2022 Bowman Baseball has been unleashed and people are now frantically chasing the next big major league stars. The youngest prospects in the game now have autographs and enough color parallels to make your head spin. Are they guaranteed to be stars in the majors? Absolutely not. Is it still fun to collect prospects and follow their ascent through the minor leagues? Absolutely!
Bowman wasn’t always loaded with parallels and autograph.s In fact, the 1991 release didn’t even have inserts.
1991 Bowman Baseball is a single-series set made up of 704 base cards. That’s it. Just base cards. This set, much like today’s Bowman products, is loaded with player’s first cards. In fact, the set features 166 Rookie Cards. Now, while we aren’t chasing Lava parallels and autographs in this one, there are some nice cards to be found including Rookie Cards of Hall of Famers Jeff Bagwell, Chipper Jones, Mike Mussina, Ivan Rodriguez and Jim Thome.
1991 Bowman Baseball Box Break
Cards per pack: 14
Packs per box: 36
Price paid: $20
Anyone looking to try some 31 year old gum?
Pack 1 highlights:
Orel Hershiser, Rod Carew, Wade Boggs & Jack Morris
This release commemorates Rod Carew’s 1991 Hall of Fame induction. The first five cards in the set are tribute cards of Carew.
Doc Gooden & Alan Trammell
Marquis Grissom, Shawon Dunston & Eddie Murray
Tom Gordon, Tom Glavine, Paul Molitor, Rondell White RC, Mike Lieberthal RC & Hensley Meulens (International League Player of the Year)
All of the Player of the Year award winners in the minor leagues got their own card in the set.
Bobby Bonilla, Greg Maddux & Juan Gonzalez
Wally Joyner, Carlos Baerga, Raul Mondesi RC & Ryne Sandberg
Mike Mussina RC, Dennis “Oil Can” Boyd, Bob Melvin, Javier Lopez RC & Barry Larkin
Moose RC! The first of, hopefully, many Hall of Fame RCs in this box.
Omar Vizquel, Jose Mesa, Lou Whitaker & Colin Powell
Colin Powell threw out the first pitch on Opening Day at Yankee Stadium in 1991.
Bret Saberhagen, Doc Gooden & Sam Militello (New York-Penn League Player of the Year)
David Justice, Ellis Burks & Matt Mieske (Northwest League Player of the Year)
Ramon Martinez, Joe Carter & Tim Howard RC (South Atlantic League Player of the Year)
Rafael Palmeiro, Shawon Dunston, Carlos Baerga & Lance Parrish
The cards featuring the foil bats in the upper left hand corner were 1990 Silver Slugger winners.
Raul Mondesi RC & Rod Carew
Roger Clemens, Ryan Klesko RC & Marc Newfield (Arizona League Player of the Year)
Robin Yount, Fred McGriff & Frank Bolick RC (California League Player of the Year)
Julio Franco, Ryne Sandberg, John Olerud & Rickey Henderson
Henderson won the third (and last) Silver Slugger award of his career in 1990.
Tim Salmon RC & Barry Bonds
Edgar Martinez, Tim “Rock” Raines & Jose Offerman (Pacific Coast League Player of the Year)
Tony Gwynn, Matt Williams, Greg Vaughn & Benny Santiago
Don Mattingly, Charlie Hough & Todd Guggiana (Pioneer League Player of the Year)
Guggiana won Player of the Year honors by batting .351 with four HR and 52 RBI in 66 games of Rookie ball. He never played above the AA level.
Nolan Ryan, Carl Everett RC & Rod Carew
Bernie Williams, Mark Langston & Kelly Gruber
Matt Williams, Greg Vaughn & Dave Parker
Dave Stewart, Harold Baines, Dale Murphy, Roberto Alomar & Ellis Burks
Burks won his Silver Slugger award by batting .296 with 21 HR and 89 RBI.
Dante Bichette, Ozzie Smith, Lee Smith, Luis Gonzalez RC, Cecil Fielder & Henry Rodriguez RC (Texas League Player of the Year)
Andre Dawson, Jose Canseco & another Jose Canseco
Dave Winfield, Ken Griffey, Sr. & Matt Williams
Randy Johnson & Rod Carew
Don Mattingly & Rickey Henderson
Rickey set the all-time stolen base record with his 939th steal on May 1, 1991. He would finish his career with 1,406 stolen bases. The closest active player to Rickey’s career mark? Dee Strange-Gordon, with 333.
Dave Stewart, Ozzie Smith, Lee Smith & Bobby Thomson’s Shot Heard Round the World
Barry Larkin, Vince Coleman, Will Clark, Andre Dawson & Reggie Sanders RC (Midwest League Player of the Year)
Andres Galarraga & Bobby Bonilla
Ken Caminiti, Mark McGwire & Darryl Strawberry
John Smoltz, Paul O’Neill, Rich “Goose” Gossage, Gary Carter & Don Robinson
Deion Sanders, Jay Buhner & Jeff Conine RC (Southern League Player of the Year)
Alan Trammell, Eddie Murray & Rod Carew
Lastly, the Steady Eddie card back. Eddie sure did beat up on the division rival Padres and Giants!
Unfortunately, I only pulled one of the five Hall of Fame rookie cards in this one. That is tough luck for me. Sure, I could go buy them pretty cheaply, but it is much more fun pulling them from a pack yourself.
I may have to give 1991 Bowman another shot.
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Want more installments of Shane Salmonson’s Cheap Wax Wednesday? Check out his other breaks in the archives.