Monday, February 19, 2024

Nagashima Magazine Cards

Ten years ago BBM was in the middle of publishing a series of "mooks" (magazine/books) about Shigeo Nagashima.  Issue number one was released on June 3rd of 2013 and subsequent issues were published on the third of each following month with the twelfth and final issue being published on May 3rd, 2014.  The monthly publication on the third was appropriate since Nagashima's uniform number was 3.

Each issue dealt with a separate time period in Nagashima's baseball career.  Issue #1 covered his rookie year of 1958 while Issue #2 covered 1959.  The third issue was dedicated to his collegiate career at Rikkio University from 1953 to 1958.  The fourth issue dealt with 1960 and the fifth covered 1961.  I couldn't find either the sixth or seventh issue on but I think they covered the time periods of 1962-63 and 1964-66 respectively.  Issue #8 dealt with the years 1967-70 and Issue #9 covered 1971-73.  The tenth issue commemorated 1974, the final season of his playing career with the final two issues covered his time as manager of the Giants with Issue #11 dealing with his first stint from 1975 to 1980 and Issue #12 dealing with the second from 1993 to 2001.

Each issue included a pair of Nagashima baseball cards.  I've been aware of these magazines for years but I hadn't seen any of the cards until I came across an auction last summer for a six card lot.  I asked Ryan to pick it up for me and we got it for only 521 yen.  They were in the box I got from him last week.

The cards have a shiny front.  I think some of the photos may have been colorized.  The cards I got were from issues #1, #7 and #10 and the backs contain information for the year(s) highlighted by that issue of the magazine.  The photos probably come from those years as well although it's difficult to say that for sure.  For each pair of cards (or at least for the pairs that I have), the back of the first card is labelled "The Record" and has his statistics for the time period in question and a little write up of his performance while the back of the second card is labeled "The Matchup" and (I think) has text about a particular matchup or rivalry he had.  The "1958" matchup talks about him being struck out by Masaichi Kaneda four times in his first NPB game while I think the "1964-66" matchup talks about his rivalry with the Hanshin Tigers and Minoru Murayama.

Here's the front and back of each of the six cards I have:

I think it's kind of interesting that there's nothing on the cards to indicate when they were made.  The copyright line on the back doesn't have the year and the BBM logo on the front is year-less as well.  

While these are interesting, I don't think I'm going to make much of an effort to find the other 18 cards.  I have the 2014 Epoch "Shigeo Nagashima Memorial Treasures" set and I'm currently working on completing the 1999 BBM Mr Giants set so I think I'm good on biographical cards of Shigeo Nagashima.  But if I come across more cards while I'm looking for something else, I might ask Ryan to grab them.

No comments: