Presidential first pitch cards offer easy collecting niche among plentiful political cardboard

bill-clintonWe’ve seen plenty of politicians in our sports card sets in the last decade or so and even more here and there in various non-sports sets in the past, but one easy way to filter out the interesting cards from the mundane is to pick a niche.

That’s ultimately up to your taste, but one niche that might appeal to more baseball fans on this Presidents Day would be cards that show a Commander in Chief actually on a baseball field throwing out a ceremonial first pitch.

There have been quite a few.

George-W-BushStandard insert cards, memorabilia cards and even an autograph or two can be found with this focus. Unlike generic politician cards in past sports sets, at least these can have a tie to the game. And it seems literally every memorable first pitch — and more — can be found on a card somewhere.

The 2002 Topps American Pie Presidential First Pitch Relics set (up top) offered us a piece of a stadium seat embedded into a card showing the first pitch. The same happened in 2004 Topps and 2004 Topps Chrome, which also had a non-Relic insert. A set also can be found in 2011 Topps Opening Day solely spotlighting presidential first pitches. These aren’t alone and there are also many single-card instances from the early 1990s up until today in baseball sets — even a certified autograph for George W. Bush in 2011 Topps Allen & Ginter.

Politicans in sports card sets were perhaps overdone in the last decade but at least some of them had a baseball tie making their inclusion make more sense. This year’s Topps baseball set was due to include politicians on cards (not baseball-specific) but the company changed its plans before its recent arrival — a move that has had a mixed response in a recent Buzz Poll. 

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