Here's a card that should have been produced, especially when you consider that the player was already on a multi-rookie card in the 1977 Topps set: a dedicated 1978 card for future superstar Dale Murphy.
Take a look at my card design:
Considering that the 1978 Topps set is rife with players that barely, if at all, played the previous year, why Topps didn't give this up-and-coming Braves prospect a card is beyond me.
A first round pick (5th pick overall) in the 1974 amateur draft out of Portland, Oregon, Murphy was already up for a cup of coffee in 1977, and performed well in his limited time in the Majors, hitting .316 with a couple of homers and 14 runs batted in in only 18 games.
Pretty nice if you ask me.
He was also up for 19 games in 1976, and did a decent job of it then as well, hitting .262 with nine R.B.I.'s.
He also ripped it up in the Minors during the 1977 season, hitting .305 with 22 homers and 90 ribbies in 127 games for Richmond in Triple-A ball.
You think this would have all been good enough to give the guy a card all by his lonesome.
As we all know, Murphy went on to have a borderline Hall of Fame career, winning the National League M.V.P. twice, in 1982 and 1983, as well as five Gold Gloves and appearing in five All-Star games.
During the first part of the 1980's he was up there as one of the best in the game.
By the time he retired after the 1993 season, his 18-year career gave us 398 homers, 1266 runs batted in, 2111 hits and 1197 runs scored.
But it was his peak years between 1980 and 1987 that made Murphy a household name in the baseball world, just falling short of Cooperstown as one of those players just outside the bubble (like Dave Parker, Steve Garvey, et al).
Factor in his boring 1979 Topps card as his first solo card, and this 1978 card would have been nice as a collector to have out there.