Sunday, September 27, 2009

Leaf Playball Bubble Gum Baseball Helmets / Caps

I received an e-mail from Jeremy a while back with some pictures that I have been meaning to share. Jeremy sent me pictures of his Leaf Playball Bubble Gum Baseball Helmet collection:

These were available back in the early 1980's. Jeremy says he remembers buying them around 1982 or maybe 1983, which is consistent with when I remember buying them as well. I only had a few of these, but Jeremy managed to complete a full set of all 26 teams which were in the league at the time. Here is a look at the entire set, courtesy of Jeremy:

AL East:

AL West:

NL East:

NL West:

The helmets are similar to the kind of helmets that you would get in gumball machines, but were a little bit bigger in size than what you get from the gumball machine as shown below:

Helmet is really a misnomer as they are really caps instead of batting helmets. If you take a closer look at them as you can see a small button on the top as well as sections of the cap consisting of 6 panels.

It looks like an effort was made to give teams that had an entire front panel of their cap that was a different color than the rest of the cap a slightly larger sticker to try to approximate the color of the front panel. For example, notice that the RedSox logo is a round circle while the Orioles cap has a larger sticker with a somewhat more triangular shape:

However, even though it does look like they tried to make the front panel look a bit more realistic, they didn't produce the helmets as shown on the side of the box as caps did not have separate colored bills as shown for teams like the Orioles, Angels, Indians, Brewers, Twins, etc.

According to the top of the box, packs were $.30 and came with one cap and a gum ball.

Apparently Leaf did a similar release for football helmets as well. I've never seen the football helmets, so I don't know if they are just like the regular gumball machine helmets or were slightly different, as all I have is a picture of the Leaf Kick-Off Bubble Gum Football Helmet wrapper:

For both baseball and football, the packaging mentions a collector display board. According to Jeremy, he had the baseball display board, but the hats didn't really stay on the board because they were too heavy.

I'd like to say thanks to Jeremy for sharing his pictures with me and allowing me to share them on the blog. If you'd like to see all of Jeremy's photos, you can see them here:

1 comment:

--David said...

Holy cow! I remember these!! Wow, I am going to have to find a Triber hat! :-)