Monday, September 27, 2010

1970 Kellogg's Baseball Iron Ons - Trying to Pull a Fast One on Topps!

Getting back to the review of cereal related releases featuring team logos, one of the more obscure sets is 1970 Kellogg's Baseball Iron Ons:

These iron ons were apparently never actually offered in boxes of Kellogg's cereal

but rather were used as a way to get around the Topps monopoly that forbid any competitors from selling baseball cards.

While Kellogg's could include cards in their boxes of cereal (and apparently offer a full set for sale as a promotion with their product), they couldn't sell the cards directly in stores....or could they?

As a way to sneak around Topps, the 1970 Kellogg's cards were included "FREE" with the purchase of 2 Major League Iron-On Patches in packs like this:

Of course, its very easy to see through this ploy, especially when you don't even see the patches in the packs - all you see are the cards! Lets see, I get 6 cards and 2 iron ons, but I'm actually getting the cards free. Yeah, right!

Here is a picture of the box they came in:

which also highlights that the cards are "FREE". The drawing of Harmon Killebrew on the box looks to be based on his 1970 Kellogg's card:

There are apparently only 10 team iron-ons in the set. In addition to the Orioles patch shown above, the following teams were also included:

Whenever I've seen these listed for sale, it is always these same 10 teams, so I'm assuming that these were the only teams produced.

Here are pictures from some previous auctions to show that it is always the same teams that are offered for sale:

The fact that they couldn't even bother to produce iron ons for half the teams makes it very clear that the iron ons were just a gimmick to sell the cards and to try to get around Topps.

What isn't clear is whether Kellogg's was even involved, since their name doesn't show on the iron-ons, the pack, or the box. Also not clear is whether the intention all along was to sell these at retail when the cereal promotion was created, or whether this was done after the cereal promotion was over to move unused cards by the card manufacturer (the Xograph Company). I'm guessing it may have been the latter given there is no mention of Kellogg's.

The backs have instructions for applying the iron-on:

Its probably not accurate to call this a Kellogg's set as it appears Kelloggs may not have been involved, but since they were sold along with "FREE" 1970 Kellogg's cards, they have come to be known in the hobby as the 1970 Kellogg's iron-ons.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Putting the Logos Back Where They Belong!

The Topps Vault is auctioning off some negatives that show what the pictures that were used in some of their 1981 Topps Football Super Action cards looked like before the airbrush artists got a hold of them and removed the team logos from the helmets (as well as some other items as we will see below).

Lets start by taking a look at Archie Manning's Super Action Card:

and then look at the actual photo:

Not only did they remove the fleur-de-lis from the Saints helmets, but they also removed the Saints logo from Archie's hand towel.

Kellen Winslow lost not only the lightning bolt from his Charger helmet

but he lost them from his jersey and pants as well.

Not only that, but the person behind him on the sideline disappeared and the microphone cord is gone as well!

Here's another airbrush job on a Charger's uniform, but it looks like the artist must have been getting tired by this point since all he did was color the lightening bolt on the pants yellow since you can still see the outline of the bolt:

Here is the actual photo from the 1980 AFC Championship game:

Steve Largent looks like he's wearing a Penn State helmet since it now looks almost white instead of silver

Even though the Browns were one team that Topps didn't have to deal with when it came to covering up logos, this Brian Sipe card still required airbrushing

because of the Colts helmet in the background.

It looks like the Topps airbrush artist could not find the right shade of green to match the rest of the Eagles uniform as Wilbert Montgomery's helmet really doesn't go with the uniform:

For some reason there is also a mysterious blue aura around the coaches on the sideline on the card that disappears when you see the original photo:

Finally, we have Ahmad Rashad after

and before:

These negatives are fun to look at to see what was airbrushed out of the picture. Looking at these photos, I can't help but imagine how much better the Topps Football sets from 1970 through 1981 would have been had they not had to airbrush the photos to avoid paying licensing fees to the NFL during that time.

Fortunately 1981 was the last year that Topps had to airbrush as they finally worked things out with the NFL and were able to use logos again starting in 1982:

Sunday, September 19, 2010

1992 Kelloggs Frosted Flakes Baseball Stickers

Following up the review of the Post Cereal issues from the early 1980s, I wanted to take a look at another cereal related release, this time from Kellogg's that came in packages of Frosted Flakes in 1992 that featured Major League Baseball team logos:

There were four different sticker sheets, with one sheet for each of the four divisions at the time. Each sheet also features a sticker of Tony the Tiger.

Even though it was released in 1992, the set includes the expansion teams that would start playing in 1993 as the Marlins can be seen on the NL East sticker sheet:

Here are the other two divisions which are still in the original packaging:

Of course, the lawyers have to make sure the parents are sufficiently warned so that Kellogg's can't be sued if there are any sticker mishaps, so the backs contain this message:

Here is a look at the box, which in this case not only has a sheet of stickers inside and Tony wearing a Red Sox uniform:

but also features a history of the Boston Red Sox on the back:

as well as a mail-in offer for the entire set (for only $1.00 and 2 UPCs):

I'm not sure if there were other boxes which featured other team histories on the back, as the Red Sox box is the only team I've come across so far.

There was also a version of the box which did not include a team history, but which featured a picture of all 4 sticker sheets on the back, and Tony in a Kellogg's uniform:

If anyone has a box with Tony in another team uniform, please let me know as I'd like to see if there were any other teams that were featured on the box as part of this promotion.

Friday, September 10, 2010

1984 Post Cereal Baseball Stickers

Post continued their 3rd annual baseball related promotion in 1984 with a fold out card that contained 4 team stickers on one card:

and a scratch-off game on the other card:

The rules and the list of prizes were included on the inside of the cards:

Prizes included pennants, batting helmets, baseballs, shirts, and team jackets. The rules don't mention which Post cereals were included in the promotion, so its not clear if these were only included in one particular brand of cereal or not.

Here is a look at the unfolded card:

This is how they came packaged:

I haven't been able to find too many pictures of these, so I'm afraid these are the only stickers that I have to show at this point:

1984 was the last year that Post included MLB logo items in their cereal for many years. Unfortunately when Post returned to using baseball to promote their cereals in the early 1990s, they did so without a license with MLB, so we ended up with cards like this:

It wouldn't be until 2001 that Post finally started including logos on their Baseball cards when they partnered with Topps to include cards like this:

Monday, September 6, 2010

1983 Post Cereal Baseball Team Cards

Post Cereal followed up their 1982 Team Card set with a similar set in 1983:

Given the Super Sugar Crisp logo on the front of the card, it appears that rather than being found in a number of different brands of Post Cereal like the 1982 set, the 1983 set was only available in this one brand of cereal.

The cards once again featured a team history on the back:

In looking at the back of this Orioles team card, it looks like Post has got its history wrong. According to this card, Jim Palmer never won 20 games or a Cy Young award. I guess this means you can't trust Sugar Bear to get his baseball facts straight.

If you want to get a cereal spokesanimal who actually knows his baseball, then Tony the Tiger is the guy to talk to since everyone knows he rolls with Ozzie Smith.

You can see the full story here at Cardboard Junkie's awesome retelling of the baseball classic "The Kid Who Could".

There was no contest associated with the team card promotion as far as I can tell as there is no contest card attached to the team card like there was the year before. Perhaps there was some type of promotion on the cereal box, but I have not found any pictures of the box to confirm.

Since a number of complete sets can be found for sale on ebay, the cereal box may have contained an offer to order the entire set. Speaking of complete sets, here is a look at the full set of 26 teams:

It would be nice to see an updated version of a promotion like this as it sure would make breakfast more fun!