Jeff Walters

1977 Topps Baseball Trivia

1977 Topps baseball captured something that didn’t exist previously. If teams could be considered “rookie cards,” the 1977 set provided the collecting world the “rookie cards” for the two newest expansion teams, the Toronto Blue Jays and Seattle Mariners. In terms of traditional rookies, the 1977 set didn’t disappoint as it included; Mark “The Bird” Fidrych, Andre Dawson, Dale Murphy, and Dennis Martinez


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1. Which Is Worth More A PSA 10 Graded 1977 Topps Andre Dawson Or Nolan Ryan?


1977 q1

A PSA 10 1977 Topps Nolan Ryan is worth more than a Andre Dawson rookie. The highest price paid for a PSA 10 Nolan Ryan was $9,200 while the Rookie Outfielder card featuring Andre Dawson topped out at a price just over $6,200. Both of these players would become Hall of Famers, Ryan being enshrined in 1999 and Dawson in 2010.

As for 1977, Ryan led in all baseball with 341 strikeouts and 204 walks. Note that, the 200+ walks have only been reached 24 times in the history of Major League Baseball. So not only was Ryan a power-pitched with a record amount of strikeouts, he walked a lot of batters too. Meanwhile, Dawson who made his debut in 1976, hit his first of 438 homers in 1977.“The Hawk” seemed to have it all as he could hit for power, for average, and was a top-notch centerfielder.

2. How Many Cards Are In A 1977 Topps Baseball Wax Pack?


1977topps wax pack

Each 1977 Topps Baseball wax pack had 10 cards, which sold for 15 cents. The 1977 Topps baseball wax boxes held 36 packs while the cases included 20 wax boxes. Wrappers came in four distinct variations. The wrapper variations included: the sports card locker, an ad for Bazooka gum, a baseball card t-shirt offers, and a team checklist offer wrapper.

3. How Big Was The 1977 Topps Baseball Series?


1977 dt3

There were 660 cards in the 1977 Topps baseball card set. This set size started in 1973 and would end in 1977. Starting in 1978, the sets grew in size to 726.  There were also traditional subsets such as Team Cards, Record Breakers, League Leaders, Rookies and Playoff cards along with a Turn Back the Clock one as well.


4. How Many Cards Are In A 1977 Topps Baseball Vending Box?

1977 topps baseball vending box

A 1977 Topps baseball vending box held 500 cards. Most of the vending boxes, especially those from the Fritsch Cards Vault, continue to sell well auctions.

5. How Many Cards In A 1977 Topps Baseball Rack Pack?

Rack packs hold 39 cards and sold for 49 cents when they came out. The big advantage to purchasing rack packs is that a buyer can see 6 of the cards in the rack. In addition, there are no “gum stains” as these packs were the only retail packs from Topps that did not contain gum. These packs do not come centered and collectors can find some of the best cards from rack packs and wax packs.

1977 Rack - Rivers Top

Topps also produced grocery tray packs, which held 9 fewer cards than a rack pack. The tray pack had three wax packs, which meant the collector was getting 30 cards. Collectors would find these packs in department stores and super markets. Today, it is very challenging to come across an unopened tray pack.



6. What Did A 1977 Topps Baseball Rack Pack Cost?

In 1977, the pack cost 49 cents. While this was affordable for a kid back then, today these racks on eBay can sell in mid hundred dollar range to a few thousand (depending on condition, and which players are showing on the racks).

rack pack for post 1977

There are still several unopened rack packs. These rack packs did not have an autograph, but because they are vintage, they still fetch a high price. Collectors can see only two cards; one at the bottom and the one at the top, but they cannot maneuver the contents of the other cards in the chamber.

7. Were The 1977 Topps Cloth Stickers Available As Inserts In Normal Topps Wax Packs?


1977-Topps-Cloth-Stickers-Baseball Nolan-Ryan

The cloth sticker set was released as a test issue in 1977. It was a 73-subject set that was the same size as the standard cards. It comprises of 55 MLB players and two sets of 9-piece puzzles. The sticky-backed cloth cards were designed for kids to stick on notebooks or anywhere else they saw fit.

While the technology for these cards today would be considered somewhat crude, it was somewhat advanced for the 1970s. Topps had been trying out this technology since the early 1970s on some test issues and it went “mainstream” in 1977 but never really caught on.

The Nolan Ryan card sticker is the most valuable in the set, selling for up to $150 in PSA 9 condition. There are several other Hall-of-Fame stars in the cloth stickers, including Carl Yastrzemski, Lou Brock, Mike Schmidt, Johnny Bench, Pete Rose, and Robin Yount. If collectors are interested in common, ungraded cards, they can generally find them for less than a dollar on eBay. Unopened card packs, boxes and sometimes a case or two are still available in the auction market.

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Want to continue reading? Here are a few posts you might find interesting:

1970 Topps Baseball: Everything You Want To Know

1971 Topps Baseball: Everything You Wanted To Know

A Look Back At The 1986-87 Fleer Basketball Set

1989 Ken Griffey Jr. Rookie: The Improbable Foresight of Upper Deck

Ichiro Suzuki Rookie: What is the value of "Once in a Lifetime Cards?"

Investing In Fleer Michael Jordan Cards? Here Is What You Need To Know


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