Tim Salmon 1994 Fleer AU: The Chase

Tim Salmon 1994 Fleer Salmon #11 AU /2000
Tim Salmon 1994 Fleer Salmon #11 AU /2000

Man oh man was the 1994 Fleer Salmon AU a tough pull when 1994 Fleer first arrived on hobby shelves 16 years ago. I was living in Anchorage AK at the time and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on some packs of ’94 Fleer for a chance at an autographed card of the day’s hottest Angel, Tim Salmon. I must have opened about a box and a half of this stuff that year. I never saw a single Salmon AU but I did however pull a few Salmon non-AU’s which was fine with me. These cards are foil coated much like ’93 SP which I thought added a nice touch to the hobby that year. Being Rookie of the Year and blasting 31 homers in ’93, Salmon was hot like fire in ’94. Salmon signed over 2000 of these cards, each of which has an official Fleer embossed stamp to guarantee its authenticity. Although there are 2000 of these guys floating around out there they were, and I would imagine still are, extremely tough to pull. This tells me that ’94 Fleer, like a lot of products released at that time, was mass produced and anything significant would be akin to the old cliché of finding a needle in a haystack. I’m not entirely convinced that these are as tough as say the 1990 Upper Deck Reggie AU but still hard pulls nonetheless. I gave up opening ’94 Fleer and just bought one of these on the secondary market auction block. I didn’t give up, I just got smart!

Frank Thomas 1994 Fleer Lumber Company #9
Frank Thomas 1994 Fleer Lumber Company #9

Looking Back: Back in 1994, as stated that I lived in AK. My parents used to take me to an indoor mall called Diamond Center. This was an incredible mall that housed an ice rink right in the center with levels of offices and stores circling the rink by as many as 10 stories high. Looking down from the second or third story I can remember it being a beautiful sight. The second story was where I spent most of my time as there was a comic/baseball card shop there called Boscos (like the delicious chocolate drink). It was also there that I spent most of my money. One day in ’94, I purchased a few packs of ’94 Fleer. I was pretty excited to see what I got. Mom took me out for lunch at a restaurant there in the mall just across from Boscos and as we sat and waited, I busted through my packs. No 1994 Fleer Salmon AU but the break wasn’t all bad. My first pack in, I noticed a card that didn’t look like the rest. There it was, a 1994 Fleer Lumber Company Frank Thomas!

These cards are simple by design with the wood grain look going all the way to the edge. At the time, I don’t think I was more than 10 or 20 cards into my Frank Thomas collection and this little cherry made a nice addition. This card serves as a constant reminder of this story and serendipitously, how when I’m looking for one thing, I may come across something else completely different but just as exciting!

Thought of the Day:

Name something that you found when you were after something completely different.

To view the current eBay auctions for Tim Salmon baseball cards, click here.


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