One of these cards below was produced in 1992 and the other in 2014. A lot can happen in the world of trading cards in 22 years and Donruss has certainly been one of the companies that’s been put through the ringer a few times over. Now known as Panini America but producing baseball cards under the Donruss name again, the Italian-based company has brought back some staples of 80s and 90s baseball cards for those collectors chasing the nostalgia ship (until it inevitably sinks).
The Cal Ripken Jr.Elite card (the gold one) is numbered to 5,000 copies which was considered extremely rare in 1992 and features an on-card autograph of Hall of Famer and recently crowned MVP winner, Cal Ripken Jr. The card next to it comes from 2014 Donruss Baseball’s comeback and is much more rare than the ’92 version. However, aside from the serial number difference (5000 to 10) and the colors, it’s almost identical and its lack of logos and/or airbrushing doesn’t even register or disrupt the overall look and feel of the card.
There will come a day, if it hasn’t already, when collectors are going to get sick and tired of 90’s throwbacks and demand new inserts, innovations, etc. but for now, I am going to sit back and enjoy it because during Wax Heaven’s heyday, a return to 90s style is everything my writing was about. It’s too bad that I’ve returned in what appears to be the tail-end of that movement. Thankfully, I have a lot of catching up to do and it looks like it’s going to be a blast.