We used to have so many brands.
The second jumbo sized package from Howard in the past few months was comprised almost entirely of Cardinals cards from brands that don't exist today (i.e. not Topps) and from the years I couldn't call myself a card collector. These are The Lost Years. My interest in baseball cards began to wane as I got closer to high school graduation, and the year after I graduated there was no World Series. It was hard to even watch baseball again for awhile.
I have no memory of Mike Gallego as a Cardinal, but seeing him like this doesn't surprise me. Tony La Russa employed a number of players he coached in Oakland in his early days with the Cards. Dennis Eckersley and Mark McGwire come to mind most prominently, but there were quite a few others.
There are several variations on this Ron Gant You Crash the Game insert, so I'm not exactly sure which this is. It has a golden sheen to it, so I'm thinking it might be a gold parallel of an insert. Maybe. Who knows?
This looks like a dream I had once.
I've opened a few of these preview packs and I don't remember getting any Cardinals cards, so this is probably going into the binders.
There aren't many cards of Willie McGee in a throwback jersey, so I am really digging this card. He came back to the team at the tail end of his career and did pretty well in a reduced role.
This is a nice shot of Big Mac. Lost in all of the steroids nonsense sometimes is that McGwire was, or at least seemed to be, one of the nicer guys in the game. I can't really defend what he did, though. I don't care how many people were doing it.
Here's one for the ever-growing Ozzie binder.
I'm slowly discovering that there's quite an army of second-year Albert Pujols cards on the market.
I didn't know that Upper Deck got into the oddball game much after the early-'90s, but this appears to be a Post cereal card. I wonder if this came from a cereal box. I would probably buy more cereal (or cookies, or bread, or whatever) if you could get special baseball cards inside. Yeah, I probably shouldn't have admitted that.
There were a couple of nice Ginter parallels tossed into this group. Duncan had to retire way too early in his career, but he's one of the lucky ones to have a World Series ring to call his own.