Topps spent the better part of the ’80s in a panic. By 1989, they were facing competition from Donruss, Fleer, Score, Upper Deck, Sportsflics, and, I don’t know, you and your baby sister.
No doubt this was a shock to the system for a company that had enjoyed an essential monopoly for 25 years.
So Topps passed the decade spinning out every configuration of card you could imagine. Big cards, little cards, coins, stamps, tattoos, rub downs, scratch offs, pewter, bronze, silver, 3D, suction cups. And in 1989, Double Headers.
These cards came packaged one per paper envelope. What you got for your retail coin was a mini two-sided card encased in a plastic stand-up display. The card contained a reproduction of the player’s 1989 issue on one side and a reproduction of their rookie card on the other.
Topps made an “all-star” version of the set, which was pretty easy to find. They also created a considerably rarer Mets/Yankees set, from whence springs this Teufel.
And that leads us to one of the more curious aspects of the Mets/Yankees set: the two “star” players (Strawberry and Mattingly) are much cheaper than the commons. For example, Teufel books for $10, while Strawberry lists for 50 cents and Mattingly for $3.
Why? Well, because Topps used the same exact version of the Strawberry and Mattingly cards in both the all-star set and the Mets/Yankees collection.