This card is like one of those off-kilter dreams where you’re falling in love with your spouse, but it’s not really your spouse.
Maybe your dream spouse is shorter than she is in waking life. Or maybe he has more charm and humor.
Invariably, you wake up feeling sad, exhilarated, and a little bit guilty.
The original ’71 Kranepool shows Eddie standing tall, with his mouth open slightly and his piercing blue eyes glimmering beneath his bushy brows. It’s a comfortable, casual pose and it makes for a wonderful card.
The picture on this glossy simulacrum is cropped tighter, and a younger Eddie looks determined to get his serious baseball-card pose right. He is deep in concentration, lips pursed and shoulders hunched, and his grip is making sawdust of the bat handle.
Topps apparently could not replicate the legacy fonts for this set, so the lowercase “Ed Kranepool” and “1st base” are a couple of distracting picas larger than on the ’71 card.
And speaking of distractions, that gold embossed Topps All-Time Fan Favorites logo hovering in the Florida sky is quite the blemish.
So yeah, this ’05 Kranepool is fun, with it’s modern printing technology and extra layer of sheen.
But when all is said and done, I’m happy to awaken to my original ’71 Kranepool…
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