Thursday, June 30, 2016

Cardboard Gods - A story told through baseball cards

  I recently finished reading (alright, I didn't read it but listened to it on audio while walking the dog and trying to shed some excess summer pounds) an interesting book that was both a memoir of author Josh Wilker's growing up in the 1970's while also intertwined with baseball cards and connections in his life.

He grew up as an obsessed Carl Yastrzemski fan and his attempted correspondence with him.

He pulls in cards like the 1975 Herb Washington - the only player to ever have a baseball card with the title "Designated Pinch Runner" since he never had an at bat! Wilker compares his unique baseball talent with his hippie parents of the early 70's.

As a teen, he shares how he struggled with his brother, classmates, and in general growing up.  This led to his confusion of certain players such as Dave and Doug Rader.  I can certainly relate to searching through a bunch of cards looking for a certain card like a Tim Foli and finding Tom Foley!

He also shares his passion for the 1975 Steve Garvey card for its Utopian feel (yes, I did just watch Zootopia with the kids, but that is neither here nor there..).  Wilker loves the symmetry of the card, the bright colors, the background, and in all, just what he refers to as the "Perfect Baseball Card" even though he is a Yaz fan.

I really enjoyed this book and wish someone would do this same thing for those of us raised in the 80s!  Here's looking at some of my blogger friends like SanJoseFuji - I could see you writing an book like this!  If you get a chance read this book - or listen to it while you walk the dog!  I promise you will think of your collection of cards and start making connections of your own!


  1. Hmmm looks like I have a book to add to my summer reading list!

  2. I have it, and read it, as well. Enjoyed it too.

  3. Brett... I LOVE this book! In fact it's my favorite baseball card related book. Mr. Wilker actually has a blog where he continues to write stories about cards and memoirs.

    Not gonna lie... my life just isn't interesting enough to write a book. And most of the stories worth sharing have already been shared on my blog ;)

    P.S. That Herb Washington card is sweet! Did you get him to sign TTM? I actually used the same card in my book review post of Cardboard Gods:

  4. Cardboard Gods was one of the first baseball card blogs I ever read regularly, so it was great to see that the author collected his work to put into a book. I finally read the book last year. Great stuff.