Did You “Know” This About 1984 Fleer Update Baseball Cards?

The 1980s are notorious for issuing some of the most overproduced sets.  Despite that, there are a few gems to keep an eye out for.  One that still holds quite a bit of value today is the 1984 Fleer Update set.  This is Fleer’s very first update set, and it contains (132) cards.  It has a short print run, and was only available through dealers.  The set grew in popularity, and prices went up dramatically.  Today a complete set is worth well over $200.  That’s a lot considering most sets from the 80s can’t be given away.  Key XRCs from this set include Roger Clemens, John Franco, Dwight Gooden, Jimmy Key, Mark Langston, Bret Saberhagen, Ron Darling, and Kirby Puckett.  Roger Clemens and Kirby Puckett are the big money cards.  Even though its far from a rookie, the Pete Rose card is popular with collectors too.

  • The print dot pattern is different when compared to an authentic card.
  • Perfect centering – counterfeit cards usually have great centering.  Authentic cards are known for having terrible centering.
  • One of the biggest signs that your 1984 Fleer Update card is a counterfeit is finding a capital “K” in the word “Know” on the back.

Counterfeit

Authentic

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How To Spot A Fake Roger Clemens 1984 TCMA Pawtucket Red Sox #22 Card

Despite all of the negative press, Roger Clemens is one of those guys collectors still go after.  Its going to be awhile before we see him inducted into Cooperstown though.  One of his most popular cards is the 1984 TCMA Pawtucket Red Sox #22 minor league card.  To many Clemens collectors, this is the big card to own along with the 1984 Fleer Update rookie.  Be careful, because there is a fair share of counterfeits for sale.

Here is an example of a counterfeit version:

Look at the right side of the letter “A” and the left side of the letter “W” in the word “PAWTUCKET”.  The green space in between almost forms a “V” shape.  That is the dead giveaway its a counterfeit.  The space should be a straight green bar with those two sides parallel to one another.

Here is an example of an authentic card:

As you can see, the green bar is perfectly straight and the right side of the letter “A” and the left side of the letter “W” are parallel.

How To Spot A Fake Dan Marino 1984 Topps #123 Rookie Card

1984 Topps Football is loaded with lots of rookie cards.  Eric Dickerson, Howie Long, and Dwight Stephenson to name a few.  There are two quarterbacks though who’s rookie cards you immediately think about whenever this set is mentioned – John Elway and Dan Marino.  Both have been heavily counterfeited over the years.

With so many grading companies looking the other way and allowing trimmed/counterfeit cards to pass through, its important to know what to watch out for.  Nothing could be more irritating than finding out the centerpiece of your collection is a fake.

Below are some tips on what to keep an eye open for when looking at Dan Marino 1984 Topps rookie cards:

  • Black border – many counterfeit examples exhibit a black border that comes to four sharp corners around the photo.  On authentic examples, those corners are much more rounded.
  • If you’re able to weigh the card, counterfeits tend to be a little heavier.  Counterfeits tend to weigh 1.93 grams compared to the normal 1.90 grams.
  • Look at the Miami Dolphins logo on the card’s front.  The stripes on the dolphin’s helmet are usually fuzzier on a counterfeit.  Take a common Miami Dolphins card from that set and compare it to the Dan Marino card you’re looking at.  Authentic examples should have clear stripes.
  • On the front of Marino’s jersey you can see the number “13”.  Lots of counterfeits have a notch out of the “1” near the edge towards the center.
  • On the back of the card, the © logo is incomplete, and the “A” in “YEAR” and “8” in “1983” (in the statistics box) are both filled in on counterfeits.

Card of the Day: Lloyd Moseby 1984 Nestle Dream Team #7

Card of the Day: Rudy Law 1984 Fleer #67

Card of the Day: Chuck Fusina 1984 Topps USFL #101

These Cards From 1984 Are NOT Dan Marino Rookies

At one time you could think of a player, and instantly one iconic rookie card would come to mind.  Nowadays that doesn’t happen.  Active athletes today have so many rookie cards to choose from.  For example, if you asked a group of collectors to write down a single Tom Brady rookie card, you’ed get various correct responses.

In my opinion, the further back we go the easier it is to identify a player’s true rookie.  That’s just how it goes when there were fewer manufacturers and products being released.  Its very possible for someone to have one unanimously regarded rookie, while at the same time having other cards issued that same year.  He’s far from the only one, but Dan Marino is the first person I think about when it comes to this setup.  Trust me.  There are lots of others.

Dan Marino’s true rookie card is #123 in the 1984 Topps Football set.  As far as football rookie cards from the 80’s go, this one is atop the list.  That card is his only rookie.  Despite that, eight other Marino cards can be found from 1984.  They’re a mixture of subsets, inserts, stickers, and promotional pieces.  Its very common for sellers to label them as rookies though.  I don’t like to see that.  Someone who doesn’t know any better could easily think they’re getting a good deal on an actual Marino rookie.

1984 Topps Instant Replay #124

1984 Topps Passing Leaders #202

1984 Topps Instant Replay #355

1984 Topps Glossy #3

1984 Topps Stickers All-Pro Foil #132/#144

1984 Topps Stickers #222

1984 Miami Dolphins Police #9

1984 7-Eleven Discs #E15