Monday, January 27, 2020
Issued in 1949 they are quite rare (Engel classifies them as R4, less than 10 copies known) and I have two of them, Tigers slugger Kaoru Betto and Giants star Noburo Aota!
The Aota one is particularly interesting since its a previously unknown "new discovery" that isn't listed in the guide. I really love finding stuff like this, maybe this is the only copy of this card which still exists (though its unlikely)!
I really love the design of these, the colorized portraits which show most of the player's body instead of just a headshot look great against the colorful background.
Both these guys are in the Hall of Fame. I've written about Betto before, but Aota is also interesting. He was a five time home run leader and at the time he retired in 1959 he held the career record for most home runs with a grand total of ......265. So slightly more career home runs than Pete Incaviglia? Well, the league was still pretty new at the time and his reign only lasted 4 years!