At one time in the 1990s I considered myself to be a major Ken Griffey Jr. collector, maybe not a super-collector but at least a junior-collector. I don’t know how many Griffey cards I had but it was in the hundreds, maybe even over 1,000 with duplicates. At the time I purchased everything connected to Griffey from Starting Lineup figures to cereal boxes and magazines, I still have some of my old Beckett, Sports Illustrated and Tuff Stuff magazines with Griffey on the cover tucked away and most of the SLU figures.
But one day in 1997 my wife (now ex-wife) in anger threw away a large portion of my collection, I call it the “Purge” and it is a day every collector fears. I estimate that she threw away 75-85% of my Griffey collection, I was devastated and lost interest and I did not want to repurchase cards that I had once owned. I call these lost cards “Ghost” cards.
In January 2014 I joined Zistle and when I tallied my Griffey collection I found out I was sitting on only 92 unique Ken Griffey Jr. cards. I was a minimal player collector and realized it was time to make a decision to either commit to collecting Griffey or stop calling myself a player collector. I decided to commit and go full on.
I made a Griffey want list, which is now up to 325 cards, and set some collecting goals specific to my player collection. In July 2014 I hit my 200th Griffey card and by January 2015 I was up to 291 Griffey cards. My goal at the beginning of this year was to reach 400 cards by December 2015, a goal I not only reached but smashed with over 4 months left in the year. Last Friday I received the 10-card 1991 Front Row Griffey set that I had ordered earlier in the week and the #6 card on the checklist, “Up close and personal” was my #500 unique Ken Griffey Jr. card.
I am now only 3,500 short of TJ's amazing accomplishment which he hit yesterday, congratulations to him on that milestone.