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12/8/18 2:40 AM
Passed up again by Strat-O-Matic. 1980 was the choice this year despite the reissue of next door neighbor 1982 just three years ago.
In the announcements narrative at the S-O-M site, the 1980 World Series winning Phillies are celebrated. As were the Royals, whom the Phils beat in the Fall Classic. A 1976 release would have included a much better--by 10 games--Phillies team and a division winning Royals team in a three way battle with Oakland (record 341 stolen bases) and Minnesota (Mauch-managed platoon/bunt strategy dynamo). Also included would be the most iconic team of modern times--the 1976 Cincinnati Reds, who faced the first Yankees team to go to the World Series since 1964. 1976 would have provided a nice contrast to the homerun/strikeout era of today.
But just last year, S-O-M released 1968 to celebrate its 50th anniversary. The release of a season which features such extreme hitter ineptitude was at odds with Hal's general philosophy. It would not have been his choice--at least not yet. 1976 is a more versatile and moderate version.
I believe that S-O-M would have reissued 1976 by now if they included "mixed player" cards with the retro sets like they do with the current sets.
1976 Yankees and Orioles had many players split their time between the two
clubs. They finished 1-2 in the AL East. There were many other intra-league transactions in MLB in 1976 that furthered the need for individualized player-per-team carding.
S-O-M fell behind the times long ago with both card and computer gaming. They started out as a game for draft leagues. That's the past. For a long time now, the game is mostly a solo venture, which means playing teams against each other in season replay. So those players who played for multiple teams within the same league should be represented accurately for each team they played with. Then those players' composite cards should be included--as they currently are.
S-O-M included mixed player cards with current teams some time ago. Those are sold separately. They should have included those with both current and retro sets with the cost built into both. But--like the "additional" players, this method of separation gave the company information they wanted for customer profiling.
But no matter how dumb the customer base has been--in the minds of those within the walls of 42 Railroad Plaza--the best thing to do is offer the consumer full service options. Those options I'm discussing are not cost prohibitive.
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