If you're a collector, you know what's in the picture above. If not, you're looking at an ancient method of dispersing picture cards, the vending box. At one time in American history, baseball cards were collected by young people (commonly referred to as chill-dren) who carried pennies and nickels in their pockets. The currency was used to pay off larger young people who threatened wedgies. The wedgie-givers then used the currency to purchase baseball picture cards in a contraption similar to the one below.
These vending machines were filled with cards from vending boxes such as the one at the top and the one below.
I recently purchased a 1984 Topps Baseball Vending Box on eBay and have had a blast going through it. I pulled out a short stack of twelve cards to share.
Rik Aalbert Blijleven is still considered Holland's #3 export, behind females and hemp clothing.
4-22-83 - Both hits were given up to SS Scott Fletcher.
6-21-83 - Carl Yastrzemski went 3 for 4 with a double.
7-8-83 - Rik gave up two singles, a double, a triple and a HR. Plus 4 BB's and an HBP.
4-12-83 - Moreland's HR was preceded by a Leon Durham single and a Ron Cey single.
6-29-83 - Carney's grand slam came against Paul Splittorff as part of a 5-run 1st inning explosion.
6-26-83 - Rhoden's performance increased Pittsburgh's odds of winning the game by an outstanding 28.9%.
6-30-83 - Gross's RBI would be his only RBI during his rookie campaign.
5-25-83 - Kirk would hit two more inside-the-park home runs. The last came on June 5, 1989 with the Dodgers at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium on a ball to deep center hit off of 2nd-year phenom, John Smoltz.
6-25-83 - Spike's hit came in his first AB, against Jim Gott.
7-13-83 - Spike was batting .333/.394/.483 after this game. He'd finish the season batting .196/.257/.271.
6-24-83 - It took a walk-off single by Pete O'Brien in the bottom of the 9th to get Mike the win.
5-15-83 - Rozem retired Amos Otis, Pat Sheridan and Joe Simpson in order in the bottom of the 11th for the save.
7-25-83 - Lubratich may have had an RBI if the batter in front of him hadn't gone 0-4. That batter was Rod Carew who was batting .373 at the time.
8-1-83 - Steve got his 4 RBI's through a double, a sac fly and a sacrifice hit.
Dick Tidrow had a busy season. It would be his last decent year. The wheels fell off to the tune of a 9.19 ERA in 1984 for the Mets.