Classic Brewers card: 2020 Yeli

April 22nd, 2021

As part of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of Topps baseball cards, we've asked fans (as well as our staff) to submit their all-time favorite baseball cards, and we've broken them down by team. We'll be revealing submissions regularly throughout the season, ranging from the famous to the weird, and everything in between.

Christian Yelich, 2020 Bowman Platinum

Yelich's 2020 Bowman Platinum card captures the Brewers' superstar at the beginning of his beautiful swing -- the swing that launched 80 home runs in his first two seasons in Milwaukee, won him back-to-back batting titles and made him the 2018 NL MVP and '19 MVP runner-up.

The card design grabs your eye, too. There's a full rainbow of colors refracting around Yelich's photo, with Yelich's name in shining blue and gold down the right side of the card, Milwaukee printed across the top and the Bowman Platinum logo across the bottom.

It was submitted by Kaylee of Wichita Falls, who got it as a gift from her dad when she went away to college this year. Yelich is her favorite player, and she got a special message along with the card.

"For years, my dad, my brother, and I loved going to get baseball card packs and seeing which ones we got," she explains. "Every time we were in a store, we stopped to grab packs. We would get them in our stockings and for our birthdays. My brother and I have a binder full of baseball cards of everyone that we have gotten.

"Recently this year, I moved into college, so I haven’t been able to be around my family to get baseball cards with them. But this year for Valentine's Day, I received a letter from my family and inside of it was a Christian Yelich baseball card. Yelich is my favorite baseball player. Inside the card, my dad wrote, 'Every girl needs a baseball card.'"

Don Money, 1977 Topps

One of the best third basemen in Brewers history, Money spent 11 years with Milwaukee, hitting 134 homers and providing strong defense at the hot corner. A fan favorite, he became the first Brewer ever to start an All-Star Game in ‘78.

Milwaukee’s own Robert Sands wrote in to share his personal affection for Money’s ‘77 Topps card:

“Growing up a huge Brewers fan, [Money] was my favorite player. As a kid, my dad would run in the store and always buy me a pack of Topps baseball cards. When he came back to the car he would open them for me and not let me see as he would reveal the team of the player. I would hear him get excited when there was a Brewers player. I can still remember the time when he opened a pack and there was my favorite player Don Money in the pack. Seeing Brewers on the card and those blue and gold uniforms, smelling that gum smell on the card was a great moment for a 10-year-old kid.”

The 1977 season would be a big one for Money at the plate. He had a career-high 25 homers and 83 RBIs, marking the only time he would reach the 20 and 80 marks in his career. -- Thomas Harrigan

Iconic Brewers card: Kurt Bevacqua, 1976 Topps

It's perfectly normal to see a guy blowing a bubble with his chewing gum while on the baseball field. It's perfectly normal for such an occurrence to be captured in photographic form for a trading card. What is extremely unusual is to see a guy blowing an 18 1/4-inch bubble that is larger than his head.

That's what Brewers infielder Kurt Bevacqua is seen doing on a 1976 Topps card depicting his victory in the '75 Joe Garagiola/Bazooka Big League Bubble Gum Blowing Championship on Aug. 4 of that year.

When asked how his life changed after clinching the title, Bevacqua said, "I feel like an old Western gunfighter now. Every 6-year-old kid in the United States is writing letters to challenge me."

The card became iconic, and it was submitted for our survey several times -- Jack G. of Wauwatosa, Wis.; Jeff C. of Lebanon, Ind.; Jon of Sherwood, Wis.; Fran of Boca Raton, Fla.; Mark C. of Encinitas, Calif.; and Ray C. of Merrick, N.Y., all expressed their fondness for the collectible.

"This inspired my Little League friends and me to have [bubble gum blowing] contests. I was 10 years old when this card came out," Ray wrote.

Jeff had some quality time bonding with his brother over this card.

"My brother and I have always found this card amusing because of both the player -- who would later become an infamous participant in the 1984 brawl between the Braves and Padres -- and the silly content displayed on the card," Jeff wrote. "There has never before or since been another card like this one!"

The silliness of the card was one of three elements Jon found fun when asking the all-important question: "A 'bubble gum' card featuring the bubble blowing champ...serendipity or amazing clarity?"

Jon also took note of the hazardous nature of the contest, particularly for Bevacqua.

"Not to mention the risk Kurt is taking with the mustache he sported," he added. "Plus, 'Bevacqua' is just a great name."

"The Brewers were not all that good and it was exciting as a young Brewers fan to see one of the role players on that team involved with the bubble gum contest," wrote Jack. "I was always excited to open a wax pack and see that card pop up!"

Bevacqua went on to play for the Rangers, Padres and Pirates after spending the 1975 and '76 seasons with Milwaukee. As a member of the Padres, he launched a memorable three-run homer in Game 2 of the 1984 World Series against the Tigers.

The homer only added to Bevacqua's fame -- he was, of course, already the Joe Garagiola/Bazooka Big League Bubble Gum Blowing champ.