Preview – 1998 Sports Illustrated Then & Now

Beckett Set Notes (verbatim from Beckett set page)

The 1998 Sports Illustrated Then and Now set (created by Fleer) was issued in one series totalling 150 cards and was distributed in six-card packs containing five cards and one mini-poster with a suggested retail price of $1.99. The fronts feature color photos of active and retired players plus 1998 rookies and prospects. The backs carry ratings for each player in key skill areas. The set contains the topical subset: A Place in History (37-53) which displays statistical compairson between current players and retired greats. Notable Rookie Cards include Magglio Ordonez. An Alex Rodriguez checklist mini-poster was randomly seeded into 1:12 packs. In addition, an Alex Rodriguez promo card was distributed to dealers and hobby media several weeks to the product’s release.

Box Contents

24 packs with 6 cards per pack


$13.35 on eBay ($9.36 auction with $3.99 shipping)


Here is Fleer’s shot at a pseudo-vintage set.  It actually took two recognized names to put out this product – Fleer and Sports Illustrated.

The foil packs follow the lead of the box.

Insert / Parallel List (taken from Beckett)

Art of the Game – 8 cards – 1:9 (insert)
Covers – 12 cards – 1:18 (insert)
Great Shots – 25 mini-posters – 1:1 (insert)
Road to Cooperstown – 10 cards – 1:24 (insert)
Extra Edition – 150 cards – 1:24 (parallel)


The year 1998 marked my (brief) return to buying modern cards.  I was mostly into Topps, but I did pick up a few packs of SI Then and Now.  I remember these cards as being a notch or two above the Topps flagship cards – very thick and very glossy.  To my 80s cardboard eyes, these cards were very impressive.  I’m looking forward to tearing into this box.  I think getting this box for under $15 is pretty good.

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