identification guide for pinback buttons?

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Apr 13, 2007
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Does anyone here collect pinback buttons with baseball players on them or know if there is any kind of organized guide for them? I see them a lot on eBay for players I collect, but was hoping there might be someone who already knows something about this kind of thing before diving in.
I'm talking about the stuff from the 70s-90s. I'm mostly looking at pins of Dave Winfield and wondering if most of what I'm seeing were produced by some officially licensed means, or just tossed off by someone with a badge maker in their living room. I'd kind of like a target before I go hunting.
The most commonly seen pins are those 3 1/2" ones from around 78-80. I believe you could originally get them at stadiums and through mail order. If you have any old baseball digest issues from that time, you can find all kinds of great ads for stuff like that (plaques, patches, buttons, posters, etc). I would assume Winfield is in this set.

Then they issued some pins in the late 80s. You can find those in around the 1" and 3 1/2" sizes. They can be tougher to find for some reason. Winfield is probably in that set.

Finally in the early 90s, there were some baseball buttons found in packs. Yellow and red borders. Those are cataloged in guides, but I don't know if Winfield is in the set. Likely though.

Of course, there are the Topps buttons from 84 as well. He is in that set.
Yeah, what I'm looking at are mostly what I'd guess are stadium issues, the 3.5" buttons. I've got his Fun Foods pin and am still hunting for the one that came out in 1990-91. I actually bought a pack of those when they were new. I managed to track down the Hendu, Roberto Kelly & Matt Williams, just not the Winfield for a decent price.

I guess that's my main hang up is seeing them listed for $3 or so + $3s&h. If I have a good month on Sportlots, I'll probably just blow my Paypal account on them and get a first hand look and maybe try to do some research. These might be another direction Tim Peichel could go with his oddball database.
I can get you some scans of different stuff, but IU am generally slow. I will mark the thread and try to find some time to locate and scan some for you. I may even have a Winfield tucked away in there.
Ok, based on what I've found on eBay, there was at least one big set issued by Sports Photo Assoc. starting in 1978 and running thru at least 1981, which totaled at least 296 pins and were actually numbered on the front. I found an auction for the Munson that is still in the wrapper.
cool, don't believe I have seen them in wrapper. A bit steep for in the package, but I wouldn't mind locating a Garvey like that. The guy had some other really cool stuff, but most of it prices up there room for bargains with that seller.