1973 was the year of Calbee's inaugural baseball card sets. 48 years later, the company still produces cards of Japan Pro Baseball players annually. Thus, in a way, the case could be made that Calbee is the Topps of Japanese baseball cards.
In 1973, Calbee produced two very similar sets of baseball cards. Card fronts and players are identical for the first 91 cards in both sets. However, the backs of the JC1 (Monoshiri) set contain a crossed bats motif near the top, while the JCM 2 card backs contain the player's team flag near the top. Shigeo Nagashima is the most popular Japanese baseball player in the history of the sport. Nagashima was still an active player in 1973, though it was his penultimate season. Unsurprisingly, the first six cards in the JC 1 and JC 2 sets depict Shigeo Nagashima.
This lot contains JC 1 card number 5 of Nagashima and JC 2 cards numbered 2 and 6. In each case, the Japanese text on the front keeps it simple: "Nagashima, 3rd base, Giants". 1970s and 80s Calbee cards tend to chip very easily, especially at the corners. These examples are in much higher grade than is normally seen--especially card #6.
Size: Each card is 2 3/8" x 3 1/8".
Condition: Card #2--Nm. Card #3--Ex/Mt. Card #6--Nm/Mt.