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starting line up baseball, starting lineup kenner, starting lineup

Do You Collect Kenner's Starting Line Up Baseball Figures?


If you're a collector of Kenner's popular line of Starting Line Up Baseball Figures then this is information that you need to know

Because here you'll find information on every figure that was produced and even some that weren't!

The best places to buy them...

And the rarest figures that were produced.

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starting line up baseball, starting lineup kenner, starting lineup

McInally, a former professional American football player with the Cincinnati Bengals, came up with the idea of the Starting Line-up figures during a visit to a toy store.

While browsing through the shop he noticed there were many figurines available of the likes of G.I. Joe, Star Wars and comic book characters but nothing based on real-life sports heroes.

McInally and a former college friend who was running Kenner's day to day operations decided to work together on the project and in he had a two hour of discussion with Kenner on his proposal.

The reaction from Kenner was overwhelming, but how were they to get the licensing rights?

Luckily, as an ex-professional football player Pat proved to be the key mover here as well and within a week he had commitments in hand for all the 3 major U.S sporting Leagues and so the Starting Lineup brand was born.

Kenner first debuted the MLB Starting Lineup figures in 1988 by releasing a 124 player set, a 5 player stand and a mail in baseball and each team had at least four players in the set. Kenner also distributed the players to stores generally by geographical region, so it was virtually impossible to complete the collection or find players from out of market.

The figures were sold in cases of 16 figures which were approx 4-inches in height. Each of the figures also came with one or more trading cards, and occasionally another keepsake such as a mini-poster or medallion.

There were a limited number of poses a figure could have, which was initially 10, for each sport but in 1993 and 1995 Kenner introduced a number of new poses. They also had limited articulation with joints at the shoulders, neck and waist and a base that resembled a part of the baseball field.

The Baseball figures came in blue blister packs as each sport was "color coded". Initially they were primarily sold to large retail stores and the sets were produced regionally which created large sets, however Kenner noticed that they were actually selling more to hobby dealers than toy stores.

This caused them to change their marketing strategy, and greatly reduce the number of figures per set. They also began to introduce variations of some of the figures with low production runs, thereby creating the "chase" figure into the hobby.

Kenner/Hasbro continued to produce the Starting Lineup baseball figures until 2000 when McFarlane Toys were granted the license.

Today, many of the figures have become highly sought after collectibles and can vary in price from a few dollars to $100's.

As well as their regular All Star series over MLB figures Kenner also released several series of Headliner figures, Cooperstown figures, Stadium Stars, Baseball Greats, Classic Doubles and Team Line-ups as well as a series of 12 inch figures.

The Rarest MLB Starting Line up Figures:

  • 1988 Cal Ripken Jr. $125.00
  • 1988 Nolan Ryan $125.00
  • 1989 Scott Fletcher (FP) $125.00
  • 1989 12.00 Tony Gwynn $250.00
  • 1989 Greg Maddux (FP) $100.00
  • 1989 Cal Ripken Jr. $175.00
  • 1989 Mike Scioscia (FP)$110.00
  • 1990 Greg Maddux $220.00
  • 1994 Cooperstown Collection Jackie Robinson #44 $150.00 (note: there was also a #42 produced which goes for much less than this one, ie about $8!
Please note that these prices are only a guideline as they are continually fluctuating and changing.



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