Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Look at the 1987 Dodgers Unocal Pin Set

I still remember the days when every new Dodger season meant a new Dodger promotion at local Union 76 gas stations.  I'd wait patiently for the newest commercial telling me what they had in store.  Then, I would needle and prod my parents to get their gas there.

Let me tell ya, those gas executives are insidious folks.  They knew parents couldn't resist the screams of a youthful rabid Dodger fan like myself.

In the late '80's to early 90's, my favorite promo of all-time came out.  They were the Dodgers historical pins, and over the next coming weeks I'll share every pin they made.  Today, we look at the 1987 Unocal pin set.

From what I remember, you could buy one pin with the purchase of eight or more gallons of gas at Unocal 76 gas stations.  A total of 6 different pins were available.  Check them all out below.

BTW, this pin promotion ran for 7 years, and 6 pins were released each year.  They are very affordable today, and can be purchased for just a few bucks a piece on eBay.

Now, on to the pins.
Pin #1 - Logo Pin - This year marks the 25 Anniversary of Dodger Stadium. Since 1962, more than 64 million fans have visited baseball's greatest shrine to witness some of the game's most exciting moments and most talented players.  Over 25 years, the Dodgers have won 3 World Championships, 7 NL Pennants, and 6 NL Western Division Titles.
Pin #2  World Series Titles Pin - During the past 25 years at Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers have captured 3 World Series titles:  Behind Koufax, Drysdale and Podres, they swept the NY Yankees in four straight in 1963.  In 1965, the Minnesota Twins fell in 7 games.  And in 1981, after losing the first two games, the Dodgers won four straight to beat the Yankees.
Pin #3 - 1st Game at Dodger Stadium Pin - Dodger Stadium opened its doors fot eh first time on April 10, 1962.  A crowd of 52,664 fans witnessed the inaugural game as the Reds behind Bob Purkey beat Johnny Podres and the Dodgers 6 to 3..  Cincinnati's Wally Post hit the first home run at Dodger Stadium.  Duke Snider go the Dodgers first hit - a single in the 2nd inning.
Pin #4 - 7 Pennants in 25 Years Pin - No Major League club has won more pennants than the Dodgers' seven during the past 25 years.  Under Walter Alston, the Dodgers captured titles in 1963, 1965, 1966 and 1974.  Tommy Lasorda piloted the Dodgers to NL pennants in his first two years of managing: 1977 and 1978, and again in 1981.
Pin #5 - Baseball in the Olympics Pin - Baseball's greatest involvement in the history of the Olympics took place at Dodger Stadium in 1984 as teams from eight countries competed.  More than 385,000 fans viewed the eight day tournament as Japan took the Gold Medal, USA the Silver and Chinese Taipei the Bronze.
Pin #6 - All-Star Game Pin - July 8, 1980 - Dodger Stadium was the site of baseball's 51st All-Star Game.  Dodger All-Stars in 1980 were Bill Russell, Reggie Smith, Bob Welch, Steve Garvey, Jerry Reuss and Davey Lopes.  The National League won the game 4 to 2 before 56,088 fans with Reuss as the winning pitcher.
BTW, below is an example of what the complete pin packaging looks like.  I have not personally kept the cardboard backing for my collection, so I took the below photo from eBay.  As you can see, pins were attached to cardboard backing with a description of each pin.
(1987 Unocal Pin Set)

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  1. What is the collection worth along with a MVP Player pin for Maury W., Sandy K and Steve C?

    1. These pins are not rare, by any means. They are quite common and plentiful in the marketplace. If you search eBay you can find individual pins for just a few bucks a piece. I personally wouldn't pay more than $3 to $4 each, and I would expect to pay much less if I was buying a lot at once.

  2. Do you happen to know the dates and games they were given away in 1987?

    1. It is not clear to me if these pins were ever given out during a game at Dodger Stadium. My recollection is that they were handed out by local Unocal 76 gas stations.

  3. My father worked for Unocal many moons ago. I have a good sized collection of framed Dodger/Unocal pins that are collecting dust in a box in my closet. Would you be interested or know of anyone/any place that might be? (I'm not living under the delusion that they'll finance my retirement by any means.)

    1. ralphheraldez@hotmail.comSunday, March 14, 2021 12:32:00 AM

      yes I would please email me


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