Wednesday, June 24, 2020

1949 Football Back Menko JCM 62

In the past few months I have picked up a lot of Japanese menkos on several websites. For those who are not very privy to menkos, they are vintage Japanese miniature cards named after their backs. In this post, the design of the backs resemble a football so it's aptly named "Football Back." This process was done by Gary Engel. Gary released a menko catalog called "Japanese Baseball Card Checklist and Price Guide" and Dave has covered menkos in great detail in numerous posts. You can buy the price guide through Prestige Collectibles here.

What I love about this menko set, and many others I hope to cover, are the illustrations of the players on the cards. What's even cooler is that sometimes the illustrated backs are just as awesome. At the time of this post I have seven cards from this set with several more to go. In this set, the player is illustrated on the front with the player's last name in cursive. The backs have no illustrations, but have a single card number in the middle and a random, five-digit number in the bottom center. Some card numbers are repeated. I think these card numbers might be jersey numbers. I put these cards in order of jersey/card number, not the random, five-digit number Gary uses to put them in oroder in his catalogue. I may change it later to match. I feel the colors pop on these, especially when they are in better condiiton. Please note that I edited these card scans so they appear more presentable for viewing.

In Engel's price guide, he gives a description of the fronts and backs of every set. Many of the sets can have similar looking fronts and backs and he does his best to describe them. I will update this post as I acquire more of the cards.

#2 Keizo Tsutsui

#3 Makoto Kozuru

#4 Torao Ooka

#5 Shinpei Ichii

#15 Michio Nishizawa

#15 Yukinobu Kuroe

#16 Tetsuharu Kawakami

#17 Hideo Fujimoto

#18 Jiro Noguchi

#19 Takeshi Doigaki

#21 Susumu Yuki

#23 Noboru Aota

#25 Kaoru Betto

#28 Tetsuharu Kawakami

#30 Kazuto Tsuruoka


  1. Nice pickups. I have a few from this set too, I love the vibrant colors and touches like the Tiger on Doigaki's card.

    1. Thanks. I was outbid on a Tamiya card the other day. Seems to be a tougher get, think it's a RC. I love the Young Player, Action Baseball, Fruit/Vegetable and many more backs. Been spending too much!