If you wanted to quickly complete your 1980 set, this baby would get you well along in your task:
The price sticker is from Zayre's, a department store/discount chain that was pretty well known in the Northeast US and later expanded further south along the Eastern seaboard. It's heyday was probably right around 1980 and the parent company proved to be a trailblazer in home shopping and other areas of retail operations-it lives on today as TJX Corp, which owns TJ Maxx among others. Present market cap is around $45 Billion!
Anyhoo......Topps had a major distribution channel to thousands of retail stores in the US and I am thinking they would tailor packaging such as the above to the specific needs of various chains if they were big enough customers. We'll get to the Collecting Box momentarily but first feast your eyes upon the back of the blister pack:
The Collecting Box we have seen before, namely for the same year's The Empire Strikes Back set. Here's two flattened out views of said box:
That commodity code of T-126-27 indicates a test issue. It's pretty sweet and has a killer shot of "The Penguin" as well. The thing is though, the Empire Strikes Back box has a non-test code:
1-885-58-01-0 means it was part of some regular issue packaging methinks. I wonder if this means the Baseball box test was successful?
Luke, I am your cover.....
I have to wonder if there are more Collector Boxes out there from other sets in 1980. You would need a big enough set to put a bunch of cards in blister packs, although Topps was infamous for throwing duplicates into their packaging.