I got a great "just because" PWE from Dime Box Nick on Saturday. I quickly worked in pictures of some of those cards into a mostly-finished anti-Giants mini-rant spurred on by the Jake Peavy trade.
Here are the rest of the cards that didn't fit anywhere in that theme.
Sweet vintage Bob Gibson! Love it. There's also a shiny Larry Walker which is pretty cool too.
A trio of Gwynns, including a multi-exposure shot and the fantastic "Sanders 27?!" card. Been wanting to score that one since seeing it on Nick's blog a while back. Looks like I went straight to the source!
A nice Hoffy BBB (blue bordered beauty), a full-bleed Bip, and check out the 1975 SSPC Whitey Wietelmann!
And don't forget about the other cards I posted the other day, including a 1967 Topps Hoyt Wilhelm. Great stuff. Thanks again, Nick! Now I have to do my best to return a respectable showing of cards, which is a very daunting task when dealing with the Dime Box King! I hope your 2014 needs list is up to date, as that's probably my best bet.
The Ramones song up top is there because Nick loves The Ramones (rightfully so). Here's a very different sounding cover of that same song.. one of my favorites.
I missed the June card show in my area because it was the day before my wedding reception and I had a "dress rehearsal" family BBQ at my house keeping me occupied. I was sad thinking it'd be the last show for a long time, because it was the last one listed on the promoter's website. But I'm happy to report that the website has since been updated, and I'll have more opportunities to leaf through bins of cards. There either wasn't a July show or I just missed it. But there are monthly shows scheduled from August through at least September.
In the meantime, I got a virtual card show fix recently thanks to an eBay seller with tons of dollar cards and a "buy 10 and get free shipping" deal. So it was like I was searching through a dollar box but with the benefit of keyword searching. I've been to 3 shows during my era of collecting as an adult, all this year, and have already fallen into some "card show traditions" as far as what I tend to pick up. My virtual card show haul stayed pretty true to these.
Let's take a look. All these cards were 99 cents unless otherwise noted.
2004 [BB] Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #117 Richie Allen
This addition to my Dick Allen collection makes me long for the days Topps included him among retired players in modern sets. Seems like it's been a while since Dick had a new card put out. (Graig Nettles on the other hand gets at least a dozen new cards per year.) On the plus side, less cards I need to hunt down and buy. I still have an eye out for the autographed version of this card.
1993 Fun Pack #197 Frank Thomas GS
Glow-in-the-dark cards and quirky Frank Thomas inserts are both high up on my mental card show wants list, and this card sticker takes care of both. The freshly-enshrined Big Hurt here gives me 3 Glow Stars.
1967 Topps #309 Hurlers Beware/Johnny Callison/Richie Allen
Here's a card that's vexed me for a while, narrowly missing out on it on Listia a couple times, with frustrating results. But now it's finally mine. Another addition to my respectably-sized Dick Allen collection, It was my most expensive purchase of the bunch at $1.82.
1981 [BB] Kellogg's #11 Willie Stargell
Willie Stargell cards are hard to pass up. And I always seem to pick up a Kellogg's card at every card show, so this was a no-brainer.
1999 [FB] SP Signature Autographs #TV Tommy Vardell
Ok, here's the card that prompted the 10-card spree. Tommy Vardell might not be a big name to most people, but he was hot shit at my high school. I missed him by a few years, but I can still remember faculty at Granite Hills High School in El Cajon, CA giddily reminisce about "Touchdown Tommy" and how awesome he was back in the day. He went on to have a pretty good collegiate career at Stanford before bouncing around for 8 seasons in the NFL, getting to play alongside Barry Sanders and retiring with 22 touchdowns. This particular certified auto is very plentiful, with a bunch on eBay and COMC. This was the cheapest available, running me just $1.10. I had intentions of bringing this card home for my "hometown heroes" minicollecting-focus for quite some time; nice to finally seal the deal. With the Giles Brothers, this brings my number of fellow Granite Hills Eagles that I have certified autos of to 3-- wait, forgot about Jimmie Johnson-- make that 4! Not bad.
2013 Topps Best of WWE Top 10 Trash Talkers #10 AJ Lee
Hey, I haven't added to my "girlie card" minicollection in a while! Honestly, I'm not a wrestling guy at all. Pretty sure this is my first/only wrestling card. The only time I ever watch WWE is if I'm hanging out at my buddy Chris' house and he has it on. But I somehow became smitten with AJ Lee a few months ago (honestly can't even remember how.. I think one of her cards just popped up in the eBay "you might also like" sidebar and she caught my eye). But yeah, I just think she's super hot, ain't gonna lie. Her wrestling character might be annoying for all I know-- apparently known to be a "trash talker"-- but whatever. I occasionally search eBay for her certified autos, but you're lucky to find them for $30, and that's for a stickergraph. A nice on-card (actually a nice sticker or any on-card) will likely run you well over $100. Ugh. So for now, this non-auto will have to do.
1991-92 Pro Set England #185 Gavin Peacock
This card of a nameless soccer player actually has the greatest name. Yep, that's right, another addition to my Greatest Gavins collection. This is Gavin Peacock. This is my first Peacock, and 2nd soccer-playing Gavin, I believe. I know nothing about him other than what this card tells me, but he's another unique Gavin in my collection. I need to sort that out one of these days and see where I'm at with it.
1950 Bowman #144 Al Evans
I can't consider a card show haul a success unless there's at least one card that could qualify for Social Security if cardboard was eligible for benefits. This wonderful, well-loved Al Evans fit the bill and set me back just $1.50. I love picking up old Bowman cards regardless of condition or player unfamiliarity when I can get them for a buck or two. Evans was a solid backstop for the Senators in the 40s. 1950 would be his last year in Washington, finishing his major league career the next year with the Red Sox.
1976 Topps #403 John Matuszak
Another football card of a name that probably doesn't get brought up much these days. I wanted to pick up a John Matuszak card for a while now simply because he was in one of my all-time favorite movies, The Goonies. Sloth!
Here's a picture of me and the now-wife and our pup Annie in front of the actual Goonies house back in April 2013. (I proposed just an hour or so before this photo was taken.)
1971 Topps #248 Hoyt Wilhelm
And finally, another staple of my card show hauls, Hoyt Wilhelm! Gotta love Hoyt, a likable character who played for a ton of years. Lots of fun vintage cards to chase down, and usually inexpensive for a Hall of Famer of the period. This was also a need for my 1971 Topps off-condition set build, so now I gotta decide to keep it with my other Hoyts or throw it in with my 1971s.
So there you have it, my "virtual card show" haul. A nice mix of stuff, I'd say, hitting many of my collecting niches. These 10 cards were just $11.35 out the door; pretty reasonable total. Usually when I buy cards on eBay it's certified autos or packs/boxes to rip, so it's nice to just buy a few cheap singles sometimes. This'll tide me over till the next real card show.
But the downside to "card show" shopping online? Well, for one thing I fudged a little and used the stock photo of one card above. The 1950 Bowman card got missed by the order picker.. so I had to bug them to send it separately.. which is a bummer, but I'm not expecting it to be a problem. Grr.. I'm pretty good keeping track of my stack at a show, but online, I seem to get my order slightly messed up like this from time to time.
I always say I'm a baseball fan first, and then after that I'm a Padres fan and a fan of certain other players I like. I don't really hate any teams. When the playoffs roll around, I always seem to root for the underdog.. the team who's gone the longest without a championship. And I usually find myself rooting against the Yankees, Cardinals, and Giants (The Red Sox get a pass since they had such a legendary dry spell).
As a player collector, of course I've got a lot of cards from these teams in my collection. Yanks I love include Reggie and Mickey. With the Cardinals, there's Gibson and Musial.
More Yankees I collect.
But now let's talk about the Giants. A division rival of my Padres, they might be my least favorite team. I'm even cool with the Dodgers these days, perhaps a result of Stockholm Syndrome from reading so many LA card blogs.
But despite my dislike of the Giants, I find myself a player collector of an inordinate number of guys who spent quality time with San Francisco. It's almost silly!
The latest tragic turn involves Jake Peavy, cruelly sent cross-country by Boston in a sick joke of a trade. I've got a soft spot for Jake from his days as the last great Padres pitcher, before they cut him loose rather than pay him competitively. (His numbers haven't been quite so good since leaving San Diego, so I suppose in hindsight it wasn't necessarily a bad move by the front office.) I don't really build PCs for many active guys, but Peavy is one of the few.. Probably the biggest collection I've got of a current player, with 60 unique cards.
The only other current Giant I like these days is manager Bruce Bochy, again thanks to his Padres ties (Hey, he and Jake will be reunited; that's kinda cool.) I don't really have a PC going for Bochy, but I probably should start. One of my collecting focuses is Pads in the Hall, and Bochy will likely get in as a manager. Winning 2 World Series Championships seems to be the magic number for managers, much like 300 wins for a pitcher, or 500 home runs or 3000 hits for a batter. So he's pretty much punched his ticket, even if it might take a while to go through. So yeah, I'll likely be obligated to collect him eventually. That's cool. He seems to be a great guy by all accounts and I'm glad he's had some success.. I just wish he could have won it all down on the opposite end of California instead.
Speaking of other Giants I'm self-imposed "forced" into collecting, you've also got Willie McCovey and Gaylord Perry.. a couple Hall of Famers who spent many years in San Francisco, with relatively brief stints in sunny San Diego.
The cards in this post are all from an awesome PWE I just received from Dime Box Nick.
Bill Madlock is another favorite of mine. No Padre connection here. While most associated with his time on the Pirates, he spent 2 and a half years as a Giant. I've also got a sizable collection of Vida Blue cards, who played 6 years in San Francisco.
I'll post the rest of the cards Nick sent that I couldn't shoehorn into this post soon.
In recent months, I've started collecting a couple other former Giants: Rod Beck (Padre connection again) and Hoyt Wilhelm (they were still the New York Giants when he played with them, so I guess that sorta gives him a pass).
Donruss kindly omitted the Giants stats from Hoyt's career. Thanks for the great cards, Nick!
So that's a whopping eight guys I collect who were Giants. That might be the most for any team after the Padres.. Just so happen to be my least-favorite team. And of course I'd never turn down cool cards of Willie Mays, Juan Marichal, Orlando Cepeda, George Foster, and the like. Damn Giants.
I snuck in a "loyal reader" contest at the end of my latest post. As expected, there weren't a lot of entrants. Only 4, in fact!
Let's throw those 4 into random.org...
...and then repeat the pattern a few times..
[and so on]
Let's say the winning number is the total combined number of runs in tonight's (7/26/14) Padres @ Braves game. The winner gets to pick one of the remaining lots of certified autos in the prize pool. The other 3 will still get cards from me too regardless (Mark and Tony already have packages from me ready to go. Greg and Duff, I need your addresses.)
Thanks for reading and good luck, guys!
I collect any card serial numbered 12/25.. "Christmas Cards" as I call them. On the 25th of each month, I like to pull out something from this eclectic minicollection to show off on the blog.
This monthly feature might be getting a little tired. I don't necessarily like having a "deadline" to get a post out. And it's not like this feature gets many views/comments either. I suppose I'm committed to finish out 2014, though at this rate I'm planning to drop it next year. But I still like collecting Christmas Cards and I'm sure I'll continue to show them off from time to time. Anyways...
Here's a nice Fred Lynn auto. The green and red in the design give it some bonus holiday cheer in addition to the serial number prominently displayed on the front. There's even a "snowy" area for the on-card signature.
A very festive card indeed! It's from 2014 Topps Tribute, which is a high-end set in no way distinguishable from Topps' other high-end sets.. Five Star, Museum Collection, Tier One, Supreme, Pristine, Triple Threads, One Star, Tier Five, Triple Tier, Five Thread Tier Star Collection, whatever.. pretty much all the same set. And when I say set, of course I mean product.. since it's in no way designed for set collectors.. just an option to pay a lot of money for a pack small box with a mystery hit or two. But who am I to complain, since I enjoy picking up high-end singles from time to time, such as Freddy here.
Fred Lynn is a guy I would lump together with Graig Nettles, whom I ranted about Topps' obsession with a little recently. Solid careers, but both fell short of the Hall, and a typical collector probably isn't going to get too excited about pulling one of their cards these days (essentially "commons" in sets you find them in today). Yet, likely due in part to playing their prime years on a legendary big-market team (Yankees and Red Sox, respectively), Topps finds a way to squeeze them into many sets that feature retired players.
I may be the only person alive who thinks of Fred Lynn as a Padre first and foremost (another similarity with Graig Nettles). He played just 90 games for San Diego, all in his twilight season of 1990. But that season was when I first really got into baseball as a youth, so it was sort of the ground floor in my eyes. Fred Lynn is a Padre. Joe Carter is a Padre. Bobby Thigpen is the Save King.
So anyways, it's nice to have his autograph now.. made doubly sweet by being an attractive Christmas Card such as this.
As I mentioned at the start of the post, this feature typically doesn't get a lot of views or comments. So here's that last (for now) contest I had mentioned trying to sneak in. Just leave a comment on this post to enter, then we'll do the usual routine of randomly selecting a winner. The prize is one of the remaining lots of certified autos (which can be found here, though the Ernie Banks lot is now gone). The window to enter will be short.. less than 24 hours, most likely. I want to keep this contest hush-hush, just a little way of saying thanks to the small handful of loyal readers who bother reading my blog even when it's not particularly sexy and exciting, like Fred Lynn up there. So, yeah! Thanks for reading! [7/26/14 UPDATE: contest now closed! Thanks again.]
After posting nearly everyday for a good stretch there, things are slowing down again slightly at Baseball Card Breakdown. Between things picking up at work (back to full-time till September.. poo! The money is nice, but I loved sleeping in and working 6-hour days) and just general blogging ennui, expect to see me back to posting just 2 or 3 times a week for a while.
Now, here's just a quick post to show off a neat card I picked up recently. This was a "wedding gift to myself" that I bought (on eBay) while honeymooning in Maui last month.
I very rarely drop three-figures on a card, but this is a pretty sweet Ryan with a print run of just 35 (though it's not serial numbered), enticing enough for me to spend a little over a C-note on it. While 2004 Topps Retired gets most of my adoration, I also am a fan of the 2003 and 2005 Retired sets, the latter being whence this card came. (I've still got an eye out for a reasonably priced 2004 Retired Ryan auto; I've seen a couple pop up on eBay in recent months, but in the neighborhood of a $400 buy-it-now, which is crazy.)
Nolan Ryan is obviously one of the game's all-time greats, so this is a pretty nifty addition for me; certainly a centerpiece of my collection. No offense to the Lone Star State or Big Apple, but as a Southern Californian child of the 70s, I think my favorite Ryan Express era is his stint with the Angels, so I'm happy with this photo selection (though an action shot could have been better than Suttoning). Nice-looking on-card autograph. Still in the uncirculated hard case (a couple scuffs behind Nolan's back, but not too bad). And of course, the full stats on the back, which I appreciate so much more than a "Congratulations" back. Yep, I like this card a bunch.
After the negativity of my last post (a drunken rant stemming from a headache sending out cards to a contest winner), life made it up to me. I just won 1st prize in Chavez Ravining's latest contest, which I'm pretty happy about! And I also recently got 2nd prize in the big contest at Red Cardboard. I've never been super into hippy-dippy karma stuff, but man, it seems when I run contests on my blog, I seem to win contests on other blogs. It just goes to show you that when you give, the universe will give back to you! Really!
But back to Red Cardboard's contest, the Junior Junkie got first place, and chose the enticing vintage lot.. but my 2nd choice was the mysterious "big box". I think I also won 4th place (out of 8), so I also got some sweet parallels as well.
The big box was specifically a 660-count box, full of various cards, mostly from the past few years but stretching back a bit to the 80s (but not much junk-era), with a heavy weight on Reds players (about a third of the cards), which is cool with me since I like the Red alright. It arrived yesterday and it's been a lot of fun going through it and checking out all the cards. A lot of it will make its way into my for-trade box, but also many, many cards will be new additions welcomed lovingly to my collection.
Let's take a look at a few highlights.
I'm a sucker for sparkly cards shimmering all about.
Between this box, and some past misc Padres lots I've gotten, I have found myself with a mess of Mat Latos cards.
Lots of Reds greats included. Love 'em.
Some cool non-Reds cards too.
Now, I like Gavin Floyd as much as anybody, but I think Matt overpaid for this one.
Just for fun:
I've heard of cracked ice parallels.. but melted ice?! LOL
There were also a ton of other cards. Dozens of current/recent Reds stars like Jay Bruce, Adam Dunn, Homer Bailey, and the like. Big thanks for all the cards, Matt! Hopefully I'll get a few Reds cards you need someday and can return the favor.
Back to Chavez Ravining, the grand prize was getting to pick a free team in his upcoming 2014 Topps Chrome break. It's often tough for me to pick a team in a group break. Sure, "my team" is the Padres, but you gotta be a fool to grab San Diego in a break of anything these days unless it's heavily discounted. So then the question is do I load up on trade fodder of a team? I can always use more Red Sox to send off to Mark Hoyle, for example. But I decided to pin my hopes on a hot player. If the White Sox were still available, I probably would have went with them hoping for a nice Jose Abreu card. But instead I ended up asking for the Angles, trying my luck for some Mike Trout goodness. Fingers crossed.
There are still a lot of good teams available in Alex's break, so check it out and consider signing up for one of the remaining spots. Here's the link.
I've bitchedbefore about how I hate the guys behind the counter at my local post office. I can pretty much always avoid them and just use the automated postage machine except when I either (a) get an orange pick-up slip or (b) have to mail a package outside the US. And after another horrible encounter the other day, I'm afraid I need to make it official:
From now on, I will only ship within the US. I offer heartfelt apologies to all cardosphere buddies in Canada and Europe, but I just cannot take dealing with the post office assholes. I can deal with the postage costing thrice as much as a comparable domestic package, it's the assholes behind the counter that I have to avoid at all costs. Fuck them. I'm done.
The winner of my recent Flip the Bip happened to be domiciled in the Great White North, which is all well and good. Hell, I'd love to live in Canada.. the land of milk and honey moose and hockey. But sending his winnings to him was an harrowing experience that pissed me off greatly. There are only 2 guys ever behind the counter at the post office: a couple of old assholes, David Carradine-looking Asshole and Cubby Asshole With A Beard (slightly less of an asshole, but I always seem to get the David Carradine-looking asshole). This time, Carradine had a black eye, so I could at least have nice daydreams about how he got it.. Hopefully got knocked the-fuck out by a customer who was sick of his shit.
So yeah, sorry to say it. But for my own well-being, I have to take drastic measures to avoid bringing that negativity into my life. So for the time being, I can only trade with other folks living in the good ol' United States of America. And my contests will only be open to those with US addresses.
Now, if somebody offered me a Bip printing plate in a trade or something else very exciting to me, and they happened to live outside the US, I suppose I'd probably reluctantly make an exception with my new xenocentric policy. Maybe I'd drive out of my way to try my luck at a different post office. But I just don't have the time to make it a regular thing.
Well, wait a sec.. I guess a PWE can be sent for 2 or 3 stamps without needing to jump through hoops (Last time I mailed a package to Canada, I was told I didn't need to fill out a customs slip (that I had thoughtfully filled out beforehand like an idiot).. but this time, I didn't bother filling one out, but then the guy told me I did need to, but I hadn't (like an idiot). And then, when I filled it out [incredibly confusing new version of the form where it doesn't make sense where you're supposed to write in the info], then I had to stand there for like 5 minutes as the guy slowly typed in the info from the slip I handed him into his computer. Hunt and peck. Glaciers melting. Scolding me for not putting last name first, like it matters worth shit. THE FUCK?! Fuck you, Autoerotic Asphyxiation Fuckhead.
But yeah. So, ok, NEVERMIND. My bad. When I send something internationally, I just need to remember to make sure it fits in a regular envelope and isn't more than a quarter-inch thick. I'll just slap 3 stamps on it, drop it in the box, and hope for the best. But anything big enough to need a bubble mailer that forces me to stand in line to deal with a postal worker behind the counter, that's a deal-breaker. In hindsight, maybe I should have tried to send the Flip the Bip winnings in a PWE, but it felt like a Miguel Cabrera certified auto deserved a bubble mailer to fully protect it. Oh well. Shit. Lessoned learned.
Guys, never send anything bigger than a PWE internationally.
This post counts as my quarterly "breakdown" to justify the blog title.
I bought my first A&G recently in the form of a blaster. Yesterday I posted the few cards I'd like to hang onto. But these cards today are all on the table for trades, so just let me know if you want to work something out. As always, my general wantlist is here for your perusal.
Let's start off with some inserts.
Here are some retired guys. Mussina is an SP.
Here are some active guys.
And some horizontal ones.
Minis. The bottom 2 have the big "A&G" logo on the back, which I think is some sort of variation but I really know very little about Ginter. (Hopefully it means they're crazy rare and I can sell them and retire off the proceeds! The Abreu mini I showed yesterday is also like that. But I suppose pulling 3 in 1 blaster would indicate they're not that special.)
And finally, some terrible non-baseball cards, including a guy (gal?) making an uncomfortable face, and a different guy who is probably somebody's uncle or something. Polar Vortex is an SP.
There you have it. If anything caught your eye, check my wantlist and get in touch. Thanks!
I've never been a ginter, but I'm slowly beginting to gint. Maybe someday I'll look back in disgunst at the days before I gunt.
I'm on record saying Allen & Ginter just doesn't do it for me. I've bought nary a pack in my life up to this point in linear time, to tell you the truth. Never even picked up any singles I can recall. What few A&G cards I have in my collection were from blind trades, plus one pack that came out of a repack a few months back. But dang it, the 2014 design is pretty suave and managed to reel me in, featured lovingly on so many other blogs in these recent several days (peer pressure? Stockholm Syndrome?), and so I dropped a Jackson on a blaster.
Today I'm just going to post the "keepers" that I plan to hang onto, and then tomorrow I'll post some trade bait for all you ginters out there.
Finally got my first Jose Abreu card! A mini, at that. Also a tiny Bob Gibson and full-size Fisk.
Some inserts of dudes I like.
More cool old-timers. The Killer is apparently an SP.
I should probably keep a couple current players too.
And I suppose I should hang onto at least 1 or 2 non-baseball cards. These 2 seem ok.
So that's it; my first ginting. A decent sampling, but no big hit or anything. [sigh.] Fun enough product, but I'm still not head-over-heels for it. Maybe next year I'll get a box and join in the Gint-a-Cuffs fun, but still just a spectator for now.
Again, check back in a day or so for the '14 A&G cards that I've got available for trade.
Mark Hoyle dropped a nice package of cards (and non-cards) on me the other day.
Let's start with this curious piece. Yes, this is literally an oddball, since it's odd and also ball-shaped. I had never seen one of these tiny spheres with a baseball player's floating head in it before. It's similar to a small marble. Turns out it's from a game called Baseball Marbles put out by a company called Creative Creations back in 1968. Very cool addition to my Dick Allen collection. Here's the back:
Mark also sent some less-literal oddballs, a sweet McCovey 1976 Hostess card and a Tony Oliva stamp.
Mark has also been spreading around some 1990 Classic (Yellow) cards lately, and I was the recipient of 3 Padres, my favorite being the Fred Lynn, whom I've had on my mind lately thanks to an upcoming post I'm working on.
And of course no mailing from Mark would be complete without some 73s!
Among the highlights here are RCs of Bill North, Lee Lacy, and Jack McKeon. This generous stack helped me reach the two-thirds complete point with the set!
468/699 66.95% complete as of 7/15/14
Wow, just a third left to go. Unfortunately for me, Mark says he's getting near the end of his 73 dupes. Maybe one more mailing and then his well will be dry. So my progress will likely slow down on that front. But it's cool; I'm not in a huge rush. Plus I've recently started casually trying to put together a poor-condition 1971 set as well, so I've got a backup option for my vintage set-build fix.
Thanks as always, Mark! I've got a stack of Red Sox just about ready to send your way in return shortly.