Friday, October 30, 2020

I'm back, baby

Ok, I took a little break from blogging while I moved, but I think I'm ready to get back at it. I'm loving the new house. The final couple days at the old house and the first couple days at the new house were extremely stressful and exhausting. It was overwhelming and I felt like I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown for a while there, ain't gonna lie. Just so much crap to move and find a new place for. But then I turned the corner and have been good since. But it's been an ongoing process and we're still working on bringing over daily carloads of stuff from the old place, taking it right up to the last day of the month.

And things are still shaking out into their new places, with lots of boxes left to unpack and things to find. I've got my drum set up, but haven't found the sticks yet. And I had intended to post about a new collecting project of mine I'm excited about (a vintage frankenset), but well, I can't find the thing at the moment, so it'll have to wait.

Instead, here's a post showing off the first new incoming cards of the new house.

I feel like this one was a gift from the cardboard gods. Adding to my stress levels when we moved in was the fact that there was a problem with the internet. On one hand it was kinda nice being "off the grid" for a few days (no politics to read about, for one thing), but my wife and I need to be able to get online for work, so not having internet was a big problem.

But then the cable guy worked on it for an hour or two and got it going. When I went to test the connection, I clicked on my most-often clicked link: the bookmark to a Topps Retired eBay search that I typically check several times per day. And wouldn't you know it, the top new listing that met my eyes was this beautiful 2005 Retired Dwight Gooden refractor auto for a very decent price. Again, I check that bookmark a lot, and it's pretty rare that a refractor I need pops up.. like less than 1% of the times I click the link is there a card I want... but when there is, I'm a very happy man and if the price is right, I'll jump. So to stumble upon this card in my very first moment online in the new house seemed like a good omen and was a real "rainbow after the storm" moment for me. I hopped on that Doc Gooden buy-it-now so quick that I didn't even have a chance to update my address with eBay, so it ended up going to the old house. And although of course I set up mail forwarding, the USPS dropped the ball and delivered to the old address. But as I say, I've been popping over there daily picking up crap and cleaning up, so it wasn't a big deal.

By the way, around the time this post is published, I'll send out the bulk email to my trader buds with the new address. So if we've exchanged cards sometime in the past couple years or so, check your inbox for that, and please reach out to me if you didn't get the email but want my new address.

I've already got a couple Gooden autos featuring him with the Mets, so I don't mind this Yankees card, even if it's not his "heritage" team or whatever. He pitched a no-hitter for the Yankees in '96, but it was one of the few highlights after his heyday with the Mets. (As you can see from the stats, it was his final shutout and/or complete game.)

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Anyways, later in that same day, I again clicked my eBay Topps Retired search bookmark and was again excited to see a card I'd been after.

I've been wanting this Lou Whitaker autograph for a long time. Ideally I'll get a refractor parallel someday (still kicking myself over the one I just missed a few months ago), but I jumped at this base auto listed with a reasonable buy-it-now price. I had updated my address with eBay by this point in the day, so while it was the 2nd card I bought in the new house, it has the distinction of being the 1st card to be received at the new location.

Lou Whitaker is next eligible for the Hall of Fame via the Modern Baseball Era Committee in 2023. I'll be rooting for him.

As regular readers know, I'm a bit obsessed with Topps Retired and it's rare that I score 2 needs in one day (or even in one week). Definitely a nice pick-me-up when I really needed it!

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I also pulled the trigger on this glow-in-the-dark Teenymate. It's my first one of these things. I was expecting it to be a little bigger. It's just about an inch tall.

Here it is glowing in the palm of my hand. You might remember me talking about my "glow-in-the-dark shelf" at the old house? Well, I've got big plans for the new house. There's a seldom-used bathroom in the basement, and my wife has given me approval to make that into a glow-in-the-dark (bath)room. So I'm excited about that, and I'm sure I'll be posting updates on the blog, regardless if you guys care, lol. But the stuff from the glow-in-the-dark shelf is still hiding in a box somewhere, so I haven't been able to deck out the bathroom yet. But yeah, I'm excited to get that all set up and add more glowing stuff to it.

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Here's a random-act-of-kardness sent my way by Dub Meñtality, a popular personality on card Twitter. He tweeted this Stadium Club auto up for grabs to a Padres fan. I was interested, but held off in case anyone wanted it more than me. But then a couple hours went by and somebody tagged me in a reply and no one else had spoken up, so I figured I'd call dibs. Dub's dibs did delight. Thanks, Dub!

After a promising debut in 2019, Michel Báez only pitched 4.2 innings for San Diego in 2020, but the Cuban righty still has potential and is one of the young arms the Padres will need to develop if they're going to make a championship run in the near future.

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Wrapping things up with a PWE from earlier in the month that I didn't get around to showing off prior to the move. Reader David G. in San Diego has been finding cards to send me in return for random Cardinals I can scrape up for him. This time he surprised me with a few Kellogg's needs and some new stuff. And yes, they were again packaged with a cologne ad. Fragrant cards are his trademark!

Thanks, David! Your return was the last outgoing cards from the old house.. hope you liked.

One thing I noticed about 1979 Kellogg's is they have a tendency to get a washed-out effect to them like these 5 from David. I wonder why that is. It might happen in other years of Kellogg's 3D cards, but seems like '79s are especially vulnerable.

For comparison, here are a couple Dwight Evans in my collection... one with crisp coloring, and one that's succumb to the washed out effect. Not that I'm picky about condition of my Kellogg's cards, but just making an observation. I wonder if it's due to sunlight exposure?

Anyways, that's it for this post. Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend!

Monday, October 19, 2020

Definitely the last Incoming Cardboard Post before the move

Ok, I'm in the middle of moving. It's exhausting. It's times like these that I really wish I didn't have the "collecting gene"! I'm excited to get settled in at the new place, but it's gonna be a lot of work.

Here's the last cards triaged in from my old house. It's a very generous "thanks again for your help" gift from Alex T., whom you may remember for the fantastic guest post he did for Baseball Card Breakdown a few weeks ago about his mission to create a TTM masterpiece featuring Jim Walewander and the Dead Milkmen.

These are a coupe low-key iconic cards that maybe not everybody knows about, but those who know.. know. This pair has been in my Desperate Double Dozen wantlist for several months, so it's great to cross those off the list. Canseco's zero year card with the Expos means I now only need a card with him on the Yankees (a much higher population of card) to complete another 9-card page in the Vagabond Binder. And that box-bottom Doc Gooden is such a perfect shot. Got recycled in Stadium Club not long ago, but hard to beat it on a vintage (excuse the term) 1985 card. Panini needs to go their own version of Project 2021 going and should be sure to include this card among the selections.

But really what Alex wanted to share with me were a couple extras from his big project. I picked these 2 from the few available options because I like how the lyric seems to match with the photo. I forgot to grab a picture of the backs (and now they're all packed up and I may not see them again for weeks... lol!), but the backs are both autographed by Mr. Walewander. Awesome off-the-wall addition to my collection. I need to find strength in the real joy-sparking parts of my collection like this during times I'm overwhelmed at the mountain of cardboard I'm stacking all the way up into the heavens.

Muchos Maas! Alex also kicked up my Kevin Maas PC with this little complete set of Star cards dedicated to the rookie phenom of 1990. I've mentioned it before, but I first started collecting cards in 1990 (Celebrating 30 Years theme), and even though his comet burned as briefly as it did brightly, I still get a thrill of adding new cards of his.

Some other long-time loves of mine, glow-in-the-dark and black gold.

A pair of Padre fan favorites from the time. Silver Signature Bip and a blue signature Dave Staton.

And Bip is back, here snug in the womb of the packs that birthed him so many times. Forever Bipping. Cool to add a couple unopened packs to the Bip Roberts PC.

Big thanks, Alex! Always a pleasure. (If you guys know Alex, ask him to share the story about returning a signed ballcap to the family of a deceased former player. It's something special.)

And thanks to everyone reading. I'll see you on the other side of this move.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Evacuation Keepers

Earlier in September when wildfires were ravaging Oregon, I was getting pretty nervous and figured I should round up some important stuff to have handy just in case the flames made their way into my neighborhood. I didn't waste time packing boring stuff like legal documents, food, or clothing, but rather just focused on my card collection. LOL. Well, I did grab a couple external hard drives that have a lot of stuff backed up on them like family photos and the custom cards I've made over the years and my music collection, but yeah mostly I just took a quick look around my card room and made a lot of snap decisions as to what was must-save if I was forced to evacuate.. and what I was sorrowfully willing to leave behind if it came down to it.

But now it looks like we'll be ok. Before I go putting everything back into its place in my collection, I figure a recap of these selections would make for an interesting post.

I filled up 2 reusable grocery bags full of cards that I had ready to grab and throw in the car in a moment's notice. One was just all my Topps Retired refractor autos. Those are "my babies" and I'm not even joking when I tell you I would save them before I saved my dog. (My departed sweetie pie Annie, no, but my current fuckface Ruby, yes.)

I didn't grab all of my ¾-setbuild of 1957 Topps.. at least not the "commons".. but I did get the "big cards" from it.

Some highlights of my Tatis PC made the cut.

More heavy-hitting favorites of my collection that would've hurt to leave behind.

Some of my all-time best pulls plus a Yaz rookie.

Had to grab my Sandlot collection.. that Archives autograph set was tough to put together, but honestly it's the personally-signed customs from the Bambino and Karen Allen that wouldn't let me consider leaving this lot behind.

Well, that's all I'm up for today, but I think I've got enough left for a "Part 2" post to cover another day.

Update (a couple weeks later): no part 2.. But here's a little more..

A few more highlights of my collection.
Thanks for reading

Saturday, October 10, 2020

untitled p0st for Oct 10, 2020

Here's a peek at my card room today. I'm not proud of this cluster-kerfuffle. And the other walls in the room aren't really any better. 

I'm moving in a few days. 

Oh man, it's gonna sucks transporting all this stuff. At least the new place is less than 5 minutes away. I'll just take a lot of trips, I guess.

I was thinking my new card room was gonna be a little smaller, though my wife said she thinks the new one is bigger. I don't remember it much. I've only been inside the new house once so far, over a month ago back when we first looked at it. The market is so competitive here right now that you can't pussyfoot around if you want to buy a house. Excited to get the keys soon and finally start moving in.

Anyways, I hope the new room won't get so messy. When we first moved into this current house, I hadn't quite gone so hard back into card collecting yet. There was the thought when we moved in that the room would be like my "music room" where I'd get Fiberoctopus going again and work on some tunes. But I just found myself turning to cards in my spare time, not picking up my instruments. But yeah, that room has really gotten away from me with all the cards n' crap over the past 7 years. A semi-fresh start should be good.

Tradeathon cards from Wes! I'm not a big football collector, but I've got some favorites like Walter Payton, so I pounced when Wes offered that PSA'd '78. I don't really know of the player David Grayson, but jumped at that one because of my recent infatuation with old Kellogg's cards. I've got a bunch of Kellogg's baseball cards, but this is my first football one, not to mention my first graded Kellogg's card. Pretty neat. Also called dibs on the yellow Soto rookie cup, Gwynn pinstripe, and Padres triple relic with a trio of past Padres pitching greats (wish we could have had some guys like that in 2020 on the mound against the Dodgers in that last series. Oh well, waitin' till next year. Go Braves.) Great package all around thanks to the Pancake King.

Big thanks, Wes! I hope I don't make you wait too long for the return your way.

Back to old house stuff, here's my glow-in-the-dark shelf as it stands before the inevitable clear-out. Everything here glows in the dark at least in part. I hope I find a good shelf to fill up with glowing stuff somewhere in the new house to keep that project alive and growing.

Happy Halloween-time.

Speaking of different glowing colors, check out this new card I got recently.....

This is an 1997 Oddbodz from Australia.. it's actually a "Combo Glo" parallel that includes two glowing colors.


In my previous post I mentioned I loved cards with "hidden" glowing parts, and the cards that Farley's distributed with their pouches of Dinosaurs fruit snacks in 1993 are an excellent example of that. 

I recently tracked down 3 of the 4 cards. Just need the Brontosaurus.

Today my dog Ruby turned the big "Five Mo.".. 5 months old, that is. Here's a video of her getting a bellyrub out in the backyard the other day. There wasn't any sound because my phone's broken, so I put a short song over it that I made back in 2007 that happened to be about the same length. (I ran that "big five mo" joke by my wife and she said it wasn't as funny as I thought it was, but I'm using it anyways, lol

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Glowing Ginter

I was happy to see Allen & Ginter include a glow-in-the-dark offering for the 3rd time in the past 4 years with 2020's Where Monsters Live. It's a 10-card mini insert set featuring locations where one might expect to find a monster hiding. I hear it's the easiest such insert to pull in Ginter this year. That's good news for me, since if they were case hits or something, it would be costly to put the set together. But as it is, they sell for a buck or two each and I scored the complete set from an eBay seller for about $15 (could've found a better price if I had a little patience, but I had to snatch up a set on release day).

I tweeted the above gif of the set in action a few days ago and got a big response. As you can see, some cards look better than others in the dark. "A Cave", "The Closet", and "A Sewer Drain" feature tiny eyes that are supposed to glow, but they're too small to really be visible, whether in hand or in photos. But you can tell by the texture that they're supposed to glow. Maybe a logistics misstep by Topps.

I think my favorite of the 10 is Under The Stairs. I didn't even notice the creepy guy back there until I saw the card in the dark. I love when glow in the dark stuff has a surprise like that! Helps the card come alive.

I finally got some 3-ring pages for minis to add them to my glow-in-the-dark binder. They fit 15 minis to a page, so I'm thinking I might like to eventually add 5 dupes so I can complete a page. So yeah, if you end up with any Where Monsters Live cards you don't want, feel free to send them my way.

I've also picked up a few more of the previous glowing Ginter set, the glow-in-the-dark parallels of the base set in 2018. These parallels were case hits, and generally are tough to find for less that double-digits a pop, so I don't have a ton of them, but have been looking out for deals on players I like.

I got Mookie Betts for about $15, which I thought was a pretty good deal for a marquee player. The cards aren't serial-numbered, but the print run was likely less than 20, so they're reasonably scarce.

I was stoked to score this Rhys Hoskins RC the other day. He just had Tommy John surgery on his non-throwing arm. I hope he's back to mashing next season.

Hall of Famer Mike Piazza here.

Big Dave Winfield rocking the brown and gold! [insert a sheepish "Go Padres" here.] This one came with a mini one-touch.. fancy.

And here's probably my best Jackie Robinson card now (one of these days I'll pony up for a vintage Jackie, but haven't yet).

Not pictured, but I've also got Jose Abreu on the way.

My plan was to collect 15 of these glowing parallels so that I could have a complete page. But now, thinking about it, I'm a little over-protective of them since they're not cheap. As a box guy, I'm distrustful of pages. I already learned the hard way that you shouldn't push the mini cards all the way down in the narrow pocket or you probably won't be able to pull it back out without putting some strain on the card, likely dinging some corners and bending the top a bit. I might feel better keeping them safe in their top-loaders and one-touches for now. I think I'll still have a goal to collect 15 of these then stop worrying about them, as I don't want to commit the time and money trying to chase the entire 350-card set. But I can feel good about a 15-card sampler of guys I collect and other random ones that I pulled the trigger on. I'm currently up to 12 or 13, so almost there.

Here's a recap of the 5 new additions in the light.

..and in the dark.

And by the way the first glowing Ginter cards were the Constellation minis from 2017. I posted a breakdown on them last year... figured I should mention them for completeness sake since this post is about glowing Ginter cards. I just put that 10-card set (plus 1 dupe) in a page. I'd eventually like 4 more dupes to fill out the empty pockets.

Fun stuff. I hope they keep it up with more glowing cards in future sets. Here are some suggestions for Topps to run with...

- Ballpark Blueprints that glow in the dark
- Maybe feature long home runs in an insert and have the route of the ball glow.
- Topps is crazy for rookie reprints.. how about rookie reprints that glow in the dark?
- Maybe like "On Fire" inserts with guys' bats on fire or whatever, and then the fire parts glow.
- Would love to see the "Stadium Lights" cards from 2011 Opening Day make a comeback.

So yeah, there are some baseball-centric ideas off the top of my head, but I'd be cool with whatever. How about you? Any ideas for glowing cards you'd like to see?

It's due for an update, but also check out my 

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Left-Leaning Vintage

The biggest card left for me to track down in my 1957 Topps setbuild was the Don Drysdale rookie. Spurred on by a "5% eBay Bucks" bonus offer the other week, I finally pulled the trigger on one.

As someone who works at PSA explained to me in a blog comment once, when a card has a qualifier-- such as this "(MC)" miscut here-- it effectively knocks the card value down by 2 grades. So like a PSA 8(OC) has roughly the equivalent value of a PSA 6. So yes, that would mean this Drysdale rookie has a negative grade by those guidelines. PSA -0.5!

Ha, I don't really care. I just like having some reassurance of authenticity when I buy a card that's likely no stranger to counterfeiting, and I didn't want to pay too much for it. I'm tempted to break Mr. Drysdale out of the slab. I suspect the surface marks around the middle of the card are wax stains, which would probably wipe off with a square of TP after a moment under a hair dryer.

While the card is very off-center to the left, there's still a sliver of border, and that's good enough for my OCD. If the photo "breaks the plane" of the card's edge, that kinda bugs me. But as long as there's unbroken border visible, no matter how thin or diamond-cut, it passes my personal centering standards. So I'm ok with the "MC" here.

But what really sinks the card's grade is the back...

Oh yikes. I didn't take a good look at the back photo in the listing before I clicked on the Buy-It-Now button. My bad! But oh well, I probably would have went through with the purchase anyways. At least you can still read most of it.

I'm not too picky about my '57 set. Just want to be able to say I've got a complete set of 1957 Topps Baseball. Just 94 cards left to go, and not many big names remaining. So hopefully in another couple years or so I'll finally put this one to bed.

Speaking of vintage Topps sets that I've had in the works for a few years now.....

This Ken Hubbs In Memoriam high-number is a key card I needed for my '64 setbuild. Recently found a solid deal on this one that has nearly identical centering issues as the '57 Drysdale, but again narrowly passes my quality standards.

I think it's awesome Topps put out this card, but maybe dedicating so much of the back to his batting stats was a disservice to a player renowned for his glove, and ultimately the existence of this card leads to me being upset at all the times Topps dropped the ball by not paying respects to active players who lost their lives through the years. Thurman Munson is the one that really sticks out like a sore thumb, but there are several who deserved an In Memoriam card along these lines.

And on that note of saying goodbye, sad to hear of the passing of Bob Gibson yesterday. Made for an emotional rollercoaster of an evening for me with the news coming out minutes after the Padres beat their postseason nemesis Cardinals to advance. Rest in peace, Mr. Gibson. One of the greats.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Maybe the last Incoming Cardboard Post before the move

Time for another Incoming Cardboard Post (or ICP, as my ninjas call it) showing off cards that've made their way to me since I last did one of these, that weren't purchases and didn't already get their own post.

Two or 3 weeks ago I was showing off the 1970 Topps Willie Mays that Daniel surprised me with, and a friendly Twitter guy named Todd at @Bookman30022 saw that and offered up a Rod Carew if I needed it, and I happily took him up on the offer, with the sweet Batting Leaders card getting in on the action too. Not wanting to be too big of a mooch, I was able to get him to share his wantlists with me so I could send him a thank-you. Thanks again, Todd!

Mr. Carew turns 75 today, assuming I get this post published by the end of the day here on the west coast.

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I called dibs on this 1963 Fleer Jim Kaat that Jon graciously offered up for an anniversary giveaway event at A Penny Sleeve for your Thoughts. I dig this vintage kinda-oddball set and don't have many cards from it. A welcomed addition to my Kaat PC. I'm gonna post that one song I like again in celebration.

Thanks, Jon! Very nice of you. Keep up the great work on your blog!

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Here's a big trade I did with reader Oren V. a couple weeks back.

The key card coming my way in the deal was this Kris Bryant RC black parallel #'d /64. It's not his base rookie (#616), but still, this All-Star Game rookie from 2015 Topps Update is pretty nice. Sparkles had a down, injury-plagued 2020, but he's still in his 20s and will most likely bounce back to being one of the best in the game. That said, I feel like my PC of his has achieved "good" status now with the addition of this low-numbered rookie, and have now "retired" him off my main wantlist.

Here are a pair of solid players that I've missed in MLB this season-type-thing of 2020. Puig couldn't quite escape free agency, while Jones had a just-ok season in Osaka. Gotta mention that the red Puig is numbered 1/50.

A couple parallels of dudes I collect round out the package. Right on. Kershaw just threw a postseason gem.. good for him. (Still rooting against the Dodgers, though.)

Thanks for the great first trade, Oren! Hope to do it again sometime.

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Last one for today...

Padres, baby! Won a postseason game for the first time in a long time tonight. With recent injuries decimating the starting rotation, they're probably not going to get too far, but they're getting their cuts in! I hope to witness a whole bunch more quality seasons from Fernando Tatis, Jr. He's a real fun player and really good.

The fella from Once A Cub pulled this Topps Now parallel numbered 12/25 and thought of me. Aw yeah! He kindly let me dig up a few Cubs cards to send his way for it. A Christmas Card of a top tier PC guy of mine? A double-bullseye, as I say. Don't get much better than that!

Thanks again, man! Big hit for my collection.

And thanks again to everybody who's brightened my day with cards recently.

Heads up to my trader-buddies that I'm moving around the middle of October. I'll likely send out a mass email to my frequent trade partners with the new address once I'm good to go in the new house.

That's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.