Sunday, May 30, 2021

Checking where I rank with some lesser-collected PC guys

Got a few more cards from my big shipment to document on the blog today. These here are non-HOF "fan favorite" type guys from the past.. Generally players that aren't chased by many collectors out there. It's fun to go after oddballs and whatnot from them, and maybe even take a run at completing their full run of cards, or at least trying to build the #1 PC for a guy on TCDB.

Starting alphabetically with Dick Allen-- not exactly an obscure name, but still-- here are a couple smaller-than-standard cards. That side-eyein' 2009 Goodwin Champions is one of my all-time favorites.. I've got at least a couple other versions of it, including the auto which had been a white whale of mine for a few years, and am happy to snag the black bordered mini of it now. 1990 Target All-Time Dodgers is a familiar set to me after seeing gcrl cover the whole thing on his blog a few years back, plus occasional appearances on Night Owl Cards. Sucks they couldn't have found a picture of Dick from this Dodger days to use on the card. That out of place White Sox uniform is worthy of young Richie's side-eye.

At the time of this post, Crash's #1 collector on TCDB is user "theFalcon" with 84, with the 2nd most being 61 cards. I haven't added up all my DA's or entered them into the site, but I'm probably somewhere between those two. TCDB lists 325 total cards for him... many of which are just from this year, with Dick being included in '21 Heritage and getting multiple Project 70 cards, too (none of which I've pulled the trigger on, though nice to see him getting some hobby love).

UPDATE: I clawed my way into 2nd place with 62 cards, though I had to resort to counting a couple Kellogg's cards that are currently stored in setbuilds not the player collection, if you wanna get technical about it-- but whatever, I own the cards. I'd probably be around 70 cards if I counted more set stuff like that. 
BTW, I already owned the above two cards, dang it! Good thing I'm trying to keep better track of my collection now. Oh well, I'll add the dupes to the "for trade/sale" inventory I've been meaning to build up on TCDB to hopefully see more trade action.

Rod Beck has 414 total cards listed. These are 3 cheap parallels I probably needed.
1995 Upper Deck - Electric Diamond Silver
1995 Score - Hall of Gold
1997 Donruss Limited - Limited Exposure (with John Wetteland on the other side)
Shooter's top collector on TCDB is user "bronnerea" with 164 cards. I can't top that, but think I'd have a shot at being in the top 10 were I to check in mine to the site.

Ken Caminiti is a guy I have a lot of cards of, but still probably wouldn't crack the top 10 on TCDB ("Expos1990" rules comfortably with 597 cards.. probably over 3 times as many as me). Ken's represented in this order by a thick, leathery insert (1997 Topps Stadium Club Patent Leather --pretty sure I saw one of these get a thumbs-up on Fuji's blog and had to grab one for myself) plus a couple $1 buybacks. And if it's buybacks of notable Padres sluggers you're into, well have I got a group of cards to show you...

A half dozen boughten-back Nate Colbert cards. Not too far from a full career Topps run of buybacks, but his high-numbered '67 rookie stars card and high-numbered '72 (and corresponding In Action) make that an unlikely project to ever complete.

And some more Colberts for my semi-supercollection. Looks like I went on a little shopping spree with Nate in mind on 4/11/2020, as all 12 of these cards were bought on the same day. Some of these weren't good deals ($5+ each for the Ty Cobb back mini and the TCMA? Geez), but just wanted to basically snag anything on the site that I didn't already have.

I think I'd have a good chance of being #1 for Nate Colbert on TCDB. Oh yeah, I just looked it up and the top spot is only 31 cards. I think I could beat that, though then again a lot of my cards of him are proof cards that wouldn't be on the TCDB checklist. But yeah, I should enter in my PC one of these days.

UPDATE: Ok, I did. 

Woo! #1 by a wide margin. Most of the above buybacks plus the APBA "card" aren't listed, so my actual number would be even greater if those were added in.

Dave Henderson is a PC I really enjoy adding to, but he's a relatively recent addition to my crew, so doubt I'd rank too highly on TCDB ("DaClyde" is first with 248 cards, followed by "bronnerea" with 175).. I still need most of his junky base cards (attn: trader buds). A pair of tiffany cards are among the parallels I grabbed this time around. I don't regard 1989 Bowman very highly.. but 1989 Bowman Tiffany? For whatever reason, I love it! Being glossy and printed on high quality cardstock somehow excuses it for the audacity of being oversized and not printing the player's name on the front. The weird by-team stats breakdown thing is still on the back, but at least it's easier to read on bright stock. lol

COMC damaged the Bill Madlock foldy, so I went ahead and folded it as intended by the design. I got it specifically because it was the only card of Mad Dog pictured on the Texas Rangers I didn't have. I might have a shot at the top 10 on TCDB for Madlock, but doubt I'd be too near the top ("bronnerea" repeats as king here with 154).

The Maas and Scioscia cards are imported from the north.

Just wanted to find a couple PC guys cheap as an excuse to add Canadian 1990 Fleer cards to my collection. ("Ptd. in Canada" on the bottom.) Feels like that's some mythic set that I hear about a lot but had never actually seen in-hand before.

Also in the photo, a look at the damage on the Madlock. It was in a long top loader, but it had been cranked pretty hard somehow in packaging and managed to damage the card within it. At least it only cost me $1 so I didn't make a stink about it. But yeah, not cool, COMC.

Mike Sharperson might be a really random player for me to collect, but I decided to build up a collection of his cards after remembering liking him back in my early days as a baseball fan and card collector circa '90-92 which really happened to be his only good seasons. Besides those 3 years, he was mostly on the roster for depth, spending the majority of his time in AAA with occasional promotions to the big league club. He was on the verge of making his Padre debut in 1996 spelling a hurt Ken Caminiti, but was fatally injured in a car wreck on the way to the airport.

TCDB lists 104 total cards with the top collector being "bronnerea" again with 70. It'll be a while till I'm anywhere near that, but enjoy picking up some oddities like these. (The '89 Bowman and middle '91 Topps are tiffany.) Still need most of his junky cards, but I'd rather get those in trade then have to buy them.

I also scored a few needs for my Dan Walters PC, mostly minor league issues. The most expensive of these was the 1989/red one ($3.20), which sadly is another victim of COMC's employee damaging the card during packaging. You can see the top left corner got jacked up. And by context of the package contents, it was clearly damaged during packaging, not already damaged before the fact nor damaged in transit. Boo. I know those guys are rushing to catch up on their backlog, but wish they'd be more careful with the cards.

Dan Walters is yet another player featured in this post whose life was cut short. I don't consciously decide to collect guys who die before reaching old age, but perhaps on some level my heart goes out to them. Collecting their cards might be like my way of paying tribute.. and/or a reminder that life is precious and I should take the time to appreciate every day I wake up in good health.

Walters has just 42 cards listed on TCDB, with ol' "bronnerea" ranked the #1 collector with 26 of them. That guy must either have a huge collection, or we just happen to share a few favorite retired players. I might be able to challenge him on this one, as I think I've got around 20-30 Dan Walters cards.

UPDATE: I've got 24 cards. So close! Good for 2nd; in striking distance of 1st.
One thing that bugs me about TCDB is the arbitrary way cards are assigned to players.
Per TCDB's checklist, the card on the left is considered a Dick Allen card, yet the card on the right isn't considered a Dan Walters card. I suppose "My collection, my rules" doesn't apply when you're using somebody else's website (and the site's many users have plenty of room to edit as they see fit).

Last guy for today is Marcus Giles...

That's an impressive page-worth of refractor goodness, eh!

As I've mentioned plenty of times on the blog, I grew up with Marcus, in the same grade as him at the same school from elementary through community college. So it's cool to collect a former classmate of mine. Like, check it out, a guy in my high school P.E. class is sharing a card with Ken Griffey Jr!-- How cool is that? Plus it's a good excuse for me to add some fun parallels from years that I wasn't actively collecting. And despite three strong seasons in his career, he was never a huge star, so his cards usually don't run me too much cash.

TCDB user "bravefan1" has a commanding lead for the top spot with 143 Marcus Giles cards, but I could probably challenge that total if I added my PC to the site. Too lazy to do that right now-- beautiful Memorial Day weekend over here-- but remind me another day. lol

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Active dudes

I should probably hurry up documenting my last COMC haul. Already got some Sportlots orders on the way and I don't want to fall too behind!

I don't mess with new cards that often these days, so "flipper madness" and this whole thing about no more cards sold at Target or Walmart doesn't affect me much. But I collect my share of active players and will occasionally pull the trigger on cards that catch my eye.

I wanted to score myself one of those fancy Instavision inserts from Stadium Club and got this one from 2017 featuring Kris Bryant. I believe these are case hits, therefore usually pricey. I got a good deal on this one ($5.23) before he started being good again (and now they're like 3x that). I like how it commemorates the Cubs finally winning it all. Nice baseball memory.

Cheap numbered cards from a couple low-key PCs of mine, Walker Buehler and Seth Beer.

Rhys Hoskins has turned out to be one of the main active players I collect. He's good enough to get into many insert sets, but not good enough to the point he's one of the most expensive cards in such sets. So like when I see a neat Knothole Gang card on the blogs and want to grab one for myself-- or maybe a 1970 Cloth Sticker insert from 2019 Topps Heritage-- I can do a search by cheapest first and Rhys is often a familiar name to find and add to my cart.

I went on a Michael Lorenzen bender one day last spring and bolstered my PC of the sorta two-way player with this solid lot. Bummed he's been hurt this season.

And speaking of the Reds, I grabbed some Joey Votto refractors, as well.

Juan Soto here with a couple sharp-looking cards.

And we'll wrap it up for today with this trio. I think I just searched Mike Trout by cheapest serial-numbered card and ended up with this stat line parallel. Franmil Reyes was a fun player in the Padres lineup for a brief while before being shipped to Cleveland. And Manny Machado is going to be around San Diego for a long time. "2019 Panini Prizm - Illumination - Prizm" is another shiny insert set that caught my eye on the blogs and snagged an example for myself.

- --o

Unrelated, but R.I.P. Gavin MacLeod.

Passed away today at age 90. Best known as the captain of the Love Boat but had a pretty interesting career. Growing up, he was the only other Gavin in the world (as far as I could tell; the name's more popular these days), so always felt kind of a weird kinship with him. I've got his autograph (or most of it, at least) in my card collection via this 12/25 auto scored back in 2014.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

more cool cards

Here are a few more pickups from my last COMC order.

I love these "What If?" cards from Donruss Archives Originals that came out in 2002. Were it not for the Toppsopoly, collectors might've gotten an Ozzie Smith Rated Rookie in 1978 that hypothetically could have looked something like this. Then there's Jim Palmer in what may have been a 1980 Donruss design. I already had the 1984 Rated Rookie of Kirby Puckett, but it's a card I love so much that went ahead and got another one since the price was right. These "official customs" (75 total) were seeded just 1 or 2 per box, so the price isn't right too often, otherwise I'd probably go after the full set.

They did a decent job on the backs too.

Spent $1.64 on this lot of 2013 Topps Wrapper Redemption Blue Slate parallels. Ah, that's a pleasing blue sparkle they've got going on! Love it! No plans to work on a full parallel set, just wanted to grab a few that were priced to move that I could possibly fit into my collection. These guys are Kevin Millwood (birthday buddy), Juan Francisco (no reason to grab him.. maybe Braves trade fodder if Johnny needs it), Carter Capps RC (former Padre I remember hoping would pan out for the team [but didn't]), Barry Zito (who seemed like a decent name to grab for essentially the site minimum).

Here are a couple refractor autos that I bought for the backgrounds rather than the unremarkable college football player featured in the foreground. Those shiny flags look pretty cool and convinced me to throw them in my cart for about a buck each.

One day I decided I really liked the 2012 Topps farewell card for Vladimir Guerrero (though it features a checklist on the back instead of stats) and thought I'd make a half-hearted run at a rainbow. Already had the base card, and my quest pretty much ends here as far as readily available cards go, but maybe I'll save an ebay search for the tougher parallels and try to add to this group. No equivalent of this card was included in Chrome that year, meaning no refractors to chase.

Speaking of Vladdy, I already showed off the big 1998 Topps Super Chrome Jumbo Refractor from this same shipment, but just as an update..

He's up on the wall. I added a blue backing that I think helps it pop. Maybe someday I'll slip it into a better frame, but for now it's what I had available. Works for me!

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Yankin' Around

I've been working on a post that's taking a while to finish (involves entering some of my PCs into TCDB), and it's been a while since I posted anything, so in the meantime here's a quick one with some recent additions to my Topps Retired collection.

Super happy to snag this '05 Tim Raines at an underpriced buy-it-now.

I'd probably prefer Rock pictured during his younger days as an All-Star in Montreal rather than his time as a role player on the dynasty Yankees, but it's still cool. I suppose part of the appeal of these Retired autos is they often go with an unexpected team, especially by 2005, the product's third and final iteration. He's pictured as an Expo in 2004 Retired, but didn't get an autograph that year.. and he wasn't in 2003 Retired at all (probably hadn't actually retired at the time that checklist was being built), so that's a wrap on Rock for me. This is my second auto of his; I've also got a Christmas Card (in a White Sox uniform).

Ron Blomberg is a fun one, not really for the stats he put up in a relatively short career, but for being a notable figure in the game's history.

Next up, a card so nice, I bought it twice.

I already had Goose in my 2004 Retired refractor auto collection, but when this one popped up with a low opening bid, I went ahead and ended up winning it. Well hey, by virtue of being a Pad in the Hall, he's an upper tier PC guy for me, so figured I'd score a "dupe" for the player collection since the price was right.

I recently completed a page of Gossage for my "Vagabond Binder" (one card per team), and that's another post on my to-do list.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Shiny cards in various sizes

More highlights from my big COMCOVID shipment.

After getting shut out for comments in my previous post, I'd better bring out the big guns.

Well, a big card and a tiny card. One shiny, one shiny and also sparkly. Two greats of the game.

At $14.99, the SuperVlad refractor was my priciest pickup of the order. I don't consider it an addition to my card collection as much as an addition to my fine art collection.

It's going up on the wall where it will serve as a motivational poster. "Fully extend for your dreams."

Here's a closer look at the sparkly micro Kirby along with his proud papa. 

The oversized bat further confounds the image and is really messing with my sense of scale! Somehow tiny Kirby is even tinier and regular Kirby is ginormous.

A few different micro cards of stars were created as prism parallels and included as a bonus with the 1993 micro factory set. At least that's my understanding of the proto-Atomic Refractor/Cracked Ice little fella's origins. Does that make it the very first sparkly parallel? I know there were sparkly baseball stickers in the late 80s; not sure if they count. But anyways, yeah, I found out about these cool things and had to pick up one for myself. Cost me a buck.

I picked up a few needs from my foolish quest of a black refractor parallel set of 2004 Topps Chrome. Three commons for around a buck each, and then splurged on Mad Dog for $10.25. Nice to cross another big'un off my wants-- 223 cards left to go-- plus he's a PC guy for me, so I can appreciate it on that level too.

Mr. Elroy Face was the lone pickup in this shipment for my ARMS (Archives Reserve Master Set). A gracious man when it comes to his signature, this card cost me what shipping alone would have cost me on eBay. Man, I sure hope COMC eventually returns to being a convenient place to purchase-and-then-soon-receive cards for decent prices. Anyways, just 136 cards left to go until I have a full master set of Topps Archives Reserve cards.

See ya next time

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Johnny's Trade Post

John Miller surprised me with some cool cards recently.

Card Twitter was buzzing today at the revelation that 2021 Topps Update is slated to feature inserts in the classic '93 Black Gold design. Let's just hope Topps goes all-in with actual gold foil like the originals, not the shine-less TBT versions from 2019. But yeah, if those Update cards are done right, I might have to chase the set, or at least go after my PC guys. I'm still working on the originals, but this lot from John helps.

Here are highlights from the many San Diego cards in the package. The 2017 Gypsy Queen Wil Myers throwback variation seems to be a pretty tough pull. Looks like John broke a few small sets like Donruss Opening Day and Fleer Update, passing the Padres onto me. I never had much from those near-oddballs so I get a thrill out of them with their less-familiar alternate designs. And always love adding cards to PCs of guys like Bip and Templeton.

John seems to dig up a few Gavin Floyds to include every time he sends me cards. While I already have most of Floyd's mainstream cards, there were a couple needs and an upgrade here.

Saving the best for last with this pair. Might seem unassuming at first, but...

A glossy parallel of Gavin Sheets and a 12/25 press proof of Matt Clement. Sheets is the frontrunner to be the next guy named Gavin to crack the big leagues, off to a good start in AAA this season. Clement is a guy I remember rooting for during his days in San Diego.

Great stuff.. thanks, John! I sent you a little return the other day, hope you like.

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Non-sport pickups plus Wallet Card and Ruby at the coast

More cards from my recent big order, this time some stuff outside of sports.. well, the big four sports, anyways. I found out Goodwin Champions is a good source for cheap on-card autographs. First off is a trio of TV dudes.

Craig Kilborn was entertaining back in his ESPN days, and I enjoyed him as the first host of The Daily Show, but it was his tenure as hosting the Late Late Show on CBS that really endeared him to me. That was a fun show. But he left to try his hand at becoming a big hollywood actor and was never heard from again. Happy to snatch this auto for just $1.53.

Another show I like is the sitcom Fresh off the Boat, based on the memoir of Eddie Huang. Figured I'd pick up an auto of his, even if it appears he attended the Wil Myers school of lazy wave signatures.

Aries Spears was pretty funny on MADtv back in the day. I haven't heard much of him since, but hey, I pulled the trigger on this inexpensive auto.

Here are four Goodwin Champions who happen to be attractive women, each card scored for just a buck-something. Heck yes! I wasn't familiar with any of these people, but jumped at adding a few more on-card autos to this part of my card collection for cheap.
Alexandra O'Laughlin is a golf and travel correspondent with the Golf Channel and NBC.
Shelina Zadorsky is a soccer player who plays in the English FA Women's Super League, as well as on the Canada women's national soccer team.
Lindsey Weaver is a golfer who's had some success on the LPGA Tour.
Quincy Davis is a professional surfer from Montauk, New York.

Another pretty lady's autograph, though a sad one as Lisa Spoonauer passed away the same year these 2017 Skybox Clerks cards came out. Great flick. Tempted to go after more cards from this set, but for now, this one will do.

I also picked up some additions to my Howard Hughes PC.

I should mention that COMC started including a little barcode slip thing with every card. I know they used to do that sometimes in the past, like with encased cards, but now I think every single card in the shipment included one. Makes sense for inventory reasons, I suppose, but kind of a pain to have to remove the receipt from every sleeve. Though sometimes, like with obscure oddballs such as these, I think I'll go ahead and leave the slip with them to help with identification down the line.

Another oversized Hughes, a Pee-Wee, and a bizarre bloodied Sgt. Slaughter.

Not to brag, but I scored very well on the Howard Hughes quiz.. but then again I did just research him last year for the 9-card custom set I made.

After completing the master set of 1988 Topps Pee-Wee's Playhouse cards (that I have been meaning to post about one of these days), I figured I'd try to pick up the other cards of him out there.

Sgt. Slaughter is a dude I collect because of his GI Joe connection (I was a huge GI Joe fan as a kid).

Alright, that's all from that shipment for now. Still lots of baseball left from it for future posts.

- - -----o

After missing last year due to the pandemic, my wife and I and her immediate family returned to the house at the Oregon coast we've rented for a weekend each spring for several years now. It's often the most action my wallet card gets each year.

I always like to dip in my wallet card when there's a body of water around, so had to snap this pic in the ocean. 90D Gwynn here, my wallet card for 2021, will possibly have the rare distinction of touching both the Pacific and Atlantic, as we'll be traveling for a wedding in New England later this year.

While walking Ruby around the neighborhood, I came across this boat named "Slabhunter" and had to take a wallet card photo. Seems it's a fishing term, not a reference to searching for graded cards, but still. haha

The house has seen some changes/improvements since last time we stayed there. One new thing that caught my eye was this cool Lego VW bus with opening doors n' stuff. All 6 of us humans in our group had been fully vaccinated, so it was nice to be able to hang out together like normal again and not worry about masks unless heading into town. Really the biggest difference with the whole trip is it was the first time staying at the house without Annie, our beloved rottie-mix who passed in late 2019. She was an awesome dog and it was kind of weird and sad without her there. 
Instead we had to deal with this jerk..

Ruby, on the verge of turning one year old, was a dang terror all weekend, thanks I suppose to being overstimulated with special friends who spoil her (my in-laws) and a new place to explore. She pissed all over the house (and pooped in it once), stole a big cut of pork tenderloin off the counter during dinner, whined a lot at bedtime, and just generally forgot all her behavioral training. (She was back to being better once we came home.) But damn it, she's a cutie so it's easier for her to get away with it. She sure did have a blast, especially down on the beach...

That's it for this post. Thanks for reading!