Thursday, March 30, 2017

Post #9 - 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge: Day 2

Our challenge for the second day of the 30-day baseball card challenge is to post a card with more than one player on it, and for the second straight day, the main feature (at least for me) is a Blue Jay.

1994 Topps #237
This 1994 Topps is in my collection solely because of Shawn Green making an appearance.  If you aren't sure why I collect him, I suggest you check out my "About Me" page.  However, let's take a quick look at these other three players.

Curtis Pride was born deaf from rubella, and is apt at reading lips.  He signed with the Mets but made his ML debut in 1993 with Montreal.  He was never a regular starter, instead spending much of his career as a pinch hitter and defensive replacement.  Pride finished his career as a .250 hitter with 20 homeruns in 421 major league baseball games.  He is now the head baseball coach at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.

Mark Sweeney is another former player well-known for pinch hitting, as he is second all-time in ML history with 175 hits and first all time in pinch hit RBIs with 102.  Sweeney was a Golden Spikes Award finalist at the University of Maine before being drafted by the California Angels in the 9th round of the 1991 MLB draft.  Sweeney made his MLB debut in 1995 with the Cardinals.  He would end up playing for 7 franchises in his 13 year career, and is now doing analyst work for FOX and FOX Sports 1 shows.

Eddie Davis is a curious addition to this card.  Unlike the other three players pictured, Davis never made it to the show, rising as high as AA baseball in 1997.  He was a 61st round draft pick out of Cerritos (CA) College by the Seattle Mariners, but passed and was drafted in the 23rd round out of Long Beach State by the Dodgers in 1993.  His best season came in 1996, while playing for San Bernardino of the California League; he hit .256 with 34 doubles and 29 home runs, while collecting an OPS of .824.  Davis would hang up his cleats in 1999 after two seasons of unaffiliated baseball.

I hope you enjoyed a small lesson in baseball history.  I certainly learned a couple of new things today myself, which is always nice.  I have family coming into town this weekend and I know I have some items in the mail, including a box I won from Julie over at A Cracked Bat, so I'll be featuring those over the next couple of weeks, as well as trying to keep up with this 30 day challenge, and a new trade on the TCDB.  Good thing I love this hobby, eh?  Everyone have a wonderful rest of your day!


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Post #8 - 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge: Day 1

If you aren't yet aware, Tony over at Off Hiatus Baseball has put together a 30-day baseball card challenge.  I figured that since my content is currently pretty slim, I would throw my hat in the ring and see if I could pull this off.  I've seen plenty of these on social media, generally with photos or music, and I think doing a baseball card one is pretty awesome.

I know a couple of bloggers started yesterday, but we were out on the road and didn't get back until midnight, so I'm starting my challenge today.  Day one is a card from the current year with a photo that you like.  Now, my 2017 stash consists of 5 packs of 2017 Topps right now, so the pickings for this are pretty slim.  If you were to ask me to do this again in 6 months, my answer would most likely change (although I suppose that's not guaranteed).  Anyway, I digress.  The card I chose for challenge day 1 is...

2017 Topps #37
There's a lot for me to like in this picture.  Jose Bautista is one of the more exciting players in the game today; there are few players that I stop channel surfing to watch hit, but he's one of them.  Josh Donaldson is the same way.  But here's what I love.  First, the look of focus in Encarnacion's eyes (I believe that's Edwin coming to the plate; feel free to correct me, Jays fans).  The same goes for Pillar (again, I think that's him).  But even more so what I love is the casual Bautista-Pillar forearm bump.  That's probably my favorite baseball celebration, because it's so simple but when pulled off quickly and successfully, one of the most bad-ass celebrations as well.  Throw in Pillar's concentration with the eye black, and this is a no-brainer for me.  Fantastic.

I'll try to get a second post up tomorrow, with the category "a card with multiple players."  I suppose this technically counts for that too, right? Just kidding.  I'll find a new one.  Until then, everyone have a wonderful rest of your day and thanks for reading!


Monday, March 27, 2017

Post #7 - Two TCDB Trades

I checked my mailbox this morning and had two PWE's sitting in it waiting for me to open.  One I was extremely excited for and the other, well...I was still excited for it, but I kind of forgot it was coming.  Even though the smaller of the two was a trade proposition that came after the first one, I still completely blanked out on it.

2012 Panini Triple Play #57

2012 Panini Triple Play #57 (Reverse)
TCDB member ShoTime contacted me recently, offering me the Derek Jeter shown above in exchange for an Eric Hosmer 1987 Topps insert that I pulled from a recent pack of 2017 Topps.  I had no use for the Hosmer so I was happy to add another Jeter to my modest DJ player collection.  Like I said, I kind of forgot about this one because of my excitement for this next trade shown below, but I appreciate the deal nonetheless! ShoTime, your Hosmer should be arriving soon if it hasn't already.

Marc Brubaker at Remember the Astrodome left a comment on a previous post that I did, mentioning that he'd like to work out a deal.  I left him my TCDB username, which is where my wantlist/tradelist is at for the moment, figuring he could set up whatever he wanted.  Bru asked for six Astros off of my trade list (well, 5 Astros and a Roberto Clemente), which I was happy to oblige.  In return, he offered me 16 cards from my wantlist!

1990 Fleer #333
A new Jeff Peterek! I still swear that I have this card somewhere, and I know for a fact that I have an autographed copy in my autograph binder, but Bru knocked this one right off of my wantlist, moving the total Peterek collection to 9 of 16.  I still need the Canadian version of this card, so if anyone has that I'm highly interested.

Clockwise, starting top left: 2013 Panini Hometown Heroes #116, 1999 Topps #109, 2002 Upper Deck Vintage #189, 1998 Upper Deck #531, 2000 Pacific Omega #73, 2000 Metal #180
Six new Shawn Greens for the collection! I especially like the 2013 Hometown Heroes card; that's a design and set that I'm totally unfamiliar with.  I have Green's 2002 Upper Deck Vintage base card but was missing this team checklist with Gary Sheffield.

Clockwise from top left: 2016 Topps Bunt Program #P-18, 2016 Topps Gypsy Queen #2, 2014 Donruss #331, 2013 Pinnacle #144, 2013 Panini Hometown Heroes #168, 2013 Panini Triple Play #69, 2014 Topps Opening Day #150a, 2014 Topps Opening Day Superstar Celebrations #SC-8, 2015 Topps #275a
Holy cow.  9 new Buster Posey's to throw in on top of there as well.  I'm lucky to pick up nine Posey cards in a calendar year, let alone in one trade.  Bru, you went above and beyond here.  As I've mentioned, there should be two packages waiting in your PO Box for you this evening, and I hope they help your collection as much as your package helped mine.

I'm extremely lucky to be part of a collecting community that is not only generous and giving with their trades, but is even willing to trade at all.  I'm always open to entertain offers on the TCDB for the time being, although I do hope to get some wantlists up on this blog here in the next month or so.  Everyone have a wonderful rest of the day, and thanks for reading!


Friday, March 24, 2017

Post #6 - Generosity All Around

One thing that has stood out to me since I started reading everyone's blogs (a couple of months ago) is the generosity of the online blogging community and trading partners.  Time and time again I hear of envelopes turning up in one's mailbox unexpectedly or a trade partner going above and beyond.  For me personally, I try and do that every time I trade, and this is really due to one deal that happened in particular which I will recount here, although there has been another recent happening that just reinforces this.

Back in February, I proposed a small trade to TCDB user Robert.  I had just started trading and was having fun sending two or maybe three cards in a PWE, although I'm sure many trade partners would rather send more cards back and forth in a single blow.  Robert, however, happily accepted my trade.  Side note; he actually mixed up a package to myself and to one other trader.  Luckily we were both in Michigan and were quickly able to both repackage the items and send them to each other correctly, no harm done.  When I finally received Robert's package this past weekend, there was plenty more than the Shawn Green and two Matt Mantei's that I had requested.

Six Shawn Green cards off of my wantlist, three Matt Mantei cards, and a 2001 Topps Kory DeHaan that was on there simply so I could send it off for a TTM request this spring (he's a manager in rookie ball for Pittsburgh).  Talk about above and beyond; Robert not only held his end of the bargain, but sent me every other card that matched up on my wantlist and his tradelist.  This was incredibly generous, and I immediately searched his tradelist to see if there was anything that I could send him beyond the three cards he asked for.  I came up with one 2010 Topps insert that he needed and shipped it off to him, but I'll be checking his wantlist again and again to see if there's any way to properly repay him.

Meanwhile, I recently contact P-Town Tom over at Eamus Catuli! with some 2017 Topps Cubs cards.  Hopefully those have found his mailbox.  Tom graciously offered to send me some cards for my player collections, as he was heading to his LCS that weekend.  Quite frankly, Tom didn't have to do anything for those cards; I just wanted them to go to a good home (sounds like I'm giving away a puppy instead of pieces of cardboard).  However, not only did Tom go out of his way to send me some cards in return, he chose quite well, if I do say so myself.

Tom, thanks for the trade - I hope those 2017 Cubs find a nice spot in a binder!

Finally today, I'll wrap up with a single card that wasn't a trade at all, but a purchase of sorts.  I sometimes frequent the Sportscard Forums (SCF), and recently picked up enough reward points to do a little shopping.  I snagged the Shawn Green below to add it to my player collection for a measly 50 RP and free shipping, so I was pretty pleased.  I guess we can call this one generosity to myself!

1995 Score #304
That'll do it for me tonight.  Once again, thanks to all the bloggers and traders out there who are a little more than fair.  It's nice to see people in this world who still go above and beyond to be good people, and I hope that my principles remain the same as yours.  Thanks for reading, and have a blessed weekend!


Thursday, March 23, 2017

Post #5 - TTM Haul Part II

Back this morning with the rest of the autographs that I had waiting in envelopes for me back in Michigan this weekend.  Next time we can start diving into some trade packages.  But first, four new baseball signatures for the binder!

2015 Choice Midwest League Top Prospects #14
Torres is a prospect in the Padres minor league system.  I picked this 33 card set up at the end of the 2015 baseball season and sent all of the cards out over the summer of 2016.  I'll have to run a check sometime to see how many of them are still in my collection, but this success is the newest.  I took about 8 months, as I'm assuming Torres returned it from spring training.

1988 Donruss #556, 1989 Topps #151, 1988 Donruss #556
Terry McGriff is the uncle of Fred McGriff, and was one of the more recent 1988 Donruss cards that I grabbed off of a stack, added to an envelope with a few other of his cards, and sent off.  The fact that it shows him in a Reds uniform is a pure bonus.  He signed all three of these via his home address in a little over a month.  One of the 1988 Donruss cards is available for trade if anyone is interested.

2012 Topps #104, 2008 TRISTAR PROjections #331, 2013 Topps #347
This is the second time I've written to Brett Anderson.  The first time, I was a bit younger, less experienced, and much less mature.  My theory was that if I sent cards in a penny sleeve, they'd be a little more protected during the journey.  Guess how that turned out with damp ink? That being said, I wrote to Anderson during Spring Training...last season.  Seriously.  I got these three back in just under a year, which is pretty cool.  Nothing quite like thinking that a card is long gone and seeing it in your mailbox (or mail stack) a year later.  The 2013 Topps unfortunately got a little bubbled, much like the Rod Brind'Amour I showcased yesterday (the cards were stuck back-to-front), so it's available for trade.  I don't know what it is with Brett Anderson, but I cannot get a clean signature!

2004 Bowman Sterling #BS-LH
Once again, not a true TTM return, but an autographed card through the mail.  I won this Holdzkom card in a contest held by Sports Card Info back in February and I finally got it added into my binder.  Holdzkom unfortunately passed away in a car accident in 2015, so this is a very nice piece of cardboard for the collection.

Thanks for reading, and I'll have more good stuff this weekend.  Everyone have a wonderful and blessed day!


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Post #4 - TTM Haul Part I

Well not to toot my own horn or anything, but I was right - that mail haul waiting for me back home was quite a healthy stack.  I'm not feeling the greatest and have a ton of homework, so this is going to be a brief post.  I'll showcase five of the new autographed cards I got for my collection; all non-baseball.

1990-91 Topps card #51
Randy Carlyle is now the head coach of the Anaheim Ducks; one of my first orders of business in slimming down my hockey collection is to take up to three cards of any player and send them off TTM if possible.  Any cards not sent TTM are added to the trade pile.  Carlyle and the photo below are the first two successful examples of this method working for me.  Carlyle returned this card in just over a month via the Ducks.

1995-96 Upper Deck Collector's Choice, 2006-07 Victory, 2006-07 Upper Deck Power Play
Rod Brind'Amour is an assistant coach with the Carolina Hurricanes and returned all three of these in about a month and a half through the team address.  The cards were stuck back to front in the SASE, so the Power Play signature is a little faded and bubbled  With that being said, it is available for trade if anyone is interested.

1990 Score #418
Cedric Jones was never a superstar for New England (to the best of my knowledge) but I ended up with a ton of his cards from when I was a Patriots fan and collected them left and right.  He was nice enough to sign these two cards for my dad and myself in about a week via the New York Athletic Club.

1989 Pro Set #255, 1990 Score #338, 1989 Pro Set #255
Stanley Morgan is in an identical boat with Cedric Jones.  Of the 50 or so Morgan cards I have in a New England uniform, I sent him these three expecting a long wait (the average was around 8 months for his return).  Although the picture is rough, he personalized two for me and one for my dad again.  The best part? He took just over a month for a 3/3 success!

1998 Press Pass Autographs #14
This one was not a TTM request, but still a TTM success! Colbey over at Cardboard Collections was doing a collection purge a few weeks back, and I requested and was granted a lot of two cards; this Wistrom shown above, which is a new signature for my collection, and a Brandon Jacobs memorabilia card that I didn't photograph before giving to my dad for his personal collection.  Starting to see a recurring theme with my dad and I? He got me started collecting and I still try to engage in the hobby with him whenever possible.  Thanks for the cards Colbey!

Tomorrow I'm going to try and post the rest of my autograph haul from the last month or so, as well as get to the post office.  Bru and ShoTime at TCDB, you both have packages coming soon! Bru, yours will be two envelopes so be on the lookout for those! Everyone has a blessed evening.


Friday, March 17, 2017

Post #3 - First TCDB Trades

So much for posting daily.  That went out the window the next day - and the day after! I forgot that we were playing down in St. Louis in a conference double header on Wednesday (actually Sauget, Illinois at GCS Ballpark; not a bad place for an NAIA ballgame, eh?) and I was so behind on homework on Thursday that I just didn't have time.  I see what some of you mean now about time management and blogging! Enough excuses - let's get on to the content today.  I'm going to focus on my first two trades on the Trading Card Database.  Now, I'm sure all readers are already familiar with TCDB, but if you're not, you need to go check it out.  Seriously the most comprehensive card collecting site I've ever seen, and the folks there are beyond spectacular.

Trade 1

I swapped a couple of duplicate Derek Jeter's that I had over to Jay in exchange for three Matt Mantei cards that I needed.  All three cards are from MLB Showdown sets; 2000, 2001, and 2003.  I never played MLB Showdown, but I did have the NFL version of the game from 2004? Maybe 2005, or even 2006.  I have no idea.  Kinda cool.  Those cards had a barcode on the side that got swiped through a scanner if I remember right, and then the scanner displayed the result of the play.  Anyway, the three Mantei's are shown below.  These are definitely cards that I would have never found myself.

2000 MLB Showdown 1st Edition #26
2001 MLB Showdown 1st Edition #24

2003 MLB Showdown Trading Deadline #13

Trade 2

My second trade came just under a week later with another TCDB user.  I tossed him another Jeter duplicate and a Rod Brind'Amour Collector's Choice card in exchange for two future TTM requests.  As I said in my first post, Barbaro Garbey is a coach with the Danville Braves.  He saw time at both corner infield spots, the outfield, and DH in his career.  He played from 1984-1988 with the Tigers and Rangers, winning the 1984 World Series with Detroit.  This 1986 card will be going out right after the minor league season begins.

1986 Topps #609
The second card featured the current pitching coach for the Danville Braves, Kanekoa Texeira.  Texeira, Shane Victorino's cousin (seriously), pitched in the minors for several MLB clubs but only reached the show with Seattle and Kansas City.  He also spent some time pitching independent ball.  This 2010 Topps will be in the mail the same day as Garbey's request.

2010 Topps #457

That's all I've got tonight; it's already 8:30 Central Time and I'm exhausted.  Don't expect to hear from me for the next two days.  Another double header (home this time) starts at noon tomorrow, and I'm jumping in the car and heading back to Michigan immediately afterwards.  I'll be off the grid on Sunday as well, helping work a poker game/auction fundraiser for the legion baseball team I coach (shameless self-promotion here).  The good news is that I'll have a large stack of mail to open up and share with everyone next week.  Have a great night and a wonderful, relaxing weekend!


Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Post #2 - My First COMC Purchase

I've decided that I'm going to try using this blog daily in an effort to stay committed to it.  Plus, I really enjoy it so far; I spent two hours last night tinkering with my tabs and wantlists, etc.  I think I have enough material to get some quality posts in for a bit, not to mention that if I can get home Sunday like I plan I should have plenty of ammo for days to come.

Today, I'm going to focus on my first COMC purchase ever, which came near the end of January.  I had some Amazon gift cards left from the holidays totaling about $20, and I went browsing.  I've never bought single cards off of Amazon, but when I saw that there was one Jeff Peterek that I needed for cheap through COMC...and then another...and then another...I bought six.  Whoops.  The total with shipping came out to be $19.19, so I didn't spend a dime out of pocket.

1986 ProCards Stockton Ports #20, 1987 ProCards #1570, 1988 Best El Paso Diablos #21
The 1986 card is from the Stockton Ports team set of that year.  The reverse tells us that Peterek played for the Beloit Brewers (Midwest League) in 1985, but he isn't featured in the team set from that year.  The middle card is from the ProCards 1987 set which featured a grand total of 2812 cards (!).  The 1988 Best El Paso Diablos card is also team issued.  According to TCDB there is a Platinum version out there as well, but I've never seen a Best Platinum from 1988, let alone of Peterek.  If anyone knows more please let me know.

1989 CMC Denver Zephyrs #8, 1989 ProCards #46, 1994 Miller Brewing Milwaukee Brewers NNO
The 1989 CMC is another team issued card, and the first card of Peterek with Denver; in all he's featured in a Zephyrs uniform six times in 16 cards.  The 1989 ProCards is from another monster ProCards set totaling 2188 cards.  Finally, the Miller Brewing Milwaukee Brewers set was released in 1994 and featured 374 cards of players in Milwaukee baseball history.  These cards appear to have come in sheets, as you can see the perforation marks on the top and right of the Peterek card.  I don't know anything else about this set.  If anyone does, feel free to share in the comments!

Whew - I thought getting a blog would make me feel better about my ramblings, but I guess not.  I promise I'll try not to make every post so long, both for my sake and yours! One last thing - Jon over at A Penny Sleeve for your Thoughts is running a great COMC contest, so hop to it! Have a great Tuesday!


Monday, March 13, 2017

First Post...A Small Trade

Welp.  I'm going to try this blogging thing.  I've been reading a lot of them lately since re-dedicating myself to the collecting hobby in January, and rather than continue to clutter up the Facebook group I so fondly read or the TradingCardDB forum boards, I figured maybe I should give this a go.  I definitely won't be posting every day right now; maybe not even weekly.  I don't have many of my cards here at school, and my time is currently limited.  However, this summer I hope to change that and really get into things.

First things first - packages sent out! Today, I was able to drop some cards to P-town Tom over at Eamus Catuli!  I had some 2017 Topps Cubs cards that he said he was interested in, and I threw in something else that I'm sure he can find a use for.  Be on the look out soon Tom!

I've also got one sealed up and ready to go to Billy Kinglsey.  Billy has recently gotten into collecting the NHL, and I've got some duplicates headed over his way that I'm sure he can find some good use for.  Hopefully I can get that sent out within the end of the week.

Now, onto what was IN my mailbox today.  I picked up a small trade package from Kaline6 over at TradingCardDB.  I sent him a 2015 Topps "Highlight of the Year" Babe Ruth in exchange for these three cards.  Sorry for the poor quality; a scanner is currently non-existent in my life, and I recently got a new phone with a subpar camera.

The Posey on the right will make a wonderful addition to my player collection.  The Barbaro Garbey on the left will join his 1986 Topps card in heading to the Danville Braves this summer, where he is a coach, in search of an autograph.  The Bill Dawley card in the middle has a funny story to it.

Almost a year ago to the day, my girlfriend gifted me with a 1988 Fleer factory set she had picked up at an antique barn.  I'm not much of a set collector, so I intended to mail out the cards from it for signatures TTM.  I sent the Dawley and a Rocky Childress out over winter break in January, and I received them both back signed nicely in black sharpie.  But when I was thinking about how to manage my collection recently, I made the decision to go ahead and start some set building; nothing serious, but projects with a reachable goal.  By that, I mean that Derek Jeter has some 14,000 cards; I'll never collect them all.  But I could certainly put some complete sets together!

Anyway, the point is that Kaline6 helped me get one of the two missing pieces of the 1988 Fleer set that I needed! Yeah, I didn't fully "build" it, but I kind of am now, right? Regardless, I'll have a complete 1988 Fleer set as soon as I get a replacement Rocky Childress.  Now what's next? Maybe 1987 Topps? I guess I'll figure that out next time I buy a factory set!

Thanks for reading; hopefully I'll have more good stuff soon.  I'm heading home to Michigan for the day on Sunday (about a 5 hour drive; leaving Saturday night after our double header for baseball, and returning Sunday evening), and I know I have a huge stack of envelopes waiting for me there.  Maybe I can spread those out over a few days so that I have some content for a while.  Here's hoping everyone has a wonderful week!