Thursday, September 3, 2015

Trade Post - Sportscards From The Dollar Store

Once again I got a little behind on some trade posts.  The good news (if you can all it that) is that I haven't made too many trades or gotten too many packages so it won't take long to remedy being behind.

Time to share some great cards from my friend from the neighboring North, Douglas of Sportscards From The Dollar Store.  This isn't the first time we have exchanged cardboard and I always appreciate that he can make up for that dreaded USPS cost to ship to Canada by including some great cards in his packages.  This trade started off with me seeing a couple cards from a Gypsy Queen break, shooting Douglas a note and a trade with much more cards being completed.

In addition to the Gyspy Queen cards, this package hit on both of my USC collections. Here are some of the highlights:

I recently updated my USC checklist but outside of a few base LCS pick ups, I haven't done much to enhance my Trojan football collection.  This group of cards filled in some nice wholes in my checklist with some fairly recent releases.  The Reggie Bush card reminds me of how hot he was and how everyone wanted to pull his cards back in 2006.  Might be a good time for me to bargain hunt and fill in some gaps from early in his career as I am guessing prices are quite a bit lower.  I am hopeful that Reggie can add something to the 49er offense to help them do better than the 4-6 win projections I have seen.

 Here are 5 more USC football cards, all of Green Bay LB Clay Matthews.  The top 4 are all different variations with the same photo while the bottom card shows Clay doing what he does best - hitting the QB.  I am a big Matthews fan despite my distaste for the Packers.  However this year I have them in my 3 team fantasy game so I will be cheering for them.

While it is a lesser collection with the cards all fitting in a 300 count box (as opposed to the 4 3000-count boxes with base/inserts and the 3 large top loader boxes with hit for USC Football), I still like picking up some USC basketball players.  This package, and this scan, show some of the more recent stars that came out of USC to play in the NBA.  A buddy I work with knows DeMar DeRozen really well but if I was going to go after a player collection in addition to my Harold Miner collection, I think it would be Taj Gibson.  I like his toughness and how hard he plays.

 There were of course some Giants in this trade package, here are some of my favs.  I had intended on picking up the Panda October Heroes cards a bunch of times and kept forgetting to seal the deal so that was a great pickup.  I also wasn't real diligent on my minor league release checklists so these knocked some cards off and inspired me to update the checklist.

 And here aer the 2 cards that started it all from 2015 Gypsy Queen.  Gary Brown is all over Topps releases this year even though he was released prior to the start of the season by the Giants but I still go after his cards - I collect all Giants.  The Mays Bronze Framed card is a thing of beauty.

Another great trade, thanks for the great assortment of cards and hitting on so many parts of my collection Douglas!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Just For The "F" Of It #2

I have decided to start a series of posts featuring some of the cards that hold a special place in my collection despite not fitting into a specific collecting category and I call them cards I have Just For The "F" Of It (as in fun).

Today's card is an auto out of 2012 Goodwin Champions of Nathan's Hot Dog eating champ, Joey Chestnut.
For whatever reason, I have become a big fan of watching the Nathan's Hot Dog eating contest every July 4th and I have even gotten my boys into it the last couple years.  Back in 2007 Chestnut dethroned Kobayaskhi and brought the title back to the USA.  He had won 8 straight titles until losing this year to Stonie, 62-60 hot dogs.  His record is 69 hot dogs so it doesn't look like he brought his A-Game.

In addition to his hog dog record, Wikipedia lists these as other eating titles he holds:
  • Deep Fried Asparagus Eating Championship in Stockton, California, May 2014: 12.8 lbs. deep fried asparagus in 10 minutes.
    Pork ribs: 13.76 pounds pork rib meat in 12 minutes at John Ascuaga's Nugget Casino Resort during the Best in the West Nugget Rib Cook-off in Sparks, Nevada on August 28, 2013.
    Steak: 4.5 pounds of steak, plus sides, in 8 minutes, 52 seconds at Big Texan Steak Ranch on March 24, 2008. Chestnut's record was broken on Monday May 26, 2014 by competitive eater Molly Schuyler.
    Matzoh Balls: 78 matzoh balls in 8 minutes at Kenny & Ziggy’s New York Delicatessen Restaurant in Houston, Texas on March 2, 2008
    Bratwurst: 70 bratwursts in 10 minutes at Oktoberfest Zinzinnati in Cincinnati, OH on September 22, 2013.
    Hard Boiled Eggs: 141 hard-boiled eggs in 8 minutes at the Radcliff Fall Festival in Radcliff, KY on October 5, 2013.
While I only watch competitive eating once each year, I couldn't stop my desired to add an autographed card of this historic champion to my collection.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Another Meet Up with Mr Haverkamp

One of the better friendships I have developed through the development of this blog has been with fellow Giants fan, Mr Haverkamp aka Jim.  We have sent a few packages back and forth between Nor Cal and So Cal and even met up a few times.  Lucky for me Jim has some friends down here from his time living in So Cal and comes down every so often for a visit.  A couple weeks back our schedules aligned and we met for lunch near the two LCSs I frequent.

One of the coolest things I received during our meet up was this awesomely packaged 12-pack of San Francisco's favorite beer (and one of mine too) - Anchor Steam.
Jim was shopping a little while back and saw these special 12-packs celebrating the Giants 3rd World Series in 5 years.  He picked one up for himself and shot me a pic and a note asking if I was interested.  Heck yes!  It pays having friends in the location of your favorite team.

Here is the top of the 12-pack, nice usage of the Orange and Black color scheme, it looks great either way.

I have always said that one of the best things about going to Spring Training in Scottsdale is sitting in the stands drinking an ice cold Anchor Steam in the hot sun straight out of the bottle.  It does make for a Perfect Game experience.

Finally, anything that partners up the logos from all 3 of the World Championship teams is a winner in my book. It looks like this is designed to be cut out and brought to a game.  My 12-pack is going to remain in tact in my card room.  It may be crazy to leave such great beer untapped but I don't want to risk damaging the packaging and I can always pick up some in So Cal without the great packaging.

This meet up wasn't all about beer however, there were of course cards involved.  I have been on a several year quest to finish my 1970 Topps set and after finishing paying for a big lay away purchase at my old LCS in Orange County I am in striking distance.  Jim brought a few cards off my want list and we negotiated a fair price and I got some serious help.

I believe this group of cards features 3-4 of the high numbers.  High numbers for this set go for a premium so it was great to get some from Jim.  I love the Bud Harrelson card of him signing autos, I wonder if the dude whose arm is featured ever figured out he was on a card.

Now we get into some of the high end cards, nothing like a pair of Hammer Hank Aaron cards.  I had been following both these cards on eBay and hadn't pulled the trigger which I am now thankful for.  These cards are both in nice shape and huge additions towards my set completion.

 Next up is a card featuring a great photo of one of my player collection focuses, Reggie Jackson.  I like his cards from his first stint with the A's as they combine his youthful appearance with those Amazing A's uniforms.  This card does not disappoint.  I have a copy in my player collection and a couple reprints but I was very happy to knock it off the set want list.

 The final 1970 Topps card in the exchange was this rookie card of Yankee great Thurman Munson. This card is in great shape and is one that is very hard to track down in any reasonable condition.  I was super happy that Jim was willing to part with this card to help me out.

Jim also tossed in a couple of extras:
This is a full Ho Hos box featuring one of my favorite players, Vida Blue.   While I had a cut out single in my player collection, I certainly didn't have this awesome piece.  It may not be the easiest to store but I actually have a large plastic container for items like this.

The final card was this iconic image of fully afroed Oscar Gamble.  I needed this for the set of 1974 cards I am working on.  For the record, here is the remainder of my want list:

1976 Topps Traded #80T Jim Kaat
1976 Topps Traded #250 Fergie Jenkins
1976 Topps Traded #592 Willie Randolph
1976 Topps Traded NNO Checklist 

I am closing in on the 1970 Topps set, after this exchange with Jim, here is my remaining want list:

1970 Topps #580 Pete Rose
1970 Topps #600 Willie Mays
1970 Topps #640 Al Kaline
1970 Topps #650 Sam McDowell
1970 Topps #660 Johnny Bench
1970 Topps #712 Nolan Ryan

Some pretty big names there but I have actually knocked 3 of the 6 off the list since I met up with Jim and I will be sharing them as soon as I get them all in hand.

Thanks for meeting up Jim and thanks for the help on my collections.  I have a few cards as a show of thanks on my way to you.  Let's keep our fingers crossed that the Giants can overtake the hated Dodgers and make it 4 out of 6!

Monday, August 31, 2015

McCovey Monday #78 - 2015 Topps Archives Rainbow

My favorite player of all time is Hall of Famer Willie McCovey.  I have amassed a collection of over 1200 different  McCovey cards since I started collecting him in the late 1980s.  I will show off one of my favorite cards every Monday.  Stretch was one of the most feared hitters of all time and I am excited to show off my collection.

Wow, it has been 2 months since I have done a McCovey Monday post.  It's not like I lack cards of his to share but I will say the 2015 collecting season has been fairly McCovey lite.  Per Beckett he has only 53 cards so far this year.  Sixteen of those are 1/1s and 7 others have print runs at 15 or less.  I guess I have been too lazy to pull out the binders and share some pre-blog pick ups and today is no different.  However I have a nice rainbow of cards to show from 2015 Topps Archives.

 First up is the base card, luckily Willie Mac wasn't one of those dreaded short prints.  I like this portrait photo primarily as it showcases Candlestick Park in the background, the Giants stadium of my youth.  It brings back memories of terrible baseball in miserable weather conditions - but I loved every minute of it.

 Here is the silver parallel, numbered 161/199.  They call it silver but it looks much more like gray to me.  Having a different color border with this card design seems to work out pretty well and I like that they included the coloring around the box containing his name.

 Finally the gold version, this one is numbered 17/50.  My only desire on this card would have been making the cartoon version of the first baseman a lefty to match McCovey.  Probably a little nit-picky but it would have been a nice little touch.

Finally, here are all 3 cards together, a nice simple and not too hard to track down rainbow of my favorite player.  Time to get out the binders and find something cool to share next week.  Have a great Monday.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Some Recent Baby Jordan Pick Ups

I have been scouring eBay frequently over the last few months ever since I recognized my former neighbor at USC Mr. Harold Miner started appearing in card sets again.  I had put together a pretty nice and close to complete collection of Miner back in his playing days so some new cards got me pretty excited.  There are quite a few cards with very low print runs that will probably never be part of my collection but there have still been some great cards to go out and get.

Here are my most recent additions:

 Back in 1992 a company named Front Row put out a set of cards that featured some of the top prospective draft picks in a set and each player had 5 cards.  I remember buying packs of this product and putting together a complete set, I think it is floating around here somewhere.  They also had parallels with the Front Row basketball logo being Gold and Silver foil.  The Silver parallels had been on my want list for years and I had actually never seen them.  I saw them pop up on eBay and jumped.

 This card brings back bad memories but I still needed to add it.  It is a Sepia parallel and features a game in the 2nd round of the 1992 NCAA Tournament.  USC was a #2 seed and the #1 seed and several of the higher seeded teams had already been eliminated so the Trojans had a fairly clear path to the Final Four.  That is until a Freshman named James Forrest hit a 3 pointer to win the game at the buzzer.  It is one of those moments where I remember exactly where I was at and who I was with as I watched and is probably one of my worst 4 sports moments ever along with the Giants losing the 2002 World Series, the Trojans losing to Vince Young and Texas in the 2006 Rose Bowl and the Lakers and Robert Horry beating the Sacramento Kings in the 2002 NBA playoffs.

This card is an Exquisite Silver parallel of Harold's base card and is numbered 02/10.  This is a nice low numbered parallel and I still don't have the base which is serial numbered /75.  This card is super thick and I really like the design and how Miner's jump shot pops out of the silver background.

 These last two cards are both autographs out of 2014-15 SP Authentic.  The top one is a Flair Showcase reprint and while the design is pretty nice, I don't like how much the auto blends into the card.  It is much easier to see in this scan than in person.  In contrast, the auto on the bottom card pops.  I like the gold design and it goes well with the Trojan's uniform.  I am also impressed with how many new pictures of Baby Jordan have surfaced and been used on cards over the last 2-3 years.  Great work by Upper Deck in making that happen.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Time for Some Giants

As I look back on my recent posting history, I recognized that I have been posting fewer Giants cards than ever.  I think it is driven by my bulk purchasing of base cards for my collection this year and being either unexcited by the actual card designs as I have seen them for years or overwhelmed by a package of 100+ cards and not knowing what to post.  Time to correct course and get back to my roots for a post.

Here are 5 random Giants cards I have picked up recently.
This 2014 Topps Sergio Romo is the 1st edition version, I believe these were short printed to 10 copies of each base card but they aren't serial numbered.  I saw a fellow blogger (sorry can't remember who) show off one of these and thought it would be nice to have one in my collection.  I did a quick eBay search and went after this Romo card.  He has been with the Giants and an important reliever and I think this card shows off a pretty cool picture of his post save celebrations. The starting price was low and I put in a bid that ended up winning it for me.  I don't really have a need to add another but if one fell in my lap I would gladly add it to the binder.

This card was one of those mistake purchases.  Don't get me wrong, I like the card.  The red backing looks nice, the card is numbered to only 25 copies and Crick is one of the Giants top prospects.  However, I got into a bidding war on Sportlots with another buyer.  I was making automatic bids without opening up the auction and looking at the card and was bidding as if the card also had an auto.  I spent under $10 for this but I would have rather had those funds go to 30-40 base cards.  Oh well, time to turn the page.

Heath Hembree is no longer with the Giants, he was traded to the Red Sox as part of the Jake Peavy trade last year.  He was once touted as the Giants future closer and I had him stashed in the minors on my fantasy team.  That didn't pan out but I will like the guy.  This auto from 2014 Donruss numbered 12/49 popped up on the LCS bid board and I brought it home for about $3-4, I am happy to have it in my collection.

Here is a sweet silver parallel of Buster Posey, the possible 2015 NL MVP.  I love this Spring Training photo, this is one of my favorite cards of the year.  I also have the base and gold version of this so I guess my rainbow is now complete.  This card is numbered 129/199.

The final card to show off and get my Giants fix is this Letterman Auto of former Giants pitcher Noah Lowry.  Lowry played for the Giants for 5 years and got injured which ended his career back in 2009.  I was always a fan and thought he had a lot of potential.  Apparently the Giants did too as I looked him up on Baseball Reference and he got paid over $9 in his 5 year career for pitching in only 106 games, 100 starts.  My middle kid is named Noah (he was not named for Lowry, we just liked the name) so I always show him any Lowry pick ups and he thinks a Giant named Noah is pretty cool.  This letterman with the Giants colors looks great and is numbered 77/99.

I feel better getting some Giants back into the blog.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Just For The "F" Of It #1

I have decided to start a new series of posts, I haven't decided if it will be weekly or just whenever I get the itch.  Knowing my posting challenges it will most likely be a just whenever sort of deal.

I am titling it Just For the "F" Of It - as in fun of it so get your mind out of the gutter, I have to keep this PG.  One of the many blessings of this blogging community has been an expansion in my appreciation for cards and my recognition that I can like a card just because, it doesn't have to fit into one of my many different collections.  These posts will celebrate the cards that I have added or kept just for the fun of it.

Now here are the types of collections I have, so cards you see will be excluded from these:
  • Set collecting
  • Player collecting (McCovey, Henderson, Vida, Winfield, Reggie, Petrick, Chili, Parker, Barkley, Ewing, Webber, Miner, Lott, Craig and Clark)
  • San Francisco Giants
  • USC Football Players
  • Vintage San Francisco 49ers
  • Sacramento Kings
  • HOF Baseball Autos
Are there any cards left???  Believe it or not, this is a collection of mine that has grown quite a bit and I have plenty of cards to share.

So who gets the nod as the first Just For The "F" Of It card?

None other than Kent Tekulve and this 2015 Topps Archive Fan Favorites Autograph.  This card came my way via eBay for about $4 delivered and I just love it.   So how did this card find a place in my JFTFOI collection?  The first World Series I remember watching was the 1979 We are Family Pirates against the Orioles and Tekulve was the ace reliever for the Pirates.  Since the Bucs were in the NL like my Giants I was rooting for them in a big way.  I also fell in love with their uniforms, great bright yellow and black with the super cool caps. I actually has a Giants version of this cap as a kid with the yellow lines being orange and the P replaced with the interlaced SF.  Kent was sporting the killer shades and the crazy underhanded delivery and it made me an instant fan.

The beauty of products like Archives are bringing these Fan Favorites autographs to collectors like me.  A worthy card for my JFTFOI club.