Wednesday, November 11, 2015

A 49er Mailday

It has been a disappointing season being a San Francisco 49er fan, with all the off season departures, the hiring of an inexperienced and over-matched coaching staff and all the chaos surrounding Colin Kaepernick there has been plenty of news (and not of the good kind) about the 49ers over the past few months.

Despite the down times, I am a 49er fan and always will be.  I will suffer through the bad times as I have in the past with hopes of a brighter future.  It helps to have 5 Super Bowl Championships to reflect on.

Just before they won a game last weekend I found myself reminiscing about the good old days and outbid someone on Sportlots for this great looking card:

It is hard to read this Sportsflic like cards but I would hope this player is recognizable.  This is a 1995 Collector's Edge die cut insert of 49er HOF Quarterback Steve Young.  The scan does a nice job of showing all the footballs and the overall design of the card but I promise you it looks 10 times better in had.  Winning a Steve card wasn't enough though.

I did an eBay search for one of my favorite all time 49ers and picked up this autographed 1997 Upper Deck Legends card of Dwight Clark.  Although I was a fan of his prior, his CATCH against the Cowboys to send the Niners to their first Super Bowl cemented Clark as an all time favorite for any true 49er fan.  I have a mini player collection of Clark with this being my 73rd different card of his. 

These card purchases don't fully make up for the pain of this current season but they help get me through it.  If things don't improve (and I don't expect they will this year) some more retail therapy may be in order.

Go Niners!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Even Without the License, I Like Prime Cuts

I completely get people not liking non-licensed Panini products.  Back in my earlier days of collecting airbrushed hats and uniforms on oddball sets were troubling to me.  If I had to pick between licensed and unlicensed cards, the choice would be simple.  However I have taken a liking to many of the products Panini has produced over the past few years. The 2012-13 Cooperstown sets were amazing - full of Hall of Famers, some great autos and really nicely designed insert sets.  Prizm is a pretty solid product, I really like the colored parallels.  The nostalgia of the Donruss product has reeled me in and I have completed the sets the last 2 years.

There is a set that I have found some new appreciation in, Prime Cuts.  I have never purchased a pack of these but I have watched a few breaks on Youtube.  I recently did an eBay search for 2012 Prime Cuts and scrolled through the cards.  I put in some low bids for some cards and ended up losing out on many of them but I was able to bring this group home.

This card works perfectly well without a logo based on the photo selection.  It is a Rated Rookie Auto of Giants backup catcher Hector Sanchez.  He is a switch hitter who seemed to show some promise a couple years back but with the rise of Andrew Susac, Hector has dropped to 3rd on the depth chart.  I predict he won't be in SF in 2016, he would make a good #2 catcher for another team instead of sitting at 3rd on the Giants depth chart.  This card is serial numbered 117/149 and I think Sanchez has a pretty nice signature.

Next up is a card I believe is considered a base card out of 2011 Prime Cuts. This didn't come from my eBay search, I got it from a seller on Sportlots but the 2011 version is similar in nature to 2012 and equally nice.  The missing hat and jersey logos are a little more apparent here but the overall design of the card is really nice.  This card is serial numbered 59/99 and I was really happy to pick it up.

Another Buster card, this one showcasing 6 jersey pieces spelling out his first name.  I believe this is considered a nickname version and I have seen another one that spells out Posey.  In an ideal world, his hat/head wouldn't get cut off but it isn't too terrible.  The overall design is again great, Panini must put a lot of attention into the card design.  This card is 14/25.

The final card in this post helps illustrate one of the reasons I am such a big fan of this set.  This is a bat relic from Giants HOF first baseman, George Kelly. He starred for the Giants in the 1920s and these sets are the only way to pick up a relic from his playing career at a reasonable price.  This card is 85/99 and I was able to pick it up for about $15 delivered.  There are a bunch of old timer relics in this product and many are very reasonable on the secondary market.

Could it be better, sure but with these good looking cards it is good enough for my collection.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

My Membership in the T206 Club Expands (And a New Collecting Goal)

I was filing away the awesome T206 card I received from Zippy Zappy into my vintage Giants binder and decided that one isn't enough.  I decided to make a checklist of all the Giants in the set and see if I could perhaps find some reasonably priced T206s to add to my collection.  I am not a stickler for condition usually but I typically like to purchase cards without creases or paper loss but upon researching the available T206 cards and their prices I realized my collection would stay quite small unless I altered my condition expectations.

In the end I decided to look for cards that look good to my eye, creases were perfectly fine and I would even take a little paper loss.  I think I did okay with this card of Chief Myers.  Chief has 3 variations in the set and this is the fielding version (the other 2 are a portrait and batting).

I think the card presents itself just fine and for just about the price of a blaster for a card over a century old I am pretty glad to have it in my collection.

When I researched the Giants in the set, I found that there are 52 Giants cards - I am not concerning myself with the different backs at this point.  As I eluded to in the title of my post, the creation of the checklist and the recent addition of 2 beauties from the set has led to a new collecting goal for me.  I have decided to add one new Giants T206 card to my collection each month.  I am hoping to keep this goal in play throughout the remainder of 2015 and all of 2016 & 2017.  This would get me to about the halfway point of the team set.

I honestly don't see myself ever completing this team set.  There are 3 different Christy Mathewson cards and 4 different John McGraw cards that sell at a premium even in worse condition than this Chief card.  Maybe one day I could score one of each player but I don't want to even set the goal of the team set when it is so far out of reach.

I am pretty excited to be expanding my membership in the T206 club!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Trade Post - Baseball Card Breakdown

One way to know you are a little behind in share trade packages is to have 2 different packages from the same blogger. Sadly this is true about a couple of PWEs I received from Gavin at Baseball Card Breakdown.  Time to share the goods and get one step closer to being caught up.

The origin of the first group of cards was a package Gavin received from another blogger who thought he was collecting Chili Davis cards.  Fortunately Gavin remember that it was in fact me and sent me these 5 cards that I needed for my Chili collection (actually it is only 4 as the bottom left card doesn't feature Chili Davis).  I have most of the micro Giants but had forgotten how small those cards really are.
He also tossed in a couple Giants I could use which is also appreciated.  How awesome is that Prism card???

This more recent batch of cards originated with a post I did on wanting to go after Kellogg's cards for my Giants collection and Gavin dropping a comment in a post about a card I had that he was interested in.

In addition to the Kellogg's card, I received this group of Giants.  Of the 6 I needed 4, a pretty darn good hit rate.  Also a couple cool things popped up.  First the JT Snow is a Topps Stars Bronze parallel.  In looking at my checklist, both the base and bronze parallels are numbered to 9799 so I pulled out my binder and to my surprise all of mine are the base version and this JT is the bronze - sweet.  Also, I did not have the Russ Davis Stadium Club Chrome card on my checklist.  I get most of my checklist info on and Davis doesn't have a team listed.  That may be due to his regular  Stadium Club card showing him on the Mariners and then he switched to the Giants in time for the Chrome release.

And finally, the awesome card that started the trade, a 1973 Kellogg's Dave Kingman.  This coupled with the Bobby Bonds I already have finished off the team set from 1973.

 Thanks for the trade Gavin!  I appreciate you reading my posts, remembering I collect Chili and reaching out for trades.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween and Some Goal Reflection

I have been hanging out for the last couple hours watching my USC Trojans take on the Cal Bears.  In between plays I was sorting some cards and cleaning up some emails and a thought crossed my mind.  With today being Halloween, I recognize there are but 2 months left in the year and less than 1 month until my favorite card shopping day of the year - Black Friday.  I enjoy scouring COMC for some set and player collection needs and looking at all the box deals on DACardWorld and Blowout.

My mind started wandering towards what I wanted to spend my Black Friday funds on.  From a box perspective, I think I will try to grab a couple boxes of the last couple Panini Cooperstown releases.  Prices are already under $100 and you get 2 HOF autos per box.  Maybe I can get lucky and get a cut or one of the HOFers I need for my set.  Plus it is really cool when every card out of a pack is of a HOFers.  I bought some 2013 Pinnacle a little while back and those boxes are already really cheap.  I almost have the base set complete and like several of the insert sets so I may buy a bunch of it - maybe even my first case of cards.

On the singles front, I was looking at my set want list and don't have a ton to track down.  I see myself going after the 2015 Donruss All-Time Diamond Kings and the 2014 Archives short prints.  I will probably look for the 2009 Finest letterman autos I need and then the vintage sets come into play. I decided to take a look at my 2015 goals and see what insight that gave me.

Here is a list of my goals at the beginning of the year with a quick update:

1.     Obtain all 2015 Giants base cards from all releases.

I have been keeping up fairly well, needing only 21 cards to finish this off with the current releases  The Cooperstown cards will be the hardest to track down, the rest shouldn’t be much of a challenge, just need to put my time and resources to them.

2015 Leaf Heroes of Baseball #60 Will Clark

2015 Panini Cooperstown #10 Bill Terry
2015 Panini Cooperstown #41 George Kelly
2015 Panini Cooperstown #59 Juan Marichal
2015 Panini Cooperstown #65 Mel Ott
2015 Panini Cooperstown #67 Monte Irvin
2015 Panini Cooperstown #70 Orlando Cepeda

2015 Stadium Club #72 Madison Bumgarner

2015 Topps Chipz #14 Madison Bumgarner
2015 Topps Chipz #67 Hunter Pence
2015 Topps Chipz #71 Buster Posey
2015 Topps Chipz #84 Pablo Sandoval

2015 Topps High Tek #HTBC Brandon Crawford B
2015 Topps High Tek #HTBP Buster Posey B
2015 Topps High Tek #HTJPK Joe Panik A

2015 Topps Museum Collection #10 Buster Posey

2015 Topps Opening Day #24 Tim Lincecum

2015 Topps Triple Threads #9 Madison Bumgarner

2015 Topps Update #US5 Ryan Vogelsong
2015 Topps Update #US271 Mike Leake
2015 Topps Update #US321 Chris Heston RC

2.     2. Acquire at least 800 Giants base cards from years past.  My want list has about 2800 going back to 1948.  I have no idea if this is a realistic target, I will try and knock as many off this list as I can but want to set some sort of goal.

I have done much better than expected on this goal.  My list is now down to 1588 needed base cards which means I added 1,212 Giants base cards well surpassing the 800 card goal.  This also doesn’t include the 2015 base cards I added.

3.Concentrate my player collections on obtaining all the base cards of these players.  Certain player like McCovey, Vida and Lott will still get the focus of all cards including base.
  • Willie McCovey
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Vida Blue
  • Reggie Jackson
  • Dave Winfield
  • Ben Petrick
  • Dave Parker (as a Pirate)
  • Chili Davis
  • Ronnie Lott
  • Roger Craig
  • Dwight Clark
  • Chris Webber
  • Charles Barkley
  • Patrick Ewing
I have started making a few base card only want lists and added them to the bottom of my posted want lists.  I am using so I doubt it will be 100% accurate but should help in my shopping excursions.

I have added cards from all of these players over the year.  My Ben Petrick and Chili Davis collections have really grown.  I feel pretty good about this goal.  The basketball guys could use some extra attention and I would like to get my Reggie Jackson and Dave Winfield collections updated with more of their recent releases.

 4. Finish my 1970 Topps set which will include:
  • Paying off lay-away balance at old LCS for all but 17 off my want list
  • Tracking down the final 17 cards that include: Reggie Jackson, Thurman Munson RC, Hank Aaron AS, Hank Aaron, Pete Rose, Willie Mays, Al Kaline, Johnny Bench and Nolan Ryan

I did it (post upcoming) !!!  My old Orange County LCS  and Mrhavercamp were huge helps in making this happen.

5. Knock 150 cards off 1971 Topps want list (currently at 340/752)

I am currently at 489/752 so I have added 149 cards, just short of my goal.  However I have 6 high numbers on the way so this goal was just accomplished.

6. Knock 100 cards off 1972 Topps want list (currently at 481/787)

I am now at 514/787 meaning I only added 33 cards. This looks like an area for some attention before year end if I want to accomplish my goal.

7. Complete 1956 Topps Presidents set (currently at 29/36 with 2 on the way)

I am down to needing 2 cards, #3 George Washington and #4 John Adams.  Time to buckle down and see if I can finish off this set.

8. Get all my base cards and inserts that aren’t part of sets or my player and team collections uploaded into Sportlots.  I just finished sorting and inputting about 5000 baseball cards that I have acquired since my move about 18 months ago and have a total of over 48,000 cards in the database.  I have tons of base cards from the early 80s to mid 2000s in a closet that I want to get input as well.  In addition to selling $20-$80/month in cards that I can turn around and use to buy new ones (almost like trading), Sportlots gives me a great database to locate the cards I have.  If you have needs by player or set, let me know and I can do a quick search.

This didn’t happen.  The closet cards never made it into the database although I did get most of my other cards into Sportlots including most of my 2015 duplicates.

9. Obtain at least 1 Giants card that will be the oldest in my collection.  I currently have 4 1933 Goudeys that are tied for my oldest card.

I now have 2 T206 cards and counting.  Thanks to Zippy Zappy for breaking the seal and entering me into the T206 Club!

10. Make significant progress on my 49ers Vintage set collection and have at least 100 different cards by year end.

I currently have 97 different cards.  I need to seek out a few more and make this goal one that I surpass.

11. Update USC Football checklist with releases from the past 3-5 years (they are hit and miss) and obtain 50% of all base cards from 2014 and 2015.

I did get my checklists updated.  I have also picked up a bunch of base cards but I haven’t tracked the percentage.  My suspicion is that I am at less than 50% but it isn’t worth my time to tabulate – it just isn’t that important to me.  I am glad my list is up to date and I will continue to add to this collection at a slow and steady pace.

12. My first non-base focused goal will be to add 6 certified autographs of players new to my Baseball HOF collection.

I met this goal just after the midpoint of the year.  I haven’t sought out any after that but will be looking for some deals in the near future.

13. Maintain set building discipline, try not to collect every set that comes out

I did okay here.  I am proud of my shift to buying some full sets that I wanted versus buying multiple boxes and singles.  I did this with Topps Archives, Topps Update and Stadium Club.  I stayed away from the Bowman releases Topps Gypsy Queen, Topps Heritage and Topps Chrome.  My only semi regret was buying 3 boxes of Allen & Ginter to build that set but part of that was driven by my first entry into Gintacuffs which I had fun with.

14. Have fun with the blog, post 200-250 times during the year, hold a couple contests, comment more on the posts of fellow bloggers, continue to trade and send some “just because” packages.

Did I have fun? – Yes, I made a mental shift and took out any stress I placed on myself to post daily
Did I post 200-250 times? – Not yet, I am at 163 posts YTD.   I typically don’t post more than once per day so I need to post about 2 out of every 3 days from now until year end to make this goal.
Did I hold a couple contests? – I held one so far and I am hoping to gear up for a second by year end.
More comments? – Maybe but I still should do more.  I really enjoy reading the blogs and I know how much a quick comment makes me feel like my post was read and appreciated.  I should do more.
Continue to trade? – I completed some trades but not a ton.
Just because packages? – Probably more than in the past but I would like to do more.  I have a stack of cards on my desk that I have been meaning to package up for a few bloggers.  Hopefully I can use some of my upcoming vacation time to send out some PWEs.

From a buying perspective, I think this reflection narrows my search down to the 2015 base cards, the 1972 Topps Set, the 1956 Topps President Set and maybe some 49er Vintage.

 Sorry for the lack of cards in the post.  I will leave you with the 1992 Ziploc set that I picked up in a Sportlots auction a long time ago.  No reason other than it has been sitting in my scanned folder for why to long.

 Happy Collecting!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Just for the "F" of it #5

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).

I've seen this card posted on a couple blogs over the years and was always a fan.  I thought it would be a good addition to my collection but never went as far as seeking out a copy to purchase.  A few weeks back I walked into one of my LCSs and saw it on the bid board and got really excited.

You just have to love a card that combines super heroes with baseball.  This card isn't in perfect condition but the price was right bringing it home for a buck or two.

I have considered collecting some older super heroes sets over the year but never taken the plunge.  In reality, my sports card collection is diverse enough to suck up my time and budget so it is probably a good idea I haven't.  If I happen to see a cheap wax box I would probably pick it up but for now this awesome card will have to suffice.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

COMC Purchase #2 - Player Collections

I previously shared the first half of my COMC purchase and this post focuses on my player collections. 

COMC has been a lot of help in filling out my newer player collections.  I look periodically with my focus being primarily on oddballs and parallels.  I found quite a bit of success with Ben Petrick:

I was able to snag 3 2000 Paramount parallels, the green, the Holographic Gold /199 and the Holographic Silver /99.  Petrick has 10 cards in his Paramount rainbow and I am down to needing 3, Holographic Green /99, Platinum Blue /67 and Premiere Date /50.  The Fleer Mystique card is the gold parallel, interestingly the base card is serial numbered but the parallel is not. This is only a 3 card rainbow with the 3rd card being the 1/1 Masterpiece which I doubt I will ever come across.  I was able to pick up 2 different Ultra Gold Medallion cards and I now have all 3 that feature Petrick.  Finally I picked up the Silver Sheen and the Rapture Gold parallels from 2000 Pacific Prism.  This rainbow is really big (15 cards) and I am down to needing 4, Holographic Blue /80, Holographic Purple /99, Premiere Date /61 and Tinsel Silver /331.  I really like the look of all the Prism parallels and look forward to finishing off this set.

I also scored all of these Petrick cards in this shipment.  The 1999 Bowman card is a gold parallel /99, the 2001 Fleer Platinum card is a parallel /201 and the 2003 Topps Total is the silver parallel.  The Fleer Showcase card is the base and is numbered /2000 and the 2002 Topps 206 mini is the Piedmont Black back parellel.

I have most of Petrick's base cards now so parallels are where most of my needs lie.  Per Beckett there are 307 Petrick cards out there and I am now at 180 for a 58.6% completion.

Next up are some Chili Davis pickups:
Chili is my newest collection and many of his cards I need are out there for the buying.  My focus has been getting some of the more odd cards on sites like COMC and picking up the base cards on Sportlots when I am buying some cards and have room in combined shipping. It seems to be working well as my collection continues to grow.  The Mother's Cookie card from 1983 is one of the older Chili cards, he has a minor league card from 1978 and 3 cards in 1982.  I am working to have copies of his Giants cards in both my Giants binders and my Chili binder.  As you can see, I also scored a Fleer Star Sticker,  a Kraft oddball with an airbrushed hat and two stickers from his Giants tenure.  The bottom middle sticker is actually an O-Pee-Chee sticker.  Chili has 2 of these Starting Lineup cards from 1988, one with the Giants and one with the Angels.  I still need the Giants version for my Chili collection. 

Across the top I picked up a Sportflix, the 1984 Nestle parallel and a Members Only Stadium Club card - the only way to tell is to look at the back, I probably should have scanned the back to show that off.  The bottom 2 cards are Fleer and Score Glossy parallels to finish up the Chili portion of the order.

This group of Chili cards brings my total to 289 different cards.  According to Beckett he has 604 different cards and with a percentage of 47.8% I am closing in on the half way mark - I just need 13 new cards.

I mentioned that most of my focus on COMC is on my new player collections but that doesn't mean I don't look for guys I have collected for a while.
I found this Silver National Treasures parallel /25 on COMC for a reasonable price and quickly jumped on it.

Overall I am pretty happy with my COMC haul.  I have gone through the money I previously added to my account so I think I will add a few dollars soon so I can browse COMC and pick up cards as I find them.  It takes some patience to wait to have them delivered (these cards were purchased over a 2.5 month period before I paid for shipping) but it is worthwhile to fill some collection gaps.