Thursday, July 17, 2014

Mid Year Report Card

In early January I posted my collecting goals for the year and we have zoomed past the midway point of the calendar so I thought I would do a check in to see where I am at and share my progress.  Seems to me that the All-Star break used to be much closer to the midpoint of the season.  The original post is below and I will share my progress and my midterm grade in color.

Collection Goals

1. Get my card room and collection organized.  Includes:

  • having everything unpacked and put away (may need to acquire shelving to make this happen).
  • having all cards not essential to my collection loaded into Sportlots to inventory and put up for sale (helps with trading as well, it is a free inventory program)
  • having an active trade list on the blog.  I envision this including sets where I have large lots of cards that I could make available for trade or purchase (cover my shipping fees and maybe make a couple bucks).
  • having all my want lists updated and have them include wants for all parts of my collection 
I am making progress on this but wish I was farther along. For the first bullet, I have decided I do need some shelving and have a plan.  We'll see if it gets done by YE.  For the second, I have sorted almost all the cards by number and year so they are ready to load.  I couple weeks of focus and I could knock this one out.  Haven't done anything with the trade list, this reminds me I need a solid plan to make this happen.  Most of my lists are updated with a few player lists added.

Mid Year Grade - C-
2. Acquire Certified Autos of at least 4 of these HOFers:

  • Barry Larkin
  • Paul Molitor
  • Eddie Murray
  • Robin Yount
  • Mike Schmidt
  • Rod Carew
  • Red Schoendienst
  • Sandy Koufax
  • New HOFers (please writers vote some new players in!) 
I have picked up 5 HOF autos and while only one (Molitor) is on this list, I call this a rousing success.

Mid Year Grade - A
3. Tie up some loose ends

  • Finish my Giants base sets from 2011-2013
  • Finish up my Giants base sets from the Turkey Red, UD Retro, UD Vintage and Topps Heritage and Topps Gallery, Fleer Tradition products
I have decided this goal will have to exclude SPs and premium sets with numbered base cards - they are just too tough and costly to track down.  For 2011 I now need 8 cards, 2 for 2012 and 10 for 2013 - I have made progress.  
Past sets of Turkey Red, Topps Heritage and Fleer Tradition are complete.  I still need 1 UD Retro card, 4 tough to find SPs from UD Vintage and 3 Topps Gallery include 2 SPs of Willie Mays.  I have picked up a couple of these but they haven't been a focus.

Mid Year Grade - C

4. Complete my final 3 1960s Topps Giants team sets and finish 1 Topps or Bowman set from the 1950s

I have finished 2 of 3 from the 1960s and haven't yet identified the 50s set I will go after.  I do think I knocked off the 2 toughest 60s sets so I am excited about my chances of finishing this goal.

Mid Year Grade - B+

5. Complete 2000 Topps Insert Sets - I have completed my version of a Master Topps set since 2005 and I want to start filling in the gaps at least back to 2000. I will start with the oldest set and move forward. If I get this done quick, I may be able to start on other sets in 2014.

I have made some progress here but as often happens, this goal expanded a bit and I have made checklists and am going after all the early 2000s insert sets I don't yet have.  This probably won't be done this year but I am happy with the direction I am going - I basically check for these from Sportlots sellers when I am buying extra cards.

Mid Year Grade - B

6. Acquire all Ultra and Stadium Club Giants inserts

I discovered most of what I need here are Barry Bonds cards and while I like Barry and his cards I found it isn't fun for me trying to track these down and shipping could kill me.  This goal has been abandoned for the time being.

Mid Year Grade - Inc/Withdrawn

7. Make progress on 1970s Vintage sets:

  • Complete my 1973 Topps Set
  • Obtain at least 450 different 1972 cards (starting 2014 with 346)
  • Obtain at least 250 different 1971 cards (starting 2014 with 83)
  • Get 1970 Topps want list down to 50 or fewer cards
I now need 2 cards to finish the 1973 set. I am up to 429 different 1972 cards.  I have reached my goal with 1971 and have 290 different cards. I need 99 cards for 1970.  I am very pleased with this progress but have realized due to the costly nature of 1970 high numbers that goal is most likely out of reach, the other 3 are looking good.

Mid Year Grade - B

8. Make progress on my non Giants player collections:
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Vida Blue
  • Reggie Jackson
  • Dave Winfield
  • Dave Parker (Pirates only)
  • Ben Petrick
I feel I am doing a pretty solid job here.  I have been picking up quite a few Rickey, particularly the new releases.  I am very happy he has started being include in so many sets.  I have gotten a couple Vida cards but he hasn't been in any 2014 releases and I just don't need that many of his older cards.  I have been picking up a nice mix of Reggie's new releases and some of his cards from after his playing days.  I need a ton of his cards but he isn't my primary go to guy and I am happy with my progress.  I haven't put much focus on Winfield yet but I did get a nice trade package recently. To focus my collection, I think I will go after cards primarily from his playing days.  I have made some good progress on my Pirates Parker collection.  I have picked up a couple Petrick cards but need to do some more damage to that want list.

Mid Term Grade - A-
9. Obtain all 2014 Giants base cards from all releases

 I currently need 19 base cards with 8 of them being SPs (Heritage didn't help this year) and 5 being on their way.  These SPs seem to all be within reach, I feel good about making this goal.

Mid Term Grade - B+

10. Create and share my strategy on football card collection to include:
  • Sets to chase
  • USC Football Collection focus
  • 49er Player Collection focus
From a set perspective I have decided to only go after the Topps set and perhaps Topps Chrome based on price and design.  When there are really good rookies, the price on Chrome goes way too high.  I have done some work thinking about my desired focuses on USC and the 49ers but outside of keeping after Ronnie Lott and Rodney Peete cards along with picking up cheap bid board and Sportlots auction cards, I haven't solidified this yet.

Mid Term Grade - C
11. Improve my trading by:
  • Tracking packages I receive
  • Creating a speadsheet with everyone I have traded with including their address and what they collect to make it easier on me
  • Send out more frequent PWEs just because
  • Trade more
I decided not to track what I receive but have been keeping track of what I send out, especially addresses.  I have done a few just becauses but could still do more.  Trade activity is probably similar to the past years but time has become a challenge here.

Mid Term Grade - C
 12. Be smarter about set collecting. I will definitely buy Jumbo Boxes of Topps Series 1, Series 2 and Update but I really need to consider outside of those sets if I should buy the set online or bust boxes to build.  I love opening packs but it gets so expensive.

I think I have done a good job here, I passed on building sets of Gypsy Queen and Bowman and will most likely do the same on Ginter.  I have bought more packs of some of those than I should but I will just consider that my weaning off period for this year.

Mid Term Grade - A-

Blog Goals

Here are a few things I would like to focus on for the blog itself:
  1. Read 6 Sports related books and post a brief review of each
  2. 250+ posts throughout the year - that is 5/week
  3. Run at least 5 contests
1. I started off strong with 2 books in January and fairly recently finished and post a 3rd.  I am technically on pace - time to identify the next 3 books and make it happen. Mid Term Grade - B

2. I am at about 125 posts in mid July so I am a little off pace.  Still a chance to pick up it up prior to year end.  Mid Term Grade - C-

3. I haven't run a contest yet but have been tempted a couple of times.  If I can get my trade bait page up and running it would be a lot easier. I also like how several bloggers have held quick contests for a card or a stack and not made each contest a big thing. I may take a page out of their book and run a few quick hitters for some cool cards I have sitting around that don't quite fit into my collection.

There you have it, overall I think I am doing pretty well but lots of "work" to do in the second half of the year - just like my Giants.


  1. Petricks are hard to come by. Plenty on ebay, but the shipping is always a joke.

  2. I need to make a list of goals like this myself. I'm too scattered and impulsive in my buying habits, and I don't keep myself focused enough on what I want to collect. Great post!

  3. Looks like you're doing a great job on your goals. Congratulations. Keep it up.