Friday, January 19, 2018

Want a Stack of Cards from Your Favorite Team?

Hello everyone!

I am still sorting through my big collection acquisition and could really use some sorting space.  I have a card table in my card room that has been covered with stacks of cards sorted by team for months.  I sent out a couple in trades and have gotten rid of a handful more since my post a few days back about thinning my collection.

While I am looking to trade the sets and larger lots of cards, I am very open to packaging these team sets up in a small flat rate box and sending them your way.  While I always welcome stuff back in trade, this is a "no strings attached" offer.  I really want that space cleared off to start sorting the other cards.

Here are the teams I have left, drop me a note if you are interested in a stack of random cards from one of these teams:

Blue Jays - Claimed
Brewers - Claimed
Diamondbacks - Claimed
Mets - Claimed
Padres - Claimed
Phillies - Claimed
Rangers - Claimed
Rays (pretty small stack) - Claimed
Reds - Claimed
Red Sox- Claimed
Royals - Claimed
Twins - Claimed
Yankees - Claimed

Pitchers and Catchers report in 25 days!

Monday, January 15, 2018

Secret Santa - Part 2

If you stumbled upon my first Secret Santa post, you may remember that my Secret Santa, Mark Hoyle, sent my original package to an old address and, once he realized his mistake had a second awesome package on the way.  Well the first package arrived a few days back and I must have been a really good boy in 2017 because Santa set me up.

Here are the goods:

First up Mark put a dent in my 49ers vintage want list with a nice grouping on 1970s 49ers
1970 Topps 49ers

1975 Topps 49ers

1975 Topps 49ers

1976 Topps 49ers
My 49er collection had been somewhat dormant during the 2nd half of the year but this package re-energized me.  Due to these new cards, I decided to set one of my more aggressive 2018 collection goals around the Niners looking to add 48 new vintage cards (1950-1979) and also get the set organized and put into a binder.  It is going to be lots of fun, I really enjoy the old football designs.

This package also inspired another 2018 collection goal.  I realized there were quite a few vintage Giants cards that I needed that could be found for an affordable price.  I decided to set a goal to collect 20 NY Giants era cards (pre-1958) to my collection in 2018.  These were the two cards that woke me up and helped me add this as a focus:

Two awesome 1939 Play Ball Giants!  Wow.  But the fun didn't end there.  I would have been excited and more than satisfied with the 49er cards.  Add in these Giants and I was feeling great.  However, there were two pieces of cardboard in the package.  I originally thought they were only to give the package some rigidity so it wouldn't bend but in between the cardboard was this:

This is a killer Sports Illustrated from about 8 months before I was born celebrating Willie Mays reaching the 3000 hit milestone.  Something I enjoy doing but don't do often enough is take a look at old magazines.  The collection I bought has a nice stack of 1970s era Baseball Digest and a bunch of old Tuff Stuff & Beckett price guides.  I am looking forward to looking through those and have already enjoyed a couple of the articles in this magazine.

The fun didn't end there.  There was one last item that fits right into a collection I don't talk much about.  I have a couple bookcases in my upstairs hall filled with sports related books. I like to read and I like sports so it makes sense.  Mark somehow tracked down this book and sent it my way:

I have read the first few pages and I believe it is a true story about a guy who becomes the NY Giants bat boy.  It was published in 1948 with this paperback edition coming out in 1949.  I have never seen this book and am so excited to get it.  Mark, I can't tell you how much I appreciate these gifts, they are such great additions to my collection.  Thank you!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

My Hall of Fame Ballot

Of course I don't have an actual vote but I do want to chime in on who I would select if I was granted the honor of voting for this year's HOF class.  I am pretty excited that Jack Morris and Alan Trammell have already been elected, I suspect this will be one of the bigger classes perhaps ever.

Here are the eligible players then I will walk you through my thought process:

  1. Andruw Jones
  2. Aubrey Huff
  3. Barry Bonds
  4. Billy Wagner
  5. Brad Lidge
  6. Carlos Lee
  7. Carlos Zambrano
  8. Chipper Jones
  9. Chris Carpenter
  10. Curt Schilling
  11. Edgar Martinez
  12. Fred McGriff
  13. Gary Sheffield
  14. Hideki Matsui
  15. Jamie Moyer
  16. Jason Isringhausen
  17. Jeff Kent
  18. Jim Thome
  19. Johan Santana
  20. Johnny Damon
  21. Kerry Wood
  22. Kevin Millwood
  23. Larry Walker
  24. Livan Hernandez
  25. Manny Ramirez
  26. Mike Mussina
  27. Omar Vizquel
  28. Orlando Hudson
  29. Roger Clemens
  30. Sammy Sosa
  31. Scott Rolen
  32. Trevor Hoffman
  33. Vladimir Guerrero
I can whittle that list of 33 down to 20 pretty quickly:

  1. Andruw Jones
  2. Barry Bonds
  3. Billy Wagner
  4. Chipper Jones
  5. Curt Schilling
  6. Edgar Martinez
  7. Fred McGriff
  8. Gary Sheffield
  9. Jamie Moyer
  10. Jeff Kent
  11. Jim Thome
  12. Larry Walker
  13. Manny Ramirez
  14. Mike Mussina
  15. Omar Vizquel
  16. Roger Clemens
  17. Sammy Sosa
  18. Scott Rolen
  19. Trevor Hoffman
  20. Vladimir Guerrero
Yes there were some guys with good careers that I eliminated but I don't think any of them pass the eye test.  Now I have a list of 20 players one could argue have HOF credentials - while I don't think all of them should be in, there are a few slam dunks for me.

Of that remaining list of 20, there are 6 that don't really get consideration from me for a vote although I have seen some arguments in favor of them -  Andruw Jones, Billy Wagner, Fred McGriff, Sammy Sosa ,Scott Rolen and Jamie Moyer.  I saw all of these guys play in their prime and none of them ever screamed HOFer to me.  The closest would be Sosa but with the bat corking, the one dimension of his game (power) and his steep drop off I just don't see him with a place in Cooperstown.

Here is my ballot.  I have 14 players to consider now and only 10 votes.  Of course I don't have to use all 10 but I think there is a backlog on the ballot due to the holier than thou attitude of the sports writers with respect to the PED era.

1. Barry Bonds - simply the best player of his generation and arguably of all time.  Not going to get into a massive debate about PEDs, I am of the camp that most of the players were doing them, baseball knew and allowed it so players from this era deserve to be in the HOF - it is a baseball history museum.
2. Roger Clemens - see above on Bonds. Clemens is the pitching equivalent.

3. Jim Thome - great power hitter, nice long career.  He has a great 12 year stretch hitting over 30 HRs each year with the exception of one year that he missed most of due to injury.  He walked a lot resulting in an OBP above .400 despite a .270 batting average.  He exceeded 1.000 in OPS 6 times and finished his career at .956.

4. Trevor Hoffman - I know some of his records have been surpassed but he was the man as a closer.  He had a somewhat unique approach to closing using a change up as a dominating pitch - but he was just that, dominant.  One of the best closers of his time and the best in the NL for a long stretch.  I had him in my keeper fantasy league for years so I watched him closely and this is deserved.

5. Vladimir Guerrero - this guy could do it all.  He was one of the top hitters in the league for more than a decade.  He had a cannon for an arm.  He seemed to have so much fun playing the game and he fell just short last year.  I predict he will get in pretty easily this year.

6. Chipper Jones - let me be clear, I never liked this guy. I am not sure what drove it, maybe all the Braves love in the 90s, maybe it is a grown man going by "Chipper", maybe it was jealous that he wasn't on my team.  The fact is the guy was one of the best third basemen of all time and is deserving of going into the Baseball HOF.

7. Curt Schilling - maybe I am in the minority on my feelings about Chipper and I am pretty sure I am in my views of Schilling.  His rantings post retirement have left a sour taste in a lot of peoples mouths with respect to Curt.  I can put all this aside and recognize how great he was.  He was a big game pitcher, excelled in the playoffs and was on a very short list (maybe he, Pedro and the Unit) on who you would want on the mound in a big game.

8. Jeff Kent - this may seem like a homer pick for this former Giant but look at the stats and he was one of the best second basemen of his generation and all time.  There was a stretch where he was one of the most feared hitters in all of baseball.  It is sad he gets so little HOF respect, my guess is he will have to wait until the veterans committee.

9. Larry Walker - I was on the fence about Walker for a little while feeling that the only reason his numbers were so good was due to the Coors Field effect.  I have done a little research and recalled his early years in Montreal and the fact is this guy was an all around great player.  While I think his home field should be taken into account, it shouldn't put on blinders to the greatness he displayed.

10. Edgar Martinez - In year's past I struggled with putting someone who was almost purely a DH in the HOF but with Big Pappy coming up in a few years I started to rethink it.  I recently read a book that statistically assessed all the HOFers and potential HOFers and they did a deep dive into several careers including Martinez.  It showed he was actually a fairly solid fielder that moved to DH due to some health concerns and because his team has some other players to play the infield corners.  It started to make me rethink his candidacy and when I think back, this dude was one of the best clutch hitters, and actually just best pure hitters of his generation.  He gets in on my ballot.

There is my ballot if I had one.  I would like to see all 10 of the guys I voted for get in eventually and it would be great is 4 or 5 of them made it this year.  What do you think about the players I chose and those I left off?

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Anyone Want Some Cards?

I need your help fellow collectors.  I have run out of space and need to move some cards to make room for the cards I decide to keep from my large collection purchase and any other future additions to my collection.  Prior to acquiring the collection, I had quite a few duplicate sets and a ton of doubles and I am hoping we can work out some trades.  I have an issue with throwing cards away but that may end up being the fate of some of these cards if I can’t find any takers.

I am not looking for huge trade returns for these, just enough for me to mentally justify shipping them out because as you know postage rates are pretty darn high these days.  For those of you that have sent me packages in the past, I will happily return the favor if you see something you would like.  Remember these are in addition to the Google Doc with a list of what I am in the process of inventorying from the purchase.

First off, here is a pic of a table covered with misc. cards sorted by team:

I have lots by team of cards that aren't part of the sets or partial sets listed below.  There are some base cards, insert cards, oddball cards, etc. in here.  No autos or relics but I may be able to toss a couple in of your team if I have them in surplus.  I have already sent out the A's, Braves, Cardinals and White Sox.  The rest are available, with some stacks bigger than others.  No Giants stacks here but I have thousands of Giants dups if a fellow Giants collector is out there.

Next, I will list the Baseball sets I have duplicates of:

1986 Fleer X2
1986 Topps X2
1987 Topps
1988 Donruss
1988 Fleer
1988 Topps
1989 Fleer
1990 Fleer
1991 Fleer
1991 Score
1991 Upper Deck
1993 Upper Deck Series 1
1995 Stadium Club Series 1
1997 Upper Deck Series 1
1998 Donruss Series 1 cards 1-170 (missing 5 cards)
2003 Topps Series 2
2004 Topps Series 1
2005 Topps Series 1
2006 Topps Series 1 & 2
2013 Hometown Heroes (w/out SPs)

I will also list a few Football sets I have duplicates of:

1985 Topps (may need a little more in return for this)
1986 Topps X2 (may need a little more in return for these)
2006 Contenders (cards 1-100)
2006 Fleer X3 (cards 1-100)
2007 Topps Draft Picks and Prospects (need 7 cards to complete)

In addition to these sets I have tons of duplicates.  Most of these sets I could put together a pretty solid starter set and/or try to fill any want lists:


Upper Deck





My hope is to be overwhelmed by the responses to this post and move all these cards.  Make sure to tell your friends or point fellow bloggers to this post so they can contact me.  I am realistic and know that most likely, I will only get a few takers then have to make some tough decisions.

I have been a card hoarder my entire life so it will be tough but I need the space so I am probably going to have dispose of some of these to clear out space..

Remember I am not looking for equal volume or book value etc.  Just enough for me to feel okay about the shipping costs to get these cards into a collector’s hands versus the local landfill.

Let’s trade!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Fun Finds

As I go through the collection I purchased I will showcase some of the fun finds I come across.  The first find was actually a pretty exciting find for me.  One area of my collection is trying to complete sets of all the major brands including Topps, Fleer, Donruss and Upper Deck.  Included in that are the traded/update sets although I haven't been super aggressive on trying to get all the update sets for most brands.

The exception is Upper Deck, I was a huge Upper Deck baseball card fan and have been pretty close to having a complete run of their flagship products and update sets for a while.  One of the big holes was the 1995 Upper Deck update set.  This is a set of 45 cards that could only be acquired through a redemption process.  The cards are fairly rare and I haven't seen too many sets come up for sale.  Those that had come up for sale were typically pretty pricey, usually above the "book value" of $60.  The collection I purchased had a binder with the complete 1995 Upper Deck set in it.  When I saw the set in the pages the first thing I did was jump to the back and I was pleased to see the entire update set.

I was able to cross this off the set want list and was very excited to do so.  Now I am down to just needing the 1997 Upper Deck Series 1 Update set, another mail in rebate, to complete my UD run.

Here is the 1995 set in its entirety:

Some great Upper Deck photography on display and what I believe is Andy Pettitte's first Upper Deck card as well.

The base set without the traded set was complete with the exception of 1 card, #130.  It is for trade or sale if anyone is interested.  I am also updating my Google Doc with the collection I bought as I go through it.  Feel free to check it out periodically and make me an offer if you see something you like.

Collection Spreadsheet

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

My 2018 Collection Goals

After last year's whittled down list of 4 goals, I have decided to reverse course and go the more detailed route for 2018.  If you saw my last post, you know I bought a fairly sizable collection of cards and a primary goal will be to get it sorted, cataloged and find homes for the items that don't fit into my collection.  I will be reaching out to all of you for some ideas how to make that happen.

Upon reflection, more detailed goals remind to me spread my hobby budget around to the different segments of my collection.  It also inspires me to better track what I pick up which I generally enjoy reflecting back on.

Here is where my focus will go on my card purchases and acquisitions in 2018:

Set Building
  • Complete 1969 Topps Set (currently need 8 - Bench, Kessinger, Cox, Reggie RC, Mantle, Santo, Fingers RC, Teddy Ballgame)
  • Start new vintage set
  • Collect Donruss, Topps Series 1 & 2, Topps Update, Opening Day and 2-3 other 2018 sets
HOF Auto collection
  • Get to 100 different players (currently at 94)
  • Finish and post on 6 sports books
  • Catch up on Sports Illustrated and ESPN magazines
49ers Vintage collection (1950s-1970s)
  • Get collection into a binder
  • Reach 200 different cards (currently at 152)
USC Football
  • Get collection organized
  • Establish focus and add 200 new cards
  • Add 20 NY Giants era vintage cards
  • Add 100 1970s-1990s cards
  • Reduce parallel want list to 150 cards (currently at 233)
Player Collections
  • Willie McCovey - pick up 2 items off want list from playing career
  • Rickey Henderson - pick up 5 items off want list from playing career, get checklist up to date
  • Dave Winfield - reach 850 different cards (currently at 805), get checklist up to date 
  • Reggie Jackson - reach 700 different cards (currently at 626), get checklist up to date 
  • Vida Blue - pick up 3 items off want list
  • Ben Petrick- reach 230 different cards (currently at 221)
  • Chili Davis - reach 465 different cards (currently at 453)
  • Dave Parker - reach 160 different Pirates cards (currently at 140)
  • Fred Lynn - post about new player collection, reach 280 different cards (currently at 252)
  • Ronnie Lott - reach 900 different cards (currently at 868)
  • Roger Craig - reach 380 different cards (currently at 361)
  • Dwight Clark - reach 125 different cards (currently at 109)
  • Fred Dean - add 5 cards (currently at 25)
  • Harold Miner - add 2 new cards (currently at 252)
  • Charles Barkley - reach 700 different cards (currently at 645)
  • Patrick Ewing - reach 550 different cards (currently at 505)
  • Chris Webber - reach 750 different cards (currently at 710)
 Will I reach all of these goal, heck no but I will have lots of fun trying!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Oh My - What Have I Done!

I always thought it would be fun to purchase a large collection of cards off someone.  In my dreams it was always a collection vintage cards from the 60s and earlier for about a penny a card from a grandma that had no clue what she had.  Well, this wasn't the case.

A friend at work does a lot of buying and selling on Craig's List. He collects primarily beer memorabilia but has told me that quite a few large collections have been up for sale in our area.  A couple months back, I was hanging out one evening and decided to take a look on Craig's List instead of watching my daughter's bedtime cartoon. I found an ad that indicated someone had a collection that took up a large portion of his garage and he wanted to sell it all to one person.  He didn't provide a price but promised he would give a firm but fair price if one came out to look at the collection.

I shot him an email and got a response the next morning.  I set up a meeting at the guys house for a Friday afternoon.  The guy's characterization was pretty accurate, much of his two car garage had cards.  There were shelves and tables around the perimeter with boxes and binders of cards and sports related stuff.  I saw a mix of sports and non-sports cards.  I thumbed through some binders, opened a few boxes that claimed to have full sets and talked a bit to the owner.  He was moving and just wanted to clear everything out.  Some things I saw that gave me some perspective - a 1982 Donruss set with the Ripken, a 1984 OPC set with the Mattingly, a box of Empire Strikes back cards, a box of 1980 Topps football cards and an autographed Don Drysdale picture.  I also saw that a big percentage of the cards were from the late 80s/early 90s including multiple sets from 1986-90 Topps.  I had plenty of cards from that era so I was on the fence about the purchase.

I asked for the price and it was surprisingly reasonable.  He indicated he was firm and wouldn't go down and I knew he had one guy who was leaving as I got there who was negotiating with his wife as he would need a small storage unit to house the collection.  I took a break and decided to call my wife to gain her perspective.  To my surprise she encouraged me knowing how much fun I would have going through it and was okay storing the collection in the basement as I went through it.

I have started sorting through the cards and here is a quick pic of some complete sets I have found in the collection.

Check out a video of most of it in my basement, I tried to sort it a little but man is there a lot of stuff.

I went back to the seller and made a deal. I loaded by my Toyota Sequoia and headed home for what would be the first of 7-8 trips over the course of the weekend.  I have started the process of going through the cards but it will take a while.  I have decided to keep a record of what I go through on a google docs spreadsheet, if you are interested take a look and if you want to follow my progress give it a bookmark.

Collection Spreadsheet

If you see anything in the video or on the google doc you are interested in, leave a comment or drop me a note.