Available for Trade (3/14/2010) Cards I Need (12.10.2010)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Congratulations in order

Congratulations are in order for the starting centerfielder for the New York Yankees.

Brett Gardner

And for Melky, hmm, well....

Actually, Melky will be the 5th outfielder behind Damon, Nady, Gardner and Swisher.

I really like Gardner. He isn't exactly Carlos Beltran but he is a base stealing threat and can hit around .300 which is something I think the Yanks need. We need people who can get on base and move into scoring position either by sacrifice or stealing. Manufacturing runs is the name of the game. The goal should be to plate at least one run every inning and pray your pitching doesn't blow up. It's obvious you can't score every inning of every game but scoring around 6 to 7 runs a game wouldn't hurt.

I'm sure Brett is really excited, I'm extremely happy for him. I saw Brett play in that game I went to last year. He hit a sacrifice fly which turned out to be the winning run. I have nothing against Melky but I like Brett's style of play. He makes contact, he's fast on the basepads and just flat out hustles. He won't be a mega-star but I hope he can get on base and score lots of runs.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Greatest of All Time

I know this is a predominately baseball blog but I'd like to take the time to acknowledge some hockey history. Tonight, March 17th 2009 Martin Brodeur has become the winningest goalie in the NHL. The Devils won 3-2 against the Chicago Blackhawks to etch Brodeur as one of the greatest if not THE greatest goalie of all time.

Tomorrow night I will be headed to Raleigh to see Marty and company the day after this historic event. Hopefully he'll extend his record by 1 win and maybe even score a shutout to inch his way closer to the all time shutout leader.

I want to congratulate Brodeur and the rest of the Devils for a surprising season. I haven't been able to watch the games but I've seen the scores and watched the highlights. What Clemmensen did in Brodeur's absence has been nothing short of fantastic. Parise is having a phenomenal year and what Brodeur has done since coming back from a torn bicep injury has been nothing short of brilliant.

I've seen the Devils play twice both at RBC Arena in Raleigh against the Canes. I hope to see them at their home stadium in Newark, NJ. My grandparents live literally minutes away from the stadium. I could theoretically walk there for a game...if it was daylight and I had someone picking me up afterward.

This is the only Brodeur card I own and it was pulled by Kim. She was nice enough to "trade" it to me. I hope to one day own an autographed card of Brodeur but I have a feeling that'll become more expensive after tonight.

I'm just proud that the greatest goalie of all time...is a New Jersey Devil.

Thank you Marty.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I'd like an order of Nachos Grande please

Chris at Nachos Grande had some cards he was trading away to help his wantlist. Among those were YSL cards and some Timeline cards which was right up my alley. I went through my very large collection of Upper Deck 2008 doubles and was able to pull out quite a few cards to help him along with his set as well as some parallels.

In return I got a healthy stack of YSL cards. I'm now sitting at 995 cards and Marie from A Cardboard Problem will help push me over 1000 cards soon. So if you have any YSL cards you don't want let me know. I may have something you want and I'm more than willing to trade. My eBay hiatus is making it very difficult to acquire them so I'll have to rely on trades.

Some Timeline Gold cards of Yankees.

I know, I know. It's A-Rod. But let's be honest, it's still A-Rod. He is a Yankee and I do collect Yankees. Besides, I could always give it to Kim....when she recovers from A-Rod's misdeeds.

And some Timeline cards to help my set.

I don't know how I'll finish this Timeline set but it'll happen....eventually. I wish someone would put those boxes on sale. Those short prints really kick your butt.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

2009 Topps Heritage Packs

I had to buy some Heritage packs from the local card shop this weekend. And Kim got some as well.

I absolutely love these cards.

Here is my very first Mark Teixeira card as a Yankee. Photoshopped perhaps, I guess it'll do.

Juan Miranda rookie card.

The Captain Derek Jeter.

A flashback card. This is an interesting choice for a flashback card. You gotta wonder how Topps came up with this card.

What baseball card set would be complete without relic cards? Here's a pointless relic card of Vernon Wells. I just don't see how they fit anywhere in this set. But the card companies are putting them in every set so oh well.

Here is an example of a short print (Ben Sheets All-Star) vs a base card (Matt Cain).

Here is a chrome refractor that Kim pulled. She also pulled an Ian Kinsler chrome card. She always gets the nice looking insert cards. Me? I get the big mitt.

I do have a complain about these cards. They do seem prone to damage on the front or strange photo blemishes. If you look here you can clearly see the back of a card superimposed on top of the Tom Glavine card. Also if you look at the Jeter card the image isn't very solid. I can't describe it but it looks like some sort of pixelation or side effect of the zoom in. If you ever see the Mark Buehrle card which is card #1, you'll see it's a pretty good photo. We're not exactly pulling Stadium Club but the photo doesn't look grainy or rubbed off.

So here you have it. Heritage in full swing. I plan on getting a box eventually but until then I'll enjoy busting packs and maybe a blaster or two.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Topps Baseball cards...OF THE FUTURE!!!

I read about technology every day from a site called Dailytech.

Here is a post about Topps trying to come up with the next gen baseball card to bring kids back to the hobby. I always like to read the comments sections, they're usually interesting and include lots of negative banter.

Here's the New York Times article.

I think it's interesting how they're trying to attract kids back to the hobby like this. I don't have children or know personally of anyone with kids that collect baseball cards. Odds are, if your dad collects baseball cards, you do. Or if you're a huge enough baseball fan, you may end up collecting cards. I'm not saying every baseball fan collects cards, but I don't know any baseball card collectors who are not baseball fans. People who buy cases to flip product don't count.

But I think the game of baseball itself needs a resurgence in general to help attract new collectors. Or the next new gimmick to bring back old collectors who stopped collecting sometime ago. Something to make them go, "Man, that card or set is pretty cool. I should start collecting again." That was Yankee Stadium Legacy for me.

But I just don't think 3D cards are the thing that can bring kids back.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Topps 2009 Jumbo Box break x 2...tale of an unhappy box breaker

William, PA and I went in together on a whole case of Topps 2009 jumbo packs. I know what you're thinking, "But Peter, you broke those boxes almost 4 weeks ago. Why are you posting it now?" To be honest I was disappointed and ashamed of what I pulled. In my opinion it wasn't even worth blogging about. But I'm gonna suck it up and throw these out there just so people can see what you might pull when you buy a box of these.

After opening two jumbo boxes, I'm one card away from completing the base set. What a slap in the face that is. That was the nail in the coffin for me after I broke these boxes. I spent the next day after the break collating the cards into their proper order and that's when I realized I was one card short. I find that statistically mind blowing. Out of 1000 cards, 2 x 500 and even subtract out the inserts which is something like 3 per pack perhaps. I should've easily pulled off a 350 card set. But I have quadruples up the ying yang which is even worse because it leaves you with not much of a variety to trade with.

Anyhow, these are some of the inserts I pulled:

The Jeter Ring of Honor was actually pulled by William. He was kind enough to give it to me. The only thing I liked about these cards is that they featured more Yankees this time around. Otherwise, it's the same exact thing from 2008 Updates & Highlights.

The Gold cards I pulled weren't even exciting. I did actually pull the Matsui gold. I may have traded with PA for the Miranda gold. The only good gold card I pulled was the Rays Highlights gold card.

The Career Highlight cards are the biggest disappointment out of the entire box. I get a crappy auto and 3 crappy relic cards. Complete trade fodder. I have no use for these cards so if you want them, make me an offer on something I need and we'll deal. I know lots of people don't like the YSL cards and I'm more than willing to trade for them. I hate the design of these cards, I like Upper Deck's relic designs a hell of a lot more.

I did get a bunch of Turkey Red cards and I have to say I do like these cards as an insert. I have some Turkey Reds from 2007(?) and they're okay. But I don't think I would collect a whole set of these. I think these cards work pretty well as an insert for 2009 Topps. If Upper Deck was smart, they'd make Masterpieces an insert set in one of their sets later this year. And if they're not bringing it out next year they should consider adding it as an insert to the Base set like Topps did here.

Out of the very few black cards I pulled this is the best one. I saw one of these sell on eBay for about $30 so when I figure out how to do it, that's where this is going. Once again, I have no use for a Red Sox card in my collection so the world's biggest flea market is getting this card.

And then there are these Legends of the Game commemorative patches. I have no idea what to make of them. They're manufactured patches that are short printed. They're just a letter from a phrase that has to do with the player. It's not the full name of the player but it could be a nickname of the player as we see with these. I've contemplated going after the Roger Maris "Against All Odds" but that's way too long and they're selling for too much on eBay. I may sell these on eBay one day. It would've been nice to pull Mickey Mantle or Thurman Munson so I could add them to my Yankee collection.

I did pull some Legends of the Game cards but we've all seen those before.

These are the variation cards I pulled. I actually had no idea they were variations until I started to see them show up online and everyone began talking about them. I didn't think anything about these cards and put them in the regular set. I had to go back through and take them out. I also pulled the Johnny Mize variation. PA pulled the CC Sabathia variation and William pulled the Barack Obama variation.

I also have a WBC redemption card which I've entered on Topps.com. The likelyhood it would produce a good card is slim to none in my opinion. I'm not sure how the WBC fits in with the first product of the year. We don't have the full rosters to know who is on the teams and it's a redemption card. Redemption cards should be religated to hot up and coming prospects or really special autographs or relic cards that they didn't want to package in the regular packs.

And that's it. No printing plates, no 1/1 sketch cards, no amazing autograph, no high demand Obama cards. Not even a full set. I can't say I hate the product because I don't. I like the base cards, they're one of the best Topps designs I've seen in awhile. But breaking two jumbo boxes and just having this to show for it is pretty disappointing. I was really hoping for a 1/1 printing plate or something else special. When you buy this big and expensive of a Cracker Jack box you expect to get a pretty decent prize. I've never pulled a 1/1 and I figured this would've been my best chance. I'm not going to go out and buy any, I just wanted to have the excitement of pulling one from a pack.

But I do have to paint the whole picture with this case, William and PA (who had the other 4 boxes in the case) had some really great pulls. I just happened to get two run of the mill boxes out of the case.

But that's the risk you take. Am I going to stop buying boxes because of this? Hell no. It's a crap shoot and you never know what you're gonna get. Sometimes you can pull a Pete Rose autograph relic or no autographs at all. It's a gamble.

Was it worth it? Not really. My goal was collecting the full set and getting some insert cards that I would want to keep in my personal collection. Neither happened. While I'm only 1 card short and I know William has that card waiting for me, it's unacceptable that two jumbo boxes almost 1000 cards can't produce a complete set. And as far as the inserts go, when I saw the release sheet I was excited at what I saw. Topps marking had me. But my actual experience differed than the advertisement, go figure.

I'm starting to think I did this collecting the base set all wrong. Maybe this is supposed to be a long drawn out process of buying 1 regular box, some blasters, some packs and accumulating the cards over time rather than go for a big bang with a couple of jumbo boxes. Who knows.

All I know is that these boxes put a bad taste in my mouth and a box of 2009 Heritage may help wash it out.

PS. I got a boatload of doubles if you're interested. Just let me know what you need or send me your wantlist and I'll see what I can do.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Opening Day for 2009 Yankee Collecting

It's spring training and the start of the collecting season. As a player collector and set building you learn to pick your battles. I'm one card away from finishing my '09 Topps Series 1 set. And I've given into temptation and got 2 blasters of 2009 Upper Deck base. So I'll work on that set as well. And I know for sure I'll be working on Heritage this year.

But for those other sets I'll be looking around for some of my favorite Yankee players. And maybe jumping on the Teixeira bandwagon due to his Mattingly connection.

But I'm really excited that there will be a bunch of cards of Xavier Nady in a Yankee Uniform. I know 2008 Updates & Highlights, 2008 Documentary and 2008 Ultimate(?) had him in a Yankee uniform but there's nothing like pulling your favorite player from a good ol' fashioned regular set.

Also Phil Coke has made his mainstream debut in both Topps 2009 and Upper Deck 2009. I know he has an auto card in Spectrum which I hope to pick up when my eBay hiatus is over. I've seen his Heritage rookie card which looks great. I actually own a Jim Kaat rookie from the 1960 set and the rookie cards are similar in design except they have that ROOKIE CARD MLB logo in the middle of the ribbon as shown here. I'll have to dig into the 2009 checklists and see what sets he's in.

And my man Phil Hughes is a hobby regular in this year's sets. I have a feeling I'll be tracking down quite a few Phil Hughes cards this year. I've seen the 2009 Heritage Hughes card and I love it. I want it! I hope he somehow finds his way into the rotation this year. I'm really rooting for Hughes to do some great things in his major league career. Which is pretty unheard of for me. I'm used to sticking with players that are established and Phil Hughes is a pretty big gamble. The odds that he'll be traded within the next 3 years is probably extremely high given the state of the rotation at the moment. I held my breath this off season hoping to not see his name in the hot stove reports and I've been lucky. I don't know how I'd feel if he got traded.

I really like Upper Deck's Game Used Jersey insert for this year. The letters are a bit more exciting than putting a big square swatch or X shaped swatch (I'm talking to you Upper Deck X) in the middle of the card. And it's better than that stupid UD thing they had in 2008. I never liked that.

So in summation, if you find yourself with a bunch of Phil Hughes, Xavier Nady and Phil Coke cards that you don't really want. Just drop me a line and I'll see if we can work something out.

Oh yeah, if you have any of those YSL thingys hangin' around, I'm interested in them too.