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

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Bucket List 3000 hits: Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

My next autograph is a player that is a bit more familiar to me. He spent a few years as a Yankee and helped them win their first World Series title since 1978. I have to say that Boggs may be one of the most interesting 3000 hitters. Boggs got his 3000th hit as a Devil Ray and at the time, he was the only hitter to get to 3000 hits with a home run. That is until this year when Derek Jeter changed that. But the spot where the HR ball hit is marked with a yellow seat in Tropicana Field.

So one of the most interesting stories with Boggs is his superstitious regiment. He would always eat chicken before a game. That's something I already knew but I later found out he took exactly 150 ground balls in practice, took batting pratice at 5:17 and ran sprints at 7:17. Before each at bat he would write the Hebrew word "Chai," which means life, in the dirt in the batter box. He is #1 on the list of most superstitious athelets on CBS Sport's web site.

There's also that 60-70 beer story that Jeff Nelson told about Boggs. I found a transcript of an interview Jeff Nelson did with ESPN radio here: 710 ESPN Steve Mason's Blog. Not only do they talk to Jeff Nelson about it but they call Paul Sorrento and he confirms the story. Essentially, on a cross country trip like New York to LA or Seattle to Boston, Boggs begins drinking beer at the start of the day and drinks all way til the end of the day. This is a man that has a .328 career batting average, multiple gold gloves and silver slugger awards and is a Hall of Fame member.

I was able to get a Wade Boggs auto for just under $20 which is a steal. His autos can go as high as $35 so he has a fairly affordable autograph. I'd say he's a must have for any personal collection. He is certainly one of the more interesting 3000 hit club members.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Bucket List 3000..er..4000 hit version (I'm Sorry)

The all time hit leader with 4,256 hits, Mr. Pete Rose. One of the most infamous figures in baseball history. He's both famous and infamous for his deeds as a player and manager. Even now Pete Rose can stir up emotions in fans of the game. Does he belong in the Hall of Fame or is his ban from baseball justified?

Personally I think it'll take his passing and many many years before he gets elected. His 4000+ hits are an amazing feat and I'm not sure if it will ever be broken. Yes, I understand Jeter is supposed to break his record but I'm not sure if Jete has that many years left in him to pull off another 1100 hits. That's almost a good 6 years of 200 hits. So this is an amazing record in and of itself which gets next to no respect because of the man who holds it. Kinda like the Home Run record. I would definitely put Rose in the Hall before I ever consider Barry Bonds.

When Donruss dropped in 2008 this card would've easily commanded $400-500. But now that Donruss has essentially flooded the market with Rose autos and relics this card might get around $100. Pete Rose autos can be had for anywhere between $40 and $100 depending on the Donruss flavor and numbering.

I pulled this 5/10 prime relic auto from a box of 2008 Donruss the first year I got back into the hobby. It was an amazing pull and I think I might have a video of it posted on this blog. So it cost like $80 or whatever a box cost back then. That was a very lucky pull for me. Not sure if I've pulled anything as good as that since.

"I'm sorry I bet on baseball", it still makes me chuckle.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Bucket List the 3000 hit version

With Derek Jeter's 3000th hit well behind us I've been a bit enamored with players in the 3000 hit club. So I decided to take a look at who was on the list: Wikipedia 3000 hit club

So I figured it would be cool to own a few autographs from that list. I do have to say that most will be unobtainable like Cap Anson, Tris Speaker, Ty Cobb and Roberto Clemente. I'd have to find certified cut autos but they would be in the thousands. And I already have autos of some of the members so I've already started and didn't even notice.

So my first subject is a player I grew up watching. He was a long time Brewers player and I'm sure others remember him as one but I remember him from his days in Toronto and Minnesota. I remember him being one of the unsung post season heroes for Toronto. He won the 1993 World Series MVP batting .500

But his time in Minnesota was really special. 1996 was a great year for baseball, in my opinion anyway. That year Molitor hit his 3000th hit at Kauffman stadium in September. I remember him doing it because the highlight was shown on ESPN's Sportscenter and this was the first year we ever had cable. So I was able to watch a replay of his historic triple.

What makes Molitor stand out is that in fact he is the ONLY person to triple for his 3000th hit.

I'm a big fan of the 2005 Upper Deck Heroes cards. That's one of the few sets where you can get on card autos of some really amazing players. There was an eBay seller with a few Paul Molitor cards from that set and I opted for this one because it highlights his 3000th hit. I actually payed a little bit more than a #/20 blue version of one of the other heroes cards but I really wanted this one.

I paid $13.50 including shipping for this card which I think is a steal for such an iconic Hall of Famer. His autos tend to be closer to the $20 range so I got a really good deal on this card. I would definitely encourage collectors to seek out a Paul Molitor auto to add to their personal collection.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Bucket List Derek Jeter Rookie

DEREK JETER HITS his 3000th hit!!
He's called many names: Captain Clutch, Captain Intangible, Jete, Mr. November, and now he's Mr. 3000.
Derek Jeter had an amazing day, July 9th 2011, going five for five. His second at bat yielding his 3000th hit, a Home Run to left field off David Price. He also drove in the winning run to help the Yankees win, the only thing he ever wants to do in this game.
This is probably his most sought after rookie card. The condition of the 1993 SP cards is very condition sensitive. Many of the cards have chipping or other issues that cards with this much foil have. That's why I opted to get a graded version. I figured this would be the best way to get the card in relatively good shape without trusting an auctioner's digital camera skills. This card cost me about $100 almost 3 months ago and I'm sure the price has gone up for graded versions. If you do have your heart set on one $100 is a deal for something in the 8 range.
Congratulations to Derek Jeter who has given me so much to look forward to in my life as a Yankee fan. I graciously thank you for all you've given us Yankee fans.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bucket List #6: A Legend Among Legends

I always liked Harmon Killebrew since I was a kid. Had really no idea who he was other than a player for the Washington Senators/Minnesota Twins that hit very well. Killebrew to me played the game the way it should be played and excelled through sheer talent and hard work.

He scuffled his first few years in the big leagues. Until '59 when he got a chance to play 3rd base regularly. He started smacking home runs all over the place and became an overnight sensation. Yep, overnight after just 4 years with the Senators. His power was legendary but it was his humble and polite persona that outshone all that. "Killer" became one of those ironic nicknames like calling a large man "Tiny." It never fit his personality but it fit his swing. Harmon hit some towering home runs, one of which was estimated to travel 520 feet unobstructed and there's a red seat commemorating that blast in the Mall of America. Also a statue of a gold glove resides outside Target field exactly 520 feet from home plate. Just awesome.

I could go on and on about Harmon. To say he has my utmost respect is putting it mildly. As a Yankee fan I'm constantly reminded how blown up every Yankee is and how if "so and so" played for the Yankees he'd be big too. To me Harmon didn't need any of that. His epic home runs and humbled personality fit perfectly for those Washington Senator/Minnesota Twins teams. I'm sure it brings great pride to have a legend like Killebrew be synonymous with the Twins organization.

He has probably one of the best autographs out there. It's clean, easy to read and distinctive. I ran across a comment about Killebrew's autograph on an article. The commenter had heard a story that Killebrew took his autograph very seriously. He said "When he saw young players scribbling illegible autographs, he would pull them aside and explain how important they were for the fans asking for them and encourage them to do them well. When mass-signing baseballs for charity auctions, he'd self-edit and throw out balls he didn't think were good enough. "

If you don't have a Killebrew auto I'd strongly urge picking one up. I was able to get the one above for less than $30 and I recently picked this 1999 Epic Signatures one after his passing for a little over $30.

Killebrew is a true legend. I find it a little funny that for years it was thought that the MLB logo was based on Killebrew. I even believed it. But really is it hard to believe that the model for MLB the ICON for MLB should be anyone other than Harmon Killebrew?

Monday, March 14, 2011

2011 Topps Heritage Live at Target

Went to a local Target and found a bounty of Topps Heritage.

There was a gravity feed box, a retail box, blasters and rack packs.

All in all, I'd say I was actually disappointed. Where Topps 2011 wasn't that bad in retail, Heritage just can't hold a candle to what Hobby offers. I know people say "never buy retail" but there's an instant gratification itch retail

1 Blaster results: 3 short prints, 2 inserts

2 Rack packs: 2 inserts
3 Retail box packs: 2 inserts (nice hair)

3 Gravity Box packs: 1 relic, 1 chrome, 1 insert and creepy floating heads

No Hughes and no Mattingly, son of a. I'm kinda disappointed but then again, it's retail and you can't hit the jackpot every time. So this time, the house won big time. So go out find some and post your results. Odds are they will be WAY better than mine.

If you pull Hughes or Mattingly and their chrome inserts let me know. I'm interested :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Collecting Bucket List #5 We're off to see the Wizard...

The wonder wizard of Ozzie. I'm not going to talk about his career. I saw him play when I was a kid growing up and he was like that fun uncle playing baseball. All the kids love him and he was just really cool to watch and be around.

His autos don't cost that much surprisingly. I assumed there would be a bevy of Ozzie collectors out there driving up the prices but there aren't. I got this auto for just around $20. And others are available for around the same price.

But there is something I would like to discuss about this card and it's causing a dilemma with my bucket list. Do this, open that image up in a new browser and look at it full sized. Now follow from the dot that belongs to the "I" in Smith and go to the right til you see a slight blue line that looks like a piece of string. That's the end of the sticker. Yep this is a clear sticker auto. I had no idea the 2004 Fleer Ex autos were stickers and I bought this card because it had both a relic, auto and was a great price. I do have to say it's a very well done sticker auto. It's hard to see it through scans but in person it is noticeable.

The problem is that I try very hard not to get sticker autos as my bucket list autos. The concept of my bucket list is for me to get cards that fit certain criteria. Now while sticker auto isn't a firm "NO" in my rules, I do have to say it is more *satisfying* as a collector to get an on card auto. As of right now I will keep this card because it fills a niche of an "Ozzie Smith" auto. It also goes above that by being an auto, relic, numbered card. But I still think an on card auto of Ozzie Smith will fit better with my collection. The jury is still out.

What do you think? When looking for autos of your favorite players do you try to get the cheapest you can find regardless of sticker or not. Or do you tend to gravitate toward on card?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

2010 Topps Chrome Wrapper Redemption results

I had amassed four hobby boxes of 2010 Topps Chrome. I held onto them until about February 25th when I packaged them up (24 wrappers in each box) in a nice Amazon.com box to be sent for my redemption. Now I know the deadline was the 28th and I was cutting it close but I was hoping they meant POSTMARKED by the 28th.

Luckily my redemption wrappers arrived Friday March 4th which was amazing turn around.

Here are the results in the order I opened the packs:

Pack 1: Babe Ruth, Jason Heyward, Tyler Colvin
Pack 2: Starlin Castro, Jackie Robinson, Stephen Strasburg
Pack 3: Austin Jackson, Ty Cobb, Mike Leake
Pack 4: Lou Gehrig, Mike Stanton, Carlos Santana (green refractors)

The first three packs contained refractors as is stated on the back of the cards themselves. But the final pack were green refractors numbered to 599. Every 10th pack is a green fractor pack according to the Topps website.

I really like this concept for a few reasons. For one, YOU GET CARDS! You take those unwanted pack wrappers and mail those suckers right back to Topps and magically they give you cards. Secondly, I think this lends to the possibility of Topps recycling the materials and reusing them in other packaging materials. Topps gets cheap material to reuse and it doesn't end up in a landfill, win-win.

I do have a question though. While I'm sure this is a "while supplies last" offer. But what happens to all the unclaimed cards? Do they stay in the Topps vault? The wrapper redemption is probably not a new concept but I'm sure it's not a widely embraced concept. I'm sure there are people who threw away all their wrappers or only bought a few packs which wouldn't make for a complete 24. Will these cards show up in other products or maybe even on the Topps Card Giveaway (whatever name it has for each year)?

Either way, I'm really happy with the redemption and I have one box of 24 Bowman Chrome wrappers I plan on turning in. Hope I get something good.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Collecting Bucket List #4 Paying Respect to "The Duke of Flatbush"

If the Dodgers stayed in Brooklyn, I would be a Dodger fan today. I have no doubt about that even to this day. I would be complaining about the free spending Yankees and my underachieving Brooklyn Bums. When I think of "The Duke of Flatbush" I think about their 1955 win over the Yankees. It was the only time they ever beat the Yankees in the World Series, mind you. Even still, it was a great achievement for the Brooklyn team.

Duke was part of a golden age for New York teams in the 50's. From 1949 til 1958 there was at least one New York team in the World Series. And the only thing that really breaks that streak is the Los Angeles Dodgers winning in 1959. Duke was overshadowed by Mantle and Mays but his stats are right up there with the best of them. He was also overshadowed by his own teammates Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella but I always saw him as the glue that held that great 50's Dodger era together.

Snider's autos are plentiful and unfortunately due to his recent passing have gone up to closer to $35 which is still a bargain for this Hall of Famer. I can't remember what I paid for this card because I bought it sometime last year but it couldn't have been too far beyond $20. And Duke Snider has a very smooth and easily read signature. I think this 1998 Donruss Signatures card is one of the best ones to get because of the great picture , on-card Signature and the signature's placement (not on the back of the card like this one).

When things settle down you may want to hunt around for an auto of this Dodger icon. I think he's a must-have for any collector.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Collecting Bucket List #3 Warrior come out and play-ee-yay

I was very fortunate to be born at the tail end of the Yankees worst decade in their history. In 1992 the Yankees traded Roberto Kelly for the man we would come to know as "The Warrior," Paul O'Neill.

He was a big part of "my" Yankees. He was there in 1993 with a team that featured Mattingly, Boggs, both Williams (Bernie and Gerald), Danny Tartabull and Paul Abbott threw is famous no-hitter. I really liked the 1993, 1994 and 1995 Yankees. Obviously 1996 was a changing of the guards so to speak. But O'Neill was there, much like myself, for a disappointing 1993 season. A 1994 season of amazing promise but foiled by MLB baseball players and owners. And the 1995 season which saw the first postseason with the new team alignment and Yankees as the first ever AL Wildcard winners. Then a golden age for the Yankees which saw them win 4 World Series in 5 years until that heartbreaking night in Arizona. The night we last saw O'Neill playing as a Yankee.

There isn't much I can say about Paul O'Neill that most don't already know. He was passionate and pissed. He had this swing that he could just stroke the ball into the outfield for a base hit. His passion for the game earned him the "The Warrior" nickname from the Boss. He had that catch deep in the Atlanta outfield during the 1996 World Series in Game 5 that ended the game. He played in the clinching Game 4 of the 1999 World Series, hours after his father passed away.

He's an important part of my baseball memories. I thought it would be fitting to get a reasonably priced auto of him as part of my bucket list. I found this great on-card auto for a little over $20. I was lucky because there really aren't many of his autos out on eBay and they tend to go for closer to $40 for the more basic autos (not short print or from high end product).

So if you're in the market for one good luck, they're out there you just have to find them.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Topps 2011 The almost blaster from Target (9.99 box)

My fiance picked me up this weird box from Target. The part that hangs on the rack is blurred but you can sorta see it. I actually thought it was a blaster until I read it. It has 72 cards in it.

This is what was inside. No packs just a cello wrapped stack of cards. I think the cards totaled out to 10 inserts and 62 base cards. I ended up needing 34 out of the 62 cards.

The pack doesn't have any fancy inserts like autos, relics or original back 60 years of Topps. But you pretty much have one of every type of common insert. Although I do have a question. What the hell card is that David Ortiz? I've never seen it before. The number on it is THP-13 and it only has his name, team name and a blurb about him on the back. There's no subset name anywhere on the card.

So what is this insert and what are the other ones in its set?

Other than that this pack is really only good for someone looking to build the set on the cheap. I'd rather stick with a blaster and its guaranteed commemorative patch, throwback cards and chance for better inserts. Or rack packs if you're trying to keep things a little cheaper but still get some inserts on the side.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Upper Deck 2010 World's BIGGEST AUTO STICKER DUMP!!! WTF!

I had no idea this is what Upper Deck had in mind when they were creating their World of Sports...

Upper Deck 2010 World of Sports

Sticker auto upon sticker auto of cards with just names on it.

I found this all out by finding this: Phil Hughes 2010 Upper Deck World of Sports


This is what Upper Deck is reduced to?! Couldn't they have found a better way around this? I'm just in disbelief. Some of my favorite cards in my personal collection are from Upper Deck. Phil Hughes and Mattingly autos and relic cards that look, well to steal one of their own product names, exquisite.

It breaks my heart to see them this way. I sort of feel like they're that underhanded guy with a jacket full of fake Rolexes trying to bait you in. But then I feel sorry for them for being beaten into submission by Topps....into creating this, this GARBAGE: Crappy three auto card

Epic Fail Upper Deck, epic fail

Friday, February 4, 2011

Collecting Bucket List #2

Andy Pettitte Auto

It seems that the end of a player's career or life wakes up collectors. I guess it's like that whole "an artist doesn't sell their work until the person dies." I didn't wait for Pettitte's announcement to retire before I purchased the above card. But I got it for a completely different reason.

I had a "bucket list" idea to collect an auto for every 2009 Yankee team member. I have to say I have most of them but Hideki Matsui will be the only player I will never get an auto for. His auto cards are just way too expensive.

But now that I think back, I'm really glad I bought this card because I would be scrambling on eBay trying to find one that doesn't have the price jacked up.

It never dawned on me until today how important Pettitte was to the many successful postseason runs. When you think of Yankee starting pitchers from 1995 to 2010, Andy Pettitte is #1. Period. Out of his 16 year career, he missed the post season 3 times. He holds many post season records mainly because of the frequency that he was able to compete. But Andy did have many amazing moments in the post season and I can honestly say I don't think the Yankees could've won any of the 5 without him.

He may not have the Hall of Face credentials or what-have-you, but as a Yankee fan he is a living legend. Which is why he is apart of my collecting bucket list.

Monday, January 31, 2011

2011 TOPPS LIVE AT TARGET!!!! (Final)

Bought 4 loose packs, 2 rack packs and a blaster. Updates coming....

BASE and TOPPS TOWN (loose packs):
INSERTS (from loose packs):

INSERTS and some Base (from rack packs):

INSERTS & Throwbacks (Blaster)

Well there you have it. The blaster had the only diamond giveaway card. It also had two throwback packs and the only original back 60th years of Topps card (Roy Campanella). I think the rack packs with the security strips have those blue 60th anniversary cards. Topps town cards look WAY cooler than I've ever seen. I assume the way cooler stuff is in Hobby. Notice I didn't get any gold cards. All I got were the diamond parallels and Target is supposed to have something called a Red Diamond as their exclusive.

Anyhow, this signifies the start of collecting season. Have fun and good luck out there.

...I call any Mattingly's you pull!

NOTE: Some of the 60 Years of Topps cards are "Lost Cards." The Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford insert cards from the rack packs are "Lost Cards" but the Stan Musial underneath that is just a 60th Anniversary card. There's nothing special beyond "THE LOST CARDS" phrase and the card number as 60YOTLC-# on the back.

NOTE2: Got a bunch of damaged base cards in the rack packs so buyer beware.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Collecting Bucket List #1

I'm sure most are familiar with a bucket list and what that concept entails. And I'm sure most have put together a collecting bucket list whether they realize it or not. You know, collecting certain cards based on a criteria you deem as important. I'm not going to dig into what that criteria should or could be. That just doesn't seem right to tell someone else what they should be collecting. What I will do is share some of my bucket list.

It's unfortunate that the subject of the first card I choose to talk about recently passed. When I think of this guy the first phrase that comes to my mind is "the Feller that pitches for the Cleveland Indians." I always wanted to get a Bob Feller auto since my buddy William talked about getting a ball from his museum. But I'm not a hardware kind of guy. I don't care for autographed balls, pictures, bats or gloves. I like getting Topps, Upper Deck, Fleer, or Donruss autos that came from wax packs. I don't know what it is about those cards but I feel like getting a good autograph is on the same level as getting their rookie card.

The good thing about Bob Feller's autographs are that they're very affordable. You can get a decent auto in the range of $20 to $35. Which I think is pretty good considering it's a card signed personally by a player and that card is seated possibly one per box.

I really like the auto on this card and how clean the card itself is. The Greats of the Game sets are awesome sets to look to when trying to find veteran autographs.

I can list tons of reasons why Bob Feller but the fact remains he was an iconic pitcher during that era and I feel had a huge impact on the league during his playing years. He's a player everyone knows about. You may not know all of his accomplishments like the classic trivia question "Who is the only person to throw a no hitter on opening day?" Or him being the first person to volunteer for military duty immediately after Pearl Harbor and his 4 years serving in the Navy.

But most everybody knows that Feller that pitches for the Cleveland Indians. I'm happy to have this card in my collection and part of my bucket list.