Friday, November 27, 2020

Redondo Beach, CA

This card was sent by Austin and A.J. of Redondo Beach, California.  Austin was one of the first people to send me Wallach cards in the early days of this blog nearly a decade ago.  With the addition of this card, he and his son A.J. may have just become the first multi-generational contributors.  I know I've received nice notes from father/son collector duos in the past, but I'm not sure I've ever received cards from the son of a contributor who wasn't born yet when cards were first sent.  So thanks for the card guys, I really enjoyed the note.

Updated Totals:

1992 Studio: 82

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Citrus Heights, CA


This isn't the first time I've received cards in one of these Post Office "oops" packages.  I was a little bit nervous to open the cards but thankfully, they all arrived completely unharmed.  I for one, am a huge fan of our Postal Service.  The fact that I can put a 55¢ stamp on an envelope and have it delivered to the door of a friend or relative on the other side of the country in under a week is nothing short of a modern miracle.  (And here I thought socialized institutions were always abject disasters that would lead to bread lines and having to give away my golf clubs,...besides fire departments, libraries, parks, schools, etc, etc)

Here the 10 cards that were in fact safely delivered by our comrades at the post office.  The card of Wallach in the Dodger home whites is a 1996 Donruss.  I mention that because I had to flip the card over to be sure.  From it's inception in 1981 to about 1993, I can spot and identify a Donruss card and what year it was printed, from across a room.  Then they just went to full mid-90's over slicked, over chromed, over styliezed, junk, and I'm reduced to flipping them over to identify the year.  I'm not sure if I would have continued collecting cards through high school if it had stayed just Topps/Fleer/Donruss (and maybe Score and Sportflics), but the explosion of a 100 different sets certainly didn't help keep my interest.  It just left me confused and alienated.

That said, I'm always happy to add more 1996 Donruss (or '94 or '95, or any of the 50 other sets that have Wallach cards from the era that all look pretty much the same) to the my collection.  And in all fairness, the back of the 1996 Donruss is actually a very nice looking and well designed card back.  These were sent by "Big Shep," who has become a pretty regular contributor.  Thanks for the cards.

Updated Totals:

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Sunday Edition

Vintage Binge Buying

I've shown it before, but that's my homemade checklist book done in the style of a 1971 checklist. A few years back I wasted an incredible amount of time handwriting everyone of my set needs from 1952 to 1991 in here using a tiny black sharpie.  Since then, whenever I pick up a need, I find the card in my book and cross it off with a red "x."  When a set is completed, I mark it off on the cover.  (Like a checklist,...subtle, I know)

I've been on a huge vintage buying kick lately.  That may sound expensive, but anyone that knows my vintage buying habits, knows that I'm not the sort to dwell on minor irrelevant details such as the condition of the card.  While I haven't been able to cross any sets off on the cover recently,  I have been putting a lot of red ink inside the book, and the act of marking those little red "x's" has been addictive.  As I write this, I already have more sportlots and ebay orders in route to my mailbox for a future post.  I make a point of not taking ink to the book until the card is actually in hand, so I'm not mentioning any of those cards at this time.  But here's a look at some of the low grade vintage treasures I've splurged on and already have in hand:

Other than the 53's, none of these are necessarily from sets I'm actively building, beyond in the sense that I'm ultimately trying to build every Topps set.  The '57 Colavito rookie isn't even a need, Rocky has just always been one of my favorite historical players (due to cards I liked in my father's collection and home run derby re-runs) and I'm not one to turn down additional Colavitio rookies when they fall my way for less than the price of a beer at Buffalo Wild Wings.

I'm actually pretty stoked about all of these beyond the 53's, which is the set I'm actually working on at the moment.  The Cepeda is his rookie, that '59 Campy has been one I've wanted to add to my collection for years, and Koufax is player that has long eluded me on cardboard.  In fact that '61 is now the closest thing to a Koufax card I own (I have some of those multi-faced league leaders, but no regular base set cards).  The Fox isn't a rookie or anything, but I'm one of those simple collector's that still gets excited about cards from the 1950's that feature Hall of Famers.  

That photo of card backs above may not pop to modern collector's who like their cards to give off an oil spill shiny glow, be marked with an illegible signature in sharpie and hermetically sealed inside a case so that they can never experience the simple pleasure of holding a card with their own hand, but to those that know, it's a pretty awesome sight.  That's a group of 19 high numbers from the 1972 set, including #686 Steve Garvey.  I was extremely relieved to pick up the Garvey for the price I did.  Sure, it's shape is a little bit rough, but nothing terrible (there's a photo of the front further down in this post).  I was worried it was going to set me back a really ugly number to own, like an entire Syracuse Basketball game worth of beers for myself and a table of friends at Wild Wings.  But it came out to more a split ticket during a Syracuse Game at Wild Wings.  Sleeving this many high numbers at once made me irrationally happy.  It may not look like it, but that's my happy face below, completing a page of high numbers (didn't realize I was being photographed at the time).

Here's where I currently sit with the 1972 set.  I've got a good number of cards to track down still, but the finish line is within sight (448 is in hand, but my copy is missing it's back):

1972: (4th Ser.) 408, 423, 428, 434, 435, 439, 448, 454, 455, 476, 489, 502, 503, 513, 520, 522 (5th Ser.) 530, 533, 535, 536, 537, 539, 540, 544, 545, 546, 550, 552, 553, 555, 556, 559, 560, 562, 564, 567, 569, 570, 572, 573, 574, 575, 576, 577, 579, 580, 582, 583, 584, 588, 589, 590, 593, 594, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 607, 619, 620, 621, 624, 625,  629, 632, 633, 635, 636, 637, 640, 643, 644, 645, 648, 650, 651, 653, 654, 655 (High #'s) 660, 663, 666, 669, 670, 673, 678, 688, 690, 692, 699, 700, 702, 704, 705, 706, 708, 709, 710, 711, 714, 715, 719, 720, 721, 722, 724, 726, 729, 730, 733, 738, 739, 742, 751, 753, 755, 757, 758, 761, 764, 768, 770, 771, 779, 783

Here are the rest of the 1970's set needs I picked up.  I'm not sure if you can tell, but that Garvey in the upper left has a good amount of wear around the edges, but like I mentioned above, is still completely acceptable.  I've debated for awhile whether I want to take on 1971 or 1973 after I finish '72, and I'm leaning strongly towards '71 at the moment.  But all of that could change.  Here's a look at what I still need as far as the single series 1970's sets (I think I'm becoming a bit of a snob in that I find myself dismissing the single series sets as challenges unworthy of my attention):

1977: 6, 8, 10, 74, 100, 113, 183, 208, 231, 234, 265, 277, 285, 327, 355, 387, 390, 412, 430, 434, 450, 467, 473, 476, 494, 518, 546, 547, 560, 580, 615, 621, 650, 655, 656

1976: 17, 55, 73, 104, 118, 119, 128, 150, 160, 192, 202, 205, 230, 300, 330, 341, 344, 345, 347, 420, 435, 480, 550, 581, 590, 596, 643, 650

1974: 3, 29, 50, 53, 80, 95, 130, 179, 280, 331, 470, 473, 582, 598, 600, 604, 605, 637

And not withstanding my "snobby multi-series vintage elitism," it still feels very nice to polish off a page in these binders for the single series sets as well.  

I hope all of you have safe and pleasant Thanksgiving Week and are able to find some positive moments with friends and loved ones, as it's almost to cliche to say it at this point, but they've been far too hard to come by this year.  And just by way of Public Service announcement, The Peanuts Thanksgiving Special will be airing on PBS on November 22 at 7:30 est/6:30 cen.

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Sportlots Pickups

I picked up these 55 cards over the course of a few orders.  The bulk of those orders were 1972 Topps set needs, but whenever I place an order with a seller on that site, I also check what sort of Wallach inventory they have.  I definitely consider 1982-86 the "Golden Age" of Wallach cards, so it's nice to see so many from that period arrive all at once.  

Updated Totals:

Friday, November 6, 2020

Expos 50th Anniversary Illustration by Josée Tellier

I picked up this "Expos 50th Anniversary Illustration" by Josée Tellier up on eBay awhile back.  If there was a public sale of these prints, I was asleep at the wheel and missed it, so I was sort of excited when this popped up on my eBay "Wallach Alert."  It measures 6"x9" and the autograph appears to be authentic in blue sharpie.  I'll probably end up framing this at some point as I like it a lot more than I expected to when I ordered it.  In fact, I'll probably try to track down a few more of the prints in the series that Ms. Tellier did, perhaps try to frame 3 or 4 of them together.  Here's a link to a galley of them on her website: Expos 50th Illustrations

You can find more of Ms. Tellier's other work on her Instagram page: @MissJoJo76  or by following her on Twitter: @MissTellier

Here are some more close up shots of the illustration:

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

McKinney, TX

This box of 179 cards was sent by fellow Wallach "Super Collector" Nick of McKinney, Texas.  The number of cards Nick has sent over the years is well into the 1,000's at this point.  This mix pretty much covered Wallach's entire playing career spanning from '82 up to '96.  I was a bit surprised to discover that the 1996 Flair that was included was the first one I've added since 2013.  I would have guessed that was a card that at least one or two copies of crossed my desk every year, but I guess not.  

Thanks for the cards Nick.

Updated Totals:

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Portland, Oregon

There is a trend developing.  Two of my last three post have featured multiple envelopes that were sent by a single reader and arrived on the same day.  Of the last three post, the one that featured only a single envelope was sent by Kerry of Portland, Oregon.  The same person who sent the nine cards shown above.  I don't know what's going on, and I'm certainly not complaining, but it's an anomaly I haven't seen in the nine years or so I've running this blog.

Kerry, this time around, included a cut out for his blog "Cards on Cards," which if you aren't following already, you probably should be.  I forgot to mention that last week.

Thanks for the cards Kerry.

Updated Totals:

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Goodyear, Arizona


These 37 cards were sent by Daniel of Goodyear, Arizona, which is the Cactus League home of the Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians.  Daniel has been sending cards going back to 2015.  These cards arrived in four separate envelopes but all on the same day (feels like a new trend).  It's a nice assortment that included an '85 Fleer and pair of '86 O-Pee-Chee.

Thank you Daniel.

Updated Totals:


Friday, October 23, 2020

Portland, OR

These two Wallach's were sent by Kerry of Portland, Oregon.  Kerry has been a pretty frequent contributor going back to 2016.  The 1988 Fleer is the "Box Bottom" variety.  I've always much prefered the photo on the '88 Fleer Box Bottom to the one used in the base set.  Kerry, or perhaps someone else, did a nice job cutting the Wallach off of the bottom of the box.  Many people (including myself as a kid), try to cut exactly on the lines.  I much prefer leaving a little bit of a margin, that way you can go back and cut the card out with the proper tools not typically found in a junk drawer, provided you ever want to make the effort.  Fleer also took the step of leaving room to do this with the four card on the bottom of the box, where as Topps did not.  The result being I usually ended up with at least two poorly cut Topps cards from the bottom of their box.  Take a look:

Thanks for the cards Kerry.

Updated Totals:

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Arlington, TN

Mark of Arlington, Tennessee, sent these 23 cards.  They arrived in two separate envelopes, but on the same day, so I'm combing them in one post.  It's a nice assortment of cards that included three relatively uncommon Panini Stickers.  In fact, the 1989 Panini Sticker is only second copy of that "card."  It's been eight years since I picked up my first one, so I guess it's not just relatively rare, it's flat out "rare."

Thanks for the cards Mark.

Updated Totals:

Sunday, October 18, 2020

New Market, NH

Cards from New Market, New Hampshire

These 2013 (and a couple 2014) Topps were sent by Bert of the Swing and a Pop-Up blog.  With these additions I am now very close to knocking off the 2013 Topps set.  The remaining needs are posted below.  I was surprised by the amount of star power in the cards that were sent.  I guess it makes sense, that when you rely on the generosity of others to send you your "needs," that the Jeter's of the set will end up being the last one's you need.  So these were greatly appreciated.  The 2014 set, particularly series 2, is still enough of a project that I'm not posting the individual needs, but they're listed on my set building page.

2013: 7?, 27, 207, 213, 338, 345, 350, 362, 369, 373, 374, 410, 418, 454, 455, 499, 536, 571, 572, 604, 622

I get asked a lot about players I collect other than Tim Wallach.  During the 80's Tim Raines was my clear second choice as far as guys I collected.  I also liked a mostly forgotten pitcher with the Expos named Joe Hesketh.  When the Expos ceased to exists, the Yankees became my team as they were the team I grew up going to see play every year.  I was huge fan of Bernie Williams and Jorge Posada and always enjoyed pulling their cards.  But over the last 20 years (with respect to Brett Gardner and Joc Pederson), Jose Fernandez and Zach Greinke have been my two favorite players.  I find something very awesome about pitchers who can hit and want the bat in their hands, especially pitchers who are also very good at pitching.  If I had developed the ability to throw smoke, hit corners, and have a good off-speed pitch, I'd only sign with a National League team.  I would not let the DH make me half a player.  

Thanks for these cards Bert.  I'll get something back out your way shortly.

Other Recent Additions

I've been more active on eBay recently.  More so than I have been in a long time.  Here are few of the cards that arrived this week.  The first two are a couple of 1972 needs.  I'm trying really hard to complete that set before the end of the year.  I don't think I'll make it, but it's going to be close.  The Steve Garvey is looking like it's going to cost me more than I ever wanted to spend on a Steve Garvey card.  There's always a couple semi-stars in the high numbers from these early 70's sets that make me do a double take at their price tags.  No disrespect to Steve Garvey, he was more than a semi-star, but he's also not Rod Carew (a '72 high number I was lucky enough to pick up in trade) or Nolan Ryan (the toughest high number in the '70 set).  Thankfully Hank Aaron and Fergie Jenkins weren't high numbers.  The Aaron still carried a bit of a price tag, but I feel good about what I paid, and "Hank Aaron" is just one of those names that sort of always feels like a bargain no matter how much it cost.  Fergie Jenkins is relatively under valued if you ask me.  As impressive as his baseball-reference page is, the most impressive thing on it is the fact that he was only named to three All-Star teams.  How did that happen?

The 1962 Rookie Parade features four players, but I'm comfortable calling it a "Joe Pepitone" rookie card.  It's been on my "Top Ten Most Wanted List" for a few years now, checking in at #4 in last year's Collecting Goals post.  It's also a high number, and Pepitone is rather beloved Yankee, so it's been tough to find for under $50 (my self-imposed limit).  Well, last week my eBay alerts pointed me to a new one with a price tag under that number.  So now I have one.

I've told this story before, but I'll mention it again.  I spent a summer working in a memorabilia store in Cooperstown as a teenager.  An old time Yankee sat in the back every day signing autographs for $10 a pop.  He never learned my name.  Joe Pepitone came in one day to say hi to his old teammate.  He made a point to introduce himself to all the employees, there were only like three of us.  When he popped back in the next day, he remembered my name.  It made an impression and I've been a retroactive Pepitone fan ever since.

The final card is a '59 Elston Howard.  It wasn't a particularly pressing need or anything like that.  I just saw it on a recent Nightowl Cards post and felt an immediate desire to own it.  And with the modern miracles of eBay, a couple of clicks of a mouse, and a $1.99 shipped, it's now in my collection.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Grand Rapids, MI

These two Tim Wallach cards, and five Chad Wallach cards, were sent by Mathew of Grand Rapids, Michigan.  By my count, this is the 3rd time in 10 months that Mathew has sent me cards.  You can follow Mathew's twitter feed @JMSWYO if you're so inclined, and here's a link.  Presently, I'm not making an effort to actively hoard Chad Wallach's cards.  Don't get me wrong, I am absolutely thrilled he was finally included in the base set this year (it's about four years past due, as proven by his baseball reference page), and I'm not turning them away, I'm just not going to be keeping a running tally at this point.  Maybe that'll change, I don't know.

Thank you for the cards Mathew.

Updated Totals:


Thursday, October 15, 2020

Boston, MA

These 31 cards were sent by "Exotic Flowers" of Boston, Massachusetts.  There may have been a note inside, but this was another envelope my dog got hold of, thankfully the cards came out unharmed.  Based on my map, I believe these could have been sent by "Rick" in the Boston area who sent cards back in 2015, and if not, the local florist may have a potential nearby trade partner they don't know about.

Thanks for the cards.

Updated Totals:

Monday, October 12, 2020

Newburgh, IN

These cards were sent by Dave of Newburgh, Indiana back in August.  You  may notice the top of the '83 Topps and bottom of one of those 1991 Upper Deck checklist have some issues.  Those are my fault.  Dave packaged these cards as nicely and securely as any cards I've ever received.  Each card was inside of a penny sleeve, inside of a brand new pristine top loader, all inside a new team bag and sent in a bubble mailer.  So what happened?  My dog happened.  A year ago or so that was a common occurrence.  I have Siberian Husky that turns two in January.  She was a cardboard addict the first year or two that I had her, then she chilled out a little (and I got better about keeping things on higher shelves).  Something about this envelope was irresistible to her though and she tried her best to do a little damage.  Thanks to Daves careful packaging, the damage was nominal.

Thanks for the cards Dave.

Updated Totals:

(Ivy, cardboard addict)

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Sunday Edition

Ramsey, New Jersey

These four cards were sent by frequent and regular contributor Max, of Ramsey, New Jersey.  I'm pretty sure it's the first time anyone as ever included 1953 set needs with the Wallach cards they send.  I won't complain if it's not the last time.   The Wallach's weren't run of the mill either.  They were both of the "Rediscover Topps," variety.  My lack of enthusiasm for this sort of gimmick is pretty well documented, but I'm not going to sit here and pretend I didn't notice either.  I also recognize some people are very into it, I assume the same people who get excited about autographs and refractors, and individually serial numbered cards, you know, extremely young children.  And I'm all for any goofy gimmick that gets kids back into the hobby.  I feel gum worked well for many decades, but what do I know?

Here's a close up of the stamps on the Wallach cards.  The '84 has a bronze stamp, and the 1993 has a red stamp.  I know that means something, but I really don't care enough to look it up.  Somehow adding some bronze foil to that card Topps made in 1984 makes it a 2017 card.  Arguing with this absurdity is like talking politics on Twitter, so I'm just going shake my head, tally it in my collection on move on.

Thanks for the cards Max.

Updated Totals:

Speaking of moving on, I had two individual non-Wallach cards show up this week.  Apparently I've been under a rock the last year or so and had no idea there was an "explosion of interest" in baseball cards.  I was casually strolling eBay for some vintage and about fell out of my chair at the prices.  How did an 1986 Fleer Larry Bird go from the $5-10 range to $50-65 range seemingly overnight?  I'm not sure what's going on, but I'll be putting a lot of stuff on eBay to sell, and will wait for this little cycle of high prices to pass (as it always does) before I dive back into picking up my low end vintage.

This 1971 Topps Joe Greene rookie card is pretty solid example of the sort of "low end" vintage I love to collect.  In the case of Joe Greene, I sort of feel like any one of his cards that doesn't look like this is sort of illegitimate.  My collection of vintage football currently resembles what my vintage baseball collection did 25 years ago, before I started building sets.  Just a random assortment of rookie cards.  I'm okay with that, and happy to add Mr. Coca-Cola to my assortment.

This 2015 Kris Bryant is decidedly not vintage.  But it does allow me to mark off the 2015 set as complete.  I held off buying it for a long time because (as I mentioned recently on this blog) I know I had multiple copies of it in 2015.  I'm pretty sure I gave a couple away to friend's kids who liked the Cubs, and I may have stashed a couple "someplace safe" in case it ever cost $5-10 bucks some day.  Well that sort of forward thinking ended up costing me $8 to have this one shipped.  I have no idea what "safe" place my others are in.  But this one is in the binder and the set is complete.

Saturday, October 3, 2020

eBay Pickup

I picked up these 352 Wallach cards on ebay recently at the very reasonable rate of a little over 4¢ a card shipped.  They arrived in the Lara Bar box, that is strikingly similar to a traditional Wax Pack display box.  I  miss the days of those boxes appearing next to the Snickers and Skittles boxes in gas stations.  Here's quick run down of what was included in the lot:

The most plentiful cards in the lot were 1988 Donruss, 1988 Topps All-Star, 1989 Donuruss, and 1990 Topps.  For the most part, there were between 2-8 copies of the cards with a few random singles.

There was a decent amount of early 80's Wallach's included, which is easily my favorite period of Wallach cards.  I'd go so far as to call 1983 the single best year for Wallach cards, but reserve the right to change that opinion on short notice and without any rational reasons.

There wasn't much as far as what I would call "exotic" or "rare" cards in the lot but there was the above assortment of Tiffany and Glossy.  The '87 Topps Tiffany and '89 Tiffany are two of the nicer examples of that card I've obtained.  I find the Topps Tiffany cards vary wildly in their appearance, with many having a sort of yellow tint, and yellowish borders instead of a clean white (or wood grain as with the '87) border.  I don't know if thats a result of how they've been stored, or was caused in the original printing process.

Updated Totals: