Thursday, August 24, 2017

Stirling Heights, MI


These five cards and nice note were went by Paul of Stirling Heights, Michigan.  Thank you for the cards Paul.  You can check out Paul's TTM Blog by clicking here, or the logo at the bottom of the page.

Here are the updated Totals for these five cards:

1990 Topps: 414
1991 Topps: 213
1991 Upper Deck Checklist: 193
1992 Donruss: 159
1994 Upper Deck: 70





Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Lot of 1982 Fleer


Above is a lot of 180 1982 Fleer Wallach's I recently found on eBay.  1982 Fleer had previously been the rookie card I owned the fewest of.  That distinction now belongs to Donruss.  Here's what they look like free of the cases they came in:


Picking up a lot like this is a little bitter sweet.  I'll explain why.  I previously had 81 copies of this card.  This seller just sold me 160.  That means someone out there owned nearly twice as many copies of a Wallach card as I did.  At this point, that shouldn't be happening too often.  Granted, every time this happens (which isn't too often anymore), it becomes that much less likely to happen again. Still, it bugs me to think people out there own more copies of a particular card than I do.  It's probably most common with 1982 cards, given the trend of 100 card lots of RC's back then, but somehow this '82 Fleer has remained somewhat elusive.  Thankfully my current total of 241 isn't likely to be shown to be second to anyone in the near future (and if it is, I'll just buy them out too).

If your wondering, 160 cards is about 3 1/4 inches tall when stacked.






Friday, August 4, 2017

2017 Topps Archives Fan Favorites Autograph #FFA-TWA "Blue" #/50


Card Review: 8.8  The blue is my favorite of the variations of this card.  The white works best, but of the colors I'm giving the blue a slight edge over the red.  Like all the other variations of this card, the back is my favorite part, and the only Tops evidence in existence that Wallach ever played for the Angels.

Number of this card in my collection: 3















Wednesday, August 2, 2017

2017 Bowman 70th Anniversary Buybacks "1991"








Card Review: 8.0  I'm only docking this card a tenth of a point for the foil stamping added to the front.    I liked the the 1991 Bowman set, and would probably go so far as to put it just a notch below 1991 Fleer as my favorite set of the year (but don't hold me to that).  The clean simple design (much like 1990 Bowman) is what I like about 1991 Bowman, so while the stamping is far from horrible, it's still unnecessary clutter.

Tops did a better job with these Bowman buybacks (Topps still owns Bowman, right?) than they did with they're own, but such a good job that I can support this fad.  It's disingenuous, tacky, and unnecessary.  Just pack the original cards in.  Don't stamp them and call them "new."  They're not.  They're just vandalized.  Which can be cool.  And these Bowman's are closer to being "cool" than the "Rediscover" non-sense, or any of that Leaf Memories garbage, but it still isn't cool.

I could get behind Tops finding legitimately roughed up cards with the scribblings of children from twenty years ago and inserting them, or how about buying cards from actual players or celebrities and stamping who the original owner was on them?  "From the collection of Mike Trout" would be cooler than another autograph card, wouldn't it?

                                                 

Number of this card in my collection: 1


Sunday, July 30, 2017

Sunday Edition


First and foremost, a huge congratulations to The Great Tim Raines.  Today his is day, and it's one that is well deserved and long over due.  I've never been happier to see a player get into Cooperstown.






I'm currently recording the Induction Ceremony.  I tried to watch it live, but when Harold Reynolds opened the show by saying Selig would "steal the show," I decided I better DVR it and watch later.  There's only so much B.S. I can tolerate.  For half a second I thought Reynolds was trolling Selig, and referencing to the boo's and jeer's he'll no doubt receive from the hoards of Montreal fans there to see Raines.  He wasn't.  He was serious.  Just as Raines represents the happiest I've ever been to see some one inducted, Bud Selig sits at the opposite end of that spectrum.  I don't think I've ever been angry to see someone get in.  I've raised eyebrows or disagreed on merits, but inclusion doesn't upset me.  It's omissions that get me upset.  Until now.  Selig's induction in a blackeye for baseball, and an embarrassment for Cooperstown.

While I wait for the recording to finish, let's look at some recent cardboard pick-ups:


These first ones are some 2008 Topps from Jim of Elgin, IL.  Jim has probably sent me eight envelopes of cards in the last two months.  He's been chipping away at my Topps need list from 2008-15 three teams at a time.  I'm guessing he sorts his cards by team.  Thank you very much Jim.  Your generosity has not gone unnoticed.


With this batch of 2008 Topps, my current need list is below.  Feel free to send me a link to your 2008-17 Topps needs.  I'd be happy to try to work out a trade.

2008: 1, 6, 13, 14, 18, 20, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 35, 45, 48, 51, 53, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 65, 72, 75, 80, 90, 96, 99, 104, 105, 117, 122, 124, 128, 129, 130, 134, 136, 137, 138, 144, 145, 148, 149, 151, 153, 155, 156, 157, 166, 173, 175, 176, 178, 182, 188, 197, 200, 209, 211, 216, 218, 226, 229, 232, 233, 234, 236, 238, 240, 251, 256, 258, 259, 268, 281, 285, 287, 288, 289, 296, 297, 298, 300, 303, 313, 317, 321, 329, 348, 356, 357, 363, 378, 382, 393, 403, 410, 418, 426, 428, 434, 437, 439, 443, 446, 457, 460, 461, 463, 469, 476, 481, 489, 498, 505, 518, 534, 535, 538, 540, 541, 550, 556, 558, 569, 585, 587, 589, 591, 593, 598, 602, 607, 608, 614, 615, 618, 621, 623, 625, 631, 632, 636, 643, 644, 652, 653



As some of you are probably aware, I have a side-project blog, "Adventures in 1952 Topps."  For the last nine years I've been trying to put together a run of the first five series of 1952 Topps from card #'s 1-310.  With this recent haul above I'm now four cards away from that goal.  A good number of those are duplicates, but only two are duplicates and not upgrades.  In any event, I'll take any chance I get to show off these 1952's.  

The '53 Bowman Joe Nuxall came with the Joe De Maestri that it's next to in the photo.  I didn't buy it.  The seller included it as extra packaging.  Usually sellers use the likes of '91 Score to do this.  I prefer the '53 Nuxall.


Above are three new basketball pick-ups.  I am now three cards shy of  completing the 1986-87 Fleer set.  It may not sound all that surprising to younger collector's to hear this, but it's certainly surprising to me, but the last three needs are Jordan, Bird, and Magic.  The Jordan is expected, but I never considered the Magic or Bird to be tough finds.  I was indifferent to them.  That was fueled mostly by the fact that they weren't rookie cards.  When I was younger, my collection was focused on RC's, not sets.  So I hunted down all the big rookies in this set.  Clyde Drexler, one of my all-time favorites, ended up being the last one to fall (obviously, not counting Jordan).  I'll probably have to track down a second copy to display outside of the set binder, because I really like that card.

My patience in seeking out a Scottie Pippen rookie paid off.  Twenty years ago or so, I believe it may have been the most expensive card in the set.  A set that included rookies of John Stockton, Reggie Miller, and Dennis Rodman.  The idea of a Pippen rookie costing more than a Stockton always seemed absurd to me.  Granted, I wasn't a Bulls fan, so I never felt a burning desire to own one, but still.  Pippin over Stockton?  I'm glad I waited, not just on principle either, the market has since adjusted now that most collector's consider Jordan a sneaker more than a player and don't remember his lil' sidekick Scottie.  I picked that Pippen up for less than the price of a movie ticket.  

Here's where I stand with the inaugural three Fleer Basketball sets:

1986-87: 9, 53, 57

1987-88: 1, 3, 9, 11, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 37, 38, 39, 41, 42, 48, 49, 52, 54, 56, 59, 60, 61, 63, 68, 69, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 79, 80, 83, 84, 85, 89, 92, 92, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 105, 106, 109, 112, 113, 118, 123, 130, 132 

1988-89: 5, 9, 10, 13, 14, 16, 18, 21, 22, 25, 30, 31, 33, 34, 39, 40, 43, 45, 49, 53, 57, 64, 68, 70, 82, 85, 89, 92, 93, 95, 96, 108, 109, 114, 115, 116, 121, 123, 124, 125, 126, 127, 129, 132




My last recent pick-up to show off is this lot of '53 Topps.  Many of the 1952's above came from the same seller I purchased these from.  It's in it's infancy, but I've decided to start a 1953 Topps side-project blog once I finish with the '52 blog, which is now a matter of when and not if.  1953 Topps is a very managable 274 cards in size, numbered to 280, but six cards were never made due to disputes with Bowman (where's that "Memorable Moments" insert card Topps?).

I've already done a test post for the '53 Topps blog.  If you're interested, here's a link, but I reserve the right to make changes to the format.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

2017 Bowman 70th Anniversary Buybacks "1990"


Card Review: 9.2
This card looks better without the 70th logo.  You can read about my profuse praise for the original, or un-altered copy (as this is technically an original too), here.  As far as the "buyback" logos go, this is probably the best that I've seen.  It's actually very well done, especially compared to the "Rediscover Topps" nonsense that I've seen so much of this year.

I don't know much about these cards.  I didn't know they were a thing until I saw a couple on eBay, and I had to do a google search just to figure out what it was called and what packs they were falling out of.  There really wasn't much out there on them, with differing opinions as to whether they exists with different color stamps, and if they how many different colors, and which colors are the most/least common.  I'm not losing any sleep over it, as I don't consider these "unique" cards and view my collection as complete without them.  I have plenty of 1990 Bowman.  Some dude stamping copies in a factory 27 years later doesn't make them "new."



Number of Copies in my collection: 1

Friday, July 28, 2017

Peoria, IL


These three cards, including and autographed '87, were sent by long-time and regular contributor "P-Town Tom" of Peoria, IL.

Thanks for the cards Tom, and thanks go out to your LCS owner as well.  What't the name of it, I'll give it a plug.

Updated Totals:

1987 Topps: 801
1989 Topps: 625
1990 Topps: 413


Saturday, July 22, 2017

40 Card eBay Lot


I was in grade school in the 1980's, and had a card "budget" that was typical for a kid in grade school.  Which is to say, my parents more or less bought baseball cards for me.  As such, I was never really in a position to speculate on rookie cards in 50 or 100 card lots.  My "speculating" consisted of hoarding the copy or two (or even three) I might pull from packs and trading with friends.  Aside from Tim Wallach's, I don't think I ever even reached nine of a single card but maybe a handful of times.  Nine sticks out as the number, because there was a brief period during which I was very proud of my full page of 1989 Topps Ricky Jordan (of the Phillies) rookie cards.

So while I never speculated on rookie cards in 50 or 100 or even 10 card lots, other people did, and I'm very happy that was a thing back in the 1980's.  Because that greed, er, "speculation" has allowed me to amass over 1,100 copies of Tim Wallach's 1982 Topps rookie card some thirty years later.  Just like  the guy expected when he loaded up on the Fullerton can't miss prospects rookie card in 1982, thirty five years later he'd sell them on the internet to some guy in New Mexico for a tiny fraction of what he paid for them.  Thanks for keeping them safe for me all these years.

With any large lot of the same card, the best part is the variations.  No, not the different colored, shiny, rainbow sparkle artificially fabricated non-sense the children enjoy today.  I'm talking about good old printing and cutting variations, organic variations if you will.  Below are the winners from this lot:


The top row are four of what I'm calling "sun faded" prints.  The black is normal, but all the colors are way too light.  There is a close up scan of one below.  In the lower left is a copy that looks like it got a double or triple treatment of the blue ink.  It's next to a "normal" copy just to show the difference.  Finally there was a extremely miscut copy.  The front of that card is perfectly centered.  The back however, has a good portion of the bottom of Ken Griffy Sr.'s card, though at the time we just called him Ken Griffey (I can't tell from the numbers, I just know Griffey to be positioned there next to Wallach on the uncut sheet).



Friday, July 21, 2017

Pooler, GA



 



These 48 Wallach cards were generously sent by the site "Signatures for Soldiers."  I encourage you to check out the site, they're doing good work over there.  I regret that my collection is more or less barren of autograph cards and I could only come up with one to send their way (Thanks 2017 Archives), but I'll be keeping an eye out for more.

Included with this lot was a 1987 Topps.  Which usually wouldn't be that big of a deal (albeit one of my favorite cards ever, Wallach or otherwise), but it's my 800th copy tallied on this blog.  The only Wallach I own more copies of is the 1982 Topps Wallach.

Updated Totals:

1987 Topps: 800!
1988 Donruss: 718
1988 Score: 240
1988 Topps AS: 591
1989 Donruss x3: 329
1989 Score: 164
1989 Topps x3: 624
1989 Upper Deck: 178
1990 Donruss: 366
1990 Donruss Baseball's Best: 7
1990 Fleer: 282
1990 Topps: 412
1990 Upper Deck x2: 237
1991 Donruss x2: 204
1991 Donruss MVP: 181
1991 Score x2: 201
1991 Score The Franchise x3: 150
1991 Topps x2: 212
1991 Upper Deck x2: 258
1991 Upper Deck Checklist x2: 192
1992 Leaf: 73
1992 Pinnacle: 91
1992 Studio x3: 44
1992 Upper Deck: 257
1993 Upper Deck: 117
1994 Score: 59
1994 Topps: 87
1995 Collector's Choice x2: 32
1995 Donruss x2: 41
1996 Collector's Choice x2: 20
1996 Pinnacle: 42




Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Ramsey, NJ


These 12 cards were sent by frequent contributor Max, also known as JacobMarley of "Starting Nine."  Max dismisses these as "nothing exotic" in his note, but I may disagree a little.  Maybe I'm a little old-fashioned, but that's a 1987 Fleer Glossy included in with this lot, and I consider "Fleer Glossy" to be somewhat "exotic," albeit, extremely difficult to spot when you're not looking for them.  Perhaps Max didn't catch the distinction, I wouldn't blame him if he did.

Thanks for the cards.

Updated Totals:

1986 Topps: 287
1987 Fleer Glossy: 25
1988 Donruss: 717
1988 Score: 239
1989 Topps: 621
1991 Donruss: 202
1991 Topps: 210
1992 Topps: 178
1993 Donruss: 87
1993 Score: 21
1993 Studio: 39
1993 Topps: 141





Sunday, July 16, 2017

Sunday Edition


2017 Archives and Series II Base set

I wasn't going to buy any Archives this year.  Not because I don't like the set, but I was just going to be disciplined and more focused with my budget.  That, and I figured I would spend way too much loading up on the Tim Wallach signature inserts in this set (which I have).  I managed to stay on point for a couple of weeks, but in retrospect, that appears to be due to the fact that the only Target in my area didn't have any.  Because the first time I saw it in the card aisle, I bought all of it.  Two blasters and five jumbo packs (I think that's what you call them).  So much for self discipline. 



Over the last few years Archives has passed Heritage for title of my favorite goofy set.  I view them both as more or less throw away novelty sets, but they're fun to open.  Far too many inserts for my liking, but I guess that's what the kids like these days.  And I don't say "throw away" as an insult, I'm not throwing mine away, I just don't think these sets will have much of a shelf life.  I have a hard time envisioning a scenario in which thirty years down the road anyone will be going to shows and searching online hunting down a need list from any of these sets.  They're essentially cardboard fidget spinners.  All the rage for awhile, fun to mess around with, and quickly forgotten when the next new fad arrives.  So, I enjoy these for what they are, and will soon stuff them away in the oblivion of my white boxes rather than shelf them in three ring binders as part of the display library.  I cringe at the thought of people "Investing" in Topps Now and Bowman Whatever Shiny Happy Meal Toy is currently all the rage.  I've seen that movie before.  

I did okay with my inserts.  I pulled two autograph cards of two guys I liked as a kid.  The Dave Stieb was especially cool to pull.  In lot of ways, I view him as the Blue Jay equivalent of Tim Wallach.  A great player (though not a Hall of Famer) who was the face of a Canadian Franchise for over decade, but never got his due because in the 1980's Canadian Teams may have well as played their games on the moon.  I remember Kevin Seitzer being a hot rookie prospect when being a hot rookie prospect was about the most glamorous title one could have bestowed on them.  My time line may be a little off, put I associate him with a lot of other guys who had hot starts before fading away well short of the Hall of Fame potential they flashed, guys like Cory Snyder, Wally Joyner, Pete Incaviglia, and Mike Greenwell.  I was somewhat surprised to see Seitzer ended up with over 1,500 career hits, a very respectable total.

The rest of the inserts don't really move the needle for me.  Some colored individually numbered cards are pretty shrug worthy, the Bazooka Retro Originals (had that mislabeled orignally) are kind of cool, especially the backs, but are nothing I'm ever going to do anything with.  I can't stand the tall skinny cards.  They're a pain in the ass to store, not fitting in pages, and not even going in the white boxes like a normal card.  The Jeter cards make me cringe.  How about a Jorge Posada or Scott Brosius retrospective?  I think Jeter's role on the Yankee dynasty at the turn of the century has been pretty well covered by Topps.  I like the 1960 Rookie Star cards, they're very well done, but should have been included as part of the 1960 cards in the base set.  Seems like a transparent and lame effort to shoe horn another Aaron Judge into the set (he'll have more cards than Jeter by the end of the year).  Finally the coins are cool, but not something I know what to do with.  Also, it would have been nice not to get doubles.

So, long story short, if you like any of these inserts, let me know.  I'm looking for a good number of 2017 base set needs, listed below.



The regular cards are why I really enjoy opening Archives.  The 1982 remakes were extremely well done.  I feel like the photography stayed very true to the photos in the original set (ditto for the '91 and '60 to a lesser extent).  That Ozzie Smith may be my favorite Ozzie card I've ever seen.  I thought Topps did a very nice job with player selection again this year.  I'd prefer they include fewer Hall of Famer's and a few more of the Cecil Cooper's, Rocky Calavito's, Bert Campaneris's and Hubie Brook's of the world, but all in all, I thought the player selection was very good once again.


I bought three blasters of Series II.  Which set me back $10 more than just buying the factory set would have.  Given my disinterest in inserts, why do I do this to myself?  It's because I'm addicted to opening packs.  So between my Series I & II spending, I probably could have bought three sets.  As it is, I have a huge list of needs.

I'll say this for the inserts.  I love those 1987 All-Star cards.  I have from time to time completed insert sets.  I actually have a binder of them.  Granted 1992 Fleer Pro-Visions was the last time I did this, but it has been done.  I loved the Fleer inserts from the 80's, the Headliners, Future Hall of Famers, Pro-Visions.  I may make a run at these '87 All-Stars if there aren't too many of them (should probably check).  I thought that Judge may off-set some of the budget damage I did to myself, but I guess that's the Judge insert nobody wants to pay for.  The Cub in the lower right is numbered to /50, but I'm not sure what I'd call it, Silver?  Most of the inserts I pulled were just dumb.  Who is collecting these Memorable Moments cards?  Just give me another base card, they seem to be precious few in these basters, as I still need a ton of them (though I have no shortage of duplicates, thanks Topps).  Speaking of which, here is my updated 2017 Need List:

2017 Needs

2017 Topps Ser. I: 13, 53, 87, 318

2017 Topps Ser. II: 353, 354, 355, 357, 358, 360, 368, 369, 370, 374, 378, 380, 381, 387, 389, 391, 396, 397, 399, 404, 407, 413, 415, 417, 419, 425, 426, 428, 430, 431, 433, 438, 443, 444, 447, 449, 451, 452, 455, 460, 466, 467, 469, 470, 479, 480, 482, 483, 484, 487, 491, 492, 502, 503, 504, 513, 515, 522, 524, 528, 535, 537, 539, 540, 541, 542, 544, 557, 562, 564, 568, 570, 572, 573, 576, 579, 590, 592, 596, 598, 602, 608, 611, 621, 626, 628, 629, 631, 635, 636, 638, 640, 641, 642, 646, 656, 658, 660, 661, 662, 666, 667, 669, 672, 674, 675, 680, 681, 685, 695, 700



Thursday, July 13, 2017

1991 Panini French Stickers #141


Card Review: 8.5  It's a rare occasion that I discover a "new" Tim Wallach card from this era, especially one from a somewhat prominent manufacturer such as Panini.  I did a double take when this card (or sticker) showed up on my eBay feed.  I already had the 1991 Panini, and it's Canadian counterpart.  Additionally, I had double checked, and cross checked, and compared all of the online data bases and checklist multiple times over the years making sure I had everything, or was at least aware of what I didn't have.  Trust me, I've been very thorough.  (It is now showing up on Beckett)

So I went back and double checked my "Most Wanted List," and it all came back to me.  At one point I did have this card listed on my list.  And I remembered that I had been informed by multiple sources that the "French" version was the same was the U.S. version, the "Top 15" was the only unique foreign variation.  Well, those sources proved wrong.  I forgive them, and am happy to add one more unique Wallach to my collection.  It is a bit surprising that in now nearly two decades of eBay use that I never saw this card, but I guess stranger things have happened.

This is the same photo as the U.S. version, but with much tighter cropping.  It's also significantly larger.  Of the three 1991 Panini efforts, this one is my favorite.  This would have made for a nice 1991 Topps or Fleer card.  As it is, it's one of the better Wallach stickers to be found.

          
             ('91 Panini, not to scale)

Number of this card in my collection: 1


Saturday, July 1, 2017

Newbury Park, CA


From time to time "real life" gets in the way of my time and scheduling for documenting my efforts to hoard as many 30 year old baseball cards of a relatively obscure third baseman who played for a team that no longer exists.  And I don't mean anything bad as far as "real life."  Just the usual, cooking, cleaning, dogs, kids not in school, some extra stuff at work.  In any event, this blog is has been forced to the backseat to a degree.

Todd sent these cards quite awhile back, and I am only now just getting to them.  Which is not very considerate on my part, because any time 1983 Topps (the greatest Topps set ever printed) arrive in my mailbox I need to make a better effort to acknowledge them.

So thank you for the cards Todd.  Newbury Park is now listed on my map, and I've posted a link to your blog, "Card Bored Dad," below.

Updated Totals: 

1983 Topps x3: 244
1984 Topps: 300

Check out Todd's blog, "Card Bored Dad"