Monday, May 27, 2024

1982 Topps Lot



That's 463 copies of the 1982 Topps Tim Wallach card spread out above.  I came upon them after a friend on twitter altered me to their being posted for a sale in a facebook collector's group that they're in. The asking price was more than reasonable, so I asked him to put me in touch with the seller, and now here they are.

For the most part they were all in great shape.  When I get lots this large I don't scour for "Gem Mint Tens" (that means "near mint" to collector's over the age of 40 who haven't learned the new figure skating grading scale younger collector's favor).  I look for off-centered cards, and cards with out of whack ink levels.  To me, those are the unique and exciting ones.  The color on all of these was more or less the same, but there were a few nice mis-cut ones that I posted pictures of below.



This lot of 463 makes the 1982 Topps Wallach the most abundant in my collection by a margin of several 100.  At last count 1984 Topps, 1987 Topps and 1988 Donruss were it's nearest competitors, and it was pretty close.  It isn't that close at the moment.

Updated Total:



Also mixed in for good measure, was one stray Andre Thorton.







Friday, April 19, 2024

Suffolk, Virginia

 

These 64 cards were sent by Tim of Suffolk, Virginia.  Tim has what must be a neighbor very near by named Russel who sent me cards back in 2022.

Tim's offering was a nice mix spanning Wallach's entire career that included seven rookie cards.  I typically don't see a lot of rookie cards in the mail, which I understand.  When you start going back to 1982, you're going back far enough that sending cards to a stranger might start to feel like less of a good idea, and if the most recent price guide I have (from about 2008) is to be believed, an '82 Wallach still demands 60¢ to a $1.  So I'm extremely greatful when someone sends me seven of them.

I'd be remiss not to point out that the two 1983 Fleer's were both autographed.  Very cool.

Also included in the lot were 3 cards of Wallach's former Alaska Goldpanners teammate and fellow Golden Spikes Award winner (University of Arizona, 1980) Terry Francona.  Very cool.  Here's a look at the cards.




In the mix were a few rarities.  Just my 3rd copy of 1995 Stadium Club 1st Day of Issue variant, and only my 7th copies of the 1991 Classic and 1994 Collector's Choice Silver Signature.

Thanks for the cards Tim!

Updated Totals:


Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Moorestown, NJ



These five cards were sent by Tom, with the "Saints Prison Ministry."  Tom has been sending me cards going back to 2014, but the return address has always been Peoria, Illinois.  It appears the organization has relocated.

You can learn more about the "Saints Prison Ministry" by clicking the image below:


Thanks for the cards Tom, hope the ankle is feeling better.

Updated Totals:



Friday, April 5, 2024

Lutherville, Maryland



This box sent by Bill from Lutherville, Maryland, arrived with 165 cards inside.  Bill previously sent cards back in 2020.  Included in the mix was a 1990 Topps Double Header.  It's only the third one in my collection.  I don't remember seeing these back in 1990, but they're out there.  Bill also included 6 copies of the 1990 Topps Super Star sticker back.  While it's not what I would call "rare," it is the most copies I've ever been sent at once.  As far as other lesser seen cards included, there were two 1993 Pacific (only my 10th and 11th copies) and a 1995 Score Hall of Gold (14th).

Finally, Bill also included a complete run of Chad Wallach's Topps base cards, which currently (criminally if you ask me) consists of two cards.

Below are some pictures of all the cards and updated totals.





Thanks for the cards Bill!

Updated Totals:










Thursday, April 4, 2024

Saugus, CA


These 17 cards were sent by "Meatball" of Saugus, California.  That's a suburb of Santa Clarita outside of Los Angeles.  Also one of the more unique names I've seen used on a return address.  Thanks for the cards "Meatball."

Updated Totals:

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Ramsey, NJ



These 12 cards were sent by "Dan" of Ramsey, New Jersey.  "Max" who runs the card blog "The Starting 9" is also from Ramsey New Jersey.  Dan, if you and "Max" are the same person, let me know, and I'll correct this post, the map, and may stats as to who has sent what over the years.  If not, you have a neighbor who has also been generous enough to sent me Wallach cards.

In any event, thank you for the cards Dan, they are very much appreciated.

Updated Totals:




Saturday, March 30, 2024

Escondido, CA



This box, stuffed with 863 Wallach cards, was sent to by Mike of Escondidio, California.  Mike is a long time collector who stumbled onto my blog and in an act of incredible generosity, sent these cards my way.  It's one of the larger mailings I've ever received and took no small amount of time to sort.  I can't imagine how much time it took Mike to pull these from what sounds like a rather large collection of cards.  Below are photos of all the cards inside and updated totals for each.


I opted to sort these by brand before taking pictures of them this time instead of my normal method of sorting them by year/brand.  It takes a little longer, as I have to sort them by year again when I'm done as that's how I store them, but I felt like it was time for a change.


Other than 1990, Wallach had a pretty good run of nice looking Fleer cards from 1982-92.  The blurry, sun bleached photo has always bugged me as 1990 Fleer is one of my favorite sets.  It's full of great photos and fun color ribbons that often match well with the photos.  The blue ribbon with the Expos road blues being an exception, the colors clash and look terrible together.


That 1990 Topps Sticker  (center left) is the first one I've added since 2016,  and only my 3rd copy total. 


I think someone at Upper Deck was a bit of an Expos fan.  Wallach always had great photos on his UD cards, front and back.  Additionally, in 1997, Upper Deck was the only company to produce a card of Wallach, including him in the 1997 Collector's Choice set and adding a little banner that said "Career Tribute," it was the only card at the time to show Wallach's full career stats.  Topps, in contrast, stopped including Wallach after the 1995 set and I'm still salty about it.


I really like the backs of the Score sets from 1988-92, and the sets as a whole are underrated.



Wallach never had a Diamond King in the regular set (a truly egregious omission), but he at least found his way into the Leaf Canadian Greats counterpart.


The 1991 Jumbo Seeds is the first one I've added since 2017.  It's probably my all-time favorite Wallach "food product" insert card.  It was an annual (if not unsurprising) disappointment growing up to see Wallach not on the Captain Crunch, or Raisin Brand, or Purina checklist of insert cards.  This Jumbo Seeds though is done in the same style and makes up for a lot of those omissions.

That stack of 21 2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites nearly doubled my total number from 23 up to 44.

Thanks for the cards Mike, they are very much appreciated.

Updated Totals:




Saturday, February 24, 2024

Watertown, NY



These 15 cards were sent by regular contributor The Nightowl, of "Night Owl Cards."  As always, it was a Dodger heavy offering.  It's a nice batch of cards with a good number of inserts and what I would loosely describe as "odd-ball" sets from the mid-90's.  My apologies to the Leaf Limited and Flair enthusiasts who may still be out there.  Somehow it's the first copies of '94 Score Select and '94 Studio I've added in four years.  That's a bit of an anomaly.

Thanks for the cards Greg!

Updated Totals:





Visit Night Owl Cards by clicking the image below:



Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Eden Prairie, Minnesota


These 10 Wallach cards, 1988 Topps Sticker Book and Sega Genesis RBI Baseball '93 instruction manual were sent by Dan of Eden Prairie, Minnesota.  It's at least the fourth time Dan has sent cards in the last three years.  The Sticker Book is blank, but Dan was nice enough to tab what pages Wallach is mentioned on, same with the RBI Baseball instruction book.  The wrappers were what the cards were packed in, which is always a nice touch that a few readers make a point to do.

Also mentioned was that a few of the Topps were "Glow Backs."  I've probably have about 3,000 1991 Topps cards, and I'd say half of them are glow backs.  I'm more inclined to consider the "Bold" logo on the back a scarcity, but as I know, I count all of the "variations" as the same in my official tally.

Thanks for the cards Dan!

Updated Totals:




 

Monday, January 29, 2024

Eldersburg, Maryland



These 5 cards were sent by "KB" of Eldersburg, Maryland.  Eldersburg is located a little west of Baltimore and it's the first time I've received cards from there.  Included was a '92 Bowman base card.  That's one I don't see very many of.  Oddly, I do receive a good number of the gold foil Team USA '92 Bowman's in the mail from readers, far more than I do of the base card.  I'm not sure why it works out that way, as far I know they were printed in equal numbers.  1992 Bowman and 1984 Donruss are two sets that I think still carry the reputation of scarcity, though in my experience, they don't seem to be any harder to find than 1991 Bowman or '85 Donruss.  Probably just residual rookie card and Mattingly frenzy that hasn't quite worn off.  

Thanks for the cards "KB!"  

Updated Totals:



Friday, January 26, 2024

Portland, Oregon



These 4 cards were sent by Kerry of Portland, Oregon.  This is (by my count) the fifth time Kerry has sent cards going back to 2016.  Perhaps I'm biased, but I think the '88 Donruss Wallach is one of the better looking cards in the set.  I consider '88 Donruss to be maybe the ugliest design of the 1980's, but within the set, this Wallach stands out.  That's not something I say about every Wallach card.  For instance, I consider the 1990 Fleer Wallach to be perhaps the worst looking card in an otherwise decent looking set.  It's out of focus, sun bleached, and blue on the card design clashes with the blue on the uniform. (I've put it below for reference, though it wasn't sent with these)


Thanks for the cards Kerry!

Updated Totals:





Thursday, January 18, 2024

Pleasanton, CA



These 46 cards were sent by James of Pleasanton, California.  James previously sent cards in April of 2017 and December of 2020.  Included were 13 copies of 1995 Collector's Choice SE.  That's actually the most copies of that card that I have ever added at once, or in a single year.

Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Baltimore, MD



"KB" was one of the last people to send my cards in 2023, and he's the first to do so in 2024.  Baltimore, after not making an appearance on the map of where cards have been sent in the first 12 years of this blog, has now shown up twice in a matter of months.  These 9 cards are nice mix to start the year off with.

Thanks for the cards "KB!"

Updated Totals:



Friday, January 12, 2024

2023 Year in Review


2023 Year in Review

There were no new Wallach cards released in 2023.  Neither Tim nor Chad made it into any sets.  Topps in their infinite wisdom opted not to include Chad Wallach in the base set or update set, despite Chad setting career highs in nearly every statistical category this past season.  Chad ended up hitting 7 home runs while playing in 65 games for the Angels, and established himself as Shohei Ohtani's preffered catcher.  Chad Wallach has now played seven straight MLB seasons and has only 2 Topps cards to show for it.  Someone over at player selection is asleep at the wheel.

On a personal level, my season started in Arizona with Spring Training in March and ended in New York in August when I returned to Yankee Stadium for the first time in nearly a decade.  There was time when I was an undergraduate student that I would regulary ride the Metro North down to the city and sit in the $8 center field seats at the old Yankee Stadium.  It doesn't feel that long ago, but somehow it's been more than 20 years.  A friend from those days was getting married, and that's what brought me back to the city, and by extension, Yankee Stadium.  I don't hate the new Stadium (can we still call it "new?") but it feels pretty clear to me that it's now safe to say that it was a terrible mistake to tear down the real one and build this replacement (I can't say the same for Shea, as much as loved it with all of it's flaws).  Still, brown bagging a beer on the 6 train surrounded by other Yankee fans doing the same has a charm that is unique to the Yankees.  My partner, who did her undergrad in Manhattan, but somehow never went to Yankee Stadium in her college days, and unbiased by a lifetime of memories of going to the real Stadium, found this new one to be wonderful.  So perhaps I judge too harshly.  Hopefully it won't be another decade before I get back.  Once a year, I like to post some non-hobby pictures, so my apologies if you're just here for the cards.

(Camel Back Ranch, Dodgers/A's)

(Salt River Fields, Rockies/Dodgers)

(Yankee Stadium, Yankees/Red Sox)



A final note on my trip to New York.  When I was in undergrad, and for a period of time after graduating and before going to law school, I played in a band.  We played a lot shows, opened for some bands that you may have heard of if you were in the scene in 2003, and even had our name appear on Ticketmaster tickets a couple of times (though never sniffed a record deal).  A story that always does well when it comes up, is we played a show at CBGB's once.  It's no longer there, but since it was near our hotel, and out of some sense of morbid curiosity, we went down to see what had replaced it. It's a high end men's fashion store now, one that specializes in the rock & roll look (irony is dead).  The type of place where a large security guard on the inside looks you up and down before deciding whether to open the door for you.  They let us in, and we pretended to browse while I pointed to racks of $5K jackets and quietly said "that's where the backstage rooms used to be," and things of that nature.  It was a more emotional experience than I expected to be.  Somewhere I have a high 8 video of our performance at CBGB's.  If I ever dig it up, maybe I'll post a song on a Sunday Edition post of this blog.  For now, here's a picture of what used to be something nice.




....And now to the Cards:



Current cards in the Collection: 33,147 
Cards acquired in 2023: 1,457 
Collection grew by: 4.6%

Top Fifteen Most Abundant Cards in the Collection



1.(tie) 1982 Topps .................................. 1,269      
1.(tie) 1984 Topps ...................................1,269      
3. 1988 Donruss ......................................1,120      
4. 1987 Topps ..........................................1,080      
5. 1983 Fleer ............................................1,063     
6. 1989 Topps ................................. 1,000
7. 1988 Topps All-Star .............................. 953
8. 1988 Topps .................................... 938
9. 1986 Topps All-Star .............................. 790
10. 1990 Topps .......................................... 743
11. 1990 Fleer ............................................ 662
12. 1990 Donruss ...................................... 592
13. 1989 Donruss ...................................... 589
14. 1986 Topps .......................................... 574
15. 1989 Fleer ............................................ 546

For the first time since I started posting this list on annual basis back in 2015, there is a tie at the #1 spot.  I don't know what the odds of that are, but they have to be small. 1989 Topps landed on exactly 1,000 copies, making it the 6th member of the the 1,000 card club.  I'll probably never do it, but I like the idea of filling empty factory set boxes from a given year with 792 copies of the Wallach from the set.


Top 10 most added cards in 2023


 

1. 1990 Fleer ..................................... 113
2. 1989 Score ..................................... 69
3. 1988 Topps ..................................... 63
4. 1989 Fleer ....................................... 56
5. 1988 Fleer ....................................... 53
6. 1991 Fleer ....................................... 52
7. 1988 Donruss ................................. 46
8. (tie) 1989 Donruss .......................... 40
8. (tie) 1989 Topps .............................. 40
10. (tie) 1991 Score ............................. 39
10. (tie) 1990 Topps ............................ 39

1990 Fleer ran away with this category this past year.  It's the first time it's topped this list.  A few ff the usual suspects, notably 1987 Topps and both 1986 Topps didn't show up in the numbers they usually do.  Perhaps I've started to exhaust the supply?


Notable No-Shows, zero acquired  




For the 2nd year in a row, I'm ranking 1987 Leaf (with 58 copies in my collection) as the most notable no-show.  It's now been over two years since I've added a copy of that card.  Other "notable" no-shows include 1992 Topps Kids (50 copies), 1985 Leaf (50), 1993 Pinnacle (49), 1994 Leaf (48), and 1995 Upper Deck (46). Oddly enough,  I often end up receiving a few of these cards days after this post goes up, and theres been a few instances where I've already received cards on this list in early January before I even get a chance to post it.  Tune in to see if that trend continues.

Welcome Back




Most of the cards on this list were sent by a very generous reader.  Dave from Williamsburg sent me one of the more unique packages I've ever received, loaded with rarely seen cards, including the '93 Refractor, a pair of Desert Shield Topps, and others.  A lot of the cards listed below are the first one's I've received since their initial post in the early days of this blog.  I started this blog in 2011, and it took about two years for me to work my way down to the more obscure cards.

1st since 2012
1991 Topps Desert Shield

1st since 2013
1989 O-Pee-Chee Stickers
1990 Bowman Tiffany
1993 Topps Finest Refractor
1995 Topps Finest Refractor

1st since 2014
2014 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Card


Top Card Added Each Year

This is a new list I decided to add this year.  Below is the card I added the most copies of each year since I started tracking in 2015.  I think of it as sort of a list of World Series Winners.

2023: 1990 Fleer (113 copies added)

2022: 1983 Fleer (832)

2021: 1985 Topps (92)

2020: 1987 Indiana Blue Sox (325)

2019: 1982 Fleer (134)

2018: 1987 Topps (100)

2017: 1982 Topps (163)

2016: 1982 Topps (312)

2015: 1982 Topps (407)

2014: 1986 Topps All-Star (97)



Top 15 All-Time Most Sent Cards




Finally, my favorite list of all the numbers I track.  The all-time tally for copies of cards that have been sent to me by generous readers.  I mention this every year, but I feel like this list offers the best insights into the junk wax era and what people were buying, and to some extant the production numbers.  It's obviously not perfect, or all that scientific (as evidenced by the 1987 Blue Sox card that a reader was nice enough to send me 325 copies of a few years ago), but I still find it to be a useful tool, or at least, an interesting list to track.

1. 1989 Topps .................................. 451
2. 1987 Topps .................................. 445
3. 1988 Donruss............................... 427
4. 1988 Topps All-Star .................... 404
5. 1988 Topps .................................. 392
6. 1990 Fleer ...…….....................…  375
7. 1990 Topps .................................. 344
8. 1990 Donruss .............................. 341
9. 1991 Upper Deck ......................... 326
10. 1987 Indiana Blue Sox .............. 325
11. 1986 Topps All-Star ................... 321
12. 1986 Topps ................................ 293
13. 1989 Donruss............................. 279
14. 1991 Donurss MVP ................... 273
15. 1991 Donruss............................. 267



Finally, thank you to everyone who continues to send cards, or even just continues to occasionally check in on this blog.  It's now been up for over a decade, which really blows my mind.