Saturday, April 26, 2014

Hawks and autos

But not Hawk autos.

Lately, my Blackhawks cards have been given a boost from recent envelopes that have arrived at my door. I did a lot of hockey collecting in the early 90s, but only get a pack here and there lately. There are not a lot of hockey releases that get me excited. Plus, there are not a lot of hockey dime boxes at the show I hit. However, they must exist based on what I have received over the past week or so.

My buds Chris and Kyle from Old Foul Cardboard must have the greatest Chicago themed card shows in their area. They find all the really good stuff that my binders need, like this trio of Blackhawks cards. But that is just the start of this envelope.

Sure, it's not a Blackhawk or a White Sox, but Chris ran a little contest and I was able to snag this sweet auto he gave away.

But here's the real treat they sent. Like I said - awesome themed ChiSox card shows in upper NY. I cannot get enough of those blue swatches. Thanks as always, guys.

Matt from Bob Walk the Plank took a liking to my trade bait page and offered a few White Sox autographs. I have been hoping to add a McCarthy auto for some time now, so I was quick to say yes. I miss Boone Logan being in Sox pinstripes - he was a decent setup man. And that great Iguchi for my player collection. Thanks a bunch, Matt!

A few weeks back, I posted a flow chat based on DimeBox Nick's mini collections. I realize, though, after getting a package from Corey at Tim Wallach that I made a small error. Let me correct that chart here.

That's more like it. Like everyone (including you if you have not started), I put any and all Wallach's aside and send them to Corey from time to time. Never care if I get anything back, but Corey has been super nice a couple times with a return package.

Hendry did not turn into the defenseman we expected. Those other two guys pictured, though, did ok.

No idea why my shinies always scan blue. Kopecky is a good 4th line grinder now in Florida. I was glad they got Versteeg back this year - he has some good talent. And there's that Toews kid again. If only he would do something amazing once in a while. Corey threw a few White Sox in as well.

Refractor chrome Heritage of Sale on the right. Pretty. Thanks again, Corey.

Alright - tonight I'll be at the Cell Comiskey to catch the Sox and the Rays. Minosa mini statue giveaway tonight, so I hope I get one. Maybe I can see that Abreu kid do something amazing, too.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Throwback Thursday - 04.24.2014

Every Thursday, I post a card showing a ballplayer wearing a throwback uniform from my collection. Hopefully, he will be wearing it well, with proper pants blousing. I'll try not to duplicate a uniform. The picture may be from the front of the card, or the back. Enjoy the uniforms from years past.

Carlos Beltran - 2001 Fleer Ultra - Kansas City Monarchs

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Scanner working overtime.

My blogging has slowed down a bit lately. It has little to do with desire and a crapton to do with time. I am being pulled in a few hundred directions (it seems) and I am not even close to clearing anything off the list. Here's just a minor rundown of my list for the next couple weeks:

1) replace brakes/rotors front and back on my mom's car
2) pull codes of the same car to figure out if we have electrical issues
3) replace the catalytic converter on my wife's car so it can pass emissions
4) find the radiator leak on my daughter's car
5) lawn/garden work
6) sort through about 2 dozen bins for a garage sale

And in with all that are your standard cleaning, cooking, laundry, bills.....

At least I tackled some of my desk, scanning a lot of cards so I could put them away. My scan folder is pretty loaded, and I have been lack in thanking many of you for the greatness you have sent me. Let's start some spring cleaning.

Bert from Swing And a Pop Up took part in my Christmas giveaway. And while I said no one had to send me anything in return, since the cards already arrived, I guess I will keep them. Bert sent a lot of White Sox at me, and so much of it was late 90s and early 00s, very lean time in my box. It's great to add nice cards like this group of Fleer Emotion cards. I think I bought one pack of the release and didn't get a ChiSox, so all these are needed.

Fleer Flair was represented in Bert's package as well. Such a simple, but pretty set.

Five new double play cards made the binder. That Vizciano is very early in the year, with the dead ivy weeds in the background. Love seeing Sojo knock the base out of the ground.

I was also able to add 7 cards of players dropping a bunt. Dig that pitcher at the plate, Nick. Bert also included two cards for my throwback binder. Man, those things are getting full.

Bert could have stopped there (hell - he didn't even need to start), but then these were hidden in the middle of each team bag.

Two Magglio bat relics and a Carlos Lee jersey swatch. Very, very nice!!!! I cannot thank you enough, Bert, for the unnecessary, out of the blue package. You rule!

Newer blogger Keith at The Homerun Apple happen to hit my blog when I had up a Trade Me Tuesday (side note: that will return next week. See time issues mentioned above). Keith snagged a grouping of Starquest cards I posted, and also made an inquiry about a couple relics on my trade bait. His offer - GQ and A&G needs. Oh heck yeah! Trade bait exists to create trades. I'll talk about almost anything for what I have available. 

I have needed that Ruiz CATP since...well....2012. The Infante is a need for the bunting binder.

Keith cleared out ALL my 2009 A&G needs bar one card: #152. I was forced, yet again, to alter my Sportlots shopping card and pull out all the '09 A&G I had in there and replace with other cards. First world problems.

I know that feel, hun.

Thanks Keith. Now let me give my scanner a day off. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Sometimes it takes a while

This past Saturday was my LCS pack wars night. It was a sparce turnout, mostly from the Easter weekend. I had no luck in the raffles, and in the $20 and $50 rounds, I only managed one hit...

2013 Allen & Ginter Endangered Animals "polar bear in a snowstorm"

Yup - I pulled absolutely nothing in all my packs. Pretty disappointing. I was going to get a few packs of '14 GQ, but then they started traditional pack war rounds. For those unaware, all who participate buy a specific pack. The man in charge calls out a specific card option (tallest player, youngest, lowest number card, etc...) and then you all open to find what you have. Whoever wins the round wins all the packs, hits included. I figured what the hell.

First round was Fleer Showcase hockey. The winning card - lightest player. I pull a Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Winner! No hits, but I did score these nice Metal Universe inserts. 

I pulled the Gretzky, but I did snag the Yakapov from someone. So one for one for me. Next round was 2014 series 1 jumbos. That call - youngest player. I pulled Jurickson Profar to pull out the win in round two. If I didn't feel guilty in the hockey round, I felt horrible in this one.

That Sundberg buy back was in my pack. The Brett is a black framed rookie reprint numbered to 199. The Cabrera is gold, numbered to 99. But that wasn't all.

A Rickey Nolasco auto, plus that Strasburg jersey were pulled by other people and I had to take them from the pack openers. To top things off, when I got home and sorted the seven jumbo packs I won, I found this amongst the cards.

That would be a Puig SP. So instead of buying 4 packs of GQ for $20, I ended up with 13 packs of Showcase and Topps Jumbo ($130 bucks worth of packs). I decided to stop there before everyone hated me.

And then they go and sucker me in for one more round - Panini Certified hockey. Lowest number card. One of the kids at the end of the case calls out "three". I reply "three". And that's a tie. So Jeff behind the counter asked for the highest card in the pack. The kid had 132. I had 167. Four more packs coming to me. And my spoils?

That Nolan auto is card #167 I pulled, so I didn't have to give it up. My buddy pulled that Ovech numbered to 150. I also "stole" that Strasberg jersey from his jumbo pack. That was it - I was leaving before I was killed.

End total - $30 spent. $170 in packs won. I think I did ok.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Pride? I ain't got that.

I make a lot of throwaway comments in and around the blogsphere. Most of them have the purpose to create humor . Sometimes, though, I'll make the comment with the hope that an underlying intention comes to light. That's what happened a month or so ago on a post on AJ's' The Lost Collector blog. AJ was talking about a nice trade with a new blogger that netted some mighty pretty vintage. I had been following a trail of posts from this same trader on a few other sites, so I made the throwaway, but serious, comment of "what do I have to do to get in on this'.

Luckily, Mark read my comment, sent me an email and we worked out a nice little trade. I still think Mark has not started a blog (correct me if I am wrong), but for a place to send all my 1990 thru mid 2006 BoSox cards, and some relics that have been collecting dust on my trade bait, Mark sent some gorgeous vintage.

When I think hockey, this is the year that comes to mind first. I think the 72-73 was one of the first hockey cards I ever purchased. I had a ton of these beige borders in my shoebox, but long ago lost them all. Mark sent a nice selection of my boys for this year.

Plus for the following year of 73-74. Love that shop job on Tallon's jersey. And check out Stash about to tear through the Blues defense.

Quick side note before I head to the rest of the card - Seabrook getting 3 games for the hit on Backes is BS. I expect one, maybe two. Three is excessive for someone with no history of malicious hits. Hell - there wasn't even a call until a few minutes after the play. More proof that Brendan Shanahan is a moron.

Ok - back to Mark's goodies. Vintage Blackhawks were joined in the package with vintage White Sox.

I am still woefully short on early White Sox, so a handful of '72s were a welcome site. Love Bradley's color changing lenses.

Lastly were some '73s. After I finish my 1964 set, I am going after a '73. It's far too great a set of images to forget. I have this Andrews already, but this beaut goes into the double play binder. And Topps really needs to bring back the coaching staff cards. Not just the manager but all the major coaches. Best card in the envelope, however, was this rectangle.

YES!!!! I finally own a Luis Alvarado! I showed this to my wife - she got this look on her face and asks "where the hell are they playing? What's with the barbed wire?" I never really noticed how the shadows/tree limbs give that look about the fence. Or maybe it is barbed wire. But thanks for the trade, Mark. Begging really pays off.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Throwback Thursday - 04.17.2014

Every Thursday, I post a card showing a ballplayer wearing a throwback uniform from my collection. Hopefully, he will be wearing it well, with proper pants blousing. I'll try not to duplicate a uniform. The picture may be from the front of the card, or the back. Enjoy the uniforms from years past.

Yoenis Cespedes - 2014 Topps - Oakland Athletics

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Sunday SIL: getting personal

Who here can honestly raise their hand an proclaim that they have mailed a personal letter to a person? With all the social media options, as well as email, the postal letter to a friend is dead. Now, a little letter in a birthday card or the annual Christmas update does not count. I am talking about just sitting down with a pad of paper, writing to someone and throwing a stamp on the envelope. It's been so long for me that I couldn't even guess the last time. Probably not even in this century.

That's why it's important, I feel, to throw a post it into each package I send out, whether it's just "I hope you need these" or "I pulled that such and such from a dime box. Awesome, huh?". It's not much, but a hand written note of some sort shows some personalization in the mailing. I can assure you there are no robots here at 2x3 Heroes.

Now that  I had to let Phyllis go.

I great package from Matt at Once A Cub really shows the power of the personal note. There was a large group that were in a team bag tagged with this note.

Sure enough, every card in the bag was not in my Zistle collections.

I forget the amount I added, but here's just a few of the double play cards in the bag. I love that Tejada in the bottom row.

And a large amount of bunting cards too. One would think I would have most of this junk wax, but nope.

Matt took the time to single out some cards with more personal Post-Its.

He would also had it without all the injuries he dealt with. But Griffey knew how to lay one down.

Sometimes the designs of the card companies turn in my favor. Matt has a fun collection of cards showing Wrigley's outfield weeds wall of ivy, and he's correct. That is the kudzu in Wrigley, but not bright enough to make Matt's binder.

It does have the back missing some characters, but this is one I would add anyway, considering the HUGE border on the bottom. How did we not see a pixel of the card below?

I know of the a couple cards of Fletcher in my binder, but never noticed how often he's shown relaying to first.

Broken bats are hard to find. And I am with you, Matt. Not quite sure if that piece of lumber is breaking or if it's just the blur of the camera lens. The heck with it - in the binder it goes.

The final note I'll show is the best of the bunch.

Good point. You are just the enabler of my collection. For the record, Cole and Cobb didn't make the cut. While Cole did bunt alot, he's obviously about to hustle to first on a walk. Cobb is just hamming for the photographer. My guess is there was no one around to spike with a slide. Phelps is iffy, but I put it in. Episonza is either about to square up, or trying to draw in the corners for a slap hit. 

Thanks for the cards, Matt. And thanks for the little messages along with them.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

A tale of two card shows

I'm fortunate for where I live. I have 2 card shops within 10 miles of my house, along with two Walmarts, 2 Targets and a Meijers. There is also a biweekly card show about 30 min away in my old stomping grounds. That show was today. However, when I was confirming the date of the show last weekend, I noticed on the Beckett calendar a show closer to my house in Morris. It was smaller (30 tables compared to 70), but it was free. I talked my wife into a gondola at Corleone's and went to the show.

Never was the phrase "you get what you pay for" more evident. This show was......not that good. Very overpriced. Not a dime box to be seen, and the stuff in the quarter box wasn't that great. At this show, I spent just $15. Here's what I got for my money.

I needed the Crede for my player collection, and the Paulie is numbered to /99. A buck 33 there.

Two bunting cards for 67 cents (yeah - it was 3 for a dollar with the Crede). Too bad I didn't need either of them.

A buck each for the Baracks. They fit into the political card binder. That Aparicio was four bucks. I picked up a Dayan Viciedo Triple Threads gold redemption for $5 from the same guy. It's already on the way from Topps.

So that's all I got for $15 and about an hour of my time. Disappointed.

 That's my line, buddy.

Today was the Orland Park show. Dime and nickel boxes galore. I spent a total of $55 at the show. Twenty of that was for 5 packs of GQ. Twenty five was for what I will show at the bottom. The other ten went to a nickel box vendor giving me...

24 guys doing this.

5 guys doing this.

A whole bunch of White Sox cards. That AJ is gold foil, btw. The rest of the nickel cards I picked up (46 of them) are for some of you readers. So you cheap jerks owe me $2.30 - PAY UP!

As I said, $5 of nickel cards (100 of them). The other $5 I dropped on this vendor went for a Chris Getz auto for a dollar (I was too lazy to scan it) and these three.

A Mattingly pseudo throwback, as that uniform was only worn for the photo, but good enough for my binder. A nice serialed NOOOO-MAR, and that rookie card of Tommy John set me back $3.

So, what would I categorize as my card show blaster? Here's $25 of vintage.

Not shown is a dupe of the 64 Fox. One for the project and one for the 64 set. When you break it down, each card cost me $3.57. Fits right into recent Ebay sales, but I didn't pay for shipping. I'll take a seven card blaster any day when it's seven cards like this.

I can say I will not be returning to Morris anytime soon.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Throwback Thursday - 04.10.2014

Every Thursday, I post a card showing a ballplayer wearing a throwback uniform from my collection. Hopefully, he will be wearing it well, with proper pants blousing. I'll try not to duplicate a uniform. The picture may be from the front of the card, or the back. Enjoy the uniforms from years past.

Jeremy Bonderman - 2005 Leaf - Detroit Stars

Monday, April 7, 2014

Other things come in the mail

I am blessed to get a lot of mail at my house. Sure, some of it are bills, and I really don't want that stuff in the box. Sometimes you get sale papers and coupons. No, I do not need new windows, tanning sessions, limo service or my air ducts cleaned. Many times I get cards are gifts from you fine readers. That's awesome. Other times the cards I get cards that are not gifts but purchases either from Listia or Ebay. And my newest reason for envelopes - TTM requests.

Buehrle was a cheap Listia pickup. I wanted the Crede the same seller had listed, but I sniped. Young is a virtual dime box from Ebay. Well - dime box plus a penny.

Here was a cheap two quarter pickup from Ebay. I slowly look for Aparicio cards. I should just make him an official project now because 1) he will be soon anyway and b) how can you talk about Nellie without talking about Luis? Speaking of Nellie....

Newest addition to the project. I have missed out on a bunch of inexpensive cards that would fit perfectly in my collection, like a 52 Bowman for under $5 and a 64 Topps for a buck fifty. Luckily, I scored this high number 61 Topps All Star card for just over $4 shipped. Small condition issues, but considering I routinely see these at 5-10 times that price, I lucked out.

I have just started sending out TTM requests. First mailing was 6 to people at Spring Training (and one not), and received back my first two TTM requests ever.

No shock this would be the first one I ever had success with. I had included his 2013 Topps card in the envelope - a TTM would make for a nice rainbow addition. Unfortunately, Gordon just signed the one card. No biggie, because I got lots of stamps.

I've read of great success with Juan Pierre. Even though he wasn't invited to Spring Training with the Marlins, I sent the request through the team at their home stadium. Juan was gracious to sign all the cards and return them pretty quick. Man, I do love that Ginter signed. I think each and every A&G card I pull from a repack are getting mailed for an autograph. And for those that are not sure, here's Juan's Bible verse.

Lots of chances for good mail that doesn't rely on the kindness of bloggers. Keep your eyes open.