30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Grab a Glass of Milk

Because... today I'm sharing one of the greatest cookies around.

I have always been a cookie guy.  Given the choice between freshly baked cookies and just about any other sweet treat out there... the majority of the time I'll pick the cookies.

My sister-in-law's concoction called the "Gross" cookie is hands down my favorite.  It's based on her maiden name and has everything from oatmeal to chocolate chips to coconut (and I'm not even a coconut kind of guy).  They're seriously amazing.

My second favorite cookie is this 1971 Topps Cookie Rojas:


It may not be edible, but it's pretty awesome.

By now most of you know that I'm trying to save up for a rental property, so when it comes to collecting, I'm on a strict hobby budget.  But what you might not know is that one of my latest projects is picking up affordable graded cards that feature amazing photography and/or interesting images.

This card is one of the greatest "turning two" trading cards around.  Thanks to an article on Fangraphs, I discovered that this play took place on August 16th, 1970 at Yankee Stadium.  The player sliding into second base is New York Yankees' right fielder Ron Woods who had just singled to lead off the inning.

I don't want to rewrite the guy's article, so I'll keep it simple.  Cookie ended up turning the double play, but his team lost to the home team 5-1 that Sunday afternoon.


Cookie is the 4th addition to this particular collection and my latest eBay purchase.  I got involved in a small bidding war over this card, but was pretty pumped to walk away the winner.  The cost?  $10.27 (+ $3.50 shipping).  I could have saved a few bucks and picked up a PSA 7 version of this card, but I'd really like to find PSA 8 (or highercopies for my 70's trading cards.

There's one more card I have to share from this collection that I picked up off of COMC earlier in the summer, but I'll save that for another post.

In the meantime, I'm combing through Night Owl's Greatest 100 Cards of the 1970s posts in search of new cards to add to this collection.  He's already given me two ideas.

What about you?

What are some of your favorite cards that happen to feature amazing photography and/or interesting photos?

Who knows... maybe I'll try to add it to this collection.  It might look like I'm focusing on the 60's and 70's, but I'll consider cards from any decade as long as they're affordable.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Captivated by The Claw

As a San Diego Padres fan... it's hard for me to admit this... but tonight I'll be pulling for the Los Angeles Dodgers over the Chicago Cubs.  It's not the first time I've wanted the Dodgers to win.  Whenever Hideo Nomo took the mound back in the mid 90's, I was rooting for him.  Unless of course he was playing my beloved Padres.

And for the last few years, I've been captivated by Clayton Kershaw.  The guy is a marvel on the mound and a once in a generation kind of player.  And although I'm hoping Jose Altuve and the Houston Astros can somehow get past the New York Yankees and win the World Series, I'd almost be as happy to finally see Kershaw get past his postseason struggles and prove his "haters" wrong.

This morning I went to my mailbox, retrieved a padded envelope sent to me from J. Meeks of My Cardboard Habit and found this:

2017 Heritage High #'s Clubhouse Collection Relic #CCR-CK

He pulled this card from his box of Heritage High #'s and I jokingly offered to take it off his hands.  Exactly one month later, it's been officially adopted into my Clayton Kershaw PC.

This card completes my Clayton Kershaw Sports Card Trifecta.  Hopefully the completion of this project is a sign... and tonight he and will get one step closer to completing the ultimate goal for this season: winning the 2017 World Series.

I officially started building my Kershaw trifecta when I purchased this card for $31.01 (+ $2.25 shipping) on eBay back in 2013:

 2009 Topps 206 Autograph #FMA22

I added a wannabe rookie card to my collection back in June when I grabbed this card at the flea market for $2:

2006 Bowman Heritage Prospects #BHP85

Together they officially team up and produce my 17th baseball card trifecta:


Thank you Judson!  Go Dodgers!  And c'mon Claw!

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Flea Market Finds #125: Too Good To Pass Up

Now that I have established a hobby budget... trips to the flea market are more about getting out of the house and walking around, than anything else.  Do I still look for baseball cards and sports memorabilia?  Sure.  However the deal would need to be literally too good to pass up.

A typical trip to the De Anza Flea Market, might result in one... maybe two... of these deals.  This past Saturday I was stumbling across deals left and right.


Purchase #1:  Archie Bunker's Card Game  $1


It's been almost forty years since I've watched an episode of All in the Family, but I can still sing the first part of the iconic theme song.  It seems like only yesterday my family was gathering around in the living room to see which line Archie would cross that week.  Those were the days.

Anyways... a guy had a bunch of vintage puzzles and board games, but this is the one that caught my eye.


I remember seeing it somewhere (possibly on one of your blogs), so I grabbed it and asked him "how much?".  I couldn't pass this up for a buck.


I'm not 100% sure... but it looks like it's complete.  For a dollar, I won't complain if it isn't.


Purchase #2:  Winnie the Pooh Lunch Box  $3


As I was rounding out the second row of vendors, I noticed a huge crowd digging through boxes.  There was a guy grabbing a bunch of vintage metal lunch pails.  I've wanted to find the Star Wars one from my childhood, so I walked over.  Unfortunately there were only a bunch of old Disney lunch pails.  I wasn't going to grab any, but when I heard that the guy before me had purchased 5 for $15... I figured it was too good of a deal to pass up.

I decided to grab the Winnie the Pooh, because I know a huge Pooh fan.  If she doesn't want it, I'll probably flip it to recover some of the money I spent on Saturday.


Purchase #3: Kenner SLU Collector's Stand  $4


I'm probably the only middle aged guy in the world who has been actively looking for one of these collector's stands, but I was pretty stoked to stumble across it.  They don't sell for a lot of money on eBay, but when you factor in shipping... they end up selling for around $20.  Too rich for my blood.  However I was happy to finally find one for four dollars.


Purchase #4:  Five Autographs  $5



I love on-card autographs.  I love on-card autographs of hall of famers (and potential hall of famers).  I love on-card autographs of hall of famers (and potential hall of famers) for a buck a piece.


Purchase #5:  1992 Classic 4-Sport Gold Set  $20


If there's one purchase I mildly regret, it's this one.  It has nothing to do with value.  $20 for a hard signed Shaquille O'Neal autograph is a no-brainer.


It's the fact that I spent more money on this single purchase than all of the other purchases combined. I'm not gonna dwell on it though.  I've been really good about saving my money the past two months and even my penny pinching father has told me that it's important to reward yourself from time to time.

So there you have it.  Five flea market finds that were a little too good for me to pass up.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Talkin' Tall Boys

The advantages of being tall easily exceeds the advantages of being short.  Trust me.  I've lived my entire life representing the bottom 25%.

But when it comes to sports cards, I feel like tall cards often get the short end of the stick.  Storage issues are one of the biggest card collecting pet peeves out there and cards taller than the standard 3.5" almost automatically lose popularity points no matter how cool they are.

Well today I'm sticking up for one of my favorite 80's oddball issues which happens to be exceptionally tall in stature and a huge pain in the butt to store.

Back in 1989, Topps and LJN Toys, Ltd. teamed up and gave baseball fans the opportunity to collect baseball cards with tiny records built into their backs.  These records could be played in a specially designed card player that came with four cards, while the remaining 160 cards in the set were sold in 4 card packs.

If you're interested in learning more about the set details and the special card player you can click here.

Right now... I wanted to focus on the card's physical appearance and breakdown my fascination with these oddballs.


It all begins with the card's design.  This set utilized the 1989 Topps baseball card design, which was ironically one of my least favorite Topps designs for years.  I would always see stacks of these cards sitting in flea market boxes and it reminded me of how card companies printed way too many cards during that time period.


However... after two-plus decades, I've actually grown to love the white bordered design that reminds me of something straight out of the 60's.  I think it's the team name written in cursive and the long flowing ribbon that houses the player's name.


The cards which are almost two inches taller than the standard base card allowed Topps to include full body images without zooming too far out.


When you combine these two things, you have a classic oddball issue... which is why I'm using this set for my Day 26 submission to Tony's 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge.  I'm not gonna lie... it was hard to pick this set over the early 80's Kellogg's and mid 80's 7-11 coins.  I love both of these oddball runs as well.  I just felt that this particular issue doesn't receive enough hobby recognition.

Okay... it's your turn.


What do you think of the 1989 Topps/LJN Baseball Talk oddballs?

Do they rise above the competition or fall short of your expectations?

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Start of a New Era

1992 ushered in the start of a new era for card collectors.  Although card companies had been producing insert sets for years, 1992 was truly a breakout year for them and our hobby.

One of the insert sets that really got collectors talking was the 1992 Fleer Rookie Sensations that could only be found in their cello packs.  A lot of collectors including myself found the blue bordered glossy inserts with the gold foil lettering to be very attractive.  Plus at the time they were considered tough pulls.  Sure it's been estimated that there were anywhere from 2 to 6 of these inserts in every box.  But compared to wax boxes, cello boxes were much more difficult to come by.  This fact combined with the insert set's soaring popularity had collectors paying $5 for a single cello pack.

At the time, Frank Thomas was one of the hottest players in the hobby and outside of his 1990 Leaf rookie card, this card was one of his most popular cards:


According to my October 1992 copy of Beckett Baseball Card Monthly the card booked for $50.  However... I know that there was a time when people paid $70 to $100 for their copies.


Today you can find completed sets on eBay for under $20.  I picked up 19 of the 20 cards for $4.10 (+ $3.50) back in May.  The bad news is the card I need is Jeff Bagwell, who is one of three hall of famers in the set.  The good news is he doesn't sell for anywhere near $24 anymore.

Anyone else remember how hot these inserts were?  Anyone else collect them?

What's even crazier than seeing how cheap these inserts currently sell for... is the fact that it's already been twenty-five years since collectors were going wild over these.  Time sure does fly by.

Happy Sunday and sayonara!