Saturday, April 18, 2015

'59 Topps set build #16/572 Jim Busby

Every time I looked at this card before doing some research for this post, I would think of Steve Busby, who pitched for the Royals between 1972 & 1980.   Little did I know that the two of them were 4th cousins.  Here is the 16th post in the '59 set build, as I slowly make my way through the set:

Card #185:  Jim Busby

The front of the card is in decent condition.   The bottom corners are both rounded, but there are no creases or markings on the front.  Even though the back has several pen markings at the top (as if someone were testing their pen on the card) it's still in pretty decent shape.

I'm not sure why someone wrote the number 28 on the back as well.  Jim wore 11(!) different uniform numbers during his 13 year career, but none of them were the # 28. 

Cartoon:  For a somewhat light hitting player like Busby, hitting grand slams in consecutive games is quite an achievement.  Jim did this on July 5th and 6th, 1956 as a member of the Cleveland Indians. 

The very short bio on the back says that "he's a fine defensive flychaser".  During a 7 year stretch between 1951 & 1957, Jim was ranked in the top 5 in the AL for putouts by a center fielder, including 3 straight seasons ranked #1.

How'd he fare in 1959?  At this point in Jim's career, he'd been relegated to part time duty.  He was with the Red Sox for the entire '59 season, hitting just .225 with 1HR and 5 RBI in 102 ABs.  At least he was able to say that he shared time in left field that year with the great Ted Williams. 

  • Jim was a World War II veteran, spending three years in the Army
  • Jim was also a two sport player in college at TCU, splitting time between the diamond and on the gridiron.   Busby was the quarterback for the Horned Frogs in the 1945 Cotton Bowl, which they lost 34-0 to Oklahoma A&M (now known as Oklahoma State)
  • Busby was also a part of the expansion Houston Colt .45s in 1962, as a player-coach.  He would go on to be a coach for the Astros, Braves, White Sox and Mariners.  
Jim passed away in 1996 at the age of 69.

thanks for reading, Robert

Friday, April 17, 2015

The never ending senior moment

Have you ever received a package in the mail, opened it up and wondered "did I get someone else's package?"  This happened to me last weekend, as I received a generous helping of cards from everyone's favorite Ken Griffey Jr. collector, TJ from the Junior Junkie blog.

When I opened the envelope, I thought for a moment and said to myself that these cards have to be for someone else.  So I sent an email to TJ, and asked him if these cards were for me.  He said that I had mentioned on the blog that I was going to start a PC of this guy, and he started setting them aside.

So I did a search of my blog for all posts involving this player.  I couldn't find anything stating that I wanted to start a PC .  Now I'm worried that I mentioned this guy on someone else's blog. 

So for a week now, I've had what I would term as a "never ending senior moment".   Trying like hell to figure out where I said this.

The player in question?  Roger Clemens

Clemens has been mentioned a few times on the blog, largely because of his 2 year stint with the Jays in the late 90's.  I looked through those posts and couldn't find anything on starting a PC.

Help me out here if you can.  Someone point me to where I mentioned this, please!!   It'll keep me from pulling out what hair I have left.

Never the less, the 67 cards of Clemens in the envelope are a helluva way to start a PC.   TJ, thank you for taking the time to put these aside for me, it really is appreciated!

thanks for reading, Robert

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A labor of love

Great pickups. Part of me is super jealous of your set building projects. The other half... the half that manages my bank account... understands I'd never, ever be able to build any 60's set on a teacher's salary. One day... if I'm lucky... I'll win the lottery and buy me a 1965 set.

That was a comment on last night from another "grizzled old vet", Mark from the great Chronicles of Fuji blog.  I really enjoyed reading the comment, and it made me think about the sets & projects that I've worked on during the almost 4 years that I've been writing this blog.

I was skeptical at first about whether I would be able to finish vintage sets.  Worrying about finding cards of heroes like Aaron, Mantle, Mays and many others made me wonder if someone on a budget could really complete vintage sets.

The '64 set build has really taught me a lot.  Deciding on what condition I wanted my vintage sets to be in. Sticking to a budget.   Most of all, being patient and not worrying about how long it takes to finish off an older set.  Thankfully, I've been able to stick to the condition and budget restraints while not freaking out about the length of time it's taken me to pick up cards for my various projects.

Another set project that I've worked on for quite a while is my Serial Numbered Insanity quest.  I'm happy to say that it's down to 120 cards to go.  I received a couple of more from a blogger who's gone dark, but still is around sending off packages here and there.   I'm talking about Spiegel from the Nomo's Sushi Platter blog.

The Dodgers are finally on the edge of completion, as Zack Greinke's 2013 Topps gold card marks the 49th Dodger to descend from the heavens into the insanity. Greinke's serial #1307 has been removed from the want list.

The Mariners aren't as close as the Dodgers, as they are still 6 cards away from being complete.  Michael Pineda's card from the 2012 Topps set is serial #997.

Much like the vintage sets I'm working on, the SNI project has been a labor of love.  I'm sure it will not cost me the amount of money that vintage sets have/will, but the time it's taken and the enjoyment I've derived is no different from anything else I'm working on.

I'm sure that when I finish some of these sets, the joy I'll feel will only be intensified. 

That's probably the biggest reason I collect.  What about you?

thanks for reading, Robert

Monday, April 13, 2015

In your travels...

Outside of the Ernie Banks '61 Topps card, and a hangar box of Heritage, the last several weeks for the most part have been pretty dry as far as card purchases.   The monthly card show snapped me out of that rut on the weekend.

I was able to snap up 4 high numbers for the '64 set...

3 of them were $5 apiece, and the Alvin Dark was $6.  It's getting a little tougher to swallow, but I knew what I was in for this year.  Picking up the last 74 cards is going to be a costly proposition, but in the end it will be well worth it.

4 more cards came off the '62 Topps want list as well..

Love the old style Phillies 'P' on Jim Owens cap.  The Midway Masters card intrigued me, not only because it features more than one player, but because something is sideways.  Is the photo wrong, or is the card description wrong?  My bet would be the midway masters bubble should have been at the bottom.

The Dodgers team checklist was just $2, which I thought was quite the bargain.

I also picked up 9 '68 Topps cards, but these 2 stand out for me...

The league leaders card was $2, and the Killebrew set me back $5.  Well worth it to add a couple of cards featuring HOFers to the build.

At a quarter apiece, a nice stack of '67s made their way home with me.  39 of them to be exact.  At that price, I couldn't leave them there.

A trio of higher numbered '73s also came home with me, along with a pair of lower numbered cards that I was happy to finally cross off the list...

It's getting really close, just 17 more cards to go to complete the '73 set.  Much like my '64 set, there are some pricey cards left over.   Dwight Evans rookie, Yaz, Aaron all time total base leader, and oh yes, the Mike Schmidt RC.

Sooooo, in your travels, if you happen to see a mid grade Schmidt RC for less than $50, send me a shout out.  Just comment on the blog, or send me a message on twitter (@30aweekhabit).   I would very much appreciate it! 

thanks for reading, Robert

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Mr. Cub--the '61 version

For the last 6 weeks, collecting cards has really taken a back seat in my life.  Up until this week, I've probably spent $10 on cards in that time.  I had hoped to change that last weekend with the monthly card show, but my failing memory didn't remind me that it was Easter weekend, and the show was postponed.

So, to cure the card buying jones that I had, I hit eBay.  By accident, I came across this card...

the auction title had NO CREASES in all caps, so I took a shot.  Imagine my surprise when I received notification that I won the auction, for less than $20!

The '61 Topps set is nowhere on my radar right now, and may never well be.  But the chance to pick up a really nice card of Ernie Banks doesn't come along too often, so I took it.

If I didn't take this chance, how would I have ever known that Ernie was a fine swimmer??

thanks for looking, Robert