Monday, March 18, 2019

Cricuts and crickets

OK, yes, it's been 10 days since I've posted on the blog.   To be honest, I've had not much to say lately that's been worth writing.   Kind of like hearing crickets...

To be honest, I've been putting off this post for some unknown reason for over a week.  To tell the whole story though, I need to go back to Christmas.

My wife, who supports my hobby madness fabulously, is very creative and crafty.  On her Christmas list this year was gift cards to Jo-Ann Fabrics so she could save up for a machine that is called a Cricut (pronounced cricket).  It helps print all kinds of different stuff, very creatively I might add (which you're going to see very soon).

Well, when I found out what it could do, and that the price was reasonable, I went ahead and bought her the machine so she didn't have to wait.

A couple of weeks ago I decided that I was tired of trying to figure out which binder was which on my shelves.  My writing was so small on the cards inside the plastic sleeve(and messy) that I always strained my eyes to see. So, I asked her to update my binder spines using her Cricut.



 Oh my, I can see them now!! 


As you can see I have various colored binders, so she was able to adapt the color of the material to contrast with the binder color.   I have a couple of 1" binders as well (not shown here), but they also turned out great.  I can find things so much easier now.  For maybe $5 worth of materials, and a couple of hours of time, my binders look super!

What's great is if I ever decide to change what's inside the binder, the letters will peel off with no damage to the binder, and I know this because we made a mistake which needed to be fixed.

Now all I have to do is finish some of these sets to show off what's in the binders....

Thanks for reading!!

Robert

Thursday, March 7, 2019

eXXXXXciting

Before you read any further, there are no naked women or anything that could be labelled pornographic at all in this post.  If you were hoping for that, you can leave now.

(Hears all the mouse clicks and browsers moving on....)

OK, now that all the riff raff have left, this post documents my 20th trade on the TCDB site in 2019.  I mentioned in yesterday's post that I had put up want lists for a couple of early 90's hockey sets that I'd put on the back burner.   Today's cards come from another set that I had long abandoned.

2008 Upper Deck X was a set that I had a fascination with quite a few years ago, but quickly abandoned it as I wasn't able to get any trades/cards come my way.   I found the cards I had a few days ago, and decided to put them up on TCDB.

Quickly, I found a trade partner, a new one to be exact in Pat (TCDB ID: itsjustoldcardboard) and struck up a deal trading off some of the Magnificent Moons cards from '18 A&G for these 5 cards.


Hey, it's 5 more X's than I pulled a few years ago the first time around.  Still need 65 more to go, but finding these quickly gives me a bit of hope that I can find some more over time.  

It is exciting for me to find new trade partners, and I'm sure Pat probably was happy getting these cards out of his house for some cards that he could use.

I know I feel that way...

Thanks for the trade Pat, look forward to many more!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Deep Pockets

Received a couple more trades in this week, including one today from new trade partner Greg (TCDB ID:  Thick McRunfast) who also writes the blog Nine Pockets .  Greg is a relatively new blogger with just 10 posts so far, but is much like me in that he will write about hockey and baseball cards. 

This was kind of a lopsided trade in terms of numbers, as I sent Greg just a trio of cards while receiving quite the bounty of hockey cards in return.


I recently added a couple of early 90's OPC sets to my TCDB want list.  Both of them have been on the shelf for a very long time but recently during the ongoing process of adding cards to the site and trying to clean up everything in general.  91-92 OPC Premier is 7 cards closer to completion, along with a couple more Keith Tkachuk cards to add to his PC (which is growing nicely).


Another want list that was added was the 90-91 OPC set, which is now 7 cards lighter.  I had this on the blog want list up until about a year ago and removed it as it really wasn't moving anywhere.  Along with those 7 is a pair of 86-87 OPC cards, including a 2nd year Kevin Dineen and current Sabres coach Phil Housley.  86-87 OPC is almost 1/4 complete now.


I've mentioned the 84-85 OPC set on the blog quite a bit lately, maybe to the point that guys are sending me cards to help me right the wrong I committed by selling my completed set many years ago.   9 more cards off the want list have me approaching 150 of the 396 card set in hand. 

I've seen a couple of Steve Yzerman RC's at about 50% of the normal book price on ebay lately and it makes me wonder if I pick one of those up for cheap that this set might have a chance to be completed this year.   We shall see...


I seem to be getting one card from the 85-86 OPC set in the house every month.  I have 12 now that Mike Ramsey is in hand.  I figure with 252 cards to go, one card a month will have the set complete by the time I turn 72 years of age.  Hopefully I'll still be able to see and also be sane enough to enjoy it by then....


As a bonus card, Greg threw in this Netminders insert from the 93-94 Fleer Powerplay set.   I may have one or 2 of the Powerplay cards around the house somewhere, but for the most part have shied away from it due to its size.  No matter, I love the addition to the Felix Potvin PC, which is lower down the totem pole, but new cards are always welcome.

Thank you for the cards Greg, they are appreciated.  Look forward to more trades!!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Monday, March 4, 2019

Another repeat customer

I haven't bought a whole lot of packs of cards since the beginning of the new year.  I have bought a couple of hanger boxes of this year's flagship product, which I still need to put a post together for. 

In the meantime, I received another trade in the mail today (#17 so far this year), from repeat trade partner Hal (TCDB ID:  ToppsrBest).

Hal chipped away at a couple of want lists the same way northerners are chipping away the ice and snow this year.   Seeing all the weather reports about what's happening this year with the cold and snow up north make me glad I decided to move south a few years back....


Still a lot of commons needed from the '79 set, but the want list is slowly dwindling as the set approaches 60% complete.  The only player I don't remember from this lot of 6 would be Bob Molinaro of the White Sox, likely because he was a part time player for most of his career.  Most of the games played during his 10 year career were during the 78 & 80 seasons with the White Sox.


My '78 set has many more cards needed to complete it, but these 9 help that cause.  Love the look of Bill North in the lower right corner; the bright yellow jersey/pullover with the yellow polo collar underneath looks sharp.  1978 would be the last season that Bill was an A, as he was traded part way through the season for Glenn Burke.  Bill would sign a free agent contract with the Giants after that season and spend his final three years by the bay. 

Hopefully a few cards warmed your heart this evening...

Thanks for the trade Hal, look forward to the next one.

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Saturday, March 2, 2019

I really Doug this PWE

A few days ago a PWE with no return address showed up in my mailbox.   I wasn't expecting anything at all from north of the border, but when I saw the postmarked city, I knew that this envelope was going to be great.

Doug from Sportscards from the Dollar Store sends me great stuff every once in a while, and this envelope was no exception.


All but one of the cards in the envelope featured Maple Leafs from various years and sets.  Love the top row, all Artifacts from this year, which is good because this is the first year in a long time that I hadn't bought any Artifacts blasters or packs.  Middle row features a pair of Glenn Anderson cards from his brief tenure as a Leaf, and a 09-10 OPC short print featuring Doug Gilmour.  Need it!
Bottom row features a couple from this year's UD series 1, neither of which I own, and a high number 09-10 OPC rookie of Viktor Stalberg.  I knew that Stalberg had bounced around the NHL the past few years, but I had no idea where he is now.   Stalberg is in the KHL with Avangard Omsk, teammates with a player he was traded for by the Leafs, Kris Versteeg.


More OPC goodness from the 09-10 set up top; 4 out of the 5 I needed for the set build (Jason Blake goes into the Leaf portion of the pile).  I don't recall if I have any of the Maple Leafs Centennial cards, but I'd seen them on blogs and on Twitter and really liked the look of them.  Now I have Bill Berg and Freddie Modin from that set.   I believe I already have Mitch Marner's card from this year's OPC, so he'll go into the Leaf pile.   Mikhail Grabovsky is a retro from the 09-10 OPC set as well.  Retro's are something I'll never turn down....


Two cards that I could never find down here in S. Florida finish off the post.  The William Nylander card is from the 17-18 Upper Deck MJ Holdings set (video on You Tube here), while the Joe Sakic card was part of the 2015 National Hockey Card Day in Canada.   Both of them are great additions to my collection. 

Thank you as always Doug, the cards are really appreciated (especially those that I'd never see here)!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Friday, March 1, 2019

Tally-Ho

I've been quite fortunate so far in 2019.  Today I received one card in the mail from another TCDB trade from repeat trade partner Robert (TCDB ID:  Hilochef).


I'm still 6 cards away from completing the Baseball Equipment of the Ages insert set from the '18 Allen & Ginter set.  The card itself wasn't the inspiration for this post, it's the number of trades I've completed so far this year.

This is trade #16 in 2019, and I thought to myself that I've been really fortunate in obtaining cards that I want in my collection while getting cards that I don't want out of the house.

I was curious to see how many cards have come in and gone out so far, so I made a little spreadsheet and the numbers were pleasing.

Cards in so far:  285 (just under 18 per trade)
Cards out so far:  157 (just under 10 per trade)

Not gonna lie, this thrills me.  Not only have people been generous when trading with me, I've knocked off quite a few cards off of my set want lists, especially the 1968-86 Topps want lists. 

What is also helping my hobby state of mind is that I'm finding cards that I'd long forgotten about.  Stuff that I haven't seen (partial sets)in several years is now being added to the TCDB website hoping to be finished sometime this year. 

While there are a couple of folks I know in a hobby funk (been there), I've been working hard to get things cleaned up and organized, which has kept me invigorated so far this year.

Complete sets are in the not too distant future as well, so stay tuned for those.

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Monday, February 25, 2019

Yea, I remember the Astrodome

Well, maybe two weeks ago I had started seeing Marc from Remember the Astrodome fame's name all about the blogs, and on TCDB as well.  So I decided to do a search to see if he needing anything of mine that I had up for trade.

That initial offer of about 11-12 cards each way turned into a bigger swap as Marc hunted down more that he needed, and with my gigantic want lists it wasn't hard to turn this trade into a big enough one that made it worth the price of a bubble mailer.


I was quite worried that I wouldn't be able to trade for the Shohei Ohtani RC from the A&G set, but thankfully that has been put to rest as it was part of 8 cards that Marc sent my way.  This set should be done before too long, as the want list is down to just 20, including 7 SPs.   Most of those SPs I've looked up on COMC and are selling in the 50-$1 range, very reasonable indeed.  A&G will likely be the first or 2nd set I put to bed this year.


Newer cards weren't all the rage in this trade, as Marc had plenty of older stuff to send my way as well.  The '72 set is being nickel and dimed right now, as these 6 cards bring me closer to 20% complete.   A long way to go, and a boat load of high numbers are still to be found.   Marc also included a couple of '82s, and a page worth of '79s as you'll see below...


'79 Topps is another set that has been coming along nicely, as I'm closing in on the 60% complete mark.  Still so many commons to pick up that I haven't even bothered looking at which RC's need to be found, that will probably come later in the year.



Marc added in a "bonus bag" of cards, which included the 17 1989 Upper Deck cards shown above.  The '89 UD set has been pretty much forgotten for quite a while, as it's been stalled at just over 600 cards acquired.  Still quite a few big names to buy for this set, including the Ken Griffey Jr. rookie.   Maybe this year I'll work on finishing this one off as well.   It could end up being one of the 5 sets that I end up completing this year.   That's the goal anyhow.






Last up is a few cards for a couple of player collections.  A bit of laziness on my part made the '15 Archives John Olerud card in the middle row look like it was cut off, but rest assured Marc sent me a nice copy in perfect condition.  The McCutchen first career home run card is the gold parallel, which is also a nice add.  I'm always looking to add common base cards of both of these players to my collection, as I don't own a great deal of either player so far.

Marc, thanks for the trade, I'm looking forward to many more with you on the TCDB website!!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

TCDB trade #50 is in the books

I was fortunate enough to receive my 50th trade package today from a TCDB member.  Many of you know Matt from the Bubba's Bangin' Batch of Baseball Bits blog.  Matt is a big A&G collector (maybe the biggest that I know), and offered up a trade to knock down some of my '18 A&G want list for a few of the minis that I received from Wes' big box break (yes Wes, a lot of the dupes and minis are being put to good use)!




Lots of stars on these 2 scans, including legends Hank Aaron and Jackie Robinson.  Also, the first scan has one of the Baseball Equipment of the Ages inserts, the modern batting helmet.  This is the first time I've seen the card, and kind of got a kick that they used the Twins logo, and not a generic blank helmet. 

I'm down to 28 to go, 10 of them SPs.   That will change later this week as I have a couple of more trades coming in, one of them having 8 of the A&G cards I need. 

Today's envelope also had a couple of Andrew McCutchen cards I needed.


Well, with 50 total trades on the TCDB website completed, that means I have finished 13 so far in 2019.  Two more trades were shipped out today so I should have them in the week, bringing the total to 15.  Not a bad start, but a long way to go to get to 100 for the year.

Thank you for the trade Matt, it is really appreciated!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Monday, February 18, 2019

No PWE is too small

A couple of weeks ago (more like 3...), I received a direct tweet from everyone's favorite Luis Torrens fan, Kenny, asking if I'd received a PWE in the mail from him from Japan.  I replied that I hadn't, but I had seen a couple of post in the previous days from others who had, so I was hopeful.

That day, I received my PWE, which contained 2 cards that without Kenny's generosity, probably would have never seen the light of day in my house.

First up, Carlos Delgado.


Now I know what you're thinking.  We've all seen the 2003 Topps Carlos Delgado card a million times.   Take a closer look, as there's no Topps logo....


Had to do a bit of hunting, but this appears to be a Topps Kanebo card, featuring the slugger and all his status from the first decade of his career.  Using Google translate I was able to figure out a couple of things, such as the team name says Blue Jays (not just Toronto, or the full Toronto Blue Jays).  It will be fun to try and figure out what the biography says someday....

But this next card is certainly something I thought I would never own.


This is a 2000 BBM Preview card, #P30 featuring Ichiro in his Orix BlueWave uniform.

Absolutely wonderful! 


What I got a kick out of on the back is there's a "Did You Know" in English, then the factoid is written in Japanese.   Wonder why they used 2 languages for that. 

The big thing for me on the card back is his stats.  1992 he started in pro ball as an 18 year old, and fared OK in his first season, struggled in his 2nd, and then just tore up the Pacific League for the next 6 seasons. 

What I learned from looking at his career stats is that if you combine MLB and Japanese stats, Ichiro has 4367 hits.  All time hit king?

Great envelope Kenny, thank you very much for thinking of me! 

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Sunday, February 17, 2019

After the first 5 minutes it was all downhill

I had mentioned before the monthly card show a little over a week ago that I had a plan.

'76 Eckersley RC & '84 Mattingly Topps RC needed to be crossed off the list. 

It's rare that I go to a show with a plan because I usually end up straying off the plan and then coming home disappointed.

Not this time.

I went to the show on Friday afternoon for the first time, as I had heard the dealers mention in their conversations that Friday afternoons always seem to do better.  So I booked off the afternoon and decided to see if it was true.

I hit the show right at 4:00 and made a lap around the tables, and at one of the tables I saw this:


Price?   $10.   No brainer.  I asked the dealer if he had a Mattingly RC.  He said he didn't but what happened next was interesting.  He asked the dealer next to him.   Nope.   He asked another dealer.  Nope.   He then asked a 3rd person.   Bingo!  I told that dealer I'd be right over.  I also bought this at the first table for $8


Two nice pieces of the '76 puzzle in hand.


Off to the other table, and for $15 I had this card in my possession.

All this done in 5 minutes.  I thanked the dealer who sold me the Mattingly, and looked around.

What do I do now?  My task was finished, and it was as if someone let the air out of my tires.

I wound up staying another 90 minutes, bought the Brees card I showed off yesterday from one of my regular dealers, then went home. 

Can't say I've ever had that feeling at a show before, but if I get that way after adding a couple of nice cards towards 2 sets that I'm building every time, I'll take it.

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Serial Saturday #20: $2.50 + /99 = more insanity


A large part of this blog over its existence has been my love for serial numbered cards.   I've been a lover of numbers all my life, so there's no doubt in my mind that serial numbering will be a big part of my card hobby love going forward.

Seeing this card at last week's card show for just $2.50 got the wheels spinning.

5/99
If I can add a card of a certain hall of famer that is serial numbered out of 99 for just $2.50, how many more names could I add to that list?

So you'll see a tab added to the top of the blog in the coming days.  Cards #/99 for $2.50 or less.  As if I didn't have enough sets/projects on the go right?

Yep, I'm sick.  Hopefully you'll enjoy them as they come along.

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Righting a wrong

One of the first hockey sets that I ever put together was the 84-85 OPC set.  There's no mincing words for me here, I love this set.  I will forever regret selling it many years ago.  So, I'm slowly putting it together again.  I've already picked up a couple of the big RC's, Gilmour and LaFontaine.   I'm kind of avoiding the Yzerman, Neely and Chelios rookies for now (although I'm seeing Yzerman RCs right now for ridiculously cheap) and focusing on the commons and semistar cards to knock down the want list.


I've found a seller on Sportlots that I like who offers free shipping for orders of 100+ cards, so as part of my latest order I grabbed a bunch of 84-85 cards.   If you ever want to watch a great special on what it was like to escape from the communist bloc for a professional athlete, find the hour long special that runs from time to time on the NHL Network that features the Stastny brothers.  Peter tells a very compelling story on how they defected from then Czechoslovakia to Quebec City.  


I love that the name and team plates are in the team's colors.  The mid 80's were a great time to be a hockey fan in Quebec, as the Montreal/Quebec series were very entertaining. 


Finding star cards of Islander players for less than 20 cents is always wonderful, so adding Trottier, Sutter and Smith was easy.   I rounded out the order with a trio of cards from the 86-87 OPC set, including Bill Derlago, who was a favorite of mine with the Leafs in the early 80's after they picked him up in a trade with the Canucks. 

86-87 OPC was a set that I never put together, but always wanted to.   I'm slowly picking up cards here and there, but I know that it'll be a long time before it's done as the $200 Patrick Roy RC won't be coming home any time soon.

First things first; righting the wrong that was selling the 84-85 OPC set in the first place. 

I'm a third of way to fixing that....

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Double Digits

You may or may not remember that I set myself just a couple of goals at the beginning of the year, one of them being the lofty goal of completing 100 trades on the TCDB website in 2019.  It may be a bit tough to complete this goal, but I'm a little closer this week as I hit the double digit mark with this trade with Charles (TCDB ID: chemistclete). 

I sent Charles a dozen cards from various vintage and modern sets, and in return I received a bakers dozen cards from 5 sets that I'm slowly putting together.


Let's start with one of my favorites, 1969 Topps.   Each card I acquire just increases my love for this set, especially the backs.


I'm guessing that time affects the shades of pink that the backs have, as many of the cards I have for the set have a sharp/bright pink color, while others (such as the Roy Face) look dull and faded.  No matter, as the backs combined with the simplicity of the front will make this set one of my favorites when completed.   These 4 put me just over the 1/4 complete mark.


Two more from the '70 set to add to the collection.  I still can't believe that even though I've never really "pursued" this set, I'm approaching the halfway mark (just 36 more to go).  I'll have to look, but I don't really remember picking up any major stars from this set yet, so that will be another hurdle in completing this one.


Another set that I really haven't dabbled much in is the '71 set.  These 4 cards get me to the 100 card total.  As you can see the Spiezio and McQueen cards are going to be set fillers for the time being, as the lower left corners have been clipped, similar to playing cards that have been removed from casino tables.


1 from the '78 and 2 from the '79 Topps sets finish off the post.   The Jerry Reuss Pirates card might feature one of the brightest uniforms ever featured on a card.  Still a beauty though.  The '79 set might be a contender for completion this year, as I'm just over 57% done now, and if I'm able to attend the NSCC this summer (which is my plan), I'm sure I'll find a few dealers there that can whittle down the list.

Trades like this are perfect for me, as they mirror my purchasing habits.   A little bit of this and a little bit of that.

Charles if you're reading this, thank you for the trade, the cards are appreciated!!

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Some more Sportlots loot

I've got cards all over my desk.  It's a bit of an epidemic.  I've had a few trades come in over the past week.   I hit the monthly card show on the weekend.  It's been a matter of trying to find time, and when I do find the time, gather the motivation to write some thoughts on the blog.

The other half of the same order that I featured the other day with the Larry Fitzgerald post is a decent selection of cards from a trio of baseball sets.




Not sure what possessed me to stop at just 20 cards from each of the '82 and '83 sets, but that's what I did.




With the '84 set winding down to completion, the '82 (just over 40% done) and '83 (33%)sets will become the likely focus when I start knocking out some sets which are nearly done (more on that in some upcoming posts). 


But it's sets like this that bring back the memories.   I was 10 years old when this set came out in the summer of 1978, and seeing these cards bring me back to a time when buying packs on the Danforth at the convenience stores for 25 cents was the thing.  The string of sets between '77 and '79 are the ones that I remember collecting the most as a kid, and finishing these 3 will give me sense of satisfaction that I never had when I was a pre-teen. 

At least now that I've got this post completed I can get this pile off the desk.

Thanks for reading!

Robert

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Just Larry, part 2

From a couple of different sources come 34 more Larry Fitzgerald cards to add to my fastest growing player collection, which now sits at 302 cards.

First, 25 cards from the 2nd Sportlots order from this week, a good mix of older base cards that I still needed...


It's very hard to tell, but the Topps Prime card in the middle row on the left is the Aqua parallel.  It looks more like a green parallel, but I'll take Topps' word for it.


Love the Football heroes card in the upper left corner.  First one of these I've had since I don't remember when (maybe early 90's)?  Lots of Topps and Upper Deck base cards here, and the next scan...


What I've noticed while collecting Larry Fitzgerald cards is that there will be lots of rainbows to chase.  I'm trying to knock down a lot of the base cards before hunting the parallels, which are usually pretty inexpensive. 

The next scan is part of a mega package that I received from now retired blogger Wes, whose swan song on the blogging front came in the form of a mega-mega break.  One of the teams that I picked was the Cardinals, and lo and behold I snagged a page's worth of cards.


Right in the middle is my 4th (?) jersey card of Fitz, a 2013 Donruss Elite Gridiron Gear #'d 165/199.  I'm already getting the Score Drive Team cards confused (bottom row middle).  It seems that there are two versions of this card featuring Fitz, one has Carson Palmer which you see above, the other features Kurt Warner and Edgerrin James, of which I have the base and yellow parallel.  Football products I guess can be just as confusing as baseball, if not more so.

I don't know how I'm going to get around to posting about the mega box of A&G cards that Wes sent my way, there was a ton of them!!  I'll figure it out somehow...

Thanks for reading!

Robert