Sunday, July 24, 2016

Closing in

I recently placed an order on to try and knock out the remaining cards from my 2015 A&G want list.  I hit up one of my favorite sellers, cochise9, and she sent me another nice stack of cards that brought my meager want list down to just 3...

An interesting group of people on this scan.  Many of you will recognize Aaron Paul from his role in the hit show Breaking Bad (which I really need to get around to watching again).  Aaron is now starring in a Hulu produced series called the Path.  I tried watching it and couldn't get past the first 20 minutes.

I decided to have a look at Ichiro's stats since he is in the news lately with his approach to 3000 career hits.   I knew that he was a star in Japan, but his stats over there are unbelievable.  His first full season at age 20 he hit .385 with 210 hits.  All that in 130 games.  His 9 seasons in Japan left him with a career average of .353. 

His 262 hits in a MLB season is a record that will probably never be broken.  He also has 3 of the top 20 hit totals for a season all time.  The only other player with more than 1 is George Sisler, who has 2.  He's definitely a first ballot Hall of Famer in my book.

Best name on this page?  Why Buck Farmer of course!  Farmer might be the only player that I've seen that was drafted 3 times, by 3 different clubs.  2009, Atlanta 46th rd.  2012, Milwaukee 15th rd.  2013, Detroit, 5th round and finally signed.  He was in the majors the next year...

Had no recollection of Max Scherzer being a member of the Diamondbacks.  I only remember him as a Tiger, then a National.  I guess that's what happens when you live on the east coast and don't get a steady diet of west coast games, you fall out of touch with the somewhat lesser known players and teams. 

Wouldn't Arizona love to have Scherzer back now?

The Mets had their eye on Wilmer Flores as a young kid, signing him to a free agent deal at the age of 16!  The Blue Jays have their own 16 year old in the system, Vladimir Guerrero Jr.  If young Vlad is near the player his dad was, Jays fans have a lot to look forward to.

I'm down to needing only 3 cards to finish the set, 27,148 and 154.  I also have a bunch of the starting points waiting for me in my next COMC order.   I just have to find three more of those as well in order to finish that up.

Allen & Ginter becoming an annual ritual might be something that replaces the flagship for me, as it kind of turned me off this year.  That post is for another time...

thanks for reading, Robert

Saturday, July 23, 2016

It started out innocently enough

A little over 5 years ago, I got the itch to start collecting baseball & hockey cards again.  To be honest, I had no idea what I was doing then when it came to online checklists, message boards and other things related to the hobby that I take for granted today.

Then I ran across this particular post on a well known card blog.

The inspiration to start a card blog of my own was kindled.  I thought to myself "if other regular guys out there can do this, so can I!!" 

So I started hunting around other blogs, looking for potential trade partners, and I settled on one particular gentleman, and completed a trade.  About a week or two later (if my memory serves me correctly) I received a package, created this short post, and 5 years ago today, the $30 a week habit blog had begun.

Along the way I've dealt with quite a few awesome card bloggers, read a lot of material, and learned a lot about not only the card collecting hobby, but the quality of people that are involved.  When you get total strangers sending you emails asking for your address so they can send you cards, and then a package so big arrives in the mail that you could do permanent damage to someone if you hit them with it, how can you not enjoy this hobby?!

In addition, I've discovered a love for vintage, even on a "budget".  I've reinforced my love of numbers by starting (and nearly finishing) the serial numbered insanity set.  I started one player collection over 25 years ago (Joe Sakic), and have upped that number to 5 players now.   I'm sure that I've completed well over 100 trades with fellow bloggers (I stopped counting a while ago),  and added thousands of cards to my collection.  I've spent countless hours sorting, creating checklists, preparing envelopes, and documenting my love for the hobby.

This is post #1369 for me, and I hope I have enough left in the tank to hit the 2000 mark sometime in the future. 

To all those who have read my drivel over the years, I do thank you.  To all those I've traded with over the years, thank you.  You have enhanced my love for this hobby ten fold.  More often than not now, when I manage a nice pull from a pack that doesn't fit my collection, I think to myself "where does this card belong?"  I enjoy reading posts on other blogs when they receive cards that I've sent them, because I know that they appreciate what I've sent.  That to me is what this hobby is all about.

Kindred spirits. 

In our world that is full of turmoil and insanity, it's nice to know that there's one constant out there.

Remember kids, it's all about the cards.  Love em or hate em, it's what we enjoy.

Today is the start of year 6 here at $30 a week habit.

As always,

Thank you for reading, Robert

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

I'm a sick, sick man

Maybe the term sick isn't the proper one, maybe a glutton for punishment would be more like it.  The reason I say this is that the recent rekindling of the Serial Numbered Insanity project has me wanting to do another one.

I've always enjoyed hockey cards just as much, if not more than baseball cards.  When I sit and think about it, it's surprising that I didn't start this project with hockey instead.  So, I've toyed with a couple of ideas for a hockey themed serial numbered insanity set.

1.  There's 30 teams in the NHL right now, similar to MLB.  I could easily do the same thing and collect 50 cards from each of the 30 franchises. 
2.  I've also thought about doing the entire set focused on just the Maple Leafs.  Overkill?  Possibly, but I'd enjoy every minute of the chase.

The big difference I would do this time is I wouldn't restrict myself to one card maker.  I left Upper Deck out of the first serial numbered challenge; my thoughts this time lean toward opening up the challenge to all card companies (if I decide to do this).

My heart really wants to do this, but the financial/practical side says that I should be finishing up some of my vintage sets before I start this.  I'm going to take a bit of time and think about this, probably waiting until I finish up with the house purchase (which hopefully is complete by the first week of August).

Meanwhile, let's keep the baseball set moving along and show off pages 7 & 8 today.

#55:  Edwin Jackson, 2011 Bowman blue parallel #55/500.  Courtesy of Max from the Starting Nine blog.  Chicago White Sox card #1
#56:  James Loney, 2010 Topps Finest blue refractor #56/299.  Courtesy of Greg from the Plaschke, thy Sweater is Argyle blog.  Los Angeles Dodgers card #3
#57:  Chris Narveson, 2002 Topps Gold Label Class 1 Gold #57/500.  Courtesy of Max from the Starting Nine blog.  St. Louis Cardinals card #5

#58:  Orlando Hudson, 2006 Topps gold parallel #58/2006.  Courtesy of Jim from the GCRL blog (retired).  Toronto card #1.
#59:  Brett Sinkbeil, 2011 Topps blue diamond parallel #59/60.  Courtesy of Ryan from the This Card is Cool blog.  Florida card #2.
#60:  Mike Schmidt, 2011 Topps Marquee blue parallel #60/299.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired).  Philadelphia card #2

#61:  Kyle Drabek, 2011 Topps Chrome sepia parallel #61/99.  Courtesy of Kyle from the Just a Bit Outside blog (removed).  Toronto card #2.
#62:  Carlos Quentin, 2011 Topps gold parallel #62/2011.  Courtesy of Ryan from the This Card is Cool blog.  Chicago White Sox card #2.
#63:  Carlos Lee, 2011 Topps Triple Threads #63/1350.  Courtesy of Max from the Starting Nine blog.  Houston card #3.

Max may be the only blogger that winds up with 3 cards on the same page.  We shall see...

#64:  Skip Schumaker, 2008 Topps Heritage chrome refractor #64/599.  Courtesy of Kyle from the Just a Bit Outside blog (removed).  St. Louis card #6.
#65:  Joba Chamberlain, 2008 Topps Moments and Milestones #65/150.  Courtesy of Brian from the Play at the Plate blog.  New York Yankees card #1
#66:  Jayson Werth, 2010 Topps Heritage chrome #66/1961.  Courtesy of Michael from Nomo's Sushi Platter blog.  Philadelphia card #3.

#67:  John Buck, 2003 Topps gold parallel #67/2003.  Purchased from the Sandlot Cards website.  Houston card #4.
#68:  Hiroki Kuroda, 2011 Topps Heritage Chrome #68/1962.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired).  Los Angeles Dodgers card #4
#69:  Stephen Drew, 2011 Bowman orange parallel #69/250.  Purchased at a card show in western PA.  Arizona card #5

#70:  Garrett Mock, 2010 Topps gold parallel #70/2010.  Courtesy of Jeff from the 2x3 heroes blog.  Washington card #1
#71:  C.C. Sabathia, 2007 Topps Co-Signers #71/225.  Courtesy of Kevin from the Diamond King blog.  Cleveland card #2
#72:  Ryan Ludwick, 2003 Topps gold parallel #72/2003.  Purchased from the Sandlot Cards website.
Cleveland card #3.

After 8 pages, there's only 3 teams that haven't made an appearance yet, the Pirates, Mets and Tigers.   Page 9 will take care of 2 of those...

Thanks for reading, Robert

Monday, July 18, 2016

Acronym free?

Back in April, Gavin at the Baseball Card Breakdown blog dared the blogosphere to write a post using pen and paper, instead of a keyboard.  Surely an art that is lost on us bloggers who have spent years at a keyboard.

Recently, while reading the news/entertainment stories on many websites, I realized something that also seems to be a lost art.  Writing without the use of acronyms.  We've become a society that has become accustomed to writing and reading stories using an acronym in order to reduce the amount of words that people have to read.  POTUS is one that I see more and more now.  President of the United States is something you would think that should be typed out of respect (even if you don't care for the leader of the free world)...

I would say that I'm as guilty as the rest, especially since my posts are sports/sports card related.  It's easy to type HR, RBI, and many other acronyms that predominate the sports writers vernacular.

I wondered recently if I would ever be able to type a post acronym free.  Not just one of my little three line posts that I use on my Player Collections blog, but a real post with a few hundred words about an actual topic.  Maybe this week I'll try to do just such a thing....

In the mean time, here is another page of Serial Numbered Insanity cards, the 6th for your perusal.

#46:  Chase Utley, 2008 Topps Co-Signers #46/400.  Courtesy of Dennis from the Too Many Verlanders blog.  Philadelphia card #1
#47:  Vladimir Guerrero, 2009 Topps Ticket to Stardom #47/50.  Courtesy of Ted from the retired Crinkly Wrappers blog.  Los Angeles Angels card #3
#48:  Dustin Moseley, 2003 Bowman Chrome refractor #48/170.  Courtesy of Mark from the Chronicles of Fuji blog.  Cincinnati card #2

#49:  Michael Wuertz, 2011 Topps gold #49/2011.  Purchased on ebay.  Oakland card #2
#50:  Matt Cain, 2008 Topps Co-Signers #50/400.  Courtesy of Dennis from the Too Many Verlanders blog.  San Francisco card #2
#51:  Prince Fielder, 2008 Topps trading card history #51/400.  Purchased at a card show.  Milwaukee card #1

#52:  Michael Hills, 2002 Topps finest refractor #52/299.  Courtesy of Brian from Play at the Plate.  Houston card #2
#53:  Ramon Hernandez, 2007 Topps Co-Signers #53/75.  Purchased at the 2002 NSCC.  Baltimore card #4
#54:  Carlos Zambrano, 2009 Bowman orange parallel #54/250.  Purchased at the 2002 NSCC.  Chicago Cubs card #2.

See, I was only able to get through the first 7 cards of the post before I started using acronyms.   National Sports Collectors Convention could have been easily typed out twice...

I'm now down to 7 teams that haven't been represented as of yet, this will change with the next post/page.

thanks for reading, Robert

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Seeing double--Serial Insanity page #5

All I have to say is thank goodness for electronic signatures.  I signed another batch of paperwork tonight as the process of purchasing a home continues for me and the better half.  The documents that we were sent today totaled 71 pages, and by having them signed electronically was a great way to save paper.

Sadly, the way these electronic document signing programs work now, I could have easily signed something twice and may never know about it.  I'm pretty sure I didn't, but when you do things electronically, skim reading becomes the norm.

Speaking of seeing double, page #5 is the first one that features the same player on two different cards.
Current Pirates pitcher Francisco Liriano is featured twice in this post, both cards showing him as a member of the Twins.  At least they're from 2 different sets.

Here's page #5, enjoy!

#37: Francisco Liriano, 2010 Bowman Chrome blue refractor #37/150.  Courtesy of the I collect ball cards blog (closed, I believe).  Minnesota card #2
#38:  Dan Uggla, 2011 Topps Sepia parallel #38/99.  I believe that I got this at a card show back in PA.  Atlanta card #5
#39:  Curt Schilling, 2007 Topps 52 chrome #39/1952.  Picked up at a card show in PA.  Baltimore card #2.

#40:  Willie Bloomquist, 2011 Topps Update black parallel #40/60.  Courtesy of Ryan from the This Card is Cool blog.  Arizona card #4.
#41:  J.J. Hardy, 2012 Bowman blue parallel #41/500.  Courtesy of Dennis from the Too Many Verlanders blog.  Baltimore card #3.
#42:  Jimmy Paredes, 2012 Topps mini gold parallel #42/61.  Courtesy of Chuck at the Lifetime Topps Project blog.  Houston card #1

#43:  Kevin Rivers, 2011 Bowman Chrome purple refractor #43/700.  Courtesy of Weston at the Fantastic Catch blog.  Seattle card #3
#44:  Matt Antonelli, 2009 Bowman blue parallel #44/500.  Courtesy of Brian from the Play at the Plate blog.  San Diego card #4.
#45:  Francisco Liriano, 2011 Topps Chrome blue refractor #45/99.    Picked up at a card show in PA.
Minnesota card #3.  

Houston gets on the board with their first card, leaving 9 teams that haven't been represented yet.  Atlanta is now the only team that has an average of a card per page, which can't last forever...

You've also seen an early pattern of SNI greatness from two big supporters of the project, Brian from PATP and Dennis from TMV.  The final count between these two gentlemen reaches 130 cards total, so get used to seeing their names. 

4 posts in 5 days.   Hopefully I can keep this going for a while...

thanks for reading, Robert

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Kaz! Kaz! Kaz! Kaz!

A quick break from the Serial Numbered Insanity set tonight to show off some cards that I recently received from Mets blogger Mark from the This Way to the Clubhouse part of the blogosphere.  I sent Mark a few Mets cards and I received a envelope full of Blue Jays goodness.

I decided to show a bunch of the cards off in groups of 4, you'll see why later.

2009 Topps black parallels!!  Hadn't seen any of these in forever.  There was also a 2011 Topps Blue Jays team card in the black parallel form as well.   It didn't make the cut.

Various forms of gold parallels.  In case you were wondering, the Mark DeRosa is the 5th version of that card that I now own.  (Base, gold, yellow, red sparkle, Wal-Mart blue)  I'm sure that there are a few others that still need to be picked up...

Four great players that played for various lengths of time in Toronto.  2 of them are in the hall of fame, 1 has the numbers to get in but the reputation to keep him out, and the 4th isn't eligible for another 2 years, but probably doesn't have enough numbers to get in.  All 4 made an impression on Blue Jays fans in one way or another.

Gustavo Pierre was just converted in the past year from a shortstop to a pitcher.  So far, not so good, in 8 appearances in A ball his ERA is over 10.  J.P. Arencibia started with the Jays, and has bounced around the past few years.  He is now part of the Rays organization.  Justin Jackson is another player that was converted from a position player to a pitcher.  He's had more success, but is still just at the AA level.  Chris Hawkins never made it past A ball and hasn't been in MiLB since 2013. 

Sluggers.  4 of them.  Lind had 146 HR with the Jays.  Carter had 203 HR with the Jays, and the most memorable one ever.  Encarnacion has 220 HR with Toronto, and right now I would resign him before I would resign Bautista.  Delgado has 336 Blue Jays HRs, and is probably their all time best hitter in my opinion.

Why the title you may ask?  Well, I'm a big fan of the movie Meatballs with Bill Murray.  If you click the link you'll go to a YouTube clip of one of the scenes from the movie, featuring a character named Spaz.  Yes, Kaz rhymes with Spaz, but no he doesn't remind of the character.   Thought maybe one or 2 of you out there could use a laugh.  You'll notice that when the subtitles come in, Spaz! is there 4 times in each.  Not sure why that is, but I made it fit the post (or at least tried to)...

Thank you for the cards Mark, they are greatly appreciated!!

Thanks for reading, Robert

Monday, July 11, 2016

The indoor season is backwards in the south

I heard this mentioned in the past couple of weeks, and it's the truth.  The heat in the south is so stifling (along with the humidity) that it's very difficult to spend any amount of time outdoors.  While I reveled in the warm winter I experienced this year, the past several weeks have been tougher than I expected.  Taking walks for 30 minutes leaves you drenched.  While I don't have a house (yet), I've already heard the stories from my friends about how mowing the lawn leaves them exhausted.

Definitely summer time down here is indoor season.  Maybe I'll take more advantage of the time inside and get some posts done.

That being said, here's a couple more Serial Numbered Insanity pages.   Enjoy!

#19:  St. Louis Cardinals team card.  2011 Topps diamond blue parallel #19/60.  Courtesy of Manupatches and Chrome Scratches (retired).  St. Louis card #2
#20:  Ryan Drese, 2005 Topps Chrome refractor #20/225.  Courtesy of Dennis from Too Many Verlanders.  Texas card #2
#21:  Mark Loretta, 2005 Topps Chrome refractor #21/225.  Courtesy of Dennis from Too Many Verlanders.  San Diego card #2

#22:  Michael Tucker, 2005 Topps Chrome red refractor #22/25.  Bought on ebay.  San Francisco card #1
#23:  Jonathan Joseph, 2011 Bowman Chrome refractor #23/150.  Courtesy of Jeff from 2x3 heroes.  Oakland card #1
#24:  Raul Ibanez, 2003 Topps Chrome refractor #24/699.  Courtesy of The Sandlot blog.  Kansas City card #1

#25:  Miguel Montero, 2011 Topps black parallel #25/60.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired, you'll be seeing that a lot through these posts).  Arizona card #1
#26:  Orlando Hernandez, 2007 Topps Chrome red refractor, #26/90.  Courtesy of Simon from the 7 Hours from Tampa Bay blog.  Arizona card #2.
#27:  Sam Fuld, 2011 Topps gold parallel #27/2011.  Courtesy of the Tomahawk Chopping blog.  Tampa Bay card #1  

#28:  Andruw Jones, 2007 Topps Moments and Milestones # 28/29.  Courtesy of Oscar from All trade bait, all the time.  Atlanta card #4.
#29:  Steven Ramos, 2014 Bowman green parallel #29/199.  Courtesy of Dennis from Too Many Verlanders.  St. Louis card #3
#30:  Adrian Gonzalez, 2010 Topps Opening Day blue parallel #30/2010.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired).  San Diego card #3

#31:  Jeff Kent, 2006 Topps Moments and Milestones #31/150.  Purchased at the 2012 NSCC in Baltimore.  LA Dodgers card #2
#32:  Russ Ortiz, 2005 Bowman white parallel #32/240.  Courtesy of Max from the Starting Nine blog.  Arizona card #3.
#33:  Wilson Valdez, 2012 Topps gold parallel #33/2012.  Courtesy of Michael from the Nomo's Sushi Platter blog.  Cincinnati card #1

#34:  Dustin Pedroia, 2011 Topps gold parallel #34/2011.  Purchased off of ebay.  Boston card #2
#35:  Torii Hunter, 2007 Topps Triple Threads #35/239.  Purchased at the Cleveland NSCC in 2014.  Minnesota card #1
#36:  Joel Piniero, 2009 Topps gold parallel #36/2009.  Courtesy of Jeroen at the Dutch Card Guy blog.  St. Louis card #4

No holes in the pages so far which is a good thing.  A bit of damage on the 19 card (OK, a lot of damage), but I don't think I want to hunt for a replacement.  Only Atlanta and St. Louis are averaging a card per page so far, while 10 teams don't have any cards yet. 

More to come, especially with the heat expected for the next.....several weeks.

Thanks for reading, Robert

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sometimes I need a push--Serial Insanity pages #1 and #2

Real estate hunting can be tiring work, especially when you do it in the middle of a Florida summer.  My wife and I finally were able to lock into a contract this past week, and the process has begun of buying what we are calling our "final home".  Our plan is not to move anymore, and hopefully in the next few weeks we will have the process closed and move into the new digs.

Outside of the daily posts on my other blog, which consist of 3 bullet points and take only a few minutes each to hammer out, my blog posts have really been few and far between.   I've managed to knock out a few trades and envelopes here and there, but blogging just hasn't been the same as it was a year or 2 ago.

Last Wednesday, one of my favorite blog trading partners, Tony from Off Hiatus Baseball posted about the Brewers cards I sent his way.  What he also mentioned in the post is my long running Serial Numbered Insanity quest, which has been dormant on the blog for some time.

Tony, thank you for the push that I've needed.  It's time to go over what I have with a fine tooth comb.   I'm going to post each page over the next several weeks, make sure that each team has 50 cards and that I've not screwed anything up.

Those who follow religiously, make sure I don't screw anything up, OK?

Here we go!!

Page 1--cards #1-9

#1:  Adrian Gonzalez, 2010 Topps Chrome Yellow Printing Plate.  Courtesy of Brian from Play at the Plate.   San Diego card #1
#2:  Brian Moran, 2010 Bowman Chrome gold refractor #2/50.  Picked up via a trade from the Bench website.  Seattle card #1
#3:  Erik Bedard, 2008 Topps Moments & Milestones #3/10.  Courtesy of Mark from the Chronicles of Fuji blog.  Baltimore card #1 

#4:  Victor Martinez, 2007 Topps Finest green refractor #4/199.  Picked up via a trade from the Bench website  Cleveland card #1 
#5:  Kevin Youkilis, 2011 Bowman's Best insert #5/99.  Picked up via a trade from the I collect ball cards blog (no longer active).  Boston card #1 
#6:  Yunel Escobar, 2009 Topps Finest green refractor #6/99.  Picked up via a trade from the Bench website (3rd one already!).  Atlanta card #1

#7:  Eric O'Flaherty, 2011 Topps Black parallel #7/60.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired).  Atlanta card #2 
#8:  Garret Anderson, 2008 Topps Co-Signers green parallel #8/25.  Courtesy of Dennis from the Too Many Verlanders blog.  LA Angels card #1  
#9:  Yorvit Torrealba, 2011 Topps gold #9/2011.  Bought from ebay.  Texas card #1  

#10: Nathan Haynes, 2007 Topps chrome refractor #10/415.  Courtesy of Max from the Starting Nine blog.  LA Angels card #2
#11: Ichiro, 2011 Topps Finest refractor #11/299.  Likely picked up at a card show in western PA.
Seattle card #2
#12:  Christian Frederickson, 2012 Bowman Chrome gold refractor #12/50.  Courtesy of the Diamond King blog (still alive, but hasn't posted in a couple years).  Colorado card #1  

#13:  Chipper Jones, 2011 Topps Finest refractor #13/299.  Likely picked up at a card show in western PA.  Atlanta card #3  
#14:  Johnny Mize, 2009 Topps Triple Threads #14/525. Picked up at the 2012 National Sports Card Convention in Baltimore.  St. Louis card #1  
#15:  John Lindsey, 2011  Bowman green parallel #15/450.  Picked up via a trade from the Bench website.  Los Angeles Dodgers card #1

#16:  Kosuke Fukudome, 2010 Topps black parallel #16/59.  Courtesy of Ted from the Crinkly Wrappers blog (retired).  Chicago Cubs card #1
#17:  Dan Uggla, 2007 Topps Moments and Milestones #17/29.  Picked up at the 2012 National Sports Card Convention in Baltimore.  Florida card #1
#18:  Brad Hawpe, 2010 Topps Chrome purple refractor #18/599.  Courtesy of the Tomahawk Chopping blog.  Colorado card #2   

1482 cards, and a lot of posts to go.  Lots of great cards to come as well.

Thanks for the push Tony!!

Thanks for reading, Robert

Sunday, July 3, 2016

An artist, I am not

Over the last few months, even though I'm not writing as much as I used to here, I am still thinking about other collectors when I pull something halfway decent out of a pack, or something that I know someone else might like.

I sent an envelope of Royals cards to Josh of the Royals and Randoms blog, and he responded in kind with a PWE featuring a couple of Blue Jays cards that were cool to me.

If you've paid any attention to this blog over the past 5 years, you know that I'm a sucker for serial numbered parallels.  This brown framed paper parallel from '15 GQ featuring Jose Reyes is a nice add to the Jays collection.  It is #'d 52/499. 

I'd love to see Reyes get another shot at a job in the majors with the Mets. 

Thank goodness that Josh put a note in the envelope telling me who this is, because I wouldn't have recognized it right away.  This is a sketch card of Paul Molitor, whom I didn't recognize at first, but when I read the note I said, "OK, I see it now". 

It's certainly a helluva lot better than anything I could sketch for sure.  Both cards are great additions to the Jays collection.

Thank you Josh for the envelope, it's greatly appreciated!!  I have some more cards coming your way sometime soon.

thanks for reading, Robert