Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Inbound and down #3: Too Many Verlanders

Totally out of the blue today comes this PWE from the great (and snowy) state of Michigan.  One of the hotbeds of college hockey is Red Berenson's Wolverines, and Dennis from the Too Many Verlanders blog is a big fan of the maize and blue.

Dennis was a big supporter of the Serial Numbered Insanity baseball project, and has jumped in on the Hockey version as well.  I received 7 cards in a PWE today, with a couple of cards from a set that I don't ever remember seeing previously...

The Tony Esposito is my 3rd different card of him already in the set.  Dennis is also the 3rd source of Esposito cards.  It's almost as if nobody else from Chicago is going to be in the set (nahhhh).  The Amonte and Spezza cards are from the 2003-04 Pacific Heads Up set; they are the Hobby Ltd. parallels numbered to 299.  The Amonte brings Philly up to 9 cards already, tied with Boston currently for the most accumulated so far.

Dennis also sent a group of 4 2003-04 Topps blue parallels.  These scanned really well, the serial numbers on the front stand out, even the Kubina which is kind of hidden in his dark jersey.  Martin Havlat recently retired from the NHL, having scored 240 goals over almost 800 career games.  Niklas Hagman played 770 games in the league, finishing his career in 2012 with 147 goals.  Pavel Kubina had a couple of 40 point seasons in Toronto in the late 00's, and finished just 30 games shy of the 1000 mark for his career.  Andrei Zyuzin was a high draft pick of the Sharks, 2nd overall in 1996.  His career probably didn't go the way he would have liked, not quite making 500 games for his time in North America. 

A great group of 7 cards to add to the SNIH project!  Thank you Dennis, the envelope and cards are greatly appreciated!

Thanks for reading, Robert

Monday, February 27, 2017

Monday Mailday

Finally!!  I've got my shit together and have 20 envelopes ready for mailing.

K9J 3P1
L7R 4E6
N3J 0G4

US of A

Let me tell you something, after doing this project, I have a helluva lot more respect for the guys who do the breaks on the blogosphere/ebay/wherever.  This was an undertaking to say the least.

I hope that guys will enjoy the cards I'm sending, I did my best to work on people's want lists (for those who had them). 

One card rule:

Baseball's back.  Probably for the first time in the last couple of decades, I'm really ready for it this year.  I just hope that the commissioner doesn't try and change too many rules.  The game is fine the way it is IMO.

Looking forward to those 100 word posts!!

Thanks for  reading, Robert

Sunday, February 26, 2017


It doesn't appear as if I will be spending any more money on cards during February, so I'll have $1792 left in my $2000 budget for the remaining 10 months of the year. 

I honestly thought that by giving myself a little more money to spend on cards that I'd go a little more "spend happy", but it's actually worked the other way around.  If I were to have spent $30/week over the first 9 weeks as normal, that would add up to $270.  I've only spent $208 thus far.

Maybe I'm watching what I'm spending a little more closely. 

I'm sure part of the decline is that I didn't hit the monthly card show in February.  That's usually good for 70-80 bucks right there. 

But enough babbling, you're wondering what the latest purchase was.  Well, I added 75 bucks to my COMC account a few weeks ago in order to purchase cards for the guys who wanted a handful.

That's done.  I received the final address I needed yesterday, and the envelopes will go out tomorrow for sure. (I couldn't get to the post office yesterday because I received a call late Friday to help out a friend to mix concrete, which took up a good portion of my Saturday.)

The order didn't take up the entire $75, so I was fortunate to add a few cards to my personal collections.

I really like the black and white photos of the Leaf Certified Immortals cards, so I snagged a couple more for the SNI hockey project.  Mike Bossy is #'d 51/699, while Mike Modano is #'d 686.  Scratch those two off of the want list.

Three more SPs from the long neglected 2012-13 OPC set are now off the list.   I've always been a big fan of the artwork on goalie masks, and the Rogie Vachon card jumped right out at me.  Sometimes less is more, and the Crowns above the eyes on Rogie's mask are a perfect example.  Perfect.  Tim Kerr was one of the best power play scorers during the 80's, amassing 20 or more PPG in a season 4 times, including an amazing 34 PPG during the 85-86 season.  Those 34 goals on the power play are still an NHL record, one that may never be touched.

Finally, I grabbed a handful of more recent Joe Sakic cards to add to my collection.   They won't be shown off on the PC blog anytime soon, so there was no worry of showing them off here.  I wouldn't mind getting a few more followers on that blog, I'm hoping to hit 25 within the next couple of months.  Maybe I'll give something away if I do...

$1867 - $75 = $1792.  If I keep going at this pace, I'll barely spend $1200 this year. 

Thanks for reading, Robert

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The blogosphere collects some really cool stuff

Looking over a bunch of want lists made me realize something.  People out there collect some great stuff.

Honestly, some of those want lists I looked at put me to shame. (hanging head)

Here are five examples:

Charlie Simmer:  Cleveland Barons?
Grace Kelly:  Queen of hearts
Lou Boudreau:  Indians Great
Dan Dierdorf:  Hall of Famer born in Canton
Mike Piazza:  Avoids broken bats

Five people will know at least one card they're getting.  Hopefully by the time they arrive they won't be duplicates. 

Just in case you're wondering, this post contains just 98 words.

Thanks for reading, Robert

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

And then there were three

OK gang, for those of you that were up for getting the 5 free cards, they arrived today!  It'll probably take me a day or two to get them sorted for each person and then tucked into some PWE's to send out.

More on that in the days to come.

Part of the big COMC order were a few cards that I already purchased before.  Two of them were 40% of the remaining cards I need to finish my '64 Topps set.

I had actually bought these before the year started, so they didn't count towards the annual $2K spending budget.  Instantly when I looked at these two cards, I thought "who is Joe Sparma?"  A quick look at baseball reference dot com showed that Joe actually had an OK career, 52 wins over 7 seasons between 1964-1970.  His best season was 1967, winning 16 games with 5 shutouts.  Joe unfortunately passed away quite young, at age 44 due to complications from triple bypass surgery.  Joe was also part of the Tigers WS champion team in 1968, giving up 2 runs in just a third of an inning.  The home run that Joe allowed was to none other than Bob Gibson of the Cardinals.

Just three cards to go to finish off the '64 set.

331—A.L. Bombers (Cash, Kaline, Mantle, Maris)
477—Mike Joyce
540—Luis Aparicio

That's it.  I can't wait.  

Thanks for reading, Robert


Monday, February 20, 2017

Being realistic

I've developed a real strong appreciation for vintage cards during the 5 1/2 years of writing this blog.  I'm just about finished with the '64 Topps set, I have a good start on sets from '62, '68 and '70 and I have a decent amount of cards from the '67 and '69 sets.  Oh, and let's not forget about '59

Those half a dozen sets by themselves are going to cost a pretty penny to finish.  RC's such as Nolan Ryan, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson and others are going to cost a small fortune, not to mention having to find cards of Mickey Mantle, Hank Aaron and Willie Mays. 


So when I saw today that Gavin from the Baseball Card Breakdown blog is starting a '57 Topps set, it got me to thinking....

How in the world will I be able to finish every set that I've ever bought cards for?  The simple truth is I won't be able to.  No how, no way, fuhgedabboutit.

So, depending on what Gavin thinks about the cards below, he may have himself a few '57s to add to his set build.

'57 is a beautiful set simply because it's simple.  Would I love to build it?  Oh my God yes.  

I just don't think it's in the cards. 

I'm hoping that Gavin will want them.  Temptation is just too great.  That's being realistic....

Thanks for reading, Robert

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Just a lazy Sunday

This is one of those Sundays between when the Super Bowl is played and the MLB regular season begins.   You just don't feel like doing shit, right?  So I figured that I'd make it easy on myself today and just post a quick SNI page to have something online....

Page 34 it is...

Card 298:  Zack Greinke, 2011 Topps Heritage Chrome refractor #298/562.  Milwaukee card #6
Card 299:  Kurt Suzuki, 2012 Topps gold #299/2012.  Oakland card #16
Card 300:  Ray Knight, 2002 Topps Super teams #300/1986.  New York Mets card #7

Card 301:  Kosuke Fukudome, 2011 Bowman Green #301/450.  Chicago Cubs card #8
Card 302:  Kevin Barry, 2006 Topps '52 #302/1952.  Atlanta card #12
Card 303:  Alex Rodriguez, 2006 Topps gold #303/2006.  New York Yankees card #10

Card 304:  Carl Crawford, 2010 Topps Opening Day blue #304/2010.  Tampa Bay card #12
Card 305:  Chris Dennis, 2011 Bowman Chrome #305/799.  Milwaukee card #7
Card 306:  CC Sabathia, 2010 Bowman blue #306/500.  New York Yankees card #11

Lots of cards to like on this page.  The Sabathia card with the Sony advertising, the Carl Crawford card featuring Aaron Hill of the Blue Jays doing his best fish out of water impression, or the Kurt Suzuki card showing him getting rid of his mask to make a play. 

The biggest contributor to this page?  A couple of Bench trades got me 2 of these cards, while I got the other 7 from various sources.  The Ray Knight card source is a mystery to me, as I failed to record where or who the card came from.   If you remember sending it my way, let me know!

Thanks for reading, Robert

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Nice guys finish last and win stuff

I am back.  I've taken pretty much most of the past week off as my wife and I have my brother-in-law and his wife in town visiting.  So we've been fixing up stuff around the house and shopping for new things to add to the house.

But enough about that.   For those that are in the 100 word contest, the cards shipped yesterday and should be on my doorstep on Tuesday!  I hope to have all the envelopes out within a day or two after that.

I entered a contest on the Eamus Catuli blog a couple of months ago in which Tom asked what our card of the year was.  The randomizer put me dead last (!) after all was said and done, but Tom was gracious enough to send this lovable loser a prize none the less.

A hangar box of 2017 Topps showed up on my door step last week (see how much of a slacker I've been?) and I opened it a few days ago. 

Two of the best cards in the box were actually for Tom!  The '87 Future Stars Addison Russell and the rainbow foil Jorge Soler will probably end up in a envelope headed Tom's way in the future.  The Rediscover Topps cards certainly don't do anything for me what so ever.  Maybe it's because I pulled a 2011 Chase Utley.  Any Blue Jay would have been better for me, but you can't always get what you want.

Inserts:  OK, don't mind the blue and red striped award winner cards.  The Ken Griffey Jr. legend card is kind of bland design wise.  Over the years Topps Heritage has used the Then & Now theme for one of their insert sets, so it was surprising to see it in the flagship set.  Interesting the difference you see in Bryce Harper in just a few short years.  Doesn't have the baby-face anymore, and his upper body has filled out noticeably.  

I did pull a few Blue Jays from the hanger box (Grilli, Stroman, Happ and Sanchez), but this Gregory Polanco card is my early vote for card of the year in 2017.  How serendipitous was it that Topps features a card of him stretching for a catch in left field in PNC park, which is where he will be playing this year instead of his regular right field. 

About the set?  It's OK, for me it's nothing special.  The one thing I noticed when opening the box was the amount of horizontal cards there are in the set.  I pulled 15 of them in my hangar box alone.  Seems like a lot, doesn't it?

Tom, thank you for the hangar box you sent me, the cards are really appreciated!!

Thanks for reading, Robert

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Serial Saturday #11: Two more pages

For those of you who were part of the 100 words/cards giveaway, this is a heads up to let you know that I finished the order today and have requested shipment.  Hopefully I'll have the cards in a couple of weeks and then I'll start to work on shipping them to everybody. 

It certainly was an educational project for me, as I learned a lot about what people collect.   There were some interesting sets/collections out there, and I'm looking forward to what people thought about the cards I sent their way.

Now, back to regular blog news, I decided to get a couple of SNI pages scanned and posted today.  I have approximately 1/2 of the serial numbered hockey cards into pages and hope to have them put away this week. 

Hope you enjoy pages 32 and 33 of SNI...

Card 280:  Justin Upton, 2010 Topps triple threads #280/1350.  Arizona card #8
Card 281:  Alexei Ramirez, 2011 Topps triple threads #281/525.  Chicago White Sox card #7
Card 282:  Danny Espinosa, 2012 Topps Heritage #282/563.  Washington card #12

Card 283:  Rod Barajas, 2010 Topps Gold #283/2010.  Toronto card #17
Card 284:  Evan Anundsen, 2010 Bowman Chrome #284/777.  Milwaukee card #5
Card 285:  Tyler Clippard, 2007 Bowman Chrome #285/500.  New York Yankees card #8

Card 286:  John Danks, 2013 Topps Gold #286/2013.  Chicago White Sox card #8
Card 287:  Tyler Colvin, 2011 Bowman Green #287/450.  Chicago Cubs #7
Card 288:  Collin Balester, 2009 Topps Gold #288/2009.  Washington card #13

Both the White Sox and the Nationals represented twice on this page.  The Milwaukee card leaves just the Pirates as the only team not to reach the 5 card plateau. 

The John Danks card was the only one on this page that I was responsible for, the other 8 were courtesy of the blogosphere.  The Night Owl sent me 2 of these, while 6 other bloggers sent 1 each.

Card 289:  John Lackey, 2007 Topps gold #289/2007.  Los Angeles Angels card #15
Card 290:  Brian Bannister, 2009 Topps gold #290/2009.  Kansas City card #11
Card 291:  Colby Lewis, 2011 Topps gold #291/2011.  Texas card #11

Card 292:  Joey Votto, 2011 Topps triple threads #292/525.  Cincinnati card #9
Card 293:  Javier Vazquez, 2010 Topps Chrome purple #293/299.  New York Yankees card #9
Card 294:  Lance Berkman, 2011 Bowman blue #294/500.  St. Louis card #16

Card 295:  Brian McCann, 2011 Bowman green #295/450.  Atlanta card #11
Card 296:  Tom Koehler, 2013 Topps gold #296/2013.  Miami card #11
Card 297:  Anthony Ortega, 2009 Bowman blue #297/500.  Los Angeles Angels card #16

I purchased 4 of the 9 cards on this page, 3 of the 4 coming via two different visits to the National in 2012 and 2014.  Both of the pages today had one card come from Ted who ran the Crinkly Wrappers blog (hope all is well for you Ted!). 

The most interesting card for me is the Brian Bannister card.  I thought that the placing of the glove over the mouth to prevent the other team from reading lips was a more recent phenomena, but I guess it's been going on longer than I thought. 

Next page up will bring the set to over 20% displayed in page form.  Still quite a ways to go.

Thanks for reading, Robert

Tuesday, February 7, 2017


It has been 3 weeks since I posted anything that I've purchased on the blog.  That doesn't mean to say that I haven't spent any money on cards, because I had to put $$ into my COMC account to start shopping for everyone.  That post comes in the next few days when I complete my task.

Today's purchase was completed last week on ebay, and consists of a grand total of 4 cards.  There was one particular card that I've had sitting in my cart for a few weeks now, and I had totally forgotten about it until last Thursday.  Surprised is probably the right word for how I felt when I looked and it was still available!!

I have a funny habit of not being able to purchase just one card.   It's a weird idiosyncrasy of mine, and if you're a seller on ebay, you're probably happy when I come your way because you'll know that you're going to move more than just one card out of inventory.

I'm very curious to see how this year's Heritage set looks, as it will be the homage to the '68 Topps set.  Instead I decided to buy 3 of the originals for $5.  They're all in very good shape, probably 3 of the best '68s that I own. 

For $32 I now have one of the two remaining whales from my '64 set.  I sacrificed a bit of condition for some affordability.   Because of this, I may be inclined to spend a bit more on the AL Bombers card that is the other big ticket left for me (although a lot of the Aparicio cards I've been seeing for sale are more expensive than I thought). 

When I finish my COMC shopping for everyone, two of the final '64s that I purchased a while ago that will head my way. 

After all this time, it's great to be at 99% complete. 

$1904-$37=$1867 left for 2017.

Thanks for reading, Robert

Monday, February 6, 2017

Greatest of all Time?

You know, the term GOAT (greatest of all time) has been thrown out quite a bit over the past 24 hours for Tom Brady.

I still have mixed feelings over whether I believe this to be true.  Has he done some amazing things with some less than amazing talent surrounding him?  Yes.

Does he have more Super Bowl appearances & rings than anyone else?  Yes.

Does he have postseason records galore?  Yes.

So what is it about Tom Brady that just will not let me give in and say, "he's the greatest to ever play the position."

I don't hate the guy.  I respect his ability as a QB.  But there's something about him that just gnaws at me.  I can't put my finger on it....

You tell me then.   Greatest of all time at the QB spot?   Why or why not...

Thanks for reading (and hopefully commenting), Robert

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Shopping isn't as easy as I thought it was

Started buying for people yesterday on COMC.  My last (and final) count was 19 people who wanted some free cards, which is good, because free is good right?

[EDIT:  Just got the 20th "volunteer" for the contest, so I'm going to consider it closed.   Thanks to all who stepped up!!]

Well, I sat down in the afternoon and started with a couple of what I thought would be easier bloggers to buy for.

30 minutes later, I shook my head and thought that I might have bit off more than I can chew.

Not complaining my friends, no not at all.  But I severely underestimated the time it's going to take to go through everyone's want lists and pick out some cards to purchase.  By the time I'd finished the 6th person's shopping list, I'd already burned through 90 minutes which means by the time I finish the 13 others, I'll have consumed 5 hours (estimated).  SURPRISE!!

No worries though, I'm glad that I can do this.  It's also teaching me a couple of things about searching through want lists as well, kind of reading between the lines of what people want, if you know what I mean.  So while that project continues this afternoon before the Super Bowl kickoff, here's page #31 of the baseball SNI set for your perusal.   Enjoy!

Card 271:  Francisco Cervelli, 2012 Topps Gold #271/2012.  New York Yankees card #7
Card 272:  Angel Pagan, 2012 Topps Gold #272/2012.  San Francisco card #7
Card 273:  Gerardo Parra, 2011 Topps Gold #273/2011.  Arizona card #7

Card 274:  Eric Thames, 2012 Topps Gold #274/2012.  Toronto card #16
Card 275:  Joel Peralta, 2011 Topps Gold #275/2011.  Tampa Bay card #11
Card 276:  Tom Gorzelanny, 2008 Topps Co-Signers #276/400.  Pittsburgh card #4

Card 277:  Andre Ethier, 2011 Topps Gold #277/2011.  Los Angeles Dodgers card #11
Card 278:  John Maine, 2004 Topps Gold #278/2004.  Baltimore card #9
Card 279:  Elvis Andrus, 2010 Topps Gold #279/2010.  Texas card #10

Favorite card on the page:  Nice shot of Gerardo Parra making a sliding catch is the winner for me.
Totally by accident that there's 8 Topps gold parallels out of 9 cards on the page.   Pretty sure that's the first time that there's been that many on a page.  Pittsburgh also still way behind the pack with only 4 cards so far, while Toronto becomes the first team to pass the 15 card mark.

I did most of the damage on this page, as I was responsible for 6 of the 9 cards.  2 of the 3 others were from Michael at Nomo's Sushi Platter, while the third was from Tom at Eamus Catuli (waiting til next year was much easier to type by the way, lol). 

Back to the store....

Thanks for reading, Robert

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Last call, because I'm going shopping today

I've got a few slots open for anyone out there who didn't hit my 100 words posts the other two times I mentioned them last month.

I have 13 people in so far that I can see.  Some of you I need addresses for, because we've never traded or haven't traded in a long time so I'd like to confirm.  Send addresses/confirmations to rmitchell6700 @ yahoo dot com please.

Crazie Joe
Daniel Wilson
RAZ (need your info please)
Card Hobbyist (need your info please)
Starting Nine
Night Owl
Royals and Randoms
Dime Boxes
Mike Matson (need your info please)
Hockey Kazi (need your info please)
Greg A.

I'd like to get 7 more "volunteers" to receive cards from me.  That will get the list to 20, which means 5 cards apiece off of your want list.   Free.  Gratis.  Costs you nada.  If I don't get 7 more, well I'll think of something.   Leave a comment on this post.

One card rule:

Although this post was just information, I'll stick to my one card rule for each post.  I found this last week while rummaging through one of my many boxes of Jays cards, and thought it quite interesting.

Someone out there has to enlighten me on these.  Chef Boyardee cards?  Never would have thought that they released anything that came in a cardboard package.  (further thought, pizza mixes maybe?)

None the less, this is a great odd ball card of one of my favorite Blue Jays players of all time, George Bell.

Even the back is full of information.  4 years of stats, 4 bullet points of career highlights, full bio.  Well done Chef!!

OK now, 7 more bloggers that want cards.   Let's go!  Someone out there must want free stuff...

Thanks for reading, Robert

Thursday, February 2, 2017

The final 7

At last, I'm finally getting around to posting the last 7 cards that I received several weeks (months?) ago from Doug at the Sportscards from the Dollar Store blog.  My desk is actually starting look reasonable now!

Now all I have to do is find a binder and start getting the 100+ cards I have already into some pages.  I'm sure that there's one around here somewhere....

My favorite cards are the two 2015-16 O-Pee-Chee black border on the bottom row.  The Holden is #'d 34 and the Boychuk is #17.  Both teams already have their cards that are serial #'d below 100 though, so these just become a couple of placeholders in the first 100.  The project still has 7 teams that need cards #'d less than 100; Montreal, Carolina, Chicago, Dallas, Nashville, Edmonton and LA.  With more than half the numbers below 100 still available, filling the 7 spots will take a bit of work, but shouldn't be too great a challenge.

The Raffi Torres photo in the top center is a little spooky to me.  In this day of political correctness, I honestly shouldn't say what he looks like to me.  I could get sued...

The Dan Hamhuis card also frightens me, because to me it's as if he only came into the NHL a few years ago, not a dozen.   I'm getting old fast.

Perfect insert set for the Crown Royale release, this Royal Pains card from 2012-13 features one of the best hitters and physical players in the NHL, David Backes.  St. Louis doesn't need to look too hard to figure out what the difference is in their team this year, they don't have this guy as their captain.   Doug Armstrong should have been held a little more accountable for not resigning this guy.

Unless some cards come my way in the near future, this might be the last serial #'d hockey card for the set that appears on the blog for a little while.   I'm still working toward getting a couple of baseball sets finished sooner rather than later, so purchases of these cards will fall a bit by the wayside.

They'll be back though....

Thanks for reading, Robert