One Man's Thoughts on Sports Card Collecting

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Trade With Lifetime Topps Project

I recently completed another trade with chuckneo over at the Lifetime Topps Project.  His blog is one of my favorites, and he has quite the ambitious project - collecting every Topps set since 1980.  My recent digging through my old cards led me to a handful he was looking for, so I was glad to do my part to bring him a tiny bit closer to his goal!

He was kind enough to send me a nice envelope of cards in return, including some Platinum Diamonds:

A few Topps inserts on my want list:

And best of all, a pair of Griffeys!:

That Golden Moments card is actually a mini - I didn't even know they made minis of those cards that year!  And I really like that Goudey style card from last year's Goodwin set.  Something about that painting-esque picture and the card design really clicks for me.

Thanks again for the trade chuckneo!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Brewer Cards As Black As My Mood...

It has been a bad 6 months to be a Milwaukee sports fan.  First, the Brewers had their 6-week death march where they managed to miss the playoffs entirely after leading the division for 150 days.  And then today we had....whatever the hell that was that the Packers did.  Without hyperbole, both were HISTORIC collapses in their respective sports, and both squandered golden opportunities at having a truly special season.  

In light of all that, now seemed like a fitting time to post some nice Brewer cards I picked up for my team collection - a set of 9 black background cards from the 2011 set.

I hadn't seen any of these in person until now. They are pretty cool, the blackout effect really makes the player photo jump off of the card.  I especially like the Gomez, Hoffman's 600th save, and team card celebration shots.

This group also includes a guy who may not be a Brewer for long - it appears the Crew is trading Yovani to the Rangers.  Oddly, no one seems to have any idea what we are getting in return yet,  One reporter speculated that the team might be clearing room to make a run at James Shields, which would be SWEET, but I doubt it's true.

Welp, time to start counting the days until Pitchers & Catchers Report Day.  "Hope springs eternal" and all that.....

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Definitely Not Junk From The Junior Junkie

I recently reached out to The Junior Junkie to initiate what I thought would be a simple Griffey swap.  I don't have many Griffey doubles, and his collection is just slightly larger than mine, but I still managed to find two Griffey dupes in my binder that he didn't have.

Pictured, left to right: my Griffey collection, Junior Junkie's collection

What I didn't expect is that he would send me an entire STACK in return!!  Check out all this awesomeness:

Lots of great stuff here.  My favorites:

-That photo on the 1997 Topps base card is SWEET.  Classic Griffey pose, and love the bat dropping out of the frame.  I'll have to pick up another copy of that one for my "great photos" binder.
-Gotta love a matching set of base card and silver signature parallel for Collector's Choice
-The 1994 Fleer Ultra Award Winners insert is one I remember wishing I could nab back in the day, I loved that design, so very happy to finally add that one to the list
-The Upper Deck Fun Pack card actually has a heat-activated background - hold your thumb on it and you can see a cartoon of Griffey about to get the ol' pie in the face from a teammate!
-That very first Topps card in the upper left is from 2012 and is my favorite of the bunch in terms of design (not sure what the card number prefix "MBC" is just yet).  It's almost like a cross between a regular card and a Chrome refractor.  I loves me some shiny!
-Vintage-style minis.  'Nuff said.
-And finally, the one with Buhner may not technically be a Griffey, but in my book a shot of these slugging teammates definitely counts!

As a bonus, this trade pushes my Griffey collection past the 700 mark~!

Thanks for the great trade Junior Junkie!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Common Cards, Uncommon Photography - Splendid Splinters Part II

First off, congrats to the 4 new Hall of Famers, Randy Johnson, Craig Biggio, John Smoltz and Pedro Martinez!  Johnson is one of my top 5 favorite players of all time, so I'm very happy for him, and Biggio really got robbed last year.  Sadly another of my all-time favorites (Jeff Bagwell) will have to wait another year.....

Today we have the second half of my feature on broken bat cards.  Enjoy!

1998 Leaf Jose Canseco #109

Something about this one just makes me giggle.  I think it is the intense look of "I'm admiring a titanic blast" on his face, meanwhile all he has is a bat stub.

2007 Upper Deck Roger Clemens #339

The second pitcher featured in this series.  Looking at the angle that bat barrel is flying off in I hope the photographer was far away!

1998 Donruss Chuck Knoblauch #55

Can't get much more sawed-off than that.

2007 Upper Deck Ramon Martinez #778

Our third entry from 2007 Upper Deck, I guess flying lumber was a real theme that year!  This one stands out for how weirdly clean the break is.  It looks like somebody literally sawed straight through it.

1998 Pinnacle Rondell White #81

And finally, an especially sharp-looking bit of shrapnel sailing out into the field of play.  I've always been amazed that there haven't been more injuries from broken bats over the years, if not from bats sailing into a fielder then from batters got their hands and/or fingers sliced.  I did read about one particularly nasty incident in the book "Big Hair and Plastic Grass:  A Funky Ride Through Baseball and America in the Swinging '70s" (a fun read by the way) - in 1976, Dodger Steve Yeager was hit in the throat by a shard of a broken bat while standing in the on-deck circle.  He ended up needing surgery on his esophagus, but thankfully he was OK.  The incident led Dodger trainer Bill Buhler to invent the neck guard we see hanging from catcher's masks today.

Stay warm out there!!