Saturday, August 19, 2017

The biggest package I've ever gotten from a fellow blogger.

I was sitting at my desk last night and heard a delivery truck pull away. Julie, of the blog A Cracked Bat: Baseball Cards and a Hot Dog, had alerted me that she was sending a package my way so I quickly went out to retrieve it.


Even though I knew Julie was sending me some Beckett magazines, the box was larger than expected. It's the biggest package I've ever gotten from a fellow blogger.

Inside the giant box were two other boxes; a shoe box filled with magazines; mostly Beckett's like this one from 2001 featuring Ichiro. I can't wait to go through each and every one!


There was also a Sport's Illustrated and Newsweek from the Summer of 1998 featuring McGwire and McGwire and Sosa respectively. 

At the very bottom of the pile was this Texas Rangers program from 2006. Pretty cool. I like the Rangers. I used to go to a lot of their Spring Training games and practices way back when. But then I notice a sticky note sticking out of the program. I turned to it and there was a ticket stub from a game on June 18, 2006 against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Now that's cool!


A search reveals that the Rangers beat the D-Backs that day, 10-7. Eric Byrnes, Orlando Hudson, and Shawn Green all hit home runs for the D-Backs in the loss. Michael Young hit one for the Rangers. 

The second box contained an envelope with three numbered team bags and a note from Julie asking me to humor her by opening them in order.



















So let's start with bag #1.

I believe this is my first Mitch Haniger card. I remember this guy last season. He hit a triple in his first MLB at bat and had 3 RBI in his first game. I don't think he has a Topps card as a Diamondback. He was traded during the last off-season to Seattle as part of the deal that netted us Taijuan Walker and Ketel Marte.


A few current and a few former D-Backs.


Goldy! Disappointing that they gave Goldschmidt a "sacrifice bunt".


2017 Gypsy Queen near complete team set. Looks like it's just missing Jake Lamb.






















Let's check out bag #2.

Gold parallels of Tomas and Lamb.


These 2002 Donruss Studio Stars cards look like credit cards and are awesome! 


A great assortment of old and new with numbered, refractors, and die cuts sprinkled in.


I love it when I can connect a card to a specific moment and as a D-Backs fan there is no better moment than this one.


This little guy was stuck behind another card and I missed it the first time I flipped through the pile. It's a Topps mini parallel numbered to 10!



Bag #3

The Steve Finley that features him and his son, that was on the top of the bag, that I forgot to get a picture of, was hiding 10 more Goldschmidt cards!


Three cards of the Big Unit including a sweet jersey card!


Love the shine on the 2017 Topps Chrome Brandon Drury refractor. 

Cool Stadium Club auto of Peter O'Brien. Such a sad story. O'Brien was a 2nd round draft pick in 2012 by the New York Yankees. The Yankees traded O'Brien to the D-Backs in July 2014. He started as a catcher, but converted to an outfielder against the wishes of the Diamondbacks. He made his debut on September 11, 2015. He hit 6 home runs in 34 games for the D-Backs in 2015 and 2016 before being traded to the Royals and spending time in their minor league system. Next up were stints with the Reds, Rangers, and Dodgers minor leagues. The Dodgers designated him for assignment on July 31st of this year.

Finally, another Topps mini. This time it's a rookie card of Archie Bradley. It's the pink parallel numbered to 5! Bradley has grown a beard and has become a huge part of the D-Backs bullpen this season. I was at the Dodgers game earlier this month where the D-Backs were down when Jake Lamb hit a grand slam to take the lead and then Bradley came in to record three quick outs and as he stormed off the mound he shouted "Let's go! This is our house! Let's go!" in reference to all the Dodgers fans at Chase Field. Probably my favorite game of the season so far!



Wow Julie! I'm blown away by your package! I can't wait to go through the all Beckett magazines. In fact, I've already looked through several. I owe you big time . I'm embarrassed by what I sent your way. You'll be getting another package from me soon!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

No Pictures of Baseball Cards. Will Anyone Read This?

Last week I asked a question and I got a great response from the blogosphere.

The question I asked was, "When was the last time you bought a Beckett magazine?"

Let's take a look at the 52 responses.

Never - 7
1992 - 5
1993 - 1
1994 - 1
1995 - 2
1997 - 1
1998 - 3
1999 - 1
2002 - 2
2003 - 1
2006 - 3
2007 - 2
2008 - 1
2009 - 3
2010 - 3
2011 - 1
2012 - 3
2013 - 1
2014 - 1
2015 - 3
2016 - 4
2017 - 4

Seven respondents have never purchased a Beckett. Let's remove them from the rest of the data.

That leaves 45 people who have actually bought a Beckett.

Four of the 45 either have a current subscription or have bought the magazine at some point this year. So we'll remove them from the equation as well.

Now we're at 41 people who have bought a Beckett, but it's been at least 8 months ago.

78.04% of people who responded haven't purchased a Beckett magazine in the last 5 years and for more than half, 53.65%, it's been more than 10 years.

If you're like me, and I'm assuming you are, because you're reading a blog written about baseball cards, then I think it's safe to assume that you're obsessed with baseball cards and with a monthly magazine dedicated to baseball cards it's hard to believe that 78% of us haven't bought one in the past 5 years.

I used to love Beckett. I never had a subscription, but I would buy them on a regular basis and I collected those with my favorite players on the cover. I would even check them out from the library as well. There was a time when the price guide was important to me, but more than that I loved reading about cards and other collectibles. I enjoyed seeing a breakdown of a new release, reading about star players, former players, and errors cards. I loved seeing other peoples collections. I loved the artwork on the front and back inside covers.

I never really left the hobby, but I wasn't as active as I am now between 2000 - 2009, so when I found others baseball blogs and returned full steam in 2009 I started looking at Beckett again and was instantly disappointed. This disappointment came from many of the same reasons you all described in your responses to my question.

The price guide portion of the magazine is irrelevant and the articles are almost non existent. Not sure if you've noticed, but my url is www.betterthanbeckett.blogspot.com because what  I loved about Beckett was a way to connect with other collectors. I loved reading peoples questions and comments in the Readers Write section. I loved seeing homemade cards that other collectors had made. I loved seeing pictures and reading the article about Super Collectors.

Everything that once made Beckett great in my eyes was now gone, or at least had been whittled down to near extinction.

When I selected www.betterthanbeckett.blogspot.com as my web address it was because the blogosphere had replaced Beckett for me. I think this is true for many of us. My blog title is It's like having my own Card Shop because I really feel like my blog and the blogosphere gives me an opportunity to look at cards, discuss cards, and buy and trade cards just like I could back in the day at my local card shop.

#100 and #101

I recently added my 100th and 101st different Paul Goldschmidt cards this year. They make 316 different total.

My goal was 50 and I've more than doubled that already. I should have made the goal larger. I have a few other Goldschmidt cards that I need to scan and sort and I just placed a comc order this morning with a few more.

2015 Topps Tribute Printing Plate



2016 Topps Tier One Dual Relic



Do you keep track of how many cards you have or certain players? If so, how many different cards do you have of your favorite players?

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Thank you all for your responses!

Thank you all for your responses to my post on Wednesday. Between the blog and Twitter I got 52 responses. I randomized the list 5 times, because I'm going to send cards to 5 people who responded.

Here is the list. I'm going to send some cards to the first 5, so if you see your name, please send me your address. daniel24303@gmail.com

You know what, the bottom 5 will gets some cards as well. Just email me with your current address and I'll get a pwe out to you.




Wednesday, August 9, 2017

I need a response from EVERYONE, please.

I have a question for the blogosphere and I'd like a response from everyone.

When was the last time you bought a Beckett magazine?

Just a little clarification. My question is regarding a current issue of the magazine. So for example, in June I bought 5 old Baseball Beckett magazines from 1991. This isn't what I'm asking.

I want to know the last time you bought a Beckett during the month that it was published.

For me it was February 2010.


If you don't remember, your best guess will do, just let me know that it is a guess.

I'm expecting that some of you will have bought a Beckett this month and for some it will have been much longer than me.

To thank you for participating I'll randomly select one person for every 10 answers and send them some cards as a thank you!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Best Offer Accepted

I was able to get a three card lot off eBay this week for a good deal. It was listed as a BIN for $12 with $3 shipping or Best Offer. I offered $7, so the total with shipping was $10 and the seller accepted.

Here are the three cards I got. All are numbered plain jersey swatches of my favorite D-Back Paul Goldschmidt.























If an auction has a Best Offer option, do you always use it before buying? What's your best Best Offer story and your worst?

Friday, August 4, 2017

I may be late to the party....

....but at least I made it to the party.

2017 Topps Heritage came out back in May I believe. I didn't partake in a blaster until late June and I'm not posting about it until now.

The truth is, I bought the blaster at Target one day and opened the packs in my car. Then I put the cards back into the blaster box and put the box in the center console of my car and sort of forgot about it until tonight when I was cleaning out my car.

Here's a look at the contents of the blaster which contained 8 packs. Each pack contains 9 cards...well most packs contain 9 cards, but we'll get to that later.

Pack 1


Pack 1 contained a Joey Votto SP.


Pack 2


Pack 3


Pack 3 contained a 10th card. A Rediscover Topps card featuring Don Aase on a 1979 Topps card. I know there are different colored stamps and this one is silver.


Pack 4


The Kyle Schwarber is an SP.


Pack 5


Pack 5 contained an unexpected hit. The Nick Markakis card is a Grey Back variation which is limited to 10. The card is neither grey nor actually numbered, but after some brief research I am confident that this is the short printed variation, which is 1:529 packs.


Here is the Markakis card back next to a regular card back. To me, it looks more brown than grey.


Pack 6


Tanaka is an SP.



Pack 7


Pack 8


What do you think about 2017 Heritage? How did I do with my blaster?

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Every Day's A Holiday - August

It's August 1st and you know what that means. Let's take a look at the August page of the Every Day's A Holiday calendar.


What cards will I be able to add to my Every Day's a Holiday card binder this month?

Here's the day by day breakdown.

1 - World Wide Web Day
2 - Ice Cream Sandwich Day
3 - Watermelon Day
4 - Assistance Dog Day
5 - Sandcastle Day
6 - Wiggle Your Toes Day
7 - Lighthouse Day
8 - Happiness Happens Day
9 - Rice Pudding Day
10 - Lazy Day
11 - Son and Daughter Day
12 - Vinyl Record Day
13 - International Lefthanders Day
14 - Social Security Day
15 - Lemon Meringue Pie Day
16 - Wave at the Security Cameras Day
17 - Black Cat Appreciation Day
18 - Mail Order Catalog Day
19 - Aviation Day
20 - World Mosquito Day
21 - Poet's Day
22 - Be an Angel Day
23 - Ride the Wind Day
24 - Pluto Demoted Day
25 - Kiss and Make Up Day
26 - Dog Day
27 - The "Dutchess" Who Wasn't Day
28 - Bow Tie Day
29 - More Herbs, Less Salt Day
30 - Slinky Day
31 - Trail Mix Day

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

1954 Bowman Ed Mathews

I made a last minute trip to my LCS last Saturday for the 3 o'clock auction and boy was I glad I did. Even getting there about 10 minutes late I still walked away with 4 items from the auction, for less than $8. There were only 4 other bidders. usually there are at least 10.

This 1954 Bowman Eddie Mathews set me back $3.


















I know it's in rough shape, really rough shape, but I still love it and for the price, I couldn't say no.

Let me know what you think of my $3 purchase.

I'm also curious to get your thoughts on Eddie Mathews. I feel like he doesn't get a lot of hobby love. Just curious as to your thoughts why or if you think he gets the hobby love that he deserves.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Road Trip with my Wallet Card

On July 1st my family and I embarked on a 3700 mile, 9 day, 7 state, 5 National Park road trip.

My wallet card made the journey with me and made several appearances.

Arches National Park in Utah.


Dinosaur National Park in Utah.


Buffalo Bill Center of the West Museum in Cody, Wyoming in front of a Bald Eagle.


Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park.


Crazy Horse Memorial in South Dakota.


There were some 1930's trading cards at the Crazy Horse visitor's center.


Mount Rushmore.



Berlin Wall memorial in Rapid City, South Dakota.


I thought this sign was fitting for my Brandon Webb, Diamondbacks cards. 


Chimney Rock in Nebraska.


Coors Field. Rockies vs. White Sox.