Sunday, January 16, 2022

Pick 6

For everyone that commented on my 2022 Card Show Recap #1 post prior to this post, pick 6 of these cards and I’ll send them to you in a PWE. The cards will be first come first serve and again, are only available to the 7 people that commented on my post from last Sunday.

My Project 2020 Project

Back in late March of 2020 Topps debuted its first Project 2020 cards. I’m guessing most of you reading are familiar with these cards. I didn’t buy any Project 2020 cards directly from Topps. In 2020 I only bought one Project 2020 card. It was Keith Shore Ken Griffey Jr. card that had a record breaking print run of 99,177.

I bought it off eBay for $6.83 shipped on August 16, 2020. I bought it for two reasons. One is to remember the entire Project 2020 by buying the card with the highest print run that highlights everything that is wrong with Project 2020. I take that back, nothing is wrong with Project 2020. The problem is everyone that only bought the cards trying to make a profit. The second reason I bought it is because it was Griffey and I collect Griffey. If I was going to buy just one Project 2020 card, it would be of a player I collect.

On Friday night I was scrolling through Twitter before bed and came across a post promoting a sale of 350 Project 2020 cards the next day. It got me thinking about the set and how cheap some of the cards are currently. So I hoped on comc and sorted Project 2020 cards by the lowest price. $2.13 was the lowest price with plenty more in the $3-$5 range.

Then it hit me. Why not collect one card of each player along with one card from each artist. So 20 total cards. I already had the Griffey card done by Keith Shore, so I needed 19 more cards. I set out to see how cheaply I could accomplish my goal. So I just went through the cards on comc lowest to highest price and made a list so I could track both the player and the artist.

The highest price on this list was $5.73, but this proved to be more challenging than I thought because as I got near the end I was stuck needing very specific cards to meet my criteria and they weren’t as cheap as I wanted them to be, so I had to redo the list somewhat. This allowed me to pick a couple of specific cards I wanted. 

For example, I wanted the Mike Trout Ben Baller card. I just remember all the hubbub about that card when it came out. Ben Baller was promoting the heck out of it and even made a necklace to give away to someone that purchased the card. I also wanted the Mark McGwire Blake Jamieson card because I remember it being on the cover of Beckett as they talked about Topps Project 2020. These cards weren’t crazy, but they weren’t necessarily the cheapest options available.

With that said. I purchase 19 cards and paid for shipping ($4.99) and it was just under $100. The lowest price I paid was $2.13 and the most I paid was $9.05 (the Tyson Peck Frank Thomas card that I didn’t notate the price). 13 of the cards were $5 or less. The 19 cards averaged $4.93 per card, a far cry from the original $19.99 price tag. Now I realize there were disconnected prices based on bulk purchases, but still.

I chose the longest, and cheapest, shipping option from comc, so I won’t see any of the cards until March, but I have to think comc is going to lose money shipping 19 cards in one touch holders. Sorry, not sorry.

Once they arrive I’ll have to figure out how to display them.

What are your thoughts on Project 2020? Did you purchase any? What cards from this set stand out to you?

Monday, January 10, 2022

2022 Card Shop Adventures #1

I find myself typically just showing cards on my blog. I mean there is only so much one can write about a particular card or set. I want to share more experiences. I think that might be why I find myself wanting to be more active on YouTube.

I'm going to try to do something similar here on my blog. Yesterday I shared a card show experience. Today it will be what I will call a Card Shop Adventure.

On Saturday, 1/8/22, I went to a card show in the morning and then to a card shop in the afternoon. I made my way to The Batter's Box card shop just before 3 pm, hoping there would be an auction at 3 pm. They used to have two auctions on Saturday (1 pm and 3 pm), but since Covid they now rotate. So one Saturday it will be at 1 pm and then the next Saturday it will be at 3 pm. They also have a Wednesday night auction as well. That one has remained every Wednesday night at 6:30 pm. Pretty sure I've talked about their auctions before, but they have 40 items for each auction. These are either items provided by the shop owners or anyone can do consignment and sell through the auction. 

The items are out on display for a week (or now two weeks for the Saturday auctions) prior and people can write in bids. Once the live auction starts they read the highest write in bid and it goes from there. The items will include everything from single cards to sets, lots, packs, occasionally unopened boxes, books, autographed items, used supplies, etc.

Turns out they held both auctions on this particular Saturday, but they announced they were going back to the every other Saturday format starting next Saturday. I arrived a few minutes before the auction started so I took a few minutes to look at the bid board beforehand. There were a couple items that caught my eye, but I knew were going to be out of my price range. One was a 1919 -192 W514 Ty Cobb strip card, like the one shown below. The one in the auction was not graded, but was in worse condition that this one.

Regardless of the condition, still a very old and rare card of one of baseball's all-time greats. The card ended up going for around $450. There were two bidders who wanted it. One was a guy I recognized and the other was someone new that I think just happened to walk in a bit before the auction with his wife and dog. I say this because of the conversation I overheard them having with the owner before the auction started. Most bidders have a bidder's number, but he told them since they didn't have one to just use his name during the auction.

I think the starting write in bid was around $200 so the bidding took a while to get to where it finished. The guys wife was holding her dog and while he husband was bidding she was looking away and just had a nervous smile on her face. Not that she didn't want him to spend the money, but that she was just nervous about the bidding process. Bidding went back and forth and then as it was being announced that the item was sold, the guy whose wife and dog were there raised his hand to bid again, but it was too late. he hesitated too long. 

I didn't feel bad for him though because he did win a 1964 Topps Giant Mickey Mantle PSA 7 in the auction for $170, which I think is an absolute steal.

I did put in a couple of write in bids before the auction started. One was on a lot of 1990 Target Dodgers uncut sheets. I think it might have been the complete set, but I wasn't sure. I've seen these cards on Night Owl's blog and so they peaked my interest. I wrote in a $4 bid. When they came up, someone else bid and so I bid again as well a couple of times, but I think I bowed out around $8. Again, not knowing if it was a complete set or not I wasn't willing to take that chance at that price.

The other item I put a write in bid on was a lot of 4 cards from the 1950's. The only card I really paid attention to was the 1955 Topps Ken Boyer rookie card. That is a card I have been looking to pick up. This one wasn't in great shape, but I put in a write in bid of $13.50. Once bidding began it was between me an one other person. We both just kept our hands up as we bid back and forth for a while. I bowed out at $25. Wish I would have paid closer attention to what the other 3 cards were in the lot to see if I should have gone higher.

After I had viewed the items and wrote in my bids I hit up the dime box and grabbed a few cards. Turns out I already have the Bonds card. I know it's only a dime, but just another reason I have got to be more organized.

I try to pick up the Laughlin World Series whenever I see them in dime boxes. I'm not sure if these are going to end up being dups or not. Mostly because they are currently scattered throughout my collection. Another reason to get more organized.

There were a lot of people there for the auction. When I say a lot, there were about 15 different bidders. They also do proxy bidding as well. Anyways, once the auction ended everyone lines up to pay for and get there stuff. Many had been too both auctions so I knew it was going to take a while. I decided to just browse while everyone else paid. I found a few Fleer boxed sets and I checked the blog to see if I needed any of them. There were 3 different ones available and the blog showed I needed all 3. $1.50 each, so I grabbed them and put them with the other cards from the dime box.

These will count toward my goal of completing 100 sets in 2022!

While I was browsing and waiting to check out, a man came in looking to sell some cards he had found clearing out a storage unit. There were newer basketball cards. He had one of those hard plastic 8 x 10 screwdown frames that holds 9 cards. The card in the middle was a Topps Steph Curry rookie card. Now I knew his rookie card was valuable, but as I saw the card and overheard him talking with one of the owners I looked it up on eBay. Wow! I was not expecting it to be that high. Well, after about 30 minutes which included them opening up then nine card case and examining the card closely, the card was a fake. It didn't have the foil on the name. At first the guy who wanted to sell it was a bit defensive saying it was probably just a parallel or something, but they showed him online where it showed the counterfeit card and then he calmed down. I get it though. He thought he had a $1000 card and just a few minutes later it's worth nothing.

I paid and left, spending a total of $4.80. I was hoping they might have a nice HOF rookie card I needed in the $30-$40 range, but the ones they had I already owned or they were out of my current price range. But it was still a fun Card Shop Adventure.

Sunday, January 9, 2022

2022 Card Show #1 Recap

I wasn't planning on attending a card show yesterday, but I had some time and so my youngest and I made our way to this card show in Glendale, Arizona. It's about 25 minutes away. I touted the Pokemon cards to my youngest, but he actually spent more time looking at sports cards than Pokemon cards.

I went to this show in December. There were less dealers there this time. We got there about 10 am. It wasn't very crowded. In fact, I overheard a couple of the dealers talking about how slow the show was. We only stayed for about 30 minutes, so maybe it picked up later. 

Almost everything was ultra-modern. The one dealer normally at this show with some vintage wasn't there. I seems like many of the new "dealers" are collectors who are trying to justify what they are spending. One of the dealers even mentioned to me that his wife told him he needed to clear some space. This particular dealer had a 1984 Fleer Update Kirby Puckett rookie card for $150 and a Roger Clemens from the same set for $125 that I considered, but I ultimately passed. 

The dealer next to the one with the Puckett and Clemens had my son reach into a duffle bag and pick a free grab bag. It had about a dozen 1993 Leaf cards. My son opened it up and right then and there and went through each card. The best card was this Tim Salmon card.

This would have been a decent card back in 1993 as Salmon would win the American League Rookie of the Year award. I have a binder for Salmon cards since he and I went to the same high school; although he graduated about a decade before I did. 

We spent a few minutes looking through some cards a $1 or 6/$5 box and saw a My House basketball card. I mentioned to my son that I wanted the Devin Booker version of that card, so we set out looking for that card in a $5 box that the same dealer had. We found one and so I took it ($5) plus three $1 cards and asked the dealer if he would take $7 for it. He countered with $5 as long he (pointing to my son) gets some. Deal. I mean, they have to go to someone when I die. 

Here is the Booker, 2020-21 Donruss Optic My House! insert card.

There is a story behind why I wanted this specific card. Back in 2017 Russell Westbrook was in pursuit of the single season triple-double record. He was tied with Oscar Robertson at 41, when the Oklahoma City Thunder came to Phoenix to play the Suns on April 7th with just 4 games left in the season. Westbrook got double digit points and rebounds and just needed assists to get sole possession of the record. 

Some fans in the arena started cheering for Thunder player after Westbrook would pass them the ball, hoping they would witness history. Devin Booker took offense to the cheers fans cheering for the opposing team and screamed at the fans "This is my house!" 

My oldest son and I were at the game. We were not cheering for Westbrook. We were cheering for Booker and the Suns. Booker scored 37 points in the Suns 120-99 victory over the Thunder.

Westbrook would end with 23 points, 12 rebounds, and 8 assists. He would break the record his next game, on April 9th against the Denver Nuggets, with just two games left in the season. 42 is still the current single season triple-double record. 

I saw this card at a show a couple of months back and it caught my eye because I remembered Booker actually saying "This is my house!" at that particular game. I don't collect a lot of basketball cards, but this is a card that is meaningful to me, so I was happy to add it to my collection.

Here are the other 3 cards I got from the same dealer, that he essentially just threw in.

There were a bunch of Topps Holiday cards in the box from a couple different years. I picked up a couple since I never got any in the wild.

I never bought, nor will I ever probably buy any Bowman Platinum packs or boxes, so grabbing this Jazz Chisholm rookie card seemed like a good thing to do. 

Looking back I don't even know why I grabbed these. I am supposed to be reducing the size of my collection. Adding these 4 cards means I need to get rid of at least 4 cards. Comment below with an athlete that went to your same high school, your favorite holiday tradition, the last time you built a snowman or your favorite Jazz artist and I'll pick someone, or maybe a few people, to send a PWE with some cards so that I can reduce my overall collection size. 

Saturday, January 8, 2022

Thursday, January 6, 2022

You can never have Too Many Goldschmidts

I don’t add very many Goldschmidt cards to my collection these days, but I still collect him and am happy to find a good Goldy that I don’t already have. So when Dennis, of the blog Too Many Verlanders reached out and asked if I needed this Goldschmidt, I was happy to see that I didn’t have it. 

This one is numbered out of 99. I like the gold with the red and blue. I think it goes well. Plus, I’ve always liked gold colored Goldschmidt cards.

Dennis added a couple other Goldschmidt cards. Autographs of two players that I thought and hoped were going to have long, fantastic careers with the D-Backs. Unfortunately neither did. 

Carlos Quentin had a decent career, but his best years were with the Rockies.

Matt Davidson won a Triple A Home Run Derby and I thought he was going to be a power hitter for years (didn’t hurt that I won an autographed bat from him on Twitter), but he only played a few games with the D-Backs before getting traded to the White Sox. He showed momentary bursts of greatness, but injuries have plagued him. Looks like he is currently back in the D-Backs minor league system.

This card has some serious shine! The camera doesn’t do it justice. Thank you Dennis for some great cards!

Who are some players that you thought were going to have a fantastic career on your favorite team, but it just didn’t happen. Max Scherzer is another one that comes to my mind for the Diamondbacks. 

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

1968 Topps Hank Aaron

A couple of days ago I mentioned I got a new playing era Hank Aaron card in the mail. I picked up this 1968 Topps card via eBay just before the New Year, but it arrived on January 3rd, so I am counting it as an incoming card for 2022.

It’s not in great shape, but it’s not too bad. No major issues. After tax and shipping I was able to add this to my Topps Hank Aaron collection for just under $50. Aaron’s cards have gone up over the last year or so since his passing, so I’m happy with the price.

Going into his 15th season Aaron had already hit 481 home runs, which means he still had 274 homers in him. Crazy numbers!

Very happy to add a base card to my Topps Hank Aaron project. Seems like it’s been a while. I did pick up a 1955 Bowman last year, but other than that I think the only Aaron cards I added were League Leader or other subset cards.

I need to do another post highlighting all of the various playing days cards I currently have and which ones I need. I didn’t include this project as part of my 2022 goals, but I definitely want to make progress on this during 2022.

The 1968 Topps set is growing on me. It’s a very plain design, but I think it works. Plus it’s got some pretty amazing rookie card power. 

What are your thoughts on the 1968 set? Love it, hate it or just meh?