Friday, October 24, 2014

Dime Box Additions

For some reason, some bloggers are easier to "buy for" than others. That centers around the fact that some bloggers -- like me, for example -- have huge holes in the collections that they have chosen to pursue. Other folks are much more focused than I am, have been at it for much longer, and/or have want lists that fall right where my card collecting "holes" are located.

Another type of blogger who is easier to "buy for" than most are the bloggers with eclectic tastes. Whether it's because they collect plays at the plate, pitchers hitting, players with microphones, or just oddballs generally, these bloggers are ones who appreciate the random collections of cards that one can harvest from a 1980s-based collection like mine.

I say all that because I really enjoy trading with Nick from the Dime Boxes. I really enjoy reading Nick's blog because it's truly the Forrest-Gump-box-of-chocolates there. You never know what has caught his eye, his dimes, and his attention on a day-to-day basis.

That's a good thing, by the way. 

An envelope from Nick showed up in my mailbox while I was actually in Nick's neck of the woods in Northern Illinois. Nick had shown off some Robin Yount O-Pee-Chee cards that he had bailed out of their dime-box jails, and I asked him if he might send them to me. 

Along with these cards came this note:



I wasn't expecting more, but let me tell you, Nick -- I enjoyed every one of these and needed all of them!

Starting with Eddie Mathews. As I have said on a few of my individual player collection pages, some of these players are ones that I simply haven't focused on in my time back in the hobby. Eddie Mathews is one such guy. It took me until that recent card show to get cards in hand that were from his playing days, for instance. 

Somehow, Nick has found Eddie with his dime box Friends in low places:







To be fair, that 1953 Topps card of Mathews is from the Topps reprint set from 1991. That does not in any way distract from the fact that these are all excellent cards I needed for my Mathews collection.

Nick also ticked a box on the Warren Spahn collection page:


I've only recently mentioned that I added Lew Burdette to the ever-expanding player collections I have. Thankfully, Nick sent these envelopes out after I said that, as this "1953 Topps Card That Never Was" found its way to me. 


I can't leave out Matt Scott's favorite steroid user, though. This Hobby-shop-only card is from 2010. I did not even know this card and a similar Prince Fielder card existed a month ago. Now I have both Prince and the Ryan Braun card.

This Jose Valentin card surprised me because it's one really horribly ugly base set card from Fleer in 1995. 


It's as if the graphics designer who wanted to give ESPN2 that "jaunty, young 1990s look" lost his/her job in Bristol and went to work at Fleer.

Back when Keith Olbermann was viewed as pulling in the "younger" crowd...
Another random gap in my collecting is from the 1980s and involves anything not named "Topps." I think I just haven't broken up the sets from that era that I collected, but I just don't have much in the way of Fleer from that era.  Nick fixed that some, sending a number of members of the PC brigade from 1984 to me.
Charlie Moore
Jim Slaton


Ben Oglivie

Cecil Cooper

Don Money

Bob McClure
Finally, while I'm not a Rollie Fingers "collector" like Cynical Buddha is, I don't mind getting a 2005 SP Legendary Cuts base card of the mustachioed one. Especially since I did not own one before.


As with his blog, Nick's PWE to me displays the gems that people with enough patience and sticktoitiveness to plow through dime boxes can find.  And Nick -- a return package is coming your way soon.

Thanks again!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

No Disguise for That Double Vision

After all that rich, fattening blog fodder from the card show, I was worried that I would once again run out of things to write about. I've been terrible the past few months about getting packages out in the mail. The usual result of that is that packages don't come to me in the mail.

Strangely, though, a number of bloggers have sent me cards anyway. One of the odder sights, however, was getting not one but two PWEs on the same day from Gavin at Baseball Card Breakdown




As Lou Gramm sings in this song, he wants his eyes filled with double vision. Weirdly, Gramm said the song resulted from watching New York Rangers Goalie John Davidson getting a concussion and experiencing double vision as a result.

I rather thought it was about getting drunk, or maybe pitching like Bill Wegman.


Gavin personalized that Collector's Choice card for me on both the front and the back:


Now, I opened the envelope with this Breakdown special first and saw that Wegman DUR. My first thought was to laugh, and I did. My second thought was, "Oh God, I think I still need that card for my Brewers collection...I hope that there is another one in this envelope."

There was not.

My third thought was, "I can imagine what is going to happen years from now. Some baseball card collector -- one of three left who still cares then about paper cards and not those wonderfully easily transferrable 'BUNT' cards that everyone else will be collecting because 'technology WHEEEE!' -- will be looking at that Wegman card and think, 'why the hell did someone do that?' I mean, first there was that George Sherrill card that someone optimistically crossed out and wrote Hall of Famer Clayton Kershaw's name on it, and now this?"

Okay, maybe I didn't have the George Sherrill thought, but my mind did wander and think about this card's potential future owners.

Of course, being the strange collector that I am, this personalized card now becomes a Baseball Card Breakdown 1 of 1 in my collection.

Thankfully, in the second envelope, this was the first card I saw:

Also thankfully, Bill Wegman was not the only player whose cards showed up in the PWEs from Portland.

One card making its debut in my collection was this 2000 Bowman card of Ben Sheets. It is the first Ben Sheets rookie card to find its way into my possession as well.


Gavin also fed my maudlin side about the life and times of Rickie Weeks, about whom I seem to be waxing nostalgic on a semi-regular/nearly daily basis.

Perhaps my tortured soul with respect to Rickie will be the start of my novel:

"It was the best of wrists, and it was the worst of wrists."




Gavin jammed -- carefully, of course -- a number of other similarly well-aged Brewer cards from the late 1990s and early 2000s into those two PWEs and sent them to the ATL. Here are the cards for guys who don't get links because I don't have player collections for them.

That does not mean that they are less important to me than any other Brewers. It just that some Brewers are more equal than others.


Levitating Spiers





J.J. Hardy was traded for Carlos Gomez.
The Twins turned that into Jim Hoey and minor leaguer Brett Jacobson.




The easy highlight of the two envelopes, though, belongs to the rather well-fed face of Jeromy Burnitz. His chiseled chin from earlier years went missing by the time that 2000 rolled around. Taking its place was a rounder, plumper, more....Milwaukee physique. Still, his home run power was prodigious, though no one wanted him stealing bases any more.



More to the point and what the scan above does not make clear is the fact that this was a Bowman Gold Parallel, serial numbered 63/99. See, I can prove it:


These two great PWEs gave me Double Vision that got the best of me.

Thanks, Gavin -- they are greatly appreciated, and your return envelope is on my desk awaiting the time when I get to a post office to mail it.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The (non-vintage) Hall of Famers

Yes, I'm finally finishing up my posting about the card show purchases that I made a couple of weeks ago. To be fair, I actually did not post every card that I bought at the card show. My overall total spend was $40, and I came home with somewhere in the range of 350 to 400 cards when all was said and done. 

I love shows like that. Cheap, good condition cards that I need.  The downside to this type of purchasing, though, is that it means that I really need to update my collection and get the "bulk" Brewers collection organized.  

I know. Who would have thought that I would say that I need more organization?

This final group of cards I bought at the show are special in many respects. They are all not vintage. Not in the least. But, they were all Hall of Famers that I found in the dime, nickel, and quarter boxes.

Let's start with the 2002 Upper Deck Piece of History of Eddie Mathews, rescued from the 7.5 cent box (the 15 for $1 group). 


The great thing about Hall of Famers getting cardboard love in present day sets is that these cards are easily obtainable for the average person and within the average collector's budget. The downside is that no one will ever again try to collect the "complete Eddie Mathews" collection. There are too many "1 of 1" cards out there -- even of Mathews -- for anyone to make that effort. 

I haven't added much lately to my Robin Yount collection in large part because most of the cards I am looking for these days either are 100% new or are oddballs. That means more buying on eBay or COMC or Just Commons, but I've been spending most of my card budgets at the shows.  But, I did pick up two of Robin's cards at this past show:




That's a 1994 Score Gold Rush parallel of Robin, a card that had eluded me to this point. That elusiveness wasn't based on any active attempts to purchase it, mind you, but rather based solely on availability.  The other card is from Score's "Hottest 100 Stars" set from 1989. I personally don't find this photo makes Robin look all that hot.

Finally, I picked up a bunch of Paul Molitor cards at the show. 














These dime boxes had some great cards to fill in some gaps. Everything from Electric Boogaloo Diamonds to 1989 Topps glossy All-Stars to 1984 Fleer to 1992 Post Cereal (in fact, I probably could have picked up an entire set of the Post Cereal for about $2 by grabbing one of each of the 30 cards).  

I think this purchase shows more that I focused a lot more on Robin Yount than on Paul Molitor in my purchasing so far this year!

As always, thanks for reading.