Monday, April 3, 2017

Then *poof* he was gone

For Brewers fans who troll around on eBay looking for items -- and especially for Robin Yount collectors -- a usual stop used to always be wfbookmen's page. Thanks to WF, I have added numerous Robin Yount relics and autographs to my collection -- sometimes at high prices, sometimes at cheap prices. From time to time, he might be a little slow in shipping for unknown reasons, but most of the time he's a solid eBay seller.

I'd stopped buying from him for a while to focus on picking up more team sets rather than the individual player cards. Plus, I'd often have to stop myself from bidding on far too many items. Then, I got one of his emails saying he had a bunch of stuff on sale with short deadlines for purchase. So, I looked at the stuff and, back at the end of January, I bought a whole raft of items from him (which I'm going to show below). It was a weird sale -- I was able to pick up many of the items by putting in a last minute opening bid on each, which usually doesn't happen.

But a weirder thing happened. Shortly after I left feedback, I went back to see what else he might have for sale, and a strange sight appeared:

Say what? Just like Kaiser Soze -- though hopefully without the international terrorist/bad guy overtones -- it seems like it was just *poof* gone. I hope he is okay -- as you can see, he's been a seller for over 19 years. Perhaps it was just a reaction to the continually increasing eBay fees.
At any rate, thanks to the big sale, I got a bunch of nice items. 

First off, we have two media guides from the Brewers early days. I eventually would like to get a complete run of the media guides in good shape like these two -- as opposed to the well-worn versions of my youth, which were my bedtime reading as a kid as if I would be tested on what Robin Yount's middle name is...which, oddly enough, is listed as "R." but many sources (including the late Bob Lemke) say that his real middle name was Rachel...leading me to believe that I too would use just the R and that his parents really wanted a girl when he was born -- but I digress.

Anyway, I don't have many of them currently, but I do like them. The 1973 one featuring Del Crandall and George Scott is particularly nice.

Another group of items that were available featured some of those Topps buyback cards with those wonderful foil stamps to "update" them. 

As you can see, other than the 1976 Topps Team card for the Brewers (with Hank Aaron placed in the center of the standing players), the rest all fit neatly into player collections -- Moore, Money, Cooper, and Oglivie are all core players from the Brewers teams of my childhood. I don't think I paid more than $1 for any one of these cards. These were, in fact, the items that were lingering without bids late on, so I snapped them up for the $0.99 open.

Something WF always seemed to have were the "higher end" sets like Triple Threads. He also seemed to have all the cool inserts and box toppers. I snapped up a couple of these as well:

I especially like the 2010 Heritage team stamps box topper with Braun and Fielder. I wish that Topps had done actual stamps for the new generation, as opposed to printing them on the box topper. Still, it's a pretty cool item to add to my Braun collection. I'm not sure that I'll find two more for both the Fielder and the team collections, though. I think this is the only one I've found (though I haven't looked all that hard).

Going deeper into the oddball side of things, this time around there were two team-issued photos and a couple of large oddballs for sale. 

In order:

The top one is probably from about 1978 or 1979 or maybe 1980. But, I think it's earlier because by 1980 Gorman Thomas was already on his way to covering up with the full beard look that would make him fit in well with Jayson Werth and Charlie Blackmon these days -- the halfway-to-homeless look.  

The next one has to be from 1983 (or it was a reprint from 1982) since it lists Harvey Kuenn as being "Manager." Harvey was the manager from May of 1982 through the end of 1983. Harry Dalton decided to fire Harvey at the end of the 1983 season after what appeared to be a disappointing finish -- losing 18 of 24 games in September of 1983 featuring a 10-game losing streak to blow the division title. Considering that Rene Lachemann came in the next year and led the team to a 67-94 record (featuring Paul Molitor missing most of the season due to Tommy John surgery), perhaps the chinks in the armor were simply displaying themselves a bit earlier.

The next item is a Cecil Cooper Mr. Z's pizza 5 x 7 photo. I have one of these already, but I kept this one unopened. 

Finally, there is the Jeff Cirillo black & white 5x7 photo issued by The Ohio Casualty Group. I really am confused by these because I'm just not sure if this is a giveaway or if Ohio Casualty just sponsored the team-issued set. I know that OCG issued a set of similarly sized photos featuring Braves and Brewers in 1999 for what was supposed to be County Stadium's final season (before the "Big Blue" crane collapse). But I don't know much more than that.

For the final items, well, it would not be a purchase from WFBookmen without some Robin Yount stuff infiltrating it.

The top item is one of those "Diamondmark" bookmarks issued in the early 1990s, when everyone was putting baseball players on everything. Skipping down, we have two serial numbered items -- one of Yount by himself serial numbered to 399 and one with Paul Molitor serial numbered to 1999.

The second item is an unused ticket stub from the 2010 game featuring a Robin Yount bobblehead for the team's 40th anniversary. It's incredible how many times the Brewers seem to feature that 1982 team and its players on bobbleheads, ticket stubs, and other stadium giveaways. This year, for instance, there is a Robin bobblehead being issued to commemorate his ride into County Stadium on his motorbike -- which was immortalized by Gavin on a Cardsphere Heroes card in 2015:

I will use any excuse I can to show that photo. 

At any rate, I'm hopeful that wfbookmen's exile from eBay will end eventually, or that he will surface on another auction site. My Yount collection hopes so too.


  1. Sounds like a good source - here's hoping they turn back up okay! I love the oddballs, especially the bookmark. Oh the 90's...

  2. Wow... you grabbed some really cool buybacks. The Cecil Cooper is sweet! He is one of my all-time favorite Brewers. The Diamondmarks and Heritage stamp box topper cards are sweet too. Hope everything is okay with the seller.

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  4. The Cirillo photo is what they used to give away on "Autograph Fridays" when they had various players at stations around the park signing. If you didn't have anything to get signed, they'd give you one of those.

    And I have also heard about the "Robin Rachel Yount" thing. Actually, on the now-gone blog I had about 8 years ago, I mentioned it and someone with the last name Yount (I can't recall the exact name) commented that Robin had no middle name, just an initial.