Wednesday, August 20, 2014

COMC Whoppers

There are a bunch of Griffeys on COMC that have been making my mouse finger twitch for some time, and this past week I finally pulled the trigger on a whole bunch of 'em.  Buyer's remorse be damned!

It's Griffey time:

I've been drooling for this one ever since the first time I saw it atop PATP's blog.  What a concept.  I'm kind of surprised it's only been done the once.  Tough find, but I finally landed her.

This one, too - a very difficult card to land.  The whole insert set is just impossible to pin down.  I pulled the Frank Thomas from a pack back in '98, and while I love it I always really wanted the Griffey.  How much did I want it?

Well, the seller had this up for $15.24, but I thought that was a little steep, so I offered $10.  And wouldn't you know it?  The seller upped the price to $20.24 and counter-offered at $15.24, the original price.  Normally I would say to hell with him, but I really wanted this thing.  I countered at $12.25, almost splitting the difference.  I didn't expect him to take it, and I was right.  He countered at $14.25.  I called it a win and accepted.  Now here it sits on my scanner.  Happy day!

This is a really beautiful insert I could never find for a good price, and I still haven't.  I paid a premium for this card because of the numeration.  I consider it worth it, though.

Here's two of my favorite Griffey card backs:

That Peter Max back is amazing and different on every card in the set.  And the Gold Leaf Stars?  It's number ten.  Ten....out of 10,000.  I just think that's really cool.

While I'm not that crazy about this set design, I can't not pick up a base card when it becomes available.  There are still so many more timelines to do.

I'm also a sucker for reasonably-priced Tek patterns.  Somebody on COMC has a bunch of these on COMC right now for five buck each.  He's dreamin'.  These were less than $1.50 each, and that's where they belong.

I've been looking for a clean Diamond Pearls insert for a while.  It's a beautiful card, but the surfaces get damaged so easily in the pack.  I'm still not certain how I'm going to store it.  Should I risk the binder?

Okay, not a Junior, but a Griffey nonetheless.  This one won't be counted in the collection, but how could I pass it up?  It's stunning.

Cameos!  These are all different, and none of them are the regular base card.  Can you spot all the differences?

Finally, one of the great things about cameos is the cheap parallels.  Case in point: these two cards.

That wasn't 10% of the goodies I got, but I've got to save some for the set posts, don't I?

I know this entire post was essentially bragging.  I promise more actual content in future posts.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Astro-nomical Oddballs: a Trade Post

I got a surprise PWE in the mail from Bru of Remember the Astrodome.  Inside were two oddballs, one of which I had not only never seen before but that blew my freaking mind:

In 1994, Junior broke the Mick's record for most homers through May with 22.  That prompted somebody at a company called Sports Stars USA (who broke the record for most generic baseball card company the same year) to make this card.  And thank goodness for that.  As oddballs go, this one is a....home run?  Derp!

Here's the back:

Seriously, what a crazy-ass card.  I love it like a child.

Holding up the rear is this sweet Card Guard promo:

This card came with a box of Ken Griffey, Jr. brand top-loaders which were sold in a box like this one:

And I can't get enough of them.

Thanks for the oddballs, Bru!  I'll keep stockpiling 'stros for ya.

Monday, August 18, 2014

You Can Tell a Lot About a Man From the Cards He Keeps

This is the stack of binder pages I got from my LCS for five bucks.  It proved to be well worth the investment, and I was able to glean a lot about the guy who originally built this collection.  I should note that I only scanned about 15-20% of the total cards from these pages, those being the ones I intend on keeping.  There were plenty more that are going into the trade boxes.  Now, let's learn about this fellow.

The first thing I noticed is that he loved the Orioles.

The stack on the left is all Orioles, the one on the right is everything else.  And this is me leaving Eddie Murray and Roberto Alomar in the right side stack.  Had I counted those it would be a lot closer...

The biggest chunk on the left is all one player.  You can see who it is, right?  No surprise...

Next, while not his favorite player he obviously had some respect for the Kid.  Here's the stack of Juniors those pages produced contrasted with everything else:

There were about 50 Juniors in there all of which I already had.  Still, here are a few worth a look:

There weren't many cards from before 1993 nor after 1999, so he probably discovered women about the same time as me.

He loved Donruss and Denny's, and who can blame him?

In fact I'm willing to bet he got a box of Donruss for Christmas one year.

He randomly picked up packs in his later years just to keep up with the hobby.  I found a few of the same brand cards scattered in random pockets while the majority of the binders seemed meticulously organized.

He had an eye for funky inserts, unscannable as they may be.

Again, had to be a box of Donruss at some point.

He bought a lot of Emotion, too.  I'm glad he did - there are some sweet inserts in here.

He was at least a little heartbroken when he heard about A-rod's indiscretions with PED's.  That may have had something to do with why he got rid of his collection to begin with.

He knew about cameos.  That Winfield with the Puckett cameo was stored with the Pucketts.

The Donruss box strikes again.  Oh, and he didn't believe in top loaders - otherwise that sweet Maddux AP would have been in one.  It's like a $12 card even by today's standards.  Back then it must have been a fortune.

All the Beckett stars were represented here.

Some great Big Hurts....

You can always tell a 90's collector by how many Mo Vaughns he has.  Dude had a healthy stack.

I love that Alomar cameo; and while I don't really save Sosas, I like that picture a lot.

Based on when he collected, we can assume he was probably super excited to pull that Nomo.

As you probably know by now, mystery guy's favorite player was without a doubt Cal Ripken, Jr.

Those are the Ripken keepers on the right, and all the other keepers (minus the Griffeys) on the left.  There were a TON.  Some nice ones, too:

I mean, WOW.  What a great collection, and all for a sawbuck.  I don't even know what some of these cards are.  This fellow did his job well.

So that's what I wanted to show you from the binder pages I picked up.  I also landed a '99 Beckett from right before the crash (I think?).  All the prices are super-inflated, and some of the ads suggest the whole PED thing hadn't happened yet.  I'll probably make a post about that eventually...

Thanks for reading!

A Very Unlikely New Blog For Your Roll

There's a new blogger out there whose passion for cardboard makes no Earthly sense.  His name is Kevin of the new blog The Card Papoy.  Kevin is from France, but he has spent enough time in the States that his English is solid and his writing is conversational.

What surprises me most about Kevin is that he started collecting cards before he made it to the U.S. (???!).  He learned to love cardboard with no real understanding of baseball or much real access to cards at all.  It's the craziest thing.

I've started reading his blog, excited for his completely unique, probably one-of-a-kind perspective on what is a common and naturally-occurring hobby among American youth.  Plus he likes Griffey, so there's that.

So do the diplomatic thing and go read his blog!  And while you're at it, thank him for the Statue of Liberty, kissing with tongues, and the coarsest mustards known to man.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

I Dare You to Read This (Don't, though)

I should not even be making this post, so I'm scheduling it for Saturday morning when I assume nobody is reading card blogs.

I found this on the Interwebz.  It's a rap song entitled "Ken Griffey, Jr."  It's not super family-friendly, nor is it very good even by hip-hop standards.  I've taken the liberty of highlighting the parts that are pertinent to Mr. Griffey, those being two lines which are identical.

I was hoping it would actually kind of be about Griffey in some way, but it's mostly poorly-rhymed misogynistic nonsense about how women are terrible.  Then he smokes weed and has lots of guns and money?  I'm not entirely certain.  My point is the title was poorly-chosen.  Plus it was written by an adult.  Think about that.

Oh, and I gave the performer the benefit of the doubt and listened to the song on YouTube.  It sounds like it was recorded on a radio morning show.  Plus the guy clearly penned his own Wikipedia page.  Yikes.

I'll come out now and say you should just not read it.  So, here it is!

"Ken Griffey

Where at? right here?
My daddy used to ball.
My daddy used to ball.

(Note: You should stop here, because if there were ever any kind of tracks related to Griffey, we are most definitely going off of them.)

I see the devil in her eyes,
She wear a hell of a disguise.
I should have never been surprised
(but it breaks my heart)
Feel like I never been this high
And I meant that s*** this time.
Told shawty I love her
And I meant that s*** this time
I text her "just me and you"
She text me back "quit lyin'"
I'm just tryin'
You know the blind leadin' the blind.
My mind in a bind,
And my heart in a twist.
If I do commit
Then what's gon' be the benefit?

Well too late
She's already lost her innocence.
Dinner dates,
"it ain't trickin' if you got it"
You 'ont get it,
In a sense
You're gettin' tricked.
Thinkin' that's your woman,
Ain't that a b****?

I just call it like I see it,
Like a unk.
Punk is got them plump lumps.
I'm at they neck
Like a f*****' razor bump.
Pepe le pew, U.A.B.
In other words I'm blazin' skunk.
I just got off stage,
You might not make that all month.
But I take none of it for granted,
Even though I understand it.
They only care about a n****
When I drop that new s***
And they start comparing me to jigga
Or 2Pac, when he was fresh out.
Chest out, Got a FN on the console
And a Tec out
"BOW" made my own bond on my last 4 charges.
I'm just hopin' them my last 4 charges.
I do this s*** for Boosie,
Back to back 4 charges,
Cuz just got that "Maro" out the shop...
That mutha f**** pissed!
I be having to drop my camera man back off,
I be on some other s***
Shout out my homies in the bay
Og train wreck and that bubbly.
I'm just tryin' to make the difference,
Though I only does edition.
I'm talking comprehension,
I really get it. Get it?
I'm talking compensation,
Yea that right, money talks.
I'm making conversation,
I hustle everyday.
Might not ever take a long vacation,

I decided to give him a call
It's like they only love a n****
When Don Trip was involved.
(Stepbrothers... its on the way, its on the way though)

[Don Trip]
Yeah, yeah, the man's in here.
I'm so mutha f*****' fly I need landing gear.
I'm not really from this planet,
I'm just stranded here.
In some pretty bitch mouth like some damn veneers.
I know my flow's so stupid,
I'm on point like a toothpick
And you softer than goose s***.
Really the truth,
Most these rappers is groupies.
A match in the sunlight...
You n****s is useless.

Dammit this is uncharted land
That I'm standin' on.
In a pool of sharks
And I'm bout to do a cannon ball.
They say never try to kill
Mosquitoes with a cannon ball,
So I just watch you n****s die slow,
As if I planned it all.
I dare you to f*** with me.
Who gon' do what to me?
Murder for hire...
It ain't s*** but a buck to me.
Yea right lucky,
"Mr. fighting for custody"
Addicted to fast money,
Fresh out of recovery.

My slice of humble pie
Should be coming any day now.
I took a whole week off,
To build my kids a playground.
Monkey bars, jungle gyms,
Slides and a swing-set.
Still found time
To cop s*** that ain't released yet.
B**** I'm a machine,
Although, I come with plenty defects,
Peep that,
I got too much game to press reset.

Ridin' wit a bad b****,
Whinin' bout respect.
Search this b**** seat...
I hope this mutha f**** eject.
Hand that b**** a parachute,
Land on yo man wit yo needy a**.
Shoulda zipped her lips
Like a freezer bag.
Shout out my brother LITO
Cuz even when we leave the lab,
You gotta know I got that n**** back,
Like a heatin' pad.

Honestly, I prolly wouldn't rap
If I ain't need the cash.
I'm strapped and you know everything I pack
Take extended mags.
Pretty b**** I got
Love to shop
Plus she need a tan.
I got her chewing wood
Like she tryin' to build a beaver dam.

NOTCH! ch ch ch
B**** ch ch ch"

Why did you just do that?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

LCS Cardboard Lootstravaganza!

If you're anything like me, you like to take one-syllable words and add -stravaganza to them.  If that's the case for you, pull up a chair, friend.  I've got some baseball cards to show you.

I stopped by the card shop for some hobby packs of 2014 Topps.  My set building efforts have been totally weaksauce of late, so I figured it was time for an injection of Series 2 before I collate and make a want list.

Anyhoo, I caught the card shop on a good day.  Someone had dropped off a collection and rather than go through everything, the proprietor offered me stacks of great stuff at low, low prices (or free).

I came home with a giant cardboard box of goodies.  Here's a peek:

A few packs, a few books, some great magazines (including a Becket from '99 that I had an absolute ball thumbing through), and a handful of pretty nice cards.  If you look closely you'll see a commemorative ticket to Cal Ripken's tribute game as well as a regular ticket to his last game.  Those were free (in fact I think we pulled them out of a box designated as trash).

This stack of binder pages was five bucks.  I've only given them a quick thumb-through and dude.  Some amazing stuff in there.  In addition to being a solid eight inches thick, all the stars of the late 90's are represented within, including a nice stack of Griffeys and a buttload of inserts and parallels, mostly of Cal Ripken.  This stack is going to get it's own post.

So yeah, timing is everything.  More to come...

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Kerr-ing is Sharing: a Trade Post

Kerry, author of Cards on Cards, is one of the first bloggers I ever traded with; and we continue to fire volleys of cardboard back and forth to this day.  Kerry lives in Portland where they have Voodoo Donuts.  So if you're ever unsure of what to send me, Kerry, I am a donut man.

Donuts or no, Kerry knows what I like (it's Griffeys), but I think he has access to a great variety of other cards because that's what I tend to find in his packages: variety.

I never get Jazz cards, so this was a big surprise.  I don't know who this dude is, but that shirt makes him look like a garbage man.  Appropriate for the New Orleans Jazz.  Anyhoo, I love it.

Some great Kittles from the downslope of his career.  I'll admit here that as I write this I am currently medicated for....reasons, so my wordsmithing is a hair lacking at the moment.  Do not let this disparage the greatness of Ron Kittle and his clean, shiny lenses.

The same goes for pre- and post-Chuckstache shots of Chuck Finley.  The glory days were just around the corner/just behind him on these two cards, in mustache terms, that is.

This card design is insane.  I'll admit that upon first viewing I thought the player's name was Panini.  That's a name plate, guys, not a good place for a brand name.  This is day one stuff.  Still, the new uniforms have grown on me.

Sharper was a legend here until the recent...unpleasantness.  Luckily a promising new rookie got his locally-iconic #42.  Here's hoping for a bright, rape-free future for that young man.

Thanks for the cards, Kerry!  I've been setting Cardinals aside for you every chance I get.  Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go lay in bed and watch Venture Brothers until I drift away into a drool-soaked mini-coma.  Have a great night!