30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Never Gonna Happen

One of the things I love the most about my father is that he keeps things real.  Sometimes too real.  He told me I could be almost anything I wanted to be... within reason.  He encouraged me to set challenging yet reasonable goals for myself.

Little League baseball is the perfect example.  I dedicated years of my childhood to playing ball.  I was fortunate enough to play on a few all-star teams.  But I was short, chubby, left-handed (who played second base), and when I finally reached high school, I couldn't hit anything they threw at me.

In short... I accepted the fact that I'd never end up playing for the Oakland Athletics at a fairly young age.

Did I quit playing?  Heck no.  I enjoyed the challenge and had way too much fun.

That same philosophy can be applied to my collecting habits.

1999 UD Century Legends Epic Signatures #RJ

I recently purchased this Reggie Jackson for the 1999 UD Century Legends Epic Signatures set I'm currently trying to build.  If you asked me who was on my Mount Rushmore of autographed card designs, this would be on it.

I love how Upper Deck combined the player's portrait with the black and white photo of Tiger Stadium in the background.  This allows the blue Sharpie to really stand out.

And the checklist is rock solid.  Here's who I've acquired so far:

Getting back to the topic at hand.  Just like I came to terms with my baseball career... I've come to terms with completing this set.  It's never gonna happen.

Why not?  Well... out of the thirty cards on the checklist, I've whittled my way down to eleven cards on my wantlist.  Four of them are reasonably attainable.  Bill Mazeroski, Don Larsen, Eddie Mathews, and Willie McCovey can all be obtained for $30 or less.  It's just a matter of whether or not I'm willing to spend that much on their signatures.

Six of them are either expensive or crazy expensive.  I'm not sure if these guys were short printed or not, but Alex Rodriguez, Barry Bonds, Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux, Nolan Ryan, and Tom Seaver sell for hundreds of dollars.  I'm willing to spend $100 for any of these.  Maybe even $125.  However... it's probably more realistic for me to tryout for the Oakland Athletics.

Then there's Juan Gonzalez.  Gonzalez doesn't sell for triple digits, but he's not in the under $30 category either.  So while I may eventually add three, four, or five more signatures to this set, I've accepted the fact that completing this set is never gonna happen.  But that's okay, because I'm going to have fun trying.

What about you...

Are you currently building any sets that you're pretty sure you'll never complete?

I look forward to reading your responses.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

Monday, September 17, 2018

The Other Space Saga

Forty years ago, one of my favorite childhood television shows premiered on September 17th, 1978.

Compared to Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica doesn't get nearly the same press in the media or on this blog.

That being said... I wanted to finally give it the respect it deserves.  I may not have a lot of BSG memorabilia in my collection, but I did manage to pick up these two signed figures a few years back:

2012 Bif Bang Pow! Battlestar Galactica Series 1 Capt. Apollo
Signed by Richard Hatch

2012 Bif Bang Pow! Battlestar Galactica Series 1 Lt. Starbuck
Signed by Dirk Benedict

Both of these figures were produced in the popular 70's Mego style.  Unfortunately, I don't remember owning any growing up.  I was more of a Kenner Star Wars guy.

However I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to grab these when Entertainment Earth had these on sale a few years ago.  According to their site, these figures were signed at the 2012 San Diego Comic Con and limited to 200 pieces.

Another piece of BSG memorabilia that I own is this comic book released back in 1979:

Marvel Battlestar Galactica #1 March 1979

When I was a kid, I did have a big stack of comic books, but I don't think I owned this issue.  I found this copy at the De Anza Flea Market back in 2014 for two bucks.  It's not worth a lot, but it's a cool display piece.

Next up is this 1978 Wonder Bread set I picked up off of eBay last year for $5 (+ $2.85 shipping).

This is another blast from the past.  I don't remember these cards specifically, however I do remember finding cards in loaves of Wonder Bread.  Wonder also produced Star Wars, football, and other trading cards back in the 70's for kids like myself to collect.

Last, but certainly not least is this custom card created by Gavin over at Baseball Card Breakdown:

Back in 2016, Gavin held a contest on his blog and the winner got to pick a subject for his Ginter Pretty Girls custom set.  I went with Grace Park, who played Sharon Valerii on the Battlestar Galactica reboot.  If I had to pick a celebrity crush, it would definitely be her.

Well that wraps up another collection established by a positive memory from my childhood.  Due to limited finances and other hobbies, I don't anticipate it growing much more.  But there are two things I'd like to add one day...

#1:  Rittenhouse Battlestar Galactica Grace Park Autograph
#2:  1978 Topps Battlestar Galactica Set w/Stickers

Until then...

Happy Anniversary BSG fans and sayonara!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Saturday Night Five: 3500ct. Monster Box

On Tuesday, I showed off this 3,500ct. box of baseball cards I purchased at the De Anza Flea Market on my birthday.  Well I finally got around to digging through it.  More than half of it was Junk Wax Era commons and semistars.  About 500 were Junk Wax Era hall of famers.

There were also about 200 miscellaneous oddballs, 200 1986 Sportflics, and 30+ 1987 Donruss Roberto Clemente puzzles (the ones that come in the 1987 Donruss Highlights sets).

The rest were a bunch of 80's Fleer baseball stickers:

The majority were from 1982 and 1986 with some 1983 and 1984 sprinkled in.  Plus there was one random 1987 San Francisco Giants sticker thrown into the mix.  These were by far the highlight of the box for me.  I love 80's Fleer team logo stickers!

I'm sure most of you have no interest in seeing them, so I figured I'd show off five of my favorite non-stickers from the monster box.

#5:  1986 Southern League All-Stars #23

There were a handful of minor league cards scattered throughout the box.  This was the only one featuring a hall of famer.

#4:  1985 Topps Circle K All-Time Home Run Kings #33

I love Topps thirty-three card boxed sets almost as much as those Fleer stickers.  This was the only Circle K card in the box, but you won't find me complaining about Yogi.

#3:  1986 Sportflics #24

One of my favorite players in the mid 80's was Vince Coleman.  This is one of his lesser known rookie cards.  Not surprising though.  Sportflics is sort of a lesser known baseball card brand.

It's sad, because 1989 Upper Deck, 1990 Leaf, and 1991 Stadium Club often are regarded as the first high-end products.  But I personally feel like Sportflics deserves that title.  Back in 1986, these lenticular baseball cards were sold in packs of three for 65¢ each, while Topps came in packs of fifteen for 35¢.

#2:  1980 Topps #667

If you watched baseball in the 80's, then you know why this card is #2 on this list.

#1:  1987 Topps Kmart 25th Anniversary #1

When I was a kid, I couldn't stand going into Kmart.  I'd sit in the car while my mom shopped, so I didn't risk running into kids from school.  This card is proof that Kmart wasn't that bad.

Well that's it for today.  Here are the results from the Pay It Forward contest from last Saturday:

Congratulations baltmoss69!  Email me your mailing address along with teams and players you collect and I'll put together a care package for you.  Thank you to everyone who took the time to comment and participate.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Bright Sunshiny Day

Autumn is just around the corner and pretty soon temperatures should start to drop and the leaves around my neighborhood will begin to change color and fall.  I'm looking forward to its arrival.

In the meantime, it's still bright and shiny in my neck of the woods.  Figured I'd celebrate the clear skies while I can still enjoy them with some recent additions that feature two things I truly appreciate in our hobby:  acetate and autographs.

Card #1:  2018 Topps Clearly Authentic Autograph #CAA-JV

I've been trying to add a Joey Votto autograph to my collection for years.  He's signed a few on-card autographs since 2014, but most of them are fairly low numbered which means they aren't exactly cheap.

Now that they're are finally starting to saturate the market, prices have started to stabilize and in some cases drop.  At the end of last month, I won this card off of eBay for $34.10 (+ $5.90 shipping).

There is so much red in the background, I actually thought I was bidding on the red parallel.  However when it arrived, I realized that this card isn't serial numbered to 50.  Oh well... I was still happy to finally able to cross Votto off of my wantlist.

Card #2:  2017 Topps Clearly Authentic Reprint #CARAU-JV

Although I like the look of the 2018 Topps Clearly Authentic Votto, I'm not going to lie.  I totally was settling.  The 2017 rookie reprint autograph was the one I really wanted.  Unfortunately, they've been known to sell in the $70 to $80 range, which was a little too rich for my blood.

Then I saw this one closing on my birthday, right before I was about to go out to dinner.  I threw out a bid I was willing to pay and ended up winning it for $52.50 (+ $3.50 shipping).

Four years of searching for his signature and I picked up two within a six day span.

Card #3:  2002 Topps Pristine Personal Endorsements #PE-BB

I have about ten eBay searches that I actually check on a daily basis.  Barry Bonds autographs are one of them.  Fans, collectors, and bloggers are divided when it comes to Barry Lamar Bonds.  Although I don't condone the use of PED's, I've accepted that they were part of the game and feel it's not realistic to remove two decades worth of baseball history from the record books

Throw in the fact that I had the pleasure of seeing Bonds play on a bunch of occasions and each time he stepped into the batter's box, he brought fans to the edge of their seat.  I can't ignore my past.  Nor will I ignore his greatness.

I realize the evening is approaching for many of us, so I'll focus my attention towards tomorrow.  Here's to a bright, sunshiny Friday.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!