30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A bike ride lead me to a Montana rookie... and a whole lot more!

This morning I took my cruiser for a little ride into my childhood neighborhood (about 3 miles from where I live now). It was weird seeing the house I grew up in completely remodeled and upgraded. In fact, most of the houses in the neighborhood seemed to go through the home improvement phase.

While riding home, I came across a garage sale. I had seen a few earlier in the morning, but didn't bother to stop. But this house looked to have some Star Wars stuff, so I decided to check it out.

There wasn't anything I was interested in and just as I was about to leave a woman asked me if I was looking for anything in particular. I asked her if she had any sports memorabilia or cards and she told me she did.

Her brother had passed away and was an avid collector, so she was selling his cards. She hadn't put them out yet, but she had them spread out in her dining room. I guess someone had gone through the stuff last night and spent $300 on a bunch of vintage.

At first glance, it looked like your typical collection of overproduced 90's cards. A few Shaq inserts caught my eye, so I decided to look through the boxes. I'm glad I did, because buried amongst the piles of cards were some real sweet treasures.

There's way too much to list. Some of the cheaper items, I'll share in future posts... but today... I'll just post the highlights of my purchases:

94/95 Upper Deck "Slam Dunk Stars" #S12 Shaquille O'Neal
94/95 Ultra "Scoring Kings" #5 Shaquille O'Neal
94/95 Flair "Center Spotlight" #4 Shaquille O'Neal
93/94 Ultra "Scoring Kings" #8 Shaquille O'Neal
94/95 Ultra "Jam City" #8 Shaquille O'Neal
95/96 Flair "Hot Numbers" #11 Shaquille O'Neal
95/96 Finest "Refractors" #252 Magic Johnson
1996 MotionVision "Limited Digital Replays" #LDR7 Brett Favre
1996 MotionVision "Limited Digital Replays" #LDR8 Brett Favre

2006 Press Pass Bronze Autographs #15 Maurice Drew

1975 Topps Mini #660 Hank Aaron
1975 Topps Mini #370 Tom Seaver
1969 Topps #100 Hank Aaron (writing on back)
1977 Topps #650 Nolan Ryan
1974 Topps #20 Nolan Ryan
1952 Look N See #11 Nathan Hale

1990 Action Packed Rookie Update #35 Emmitt Smith
1984 Topps #123 Dan Marino
1984 Topps #63 John Elway
1981 Topps #216 Joe Montana
1982 Topps #21 Cal Ripken Jr. (x2)
1980 Topps #482 Rickey Henderson
1983 Donruss #277 Ryne Sandberg

I'm pretty stoked about finally adding a Joe Montana rookie card to my collection. The other card that stands out for me is the Shaquille O'Neal Hot Numbers insert. Actually... who am I kidding...I'm pretty stoked about all of them.

The lady mentioned that she didn't know much about cards, so I went home and brought her a price guide. I taught her how to look up prices and how to find BV's on COMC. I also told her that BV isn't necessarily accurate and suggested that she search "completed listings" on eBay.

It may seem like I bought a lot of stuff, but I barely scratched the surface. She had a ton of vintage star cards: Nolan Ryan, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Pete Rose, etc.

I can only imagine what the guy from last night hauled in. Mantles? Tobacco cards? Anyways... I explained to her that she had a gold mine in her possession. And after a couple of hours, I had helped her sort her treasures from her trash.

I left with a few more cards... some of them PC additions.. and part of them were "thank you" gifts for helping her out. I gave her my phone number and told her I'd help her out when she's ready to post some of the bigger cards on eBay. The rest she plans on selling at the flea market next month.

I won't go into specifics on what I paid, but it was definitely worth my time to stop by and check out her stuff.

It's crazy to think that this morning I figured I'd do something different for once and get some exercise... but in the end... it lead me back to sports cards. The only downside is I might be addicted to garage sales now.

Here is Saturday's question of the day:

Do you ever go to garage sales?
If so, what's the best thing you've ever found?

Oh... updated contest standings have been posted. In the next few days... I'll be adding something to the prize list as promised. Until then... enjoy the rest of your weekend. Sayonara!


  1. Cool story! Congrats on the pickups.

  2. Haven't been to a garage sale in ages. I definitely need to though. I'd guess I found a cool toy at one as a kid.

    Wish I could more specific.

    Oh, and are you tied to the Mojo Drew Auto? I've been slowly setting aside some things you might like.

  3. I never go but should start. My wife just picked up a vintage dresser, chair and printing tray for $25 today, does that count?

  4. Sadly there's never any garage sales over here, The last flea market I went to, I bought a solid wood CD tower for under $10 & a Doors LP!

  5. My wife and in-laws LOVE garage saleing and I enjoy tagging along. They usually look for furnature and dishes (my wife collects blue "Moon and Stars" glassware. I should post some pics sometime of her collection.)

    Anyway, the first thing that came to my mind was the last garage sale we went to was during my wife's law school graduation weekend and me and my dad found him a 1950s (I think) band saw for $50. It had a cast iron stand and weighed a good 100 lbs. I can't remember the last time I saw him that happy.

    Congrats on the great finds. I hope to one day stumble into a collection that great at a yard sale.

  6. No I don't go to garage sales but I heard someone find a Honus Wagner during the 1970s and just a few years ago didnt someone find a 1969 Redlegs team card?

  7. Nice story. Way to be the good guy here especially!

    Me and yard sales...notsomuch lately. Just seems I'm always on my way to somewhere when I'm out and about and I don't have time to stop (plus right now I live in a student heavy/apartment heavy area). I'm hoping that when I move to the other side of town in a few weeks I'll start hitting more yard sales, as it's more local heavy. Because I love yard sales and trying to find deals!

    My best of all time...hard to say. Probably some Headliners though...I used to buy those Corinthian things all the time.

  8. DANG FOOJ! Nice haul buddy.
    Best find... The "pizza boxes" full of 1981 and '82 Topps cards that I scored a few weeks ago.

  9. Nice pick ups.

    Locally our garage sales tend to be spread all over the place and if you don't get there in the first moments there are a group of "professionals" who swoop in and raid all the things of value, often way underpaying and not feeling bad about it. Guess that's why they are "professionals."

    Must be fun. Maybe I'll try one in the next few weeks just to see what happens.

  10. I used to go to yard sales back when I lived in northern British Columbia.... rural areas always have the best sales. Since I moved to Calgary, the garage sales are just horrid junk best seen in the land fill.

  11. Between the '56 Jackie and this garage sale haul, you've had one heck of a Spring, Fuji. Congrats on all that cool stuff, especially the Montana (which will probably take the #10 spot next time I cross an all-time want off the list).

  12. I went to a garage sale the other day and bought a cool polyester shirt for 50 cents. I am actually wearing it right now. True story.

  13. I've thought of going to garage sales to look for cards. I've been to flea markets and parking lot group yard sales, but I've been disappointed most of the time. I remember in the early '90s I went to a flea market and there were tons of dealers with cards, but now they seem to be full of Mexican and Chinese dealers with lots of the same stuff - slutty clothes and cheap housewares.

    I did see one community yard sale with a bucket or milk crate full of game used (probably BP-caught) MLB balls. They were a buck each, but I had no use for them so I left them there.

  14. The closest to a garage sale here in the UK would be a car boot/trunk sale,last one I went to I pickd up an original Metalica Master of Puppets LP for $2 sold on ebay for $40.

  15. I need to go garage sale searching more often.

  16. Have not done a whole lot a garage sales, but the only thing I can remember buying was a "Pit stop Scene" diorama of the 42 mello yello car

  17. I used to hit up yard sales a lot. Never really had any luck though. :-(
    Amazing pickups

  18. I used to got to garage sales and the like, hoping I could find that shoebox full of cards for $5. I've never even found an '87 Topps card at any yard sale I've been to. Sigh...

  19. Dont really have garage sales over here. But I did pick up a store model Mickey Mantle glove from the first flea market I ever went to when I lived in the states. The glove was all beat up and covered in writing, which I cant get off.
    Still it was pretty cool and I still have it.

  20. I go to garage sales on the regular. I don't score cards too often but did get a complete set of Americanna recently for 2 bucks.

  21. I occasionally check out the garage sales around the neighborhood. Whenever I walk up to a garage sale, the first words out my mouth are "Do you have any baseball cards?" 99% of the time the answer is no, but last summer I scored a bunch of 80s-90s Cardinal cards. No vintage or autos like you found, though. Congrats on the big score.

  22. BTW, my comment was to say that I have not gone to garage sales. Hope that was clear enough.

  23. Thanks for all of the comments... it's a shame a lot of you don't have a lot of garage sales to choose from. I'm planning to make it a routine... riding my bike and checking out local garage sales.

    Zakwin - It's the only MJD auto in the collection... so I'd like to hold on it. If I end up grabbing one in his Jaguar's uniform... then you can have first dibs on this.

    Kirk - yep... dressers count too.

    Eric - vintage tools? awesome!

    John - i heard about the wagner card too. unfortunately... i wasn't nearly as lucky. but i'm not complaining.

    Spastik - it's funny... i love SLU's... but never got into the whole "headliners" fad. I only have one in my collection... it's my brett favre that was gifted to me.

    thesewingmachineguy - are you going to build the 1982 set? if so... let me know... maybe we can help each other out.

    baseball nut - yeah... i know what you mean about the "professionals". someone went over the night before and spent $300 on a bunch of stuff. i can only imagine what was in there... if they left all the other vintage stuff behind.

    scott - thanks... two of my biggest wants crossed off in less than a month. i'm one happy camper.

    spiegel - 50 cents for a shirt? nice deal... polyester? even better ;-)

    ryan - that's actually one thing i'd like to add to my collection one day... a game used ball or puck

    hairylemon - that's my favorite metallica album... nice pick up.

    tonymc - nice find... i'm sure that's worth a shiny penny. i'd like to find my old tom seaver glove i used in little league.

    babenny - americana set for $2? congratulations!

    baseball nut - 10-4 buddy!

  24. Oh... I'm adding up the points... so an update will be here shortly. This means... no more points for this particular post. Thanks again for the awesome participation!