Friday, July 13, 2012

Gotta Love Vintage Cards w/ Character!

If given the choice between a high grade vintage card or a low grade vintage card and money isn't an issue... I'll take the high grade card all day long. I mean... who wouldn't?

But let's be real. I'm a teacher, so money is ALWAYS going to be an issue for me.

With that in mind, I have learned to appreciate cards with creases, pinholes, ink stains, collector's initials, and even peeled off backs. In fact, while many collectors feel these are major condition flaws... I prefer to look at it differently.

The more imperfections on the card... the more character the card has.

So today, I'm going to show off some recent vintage acquisitions that have a whole bunch of "character".


Remember those $1 grab bags I picked up at the flea market? Here are the highlights from that purchase. However, I'm warning you in advance. If you're a collector who only deals with high grade vintage, then you may want to look the other way. Because things are about to get nasty.

1972 Topps #49 Willie Mays


This card has a little of everything: tape, writing, & even a nice portion of the back stripped off.


1969 Topps Deckle Edge #29 Bob Gibson


The Mays didn't have enough ink for you? Here's a little more for your viewing pleasure.


1960 Topps #1 Early Wynn


I guess the Gibson looks pretty good now. I wonder what the person who did this was trying to accomplish?


1959 Topps #150 Stan Musial


Forget the fact that this card is super off-centered. Check out the pinholes and the red ink initials at the top. Need more? Check out the back. Remember when we used to tape our favorite cards to the bedroom walls? Now... remember what happened when we tried to remove the tape?

First Mays... then Musial. I'm starting to have a strong appreciation of cards that have part of their backs missing:

1972 Topps #280 Willie McCovey



1969 Topps #539 Ted Shows How



And now... I present you with the piece de resistance...

1971 Topps #525 Ernie Banks


The front isn't that bad... but the back of the card... well, I'll just let the picture do the explaining. Now that's a card with character.


And just in case if you were wondering... yes, there were a few cards in decent condition:

1975 Topps Mini #200 Mantle/Wills MVP



1968 Topps #374 Roberto Clemente AS



1974 Kellogg's #37 Willie Stargell


Plus a whopping 70 copies of...

1989 Fleer #553 Bill McGuire


Now that's taking grab bag filler to the next level.

Today's question of the day...

What's the worst conditioned card in your collection? Is there a story behind it?

1 Point - Leave your response below.
3 Points - Show off your "card with character" on your blog and leave a link below, so that others can enjoy what you wrote.

I'll accept responses to this post until Sunday at 3pm (PST).

FYI: I'll provide all of you with a contest update that includes the All-Star mini contest and the flea market mini contest Sunday afternoon, before my evening post.

Have a great weekend and sayonara!

82 comments:

  1. I have a 1972 Pete Rose that has more creases them a 95 year old woman and some pinholes to go along with them. I guy threw it in an ebay package for free when I won some other cards from him a few years back. I always want to upgrade it but have yet to so it stays in the binder til I do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great bonus card... love the 72 set. When you upgrade, lmk if you want to trade it... I could always add it to my vintage binder.

      Delete
  2. This is one of my favorite topics in the hobby. I'm a big fan of these "cards with character", and I would've gobbled those $1 grab bags up if I saw them at your flea market. I have a ton of these types of cards in my collection.

    I'd say my worst conditioned card is my '75 Topps George Brett rookie, which appears to have gone through a wash and dry at some point in its lifetime. At fifty cents, I couldn't pass it up. Once again, this is a topic I've already blogged about:

    http://baseballdimebox.blogspot.com/2011/12/only-i-would-buy-this-card.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow... now that's a card with character. Thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  3. Hmmmm...now it's probably one of those 89 or 90 Topps Big cards of Mark McLemore, that are a little oversized. It got bend at some time and then creased some more and for some reason I think it's neat since I had a bunch of his cards as a kid and I used to hate those oversized cards as a kid.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't like them back then either... but I picked up a collection of those cards a while back and now they sit in my collection.

      Delete
  4. Unfortunately no time to post this weekend, but the worst is with my '67 Mantle or '54 Ruzzuto. Both are a mess. I wanted a Mantle and finally found the '67 for around $30...or one dollar per crease!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One day... I'll add a regular issue Mantle card to my collection. Nice find.

      Delete
    2. I was going to suggest a 1964 Topps Giants Mantle, since I got mine pretty cheap... but then I looked at the prices on eBay and said "OH! Never mind..." They're probably still relatively inexpensive for Mantles, and it's a nice-looking card, but they ain't "cheap" anymore.

      It's funny... When I was younger I used hear stories about buying 1960's high series cards for pennies, and thought "Man, that must've been nice!" But now I'm the guy saying "Yep, back in the day I bought my 1964 Giant Mantle for $4!"

      Delete
    3. LOL... and I'm the guy saying I bought 1989 Upper Deck Griffeys for $100. Wait... something doesn't seem right.

      Delete
  5. I got a couple of 1952 Topps that are beat up but since it is 52s, they are worth it

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have a 1958 Mantle that I inherited from my dad that looks like it went thru the washing machine. He doesn't remember what happened by Mickey was his favorite player so I am guessing it spent lots of time in his pocket.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Cool vintage stuff The blogger who does "Poor Old Baseball Cards" (and a football version) http://pooroldbaseballcards.blogspot.com/ lives for this type of card he would love those cards. Plus it looks like you got Bipped er Billed (McGuired?).

    I've already done one of those "my worst condition card" posts on my 1960 Topps Football Ralph Guglielmi filler (and the upgrade I got for it) http://captkirk42.blogspot.com/2012/02/upgrade-update-or-two-ralphs-make-that.html

    ReplyDelete
  8. My favorite card with character was already shown on my blog a couple of weeks ago, I will leave the link here again. It is wonderful:

    http://startingnine.blogspot.com/2012/06/quad-reggie-jackson.html

    ReplyDelete
  9. mine was extra special... a gift from a fellow Braves lover. a 1954 Eddie Matthews from dayf.

    I wrote about it here...

    http://waxaholic.blogspot.ca/2011/09/as-promised-vintage-junkie.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nice Matthews... you can return the favor if you win those kitty cat cards ;-)

      Delete
  10. I have a Don Sutton second year card that is in very rough shape... my 3 year old nephew put it in my fish tank when I was about 12, so it has some SLIGHT water damage... but it came from a unique source for me that I have fond memories of, so I keep it, even if the hellish condition it's in.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hahaha! I have a couple 60s Topps Dodgers with hole punches in them. I think the previous owner used to store them in a binder that way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I have one or two cards that have been hole punched too! Awesome!

      Delete
  12. I haven't had the stamina to chime in on your contest yet, but I've been enjoying it and all the blogger participation.

    This topic is near and dear to me and the Vealtones. I just posted about a hacked Pee Wee Reese card: http://cootvealandthevealtones.blogspot.com/2012/07/cobb-was-asshole-so-lets-enjoy-pee-wee.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Didn't realize Pee Wee had Robinson's back. Great history lesson and sweet lookin' Pee Wee.

      Delete
  13. I just a got a very well loved 1953 Topps Hank Sauer (and several duplicate chibi Avengers) out of the blue from Heartbreaking cards, but even my most damaged cards pale in comparison to that Ernie. The back is both disgusting and kinda impressive at the same time. That '68 Clemente is worth the epic Bill McGuire bipping though. Nice find!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Yeah, that Ernie is insane. I almost hope that kid is back again next month, so I can add more McGuires to the collection.

      Delete
  14. My worst conditioned card is probably my 2006 Upper Deck Ichiro card. It was the first Ichiro card I ever pulled in a pack and was the first of many cards I deemed special. Only this Ichiro card was so special that I decided to put it into my wallet to carry it around with me at all times. It's a horizontal card and the top few milimeters were sticking out from the wallet (a small cheap one made in China) and because of that the entire top part of the card disappeared as time went on (as a result I can only see half of the .AVG stats on the back). But, it's still as special to me as when I first pulled it in the pack.
    BTW, I also pulled Hideki Matsui in the same pack of 2006 UD. Two of the greatest hitters in Japanese history in one pack :).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's nice knowing collectors still carry their favorite cards in their wallets. Ironically, I'm in the process of figuring out a way to make a wallet out of baseball cards.

      Delete
  15. You've gotta be kidding me... I'm first? Me? The guy who's late to every party, and I'm FIRST?

    Now you've got me wondering if some tragedy has befallen everyone else, like some low-budget cable movie.... Who's murdering the members of the Sportscard Blogosphere?

    Here's my tale of cardboard woe and a 39-year-old who's lead a hard life...
    http://shlabotnikreport.wordpress.com/2012/07/14/fuji-feedback-the-worst-conditioned-card-in-my-collection/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry... I forgot to turn the comment moderation off. You weren't first... but you did earn 3 points ;-)

      Delete
    2. As soon as I saw the Blogger note about "waiting on moderation" I realized what was happening. I may not be late, but I'm still as clueless as I ever was. :-D

      By the way, thanks for kicking this off, it's turned out to be a great topic!

      Delete
    3. Yeah... I'm having a blast reading everyone's entries.

      Delete
  16. Mine would be a '67 Topps high number Brooks Robinson. I say 'would be' because I can't really call it a card anymore. When I was off at school my brothers decided to take a bunch of cards and cut them into their components photo, name, team, etc) and glue them into notebook pages. I've got the damn thing somewhere. But I'll nominate my '59 Gibson. It's one of the few cards that survived through the years. I'll post it over on my blog by the deadline.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Looking forward to reading your post.

      Delete
  17. Here ya go, a great and well-loved card.

    http://plaschkethysweaterisargyle.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-worst-conditioned-card-in-my.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great card on multiple levels... thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  18. I'm not sure if I'll get a post up in time as i have people in town -- but my worst conditioned cards include a 1958 Willie Mays and a 1955 rookie Sandy Koufax. Both of which I've featured on the blog. Two very nice cards regardless of how beat up they are.

    Here's the Sandy link: http://nightowlcards.blogspot.com/2009/01/poor-old-koufax.html

    Here's the Willie link. Post is a bunch of out-of-date rambling:
    http://nightowlcards.blogspot.com/2008/10/housekeeping.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love both of those cards. The more important issue is that you're approaching your 5 year anniversary. Congratulations!

      Delete
  19. My worst conditioned card is air conditioned.

    http://hockeykazi.blogspot.ca/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love a card with added air conditioning. Awesome!

      Delete
  20. Actually, I've decided to write a new post on this topic. It's been a while since I gave you any new material to read for this contest, I've just been posting old links haha.

    I'll have the post up sometime tonight.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Here it is:

    http://baseballdimebox.blogspot.com/2012/07/cards-with-character.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great post... extra credit for the extra effort. Looking forward to seeing that sportlots purchase of yours.

      Delete
  22. Mine is a 1956 Don Zimmer... I'm not sure what's holding it together but it's part of my low-grade 1956 set. Unfortunately, my scanner is down at the moment. :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The 1956 Topps set is one of my all-time favorite designs... best of luck on your project.

      Delete
  23. a 1960s Transmogrified Frank Sullivan, here you go:

    http://dawgbonesaphilliesphan.blogspot.com/2012/07/flea-market-finds-for-norfolk-va.html

    I'm almost wanting to strive for the Kitty cards just to see what dayf would trade for them! That's gonna be a great read if and when (and where-ever) it happens!

    Later,
    Dawgbones

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He's willing to punch a puppy in the face... so I'm sure he'll trade you something special if you win.

      Delete
  24. I'm in sir!

    http://playattheplatedude.blogspot.com/2012/07/i-have-lot-of-vintage-cards-in-pretty.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nice Robinson... thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  25. Great topic! Here's mine: http://canadiancardboard.tumblr.com/post/27230495041/card-bert-campaneris-1970-o-pee-chee-205

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    Replies
    1. Big fan of Campaneris... bigger fan of cards with character. Thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  26. I'd have to say the most notable one is the 1954 Topps Monte Irvin I picked up for my Topps #3 collection. It's a HOFer from '45 that I got for $4, so regardless of the huge crease across his face, it's awesome.

    http://mycardboardmistress.blogspot.com/2011/10/4-vintage-hofer.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow... I think I just fell in love with the '54 design. Nice card.

      Delete
  27. I have the ugliest Eddie Shore in the universe. I think it was eaten by an enraged fan of Ace Bailey.

    http://1967ers.wordpress.com/2011/11/15/the-ugliest-eddie-shore-in-the-universe-1933-34-opc/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That Shore has chunks of character!

      Delete
  28. I have a '63-64 Parkhurst Gordie Howe card it poor condition:

    http://puckjunk.com/2008/07/04/building-the-set-of-my-dreams/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sure is a great looking card... love how they took a ball point pen to fill in the blue.

      Delete
  29. Wow, I'm bringing nothing to the table this time. I should have guessed in the flea market contest and be unavailable for this one!

    I'm not a vintage collector in terms of actively looking for older cards. Even for the oldest cards I have, the most damage on them is just the normal frayed edges. I checked the cards I picked up from the Topps Giveaway, and nothing there either. I guess my OCD would prevent me from actually purchasing vintage cards in the condition you guys have been showing.

    Hopefully I'll have a better answer for the next contest!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No problemo... at least you get one point for leaving an explanation ;-)

      Delete
  30. My card is a 1974 Topps Hank Aaron, card number 1.

    The story is too long for this comments section, so here is the link.

    http://booboosue.blogspot.com/2012/07/condition-good-to-poor-or-how-to-loose.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great post! I'm going to start collecting that Aaron subset... sooner than later. Oh... love the #1 Aaron... it indeed has "character".

      Extra Effort = Extra Credit

      Delete
  31. Well I would say a signed Jason Akamanis Card from 2003. He's an Australian Football League player. I was young and was collecting Australian cards. I met him before my team the Brisbane Lions won the Grand Final and he signed the card for me in person. I have recently found this card and it's all bent but has value to me as my first ever item signed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cards with character are cool... but cards with character that have sentimental value are the coolest. Thanks for sharing.

      Delete
  32. A 55 Bowman I won in a contest. It's quite creased, but still awesome.

    http://tenetsofwilson.blogspot.com/2012/07/my-worst-conditioned-card.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol... I was raised to take care of my toys too.

      Delete
  33. Cards with character have often been a feature of my blog ever since I started it. I have featured this 1958 Mickey Mantle All-Star, a 1958 Ted Williams...heck, even several 1958 Topps cards at once.

    Aside from 1958 Topps, here's a quartet of 1955 Bowman cards, a parade of 1951 Bowman cards, this trimmed 1952 Topps Yogi Berra, "traded" cards from 1960 Topps as well as 1961 Topps, and even this recent post about my first 1938 Goudey.

    The good news...I recently picked up a new scanner, so my "cards with character" will be featured more often in the future. Heck, this week I have a report of some vintage cards I picked up for $40. I'll save the details, but they definitely have their share of character.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The link above for the 1958 Williams is wrong...here's the right one (and, it's an answer to a previous question you asked!).

      Delete
    2. Damn... those are some amazing cards with character. I especially enjoyed the trimmed Yogi. Thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  34. I guess of my Chris Getz Collection there's a number worn away, so i'll need another to add to it!

    ReplyDelete
  35. I couldn't choose just one...

    http://cardjunk.blogspot.com/2012/07/just-because-you-are-character-does-not.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great post... great cards... great effort. Extra point awarded.

      Delete
  36. Wow... this is exactly why I love running this contest. Thank you to everyone who share their cards with character.

    Contest entries are now closed... stay tuned for a contest update within the next hour or so.

    ReplyDelete
  37. My 1952 Topps #5 had a long life before reaching the Boston area. Late for the contest, but definitely a guy with character.

    http://number5typecollection.blogspot.com/2010/11/1952-topps-baseball-5-larry-jansen.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome card... that card definitely has character. Thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  38. I'm late to the party, but thought I'd share a few anyways.

    http://classonave.blogspot.com/2011/01/roy-campanella-1953-topps-27.html
    http://classonave.blogspot.com/2011/02/whitey-ford-1953-topps-207.html

    http://classonave.blogspot.com/2012/02/enos-slaughter-1952-topps.html
    http://classonave.blogspot.com/2011/07/frank-shea-1952-topps-248.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow... those cards are awesome. I'm torn between the "torn" Campanella or the "red eyed" Shea.

      Delete
  39. Fuj - I linked a story to my blog. http://chucksusedcards.blogspot.com/

    There are some cards with character and a lot more stories to tell. Wars, and plots and 100 years of survival ... anyway, check it out.

    Chuck

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Chuck for sharing. I loved the point you made about wars & cardboard. I've had similar thoughts... but my focus was the impact of natural disasters on cardboard. Like... how many card collections have been lost due to floods, tornadoes, and fires.

      Delete
  40. i know i'm late but i still published a post anyway

    http://garveyceyrusselllopes.blogspot.com/2012/07/do-you-know-what-this-is.html

    ReplyDelete
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