30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Doubling the Size of my Japan PC

Imagine a forty-two year old man sitting on the floor of his office sorting baseball cards into teams the same way he did it when he was a kid.

That's exactly what I did yesterday afternoon after receiving a 400ct. box filled with Japanese baseball cards from Jason over at Clyde's Stale Cards.

This box of cards doubled the size of my Calbee and BBM baseball card collection.  In fact I ended up adding a new binder to my shelf.  I even had to start putting 18 cards into each 9-pocket binder page, because space is a premium.

But enough about sorting and reorganizing... let's get to the goodies.  First off... I've been Bipped:

1987 ProCards #128

Well... not literally.  But Jason did send me my first Bip Roberts minor league card.  He also hooked me up with 15 cards for my 1986 Donruss baseball set:

I'm also building the first four Marvel Universe sets from the early 90's.  He also sent a few of these as well:

But the bulk of his care package were original Calbee and BBM baseball cards from Japan.  Let's start off with the newest addition to my Fujimoto collection:

2004 Calbee #195

I'm still waiting for a Fujimoto to play in the MLB, so for now... I'll settle for a couple of minor leaguers and a handful of NPB players.  Atsushi played the better part of his thirteen year career with he Hanshin Tigers, where he's currently one of their infield coaches.

Masanori Murakami was the first Japanese baseball player to cross the Pacific and play in the MLB, but it was Hideo Nomo who really opened the floodgates for them.

1991 BBM #202 and #206

Back in the mid 90's... I dove head first into Nomo-mania, but I didn't really start my Japanese athlete PC until I jumped back into the hobby in 2008.

2005 Calbee StarCard #S-03

It started with guys like Daisuke Matsuzaka, Ichiro Suzuki, and Kenji Johjima.  But eventually I discovered these guys had Japanese baseball cards too.  That's when I expanded my collection to include these as well as unopened wax packs.

These days... I collect just about anything and everything featuring Japanese baseball players.  My collection is split into four categories:  Japanese baseball players (MLB cards), Japanese baseball players (NPB cards + packs), Team Japan players, and any non-sports trading cards from Japan.

Murakami, Nomo, and Ichiro will always highlight my collection, because of their impact in the MLB... but I also enjoy some of the lower tier players like Munenori Kawasaki:

2005 Calbee Title Holder #T-10

I love the energy and entertainment he brings to the game.  Another guy I like is Koji Uehara of the Boston Red Sox:

2005 Calbee StarCard #S-42

But my favorite current Japanese player is Yu Darvish...

2006 BBM Fighters #F02 and 2007 BBM FIghters #F088

Hopefully he'll be able to bounce back after undergoing Tommy John surgery.  And finally... I'll leave you guys with two mystery cards:

I tried to research each of these people, but came up short.  It looks like Ayumi Kataoka was the first female manager in Japan.

As for the sweet looking hologram... I can't figure out the player, because it's  mostly written in Japanese.   But I'll go ahead and guess "Mel Hall", who had a monster season for the Marines back in 1993.

Thanks Jason for this generous package.  You're one of the guys who might need to wait a little longer in terms of return "care packages".  You collect very specific players, so I need to see if I can scrape up some stuff for your collection.

Happy Sunday and sayonara!


  1. The hologram is actually from Taiwan. Leo Garcia was the March MVP (basically CPBL's player of the month). It was sitting next to my desk for months, so I just threw it in assuming you didn't have a badly peeling Taiwanese hologram of Leo Garcia. If I was wrong on that count, I apologize.

  2. 今度日本に戻ったらフジサンのためにヴィンテージの面子カードでも探しておきます。

  3. Jason - I promise to give your badly peeling Taiwanese hologram a loving and caring home. Thanks again for the awesome package!

    Zippy - Had to put your comment into the Google translator. Here's what it responded...

    We have been looking at vintage face card for Fuji When you turn back to Japan.

    Is this close?

    Mark - Yeah. It's not often one of your PC's doubles in size with one package.

    1. Lol, no it's not. Let's just say I have something planned to boost your Japan PC. Something old... (Disclaimer, it might take a few years).

  4. That's a great package! Jason has some amazing stuff in his collection.

  5. That's a hell of a Bip! The Japanese cards are cool too!

  6. I'm a sucker for Japanese cards, and I love everything you posted here. I was actually Zippy Zapped with a copy of that same Kawasaki a while back.

  7. Great cards... I particularly like the Koji, as I've been a fan of his since he was with the Orioles.

    I became intrigued by Japanese baseball in the 1970's, and at one point I had something of a player collection going for any Japanese players in MLB... But then it got to be more than a handful, and I abandoned that collection.

  8. ryan - totally agree. it provided hours of entertainment. if things go as planned, i should be opening your packages this weekend.

    defgav - yeah. huge addition to my padres pc.

    nick - as crazy as this sounds... i'm pretty sure that this is only the third kawasaki card i own. don't see cardboard of him every day.

    shlabotnikreport - i totally understand. based on binders, my japan pc is the 2nd largest collection on my book shelf... right behind my baseball inserts/parallels collection.