30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Bad News = Awesome News

I try my best to have a positive attitude towards life.  That's why I avoid watching the news and discussing politics unless absolutely necessary.  And even when I can't avoid "negativity", I try my best to find something positive in even the darkest issues.

Let's take Panini baseball products.  For the most part... I steer my wallet clear of their logo-less products.  However that doesn't mean I dislike everything they produce.  I've picked up a few of their Hometown Heroes autographs, because they tend to be an affordable way to find pick up on-card signatures of fan favorites.

I even stepped out of my comfort zone and started building the 2013 Hometown Hero base set, because I love the overall design and solid player selection.  However the greatest decision Panini made to get guys like me to consider purchasing their cards was securing The Bad News Bears license.

Ever since I discovered you could pull baseball cards of Amanda Whurlizer, Mike Engelberg, and Kelly Leak from packs of 2013 Panini Golden Age... I've been pumped.  It started off with me picking up the team set, a few minis, and an insert.

But I eventually purchased some of the lower end signatures...

Ahmad Abdul-Rahim (Outfield)

Mike Engelberg (Catcher)

Rudi Stein (Relief Pitcher)

I picked up these three autographs for less than ten bucks a piece on eBay... back in 2013 within a few months of the product's release.  Then the project sort of hit a wall.  Sales for the two larger names (Haley and O'Neal) were fetching well over $50 each and I just wasn't willing to reach that deep into my wallet.

Fast forward to this past April... and I decided to look up their current prices.  Like with 99% of all cardboard values... they dropped after collectors moved on to the current flavor or the month.

I was able to pick up the O'Neal for $32.05 on COMC...

Amanda Whurlizer (Pitcher)

That purchase motivated me to pick up the Haley too...

Kelly Leak (Outfielder)

This was the most expensive autograph out of the lot.  It set me back forty dollars, but at least the money went to a fellow blogger... The Daily Dimwit.

At the time, I thought I was finished with the set.  But after checking The Cardboard Connection's checklist, I discovered I was still missing Toby...

Toby Whitewood (First Base)

Two weeks later, I snatched one up on COMC for $7.75 and wrapped up one of my favorite autograph projects.

They look super cool individually... but the Bears just wouldn't be the Bears unless they stood together as a team:

It's a shame they didn't have other key members of the Bears on the checklist.  Panini... if you're reading this... why don't you make this a "living set" and add signatures of Tanner, Timmy, and Ogilvie using the same card design in a future Golden Age product.

If you did... maybe I'd go out and buy a few packs or possibly even a blaster of Panini Golden Age (which you may or may not have discontinued).  At the very least, you'd have me looking forward to some of your cards.

Happy Wednesday and sayonara!

Oh one more thing... thank you to everyone who left the thoughtful "happy birthday" messages on my blog and over at Facebook.  Very much appreciated.


  1. Pretty damn cool,man!I liked The Sandlot but It's got nothing on TBNB!

  2. Awesome. And I agree with Big Tone.

  3. That's an awesome set, Fuji! Congrats!

  4. That is pretty cool. I think everyone around our age identified with the Bad News Bears kids. We all wanted to be Kelly Leak, definitely.

  5. That is such a cool collection, I am hoping Panini makes things right by at least getting Chris Barnes and Quinn Smith in to a future autograph set. A BNB release is not complete without Timmy and Tanner, I mean Tanner took on the whole seventh grade he was a bad ass at 11 years old.

    Tatum O'Neal was my first celebrity crush after I watched this movie as a kid.

  6. That is so cool! I would have loved to go after the Major League autos but Rick Vaughn sells for outrageous money.

    1. It's that Tiger Blood in his veins that makes it so pricey.

  7. These are awesome - You're right - they look best when they are all together as a team.

  8. Big Tone - It's funny. My students love watching the Sandlot. Shame I can't show them The Bad News Bears.

    Tony - Very true. He was so cool.

    Corky - 100% agree. When I was a kid... always thought those two looked like brothers.

    Matthew - I'd considered chasing that too... but refuse for the same reason.