30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Saturday, January 2, 2021

TWiB: Hobby Goals, Summer Plans, Books, and The End Game

2021 is off to a great start.  A special thanks to everyone who took the time to help me out and ask me some questions on my New Year's Eve post.  I'm excited to sit down and start planning my new series which will start in the next few weeks.

It was really nice to see my blogroll explode with more posts than usual over the past week or so.  All of the annual Top 10 lists and New Year's resolution posts were very entertaining and opened my eyes to several cards I'm hoping to add to my collection at some point.

Well let's get things rolling with our first This Week in Blogging post of 2021...

#1My 2021 Hobby Goals

It's been a few years since I've sat down and written down some hobby goals and until I read Daniel's post over on It's like having my own Card Shop... I had no plans of creating a list this year either.  But he was hosting a giveaway for a Paul O'neill game-used batting glove card... so I came up with these...
  • Stick to my budget.
  • Organize my inserts, parallels & oddball PC's.
  • Organize a few 5,000ct. boxes I have laying around.
I haven't figured out what my budget for 2021 is going to be yet, but it'll probably be somewhere around $100 per month.  Maybe even less.  I'd also like to organize my inserts, parallels, and oddball player collections.  Right now most of them are just thrown into binders and organized by players.  My goal is to sit down and organize them by brand so it's easier to see if I already have the card or not.

2016 Topps Chrome Update #HMT26

Finally... I have a few 5,000ct. boxes that need to be sorted.  One of them is filled with rookie cards that I've accumulated over the years.  Yesterday I started to dig through it and founds some really cool items.  One of them was this Blake Snell.

#2Summer Plans

Jim over at cards as i see them wrote about the summer plans that were cancelled do to our planet's current situation.

It made me think about my summer plans that got swept under the rug...

1985 Mother's Cookies Athletics #28

Normally, I'd go to at least a couple of Oakland A's games at the Coliseum... but that never happened.

1987 Mother's Cookies Dodgers #28

My buddy and I had to cancel our annual trip down to Southern California... which meant we didn't get to eat a Dodger Dog or meet up with SumoMenkoMan at Frank and Son.

I also didn't get a chance to visit my father down in Las Vegas.  It's the first time I didn't go down to visit during my summer break in as long as I can remember.

2004-05 Topps Chrome Refractor #178

And the other trip I didn't get to take was my annual trip up to Portland to see my friend and her family.  I was also hoping to get together with Kerry, Gavin, and Rod eventually on one of these trips.

There's always a chance things will be better by this summer... but I won't be flying until I'm 100% certain things are back to normal.  In other words... I'm not getting my hopes up.

#3Another Donruss Variation

Nachos Grande wrote a post earlier in the week about a TCDB trade that didn't go as planned.  It involved a 1988 Donruss Barry Larkin factory set variation.  Like NG, I also thought the variation involved the border.  However after digging a little deeper, I noticed that it actually has to do with the font on the back of the card.  

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find any examples of the factory set variations in my collection.  However I have an example of another variation that Jongudmund  pointed out to me this summer over on his blog: .394 - The Tony Gwynn Baseball Card Blog.

The variation literally has to do with a "dot" or "period" located (or not located) on the back of the card:

1988 Donruss Bonus MVP #BC-6

Can you spot the variation (outside of the different shades of blue)?  If not... here's a closer look:

If you look right after the © 1987 Leaf, INC, you'll notice the card on the left doesn't have a "period", but the right one does.  Okay... start digging through your boxes looking for those variations.

#4The Baseball Card Bible

The Great American Baseball Card Flipping, Trading and Bubble Gum Book is often referred to as the greatest baseball card book in existence.  I've never read it from cover to cover, so I can't really comment.  I do however own two copies of the book:

The first one is a hard cover, first printing version from 1973.  The other is the cover I see more often:

It's from 1991.  One of these versions I received as a gift from a fellow blogger... while the other one was an eBay purchase from 2011.  Unfortunately... my attempt to solve this mystery came up short.

Anyways... Night Owl wrote about the book earlier in the week (which stemmed from a Cardboard Junkie post) where he went through his collection and dug out all of the cards he had that are pictured in the book.  Out of the 243 cards in his version of the book, he discovered he had 48... which is pretty darn impressive.

I left a comment on his posted and estimated I had about eight.  After pulling out my copies and sifting through binders and scans, I came up with these:

1965 Topps #282

1964 Topps #335

1956 Topps #30

1958 Topps #161

1952 Topps #31

I did spot a few more that I'd like to eventually pick up if I can find them for a reasonable price.  So please stay tuned.

Until then... I'm sitting at whopping total of five cards from the Baseball Card Bible.

#5All-Time Teams (The Hockey Version)

If you're a baseball fan and you haven't checked out Chris The Collector's All-Time Teams series... I encourage you to click here.  He essentially created an all-time roster for every MLB team with a player only being represented one time.  In other words, Reggie Jackson only appeared for the Oakland A's, but not for the New York Yankees, California Angels, or Baltimore Orioles.

The amount of research he put into each post was very impressive and although you might not agree with every single selection he made... it's definitely worth the read.

Yesterday he started up a new round of all-time teams.  This time he's covering hockey.

He kicked things off with the Anaheim Ducks.  Regardless of whether or not you're into hockey, I highly recommend that you check out his series.  I promise you won't be disappointed.

Anyways... after reading the inaugural post in the series... it reminded me of my trip down to Southern California back in 1999 when I attended the Ducks Casino Night.  I've written about my little adventure before, but I thought I'd share this signed 8x10 featuring three Ducks that made The Collector's teamPaul Kariya, Guy Hebert, and Teemu Selanne.

#6A Few Sayonara Salutes

Last weekend, I read the news that Phil Niekro passed away.  A few tributes popped up on fellow card blogsBaseball Card Breakdown, The Diamond King, and Sports Cards Ate My Brain.

1979 Topps #595

When I was a kid, I always thought that Mr. Niekro looked much older than he really was.

1986 Topps Traded #77T

When I was in high school, I saw Major League in the theaters and immediately thought of him when Chelcie Ross (Eddie Harris) appeared on the screen.

2014 Topps Archives Fan Favorites Autographs #FFA-PN

But I'm sure most baseball fans will remember the knuckleball pitcher for his hall of fame career which spanned twenty-four seasonsRest in peace, Knucksie.

A few days later, I discovered on Johnny's Trading Spot that Dawn Wells passed away:

2012 Panini Golden Age Historic Signatures #DW

I'm 97% certain that MaryAnn was my very first celebrity crushTwo years ago I wrote about her in this post, but a recent discovery (that I will share on this blog in the near future) has opened the door of doubt.  That being said... it's impossible for me to look at MaryAnn's smile and not smile myself.  Rest in peace, Mrs. Wells.

2015 Topps Tek Signers #11

My final sayonara salute goes out to Jeremy Bulloch who passed away back on December 17th.  For those of you who aren't familiar with that name, he played the role of Boba Fett in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.

If you're a regular on my blog, then you know that Boba Fett is one of my favorite Star Wars characters.  Over the years I've put together a small collection of his signatures that is available here.

I'll just quickly show off my prized possession... which is this limited edition Santa Cruz skateboard that Bulloch signed back in 2017 at a private signing in Oregon with my buddy Mike.  At the time of the signing, Bulloch had never seen one of these skateboards before... which I thought was really cool.  Not sure if anyone else ever had him sign one of these.  If not, this is a one of a kind collectible.

Rest in peace, Mr. Bulloch.

#7Look What I Got Posts

This morning, I read back to back posts which made it sound like "look what I got" posts aren't very popularIs that true?  Do people really no enjoy seeing what other bloggers have picked up?

Personally... I enjoy reading about what cards that other bloggers purchased, traded for, or have sitting around in their collection.  Sometimes it even leads me to picking up cards myself like this Trevor Hoffman "authentic ticket stub" card:

2009 Topps Ticket To Stardom #TS-63

I can't remember whose blog I originally saw this on, but I did rush over to COMC and grabbed myself a copy.  I'll never tell anyone what they should or shouldn't write about... but if you're asking for my opinion... I'd say don't be afraid to show your readers "what you've got".

#8The End Game

Johnny is getting double the exposure in this postLast weekend, he wrote about the possibility of selling off his collection.  Ultimately the issue has to do with leaving behind a collection that nobody in his family wants... nor does he want to leave them with the burden of dealing with it after he's gone.

This is an excellent discussion topic that I've had with a few friends... and it's been one of the contributing factors to me slowing down my purchases the past year (although eBay and COMC charging tax... along with rising card values have played the bigger role).  Haven't decided what the endgame will be... but I'm not in any rush either.  With me teaching from home this school year, it would have been the perfect time to start listing cards.  My father even brought up the idea of selling some stuff a few days ago.  But that's not my style.  Maybe one day... but for the time being... I'll continue to collect and enjoy the hobby.

Whoa... sorry for the super long post.  I just started typing and kept typing and typing.  My plan is to cut down on my rambling starting next week.

Until then... feel free to share your thoughts on "look what I got" posts, favorite baseball card books, your collecting endgame, or personal hobby goals down in the comment section below.

I promise to read and respond to each and every one of you.  Even the SPAM.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!


  1. I wish I had unsorted cards laying around!! My dream... And don't forget me when you finally make it back to Portland! I love that Zernail card, someday I will grab one. And count me among those who do enjoy the 'look what I got' posts.

  2. "Look what I got" posts are mostly entertaining. I enjoy seeing oddball cards that are new to me. I don't like any Panini baseball posts. I think they are all ugly as sin. My goal this year is to obtain a '64 Bob Gibson.

  3. I don't set concrete hobby goals and I don't chase tiny card back variations. Neither of those things are fun to me.

    "Look what I got" posts make the blog world go round. But there's a way to do them so it appeals to more than 3 people.

    I thought that Ducks autographed picture was awesome and then you pulled out the Dawn Wells autograph card.

  4. happy new year! I need that Zernal card. It's as iconic as the '57 Kluszewski. I enjoy all your posts.

  5. One of the reasons i was less interested to blog was due to my staleness of the "look what i got" posts. i was boring myself with my own posts of them. my goal now is to limit it to a weekly sunday recap and leave it at that.

    hey, if you do make it up to Porltand and everyone is somewhat healthy in our parts it would be great to link up! Cards on Cards, Baseball Card Breakdown and Padrographs are all up here as well as a couple others i may be forgetting. we could have a blogger round table.

  6. Collecting end game is a great subject. I walked away from the hobby for over a year a couple of years ago because of that concern. I'm good at collecting, but not so much at un-collecting. My approach is to organize what I have better in hopes that it will help to let go of unwanted items.

    I'm definitely good with "look what I picked up" posts. If you're excited about it, then show it!


  7. I'm all for "look what I got" posts, and many of mine are of that ilk I guess. Great question on collecting endgame, I think that's a big reason I've begun selling as much as I have this past year (combined with the extra time from working full-time at home for ten months running now).

    I too am excited for Chris' All-Time NHL series!

  8. I think the only card related books I e read are "the card" which is about the gretzky Wagner card and "card sharks" which is about upper deck. Neither apaints the hobby in the best light.
    Not sure if it was my post about a 2008 ticket that got you looking for that Hoffman card, but mrmopar's comme t had me heading to comc to find a similar card.


  9. I do "look what I got" posts. I tried different kinds when I saw some bloggers being dismissive of lwig posts. But those other ones were too much effort for the level of interest they got.

    Boba Fett was a bad ass. He deserved to go out better.

  10. "Look what I got" posts are fine, but I could never revolve my blog around them. I just don't feel like they encourage as much interaction as other posts. I read a book called "The Card" a few months ago, which was mostly about the aura (and possible fraud) surrounding the famous T206 Wagner. "Cardboard Gods" and "Mint Condition" are probably my go-to baseball card books, along with the "Baseball Card Flipping..." opus. (Never seen a first edition of that, either - bet it's worth a few bucks!)

  11. I like the "look what I got" posts because a lot of times it gives me more insights into what someone else likes or collects. For myself, when I write those posts I often end up with new trade partners. So, for me they are a win-win type of post. I understand that people might not want to read them every day (which I get) but that type of post is perfectly fine in my book!

  12. For some reason typing look what i got posts bugs me but i love to see others do it so i can find cards i want lol.

  13. 1. I have no problem with "Look What I Got Posts", but I also understand that they can have limited appeal depending on what the "what" is.

    2. Favorite baseball card books? I am not sure I have one.

    3. End game? (Laughs). I don't have an end game.

    4. Hobby Goals. "Be Excellent To Each Other...." -Ted (From Bill and Ted's)


  14. My hobby goals for this next month or two is to cut down on spending, and focus more on what I already have. Enjoying/organizing/downsizing my collection. I'm also hoping to list more cards on Ebay to help fund my collection.

  15. "Look What I Got" posts are the meat of our blogging world. I love reading those posts. But I also love the side dishes too. That's why I also like reading and writing about bloggers' goals, lists, experiences at ball games, card shows, etc.

    As far as I know, Teemu Selanne is the only hockey player I've ever encountered in person. Back in the 90's when I was working at the Pond of Anaheim (now the Honda Center), I passed by Teemu in the hallway. We just simply nodded to each other and kept going.

  16. the diamond king - 10 years ago, i would have loved to have a few 5,000ct. boxes of unsorted cards. these days, it takes its toll on my back and i'm only able to sort for an hour or so before it starts getting sore. but i've gone through about 1,000 cards and have found some really cool cards. as for portland... i'll add you to the list. didn't realize so many of you guys live in the pacific northwest

    unknown - what if they're panini stickers from the 90's? good luck on grabbing that 64t gibson

    night owl - i hear ya. the 80's donruss variations are straight up silly. as for blog writing skills... i'm sure i'm not alone in saying that i wish i had your level of creativity.

    peter k steinberg - that kluszewski is one of the cards in that book that i want to pick up eventually

    cardboardhogs - wow. another portland blogger? i'll definitely let you know when i'm headed back up there

    cincicuse bill - lol. if i stopped writing look what i picked up posts... i'd have only 10 to 15 posts per year ;D as for the endgame... it's something i've gotta figure out at some point

    shoeboxlegends - i'm always impressed with your ability to turn one card into a bunch of cards you want for your collection. i hope to one day get to that point.

    gcrl - i grabbed both of those books a few years ago, but haven't read them. one day. as for mr. mopar's comment... that might have been the inspiration. but i kinda feel like someone actually wrote about one of these ticket to stardom cards.

    elliptical man - if you get a chance to watch the mandalorian, i highly recommend it. if you like boba fett, you won't be disappointed.

    nick - cardboard gods is a great book. i've actually read it two, maybe even three times while books like the card and card sharks sit on my bookshelf gathering dust

    nachos grande - i just looking at cards, so "look what i got" posts satisfy that for me.

    matt - they can be challenging to write sometimes... but one of the reasons i have a blog is to document my collection.

    the snorting bull - be excellent to each other is a great motto in general

    gtt - listing cards on ebay is a great idea. i've seen other bloggers do that and it's very impressive

    bbcardz - my lone experience with teemu was at the casino night event. out of all the players i had the opportunity to interact with, he was my least favorite. but i do remember kariya was really cool. stu grimson too.

  17. Great TWiB post! I had read Night Owl’s post, but reading your post inspired me to snag a copy of the book off eBay. Can’t wait to go through it and see how many I have.

  18. Most of my posts are indeed of the "look what I got" variety, but I try to give it more depth than just a collection of scans.

    I certainly have ideas for more, but between the generosity of this community and time constraints, I don't see myself doing much more than that.

  19. I tend to avoid the "Look what I got" posts when it comes to purchases. I definitely do them with prewar acquisitions because those are often distinct and weird enough to be interesting plus the reasons I got them are usually interesting as well. I also post about every trade package I get because putting it on the record that someone is a good trader is good hobby karma.

    For other purchases though I wait until I can write something more than "look what I got." Many of my acquisitions are already in the service of posts I'm writing anyway.

  20. I am a set guy ,so annually Baseball sets Topps,Heritage,Archives,and Stadium Club are always a must each year,Football Donruss and Prestige.Basketball Hoops and Donruss. Hockey Upper Deck base.Also anything new that jumps out at me.

  21. I like Look-what-I-got posts. Neat to see what other people are collecting and cards that I don't normally see. By the way, amazing how well you do sticking to a budget..mad respect!