Thursday, June 30, 2016

Cheap Cool Cards #44: Beastie Boys Rookie Card???

1991 Pro Set Yo! MTV Raps #102

A few weeks ago, I received some Yo! MTV Raps cards from Tiny over on CCW, which took me down Memory Lane and motivated me to track down some cheap boxes on eBay.  Unfortunately there weren't any within my budget, but I did happen to find this thirty-seven card lot on eBay:

The vendor was asking $1.99 (+ free shipping), which is probably a fair price considering it cost them nearly that much in shipping alone.  But since there was a "best offer" option, I decided to see if he'd take a buck.

He did.  The main card I wanted was the Beastie Boys card at the top of the post.  They've been one of my favorite groups for close to three decades and I've slowly been picking up pieces of their memorabilia.

Last month it was a Star Wars figure that honored their 1998 album Hello Nasty.  

Back in March I grabbed this limited edition skateboard deck that's a tribute to Spike Jonze who directed several Beastie Boys music videos, including one of the most iconic music videos ever made:

Sorry... due to copyright issues... I had to use the Beavis and Butthead version of Sabotage.  I'm not allowed to show you the actual music video on my site... but you can click here and watch it over on YouTube.

Or you can wrap up this post by checking out this pair of rap classics instead:

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Monday, June 27, 2016

1 Chicken... 2 Chicken... Red Chicken... Blue Chicken

We've all had our fair share of killer deals... but today I wanted to share one of the coolest internet bargains around.  Last weekend I finally found a copy of the 2016 Donruss San Diego Chicken card at the flea market, which motivated me to search for his autographed relic card on eBay.  Unfortunately... those are going for ridiculous prices.

I eventually discovered that Ted Giannoulas (a.k.a the San Diego Chicken) has his own website with an online store.  He sells a variety of items like t-shirts, magnets, and posters.  However one of the best bargains on the site are signed 8x10's:

Mr. Giannoulas only charges $4 for each signed photo and that includes free personalization and shipping.  Is that a steal or what?  That's a bargain compared to his Donruss autograph that routinely sells in the $40 to $65 range.

If photographs aren't your thing, Mr. Giannoulas also offers signed bobbleheads for $22:

These bobbleheads are replicas of the stadium giveaways handed out at the Chicken's final performance at Qualcomm Stadium in 2003.  I actually own an original SGA and couldn't tell the difference between the two... with the exception that one of them is signed and the other isn't.

By the way... shipping is free on the bobblehead too.  Actually I'm pretty sure every item on his site includes free shipping.

If $22 is too much... Mr. Giannoulas also offers a statue version that is exactly like the bobblehead except that it doesn't bobble.  He sells those for $16 and will sign and personalize them for free as well.

Last... but not least... he'll throw in a personalized thank you card with every order:

So what are you waiting for?  Head on over to and check out his stuff.

Happy Monday and sayonara!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Polar Opposites

One of the greatest things about our hobby is the variety of trading cards accessible to us.  There's just about every imaginable thing out there for us to collect.  Politicians, musicians, trees, birds, food, cartoon characters, movie stars... as well as a plethora of popular sports.

I enjoy collecting a little bit of everything.  But if I had to pick a favorite sport to collect in terms of cards, I'd go with baseball.  It's the sport I enjoyed playing the most as a kid and it's also the sport I started collecting back in the early 80's.

And if you thought there were a variety of trading cards available to collectors... just think about the variety of trading cards within one particular sport.  Today I figured we'd look at six cards that were sent to me by Steve over at 1975 Baseball Cards. and see the diversity that exists among baseball cards.

1976 SSPC #624 and 2005 BBM Touch the Game

First off... you'll notice that the card on the left is nearly thirty years older than the card on the right.  But what you can't see is how much thicker the Johjima is compared to the Winkles.  You would probably need to stack 6 to 8 SSPC cards to match the single BBM.

1976 SSPC #587 and 2000 BBM Diamond Heroes #8

Another thing that stands out between the two cards is abundance of foil on one card and the lack of foil on the other.  I remember jumping all over Fleer Metal cards in the mid 90's.  The 2000 BBM Diamond Heroes set is very similar to that product line.

1976 SSPC #501 and 2001 BBM Diamond Heroes #130

The final thing I'd like to compare is trading card's country of origin.  When I first started collecting I had no idea that people collected trading cards all around the world and that cards were printed in different languages.  These days... I have an entire collection dedicated to trading cards written in Japanese.

And thanks to Steve... I just added three new Kenji Johjima cards to that collection, along with three forty-year old pieces of cardboard.

So what about you...

Where do you fall on the SSPC/BBM trading card spectrum?

I'm a fan of both... but since that's kind of a cop out... I'll say I'm slightly leaning on the SSPC side, because vintage oddball issues are one of my favorite things to collect.

Well that's it for tonight.  Stay tuned for my next post which will go over what I picked up earlier today at the Serramonte Mall Card and Collectibles Show.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, June 23, 2016


If you've purchased enough sports cards off of eBay, then I'm sure you've received the occasional freebie.  Sometimes it's a handful of base cards from a recent product.  Maybe it's a free pack of 1988 Score baseball.  I've even received a complimentary memorabilia card before.

Today's post isn't about those kinds of freebies.  It's about two unique situations that have taken place over the past five weeks.

Last Thursday, I submitted a "Best Offer" for a five card 2016 Archives autographed card lot over on eBay.  The guy countered my offer and I accepted.  Later that afternoon, I received this message:

At first, I was disappointed because I needed four of the five cards for my set.  But it was a harmless mistake... and 2016 Archives is still pretty fresh, which means that there are plenty of autograph lots to be had.  So it didn't take long for me to move on with my life and card collection.

Earlier in the week, I received this 2016 Bowman Chrome refractor of Yoan Moncada:

I'll be the first to admit that I'm not much of a prospector... but I do love me some shiny refractors.  I did a little research and it looks like Moncada has a solid shot at making the Bigs.  If not, I feel bad for the Red Sox and the sixty-three million dollars spent on their top prospect.  Only time will tell.  The good news is I don't have much invested in this card.

A few weeks earlier, I purchased this 2012 Exquisite Legacy Signatures card of Archie Griffin:

Griffin is the only person to ever win the Heisman Trophy twice... and based on what I've read... this feat may be hard to repeat.

I have been wanting to add one of his Press Pass signatures to my collection for several years, but I recently discovered that he has a few Upper Deck autographs as well.  Last month, I won this on-card autographed #'d to 60 card with a bid of $19.50 (+ $4.70 shipping).

A week later... the seller sent me a eBay message letting me know that the card had been shipped, but the tracking kept showing up as "In Transit".  I wasn't too worried and told him I appreciated him following up on the sale.

Five days later, the seller sent me a full refund with this message:

I was honestly a little bummed, because I really excited to add this card to my collection.  At least I got my money back and I knew there would be other Griffins to be had.

A little over a week later... a padded envelope arrived in my mailbox.  I sent the seller a message on eBay offering to resend the money... but he never replied.  I left him positive feedback and a nice note.  Figured it was the least I could do, since he essentially gave me an autograph that had been sitting on my Top 10 list for several years.

Two cool freebies from eBay vendors in five weeks.  Not bad considering the coolest Free-Bay item before that was a Eric Chavez jersey card I received a few years ago.

What about you...

What are some of the coolest Free-Bay items you've received?

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Flea Market Finds #105: Vintage + The Chicken + Archives

This past weekend, my schedule was completely booked with the exception of Saturday morning and Sunday evening.  I sat around and laid out my summer school curriculum Sunday night... but on Saturday morning I squeezed in a quick trip to the Branham High School Flea Market.

Purchase #1:  Quarter Bin Cards $1

Tony... the regular vendor with the quarter bins... was set up with his buddy, so I stopped off and dug through stuff and found four cards.  Technically these came out of his baseball insert box, which were labeled a dollar a piece.  But since I promised to take all of his 2016 Topps Archives base cards off of his hands next weekend at the Serramonte Mall Sports Card and Collectibles Show, he let me have them for a quarter each.

I'm always looking to add buyback singles to my vintage binder assuming the price is right.  One dollar each is a little steep... however I'll buy them all day long at a quarter a piece.  Actually these three cards were mainly filler cards.  The main card I wanted was this:

2016 Donruss #151

I recently added a "most wanted" list on the left hand side of the blog and this card was on it.

I grew up watching The San Diego Chicken on The Baseball Bunch, so he'll always have a home in my sports card collection whenever there are new trading cards produced of him.

Purchase #2:  Bert Campaneris Autograph $5

2016 Topps Archives Fan Favorites Auto #FFA-BC

I paid full eBay value for this card... but I'm not complaining.  This card features an on-card autograph of an Athletics legend.  He's the franchise's all-time leader in hits and games played.  He was a 6x AL All-Star, stole 649 bases, won the Babe Ruth Award in 1973, and is a 3x World Champion.  To top it off... he's the first MLB player to play all 9 positions in a single game.  I'll pay five bucks any day of the week for certified on-card autographs that I don't already own of this guy.

Well that's all for now.  It's been slim pickings lately during my flea market runs.  Hopefully things will turn around soon.  At the very least, I hope I find some cool stuff at next weekend's card show.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Giving Props to Pops

2014 Topps Update #153

Kurt Suzuki is currently my favorite player... but he's not my hero.  Neither was Tony Gwynn, Rickey Henderson, or Greg Maddux.  That title has always been reserved for my father:

He inspired me and my siblings to always try our best and to avoid taking short cuts in life.  From the time I was born until my final year in college, my father worked ten to twelve hour days... five days a week to provide for his family.

1993 Bowman #702

He motivated all of us to persevere and never give up.  If we started something it was important to follow through and finish it.

1988 Donruss #625

We were raised to always be there for each other and it's nice to know that even though all of his children are grown up and living in different cities... that we still make the time to visit and hang out with each other.

1992 Upper Deck #85
Most importantly... my father taught us the importance of having character, honoring the family name, and learning from our mistakes in life.

1982 Fleer #640

Thank you for everything Pops!  You might not catch like Kurt... or hit like Gwynn... or steal bases like Rickey... or throw a ball like Maddux... but you're a hero in my book.

Happy Sunday and sayonara!