30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Flea Market Finds #120: Bags of Hidden Treasure

I typically avoid picking up Ziploc bags filled with 1992 Donruss baseball cards for these two reasons:

1.  Cards thrown into Ziploc bags tend to be damaged.
2.  Who needs more 1992 Donruss baseball cards?

However this particular bag I found sitting on a table at the Capitol Flea Market also had some dark brown cards too, so I went against my natural instinct, flipped the bag over, and made a pleasant discovery.

Bag #1:  Vintage Oddballs  $4

Right away a nice stack of 1968 Atlantic Oil Play Ball oddballs caught my attention.  I had seen these cards before over at Wrigley Wax, but don't think I had seen any in person before.

The concept was simple.  Customers who purchased gas were given game pieces that contained two player cards that each had a specific player number.  Collect and match specific numbers and you could win prizes.

Just like McDonald's Monopoly game pieces, the winning cards were short printed and are very rare since most people redeemed these back in the day.  My stack didn't contain any of the short printed cards.  But there were a handful of hall of famers like Frank Robinson, Al Kaline, Lou Brock, Carl Yastrzemski, and Roberto Clemente.

It looks like some (possibly all) of the cards came with two different backs.  One with the game piece cover and the other with the official rules.

In addition to the vintage game cards and 1992 Donruss, there were also two sets of 1986 Drake's Big Hitters:

These were originally released on boxes of Drake's products like the Hostess cards from the 70's.  Someone took the time to cut these out.  Unfortunately both sets are far from mint due to rubber band damage and inconsistent cutting.

On the other hand, it's a pretty cool oddball issue.  They contain official MLB logos and have some awesome action shots.

Moral of the story?  If you see a bag of Junk Wax Era cardboard sitting on a table at the flea market... it's probably worth the two seconds of your life to flip it over and see if there's anything else worthy on the other side.

Bag #2:  Topps Rediscover Buybacks $5

Another bag of sorts.  This time it's a team bag filled with 2017 Topps Rediscover buybacks.

1993 Topps #465  

It's much less interesting compared to the Ziploc bag, but there were a few cards that I really, really wanted and the guy refused to break up the lot.

The key cards are the high flyin' Fernandez featured above and this Devon White rookie card:

1987 Topps #139

And of course... there were a few vintage buybacks for some fellow bloggers and myself:

That's it.  There were plenty of other cards to be had... but I'm trying to cut back on clutter.  Here's a peak at the stuff I passed up:

I was interested in this binder filled with early 90's Fleer inserts...

But the $20 price tag was a little too steep for cards you regularly find in quarter bins.  Plus, I'm trying my best to reduce the clutter.

This should prove challenging as I'll be hanging out at the 21st Annual TRISTAR Collectors Show at the Cow Palace on Saturday.  My goal is to limit my dime box and quarter bin purchases... and hopefully purchase a 1956 Topps hall of famer for my collection.  We'll see how that goes.

Enjoy the rest of the week.  Happy Thursday and sayonara!


  1. I dunno...I might have picked up that $20 binder almost for the sheets alone!

    Great pickups, Fuji!

  2. Who needs 1992 Donruss??
    *raises hand* Still trying to complete the set

  3. That's some really great stuff you found. Those Atlantic Oil cards are really neat.

  4. It is so tempting to pick up lots you are pretty sure will be a bust. I salute your holding back!

  5. Those Atlantic Oil oddballs are a fantastic score. I own exactly two of them (Milt Pappas and Boog Powell) and my heart would've just about jumped out of my chest had I seen those sitting in a Ziploc bag at my local flea market.

  6. Great grab bag. You are correct. The Atlantic cards came with two backs. One version is not any rarer than the other. The short prints are tough .

  7. Wow, I agree with Nick, those Atlantic Oil cards are fantastic. Never knew they had a Rose card. Looks like I'll be adding that one to my want list. Nice find Fuji!

  8. I'm glad that the local flea markets are not good for cards. If they were I would become a hoarder and my wife would probably kick me to the curb.

    Congrats on the fantastic oddball pickups. What a deal!

  9. Holy crap - that was a hell of $9 spent. The card seller I usually see at the Kane County flea market is WAY overpriced.

  10. it's great that the atlantic oil card uses the 'campy' campaneris nickname! nice pickups!

  11. Nothing new to add. You could probably sell just one of Your Atlantic Oil cards and make back your "investment". Great find!

  12. Tony Lehman - I have two binders filled with sheets that I'm about to toss. If you lived in the Bay Area, I'd tell you to stop by and you could have them.

    Mike Matson - If you have a wantlist put together, shoot me an email with your mailing address. I'll send them your way.

    Adam Sanders - Thanks. I was pretty stoked to add them to the collection.

    B Man - I'm really trying to show some restraint. The true test will be tomorrow @ TRISTAR.

    Nick - Thanks Nick. It's always cool to add some vintage oddballs to the collection on the cheap.

    Mark Hoyle - Yeah... that's what I figured. I didn't have both versions for all of them, so I wasn't sure. Do you collect these? Lmk if you need any for your collection. I have a few duplicates and never know what to send you.

    Reds Card Collector - Thanks. Yeah... the Rose was my second favorite behind Clemente.

    Matthew Scott - I used to buy every deal I came across. Unfortunately space is forcing me to make better choices, since I don't have a wife to keep me in check.

    JediJeff - If you're ever in the Bay Area, let me know. There are a few regulars at two of the flea markets I go to. Both are reasonable and work with you on prices.

    gcrl - I didn't even realize that until you pointed it out. Good eyes.

    Hackenbush - Yeah. Looks like the Clemente is the most valuable out of the lot. But I won't be selling it anytime soon.

  13. Interestingly enough, it was a bag of 1992 Donruss at a local thrift store that got me back into collecting.