30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Ichi Phone Home

Lately a lot of blogs have been showing off their 2018 Topps Update blasters and each time I read them, I get a little frustrated because I can't find any sitting on my Target shelves.

On the other hand... part of me feels like Topps can keep their stinkin' Update blasters.  I'll go spend my hard earned money on something I'll actually hold onto and treasure.

1993 Teleca Phone Card #NNO

Two weeks ago, I picked up this phone card off of eBay for $17.38 + ($4 shipping), which is right around the same price I'd pay for one of those aforementioned blasters after factoring in tax.  Some of you might be thinking I made the wrong decision and should have held out for some 2018 Update.  I mean... who the heck still collects phone cards?

But this is actually a collectible that I've been actively chasing for a few years and it's one of the earliest Ichiro Suzuki collectibles out there.

Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of information on this phone card out on the internetPSA doesn't recognize it on their Suzuki master set registry... and the only tidbit of knowledge I can find on Beckett is that it's a single card set.

The back doesn't really offer any help either.  It's primarily written in Japanese, which I'm unable to read.  But if feel free to translate if you're bored:

What I do know is that it was produced and issued the same year as his treasured BBM and Tomy ID rookie cards:

The difference?  This card sells for a fraction of what I paid for these two cards.

So what do you think?  Let's say you haven't opened any 2018 Topps Update and you have $21.38 to spend.

Do you buy a blaster box of the stuff, buy a single card for your collection, buy 214 dime cards at an upcoming card show, or spend the money on something else?

Share your thoughts down in the comment section below.  Happy November and sayonara!

Extra Innings

I was a little too young to remember seeing Willie McCovey play, but growing up in the Bay Area I definitely knew of and appreciated his contributions to the game.  Rest in peace Stretch!


  1. Haven’t bought any but a couple of loose jumbo hobby packs, but Update is so ‘last week,’ when the real hunt is for Topps Chrome Update =)

  2. I’ll take the single quality card I’ve been eyeing for a while. If not that then I hit the bargain bin in search of overlooked treasures.

    Love the iIchiro card! Awesome find!!

    And RIP Willie McCovey. Great person great player

  3. The way things have been going for me lately at shows, probably 214 dime cards.

    Topps Update is not even on my radar anymore.

    If I were to spend $21.38 on a single card it would probably be a Joe Sakic low numbered parallel as I still need lots of those.

    That Ichiro phone card is a cool collectible though!!

  4. I spent my $22 on a half-case break of Update since I just want the Giants cards anyway.

    Is funny though, I've yet to wrap my head around being comfortable spending ~$20 on a single card even though I'd probably enjoy it more than a blaster.

  5. I hope to find a few packs of Update when I go to Target this weekend. I'd be happy with like a $10 hanger box versus a blaster.

    Great phone card. Those were a big deal back in the mid-90s. I have a signed Big Country Reeves phone card that I will always treasure.

  6. It kind of pains me to say this, because I do enjoy ripping packs/boxes..but I've always been more satisfied spending $20 on COMC than a blaster. If I could hit up a card show, that would be my first choice (instant gratification + quantity) but being a budget collector makes it harder for me to shrug off a bad blaster when I could have had three vintage singles + relics + low numbered shiny for half the price.

  7. Definitely a nice hard-to-find single is the way to go. Sometimes Blaster Boxes, but mostly singles. Nice Ichiro Card!

  8. Very cool stuff! I would have chosen that route as well.

  9. Laurens - Yeah. I'm pretty much over Update. That doesn't mean I wouldn't still buy a blaster if I actually found one at my local Target.

    Baltmoss68 - I love overlooked treasures in bargain bins. Gonna try and find some today at the flea market.

    Robert - Topps Update never even popped up on my radar. Haven't seen it once at my Targets :(

    Nick Vossbrink - I'm still trying to wrap my head around being comfortable spending $20 on a blaster ;)

    The Lost Collector - Nice. I remember Big Country and the signed phone cards of the 90's.

    Chris - After seeing those hobby boxes you bust... I can imagine that blasters just aren't as fulfilling as they would be to other collectors.

    SumoMenkoMan - Singles are my first choice as well. Kinda hit a wall lately though.

    Sport Card Collectors - Thanks

  10. 214 dimebox cards. (Ah, if only)

    Quantity is sometimes more fun than quality

  11. Update has become ridiculous. how many more rookie Ohtanis do we need in ONE product? too numerous are the SPs... sigh. not for me anymore. i'd rather have a couple of vintage cards or an auto.