30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Monday, November 30, 2020

Mixed Emotions Monday

I'm a pretty forgiving person.  I wasn't always that way... but that's who I am today.  Outside of giving Topps a hard time every now and then... I also tend to focus on the positive things in life.  That's why I don't really think twice about picking up cards of guys like Barry Bonds or Pete Rose.

But recently I found a good deal on this 1970 Kellogg's card of Orenthal James Simpson that had me going back and forth on whether or not to click the "buy it now" button.

1970 Kellogg's #48

Obviously, I did.  But I still harbor mixed emotions on this purchase.  On one hand... watching the ESPN documentary on him made me cringe.

On the other hand... I've been trying to pick up the Kellogg's rookie cards of hall of famers... and this card fits the description.  Love the card... not the person.  Anyways... that's enough attention for OJ for today.  Let's stay in the same lane, but shift gears and focus on a care package from Elliptical Man, who loves to give away cards on his blog: The View from the Third Floor.

He sent me a PWE filled with football cards that appears to be a prize from his Halloween Quadrapalooza giveaway.  Let's start with the latest addition to my Brett Favre collection...

2010 Topps Peak Performance #PP35

Love the player... not the team.  And even though it sucked watching the Vikings beat the Packers on MNF, I'm glad Topps honored Favre with this card.  It's just a shame that they didn't use a photograph from that actual game.

Next up is another QB I enjoyed rooting for during the 2000's...

2010 Topps Peak Performance #PP6

This card references the Colts victory over the Jaguars to secure their 23rd consecutive regular season win streak... which is an NFL record.  Unfortunately Manning was on the road for that win, but is wearing a home jersey in that photo.  

Love the record... not the photo.

Okay... I'm on a roll.  It's kind of fun analyzing photographs.

1999 Topps #20

Topps captured a great action shot of TO juking Jets Pro Bowl cornerback Aaron Glenn in an overtime win at Candlestick Park during the first week of the 1998 season.

Love the action shot... not the player.

And rounding out the rest of the PWE are a few more Peak Performance inserts and some shiny game cards:

Thank you for the care package, Mr. EllipticalLove the generosity!  No mixed emotions here.  By the way... I sent you an email on Friday or Saturday.  Hope you received it.

Well that's it for today.  My back is feeling a little better.  It's back into the Zoom classroomNineteen days until Winter Holiday Break.  Happy Monday and sayonara!

Saturday, November 28, 2020

TWiB: Turkeys, Colorful Acetate, and a Forgotten Female Treasure

Time flies by when you don't have to work.  This week has been filled with ups and downs.  I opened up my wallet and participated in Lego's VIP weekend.  I also made several eBay card related purchases... which is something I really haven't been doing in 2020.  My most expensive purchase of the week was a new water heater.  It wasn't planned... but considering it's been thirteen years since I replaced the other one... I can't complain.

Thanksgiving was pretty awesome.  My friend delivered a traditional turkey dinner with stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie.  I also hung out with my family on Zoom.

Then yesterday, I capped off my wonderful Thanksgiving Break by tweaking my back (AGAIN)... which ruined some plans I made... but it's something I've learned to deal with as I get older.  I'm just hoping I can rest it up by Monday, since I'll be introducing a new unit to my students.  Anyways... that recaps my week.

Here's a look at This Week in Blogging:

#1Savoring Turkey Red

2020 Topps Turkey Red #TR-39
2020 Topps Turkey Red #TR-67

On Thanksgiving, Wrigley Wax showed off a ton of Turkeys and I realized just how much I enjoy this year's insert set.  And after taking a few moments to think about it, I figured out why.  It's because Topps hasn't been shoving them down our throats the past five years.  This supports my belief that Topps should hold off on producing products like Gold Label, Tek, Triple Threads, Gypsy Queen, and Topps Gallery on a yearly basis.

#2Fine Art

Speaking of Topps Gallery, Shoebox Legends showed off his Peyton Manning 2000 Gallery of Heroes insert earlier in the week, which reminded me that I hadn't published the set spotlight post I wrote back in early October.  My non-baseball posts don't garnish a lot of views, so it became buried and forgotten.

Today seems like a good day to show it off...

2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH1
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH2
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH4

2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH5
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH6
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH7

2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH8
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH9
2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH10

The Gallery of Heroes inserts from the late 90's and early 2000's are some of my favorite inserts of all-time.  They combine colorful acetate and superstar athletes to produce a collectible resembling the walls at the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, France.

2000 Topps Gallery Gallery of Heroes #GH3

I picked up this set five years ago for $15.99 (free shipping) on eBay... and the Favre was the card this purchase centered around.

On Monday, Peter K. Steinberg asked his readers if we are die-cut collectors and whether or not we thought die-cut cards were cool or overrated.  I figured I'd just let this set do the talking.

#3A Pair of Sayonara Salutes

2004 Fleer WWE Chaos Tuff Guys Memorabilia #TG-U

Outside of checking in on Asuka, I don't really follow wrestling.  But I remember when The Undertaker first appeared in the WWF back in the early 90's and he was pretty cool.

This past Monday, I heard about his retirement over on Rebel Coyote's blog: Rebel Random Ramblings.

Sports Illustrated for Kids (July 1990) #163

Two days later, I read about the passing of soccer legend, Diego Maradona in an ESPN article.

1989-90 Kenner Sportstars

Two different goodbyes for two legendary athletes who played two very different sports... that I don't follow very closely.  Enjoy your retirement Undertaker and rest in peace Mr. Maradona.

#4Forgotten Treasure

With so many different things to collect, it's easy to let some things we've collected in the past fall through the cracks and be forgotten.  This morning I saw a WNBA card over on Sportscards From The Dollar Store that took me back to the late 90's when I pulled this:

1999 Fleer Ultra WNBA Gold Medallion #102

Like wrestling and soccer, I don't follow women's basketball very closely.  But there was a time when I was ripping open packs searching for a Chamique Holdsclaw rookie card.  I never pulled her Ultra rookie card, but I did pull the parallel of it seen above.  Anyone else remember when this card was a big time pull?

#5More Baseball Trivia

As I mentioned in last week's TWiB post... one of my favorite things about reading card blogs is learning new trivia.  This week I read about Bill Freehan's five grand slams in 1968 over on John's Big League Baseball Blog.  That feat is pretty darn impressive.

1988 Topps #2

It inspired me to see who holds the single season record.  I discovered that Travis Hafner and Don Mattingly share the record with six.  I didn't know about Hafner, but I did remember Topps celebrating Donnie Baseball's accomplishment with a card in 1988.

1987 Topps #500

The thing that's fascinating about Mattingly's record is that those six grand slams were the only ones he ever hit during his MLB career.

#6Circle The Date

1986 Topps #260

Are you a fan of 80's baseball cards?  If so, circle January 4th, 2021 on your calendars... because that's when Night Owl will start revealing his list of The Greatest 100 Cards of the 80's.  I'm super excited to see if and where some of my personal favorites... like this Tony Pena... lands.

Well... that wraps up another This Week in Blogging post.  Here are a few questions for you to ponder...

Are you a fan of this year's Turkey Red inserts?

Do you watch wrestling, soccer, or women's basketball?  Do you have any personal favorites?

When you hear the words "grand slam", who is the first player that pops into your head?

What are some 80's baseball cards you're hoping to see on Night Owl's list?

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Giving Thanks

Last Friday I showed a video to my homeroom that showed how gratitude can increase the level of happiness in an individual.  This probably isn't surprising.  However the person they were referring to wasn't the recipient, it was the person showing the gratitude.

I was kind of blown away by this, but after sitting down and thinking about it... it's totally true.  Whenever tell my father how much he means to me, it definitely puts a smile on my face.  The same things applies to other family members, friends, co-workers, students, and fellow collectors.  I just never really took the time to realize it.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving and Trevor's challenge, I wanted to take the time to show my appreciation for the hobby we all love even though it is far from perfect.

2020 WTHBALLS #28

I'm thankful for all of the awesome custom card creators out there like Gavin, Nick, Rod, Jeremy, and Gio... who created the Billy Williams you see above.

2015 Panini Prizm Red Baseballs #101

thankful for shiny cards that when angled properly refract every color of the visual light spectrum (even those without MLB logos).

2020 Stadium Club Red Foil #26
2020 Stadium Club Red Foil #115

I'm thankful for the beautiful photography on so many Stadium Club cards year in and year out.

2020 Topps 582 Montgomery Club Set 4 #5

I'm thankful for nicely posed action shots on simple, yet beautiful cards designs even when the average collector isn't able to get their hands on them without paying inflated prices on the secondary market.

1993 Finest #151

I'm thankful for iconic sets that helped shape the hobby landscape for better or worse, because I love this hobby unconditionally.

And I'm thankful for Julie over at A Cracked Bat: Baseball Cards and a Hot Dog, because she generously sent me all of the cards featured in this post.

Today's question of the day...

In regards to our hobby... what are you thankful for?

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope all of you are enjoying this holiday with someone you are thankful for.  Stay safe.  Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

The Forgotten Fad?

Is it just me... or has the Topps Project 2020 hype started to die down?  I never dove head first into the scene, but there was a point when I was checking their website on semi-regular basis.  However ever since I purchased Sophia Chang and Ermsy's versions of the 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson and 1983 Topps Tony Gwynn rookie cards... I don't think I've checked more than a handful of times.

That being said... I just purchased six of them on eBay, because they were less than $4.25 each (shipping/tax included).

Why the sudden interest?  Well... I was inspired by Brian over at Collecting Cutch after he sent me three new Project 2020 cards for my collection:

Topps Project 2020 #198 by Mr. Cartoon (Print Run: 3,567)

According to the his website, Mr. Cartoon is an artist who was born and raised in Los Angeles.  His work can be found on famous celebrities such as Eminem, Dr. Dre, and Beyonc√©.  I'm not an expert on tattoos, but I feel like his version of Gwynn's rookie card definitely gives off a tattoo vibe.  I really like how he incorporates the portrait and action shot photos from the original card into this one with Gwynn's nickname.

Topps Project 2020 #153 by Mr. Cartoon (Print Run:5,155)

Brian also hooked me up with Mr. Cartoon's version of Rickey Henderson's rookie card.  Although I tend to prefer the Project 2020 cards that semi-resemble the original card... I have to admit I like how the A's logo stands out and also enjoy the font he used for his name.

Mr. Cartoon actually produced two other cards for Oakland A's fans and card collectors that were available at his online store.  Unfortunately both are sold out.

Topps Project 2020 #77 by King Saladeen (Print Run: 11,425)

The last Project 2020 card I received is my very first Ichiro from this line of cards.  I'm not very familiar with Saladeen's work, but he's an artist from Philadelphia who was a gifted high school basketball player.  He refocused his energy on art after an automobile accident sidelined those dreams.

My favorite thing about his interpretation of Ichiro's 2001 Topps rookie card is the Seattle skyline in the background.  The way he drew Mariners also gives off a 1989 Topps vibe... which is the first Topps set that The Kid appeared in.

Although Sophia Chang and Ermsy are hands down my favorite Project 2020 artists, I enjoy looking at and appreciating the work of other artists like Mr. Cartoon and King Saladeen.

That's why I went hunting for cheap copies of other cards from this series which I'll share with you guys as soon as they arrive.  In the meantime, let's continue checking out the rest of Brian's care package.

2001 Inkworks Smallville Autograph #A4

Before seeing her on Collecting Cutch, I wasn't aware of Kelly Brook.  If you're not familiar with her, click here and you'll be in for a special treat.

This autograph was one of the prizes offered in Brian's annual Save Second Base event.  Most of you know how much I enjoy an on-card autograph, so this one is a nice addition to my non-sport collection.

Wrapping up the care package were some singles for my Tony Gwynn, Greg Maddux, and Kurt Suzuki collections.  I'll start off with three new Gwynns for my binder:

1994 Pacific Silver Prisms Circular #35

1996 Fleer Update Headliner #8

2000 Pacific (Portrait Version) #363

It's always nice to add a new card to my Gwynn collectionThree new additions is three times as nice.  At first glance, I thought I already had all three of these cards.  I guess I'm at the point where I don't really know what I have in my Gwynn collection compared to what I've seen on other blogs or websites.

However these additions have made me realize that I need the other 1994 Pacific Prism card of Gwynn as well as the "in action" version of his 2000 Pacific card.

He also hooked me up with two new Kurt Suzuki cards for my collection.  One of them I showed off yesterday.  If you didn't see it, please click here... because it was truly worthy of its own post.  The other card was this Allen & Ginter buyback card:

2010 Allen & Ginter #281

Once upon a time, I treasured Allen & Ginter and looked forward to its annual release.  During that era, Suzuki had a nice four year run where he was included on Ginter checklists.  This card is one of them.

If I ever go back and add money to my COMC account, I'll probably grab the other Kurt Suzuki A&G buybacks up for sale.  But it's not really worth dealing with the shipping drama over a pair of cards.

Here are the final four cards that Brian sent:

Talk about a complete care package.  Even though I already own these four cards... each of them are fantastic in their own special way.  There's a chance you'll be seeing one of these in a future post.

Thank you Brian for this very generous care package!  I'm not exactly sure what you send to the Andrew McCutchen collector who has just about every single Cutch card out there... but I'll find something.  Even if it means hooking up your girlfriend with more Cactus Coolers.

Okay... let's get back to those trendy Topps trading cards for today's question of the day...

Have you noticed that interest in Topps Project 2020 has softened the past few months?

Have you purchased any Project 2020 lately?

I'm interested in seeing of my point of view is skewed or not.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!

AfterwordGiving Thanks

Trevor over at Bump and Run Football Card Blog has challenged fellow card bloggers to write down some things they are thankful for.

On Saturday, shared why I was thankful for my parentsYesterday, I explained why I was thankful for the blogging community.  I'll be going a different route today as I express how thankful I am for my job.

When I was a kid, my parents would remind me over and over again that one day I'd have to grow up, move out of the house, and survive on my own.  They explained that an education opened up opportunities and they were right.

While I was in college, I made a life-altering decision to become a teacher.  Originally my parents thought I'd follow in my father's footsteps and become an engineer, since I really enjoyed science and math.  However that all changed after taking a few early childhood education courses at the community college level.

I'm not going to say that my job is perfect.  Most of you have read about some of the ups and downs on this blog.  But the "ups" heavily outweigh the "downs" and even though I haven't had a lot of positive things to share about my job these past eight months, I wanted to point out just how fortunate I am.

I'll never be a millionaire... but my job pays the bills, offers reasonable health insurance, has introduced me to some of my closest friends, and gives me the opportunity to make a positive impact on my students.  For these things... I truly am thankful.