30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Saturday, January 30, 2021

TWiB: Underrated Junk Wax, Sunsets and Criminals, Two-Sport Athletes, and a Love Child

Time continues to mess with my mind.  On one hand this school year seems to be taking forever.  On the other hand... we are already into the 5th Saturday of 2021 which means another This Week in Blogging post.

#1An Underrated Set

1991 Score #317

A couple weeks ago, I started writing a post where I ranked the 1991 flagship baseball card designs and Score was near the bottom of the list.  After reading Night Owl's post which showcased his favorite 1991 Score card from every team... my rankings haven't changed.  But I do have a higher level of appreciation than before.

His post opened my eyes to the vast variety of action shots featured in the set... which is something I value in a trading card.  

#2A Treasured Traded Set

One more Night Owl Cards post... then I promise to feature other blogs.  I realize that if you're reading this post, then you've probably already read Greg's posts... but I'm documenting card blogs and he happens to write posts that capture my attention.  So blame him, not me.

1987 Topps Traded #70T

Last weekend, Night Owl Cards wrote about his 1987 Topps Traded set build.  I'm always excited to read a blog post featuring Topps Traded sets from the 80's, because from the mid 80's on... I made sure to track them down for my collection.  I'm pretty sure the 1985 boxed set was the first I ever purchased, but the 1986 was the first I treasured.

1986 Topps Traded #11T
1986 Topps Traded #20T

It's one of the most star stacked Topps Traded sets of all-time.  Just look at the list of young stars included:  Barry Bonds, Bobby Bonilla, Jose Canseco, Will Clark, Andres Galarraga, Bo Jackson, Wally Joyner, John Kruk, Kevin Mitchell, and tons of other guys who had solid MLB careers.  Plus don't forget the stars and hall of famers that make up the "traded" players: Don Baylor, Ken Griffey, Phil Niekro, Lou Piniella, Darrell Porter, Tom Seaver, Ted Simmons, Chuck Tanner, and Dick Williams.

I'm not sure when these sets started selling in the $25 to $40 range, but I could have sworn dealers were selling these sets for $5 to $10 just a year or two ago.

#3Sunsets and Criminals

On Saturday, Chris showed off some Larry Bird and Lawrence Taylor cards on his blog: The 1993.  He also asked his readers if they collect "sunset" cards and whether or not they avoid collecting athletes who have committed crimes or other objectionable acts.

2002 Topps #99

Although I don't actively chase "sunset" cards, I do enjoy having them in my collection.  There is just something cool about a card company producing a final card with full career statistics for an athlete after they've retired.

As for guys who have committed crimes...

1985 Topps #620
1994 Ted Williams Roger Staubach's NFL Football #S32
1989 Donruss #542

Athletes have never been my heroes... so I have no problem separating the accomplishments they've made on the field from the crimes they've committed off of them.  And ultimately... I collect trading cards that represent history... and that includes the good and the bad.

#4A Star is Born

Wrigley Field Roster Jenga returned to his keyboard about a month ago and last weekend he wrote a really cool post about the night his son was born.  I think it's something the little guy will be happy to read one day when he's old enough.

2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites Autographs #FFA-JRU

Blogs weren't around back when I was born, but I have tried to document some of the things that happened in the sports world the day I was born.  Most notably the 1972 Olympics were in full swing... and the Oakland A's beat the Detroit Tigers behind a three run homer by Joe Rudi.

#5Cry for Help

Two days ago, Hackenbush showed off his Alan Alda silk cachet over on his blog: Can't Have Too Many Cards.  I know I've seen these pop up on a few blogs in the past.  My question is... what's the story behind them?  Were they originally sold at the post office?

I've picked up a few over the years.  The first one highlights Ichiro and the 2001 All-Star Game.  I picked this up off of my buddy at a flea market for a buckWere these sold at the game?

The next two were a little more expensive:

I bought them from a different friend at a card show back in 2015.  Each features a Ron Ferdinand signature and sketches of Dennis the Menace, but who knows if they're authentic or not.

If any of you have any information on silk cachets... feel free to leave it down below in the comments.

#6A New #1

2021 Topps #1

On Thursday Topps announced that Fernando Tatis Jr. would be honored with being card #1 in the 2021 Topps flagship set.  Personally... I heard about it over on John Sharp's blog: John's Big League Baseball Blog.

2020 Topps Fire #169
2020 Bowman #11

The jury is still out on this particular design.  It's definitely not going to be a favorite of mine, but I'm not ready to lump it in with the 1988, 1998, or 1999 flagship designs either.  Personally... I think this year's design looks like the love child of 2020 Topps Fire and 2020 Bowman.

#7Two-Sport Athletes

When I was in middle school, I really started getting into watching the WWF.  Most of my friends were too.  Guys like Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant, and the Iron Shiek were a new source of entertainment for this teenager and I enjoyed watching it whenever I had the opportunity.

On Monday, my buddy Ryan showed off a pair of 70's sumo wrestling cards featuring WWF star King Haku over on his blog: Japanese Sumo Wrestling Cards and Menko.  It's cool because it features an athlete famous for one sport being featured on trading cards of another sport.  This isn't exactly a new theme in trading cards.  I've written about Michael Jordan, Bo Jackson, Deion Sanders, and Danny Ainge before on this blog.

1963 Topps #54

But today... I wanted to show off my latest two sport athlete purchase.  This is a rookie card of Dave DeBusschere.  The same year he was drafted by the Detroit Pistons, he also signed a contract with the Chicago White Sox.

Although he is more famous for being a basketball hall of famer, he did pitch a complete game shutout versus the Cleveland Indians on August 13th, 1963.  I picked this card up two weeks ago for $9.41 ($4.49 bid + $4.50 shipping & $.42 tax).

#8Basketball Bonanza

By the way... if you like vintage basketball cards... then head over to Can't Have Too Many Cards again.  Hackenbush showed off some really nice 70's basketball cards on Monday including a Dr. J. rookie card.
1971-72 Topps #70

Unfortunately... most of my basketball cards are from the 80's, 90's, and 2000's.  But I have about 100 different cards sitting in my vintage basketball binder including this Chamberlain.

I like how the cartoon on the back references his 100 point game versus the New York Knicks back on March 2, 1962.

#9Wrapping Things Up

It looks like Chris is starting to wrap up his All-Time Hockey Teams series.  Last weekend, he showed of his all-time Pittsburgh Penguins team which featured a lot of guys I remember playing with on those early 90's NHL games on the Sega Genesis.

1990-91 OPC Premier # 50

One of those guys was Jaromir Jagr who went on to have a stellar career Chris's post inspired me to see how much his 1990-91 OPC  Premier rookie card was selling for.  I was blown away that raw copies are selling in the $30 to $40 range... while PSA 10 copies are fetching over $600.

Back in August of 2018, I picked up my copy for $75 (+ $5 shipping).  At the time, I was second guessing the best offer price I sent to the seller... but now I'm sure glad he accepted.

Chris also showed off his all-time San Jose Sharks team which featured these six guys:

Thanks Chris for taking the time to write this series.  It brought back a lot of good memories... and more importantly opened my eyes to current players and guys who played before the 90's.

Well that wraps up another This Week in Blogging.  Here are some conversation starters for you...

What's your favorite 1991 flagship baseball card design?

What is a Junk Wax Era set you think deserves more hobby love?

What's your favorite "sunset" card?

Is there room for a criminal in your collection?

What's the story behind silk cachets?

What's your favorite card #1 from a Topps flagship baseball set?

Do you collect vintage basketball cards?

Have you noticed any specific cards that are selling for outrageous prices lately?

That should get the conversations flowing... however even if you don't like these questions... feel free to leave any thoughts down below and I look forward to responding to them.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Climbing Over the Brick Wall

Every collector seems to have their own opinion on the latest hobby boom.  Personally... I love it.  I think it's great that national attention is being drawn to the hobby I've loved since I was nine years old.  But it has come with a few drawbacks.  One of which happened to be the ability to find reasonably priced baseball cards for my 1978 Kellogg's set build.

Last summer, I ran into a brick wall and gave up searching for the last six cards I needed to finish my set.  I had been searching for clean, non-cracked copies and couldn't find any sellers with reasonable prices.  It became so frustrating that I literally deleted my saved eBay searches.

Then right after the new year, I decided to see if prices had settled.  It's hard to say whether or not they have or haven't... but I did manage to find a pair of auctions I was interested in.  One was for a complete set, which I didn't bother bidding on.  The other was partial set that included all six cards that I needed:

1978 Kellogg's #1

1978 Kellogg's #2

1978 Kellogg's #3

1978 Kellogg's #25

1978 Kellogg's #51

1978 Kellogg's #52

You might have noticed that the Eddie Murray has a tiny crack in the upper right-hand corner.  I was a little bummed to see that, but at this point... I'm gonna force myself to live with it.

When I pulled my 1978 Kellogg's set out, I was actually able to upgrade five cards... including this Don Sutton:

I'm not sure why I even had this Sutton in my set build.  It's totally cracked and in very poor shape, but thankfully the replacement is pretty clean.

I'm even more thankful to finally be able to cross these six cards off of my wantlist and put this set behind me.

I now have a complete run of Kellogg's baseball card sets from 1976 to 1983.  I also have  complete 1972 Kellogg's and 1972 Kellogg's All-Time Greats sets sitting in the collection.  I'm in the process of putting together the 1970 and 1975 sets... but don't anticipate finishing them anytime soon.

Right now... I just happy to be able to pull out this beautiful 1978 set whenever I want...

With the
shortage of top loaders within our hobby, I've had to settle on Card Saver 2's.  Hopefully these semi-rigid holders are sturdy enough to keep these from curling.

There are plenty of other Kellogg's collectors out there...

How do you store your lenticular cards?

And to all of my readers...

Have you managed to complete any challenging sets during the latest hobby boom?

I look forward to reading and responding to your comments.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

A PC of a Guy I Don't Actively Collect

People who read this blog generally know my favorite teams and the players I actively collect.  But there are plenty of athletes in my personal collection that I fail to mention on this blog.

Hank Aaron is one of those guys.

It's probably because I don't actively seek his cards.  But that doesn't mean I haven't purchased some really cool collectibles featuring him over the years.  The bottom line is he's a legend.  When I started collecting cards back in 1981, I was also becoming a really big fan of the game of baseball too.  A big part of both of those things had to do with my love for numbers... which is why I've been fascinated by baseball statistics since the very beginning.

1974 Topps #1

How does this relate to Henry Louis Aaron?  Well even though I've had a deeper appreciation for high average hitters over home run hitters for as long as I can remember... what nine year old baseball fan doesn't appreciate the all-time home run king?  That's why I've slowly tucked away his cards (and collectibles) as I've encountered them over the years.

And as news of his death quickly spread over our blogosphere, I decided to pull out my boxes and scan some of my personal favorites.  It wasn't an easy task, but I even created a Top 10 list.

But before we get to those... here are a bunch of honorable mentions...

2001 Upper Deck Hall of Famers Bat #B-HA

1964 Topps #9
1968 Topps #3
1972 Topps #87

1968 Topps Game #4

1969 Topps #100

1970 Milton Bradley #NNO

1973 Topps #100

1975 Topps #660

2006 Kellogg's All-Star Autographs #NNO

1989 Kenner SLU Baseball Greats #NNO
2000 Hasbro SLU All Century Team #NNO

1991 UD Heroes of Baseball Hologram #HH1
1996 Hallmark Keepsake Ornament #HK2
2017 Bowman's Best 1997 Best Cuts #97BC-HA

Alright... now that we've gotten those out of the way.  Let's check out my
ten favorite Hank Aaron collectibles...

#102001 UD Decade 1970's Game-Used Jersey #J-HA

Yeah... I know memorabilia cards aren't for everyone.  But I enjoy collecting them and if you've followed this blog long enough, you know how much I love this product.

#91967 Topps Posters #15

This is the first of two oddball issues from the 60's on this list.  I really like the simple design and the fact that it's printed on newspaper stock.  It definitely has a vintage feel to it.  I also think it's cool that he has his jersey number written on the knob of his bat.

#81966 Topps #215

Do I really need to explain why this card is so awesome?  Two words: three legends.

#71967 Topps #250

Back in the early 90's, I purchased a few Hank Aaron cards from the card shop I worked at.  One of them was the 1973 Topps card featured in the honorable mentions.  This was another one of those cards.  At the time this was one of the oldest and most valuable cards in the collection.  However it wasn't my favorite.  That honor belonged to the #6 card on this list.

#61972 Topps #299

This was one of the other vintage cards I purchased from the card shop I worked at.  I can't remember ever writing about this card before... which is a shame, because it's so darn beautiful.  Plus the 1972 Topps baseball card set will always hold a special place in my collection since it's my birth year set.

#52015 Topps Museum Collection Premium Prints #PP-HA

This is one of the most valuable baseball cards in my collection.  For the longest time, I wanted to add a pack pulled on-card autograph of Aaron to the collection, so in 2017 I purchased this card for $125 on eBay.

#41983 Perez-Steel Hall of Fame Art Postcards #177

I realize slabbed signatures and oversized items are not popular among many bloggers... but I love this collectible.  It's not my favorite Hank Aaron autograph... but it's pretty darn close.

#31964 Topps Giants #49

This is the 2nd oldest Aaron collectible in my collection and it comes from my favorite oddball issue from the 60's.  It's such a great looking card.

#2715th Home Run 16" x 20" Signed Photo (Steiner Certified)

Thanks to an awesome gift card offer, I was able to purchased this photo off of the Steiner website nine years ago for only $117.55 (+ $9.99 shipping).  One day I'd like to have it professionally framed and hang it up in my office.  That won't happen until I move and buy a larger place... which may or may not ever happen.  Until then... I get to look at this photo of my photo.

#11956 Topps #31

If I have a copy of a player's 1956 Topps card... chances are it's going to be my favorite card of his.  This card actually features two legends... since the player sliding into home isn't Hammerin' Hank.  It's actually the Say Hey Kid.

Well that wraps up my Hank Aaron PC.  Like I mentioned at the start of this post... I'm not actively looking to add any new cards of his to this collection.  But that doesn't mean I won't.  Maybe one day I'll stumble across an affordable graded vintage card from his playing days or a cool looking memorabilia card from the late 90's/early 2000's.  If that ever happens... I'll try to remember to share it on this blog.

Until then...

Do you have a favorite Hank Aaron collectible?

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!