Thursday, June 28, 2018

Nine Neat Cards from 1982

So I caught wind of this contest going around from the blog called It's Like Having My Own Card Shop in honor of his ninth blogging anniversary. The deal is that you write a post showing nine cards. That's it, plain and simple. So, being one for an interesting challenge, I decided to not only partake in said contest but also show nine cards from the 3,200 count box I have filled with cards from 1982 that I finally sorted out. The caveat to this is that I've already filed away the majority of them so what you see here will be out of my rather large duplicate pile that accumulated. And, to add another fun twist to this, I'll field a starting nine from the group.

Brett Butler (CF)

Speedy base stealer Brett Butler would head the top of this line-up and 1982 just so happened to be his rookie season. In 89 games with the Braves that season, he stole 21 bases, hit .217, and managed 7 RBIs. 

Ozzie Smith (SS)

The strange this about this card is that Ozzie wasn't even with the Padres in 1982. He'd been traded to the Cardinals in December of 1981. This would also give me another base running threat at the top of the line-up for the heart of the order.

Lee May (1B)

Former Reds first baseman "The Big Bopper" Lee May would be holding down first and the third spot in the line-up. 1982 was May's final season in the bigs and he was a part-timer with the Royals. Sure, his power was pretty well diminished by this time but over a 12-season span (1968-1979) over the prime of his career, he averaged 27 homers a season. 

Andre Dawson (RF)

Andre Dawson would be my clean-up hitter, although I can't exactly remember where he hit in the order during his career. I'd put him in right field.

Dave Parker (LF)

Despite Parker being primarily a right fielder, I'd have to put him in left since I've already got Butler in center and Dawson in right. Plus, I'd have a "Hawk" in right, "Bugsy" in center, and "Cobra" in left. Definitely an outfield of colorful nicknames.

Ron Cey (3B)

Ron Cey would man the hot corner for me and bat sixth. Yes, I know that most of the cards I've shown so far have been from 1982 Donruss. It's what I had the most duplicates of.

Gene Tenace (C)

Batting seventh and catching would be Gene Tenace. I had no clue that Tenace ever played for the Cardinals until I found this card. To me that's the beauty of going through early 80s cards like this, you find cards of 70s players at the end of their career with completely random teams, like the Lee May card I showed off earlier.

Pete Mackanin (2B)

In the eighth spot is light hitting second baseman Pete Mackanin. I picked this card for two reasons ... 1) the blue Twins uniform and 2) the fact that he was a former Reds manager. This is also a sunset card as he retired after the 1981 season.

Gaylord Perry (P)

Finally, pitching would be Gaylord Perry who looks rather forlorn on this 1982 Fleer card. Perhaps he knew the end of his career was nigh. This is the only 1982 Fleer card I found from my dupes pile that looked decent. 

So there's nine cards from my 1982 box and a pretty decent starting nine as well. As far as the cards themselves go, Fleer probably had the least interesting set of all of these as the design was pretty basic. I really like the Donruss cards from this time and I might have enough to come up with a starter set. 

Also, I'd be remiss if I didn't thank Daniel at the ILHMOCS blog for offering up this contest, giving me a blog topic to write about, and for giving me a fun and interesting way to write about cards from 36 years ago.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Back to the Minors

As I get deeper and deeper into the giant pile of yard sale cards I purchased, there are all kinds of things that keep showing up at completely random. So far I've uncovered junk wax, a handful of vintage, oddballs from baseball and pro wrestling, but some of the most interesting cards I've come across are minor league cards.

I'm no expert on minor league cards and never really was a big collector of them. Sure, here and there, maybe a pack of Heritage Minors or Pro Debut to scratch a pack busting itch, but most of the minor league cards I currently have are from various repacks I've opened over the years (most of which have been covered right in this very space). The cards I found in this stash though are quite interesting and date back further than any other minor league cards I currently have in my possession.

TCMA did a fair bit of minor league cards back in the 70s and while looking this up, it appears that they did 38 different team sets in 1979 ranging from well known teams such as the Toledo Mud Hens and Buffalo Bisons to lesser knowns such as the Holyoke Millers and Appleton Foxes. The Kelvin Chapman is my favorite though mainly because of the background of the picture with the giant radio tower and the rolling hills.

Here are two samples from the 1981 edition with Michael Cole (not the WWE announcer) and former White Sox and Expos outfielder Ivan Calderon, of who I only know because I had multiple cards of his 1992 Topps card at one time.

I had a whole glut of card from the late 80s and early 90s so these were the better two of the 1990 cards that I could find, even though I've never heard of either of these guys.

The one thing I do like about most of these cards is that the backs tell which major league team they're affiliated with. That sure makes sorting a heck of a lot easier.

And finally some cards from 1991, including a few names I actually know, which kind of surprises me. Anyway, that's a pile of minor league cards from the 80s and 90s. The older ones seem like they have a little bit of charm to them and they look a little rough around the edges. The 90s ones almost seem too slick for minor league cards. Some of these will land in my collection, some will wind up in trade boxes, and the rest of them will probably wind-up in the donation bag to Goodwill.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

A Sampling of Series 2

Well, I did it. I bit the bullet and bought a few packs of Series 2. Was it what I wanted to buy? Not really. I went to the card shop over Father's Day weekend since I needed some more storage supplies and while I was there I took a look at the pack selection. Most everything I was interested in (Gypsy Queen, Heritage, etc.) was about eight bucks a pack. I asked why and got back a one word answer ... Ohtani. I settled for a handful of packs of Series 2 then and a couple WWE packs (which were a complete bust), and a Pokemon pack for my five-year-old. When I got the chance to finally tear into these, I had pretty low expectations.

A few random base cards, picked mainly for the photography and the colorful aspect of the cards. I still really do like the 2018 design.

Some really cool horizontal cards. One thing I've always liked about Nationals cards are they way the pictures really stand out with their home uniforms.

A gold parallel of Taijuan Walker. If you look at this long enough then you'll notice that he kind of pops out of the background a little bit.

Four more cards ... two Reds I needed, an Andrew Benintendi Future Stars card, and Yonder Alonso who's having a pretty decent year for the upstate Indians. 

Now the inserts, got these three 1983 style All-Star cards. Not bad and I don't mind the little tribute to the 1983 set.

And a few other inserts. I really like the Throwback Jerseys insert and was even happier when it was an Adam Duvall card that I got. Also, still not a big fan of Ryan Braun but I'll be hanging onto this card for now at least.

As for Series 2 as a whole, it's pretty much everything you expect, basic card that won't break the bank, good photography, decent inserts. My one major issue this year with the flagship line is that they stopped the buybacks and the First Pitch inserts dead in their tracks. Those were some of my favorites from the past few years, especially the buybacks once I came to appreciate them. Anyway, will I be buying more Series 2? Maybe if I'm at the card shop and have the itch to get some more packs but I won't be going the retail route. I'll save that for my Hertiage, GQ, and all the other cards that get marked up at the shop.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Taking the Scenic Route

Everyone's favorite White Sox blogger, Jeff of 2x3 Heroes, is in the midst of sending out his annual "Tis the Season" packages. I was excited when I got my notification from the USPS that the package was on the way and it would be delivered in a few days. Well, after a few days, no package. I checked the tracking online and it simply said "in route to distribution center". Then, a few days later, the package popped up in L.A., then after a day or so in L.A. it made its way to San Francisco, and finally, after about 10 days of criss-crossing the country, a small priority mail box finally landed on my doorstep. To be honest, I'd kind of forgotten what I'd claimed in the annual year-end give away but it turns out the box contained a ton of hockey cards from all over the place.

The note from Jeff said I took a bunch of "meh hits" off his hands. These are some swell looking hits and I'm glad they're more jersey cards than autograph cards. If you can't make out who the players are on these three it's Ales Hemsky, Roman Horak, and Justin Schultz, unfortunately three names that aren't all that familiar to me.

One name that is familiar to me though is Rick Nash. Nash was the first player selected overall in the 2002 draft and could probably be classified at the first "homegrown" star of the Blue Jackets. 

This card is probably my favorite of the jersey cards included in the box. Glenn Anderson was part of the Oilers dynasty in the 1980s and early 90s where he won five Stanley Cups with the team and made four All-Star teams. He also won a Cup with the Rangers in 1994 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame as a player in 2008.

Relic cards though weren't the only thing that Jeff included. He also put a huge dent in my team collections for hockey. There were six "team packs" in the box and each one was loaded with all kinds of miscellaneous odds and ends. I'll show some highlights.

First, a nice lot of Blue Jackets. Of all my team I follow, the Blue Jackets are the ones I honestly watched the least of last season.

Some nice Devils including a pair of Jagr's. One can never have too many Jagr cards. Too bad it looks like he might be done in the NHL for the forseeable future. Speaking of which, I'm on the lookout for the lone card he had with the Flames from the Upper Deck main set.

More Devils and some mid-90s action with Brodeur and Stevens.

Old school Oilers!

And also some newer ones. 

My Calgary Flames collection really got a nice boost.

My Shane Doan collection for the Coyotes pretty much tripled in size. Also, there were some Jeremy Roenick cards with the really, really old Coyotes uniform.

Team collections aside, there was a nice mixed bag of cards too with these Artifacts and Score cards. I never really buy much in the way of late season hockey releases so adding cards from Artifacts is very nice. The picture really doesn't do them justice.

There was also a really good grouping of 2016-17 Upper Deck, of which I had none in the collection. That'll also put the bow on this giant box of cards as well. Now, I just have to find the time to get them filed away.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

The Yard Sale Cards: Wrestling

This weekend just happens to be a big weekend in the world of WWE with both NXT Takeover and Money in the Bank happening in Chicago. The Money in the Bank event over the last few years has sort of begun to fill the void of a mega-event in between WrestleMania (March/April) and SummerSlam (mid/late August), a spot that was held in the 90s by King of the Ring. I figured this would be as good a time as any to show off some of the wrestling cards from the yard sale lot.

Speaking of WrestleMania, I'll start with these 1993 Coliseum Video WrestleMania tear off cards. As with most Coliseum Video stuff from this time, these were most likely handed out as free gifts when you rented a WWF tape. 

Not only were there the loose cards, but there were also some of the panels still in tact. If the prices for the uncut panels on COMC and eBay are to be believed, then I could probably sell some of my extras off and cover my yard sale costs.

Next up are some postcards from Coliseum Video. In addition to the Bret Hart and Crush postcards, there are also Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Undertaker, and Steiner Brothers cards as part of the six card set.

These cards are tiny but they're cool. Again these were distributed by Coliseum Video. I've got four of the five cards in the set, the only thing missing is the Undertaker card.

Here are some stickers. These look like they're more recent, as in possibly released in 1994, as opposed to 1993 like most everything else was so far.

There were a ton, I mean a TON of duplicates of this five card Bret Hart set that chronicles both his tournament win at King of the Ring 1993 and his WWF title win at WrestleMania X. Interestingly enough, these are not in chronological order. 

Moving on from the Coliseum Video cards, there was also a good amount of variety featuring the sets put out by Classic in the early 90s. This blue bordered set was the last set that Classic produced from 1991. I think my two favorite cards here are the Ricky Steamboat card which captures him breathing fire and the Sensational Sherri card right next to it in which she looks like an extra from the set of CATS.

Classic only made WWF sets for three years, 1989, 1990, and 1991. These cards are from the inaugural 1989 set. I still forget some times that Barry Windham had a very brief WWF run in 1989.

These cards look like they're tear outs from the WWF Magazine and after a bit of research on TCDB, it turns out that the Jim Ross card is. The other cards I can't find any record of on quick search on TCDB, COMC, or eBay. I might have to do some more digging to see what I can find.

WWF cards weren't the only thing included. There was also a good amount of WCW cards from the early 90s, back when WCW wasn't exactly at the top of its form. These are from the 1991 Impel WCW set and if I can remember correctly, after I sorted them I think I came up about 10-12 cards short of a full set.

These black border cards are also from 1991 but were put out by Championship Marketing. I've seen the Impel ones numerous times and while they're kind of funky and have that 90s vibe, these definitely seem a bit more on the serious side. I think the black borders give them an edgier feel and the photography doesn't seem as cheesy as well.

Also, here's a set I wasn't aware of until I pulled the cards out of the box, that being this 1995 CARDZ WCW set. I really, really like it but I think my favorite part of the set has to be the cards of the pay-per-view posters. Those are super cool. 

This box provided a nice array and some new and definitely unique additions to my wrestling card collection. Who knew there were so many WWF oddball cards in the mid-90s? The WCW Impel cards I could've lived without but still, if I can complete the set, I'll probably binder it up but it's not a priority. Hope everyone enjoys the wrestling this weekend!