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Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Tuesday, August 30, 2016
Mancini sports a .306 average across 4 minor league seasons. He was promoted to AAA Norfolk, a notoriously unfriendly park for hitters' stats, but has batted a respectable .279 with 13 home runs over 118 games. Mancini stands a chance to be called up when rosters expand on September 1. If anything, he must be added to the Orioles 40-man roster this off season, or they risk exposing him to the Rule V Draft (where any team can draft him for the price of $50,000, but must keep him on their 25-man roster, or offer him back to the O's for $25,000). It is a no-brainer that Mancini is added to the 40-man no later than the off season.
Monday, August 29, 2016
I have wanted a Thome ball for some time now, especially since I was right beside him twice at Camden Yards (back when he played for the Twins), but couldn't get him to sign. I was running around the National during the final minutes of the show looking for a vendor who had cheap Vladimir Guerrero balls, but I found the guy with Torre and Thome instead. Adding the Hall of Famer (Torre) cheaply won out over Vladdy.
Thome (b. 1970) played in the Majors from 1991 to 2012 for the Indians, Phillies, White Sox, Dodgers, Twins and Orioles. He was a 5-time All Star who finished as high as 4th in the NL MVP Voting (2003). He appeared in two World Series with the Indians (1995 and 1997), but never won a ring. He retired after the 2012 season, one in which he was traded to the O's for the stretch run. The 2012 Orioles would fall to the Yankees in the ALDS that year.
Thome had 2,328 hits, 612 home runs and a .276 batting average. His home run total currently ranks 7th all time. He will be eligible for Hall of Fame voting in 2018.
Sunday, August 28, 2016
I didn't think too much this year when the Orioles added a Rays far hand to the roster via the draft, but based on his strong spring, Joey Rickard really raised some eyebrows.
I picked up these Chrome cards at various vendors at the National. They are Rickard's first Topps offerings, and they look great. I got his auto at the top of the page for around $10, and the other two cards (his base chrome, and the prism refractor) were in dime boxes.
Saturday, August 27, 2016
I mailed to Kent Tekulve on April 20 of this year, and got back three of the five cards that I sent. He kept the 1977 and 1983 Topps that I sent. No big deal. He signed the cards in sharpie, one that was about to give out, but the cards still turned out ok. The cards came back on August 8, for a 110-day TAT.
Tekulve (b. 1947) played in the majors from 1974 to 1989 for the Pirates, Phillies and Reds. He had a career record of 94-90 with an ERA of 2.85, 779 strike outs and 184 saves. He finished as high as 5th in the NL Cy Young voting (twice, 1978 and 1979). He also won the World Series with the Pirates in 1979. He appeared on the 1995 Hall of Fame ballot, yet only received 1.3% of the vote.
Friday, August 26, 2016
This year, I picked up some great parallels and a couple autos. The above green refractor from 2015 Topps Chrome is numbered 7/99 and came out of a dollar box. It was cheaper than a dollar because I got a bulk deal on it, so that made it even better.
Schoop is having a great season for the Orioles. batting .282 with 20 homers through 127 games. He has been a solid piece for the Orioles and could very well top out at more than 30 home runs this year. I believe Schoop will have a few big moments for the O's down the stretch.
Thursday, August 25, 2016
I really appreciated Frankie hooking me up with this card. He didn't have to give it to me, but he did. I love Museum Collection, and this Machado will look great in my collection! Thanks Frankie!
Wednesday, August 24, 2016
I have never owned this 1986 Topps Traded Barry Bonds, so I was really happy that I saw it for $3.00 at the show. I bundled it with a stack of other cards, so I paid a lot less than $3.00. I really enjoy the 1986 set, and already had the Bo Jackson from 1986 Topps Traded. I will put this in a brand new top loader and store it with my other rookies. I know the card is nowhere near worth what it used to be back in the early 90s, but it is still cool that I got one of these for a good price.
I still have a huge stack of cards from the show (not to mention several signed baseballs as well) that I need to post. I think National posts may very well get me through the season into the off-season, to where I can start up some TTMs again, among some other projects.
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
I ordered the 5-card deal when they were announced the next day, and promptly messaged Nolan's wife, Jenny, about them. She had no idea that Topps was doing this, so I was glad to let her in on it. Unfortunately, she was busy the day they were available and forgot about them. Not to worry, though, I ordered the 5-pack for a reason. I made sure to send her one, when they finally arrived (after I got home from the National).
Nolan has had a rough go as of late, but I'm thinking he will be able to turn it up for the stretch run. He is still a very good player and one that I definitely would love to see in a big at bat during the playoffs. He deserves it, after all that he has been through the last several years.
I (obviously) still keep in touch with Jenny. She is always helping me out and is always adding to my Nolan PC. She also still reads this blog, when she finds the time. I will always appreciate the help she has given me, and I was more than happy to pick up one of the Topps Now cards for her.
Monday, August 22, 2016
I found one for $15 at a booth, and jumped all over it. This has Manny, Jonesey, Gausman and of course, Chris Davis. It has patches from Manny and Davis, and jersey swatches from Jones and Gausman. The card is numbered 73/99. Including the Davis quads, I have 10 quad cards from 2014 Museum Collection. I really love the set and will keep picking them up, as long as I see them at reasonable prices.
Sunday, August 21, 2016
We ran into a ton of traffic on the way North. I think everyone had the same idea we had, take one last trip for the summer. Of course, that was in addition to DC traffic, which always is terrible. We finally got to Baltimore around 3PM, parked, then walked to the Lexington Market for some seafood at Fraidley's. Philip got a brioled salmon, Chris got fried oysters and I got an amazing crab cake. The food was awesome!
Before the game, I met up with a fellow Instagrammer, Jack, and showed he and Philip how to "graph". We got pretty close to Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa, but couldn't get them to sign for us. Philip, Chris and I each ended up getting Marwin Gonzalez on OMLBs, but Jack held out for someone else. We left the area before Jack got anyone, and I'm not sure if he did.
We did have fun at the game. Philip enjoyed himself, and it was nice to be able to spend time with him. We have gone on some trips together, before, like Summer Sanitarium 2000 and Philly this January, but we had never gone to a baseball game together. He loves to give me a lot of crap about the Os, feigning interest in the Yankees to get under my skin. He does it out of love, though. He is really knowledgeable about sports and is always ready for a good debate. He also helps plug the blog whenever he gets a chance, which is very helpful.
Overall, I had a great time with my brother and my son! I also met up with a couple friends and got a cool bobble head. What more could you ask for? Oh yeah, a win would have been nice. Oh well.
Saturday, August 20, 2016
I already had his base RC, but not the chrome. That put this card low on my priority list, but I figured at that price, and with Ichiro about to break the 3,000 hit barrier, I went ahead and picked it up.
I'm glad I did. Ichiro has now passed 3,000 hits and should be a first ballot Hall of Famer. I now have his 2001 Topps and 2001 Topps Chrome, which it nice. I need to think long and hard about the next rookie cards that I want, because I have so many now, it is hard to think of what I need.
Thursday, August 18, 2016
Torre (b. 1940) played in the majors from 1960 to 1977 for the Braves (Milwaukee and Atlanta), Cardinals and Mets. He had 2,342 hits, 252 home runs and a .297 lifetime batting average. He was the 1971 NL MVP when he had 230 hits, 137 RBIs and an NL leading .363 batting average. He was also a 9-time All Star. As a player, Torre appeared on fifteen BBWAA Hall of Fame ballots (1983 to 1997), but could only gain as high as 22.2% of the vote (on his final ballot).
As a manager, however, is how Torre really gained election to the Hall. He managed in the majors from 1977 to 1981 with the Mets, 1982 to 1984 with the Braves, 190 to 1995 with the Cardinals, 1996 to 2007 with the Yankees and 2008 to 2010 with the Dodgers.
Prior to his time with the Yankees, Torre was a fairly middling manager. He had some success with the Braves, reaching the playoffs, but losing in the NLCS 3-0 to the Cardinals. Torre took over the Yankees in 1996 and went on to win 4 World Series titles (1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000). His career managerial record is 2,326-1997 (.538 win percentage).
Torre was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2014 by the Veterans Committee and is my 127th Hall of Famer.
Wednesday, August 17, 2016
I looked a three different National Card Shows to complete the series, with no luck at all. The closest I came was this year, when I found a vendor with maybe 15 of the letters from various series, but the only Brooks he had was the C. I thought I was smart back in the day when I added the search on Ebay as a "followed" search, only to be teased by the occasional L or E. Finally, last week, the followed search paid off when someone listed several of the letters at once.
I had been waiting so long to finish this set, I was willing to pay almost any price to complete it. Luckily, when I saw the R go up for sale, it was $10.00 BIN with free shipping. So, I got it for a lot cheaper than most of the letters, which I paid between $15-$25 per letter (a couple were as low as $7, I think).
So, I can now turn off the Ebay notifications. I can now stop searching through manufactured patches at card shows. I am officially taken out of the market for these letter patches.
The original post that started this project can be seen HERE.
Tuesday, August 16, 2016
Instead, I chose one guy I needed, and also got a voucher for a guy I think will be in the Hall later on (and who will be blogged later). I chose Craig Biggio over some of the other guys that I needed, not only because his price was the most affordable, but also because my friends and I have a nice running joke about what we think his signature looks like. I will leave it to your imagination, but "something on a skateboard" will get you pretty close...
Biggio was really nice, in the brief moment that Andrew and I talked to him. I am disappointed to note that the photo I took of Andrew and Biggio turned out blurry as crap (thanks cell phone camera). Sorry, Andrew.
Biggio (b. 1965) played in the majors from 1988 to 2007 with the Astros. He had 3,060 hits, 291 home runs and a .281 career batting average. He was a 7-time All Star and won the Silver Slugger award 5 times. He was also a 4-time Gold Glove Award winner. He finished as high as 4th in the MVP voting (1997). Biggio was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2015 on his third ballot when he received 82.7% of the vote. He is my 126th Hall of Famer.
Monday, August 15, 2016
This is a pretty tough Cal to find, and I am glad I was able to add it to the Cal PC. I often complain about how hard it is to find Cal cards that I don't yet have, and this one was a prime example of one I really needed. There is also the 1980 WBTV Charlotte Orioles minor league card, but I will never own that one. I saw one graded at a 7 at the show, and the vendor wanted $10,000 for it. No thanks!
Maybe I will be able to find a generous benefactor who has the Charlotte O's Cal card, but I highly doubt it.
Anyway, I am really glad I was able to knock off two big Ripken cards while I was at the National. Maybe if I think hard enough, I will be able to come up with some other Cals that can populate my Top Ten Wishlist for next year!
Sunday, August 14, 2016
I was walking around the show on the last day and was looking down quickly at the showcases when I saw it. I had walked around the entire show the whole time asking people if they had it and had come up short. So much so, I ended up buying another big rookie from that series just because the dealer had it over the Pujols.
I got it for a really nice price ($20) and am so glad I can take it off of my Top Ten Wishlist. I'm really going to struggle finding new cards to search for once the year is out. I definitely have met my goal in the amount of cards that I wanted to cross off of it (more to come in a few days on that).
Friday, August 12, 2016
Earnshaw (b. 1900 - d. 1976) played in the majors from 1928 to 1936 for the A's (Philadelphia), White Sox, Dodgers and Cardinals. He had a career record of 127-93 with an ERA of 4.38 and 1,002 strike outs. He was a 20-game winner 3 times in his career. He led the AL in wins in 1929 with 24. He won the World Series with the A's in 1929 and 1930.
If this baseball was signed while the players were still active, that might put is an era from 1928 to 1933 since by 1928, all three players were on the A's, until Simmons left in 1933. It would be really cool if it was from that time period. It has to be from at least 1956, since that is the year that Simmons passed away. Regardless, I have an amazing baseball, and piece of history on my hands.
Thursday, August 11, 2016
I already had the 3/5 piece, so now I have two of the five pieces for this series (40%, haha). Not bad! I got it off of my friend, Robert L., who also works for the Aberdeen Ironbirds. Not a bad gig. He's a good guy that I am able to chat with at times, and he updates me on happenings at the Orioles Low A team.
Thanks for the deal on this awesome card, Robert! I am happy to have it in the Davis PC.
Wednesday, August 10, 2016
To say I was disappointed when I first got the card is an understatement. I was happy to complete a deal, but I felt like I messed up big time prior to the deal, but in the end, I am glad I sat down and really looked closely at the card.
I had met up in person with my good friends Kyle and Jordan at the show. Both of them are guys I have befriended on Instagram right at the beginning of my time there. Kyle was the first successful deal that I made, and Jordan is his best friend. We all hit it off and have been good friends ever since. Kyle was interested in a Brendan Rogers card that I had, and offered up the Brooks.
I had gotten the Rogers when my friend, Robert, traded my 2016 Bowman Rogers auto that we had raw card graded at Beckett. It got a 9-10, and I let Robert trade it for me, since he was flipping his graded stuff for crazy deals. He flipped that Rogers for a... Brendan Rogers auto. This one was a 2015 Bowman's Best RC auto. Robert felt like he got a good deal, and I couldn't blame him, since it was a RC auto, but I had been hoping for something better, like an Oriole. So, Kyle said he was interested in the Rogers and offered the Brooks. Since it was a Brooks, and since Kyle is such a good friend, I had to let him have the deal. I felt like he got the better end of the deal, since I already had a 63 Brooks. I took the card, put it in my box and forgot about it until Andrew and I were looking at cards a few days later.
I noticed, then, that the Brooks that Kyle had traded to me was in such amazing shape. I had spent a good deal of time at the show shopping around for a graded vintage card for a friend and came to realize just how tough it is to get a high grade on vintage. I also learned about the huge difference in quality and price between grades. A 6 goes for a fraction of a 7 which goes for a fraction of an 8. I think this card would bring a pretty high grade, even with its centering.
So, all of that being said, thank you so much for the trade, Kyle. Also, thanks for sticking with me all of these years. It was great to finally meet you in person and even better walking around the show for a bit with you and Jordan and talking about cards.
Tuesday, August 9, 2016
The other guys I got were Red Schoendienst, Ron Santo, Gaylord Perry and Jim Kaat. We also walked into the show with Frank Robinson on Friday. That was really cool.
The ball is JSA authenticated and is a William White ONL baseball. The dealer gave me $5 off the price, which is decent enough, I guess. I have been wanting to knock Larkin off of my list for some time now, even though, in my humble opinion, I don't feel as if he is a surefire Hall of Famer. That being said, however, there are guys who aren't in that I believe should be, but others could have an argument against them. It creates a good field for debate, though.
Larkin (b. 1964) played in the majors from 1986 to 2004 for the Cincinnati Reds. He had 2,340 hits, 198 home runs and a career average of .295. He was an All Star 12 times, won the NL MVP in 1995 and won the World Series in 1990 with the Reds. He was also a 9-time Silver Slugger Award winner and a 3-time Gold Glove Award winner.
Larkin making the Hall of Fame as a shortstop, I guess paves the way for someone like Omar Vizquel to get in. I just don't feel as if Larkin has the stats, but compared to other shortstops not named Cal, he probably does measure up.
Sunday, August 7, 2016
Simmons (b. 1902 - d. 1956) played in the majors from 1924 to 1941, 1943 and 1944 for the A's (Philadelphia), White Sox, Tigers, Senators, Braves (Boston), Reds and Red Sox. He had 2,927 hits, 307 home runs and a .334 batting average. He finished as high as 2nd in the MVP voting (1925, losing to Roger Peckinpaugh). Peckinpaugh's stats do not even begin to compare to Simmons's, let alone other players during that season (Babe Ruth..???). That version of the MVP award was voted on by an 8-member committee and was dropped after 1928.
Simmons had a great career; he is the fastest player to ever record 2,000 hits (in 1,390 games). He is ranked 23rd all-time in batting average with .334. He was a three-time All Star (1933, 1934 and 1935) and won the World Series twice with the A's (1929 and 1930). He had 200 or more hits six times. He was the AL batting champion in 1930 and 1931 (.381 and .390, respectively). He batted over .300 and had 100+ RBI in his first eleven seasons. Simmons was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1953 with 75.4% of the vote (his seventh official ballot). Simmons is my 124th Hall of Fame autograph.
Saturday, August 6, 2016
I came to the National this year with a plan in mind if I found a Foxx that I liked at a reasonable price. I also enjoyed chatting with the seller of the ball. We spoke for a while about Hall of Famers, about my meeting with Mr. Don McNair, who's dad played alongside Foxx, and collecting in general.
I made up my mind to purchase the ball, but saw that it had no LOA to go with it, so the seller took it to JSA and had them issue an LOA, all of this he did for free. I made the purchase yesterday, and picked the ball up around lunchtime today, once the LOA was completed.
I had a good laugh with the seller this morning. He asked me to come sit by him while one of his staff went to check on the LOA. I had asked him if he was having a a good show, to which he replied: "Oh man, I killed it yesterday. I found some sucker to buy this Jimmie Foxx ball off of me. I killed it!" Then he slapped me on the shoulder and we had a good laugh together. I really enjoyed buying from him, Kevin Keating, and definitely will again. I was really nervous about the purchase, but he made it really easy on me. He even gave me a bit of a break on the price. It is a huge purchase, but I see it as an investment. Foxx obviously isn't signing anymore, and I have wanted one for years. Now I have one, and couldn't be happier.
Foxx (b. 1907 - d. 1967) played in the majors from 1925 to 1942, 1944 and 1945 for the A's (Philadelphia), Red Sox, Cubs and Phillies. He retired with 2,646 hits, 534 home runs and a .325 batting average. He was a three-time AL MVP (1932, 1933 and 1938), two-time batting champion (1933 - .356 and 1938 - .349), and four-time home run champ (1932 - 58; 1933 - 48; 1935 - 36 and 1939 - 35).
Foxx hit 50 or more home runs twice, 40 or more home runs 5 times and 30 or more home runs 12 times (and in 12 straight seasons). He was an All Star 9 times from 1933 to 1941. Foxx won the World series twice with Connie Mack's A's, in 1929 and 1930.
Foxx was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1951 by the BBWAA with 79.2% of the vote (really?). He had appeared on 8 ballots, back when the voting was far different than it is today.
Foxx is, without a doubt, an All-Time Great. He ranks 15th all-time with a 4.21 career share MVP vote, 10th all-time with a .428 OBP, 18th all-time in home runs (534) and 9th all-time in RBI (1,922). When he retired, Foxx was second all-time in home runs. Someone had to come in second to Babe Ruth.
Thursday, August 4, 2016
I had asked a couple dealers as the day went on to see if any were available, but didn't have much luck. I ended up picking up a few inserts and parallels as I walked around the show. I stopped at one dealer about halfway through the day and asked him if he had one, he laughed, and said he thought he did, but wasn't sure if he could put his hands on it.
Luckily, he was able to find it in one of his boxes! I'm glad I asked about it! So, for $100.00, I was able to pick this card up.
If you don't know about them, the Desert Shield cards were issued by Topps to servicemen and women in Iraq during Operation Desert Shield. Not many of the cards made their way back stateside after the conflict, so these are very rare cards. The Cal Ripken, Nolan Ryan and the Chipper Jones RC are all the most sought-after cards in the set.
I'm really happy I was able to get this card and cross it off of the list!
I got this Mike Mussina auto for only $20, since the seller didn't have any authentication to go with it. I know Moose's auto pretty well and am confident that this is a legit ball. I have been wanting to get a ball signed by him for a while, and finally was able to get a great deal!
Mussina (b. 1968) played in the majors from 1991 to 2008 for the Orioles and Yankees. He had a career record of 270-153 with an ERA of 3.68 and 2,813 strike outs. He never won a World Series or Cy Young Award, which are probably the reasons he isn't in the Hall of Fame... yet. He was a 5-time All Star and a 7-time Gold Glove Award winner. He finished as high as second in the AL Cy Young Award voting (1999 to Pedro Martinez) and as high as 19th in the AL MVP voting.
I finally have a Mussina ball, and I didn't need to spend a ton on it the first day of the National. I'm really excited to see how the rest of the days go!
Monday, August 1, 2016
Mark sent along 10 1969 Topps that I needed. The cards were in decent enough shape for me to be able to cross them off of the list, just in time for the National. I doubt I will pursue completing this set while at the show. Completing the 1959 set last year was an expensive endeavor. I may grab a few, though, enough to make a dent, I think.
Thank you so much for the cards, Mark!