Wednesday, October 31, 2012

More Cards on

I hope everyone takes a look at the new cards I added for sale on  This time around, I added less high-end stuff in hopes of clearing out some of my boxes and maybe flipping them for Orioles cards.  There's a bunch of A&G minis and Topps Gold parallels that I added, so hopefully some of you need them for your respective PCs.  Go ahead, take a look:

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Orioles Are Beginning to Bring Home Some Hardware

The 2012 Rawlings Gold Glove Awards have just been announced and the three nominated Orioles won for their respective categories.
Adam Jones won his second Gold Glove (last winning in 2009) in Center Field.
Matt Wieters won his second Gold Glove (he won it last year) for Catcher.  Is it not ridiculous that Wieters has yet to have a Topps card?
Finally, J. J. Hardy took home his first Gold Glove at Shortstop.  He is the first Orioles shortstop to win the award since Cal Ripken did it in 1992.  It has been that long?  Jeez.

Anyway, there you have it, the three nominated Orioles took home some awards.  I anticipate one more award being handed out to an Oriole, a Manager of the Year Award to Buck Showalter.  I believe that award will be announced next week.

Some Vintage Cards From My Brother John

I went to my parents' house several weeks ago and while I was in town, I went across the street to visit my brother, John.  He had some Orioles cards for me, like always and this time, he had a few vintage cards.
I like the design of 1958 Topps.  It is eerily reminiscent of the 1954 design, except on a smaller piece of cardboard.  Qualters only pitched in parts of 3 seasons in the majors (1953, 1957 and 1958) for the Phillies and White Sox.
This is not the Hall of Famer, Joe Morgan, but this Morgan was also a manager in the majors for a few seasons.  Funny that both Morgans were second basemen.  I also enjoy the 1960 set.  It has a nice unique look to it and in my opinion is one of the classic sets in Topps' portfolio.
Finally, here is the 1966 Floyd Robinson card that my brother gave me.  John thought that this guy might be related to Frank Robinson, but I haven't seen any evidence of such.  The 1966 design is very minimal.  It isn't one of my favorites, it is more of a 'mehhh' set.  It is a key set for me in that it contains the Jim Palmer rookie car.

So, thank John for these really cool vintage cards.  It has been a little while since I have picked up some vintage, so anytime I can get them is a good time.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Congratulations to the Giants and Their Fans

Well, the World Series is over and the Giants have taken home their seventh championship and second in three seasons.
They swept the Tigers in 4 games and their pitching staff just dominated.  Tim Lincecum, my son's favorite player, was lights out out of the bullpen.  Chris was really happy that the Giants won, having claimed them as 'his team' recently.  He is lucky in that he is only 6 and has already seen them win the World Series twice.

I was listening to XM this morning and they were discussing whether or not the Giants can be considered a dynasty.  That was food for thought, since they have already won two titles and are poised to make a run again next year.  I believe that they have as good a chance as any and will really do well if their pitching staff can maintain the success they had this postseason.  They also need Tim Lincecum to put up better numbers next year than he did this year.

What do you guys think?  Personally, I would be fine if they don't repeat next year if that means that the Orioles win!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Another Reimold - 2009 Topps Update Black

I wasn't kidding when I said I really attacked my want list recently.  I grabbed a 2009 Topps Black Nolan Reimold the other day for $9.99.  Again, this is his rookie card, so I'm trying to complete the 'rainbow' of that year.
Who am I kidding?  I'm trying to complete the 'rainbow' of every year.  I think I've done pretty well.  Unless I find a printing plate of 2009 Topps, I'm pretty much done with this year.  I bought the gold parallel off of COMC, so when I buy a couple more cards to justify shipping, I'll take delivery of it.  I also found someone who has the 2010 Black Parallel, which has been the hardest one for me to find, so I'll probably grab that next week.  Once I take care of that, I think I will concentrate some more on HOF autos, but who knows, something may jump out at me and I'll have to get it.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Another Off of the Want List - 2012 Topps Mini Gold Nolan Reimold

I got another card knocked off of the want list the other day when I received this 2012 Topps Mini Gold parallel Nolan Reimold from Ebay for around $10.
The cool this about this card is that it is numbered 14/61.  Not bad, getting a card serial numbered at his uniform number for around $10.  I was tipped to this auction by my good buddy Ryan, whom was generous enough to let me land this instead of claiming it for himself.  I wouldn't blame him for doing it, though, I mean, we both are big O's fans.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Off of the Want List - 2009 Topps Silk Nolan Reimold

I felt like I had been neglecting my want list a few months ago when the only things I was knocking off were HOF signed baseballs.  So, I updated the list for the 2012 National Card Show and have been trying to keep up with it ever since.  Since I did that, I have added several Nolan Reimold parallels to my collection.  I have gotten lucky recently in being able to find the ones I need.
One of the cards I got in the mail yesterday was the above 2009 Topps Update Silk Nolan Reimold #36/50.  I had been looking for this card for a while and could never come across any at shows or Ebay.  Luckily, someone finally posted one on Ebay and I grabbed it.  This is considered a rookie card, so it carries a bit of a premium, especially among Reimold fans.  I have only seen this one since I have been looking, so it doesn't look like too many people are willing to part with them.  I'm glad I added it, though because I need to make room on my want list for all of the 2013 stuff that will be coming out before you know it.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

TTM Signer Les Mueller Has Passed Away

Former Tigers pitcher and one of the few remaining players from the 1945 World Series Champion Tigers, Les Mueller, passed away today at the age of 93.
I received the above baseball as a TTM success earlier this year on January 17.  You can read about it here
Mueller played only two seasons in the majors, but was able to take home a ring after the 1945 season.  Following his passing, only 4 players remain living from that team:  Virgil Trucks, Milt Welch, Ed Mierkowicz and Billy Pierce.

Friday, October 19, 2012

1,000th Post and an Ebay Pickup

Well, I have reached my 1,000th post.  Wow.  Who would have thought way back in November of 2008 that I would reach 1,000 posts on this blog.  I sure didn't think I would.  I didn't really have anything major planned for my 1,000th post like other bloggers may have.  Just business as usual over here.
That being said, this post does center around a really cool card that I got off of Ebay for around $24.  This is the 2012 Topps Mini Silver parallel Nolan Reimold.  The Ebay listing actually had this labeled as a 'black' parallel, but it definitely is silver(ish).  It might be Platinum, who knows.  Beckett, I guess.  Anyway, I looked on Ebay for some clarification on these and there are listings under: Black, Silver and Platinum.  Interesting.  This card is serial numbered 2/5, so I own 20% of the print run on this card.  Not bad.

So, my 2012 Topps Reimold Rainbow project is looking pretty good from where I sit.  This one is a really awesome addition to my Reimold PC.  I need to find a 2012 Topps printing plate to round this out.  If anyone has one, please let me know because it would be cool to add it also.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Ebay Pickup - 2012 Topps Black Nolan Reimold

Things are a bit quiet around here, since the Orioles are done for the season.  I decided to hit up Ebay the other day and see about knocking some cards off of my want list.  I got two cards and the first one arrived today.
I got this 2012 Topps Black Nolan Reimold 47/61 for $12.00 plus $2.00 shipping.  Most of what I'm looking at for my Reimold PC is starting to get a little expensive.  I'm trying to knock out a lot of his parallels and I feel like I'm well on my way.

Stay tuned to the blog to see the next card I picked up.  It will look alarmingly similar to this one, but the price was double.  You'll find out why soon!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Second Trade With Joe Average Collector

This trade with Jason from the blog titled Joe Average Collector was nowhere near as epic as our first encounter, but he did manage to hook me up with some much needed 2010 Heritage Chromes for my PCs.
First was this 2010 Topps Heritage Chrome Black Refractor of Adam Jones numbered 57/61.  I don't have too many black refractors, so this one was a nice addition.  I have been looking up Reimold black refractors and black parallels and have learned that they definitely carry a sizable premium, so being able to trade for this was really nice.
Jason also sent me this 2010 Topps Heritage Chrome Nolan Reimold numbered 1,052/1,961.  Another Reimold knocked off of my want list (which I have updated, by the way).

What did I trade him, you might be wondering?  Well, I saved my Jesus Montero auto from my wife wanting to burn it and sent it on to Jason.  Now it will be in a home, free from my wife's vindictive hands.

Thanks for the trade Jason.  I hope you enjoy the Montero.

Friday, October 12, 2012

It Was Fun While It Lasted

Well, I'm proud of my boys, but they just couldn't get past the Yankees.  Story of the year, they would pull even but couldn't surpass the Yankees and put them away.  Now, here's to a nice, restful offseason and let's get back to it when Spring Training starts in February.  I think the Orioles can do well next year.  Markakis, Roberts and Reimold should be back from injuries and the young pitchers will have the experience they have gained from this season.

I want to thank everyone for the well wishes during this season and this series.  This has been the most amazing season that I've been a part of and I have loved every minute of it.

I'm going to be away from my blog for an undetermined amount of time as I get over the loss, but I will return.

It All Comes Down To This

I am so exhausted.  Thankfully, this series will be over tonight.  I want the Orioles to win, but this has got to be the most agonizing series I have seen them play in some time.  I, of course, wouldn't have it any other way.  If the Orioles win, they will have beaten a team that has wiped the floor with them too many times to count.  A true rival.  You all know how much I hate the Yankees, but they are the greatest dynasty in sports for a reason.  Any title worth winning typically has to go through New York.
Every game in this series has been a nail-biter.  Each game was either tied or within one run coming into the 9th inning.  The Orioles have had a lead in each game played, so far.  Every home run hit in the series by either team has been a solo home run.  Alex Rodriguez, the highest paid player in the game is being benched in a do or die, deciding game 5.  The Orioles' biggest threats, Adam Jones and Matt Wieters and the Yankees big guns, A-Rod, Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson have all laid eggs with their performances.

I can't wait for the game tonight, but, more importantly, I can't wait until it is finally over and my stress level can decrease a bit.

A win tonight, for me, would almost be the equivalent of winning the World Series.

Let's Go O's!

Monday, October 8, 2012

My Thoughts on 2012 Topps Update

To get my mind off of last night's meltdown, I figured I would post about the jumbo box of Topps Update that I picked up from the card shop yesterday.
When one of the gold cards you get is one of the players who you are trying to get every single parallel of, that definitely makes getting the box worthwhile.  I was super excited to pull this Topps Gold Nolan Reimold from one of the first packs I opened (I think it was the second or third pack I opened.  I think all I need of him from 2012 now is a printing plate, any 1/1 they issued (platinum or whatever) and the orange factory set exclusive (I should have bought one when I saw it.  Oh yeah, I still need his mini black parallel.
Speaking of black parallels, I pulled the above Jay Bruce from my box.  Cool.  I also got the above Roberto Clemente award winner golden ring.  Pretty cool card.  I'm probably one of the few who likes the manufactured rings.  But hey, I also enjoyed the manufactured patches also.
I think my biggest hit was the above Yu Darvish relic.  Usually, pulling Darvish stuff is up to my buddy Scott, since it seems Darvish is in every pack he opens.  I bet Scott could buy a crappy wax pack of 1987 Topps and pull a Darvish...
Hey look!  My wife can finally have that Jesus Montero autograph that he denied her a few months ago.  If you don't remember the story, my wife asked him to sign her notepad at a game in August and he told her he doesn't sign pieces of paper.  He does, however, sign stickers.  Yeah, this is trade bait.
Finally, after doing a google search this evening for Topps Update Short Prints, I discovered that I owned a short print of Prince Fielder.  The all star cards featuring players in suits is one of the variations that permeate this year's set.  There are also some All Star parade SPs as well as horizontal SPs.

I had two minor disappointments with this set/box.  One i that Miguel Gonzalez didn't make it into the checklist, so I'll have to wait until sometime in 2013 to get his RC.  My other gripe is that the Jim Thome in an O's uniform is a SP and it is going at a ridiculous price on Ebay.  I figure I'll wait for them to flood the market and snatch one up for cheap.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

I'm Ready, Are You?

I feel like more of my friends and family are fans of the Yankees than any other club.  My dad grew up in Bethesda, Maryland up to 1970 before my grandfather accepted a transfer with his company to Winston-Salem, NC.  One would think that Dad might have grown up an Orioles fan, but according to him, he isn't a baseball fan (according to him, he would rather "watch paint dry.").

My mom is a Yankee fan; she has been since the 70s and Thurman Munson.  She also appreciated Don Mattingly in the 1980s.  I remember hearing her go "Ha Ha!!!" during the Jeffrey Maier play in the 1996 ALCS while I was watching the game in my room (I may or may not have been crying).

My older brother, Philip, is a self professed Yankee fan and he loves to call me and gloat about the Yankees' latest exploits.

My wife's grandfather, being from New Jersey, is a huge Yankee fan, and anytime I talk with him, he has to give me a hard time.  I love talking to him, though, one reason is that he sounds like DeNiro.  I love hearing him talk about "Derek Jetuhsz", haha.

One of my best friends is fellow blogger, Drew, and he has been surprisingly quiet leading up to tonight's game.

Pete, from the blog Dropped Third Strike, is also a huge Yankee fan.

My point is, more than any other team, I stress the most about the Orioles playing the Yankees.  If the O's are beaten by the Yankees, I always get phone calls.  In years past, it was more obnoxious, but this year, I feel like most of them respect what the Orioles have been able to accomplish.  The Yankees are and forever will be my least favorite team, but I do respect the hell out of them.
A trip through the postseason for the Orioles wouldn't mean as much if it didn't pass through New York.  There is some kind of validation when the Yankees are the team to beat, and I think the Orioles have a good shot at taking this series.  It definitely would mean a lot more for the O's to beat the Yankees and I sure hope the O's have a good showing.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Publications Are Starting to Notice The Orioles

When I went to Baltimore last week, I was happy to carry along with me a copy of the USA Today Sports Weekly to give to my good friend Ryan.  My wife had told me about the issue and how Buck Showalter was on the cover.  Well, that wasn't the only publication that the Orioles graced the cover of recently.
Sports Illustrated featured Orioles Outfielders Endy Chavez, Adam Jones and Nick Markakis on their cover in their most recent issue.  I picked up a copy on the way back to Ryan's Saturday night after the game.  I can't remember the last time I saw the Orioles on the cover of SI.  The cool thing is, I actually have 2 copies of this issue now because Monday when I got to work, my friend Rae had a copy waiting for me.
I'm certain that the Orioles' recent surge has assisted the Baltimore Sun in selling a few more copies.  Most newspapers are struggling at the moment.  Again, I can't remember the last newspaper I purchased for anything other than coupons, so when I saw this front page, I had to get a copy.
Finally, here is the USA Today Sports Weekly featuring Buck on the cover.  I bought 3 copies of this and gave one to Ryan.  I plan on giving the other copy to one of our subcontractors who always talks to me about the Orioles.

It feels really good that the Orioles are starting to get some attention.  The certain 4-letter network still probably can't believe their beloved Red Sox aren't in the playoffs and still sell the Orioles short.  On XM on Friday, the commentators were giving the Orioles 'no chance' to advance past the Rangers in the playoffs and were calling Buck's decision to start Joe Saunders last night a bad decision.  I'm so happy they are proving people wrong.  I hope all of this continues and the Orioles keep getting the ink.

And Then There Were Fewer

The Orioles have defeated the Rangers in the one-game wildcard playoff and will be hosting playoff games at Camden Yards for the first time in 15 years.  I would love to take some donations to go to the game against the Yankees on Sunday; Standing Room Only tickets are available, but I would have to have Chris with me, and I'm not too sure about taking to the madhouse that will be SRO.

Oh well, I can enjoy the game from my living room!  This season has been so magical and I hope it doesn't stop!  Thank God and Let's Go O's!

We are now down to 8 of 30 teams left after the Braves and Rangers have been sent home.  The Braves/Cardinals game is blighted by a terrible call.  I saw it as it happened and was screaming at the TV.  What a joke.

The Orioles will go one to face the Yankees and hopefully get some retribution for the 1996 ALCS.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Let's Go O's!

For the first time since 1997, the Orioles will be playing a playoff game.  Tonight, they will face the 2-time defending AL Champion Texas Rangers in a one-game, do or die, playoff game.  The loser will go home and the winner will go on to face the Yankees in the ALDS.
For the Orioles, they were picked by almost everyone to lose 100 games and finish last in the AL East.  They weren't supposed to be here.  Shows you that the games aren't won on paper.  If ESPN had it's way, the Red Sox would be in the playoffs playing against the Yankees every year with Brett Favre making an appearance.  This is why I don't watch ESPN.  Bobby Valentine said a few weeks ago that the Orioles were lucky.  I bet he wishes he could have had a little more luck this year.  Jim Bowden said on XM Radio a few months ago that even though the Orioles were in the playoff hunt, he still picked them to finish last and the Red Sox to make the playoffs.  He had to apologize on air a couple weeks ago.

My point is, the Orioles aren't supposed to be here and I am glad they have proven every 'expert' wrong.  I hope they can continue to have some of that magic tonight.  I'm not ready to wake up from this dream season just yet.  Let's Go O's!  Feel the magic happen, O-R-I-O-L-E-S!!!!!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Cards From Checkoutmycards

So, I'm sure you all are wondering how I have been doing on COMC so far.  Well, I have sold 3 of the 50 cards that I had listed so far.  I like the site, so I sent them another box of 115 cards (mostly SPs and parallels - a lot less high end stuff this time) and one graded gem mint 10 Bowman Chrome card.  Maybe I can flip that stuff and get some needs met off of my want list again like I was able to with the cards below.
I can't believe I didn't own a single 1986 Fleer Cal Ripken card.  I had seen them plenty of times,  but for whatever reason, they didn't end up in my collection.  The above card is the base card for the year and below is his League Leaders card.
He was also featured on the below card with Alan Trammell; two of the best shortstops of their generation.  Why Trammell isn't in the Hall of Fame is anyone's guess.
I saw the below 2004 Delmarva Shorebirds Nick Markakis for $0.99, so I added it to my cart.  I hadn't seen any of them before, so I figured it wouldn't hurt to add it to my PC.
The below Nolan Reimold 2009 Topps Finest redemption RC is direct from my want list.  Apparently, there are a few harder to find parallels of this card, but I haven't ever seen them.  I intend to keep my eyes peeled for them, though, because the parallels I have of other players (notably, Brian Roberts) look pretty good.
I also knocked the 2009 Heritage SP RC off of my want list.  I still need the Chrome, though.
I got my first Kevin Gausman card.  Here's to hoping that the Orioles' pitching depth is finally significant enough that Gausman won't be rushed to the majors like Jake Arrieta and Brian Matusz were when they were brought up.  Give Gausman plenty of time to develop in the minors and then call him up when he is ready to join a rotation anchored by Dylan Bundy.
I don't know about you, but I thought the Bowman Ice parallels scanned really nice.  The below Markakis and McCutchen cards are really awesome.
I really wanted the red parallels, but those are commanding pretty hefty prices right now, so I am going to keep my eyes opened for them and hope to get a bargain later on.
Finally, I don't know how I missed it while I was there, but this is a 2012 National Show Leaf Brooks Robinson.  I love adding new Brooks cards to the collection, so this was a 'must have.'
Well, I think I was pretty successful in flipping three cards for 10.  I feel like I made an Andy MacPhail-type trade.  The cards I sold so far were a 2011 Topps Diamond Die Cut Reggie Jackson, 2008 Bowman Chrome no sig Kosuke Fukudome and a Topps Finest Yu Darvish RC.  Not a bad haul, I think.  Make sure you guys take a look at my wares and stay tuned for more cards to be added soon!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Brooks Robinson Statue Dedication

I love Brooks Robinson.  I grew us a Cal Ripken fan, but never really took the time as a kid to look into the past Orioles and understood the history of the team.  I didn't really get into those teams until I got back into the hobby around 2005 or so.  I'm glad I did, though.  Brooks Robinson is, in my opinion, just as much the face of the Baltimore Orioles as Cal is.  They go hand in hand, really.  Baseball's Iron Man and the greatest defensive 3rd baseman of all time.  They both are Hall of Famers and beloved in the city of Baltimore.  For some reason, over the past several years, Brooks and the Orioles have seemed far apart.  Brooks wasn't seen around the ballpark.  He used to do color commentary on broadcasts many years ago, but hadn't been invited to do any for MASN recently.  A statue of Babe Ruth stood outside the gates of Camden Yards, but no statue to Brooks was anywhere to be seen.

Last year, a private investor commissioned a statue dedicated to Brooks.  The statue was unveiled outside and across the street from the ballpark, near Pickles, the famous pub across from Camden Yards.  The statue was erected in honor of a man who, seemingly, hadn't really been honored enough by the team he spent 23 seasons with (a record).  Yeah, he was in the Orioles Hall of Fame and has his number 5 retired, but it seemed to be missing something.  Until September 29, 2012, that is.  On that night, as a part of the Orioles Legends series, honoring the 6 greatest Orioles of all time, a statue inside the ballpark was unveiled in honor of Mr. Oriole, Brooks Robinson.
His statue, which was supposed to be unveiled in April, was the last of the 6 statues to be revealed (Frank Robinson, Earl Weaver, Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer and Cal Ripken are the others who were honored with larger than life sculptures).  Broos' dedication was delayed due to recurring health concerns and it was thought that he might not be able to attend his own ceremony.
The ceremony was befitting the man who spent decades with the Orioles, signed as a 'bonus baby' out of high school in 1955, making his major league debut later that season as an 18-year old.
His former manager, Earl Weaver, and the other Oriole Hall of Famers, looked on as dignitaries (one being ESPN commentator and huge Oriole fan, Roy Firestone) gave speeches honoring Brooks.  Earl Weaver was even shown on the Jumbotron crying.
Cal, Jim, Earl, Eddie and Frank all removed the sheet from the statue, unveiling it for all who attended the ceremony to see.  We were standing along the fence in the flag court watching the proceedings.
Brooks gave a great speech, thanking all in attendance for their years of support.  He also thanked the sculptor for his work and the Angelos family for their contribution to the team and coming through with a great series honoring the past Oriole greats.
Brooks culminated his speech by professing that he no longer wanted to call us fans 'fans' but instead would rather refer to us as his friends.  This brought tears to my eyes as I knew his sincerity and thought to myself how thankful I was to have actually met and spoken to Brooks in person.  He is a true class act and all sports figures can take a lesson from him in humility and class.
Thirty minutes before the game started, an on field ceremony for Brooks was held.  The other Oriole legends, along with Brooks were escorted onto the field in 2012 Camaros.  I got a picture of each one as they came in via the Jumbotron, except for Frank Robinson.  I was too slow in getting my camera out.
Eddie looks like he has added a few pounds but could still knock a ball out of the park.  Cal also looked good and could probably knock a few out himself.
Brooks, on the other hand does look like he has aged greatly since I met him at the 'Dinner With Brooks' event back in October 2010.  He has battled abdominal issues for the past several months, along with a cancer scare and a fall off of a stage earlier in the year.  His health has been a source of stress for Orioles fans recently, and at the age of 75, it shows that he is getting up in years.
Brooks was presented with a 2-foot tall bronze replica of the sculpture that had been revealed earlier that evening.
Brooks gave a second speech, mirroring the one he had given earlier.  He again referred to the fans as his friends and stated that he hoped this was his last celebration of his career.  I think he has had 4 or 5 different career celebrations, so I don't blame him for hoping this one wraps them up.  Especially is his health is not so great.
Brooks took the time to acknowledge the 2012 Orioles, drawing a huge pop from the crowd when he said "How about them Orioles?"  It was really cool to see him acknowledge this year's club and the playoff feel that has been spreading around Baltimore.
Finally, Brooks took a second to assure the crowd that he wasn't "...going anywhere for a long time!"  I took that to mean that he has gotten a clean bill of health and has put the health concerns from earlier this year behind him.

I was so blessed to be able to experience the Brooks statue dedication with some close friends, my wife and my son.  I told Chris that he would be able to take his grandkids to see the statue and tell them one day that he and his daddy were there to see it unveiled.  It definitely was a cool night and I'm glad I was there for Brooks.