Monday, March 31, 2014

Ebay Pickup - 2014 Topps Heritage Chris Davis Black Parallel

You all know about the Miguel Cabrera black parallel that I pulled out of my box of 2014 Topps Heritage.  Well, it sold for $41 and I was able to use some of that money to buy this Chris Davis black parallel.  This Davis is numbered 16/65 and is a high number, just like the Cabrera was.  I was happy to 'trade' it for this Davis and some other stuff.

I really like these black parallels.  They look really sharp, especially with the '65 design.  I was also glad that I got this Davis as opposed to the two I missed out on the day before.  Those went for just over $25 each and I got this one for just over $21. I saved $4, woo hoo!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

COMC Pickup - 1981 Topps Willie Stargell

Coming from one of the most underrated sets in Topps history (at least in my opinion) is this awesome 1981 Topps Willie Stargell card.  I got it off of COMC really cheaply and I just love it for all of the colorfulness that is shown on the card.  I have toyed with the idea of starting a Stargell PC, even though he was responsible for the Pirates beating the Orioles in the 1979 World Series.  I wasn't alive then, so it doesn't really matter to me.

The card is just amazing.  It captures Stargell seemingly hitting a home run, judging by the upward glance on his face.  It has the old school loud uniforms of the 70s.  Look at the high socks and stirrups.  What a card.  I kind of hate that I bought the 1981 set whole in an album.  It really is an underrated set and one that I'm sure would have been a blast to build.  I might look into actually putting one together at some point, maybe if I can find a decent enough starter set.  Who know.  All I know is, I kind of want to pull out that album and see if there are more gems in the set that are like this one.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

COMC Pickup - 1965 Topps Warren Spahn

I picked up a nice card off of COMC recently and it also fits into my Hall of Famers in strange uniforms theme.  Here is a Warren Spahn card featuring the longtime Brave as a Met.  Spahn would finish his career in '65 with the Mets and Giants, going 7-16 with a 4.01 ERA on the season.  In July of the 1965 season, Spahn would be released by the Mets and sign with the Giants.  He joined the Giants as they were gearing up for a pennant run, ultimately finishing second to the Dodgers.

Amazingly, Spahn was on that '65 Giants team with 5 other future Hall of Famers in Juan Marichal, Gaylord Perry, Orlando Cepeda, Willie McCovey and Willie Mays.

I really like this card as 1965 Topps is a great design.  Spahn looks out of place without a hat and very out of place out of a Braves uniform.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Second Instagram Trade With Kyle - 2011 Topps Tier One Roy Campanella Relic

I've made a couple (what I would call) friends on Instagram.  The one I talk to the most is a guy named Kyle who lives in Delaware.  He's a huge Phillies fan, so I sent him a good deal of Roy Halladay and other assorted Phillies goodies recently.  He mentioned that he had this 2011 Topps Tier One Campanella relic and he needed some quick cash for a purchase, so I bought it off of him.

The card has a little damage to it, likely resulting from Topps placement of the relic piece, but it is hardly noticeable.  Looking at the piece of jersey, it looks like there may be a faint hint of dirt on it.  It could just be my eyes, though.

Anyway, I really like the card, as I don't have much of anything as far as Campanella goes.  I was really happy to pick it up and I was really happy to help out a (new) friend.

Thanks for the trade, Kyle.  I hope you like your Phillies cards.  I'm sure there are more where those came from!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

A Second Instagram Trade With Carson

I have started to do second trades with a few of the people from Instagram that I enjoyed dealing with the first time around.  The first guy I initiated a second deal with was Carson.  He collects vintage cards, just like me, and was willing to send along several 1959 Topps to help me with my set needs in exchange for a few Pirates inserts and some extra vintage I had in a box.

Carson sent along 12 1959 cards that I needed for my set.  They were all commons, but they were all needed and I was happy to get them.
As a surprise, Carson sent me a bunch of Orioles cards.  He had said he was going to a show soon after we reached our deal for the 59s, so it delayed his shipment a couple of days.  I was completely fine with that since I wanted to take a little time to get him a few things together as well.

I was really happy with my package and I know that Carson will be a regular trade partner for a long time. Thanks so much for the cards!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

COMC Pickup - 1959 Topps Don Newcombe

I picked up another set need with my recent COMC purchase, this time landing a Don Newcombe card out of 1959 Topps.

Newcombe is a personal favorite of mine, especially when he is brought onto XM Radio to talk about those old Dodgers teams that he played on with Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella.

Something cool about the card, which I may have pointed out on some other 1950s cards, is the reference to the Cincinnati Redlegs.  This card came out during the McCarthy Era of US History when the Red Scare was at its height.  So as to not be associated with the Communists, the Reds team would be referred to as the Redlegs during this era.  I'm not going to delve into politics at all, but I do find it interesting to see this part of American History manifested on a baseball card.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

COMC Pickup - 1969 Topps Willie Stargell

I spent some more COMC store credit last week and picked up a few set needs, some vintage and a couple PC pieces.  The above card fills a set need in that it will be put into my 1969 Topps set.  However, I did buy two other Stargell cards to start a little mini PC.  I may not try to get ALL of Stargell's cards, but I did find that the few I had been looking at are really cool and I wanted to own them.

I really want to start ANOTHER vintage set, but that seriously would be biting off quite a bit more than I could chew, so I am just going to try to work hard on finishing this and/or 1959 before I try to get started on something else.  Who knows though.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Set Complete - 1993 Topps

Well, I knocked a set out.  It wasn't anything glorious like the 1959 or 1969 sets I've been working on, but I was able to amass the 825-card set from 1993 Topps.  This is a set that features the Derek Jeter RC (which I got from Drew) and a huge checklist.  I had a whole bunch of cards from my childhood sitting in a box, so those started me on the way for this and I was helped even further when a co-worker gave me all of her son's old cards.  After sorting those, I needed only a handful of 1993s to complete the set.

I sat on it for a while and then finally knocked them all out with one Sportlots purchase.  This Doug Brocail RC was the final card that I crossed off of my list.

I am not too far away from completing 1996 Topps as well.  I thought I closed it out with the same Sportlots purchase, but I think I missed a couple.  Oh well.  It'll be done soon enough.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Instagram Pickup - 2013 Topps Tribute Jimmie Foxx

I got a nice piece for my Jimmie Foxx PC the other day when I got this 2013 Topps Tribute relic card from a guy named Austin off of Instagram.  Austin has quite a few good items, so I was glad to see that the Foxx was available for sale or trade and at a reasonable price.

It got here really fast.  All I need now is to get a nice magnetic case for it instead of the top loader it's in right now.

These Triple Threads cards are really nice.  This one is numbered 16/18; the emerald version of the card.

Thanks for the deal, Austin!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A Trade With Roger Helps My Chrome Set

I got a random email from a fellow blogger a couple weeks ago.  The blogger was Roger from the blog "Sports Card Mask-A-Rade" and he had a bunch of 2013 Chrome to help me with my set.

In all, Roger sent me 25 cards to help with my set, leaving me with only 27 to go before the set is complete. Not too bad.  When I finish this one, it'll be the third Chrome set that I've completed, along with 2010 and 2012.  I have grown to love Chrome recently, especially the color refractor parallels.

I figure I'll be able to make a few trades and buy some needs off of Sportlots to get this set done and out of my notebook.  Then, maybe I can add a few other sets to work on.

Thanks for the cards, Roger.  I hope you like the package I sent you.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Lots of Mail From Drew

I got a huge package in the mail from my very good friend and long-time trading partner, Drew, the other day.  The package consisted of the stacks of cards that can be seen above.  Most of it was just Drew clearing out space on his card desk, but there were quite a few hidden gems inside as well.
First up is this 1967 Wally Bunker.  I'm warming up to '67.  I used to think it was boring (and it still kinda is) but it is a good, almost iconic set.  Stripped down, raw, and simplistic, the set does have its merits.  Add in the fact that I own the Mantle, I think I could grown to like it even more as other Hall of Famers out of this set join my collection
Here is a Chris Davis card that Drew included.  I'm pretty sure I didn't already have it, but I need to consult my Davis PC and see.  I know I had it in my set (duh) but I really don't remember buying it when I went on my COMC bender a while back.
I really like this 1961 Orioles team card.  Drew has been working on the 1961 Topps set for some time now. I really hope he finishes it because it is a good one and he is well on his way!
Look at this young buck, er I mean young Buck.  A 2005 Topps gold parallel Buck Showalter.  I actually do have a Showalter PC.  He has quickly grown into my favorite Orioles manager, since I don't remember the days of Earl Weaver.
Finally, I just thought this Score Chris Hoiles card was awesome.  I'm especially please about how it scanned.  I mean, look at it, it looks amazing!  The card really looks like it could have come out this year.

So, thanks for all of the cards, Drew!  You know you'll have some stuff coming from me shortly!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

A Package of Orioles Rookies From Weston

I got a package in the mail from Weston over at Fantastic Catch the other day.  Seemingly, it had a recurring theme of 'rookie cards'.  Of course, there were a couple older Topps Tribute cards of Brooks and Frank Robinson (no relation).

The highlight of the package just might be this 2014 Topps blue parallel of Jonathan Schoop.  Schoop is lighting things up in spring training and if he doesn't make the team for Opening Day, he will be up soon after.

Schoop is batting .400 over 6 spring training games with 1 homer and 6 RBI.  He figures to begin the season at AAA Norfolk, but there is a distinct possibility he could beat out the likes of Jemile Weeks and Ryan Flaherty for the opening day 2nd base job.  His chances increase if Manny Machado begins the season on the DL.

I'm not anticipating his making the team, but he definitely is making things very interesting.

Thanks so much for the cards, Weston!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Ebay Pickup - 2013 Panini Black Friday Chris Davis Proof Card

Exactly two months ago to the day, I bought this card off of Ebay at the suggestion of my buddy, Matthew. He had seen it on Ebay and recommended I get it and since I didn't have any of these proof cards, I figured I'd give it a shot.  These are supposedly 1/1s and Panini's answer to the Printing Plate, or something like that.

I do think it is pretty cool.  There isn't anything on the back of the card at all explaining what it is, unlike a printing plate card.  For all I know, someone could have printed this on thick card stock and passed it off as a 1/1.  Anyway, this will probably be the only one of these I try to get. What do you all think?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spread The Word - I'm Back On Ebay

I took several years off from selling on Ebay.  I had moved, started doing shows, started a blog, started a COMC account, but finally, after several painstaking hours of listing stuff, I am back on ebay.  This is probably only temporary, but who knows, I might find a few more things to throw up there.

What prompted me to do it was pulling this beauty out of my 2014 Topps Heritage box this weekend.  I casually looked it up and was amazed to see what they had sold for, so I naturally decided to try to cash in.  I figured, if I can get a decent amount of money funneled into my PayPal account, I could maybe expedite some set pursuits or maybe see about adding HOF baseball #101 to my collection.  We'll see.
So, if you have time and money burning a hole in your pocket, please head over to Ebay and check out my wares.  My Ebay ID is roaddogg57 and I will give you the courtesy of a page link here.

Thanks for looking guys and good luck if any of you decide to bid!

Tons of Mail From Alex

I got a couple huge packages from my buddy Alex from the blog "Chavez Ravining" which contained a ton of Orioles.  Inside were scores of cards I needed for various PCs.  One of which I really wanted to highlight was the above 2014 Donruss Diamond Kings Chris Davis.  The card looks awesome.  It is numbered 388/400.  I think it looks awesome, especially with the metallic finish and the red, white and blue.
I had hoped the hologram on this one would have scanned a little better, but oh well, it's still cool.  I'm not sure whether I had this Denny's Cal Ripken hologram yet, but I'll find out sooner or later when I go to organize my Cal cards.  It's on my bucket list, you know, organize my Cal cards before I die.  We'll see if I ever accomplish that goal.

Anyway, thanks for the cards, Alex.  You've fast become quite a good trade partner for me and I really appreciate it.  Keep up the awesome work on your blog and let's keep the trades coming!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Sportlots Pickup - 1959 Topps

I bought a bunch of cards I needed for sets from Sportlots this past weekend.  The first batch of which came in this evening.

I was excited to see that the package was all of the 1959 Topps I had bought.  I didn't get any stars, but I did pick up this high number Billy Pierce.  Actually, this pierce is the final card in the set, so I guess you could say it's all downhill from here.

I thumbed through my set so far tonight as well and realized that Pierce has at least 3 cards in the set.  He has this All Star card, a base card and a highlights card.  Not bad for a great pitcher and an even greater TTM signer.

So, I have updated my 1959 needs list, in case anyone is feeling generous.  Cool thing, too, is that I just reached a deal on Instagram tonight for 11 more, so I'm knocking quite a few of these out.  That will give me room to concentrate on some stars coming up, so it'll be nice to get some commons out of the way.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Some More From The Dana Package

I wanted to show off a bit more of the cards I got from Dana before I top load them and add them to my PCs.  The first card is this 2013 Select Wei-yin Chen auto.  I really like Select, but there was no way I was going to buy a pack of those at their SRP ($50, I think).
Another version of a pack of cards being well out of my reach is Topps Triple Threads.  I learned a long time ago that it is a lot easier buying the card I want off of Ebay or another site than it is for me to buy it by the pack and pull a Mark Prior relic.  Uggh.  So, I was very happy when Dana hooked me up with the Chen up above and the Brooks Robinson purple parallel.  Triple Threads is always a solid offering, but it is routinely out of my budget.
Finally, Dana can join the club of folks who recently have hooked me up with Cal Ripken cards that I didn't already have.  The Triple Threads is really nice, again.  I'm glad she hooked me up with both Brooks and Cal.
Finally, Dana sent me a ton of Orioles 2014 Donruss cards.  I'm a big fan of these, even though they don't have logos.  I know I said it before, but I feel like Panini is making a solid effort in the baseball card genre and their having a license along with Topps would be nothing but a good thing.

So, that will wrap up my posts from the package from Dana.  Thanks so much for the cards.  I really appreciate it and I hope we can trade again (after I replenish my wiped out Braves trade stack).

Saturday, March 15, 2014

1966 Topps Orioles From Brady

I've gotten quite a few unsolicited emails lately from fellow bloggers and readers of my blog looking to offload cards and do some trading.  It is definitely something I enjoy because I've learned that all bloggers are very generous and willing to help others in their quests to build their sets, team needs and PCs.  I got an email a couple weeks ago from Brady, author of the blog "Yadier Molina Baseball Cards."  He has recently picked up some cards from his childhood that had been in storage and he has embarked on a massive sorting project.  This project resulted in some extra Orioles cards and he happily sent some to me.  I really appreciated his gesture, as I didn't have very many Orioles 1966 Topps cards.  I do have the Palmer RC, and the Brooks Robinson, so I at least had my PC needs met already.

Brady sent me 5 Orioles total.  Looking at the photography, it appears as if most of the shots were taken at Yankee Stadium, as you might be able to see above.  The Woody Held card he sent (not pictured) looks to be from a different stadium.  It wouldn't surprise me if Topps dispatched their photographers to Yankee Stadium in the old days to save on travel expenses, since they were based out of New York.

So, thank you so much for the O's cards, Brady.  Good luck in your quest to finishing the 1966 set.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Some Random Cards From Mom

I got a package in the mail from my mom last week.  Actually, it was a huge box.  In it were several pairs of pants for Chris, several books for him to read and a little hunk of cardboard taped together that said "One Orioles Card Inside."  So, I opened it up and found the above Jim Palmer 1992 Corn Flakes card.  It is actually a Sportflics card.  I remember when Sportflics were brought back in the mid 90s, I think it was 1995, and everyone was thinking "Oh Cool."  Then, after a while, we remembered how badly the cards curved if they got hot and they became a passing thing for a second time.  Oh well.  Anyway, I really like this Palmer and I didn't yet have it in my Palmer PC, so I'm going to put it in a top loader really quick so it doesn't curve and there you go.
Also included was this Ziploc Rollie Fingers featuring probably the greatest mustache of all time.  You can never go wrong with a Rollie Fingers card.

Thanks for the cards, Mom!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Picking Up Some Rookie Cards on Instagram

This is the last Instagram post for now, at least of stuff that I have gotten in recently.  I do have one more trade pending, which I think will be in sometime next week.  That being said, I completed a trade with a Dodgers fan names Javier in exchange for several rookie cards, three of which I kept (one obviously isn't a RC) and two I will flip on to friends.

I'm sure I probably owned the above 2008 Bowman Andrew McCutchen at some point, but I didn't make him a PC until a couple years ago.  The card doesn't sell for much, but it is still a RC, and I'll take it.
This Justin Verlander is one that I know I have, but it is part of my complete set.  So, I figured since Javier was offering it, it wouldn't be a bad idea to go ahead and pick up another and stash it with my RCs.  I also don't feel like I have shown enough 2006 Topps on here.  I remember the set being the first to come out after I jumped back into cards (2005 Topps was already out, of course) and I was just as excited when it was released and I saw it for the first time as I was when 1991 Topps came out. The feeling I got as a kid when the new set of cards came out is unrivaled, I think.  It kind of sucks now that we get the next year's design so early now.  I miss the days when you didn't know until you opened that first pack, and that's how it was for me when 2006 came out.  I do still have an empty box for 2006.
Finally, Javier had one 2013 Topps emerald parallel I needed for my set.  Yes, I'm still working on it.  I hope to have this set completed sometime soon, but it definitely has slowed down.  If anyone has Series 1 or 2 emerald parallels, please consult my wishlist and help me out!

Thanks for the trade, Javier.  I really appreciate it!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

1996 Topps Cards From Blog Reader Howard

I got an email recently from a blog reader named Howard saying that he had 32 of the 1996 Topps cards that I needed for my set.  A few days later, the cards appeared in my mailbox.  I hadn't been pursuing the mid 90s sets too hard, but I went ahead and put the needs lists for 1993 and 1996 on here in case someone had them lying around.  Luckily, Howard was looking and saw the 96 list.  I'll probably wrap this set up pretty soon with a Sportlots purchase, but at the moment, I haven't made an attempt.  I'm thinking I'll get this and 1993 done very soon and maybe I'll remember to add my 1994 needs as well, since I already have that set in my notebook.

As for the cards he sent, I chose this 1996 Doug Drabek to show off because I kind of forgot about Drabek, to be honest.  I remember him as an early 90s ace, but I completely forgot he was in this set, and even worse, I forgot he pitched for the Orioles in 1998 (his last season in the majors).

Thanks for the cards, Howard!  I really appreciate you stepping up to help me on my way to finishing this set.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Instagram Trade With Jack - 2012 Topps Futures Game Relic Manny Machado

The trades are pouring in (at the moment) and today I am happy to show off a trade that I completed (or purchase, rather) with a fellow named Jack.  Jack posted the above Manny Machado 2012 Topps Futures Game relic and I was immediately tagged by him because he had already seen that I was an Orioles fan.  I messaged him right away and  we had a deal worked out in minutes.
Little did I know, Jack put in some extras for me as well to sweeten the deal.  He gave me the above 2013 Select Chris Davis (which I didn't have) as well as a Select Jones and a few other Orioles.  His speed and generosity weren't lost on me, so I made sure to message him after I got my package and insure that I was going to be trading with him again in the future.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Facebook Trade With Zach - 2004 Topps Heritage

I completed a trade over Facebook the other day with a new collector, Zach.  Zach is young, but already has a nice collection.  He collects Mets, Reds and Tigers, so I offered him a few relics in exchange for a stack of 51 different 2004 Topps Heritage cards.  You might recognize the design.  I have intended to build the 2004 Heritage set for some time now, but haven't pulled the trigger.

Zach hooked me up with the cards very quickly.  He seems like a really good kid.  I helped him set up a blog, so give him a follow, why don't you?  Like I said, he collects Mets, Reds and Tigers.

This stack of cards puts me well on my way for this set.  The highlight of the set (for me at least) is the Nick Markakis RC.  I've got one in my Nick The Stick PC, so now I need another for the set!

Thanks for the trade, Zach!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Another Successful Instagram Trade - 2008 Just Minors Chris Davis Auto

Jumping topics a bit here, but I wanted to show another card that I received through trading on Instagram recently.  I had gotten in my 2013 Topps Chrome Jose Fernandez autograph and flipped it on to a kid named Sabastian in exchange for this Chris Davis 2008 Just Minors auto (and a bonus Manny Machado RC that I didn't have).

Sabastian may have gotten the better end of the deal, but I needed this Davis for my PC and I hadn't seen any of these before.  It's one of those instances where folks who look solely at BV don't understand.  If you like a player or a card, the BV means nothing.  The true value of the card is what you're willing to pay for it.  I was willing to trade a kid a Jose Fernandez auto for a Chris Davis auto.  Fair deal in my mind.  He's happy and I'm happy, so there you go!

Thanks for the trade Sabastian!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

More From Dana - Hakuna Machado

Dana sent me a bunch of different Orioles cards, all of which I needed, but none more so than the 7 Manny Machados that she sent along.  I've learned very quickly that any and every kid under the age of 14 has a Manny Machado PC and they are driving up the price of his cards everywhere.  So, it's really tough to get my hands on any of them, unless I pull them from a pack myself.  Thanks to Dana, I don't have to worry about a few of them, now that I have these.

I do have to saw WOW for the 2014 Panini Donruss.  They hit this one out of the park, in my opinion.  The design is fresh, but it also reaches back to Donruss of old and really makes you feel like they never left the market.  Well played, Panini!
Sticking with Donruss, here is a numbered Machado from the Elite Series subset.  Very sharp!  This one is nombered 320/999 and looks amazing.  I love it!
Finally, I wanted to show the X-fractor that she sent from Manny's 2013 Topps Chrome.  I didn't have this one either and she was gracious enough to send it along.

I appreciate the package so much, Dana.  Thanks so much.  I'm going to continue with probably 3 or 4 more posts from it, so you all stay tuned!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Trading With Blog Reader Dana - 2013 Topps Chrome Manny Machado RC Auto

I got an email from someone who has read my blog for a long time, Dana.  She used to frequent the card shop I helped out at and follows me on Facebook as well.  When she emailed me, I was happily surprised that the had contacted me to do a trade.  Braves stuff for Orioles stuff with the centerpiece being the above 2013 Topps Chrome Manny Machado RC Autograph.

I sent Dana a multitude of Braves stuff, including a SP and a relic from 2014 Topps, among other things. She sent a huge stack of recent Orioles stuff, way too much to justice with in one post.  So, I will break it up among many posts.

I thought the other day that I really needed to get something cooking as far as trades go, and lo and behold, a huge package from Dana and also several other trades came rolling in all at once.  I'm going to make time for each and every one, so if you sent me something, don't worry, it'll get posted.  Hopefully sooner rather than later.  I also want to take Fuji's idea and do a posting showing my top 5 Hall of Fame baseballs.  I haven't thought enough about it, but I will get one moving shortly.

So, that being said, please enjoy the Manny RC Auto that Dana sent me and stay tuned over the next couple days and see what else was in her padded mailer!

Thanks so much, Dana!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Hall of Fame Baseball #100 - Mickey Mantle

The quest began in January of 2010 when I posted here that I wanted to branch out into memorabilia.  It was a discussion with my good friend, P. A. at the card shop on a Saturday that getting some signed baseballs by Hall of Famers wouldn't be too difficult a task.  I began with three baseballs, the Cal Ripken that my mom gave me in 1992; a Jim Palmer given to me for my 19th birthday in 1999 by my old boss, Todd and a Brooks Robinson given to me by Mom a few years later at Christmas.  The first baseball in my quest (4th overall) arrived on January 14, 2010 (A ball signed by Stan Musial, which you can see here).  Four years and 96 baseballs later, we now have number 100, Mickey Mantle.

This has been an exhaustive quest.  I have obtained several baseballs through the mail, at card shows, over Ebay, through auction houses, antique shops, two trades, birthday and Christmas presents from my mom and great friend, Drew and a couple in person autographs.  I haven't spent near what one might think on these 100 baseballs. I've watched sales and auctions like a hawk.  I've learned a thing or two about autograph authentication along the way, of course.

The Mantle ball came about, like I said last night, through my friend Conrad from the antique shop (Chic Antiques) in Columbia, SC.  He did shows with a good friend of mine in the 1980s and early 1990s where they would meet Hall of Famers in person, one of which was Mantle, himself.  Conrad wanted to help me with my quest, so he gave me a deal I couldn't refuse on both the Koufax ball and this Mantle.

As you can see, the signature is amazing.  Words can't describe, so I'll just let you take a look at the picture and see for yourself.

Now what do I do?  I've reached a plateau, 100 signed baseballs and I've nearly run out of room in my China cabinet.  This ball and several others won't even be able to be displayed since they are in a safe location, not in my house.  Do I keep moving forward and knock more players off the list (and go for Jimmie Foxx, ultimately)?  Do I rest on my laurels and admire the fact that I reached #100?  I don't really know at this moment.  I'm inclined to continue on, maybe try to reach 150 or more.  If I do, I need to devise an alternate means of display.  Also,I know I have to replace at least one ball (Niekro) because of fading.  I also need to re-assess my choice of pens/balls for TTM and IP autographing as well to eliminate the fading issue (which I think I have solved).

So, we'll see what the future holds.  If I were to guess today, at this moment, I'd be willing to say Hell Yeah, keep em coming, but I do have some things to think about.

Mickey Mantle (b. 1931 - d. 1995) played in the Majors from 1951 to 1968, all for the Yankees.  He had 2,415 hits, 536 home runs and a batting average of .298.  Mantle was a 16-time All Star, 3-time AL MVP (1956, 1957 and 1962) and the 1956 AL Batting Champion (.353 average).  He won the World Series with the Yankees 7 times (1951, 52, 53, 56, 58, 61 and 62) and made 12 trips to the World Series all together.

He was a 4-time AL Home Run champion (1955, 1956, 1958 and 1960) and hit 50 or more home runs twice (1956 and 1961). He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1974 (his first ballot) when he was named to 88.2% of the ballot.

So, there you have it.  I am celebrating a huge milestone in my collection.  I wanted #100 to be special and I couldn't honestly think of getting anyone other than Mantle at #100 (unless a Jimmie Foxx fell into my lap).  I'd like to thank everyone who helped me get to this point, namely Mom, my wife, P. A., Drew and Conrad.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Hall of Fame Signed Baseball - Sandy Koufax

Well, as you may be able to tell, I now have Hall of Fame signed baseball #99 in my possession as the above ball signed by Sandy Koufax.  What does that mean?  Well, if Koufax is #99 and not #100, then #100 must be epic, right?  You are correct.  I got both in one purchase a couple weeks ago, and they finally have arrived.  I'll spend tonight talking about Koufax and will follow up tomorrow on the #100 ball.

I got the balls from Conrad, the proprietor of Chic Antiques in Columbia, SC.  I've supported his store for some time now, especially since I learned that he was close friends with someone I was close friends with.  It's a small world (after all).  So, when I emailed Conrad to see if he could help me with my project, he came back with several options for #100.  A couple guys I had, so he had it narrowed it down to two.  I decided that since he gave me such a good price on each, I would go ahead and buy them both, hence the dual purchase.  Not bad, plus I bought "local", even though Columbia isn't exactly local to me, I bought them from a small business, local to my brother.  Close enough.  Anyway, I'm really glad to have helped Conrad out as he definitely helped me out.  If you are ever in Columbia, please check out Conrad's shop, located on Huger St.  Tell him I sent you!

Sandy Koufax (b. 1935) played in the majors from 1955 to 1966 for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers.  He had a career record of 165-87 with 2,396 strikeouts and a 2,76 ERA.  He was the Cy Young Award winner 3 times (1963, 1965 and 1966), the NL MVP in 1963 and won 20+ games 3 times in his career.

He won the World Series with the Dodgers in 1959, 1963 and 1965 and was on the 1955 team that won it all as well, but he didn't pitch in the post season.  His career post season record was 4-3 with a 0.95 ERA and 61 strikeouts.  Interestlingly enough, his final game pitched was in the 1966 World Series, a loss in Game 2 against a 19-year old rookie and an upstart team.  The rookie?  Jim Palmer and the team was the Orioles.  The O's would go on to sweep the heavily favored Dodgers in 4 games and Koufax would retire after the Series.

Koufax is my 99th Hall of Fame signed baseball in my collection.  I now have Koufax's rookie card (1955 Topps); his final regular Topps issue (1966 Topps) and a signed baseball).  Stay tuned to see who made the cut as #100.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A Surprise Package From Andrew

I got a really nice package (along with a nice note) in the mail the other day from my very good friend, Andrew.  I haven't been able to talk to him much recently because we both have been really busy, but he is still one of the people that I talk to the most, especially about baseball and cards.

We've been friends now for two years and I'm really glad that Weston introduced us.  Andrew and I send packages back and forth to each other now without even expecting anything in return from the other.  It's a really good setup.

In that vein, he pulled the above 2013 Topps Update Chris Davis gold parallel and immediately put it aside for me.  I made a trade the other day for a rookie card of Yadier Molina, not because I wanted it, but because I knew he needed it.  The wheels keep on turning.

Thanks so much for the package Andrew.  You'll be getting another from me before you know it!

Monday, March 3, 2014

My Second Instagram Trade

I completed my second Instagram trade this evening when I came home to a package from my new friend, James.  He was actually the first person to initiate a trade with me, other than the kid who scammed me, but weather and shipping issues delayed his package.  It finally got here, through no fault of James, who was on top of the shipping.  James kept me in the loop on what was going on and I really appreciated the care he took to make sure I knew he was a legit trader.

I sent him a huge stack of Todd Helton cards for a low price in addition with some card supplies.  In turn, James paid me for the supplies and sent me several Orioles including the above Cal Ripken, which I'm pretty sure I don't have as well as the below Jimmie Foxx cards.
This card above is the 2009 Topps T206 Foxx, which, surprisingly, I didn't have. It will look awesome in my Foxx PC.
This is a 2011 Topps DeLong reprint, which looks really great.

I'm really glad that I met with James and pulled off a trade.  We have been chatting quite a bit about baseball and cards in general, which all of you know I really enjoy.  I hope he and I can do more trades in the future.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

COMC Pickup - 2003 UD Sweet Spot Classic Bob Feller

One of the few things I miss since Upper Deck has left the baseball card market was their Sweet Spot Classic series.  Between that and Legendary Cuts, those were the best yearly offerings that UD had going, in my opinion.  I really like the photography used for the cards for each, and the hits (when not a redemption) were pretty great.

So, when I saw this 2003 UD Sweet Spot Classic Bob Feller that I needed for my collection on COMC, I snatched it up.  The coloring is great.  I don't know what it is about a sepia photo or card, but I really enjoy it.  Feller looks like he is ready to mow someone down with that 100+ mph fastball. I wish I could hop in the DeLorean and go back to his hey day and watch him throw.

That's the funny thing, if I had a time machine, I wouldn't be using it to better mankind, I would be in one of those old straw hats, sitting in old baseball stadiums, perfectly content.  If only that were possible...