Wednesday, October 31, 2018

TTM Success - Larry Andersen

Another player needed for my 1987 Topps set has been taken care of, and it got me some other good cards out of my box, as well.  I ended up sending 5 cards for Larry Andersen, and all of what I sent looks really nice.
I liked the Mariners jersey on his 1982 Topps, and threw in the 1988 and 1989 Topps.  I was happy with the 1987, but it was great that he was good for signing everything.

Andersen (b. 1953) played in the majors in 1975, 1977, 1979 and from 1981 to 1994 for the Indians, Mariners, Phillies, Astros, Red Sox and Padres.  He had a career record of 40-39 with 758 strikeouts and a 3.15 ERA.

I mailed to Andersen July 2 and got the cards back on September 7, for a 67-day TAT.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

TTM Success - Max Venable

My quest for signed 1987 Topps led me to send TTM to Max Venable, which landed me these three cards.  I made sure to send this 1983 Topps, since I hadn't sent one out in quite a while, and it turned out well.
I also included the 1986, along with his 1987, of course.  All of the cards turned out really well, which was nice.  I probably could have sent a few more, but kept it at three, so I wouldn't miss the 87, in case he only signed a couple.

Venable (b. 1957) played in the majors from 1979 to 1987 and 1989 to 1991 for the Giants, Expos, Reds and Angels.  He had 337 hits, 18 home runs and a .241 batting average.  He is the father of former Padre, Will Venable.

I mailed to Venable on August 22 and got the cards back on September 7, for a 16-day TAT.

Monday, October 29, 2018

TTM Success - Bob Zupcic

I added a few mid-90s cards to my album with this success from Bob Zupcic.  This 1993 Fleer Ultra turned out well, as these cards tend to do.  The cards all bubbled up, but I'm still ok with his they turned out.
I added two Topps cards, as well.  I still don't have many extra 1994s, so getting this one in was nice.  I also haven't completed my 1995 set, yet, so I really need to get on that sometime soon.  I just haven't had time to shop for the few missing cards I have left.

Zupcic (b. 1966) played in the majors from 1991 to 1994 for the Red Sox and White Sox.  He had 199 hits, 7 home runs and a .250 batting average.

I mailed to Zupcic on January 2 and got the cards back on September 6, for a 247-day TAT.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

TTM Success - Bert Blyleven

Because I am working on the 1987 set, I sent off to Bert Blyleven, since I saw he was signing, and he had a pretty reasonable price.  He was signing for $20.00, and the autograph turned out well.

Blyleven (b. 1951) played in the majors from 1970 to 1990 and 1992 for the Twins, Rangers, Pirates, Indians and Angels.  He had a career record of 287-250 with 3,701 strike outs and a 3.31 ERA.  He was an All Star twice (1973 and 1985) and finished a career-best 3rd in the Cy Young voting (AL) twice, in 1984 and 1985.  His best MVP finish was 13th in 1989 (AL).  He won the World Series with the Pirates in 1979 and the Twins in 1987.  He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2011, his 14th ballot (79/7% of the vote).

I mailed to Blyleven on August 22 and got the card back on September 1, for a 10-day TAT.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

TTM Success - Matt LaPorta

I have realized it is a lot tougher adding cards from the mid-to-late 2000s via TTM than any era of cards.  These are usually the guys who are recently retired, so you can't send via teams, and it is tough getting the addresses for their locations.  Still, a few pop up here and there, and this was how I was able to get Matt LaPorta.
 LaPorta was a former First Round pick (7th overall) by the Brewers in the 2007 June Amateur Draft.  He was the key piece in the July 2008 trade that sent CC Sabathia to the Brewers.  In the end, it wasn't LaPorta who made the most impact from that trade; it ended up being a player to be named later, Michael Brantley, who would impact the Indians more.
Still, I was able to get some nice cards done by LaPorta.  I sure had a bunch of them.

LaPorta (b. 1985) played in the majors from 2009 to 2012 for the Indians.  He had 230 hits, 31 home runs and a .238 batting average.

I mailed to LaPorta on August 21, and got the cards back on August 31, for a 10-day TAT.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Another TTM Success From Pat Neshek

I added some nice cards with this second TTM success from Pat Neshek.  I wasn't going to bother him again, but I had a couple cards I really liked, and decided to send them.
This red parallel from 2018 Stadium Club was really the one that pushed me toward sending to him again.  I got it out of a stack of cards my friend, Caleb, gave me at the National.

I mailed to Neshek on August 20 and got the cards back on August 31, for an 11-day TAT.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Another TTM Success From Dave Righetti

I had two TTM requests for Dave Righetti out, and both of them came in a few weeks apart from each other.  I was worried, because when the first one came in, he left out signing one of the 1987 Topps that I needed for my set.  Little did I know, I had it covered with the first TTM request that I sent.

In addition to this 1991 Donruss Diamond Kings, I sent one 1987 Topps, and it just happened to be the one he didn't sign in the other request.  This one was sent out a year before the other one, so I had no idea he would leave that particular card out.
Now, I have all three of Righetti's 1987 Topps signed.  I don't have to worry about trying to mail to him again.

I sent this request off on April 12, 2017, and got the cards back on August 31, 2018, for a 506-day TAT.  I got really lucky with this one.  I sent 5 cards, and one of the ones he signed was the 1987 I needed.  Whew!

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Gerard Comes Through For The Set and More

My good friend, Gerard, has helped me out tremendously with my 1987 Topps set.  This time around, he helped me get two cards signed that I was shut out on when I saw Dick Schofield in Norfolk.  His team was coming off of a loss, and he wasn't in the mood for signing, which I totally understand.  I wanted to add his card to my 1987 set, but more importantly, I wanted the card below to get signed by him.
I had this 1985 Topps Father/Son card signed by the elder Schofield TTM, and Gerard helped me complete the card.  I really appreciate his effort, and it has gone back in its place in my album.

Thanks so much, Gerard!

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Some 87 Topps From a Blog Reader

I received an email from blog reader, Sean, who is also working on a signed 1987 Topps set.  We worked out a trade that landed me two cards I needed: the above Curt Ford, and the below Tim Hulett.
I'm now at 335 cards for the set, which is a lot farther than I ever thought I would get.  I have several coming in, especially a few big names from some private signings.  I hope to find some of the tougher deceased players, but I know I need to be patient in trying to corral those.

Thanks for the deal, Sean!  I hope the cards I sent got there ok.

Monday, October 22, 2018

TTM Success - Bruce Sutter

The final card I got back in the private signing on SCN that took so long was Bruce Sutter.  The whole reason I signed up for the thing was because I would be able to knock off some big names at fairly reasonable prices.  This is why I love the feature on SCN.  This was actually one of the first private signings I had signed up for, and I learned a lot about the process.  I wasn't aware at the time how to set up a trade for the signings (which is how they are tracked, and feedback is issued).  I believe my inability to set up the trade for this was one of the main reasons why it was delayed as long as it was.  He had no recourse against him.  Thankfully, the cards ended up coming in, and I actually had used the guy one other time between then and now.  That signing worked out fast, and that card (which was being done for a friend) came back quickly.  I have signed up for another big name signing through this guy, this time with tracking, so we shall see if there is any improvement.

Sutter (b. 1953) played in the majors from 1976 to 1986 and 1988 for the Cubs, Cardinals and Braves.  He had a career record of 68-71 with a 2.83 ERA and 861 strike outs.  He finished his career with 300 saves.  He was a six-time All Star (1977 to 1981 and 1984) and finished a career-best 5th in the 1982 NL MVP voting.  He was the 1979 NL Cy Young Award winner.  He is often credited with developing the split finger fastball.  He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2006, his 13th ballot (76.9%).  He won the World Series with the Cardinals in 1982.

I sent to the private signing on March 3 and got the card back on August 29, for a 179-day TAT.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

TTM Success - Vince Coleman

The third of four guys I signed up for, for this private signing, was Vince Coleman.  According to the guy running the signing, Coleman was the reason for the holdup.  Let's not worry about how I asked the guy to just refund me for Coleman and send my cards back; he waited and waited, not returning emails, until Coleman finally signed.  Of course, I picked up a Coleman from a reader of this blog in the meantime, you know, because I was expecting the refund from this signing.  Anyway, I have an extra Coleman, if anyone else is looking for one for their sets or collections.

Coleman (b. 1961) played in the majors from 1985 to 1997 for the Cardinals, Mets, Royals, Mariners, Reds and Tigers.  He had 1,425 hits, 28 home runs and a .264 batting average.  He was the 1985 NL Rookie of the Year, and led the NL in stolen bases six years in a row.  His 752 stolen bases rank 6th all-time.  His best MVP finish was 11th in 1985 and he was an All Star twice (1988 and 1989).  He appeared on the 2003 Hall of Fame ballot, but received only 0.6% of the vote.

I sent to the signing on March 3 and got the card back on August 29, for a 179-day TAT.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

TTM Success - Jack Clark

The second of the four players I got from my much delayed private signing was Jack Clark.  I needed him for the 87 set, and in the end the card turned out really well.

Clark (b. 1955) played in the majors from 1975 to 1992 for the Giants, Cardinals, Yankees, Padres and Red Sox.  He had 1,826 hits, 340 home runs and a .267 batting average.  He was a 4-time All Star (1978, 1979, 1985 and 1987) and finished a career-best 3rd in the NL MVP voting.  Clark appeared on the 1998 Hall of Fame ballot, but only received 1.8% of the vote.

Toward the end of his playing career, Clark tried his hand at drag racing.  He ran a Top Fuel team in 1991; a car that was driven by the late, great, Tom "The Mongoose" McEwen.  McEwen would win the final national event of his career in Clark's dragster.  In 1992, Clark took over driving, but didn't fare too well.  He wound up filing for bankruptcy and sold off his race team.

I sent to the private signing the same time as Ozzie Smith (March 3) and got the card back on August 29, for a 179-day TAT.

Friday, October 19, 2018

TTM Success - Ozzie Smith

This was probably my worst experience with a private signing since I started using them earlier this year, but the cards I sent off finally came back.  Supposedly, the guy who ran this signing is one of the best, but I never felt like I was a "valued" customer.  I answered the private signing when I saw that I could get Ozzie Smith at a reasonable rate.  Since he was on these two cards, I figured I would try to go ahead and get these done at $35 a pop.
Smith is also on the 1987 Topps Cardinals Team Leaders card, but I'm not overly concerned about adding him to that one at the moment.  I'm just glad these came back.  The signing was for four players, actually, and I spent a good amount of money for it, but several emails and a long wait finally paid off.

Smith (b. 1954) played in the majors from 1978 to 1991 for the Padres and Cardinals.  He had 2.460 hits, 28 home runs and a .262 batting average.  He was a 15-time All Star (1981 to 1992 and 1994 to 1996) and a 13-time Gold Glove Award winner (1980 to 1992).  His best MVP finish was 2nd in 1987.  He won the World Series with the Cardinals in 1982 and was the 1985 NLCS MVP.

Smith was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2002 (first ballot) when he was named on 91.7% of the ballot.

I sent to the private signing on March 3 and got the cards back on August 29, for a 179-day TAT.  The cards were supposed to come back at the end of March.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

TTM Success - Chris Iannetta

I added some nice cards to the album with this success from Rockies catcher, Chris Iannetta.  I had seen on Instagram that he was signing, and sent a few cards out.
Iannetta (b. 1983) has played in the majors since 2006 for the Rockies, Angels, Mariners and Diamondbacks.  He has 788 hits, 135 home runs and a .230 batting average.

I mailed to Iannetta on July 26 via the Rockies and got the cards back on August 27, for a 32-day TAT.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

TTM Success - Darrin Fletcher

I waited a while, but finally got these cards in from Darrin Fletcher.  I liked this 1990 Score because of the inverted border.  I doubt this was an "error" card, but it is still cool.
I had a bunch of cards of Fletcher, and they all looked really cool after signing.  I thought the 1999 Pacific turned out really well, and it was a kind of card that I had very few of.
Finally, this 1996 Fleer Metal also turned out well.  I really love these cards, and they look so cool when signed.

Fletcher (b. 1966) played in the majors from 1989 to 2002 for the Dodgers, Phillies, Expos and Blue Jays.  He had 1,048 hits, 124 home runs and a .269 batting average.  He was an All Star in 1994.

I mailed to Fletcher on March 6, 2017, and got the cards back on August 18, 2018, for a 530-day TAT.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

TTM Success - Darryl Strawberry

I crossed a big name off of my 1987 Topps checklist with this private signing success from Darryl Strawberry.  A friend of mine tried to get Strawberry for me last year, but he missed out.  I went ahead and answered the private signing so I could get the cards off of the list.
His signature isn't the greatest, but they still count toward my set.  I'm glad to have these done.

Strawberry (b. 1962) played in the majors from 1983 to 1999 for the Mets, Dodgers, Giants and Yankees.  He had 1,401 hits, 335 home runs and a .259 batting average.  He was the NL Rookie of the Year in 1983.  He finished 2nd in the 1988 NL MVP voting (behind Kirk Gibson) and was an 8-time All Star (1984 to 1991).  He won the World Series with the Mets in 1986 and with the Yankees in 1996 and 1999.  He appeared on the 2005 Hall of Fame ballot and received 1.5% of the vote.

I mailed to the private signing on July 21 and got the cards back on August 10, for a 20-day TAT.  I paid a fee of $30/card.

Monday, October 15, 2018

TTM Success - Dick Bosman

These vintage cards I sent to Dick Bosman turned out really well in this TTM success.  I raided my vintage box for this 1968 Topps.
The 1971 Topps came from my LCS, and the 1973 came out of the lot of cards I picked up from Conrad.  All of them turned out great, and have taken their places in my album.

Bosman (b. 1944) played in the majors from 1966 to 1976 for the Senators, Rangers, Indians and A's.  He had a career record of 82-85 with 757 strike outs and a 3.67 ERA.  He led the AL in ERA in 1969 (2.19).  He finished 26th in the AL MVP voting that season, as well.

I mailed to Bosman on July 2 and got the cards back on August 10, for a 39-day TAT.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

TTM Success - John Kruk

This was a TTM success that I thought might not come, but in the end, I got a couple nice cards back from John Kruk.  Needing him for my 1987 set, I sent that along, and also this 1994 Upper Deck Fun Pack card.  Kruk switched pens, and signed this one in silver Sharpie, which was a nice touch.  The card is pretty cool, and is pretty unique in my album.
Of course, the 1987 Topps turned out great.  I have well over 300 now, and am doing well in adding to that total.  I doubt I'll ever complete the set, but it is definitely worth a shot, and has been a lot of fun to pursue.

Kruk (b. 1961) played in the majors from 1986 to 1995 for the Padres, Phillies and White Sox.  He had 1,170 hits, 100 home runs and a .300 batting average.  He was a three-time All Star (1991, 1992, 1993) and finished a best of 14th (1992) in the NL MVP voting, appearing on three MVP ballots (1991, 1992, 1993).  His 1993 Phillies lost to the Blue Jays in the World Series, but it was no fault of Kruk's.  He batted .348 in that series and knocked in 4 runs.

He appeared on the 2001 Hall of Fame ballot, and received 0.2% of the vote.

I mailed to Kruk on March 30, via the Phillies, and got the cards back on August 10, for a 133-day TAT.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

TTM Success - Pete Ward

Here's a really cool card that I grabbed from the boxes Conrad showed me in Columbia.  1964 Topps is a great set, and getting any signed is always nice.  This one of Pete Ward turned out well.

Ward (b. 1937) played in the majors from 1962 to 1970 for the Orioles, White Sox and Yankees.  He had 776 hits, 98 home runs and a .254 batting average.  He was second in the 1963 AL Rookie of the Year voting (to Gary Peters) and his best MVP finish was 6th in 1964.

I mailed to Ward on July 26 and got the card back on August 10, for a 15-day TAT.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Some Signed Cards From Michael

Toward the end of the Wood Ducks season, my friend Michael came back down to visit.  During his visit, we traded some IP autos, and I ended up with some nice stuff for my album.  One of the highlights was this 1987 Topps Gary Roenicke for the set.  I thought I had Roenicke already, but it turns out that I didn't.  Now I do have it and the Earth can continue to spin.
I grabbed quite a few 2017 Heritage Minors, and even some extras of these that I can use as trade bait.
Michael got a ton of cards signed by Jay Bell, so I picked a few that looked nice, and added those to the pile.
I needed Butch Davis on something other than the 1985 Topps that I had gotten TTM.  This 1984 Donruss is pretty cool looking, and I don't have very many of them.
Finally, I added these.  The Denard Span 2017 Topps looks really cool with the Wrigley ivy in the background.

Thanks for the deal, Michael!

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Another TTM Success From Whitey Ford

I was worried that this card was lost forever, since it took so long for it to come back from Whitey Ford.  I had mailed to him in October of last year, along with a check for $40.00, and got the card back unsigned.  The check had been cashed, which I found out due to my online banking.  I found it odd that the card came back unsigned, so I wrote Ford a letter asking if a mistake was made.

I also included a copy of the canceled check.  I waited and waited, thinking that Mr. Ford had taken my money and ran, and the card would be lost forever.  The card had been given to me by my brother, Andy, one Saturday at the Winston-Salem card shop.  He had used his savings to buy me something he thought I would like, and I did!  After those many years sitting in my box, I thought it would be cool to get this card signed by Ford and add it to my autograph album.  So, you can see why I was so worried that it would never come back!

Finally, in July, the card came back, and I was really excited.  I had originally mailed the card on October 30 and re-sent about a month later in November, then it finally came back on July 28, for a total TAT of 271 days.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

TTM Success - Tyler Mapes

I needed Tyler Mapes for my 2018 Carolina League All Star set, but he was promoted before the game was held.  Luckily, my good friend, Gerard, reached out to him on Instagram and asked if he would sign some cards TTM.  When Gerard told me that Mapes had agreed, I mailed this (and Chris's card) to Harrisburg.

Mapes (b. 1991) was a 30th round pick in the 2014 Amateur Draft by the Nationals out of Tulane University.  He has a career minor league record of 27-17 with a 2.66 ERA and 255 strike outs.  He split this season with High A Potomac and Double A Harrisburg.

I mailed to Mapes on July 9 and got the card back on July 23, for a 14-day TAT.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

TTM Success - Mike Paul

I used another couple of cards that I got from Conrad in Columbia with this TTM success from Mike Paul.  The 1973 set isn't Topps's best set, but it does look nice when signed.  The action shots are pretty cool, and the head shots are reminiscent of older sets (like 1969).
This 1974 Topps also turned out really well.  Similar to the 1973s, 1974 is a decent enough set, and always looks nice when signed.

Paul (b. 1945) played in the majors from 1968 to 1974 for the Indians, Rangers and Cubs.  He had a 27-48 record with 452 strike outs and a 3.91 ERA.

I mailed to Paul on May 23 and got the cards back on July 20, for a 58-day TAT.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Birthday Gift From Josh - Jack Wilson Auto

Over the last several years, I have thoroughly enjoyed my friendship with my buddy Josh.  I went to his graduation last year in West Virginia and spent some quality time with him, his family and his friends.  Josh sent me a little birthday gift recently, delayed by the hurricane, but it finally got here.

It is a bit fitting that Josh sent me a Jack Wilson autograph, since Jack Wilson is how our relationship started.  He followed my Instagram account and sent me a DM asking me if I knew who Jack Wilson was.

Little did he know that we would become great friends, and Wilson would pop up many times in our conversations and exchanging of gifts.

Thank you so much, Josh!

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Birthday Gift From Max - 1987 Topps Set Needs

Max has contributed so many cards to my 1987 Topps set, so I wasn't surprised that the set is where he put his focus for my birthday gift.  What I didn't expect was that he would hook me up with two guys I sent to TTM, but have, so far, eluded me.

I have been waiting on my 1987 Topps to come back from Lasorda for some time now (over a year, I think), so I'm just about set to write it off.  Maxx hooked me up, so I don't have to worry about hunting one down later on to complete the set.
I sent to Mike Maddux at Spring Training, and I'm sure the card will come back eventually, but Max, still, decided to send me one that he had gotten in person.  If the TTM one ever comes back, I can use it as trade bait to knock something else off of the list.

Thank you so much for the birthday gifts, Max, I truly appreciate them!

Saturday, October 6, 2018

TTM Success - Ray Culp

My lot of 1972 Topps that I bought off of Conrad helped facilitate this TTM success from Ray Culp.  That, and raiding my vintage box again.
I took another 1968 out of my box, and got it signed.  Culp's signature looks a bit shaky, but I'm still happy with what I got.

Culp (b. 1941) played in the majors from 1963 to 1973 for the Phillies, Cubs and Red Sox.  He had a record of 122-101 with 1,411 strike outs and a 3.58 ERA.  He finished 3rd in the 1963 NL Rookie of the Year Award voting (Pete Rose took the crown) and was an All Star twice (1963 and 1969).  He appeared on the 1979 Hall of Fame ballot, but did not receive any votes.

I mailed to Culp on October 17, 2017 and got the cards back on July 19, 2018, for a 275-day TAT.

Friday, October 5, 2018

TTM Success - Nate Oliver

I raided my vintage box again with this 1968 TOpps that I got signed TTM by Nate Oliver.  I kind of hate doing it,  but on the other hand, it gives me some older cards to send off.  Especially since it is going to be a while before I attempt the 1968 set anyway.

Oliver (b. 1940) played in the majors from 1963 to 1969 for the Dodgers, Giants, Yankees and Cubs.  He had 216 hits, 2 home runs and a .226 batting average.

I mailed to Oliver on May 24 and got the card back on July 9, for a 46-day TAT.