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Sunday, September 25, 2022

50-50 Returns From Cody M

Normally, I like to keep a positive spin on my posts, but in reality, not all of my trading and 50/50 experiences are positive ones.  This one from a guy named Cody started out promising, but ended after almost a year of little communication and almost not getting my cards back.
Cody hit me up last season, asking me to do 50/50s with him for that season.  I was advised by a mutual friend that I should proceed with caution, but I sent some stuff anyway.   I waited until the end of the season, and started messaging Cody about when he would send my stuff back.  No responses for quite a while, I was ready to give up on these cards and take the loss.  Our mutual friend told me that he probably would run into Cody this season while graphing and could help me get my stuff back.  A couple months ago, I finally got a message from him.  It was loaded with excuses and a half-apology.  Finally, I got my cards back.  Kind of.
A lot of what I sent was sent back unsigned, with a bunch of random cards tossed in.  The ones that were signed were great and all, but I'm not 100% certain they're all ones that I sent.

One positive that I got from this experience is that I now log what 50/50s I've sent to people to help me better track what I've got out to folks.  Cody has reached out to me a couple times after this to try to have me send him more stuff, but I have respectfully declined.  I'm not one to block folks, but I also don't want to send more stuff out and have to wait a year to get it back.

I guess trades and 50/50s aren't always sunshine and rainbows, but I do feel bad about not being more positive this morning.

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Various 50-50s From Patrick

Taking a couple days off from posting didn't put me any farther behind than I thought I would be, which is nice.  I still have several 50/50s I need to catch up on and what will probably end up being a card dump post of stuff that I just can't tell where it came from.  I did, however, figure out which signed cards I got back from my friend, Patrick, and got them all into this post.
Patrick took a bunch of cards for Wilmington and Harrisburg for me the last to seasons, and did pretty well getting me most of my cards signed.  I was glad he was able to get Tim Cate done for me; he helped me finish a couple of the duals with Owen White that I had already posted a while back.
He also helped me knock out some random cards, as well as a few Carolina League All Star cards.  I wish they would bring back the league all star games.  It is so stupid that the minor leagues haven't been having them.
Patrick helped me get a 2011 Bowman Chrome signed.  I haven't been through that box in a while, since there haven't been many guys I've seen lately in that set.  I probably will go through that box soon and get some TTMs from it.
Finally, Patrick got a few more Frank Viola cards done for me.  I still have several of his cards, in case I see him at High Point again.

I appreciate Patrick getting these cards signed for me.  I didn't send him as many cards this season, as we both were busy, but he does have a package he is going to send back soon.  I also owe him some of his cards, so I need to get them in the mail too.

Friday, September 23, 2022

September 2022 Graphing of Tides at Bulls

With several PDOs to burn, I took two days off this week to go up to Durham for Stranger Things night on Thursday and also to do some graphing for what might be my last time this season.  The Norfolk Tides were in Durham, and I was able to assemble my book fairly quickly, since I already had a good many Orioles minor leaguers put aside.  Still, the prep work was tedious, but worth it in the end.

I finally got to graph Grayson Rodriguez, and luckily was able to get him on two cards.  The above 2021 Bowman Chrome purple mojo refractor turned out great, and is numbered 220/250.
Also, Tyler Glasnow has been rehabbing in Durham, and I was able to get this orange foil 2020 Donruss signed.  This card will look really cool in my album, and will be somewhat unique, since I didn't open much 2020 Donruss.  This card came out of one of the former card shop boxes.
I wish I had pulled out two Brujan cards for him to sign, other than letting him choose the two, as I had a 2022 Topps chrome mojo 87 that I would have rather he sign.  I tried getting him on arrival today, but never saw him.  Oh, well.  The 2022 Bowman and 2022 Topps are fine additions to my album anyway.  I finally got my 2021 Mosiac Josh Fleming done.  I had sent one to him TTM, but haven't seen it come back yet.  I also finally got Josh Lowe and Luke Railey done, after missing them several times in Durham.
Today's arrival was really nice; I got Yonny Chirinos on two, with the help of my good friend, Jackson.  Seeing Jackson the last two days after missing him all season was also really great.  I finally got my 2021 Bulls team set card of Reinaldo Ruiz signed after missing him a bunch of times.
I also finally got this 2019 Topps gold Rays card signed by Ralph Garza.  Since he has played at Tropicana, I figured I'd get him to sign it, since I didn't have any other cards of his.
Surprisingly, I was able to finish four of m 2019 Midwest League All Star cards: Chris Vallimont, Logan Gillaspie, Xavier Edwards and Grant Witherspoon.  The Gillaspie had been randomly sitting on my desk for a while, and finally has a home in my album.
Speaking of finally getting cards into my album, here are a few that i have had my eye on getting signed for a little while now.  The 2015 NY-Penn League All Star card of Spenser Watkins brought a comment from him when he saw it.  I also was finally able to finish the dual card of Grayson Rodriguez and Cadyn Grenier from 2018 Bowman.  The 2020 Topps Pro Debut Chrome refractor of Yusniel Diaz is another that I really wanted done, and I was smart enough this time to only show that one to him when he was signing.  That way I knew it would get done.

Also, I got some nice cards signed by Brett Phillips.  Jackson told me ahead of time that Phillips was really nice, and he didn't disappoint.  He really was cool, and talked to us a good bit.
Phillips signed a bunch, and I really appreciated it.  He got a nice assortment of cards done for me, which I appreciated.  I left without any of his cards to put back into my boxes.
I got a lot of Orioles affiliates' team set cards signed, as well as some other stuff.  I upgraded my 2022 Topps signed by Bruce Zimmermann, since the one he signed for me TTM was signed in ballpoint pen.  I also got my 2022 SAL Top Prospects Connor Norby card signed, and had a nice conversation with him about ECU.
Chris Vallimont was really cool.  He was easy to spot; he was wearing a retro Cleveland Browns jersey, as the Browns were playing last night.
Finally, Nick Vespi wouldn't sign outside for arrival, but did tell us that he would sign inside.  I asked him if he would be in the bullpen, since my seats were right there.  He said yes and that he would look for me inside.  He was true to his word, and signed for me right before the National Anthem.

Last night's game was exciting, with the Bulls winning in a walk off.  Their Stranger Things jerseys were really cool, and I may bid on one of them.  I was wearing the one that I won years ago, signed by Brandon Snyder.

In all, I got the following signatures: Cooper Criswell x 1, Yonny Chirinos x 2, Xavier Edwards x 3, Ralph Garza x 1, Angel Perdomo x 3, Reinaldo Ruiz x 2, Vidal Brujan x 2, Josh Fleming x 1, Tyler Glasnow x 1, Josh Lowe x 2, Luke Raley x 2, Grant Witherspoon x 1, Ryan Conroy x 2, Yusniel Diaz x 2, Cam Gallagher x 1, Logan Gillaspie x 1, Morgan McSweeney x 2, Tyler Nevin x 1, Connor Norby x 1, Jacob Nottingham x 1, Brett Phillips x 8, Justin Ramsey x 1, Grayson Rodriguez x 2, Ramon Sambo x 1, Chris Vallimont x 6, Nick Vespi x 3, Spenser Watkins x 1 and Bruce Zimmermann x 4 (58 total autographs)

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

TTM Success - Tim Mauser

Another TTM success came in from a request that had been out for a while; Tim Mauser.  I was able to get a 1994 Topps (above) and a 1995 Topps (below) signed.  Both turned out great.  I have found that I like 1994 Topps, even though sorting through them is a pain.  This is, of course, due to the overgloss on them that causes the set to be bricked.  Otherwise, the individual cards look really nice when signed.
1995 Topps also looks nice when signed; the set had some good photos in it, and I have gotten a few of those signed in the past.

Mauser (b. 1966) played in the majors i 1991 and from 1993 to 1995 for the Phillies and Padres.  He had a record of 2-6 with 93 strike outs and a 4.37 ERA.

I mailed to Mauser on November 22, 2021, and got the cards back on September 12, 2022, for a 294-day TAT.

Monday, September 19, 2022

Another TTM Success From Jeren Kendall

Bowman Hi Tek is a nice product.  I remember back when it was Topps Tek in the early 2000s, but Topps applied it to Bowman and called it Hi Tek more recently.  I had found these two cards of Jeren Kendall a while back and sent them to him TTM.  I had gotten him before in 2019, so I figured enough time had passed for me to send again.
Both of these cards turned out nicely.  They are two different patterns, so I have them side by side in the autograph album.

I mailed to Kendall on January 28, 2021, and got the cards back on September 9, 2022, for a 589-day TAT.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

A Free Autograph For a Failed Private Signing

There was a private signing listed for Tommy Harper that I wanted to get in on, so I signed up and sent off a 1964 Topps.  The signing ended up being canceled.  I got my card and my money back.  I was also sent this 1989 Bowman Bob Stanley as a consolation.

I like the card, as it fills another spot in my album page for oversized Bowman cards.  I have one more slot to fill, and that page will be complete.  I'll probably pick up something to send out for it at a future card show. 

Matt F With 50-50 Returns

There should be a bunch of 50/50 returns coming in soon now that .inor league seasons are wrapping up. I'm glad that I'm getting a handle on my posts, because that means a ton of cards are headed back (hopefully).
A friend of mine from Instagram (Matt F) took some 50/50s last season and this year, we expanded further and sent out a ton of stuff to each other. Matt may have gotten me the most out of everything I sent to everyone, as far as 50/50s go. I had pulled these Joe Boyle cards when I busted 2020 Bowman Draft and had hoped I could send them TTM. It's never able to fi d a good address for him, but got lucky when I saw that Matt could take him.  The cards look awesome and now I don't have to worry about getting them signed.
Parker Meadows was another guy I had held cards for TTM, but sent them to Matt, instead. I'm glad he got these done for me, as well.
I love getting random cards out of my boxes and sent out for TTMs and 50/50s.  I've become a bit of a hoarder, as far as cards go, and making room for new stuff is always good.  I kept running into the 2015 Heritage Chi Chi Gonzalez in my box, so it was nice to finally get it signed and into my album.  I was also tired of seeing these two James Marinans in the Bowman boxes, and now they're done, as well.
Matt really hooked me up with some guys this season, and it is really appreciated.  I moved a bunch of recent Bowman stuff out of my box.
Matt's home minor league team was Dayton, but I ust found out that he moved. I'm hoping he can take 50/50s next season, since he does so well with getting my stuff signed. It is going to be tough not being able to knock out Dayton guys as easily as I had with Matt. I guess I'll have to find someone else who sees them.
Matt hit me up on a bunch of the coaches for Dayton and some other guys from that league.  He also sent me a few extra autos he had, as I had done with him. 
He was able to get Bryan LaHair for me on a few cards, which was great.  I was also glad to move a few Jimmy Jones out of my Topps boxes.
Finally, Matt got a couple Juan Samuel cards signed for me.  He had gotten a little difficult the last couple of years, as far as signing his mail.  I think I opted for a private signing to ensure that I got my 1987 Topps Phillies leaders card signed; I should have waited. Thing is, had I have waited, he may not have signed for Matt.

Thanks so much for getting all of these cards signed for me, Matt.

A Couple Signed Cards From Connor

Having leftovers from a team that you see can be frustrating.  That's why I've worked to have a decent network of folks who see other teams; this helps me finish off some cards.  I had picked up this 2020 Bowman Chrome Sapphire parallel of Zavier Warren at a card show in Richmond, thinking I would see him again.  He was moved up shortly thereafter, so I was stuck with the card.  I found someone on Instagram, a guy names Connor, who was willing to take the card, without me having to send 50/50s or pay a consignment fee.  The card got signed, and turned out nicely.
He also took this Russell Smith that I had pulled from 2021 Bowman Draft.  When he said he could also take this card, I was excited, as it looks awesome when scanned.

I really appreciated Connor taking these for me and getting them done.  He sees the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, so I may now have a hookup for guys after they leave the Mudcats.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

TTM Success - Jorge Mateo

A private signing popped up for current Orioles shortstop, Jorge Mateo.  I figured I would go ahead and get a couple of his cards signed and signed up.  The above 2018 Topps Heritage Deckle Edge insert was a card I really wanted to get signed.  His actual signature is on the left.
I also got a 2022 Topps signed, and it turned out nicely, as well.

Mateo (b. 1995) has played in the majors since 2020 for the Padres and Orioles.  He currently has a career average of 228 with 150 hits and 17 home runs.

I mailed to the signing on August 16 and got the cards back on September 9, for a 24-day TAT.

Logan K Returns Some Autographs

A cool thing that happened when Chris and I were on our road trip out west was meeting some of the local graphers at the stadiums that we went to.  I was able to connect with one of the ones from Wichita, and he agreed to take some cards that I missed and try to get them signed.  He had never done a 50/50 with someone before, but that's not quite what we did.  Instead, we pretty much did a league swap.  I got him some Wood Ducks, and also some of their opponents.  Logan worked on some of my Wichita stuff, and also took some other teams.
Logan saw Corpus Christi after I had left Wichita, so he took some of the cards I had for them.  I was really happy to get the above Matt Ruppenthal from my Midwest League All Star set completed, as well as the Joe Perez 2017 Bowman Chrome purple refractor.
Logan sent back a few of the Wichita team set guys I missed; he is still working on some of the others.  I tried to get Simeon Woods-Richardson, but missed him completely.  I would have knocked out several of his cards, had I been able to stop him.  He signs TTM, but it is still nice getting people in person.
Here are the rest of the Corpus Christi guys that Logan got for me.  I had these pulled and put aside with Astros stuff, since Fayetteville is their Low A team.  I had never pulled the higher-up guys out of the box (thanks for not getting around to it).  It ended up making for a quick search when Logan told me he was seeing Astros AA guys.

Thanks for getting the autographs for me, Logan.  Next year, we will be able to swap early on, and knock out a lot more stuff!

Friday, September 16, 2022

Dylan D With the 50-50 Returns

My friend, Dylan, approached me early this year about sending him cards for 50/50s this season.  I was happy to oblige, since it helped me move a bunch of cards.  In the end, I sent him a ton of stuff (probably way too much), but I did get some nice signatures back.  The card that I wanted back more than any other was the above 2017 Bowman orange parallel of Scott Hurst.  I had this card in my Bowman box since I busted 2017 Bowman, and really wanted to get it signed.  Dylan was happy to help, and the card is now in my album.
Along with the 50/50s, Dylan sent me some extras that he accumulated along the way.  He hinted at this Sandy Alcantara a few months ago, and then I forgot that it was coming.  I was really happy to get it, though, along with another huge surprise.
Dylan helped me get some of my Jackson Kowars signed.  I missed him when he came through Kinston, so it was nice to get some of his cards done.  I was especially happy that his Carolina League All Star card got signed.
Here is an assortment of what Dylan was able to get signed for me.  The 2019 Topps Holiday Willians Astudillo is a really cool card.  I also like that he was able to get some of my 2019 Bowman Heritage cards done (by Brewer Hicklen and Luken Baker).
I completely missed Astudillo when I saw Jacksonville at Durham early this season.  He was on the taxi squad early that week, then showed up the next night.  This is after I took his cards out of my book, thinking he wouldn't be on that trip.
Here are some of the extras that Dylan included.  There might be a card or two from Drake, as the stacks got mixed up a bit.
I believe most of these are ones that Dylan sent back, since they still have my tags on the back of most of them.
Finally, here's the huge surprise that Dylan included in the package.  I was floored when I saw a Zack Greinke signed card included with my stuff.  I guess he had no problem signing for Dylan while he was on a rehab assignment, since Dylan isn't Pat Neshek.

Thank you so much for taking my 50/50s, and also for the extras, Dylan.  I regret not stopping in Memphis to say hello when we were on our graphing trip out west.  I will try to meet up next year.

A Ton of Autographs From Drake

This post may seem like a card/scan dump.  I regret that I didn't break my friend, Drake's shipments up and post them when they came in.  I know Drake was disappointed that I waited to scan and post everything that he has sent me this past year.  I got busy trying to catch up on TTMs and then in-season graphing, I let his stack of cards get super huge.

Still, I finally sat down to scan everything, and even though my scanned froze several times, I finally got through it.
Drake has taken a ton of cards for 50/50s from me over the last two seasons.  He sees some teams in Florida and also Illinois.  He also has been able to see some players on rehab assignments in Florida, and I believe he also went to Tampa for a Rays game.  He was going to get Randy Arozarena and Wander Franco for me, but I don't think he was able to.  I am really happy with the Josh Lowes he got signed.  He has my 2020 Topps Heritage Minors blue parallel still, and that should be coming in the mail soon.
It was really hard sorting the stiff he had sent into some kind of pattern that would make it easy to post and discuss, so I decided to try to put stuff together that was similar, even though they may not all be the same teams.  Drake knocked out a bunch of Bowman products for me.  Several minor leaguers I may not have been able to see, he got them.
That's what appeals to me the most about doing 50/50s with folks.  They take cards from me of guys I wouldn't normally see, and I get them guys that I see.  We swap, and everyone is happy.  It also helps me clear space in my Bowman boxes for new product, and keeps teams that I never see from just sitting there collecting dust.
I especially like knocking out 2021 Heritage Minors cards.  I'm not working on the set, by any means, I just like the colorful cards and I also like reducing the stack that I have here at the house.
Drake took a couple Jordan Walkers from me that helped reduce the leftovers I had from my trip out west.  Maybe next season, he and I can get together and graph.  I'd enjoy it.
Drake also has helped me clear out some extras that I have here at the house.  He loves doing "blind trades" where he is happy taking any set number of cards and exchanging them card for card.  He doesn't mind obscure players or team personnel, so I try to send him some stuff he wouldn't normally see.  He does the same for me.
This has put several random team set cards in my album, and since I enjoy the randomness of my album pages, the cards fit right into my theme.
Here are some older Heritage and Heritage Minors cards that Drake has sent me.  I feel like Heritage and Heritage Minors are nice cards to get signed.  I also appreciate that they don't have to be prepped.
The Bowman cards Drake sent go back to the early 2010s.  I have some from those years, but seeing guys who were in those sets are getting tougher and tougher to see.  I have to go to places like AAA to see some of those guys, or wait until they become coaches.
I wonder just how man extra autographs Drake must have, since he sent me a ton.
He also included some older Topps cards that I can use to check off of my Topps ledger for some of those early 2000s sets.
This Tirso Ornelas was one of those 2017 Bowman Chrome minis.  I have seen them around, but never pulled any.  I have a few of them from some former Wood Ducks.
So, Drake really hooked me up with a bunch of stuff.  I hate that it took me so long to scan and post them, but they're finally here, and also have finally been added to my autograph album.

Thank you so much, Drake, for all of the cards, and also for taking all of the 50/50s the past two seasons.