Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Someone Likes the A's

Turning A's into Birds, thanks to a @JoshSamBob mailing. 

For nearly a decade, I haven't been able to figure out what to do with any of my Oakland A's cards, aside from a stray Rickey Henderson or Mark McGwire card here and there. This all finally changed recently, as I finally found a suitable home for a bunch of A's cards. In addition to being a fan of the team from the other city by the bay, Josh Bob has an expansive Jewish player themed collection going. You'll learn something by following that hyperlink, let me assure you.

Among the big stack of cards that came my way with this Jim Edmonds refractor. Refractors are always a nice addition to my collection. They are shiny and they don't talk back.

Here's an early Albert Pujols card. I am slowly building an army of second year Pujols cards, but any sign of a rookie card has still eluded me. Someday...

Zoom. Crop. Call it good, I guess.

Josh Bob also included some Tulos for Erin's collection, which is still going strong. I haven't bought any packs of the flagship Topps set this year, so this one was totally new to this household.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

A Long Ways From Cooperstown

Another super trade from three time zones over. 

Portland, Oregon is a long ways from anywhere. With the crippling budget crisis that seems to have been the standard operating practice for the USPS going on years now, it's fairly wondrous that it only takes a few days for these baseball cards to go from coast to coast. Brett from Cooperstown Exit 3:16 was kind enough to send me this latest batch of (mostly) glossy cardboard wonders from the other side of the country.

I've pretty much resolved to not set foot in another Wal-Mart store again, so it's always nice to continue to get these blue parallels that were exclusive to the chain for several years, especially when they are some of my favorite players.

Brett is a big collector of on card autographs with bible verses, so I'm guessing he had a few non-verse extras that were available to send my way. This is quite the assortment! Mabry, the Cardinals hitting coach... Swagerty, the former prospect... and Erik Pappas eating... something. I always used to think of this card as Erik Pappas eating ice cream, but it's very clear that it's not ice cream that he has in that bowl.

Ahhh, a much needed David Freese Topps Heritage short print. You don't find those in the mail every day!

Finally, behold the card of the Wizard of Oz circa 1997. It's very... confusing. Nice, but confusing.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


A greater than great set of cards from @Lost_Collector 

I like to say that every trade I've made through the blog over the years has been great, but certainly there are occasions where something I get back is a little more... great. This is probably one of those teams. Sometimes I struggle to find an overarching theme when I want to show off a bunch of cards I got in the mail, so let's just say this group of Cardinals and Blazers was G-R-R-REAT, Tony the Tiger style.

In his age 39 year, Carlos Beltran is still very productive when healthy, so he's been a name that's been bandied about in trade talks. I'd have to say that I wouldn't mind seeing him back in St. Louis, with his name tossed in Mike Matheny's daily lineup raffle.

It's easy to get wistful when you see a nice Brandon Roy card, but the guy did accomplish quite a bit in his brief career. The Blazers haven't had many 3-time All-Stars in their team's history -- only four others accomplished this in a Portland uniform.

Jim Edmonds was talking about injuring his unnaturally huge oblique muscles on the air during a game the other day. Talk about a humblebrag.

Meyers Leonard just re-upped with the Blazers for another 4 seasons, so the team that made the surprising playoff run will be largely in tact come next fall. This is a good thing. Hopefully this enormous 3 point shooter will stay healthy all season.

Here's a lefty swing even Jimmy could envy. I assume Stan's oblique muscles were made out of weapon's grade titanium alloy.

I've never been more tempted to buy a Topps Now card than I was this past weekend after Adam Wainwright threw a shutout on the day the entire 2006 World Series team (give or take a Carpenter) was in house to celebrate their tenth anniversary. Which is to say, I was just slightly more tempted than I am to walk out into the street in front of a speeding bus.

Obliques, Achilles... why do I know so much about strangers' limbs and muscles and tendons? Sports are weird.

Here's hoping that Wesley Matthews comes back stronger than ever next season, even though he'll be wearing the wrong uniform once again.

Thanks again to The Lost Collector, who may be intrigued to know that I own two distinct pairs of New York Knicks themed socks. Throwbacks, of course.

Summer Cleaning 2016

[Updated 9/27/16] Stuff for the grabbing. 

Awhile ago, I discovered this filthy cardboard box that is built for containing microphone(s). What sort of horrors laid within?

AHHH! AHHHHH! Cardboard horrors! So while I clear this thing out, I figured this is a good time to introduce to everyone that I have finally fully (99.9% complete) cataloged my Cardinals collection. Because of this, I can finally make it easy on everyone who wants to find out if I have something or not before they send it. To celebrate, or possibly to just feel the thrill of purging weird old junk, I am offering up the following proposal which has no foreseeable expiration date.


1. Pick something from the list!

The list will be updated throughout the summer. Possibly throughout the year and beyond. I will add more stuff to this list if it proves to be popular enough to warrant that. I have a lot of stuff that I don't need. This is not a 1:1 thing, so you aren't limited to picking one thing, nor are you limited to just one of...

2. Find a card to send me!

3. Tell me what you want and where to send it!

This is the easy part. All I require is a minimum of one card that I need for anything that you claim.
Note: If you're a #Supertrader and you claim something, I already have your address and you don't even need to send anything. If you're just plain super and have traded with me in the past, I'll probably send first because I probably owe you anyway. Otherwise, I just may wait to get my grubby mitts on that Plain White Envelope because I'm eager to mark things off of my nearly endless want list.

4. Rules are made to be broken, and that includes this one!

Really, the idea is just to spark some trades. If you have stuff you think I might like and you also have stuff that you like and I might have, send me an email, drop me a note or tweet me a... thing... and let's get this thing going.

Sorry about the Pro Set.

New stuff added to the top of the list!


  • Jose Fernandez 2013 Topps Chrome Update All-Star
  • Oscar Taveras 2013 Bowman Chrome Future of the Franchise Mini
  • Emmitt Smith 1990 Pro Set rookie card (well... it's Pro Set) [x3]
  • Cam Newton 2011 Press Pass Class of 2011 insert
  • Jerome Bettis 1993 Upper Deck rookie card (The Bus!) [x2]
  • Jake Arrieta 2011 Topps
  • 2006 Seattle Seahawks Pocket Schedule (Shaun Alexander is on the front) [x5]
  • 2009 Seattle Mariners Pocket Schedule (Brandon Morrow is on the front)
  • 2015 Hillsboro Hops (A-Diamondbacks affiliate) Pocket Schedule
  • 2014 Portland Timbers Pocket Schedule (USMNT member Darlington Nagbe is on the front) [x2]
  • Assorted Max Scherzer rookie cards, 2008 Goudey [x2], 2008 Stadium Club [x3]
  • 1990 Pro Set Super Bowl Art Set (24 cards - one was inserted in every pack of 1990 Pro Set Football if I recall.) [x5]
  • 1993 Seattle Mariners Pocket Schedule (Lou Piniella is on the front!) [x4]
  • Portland Trail Blazers Pocket Schedules, assorted, 1988-89, 1991-92 [x3], 1992-93 [x5]
  • 1993 Portland State Vikings Football Pocket Schedule (featuring Billy Matos and Matt James) [x8]
  • 1991 Donruss Willie Stargell Puzzle complete set (one was inserted in every pack of 1991 Donruss, while one Elite card was inserted in every 11 billion packs)
  • 1990 Donruss The Rookies complete factory set (this has been opened, but I swear I did not remove the coveted Ben McDonald card.)
  • 1990 Score Rookie & Traded set complete factory set (this has been opened... featuring Frank Thomas and Eric Lindros hitting a baseball for some reason.)
  • 1987 Topps St. Louis Cardinals team set
  • 1985 Topps St. Louis Cardinals team set
  • 1989 Topps St. Louis Cardinals team set
  • 1988 Topps St. Louis Cardinals team set
  • 1991 Upper Deck Nolan Ryan Baseball Heroes set (9 cards, inserted in packs of 1991 Upper Deck baseball)
  • 1989 Upper Deck Team Logo Stickers set (all the teams)
  • 1990 Upper Deck Team Logo Stickers set (all the teams)
More to come!

Monday, July 18, 2016

New School, Guys

New cards, fuzzy memories. 

Last month, Topps unleashed another round of their flagship set (Series Two) with another round of inserts. I've finally lined up a deal to get all the Cardinals base cards from the set I'm trying to ignore, but of course that leaves a lot of inserts to gather up. Darryl Strawberry enthusiast Peter sent over these Hallowed Highlights inserts from Series Two, which gives me a few less dumb things I need to track down.

The graphics on these cards are really in your face. They're not as bad as the '90s computer 3D modeling graphics from one of the insert designs from Series One, but they're not subtle.

Again, we see the Topps digital photo enhancer factory at work with this extra blurred background, altering what was probably a very fine archival baseball photo.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Old School, Y'All

Throwback Thursday? Sure, why not? 

Awhile back, I reached out to Jon from A Penny Sleeve For Your Thoughts to ask about some extra early '80s Topps album stickers he had acquired in the comments section on a post he did for APTBNL. I am super excited about these two stacks of stickers that I get to put, unstuck, in my Cardinals binders soon. But as often seems to be the case, it was the bonus cards that had my eyeballs bugging out.

Look at these guys! Look at these haircuts!

I spent some time this spring reading The Breaks of the Game for the first time, which is kind of strange considering my lifelong fixation on Portland's only Big 3 pro sports franchise. This definitely kickstarted my interest in working on filling in the missing parts of my Blazers collection, which is mostly from my early childhood dating back to the start of the franchise (which was before my time.)

This card was printed in 1973, but in a few short months in Media Days all across the countries, young NBA players will still be making this pose.

Dave Twardzik, forever Bill Walton's lil' buddy.

Sidney Wicks was a classic example of the star player putting up big numbers on a bad team. It's rarely fair to completely blame the player for the lack of talent around him, though.

Big thanks to Jon for all of the Cardinals and Blazers needs!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Rooty Tooty Fresh & Looty

Ketel, anyone? 

June's @thelootlocker box arrived recently, once again bearing fruit. I had skipped a month of the hobby packs-a-month club because I ran out of time to buy in for the previous month. I have considered getting an automatic monthly subscription, but I probably should take a look at reducing other monthly recurring charges that are not card-related before I dive in with both feet.

This month's locker came with a pack of 2016 Gypsy Queen, and said pack had a numbered (19/50) framed mini of the Mariners rookie shortstop. I recently sent a hoard of M's stuff to Supertrader The Junior Junkie, so this didn't make the cut, and I honestly don't know if he actually likes the Mariners or is just hoping that some unusual Griffeys fall out of the flotsam.

The centerpiece of the box was a 2016 Finest pack. Topps pulled some last minute switcheroo on people with this product that got some high end feathers ruffled somewhere, turning it into an online only product. I think that's why the July box has gone back to 2015 Finest. In any case, I don't often get to bust packs that are in the $10 range, so I thought I'd show off everything here.

56 - Peter O'Brien - No indication that he's of any relation to former Ranger Pete O'Brien, though with all of the baseball Jr's running around these days, you can never tell.

83 - Carlos Carrasco - I've heard some say they weren't thrilled with the font here, but it's different and it's not like I'm going to have stacks and stacks of these cards and get totally sick of them. It's... something. I do like the lines that stretch across the card in abundance. Topps should feel free to do stuff like this with their fancier products and leave the digital effects out of their flagship set. (I can't hate that set with enough passion, folks.)

76 - Anthony Rizzo Purple Refractor (91/250) - It's a shiny numbered Cub. Someone else will like this more than me.

90 - Zack Greinke - Greinke seems to have a weird non-following for someone who is a great starting pitcher. Great but not otherworldly. Still, as the card back indicates, he's racked up 47 WAR over the course of his career. That is impressive, especially when you factor in his early career struggles with the Royals.

89 - Starling Marte - Marte is a beast in the field and a terror on the basepaths, especially when the Cardinals are facing his team. In another uniform, I'd probably be a pretty big fan.

Pack 3 was a 2016 Panini Diamond Kings pack. They are really nice looking overall, for an "art" set. I did manage to snag most of the Cardinals from this one at a card show earlier this year. I skipped all of the base cards (which, again, are pretty nice looking) and went straight to this King Felix Aficionado insert. Look, someone drew a flag on his cap! I think these are actually just "painted over" photographs, or at least I was hearing people grumble about that at the time they were released, but I don't hate them. They would run laps around that National Chicle disaster from years ago, especially if they had real logos.

Monday, July 11, 2016

This Blog Post is Not About Pokemon Go

@TwitchWasHere delivers the good goods. 

It's crazy to have a week that will be almost entirely free of baseball, which might actually help me get caught up in some posts that I wanted to write. I'm not entirely sure if he's shuttered his latest blog, but Twitch is active on Twitter and is always up for a trade. The starting point for this exchange was a Yoenis Cespedes card I'd pulled from a Loot Locker, and as always, I ended up with a bunch of cool things for my collection.

Somehow, I didn't own a copy of Ozzie Smith's 2012 Prizm card. I still think it's kind of crap that Panini put this set out in 2013 but still called it "2012" so they could sneak another Prizm release in the same calendar year. Including stats from the current season really throws me off! (Not that Ozzie Smith played any baseball in 2012, of course. Poor example.)

I really wanted to like the WBC, but it managed to grab less and less of my attention each time it was held. Unfortunately, there's no more baseball at the Olympics, so I should probably try and make an effort next time.

Another fun Pujols insert for the collection. As I am nearly complete in doing inventory of my Cardinals collection on Zistle, I am realizing that I have a ton of Pujols insert dupes that I didn't know were dupes. I guess that's not a terrible problem to have. This Topps Chrome "Vintage" insert is definitely not a dupe.

Erin has had a copy of the Yadi / Buster Posey All-Star photo variation from the 2013 Topps Update set for quite awhile, so I was happy to get a copy of my own.

More Prizm. Definitely can't complain about a shiny parallel!

Twitch sneaked in a Trail Blazers card, which is always nice. B-Roy is certainly missed.

Well, I can't do much better than topping this off with an Albert Pujols jersey card. Great stuff all around!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016


Just one All-Star nod for the Cardinals means I'm taking the year off from the farcical game. 

While it certainly seems like a down year for the Cardinals, there were a number of All-Star candidates on a team that has mostly been one of the top offenses in the league this year. Instead, only Matt Carpenter will be heading to San Diego next week, which gives me an excuse to not watch the game Bud Selig ruined long ago anyway. Instead, I will drown my sorrows in the latest stack of cards, which comes courtesy of 2x3 Heroes -- who will never snub you when it comes to sending a quality package of cards.

I don't think I was aware of the 2004 Upper Deck Diamond Collection set until recently, when I received this couple of cards from JediJeff as well as when I won an auction for the Jim Edmonds card. Reggie Sanders is easy to overlook for my collection when he's wearing a Pirates uniform, but the Cardinals logo is present and accounted for.

Here's a former All-Star on a photo variation version of his 2014 Gypsy Queen mini. Craig has just a handful of ABs this season, all in AAA where he currently resides on the Pawtucket Red Sox DL.

Former World Series winning left fielder turned radio host. I really like the 2003 Topps Heritage set and wish I owned more of it.

With Brandon Moss becoming the latest Cardinal to hit the DL, Adams will be counted on to play more. When he's on, he's really fun to watch, and I'm excited to add this jersey swatch card to my collection.

Otherwise, the option at 1B is Jedd Gyorko, I guess?

This silver Ozzie mini is numbered 133/199. Ozzie made a lot of All-Star starts, much to the chagrin of Barry Larkin fans.

Ryan Jackson seemed like he had a decent chance to emerge as the Next Cardinals Shortstop out of the group that at one time also included Pete Kozma, but he never hit much and didn't get a whole lot of looks at the big league level. He's played in both the Angels and Phillies minor league systems this season.

I think that Waino's ERA will be south of 4 by the time this season is all said and done and we'll have mostly forgotten about his ugly start to this season. I'm a believer.

I'm still trying to remember to buy Stadium Club cards that came out last year, but we already have another set upon us, apparently? This gold foil version of Kolten Wong's card is a nice drop in the bucket, in the meantime.