Saturday, October 25, 2014

A Rainbow of Red Sox

I'm apparently a total sucker for a good colored parallel card. Even though Topps has flooded the market with these things in recent years I still seek them out.  In my last COMC shipment alone I realized I had enough to complete a rainbow of Red Sox.

Red - 2008 Topps Opening Day Manny Ramirez

Orange - 2012 Topps Chrome Orange Refractor David Ortiz

Yellow - 2014 Topps Yellow Jonny Gomes

Green - 2013 Topps Emerald Foil Dustin Pedroia

Blue - 2009 Topps Chrome Blue Refractor Josh Beckett (#'d /199)

Indigo - 2014 Topps Toys 'R' Us Purple Jon Lester

Violet - 2010 Topps Chrome Purple Refractor John Lackey (#'d /599)

This one scanned in closer to blue, but is clearly purple in hand. 

I love these parallels as much as anyone, but even I have to admit it's gotten a bit ridiculous.  I have a feeling Topps may have realized this, as the parallels in this year's Chrome product were reduced in number, and the borders on next year's flagship set don't seem very conducive to colored parallels either...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Re-packs aren't always winners...

Before I head in for a long day and night at work, let's take a look at a couple more packs that came from one of these 20 packs for 20 bucks discount boxes...


First up is 2012 Gypsy Queen, weighing in at a measly 6 cards...

I'm not overly fond of the design, but I do like the sort of 3D effect that Topps achieved by blurring the background behind the player.

The fact that this card is a new addition to my Red Sox collection is really the only good thing about this pack, unfortunately.

...

...

Sorry I dozed off there for a couple of cards.  My mini wasn't any help in saving this pack.

I guess this would be the highlight of the pack, I think it's the best photograph anyway.  Well, that was a poor showing for 2012 Gypsy Queen to say the least.

Let's see if the Opening Day set from the same year does any better.  It does have an extra card at least compared to Gypsy Queen.

A Giants player in the first pack, and a Royals player in this one.  I'm glad Kansas City pulled off the win last night, looks like it's going to be an entertaining World Series.


Neither one of these packs was all that exciting I guess, although I prefer the flagship/Opening Day design to Gypsy Queen so I guess I give the nod to this pack.

I did get an insert, but it's an odd one that I don't care much for and won't be hanging onto.



In both packs my favorite card was the final card, in this case a late-career Todd Helton.

Wow, that was pretty bad.  Good news is at least each of these only set me back a dollar...

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A Royal Bargain

I like to think that I do an okay job of sticking to my goals and keeping on track without straying too much in my collecting.  Every so often though I stumble across something that doesn't really fit but I just have to have, either because it's an interesting piece, or just too good a bargain to pass up.  Today's card is a case of both....

About three weeks ago, as the Royals were beginning their amazing run to the World Series, I stumbled across this on-card autograph of young pitching stud Yordano Ventura while trolling eBay.  Yordano's actually taking the mound tonight in probably the biggest game for the Royals franchise in three decades.  I'd been casually watching this fire-balling phenom progress all season long, and with the Royals qualifying for post-season play in his rookie season I decided to make a play at this one if I could get it on the cheap.

Obviously I won the card, since I'm posting about it, but I bet you'd be surprised how little it set me back.  How about less than $3!

$2.75 for an on-card autographed rookie of a 23-year-old World Series starter that regularly hits triple digits on the radar gun!  I'd call that a bargain.

I posted a Giants card last night, and they won Game 1, so my superstitious self feels like maybe this post will help Kansas City this evening.  Yes, like 90% of the baseball world I'm on the Royals bandwagon.  When I don't have a horse in the race I go for the underdog, and besides it's hard not to root for a team that hasn't seen post-season in nearly as long as I've been on this Earth!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

I'm beat...and so are these cards

Today was incredibly stressful and long, I'm out of gas but did want to at least post something.  Here are three well-loved 1959 Topps baseball cards I picked up a while back at the local hobby shop...

Not the HOF Earl Averill, this would be his son Earl Jr.  Quite a few condition issues here, not the least of which is a giant crease above the team logo.  I'll fork over a dime for any '59 Topps card I don't have though.  I think it was so cheap largely because of the back:

Yeah this was definitely taped or glued into an album at some point, but you can still see the cartoon which is my biggest concern.

Eddie Haas would later coach the Braves in Atlanta (after Joe Torre), and even spent some time as a scout in the Red Sox organization.  I love the Sporting News Rookie Stars subset in this set.


Last but not least, Allan "Red" Worthington.  Red began his Major League career with back to back shutouts, which is noted in the cartoon on the back of his card:

No paper loss here!  Three cards closer to a beater '59 Topps set, and my total cost was 60 cents.  No complaints there!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Signature Sundays - A Pot(vin) of Coffey

Sorry, that post title is really cheesy, but it was all I could come up with to tie today's two autograph subjects together.  Surprise, surprise the cards are from the 2012-13 Panini Classics Signatures release...

Denis Potvin was a short print in the set.  I was kicking myself for missing out on one of these many months ago that sold for around $30.  As luck would have it though a couple of weeks back another one finally went up and I took it home for even less, around the price of a blaster.

Denis' career got off to a hot start in the mid to late '70s.  He was a #1 overall draft pick, and didn't disappoint as he captured the Calder Trophy his rookie season.  After that he went on to capture three Norris Trophies as top NHL defenseman within a four year span at the end of the decade!  All of that pales in comparison to the fact that Potvin won four consecutive Stanley Cups with the Islanders to begin the following decade.


Today's other subject is without question one of the all-time great offensive-minded defensemen, Paul Coffey.  He trails only Ray Bourque as far as defensemen go in most offensive statistical categories.  The thing is though, Bourque won only a single Cup, at the tail end when he latched on with an already-successful Colorado team.  Paul Coffey on the other hand was a key member of the Oilers dynasty in the 1980s, and won another Cup with Pittsburgh in 1991 as well.

Like Denis Potvin, Paul was also awarded the Norris Trophy three times in his remarkable career.  He really racked up the points for a guy who played the back end, in fact he's still the 13th all-time regular season scorer to this day!  Unless Joe Thornton, Jarome Iginla or Daniel Alfredsson, all of whom are in the late stages of their careers, explode for another 300+ points he's going to stay in that slot for some time too.

Coffey's card was one that was released this past season in the Contenders product, and I've never seen an SP/SSP list for that, but based on availability and final sales prices I'm fairly certain that this card is an SP as well.

So there you have it, two more great autographs from my favorite hockey autograph product to date.  8 Stanley Cups, 6 Norris Trophies and 2 HOF inductions between these two, not too bad at all!  I bet if you were to rank your top 10 NHL defensemen of the '80s both of these guys would make the list...

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dog Food and Baseball Cards - My First 1954 Red Heart

When I think of oddball baseball cards, I usually picture the many great sets released in the '80s by brands like Post, Kay-Bee, Woolworth's, etc.  In that great decade of collecting, sets were produced by a range of random companies far and wide, from toy stores to purveyors of fine breakfast sausages!

Today's brief post features a much older oddball set though, 1954 Red Heart:

These beauties were distributed by The John Morrell Company, makers of Red Heart Dog Food.  Though I don't believe that particular brand name lives on today, The John Morrell Company certainly does. 

Anyway, this was a 33-card set released in three different subsets of 11 cards each.  The cards weren't actually packaged with the dog food, but rather were a mail-away promotion.  A few labels and some pocket change was enough to get an 11 card pack delivered to your mailbox.

I am a fan of the simplistic design and vintage feel.  There are only two Red Sox players on the short checklist, so I'd love to pick up the other someday (George Kell).

The backs are well done, they certainly hold up when compared against the other sets of the day in my opinion.  Certainly a unique addition to my vintage Red Sox collection, courtesy of "The Big League Dog Food".

The best part is, this card cost me less than $10.  I'll take this over a hanger box of 2014 Topps Update any day!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Quick Rip - Two More Packs of OPC Baseball

Why not rip a couple packs of O-Pee-Chee baseball while I watch this horrific Patriots/Jets game. I knew I should have stuck with Bruins/Canadiens...

6 cards per pack, here's the first...

Awesome card, my favorite photo in the pack right out of the gate.  I love the two fans in the front striking a "thriller pose".

The portrait shots are less impressive to me than the in-game action, but as portraits go the ones in this set are at least well done.

My one-per-pack black parallel, snooze...


I never liked the strange background that appears on Steve Pearce's card.  There are a number of cards in the set against this same backdrop, and to me, it just looks like the curtain to a meat locker or industrial freezer.

Orlando would be dealt to the Minnesota Twins during the 2009 season.

Pack 2!

This pack leads off with a nice late-career card of a guy with 422 career saves.

I opened these a couple weeks back, and I've already shipped this one out to Tony at Off Hiatus Baseball Cards.

Rather than being irritated that I lost one of my 6 cards in the pack to this giant, self-promoting insert set, I actually kind of like this card.  I mean, who doesn't like DiMaggio, and what an awkward photograph.



DiMaggio, Jeter, Verlander and A.J Burnett...that pack certainly finished off with some horsepower!

That's all for tonight...
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