Sunday, June 23, 2013

A few things to report

This is a long post so please bear with me.

I have a couple things to report on today. Yesterday (Friday) was a great day for me with a big haul of cards! First of all I received a package from Ryan for a trade we recently negotiated. This was our first trade and hopefully not our last. In exchange for some Orioles cards he was looking for and a 2013 Gypsy Queen Cal Ripken Jr. Framed white parallel, Ryan sent me the following:

2013 Bowman- 53 Jesus Montero Silver Ice Parallel
2013 Topps Gypsy Queen- GS-BH Bryce Harper Glove Stories
2012 Topps Chrome- 183 Tyler Pastornicky RC Refractor
2011 Topps- DD-HF Jason Heyward/Freddie Freeman Diamond Duos

Thanks for the trade Ryan!

Now for the second part. Topps Series 2 streeted on Wednesday. On Thursday I went to the closer of my two local Wal-Mart stores hoping to pick up some packs to rip. I arrived at around 4PM on the day AFTER the series was supposed to debut...well, did debut. Unfortunately this Wal-Mart store has one of the worst, most unkempt card aisles I've ever seen. Loose packs everywhere and in the wrong boxes, price tags in the wrong place or even missing, not to mention the fact that the selection is rather poor. I have yet to see Topps Archives show up in this store and they don't carry ANY Panini baseball products. Not even Triple Play. Well much to my chagrin I found that they had not yet stocked Series 2. Thankfully I was in town already for other errands so I didn't waste my time and gas driving there. 

Fast forward to Friday. I had a meeting to attend that was not all that far to the other Wal-Mart in my area so I made a little side trip on the way home to see if they had any S2. Thankfully they did!! I'm not over in the area of this store very often so it had been a long time since I bought any cards there but now I know where I'm gonna go when I'm feeling the cardboard itch. The difference between store #2 and store #1 was night and day! Store 2 had a clean, well kept card aisle with a great selection. All of the current lower end Topps products were in stock, including Series 2, as well as Panini products including Prizm which frankly surprised me. I know Target stores normally carry those kinds of products but I wasn't expecting it from my local podunk Wally World. Wish I had a Target nearby...

But now to the cards!

I decided to limit myself to $20 for this trip and elected to go with a hanger box, rack pack and two loose packs as opposed to a blaster box. I'll take the value of more cards and better odds over getting a manu-patch. I've already hand collated the cards so I will list them in numerical order and show a few of the highlights. 

Base Set

339 Nick Swisher
346 Aaron Hicks RC
350 Albert Pujols
352 Tommy Hanson
357 Juan Francisco
368 Chris Young
369 Bryce Harper NL ROY
372 Jeff Locke
376 Juan Pierre Checklist
377 J.D. Martinez
381 Wily Peralta
383 Matt Harrison
384 Jake McGee
385 Brandon Belt
388 Justin Turner
393 Andres Torres
395 Alexei Ramirez
397 Mike Aviles
398 Mike Fiers
401 Ryan Dempster
404 Ryan Madson
406 Brandon McCarthy
407 Juan Pierre
408 Coco Crisp
412 Everth Cabrera
418 Evan Gattis RC 

Very happy I pulled this one!

420 Rick Porcello
421 Jordy Mercer RC
424 Steven Lerud RC
426 Vinnie Pestano
432 Jose Iglesias
443 Lou Marson
454 Paul Goldschmidt
459 Jesus Montero
460 Ryan Doumit
461 Drew Pomeranz
462 Eduardo Nunez
463 Jason Hammel
470 Jeff Francoeur
473 Josh Johnson
476 John Buck
478 Gavin Floyd
488 Ryan Wheeler RC
492 Jose Molina
497 Brett Myers
503 Clay Buchholz
509 Brennan Boesch
511 Rob Brantly RC
518 Nolan Reimold
520 Peter Bourjos
521 Evan Scribner RC
523 Wandy Rodriguez
525 J.P. Arencibia
526 Tyler Flowers
530 Wade Miley Rookie Cup
531 Craig Gentry
532 Todd Helton
540 Michael Bourn NL Defensive POY
547 Glen Perkins
548 John Lackey
549 Huston Street
559 Travis Snider
566 C.J. Wilson
567 Alfonso Soriano Checklist
568 Steve Lombardozzi Rookie Cup

I love this photo

570 Devin Mesoraco

Odd issue with this card. The foil lettering for Mesoraco's name is only the outlines of the letters rather than solid. This card came out of the hanger box and there was one other card in the box with this same issue. I didn't see any like this in Series 1. Side note: Gotta love the look on Mesoraco's face here.

574 Corey Hart
580 Jordan Danks
588 Jordan Zimmermann
593 James Loney
595 David Ortiz
598 Fernando Martinez
599 Carlos Carrasco
602 Anibal Sanchez
607 Chris Carter
613 Jhoulys Chacin
614 B.J. Upton
615 Mark Ellis
618 Koji Uehara
623 Alexi Ogando
630 Andy Dirks
632 R.A. Dickey NL Cy Young
633 Victor Martinez
636 Cole de Vries RC
638 Andrew Cashner
639 Josh Hamilton
640 Jason Castro
641 Bruce Chen
642 Austin Jackson
643 Matt Garza
644 Ryan Lavarnway
651 Gregor Blanco
657 Jorge De La Rosa
658 David Freese
660 Miguel Cabrera


 Wal-mart Blue Parallel
337 Chris Iannetta
354 Casey Janssen
366 Ervin Santana
458 Jake Peavy
507 Lance Lynn
538 Brett Wallace
565 Torii Hunter
612 Robinson Cano

Emerald Sparkle Parallel
375 Wilin Rosario Rookie Cup
401 Ryan Dempster

Gold Parallel
636 Cole de Vries RC 0279/2013

Chase It Down
CD-10 Jon Jay

World Baseball Classic Stars
WBC-3 Joey Votto
WBC-11 Pablo Sandoval

Making Their Mark
MM-9 Tyler Skaggs 1st Win
MM-12 Zack Cozart 1st Home Run

1972 Minis
TM-85 Matt Williams
TM-91 Stephen Strasburg

Chasing History
CH-55 Ken Griffey Jr. Gold Holofoil
CH-57 Cal Ripken Jr. Silver Foil
CH-57 Cal Ripken Jr. Gold Holofoil
CH-65 Gary Carter Gold Holofoil
CH-69 Sandy Koufax Gold Holofoil
CH-75 Dustin Pedroia Silver Holofoil
CH-86 Roy Halladay Silver Foil
CH-97 Troy Tulowitzki Silver Holofoil

So overall it was a fun pack ripping experience. Nothing spectacular pulled but I like the inserts in this year's Topps flagship set. I particularly like the "Making Their Mark" insert that is new to Series 2. Hopefully soon I will be able to pick up a few more packs or a hanger box.

Most of the cards listed above are available for trade, though a few have already been promised. Just ask!! I like Braves and inserts in return!

Also, I got two Million Dollar Chase code cards as well and I have no use for these. So if anyone is participating in this promotion and would like the codes, just ask and I would be happy to send them to you.

Happy collecting!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

'12 Bowman blaster report

So I've been keeping a 2012 Bowman blaster box around "for a rainy day". Well today was a rainy day so I decided to break it! Contents are as follows:

Pack 1
161 Jason Heyward

108 Torii Hunter
BCP41 Zach Walters 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP37 Michael Crouse 1st Bowman Chrome Card
89 Brian Wilson Gold Parallel
BP75 Dillon Maples 1st Bowman Card
BP72 Jabari Blash 1st Bowman Card
116 Trevor Cahill
191 Brett Lawrie Rookie Card
200 Eric Surkamp Rookie Card

Pack 2
197 Michael Fiers Rookie Card
48 Zach Greinke
BCP75 Dillon Maples 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP62 Kes Carter 1st Bowman Chrome Card
146 Martin Prado Gold Parallel
BPA-ML Matt Lipka Prospect Autograph Blue Parallel 214/500!!!!

BP76 Ian Gac 1st Bowman Card
BP103 Drew Hutchison 1st Bowman Card
186 Aramis Ramirez
103 Mike Moustakas

Pack 3
122 Howie Kendrick
56 Ted Lilly
166 Victor Martinez
BCP89 Austin Hedges 1st Bowman Chrome Card
127 Jose Bautista Gold Parallel
BBP5 Shelby Miller Bowman's Best

BP46 Anthony Fernandez 1st Bowman Card
BP9 Paul Hoilman 1st Bowman Card
21 Yunel Escobar
187 Kevin Youkilis

Pack 4
75 Roy Halladay
72 Tim Hudson
BCP67 J.T. Wise 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP31 Nick Maronde 1st Bowman Chrome Card

53 Adam Lind
BP106 Tyler Collins 1st Bowman Card
BP92 Nick Delmonico
118 Alex Gordon
119 Josh Johnson
152 Giancarlo Stanton

Pack 5
214 Devin Mesoraco Rookie Card

179 Carlos Gonzalez
BCP94 Charlie Tilson 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP104 Joc Pederson 1st Bowman Chrome Card
196 Tom Milone Rookie Card Gold Parallel
BP71 Jonathon Berti 1st Bowman Card International Parallel
BP47 Ariel Pena 1st Bowman Card
BP26 Joseph Staley 1st Bowman Card
2 Nick Swisher
30 Anibal Sanchez

Pack 6
151 Clayton Kershaw
139 Tim Lincecum
203 Leonys Martin Rookie Card
BCP28 Josh Edgin 1st Bowman Chrome Card
49 Albert Pujols Gold Parallel
BB1 CC Sabathia Bowman's Best

BP62 Kes Carter 1st Bowman Card
BP44 Adam Duvall 1st Bowman Card
190 CC Sabathia
66 Mariano Rivera

Pack 7
47 Jaime Garcia
25 John Danks
207 Adron Chambers Rookie Card
BCP17 Tyler Austin 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP9 Eddie Rosario

205 Matt Dominguez Rookie Card Gold Parallel
BP48 Boone Whiting 1st Bowman Card
BP71 Jonathon Berti 1st Bowman Card
65 Ben Revere
198 Brett Pill Rookie Card

Pack 8
102 Clay Buchholz
138 Heath Bell
BCP72 Jabari Blash 1st Bowman Chrome Card
BCP99 Dante Bichette Jr.

178 Jhonny Peralta Gold Parallel
BP66 Jackie Bradley Jr. 1st Bowman Card
BP42 Tim Crabbe 1st Bowman Card
159 David Ortiz
185 Jayson Werth
45 Adam Jones

So...I think this turned out to be a pretty great blaster! Two Bowman's Best pulls when a blaster would normally only yield one. But of course the best pull was the Matt Lipka auto! When I opened the pack I saw the blue border and figured it was just a parallel base card which is normally inserted 1:29 packs. But then I discovered it was an auto! Albeit a sticker auto but still 1:161 packs.

As a Braves fan I generally don't follow the prospects in their minor league system until they're on the cusp of making it to The Show. As so I was unfamiliar with Lipka and did some research. Turns out the Braves took him as the 35th overall pick in the 2010 draft as a SS out of McKinney HS in Texas. In 2012 he switched to CF and while playing with the Braves high Class A affiliate Lynchburg Hillcats he tore his right hamstring and was done for the year. This season he has come back from his injury to hit well for Lynchburg. He is currently hitting .284, 4 HR, 30 RBI and 17 steals in 24 tries. Looking at his stats his batting average has steadily risen each season since being promoted from Rookie League to Low A. Doesn't appear to be much of a power hitter but he sure does have wheels!

If he stays healthy maybe we'll get to see him in Atlanta in a couple years and this card might be worth something!

On another note, Series 2 streets tomorrow!!! I'm hoping to pick up a hanger box or maybe even a blaster in the next couple days and I will report here on my findings.

Happy collecting!

PS: All cards listed above are available for trade other than the auto.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Braves and more trade

Back in April I was finishing sorting and hand collating my entire collection and I came across a 2009 Topps Platinum parallel 1/1 Delmon Young. I remembered pulling this card out of a couple packs my mom got me as stocking stuffers for Christmas that year. I had recently started following Topher's blog at Crackin Wax so I offered the card up for trade to him as he is a Twins collector. Well Topher is really only in the game for Twins RC AU cards so he referred me to Rhubarb_Runner from "é rayhahn, rayhahn". I emailed Rhubarb, who is another avid Twins collector, and over the course of about two weeks we worked out what turned into a much larger trade. As it turns out he needed quite a few Twins base cards from the 90s to help complete his team sets and 90s cards is something I can definitely deliver! He has a great selection of Braves cards available as well as some other players I like so picking out what I wanted was pretty easy. He wrote up a report on our trade here and now that I have gotten into the blogging business I can show what I received from him in return. 

2013 Topps S1
Spring Fever
SF-45 Bryce Harper 

2012 Bowman Platinum
 BPP76 Andrelton Simmons purple refractor

2011 Topps
CMG Reprints
CMGR-1 Babe Ruth

2011 Topps Chrome
136 CJ Wilson X-fractor
1999 Upper Deck
View to a Thrill
V7 Cal Ripken Jr. 
2010 Topps Heritage
C59 Lance Berkman  1818/1961
2000 Bowman
Early Indications
E6 Chipper Jones

2000 Bowman
Major Power
MP2 Chipper Jones

2001 Fleer Premium
Grip It And Rip It
10 of 15 Tom Glavine/Chipper Jones (on back)

2003 Donruss
Diamond Kings
15 Chipper Jones

2004 Donruss
Inside View
IV-2 Greg Maddux 0654/1250

2004 Playoff Honors
Prime Signatures
PS-12 Tom Glavine 0373/2500

2005 Donruss Throwback Threads
D-8 Troy Glaus/Garret Anderson/Francisco Rodriguez

2005 Leaf
Passing Through Time
PTT-253 Chipper Jones

2003 Fleer Platinum
Platinum Portraits
PP/PM Pedro Martinez GU jersey (road gray)

2007 Upper Deck
Game Materials
UD-JS John Smoltz GU jersey (road gray)

This was actually my first ever internet trade and I think it turned out great! Thanks again Rhubarb_Runner! I have another trade in the works right now so hopefully I will be able to report on that next week.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

'12 Heritage blaster report

So back around the end of April the folks at Dave and Adam's Card World held their Spring Cleaning Sale. With thousands of items on their website discounted I took advantage of the opportunity and ordered my own Christmas present. All of the hobby, retail, rack and blaster boxes along with extra supplies will have to wait till 12/25, but I went ahead and opened a 2012 Topps Heritage blaster to abate my need to rip every last pack immediately. The report of what was inside is as follows.

Pack 1
351 Danny Espinosa All-Star Rookie
342 Chris Coghlan
414 Corey Hart
110 Chase Headley
160 Mark Buehrle
216 Kyle Weiland
495 James Shields SP
250 Jon Jay
95 2012 Rookie Stars Joe Benson/Adron Chambers/Corey Brown/Michael Taylor

Pack 2
61 Aubrey Huff
378 Jeff Niemann
58 Marlon Byrd
352 Mike Adams
245 Lucas Duda
29 1962 Rookie Stars Brad Peacock/Devin Mesoraco/Justin de Fratus/Joe Savery (intentional error card-wrong date)
202 Boston Red Sox
196 Tim Fedorowicz RC
8 AL Pitching Leaders Justin Verlander/CC Sabathia/Dan Haren/Gio Gonzalez/Jered Weaver

Pack 3
38 Andrew Brackman RC
363 Aaron Harang
361 Alex Fraudriguez
116 Vance Worley
297 Derek Holland
299 2012 Rookie Stars Steve Delabar/Tom Milone/Luis Marte/Jared Hughes
NF-UA News Flashbacks '63 University of Alabama Integration Flashpoint
184 Jared Hughes RC
412 Dodgers Big Three matt Kemp/Andre Ethier/Clayton Kershaw
C3 Checklist

Pack 4
417 Jeremy Guthrie
87 Andrew McCutchen
387 Ricky Nolasco
328 Elvis Andrus
303 Alexi Ogando
117 Vernon Wells
481 Justin Upton SP
206 Lance Lynn
102 Ron Washington

Pack 5
107 Ruben Tejada
406 Al Alburquerque
395 Daniel Hudson
163 Matt Cain
132 Cole Hamels
169 2012 Rookie Stars Luis Marte/Brett Pill/Efren Navarro/Jared Hughes
453 Troy Tulowitzki SP Blue Bordered Parallel
314 Alexi Casilla
398 Craig Kimbrel All-Star Rookie

Pack 6
199 Jeff Keppinger
10 AL Strikeout Leaders Justin Verlander/CC Sabathia/David Price/Felix Hernandez/James Shields
221 Chase Utley
388 Pablo Sandoval
69 Michael Morse
253 2012 Rookie Stars Drew Pomeranz/Addison Reed/Alex Liddi/Michael Taylor
476 Prince Fielder SP
353 Cameron Maybin
39 Bronson Arroyo

Pack 7
113 Kerry Wood
56 Cliff Lee
373 Michael Young
183 Mark Teixeira
86 Dayan Viciedo
350 Tommy Hanson
BF-SK Baseball Flashbacks '63 Sandy Koufax
247 Jarrod Parker
29 2012 Rookie Stars Brad Peacock/Devin Mesoraco/Justin de Fratus/Joe Savery (correct date)

At this point in ripping the wax I was feeling like this was a pretty boring blaster. But I had one pack left..

Pack 8
257 Jacob Turner
17 Mike Moustakas
104 Danny Duffy
17 Topps Stick-Ons Ryan Zimmerman
248 Kosuke Fukudome
285 Adrian Gonzalez
142 Allen Craig World Series Game #1
CCR-PF Clubhouse Collection Prince Fielder Game Used Jersey

The LAST CARD I pulled from the entire blaster box was a relic! Now as a relic that is inserted at 1:57 packs and is not sequentially numbered, I know that this card would not be that exciting to many of my fellow hobbyists unless they were a huge Fielder fan. But for me it was a huge pull because my collecting habits waned considerably over the last decade while relics were becoming more prominent. This year I have picked the hobby back up in a big way. I have aquired a few other relics this year through buys and trades but this was the very first relic I have EVER personally pulled from a pack! So it was a pretty big deal to me. :-)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Shout Out

I'd like to give a shout out to two of my fellow collectors who I have had some interaction with prior to creating this blog.

Rhubarb_Runner from "é rayhahn, rayhahn" and I worked out a trade that he wrote about here. Great trading partner! Hopefully in the future I will come across more Twins cards that he is in need of. Thanks Rhubarb!

Also, Topher from CRACKIN WAX. Topher referred me to Rhubarb to make the trade. And if you're interested in some almost free baseball cards check out Topher's "Take my Cards" page. Great selection and the money goes to support great causes! Thanks Topher!

Gypsy Queen rack report

So for my first baseball card related post.

So far this collecting season I have dropped more cash on baseball cards than I have in YEARS. I stopped buying Topps S1 back in April because I got down to only 20 or so cards left in the base set that I was lacking. I didn't feel like dropping money on packs that would be almost all or completely duplicates. Since then I have dived headfirst into the Gypsy Queen and Bowman sets. At this point I can't remember what all I got in what packs, however I do have a recent purchase to share. The other day I made a stop at my local Wally World and picked up a Gypsy Queen rack pack. Contents are as follows...

Pack 1
17 Brandon Belt

29 Cole Hamels

223 Jeff Samardzija mini

334 Bill Mazeroski SP

157 Vida Blue

294 Rickie Weeks

Pack 2
118 Ruben Tejada

171 Yasmani Grandal

DA-CC CC Sabathia Dealing Aces

207 Zack Cozart mini

119 Torii Hunter

286 Brandon McCarthy

Pack 3
229 Josh Johnson

CP-CF Carlton Fisk Collisions at the Plate

SS-MT Mike Trout Sliding Stars

194 Brandon Phillips mini

110 Buster Posey

11 Anthony Rizzo

The thing that makes the rack packs worth the $10 as opposed to buying loose packs is that it includes a pack of three White Framed Paper parallel cards that are normally inserted 1:35 packs. This rack pack included:

196 Omar Infante

120 Cal Ripken Jr.

328 Denard Span

All in all this wasn't a spectacular buy but there were a few good cards. Particularly the Mike Trout Sliding Stars insert and of course the Ripken Jr. white framed card.