Sunday, June 30, 2013

The most beautiful card of 2013

That's my opinion anyway. This was the best card I pulled in the last blaster of Archives from my MIL.

Isn't it amazing.

It's as if Cooperstown had a little chapel with stained glass windows all around. You go in there to offer up a little prayer and there is Jackie staring down at you as if to say everything will be ok.

It will Jackie. Everything is going to be just fine.

The hit could have been worse

We are on to the final Archives blaster from the great haul of goodies from my mother-in-law. This blaster had two notable cards and this Bryce Harper is the first of them.

Seeing as how Harper has already broken every MLB hitting record and is already in the Hall of Fame (wait, that's not right) I'll hold on to this one because its probably worth about a gazillion bucks.

Besides, I've always wanted a piece of curtain from the Hyatt at Dulles International Airport in DC.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

MIL Archives Blaster #1: Not all Yankee cards make me sick

If you had told me I'd be happy to pull a Yankees hit, I would have called you crazy.

Or worse.

I pulled this Mickey Rivers auto out of the first MIL blaster and I must say, I think I actually like it. Only because Mickey was such a favorite of mine during the early days of my Ranger fandom. Of course I wish it was on a Rangers card, but I suppose I should just be happy I pulled an auto I like instead of one to trade.

One more blaster to go and it has two pics. That means two posts and the final one has what I think is the most beautiful card of 2013.

Yea, I said beautiful.

MIL Archives Blaster #1: What's worse than pulling a Yankee insert?

How about pulling one with four Yankees on it? Ok, I've got nothing against Ruth or Mattingly and Jackson is ok. That just leaves Jeter.

I think I'm going to stick these on some firecrackers and blow them up. The first blaster from my MIL had another Yankee that I think I'm going to keep.

Stay tuned.

Friday, June 28, 2013

6 Hanger Boxes, 1 SP

I didn't expect any hits out of my 6 hanger boxes and I wasn't "disappointed". I was hoping to get a couple of SPs and ended up with one.

Gimmicks are a way of life for Topps collectors these days. That doesn't mean we have to like it.

That's the end of the hanger boxes. I didn't bother to show all the inserts. I didn't get any Rangers inserts other than the the two Darvish's I showed in the last post.

The two Archives blasters were better.

Collation confusion

I think we all know when you see a run of base cards repeat itself in pack after pack it's because of the way the cards appear on the uncut sheets. I don't recall seeing a whole series of inserts do the same thing.

Two of the hanger boxes had the same four gold Chasing History inserts. I'm not complaining since I got dupe Darvish cards.


Die cut duplicity

Out of six hanger boxes the dear MIL bought for me, I only pulled two die cuts. Unfortunately for me, one was AFraud and one was Chris Sale who I already pulled.

Double Mint Twins all over again

Another hanger box was a Justin Morneau love feat with the gold and Emerald versions showing up.

Double mint twins

One of the hanging boxes was a Pablo Sandoval hot box. I pulled the Emerald and the gold version.

Get this MIL party started

For some reason I can't get this confounded new photo app I've been using to let me upload more than one pic at a time so I'm going to show you the stuff I got from MIL in a piecemeal fashion.

Here are the damages from the six hanging boxes. I've got the base sorted already (shocker!) and six little stacks of inserts.

More to follow ( and sorry I have to do it this way).

Thursday, June 27, 2013

What do you call someone who gives you a $100 worth of cards to open?


Patron saint of sportscards?

I just call her my mother-in-law.

I asked my MIL to stop buying me cards a while back, but she brought my recuperating wife a rather large stash of snacks, Ginger Ale and magazines to help her recuperation and she brought a bag for me.

She said it was a thank you for taking care of her baby. I said thanks and looked inside. What did I find?

Two blasters of 2013 Archives and six 2013 Topps hanging boxes!!!! Are you kidding me? Well, I couldn't break the poor, generous, thankful woman's heart so I hugged her and said thanks again.

Details to follow.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

I need you guys to post more

I'm at the hospital watching my wife sleep after she had surgery this morning. She'll be ok, but its one more thing that has happened this year to make me realize that real life isn't near as much fun as blog life.

Anyway, I'm going stir crazy and I need more posts to read! Get crackin' fellow bloggers!!

Monday, June 24, 2013

2013 Topps Series 2: Hanging Box Edition

It's sad, but I think I lost interest in this post before I started it.  I'm going to give it to you anyway because I said I would.  I posted my blaster results this morning and this is a comparison post. 

The major differences between the blaster and the hanging box are this:

1--The blaster has a manupatch and no chance at a "hit".  The hanging box has "hits", but long odds on pulling one.

2--I pulled 20 blue Walmart parallels in the blaster and 5 in the hanging box. 

3--I got 4 gold Chasing History inserts in the hanging box and zero in the blaster.

I'll start off with a few of the base cards that caught my eye.

Is this a tag 'em out, throw 'em out double play?  I'm totally distracted by the D'Butt on the right.  I'll regret typing that. 

In this morning's blaster post, I showed a Salvador Perez homerun trot.   Now we have a Billy Butler walk off.  When did player's start throwing their helmet before they got to home? 

Really not a good play at the plate shot.  I'm thinking the runner is safe. 

Here is a different play at the plate card.  Unfortunately, you can't see the runner or the catcher. 

Is it just me or does Brett Myers look like....

...Todd Hoffman from Gold Rush?

Hey mom, I'm on a baseball card!  Oh crap!  Thanks a lot Topps. 

I guess this counts as an Emerald play at the plate.  It's Michael Cuddyer if you can't tell. 

Here are the four Gold Chasing History inserts I pulled.  Derek Jeter, Jordan Zimmerman, Phil Niekro and Hank Aaron.  I didn't get any of those in the blaster and I don't know if you even can. 

Pretty much anything you see except the base is up for trade. 

Now I need to track down one of those awesome Derek Holland base cards. 

2013 Topps Series Two: Blaster Edition

Allow me to acknowledge the fact that I lost my last grandparent last Tuesday.  My grandma went to be with the Lord and I'm confident I'll see her again someday.  She was suffering mightily and I believe she's in a better place.  It's strange how you only see certain family members when there is a wedding or funeral. 

I love you grandma.

Hopefully, going right into my blaster of 2013 Topps isn't disrespectfull, but grandma was always supportive of my hobby.  When I first started buying cards back in 1981, she would come by to visit and give me a dollar, which would buy three packs of 1981 Topps with change left over. 

Today an 8 pack blaster costs $20 plus tax so I guess progress isn't always a great thing.  That being said, Topps is Topps and almost all of us buy at least SOME flagship so here's my take.  I bought a blaster and a hanging box.  I won't keep you in suspense and this probably won't be a surprise to most of you, but the hanging box offers a better value in my opinion.  Maybe I'd think differently if I'd pulled a different manu-patch. 

Here goes...

My first series two base card was this guy. 

It's not exactly a notable card with the exception that Salvador Perez appears to have just hit a walk off homer.  If  that's the case it was probably the September 15th game last year against the Angels.  Billy Butler tied the game in the bottom of the 9th with a two run shot and Perez followed that with the game winner.  Just remember this card when you see my post about the hanging box. 

Another base card that caught my eye was this "hey I just hit a homerun" pose by Hanley Ramirez.  Anyone think Sandy Koufax might have given him one at the noggin his next time up? 

I'm no Angels fan, but that appears to be a Rangers retro uni running by first.  Safe I might add. 

Anyone else think Brian Roberts was sure Bryce Harper was out? 

I think this is a catch in which Craig Gentry robbed Joe Mauer of a homerun.  You can check this link out.  It has videos of two Gentry catches.  The latter catch is Mauer's blast to center.  You'll notice in the video a fan running out to what they call Green's Hill. You can see his shadow on the video and on the card too. 

I don't even know why I included this card. 

Are these supposed to be Museum knock offs?

I pulled a couple of Chasing History inserts.  One of the main differences in the blaster and the hanging box is you get the gold version in the hanging box.  At least I did.

A couple of A.L. West minis. 

A couple of A.L. West Emerald parallels. 

 A very poorly cropped (by me) Chris Sale Cut to the Chase insert.

The blaster had 20 blue bordered Walmart parallels.  No Rangers, but three Giants.  Go figure. 

And last, but maybe least, is my manu-patch.  Lucky for me I have a number of Braves collectors that I trade with.  I'm sure I can move this thing.  Even though I'm not a big fan of these, there are still some that I'll want for my player/Rangers collections.  *Sigh*  Topps has to go a make everything so difficult. 

I guess the chase is part of the fun. I'll have some hanging box fun for you later today or tomorrow. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Two shockers

The Rangers actually won a game.  I know, right. 

After a 6 game losing streak in which they were a dreadfull 4-34 with runners in scoring position and scored a total of 8 runs, they acted like the team they are and scored 8 to squeak out a win against Oakland.  There's nothing like breaking a losing streak against the team that is just ahead of you for the division lead. 

A major contributor to the win was this guy:

I pulled this 2013 Bowman Nelson Cruz blue parallel from a blaster.  It's #136/500.  He had two homers and a double and drove in 4 runs last night.  I know what you're thinking and I'm thinking it too.  If they prove Cruz is guilty of taking whatever, then throw the book at him and the others.  We'll see. 

The other shocker is that despite my earlier post to the contrary, I've decided I really do like this years Bowman.  I like the white border and the clean look.  Sue me.  Of course, I didn't scan  take any pictures of the base cards.  Here are the "highlights" of the blasters I bought. 

Jeremy Moore blue border (spoken for).

Mitch Nay blue border (spoken for). 

A shiny, mini four pack. 

A refractory Royal. 

An icy Royal. 

An off kilter icy White Sox player. 

An icy, Giolito.  

I've got 4 of these cards if anyone wants the codes.

Oh yea, an illegible auto of a Reds prospect, Jeff Gelalich (possibly in a trade).  It's numbered to 500 like the other blue parallels.  These cards are available unless otherwise indicated. 

By the way, if you're the praying type, my grandmother is likely to pass today.  She's 85 and has been in poor health for some time.  I'm just hoping my mother holds up through it all. 

Thanks everyone.  Have a blessed day. 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Intensity at the Plate

My dad liked players who were intense.  He liked what people sometimes call the "bang-bang" plays. 

He would have liked this play in real time.

My dad's been gone a little over 5 years now.  I still miss him, but I'm sure if he was here we would wish other a Happy Father's Day today.

I hope all you fathers out there have a great day and get to spend time with or talking to your fathers today.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Knot holes, refractors and carriers, oh my

I wouldn't consider the 1982 Topps design to be one of Topps' best designs, but it's ok.  Everyone knows it's the hockey stick set, right?  Seeing so many of today's players on Archives version of 1982 is kind of weird.  For me, you can't beat original cards, no matter the year. 

Take these two gems for example.

I know for a fact I used to have these 1982 Johnny Bench cards.  That was the second year of my collecting days, but I guess they were victims of the great garage sale purge. 

This card should be called ALMOST In Action or maybe even Potential Action, but In Action?  Who cares really, I was just amazed to receive these sweet cards from Brian over at Waxaholic.  These were some of the last cards I scanned way back in March...about the time I went off the grid. 

Back then I was feeling sort of off-kilter, like this scan of Mickey Rivers' 1981 Fleer Star Sticker. I can't vouch for Mick, but I'm feeling better these days.

Wes Littleton was KNOT a big star for the Rangers, but he did fill a HOLE for them after this 2003 Bowman Heritage card came out.  From 2006-2008, he pitched in 80 games, going 5-3 with 3 saves.

Great googly-moogly, will you look at that hunk.  Of plastic.  That's a 2005 Topps Pristine Nolan Ryan Refractor # 436/549.  Oddly numbered, oddly packaged and greatly appreciated.  It's a real thing of beauty although the scanner didn't like it much.  As much as I like the Ryan, it wasn't the high point of this package. 

Will you please look at that vintage beauty?  That is what we in the Navy called, projecting power.   It's a 1954 Bowman USS Franklin D. Roosevelt Power for Peace card.  This card immediately finds itself in the top tier of favorite cards in my collection. 

Cap, thanks so much and I'm sorry it took so long for me to get these posted. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Not all blasters are created equally

Yesterday I wrote about my first 2013 Archives blaster.  I was fortunate enough to pull a gold parallel of Ryne Sandberg and a Trevor Cahill relic (if you count pulling a DBack relic as fortunate).  Beating the odds like I did, I bought another blaster.  I should have left well enough alone. 

Let's see if you can see which team was favored by this blaster. 

Miguel Cabrera is almost too big a guy to be on one of these Tall Boys.  I like these, but I'm not planning on collecting all of them.  These are 1:5, but stay tuned, because I'll have another one to show before this post is finished.  I'm still not sure if I want to collect the base set, but let's assume I am and see how much closer this blaster gets me.  Yesterday I said I had 52 base cards from the first blaster, but it was actually 53. 
Pack 1 gets me 7 cards I needed so now I stand at an even 60, or 30% complete.

Pack 2 had a Leon Durham 1983 All Star insert, but I like Joe Mauer so you get to see Joe Mauer.  The color scheme is ok, but I still don't like the 1990 design.  I needed all 7 of these base cards so that puts me at 67 cards, or 33.5%.

I don't know about all the 4-in-1 inserts, but this one is pretty nice.  That's a great group of players right there.  Gwynn, Boggs, Ripken and Sandberg.  4 Hall of Famers, 75 years of MLB experience, 5861 runs scored, 11721 hits, 2127 doubles, 966 homers and 4908 RBIs.  Wow.  Also, another 7 base cards toward the set. That gives me 74 cards, or 37%.

Have you figured out yet which team is going to be well represented in this blaster?  Well, I'll give you hint.  This card is your hint.  Subtle, I know.  This Dave Lopes SP is the first one I've gotten in the blaster.  I also picked up a Joe Nathan base card, the first Ranger out of this one.  Unfortunately, 5 of the 7 base cards in this pack were dupes from yesterday.  That leaves at 76 cards, or 38% completed.

Always happy to see a Johnny Bench insert so I don't have to chase it down later.  This pack had 5 Reds cards, including this one.  Every single base card in that pack was a dupe. My hopes of getting to 50% completion are slipping away. 

Three packs to go and I pull one of these nice Gallery of Heroes cards.  It's a Yankee, but at least it's harmless Yogi Berra and he IS a catcher.  I also got a Bob Tewskbury SP and 6 more duplicate base cards.  *Sigh*

The second to the last pack had one card I hadn't pulled before.  This already spoken for Clayton Kershaw Tall Boy.  Damn this blaster. 

The last pack and yet another Dodger.  This time it's the All Star insert for one Pedro Guerrero.  You guessed it too, another 7 dupes.  So after two blasters, I have 78 cards towards the 200 card base set.  I don't plan on opening anymore Archives, so completing the set may prove a challenge.

I'm not sure I'm up for another challenge.