Monday, November 19, 2012

Trade with All the Way to the Backstop

Marcus at All the Way to the Backstop and I just completed a trade in which I was able to cross off a number of cards off my wantlists.  He was able to take off a bunch of 2012 Heritage and Update cards.  The prize of the lot though were the extra Royals that he added to the trade.

He put together a 1992 Fleer Ultra Series 1 team set along with some random cards that I scanned below.

As you can see there are many current and one recent Royal including a few prospects that are high up in the farm system.  You may recognize Gregor Blanco who most recently appeared in the World Series with the Giants.  I just hope that I get to see the Royals in the playoffs soon.  I think I can speak for most Royals fans in saying that we are tired of hearing about our great farm system that, unfortunately, has not translated into a winning major league team yet.  There are hopes that current players like Gordon, Butler, Moustakas will be able to see prospects like Odorizzi and Montgomery put together solid seasons on the mound to help with our continual pitching woes.  I guess I will get to see if it happens since we just renewed our season tickets for next year.  I hope it pays off!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

COMC Pickups - Long Live the Mitchell Report

On my recent purchase from COMC, I was able to pick up a couple of the 2000 Upper Deck Legends Legendary Jersey cards that I needed.  The first is one of my least liked players that I ever saw, albeit a very colorful one.  The Jose Canseco card is pretty blah with a plain white jersey swatch which, I guess, accurately describes how I feel about him now.  Although his 462 home runs should be impressive in most books, the fact that it was aided by performance-enhancing drugs tarnishes his record.

There was an interesting conversation on MLB Network Radio this morning in which Billy Beane basically dismissed the suspension of Bartolo Colon in deciding to bring him back for the 2013 season.  When you look at that, plus the fact that other users are currently still in the game in playing and coaching positions, you wonder if the "user" label really means anything anymore.  Do we too easily dismiss the transgressions of these players because they are athletes, or are we really being forgiving in doing so???

My second pickup is of another PED user, Matt Williams.  Williams, a current coach for the Diamondbacks, hit 378 home runs during his career.  He claimed to use HGH to recover from an ankle injury.  However, with his name on the "list" there will always be people who will want to put the "asterisk" next to his name also.  At least, I sort of like this card.  At least he wasn't as much of an *#$%@ as Canseco still is.

I picked up 2 cards that I needed.  Both were very cheap.  They will go into their place of helping me complete this insert set.  As Forest Gump would say, "That is all I have to say about that."

Sunday, November 4, 2012

1973 Topps Mike Schmidt

One of the things that many of you bloggers got me to think about was starting some big project.  I decided that I would try to put together my birth year set, 1973 Topps.  This was a good choice for a number of reasons.  To many collectors/dealers, 1972 is the last of the "vintage" sets so the 1973 set is very reasonable in price.  While there are a number of stars in the set, they are either at the end of their career or on special all-time leaders cards, so they are reasonable in price.  At the $350-$700 range for a complete set, this is the oldest Topps set that is still under $1500, so again the price is to my advantage.

I have been able to put together almost the whole set without spending more than $8 on any one card.  I have bought commons and some stars in pretty cheap lots.  I have found some stars cards at what I consider bargain prices.  I have picked up some of the harder to find high number series through COMC for reasonable prices.

My only concern was the big card of the set, a Rookie Third Basemen card of Ron Cey, John Hilton, and MIKE SCHMIDT.  With this card holding up the value of the set, I knew that this would be where I would have to spend the bulk of my money if I were to complete the set.  I have probably looked at a hundred Schmidt rookies since deciding to put this set together.  All of which were either way overpriced, or in poor condition (and still overpriced).

I almost pulled the trigger at a card show last fall, but the dealer would not budge off of his $75 price for a decent but not great card.  I was willing to go $60, but he wouldn't come down.  I almost decided to settle for a miscut and off-center card as I haven't been too worried about the condition of some of the cards.  However, I decided that I really wanted to have a decent Schmidt Rookie to cap off this set.  I decided that if I could find a card that was in decent shape with no creases or major corner damage for less than $50 then I would do it.

I can now say that I have found it and am now the proud owner of a 1973 Mike Schmidt Rookie PSA 4 graded card.  I found it at my local card shop who had it originally listed on ebay.  He came down on the price that it was listed for and brought it into my price range.  This brings me down to 8 cards needed to complete my set.  I hope to have this completed by Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Card Shop Finds - 2011 Year of Topps Inserts

Most of my collection consists of just base sets.  I use any inserts that I get as trade bait to finish up my base set needs.  However, in 2011 I decided to try to put together the Year of Topps insert set and the Year of Topps Lost Cards insert set.  I completed the Lost Card Set last spring through trading, but I have yet to really get close to the Year of Topps insert set until today.  I went to my local card shop which happens to be about an hour away in Shawnee, KS.  The Baseball Card Store has always been good with a nice selection of new products, set building needs, and hobby supplies.  It also includes a number of vintage cards, including graded cards.  I was able to come away with the major card of a set that I am currently close to completing.  That will need its own post in a few days

Today I came away with most of the cards that I needed to complete the Year of Topps insert set including these good looking cards.

I have always appreciated the look of vintage cards and I guess that is why this insert set appealed to me.  Even though there is a good number of recent designs in the set, it is the older styles that I have enjoyed the most.  With these additions, I am down to 5 cards needed to finish off the 118 card set.  The cards that I need include numbers 3, 48, 53, 54, and 70.  If you have any of these, please let me know and we can work out a trade.

Monday, October 29, 2012

What to do now???

It is sad to see the baseball season come to an end.  I really expected to see a 6 or 7 game series with the Tigers coming out on top.  Hats off to the Giants for taking the wind out of the Tigers from the beginning by knocking off Verlander.  

This baseball season was one that I will always remember.  Not for the continued struggle of my beloved Royals despite expectations that they would be better.  But for a season in which I had season tickets for the first time.  A season in which I was able to attend my first major professional sporting event, the All Star Game and all of the festivities that surrounded that.  A season in which I was able to get to two other parks (Baltimore and Washington) besides Kansas City.  A season that was somewhat interrupted with a major move and job change for my wife and I.

So where to we go from here???  I am reminded of one of my favorite baseball quotes from the great Rogers Hornsby.

People ask me what I do in the winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.

Good thing I have MLB Network!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Card Show Pickups

On Sunday, a friend of mine, my wife, and I travelled up the road to the Olathe, KS Hampton Inn for the local card show.  It looks like this is a recurring show on the 2nd weekend of every other month.  This was the first time that any of us had been to this particular show.  There were 11-12 different dealers there and I must say that I was somewhat disappointed.  I had taken my list of cards I needed for a couple of sets, but found nothing from them.  I was especially looking to try to finish up the last 17 cards of my 1973 Topps set, but I came up empty.  There was only 1 dealer that was selling any wax boxes but none of those were from the last 2 years, and most were just selling a ton of patch and auto cards that I don't really care about.

I was able to make a couple of purchases.  Being close to KC, there were a couple of dealers with some George Brett cards.  After leaving my wife to browse through the box (and she has a pretty good eye for what I need) we walked away with 4 Brett cards.  One was a 1989 Topps Wax Box bottom, a 1993 Kraft Singles Superstar, a 1991 Sports Educational, and my favorite, 1 1993 Cardtoons.

According to cardtoons, "True" Brett is one of the legendary Old West figures to have played professional baseball.  Some of the others include...Bat Masterson, Wild Ball Hickock, Billy the Say Hey Kid, and Buffa-Low Ball Bill.  There were others listed, but I will stop there.  You have to love unlicensed cards......

My steal for the show came from what I was told a 10 cent box.  When I showed the dealer the 20 cards that I got, he asked if I got them out of box he pointed at.  I guess he wasn't wanting to get rid of them for 10 cents each, but based on the condition, he honored his original offer.  I pulled $2.00 worth of cards and came away with some pretty rough cards from 1958, 1959, 1963, and 1964.  Nothing I needed, but just pretty cool to add to my collection.  At only $2.00, I considered it a bargain and at least I had heard of some of the names!!!

I probably impressed my wife by only spending $5.00 although I had to trouble her for the money as none of the dealers had enough change to break a $20.00 bill.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

2000 Upper Deck Legends Legendary Jersey Update

Over the course of the last few months, I have been able to pick up a few more pieces to my goal of collecting the 2000 Upper Deck Legends Legendary Jersey subset.  I have added a couple of players from my youth including Randy Johnson, Tony Gwynn, Ozzie Smith, and Willie Stargell.  Although Stargell was at the end of his career, I still remember the 70s run of the Pirate "family".

I have also added a few players from before my time including Bob Gibson, Don Drysdale, and Roger Maris.  The Maris is my first "graded" card in my collection.  I never did get to see any of these players play the game, but growing up I definitely remember hearing about each of their achievements.  I was very pleased to be able to add these to my collection.  This brings my total collection up to 35 cards in the subset.

Friday, October 19, 2012

What is better than entering a blogger's contest and winning....

NOT entering a blogger's contest and STILL winning.  Thanks to Dennis over at Too Many Verlanders for having a contest in which: 1) I won and got some great prizes; 2) I didn't have to enter; and 3) I ended up with new followers on my blog.  Based upon the name of his blog and how Verlander has pitched this year, I would like to predict that one of them will win either a Blogger of the Year Award and/or the Cy Young Award.   Maybe both will come true.

I must say that the main contest prize was a pretty cool Jayson Werth manufactured bat barrel card from 2010 Topps Update.  This is my first barrel card and while I don't think I would pursue any more of these cards unless it were someone in my PC it is still cool to have in my collection.  It is, by far, the thickest card in my collection.

The rest of the loot will fit nicely in my Royals collection as Dennis included a large number of random Royals covering many years.  Some of my favorites in his stash included this 1983 Fleer two card set of Bud Black and Vida Blue.  I remember loving how they would make two cards form one picture.  I am not so much of a fan of this anymore, but as a 10 year old kid, it was supercool!

A few of the cards were of the Chrome variety including this 2006 Bowman Chrome Futures Game Alex Gordon and the 2001 Topps Chrome Golden Anniversary Bo Jackson.

But the really big surprise was the card I actually didn't see until the end. A card from a Royal.  A card from my favorite player.  A rookie card.  A 1975 Topps card.  A piece of cardboard that has definitely been appreciated....I love it!  Thanks Dennis for the contest and letting me win even though I didn't even enter.  Definitely, the best contest ever, and the reason I love blogging!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Back in the game....with a new job, a new house, and a new set completion!

Well, it has been quite some time since my last post, but when I left you I was in the midst of finishing up another school year, taking on a new job, and trying to sell a house.  I would like to say that all of those things got accomplished, but not that easily.

The house, even in today's market, sold very quickly.  Of course, I decided the phrase "priced to sell" should mean just that.  We bought a new house.  Although I will say that I feel sorry for anybody that tries to buy a house with today's banking regulations in place.  Thanks to the Wall Street banking fiasco for making that process a living hell.  In a quick recap, closing on new house delayed 3 times for a total of 6 weeks, moved out of old house on Thursday night with no place to move to, was approved to move into our new house without closing on it Friday morning, started new job 3 days later, had to miss 2nd day of work to close on new house. There was much *)@#*$& going on!

My wife and I have been in our new jobs for almost 3 months now and are enjoying them a great deal.  I made the move into educational administration while my wife was able to get another teaching job doing what she loves...teaching band!

Moving and starting work in such a short time frame meant not much time to unpack the important cards!  Finally, that is slowly getting done.  I have made a few trips to the LCS which is only about an hour from my house, instead of the 3  hours that it used to be.  I have been able to track down some cards for my 1973 set, but finally found the last remaining card of my 2000 Topps HD Set that has eluded me for quite some time.  I have had a few opportunities to buy it through eBay auctions but I wouldn't justify spending $20+ dollars for a lot of 30 cards (29 of which I didn't need)!  Finally, I came across an auction that only required me to buy 4 extra cards for a lot less money.

I give you the elusive 2000 Topps HD #76 Sean Casey.  It's been a long time coming but I'm glad it found its new home.  I think its beautiful!!!

The other four cards included the only two Royals in the set that will find their way into my Royals Team Set notebook, and two sluggers that will probably find their way into someone's trade pile in the future.

It good to be back in the blogosphere again.  I hope the posts keep coming, the trades will once again pick back up, and I will continue working on completing some more sets that I was working on before my hiatus.  Thanks to all of you fellow bloggers for keeping me connected as I continued to read your blogs on a regular basis.

Monday, June 11, 2012

26 Cent Summer just became $$$ Summer

Sorry for the lack of postings since April.  My wife and I have been searching for new jobs.  As of last Monday, we have been offered, and we have accepted jobs which will require a move for us.  Due to this move, which must be relatively quick, 26 Cent Summer will go on hiatus.  I am still going to squeeze in a few baseball games including an Orioles game and Nationals game along with the standard Royals games.  I will also be attending All Star Week in Kansas City.  Every other spare moment will be getting a house ready to sell and trying to move into a new house.  With the way the housing market is here in Kansas, I may just find myself spending $$$ on two mortgage payments until I can get my current home sold.

Thanks for reading and I hope to be back by August.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Card Show Pickups - Clay Enjoys Building Miniature Race Cars - VROOM!!

While in Kansas City this weekend for some disappointing Royals baseball, I was able to find something good in the Independence Mall Card Show.  After going to the show for the 2nd time in the last year, the dealers were pretty much the same, even the same locations in the mall.

My main goal was to get as many 1973 cards for my set.  I went with about $25 in my pocket hoping that would get me something good considering that I am mainly down to mostly star or high # cards.  If I would have had $5 more dollars I could have walked away with the crown jewel of the set, the Mike Schmidt rookie.  While that would have been nice, the condition wasn't quite what I wanted to put into my set so I had to pass.  Now even though I had the extra $5, and condition has never been a main focus for me in collecting this set, the 2 choices were very subpar.  Instead I spent at total of $14 and got the following....

First, the horizontal cards, a Willie Stargell and some Rookie Pitchers.  One of the things about the 1973 set is their quality action photography.  Granted technology has improved, but I can just envision some guy sitting in the 8th row taking this photo with his Kodachrome Instamatic camera.

Next, we have some of the vertical cards including some of my stars that I needed.  Jim Palmer, Juan Marichal, Al Kaline, and Thurman Munson.  Lesson learned on the Munson card...never quit looking for a card just because you found it already.  I found the Munson card for a price I was willing to pay, but then when browsing through some other 73s from the same dealer, I found a card in better condition for $2 less than the original.  I think he may have been a little miffed that he lost out on that extra $2.  My gain!

I was able to find three "All-Time" leader subset cards that I needed.  Any day that I can add Hank Aaron, Cy Young, and Walter Johnson to my collection is a good day.

And finally, to the reason for the title of the blog post.  Too many times, I often forget to take some time and read the backs of the cards that I buy.  I guess it is the "rush" to get them put in their rightful spot in the binder.  It's like I think they can't wait to get to their new home.  Anyway, one back caught my way and that was of the Clay Kirby card and the Topps cartoons.  "Clay enjoys building miniature racing cars."  I can see Mr Kirby sitting in his home in December with one of those magnifying lamps painting one of his prized cars, and saying "VROOM!" when he realizes he has built another masterpiece.

Kirby would play for three different major league teams, the Padres, the Reds, and the Expos.  His career win-loss record was 75-104.  He led the NL with 20 losses in 1969.  He would then die at the young age of 43 in 1991.  Here's to Mr. Kirby.  He probably never thought he would be the inspiration to a blog post.  Kirby had a big hand in Padres lore as he almost pitched a no-hitter.  Unfortunately, a pinch hitter would be used in the 9th for Kirby as the Padres were trailing 1-0 (he had given up 5 walks but no hits). For more on this interesting Padre story, which is a MUST READ, see this article.

These 12 cards bring my 1973 want list down to 36 cards!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Two Recent Pickups for the UD Legendary Jerseys Collection

My latest two pickups for my quest to get the complete 2000 Upper Deck Legends Legendary Jerseys insert set arrived this week.  This brings my total number of cards to 28 out of 52.  The two players are both members of the 3000 Hit Club and both members of the Hall of Fame.  One of them was a the legendary base stealer of the Cubs and Cardinals, the other a great slugger mainly the Padres and Yankees.

Here they are......
Lou Brock

Dave Winfield

On a side note, I remember buying the Sport Americana Baseball Player Address Book and I was excited to start asking for autographs.  I remember a wonderfully nice and complimentary letter to Lou Brock.  I never got a reply, and never wrote to another player again. :(

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Line Score of the Day and Opening Day at the K this Friday.

So after listening to most of the game on radio, I turned on the TV to witness the end of the Royals-A's game today.  The best line score of the year belongs to Jonathan Broxton, the new Royals closer.

Broxton (BS, 1) (L, 0-1) 0.2 IP, 0 H, 2 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 2 HBP

After opening the bottom of the 12th with a strikeout, Broxton saw a error by SS Alcides Escobar put a runner at 1st.  He then followed with a walk, another walk, a groundout to tie the game, a hit batter, and then another hit batter to lose the game.  Instead of ending the season opening road trip at 4-2, we now head home at 3-3.  Here is hoping the results against the Indians on Friday is a little better.

Opening Day at the K!  Home of the 2012 All Star Game.  I'll be there.

2011 Opening Day - Royals vs. Angels

Monday, April 9, 2012

Surprise Package from Crinkly Wrappers

Ted from Crinkly Wrappers responded to one of my recent posts and said he would like to send some cards my way.  Today, I got that package and did it have some great cards.  First, he sent me 28 cards to fit into my 2011 Year of Topps Insert set.  A lot of great additions including this 1959 Roger Maris Kansas City Athletics card.  I always wonder what might have been if many of those Yankee greats would have stayed with whatever Kansas City team they first played for.  I would love to put the 1973 Goose Gossage into my 73 set; however, I will have to leave that spot open until I get the "real" one.

Speaking of 1973 Topps, I found 2 high number cards included in the package including former Royal, Darrell Porter.  With these two cards, my 1973 Topps set now needs only 48 cards to be complete.

Finally, Ted sent over a bunch of Royals including the obligatory 2010 and 2011 All Star selections:  Joakim Soria and Aaron Crow.  Also included were my first Topps stickers from 2011 and 2012:  Billy Butler and Eric Hosmer.  With the All Star game in Kansas City this year, I would love for these two Royal favorites to be named to the All Star team to represent the home town team.

Thanks Ted.  To send this only a few days after the incident at your house is amazing.  If you are like me, sometimes it is the cards that gets my mind off the things I don't wish to think about.  Thanks again and best wishes to you and your family.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

1983 Topps Set COMPLETE - Thanks to Johngy and the One Card Challenge

Today, I received a package from Johngy.  The long awaited Whitey Herzog to complete my 1983 Topps Set that I started back in, well, 1983.  I posted my request on Night Owl's One Card Challenge page and within a couple of weeks arrived this wonderful card that immediately went to its rightful spot inside the 1983 Topps album.

1983 Topps Album - Page 21 - Cards #181-190

29 Years after it began, I can now set it is complete.  Thanks Johngy!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Latest Pickups - 2000 UD Legendary Jerseys - Night and Day

My latest pickups in my quest to get the entire 2000 Upper Deck Legends Legendary Jersey insert set came in this week.  The first is a card that has been pretty tough to find as I have not seen many of them anywhere, including eBay.  I remember watching WTBS Broadcasts of the Braves games as I was growing up.  Even though the Braves were not very good during those years and my main reason to watch WTBS was World Championship Wrestling, I did like watching Dale Murphy play.  Much has been written about whether or not he should be in the Hall of Fame.  While his power stats are pretty good (398 HR and 1266 RBIs), and his 2 MVPs (82 and 83) look impressive, I personally don't believe he should be there.  One cannot argue his character though, perhaps, one of the best people to play the game.

On the other hand, I give you the next card of a player that many people question, both his career numbers and his character.  Barry Bonds finished as the All-Time Home Run Leader in baseball.  However, achieving that feat with the help of steroids has cost him greatly.  I still think he was one of the most gifted players to play the game even without the help of steroids, but the fact that he did this during one of the most controversial eras of baseball and his relationship with BALCO have meant that his career and his records will always be tainted.  Would I put him in the Hall of Fame....yes, but I don't care if he never gets there.  

Ironic that the two cards that I get this week are players known for their power, but whose character is so drastically different.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

COMC Purchase - 2000 Topps HD and One Card Challenge Request

My second group of cards from my recent purchase at COMC was all but 2 of the cards that I needed to complete my 2000 Topps HD set.  This set is something that I recently have been trying to complete as I mostly forgot about it after I received a box of this back in 2000.  The box was a birthday present from my wife and it was the first time that I had bought or received any high-end cards (at least I considered it high-end then).  After striking out at a number of shows and shops looking for these, I decided to see what COMC had.  Luckily, they had all but 2 cards that I needed and I was able to get almost all of them for between 25-35 cents each.

I remember loving the quality of the pictures when I opened my first pack.  The cards are also printed on very thick card stock to the point that they almost have that "credit card" feel.  Here are three of the cards that I received in my purchase, all of them some of the games great players:  Alomar, Boggs, and Griffey.

Before receiving these cards I would have said I really loved the set, but the next three cards changed my mind.  Can you figure out why?

It is a good thing that the name is on the back of their jersey because the photos that they decided to use reveal nothing of their face.  I hadn't noticed this before with the cards but I am now a little disappointed with what Topps did.  While I appreciate the action shots of all three, I can't help but wonder how better the cards could have been if the photo was taken from the opposite side.

This did bring me within 2 cards from completion of this set.  One of which I have since bought in a lot on eBay.  I probably wouldn't have purchased the lot, but I was able to get the Juan Gonzalez card along with 21 other cards including some duplicates of the above cards for only $2.50 with free shipping.  I decided I couldn't pass that up, and the other cards would make good trade bait.  So if anybody is interested in some 2000 Topps HD, I will try to post what I have on my trade page later.

This leaves me with only 1 card remaining and another One Card Challenge.  My last remaining card is #76 Sean Casey.  If anyone has this, let me know and we can work out a trade.

Monday, March 19, 2012

2012 Trade Post #10 - Hobbs' Knights - 91 Topps Set Completed

Jason from Hobb's Knights sent me some great cards including many of my set needs and some Royals.  The first group of cards I would like to highlight are two names that you won't come across often, Gene Harris and Jeff Pico.  They are quite important to my collection though as they are the last two cards in my 1991 Topps Set.  Mission completed!

He also sent me some 2011 Heritage and some 2011 Year of Topps Insert cards.  I am now over halfway finished with that insert set.  Gotta love me some "Country Breakfast"!  And for those of you outside the KC area, that just happens to be the fan created nickname of Royals DH Billy Butler.  With Butler size and speed, most Royals assume there hasn't been a country breakfast that Billy didn't finish.

The trade include some 2009 Topps American Heritage cards, one of which is a short print of the 2008 Presidential Election.  Being a history teacher, I really like this set along with the American Heritage Heroes set.  I have used those cards as a good conversation starter/lesson plan in some of my classes.

Finally, Jason sent over quite a few Royals including cards of two my favorite Royals, George Brett and Dan Quisenberry.  One of the cards is quite unique as I had not seen this set before.  The 1998 Skybox Dean Palmer is clear on the right side.  You probably cannot see that on the scan, but Palmer is raised up on the card while the entire right side of the card is clear plastic.  Very cool! 

Thanks again Jason!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

COMC Purchase - 1983 Topps and One Card Challenge Request

I recently made my first purchase on COMC which eventually led to a delivery of 116 cards I needed for various sets I am building.  You will see some more posts in the upcoming days about what I received.  I was in a discussion with a friend of mine the other day about COMC vs. eBay.  I tend to like both a lot.  However, if I am needing something specific, I will most likely head to COMC to handle those needs.  I think just about 95% of the cards I bought were less than the listed price thanks to the "make an offer" option.  The S&H can be a problem when you add it up.  $25.00 to ship doesn't sound too reasonable at first, but if I figure what it would have cost me to get the same items on eBay, it turns out to be a pretty good deal.  Of course, you will want to wait until you have a good number of cards to ship to make it as reasonable as possible.  I went ahead and spent an additional $4.00 on the standard shipping vs. the economy shipping.  I think it was well worth it.  My cards all came in sleeves inside a small storage box which was securely packed inside a larger box.  Much better than some of the stuff you get through eBay sellers.

Anyway, my first group of cards I want to show are from the 1983 Topps set.  I needed four of these but I upgraded one of my checklist cards with one that wasn't marked.  My favorite card from this lot was the 1982 Stolen Base Leaders card.  Tim Raines led the N.L. with a very impressive 78 steals, but the 1982 season was Rickey Henderson's 130 base swipes which stands as the modern day record.  It is only surpassed by Hugh Nicol's 138 stolen bases during the 1887 season with the Cincinnati Red Stockings.

This leaves me with one remaining 1983 Topps card, a Whitey Herzog #186.  I have posted this over at Night Owl's One Card Challenge.  While my first one card challenge was unsuccessful since I ended up getting it at Wes' Baseball Cards in Lincoln, NE, I hope someone will be able to help me out with this one.  I have also posted another challenge which is a 2000 Topps HD Sean Casey #76.  I hope someone out there can help me out with these.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

2000 Upper Deck Legends - Legendary Jersey Collection - Joe Torre

I have not posted most of latest additions to my 2000 Upper Deck Legends - Legendary Jersey Subset collection.  I have slowed somewhat on the acquisition of these cards to focus on putting together some of my sets.  I was able to get this Joe Torre last week relatively cheaply off of eBay.

That brings my collection to a total of 24 cards out of the 52 total cards.  You can see my complete collection on another page of my blog here.  I plan to continue to try and put this together.  So far I have spent just under $100.  However, I have a long ways to go as there are some short prints that will be quite hard to find and even harder to acquire.

Apparently, I am not the only person trying to put this subset together as I saw a post on the Beckett forums from a collector that is trying to complete their set.  There is also a person on eBay that is currently trying to sell a complete set, that he says is the only one in existence.  I believe it, but I will continue to put this together as a very long term project.  In case you want to go ahead and buy the complete set, you can have it all in a nice frame for only $5995.00.  Here is a link to that auction.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

C.S.I. Cardboard - 1974 Topps Fran Healy

This is my second attempt to take a card and try to find out what game the picture was taken at.  The first was last year with a 1994 Topps George Brett which you can read about here.  I decided to give it another shot when I received a trade package from Anthony at Get The Bat Off Your Shoulder and it included several Royals including the subject of this version of C.S.I. Cardboard, a 1974 Topps Fran Healy.

The Clues
First, we have the subject of the card, Kansas City Royals catcher, Fran Healy.  The second clue, and this is what originally caught my eye, was the play at the plate with #15 sliding into home.  White uniform, black or "midnight blue" letters (but no visible pinstripes?), #15, sideburns.....none other than the legendary Thurman Munson.  It appears that Munson is scoring a run as Healy is preparing to catch the throw.  Because of the Royals powder blues and the Yankees home whites, we can assume the game was played in New York.  Night game???   Hard to say, photography is not what it is today so we will have to go with the four things we "know":

     1.  Fran Healy was catching for the Royals.
     2.  Thurman Munson was playing for the Yankees.
     3.  Thurman Munson scored a run.
     4.  Game played at Yankee Stadium.

The Story
The Royals played the Yankees six times in New York during the 1973 season.  The Yankees scored a run in all six games.  Healy and Munson both appeared in three of those games, but Munson only scored a run in one of them.  Three scoring opportunities appear in the box score.  

The first was in the bottom of the 2nd after Munson reached on a fielder's choice when he grounded to Freddie Patek who threw to Cookie Rojas for a force out at second base.  Munson would move to second on an error by Patek during Gene Michael's at bat.  He would then move to third on a grounder to second by Horace Clarke.  Munson then scored on a single to left by Matty Alou.  It is doubtful that Munson would have had to slide trying to score from third on a single to left. (Not that it couldn't have happened.)

The second opportunity was in the bottom of the 4th when Munson tripled off Royals starter Dick Drago.  The next batter, Michael, lined to the second basemen for the second out of the inning and then Clarke singled to left scoring Munson.  Again, doubtful that Munson would have needed to slide on a single to left.

Munson's third and final scoring opportunity would come in the bottom of the 5th when he drew a walk off Royals reliever Steve Mingori (which was the other 74 Topps card Anthony sent...hmm!) moving Johnny Callison to second.  Michael was next and hit a double to left field (and I will assume to left-center here because of the angle of Healy in comparison to Munson sliding) scoring Callison and Munson.  This play is most likely the play pictured on the card.  Munson scoring from 1st on a double would have likely resulted in a somewhat close play at the plate, enough for Munson to have gotten dirty.  

The Yankees would go on to win that game 10-3.  Healy, the card's subject, would go 2 for 3 in the game with one RBI.  Munson, would end up going 3 for 3 with 2 runs scored and a walk.  He would raise his average to .294 with this perfect day.  Munson would be an All-Star during the 1973 season while also winning his first gold glove.

The Day
July 12, 1973 - Bottom of the 5th Inning

Case Closed!

Friday, March 9, 2012

2012 Trade Post #9 - Get The Bat Off Your Shoulder

Anthony from Get The Bat Off Your Shoulder and myself helped each other complete our 1992 Topps sets.  He sent me a big stack from 1992 including the Iron Man and the Big Hurt.

He also sent me 4 of the last 5 cards I needed for my 1983 set including the biggest set of 1980s shades you have ever seen and a perfect picture of fundamentals for infielders.  By looking at Guy's stats it reveals that he literally couldn't "get the bat of his shoulder".

Finally, Anthony got me closer to completion of my 2011 Heritage set with some great cards including Mr. Angel and Mr. Ray, Albert and Evan.

Thanks for a great trade and enjoy your completed 1992 Topps set.