Friday, June 29, 2018

My 2018 All-Star Ballot, American League: A 9 Card Post

I was going to save this post for about another week, but the 9 card contest at It's Like Having My Own Card Shop caused me to move it up.  It just makes sense that my AL All-Star Ballot had 9 players, who can be my 9 cards for the contest.

I don't have a whole lot of power over a lot of things.  But I do have a vote for the MLB All-Star Game.  Some people may argue that I, Mr. Joe Fan, shouldn't have a say, but it is a responsibility that I take seriously.  Sure, I could just vote a straight party ticket of Cubs, but I think carefully about the issues and select individual candidates based on merit.  So, as the voting deadline nears, I have selected my ballot.

AL Catcher: Salvador Perez, Royals

The choices aren't great here for AL catcher.  Wilson Ramos is having a good year at the plate, but he is a little suspect behind the plate.  Gary Sanchez has struggled below the Mendoza line, and now he's hurt.  Perez may not have enough at-bats to qualify for a batting title, but he is still the most solid AL backstop I can see.

AL 1st Base: Mitch Moreland, Red Sox

Batting right around .300 and near the AL 1st basemen lead for HR, Moreland is having a great season late in his career.

AL 2nd Base: Jose Altuve, Astros

Let's just say this spot is Altuve's until otherwise determined.  Oh, and he's leading the lead in batting average, just in case you need some justification.

AL 3rd Base: Jose Ramirez, Indians

Ramirez is having an MVP caliber season right now.  23 HR, 12 SB, and almost .300 average.

AL Shortstop: Manny Machado, Orioles

Speaking of MVP caliber, Manny has to be in the conversation, too.  For as long as he is in the AL, at least.  Who knows where he'll finish the season?

AL Outfield: Mike Trout, Angels

And here we have an MVP having possibly the best season of his career.  This was a no-brainer.

AL Outfield: Mookie Betts, Red Sox

The top players in the AL are just lights out this year.  Mookie is hitting for average and power and swiping a lot of bags.

AL Outfield: Andrew Benintendi, Red Sox

I was surprised at myself for making this choice.  I hadn't given much thought to Benintendi as an All-Star, but he too is showing good hitting (.290), decent power (13 HR), and good base-running (12 SB).

AL Designated Hitter: J.D. Martinez, Red Sox

This one wasn't too difficult of a decision.  He's batting .326 with 23 home runs.  Sounds like just what I want a DH to do.

So there are nine cards for the nine AL All-Star starters on my ballot.  There are a few other players who probably deserve spots.  Jose Abreu, Andrelton Simmons, and Eddie Rosario immediately come to mind, but I think I've used my voting powers well here.  Who are you voting for?

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Group Break Part 1

Here it is, the first part of our Group Break.  "Why just Part 1?" you may ask.  Well, it has to do with UPS.  See, yesterday came and went without my receiving a package.  The tracking info showed only an arrival at the UPS facility in Louisville, but no departure scan.  Had it been lost?  So I called UPS to find out why I hadn't received it, and this is what I learned: no, the package wasn't in Louisville.  It was in Canada.  Apparently, it had been mis-sorted.  I was glad to hear it was safe, but I'm nowhere near Ontario, so it didn't do me much good.  They were able to find it for me and they sent me some updated tracking information.

I was pretty bummed because I was looking forward to a break.  I then realized that all was not lost.  This particular package only had the Stadium Club.  I have the Topps blaster and the Diamond Kings in hand.  So let's start this break!

I apologize for the two YouTube clips.  I'm still a novice at this.  Apparently, the entire video was too big to upload as a whole to YouTube, so I had to divide it into 2 clips.  Enjoy Part 1!  We'll do Part 2 when I get the other boxes.

Video 1:

Video 2:

Monday, June 25, 2018

Group Break Update and 2nd Team Randomization

I've never done a video post before.  Let's try this.

So, we are ready to roll.  We'll break on Thursday!

Friday, June 22, 2018

Closest Thing to a Dime Box in These Parts

I envy those bloggers who go to their local card shows and pass the day sifting through the dime boxes for cards that catch their eye.  I'm even more envious when they unearth gems of cards that have no business being in the dime box, but the sellers have placed there for some reason or another.  Most of the cards on my wantlist belong in a dime box somewhere, but I usually have to pay more than that to pick them up.  I can't complain too much, though, because I also realize that there are bloggers who are just envious of the local card shows, period.  I at least have one I can attend, though the dates always seem to coincide with something else that is happening and I don't usually make it.  This past card, I did happen to attend.

My initial plan was to set up a table at last month's card show.  Yes, I would definitely have a dime box!  In fact, most of my wares would be in the dime box.  But it turned out that the card show was the same day as my wife's all-day choir rehearsal with the orchestra.  I would have the kids all day.  I could take my two boys to hang out at my table, no problem.  But the two-year-old cyclone that I call my daughter would have been an issue.  So instead, I took the three kids to spend just about an hour at the show with me, instead.

The first table we saw when we walked in was one that a friend of mine was running.  He had 200-count boxes stacked on his table marked "Baseball--Free."  I let each of my two boys pick up a box.  I expected the boxes to be jam-packed with junk wax, and I was right.  My boys now own more 1988 Topps baseball than I do.  But sitting across the top of the cards in each box was a top loader.  The two Cooperstown autographs at the top of the post!  My boys both got serial-numbered, on-card autos of Hall of Fame pitchers for nothing more than a "Thank you!"  Not a bad start to the day.

The next few tables were pretty much all the same: lots of cool, rare, high-end cards that I could never afford.  I oohed and aahed and moved along.  I finally came to a table with a few binders stacked on it.  He was trying to sell all of his collection of vintage Topps as a whole.  He was adamant that he would not break it up.  He did have one binder that he said he would sell individual cards.  I started perusing through it and found some good cards, but when he said he would do most of those cards 3/$1, I started over and looked in earnest.  Like I said, no seller at this show has a dime box, so 3/$1 is the best price I had seen all day.

I picked up some shiny Cubs from slim collecting years.

I added to my All-Star MVP collection.  I really don't like 1979 Topps, but I believe this is my first card of Don Sutton from his actual Dodger days, when he won the award.

Some Rookies of the Year.  I could have really gone nuts with Jeff Bagwell, but I refrained.

Finally, a Lolich refractor for my Frankenset, a couple of football, and the highlight of the purchase. That is a genuine Steve Garvey rookie.  The Roger Staubach is pretty beat up, but the Garvey is in great shape.  Now, I didn't get all of these cards 3/$1.  I picked up these cards and a stack of empty binder pages for $15.  In essence, I paid 75 cents for that beautiful Steve Garvey rookie.

I only spent money at one other table.  As I was making my rounds, I saw this card:

and thought, Here in Provo, that card will be gone before the day is over.  My next thought was Why shouldn't I be the one to take it home?  The seller had it marked for $8, but after a quick check of COMC and ebay, I saw that I couldn't get it for less than $6 online away, so I asked if he would take $6, and we had a deal.

I went in with $30 in my pocket, and $25 later (for those of you doing the math at home, I picked up some grab bags for the kids besides the $21 of cards I showed that I purchased), we left the card show.  It was the first time at the card show for two of my kids, so it was fun to introduce them to the world.  I'm happy with the small haul I made while there.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

My First Group Break Reminder--FULL!

There are two one slots remaining for my first group break.  We will be breaking 2 hobby boxes of 2018 Stadium Club and 1 hobby box of 2018 Diamond Kings.  Slots are $23 apiece and you get to claim one team and receive another random team.  For more details and to sign up, click HERE.

If we fill the last two slots by the end of day Friday, I'll go find another blaster to throw in as a bonus.

We still have some good teams remaining.  Remaining teams are

Blue Jays

White Sox

Saturday, June 16, 2018

A Post That's Completely Out of Place

So here we are, in the middle of baseball season 2018.  My Cubs are coming alive and finding themselves neck and neck with those pesky upstart Brewers.  So I'm thinking that now is a good time to post a football set from 1999. 

One of my favorite things to buy on Sportlots is the complete sets that people post.  They usually go for pretty reasonable prices.  A while back, I picked up an almost complete set of 1999 Upper Deck HoloGrFx base set and 24/7 insert set.  It was missing just a few cards of each, and for the price, I thought I could easily add the missing cards and still pick up a very shiny set and its insert companion for a reasonable price.  I was 17 back when this set released, and my collecting days were coming to a close.  I didn't buy many cards at that time, but I do recall opening one single pack of this product.  I never would have dreamed I would own the complete set.

As I examined the cards, I noticed something about the players in the base set.  There were Hall of Fame players aplenty, but I divided them into two categories.  The first category was players who were nearing the end of their storied careers.  In fact, this is a sunset card for Barry Sanders.  Steve Young would retire at the end of 1999, and Marino and Aikman would both follow within the next two years.

It was a time of a changing of the guard of sorts.  Manning, Gonzalez, and Moss were still in their NFL infancy.  Owens was about to take over for Rice as San Francisco's go-to receiver.  Faulk was a star at this point, but this year marked his first year in St. Louis, when his game really reached another level. 

The 1999 rookie class was pretty good.  I remember there being a few big draft busts at quarterback, such as Tim Couch, Akili Smith, and Cade McNown.  Some QBs drafted later made up for the high-pick busts, though.  Shaun King and Aaron Brooks never became superstars, but they were solid quarterbacks.  Donovan McNabb and Daunte Culpepper were big-time quarterbacks, though McNabb far outlasted Culpepper.  A trio of rookies would go on to the All-Decade team for the 2000s: Edgerrin James, Torry Holt, and Champ Bailey.  But the star of the 1999 NFL Draft was Ricky Williams.  Saints coach Mike Ditka mortgaged his entire draft, trading eight picks to move up 7 spots and select the Heisman winner from Texas.  It didn't work; Ditka was fired after Williams' rookie season.

In addition to the base set, I received 75% of the NFL 24/7 insert set.  This set would really be great if the HoloGrFx base set wasn't so shiny to begin with.  Instead, it's hard to even spot the difference between the two.

I have since picked up the missing cards, so the 100-card base set and 15-card NFL 24/7 set are complete in my collection.  Every once in a while I'll put on my sunglasses and enjoy them in the binder.  But maybe not in the middle of baseball season.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Hosting My First Group Break--Sign Up Here!

A few months ago, I started toying with the idea of hosting a group break.  I wasn't really sure about it, but I finally decided to go ahead with it.  So, at the end of this month, I will host my first group break.  I'm opening this up to my blogging buddies and my friends at the Trading Card Database.

What will we break?  

We're going to break 3 boxes: 1 hobby box of 2018 Diamond Kings and 2 hobby boxes of 2018 Stadium Club.

Box configuration: 

2018 Diamond Kings

  • 12 packs, 8 cards per pack
  • 2 Autos or Memorabilia
  • 3 Framed Parallels
  • 2 SPs
  • 2 Variations
  • 11 Inserts

2018 Stadium Club

  •  16 packs, 8 cards per pack
  • 2 Autos per box
  • 1 Chrome Parallel per box
  • 1 Beam Team per box
  • Black Parallel 1:8
  • Other parallels and inserts 


How much is it?

Each slot will cost $23, and that includes shipping.


What does a slot get me?

 Each slot gets you a choice of your team (first come, first served).  You will also receive another randomized team.  Three boxes, two teams.

As a bonus, if we sell all of the slots by June 22, I'll find another blaster to throw in.


How do I claim a team?

I'm reserving the Cubs for me. There will be 14 other slots, and the other 15 will be randomized among those who have joined the break.

To claim a slot, comment on this post with the team you want.  I'll update the list as slots fill.  Payment will be taken through Paypal.  To pay, click on the button below.  Be sure to include your team in the comment box.

Team Claimed

Payment will be due within a week of claiming a team.  If I don't get payment, I'll have to open the slot back up for somebody else.


When will we break?

Stadium Club doesn't release until June 27.  I have pre-ordered the two boxes, but I don't know for sure when I will receive them.  I'm really hoping to break on June 28, but we'll see if we're that lucky.  I'll keep you posted when I receive the boxes.


Other Rules:

  • ALL CARDS will ship.
  • Any card featuring multiple teams will be randomed off to one of the people holding a team on the card. 
  • Randomization of second team will happen on the day of the break or as soon as all slots fill, whichever comes first.

So, for a little more than a blaster plus tax, you will get two teams from three hobby boxes.  If we sell out all of the slots by June 22, I'll throw another blaster into the break.  Let's have some fun with some brand new product!



  1. Cubs-Trevor P (tntcardsstg)
  2. Cardinals-CardinalsFan16 (rl16) PAID
  3. Phillies-HerkoJerko PAID
  4. Red Sox-Chris PAID
  5. Giants-Fred Pike (dicefoot) PAID
  6. Yankees--SaintOrm PAID
  7. Orioles-CollectingAfterDeath PAID
  8. Braves-Sweatdog PAID
  9. Royals-JB (RoyalsChief) PAID
  10. D-Backs-Adam M. PAID
  11. Mariners-capsboy (Stephen W) PAID
  12.  Rockies-Adam K (Infield Fly) PAID
  13.  Angels-Adam M. PAID
  14.  Dodgers-Adam M.
  15. Astros-Dimwit

    Tuesday, June 12, 2018

    Sport Card Collecting From Sport Card Collectors!

    Judging from some of the posts I've seen of late, Matt from Sport Card Collectors has been busy sending out PWEs to various bloggers.  I was fortunate enough recently to receive not one, but two PWEs with some football goodies from Matt.

    As a noted Cubs fan and Rookie of the Year collector, I obviously have an affinity for Kris Bryant cards.  This year Topps put an entire Kris Bryant insert set into Flagship.  However, I don't think I'll chase down this entire set.  Something about a 30 card tribute set devoted solely to a player who has only entered his fourth season seems off to me.  That won't stop me from appreciating the cards that do come my way.  These cards mark the third through seventh additions to my collection from this set, all unique.

    Faithful readers know that, like me, Matt is primarily a football guy.  He sent a few modern inserts of retired players my way.  My favorite is the shiny Kellen Winslow, who fits perfectly into my collection as a member of the 1980s All-Decade team.  Darrell Green is also an All-Decade guy.  When I opened the envelope, I wasn't sure exactly why Matt thought I was the best recipient for these particular cards.  Now I think that he was trying to hit needs for my Franchise 9 project.  So, do Larry Csonka, Franco Harris, Gale Sayers, and Jim Otto qualify for their respective teams' top nine?  We shall see as I begin to unfold the series.  Either way (and whether that was his intention or not) inserts of Hall of Famers are welcome in my home.

    The big item was the only one I was expecting.  When Matt pulled the Fred Warner auto out of his break of Leaf Draft, I immediately claimed it.  He said I could have it if Warner wasn't drafted by the Giants.  On Day 2, I was happy to see the 49ers pick him, securing my latest BYU autograph.  For years, BYU was a quarterback school (see: Jim McMahon, Steve Young, Ty Detmer, et al).  In the past few years, they seem to be churning out linebackers instead.  Kyle Van Noy, Harvey Langi, and now Fred Warner have all been 2nd or 3rd round picks in the past five years.  In my opinion, Warner is the least of the three, but the promise he flashed during his freshman and sophomore years might be an indicator of the potential he still hasn't tapped.

    Thanks for the PWEs, Matt!  It's always good to add to that BYU auto collection.