Tuesday, May 28, 2019

I Finished Last in March Radness--Will I Survive to Tell About It?

Since I was appointed our school's testing coordinator last year, March has been an insanely busy month for me at work.  So when Cards on Cards opened up his March Radness NCAA basketball tournament this year, I wanted to enter without spending a lot of time choosing teams.  I ended up sitting down with my 10 year-old and 8 year-old and having them take turns choosing teams in the bracket.  When I ended up with Old Dominion in the championship, I knew I had a winner. . . or not.  It turns out that I did win, because Kerry puts together a package for last place.

He made some vague threats about the loser getting a really bad package.  I was curious.  I imagined a box of Norfin Trolls or *gasp* a priority mail box packed to the gills with junk wax dupes, like 50 copies of 1989 Fleer Steve Jeltz or something.  Kerry mentioned in one post he might send me a box of spiders.  I didn't think he was serious, but the thought creeped me out.  But I braced myself for the worst.

And this is the worst Kerry could do.  At first glance, it's a healthy stack of cards, and I could certainly imagine worse than Anthony Rizzo.  But is this top card merely hiding something a little more nefarious?

Three 2016 Cubs from the Topps National League Stars set?!  Why that's, that's--pretty cool, actually.  I didn't have any of these, although I think I have about a full page of that Jake Arrieta design, between Flagship, Chrome, Opening Day, parallels, etc.

This may be the extent of all the 2019 Donruss I get this year.  A red holofoil of Albert Almora and his currently hot bat and a really nice DK El Mago are two of my favorite cards of this package.

A couple more of 2019's offerings.  This is my first look at Opening Day's Rally Time inserts.  I like the concept, and that is definitely a fun card of David Bote, but why does it look just like a base card?  Could they really not come with anything to make a unique design? 

I didn't buy any Chrome at all last year, so these were all needs.  I really liked last year's design, and I do like it all chromed up, but I don't have much of it.  Once again, Javy is my favorite here.  I think I would like the Contreras more if it were a photo from the front angle.

More Javy.  This is the first Panini Chronicles card I've ever gotten, but I did get some blasters really cheap from Dave and Adam's last week that I'm going to bust.  I'm not in love with the product, but I figured for $6 a box, I would try a couple.

Who doesn't like early Bowman's Best?  Or the Cubs jerseys that look like they say "Cuba?"  I sure like them, and I'm glad to receive them.

And there's the junk wax I was expecting.  Walton, Sandberg, and Gracie are always welcome in my collection.  But Stadium Club has me in suspense--was Dwight safe or out?

Yes, there were some dupes for me, as I expected from Kerry's evil plan.

Some Team USA cards, including two players who made it to the Show in Austin Jackson and Kevin Gausman, and a relic of Cody Wheeler, who never did.

And now we're just getting some random stuff here.  I don't recall a "History of Topps" insert set.  I'm not a fan of either the card or the concept.

What's this?  Tyronn Lue?  Well, this is A&G, so I guess it's still a baseball card.  Kinda.

Now we're really getting random.  I never got into Star Trek.  My sci-fi fix comes from Doctor Who.  Like the good Doctor, the NBA sticker comes from overseas, from a European Upper Deck release.  That's kind of cool.

Also included were two unopened packs.  I have no interest in either of these two sets, so I gave them to my boys.  They were the ones who earned me this package, anyway.

I can see what Kerry was trying to do here.  As a Cardinals fan, the scariest thing he could think of was Cubs cards!  These were probably hiding in his closet, haunting him when the lights are off in the dead of the night.  He thought this package would keep me away from his contests forever.  But he failed!  I get the last laugh here, because, unbeknownst to him, I actually love Cubs cards.  I win!

But wait, what on Earth is this?

*Runs away screaming*

Friday, May 10, 2019

A Few Random Sportlots Auctions

In a recent post, I checked out a Sportlots box for the first time and came away a pretty good sized "sportlot" of cards for my collection.  Around the same time, I decided to take a peek at a couple of auctions.  I don't usually look at the auctions on Sportlots, but this time around I found a few that caught my eye.  The titles were simple--things like "34 Stars Inserts Favre"--but they were on Day 3 with no bids, so I decided to check them out.  I saw a few cards I wanted in the photos and figured if I could win multiple auctions for cheap and get the combined shipping, it was worth a shot.  In the end, I won a trio of auctions for $.25 apiece, and with shipping, I had them for about $7 total.  I didn't know every card that would be in the lots, so I was taking a bit of a chance.  As it turns out, it was a pretty good chance to be taking.

This cool insert set came from 2008 Topps and Chrome.  It honors NFL players who also served active military duty.  With all three lots combined, I picked up two copies of this set, minus one card.  I've since remedied that incomplete set through COMC.  After my Black Friday shipping this year, I'll have my Roger Staubach in hand and a completed set in my binder.

The lots were all given titles that included, "inserts," "stars," and at least one player's name.  Most of the cards were stars, inserts, or rookies, which made me happy.  I was a bit scared that I'd get one or two inserts or stars, and the rest would be 1990 Pro Set or something.  Stars from the 90s were well-represented, mostly in shiny.

 The Nineties provided some interesting insert sets.  I remember how cool I thought the acetone Collector's Edge cards were when I was a kid, but Bobby Hebert is the first I've owned.  I also loved the Ultra Stars and anything Fleer Metal at the time, both modeled by Marshall Faulk here.

I don't know anybody who misses Classic, but I won't complain about parallels/inserts of a few Hall of Famers that I received.

Early 2000s inserts were a cool find. Since I bought no cards during this period, there are still many sets I've never seen before.  Not only were the cards themselves pretty cool, there are some pretty good names here.  Most of these guys aren't NFL legends, but they were higher-tier players in their time.

More late 90s/early 2000s inserts.  Marshall Faulk made quite a few appearances in the package.

There were some nice rookies in there.  The Playoff rookies on the bottom row aren't the greatest (or even good) players, but those are some cool transparent cards.

The inserts kept coming into the early 2010s.  These were the most recent cards in the package.  I like the inclusion of two underrated running backs in Lenny Moore and Lydell Mitchell, as well as Packer great Billy Howton.

 Some NFL legends came in 2008 shiny Chrome . . .

and some real 1980s cardboard.

There were two special occasion promos, from 2004 National Trading Card Day and the 1991 National Sports Collectible Convention.  Oh look, there's Marshall Faulk again.

Finally, there were a few additions to my BYU collection.  Playoff was a quality card company in the 90s, and I have liked Panini's reincarnation thus far this decade.

I took a chance on some lots, and though I couldn't fit it all in my collection, I did get some pretty good cards for about six cents a pop.  I really don't feel there was any filler junk in any of the lots.  So, if you're browsing around auctions on Sportlots, and you see a lot from AAAVINTA, I can vouch that it will be filled with some pretty good cards.