Monday, August 12, 2019

National Baseball Card Day Left Me With Some Decisions to Make

On Saturday, I took my oldest son to the card shop for some free cards.  We each got a pack of Topps National Baseball Card Day promos.  The two cellophane packs had Miguel Cabrera and Christian Yelich on top.  I offered them to my son and let him choose.  As I expected, he chose Miggy.  As a Cubs fan, I'm not a big Yelich guy, but I don't think I could have hand-selected a better pack than the one I got.

El Mago and King Fish are probably the two I cards I would have wanted most in the set.  Pete Alonso had a good chance of winning Rookie of the Year and becoming a PC player.  The reigning (and potential repeat) NL MVP and the Best Lefty Ever? are a strong supporting cast.

The LCS we visited was having a warehouse sale with a ton of (mostly) junk they were trying to get rid of.  There was even a bin of free stuff.  I thought about picking up some old Becketts for a buck apiece, but decided that I could find better ways to spend a very limited budget.  I did find some random oddballs in a bin marked "2/$5" that I thought would be worth the money.  They all left we with decisions to make about my collection, though.

First up is this Post Cereal set.  The envelope contains the entire oddball set.

They're postcard-sized cards.  One side is full-bleed action shot (no logos, of course).  The checklist is pretty great, as you might expect from a set that used only 16 of the top players of the year.  A sextet of Hall of Famers is shown here.

The other side looks more like a traditional card front and back.  There is a fold in the middle to make these cards into a little booklet.  So that leads me to the first decision: How should I store these?  I see three options.
  1. I keep them in the envelope they came in.
  2. I put them in a photo album to act as a binder.
  3. I fold them in normal-sized cards and put them in my oddballs binder.
What are you thoughts?  What would you do?  I want to have them in my binder, but I'm hesitant to fold them.

The second item that I picked up was a trio of hologram cards in a hard display case.  These are all guys I collect, including David Robinson, though I don't actively collect basketball.  So I figured to get these three cards for $2.50 was probably a reasonable purchase.  These are 1991 Arena Holograms and each card has a print run of 250,000.  That's all I know.  Does anybody know anything else, like where they came from?  I have a decision to make about these cards.  They have all been removed from their encasement, but now I have to decide whether I want to complete the set.  With these 3 cards, I'm 60% there--only Joe Montana and Frank Thomas remain.  Should I finish it and keep it with my sets, or should I just let these join my player collections individually?

My last pickups were these two Score portfolio-type binders.  I glanced inside and saw that both contained 1998 Pinnacle Mint cards and coins.  I picked up both of them, thinking that I collected enough late-90s players to make the purchase worthwhile.

When I got the binders home and examined the contents more closely, I discovered a few things.  First, for each player included, there was a base card with the coin and a bronze parallel.  I also learned that this was nearly a complete set of cards, coins, and bronze parallels.  There are only 30 players in the entire set, and I have 22.  Now it's decision time.  Do I go ahead and complete the set(s), or do I keep what I want and use the rest as trade bait?  Normally, I would complete this set without hesitation, but the cost of the coins is a stumbling block for me.  I looked on COMC and found that each coin is $1-$8.  That's a steep price to complete a set that I just stumbled upon and never intended to chase.  And, of course, the missing cards are the big names: Bonds, Griffey, Jeter, Ripken, etc.  On the other hand, what a cool set and what an opportunity to have so much of this complete already!  What would you do?

So I didn't spend my money on Topps to get the extra Bryce Harper NBCD card, but I found some really interesting odds and ends.  But I'm left with some decisions to make about my new finds.
  1. How should I store the Post postcards?  Fold them?  Keep them in the box?
  2. Should I pick up the last two cards in the holograms set, or should I keep the 3 I have in my player collections?
  3. Should I finish the Pinnacle Mint sets (coins, base, and bronze parallels) or break the partial set apart and use some for trade bait?
I really want to hear what you would do.  Leave me some advice in the comments!


  1. There should be a standard size plastic sheet for the postcards as they are. Probably three- or four-pocket type.

    If those three guys are PCs, then finishing the set would mean you would need second copies of the ones you have. Pass.

    Since the big guns are all left to get, I'd pick one series, (plain, gold or bronze) and complete that run using the others as trade bait for them.

  2. First off, these were some fun finds! I've never seen those Post-cards before, they're really quite attractive. And as Greg already mentioned, they make postcard pages, the 4-pocket pages are for standard sized postcards, while the 3-pocket's are for slightly larger postcards. As for the holograms, I'd say just add them to your player collections. I hadn't ever seen those before either, and now I want some! :)

    1. That's two votes for leaving them in the PC. Thanks, Jon!

  3. I didn't know Mike Trout's nickname was King Fish.
    Personally, I would keep them in the envelope, but if I had the means to binder them up I would do that first.

    1. Eh, it might not be. I'm just not a big of fan "Millville Meteor" and I read "King Fish" once and decided to use it instead in this post.

      Thanks for the input, Tom!

  4. 1. Postcard sheets from your LCS. Check the dimensions first because they come in 3 or 4 per page depending on dimensions.
    2. Crack that thing open and put them in your PCs.
    3. The reason that set is expense on COMC is two reasons. It was very expensive when it came out even though it was unpopular. (very expensive for the time that is) The parallels were also very confusing. If I remember right it came with only 2 or 3 cards and 1 coin per pack and it was released right about the same time as SPX and Totally Certified. So not only was it a pain to store it was the least popular of the "expensive stuff". If you decide to chase it don't buy them from COMC. COMC charges an extra fee to list irregular sized items so all the coins there are overpriced. Try instead. (but use the pictures form COMC to make sure you are getting the correct parallels.) But don't just search for them. You need to search by seller, it's cheaper this way. Select Preferred Sellers at the top and then choose one of the Double Blue Star Sellers. (These are the sellers with the biggest inventory so more likely to have multiple coins or other cards you want) I did it and choose WESTLAKE just now because I have bought from them multiple times. They have 20 different Brass coins in stock with Griffey being the most expensive at $2. (Andrew Jones is only .18) I only searched this one seller, others may have more but if you stick to one seller you pay one shipping cost. (Shipping is cheap too. The more you buy the cheaper the shipping is) The only drawback is the lack of pictures.

    1. Thank you, Adam! I didn't consider that COMC would be that much more expensive than Sportlots.

  5. Cool post card set! I'd probably go out and find some sheets that would hold postcards (possibly a 4-pocket page). Those coins are cool too.

  6. That is a pretty cool coin set. Love the late 1990s stuff....for a while, that was a dead area to collect, but it seems like it is making a comeback.!