Friday, July 31, 2015

Player Collection Additions

I'll start this post out with another lament as to how my collecting activity has ground to a halt.  Real life is still dragging me down.  We finally had a long enough dry spell that we could get a bulldozer in to repair storm damage in my east pasture (We received 24" of rain in may and 45" year to date. Mind you, typical rainfall here is 32" a year.)  We are also about to do some home improvement projects.  See? Real life.

That said, I have managed to add two cards to my player collections in recent weeks.

I have been looking for this card for a couple of years. I'd missed out on a couple of auctions in the past and there was a long spell where no copies came up for sale. Then, all of a sudden, a veritable avalanche of this card has appeared on EBay.  Without looking, I would estimate about 4-5 have popped up in a matter of a few weeks. I was finally able to snag one.

This card is part of a 59 card set of similar cards issued by the New York Journal American in 1954.  The actually covers all three New York Teams of the time (Yankees, Dodgers, and Giants.)  It looks like it would be a fun set to collect, save the fact that there are a number of cards with book values over $100 including Roy Campanella, Pee Wee Reese, Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, and Mickey Mantle (of course.) Mantle is the most expensive at $600 BV, followed by Mays and Robinson at $300 and $250 respectively.

This is a 1941 Double Play card. It is from a 75 card set, each with 2 subjects. I was able to snag this one for around $13.  Now I need to track down a similarly affordable version of card 119/120, which features Lloyd Waner.  I was going to talk more about this set, but as usual someone else has done it better.  See here for a good description.

Other than that, I have been on the sidelines hobbywise recently and expect it to stay that way for a while.

What I am listening to:  The Letter by The Box Tops

Saturday, July 18, 2015


Things have been quiet here lately. With regard to my collection anyways.  In the last two weeks I have had to replace the AC compressor on two different cars, leaving a fairly big hole in my pocket.  I have picked up a few things here and there, and have managed to complete two sets.

These were the last two unnumbered checklists I needed to complete my 1973 Topps set. So, at the moment, the only "flagship" sets I am working on are 1956, 1975, and 1979.  I'd like to finish at least one of the latter two prior to the end of this year.  Depending on how you look at it, it took me almost three and half years to finish this set. I got my first '73s in a trade with Ted at the now defunct Crinkly Wrappers in January of 2012, although I didn't start working it in earnest until about a year later.

These were the two cards I needed to achieve my definition of complete for the 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game set. This was over 4 years in the making, as I really started on this set in April of 2011.  It isn't a master set, as there is the serial numbered blue parallels, the autographed subset, game used memorabilia parallels to various insert sets, and the uber-expensive Yankee clippings insert set.  But the cost to complete any one of those is beyond what I willing to pay and would only distract from my core vintage set collecting.  So, this one is done also!

Lastly, this is the one card I have added to my Paul and Lloyd Waner player collections. I bought it on a whim and probably shouldn't have.  It cost $46 delivered and is typical of most modern Waner releases: bat cards issued in low numbers. I like the card real well, but I am discouraged by the prices these modern cards get.  I am not sure what I am going to do with this collection. I may just limit it to vintage (which are also expensive) and non-exclusive modern cards.  At least for the moment, the need for car air conditioning in the Oklahoma summer has forced that decision into the future.

Friday, July 3, 2015

June Card Show Haul

There was a show at the end of June I attended. My hope was to make progress on my 1975 and 1979 Topps sets. I made no progress on either, but I consider it a success anyways, as I made progress on several other sets I am working on. I got to the show and headed over to say hello to the two sellers I get most of my cards from and to take a quick scan of their tables. I didn't see anything that immediately grabbed my attention, so I decided to walk around the room and see what else was there. Imagine my surprise when, after almost completing the circuit of the room that I came across Roger Neufeldt of Sports Memories of Oklahoma. Roger is the best source for high quality vintage around here, but he hasn't done a local show in well over a year. He mostly does shows in MLB cities and the National. However, the local show is now being organized by a new group and he decided to give it another shot. So, I ended up spending most of my money with him. So, what did I get?

One card from the 1959 Fleer Ted Williams set. This is the 39th card I have from that 80 card set.  Interestingly, one of the other sellers told me that he recently sold a PSA 7 version of card 68 from the set for $1000. That is the one card that I think I may never acquire from this set.  Card 68, titled "Ted Signs for 1959" was pulled out of distribution very early in production since it featured a picture of Ted Williams signing a contract next to Boston GM Bucky Harris who was under contract with rival Topps.  Consequently, few made it into the wild.  Even mid grade versions sell for over $400.  I may just end up filling in my set with a reprint, which do seem generally available.

I added a total of 21 cards to my 1961 Fleer set, leaving me with only 23 cards to go to complete the 154 card set.  Among those remaining 23, though, are the Babe Ruth and Ted Williams cards which have book values of $120.   I am going to set a budget of $25 to $30 each, but it will probably take some time and luck to make that happen.

Additionally, I also picked up additional copies of the two Waner brothers cards from this set for my PC.

Finally, I managed to locate another 11 modestly priced cards for my 1956 set, bring me to a total of 219 cards from this 340 card set.

I've got a few other things brewing for future posts, including a call out to the blogging community to find me the single card I need to complete a set.  I was also hoping to have a new addition to my 1963 Fleer autograph project, but the consigner I sent a card to has apparently lost it and is not responding to my requests for information. Hopefully that will resolve itself shortly.

What I am listening to: A Feather's Not a Bird bu Rosanne Cash

Friday, June 19, 2015

Oversized Additions

I have to admit a little ambivalence here.  My Paul Blair player collection has pretty much ground to a halt. I need to pony up the $9 for a month of access to Beckett, for the sole reason of compiling a more comprehensive list of Blair cards, but I don't expect that to change my activity level significantly.  My expectation is that I will find a fair number of cards I don't have, but they will mainly be low population cut auto cards (without photos) from modern unlicensed products.  Now, unlicensed products don't bother me, but cards without photos do.   As do serial numbered cards with small populations (1/1, x/5, etc.)  Several things contributed to my exit from collecting modern sets, but the main issue was artificial scarcity.  Low population serial numbered cards and short prints really chapped my ass.  So, unless I can get them cheap, such cards won't be a high priority for me.

Oh, there are a few O-Pee-Chee that I lack, but I've never been willing to pay the inflated asking prices.   I may bend on that.  The other main category is Topps Venezuelan.  Those are so expensive, though, I have a hard time seeing myself biting the bullet. So, until then what do I do?

Post cards, I guess.  I am really torn whether post cards qualify as trading cards.  I mean they are cards and all, but they just aren't the same.  They are larger and instead of statistics on the back, they have a little square labeled "Place Stamp Here."  I did win the post card above for the huge, huge price of $5 delivered.  Alas, the seller managed to ship it to the wrong address, so he compensated me by also sending the post card below.

Not to shabby. Two autographed postcards for $5.  I like that. Getting deals like that would change my ambivalence to post cards.  At some point I need to figure out what years they are from, but not tonight.  There is a show tomorrow and I need to get ready.

What I am listening to:  Worried Mind by Eilen Jewell

Monday, June 1, 2015

The Old Ballpark

A lot of you probably read Julie over at A Cracked Bat.  If you do (and you should,) you will know that she recently ran into Ferguson Jenkins in a card shop called The Old Ballpark in Oklahoma City. As an OKC area guy, I can confirm it is a great shop.  The shop in Norman, The Dugout, has a better selection of vintage but isn't as well organized and doesn't seem to put a lot of emphasis on current releases.  The Old Ballpark still has a decent selection of vintage, but does market current releases and has a large number of discount boxes at various price points.

I went there this past weekend with my 1975 and 1979 Topps want lists in hand. I didn't see any boxes of 1975 commons, but did find a one and a half 800 count boxes of 1979 cards.  At last check, I needed around 216 cards to finish 1979. I was able to knock off 117 at The Old Ballpark.

I got a handful of stars, the best of which was this  Jim Rice.

I also got most of the 26 team prospect cards. In fact, I only need 2 more to complete that subset.

I also managed to make one recent addition to my Waner brother PCs on an EBay auction..

I bid on this not expecting to win, but ended up getting it for $15 delivered.  There is the bimonthly OKC show coming up at the end of June that I am going to go to. So, July is the perfect time to get started on the Waner PCs in earnest.  I'll probably start with getting a bunch of modern base cards that are inexpensive and start working to get a few of the vintage cards at bargain prices.

Coming up: Additions to another player collection.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

One Step Closer to Completion

My Johnny Antonelli player collection is getting closer to completion.  For a certain definition of completion.  There are only four of what I consider major issue cards that I don't have.  With this pickup, there are only three:

What are the other three: 1960 Bazooka and 1961 Post, the latter of which has two versions: one with Antonelli as a Giant and another with him as an Indian. Certainly, there are a number of rare regional/team issues or limited run modern cards out there that I don't (and probably never will) have.  So, once I have the Bazooka and Posts, I'm going to consider this collection closed and any further additions will be gravy.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

First New PC Addition

As I had mentioned earlier, I have started a new player collection (or more accurately, two player collections) of the Waner brothers, Paul and Lloyd. Since then, however, I haven't done much.  I've bid on a few EBay auctions, but never won. Until I got this card:

I am always leery of buying autographs off of EBay, but I compared this PSA certified autographs and it looks good to me.  So, I took a flyer on bidding and got it for under $17 delivered.  Once I won the auction I had a realization that Paul Waner is also in the Hall of Fame and probably has one of these post cards as well. I haven't gotten one yet, but will shortly. I don't expect to get a signed version. I have not researched these postcards history, but I wouldn't expect to find a signed Paul Waner as he passed away in 1965.

Having thought about having player collections for brothers who are both in the Hall of Fame, I realized that I need to set out some rules for how I am going to do this.  Three rules to be precise:

  1. Where both Waners appear in the same set, try to get both at the same time.  This will make tracking progress and identifying cards I need (without continually consulting a want list 500 cards long) easier.  This will probably not be practical for vintage cards as they will probably be expensive and getting both at the same time would likely blow my budget. In those cases, I will try to focus on finding the second quickly after acquiring the first.
  2. There are numerous cards on which both brothers appear.  For these cards, I am not going to get two copies, one for each collection. Rather, I am going to maintain a section of the binder for "Waner Brothers."
  3. Speaking of vintage, I had to make a decision on condition.  I am normally condition sensitive, but in this case, with numerous cards from the 1920s through 1940s, I am going to relax because I would never be able to afford them in EX or better condition. I am going to look for cards with nice eye appeal, border all the way around where applicable, and no obvious creases that extend through the entire card.  Round corners, surface creases, and some paper loss on the back are just fine.
So there we go. Now I need to go find that Paul Waner HOF card/