Thursday, May 21, 2009

Mail Day Redux

Once again, I have allowed mail to pile up. However, this time it is legit. Planning a weekend trip to Nova Scotia and making sure work is covered has taken up MUCH more time than it should have.

Several packages have been waiting for me with open arms as I got home from work lately. Firstly was my inaugural trade using and I could not be happier. I have a feeling that when I find some time I will quickly become addicted to trading with its members. A special thanks to dkrill for these additions ;

A couple Jays and some SP's as well as Mr.Robinson signing on the dotted line.

A successful ebay auction showed up as well, I had totally forgotten about this purchase. I hate when that happens. It makes me think about what else I may have forgotten to do.
Anyway, chalk one more SP off the board for '09 Topps if you would Mr.Sabathia.

Finally, thanks to FanofReds for my first three Target Retro cards of the year. These are much nicer when seen in person but I am resisting the urge to start collecting this version of the set as well. MUST.....................STAY........................STRONG!!!!

Thanks to everyone for their help in finishing some sets and possibly starting others. If anybody needs help finishing their sets off drop me an e-mail and I will see what I can do. In the mean time, take a look at FanofReds want lists and help him out.

Friends don't let friends go topp-less!!


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mail Day (aka Thorzul Rules!!)

Here we go, here is my first attempt to stay on top of mailings and give thanks where it is rightfully due.

When I got home from work today an envelope was waiting in the mailbox for me from the land of Richie and The Fonz. Thorzul Will Rule sent along his part in a swap of 2009 Topps singles bringing me mercifully closer to finishing Series 1. (The 22nd is approaching rapidly)

I always will love the "landscape" layout for baseball cards.

And these four thematically fit together perfectly.

Thanks again to Thorzul for the additions they are greatly appreciated.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Sorely Delayed Mail Day

One of the things I am terrible for is collecting.

Let me explain.

I tend to let things gather. It is for this very reason I am not the one in charge of bills in the house. I finally decided to wade through a seriously large pile of mail addressed to me. Inside were two VERY important envelopes. One was from the Canadian Government thanking me for being a model citizen and filing my taxes. I like a country that pays me to live Second was an envelope from Matt over at Heartbreaking Cards completing a trade from last month. Matt managed to knock a few cards off of the increasingly hard to finish Wal-Mart "blackout" parallel set. I say "hard to finish" because Wal-Mart in Canada has yet to carry ANY baseball cards this year. My two blasters came from my wife when she was in Utah and the rest came from two single lot auctions on ebay.

Anyway, thanks to matt for these,


and these ;

Matt also helped finish off the Legends sub set with two titans of the game ;

As well as having 3 base cards inching me closer to the finish line.

Once again, thanks to matt and I will regularly keep an eye on your want lists for future trades. This was truly appreciated.

Anyone else needing to finish off their Topps baseball base, sub-sets, or Wal-Marts check out my lists here and e-mail me your want lists here we can work something out.


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Spring Expo 2009 : Bust or Boon?? - The Final Chapter

I had mentioned in the second part of my card expo experience that I would introduce you to someone who had made the whole experience worthwhile. What had started out so pathetically disappointing turned out to be a great day, not only for me but for my collection as well.

Let me introduce you to Frank Schulte.

Frank Schulte had a major league career that spanned 15 years and 4 cities. He made his debut on September 21, 1904 for the Chicago Cubs and played twelve years mostly in the outfield. Frank played parts of 2 seasons in Pittsburgh, played half a year in Philadelphia and ended his career as a Senator.

His nickname was 'Wildfire'.

Throughout his career he had several notable achievements;

- He was named the very first NL MVP in 1911.
- He held the record for the longest post-season hitting streak at 12 games for 10 years.
- Frank became the charter member of the '20-20-20-20 Club' in 1911 and was its only member until 1957. He is joined by Willie Mays, Curtis Granderson and Jimmy Rollins.

As a bit of a quirky factoid Frank Schulte received 1 HOF vote in 1937 from the Baseball Writers of America.

So, how did 'Wildfire' Frank Schulte help turn around my card show experience?

When I decided to get back into the card collecting hobby I figured it was time that I start turning my collection into a serious collection and one that people who may not be into the whole collecting/collating/chasing mentality could still enjoy. One of the goals for this year was to acquire a card that was at least 100 years old.

Not only did Frank help in that department, but he gave me the added bonus of being a member of one of my favorite teams AND the card I acquired was from one of the most famous sets of all time. The T206 Tobacco Set;

Regardless of how the day began what matters is how it ended and I could not have been happier to have something like this added to my collection. It truly has me excited to collect again.

A special thanks to OleMissCub from the Forums for posting the photos from which I got the one of Frank. Thank-you's as well go to The Baseball Page and Baseball Almanac for providing the information.


Monday, May 4, 2009

Spring Expo 2009 : Bust or Boon?? - Part II

So, when last we left, I had returned a purchase to a group of individuals who made absolutely sure that I would never give them another penny while I draw breath. While I am positive this decision will not impact them in the slightest I can

As I made my way around the to the vendors I was amazed at just how much I had missed card shows of this magnitude. Not because of what I could purchase but more because of what it was I got to see. There were all kinds of cards that I am quite sure I will never own but to be able to see them and hold them was pretty cool. Unfortunately, as was to be expected, a majority of the stuff there was Hockey related. I did however manage to find enough dealers with baseball cards available to make searching worthwhile. I found several single cards that would add to my sub-set collection;

add to my player collections;

and finish off a current sub-set;

I also wanted to specifically thank TPM Collector's Store from Quebec for being one of only 4 dealers that I saw who ACTUALLY brought singles,commons and traders from current releases to the show. I managed to get another 100 cards closer to the 800-card OPC Hockey Parallel set at a very reasonable price. As well as finish off my 08-09 UD MVP Hockey base set.

I also picked up my missing pack of 1983 Topps Baseball;

Having filled this gap in my pack collection I am now deciding on what to do with the extra pack of 1982 Topps I was offering up for trade. I have a few ideas, tell me what you think. I was either going to donate it to A Pack to be Named Later to be opened by one of their esteemed members, open it myself and post it to PTBNL, offer it up as a part of Waxaholic's 'Playoff Contest' prize lot or use it as a prize in a contest of my own. Decisions, decisions.....

While I was leafing through another vendor's singles boxes I found a number of cards that I have considered completing when I pulled them in a box break but have never really though twice about since. I like the idea and being a collector of programs from games they may be the closest I get to some of them;

This may be a set that I pick away at more than obsessively try and complete right away. We'll see how it goes.
So, as you can see, once I got to travelling around the show I started to enjoy myself more and more and managed to make it a worthwhile experience. However, like any good story this is by no means the end. Tomorrow I will introduce you to an individual who made this show and absolute winner for me and also provided me with one of the goals I set out for myself this year.

Until then,


Spring Expo 2009 : Bust or Boon??

Well, I finally got around to making some time for a review of the card expo I attended this past weekend. I have made a few references to it earlier on my blog both here and here. Suffice to say I had gone in with heightened expectations and perhaps a touch of delusion.

My main goal of this show was to get autographs from the four Hall of Fame baseball players that were appearing. Paul Molitor, Juan Marichal, Rollie Fingers and Ferguson Jenkins. What made things even more appealing was that all the money collected from their appearance went to the Ferguson Jenkins charitable foundation. Athletes that charge people for their autographs have a special place in my heart and it usually is the same place I keep reserved for telephone solicitors and politicians. However, if the proceeds can go to people who ACTUALLY need the money then I have an easier time shelling out the cash.

Firstly, I learned a very valuable lesson even before I was out of the car. If you plan to take pictures and document the event it is best to make sure that your camera battery is CHARGED!! Never shall I make that mistake again. The autograph session was scheduled to run from 11:00am to 2:00pm. Circumstances beyond my control delayed my departure for a couple hours but still left me enough time to make the session, so I thought.
I arrived at the show a little before 1:00pm and made my way inside. The area in which the autograph sessions were taking place proved a little non-descript but not impossible to find. I asked one of the session organizers where items for signing could be purchased and was directed to their setup. $100 dollars later I had 4 official National League baseballs ready and willing to accept the signatures of the HOF'ers. As I walked around the corner to where the booth was set up the first person to catch my eye was Ferguson Jenkins. He was standing up and putting on his jacket. Beside me was Rollie Fingers and he was asking Fergie if Juan Marichal was "ready yet". I quickly found one of the attendants and asked her if the players were taking a quick break before returning. She informed me that they were, in fact, leaving because they had a dinner to attend that evening. However, they were taking peoples items they wished to have signed, the people's information and you could come back on the Sunday and pick up the items. Having not seen Paul Molitor anywhere I inquired as to if he had even made the signing and was told he had not but was signing a few things in the back and would have the rest of the items brought to his hotel room that evening.
As I was talking to the attendant I noticed on the table in front of me a sort of "menu", if you will, with the "donation costs" listed based on items. I asked if the cost of the items purchased included the autograph itself or if there was an additional charge. She told me that if you purchased a baseball or bat that it included the signature. So I told her I had these four balls to be signed but was not sure I would be able to make the trip back on Sunday to pick them up. She asked where I had purchased them and I told her from the organizers. She then proceeded to inform me that they were not a part of the items that the foundation were selling and would be subject to a $20 per signature donation.

That pretty much sealed my decision.

I immediately went back to the person who had sold me the baseballs and told them I would be returning them for a refund. This is where things ALMOST became unglued. The zipperhead behind the counter asked me why I was returning them. My response was simple.

"Because, I am."

The next waste-of-space that came over started into me about what my reasoning was for returning the baseballs. So, I figured I would indulge this one.

"Number 1, the baseballs being sold at the signing table are cheaper than these AND they include a signature."
"Number 2, 100% of the money I spend over there goes to charity. 100% of what I spent here apparently, does not."
"Number 3, I am returning these because you made me give you two reasons WHY I want to return these."

After some further discussion back and forth they finally found someone who knew how to credit a credit card. Apparently this in itself is a skill that is only bestowed on a chosen few, much like the quest to destroy the Ring was bestowed upon Frodo. Had I known this I would have seriously considered majoring in it in University.

With the bitter taste of appalling customer service in my mouth and a bit of disappointment lingering in the air I decided to start checking out what the show had to offer. What started out so poorly soon worked its way to being a rather successful outing.

More on that in part 2.....right now dinner calls.


Saturday, May 2, 2009

Free Comic Book Day 2009

On the way to the card show I stopped off and managed to get a couple of the titles available that interested me. Here's what I grabbed.

Anything with Stephen Colbert should be worth a glance. I picked up this next one for a guy at work who is a HUGE fan.

I am also interested to see where they take this.

I am currently sorting through what I picked up at the show today and will post a full report later on, quite possibly tomorrow. What I will say is that what started out as a major disappointment turned into an all-around great day at the Sport Card and Memorabilia Expo.

The Big Show

The last few days have been spent trying to get as much of my collection sorted as possible in order to maximize my time today. It has crept up on me but I will be making my way to the bi-annual card show held at the Toronto International Centre out near the airport.

Mostly I am looking forward to the appearances of Paul Molitor, Ferguson Jenkins, Juan Marichal and Rollie Fingers. I still have not decided what to get signed but that does not surprise me. I am also taking a few lists of fellow bloggers with me to see what I might be able to find for them. With camera in hand I will report back later on the show and any finds.


Friday, May 1, 2009

Hottest RC of yours??!!

Perhaps the most sought after auto'd Rookie Card of the early 2009 Baseball season rivaling that of the Upper Deck Series 1 buyback Griffey Jr. showed up in my mailbox today along with a personalized letter. I am now one of the elite few who are the proud owner of this little gem;

What a way to start my weekend to come home to this envelope waiting. Great work on the card and I absolutely love the cartoon. Let me say a very hearty "Thank You" to Sean and I am glad to hear your arm is feeling much better.

For those of you who have not yet taken the opportunity to acquire one of these beauties there may still be time. Check out this link for all you need to participate.

Here are some followups as well ;

Update #1

Update #2