Monday, December 30, 2013

In Mourning

If any bloggers out there have seen my comments on their posts, they've probably noticed my avatar:

and wondered why a football icon has commented on their (mostly) baseball posts.  I've always said my favorite sport is baseball, but my favorite sports team is the Cowboys. 

I know what you're thinking.  I'm from California and I'm an Angels' fan.  Cowboys??  I inherited it from my father.  He grew up in Dallas.  He's also a fan of the evil empire, but I couldn't possibly follow in those footsteps.

So yeah, last night's game kinda sucked (quiet Brad.)

So I'll try to think of happier thoughts.  Like one of my Christmas presents.  I didn't get any cards, but I did get this

My early favorite player growing up was Rod Carew.  But somewhere in college I became a huge Ted Williams fan.  This book is huge.  It'll take me awhile to get through it.

This is actually the oldest card in my collection.

I don't have the 1969 base card, but I do have this one.

Knowing Ted, he's probably looking at a pitcher here.

Now he's thinking about hitting.

And now I'm (kinda sorta maybe) bringing it full circle.  Williams was the first major league manager in the Metroplex...which is where my beloved losers Cowboys are located.

Oh, and Congrats to Brad and all the other Eagles' fans.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Card Numbering Again

1978-1979 wasn't the only set of years that Topps decided to repeat some of their numbering pattern.  1984 Topps has been blogged about many times as a rip off of 1983 Topps.  I, of course, am in the minority position of liking 1984 as much as, or maybe more than, 1983.  But apparently

they liked the

numbering in 1983

so much

that they used it

again in


 Sometimes it carried from 1982

and once it

even went through 1985

Team card/manager card.  Coincidence?

Yeah, I ran out of stuff to say.  Newbie blogger.  There are other instances where the numbers are almost exact as well, 105/100, 262/266, 341/342, 416/415, 500/499, 547/548, 599/600, 623/626, and 678/680 (1983 first in all pairs).

Thursday, December 26, 2013


I won't be detailing all the cards that were under the Christmas tree this year.....because there weren't any.  I've never really gotten cards for Christmas.  I shouldn't say never, but you get the idea.  My family, I think, has always just assumed that they won't know what I want, so they go in a different direction.  And I've never been one to tell anyone what I want, so that's on me.

But that doesn't mean I haven't been getting cards.  I've said it before, and I'll probably say it a million times in the future, but cards bloggers have to collectively be one of the most generous groups of people around.  I got a box in the mail a day or two before Christmas which I am still going through, and should post about soon.

I got home from work today and found a bubble mailer in the mailbox.  Upon seeing the return address, I knew I didn't have any trades in the works, so Surprise Cards!

Spiff over at Texas Rangers Cards thought of me at Christmas time!  See, there's no rivalry in the blogging world (Go Angels!)  There were three stacks of cards in there.  You've all seen junk wax, so this is just a fraction of the contents, but I'll show some of the highlights:

Traded cards (Did Score call them Traded?  They're numbered with "T"s).  The pink is the giveaway.  There wasn't pink in the 1989 base set.   And a 1992 UD Dave Winfield.  Even though there's evil Yankeeness on that card, its a sharp looking card.  And Winfield was a steal for the Angels.  Mike Witt had been a very good pitcher in the 80's, but he was done when he was unloaded for the HOF outfielder.

Collector's choice is a recent addition to my knowledge of the card collecting world.  It took me awhile to figure out there was Upper Deck AND Upper Deck Collector's Choice.  Look at the parallel Rickey.  I've been getting lots of Rickey in Angel gear lately. (edit: Rickey isn't a parallel I guess.  Rickey is just different, which is kinda appropriate)

Chone Figgins was another steal for the Angels.  They gave up the immortal Kimera Bartee, who had all of 19 ML at-bats after the trade for Figgins and he was a really good piece for 6+ years.  I was rather disappointed for him when he was a huge bust for the Mariners.  Brandon Wood on the other hand was the huge prospect that the Angels would not include in any trade talks as he made his way up the chain.  He was also the colossal out-making machine that the Angels let go for nothing.  I seem to recall he had some parting shots for the organization on his way out too, although I can't seem to find them.  If that's true, that's just sad and another reason to say good riddance.

Surprise packages are awesome.  Am I right?

Thanks Spiff.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Card Numbering

Am I the only one who wonders just how Topps decides which cards to put at each number?  Sure the x00 was always the elite stars, x50 was the next tier of stars, and the xx0 numbers were the lesser stars.  But how do they decide who gets 331?

One thing I kind of noticed going through Topps cards for my frankenset was that cards from consecutive years ended up near each other or at the same number alot.  So even though I don't know how Topps decides, I do know that sometimes they don't like to change anything.  Take 1978 and 1979:

They decided

to put Angels
in the same spots
in the set
in 1979
swapped those. oops
as they had
in 1978
they liked it som uch they did it a 3rd year.
and over
and over
and over.

They like 48 so much, they kept it going through 1981
And those are just the number that line up exactly.  There are other examples of numbers just off: 214/212, 400/402, 429/424, 454/453, 478/477, 529/530, 579/580, 600/601, and 655/654 (1978 first in all pairs).  I know I can't be the first one to see this. 

The card that exploded into hundreds

Just a quick post today.  And it seriously won't even begin to do justice to the package I got last week.

I sent an email to P-town Tom over at Waiting 'til Next year.  I saw a card he posted and asked if it was available, and offered up my usual assortment of junk wax.  I'll trade however many of those things I can to make a fair trade.  But Tom responded with the words "making this trade bigger".  I'm all for that.  So we turned it into a set building trade.  And as usual, I was so excited to get cards into sets, I didn't scan many cards.  Bad blogger (and when referring to me, I clearly use that term lightly).

But there are a couple highlights:

First off, here's the card I initially asked about.  Truth be told, I probably would have sent off the box I sent just for this card and called it even.  But Tom knocked off huge parts of a number of want lists for me.

One of things I have done is buy large lots of cards on eBay as long as it comes out to like 4 or 5 cents a card with shipping.  The problem with that practice is you never get any star cards.  Included in a stack of 1978 Topps that Tom sent was this guy:

Great ballplayer, so-so announcer.  And a star card.

Oh, and is there any question
which team Tom

I love me some 70's cards.   And there were plenty of those in the box. 

Thanks Tom for shrinking down some holes in my set collections.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Anthony Keith

I just went to the mailbox, and what a bunch of goodies in there today.  I got a Ted Williams card for that PC from eBay.  John dropped two more PWEs on me, and P-town Tom sent me a box.  But I wanted to put up a quick post on the other envelope I got today.  I won
these two cards on Listia for 100 credits.  1986 and 1987 Topps mini leaders.  I've been a fan of Gwynn's pretty much since I pulled his rookie cards out of packs of Fleer and Donruss back in 1983.  I went to the card store the next year and bought the Topps rookie.  He thus became one of my first player collections.  So these were good additions to the Gwynn PC.  But the thing that caught my eye was when I turned the cards over:

Apparently Gwynn lost 7 pounds in 1986.  Ummmm, as I said I'm a big Gwynn fan, always will be.  The guy is a class act all the way.  But I'm not so sure Gwynn ever lost weight.  At least that's the way I seem to remember it.

And 1

Recently I received 2 PWEs from John over at My first blog.  Welp, another PWE showed up from John.  Who doesn't love PWEs?  Seriously?  Awesome right?

He definitely is hitting on the wasteland that is my Angels from the period of my collecting inactivity.  I have to say though, Disney did the Angels no favors with their rebranding.  They switched the team from my favorite logo/color combination the Angels have employed:

to that powder blue wing thingy.  The team did have some star power though.  You have the Mo Vaughn signing (bust), Garrett Anderson came up (overrated, but still a good ballplayer), and Troy Glaus there (power).

J.T. Snow is modeling the unis ther for us.  There's a lot going on there in the bottom corner on Darin Erstad.  Stuck in a "metal universe" snowstorm I guess.  Up top there's a Tim Salmon to add to my growing PC.  When I saw the back of the George Hendrick there, I thought "I have that.  Junk Wax, duh".  But no, its a "Topps reproduction" (from the back) of the 1988 card in 2001 Archives.

Thanks again John.  I think I managed to find some more cards from your want list, so keep an eye out.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013


Frankenset card #46

As of right now, my frankenset is very 80's-centric.  I collected in the 80's then stopped for almost 20 years.  That's the way it goes.  But I've gotten a few newer cards, and whenever a newer card (or vintage for that matter) has a double it goes in the set.

And so it is with card #46.  2008 Upper Deck Timeline Torii Hunter.  Its actually a pretty sharp looking card.  Good team colors.  Decent (in)action shot.

I've always been ambivalent about the one line of stats cards.  I'd rather have the full set, but one year doesn't usually bother me.  But just career stats?  Nah.  Home jersey on the front, road jersey on the back.  Nice touch.

One thing that gets me about collecting cards from the period after I stopped is that there are always parallels to look for.  I had to check The Trading Card database to see if the cards I have could be different in some way.  There's a gold version, but the two I have are the same.  Are there other resources out there for figuring out what you have?

Torii Hunter is a player who I seem to appreciate more now that he's gone.  While he was an Angel I always new he was a good clubhouse guy.  I knew he was a great defender, and a decent bat.  But the Angels basically let him go so that they could pay Josh Hamilton $97 million more.  Seriously.  $123 million versus $26 million.  Sad thing is, they have about the same value.  But Torii is far less streaky.  And doesn't need a life coach following him around. (low blow?)  Its easy to overstate "intangibles" in baseball.  It happens every day.  It happens every time a .500 pitcher who "eats innings" is signed.  But when a popular, good influence player leaves a team, the clubhouse can suffer.  Especially when the player is a solid contributor on the field.

Thanks for the 5 years Torii.