July 31, 2016

A Celebratory Photo SP

A few days ago, I shared the most recent(very generous) trade package from Bubble Gum territory. In said package, I found two Yankee photo variation SPs from different 2015 Topps sets. Right after I received that package, I began looking into picking up a few of the remaining Yankee SPs. I was fortunate to find the following floating around Listia for a very reasonable number of credits.

I like this card for two reasons. First, I liked Prado before he was dealt to the Yankees exactly two years ago today. I was thrilled when I heard he would be playing in Pinstripes. Second, I know exactly which game this card immortalizes.

On Friday, August 22, 2014 Prado cracked a HR early in the game and hit a walk-off single. I found confirmation that this photo came from that night's celebration in a photo printed by the New York Daily News:

While this is taken from a different angle, it is the same moment. If you look closely at the card, you can see that it is Brett Gardner dumping the cooler on Prado.

This is far and away, my favorite card documenting his 37 game stint with the Yankees. That's it, acquired on July 31, 37 games, an appendectomy, and a trade in December. I wish he would have had more time in NY, but at least I'll always have that celebratory photo SP. Thanks for reading.

July 30, 2016

Batting 1.000 On Hockey Repacks

A week or two ago, just before I found a discounted UD series one hockey blaster, I picked up my second 100 card, 1:4 has a hit hockey repacks from a not-so-local Target.

I'll admit, I cheated a little bit on this one. You'll see why in a bit. I picked it up because I kinda liked the face card and was interested to get a better look at it. When I did, I caught a glimpse of the side of the package and saw something unique. The combo of interesting face card and unique looking card buried in the stack made me take it with me to the register when I was ready to check-out.

I was lucky to find a trio of Devils that were on the roster around the time I became a fan of the team. I have an especially fond memory of Stephane Richer. I recall renting an NHL game for the NES(I think) and I chose to play with the Devils. His likeness within the game was on par with Gretzky and Lemieux. They instantly became my team(fortified by all of my friends telling me I should like the Rangers) and Richer became one of my favorite players on the team. Using him in the game kinda reminded me of playing Tecmo Bowl with Bo Jackson.

The bottom row boasts two other great players from the late '80's, early '90's. I had to include the Stevenson RC in the scan simply because you just don't see rollerblades on many pieces of cardboard.

Great photos, especially the Lemieux/Bush meeting on that UD card.

There it is, right there in the center, the face card of the repack. I love that also hiding in the stack was a similarly designed Ovechkin. I dig that old photo of Joe Malone too. Get a load of that old school equipment and sweater!

I was pretty happy to pull this silver signature parallel out of there as well. So, what exactly was that unique looking card I saw from the side of the box? Well, I could tell that it was a thick acetate card of some sort, but I had no idea what kind it was.

This is prett awesome! The signature is on-card. Though I wasn't familiar with Drew Stafford, it's still a cool card. This makes me 2:2 pulling 'hits' from these repacks. This was a ton of fun to bust. My local Target(s) don't stock these for hockey so it won't become a habit to pick them up. When I happen to see a few of these on the shelves, I'll be sure to take a peek though. If the face card is worth it, I'll definitely crack a few more of these. Maybe I'll be able to keep,the streak alive. Thanks for reading.

July 29, 2016

Rounding Out My Father's Day Collection

A little over a month ago, I posted an awesome card that I had picked up from this year's Panini Father's Day promo. Well, I wasn't satisfied with just the one and I went on a mini eBay shopping spree with the goal of acquiring more of the singles and parallels that caught my eye. Here are the results of said shopping spree.

Let's start off strong out of the gate. This Schwarber relic was included in a lot of 6 cards that I really wanted to add to my collection. As much as I like him, it wasn't on my list of cards to pick-up. However, as I watched this auction come to a close, there were no bids, so I placed a really low bid and ended up being the only bidder in the auction. I was thrilled to add this in addition to a few of the others that will follow all in one auction, for the starting bid plus shipping. 

The Turner RC was a part of a 3 card lot alongside the Russell and one of the RCs that will appear a little further down the post. Once again, I was able to snag the lot for the starting bid.

While I don't normally stray too far from baseball and football, couldn't help but add the auction that included this Steph Curry to my list. Once again it was a lot(this time 6 cards) and I was able to win it for the starting bid price.

This was a separate 6 card lot from the same seller as the one that included the Curry and Harper above, so I made out twice as good winning for the starting bid and getting combined shipping to boot.

These three were included in the above six card lots. I love adding cards of former NC State guy, Russell Wilson. The Miller was a great addition as well, though not as great as the other card he has in the set. As happy as I was that the Broncos beat the Panthers, I do like my 'hometown' Panthers and Cam is the heart of the team. It's a pretty cool card of him if you ask me.

One of these was the third RC in the lot with Trea Turner. The other was one that I picked up singularly prior to winning the RC lot. I will likely find another home for the one that is #'d 300/599 simply because some of the foil on the serial number is flaking. If I don't find any takers, it'll just have to live in my collection. They are the first RCs I got that actually have the Broncos logo.

These two focus on the playoff exploits of two of my favorite Broncos. DT helping to defeat the Pats and of course, the base variety of my favorite Von Miller card ever produced(from SB50).

Last one for now, is the cracked ice parallel of the DT playoff card. It goes extremely well with the cracked ice Von Miller I posted about prior. Sadly, this DT isn't a Christmas card. I am keeping my eyes open for that one though. I've seen 11/25 and 13/25 listed...so close. Since almost all of the purchases in the shopping spree were lots, there are a bunch more that I have that will either find their way into trade packages or back onto eBay, but all told, I think I came away with some great deals. I walked away with 14 keepers(not including the Russell RC), some trade bait, and perhaps some singles to resell for right around $20(shipping fees included). There are a few other singles I want to track down, but shortly my attention will turn to Panini's National exclusive set. Thank goodness for the internet! Thanks for reading.

July 28, 2016

Bubble Gum Bomb

In keeping with the trade package catch-up, let's take a look at the most recent(though I've had this for several months at this point) package from Jeff at Wish They Still Came With Bubble Gum. As usual, he loaded it up with awesome cardboard goodness, but he sent an additional surprise my way this go 'round.

Starting off are two shiny NJ Devils. I've always loved the Black Diamond brand(across all sports) probably because they remind me of the early days of the SP brand. In those first few years, the RCs were done in varying styles of foil and I was always so excited to pull one of those.

I can't help but still collect Robbie Cano. He was one of my favorite Yankees during his time in NY. I was especially happy to find this Heritage purple refractor, even if he is sporting the M's jersey. That is my first card of Mo the Third. If he can develop into a half the player his dad was, he should have a long and successful career.

Ahhh, old Topps Tek! These young Hamiltons were especially welcome additions since I always like to be reminded of his time in the Rays system. When I think about that, it does make me wish that I had gotten the chance to see him in Durham Bulls colors, but it wasn't meant to be.

As much as I liked finding the Josh Hamilton Tek cards, you know I loved finding these new-to-me Bernie cards!

More Bernies and a Jorge that I've had my eyes on for a while were also very welcome additions.

I had completely forgotten about the Topps Laser set from back in the day until I found some in a quarter box at the last show I went to. There weren't any players I wanted in that quarter box, so it was cool to see this Wade Boggs fall out of the package. These look really intricate, but they are extremely fragile.

Since I'm not a huge fan of the GQ line, I always appreciate when I find GQ minis or mini parallels in trade packages. I scanned this Whitey Ford a while back, but I'm pretty sure the black parallel was #/50.

From one great Yankee hurler to another. These two David Cones pay tribute to the perfect game he threw back in July 1999. I've had the MVP card for a long time, but the Dominion was new to me and I couldn't help but show them both off side by side since the pics were snapped a few moments apart and from slightly different angles.

Nearing the end of this great stack of cards, but there are still these gems to highlight. Both of these are photo variation SPs from last year's Topps sets. I've shown the Jeter before. It shows The Captain celebrating(with his teammates) his walk off hit in his final Yankee Stadium AB. The Andrew Miller is a great shot of him presumably in the bullpen awaiting the call to start warming up for another save. 

That was some great, great cardboard. However, the real treat of this package was what followed.

I thought it was strange that when the envelope arrived, it was one of the letter sized ones. When I opened it, I saw the cards in full 9 pocket pages which I thought explained the envelope, but once I pulled the pages out, this remained. When I was younger, I made every attempt to collect programs like these. That's a habit I had to reconsider as I got older because I began to realize that space limitations and moving stuff like this from house to house can be tricky. Seeing this brought back fond memories and I really enjoyed reading through it. Jeff, I'm not sure where you found this, but thanks for thinking of me and sending it my way! I've got a stack of Braves, Falcons, and a few Lightning cards ready to pack and send to you.

Thanks for reading.

July 27, 2016

JBF Strikes Again

It has been a while since I've written up a trade package. For that I apologize to all of the great folks out there that have sent trades my way in the recent past. Granted, at this point, incoming packages are pretty much non-existent(a side effect of me not getting to the post office lately) but I do still have several packages that have posts in various stages of completeness. Tonight, I want to focus on another great Supertraders package from the Father of All Supertraders, JBF. As always, the bubble mailer was jam packed with great cardboard.

I was late to the Brock party, beginning to acquire RCs only a few weeks before he was signed away by the Texans. I was bummed, but can certainly understand why he left. He did a great job holding down the fort while Manning was on the shelf and then he was tossed to the side. This fan certainly recognizes that the Broncos would not have made it to the Big Game without his contributions. I particularly love the Platinum X-fractor(or whatever they call that pattern).

Here's a group of more former Broncos that are probably a bit under appreciated.

This is an incredible card! It is super thick and made of acetate.

This one is a blast from the past! Back in the mid to late '90's, Playoff had several inserts that were similar to this. You know he type, multiple players from the same team, Dufex-like backgrounds, and really long odds of pulling them from packs. Back then, I never thought I'd actually own one of these. It only took 21 years after this one was released, but I finally can add one to my collection. This one is particularly great for me because it features Shannon Sharpe and Glyn Milburn. Back in my younger collecting days, Milburn was one of my favorite non-star Broncos to collect.

Moving on to baseball, we've got minis! That's not all, though...

This awesome Longo relic was the icing on the latest cardboard bomb from JBF. Thanks for another great bunch of cards.

I realize I've been saying that I'd be shipping out packages for quite some time, but I really do have multiples packed in team bags, notes composed, with address labels written just awaiting their envelopes to be sealed and a trip to the post office. Fortunately, there is still a lot of time left before the end of the year, so I can always increase my volume of mail sent out. Thanks for reading.

July 24, 2016

The End of a WWE Era

Tonight will be the end of another WWE era. It's the last PPV event before the most recent brand split shows begin. Though I won't be able to watch live on the WWE Network, I decided to share some cardboard of a few of my favorite participants scheduled to perform on tonight's card.

Don't you dare be sour that I decided to start with the W-W-E Tag Team Champions...these guys are some of the most entertaining performers on the roster. They've got a difficult task tonight against the Wyatt Family.

When I pulled these from a hanger box of 2015 Chrome, I set them to the side, and I'm glad I did. I had no idea I had pulled two debut cards of a Certified G since I don't get to watch NXT. However, since making his main roster debut, Big Cass has quickly become one of my favorites(along with his partner Enzo).

Don't have this one in hand yet, but I did purchase this from an eBay seller in Japan. AJ Styles, Luke Gallows, and Karl Anderson vs. Enzo, Cass, and John Cena should probably be one of the most entertaining matches of the night.

The last piece of cardboard I'm going to share depicts the three guys that will battle it out in the main event.

The triple threat match between the former members of The Shield is the most highly anticipated match of the evening. I hope it can live up to the hype. I really hope that WWE creative book it with Dean Ambrose walking away to lead Smackdown Live as the reigning WWE Champion.

So, is anyone out there planning to watch Battleground tonight? What matches are you looking forward to? Which performers are you hoping come out victorious? Thanks for reading.

July 23, 2016

Treasure From the Land of the Rising Sun

As has been my habit for some time, I was recently hunting for hidden gems in the Land of Listia. A little over a week ago, I spotted this treasure.

I'm not a huge Matsuzaka fan, but I kept an eye on it and as the end of the auction approached, I put in a fairly reasonable bid and came away as the top bidder. It arrived yesterday and was even better looking than I thought it would be. Though it may be hard to tell from the scan, the front design is very reminiscent of the 1997 Fleer Metal set sans the comic book themed backgrounds. Let's take a look at the back.

Other than being issued by BBM, I don't know much about it other than I was happy to have added this for a really reasonable credit total. This brings my Japanese cardboard collection up to a whopping  4 cards. Thanks for reading.

July 15, 2016

Didn't Expect to Find This

Over the last week, Stadium Club has temporarily(I hope) disappeared from retail shelves in my general vicinity so I have had to explore other options to satiate my card breaking appetite. Earlier this week, I grabbed another hockey repack(I'll post on that another day),but while at my local Target I found something quite exciting.

I had considered, on multiple occasions, grabbing one of these shortly after they released but I never ended up taking one home. I couldn't justify the purchase price for a sport that I don't regularly collect when my reasoning for the gamble was to see if I could pull the Connor McDavid Young Guns RC. However, I've become increasingly involved in the world of Upper Deck ePack(possibly more on that at a later date) and when I saw this discounted series one blaster I had to roll the dice. Here are a few of my favorite base cards from the break.

I'm not a Blackhawks fan, but the emotion and the Stanley Cup Finals patch on that Duncan Keith make for an awesome piece of cardboard! I like the post-check action on the Subban and I included Parise simply because he is a former Devil.

A few interesting horizontal cards. I especially like that the puck is in mid-air on the Steen. Skinner ended up being my only 'favorite teams(Canes or Devils) pull'.

I wasn't overjoyed with either of these insert pulls. They're up for grabs if anyone is interested. It definitely looks like this blaster was meant for a Chicago fan...

I really like these Canvas inserts, though I was underwhelmed by the Weber. The best part of it for me is the fact that the stream from his water bottle was caught on film. I was happy to find a Canvas Young Guns in there. That's all for the insert portion of the program. Last stop is the Young Guns territory. Did I hit the lottery and snag the McDavid?

In short, no I didn't. The Panarin was a pretty darn good pull though. It cartainly made the break a success! This was one of the most entertaining blasters I've busted in a while. Now that I know they can be found in the clearance section, I'll be keeping my eyes open for one or two more. Thanks for reading.

July 7, 2016

This Day In Sports Entertainment History

Yes, I'm going to detour in order to share some cardboard that depicts one of my favorite moments in pro wrestling.

In one of the biggest swerves ever, the All American, the Immortal Hulk Hogan turned heel and joined Kevin Nash and Scott Hall creating one of the most influential factions in the history of sports entertainment.

Today marks 20 years since the beginning of that 'Too Sweet' storyline...dang, that makes me feel old! Thanks for reading.

July 6, 2016

Maybe This Guy Will Be Good Someday - #1 Draft Pick Edition

Occasionally I indulge in ripping some Bowman(or Bowman Chrome or Bowman Draft, etc) or select other prospect heavy products. I am especially prone to doing this if I can find said product on clearance at my local retail outlet. A few years back I stumbled upon a discounted hanger box of 2013 Elite Extra Edition(didn't know hey did hangers in addition to blasters) which promised some set number of cards that I can't recall with one guaranteed autograph. I picked it up quickly and ended up pulling a die-cut Aaron Judge and an auto of Jake Bauers who at the time the card was printed was a San Diego prospect but had recently been dealt to the Rays as a part of the Wil Myers deal. Therefore, I was pretty excited to pull an auto of a guy I might get to watch with the Bulls. Tucked towards the back of the stack of cards was this U15 Team USA relic card:

I had never heard of this kid and I tucked it away in a box. I came across this card over the weekend while I was searching for some other cards. When I saw it I thought, 'Hey, I've heard/seen that name recently'... Where did I hear that name?

Oh yeah...that kid was just taken number one overall in the 2016 MLB Draft! Not that being the top draft pick guarantees big league success, but at least he's not just some random guy that played for Team USA as a teen, never to be heard from again. Kinda cool to get a bit of reinforcement that maybe some of those unknown guys pulled from products like these may actually amount to something someday. Guess I should probably follow his career a little bit. Thanks for reading.

July 5, 2016

Post-Holiday Pack Therapy

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, the long weekend afforded me quite a bit of quality family time. All good things come to an end though and I anticipated today being a stressful day at the office and it definitely delivered. After 8 hours of craziness, I was able to slip out to grab a bite to eat and I decided that while I was out I needed some pack therapy. I rolled over to my local Target(not the same one where I found my blaster of Stadium Club last week) hoping that they had finally put some SC on the shelves or pegs. Fortunately, there were some jumbo packs hanging when I arrived. I grabbed two and went back to finish my workday. 

When I got to my car at the end of my shift, I ripped the packs. Photography-wise, the packs were underwhelming. Out of 24 cards, the following were the only really interesting cards.

I hadn't seen the Stargell pic before and I dig the old school uniform, especially the hat. The Cervelli in full gear is pretty slick and who doesn't love a good celebration shot? I'd like to think that Odor is celebrating his one punch knockdown of Joey Bats...

I'm loving these two RCs! The Shaffer is my favorite of his RCs as it shows him celebrating solo after his first career HR. He put on quite the act since his teammates were huddled in the dugout ignoring him. See the video below, it's quite entertaining. The Bird is a great shot taken on Jorge Posada Day(check the awesome patch on his sleeve).

This was an unexpected surprise!

The Instavision inserts are case hits exclusive to Hobby boxes according to Cardboard Connection but apparently that information isn't correct. I am a bit disappointed with seeing this in hand though. When I heard the name 'Instavision', I imagined something similar to to the SC inserts from years ago that actually contained a few seconds of game footage. Sadly, the card scans incredibly well and doesn't really do much of anything. Outside of being a little foil-y, it's just a nice insert, but nothing terribly special. Even with the vast majority of the remaining cards being fairly pedestrian, they were needs for my set build. I'm slowly chipping away. Thanks for reading.