Sunday, May 31, 2020

Highly generous and completely fantastic

There are so many generous bloggers out there who have been giving away such nice cards, in many cases nicer than what I myself have for my own collection, let alone as trade bait. In terms of volume of cards sent the nicest just might be Brian of Highly Subjective and Completely Arbitrary. This week he sent me a couple hundred awesome cards - apparently I had won a contest in addition to the results of several Free Card Fridays. I'm not even sure where the FCF cards end and the contest cards begin, as I wasn't keeping track of what I asked for (makes it a better surprise that way). Here are some highlights of what I got from him:

A couple of Yankee autographs.
 A whole lot of fun cards of various kinds.
 2017 and 2019 setbuilds.
 My last two cards needed to complete the 1998 Topps set! I now have the full run from 1977-2008.
I remember picking out this card. I found it funny that the sign behind him said "SLUTS".
I guess it's "SUITE" but come on, you saw "SLUTS" first too.

A variety of great Yankee cards.
 Two unopened packs of 2003 Victory.
 Each pack had one green parallel card. Hard to do better than the two I got - Pujols and Maddux.
 Thanks Brian! Despite your note I do plan on sending some cards to you!

Saturday, May 30, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 6

Day 6 of the Cardpocalypse Challenge: Favorite non-sport card in your collection. The first card set I ever collected was the Topps Return of the Jedi set. I was six years old in 1983 and I did complete the entire 220 card set. I didn't take great care of them over the years and they are unsorted in a box. I know I am probably missing some, so I have no intention of sorting them to see what has gone missing.

For this post I looked through the cards to see what not only stood out to me now, but also would have done so when I was a kid. I came up with this awesome action shot from the Endor battle. A lot of times you see the same few photos from the original trilogy - I don't think you see this one very often. Looks like the stormtrooper is about to be hit by his own side's laser.

Friday, May 29, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 5

Day 5 of the Cardpocalypse Challenge: Favorite "other" sport card in your collection. When I picked up that huge haul of hockey cards last year I hung on to a very few that had some fun photos. For my "favorite" I almost went with a card with Ken "The Rat" Linseman posting with a rat doll, but went with this one instead.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 4

Day 4 of the Cardpocalypse Challenge: Favorite basketball card in your collection. I've never been able to drum up any interest in basketball personally. I've got a few boxes of basketball cards sitting around that I have no interest in, they are all available for trade. I think most are the basketball equivalent of junk wax but I have a few somewhat nicer ones. If you collect basketball let me know.

I picked out the first card that grabbed my attention from one of those boxes. Everyone loves a Mookie, I think this guy was a fan favorite anyway. Better-than-average photo for a hoops card and I always like shiny. I've got a few cards from this set available.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 3

Day 3 of the Cardpocalypse Challenge: Favorite football card in your collection. I'll go with one that I've acquired during quarantine (day 1 of the challenge). Came from one of the Johnny's Trading Spot Big Fun Games (he still needs three more for Friday night).  One of my oldest cards, and it is of a Giants legend, Homer Jones.
I could have picked a card from a player whom I actually saw play, like Taylor, Simms, Bavaro, Hostetler, Manning, et al. But I don't really have one stand-out card for any of them.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 2

Day 2 of the Cardpocalypse Challenge: A card from the current release year with a unique photo. The only 2020 cards I have are from the base set, though I do have most of Series I. Like most recent Topps base sets, this is mostly action photos. Many of them are quite well done but aren't really unique - there are only so many different ways to capture baseball action, especially if you restrict yourself to just what is available from services like Getty, which is what Topps does now that they don't use their own photographers anymore.

This card however stood out to me for two reasons. One is that with his scraggly hair and beard, simple gray T-shirt and what looks like gray sweatpants, Scherzer looks like any other regular guy. A much-better-shape version of me, even. Second, this is the first card that I am aware of that clearly shows someone taking a selfie in the background.

Monday, May 25, 2020

7-Day Trading Card Challenge: Day 1

One of the many new blogs (new to me, anyway) is Cardpocalypse, and he has started a new 7-Day Trading Card Challenge. Day 1 is "Favorite Card Acquired During Quarantine".

Not that hard to do - my new matchbook obsession has also led me to acquire what are now the two oldest cards of Hall-of-Famers in my vintage collection.

1936 Paul Waner

1934 Jesse Haines

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Cardboard Cousins: '58 Topps/'07 Heritage

'58/'07 is the first instance where I have a lot of cards from both sets. Clearly there was a lot of intentional pair-ups by Topps. These are just instances where I own both cards.

#439 Two Indians pitchers. Narleski was primarily a reliever though, unlike Westbrook.
 #390 Two All-Star Braves catchers.
 #366 Two Cardinals outfielders at the beginning of their careers. Sadly, both died quite young.
 #255 Not teammates here, but Topps paired the '06 Cy Young winer with the '58 Cy Young winner, surely not a coincidence.
 #244 Two rookie Dodger outfielders. Kemp would have a much better career but Demeter had several solid seasons with the Phillies in the early '60s.
 They even used the same cartoon on the back, just reversed.
 #226 A couple of undistinguished Pittsburgh relievers. It's a shame Topps couldn't duplicate the bright blue background from the original.
 #224 The '57 Yankees' relief ace paired with the '06 Yankees starting ace. Topps using the wrong shade of orange here . . .
 #23 . . . and even worse, here with the KC A's red. I wasn't familiar with Bill Tuttle but he was actually quite similar to Mark Kotsay. Both were regular outfielders but not stars, who had come over to Oakland after some success with other teams (Tuttle with Detroit, Kotsay with Florida and San Diego).
 #21 Topps does a better job here with the blue. Barclay and Cain were both promising pitchers coming off their rookie seasons.  After going 13-12 in 2006 Cain would be a three-time All-Star, winning over 100 games and was a part of three World Champion Giants teams. After going 9-9 in 1957, arm injuries limited him to just 7 more major league games. Every time people complain about modern pitchers being weak, remember that for every Gibson or Drysdale there were 20 guys like Barclay who had promising careers cut short because of the primitive handling of pitchers back then.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Cards and Vintage Things: Yes, More Matchbooks

I couldn't resist pulling the trigger on another cheap matchbook lot. 50 matchbooks for just over a quarter per.

Part of the reason for grabbing this lot was two more '34 Diamond Match cards. (Yes, they can be called cards). Baxter Jordan was .300 hitting first baseman with no power, at a time when first base was increasingly becoming a power position, so he only lasted a few years in the league. Jesse Haines, however, is my second Diamond Match HOFer (and my oldest). This is my first card of a player born in the nineteenth century (1893) and who debuted over 100 years ago (1918). Haines was the ace of the Cardinals staff in the 1920s and early 1930s. He was 40 years old when this card came out, but he still pitched another three years and this isn't even his "sunset card" (he's in the 1936 World Wide Gum) set.
 The other grabber for me was a 7-Up matchbook with "The Uncola" logo. Goes well with the other 7-Up matchbooks I have.
 Here's most of the rest of the lot. Heavy on hotels and heavy on Reno and the San Francisco/San Jose/Oakland area.
 A MetLife matchbook with the original MetLife building, and a '38 Studebaker matchbook, are two highlights.
 Diamond Match didn't just do baseball cards. An Olympic swimmer, Larry "Buster" Crabbe was famous for playing Tarzan, Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon (though he not done either space hero yet when this was printed). Myrna Loy was Nora in several Thin Man movies (the first is referenced on the back). John Howard never became a big star but had a long Hollywood career. A decade after this matchbook was printed he served as a Naval Lieutenant during World War II, earning the Navy Cross for his acts of valor. I am in no rush to get rid of these, but they don't fit well into my collection and I would be fine to trade these for vintage baseball cards or something else interesting.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Vintage backgrounds: Walt Disney?

Why is there a sign behind Dave McNally that says Walt Disney? The Orioles trained in Miami, not terribly near the still-new Walt Disney World in Orlando, and it doesn't look like that's what it says either. The orange writing is not particularly common for Disney. In 1972 they released a movie called "Biscuit Eater" which had orange writing on the post, but I don't think that's what it says either. Any ideas?

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Cards from Chavez Ravining

Alex of Chavez Ravining sent me some great additions to my '18, '19 and '20 setbuilds this week. Some great cards in here, including some big Yankee names. Hopefully we'll get to see these guy play at some point this year.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Cards from The Collective Mind

The Collective Mind is another blogger who has been sharing some useful mailing tips for those of us who are used to just slapping together a package and taking it to the post office to let them do the work. Looks like he sent out a bunch of packages and I was fortunate to get one.

A bunch of set needs, mostly from late-00s Upper Deck. Some great photos in there.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

1981 Topps Joey McLaughlin

The front: Even though the sky seems partly cloudy, the photographer still managed to get McLaughlin to squint into the sun.

The back: McLaughlin’s 12 wins tied for third in the Southern League in 1976.

The player: Reliever Joey McLaughlin pitched for the Braves, Blue Jays and Rangers from 1977 to 1984. In 250 games he went 29-28 with a 3.85 ERA.

The man: After his career McLaughlin did a lot of youth coaching, but is now retired.

My collection: I have 14 of his cards, from 1980 to 1985. I would be interested in trading for 1983 Fleer Star Stickers #107.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Cardboard cousins: '54 Topps/'03 Topps Heritage

I don't have many '54s but I did have a couple that lined up to heritage cards. For some reason Topp's didn't use the baby blue color. The forest green looks pretty good too though.

#192 Cot Deal/Matt Morris. Other than being right-handed pitchers they didn't have much in common. In 1954 Deal, a journeyman reliever, pitched in 33 of his career 45 games. Morris in 2003 went 11-8 in the Cardinal's rotation, a down year from 22-8 and 17-9 the previous two seasons.
 #38 Eddie Stanky/Tony LaRussa. Two famous managers. Stanky at the beginning of his career, LaRussa well into his.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Extra chrome

I had about fifty cents in eBay extra bucks last quarter. I couldn't find any vintage I could make worthwhile at that reduction, so instead I bought a little lot of '19 Chrome for almost nothing. These are my first eight cards in this set. A little extra Chrome once in a while is nice to have.

Vintage backgrounds: Not Sun City?

A while back I showed a 1970 Seattle Pilots card taken in Tempe with Double Butte Mountain dominating the background. In that post Gregory asked if it was the same mountain in the background of Jerry Bell's 1974 card.
We're up to the 1974 set now in the Vintage Backgrounds series. In 1973 the Brewers found themselves in a new spring training site - Sun City Stadium. They stayed there through 1985, and ten years later it was razed for a seniors apartment complex. Theoretically then this picture should have been in Sun City. However that ballpark was in the middle of town and most photos taken in the ballpark (pretty much all the Sun City Stadium photos online can be found on this Smugmug site) do not have mountains in the background. So my guess is that this is a photo from a prior spring, and it is probably Double Butte or another Tempe mountain in the background.

There is one photo from the Sun City era that does have some mountains clearly in the background. It is probably from 1985, the Brewers' last season in Sun City, and it is too good not to be shared. Such a stark difference between baseball of the 1970s/1980s with that of the 2000s/2010s. (The 2020s? Who knows?)

Friday, May 15, 2020

Cards and vintage things: more matchbooks

I picked up a lot more matchbooks recently. One huge lot and one tiny lot.

I'll start off with a little baseball content. Then it's all matchbooks the rest of the way for this post.

I'm happy to say that I am a good enough baseball fan that I recognized this guy immediately. It's the cover of a 1955 Ohio Blue Tip matchbook. It was unlicensed, and is not in the Beckett book or TCDB, so I'm not considering it a baseball card. Fun little thing to have though.
For those of you who couldn't figure out the player - it's Ted Williams. Fun to have a '55 Williams collectible of any kind.

Both lots had cool Pepsi matchbooks. I've got a nice little collection of these now. Here are the two new ones.
 The "Think Young" matchbook came in a little lot of 10. Cost about $7. Other interesting matchbooks were two for the NY restaurant Sardi's. Both had a phone number on the inside, one in the old-style alphanumeric, the other in the new style all-digits. The others were mostly San Francisco-area matchbooks, some of them fairly modern.

The other lot cost twice as much as the first lot - $15. For that $15 I got about 850 matchbooks. Most seem to be 1950s-1960s. So 85 times the matchbooks for 2 times the cost. This was the one where I thought the seller ghosted me, but I think she was just annoyed that it cost her more in postage then what she got for the matchbooks, and took her time sending them. Here are some highlights. There was a fair amount of duplication so if you are interested in anything you see let me know. At least half of the matchbooks came from Texas, seems to be the Austin area.

Some more in the soda category, including two-and-a-half Coke matchbooks.
 A variety of familiar brands here.
 Lots of drugstore/medical matchbooks. Old brands like Rexall, Dristan, Anacin, etc.
 Quite a lot of Hunt's tomato sauce matchbooks. Each one had a recipe on the back.
 Some cool gas station matchbooks.
 Some great automotive matchbooks. '61 and '63 Chevrolet, '62 and '64 Ford.
 There were two of this fantastic Continental Airlines matchbook, allowing me to show the great inside as well as the outside.
 I had never heard of Blackie Sherrod but apparently he is overwhelmingly considered the best sportswriter in Dallas history. He was about 10-15 years into his career at this point. He ended up working for over 60 years. You might recognize the girl in the right from the last matchbook post. Then she was on a kitchen company matchbook, here she is on a dry-cleaner matchbook.
 Such a wide variety of matchbooks that really create a snapshot in time. Afro-American Life Insurance was one of the country's largest black-owned businesses, and it is in the same lot with a caricature that would not be acceptable for much longer.
 The inside of that matchbook may even be more offensive than the outside.
 Matchbooks for children? I couldn't find much online about the "Zany Zoo" series. Seems to be 1960s.
 Anyone out there a USC graduate/fan? Lots of these matchbooks. Also one for Cal, and a couple from Tulane. The Tulane's have the 1967 football schedule inside.
 Lots of 1962 Seattle World's Fair matchbooks.
 There were several older NYC matchbooks. Richmond Hill is in Queens. WEAF became WNBC in the 1940s, dating the matchbook to this time. In 1988 WNBC became WFAN, the sports talk station (and current home of the Yankees).
 This is one of my favorites from the lot. A great piece of Long Island aviation history.
 Lots of military related matchbooks. These are mostly Air Force Bases and military hospitals in Texas.
 Some of the boxes came in this vintage Hershey's box - that will be a fun add to my vintage collection. Probably 1950s. And there are real pipe cleaners in the Sir Walter Raleigh package, also 1950s.