Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Cards From P-Town!!!!

I'm WAAAAAAY behind on posting. Grad school has been eating me alive, so when I get home, I haven't really been doing much in the way of collecting...and that includes posting here. I'm trying to rectify that, but I make no guarantees.

A while back, before the Cubs won it all, our good friend P-Town Tom of the now former "Waiting 'Til Next Year" blog sent me a stack of Rangers cardboard, which I am more than grateful for (if you're interested, you can go here to learn about the new name of Tom's blog).

Tom also indulged me on another project I have wanted to do, which I haven't forgotten about, Tom! I promise!

As I'm currently sitting in my advanced theory class, I don't have a ton of time today. Therefore, I'm going to share the cards that Tom sent over without much detail. Tom, I apologize - but know that I am really thankful for them!!!

Monday, November 28, 2016

My First Twitter Trade: I Now Have A 2016 Allen & Ginter Unannounced Mini!!!

A couple weeks back, I took my search for the 2016 Allen & Ginter "Skippers" mini insert of Rangers manager Jeff Banister. I've been watching on eBay and have even made a few bid, but all cards were out of my price range. So I asked the Twittersphere to help me out. 

@CRyden33 came to the rescue. A few messages back and forth and we agreed on a trade that was more than fair. I went home for the holiday, and when I returned this guy was in my mailbox:

That's one handsome card!

I super stoked to have this in my collection. The SSP unannounced minis always seem really hard to get, so I am glad I found someone willing to make a trade.

I hope everyone have a relaxing Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

It's That Time of Year: My Annual Collecting Crisis Has Arrived

In what seems like an annual event, I once again find myself in a collecting funk, so to speak. I honestly don't know what is to blame for it this time because there are so many possible culprits. For instance, I have been at school studying, teaching and conducting research until at least midnight on an almost daily basis. I'm finishing up coursework this semester and will begin my dissertation in January. I'm trying to figure out if I want to teach or consult, or perhaps a combination of both. Beyond that, I still stress about my father's health. Speaking of stress, this election didn't really help. The campaign was truly divisive, and what's going on in the streets is just as, if not more, concerning. So yeah, I have a few things on my mind.

But I find myself now evaluating what I want to get out of collecting. I know I really enjoy sets like Heritage, Allen & Ginter and Stadium Club, so I think I want to continue building those. But other parts of my collection are no longer interesting to me. For instance, I think I am ready to jettison my Joey Gallo PC. Also on the chopping block:

My Texas Rangers Stadium Give Away (SGA) bobblehead collection. For whatever reason, I just lost interest, almost overnight. Another odd collection that I am ready to get rid of?

My Funko Pop! Marvel bobbles. No. More. Interest. I know these aren't baseball related, but they were definitely part of my collecting habits.

I don't want this to seem all doom and gloom for me. While I may have lost the itch for a few things, I have found myself enjoying different parts of my collection. For instance, I have been attempting to scan, front and back, every Ranger card that I have with the hopes of have a "Ranger Cardboard Encyclopedia," of sorts. This project is definitely fun, but it involves a lot of work. It makes me realize how many cards that I don't have. 

Furthermore, I also enjoy getting my sets into binders. It definitely makes my OCD more at ease when everything is in order. As I am learning for myself (but I've been hearing from y'all for a few years now), pages and binders can get pricey. But it feels that the project is well worth the work and cost.

I also feel excited to continue building my Rusty Greer and Matt Harrison PCs. 

So there's my crisis. I am looking to jettison some things and add some things. I guess I just need to figure out where to start. 

PS - If you have any interest in the above-mentioned items (Gallo, bobbleheads, Pops!), let me know. I'm ready to move 'em out!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Grabbing a few Big Names for my 1969 Topps Set at Duane's

Earlier in the month, I was home for a wedding and decided that I wanted to stop by Duane's Sportscards in Arlington. Among other things, I wanted to grab a few cards for my 1969 set, as I felt that I was neglecting it.

Duane's always has a large selection of vintage, and usually the prices are pretty good. They may cost a bit more than eBay, but I'm happy to pay a little more to help out a card dealer that I know.

Anyway, I snagged four cards, all of players that are pretty well known. As I am currently sitting in class, I'm just going to post scans of the cards and who is portrayed on them.

First up:

Don Sutton

Phil Niekro

Juan Marichal

And lastly, Joe Torre.

So that's it for now. Hope everyone is having a good day!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

I'm Looking for Your Input!!!

I've been gone for...well, I'm not certain. It seems like a long time. I could say that I was burned out on cards and I just needed to get away for a bit, but that would only be half true. The reality was that I was burned out with everything - cards, school, in general. I just hit a point where I needed to step back and recharge. Fortunately, my cousin/best friend/figurative brother made a point to come spend the weekend with me, and that did wonders. It's kind of magical what 18 holes can do early on a Sunday morning.

I'm ridiculously far behind on posting because of my need to step back. Don't believe me? Here's my pending post folder, and as you can tell, some have been pending for a while:

This is part of a larger problem I'm finding that I have. I recently began reorganizing my collection. I have almost everything physically organized, but I need a way to digitally organize everything. Here's the system I use now. First, I have been creating a checklist of 2016 releases and the Ranger cards that are in them:

From here, I create a Rangers-only checklist:

I try to note every card, parallels to inserts, that are included. Once complete, I note each card that I have with an "X" (as you can see above.

To accompany this, I have been scanning each card, front and back, which I keep in what I have nicknamed my "Ranger Cardboard Encyclopedia":

The image above is for the 2016 cards that I have. Each folder, when opened, looks similar to this:

Thus far, everything has worked out. However, I have spent a ton of time creating the checklists, and truth be told, I'm still working on 2016. I can't imagine how much time it will take to create 40-plus years leading up to this year. Nevermind the fact that it will get infinitely more difficult when I start building checklists for products that don't have the Rangers intentioanlly identified.

So here's my question. How do you keep a digital catalog of your collection? Do you use specific software? Have you created your own system? I would greatly appreciate your input! Feel free to create your own post on the matter and leave the link in the comment sections below!

Now, I can't end this post without sharing some cardboard! In building my 2016 checklist, I've come across a few sets that feature only one Ranger card. One of these is the Walmart Marketside Pizza set. Prince Fielder is the only card in the set, and I recently grabbed it for about $1.25 shipped.



Nothing special, but it completes a set!

I hope everyone is doing well, and I look forward to your help with organization!

Sunday, October 9, 2016

A Few Boxes of 2016 Heritage Minor Leagues

I've got to get this out: I hate the Blue Jays. For numerous reasons. I cannot stand them. Their fans are pretty awful - I've already received a handful of hateful/threatening tweets since the game ended just a few minutes ago. Stay classy, you keyboard warriors of Toronto.

Okay, I feel slightly better, but not a lot.

On to something that will make me feel better. This year, my box opening has decreased dramatically. This is due to a combination of being on a tighter budget and the fact that Topps products are becoming more and more disappointing.

However, when I saw that Heritage Minor Leagues would have an on-card auto and a relic card in each box, I knew that I was in. The best part? A box only runs about $50. So I set aside some money to purchase two boxes, as I thought that would guarantee a full set. Spoiler alert: it didn't.

I bought my first two boxes at my LCS in Lubbock. My relics weren't bad - at least I've heard of these guys:

My autos? Well, they were a different story. I haven't heard of either of these guys:

I also pulled a few of the blue-border parallels:

And I even snagged a peach-parallel (can we please call it something else???) numbered to 25:

However, the "big hit" of my two boxes was this:

The Tyler O'Neill "green bat" variation (thanks to eBay for the photo - I'll explain momentarily). So far, only three of these types of variations have been found. It's cool to pull one.

A few days later, I was back in DFW and I decided to stop in and visit with Duane of Duane's Sports Cards. After the initial hand collation of my first two boxes, I had only about 66% of the set. So I decided to buy another couple boxes.

My relics were decent:

I've heard of these guys, too. How about the autos?

Wait - another Jackson auto??? Okay, that sucks. What about the blue-border parallels?

That Blandino looks familiar...oh yeah, I pulled the same card in my first round. I also pulled a peach parallel (still sounds stupid):

Hey, that isn't too bad.

And I also noticed that one box had two autos in it. You may have seen the tweet:

Sweet! One of the "SSP" no team name autos of Phil Bickford!!!! I didn't realize Bickford was traded to the Brewers earlier this year, but this is still a sweet card.

When I returned to Lubbock, I stopped by my LCS and dropped off the Bickford and O'Neill to be sent into PSA for slabbing and grading. I don't care so much about the grades (I expect both to be 9's), but I love seeing a Heritage card in a PSA slab. I guess it's an OCD thing.

I also collated my new boxes to finish off my set. But wouldn't you know, I am STILL a few cards short. Most annoyingly, I need card number 107. I shouldn't need ANY base cards after buying four boxes. Ridiculous. Beyond that, I need three short prints: card numbers 203, 206 and 212. If you have any of those, let's talk!

Lastly, each box comes with two cards that offer chances at winning a day to "make your pro debut." Each card has a code that is revealed by scratching the coating and entering the code on the website The card looks like this:

I had eight of these cards. I never win anything, so I threw the cards away. Then I decided, what the heck? I pulled the cards from the trash bin next to my desk and scratched them and began entering them one-by-one into the system. Loser after loser. On the sixth entry, though, I actually won! The system said I was a winner and then asked me to answer a few short questions about my love of baseball. Sweet!

So, what exactly did I win?

It appears as if I won either a hat or a pin! Cool deal! I seriously doubt that I will win the grand prize, so I will take whatever I do win and be extremely happy!

So, overall, I love the set. Heritage in all of its variations is one of my favorite product lines. However, this set is a major disappointment in its collation issues. I shouldn't have to buy four boxes to put a set together, and if I did buy four boxes, I should have the entire set! I was not so fortunate. Receiving the same autos and parallels was just a coincidence - or at least that's what I'm telling myself.

Anyway, I am off to bed. Hope everyone is well!

Friday, October 7, 2016

A Nice eBay Mailday

Recently, Topps Heritage High Number hit the market. I love the Heritage products, so I knew I needed to grab a box or two. I did just that, but in the excitement of getting everything organized and put away (more on this in a later post), I forgot to create a post about what I pulled. In short: nothing terribly exciting.

So I decided to hit up eBay for some of the cards I did want. A couple came in a few days ago, and since I am in Iowa City, Iowa, for a wedding, I have a bit of free time on my hands to share with you what I bought.

First up, this guy:

You can't tell from the front....

...but this is actually the mini parallel version of the card. Only Desmond and Nomar Mazara had mini parallels in the set. Speaking of Mazara...

...I was able to grab this redemption for his Real One Auto. Topps hasn't indicated whether or not Mazara has signed these, so I am assuming that means that he hasn't. However, if the way the Rangers are playing the Blue Jays is any indication, he may have a few months of free time pretty soon.

That's it for now. I hope everyone is doing well!