Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Blaster Madness #6: 2019 Bowman

I went to the Dallas Card Show this weekend on the hunt for a box of 2019 Bowman. There wasn't much to find, and the prices reflected that scarcity. A regular hobby box was running around $140. I decided against that, believing the better deal would be to grab seven blasters.

On my way home, I stopped by the local Walmart and snagged four blasters. Let's take a look and see how I did.

This was the only paper parallel I managed to pull, featuring Roberto Ramos of the Rockies. The blue parallels are numbered to 150.

I also was able to pull this Rookie of the Year Favorites atomic refractor of the Blue Jays' Danny Jansen. It is also numbered to 150. I really like atomic refractors, but I really hate the Blue Jays. Though that may not be as true now that Bautista has fallen off the face of the earth.

Speaking of parallel inserts, I also managed to pull this Top 100 gold refractor of the Royals' Khalil Lee. I know nothing about this guy, but that can be said of everyone featured so far. Also, why isn't this set called "Topps" 100 or "Topp" 100? Seems like the kind of cheesy move that Topps would pull...and I wouldn't hate it.

And we finish with an autograph:

A green refactor auto of Matt Vierling. I don't believe green refractor autos are exclusive to blasters, but I do know that the autographs that are normally found in retail are sticker autos on paper cards (rather than chrome). Regardless, I was stoked to pull this.

So after four blasters, I'm willing to say that my value is already better than what I would have pulled from a single hobby box. I've watched a few breaks online and it seems that color is a hard thing to come by. 

This would indicate that production has been ramped up even more this year. That fuels my fear that the industry is starting to edge back in the overproduction of the 80s and 90s. I really hope I'm wrong.

Have you had any luck with this year's Bowman? Are you concerned that we are approaching a second overproduction era?

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

A White Whale Comes Home

There's always a method to the madness. A couple days ago, I posted about having some cards in my Watch List for a long time. The reason I noticed that is because I went to that list to remove a card that I watched for more than three years.

Another copy showed up on eBay and I was able to grab it for about half the price of the first copy.

I was pretty excited about getting this card in. It is one that I've always wanted, and it may be a favorite in my collection.

From 2012 Topps Update, this is the gold parallel of Matt Harrison's All-Star Stitches card. Yes, it's just a relic card, but it may be the most beautiful relic I've ever seen. The gold shimmer really makes the card stand out. Furthermore, it is representative of the only year Harrison made it to the All-Star Game. 

Even the back of the card is attractive. The framing and color scheme really work here. I'm a big fan, and I couldn't be more excited to have this card in my collection.

I went back to look at the first copy a couple of days later and noticed that it was gone. That afternoon, I received a package from COMC. I was intrigued, as I haven't ordered anything from there in a while. I opened it up and found the copy of the card that I watched for more than three years (it was on eBay through the COMC auction service). A friend purchased it and sent it my way as a nod to my late grandmother, who passed away just over a year ago. She was the one that got me into collecting. I miss her very much.

So, here's the story, in short: I watch a card for more than three years, then purchase a cheaper copy that appears. A couple days after receiving the card, I also receive the first copy as a gift. The world is a pretty incredible place.

What is the longest you've watched a card before pulling the trigger?

Monday, April 15, 2019

Blaster Madness 5: 2019 Panini Stars and Stripes (This Was a Good One)

I've got a number of scans from other blasters that I had planned on blogging about, but the contents of a blaster I purchased yesterday forced it to the front of the queue. I had to make a quick run to Walmart for a couple things and decided to grab one of the available blasters of 2019 Panini Stars and Stripes. I'm a sucker for anything Team USA, so thee cards are right up my alley. 

Each blaster promises two autographed or memorabilia cards per box, on average. Let's take a look at what I pulled.

First was this Caleb Pendleton auto. Pendleton is a member of the 17U National Team, a squad that works in the USA Baseball development program. Like Bowman, there may be a wait to find out if he makes it to the majors.

This was the third hit of my box, a Hunter Haas relic auto. The wait for Haas will be even longer, as he is a member of the 16U team.

But here is the real beauty of the box:

This is a 1-of-1 Jack O'Dowd USA Baseball patch autograph! How awesome is that?! Again, this guy may take a while to determine if he ever makes it to MLB, but it's a beautiful card nonethelless.

What's the best card you'v pulled from a blaster (of any product!)?

Sorry for the brevity, but today has turned out to be a bit busier than I expected                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

Thursday, April 11, 2019

It's Been There Awhile

Yesterday, I was going through my regular eBay check. I have a handful of saved searches that I look at a couple times a day to see new postings of cards I want. I had an itch to buy something, but none of the new listings jumped out at me. So I flipped over to my Watch Items folder.

As I scanned through it, I realized that a couple cards had been in that folder for a while. A while as in years. These cards, for whatever reason, have never sold and are continuously re-listed. Let's take a look at a couple.

First up is a rookie variation of Yu Darvish from 2012 Topps. I know Cubs fans probably hate him, and a lot of Rangers fans were disappointed by him, but I'm still a Darvish fan. This card features Darvish throwing left-handed - something he's good at. Reports are that he can throw in the low- to mid-80's with his left hand. I've always thought this was a cool shot. 

I saved this listing when I first saw it at least three years ago. I'm on a budget, and rarely do I go out of that budget to get a card. I have waited for the price to come down, but it hasn't. A cursory search for the card on eBay now shows the cheapest listing at $12 or best offer, with $4 shipping. Maybe I'll swap out listings.

The next long-tenured card in my Watch List is this dual auto featuring Eric Campbell and my primary PC guy, Matt Harrison. Unlike the Darvish, the reason for not buying this card isn't money. while I think the price could be cheaper, I do think that the asking price here is fair. I just don't like this card. I think it might be one of the ugliest cards I've ever seen. So, since I know that I need this card for the collection, I drag my feet when it comes down to buying it. 

Lastly, the longest-watched item in my list. This hails from 2013 Triple Threads, featuring three nice patches from Harrison's All Star uniform. Unlike the last card, I think this card is a beaut! Like the Darvish, my problem here is cost. This card has been listed for $57 and has been for almost five years. I've tried emailing the seller to see if we could work out a deal for it, but I never hear anything back. So, the card will sit in my Watch List until it does get cheaper or I find another copy for less.

This leads me to what I believe is an interesting Blog Bat Around question: Which card(s) have been your Watch List the longest and why have they been there so long?