Tuesday, March 7, 2017

February COMC Haul

While I haven't been checking out the blogging biosphere tooo much lately, I've at least continued to help COMC with their inventory efforts. February produced my latest batch of cards resulting from that assistance.

According to COMC's statistics, I've thus far accumulated 685,965 points, good for about $685 ($1 COMC cash for every 1,000 points) which I've since converted into 624 cards purchased to date. I'm actually in 47th place on the all-time leaderboard for their inventory challenge.

As for my February order, my selection of more than 50 cards was all over the board. They ranged from San Diego Padres and Tony Gwynn cards, to Packers, Wild, autographs, and political pieces of printed cardboard.

I'll begin my February COMC package with scans of my most favorite Padre of all, Mr. Padre himself, Tony Gwynn.

It's possible to say I found a few Tony Gwynns aplenty, beginning with retro cards relating to his college days as a San Diego State Aztec (I'll be getting back to this Aztec theme later). The three SDSU cards include his 2009 Press Pass Fusion (#3), 2014 Upper Deck 25th Anniversary Silver (#37) and 2015 Panini Contenders (#91). I also picked up his 2015 Donruss Tony Gwynn Tribute (#5), the only card of this mini-set I didn't have yet, as well as a 1998 Leaf (#166), and a 2003 Topps Retired Signature (#30).
I also updated my Padres player collection with the addition of a 2016 Donruss Optic Travis Jankowski RC (#57), 2004 Absolute Memorabilia Akinori Otsuka RC (#211) S/N 346/1000, 2016 Topps Heritage Chrome Alexei Ramirez (#THC606) S/N 978/999, 2016 Bowman Prospects Yellow Ruddy Giron (#BP20), 2007 Artifacts Divisional Artifacts Trevor Hoffman jersey (#HO) S/N 23/199, 2009 Sweet Spot Everth Cabrera Autograph RC (#109) S/N 251/699, 2014 Elite Turn of the Century Autographs Reymond Fuentes (#85), and a 2007 Sweet Spot Kevin Cameron Autograph RC (#129).

Otsuka, a pitcher who I enjoyed watching pitch and who toiled from the San Diego bullpen from 2004-05, now serves as their Triple-A bullpen coach at El Paso. As for the Cameron Sweet Spot helmet card,  I just felt it was especially sweet.

Since we're now in our fourth year as Iowa Wild hockey ticketholders, we're seeing more and more of our players moving up to (and sticking with) the Minnesota Wild. So, I decided to go off onto another collective bent and start collecting autographs and rookie cards of those players we've seen skating here at Wells Fargo Arena. I already have autographed sticks and programs these players have autographed over the years during team autograph sessions, but I felt having certified autos and nice RCs of these players would be a nice touch, too.
 

 
So, the only stipulation to this new Iowa Wild collection is the fact each player must have played at Iowa, since it stands to reason we would of seen him continue his Wild career through Minnesota's AHL affiliated. 
 
So, what better place to begin, than with a 2011-12 Panini Contenders NHL Ink Brett Bulmer (#24), 2012-13 Fleer Retro Autographics  1996-97 (96JF), 2002-03 BAP Signature Series RC (#187), 2011-12 Dominion Carson McMillan RC (#121) S/N 062/199, 2013-14 Panini National Treasures Retro Phenoms Autographs Tyler Cuma (Wolf Logo) (#RPTC1), and a 2012-13 Certified Signatures Cody Almond (#37).
My autographed goalie trifecta displaya 2013-14 Dominion Private Signings Darcy Kuemper (#PSUE) S/N 144/199, 2013-14 Score Hot Rookie Signatures Johan Gustafsson (#748), 2007-08 Be a Player Signatures Josh Harding (#SHA), 2015-16 Upper Deck Premier Christopher Bertschy RC(#60) S/N 183/399), 2016-17 Upper Deck MVP Green Script Mike Reilly RC (#276), 2016 Upper Deck MVP Mike Reilly RC (#276), and a 2016-17 O-Pee-Chee Retro Mike Reilly (#551)

When it comes to the rookie cards for these lads, you can't beat these 2015-16 Upper Deck Michael Keranen RC (#466), 2012-13 Upper Deck Warren Peters RC (#230), 2012-13 Upper Deck Tyler Cuma RC (#228), 2012-13 Certified Jason Zucker RC (#144) S/N 396/999, 2013-14 SPx Mathew Dumba RC (#139), 2011-12 Panini Contenders Carson McMillan RC (#172) S/N 747/999, and a 2014-15 Spx Christian Folin RC (#129).

During my last shipment, I picked up a few Green Bay Packers autographed cards. Now I'm not too sure if I want to really attempt to collect all the Packers autos.

In any case, I did pick up a few nice ones with a 2009 SP Authentic Quinn Johnson RC (#324) S/N 766/999, 2006 Sweet Spot Signatures Ingle Martin (#IM), 2005 Ultimate Collection Terrence Murphy RC (#209) S/N 26/225, and a 2013 Momentum Rookie Signatures Johnathan Franklin RC (#212) S/N 329/399. Like Cameron's Sweet Spot San Diego Padres helmet auto, I really like that Inge Martin Packer helmet auto. It's just too bad he couldn't of done a lot more during his brief stint as a Packer.

 
I also added a few RC to the collection, both for tradebait, and for a few team-collecting friends. They include these 2015-16 Upper Deck Young Guns of Nick Shore RC (#216), Nickolay Goldobin RC (#453), and Frank Vatrano RC (#455), 2015-16 O-Pee-Chee Update Artemi Panarin RC (#U45) and Max Domi RC (#U35). And then there's a trio of football cards, with a 2015 Topps T.J. Yeldon (#430A), 2015 Prestige Ameer Abdullah RC (#203B), and a 2015 Topps Nelson Agholor RC (#146A).

 
 And finally, remember how I began this blog with the Tony Gwynn San Diego State baseball cards? I'll now conclude it with this 2011 Sweet Spot Rookie Signatures Vincent Brown (#RVSB), S/N141/599. And again, like the Padres helmet and Packers' helmet auto, I really do like this San Diego state helmet auto. Considering I almost went to San Diego State during the time we lived here, the Aztecs are one of the teams I actually follow on college football Saturdays. Rocky Long has done one heck of a job with this team.

Monday, February 20, 2017

2010 Topps 206 minis from the dime box

In my last post, I was talking about the single row box of cards of 2010 Topps 206 cards I found during the September Urbandale American Legion card show. These cards, going for a dime apiece,  didn't look as if anyone had dug through it yet.
 
Besides a bunch of Topps 206 SP cards, I was also able to find a whole mess of minis, including a pair of serial-numbered ones, all for one shiny dime each.

Of the 2010 Topps 206 Minis I dug out of the dime box, there were a total of 36 cards, consisting of mini cards of Cycle (2), Polar Bear (3), American Caramel (9), Old Mill (2), and Piedmont (10).

The two mini Cycle cards were both serial numbered, which included a Martin Prado (S/N 23/99) (#43) and a Roy Oswalt (S/N 50/99) (#118). The two Old Mill minis included Gil Meche (#180) and Scott Kazmir (#149). The three Polar Bear minis include Freddy Sanchez (#117); Prince Fielder (#125); and Ryan Ludwick (#150).
 
Of the nine Piedmont mini cards, I found Daniel McCutchenn (#261); Christy Mathewson (#99); Felix Hernandez (#53); Jeff Francoeur (#235); Cristian Guzman (#67); Rick Ankiel (249); Cliff Lee (#152); Jason Kubel (#21); and Joe Mauer (#218).

Among the 10 American Caramels card, I found Justin Verlander (#58); Clay Buchholz (#76); Justin Upton (#33); Yadier Molina (#115); Chris Carpenter (#86); Alex Gordon (#202); Brett Anderson (#146); Luke Hochevar (#70); and Robinson Cano (#273).

I'm not entirely sure why I picked up these 2010 Topps 206 Historical Events minis, but I figured, for a dime each, I could probably find someone who would actually be interested in them. This is actually a 20-card set, so I managed to pick up half the set, which included: Joan of Arc Beatified (#HE5); Francis' Louis Bleriot makes 1st Airplane Flight Across English Channel (#HE7); First Short Flight in a Plane With a Jet Engine (#HE20); 1st Junior High School in U.S. Opens (Columbus, Ohio) (#HE10); Chicago's Comiskey Park open, St. Louis Browns Beat White Sox, 2-0 (#HE16); 1st Radio Contest Held (Philadelphia) (#HE13); Earth Passes Through Tail of Comet Halley (#HE15); The Boy Scouts of America is Incorporated by William D. Boyce (#HE12); British Miners Strike For 8-Hour Working Day (#HE11); and 1st Movie Stunt: Man Jumps Into Hudson River From a Burning Balloon (#HE18).

Actually,  this turned out to be a rather bittersweet find. It turns out someone was selling these, and a few other cards for, Chuck's Sports Cards Plus. According to the guy who was selling the cards for Chuck, said that Chuck was shutting down his Des Moines shop. 
 
Back in April, someone broke into Chuck's Store at 5 a.m., prying open the front door and making off with about 200 cards worth more than $100,000. Apparently, the crook knew where the vintage cards were and that's what he concentrated on. Someone saw him breaking in and called the cops, but he was long gone by the time law enforcement arrived.
 
If that's the case, it's truly sad indeed, as that will leave Des Moines with just one or card shops and the monthly Urbandale card show.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Dime Box 2010 Topps 206 SP cards

While I was shopping at the September Urbandale American Legion card show, I came across a dealer who had 10 huge, 5,000-count boxes full of baseball and football cards for 10 cents each. After digging around, I also found a single row box of 2010 Topps 206 cards. What was especially interesting was the fact this box didn't look as if anyone had dug through it yet, and yes, all the cards in this box were 10 cents apiece as well.

Unfortunately, I struck out on finding any Padres in this box, what did make this a fantastic find, however, was the fact there was a boatload of Topps 206 short-printed SP cards in the box, including a whole mess of minis.

For those not aware of the 206 SP cards, the backs are unnumbered, and were only distributed one in every four packs. This Tim Lincecum Bronze (#255) and Lincecum SP (#333) card demonstrate the difference in the SP cards, which only have the player's name, team name and "American League," or "National League."
As for the card fronts, as shown by the Lincecum Bronze and Lincecum SP, the SP cards are also unique in that they feature artwork of the players with their hats on. 

Of the 50 SP cards in this set, I managed to find 16 different cards, including a Jason Bay (#319), Shin-Soo Choo (#309), Rajai Davis (#327), Stephen Drew (#342), Neftali Feliz (#339), Roy Halladay (#304), Austin Jackson (#338), and Ubaldo Jiminez (#322)
I then found these Stephen Strassburg (#331), Stan Musial (#343), Brian McCann (#303), Joe Mauer (#316), Mickey Mantle (#340), Cliff Lee (#308), Evan Longoria (#310), and Matt Kemp (#318) SPs in the box. Needless to say, I was more than a little surprised to find the Mantle card in the box.
I was able to pick up a few more interesting cards, including this Bronze Allen Craig (#203), Ian Desmond RC, (#171), Jason Heyward RC (#60), Derek Jeter (#162), Bronze Derek Jeter (#162), and an Austin Jackson RC (166)

And then there were these rookie cards for Mike Leake (#17), Tommy Manzella (#295), Daniel McCutchen (#261), Buster Posey (#193), Stephen Strasburg (#55), and Drew Stubbs (#179). If I remember right, Strasburg had just been called up to the Nationals, so I believe this may have been one of his first rookie cards.

If mini cards are your things, check out my next post, when I'll show the awesome mini cards I found from the same dime box from the Urbandale American Legion card show.


Monday, January 2, 2017

September Urbndale Card Show haul

Since it's been awhile since I've been posting again, I figured now would be a good time to showcase my purchases from the September Urbandale American Legion card show. I wasn't able to attend the October show due to drill weekend, but I did attend the November show, which I'll detail some of those goodies later.

The December show, held on Sunday, Dec. 18, was a whole different story. With blowing snow and temperatures in the sub-zero range (including a -31 degree windchill at 8 a.m. that morning), I figured a) the vendors may be a little thin that day, (especially those coming from longer distances) and b) it was too damn cold to go anywhere. We threw a few logs on the fireplace and stayed home all day.

You just have to love Iowa sometimes. Especially when you have friends who still live in San Diego call you up, reminding you about how gorgeous the weather is out there.

I'll start out with a 2015 Topps Pro Debut Pennant Patches Matt Wisler (#PP-MW), 2012 Bowman Sterling Prospects Autographs Travis Jankowski (#BSAP-TJ), 2016 Donruss Ted Giannoulas (#151), 2016 Donruss Optic The Famous San Diego Chicken/Ted Giannoulas (#165), and a couple of 2016 Wacky Packages MLB Padres Deep Friar (#35) and Padres Head Shavers (#36).

I'm not a huge fan of manufactured patches, but how can you not like El Paso's Chihuahua with an attitude. When it comes to the San Diego Chicken, we talk to him every time he's in Des Moines at an Iowa Cubs game and I have almost every Chicken card made (now that sounds like a good idea for a blog column). However, Donruss has released a large amount of serial numbered, memorabilia and certified autograph cards of the Chicken this baseball season. These two cards should at least help get me started on getting back in the Chicken groove again.

Of course, I had to get me some Gwynns. 2015 Panini Contenders Old School Colors (#14), 2003 Diamond Kings (169), 2015 Panini National Convention VIP Party (#59), 2014 Topps Allan and Ginter (#223), 2011 Topps Kimball Champions (#KC59), 2013 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions (#101), 2000 MLB Showdown Unlimited Foil (#359), and a 2013 Topps Allen and Ginter Across the Years (#ATY-TG).

Since we do live in Des Moines, which is home to the Triple A Chicago Cubs affiliate, I have do collect a few Iowa Cubs cards. The only stipulation is, however, they have to be wearing an Iowa Cub uniform. The following cards fit that criteria to a "T" - a 2010 Topps Pro Debut David Cales (#302), 1999 SP Top Prospects Kyle Farnsworth (#46), 1996 Best Autographs Brooks Kieschnick (#36), 1998 SP Top Prospects T10 Kerry Wood (#4), and a 1994 Action Packed Ozzie Timmons (#40).

Here's a couple more Padres cards, as well as a pair of MLB showdown strategy cards I picked up. The Padres cards include a 2016 Topps Archives '69 Topps Super Tyson Ross (#69TSTR) and a 2016 Diamond Kings Framed Colin Rea (#156). The MLB Showdown Strategy card is courtesy of the 2001 MLB Showdown Pennant Run Strategy Mike Piazza/Go Up Hacking (#S6).

I used to actually play in an MLB Showdown league at a local card shop. One season, we each bought a booster box and three packs. They were all opened and then we drafted the players like a normal team. My first pick was a foil Randy Johnson, who was the ace of my staff that year. I think I actually finished fourth out of nine teams that season. This was one of, if not the best, strategy cards in the game. I still have most of my cards in the hope that I can someday find someone to play again.

For that matter, I still have a bunch of MLB Sportsclix figures from Wizards of the Coasts. We used to play in a league at another neighboring card store here in Des Moines and I was actually a referee for Wizards of the Coast for this game. That's another game I'd still love to play again.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
And of course, I had to pick up a few hockey cards. I found these 2015-16 Upper Deck UD Portraits of Dylan Larkin (P95), Artemi Panarin (P110), Jack Eichel (P61), and Connor McDavid (P100) for a buck apiece. While these may not be their rookie cards, they are affordable cardboard for the quality of players.