Sunday, March 30, 2014

One Mans Junk Is Another Mans 1979 Topps

You're looking at eighty-three nineteen-seventy-nine Topps.
That's called a Big Hunk.

The cards, not the Big Hunk above (but I sure would like one right now except it would probably pull all my crowns off) came courtesy of

Trying to knock out a set in big chunks like this is the way to go man.
Much appreciated.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

A Surprise Ripping Of Two Boxes At My LCS

Great thing about aerospace is that typically you get to work a 9/80 shift meaning that you get every other Friday off.  When I get the chance I like to take that Friday off and spend some time at my LCS.  I got to do that last Friday.

My goal this time was to knock off a bunch of 1980 Topps I needed.  I knew my guy at the LCS had several boxes of commons to go through, so with checklist in hand I tore in.

After about an hour flipping through cards and checking the numbers off the checklist, I had pulled close to a hundred 1980 Topps I needed.

About half-way through those 1980 Topps the dealer pointed out a couple boxes of new junk he had recently gotten.
This is stuff people bring in to get a couple bucks for, or to just get rid of.  He knows I like to go through it so he always mentions when he has new junk. Whatever I pull out of these junk boxes he usually gives me for free because, as he's told me, he'll probably throw it away or donate it since he has no room for it.
So I went through the boxes, looking for the baseball cards and riffled through them. 

There was a row of 1995 Topps Embossed that had a few Angels in it.
And if you recall from my last post I had a problem identifying the brand that these were.

There was also this silver counterpart to the Gold Tim Salmon that came from Remember The Astrodome in my last post.  Coincidence?  I think not.

About this time I noticed that the dealer started to open a couple packs of 2014 Topps Opening Day from a box on the table in front of him,
so I asked him to let me know if he found any Angels.
He agreed, and I went back to the junk box.

Found the tandem of Wally Joyners in the box.
I've come to learn that the real term for the gold versions of 1995 Topps Embossed is Golden Idol.
Not a good looking card the Gold Idol, way too dark.

Also found a nice John Olerud.
This actually wouldn't be a bad set to pick up.
There's only 140 cards in the set, and the only insert set was the Golden Idols at another 140 cards.
The Idols were inserted only 1 per pack so those would be tougher to pick up.

I have a ton of these 1991 Impel/Line Drive AAA and AA cards.
A massive set, both at 650 cards.
I love these cards as they're great for autographs.

1994 Bowmans Best DeShawn Warren.
Warren was drafted out of high school, and bounced around in the minors until 1999 never making up to the bigs.  He had some pretty cool cards though.

The dealer saw that I was starting to wrap things up and asked if I had any more time available to stay and rip open the other packs from the two boxes of Opening Day he had.
"Heck yeah!"
You can keep any Angels you pull too, he said.

Holy crap.
I was stoked just at being invited to rip two boxes of packs, but to keep any Angels I pull too?
Awesome.  What an opportunity to get some great cards for my team, a bunch of inserts, and maybe nail some nice Mike Trout.

Nope.  Here's what I pulled as far as Angels:

Now I am in no way complaining, just stating the facts.
Two boxes of Opening Day, that's 72 packs, and these are the only Angels in there?
And of these there were maybe 5 dupes, but only one of the Trout insert.
All the more reason I've cut way back on buying packs to get the team set.
It would cost me a fortune to build the set that way.

But Man, that sure was fun.
At the end of it all I showed the guy what I had pulled: the stack of 1980 Topps, the random cards from the junk boxes, and those that I pulled from Opening Day. I asked what I could pay him for all this.
He said I could have it.

I love that man.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Don't Forget About The Astrodome

"Better never, than late", was the saying around my old job if someone were to show up late to a scheduled meeting.  You'd be the recipient of the wrath of the boss.  At the least you had a pay a buck to the manager. That's the reverse however for how it goes for this post.

The package that arrived from Remember The Astrodome is dated March 2.  That's how far behind I am in my blogging since I started working again after a looooong layoff.  Better to show it off now, than never.

1995 Topps Embossed Gold #108
New Tim Salmon card.  I had to do some research to figure out what this was.  There's no Topps logo, but there is a logo with a T and an MB which was giving me fits.  Why do I not know what this is?  Had to look around ebay for an example.  Fortunately it didn't take too long to figure it out.

Marc  sent two of the 2012 Topps Pennant cards that I needed.  He and Big 44 were the only ones to send me cards for the little giveaway I had.  The two names went in a hat and it was Marcs name that come out.  He wins the Ben Zobrist relic.  Big 44 will get something too for participating, but it may take me a while to get these mailed out to you.

1987 Topps All-Star and a 2000 Skybox Dominion.
Always nice to get another couple Joyners. 2000 was his 15th season in baseball, and although Wally kept his batting average up most of his career, but his power numbers sure fell off.

Marc included five 1979 Topps I needed towards the set.
Tom Poquette here looks like he's contemplating what his catch-phrase will be for his next career as the spokesman for Motel 6.
"Leave the door unlocked...nah, the lights...."
(It's actually Tom Bodett who is the Motel 6 spokesman)

And eleven more for the 1980 set.
My first thought when I saw this card was, "Is this a fantasy camp card?"
He just looks so uncomfortable and unnatural in that uniform.  You can see his farmers tan!
Upon turning it over to see the stats, Tommy Hutton had been in the bigs since 1966!
AND he won the PCL batting title in 1971 with a .352 average.
Did not expect that.

1990 Topps Coins #12, #13.
Topps Angels coins are always welcome, but they bring up that age old dilemma of how to store them.
I do not want to think about that right now.

I got Wally-ied.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Quarried Angels

I think that's how you spell quarried.  
Anyhow a nice package of Angels came from Johnny of Cards From The Quarry.

It was a package that made me smile.
Here are just a few of the great cards.

2006 Topps Heritage Clubhouse Collection CC-VG relic.
Vladdy seemed to always be happy when he was playing.
Always smiling on his baseball cards.
I don't think the photographer had to ask him to smile either, I think it just came naturally.

That leads me to some of these other Angels cards that came from The Quarry.
Let's see what my first thought is about that players personality when I see who's pictured on the card.

2009 Upper Deck Icons IC-WE relic.
Jered Weaver.
Happy but serious.  When it's game time it's go time.
Intensely focused.

2010 Topps #141 Black 43/59.
Chone Figgins.
Happy, especially when stealing bases.
Went by "Figgy", a very happy nickname.

2008 Topps Heritage Chrome C68 0959/1959; 2011 Topps Heritage Chrome C91 1263/1962.
John Lackey - Never happy, never will be. 
Dan Haren - Not happy to be here.
I was happy to see you both go.

2002 Donruss Rookie Crusade RC-44.
Happy just for the chance to play.
Happy to do anything asked of him.

2008 Topps #62.
Rich Thompson.
Australian, G-Day Mate, Happy.  All Australians are happy.
The Wiggles are Australian.

That card and the next one are actually mine.  I'm showing them to lead up to the card I got from The Quarry.

I'm very familiar with that last card and this one in red representing the Opening Day set.

But this card I got from The Quarry struck me as odd:

My first thought was this was an error, and how cool and generous of The Quarry to give it to me.
It's missing the red coloring, and the circles around the letters in ANGELS.
Sweet!  I love error cards.
However, research led me to find out that this is in fact not an error but a "gold" version and is numbered 0114/2199.

Here's the three compared.
that's my first gold card from 2008, hence my unfamiliarity with it.

2006 Upper Deck Ovation#3.
Figgy again, though not smiling here, one of the happiest Angels ever.
Awesome card with a rising full baseball moon in the background.

2000 Topps Update T38.
K-Rod rookie card, you'd think he'd be happy.
Not Happy.
I don't think he ever has been.
I think that's a middle finger he's showing us.

Garret Anderson - Happy but quiet.
Darin Erstad - Happy but intense.

I have an issue with these 1998 Aurora cards though.
Anderson's card has him as an "outfielder".
Erstad's card therefore should list him as a "first baseMAN" and not "first base".
If you're gonna say FIRST BASE, then you have to say OUTFIELD.
Get it?

Bad editing, and that really chaps my hide.

2009 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Autograph #118.
Kevin Jepsen.
I just can't read him.

Bitchen card though.
I like the cards with the raised baseball stitches.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Howie Judson Near Perfection

1991 Topps 1953 Archives #12

Howie Judson is a 99% through the mail signer according to
The one guy that didn't get his card back can probably blame the mail service and not Howie for the loss.
And that was back in 2006!
Thanks for screwing up Mr Judson's perfect success rate USPS.
Howie signed my card in 7 days from his home in Winter Haven, FL.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Hank Conger Looks To The Future

2007 Bowman Prospects Authentic Autograph Orange #244/250
Obtained on Listia for a whopping 3,334 credits.
A bidder tried to swoop in at the last minute for the win, but I swooped his swoop and snagged it.

Conger sure needs to step it up this season.
Angels catching hasn't been the same since Scioscia chose Jeff Mathis over Mike Napoli.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Two And Done - 2014 Donruss

First off, I received these brand new Donruss cards from One Mans Junk (Wax) recently:

Okay, nice.  First time I've seen the new Donruss issue.  I like.
Good design, simple, readable, nice for autographs.
(These were just a small part of the big envelope sent from Jeff, more on the rest in another post.)

Fast forward a couple days and I'm at Target trying to get past the card aisle without stopping.
Like most of you I'm very weak at that and weakness won.
So I thought I'd pick up a couple packs of that new Donruss.
My first and last hopefully as I'm trying to cut back on surplus cards and focusing on just picking up Angels here and there.

I was surprised to see David Ortiz on the package.
Is David Ortiz really still enough of a draw to warrant a portrait on a pack of cards?
Surely there are much more deserving young superstars.
Or is Panini relegated to has-beens and leftovers?
Kinda like how they have to airbrush logos out now.


8 cards per pack, I got 7 base cards.
No Angels which makes all these surplus. 
No way I'm about to start another set.

I also pulled this insert:

Numbered 912/999.
Not bad, it's certainly a pretty card.
But there are 999 of these?
And how many more of the other inserts?
That's just plain crazy.
That's another reason I'll never collect a Panini set.
Once you get past the base set of what 200 cards, there are a trillion of the subsets.


6 base cards in this one and 2 inserts as follows:

Number 1 of the The Rookies insert set.
Choice is projected as having a great season.
While having a great Spring the Rangers are considering keeping him on the bench as a fourth outfielder.
They don't seem too concerned about his missing all those at-bats in minors.
Make or break time.

Number 6 of the No-Nos insert set.
Probably one of the worst cropped photos on a baseball card I've ever seen seen.
He's been quartered.  Lopped off top of head, right arm, and both legs.
Good thing Panini has the right to show player names.
I don't think I would have recognized Weaver just by his torso.
What did he have an Angels logo on his right forearm?
Angels logoed stockings?

Thing that gets me peeved is that someone actually had to give the okay on this garbage.
"Looks good Jack, lets go with it."

Sunday, March 16, 2014

A Bunch Of "Last Card Needed" From Jaybarkerfan

I've learned from experience that you can fit 8 pretty stuffed team bags in a small flat-rate Priority Mail box.
So I knew by the feel and the weight of this box I received from Jaybarkerfan that it was stuffed.
And that got me excited, looking forward to the surprise that awaited.

I opened the box to a warm welcome.
The Priority Mail box thanks me for using Priority Mail.
I thank Jaybarkerfan for using Priority Mail.
And there inside are the 8 team bags I hoped would be inside.

As I went through them I noticed that many were not only cards I needed for team sets, but that many were the last card I needed to complete the team set.

Let's pick out some of the goodies.

1979 Hostess #38.
Its refreshing to see a Rod Carew card without the headband.
This is not the last card I needed for the team set, but I'm at least one card closer to these harder-to-come-by cards.  Not bad on the cut job too.  A little close to the dashes on the bottom, but acceptable.  I have some pretty badly cut cards.

1991 Score Super Stars #66.
Last Card Needed.
Winfield has wheels.  Look at him eyeing his deep drive to right, the ball bouncing off the wall a ricocheting past the fielder as Winfield is motoring (whats your price for flight) down the base path and pulling into first for a standing single.
I don't think he was very fast at this point in his career.

1992 Classic II #T1.
Last card needed.
Look at any Jim Abbott card that pictures him in the act of pitching and you will see the same thing:  compact, power, intensity.  No falling off the mound, arms flailing, hat flying off.
Compact, power, intensity.

2008 Upper Deck First Pitch #381.
Last card needed.
It had to be a Lackey I needed.
Ask any Angels fan for one of the most despised ex-Angels and most will probably name John Lackey.

1988 Topps Glossy Rookies #5.
One of the two I needed, so half way there.
Classy set.

1994 Upper Deck #334.
Not the last card I needed.
I"m drawn to red/white/blue uniformed teams.
Been a Patriots fan since I can't remember when.
Favorite National League team is the Braves.
My high school colors were red/blue/gold (close enough).
I served in the Air Force.
And of course the Angels.
I liked this action shot of Greg Myers chasing down a pop-up back towards the net.  
He threw his mask off, but his helmet stayed on a little longer until it fell down his back as he gazed skyward for the ball.
I have a strong feeling he caught it.

1994 Pinnacle Museum Collection #156.
Not the last card I needed.
But another cool Greg Myers card.
The scan takes a lot of the bling away from this card,
but the Pinnacle light is still shining down on Greg.

1998 Donruss Hit List #359.
Not the last card, but one I still needed.
The back of this card notes that Salmon was #21 on the top 30 batting average list for 1997 with an average of .296.  Anyone remember off the top of their head who lead all of baseball that year?

And many more Salmons too.

1990 Upper Deck Halo Magazine insert.
Not the last card, but the first single.
These came in 3-card perforated strips in issues of Halo Magazine, the teams program.
I have the complete set of cards, all in strips, but none separated like this one.
The back of the card is similar to the 1990 Upper Deck issue.

1992 Upper Deck Comic Ball #193.
1992 Mr. Turkey Superstar #1
Not the last cards but the first(s).
Two really nice oddballs for the Abbott collection.
I'll accept Comic Ball cards with Jim Abbott for the team collection but I'm not about to try to actively collect them all, nor all the Nolan Ryan, or Reggie Jacksons.
That would drive me batty.

1990 Donruss Best of the American League.
Not the last, but the firsts.
I like these so much better than the red base set.
That might be because I am so sick of red base set, it being massed produced in the junk era, and you find them EVERYWHERE.
And people seem to think they are "vintage" and worth a fortune.  
Like these two that can be had on ebay for a cool $150.00:

Free shipping of course.
And No they're not the rare Aqueous Test issues.  
The guy thought it would be better to offer them as a father/son combo.
He was told based on condition that he could get that much.
Granted he does have Best Offer available.

But back to the blues.
In my opinion, take away the awful splatter paint and easily one of the best looking cards of the era.
That shade of blue is captivating.

Look at this:
(Not my best editing but you get the idea.)
Isn't that a beautiful card?

I got Jimmied.

Good stuff JBF.