Sunday, December 16, 2018

This One's For YOU! (200th Post)

When I realized that I was coming up on my 200th post I began to think of how I could celebrate the occasion. For my 99th post I scanned 99 cards of players who wore #99. Can't do that for 200, obviously.

The cardsphere has been alive with contests and giveaways lately, and so I thought I'd use this 200th post to salute those of you who have given so much to the sports card community.

Fuji, Billy, and Dennis are among those who have mailed out care packages this holiday season. I mentioned Billy's card here and I'll be sure to write another thank-you post when the others arrive.  

Jon did a fantastic job taking over Secret Santa duties from Matt. Thanks for keeping it going, Jon! I hope everyone who participated enjoyed their gifts. Don't forget to thank your sender!

We're all looking forward to Wes/JBF/Willinghammer's grand finale over at Area 40. He was kind enough to include me, even though I was just popping in to observe. Kerry was incredibly generous earlier this year with his giveaway, and there are lots of other giveaways and contests going on as I write this. 

Giveaways and contests are great fun, but after running one of my own I vowed not to join one that isn't hosted by a blogger I follow regularly. I cringe whenever I see the flock of comments on contest posts, most of them from folks who wouldn't bother to read or comment without the possibility of getting some free cards in return.

contest post
regular post

One of the more interesting and fun contests of late is Josh's Baseball Sheep survey. That gave me an idea for this post..asking you, the reader of this humble blog, what topics are of particular interest to you.

I won't burden you with 20 (more) questions. Instead I'll bring back an old Craig Kilborn segment..

1) What kind of collector are you? Team/player collector? Set builder? Vintage or modern? High-end hits or dime box/dollar store finds? Your collecting preferences may be well-known to most of us, and if that's the case perhaps you can share something we might not know about the way you collect.

2) Name something you don't like about the hobby. It could be the brand monopolies, the price point of certain products, breaker culture..any grievance you choose to air. Or keep it simple and suggest a change that the hobby (or manufacturers) should adopt. 

3) You have been given authority to expand or realign any pro sports league. That means you can add two teams to the MLB or NBA, relocate up to two teams in any sport, or contract two teams if you think it's necessary. What franchise moves would you make?

4) What are your collecting goals for 2019? Is there a set you want to complete? A specific milestone you want to hit (200 cards of player X, for example)? What is your approximate budget for your collection? Do you plan to raise/lower it in the new year?

5) What topics would you like to see more of in this blog? I try to recap every trade, gift, and purchase of cards in either a single post or grouped together. If you feel like I haven't properly acknowledged you (ahem) please let me know. Other than that I pretty much write whatever comes to mind.

That said, there are plenty of things I consider writing about but don't. Here are some ideas I have been kicking around:

  • Progress posts. These would focus on set builds, new additions to player PCs, and thoughts on how I organize my collection. I did a series on my star player boxes, shared my initial experience with cataloging cards on TCDB, and mentioned some of my sets in the past. There are still some sets and player PCs I haven't yet discussed.

    My O-Pee-Chee Franken-set is complete! You can view it here.

  • Statistical comparison posts. I enjoy writing these posts, and they seemed popular initially. A lot of my analysis focuses on who should/should not be in the Hall of Fame.

    I bought this Luis Aparicio on COMC for $14.20, mostly because I like to 'sort by lowest' on graded vintage singles and this was the cheapest HOFer in high grade.

  • General sports talk. We all have our own favorite teams and players, so I shy away from sharing thoughts on how well (or poorly) my guys are playing. That said, there are always breakout players, trades, free agent signings, and other issues to discuss - such as players who behave horribly with women.

These two cards were also in my latest COMC order. Russell was the last card I needed to complete the Heritage set. I picked up the Hunt because the Chiefs were red-hot and I couldn't afford any Pat Mahomes singles; the TMZ video surfaced two weeks later.

  • Non-sports topics, such as music, women, books, movies, etc. From time to time I have long-form thoughts that are not about sports, but I rarely share them here because this is a card collecting blog. Some of you have indicated that you don't mind these off-topic posts on occasion.. but do you really want to know my thoughts on The Good Place, Anna Kendrick's autobiography, or why I'm so surprised and thrilled that The Cure were elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?!?!

    I also have bits and pieces of fiction that have been dormant since the beginning of this blog - with one exception. I could always repost that here, or revive my Lighthouse story if there is interest (and time) Be warned: it's mostly teen/YA fare.


Any feedback on any of these questions would be considered and appreciated. Thank you for reading this post, following this blog, and for making the card collecting community and blogosphere better every year!



  1. Congrats on 200! Don't delete anymore, LOL.

    To answer your questions...
    #1. I collect sports. I used to focus on sets, but the sets of today are not great (see #2) so I've transitioned to my "Names Project" of getting at least one of as many different people as possible.
    #2. I don't like the way they are doing current sets...when they bother. There are very few actual sets being produced, most of them are just memorabilia delivery systems built for people who are more about making a profit than collecting. We need to be more like the 1990s, with actual sets to collect. And for some reason they make super tiny sets. Panini is the worst. The NBA is a 525 man league, and they refuse to make anything larger than 300 cards.
    #3. Seattle SuperSonics and Kentucky Colonels return. Move the Memphis Grizzlies to the Eastern conference. (They are farther east than at least two East teams, the Bulls and Bucks. Not sure on the Pacers.

    #4. After a very stressful goal of 2018, (My Card of the Day project) I'm going into 2019 specifically with no goals set around collecting. I'd like to get to 100 documented trades on the Database, I think it will happen. I'm at 79 now. It would require doing more than I did in 2018 but it should be doable. My monthly budget is about $30 on average, sometimes less, sometimes more. Usually less. I'd love for it to be increased but that's not too likely.

    #5. Everything. I have a lot of time on my hands due to my health problems, so the more I have to read, the better. I will read everything you post. I may not always comment, and I may gloss over stuff when it's solely baseball or football, but I'll still give each post at least a look over.

  2. 1) That's an excellent question...that I always have trouble answering because of how scattered my collection is. At heart, I guess I'm a player collector, but that's really just the tip of the iceberg.

    2) Breaker culture is a big one, mostly just the constant flock towards "hits," rookies, etc (although I'll admit it's a tad better now than it was a couple years ago). Also, if Topps is going to persist with photo-variation SPs, I wish they'd make them a bit easier to identify.


    4) My only real goal for 2019 is to blog a bit more than I did this year. I feel like I spent a bit more than I should've on retail this year as well, so I'd like to cut down on that a bit and be more patient as far as waiting for new sets to wind up in dime boxes at card shows.

    5) Anything you wanna write about! It's your blog.

    Congrats on 200 posts, good sir!

  3. That Aparicio is awesome!

    1) Mostly baseball... Bill Freehan is my #1 player...the Detroit Tigers, Michigan Baseball players (Rich Hill/BarryLarkin. etc.), players from Double-A Jacksonville(Giancarlo Stanton/Christian Yelich. etc.), All Detroit sports teams, any Michigan Football players(Brady/Howard/Woodson, etc., Michigan hockey, basketball.

    2.Way, way too many card sets, and the way they make hits scarce, it drives up the prices, availability, when all you want is a box of Topps Heritage Update or Topps Archives at Walmart.

    3. MLB Team in Montreal...either the Rays get their stuff together and get out of that dungeon or move them to Montreal.

    4. My health keeps me from blogging more...that, and everything is on my phone.
    My big goal is to get my cards together.

    5. Blogging is about what YOU want...what makes you happy hitting those computer keys.

    Congrats on your milestone!

  4. Congrats on 200 ... Man, I feel old when I think of when my 200th post happened. But then I feel old in any situation.

    1. Set collector. Vintage please. Also a team collector but pulling away from that.

    2. Card grading. I will never understand.

    3. Move Diamondbacks to Montreal, rename them the Expos. Contract the Padres and Rays.

    4. I don't set New Year's collecting goals. Too rigid a theme for a hobby.

    5. Yeah, do what you like. But I enjoy when people are all over the board on topics. "This is what I got" 49 posts in a row gets old.

  5. Congratulations on the big 200. I've always enjoyed the variety of stuff you post, so if you write it... there's a good chance I'll read it. That being said... here's are my quick responses to your five questions:

    #1: Although I'd like to say that my team and player collections are my #1 focus... I think if you were to look back at my 2018 purchases... I probably spent roughly the same amount of money on random autographs for my collection.

    #2: It's a tie. Sticker-graphs and Topps' monopoly on MLB cards.

    #3: Bring back the Montreal Expos and the Seattle Supersonics.

    #4: Cut back on spending. Both of my cars are old... it's time to think about the possibility of buying a new car in 2019 or 2020.

    #5: Write about whatever interests you. Like I said earlier in the comment... there's a good chance I'll be interested too.

    Happy holidays!

  6. Congratulations on your 200th post.
    My answers:
    1- I am a player collector. I am working on some sets but they are older sets from my childhood.

    2- I am losing interest in modern releases. The companies are making too many parallels, inserts parallels of insert, gimmicks, errors, SP and SSP cards.

    3- Seattle gets the Sonics back from the a-hole who stole them. Clay Bennet and David Stern are fined for their shady dealings to steal and move the team. I would like to see a 4 MLB teams in Canada, including Toronto, at least Montreal and Vancouver get one.

    4- I have had a couple of ideas for the new year. I haven’t set goals lately but I will probably cut back on purchases.

  7. Congratulations on #200! You ask some pretty interesting questions so I'll toss in my 1.9 cents:

    1) Topps flagship and Heritage set builder along with collecting a few oddball sets.

    2) I have almost no complaints about the hobby. I collect what I collect for the fun of it. I can't say there's anything out there stopping me from the fun of it. One improvement I can suggest is for the National to expand out to the West Coast (or have it twice yearly in different cities each year). I also agree that the readability of Topps card codes needs improvement.

    3) At this point, I wouldn't make any franchise moves. I do recognize that some teams are not getting much support (aka $) from their local market/fans, but I don't see why moving to another city would increase support and revenue. I don't like to make major decisions or even form opinions without knowing all the facts.

    4) Hmmm, collecting goals for 2019? As usual, baseball-wise I try to complete Topps flagship, Update, Heritage and stadium giveaway card sets from Dodger Stadium.

    5) I like your blog as it is--so far, so good!

  8. Congrats on #200. I really enjoy this blog.
    1 - I'm a set collector who dipped his toe into the vintage pool and fell in head-first.
    2 - If I had a complaint, it would be the prices. Especially in the northeast and especially in NY, cards are still pricier here than what I see others in the south or west have to pay.
    3 - Not really something I have thought about. I don't follow hockey but I see the NHL broke up having the three NYC area teams in one division, which I think is stupid because that's such a great rivalry.
    4 - Keep collecting vintage without being stupid about money.
    5 - Write whatever you want. It's your blog, no-one else's.

    1. I don't think that's correct about the NHL splitting up the New York teams.

  9. 1 - I'm a pretty casual collector. I'm quite happy rummaging through dime boxes at shows picking up players I like and anything else which seems like a good deal. I really only cole t baseball, the Mets are my team, and I have my favorites (mostly Mets stars, but George Brett is a big one for me), but I might buy any baseball card if I don't have it and the price is right. (I'm not one of those guys who wants one for the setbuild and one for the player binder. If I have the card, I don't need another.

    2 - I mentioned this on another blog, but I don't like how confusing the different versions of a card can be. It's difficult enough to keep straight what I do and don't have without having to guess whether a certain card is a parallel or not. I wish every parallel had a name near the card number, especially when the variations are subtle.

    3 - Hmmm, that's a toughie. Mostly I'd move Houston back to the NL or move the Rays to Montreal and put them in the NL so that we wouldn't have to have interleague play even in the final weeks of the season. Of course adding two expansion teams would make that work, too. Also, can I make either the Florida Panthers or the Carolina Panthers change their names? I understand that the names a Giants and Cardinals, for example, have such long traditions in two sports that they'll always be duplicated, but there was no need for two relatively recent expansion teams to take the same name. For the same reason I wish the new Winnipeg team had called itself the Manitoba Moose.

    4 - Well, I'm now two commons away from finishing 1980 Topps, so I certainly hope I'll finish that. But the main goal for this year is to turn my idea for a Mets (Not Mets) virtual Frankenset blog into reality. (Virtual Frankenset because I don't actually have the cards, it's just a possible Frankenset.) Oh, and I'd kind of like to get my first 1/1, if the price is right.

    5 - Well, I would never object to reading more about The Good Place and the rock hall of fame!

  10. 1). At this point I’m a team collector. Not just cards but any kind of memorabilia. Have a few player collections. With my PC’s for older retired players I only chase cards from their playing days. What I search out to buy is mostly vintage. More on the higher end. Do t did thru dime and dollar boxes much. I do like modern cards I just don’t buy them I grab them in trades. The only new products I buy would be the team sets.
    2) I think the card companies have become to hit conscious. To many parallels. It’s become impossible to be a set collector. Breaks don’t bother me. I just don’t do them
    3) I’ve seen a few others mention this but bring basketball back to Seattle. Get the two baseball teams out of Florida.
    4) I have a few white whale vintage pieces I would like to get. Possibly work on a vintage set maybe 1965
    5) I am new to your blog. Started reading when the Secret Santa went down. General sports talk is always good. And to bring in a few topics that aren’t card related also works. But it’s your blog Do what you feel

  11. Congrats on post #200!

    1)Is low budget hoarder a thing?

    2) I miss the junk wax era days - multiple licensed companies, a handful of inserts in each set, and a card shop practically in every small town!

    3)I'd put an MLB team in Buffalo, NY (growing up, there were always teases of Buffalo trying to get a MLB franchise) and Charlottesville, VA (yeah, I know, it'd last as long as the Seattle Pilots, but having an MLB team in my geographical backyard would be amazing!)

    4) For the first time I started to get back in the hobby, I'm considering a goal, but I'll reveal that later on my blog. My budget is about $10-$20/month. I'll usually buy a pack every other week on payday.

    5) You're a talented writer, and pretty much enjoyed everything you've written. Write about what ever you want, and I'll give it a perusal.

  12. Wow, #200 sure got here quick! Congratulations, and stop deleting posts (says the person who's nearly done the very same thing on many the occasion).

    1) I don't really know anymore.

    2) Uhh... stuff? I don't know on that either, if I don't like something I tend to not pay any attention to it, so...

    3) I'd like to see the Sonics back in Seattle.

    4) I don't have any.

    5) You should know by now that I'll be around for whatever it is that you decide to write about :)

  13. I would also like to congratulate you on the posting milestone!

    1. I collect too much stuff, but mostly baseball in general.
    2. I'm worried counterfeiting methods continue to improve and are easy enough and widespread to the point that cards become worthless because there's no way to tell the difference between a fake and a real card. Topps and other card companies and eBay don't seem to have a problem with the tons of unauthorized "reprint that isn't marked as a reprint" cards polluting the hobby.
    3. I'd love an expansion MLB team here in Portland.
    4. In 2019, I might be able to complete one of the two oldest sets I've been working on ('57 and '64 Topps).
    5. I appreciate non-card talk to spice up a blog, so I'd encourage you to write about whatever you want to.

    I miss Craig Kilborn.

  14. Thanks for the plug. :-)

    1. Team - KC Royals and "Randoms" -- anything else that catches my eye, especially players from Iowa State University.
    2. Definitely the baseball monopoly. There need to be a greater variety of products at different prices. Give Upper Deck and Panini a baseball license and let them do their thing. Competition!
    3. Contract the White Sox because I hate their announcers.
    4. Main goal is card organization/sorting and continuing to enter traders on TCDB and keep doing efficient trades there to get stuff that I really want in exchange for stuff I don't. :-)
    5. As everyone else says - do what you want! Otherwise you'll get resentful. I do like seeing trade posts, especially when the blogger receives a variety of different stuff, not just cards from one recent set.

  15. Congrats on 200!

    1) What kind of collector are you? That's hard to answer. One word, hoarder. I collect everything but I am a trader collector as well. Trading is the only way I can add new cards to my collection these days.

    2) Name something you don't like about the hobby. License monopolies. I like variety like the 90's. So sick of seeing one company with one license.

    3) You have been given authority to expand or realign any pro sports league. Knowing how bad the Rays and Marlins turnout is for their games, combine them and move them to a more popular area. Not sure where I would stick them quite yet.

    4) What are your collecting goals for 2019? Try to finish up some of my 90's insert sets. There are a few non sport autographs like Kevin Hart I would love to add in the New Year

    5) What topics would you like to see more of in this blog?
    I liked some of the ideas you have been tossing around especially the non sports one.

  16. Nice job on 200! I'll jump in late to the party as usual.

    1) I collect all over the place because I basically have no life otherwise. I build baseball, football and a few hockey sets from vintage to now (though the latter is waning) and am still filling in the late 80's to early 2000 that I skipped originally. I also have 50+ player collections mostly from the 60's & 70's and a few modern guys mixed in. 95% of those are baseball with a few football guys and one hockey. I also collect Redskins (and casually pick up Capitals). Also like cards about the space program, Star Trek/Star Wars, and hard rock music.

    2) Can't stand the exclusive licenses, and the saturation of rookies in every product. Wish they would do more with retired players and just come up with more original ideas.

    3) Swap the Brewers and Astros back where they came from. Would have said make the Chargers go back to San Diego, but I was talking to a former SD resident and he said there were plenty of fans, just none of them went to the games.

    4) Haven't thought about my goals quite yet. Probably like last year - Only collect the current sets and inserts that I really like, finish more vintage sets, and clear up more of those pesky cards in between that have sat on my want lists for years.

    5) I thought I might expand (as if I need to do that) into some non-sport subject since the major sports cards are harder to get motivated to collect.

  17. Congratulations on 200 posts. It's quite an impressive milestone to reach.

    1. I don't think I can call myself any type of collector since I collect almost anything that interests me. Typically, I lean towards player collections and vintage sets as well as Topps Heritage. I mainly focus on my PCs, but I collect far more than that.

    2. I don't like the sheer number of sets Topps releases and all the different variation insert parallels within them. It gets hard to keep track of everything, and it's a huge turn-off for many collectors.

    3. Easy, move the Marlins and the Rays out of Florida and into Portland and Montreal.

    4. Try to focus my collection a bit more. Right now, I'm kind of all over the place. I'll be using the holidays to do some organization. After that, I'll be ready to focus on what I want.

    5. Whatever you think could improve the blog. I enjoy the variety of sports even if I'm not too knowledgeable about them. If you think something would be a nice fit, then I would love to see it.