Friday, 17 September 2010

New 2011 Topps pictures released

Yesterday Topps put out the first picture of their 2011 design featuring Albert Pujols.
Just a few moments ago they released more pictures on their facebook page including the Ichiro 1/1 pictured above.
I was wondering what they were going to do for their 60th anniversary. At least now we have some sort of idea.

Unexpected expectedness from Redsox101

Is expectedness even a word?

Who cares.

So I woke up a few hours ago, I've drunk about 6 cups of tea and smoked way to many cigarettes (Warning: smoking is bad DONT DO IT!).

Today will be a lazy day. I have a few DVDs to watch, nothing exciting just a few that I've not seen for a while. I'm going to watch Hatchet first, followed by Dead Snow and probably finish off with a Romero film. There's a bit of a theme developing there. Then after that I think I'll have a bash at the new Halo game.

But the DVDs and Halo are on hold for the moment because a bubble mailer has just come through my door. Looking at the return address I can see its from Matt (or Redsox101 if you prefer) who I have traded with before. He said he had something to send me so I was expecting it although I did not expect to get what I did!

I've talked about Matt a few times in the past and he always sends nice cards. This time was no different.

I'm not going to show all the cards because there were a lot. We'll start with the highlights of the cards that I was expecting and then I will show you what makes Matt an excellent trader.

He sent me a stack of Chicle that I think I may have gotten from one of his many pack breaks that he does on his blog. I focused on these two cards because it shows all that is wrong with Chicle. Price reminds me of a Japanese soldier from the HBO show the Pacific. It does not remind me of David Price.

Tom Seaver or is it really Toms evil twin? The picture looks really creepy and I think hes hiding something in his glove. What do you think it could be? I don't really want to say what he reminds me of because I want to keep this blog as unoffensive as possible. But if you really must know what I think then do a google image search of Arrested Developments Tobias Funke's business card... Oh to hell with it, I'll do the search for you.

In short alot of the artists impressions of current and old players of the game leave a lot to be desired. Don't get me wrong both the Price and Seaver are very well done and the Chicle concept is brilliant. It was just poorly executed.

Next he included a bunch of Goudeys.

I never thought I would miss Upper Deck but I do. This is how Chicle should have looked. Design is flawless and the art is perfect. Maybe one day soon UD will return and we can all enjoy this set once more.

Speaking of Upper Deck, Matt also sent these.

Masterpieces. What can I say about this set? I could spend the next hour talking through the designs and variations that this set offered but I wont. I have nothing negative to say about this set, which is probably a first for me. Beardy of the Mojo Beard is making his own online unlicensed Masterpieces. Go check it out.

Now onto the unexpectedness.


Six new minis for the set. Including another sweet black bordered beauty as well as a new dinosaur and lords of Olympus. I love this set!

All the above cards were wrapped up together but there was another small wrapped up package included.

On the front it says simply - Surprise :)

What could be in here I thought? What else could he surprise me with? For a start I wasn't expecting the minis so what ever is in this other package must be something really good.

I noticed that the package rattled when I shook it. Yes I shook it. I wanted to guess what was inside since it was pretty thick. The rattle suggested that it was a few cards in a snap case and so shaking it will probably damage the cards so I stopped doing that.

I did not expect to find this looking back at me when I ripped the package open.

A 2009 Topps uncirculated auto of my main man Adam Lind! Holy frack! This really was a HUGE surprise! Notice the tamper proof sticker over the top of the card that I'm awfully tempted to remove so I can remove the card and have a proper look but I wont. This is going to be the only Lind card I own that I have never personally touched. That sounded weird but I think you get what I mean by that.

Matt you have gone above and beyond! I can not thank you enough for all the cards and especially the Lind auto.

I have some things to send your way too but its going to have to wait for a while until I get something else to include that will be to the same standard of what you sent.

Oh by the way Matt is the same guy that's running this break. Please join up!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Redsox101 group break

Redsox101 has been trying hard to arrange a group break of some kind for a while now.

After a few revisions he has come up with a break containing the following boxes and the following prices.

2010 Allen & Ginter 78.00 3 Hits
2010 T206 58.00 2 hits
2009 UD Ballpark 118.00 12 hits
2008 Moments and Milestones 55.00 2 Hits (every Card Is Numbered)

So that's a total of 309.00 dollars divided by 10 is 30.00 plus shipping is 2.00

3 teams 32 Dollars 19 Hits 4 boxes

I'm guessing that the shipping price is for the USA, so it will probably be a little more for collectors living overseas. I need to get that clarified.

So there's ten places, each with three teams. You can pick your first team and then the others are randomised.

Three spots (possibly four) have already been claimed so that means there are seven left. Redsox101 is hoping to get this done by October 10th, so you have a few weeks to sign up.

To claim a spot follow this link or leave a comment here and I'll pass on your interest.

Just to clarify, I'M NOT running this break. I'm just shamelessly plugging it on the blogroll.

I may as well plug this too... again.

Sports Jambalaya

Take a look and let us know what you think.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

A few more minis

Thanks to some generosity from John I have finally gotten some new minis for the set!

First is Persephone, from the Lords of Olympus subset. She was the Goddess of the Underworld and the daughter of Zeus and Zeus's sister, Demeter. Was it common for Greek Gods to keep it in the family like that? Weird. Still at least I learnt something new.

Next we have a few regular players.

Top left is Joe Nathan of the Twins. I actual remember Joe when he player for the Giants a long time ago but didnt know much about his time with the Twins apart from he was at the All Star game last year. Hes missed the entire season this year due to having Tommy John surgery.

Top right is Jorge Cantu pictured as a Marlin but he was recently traded to the Rangers.

Bottom is Nick Markakis of the Orioles. Nick is famous for having a stupid last name.
Seriously though he is a pretty good player. He just needs to get out of Baltimore if he wants to win something.

By the way the Markakis is a A&G back. The other two are normal.

Black bordered minis! Beautiful looking cards!
On the left is some dude called Tiago Della Vega who is the worlds fastest guitar player and you could be too if you practiced for 14 hours a day like this guy did. I've not heard him play but according the back of the card he can play at an incredible 38 BPS. I'll need to check that out on YouTube!

Next to him is Francisco Rodriguez of the Mets. He was arrested and charged with third-degree assault for allegedly attacking his father-in-law a few weeks. What was the deal with that? That's something else I need to check out.

The final two cards featuring another favourite of mine, the National Animals.
Top is Argentina and their animal the Cougar. Big cats are cool so this card is a winner.

Bottom is Turkey and their animal the Gray Wolf. According to the card the wolf is their national animal because in ancient times their ancestors were raised amongst the wolves who then lead the Turks to freedom.

If you look at the top right of the above photo you will see something entering the shot.

Meet Poppet, the baseball card hungry cat!
This cat has damaged a few cards since we got her a year ago. Some were destroyed and had to be replaced, such as a bunch of 2009 Heritage cards that got shredded in a binder. Guess she thought it was a scratching post.
The most recent attack was when she managed to fish out a few cards from my monster box of commons, inserts and numbered cards. I don't know how she got that lid off. Luckily she only grabbed a bunch of 87 and 97 Topps so it was not a massive issue, it just taught me to be a bit more careful.
Incidentally all the cards she picked out of the box were Royals players.
Make of that what you will.
One more thing. Check out this blog that I contribute too. You may see a few other familiar bloggers there and maybe some new ones.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Step back in time - Tuff Stuff 2000

I was going through a few things a couple of weeks ago from when I was younger. I wasn't looking for anything in particular, I was just bored. I found a few baseball scrap books that contained some baseball newspaper clippings, Giants tickets and also a Tuff Stuff price guide from April 2000.

Now I'm actually a big fan of price guides, more specifically Beckett. I enjoy the articles and reviews that accompany them, as well as the occasional interview. The price guide is also used alot but mostly as a checklist more than to see how much my cards are worth.

I have picked up two Becketts this last year. I picked up the first one just to see what had changed in the hobby and to get a good idea of what sets were released in the nine years I was away. The second one I picked up because it included all the sets from 2009 as well as a couple from 2010. I will probably pick up another one towards the end of the year or early 2011.

The point of this post is to show just how much the collecting world had changed since April 2000 til now.

Tuff Stuff is a price guide that covers all the major North American sports but I was only interested in the baseball stuff. The issue I have has Mark McGwire on the front and the issue has articles regarding McGwire's 1985 Topps RC and also a list of the hardest signatures to get from various sports.

I thought the McGwire RC article is very interesting from today's perspective. McGwires exploits on and off the field have been well documented and you either love him or hate him. Sure the guy took steroids during the bulk of his career, including the 1998 season when he hit 70 home runs. At the time it was fairly common knowledge that he was using some sort of performance enhancing substance but this was not really addressed at the time. It was not until a few years later when the fans started to turn against him and other big stars of the time. The article features a sliding scale of McGwires RC from its issue in 1985 right up to 2000. I wont list every year but here's a few below.

1985 - .50

1987 - $12

1990 - $18

1993 - $30

1995 - $8

1998 - $90

2000 - $200

How much is the card worth now? Well I can say its not $200 and will probably never be worth that much ever again, unless its a graded gem mint copy. According to COMC the cards current value is $30 but you can pick one up for $6.

That's a huge decrease in value and I'm sure the people who invested in his RC lost a lot of money and there are probably still a few people oblivious to the fact the card is not as big as it once was and are just sitting on it.
In comparison, I wonder what Strasburgs cards will look like in ten years time? The low numbered cards should hold their value for a long, long time but what about the base and base chromes? Will they still be worth $30/$50? Nope. You could probably get one for less then $10 by next year.
The other part of the guide has a piece on the top ten hardest signatures to get along with a brief write up of why their sigs are tough to get. I'm not familiar with some of the names but I'll list them anyway.
They are:
1 - Mark McGwire - Tough because he simply does not sign often.
2 - Patrick Ewing - It says he only really signs for friends and teammates.
3 - Mark Messier - Will only sign through Steiner Sports.
4 - Al Davis - It says he simply does not like signing.
5 - Kevin Garnett - It says he wont sign due to people profiting on his name. He tells fans 'Not now, dog'.
6 - Tiger Woods - It says he has a high amount of security and its tough to get to him.
7 - Eddie Murray - It says he will only sign at conventions.
8 - Scottie Pippin -It says he will pretend to be on a cell phone so he can ignore everyone.
9 - Deion Sanders - It says he doesn't have the time.
10 - Randy Moss - It says hes moody and will walk right past anyone asking for a sig.
Out of the above list I would personally only want two autos. The McGwire and the Woods but the chances of me getting any are slim. Tiger Woods will actually be half a mile from my house when the Ryder cup starts so I may get an opportunity if I happen to run into him though I doubt very much I will.
Have any of you guys gotten an auto from the above list? and I'm talking IP or TTM. I know the list is ten years out of date but I was just curious to see if anything had changed over time. That maybe the players had mellowed out and embraced the fans.
Theres a lot more in this magazine but I'll save that for another time.
One more thing. We need more people to fill out a 2010 A&G casebreak. Either get in touch with me or follow the link for more details.