Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Mailbox Shock

I found this draft from 2007.  I have no idea who sent these cards to me.  

I love going to the mailbox and getting a shock. unless it is a bill  Card shock is always great.  I recently got one of those shocks.  I was warned that some cards were coming but I didn't expect an 800 count box full of Red Sox.  Here is a tiny portion of what I got.

  • Yes, I still need 1993 Bowman cards. I was only collecting football in 93 so the want list is extensive.
  • Cyborg Mo - Hard to see but he has a metal arm and leg.
  • A rookie Nomar
  • Hard to see in the scan but that is a Donruss Press Proof Mo Vaughn.  The first one I have ever had.
  • Wakefield is in back in the rotation and I now have a blue parallel Wake.
  • Of all the painted sets ever made 2003 Playoff Portraits may be the very best ever.  
  • Pedro was supposed to go on a different scan.

Upper Deck Timeless Teams are kick ass. Somehow I missed that set but I am always glad to find some.  The big checklist means I wall be chasing them for years.  I received 7 in this box so to fill the scan here are 2 Nomars.

The floodgates were opened with Nomar cards as you could see in past posts.  Now I hope the Pedro floodgates open.  If they do this package will be the start of it.  I think if I decided to bite off player collecting again I would probably choose Pedro.  The best pitcher that I have ever seen and he has a ton of great cards.

Thanks again for the great box of cards.

Friday, April 26, 2019

Going Blind

No the shininess of this Gonzalez Refractor didn't blind me.  I went to the eye doctor this week; he more or less said, dam your getting old!  But this isn't about my eye doctor visit either.  I see less clear than before but I am not going blind.  The post title is about a Sportlots purchase I made.

In a way all your Sportlots purchases are made blind because you never see a scan of the card you are buying.  But I am not quite talking about that either.  I purchased some cards on Sportlots from Mkoates5.  They showed up a few days later with a letter.  (that I wish I saved to scan)  The letter said something along the lines of "Thanks for purchasing from me.  I notice you ordered only Red Sox.  I have allot more Red Sox available." and gave me his email address.

 So I contacted him and he offered to go through my want list and pull anything on it he had and he would sell them for .15 each regardless of if it was an insert, parallel, or whatever. 

I figured .15 a card with zero doubles and I don't even have to look through the inventory to find them, YES PLEASE!!

Pictured are just a tiny portion of the 231 Red Sox cards that received.  It sure was a great haul.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Still Into Vintage

I know I have mainly posted Virdon cards for the last few months but that doesn't mean I am totally ignoring my Red Sox collection but for the last few years I have only sought out vintage Red Sox cards.  New cards just don't hold my interest. 

My favorite set all time is 1948 Leaf.  (I call it 48 Leaf though the Standard says it is 49 Leaf)  If I ever won the lottery I would build complete 48 Leaf Baseball, Football, Boxing, and Pirates sets.  Yes, there is a Leaf Pirates set.  It isn't Pittsburgh Pirates it's guys like Captain Kidd, Cisco and tons of guys you have never heard of. 

Since I'm not winning the lottery any time soon I decided to at least build the Red Sox team set.  But even that is an expensive undertaking.  The set it littered with Short Print cards and many of them happen to be Red Sox.   So I always seek them out on eBay but since they go for hundreds each I just keep watching and waiting. 

Every now and then patience and persistence pays off and I get lucky.  Usually the SP cards go for hundreds of dollars even when they are in horrible shape.  But they go for considerably less when the get listed as 1948 Laef instead of 1948 Leaf.  Yes whoever listed this misspelled it and I got it for a steal. 

1948 Leaf Matthew Batts

Matthew Batts is one of the dreaded SP cards.  This one is offcenter, offcut, and has some paperloss but it cost me less than a tank of gas.  Actually it was closer to a half tank of gas.  That is a steal!!

I am down to needing two more cards to complete my team set.  I still need Johnny Pesky (RC) and Billy Goodman, both are SPs.  I know I won't get them for a song, like the Batts, but eventually one will be cheap enough for me to snag and when it does, I'll be waiting.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019


This isn't a post about someone sending me cards.  This is about some mail that got sent 20 years before I was born.  One year after winning the NL Rookie of the Year Bill Virdon started coaching on the side.  It was probably a good start since it was something he did for over 30 years after his playing days were through.  

How cool is that return address?  A full photo on the front of the envelope.

Inside is a letter on legal paper.  Man were the times different.  The camp, plus room and board are only $165 for 4 WEEKS!  My daughter's 1 week soccer camp last year was $650.

Kudos to Mr. Formuff for preserving this envelope and letter so well.  It is a cool little addition to my Virdon Collection.  

Tuesday, April 23, 2019


Over the last few years as Virdons I don't have became more scarce I have branched out and purchased some things I never would have years ago.

This is a newspaper clipping from 1984.  I don't have a ruler handy to measure it but this thing is pretty darn big.  Folded in half it is almost (but not quite) takes up a whole 8x10 page.  It doesn't have a date on it anywhere but it does have results from the 1984 Olympics.  (all in French)

Monday, April 22, 2019

20 Years Or So Apart

Now that I am somewhat organized you are going to get a slew of 8x10, 4x6, and 5x7 cards scanned at you.  I mean I could post about my GIANT Spotlots purchase but that requires WAY to much scanning.  8x10s are s much easier. 

I'm not sure how old this photo is but it has to be mid to late 50s with how young Virdon and Aaron look.  

This 8x10 is from spring training 1974.  So a little over 20 years after the other photo.  At this point Hank is the Home Run King and Virdon is about to win the 1974 Manager of the Year award.  

Friday, April 19, 2019


Well the over-sized Virdons to a new folder is done.  (Though I know I am missing some 8x10s somewhere.  I just have to find them...)


I didn't realize just how many over-sized Virdons I had stashed here and there.  The old binder looks much the same as it did before but now I have a whole other binder to go with it. 

Doubles (and triples)
This is the cost of being unorganized.  That is three 58 Jays Publishing, two 1962 Sports Service, and two different Rowe/Brace postcards that are all doubles.  To make it worse I had the 58 Jays and 62 Sports Service on my eBay watch list again.  I saved myself from more purchases at least.

Team Issues are the reason I needed to get organized.  See the subtle differences in the above team issues?  Same picture different issues.  To close to go off of memory when I find one on eBay.

Many times even different pictures look just alike.  Every one of the above look alike but are a tiny bit different. (Sorry for the sideways photos I didn't realize they would post this way.)

1962 JD McCarthy

Sometimes cards are exactly the same, except they aren't.

I bet you thought that back parallels were a new thing invented so sell more useless inserts.  In reality back parallels existed even back in 1962.

1984 Postcards

It isn't the old team issues that have lots of variables. 

The "newer" ones have endless parallels too.  With those missing 8x10s I have this same postcard with English on the back instead of French. 

This is another cost of chasing team issues.  Sometimes you have to buy the whole team, or some kind of lot, to get the one card you want.  At least I know who to send the Cardinals too. 

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Updating The Virdon Binder

I store all my Virdons in a single 6" binder.  It is bursting at the seems and has been for more than a year.  I probably have 40-60 or Virdons that need put away but it just doesn't have the room.

Right now they are all in there by issue date (or as close to it as a can figure with team issues) but that tends to be a problem with any over-sized card because they take a different size page.  So I have decided to start a second binder and I'll keep all my regular size Virdons in one binder and anything that is over-sized in another.  For the over-sized binder I am going to sort by team then size.  So all the Cardinal Virdons together 4x6, 5x7, 8x10 and everything else in between then Pirates, Mets, Astros, and finally Expos.  I have to look at the over-sized cards all the time to figure out if I already have one I find and having them in team order will help since I never know what year a team issued coach card might be.

Finally getting them all out of a drawer and into a binder at all will help find them allot easier.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Marking A Checklist Off The Checklist

In January I posted about some Virdon cards I didn't know existed.  I didn't know Topps had mail in team cards from 1975 to 1981.  Well I chipped another one off the list. 

I didn't really want a graded card but except for an uncut sheet it is all I have been able to find.  I almost just bought the sheet but the graded card was cheaper that the uncut sheet.

Now I am down to only needing the 1976 Mail In.  All of the other ones had multiples for me to choose from on eBay but not the 76.  There is none on eBay, COMC, Sportlots, or Beckett Marketplace.  So I patiently wait.  One day it will show up somewhere and when it does...

Monday, April 15, 2019

Scribbles In Ink

My much ignored boxing card collection got an addition recently. 

This looks like a In Person or TTM auto but actually this is a auto insert from 1996 Ringside. 

Ringside did it a little different than most other companies.  Instead of a little blurb on the back about how you received an on card auto... they embossed the cards with a seal.  It is hard to see in the scan but if you look at his boxing gloves (front scan) you can faintly see the embossment.  On the back you can faintly see it on the white box below his ring record.  It says 'Spotlight Signature Gold in the embossment. 

This is my fourth Spotlight Signature card.  I also have Carmon Basilio, Vinny Pazienza, and Willie Pep.  I can't find a list of all of them all anywhere so I don't know how many more might be out there.  The Basilio I actually pulled from a pack.  The rest came via eBay.   

Saturday, April 13, 2019

What The...

No your eyes are not deceiving you, that is Bill Virdon in a Mets uniform. 

1967 Bill Virdon 8x10

After he left the Pirates as a player he spent two years as a player/coach in the Mets minor leagues.  I hardly have any Virdon stuff from those two years but they didn't exactly make much for minor league teams back then. 

Friday, April 12, 2019

It's Triplets!!

Not me, God no!!  That would be a nightmare as far as I'm concerned.  Mine are all spread out and that can be bad enough, three at one time...

When I stared my Virdon collection I put a limitation of no team pictures on myself.  So all those team cards that Topps put out I don't have them in my collection. (except for the ones where he has his own picture and name on the front like 1975, 79, 80, etc...)  However when I found the following I made an exception. 

1952 Triplets Team Photo

This is the earliest Virdon anything that I have.  It is from when he played Single A ball in the yankees farm system for the Binghamton Triplets.  Notice he doesn't have glasses on in the picture which was a Virdon staple on everything I have ever seen. (middle row second from left)

I may have started something becasue I think when I see other team pictures from his minor league days I will now pick them up too.

This is a really odd size team photo at 9.5x11.  It has defiantly seen better days.  But it's a 75 year old piece of paper that you don't want to fold and is too big to really put into something that would protect it. 

Thursday, April 11, 2019

New School Treatment To An Old School Player Collection

I don't know how people with a Player Collection of a modern player do it.  All the Autos, jerseys, millions of 1/1 cards, and other low serial numbers how do you even start to decide what to chase.  It is one of the nice things about player collecting a guy that only played/managed through the early 90s; there is only so much for me to chase and I for the most part know what is out there I don't have yet.  It isn't too often I find something that completely surprises me.  Well, I just got something that completely surprised me.

A printing plate from 1962 Topps.   Did you know these were out in the wild, I didn't?   If it had come from Topps Vault that would be understandable but this didn't.  (though it was  really big seller on eBay)  I had thought that all the printing plates went to Venezuela so that they could do the Venezuelan cards.  Maybe the reason the 1962 Venezuelan set didn't include Virdon amongst others is the printing plates never left that states.  I probably way overpaid for this since I'm the only Virdon collector that I know of but I couldn't take the chance it got away and did the BIN the day it got posted.  I mean it's a 57 year old item that shouldn't exist but does.

I now know how it feels to get a printing plate for my Player Collection just like those modern collectors, only different.