Tuesday, April 30, 2024

2023 Bowman Draft Team Set AKA Who The...

 I struggle with Bowman.  There seem to be so many sets and they are all so similar.  Many times there are two cards that look exactly alike but the numbers will be different.  Actually they will be the same with a slew of letters add.  This is 2023 Bowman Draft or the BD set.  Not to be confused with the BD set, the BDP set, or the BDPP set.  Confused yet? Me too.

The Red Sox team set consists of seven cards.  I have heard of exactly one of these players.  None of them have made it to the majors yet.  Actually I don't even think any have made it to AAA yet.  I have heard of Marcelo Mayer though.  

The back of his card doesn't help any either.  So I googled him.  It turns out he was the #4 pick of the 21 draft.  That was the highest Red Sox pick in 50 years.  He isn't just a prospect he's an uber prospect.

Side note: I think I figured out how to keep the scans straight, at least mostly straight.  The trick was putting an unused stick of staples above the cards when I lay them on the scanner bed.  When I scan multiple cards like the whole team set above the bottom half is kind of tricky to keep straight but it's working so far.

Monday, April 29, 2024

I Should Have Done More Research

 This popped up in my random eBay searches as a 1962 MLBPA Pin.  I snatched it up for .99 with 1.50 shipping.

To give you a sense of this pins size, that is a nickel holder it is in.  It came in the holder and I am going to leave it that way because how else will I store it.  They actually make pages that fit these coin holders and I have one with assorted Red Sox pins and coins in it already.  

I was all set to post about my great vintage buy when I thought I should check the Standard Catalog and see if it is really called MLBPA Pin.  I found out that yes that is what it is called but it is in no way a 1962.  It turned out to be a 1969 MLBPA Pin.  That still sounds vintage but it was actually printed in 1983.  The difference between the originals made in 1969 and the reprints, and you are just going to have to trust me because I have no way to scan it, is that on the curve of the pin where it transitions from front back mine says Made in USA.  The original 1969 version should say Winona, MINN.   

Trivia Time**:  When did the US move to the two letter state abbreviation?  

The reprints are not exactly reprints either because they are mostly different players than the originals.  Doerr is on of the ones that isn't in the original set so if I had taken the 5 minutes to check my Standard before buying it I would have known.  It was only $2.49 total so at least I didn't spend much on it.  There is a blue version of this same pin.  The only other Red Sox in the set is Ted Williams.  Oddly I see plenty of the blue version online but I do not see any of the Williams in a Red version.  

**It was 1963 six years before they printed MINN on the original pins.  I guess is took a while to catch on.   

Friday, April 26, 2024

Another yankee Mailday

 It feels odd getting yankee items.  As a Red Sox collector I have WAY to many of them but I keep getting more because Virdon spent a year and a half with the yankees.  

This is a 5x7 1974 Spring Training photo.  It is accidently the second one I own.  My non Virdon stuff is organized by size (4x6, 5x7, 8x10, 9x11), then team.  The reason I did it that way is because the pages are a tad different sized and this keeps the same size pages together.  So all the 4x6s are together and it goes Cardinals, Pirates, yankees, Astros.  Then the 5x7s start and it again goes Cardinals, Pirates, yankees, and Astros.  When this showed up on eBay I didn't look at the size because in my brain all team photos were 8x10.  (and they mostly are)  When I checked the yankee section of 8x10s I didn't have this one and pulled the trigger.  Once it came in and it was a 5x7 and I went to the 5x7 yankee section I already had it.  So it goes with non cards, they are just so hard to track.  

At fist I only collected Virdon cards.  That expanded to postcards because to me they are like a close cousin to baseball cards.  Eventually I expanded that to 8x10, but only with some kind of printing mark.  Then I went back on that and added any 8x10.  Somewhere in there I added team photos but only if they actually list Bill Virdon on them.  o things like the 1972 Topps Pirates Team Card doesn't exist in my collection because Virdon isn't listed on it.


It really doesn't look like him in the picture.  Even zoomed in you can't see his glasses but I do think it is him because in tons of pictures I have seen of Bill Virdon from his time with the yankees, he is wearing black gloves.

Thursday, April 25, 2024

About 10 Years on the Want List Then A Conundrum

 I originally pulled my Virdon Want List off of the Beckett website.  Since then I added cards as I found out stuff existed.  One of the original cards on my list was 1962 Swan-Virdon.

Beckett had it listed 15 years ago but Trading Card Database still doesn't know it exists.  I accidently found that it has a back variation.  It is the exact same card only it doesn't have the Swan-Virdon advertisement.  

It took me a little time to find that non advertisement back.  To find it I started searching JD McCarthy lots, and I finally did.  But in the course of looking at JD McCarthy lots I found this postcard.

It was a part of a large JD McCarthy postcard lot selling for like $1000 in one of the big auction houses and I wasn't willing to pay that much for a postcard.  I didn't know what it was but I knew it was a JD McCarthy postcard and he was kneeling in it.  So that is how it went on my want list.  McCarthy Postcard (kneeling).  It tool almost 10 years for one to show up on eBay.  Then oddly enough it took like six months for a second one to show up.

Now I don't have any proof but the fact that both of these were mailed in 1957 makes me think that is when they were produced.  So it is now being moved on my list to 1957 JC McCarthy (Kneeling).

The kicker now becomes what do I do about the 1962 JC McCarthy no add back?  because if you look closer at it.

 It got mailed in 1960 two years before Beckett says that the Swan-Virdon came out.  So was it a 1960 JD McCarthy or does Beckett have the year wrong?  These want list conundrums come up all the time with non postcards and team issues.  There are just no records of them out there so it is kind of fly by the seat if your pants and comparing small things. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Just a Double I Didn't Remember Having

 It isn't very often a Bill Virdon that I don't have pops up.  So when a 1975 Box Bottom card with a Buy it Now of $4.00 showed up on eBay, I pounced on it. I got it in the mail and after some research, there was not Box Bottom cards in 1975 so I don't know what I got.  

It is obviously hand cut and it obviously had a border at one time.  I thought maybe it was cut from a complete sheet but when I looked for that: 

Uncut sheets have no border so it isn't from and uncut sheet.

I double checked mail in team cards and they have the border. 

While looking for the full sheet I found these Mail in Team Cards.  This is it I went to put it in the Virdon binder and I already had it.  I don't remember it even existing but somewhere along the way I had already grabbed it and forgot about it.  

Trading Card Database lists the Team Card as having a grey back and a white back.  This is a scan of mine with the standard 75 Topps card.  Oddly enough my regular version is almost as crooked looking as the hand cut one.  

Evidently this card has three variations Standard, Grey, and White.  I now have to chase down a grey and a white one.  That is how it goes when you PC an player that doesn't get current cards made of him.  The only things there are to chase is variations. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

A Mail Day First

 I got in shipment number three of my 2023 Team Sets.  One of the sellers was Eastern_Shore_Sports_Cards and I bought the Topps Inception team set from him.  I have never seen Inception before so I didn't know what I was getting.  But what I really really didn't know I was getting was the free Bowman Best team set he sent.  

Free team set, I'll Take It!!  Luckily I had not ordered that team set this year.  Somehow it fell through the cracks because I didn't even have it on my checklist.  With the logo in the background and the kind of snowflake motif these kind of remind me of the Christmas Ornament card inserts' from long ago.  

The inception cards are a surprise themselves.  They are super thick.  Thicker than a jersey card, maybe two jersey cards together even.  They are kind of weirdly repetitive but not repetitive at all.  I think Night Owl would label it the paintbrush and clouds set.  I like the 

Thanks for the free cards Eastern Shore Card Store whoever you are. 

Monday, April 22, 2024

Mail Day Number Two

 My second batch of team sets came in.  It was only two sets but it was the one I was most excited for because it was Topps Flagship and Allen & Ginter.  

One of the reasons I wait until the new year to buy the previous year's cards is so that I don't have to chase each series of team sets down.  So when I buy Topps I buy series 1, 2, and Update as a complete set.  (I always bought Heritage and High Numbers together but I broke from that this year because for some reason that was like three times more money this year)  I am not going to post anything more about flagship right now. Since it is all three series' it has the most cards and I think might just do a card by card post on it; a rehash of the 2023 team if you will.  

Now onto Ginter.  A&G has been one of my favorites since it came out or I should say the year after it came out.  I never saw 2006 Ginter until I started getting it in blog trades.  I always assumed it might have been hobby only and in my little town the only place I had to buy cards was Wal Mart.  In 2007 A&G was available to me and it was perfectly simple.  Silhouette images on a white background (and minis) it was great.  I understand that Topps had to change it up some and it couldn't stay images on a plain white background forever or every year's cards would look the same.  They started out using other old A&G sets as a template but that could only last so long too.  Now each year Topps adds some stuff that they think makes it look old timey.  To me however 2023 was a bust.  This is the worst A&G design ever, it looks so cheesy.  

I said cheesy but I should have said Carney because each card screams elementary school Renaissance Festival.  They say step up to the board and grab a fishing pole, everybody hooks a prize! Just reach in and grab a duck, whatever number is on the bottom is that basket you get to pick from, EVERYBODY gets a prize!  But really nobody does because the prizes are so cheap looking.

Also how does Topps do this?

These aren't image variations either, they used each of these guys twice it the same set.  Yes one is a base and one is a SP but in a way aren't SPs still base cards?  At least that is how I always saw them.  Somehow Topps couldn't find anyone else in the history of the Red Sox to to put in the set one time so instead they doubled up players in the same set.

One of the main reasons I stopped blogging is my scanner.  My old one was so perfect.  I could fill it with cards and when I scanned it asked do you want this as a single image or do you want it to be broken into multiple images.  No matter which I selected one I got perfect scans with no background.  I could scan 9 cards at a time and it would break it into 9 scans with no cropping issues.  My current scanner can scan a full page or it can scan a specified area.  I can say scan 2.5x3.5 but it only scans the exact middle of the top of the page and if I am off any it cuts the card off.  So right now I am using my phone which I know sucks.  The background doesn't bother me as much as the lighting does.  I am going to try and figure that out some work around for the scanner.  I am thinking some kind of template that makes me set the card in the perfect spot but I know it will be some trial and error.  Hopefully I can get something figured out.   

Friday, April 19, 2024

The Last Blogger To Get a 2023 Card

Today I held my first 2023 baseball card.  Five years ago I stopped building current Red Sox team sets.  I didn't stop collecting Red Sox cards (even though my blog activity makes it look like I quit), I just stopped trying to build new team sets.  I switched to outright buying the current year's team sets.  

I haven't been trying to build team sets but every year I cave in at some point and buy a random pack at Wal-Mart or I get one for Birthday, Father's Day, or Christmas. But not this year, I haven't held a single 2023 card until today.  This is the first time that has ever happened.  

While may think of this as cheating it is so much more economical that I can't justify building them anymore.  The extra money saved I can spend on what I really like, vintage cards and Virdons.  There is the added bonus of getting the cards a year late because I can sort of relive the prior baseball year as I binder them up. 

This is the first batch of 2023 cards to come in the mail.  I get about half of my team sets from TeamSets4U and they just so happen to be the fastest getting them to my mailbox.  Actually what came first was my new binder, it came from Amazon and arrived the next day, it's hard to beat Amazon shipping.

This is eleven team sets: Bowman Prospects, Bowman Chrome Prospects, Bowman Platinum, Big League, Donruss, Heritage Low Numbers, Pristine, Pro Debut, Topps All Star, Gold Star, and Holiday parallels.

My process is to go to ebay and start putting the three lowest priced team sets of each brand in my cart for every single brand I plan to buy.  Then I go to my cart and weed out the ones that screw me on shipping.  Sometimes that set that was $8 with $2 shipping is more expensive than the $9 team set that had $5 shipping but free shipping if combined.  Once I weed out the more expensive ones I go to each seller I am going to use and see that else they have available to combine shipping on.  Many times I will find a team set from an older year that I can get for only a couple dollars and free shipping.  Mostly though I end up with more and more parallel sets.  I find random things I never heard of like Montgomery parallel team sets for $5.  

I have fourteen more team sets besides these just waiting to show up in my mailbox.  Living in Phoenix it is about to be stay in the house hot so I will have plenty of time to watch the current year Sox while I relive last years Sox.