Sunday, November 17, 2019

Oh there's no place like Doon for the holidays

Blogging legend Napkin Doon recently went on a Topps Holiday binge, and he was kind enough to send me an early holiday package.

Last I knew, he was building the 2019 Topps Holiday set, but was closing in on completion. I'm not sure if he's 100% there or not. To help his cause, he joined Trading Card Database. You can find him here.

Santa Doon's package consisted of a few items, including two broken down blaster boxes of the product itself. Doon has noticed I'm a crafting geek and make some coasters out of old blasters, so he helped send me some supplies. These will go to good use.
And if you're wondering, here was my first dabble at coasters. More to come.
I saw a lot of critics of this set from the whiney card collecting community on Twitter. Me? I think it's great. The design is a lot better than the snowflake pattern of the last few years. I don't even mind the gimmicky present and candy cane short prints and all that. To me, this is the perfect time to be gimmicky in a fun product like this.

Doon sent me my first sampling of them, and I like them in person as much as I hoped I would. Well done here, Topps.
While I remember the pattern of the last few years, I didn't remember this one from 2017. The snowflakes are embossed and sparkly. I thought that was cool. 
Nap also sent me a nice team bag of cards, included some Clint Fraziers. I still like Frazier a lot and seems like he always get a raw deal. He'll hit 40 HRs for the Pirates one of these years.
A nice numbered card of Yankees HOFer Mike Mussina! No logo on his cap if fitting!
And here's a lazy photo of a stack of cards. There was a nice Judge Bowman, and a vintage Bobby Richardson.
Thanks, Nap. As for everyone else, feel free to flood his TCDB was trade offers and pleas to come back to blogging.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

This fan's favorite

As the onslaught of 2019 Tino Martiez cards continues, I've found the best strategy is to wait a few weeks before pursuing.

The autographs in the newer products were going for quite a lot, as Tino is a guy that generally didn't have a ton of autographs on the market. As they tend to do, Topps changed that and has flooded the market with Tinos. In turn, it's driven prices down.

I was impatient at first, but now know to wait a few minutes until the next Topps release comes out, and now I'm able to score cards like this for much less I would have been a month or two ago.
Topps Archives Fan Favorites feels like the most natural set for Tino to actually be included in a 2019 Topps set. It was fun to see this design again, and I don't recall ever seeing this photo. Double win in my book.

He's certainly always been my favorite, and I'm glad I have card that reflects that.


Saturday, November 9, 2019

TCBD trades are flying in

I'm up to eight completed Trading Card Database trades, with two more in-transit. Pretty cool. I'm having a bit of a hard time using the "matching" tool to find people to trade with. It's a bit cumbersome and clunky. But others seem to be using it just fine, so I assume it's something one learns in time.

The first was a great deal because I got rid of 8 cards, and only one came in. I like being net -7 and not accumulating a bunch of cards. I sent user hilochef seven cards from various 2019 sets, and got one lovely RC in return:
Love it! Gleyber RCs are a nice thing to have these days, and the Chrome Update version is a nice one.

My next trade was with Detfan6897, obviously a Detroit Tigers fan. I sent him three Tigers from three different 2019 sets, including a Jordan Zimmer 2019 Topps Fire. In return, I got a Tino I needed, as well as another Gleyber RC (a rookie debut card from 2018 Update), and a cool Future Stars try-card of Torres, Frazier, and Andujar. Nice little three for three swap!
A slightly larger trade was made with user stoob, in which I gave away seven cards from 2019 Topps Update, and got seven back in return. The highlights for me are the really fun Jeter-esque Gio Urshela, as well as a plethora of RCs in the name of Mike Tauchman (although not supposed to be a RC I don't think), Mike Ford, and Thairo Estrada. There was also a beautiful Giancarlo Stanton 1984 Refractor. Those look so sweet.
And speaking of Gio, I received a sweet Topps Gold of that same card from natemedmonds. I sent him four cards, and got this beauty in return. Yankee card of the year?
I still need to do better about getting Tino Martinez cards I need and not accumulating current Yankees, but it sure is fun to sent unwanted cards to set builders for cards I'd rather have.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Freezer Day

In elementary school, one of the items on the lunch menu at the end of the school year was "Freezer Day."

I always enjoyed buying lunch on Freezer Day because there was so many delicious items available. I was a bit too naive (aka dumb) to understand that it was literally the lunch staff's way of cleaning out everything left in the freezer from the school year. Nuggets, fries, hamburger, ziti, meatballs, steakumms. All served to unsuspecting kids so that it didn't go to waste.

Pretty gross.

And awesome.

When I was looking through my scanned folder, I just saw a bunch of cards that are leftovers. Cards that have been sitting there for the last year or so without a post to call home.

So I'm taking a mishmash of what's left in my folder and creating my own little Freezer Day on a Sunday evening.

First off, Tino has to be part of Freezer Day. I remember buying this SI for Kids card because I thought I needed it. But when it arrived, it turns out it was a dupe. That happens a lot.
This was a recent pickup because I didn't realize Pinnacle Mint had cards that were printed with a medallion, versus the physical coin that usually goes in there. I have a few of the card and coin combos, but I was surprised that this version existed.
Wrapping up the frozen Tino section, my most recent pickup. It was another instance of me complaining on Twitter about crappy shipping by a seller who charged nearly $4 and sent it in a PWE. Two in a row!
Back in the spring, I bought this card, and I'm not sure why. Probably because "cucked" is funny and this guy's last name is Kucks? Cool signature and card though.
This Tyler Wade autograph was from last winter. I think I thought Wade was going to be awesome. He's mostly been overmatched in his short Big League career, but he was a bit better down the stretch and I think he'll continue to be a useful utility guy.
Stanton relic? I think got it during the COMC Black Friday sale, along with this cool Judge Tarot and Frazier Fortune Teller. The Tarots are very very cool.
When Mariano Rivera got elected to the HOF, I bought the two Topps NOW issued cards. I guess they arrived a few weeks after the news, so I never got along to posting them.
Lastly, spring chicken is on the Freezer Day menu, with this Yankee young'un. Deivi Garcia is the most promising Yankees minor league pitcher since Luis Severino. I'm excited to see him (hopefully) debut next season. I bought this card with some leftover eBay bucks last quarter.
That should do it for this Freezer Day. Glad I could finally clean this cards out of the depths of my scanned folder.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

A TTM from the Sockman

Mike Tauchman had a very solid first season in Pinstripes. He was acquired late in spring training, and ended up making the Opening Day roster. He had a 3.6 WAR, belted 13 homers, and played a solid OF. He was pressed into more playing time than he should have had with all of the Yankees injuries.

He also received a John Sterling home run call: "Tauchman, the Sockman."

The one thing about guys like Tauchman, and Gio Urshela, and Luke Voit, etc, is that Brian Cashman has gotten obsessed with these buy-low, under-the-radar type of trade candidates. And that's cool. They almost always pay off for him. But it's like a game to him, and he likes operating as if he were the frugal Marlins or something to show how smart he is.

It's like he needs to constantly prove he's a savvy GM with these deals.

I'd love to see Cashman play it both ways - continue to try to make these ninja moves, while also opening up the wallet and using the financial might that comes with New York. There's room to play it both ways.

Anyhow, back in April I sent Tauchman a TTM request, and after the season my two cards arrived. Mind you I didn't have a real Tauchman card at the time. Since then, he's been included in 2019 Update (with an erroneous RC...he previously had one with the Rockies), so I'll likely try to send him another request down the road if I ever decide to send another TTM request.
Thanks, Mr. Mike Tauchman!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

A big eBay bozo

If you follow me on Twitter, you might have a seen a few Tweets from me about a bizarre shipping case that occurred on a recent eBay purchase.

I purchased the following card for $6.75 + $3.82 shipping:
For $3.82 shipping, I think we'd all expect a bubble mailer. I am someone who has ZERO issue with PWEs, especially if the auction has free or $1 shipping. It's expected.

By my $3.82 shipping charge got me a PWE.

Now, the card arrived just fine and in a top loader, but honestly, I felt robbed of $2. The seller didn't get what he wanted in the auction, so he made two extra bucks by undercutting the shipping.

Feeling a bit chapped, I reached out. Here is the full eBay message exchange:

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I apologize if that was a little tough to follow, so here is the breakdown:

1. I ask about the shipping, feeling like it should have been a bubble mailer.
2. Seller says he didn't look at the shipping, asks if card was damaged.
3. I say "no", but the cost still seems too high given what I paid.
4. Seller justifies his actions by saying I got a good deal on the card.
5. Since it didn't get to me damaged, he didn't think he needed to offer a refund. He finally gave a partial refund.
6. I said thank you and that his logic is bizarre.
7. He says he was drinking during Game 6 of the World Series.

Freakin' weird.

All in all, card arrived ok, I got a partial refund, and I got some good laughs and a bunch of Twitter followers out of it. I still think the seller was wrong and probably does this a bunch, knowing most buyers won't ever reach out about it.

eBay really is the land of bozos.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

The free table

At the local church thrift store I tend to frequent, there is a "free table" before one walks in.

Usually it's a bunch of crap. After all, if it's not good enough to make the floor at this low-end thrift store, it must be pretty bad. But I always take a quick peek when I walk in, hoping to find cards.

And today I did.

It's certainly not an all-time find, and I need this like I need another hole in the head, but I couldn't just leave this there:
Remember these? I have no idea why these card plaques existed. But I'd say they were a very early '90s thing, and the ultimate grandma gift. I had a bunch of them. I think I still have a Tino one somewhere in my collection.

I really don't have much of a use for this, but again, it was on the free table, asking for a Yankees collector to rescue it. So it'll sit in my card area for now. Maybe I'll find somewhere to display it. Maybe I'll swap out the 1990 Leaf for a '84 Topps Mattingly and display it a little more proudly.

I struck out inside the store. No binders or boxes of cards. I find them about twice a year.

But a card plaque on the "free table"? That's a first.