Thursday, February 4, 2016

Beauty in the Breakdown

Before the holidays, or maybe right after, I don’t know…Gavin from Baseball Card Breakdown sent an awesome package. He had asked for my address “just in case” he got the urge to send me something. And shockingly enough, he got that urge.

I must say that Gavin is easily one of the most creative card bloggers/collectors out there. He’s always doing new things, whether it’s sketch cards or cutting up signatures to make cooler cut autos, or seeing what he can make glow-in-the-dark (hint: everything). Personally, I think it’s a tragedy that this dude is not employed by a card company. I’m sure there are some creative designers at Topps (“Umm, I dunno. Let’s just make it in the 1987 design. And we can make it mini. Yeah, that’s it.”), but Gavin is constantly doing things that would be a welcome addition to the current card offerings out there. Hopefully that dream materializes one day, but for now, we’re all the lucky recipients of his creativeness.

I wasn’t sure which was to go with as the first card I show off, but I have to go with the custom, card #9 in the Cardsphere Heroes set (Gavin, is there a checklist that I missed?). I was honored to be included in the set. The card features a shot of Tino Martinez tipping his cap the crowd at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa. I can’t tell if it was from Tino’s last year in 2005, or if it was a spring training guest appearance. The back is equally cool, with a nice write-up, notably a mention of my Tino collection! Awesome! I also love the star hologram cut into the card, as well as the 1/1 marketing in red pen. Am I adding this to my Tino collection as a unique Tino? You bet I am.
The next fabulous item is sort of a card, but sort of not. It’s from the Topps Vault and is a 2000 Topps MVP Pro Set Photo. Essentially, I believe it’s the proof the designers used before sending this card to print. What a cool item! There is even some markings on the back of the Tino card photo in pen around his birthday and draft info. Fact-checking, maybe?
It also came with a COA. I tip my cap to Topps for keeping these around and selling them later as a unique collectible. I had a ton of mechanicals and proofs from old jobs that eventually got tossed in the trash. This could have easily been the fate of this one (and probably was for years before that).

I also didn’t have this 1990 ProCards Tino sponsored by KFC. I thought I did when I saw it, but not this particular one.
In fact, Gavin sent the whole team set. There weren’t too many recognizable names other than Dave Burba, but I did notice this guy:
Yep, that’s Casey Close, the MLB super agent. He was formerly with IMG, CAA, and now runs Excel. He represented Derek Jeter for his entire career, and he still represents Tanaka, Kershaw, and Greinke. Pretty cool.

Here’s a Rizzuto I didn’t have as well, numbered to just 75.
Gavin, awesome, awesome package, my man. Thank you!


  1. I've started a binder page with all the cool "blogger" cards I've received the last couple of years. Gavin is well represented.

  2. That Tino is awesome. As to the numbering, my Robin Yount was card 3, so there has to be a checklist. Maybe Gavin is trying to replicate the Ginter Code too!

  3. Thanks for the kind words, and glad you like the cards!

    All the info for the Cardsphere Heroes set can be found here.