Friday, April 30, 2021

Better Than a Blaster

It has been awhile since I have bought any cards other than a few singles off of EBAY.  Even if I could find retail blasters, nothing really appealed to me the last few weeks.  Of course with Bowman and Diamond Kings out this week, that may change.  I may have to venture to a couple of Wal-Marts to see if the flippers missed something.

Instead of throwing money at packs, I spent just under the price of a blaster for a Cardinals lot from The Bench member STLSHOEMAN.  He took the time to go through my wantlist and found quite a few duplicates from his own collection.  Here is what $19 bought me.

I am not very picky about the condition of vintage cards.  My only real hard pass is writing on the card.  The 1966 Gagliano and 1967 Briles pass the test.  The corners may be soft and there are some minor creases, but they are not bad for being over 50 years old.

There was an assortment of base cards that hit a few team sets.  The Duncan is a 2007 Heritage shortprint.  I love the Musial picture on the 2009 Tristar Obak card.  

The rest of the base cards were from 2013 Bowman Chrome and Chrome Draft.  

Moving on to the inserts, I gained 3 different Topps Gold cards.  The 2017 Update cards features 3 outfielders no longer with the team.  It seems like the Cardinals go through them pretty quick.  I hope Dylan Carlson breaks that trend.  

I knowingly bought a mini card.  Sounds strange, but it happens.  Waino is going to miss his next start due to Covid exposure, but since he is vaccinated he will only miss a few days.  Good to hear because his last 2 starts have been great.

Flaherty is Wainwright's heir apparent as the Cardinals ace.  He is also off to a good start.  I will gladly take any refractors of his, especially great ones like the 2018 Chrome Update pink.

Sepia refractors do not stand out as much as the colored ones, but they do have a nostalgic look to them.  

Different players on both these 2019 inserts, but the stance looks very similar.  It seems to be working for Knizner, not so much for Thomas.  

There was a nice group of 2020 inserts including a mojo refractor, another Flaherty insert, and 2 DeJong inserts that make me think of Christmas when looking at them side by side.  

I will finish up with 3 2021 inserts.  The silver pack is my favorite of the bunch.  When I was done, the lot included 2 vintage, 10 base cards, 1 shortprint, and 18 inserts/parallels.  Money well spent in my opinion.  


Thursday, April 29, 2021

2 New Cardinals Bobbleheads

Two weekends ago I made my first trip to St. Louis since Covid hit.  My son had a baseball tournament in nearby O'Fallon, IL.  His game schedule allowed us to make a trip to the Cardinals Hall of Fame museum Sunday morning.  Back in January I renewed my family membership.  I usually do this during Cardinals Winter Warm Up, but that did not happen this year.  Hope it can in 2022.  A family membership gets you unlimited access to the museum along with 2 exclusive Cardinals bobbleheads.  I picked mine up during our visit.

Joe Medwick is holding his 1937 Triple Crown award.  He is the last National League player to win it.  The museum does a good job of featuring retired players like him, not just the better know guys like Musial, Brock, Gibson, etc.

The museum does put out the favorites also like this Ozzie Smith.  This is my 3rd different Ozzie bobblehead.  I have mentioned it before, but these bobbleheads are great quality.  A lot better than some of the stadium giveaways.  


Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Spent My EBAY Bucks

Earlier this year EBAY changed its policy regarding EBAY bucks.  No longer will you receive 1% on any of your purchases.  You may still get the occasional 5% offer that is good for a few days.  It always seems that comes after a spending spree.  

In my case, the change did not affect me that much.  It is rare for me to spend over $50 a month on the site.  March was different though, as I purchased some truck rims for a coworker that were over $500.  He paid me the next day and I had a little free money to play with.  I also had a few dollars left on a gift card, so last week I decided to go shopping.  Not finding an autograph or Lankford card, I settled on finishing a team set from 2016.

These 2 completed the 21 card team set from 2016 Topps Chrome Sapphire.  I was able to find a seller with both cards who accepted my best offer.  I paid a little over $5 out of pocket, but it feels great to complete this set.  This online exclusive has a print run of 250.  They are not serial numbered, but are great looking cards.    


Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Forgot This One

 In my rush to catch up on my trade recaps, I totally forgot about a trade that arrived 2 weeks ago from TCDB member BLWinborn40.  He proposed a 1 for 1 trade, but we were able to work out a larger one with 30 cards going his way and 12 coming back my direction.  

Starting things off with a trio of Cardinals inserts featuring Hall of  Famers.  The Brock is my first insert from 2021 Heritage.  It is nice to see him on a card other than the Then & Now insert.  It is sad to think Cepeda is the only player out of the 4 who is still with us.  

It is always nice to get in some colored parallels.  The Flaherty 2019 Opening Day is my favorite.  Jack is off to a nice start this year with a 4-0 record so far.  He has had a ton of run support to get a couple of those wins.

I hope I have see the last snow until December.  The flurries we had here in Illinois last week were a reminder of how crazy April weather can been.  I much rather prefer Metallic snowflake card this time of year.

What is more fun than a mascot sticker card?  This 2019 Topps Stickers card is even better with 3 different mascots.  Speaking of stickers . . .

My son added 4 Altuve stickers to his collection.  The bottom left is from 2020, the other 3 from 2019.  He is getting very close to his goal of 400 by the end of May.  Altuve came back from his covid stint last night with a nice 3-5 night.  


Thursday, April 22, 2021

It's Almost Time

This week I have received quite a few baseball related emails.  This is not a surprise as I surf quite a few of  Cardinals sites that I am sure track my activity.  A couple of them stood out more than others though.  Both the Peoria Chiefs and Indianapolis Indians have sent messages about tickets sales coming up soon.  With the minor league season starting on May 4, a lot of teams will be selling tickets next week for the first time in over a year.  Even though we cannot have the player interaction that I love about minor league games, my family will still be attending numerous games this summer.  Not sure when, but hopefully by the end of June.  

In the meantime, I got a little minor league fix from a trade package that arrived from TCDB member madams30.

The massive 880 card 1990 ProCards set contains 33 different Cardinals.  I have 7 more to track down before it is complete.  All but 3 of the cards are from the Cardinals then Triple A team Louisville Redbirds.  The last 3 including this Pacheco card are from the former Class A team in Savannah.

This 1991-1992 Procards set is a lot smaller with only 17 Cardinals.  This one is far from done though as these are my first cards from the set.

Not all the cards were minor league related.  This 1992 OPC card brings my needs down to 1.  Some of these OPC sets have been tough to complete.  

Many collectors miss the Pacific due to the wonderful designs.  These 2 cards are perfect examples. The 1998 Omega Brian Jordan is a red parallel, while the Ankiel is a 2000 Invincible Diamond Aces insert.  

Finishing things off with a couple 2000 Paramount green parallels.  I do not recall to many green parallels from Pacific or Topps.  There are some green Chrome refractors from various years, but not much else.  Maybe Panini will produce one for 2022 Donruss to go along with the other 20 some parallels.


Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Just 1 Today

I did not have as much spare time this morning to scan cards as I did yesterday, so today I only have 1 trade recap to highlight.  These cards were courtesy of The Bench member Shepherd.

Gold cards are always good.  Maybe by the end of the summer I will finally complete a team set.

I was almost shocked to see today's Cardinals starting lineup did not have Molina in it.  Even at 38 years old, he wants to play everyday.  This will be his second day off in 17 games.  Before the season started most fans were expected him missing one game a week.  So far that looks about right, but once it gets warmer he may get an extra day here or there.  

I almost completed my 2016 Heritage team set with this Diaz card.  I thought I was getting the regular short print card, but I received this action variation.  Not a problem though as I needed both.  

My son added 3 more Altuves to his collection with a couple of Topps Fire parallels and a 2018 Panini Chronicles Score card.  Once again gold is good one a baseball card.  

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Playing Catch Up With a Trio of Trades

Even though it has only been 5 days since my last post, it feels like I am getting very behind.  I have 7 different trades and another pickup that I need to recap, but extra time has not been my friend of late.  My daughter is finishing up her high school volleyball season with 3 games last week and this week.  I was also gone all weekend for my son's first travel baseball tournament of the year.  The neat freak in me cannot stand to see all the different stacks of cards on my desk so I woke up early this morning and scanned 3 trades that came in last week.    

First up is pwe trade from TCDB member cdorso.

On top are a couple of nice 2020 inserts of 2 of the better 2021 Cardinals so far.  The Cardinals offense is either hit or miss this year.  Sunday's game they managed only 2 hits, but last night they hit 5 home runs and score 12.  The bottom 2012 Bowman Draft Chrome finished my team set.

Next up is another 3 card pwe trade from TCDB member Jquirp001.

The Red Foil Stadium Club cards look so awesome paired with the Cardinals uniform.  I would not give Topps an A+ very often, but these cards are worthy of it.  The Harvey Haddix completed my 1989 Swell Baseball Greats team set.  

The final trade was a 2 card swap with The Bench member ripahl.

The 2020 Finest Flashback  Edman card is not as off centered as my scanner made it look.  For some reason it cut off the left side.  Edman is doing well in the lead off spot replacing Kolten Wong.  He was slated to spend most of his time at Wong's old spot at second base, but injuries to Harrison Bader and Tyler O'Neill have moved him to the outfield for now.  As long as he keeps hitting, I don't care where he plays.  Gibson had more success in the 1960s than the 1970s, but Topps did not see it that way.  It is still a nice insert. 

Thursday, April 15, 2021

My First 2021 Donruss

 A recent trade with TCDB member 2822ams brought me my first cards from 2021 Donruss.  

Like the last few years, the base design is pretty plain.  The ribbon in team colors is nice, but the plain white borders make the lack of logos stand out.  I know that will not change because Donruss uses so many different colored parallels.  At least the Diamond Kings is a little different.

My son also received his first 2021 Donruss card with this name variation.  Looks like the Astros got hit pretty hard with the virus this week.  Altuve will be out for a while along with Bregman and Alvarez.

Slowly but surely I will complete the 2021 Hertage team set.  4 more base and 3 short prints left to go.

I love getting cards featuring players in a Peoria Chiefs uniform.  Even better that this 2019 Heritage Minors inserts shows one of the Cardinals top prospects.  


Monday, April 12, 2021

Quality Over Quanity

I am guessing most collectors will tell you they have no problem trading away a large quantity of cards in return for a quality card.  I am no different, but my standard of quality is most likely lower than most.  I will gladly trade a lot of base cards in exchange for a handful of Cardinals I need.  It is so much better to get rid of unwanted excess cards for something that fits into my personal collection.  Last week I worked out such a trade where I sent TCDB member dallasdanger 48 Dodger cards in exchange for 6 Cardinals and 1 Altuve card.  

Jose is off to a good start this year despite all the fan heckling the Astros are receiving on the road.  My son's push for 400 continues.

I completed my 2021 Opening Day team set with the Whitley and Goldy card.  I already have the Carlson, but the trader included a copy because he could not find the Altuve.  Good for me, not for my son.

I did get a nice 2021 Opening Day insert and a 2020 Topps Heritage Sticker preview.  Do we really need a preview of a sticker set?

The last card was this sweet 2021 Flaherty relic.  I still enjoy these cards even though that could be a piece of who knows what that never saw the green grass of Busch Stadium.  


Friday, April 9, 2021

Opening Day and a PWE

Early last week I bought into a box break of 2021 Topps Opening Day.  It was a cheap break that was opened on opening day.  What better way to celebrate the first games of the season than watching someone open cards for you.  This break was for a single hobby break where $9 got you 1 team of your choice and a random team.  The Cards and the Rockies were my 2 teams.  Here is how I did.

Each hobby box has 36 packs containing 7 cards. There are 220 cards in the base set.  Each pack contained 1 insert, so you would think out of the remaining 216 you would come close to a complete set.  Not so with this box.  The left side of the box was almost identical to the right side.  There are 6 Cardinals in the set not counting variations.  I received these 4 to go along with duplicates of all of them except the Carlson.  For the Rockies, I received 2 each of the same 3 base cards.  Big fail to Topps on this one.

I did get a couple of nice Cardinals inserts and a Dinger card that was sent to Johnny along with the Rockies base cards.  The Mascot cards are always fun.

The same day the Opening Day package arrived I also received a pwe from The Bench member hociman.  
Other than a few cards from my 2 blasters, I have not received any 2021 Heritage Cardinals.  There are plenty out there other than the 2 short prints, I have just been too lazy to trade for them.  Guess it is time to get started.

2020 Panini Chronicles had a ton of nice looking cards.  There are quite a few different brands to chase down.  The Fowler Spectra is just as thick as a game used card.  

Thursday, April 8, 2021

It is Opening Day Part 2

I know Opening Day was last Thursday, but today is the Cardinals home opener.  After sweeping 3 games in Miami,  things will be a lot tougher with the Brewers being in town.  It will be strange seeing Kolten Wong leading off the game for the visitors.  I hope he gets a nice ovation for his 8 years of service in St. Louis.  He always played his heart out.

Enough rambling about baseball.  Let's get to the pictures of the players on cardboard.  Today's recap is courtesy of TCDB member George Hayes.  His pwe arrives over the weekend.

This is a stretch to be considered a Cardinals card.  It clearly says Angels on the front and the guy only played 4 games for St. Louis.  However most checklist says it is a Cardinals, so that is what I am going with.

This Terry Bradshaw was never quite as good his football counterpart.  His career last 34 games over 2 years with a .262 batting average.  Not great numbers, but at least he made the majors.

Now we get to someone who had a nice Cardinals career.  No not Jimmy Journell.  Pujols has started the year off 2 for 16 with one of those hits being a home run.  It certainly looks like this will be his last year.  These 2 bring my 2002 UD 40-Man set needs down to 7.  Sounds like a lot, but it is not bad considering there are 44 Cardinals to hunt down.  

The last card is a 2003 Bowman Heritage of fan favorite Matt Morris.  The Cardinals always seem to have a bulldog type pitcher in the starting 5 along the lines of Darryl Kile and Chris Carpenter.  Morris fit that mold also.  It was a shame he lost almost 2 years to injuries.  

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

2 From the Weekend

Catching up today on more mail that arrived over the weekend.  First up is a pwe from TCDB member Themissionsguy.  Clark is a relatively new member that I have traded with twice this year.  He also runs some group breaks on his Facebook page that are priced very reasonable.

I do not have very many mojo refractors in my collection.  I love the looks of them, but they can be tough to find thanks to the retail craze we are going through.  Maybe when cards shows become more regular again they will be easier to come by.  

Stadium Club Chrome was one of my favorite sets last year.  Great photography and chrome technology are a great combination.  These 2 put me a little over half way to the 14 card team set.  

It amazes me how many people are still opening 2021 Topps.  I guess the rookie chase is very addicting.  I will sit back and just trade for the inserts and parallels I need.  

The next package was a single card from The Bench member weavahVBC.

It is very rare for me to make a 1 for 1 trade with the cost of postage so high right now.  It is even more rare for that single card to be a mini.  I hope Flaherty has a better start against the Marlins this afternoon than he did on opening day against the Reds.  He needs to be really good this year if the Cardinals have any chance of going to the postseason.