Sunday, August 28, 2016

It's All About Perspective

 It's all about perspective, it really is. How many of you have an over abundance of Miami Marlins cards and would gladly trade the whole lot of them for one card that fits in your collection?

That's me in a nutshell. I'm sure many of you feel the same way.

Ryan, author of the Card Stacks Blog, reached out to me and we hammered out a quick trade.
 I didn't exactly send him Marlins cards, but as far as I'm concerned they might as well have been. Cards which don't have a place in my collection don't have much value to me.  Yep, I'm one of those collectors . . . the last price guide I bought was over twenty-five years ago and it was because there was a Cub on the front of it. I collect to collect, not to turn a buck.

I don't want to overpay when I go to a shop, a show, or buy on Ebay. So, I guess I have some knowledge about the pricing of cards, but it's not something I'm thinking about when I'm pulling cards for a package. 
Most of the time I just hope I hit on a few collections with the friendly blogger I'm trading with by accident. Just like how these two Jon Lester cards brought a huge smile to my face. I'm sure Ryan has no idea how few Lester cards I have in my collection.

Sometimes I'll go the extra mile and do a little research so there's something for the other blogger to get really excited about. The Ryno fits into my player collection, which is now up to 813 unique cards. That's worthy of some excitement for sure!
 To this point, the package has been all aces with me. I'm not so sure why Ryan needs to keep an eye out:
 I love the 2016 edition of the Chicago Cubs and all of the above cards filled a gap somewhere in my collection.  Man, especially the three Bryant's in the package. Here's the last two:
 Ryan, you're obviously not a Kris Bryant collector, nor do you live in Illinois. So you probably have have no idea what these three cards can go for at a show around here. There's no way I could trade a bubble mailer full of Atlanta Braves to my LCS owner for a 2015 Topps card of Miguel Montero . . . let alone three Bryants!

Dude. We. Are. Square.

On second thought, maybe I need to be on the look out for more Braves . . .

I guess it's all about perspective.   Thanks for the trade!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

A Pack of 2016 Donruss Optic

I was unaware of what I was opening until I had the cards in hand. It's actually quite simple.
Topps Chrome is to Topps Flagship as Donruss Optic is to regular Donruss.
Same photos as regular Donruss.  Yet, they are chromier!  Is chromier a word? The spell checker in blogger sure doesn't like it.

 And, Panini is no dummy. The price point and number of cards per pack are the same as Topps Chrome. Sigh. Where's the originality?

The Carlos Correa is a nice get, but I'm having a little buyer's remorse over this one. I could have ripped four packs of Topps Bunt instead. C'est la vie. All cards are available if anything catches your eyes.

Thank for reading!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Physical Pack of Topps Bunt 2016

I had to make a run to the big red box store to pick up a prize for JBF and naturally I had to pick up a little something for myself.       . . . Ben Zobrist!  Woo-Hoo! . . .
 Seven cards for a buck? 200 card base set? A couple of neat inserts? It sure reminds me of Topps Opening Day.  Actually, I would be all for this set replacing Opening Day . . . at least we get a new design and new photos!
 Topps Bunt features present day players and stars from the past.
 I really like the design. Simple, just a little smoky, large logos and crisp pictures.
My only complaint is the very thin card stock, but that just means I have top be a little more careful with the cards.
 I was lucky enough to pull one of the program inserts. It really looks like a worn program... well done, Topps!

I still haven't busted a box of a 2016 product. I hear the boxes are pretty cheap and maybe I'll look into one. I think if I was already into the Topps digital Bunt cards I would be all over his set, but I don't have time for virtual cards.  I barely have time for physical cards!

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

My Man Room

With a week of school under my belt I've been using the weekend to recharge the battery. Sleeping in, dinner and drinks with friends, binge watching Stranger Things and finally . . . baseball cards!

Judson recently asked that we show off our card rooms and that's what I'm here to do today. It's a picture heavy post, which should make it a quick read.  Here we go!

I thought about showing a picture of my mailbox to start things off, but really this is my cardboard journey begins.
This is my blogging/pack ripping/pack opening/package labeling station. I eat breakfast here every morning while updating my fantasy baseball team and reading blog posts. It is usually this clean, but what you don't see pictured is all of the cat hair.  If you look to the lower left you'll see a package which should have went out in the mail earlier this week (sorry Ryan), and on the desk there is a blaster of Topps Bunt which will start its trek to Alabama post haste.

Let's hit the actual card room, which my wife and refer to as the Man Room.  Below are pictures of what one sees when they first enter the 12.5' by 14' room.
There are bobbleheads on the shelves in the upper left corner and baseball movies on VHS within the black shelving unit on the floor. Hugo likes to steal my little stuffed dog wearing a Cubs shirt, which is right next to my Chicago Bear wearing Joe Maddon glasses.
This is the other half of the exterior wall which contains the garden view window. My card sorting table is in the foreground, which contains many stacks of basketball cards from an inherited collection. (Anyone want some basketball cards?) You can get a better look at the table here. I spend a lot of hours on the green two-seater, as you can probably tell by the cushions.

For the record, the stop light works! I also have some ivy along the ceiling of the room to give it a little of that Wrigley feel. If you look closely along the baseboard on the right you can see a blue speck. That's one of my wife's Dove chocolate wrappers that we give the cats to play with. Simple pleasures.

Here's a shot of the closet, which is pictured in the right of the above two pictures.
 There are lots of baseball related things hanging on the wall I could point out, but instead I'll point out the hanging black cape, which I've used to dress up as "Math Man" on a couple of occasions. I'm a nerd, I know.

On the left are all of my non-Cubs cards. Binders of complete sets and monster boxes of others. There's a shoe box on the top, which houses all of my favorite non-Cub cards and just below that is the shelf where I keep cards that need to be sorted into my trade box for specific bloggers. It's pretty empty right now, because I made a concerted effort to get things in order before the school year started. Go me!

The right half of my card closet is all Cubs cards. My Sandberg binder, the FrankenSet binder and many others are housed here. On the the shelves above the binders are my Cubs monster boxes, which contain all of my unique Cubs cards including vintage, junk wax, modern cards, autos and relics. The very top two shelves are where all of my packaging supplies are stored.
One of my summer projects was adding in three wood shelves to each side of my Card Closet. I'm much happier with the usable space I have now.

The green chest contains more completed sets and all of my basketball and football cards from early collecting days. It's actually the mother in-law's toy chest from her childhood. On top of those are two 2,400-count boxes of cards to be dispersed among my blogging brethren. The trade boxes! They're not in the closet because I'm in and out of them so frequently.

The above shot shows my Brandon Hyde (1st base coach of the Cubs) jersey and my homemade bat rack, which I'm really proud of. One of the bats was what my mom and her siblings played with when they were kids and the one on the far right is my fungo for when I coach spring baseball.

The next picture in the roll should have been a picture of the entryway to the room . . . oops. I didn't take one. Doorways are boring any way.

The door is flanked by the recliner and bat rack on one side and this corner on the other side. Hanging from the ceiling is my Fear the Fleer entry for Thorzul's Nightmare on Cardboard 2013 contest, which I couldn't part with.
 The "Go Cubs Go" is a hand painted sign from Grandfather. A scratching post for the cats is in the room... you know, because of cats. Of the two cabinets on the wall, the right one is the fuse box and the left one looks like this:
 My wife bought this cabinet at a garage sale and re-purposed it to store some of my collection. I use it to keep dust off my favorite bobbleheads, autographed baseballs, pictures and ticket stubs.

Lastly, we have the television stand which I completed about a year and a half ago. It houses baseball singles organized in boxes, a couple of binders, DVDs, books and bobbleheads. I absolutely love this piece.
We've come full circle!  I really enjoy spending time in my man room. I could be sorting cards, ripping packs, building trade packages, or perhaps just kicking back with Gus and watching the Cubs.
It's my place to get away from the real world and be a care free kid again. 

Thanks for taking the tour with me.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Chipmunk Contest Winner Declared!

Summer. Where has it gone?

It's my first day of the new school year and the Chipmunk Relocation Contest is officially over. It was a pretty successful summer of trapping in my backyard as I caught four squirrels, ten raccoons and thirty-eight chipmunks. All fifty-two of the varmint were safely relocated to a drop-off zone a couple of highways over. I also caught five birds and released them from my backyard.

Below are the links and one picture for proof of the latest round of trappings.

Bird #5

Chipmunk #35 - Only a picture for this one. I wasn't home at the time and my wife deposited it at the drop off point for me.  Thanks, babe!

Chipmunk #36

Chipmunk #37

Raccoon #9

Raccoon #10

Chipmunk #38

List of ALL 33 Entries:    (chipmunks, others, Cubs Wins, blogger)
5             3             69           irondequoit36
8             13           74           Tony L.
10           5             77           Stealing Home
12           7             79           JediJeff
13           3             81           Adam Kaningher
13           8             82           The Angels in Order
18           6             75           Mark Hoyle
22           2             79           Matthew Scott
26           6             76           Play at the Plate
27           4             75           Al Kawamoto
28           5             76           Nick
31           1             69           The Lost Collector
34           7             81           Daniel Wilson (currently sitting in the winning spot!)
35           4             85           John Hazen
36           8             77           Jupiterhill
36           9             74           Swing And a Pop-up
37           3             77           Jane
37           8             107         B Man
38           3             71           jaybarkerfan
38           14           73          WINNING NUMBERS
39           6             70           gcrl
42           5             78           Nachos Grande
42           6             83           CaptKirk42
44           4             74           KO Rob
47           3             76           Captain Canuck
49           4             80           Sport Card Collectors
49           9             78           Once A Cub
50           4             70           Fuji
52           4             79           RAZ
52           5             75           Adam Sanders
53           4             75           Wilson
55           3             81           Corky
61           12           79           defgav
74           3             74           Jeff

Congrats to jaybarkerfan on guessing the correct number of chipmunks which would be relocated. Your prize is a blaster of baseball cards!

I mentioned in this post there would be a consolation prize: correctly predict the number of wins the Cubs would have on the morning of August 15th. Well, the Cubs blew late leads in each of the last two games and as a result they sit at 73 wins.  Every number between 69 and 85 was guessed at least once except for 72, 73, and 84.  No 73? Go figure.  Sorry guys.

Thanks for playing along and following my progress this summer!

For the record, our garden is producing a ridiculous amount of vegetables, which are safe to grow peacefully now that the rodents have been removed. Happy days!