2014 Topps S1 – Packs 5 and 6

I’m now 6 packs deep and haven’t pulled a big hit…but I’m going to show you what i’ve got anyways.  Because I know you all love to see some scans of base cards and stuff.

Donny Baseball was one of my favorite players growing up, not Rickey Henderson favorite, but way ahead of whomever was third at the time…maybe Nolan Ryan or George Brett?  Mattingly was always an elusive pull or me.  I never got his card in the packs I bought during the 1985 and 1986 seasons.  I got a whole bunch of 1987 Topps though…damn that set was so overproduced.  I think I had about 4 complete sets that year due to everyone in my family buying me boxes from Sam’s.  Mattingly seemed destined for the Hall of Fame and put up phenomenal numbers especially with a healthy Rickey Henderson hitting in front of him.  Seeing this young skinny photo of Donny baseball brings back some great memories of being a young collector.  I appreciate Topps pulling old stock photos of baseballs legends and the players that were really good.  It keeps the older kids connected and provides a great lesson for the kids that are starting to collect.

14 TO Don Mattingly 50 years of the Draft

Topps has also provided the kids with a look at their previous card designs, which is also a very good thing in my mind.  Although, i’m not sure if copying the late 80’s and early 90’s is the way to go.  Best to make up for it by making these babies die cut.

14 TO Clayton Kershaw 1989 Mini Die Cut

Here are some Power Player cards that have powerful players on them.  Yadi would like to salute you and Giancarlo is getting a Marlin cortisone shot to the knee…sorry…I couldn’t think of anything else to add to these cards.  It’s a parallel that could have been more parallel-y in my mind.  I guess changing the border color has been done a million times.  Maybe if they edited out the backgrounds…I don’t know, crap.  I actually didn’t notice these were Power Player cards at first pass.  My oversight was corrected when I realized that these ‘base’ cards should not have been in the middle of the pack.  I’m sleuthy!

14 TO Molina Stanton Power Players

Love the Mo cards.  Love the bottom one the most though.  Such a great baseball moment.

14 TO Mariano Rivera

The next two cards are last because they deserve to be last.

Although the back of Melky’s card doesn’t suggest anything about PED as Night Owl had suggested it should.  I find it telling that Topps decided to quote A-Rod with the very insightful “He’s a big, big, big-time player.”  That’s three bigs.  I would have gone with he’s a big, bigger, biggest time player but that wouldn’t make much sense either.  Don’t do drugs kids, especially if they are to be inserted with needles.

14 TO Melky Cabrera

Lastly.  This guy.  The finger pointer.  Topps was smart enough to not drop any photos of him with eye black.  I’m finding it difficult to justify writing what I feel about his homophobic eye black last year.  He seemed to play it off as ignorance and something that wasn’t a big deal.

14 TO Yunel Escobar

But, I’m an adult and I know words can be filled with hate and bad intentions.  My dilemma though, is that I’m a die hard Redskins fan.  Another term that has been deemed as hateful or oppressive.  It’s an unfair position for me to be ok with one derogatory term but not with another.  It doesn’t really matter if one is worse, if the words offend someone than it’s an offensive term…besides, what’s with finger pointing at the cameraman?  Who does that?


Hobby and Collecting Goals for 2014

My first year of blogging is in the digital books.  I have had a great time and was able to connect with quite a few bloggers that i’ve been reading for a couple years now.  There are a lot of friendly collectors out there and it gives me hope for our community.  My objective for starting the blog was to be able to connect with other guys like me and I think that i’ve started to do that this year.  I’m hoping that 2014 will be an even better blogging year and that I can connect with more bloggers.  Before I look forward though, i’d like to take a look back at what I wanted to do and what i accomplished.

  • First and foremost, i really need to get organized and finish getting my checklists in order.  This is something I have been working on for years and always start great, but never finish.  I have managed to get the Redskins team checklist set for Topps cards, but the player collections are really lagging behind.  Guess i should get some excel time in soon. -Ummm, no.  Like many of you guys out there I am lagging in my organization skills.  That seems to be the trend with our hobby.  The very basic and generic foundation of this hobby is collecting, consumption and to some extent…hoarding.  I’ve done a fantastic job of picking up cards that I do not already have, but I don’t have any of them documented.  Without any kind of documentation, i’m not really sure what I need…or really have.
  • As a follow up to the item above, i would like to complete the Redskin Topps team sets for the 70’s and 80’s.  This is mostly complete except for the 1970-1973 sets and some random cards for most other years.  Once the season is over i can start posting completed pages of Redskins joy!  There is a great shop in NE Portland where i could probably knock out the missing cards on one Saturday. -I have visited the NE Portland shop a couple of times and picked up plenty of cards that I don’t already have.  Unfortunately, this goes back to the lack of organization.  I believe I have most of the 70’s Topps Redskins team sets complete and have a great deal of the 80’s cards done as well.
  • For the past 3 years, i have been scooping up Chris Cooley, Clinton Portis and Santana Moss cards with no real recollection of what i have and what i want.  This is the year i get these guys organized and stored properly.  Why these three players you may ask?  Well, these three guys reflect some great and miserable times as a Redskins fan.  All three players were vital to the playoff runs in 2005 and 2007…especially Clinton Portis.  I know there are a lot of fans that don’t look too highly on Portis, but for me, the way he carried the team down the playoff stretch will always be remembered.  Not to mention the way he rose to the occasion after Sean Taylor was taken away from us…These guys are always going to be Redskins in my mind and am so happy that Cooley and Moss are a part of the 2012 NFC East Division Champions! -Organization, collating and documenting is lacking…again.
  • Speaking of Sean Taylor…He was a phenomenal player, someone that created so many problems on the field for offenses and made some nasty hits on receivers…and punters.  When he was murdered, i was completely shocked and felt like I had lost one of the potentially greatest players of our generation.  Some idiots like Colin Cowherd and Michael Wilbon made light of his murder with callous comments suggesting he had it coming.  Regardless of what you think of Sean Taylor, he would have been a great player for many years to come.  I have been working for years to collect all of his base cards along with some jersey cards, probably staying away from the 1/1 cards though…too much for me. -I actually have not picked up too many Sean Taylor cards this year.  His cards are hard to find at shows and card shops and the stuff I see on ebay and COMC are more than what I want to spend.  This one is something that I’d really like to focus on again this year.
  • Last and definitely not the least of my goals.  I would really like to get one, just one, on card autograph rookie card of Robert Griffin III.  I’m only shooting for one right now due to the cost of the cards…crazy expensive right now and i can’t rationalize spending $500+ on any piece of cardboard right now.  At the last card show i noticed the Leaf Signatures card…such a beauty…but going for $250.  Kind of steep…but if it’s still around for the next show and i can convince myself that it’s an investment, i will pull the trigger! -Ok, this goal was accomplished…twice this year.  I was able to find a great deal on two cards from ebay just after the injury.  There were a lot of people dumping his cards and I was able to jump on them for a great price.  I had been saving my paypal money and ended up with two on card autographs that I am more than happy with.

12 TI Robert Griffin III Auto 20:50

12 PS Robert Griffin III Auto 21:25


Now as I look ahead to 2014 and what I want to do.  Organization has to be at the top of the list along with the purging of stuff I don’t want or need.  I am also hoping to generate a few more trades.

  • Organize my Redskins!  Get my Redskin Topps team sets organized, in sleeves and in binders with labels on the spines.  Maybe if i just focus on the Topps stuff the other brands and sets will quickly follow.
  • Purge, purge and purge again!  I’m hoping to post more items on ebay or COMC this year…or make trades to get rid of cards that don’t fit into my selected PC items.
  • Trades!  I’ve made some nice trades with The Daily Dimwit, Fantastic Catch, My Cardboard Mistress, Collector’s Crack, Cardboard Collections and one in the works with Nachos Grande.  I’d like to expand my export/import operation with a few of you bloggers out there in hopes of completing some our checklists.
  • Read!  I know this isn’t really something that’s sports card related but i’ve really been trying my best to find some time to read more.  As you may have noticed, I posted two images of books that I am reading on the right column.  My hope is to read 24 books this year.  I’ve finished the two that you see now and am looking to add two more. I have plenty of books available to me (it’s fantastic and terrible working across the street from the largest independent bookstore in the world, Powell’s)  I’m not doing book reports because I’m 38 and have done that already.  Although, if any of you folks out there are reading/have read the books, i’d love to discuss them with you.
  • Add and Purge!  Since I decided to start collecting Tim Duncan, Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg, I think it’s time to cut the chord on a couple other players that were once in my collection.  I will be getting rid of my duplicates for Justin Upton, Evan Longoria and Carl Crawford.  If you are interested in any of these guys, let me know what you need and I can see if they are available from my collection.
  • Posts!  I was hoping to keep my list to 5 items but am going to add a 6th for good measure.  I am pushing to have at least 200 posts.  I got 127 out in 2013, which is ok for the first year.  I do have a personal rule of making one post a day and plan on keeping that.  I may end up writing multiple posts about one visit to stretch this out…but maybe that’s cheating?

There it is.  My list of things to reach for 2014.  I hope all of you had a safe and fun first day of the new year and wish you all good luck in your collecting adventures.  I love reading the posts and plan on keeping/getting in touch with most of you guys this year.

Thanks for reading and as always Hail to the Redskins!

Christmas Eve Pickups

I had an extra hour today because I decided that work was so slow that I shouldn’t be there.  I left to run some errands and was able to get over to see the fine folks at Hoopla sports cards.  I had been in there many times, but never really had the time to look around.  They have a ton of stuff and are super friendly guys, so they helped me find a couple of things I was looking for…and of course some other things I didn’t know I needed.

As my building of the Tim Duncan collection begins, my main focus is on base cards and cards that I just like the look of.  Getting in to basketball cards is completely different…they don’t wear protective head wear so you get a great look at each players face.  Here are two pictures of Timmy’s emotionless face.  So stoic.

12 PP Tim Duncan

I also picked up my first jersey card of Duncan.  That is one BIG STAR.

04 UD Tim Duncan All Star Jersey

I love the overhead view in this card.  There was a guy in the shop opening some high end version of Hockey cards…man, Hockey cards are REALLY AWESOME.  As an amateur photographer, I love the contract of the white ice and the colorful jerseys.  I’ve noticed some of these nice contrasts in the basketball cards…but not this one per se.

13 HO Tim Duncan

Here are a couple of cards i didn’t know existed of Ryan Kerrigan and Jarvis Jenkins.  I also picked up Paul, Helu and Royster…but I like these guys more so I scanned them instead.

11 SP Ryan Kerrigan Jarvis Jenkins

The next one is a beauty.  A Stephen Davis Turkey Red jersey card.  This card is all kinds of wonderful and cost me $2.  Not bad at all for a jersey card.

06 TR Stephen Davis Game Worn Jersey

This is where it gets fun.  Heath Shuler.  He was a highly touted QB coming out of Tennessee and was to be the face of the franchise for years to come.  His QB guru head coach was going to groom him in to the next Troy Aikman, or at least some other great Hall of Fame QB.

95 SP Heath Shuler Reflextions

A lack of pocket presence and multiple injuries helped derail his career along with inability to really learn the offense that was tailored to fit his specific athletic abilities.

95 AP Heath Shuler Armed Forces

Luckily for the Redskins, they drafted another QB…you know, just in case The Man didn’t work out.  Why does this sound so familiar…?