I miss the Captain…a rare post.

I really miss watching Jeter play short for the New York Yankees.

I know the guy is nearing the end of his career and the severity of his injuries has increased the past few seasons, but it’s always nice knowing the captain is in the lineup and there at shortstop.  I’ve been lucky enough to see him play the last few years in Seattle, but will miss him this year since he will still be on his DL stint when we make our trek up to Seattle in June.  This will be our son’s first baseball game and living in Portland, will probably be his only game for the season.  So here’s hoping Jeter can come back and play well for many more years.

10 TR Derek Jeter

The team has been playing pretty well without him, Teixeira, A-Rod and Granderson, but I’m not sure if the Yankees have the staying power to keep pace with the other teams in the AL East.  Boston is having a great season, are healthy and don’t have to deal with the Bobby Valentine circus.  Baltimore is young, playing well and managed as well as any team in baseball.  Toronto has a ton of talent and i’m sure they will get it turned around in plenty of time to compete for the division title…and Tampa is always lurking around with their deep farm system and endless amounts of young talent.  At this point, i think it’s inevitable that the numbers being put up by Hafner, Wells and Overbay will level out and begin to pull the Yankees back to the rest of the pack a bit…I may very well be wrong.  Wouldn’t be the first time tonight that i’ve been wrong.

00 BB Derek Jeter

Getting back to Jeter, I know he is one of those guys you love or hate and may be overrated due to his days with the pinstripes…but his passion for winning and dedication to the Yankees and the game of baseball is something i’ve always appreciated.  Yeah he doesn’t have great range at short and his arm isn’t the strongest, but he always seems to make the big play with the bat or glove.  Jeter is one of those guys you want your kid to emulate when they play baseball.  Bryce Harper is another one of those guys.  I have always loved the hustle guys (maybe Rickey wasn’t always about the hustle…).  It’s the way i played baseball, when i played, way back when i was younger and in shape.

98 TG Derek Jeter

I know the cards i’ve posted aren’t the most exciting Jeter cards out there, but I like them…and i haven’t had too many posts dedicated to Derek Jeter.  I always manage to pick up a few Jeters’ at the shows in the nickel and dollar boxes, coming home with 12-15 each time.  He’s one of those guys that you can’t ever get enough cards of…plus he has a gillion of them.

We have another show this Saturday and i’m sure I will be adding a few more Jeters to the collection…and I might just post a few of them.

Sorry for the choppy thoughts, been busy at work and up all night with the kid, but I Hope you enjoyed the Jeter post!

Box Break: 2013 Topps Heritage

Have you ever had a hot box, or better yet, been hot boxed.  Well, I was hot boxed over the weekend and it was wonderful.  I saw blue refractors everywhere while listening to the Stones.  There were giant heads and men shooting imaginary arrows after pulling ripe plantains out of their pants.  Others were smiling, giggling and simply staring in to space…and I swear I saw a Marlin with photos taken before and after a clean shave.  It was all magical, and now the trip is over…the flashback is now Monday night and I have a hangover.

Topps Heritage is a set that I LOVE putting together each year.  I know a lot of folks out there are indifferent or hate it, but I really enjoy the set.  I love that it’s set at a decent price.  I also love that you can complete a base set with minimal headaches while managing to still eat lunch each day.  I admit the SP’s and SSP’s are a little bit of a pain, but isn’t that what collectors really want?  They can definitely come off as gimmicks, but they also represent the desire to chase and build sets.  Part of my enjoyment with collecting cardboard is that I know I can’t have everything I want…even though I really want everything.  To me, that is the joy in collecting.  The chase.  I have binders of the flagship Topps set with all the cards in their proper position.  I have binder of Topps Heritage with huge chunks of cardboard missing.  It’s infuriating at times but I can’t quit it.  It’s like that girl in high school that talked to you enough to be a friend, but you just couldn’t get closer to her…it was the chase.  You didn’t hate her for it, you knew deep down that nothing would ever happen, but it never stopped you from trying did it?  That’s what I love about Heritage.  I will never complete all the Heritage sets I’ve started, but I will try and will buy boxes to open packs to put in sleeves…that’s what I do.  That’s why I collect.

To chase the un-obtainable.

Ok, I’ve been rambling a bit here tonight.  Each year I buy a few boxes of Heritage throughout the year to build a full set with all the SP’s.  This year I ordered my boxes in advance from Dave and Adam’s cardworld and have slowly started to open them.  Just out of curiosity, I did something I’m a little embarrassed about.  I weighed each box on a small digital scale my wife uses around the kitchen.  I found three different sizes of the boxes 1lb 4 3/4oz, 1lb 5oz and 1lb 5 7/8oz.  Hmmm.  Think I’m going to open the heavy box first.  Glad I did as it was what must have been a HOTBOX!

Holy Hot Rocks I’m Hot, so give up the props – just a little something from Redman to lead into the magical Blue Refractor imagery.

12 TH Jeter Rivera Blue Refractor

I also managed to pull an awkward looking Adam Jones Clubhouse Collection White Jersey Card.

12 TH Adam Jones Clubhouse Collection White Jersey

Here is the archer/plantain man.  Just watched him lock it down against the Netherlands.  Any fans of the WBC out there?  I’ve really been enjoying it this year, plus the Dominican Republic team is stacked like an all star team.

12 TH Fernando Rodney Chrome 88:999

A young stoned Stones.  This photo was taken before Keith Richards made his deal with whatever devil that allowed him to live to 150.  Maybe he’s a vampire?

12 TH Rolling Stones News Flashback

Lots of gigantic heads in the ’64 remake here.  Wonder if that was the trend in the mid 60’s, to get right up in a man’s face and release the shutter?  I’m not up on my camera lens history, but I imagine a lot of fixed lenses back then creating the up close shots.  One of the many reasons I like Heritage is their attentiveness to focusing on the mimicked set.  My one complaint about it would be the photos though.  I think Topps could take easily use the same angles and focal lengths, but get sharper photos rather than attempting to copy the grainy old school photos.  I know, I know…that’s the whole point of this set.  I just think the technology of today shouldn’t be limited in order to duplicate what couldn’t be done 50 years ago.

12 TH Cano Strasburg

I got a Heritage Suite card too, SSSP?

12 TH Pedro Ciriaco

The thing I love about this card is these two guys look like a before and aftershave photo.  Maybe Mr. Mattison can find a razor and trim that beast up a bit?

12 TH Kevin Mattison Tom Koehler Marlins Rookie Stars

Nothing to hide.

12 TH Chris Tillman

This guy is WAY TOO INTENSE.

12 TH Zack Greinke

Card Design 3.5 of 5

This isn’t one of my favorite designs, it’s a little too simple for my liking.  The backs are great and I think Topps has done a great job matching the original design and feel of the cards again.

Photography 3.5 of 5

The photography is what it is.  They are matching what was done previously.  Just think more can be done, especially with all the technology we have now.

Hits 3.5 of 5

Although this box was pretty dope, I can’t say that Heritage has great hits.  They just don’t and that’s what has a lot of folks upset.  That’s not my concern though.  I like the Clubhouse Collection cards as simple and non-descript as they are, I think they work for this price point and set.  The box toppers are only nice if you don’t get a panel.  The panels are terrible because you can’t really do anything with them and nobody wants them…at least that I know.

Review

I have a long way to go to completing this set, but I am going to enjoy every minute of it regardless of what people think.  I like the simple non glossy cardboard that is Heritage.  It reminds me of the cards I collected as a kid, only better stock.

Mall 205 Card Show

It’s been a while since I’ve been to a card show and since my last post, so I will tackle both in one post this evening!

Each month, we have a show at Mall 205 here in the Portland area.  Not sure why they do these things in a strip mall, but that’s how they do it up here I guess.  Maybe they pick up residual traffic from mall shoppers?  I don’t know.  It provides a great opportunity for me to get new deodorant at Target, some new kicks at the Famous Footwear (remember that name…) and chase it all down with a slice of pizza from the place no longer called pizza schmizza although it still looks like a pizza schmizza.

As of late, I’ve been on a purging phase and have managed to get rid of a bunch of CD’s at the local Everyday Music and have some cash for the card shows.  So, I had a slightly bigger budget than normal for this trip…the excitement builds.  In general, I don’t go to these shows with goals or objectives because I tend to look for the same stuff and hit up the same tables.  This time though I really wanted to pick up some new Robinson Cano and Rickey Henderson cards along with any shiny new Redskins cards I didn’t already have.  I was only successful with the latter goal.

Having gone to these shows for the past couple of years now, I’ve developed a rapport with a few of the guys and gravitate to their tables first.  My first stop is always Tom.  Somehow he manages to have some new Redskin stuff for me each time at fantastic prices.  He’s always personable and friendly as well as having a tremendous amount of great cards.  In my visit with him, he pulls out this triple auto card with RGIII on it that I can only manage to drool over.  No idea how much it was and really didn’t want to know…it was too much for me, but a beautiful card no less.  I walked away with a new orange Kerrigan card and a serial numbered Fred Davis along with a couple other items.

11 TC Ryan Kerrigan Orange Refractor08 DT Fred Davis 33:50

After Tom’s table, I typically just move down the line knowing the other tables I want to visit will have some good stuff for me.  I worked down the line and ran into a new guy, Greg who had some nice stuff to offer.  He dropped a Kirk Cousins auto Prizm and Alfred Morris in front of me…$10…why, yes, thank you.

12 PP Kirk Cousins Auto 204:49912 PP Alfred Morris

The next couple of items I picked up came from a couple of different tables at good prices…can’t go wrong with any RGIII in my mind.

12 Robert Griffin III Game Time Giveaway12 PP Robert Griffin III Rookie Impact

One table I visited was very interesting.  The guy was selling DVD’s, comics and had a box of cards with a really nice and shiny Derek Jeter on top…so I stopped to take a peek.  His sign said ‘this box $1 each’, but he tells me that if I buy 5 cards or more, I can have them for 50cents each…hmmm.  If I buy 4 cards, that will be $4 but if I buy 5…it will set me back $2.50.  I used to be really good at math and from what I can recall it was in my best interest to max out my purchase at this guys table.  Unfortunately, I only managed to pick up 5 items.  4 Jeters and my only Rickey Henderson of the show.

09 T Rickey Henderson SP08 UG Derek Jeter07 TH Derek Jeter Chrome01 BC Derek Jeter

As I worked my way to one of my new favorite table, for some reason I have never asked for the guys name…but I always spend a good amount of money on his stuff.  He always has great stuff and gives you a nice deal…plus he’s really cool.  I was sifting through his 50% off box when I heard some loud cursing.  I turned to see some kid darting out of the aforementioned Famous Footwear with some new Nike kicks in his hand.  The kid was fast, but I can see that corporate check on those sneaks a mile away.

THE KID WAS HELLA FAST!

He was being chased out of the mall by Paul Blart’s slimmer brother, well, slightly slimmer and Segway-less.  This mall cop had no chance, but it was a valiant effort.  I should have offered him a slice of my Hawaiian pizza, they were on sale that day…daily special.

Anyways, back to marked down cardboard.  Homeboy hooked me up with some RGIII goodies along with an Aldrick Robinson auto and a Ryan Torain auto that I’ve passed up many times.  At least I can cross it off my imaginary list.

12 PP Aldrick Robinson Auto11 BS Ryan Torain Auto12 PS Robert Griffin III Die Cut12 TC Robert Griffin III Chrome Mini

Last stop before my wife kills me for being late.  New table, friendly guy and great cards that were marked down to 80% off.  80% off!  Why in the hell would I pay retail when I can get great cards for 80% off!  The guy had a few boxes of nice serial numbered cards with Clinton Portis and Santana Moss cards that I could use for my PC.  Unfortunately most of the cards were in their previous teams kits, but still guys I loved to watch.

01 UD Santana Moss Game Gear Jersey510:100004 DE Clinton Portis Throwback Threads 18:150

02 TP Clinton Portis Jersey

04 PP Clinton Portis Jersey 39:100

04 DE Clinton Portis Jersey 36:25002 UD Clinton Portis XL Rookies01 QL Santana Moss02 TD Santana Moss 139:199

All in all, a great show that included great deals, food and a petty crime.  Can’t beat that at all.  I ended up staying under my budget and walked out a happy guy…plus it was sunny and warm on a March day in Portland, Oregon.  Life is good

One last thing, I couldn’t help but notice this sign and think of The Chronicles of Fuji.

2013-03-09 10.18.30

Hogs out!

Rickey Henderson additions to my PC +1 Jeter

Since i’ve gotten the blog up and running again, one thing I really wanted to do was be more proactive in picking up new Rickey Henderson cards, or at least new to me.  I’ve been a huge fan of his since I first started collecting in 1985 and was able to collect all of his base cards and some oddball stuff from the 80’s through the mid-90’s.  When i gave up collecting for a few years, roughly 1995-2006, i missed out on a lot of his cards and have been playing catch up ever since.

Recently, my targets have been anything that isn’t an autograph or an outrageously short print/low serial numbered card.  Focusing on base cards, parallels, inserts and nice looking jersey cards that I can find easily and cost friendly.  For some reason or another, his cards are extremely difficult to spot at the card shows I go to as well as my LCS…no idea why.  I never have any issues finding Tony Gwynn, Ken Griffey Jr. or Cal Ripken Jr. cards, equally great players from around the same era…but the Rickey Henderson cards are difficult if not impossible to find.  I have no idea why this is?  Is it that he is such a popular player and people are hoarding his cards?  Or maybe people don’t like him as much as the other players from his era?

When he was playing, especially near the end of his career, there was some negativity towards him.  He had a rough end with the Mets.  Seemingly played one year for every team on the west coast.  Tried many times to land with the A’s for a late season push.  Whatever the reason, there was some negativity around him.  During his heyday, he was an extremely popular player and dynamic player.  He was also one of the few guys from the early years of the steroid era that seemed to be clean.

He is also a player, in my mind that is the only ‘greatest ____ of all time’ that can’t be argued with.  Maybe I’m wrong on this one, but I believe he is not only the greatest base stealer of all time, but the single greatest leadoff hitter.  Maybe i’m biased, but I cannot think of any other player you could say something like this about, much less two things?  Who is the greatest Home Run hitter?  Greatest Center Fielder?  Greatest Catcher, Pitcher?  All of these topics draw major debate, but when i comes to the leadoff position and base stealing, There is no one better than Rickey, and that is one of the reasons why he is my all time favorite baseball player.  I will keep looking for cards when i’m out and see who has anything new and exciting, I will also check in with the great Rickey Henderson Collectibles website to see what’s new and fantastic in the world of Rickey.

So without further adieu, here are a few images from my latest visit to the ebay and the LCS. (some of these cards may not be that new and exciting to you guys, but they are new to my collection and make me happy!)

The first card is a good ol’ fashioned hologram from the mid 90’s.  Upper Deck put all their chips in on this technology and it didn’t quite work out for them…did it?  The Denny’s cards are pretty classic though and a must have for your binders.  From different angles, it looks like you have a silver-ish card with no image and from others, you can see the Man of Steal!  Thank you Denny’s, this one set me back one hundred pennies.

94 UD Rickey Henderson Dennys Hologram

The next two cars are from this years Topps set, The Greats insert and a Game Used Memorabilia Chasing History card.  Both were bid on and won by yours truly from the electronic bay.  I’m hit or miss on bidding from stuff at ebay as i have found the sellers/buyers difficult to deal with at times.  When i do purchase stuff from ebay i go low budget in order to avoid any real issues.  Both of these cards set me back about $7 shipped.  I love the old and new Rickey on the cards.  Classic vs. Legend.

13 T Rickey Henderson The Greats13 T Rickey Henderson Chasing History Game Used Jersey

The last one is the Allen and Ginter base card from last years set.

12 AG Rickey Henderson

I also picked up this beast, Derek Jeter, from the 1998 Zenith set.  This set came out in a period when i was collecting things not on cardboard.  I seem to remember Stale Gum doing a box break on these odd ball giants and attempting to find a way to get the mini card out of the big card without damaging the big card…or the mini card.  Many attempts were made and a valiant effort was given.  I’m just glad these things don’t exist anymore…except with A&G, i guess their stuff is ok, right?

98 Zenith Derek Jeter