Monday, November 30, 2020

Narrowing Down The 2020 List

Last year, I took it upon myself to go through and make a Top 10 list of the Greatest Red Sox cards for 2019. It was insane, and it was almost impossible to narrow my choices down to just 10. So why not go back down the rabbit hole and do it again this year?
This year has been easier. Funny how when your team isn't coming off a World Championship the number of great cards decreases significantly. After going through all the major sets, I hand-picked 25 potential candidates. I was able to cull a few from there easy enough, and the Top 6 cards came to light rather easily.
Just like last year, the back end of cards is where it gets tough. I have 12 cards left, and only 4 spots available. I figured why not take an informal poll and see what my readership thinks. I'll present a group of cards that I think are similar in nature and you can comment with your choice for each group. Full disclaimer here, I'm not automatically awarding the remaining spots to the cards with the highest vote totals. I'm just curious to see what other would pick, and why.

Which of these cards is the greatest? 

Group A: "Fielder's Choice"


Group B: "There Is No I In Team"


Group C: "Mama's Little Baby Like Short Prints, Short Prints" 


Group D: "Above The Rest" 


Again, the winner of each group doesn't automatically make my Top 10. It just gives me added perspectives as I decide which cards make the cut. 

What say you, loyal readers? Which cards would you choose as the best of the year?

Friday, November 27, 2020

TCDB Trade Recap: Cards From Lenexa, KS

I like using the TCDB to whittle down my doubles box. I'll pick a set, and search for other collectors that need cards from that set. The cards I ask in return aren't necessarily from sets I'm working on, but I'll often find some Red Sox cards I need. That was the case this time around when I proposed a swap to Clay. He sent some needed Red Sox my way:
I really enjoy those Conlon Collection cards - the pictures are fantastic and you often get a peek into the game's history that you don't normally have a chance to read about.

Favorite Card: How can I not pick a big athlete nicknamed "Baby Doll"?

Thanks for the trade, Clay!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Repack Haiku #180 (Chris Bosio)

Fired from coaching
For insensitive comments
To clubhouse worker
1990 Donruss #57 Chris Bosio

After a successful Major League career, Bosio was well into an equally successful career as a pitching coach. That all changed in 2018 when he made an offensive comment at an African-American clubhouse attendant. The Tigers fired him, and he hasn't gotten another MLB job since. 


"Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has many, not your past misfortunes, of which all men have some." - Charles Dickens

Last week, Trevor at Bump and Run Football Cards challenged his fellow bloggers to write a daily post with things we are thankful for. Although I couldn't do a week's worth of postings, I can at least list 7 things I'm thankful for:
1. "The Child" - In an unconventional way, I became a father again this year. Due to some poor life choices by a family member and his girlfriend, my wife and have full legal custody of our niece, who turns 1 next month. Outside of explaining the circumstances, that is the only time I refer to her as my niece. She's as much my daughter as my other two, and our family smiles and laughs more because of this blessing.

2. My family's health - So far, no one in my immediate family has caught the COVID-19 virus. For the most part my extended family and friends have avoided it as well. I'm thankful for that, and hopeful it continues into the new year.

3. My health - Back in September, I had surgery to remove some polyps that were blocking my nasal cavities and made it difficult to breath. It was a world of difference once that was done and I am looking forward to actually being able to smell all that Thanksgiving food!

4. My wife - We celebrated our 15th anniversary this year. I'm not quite sure how she's put up with me for so long.

5. My kids - I've got a teenager who wants very little to do with the world outside her bedroom, a 9 year old obsessed with fake nails, and as I mentioned above I've had a year's worth of diapers to change. I wouldn't trade any of them for the world.

6. My job - Being "essential" sucks sometimes, but the stability my job has afforded me means a steady paycheck. I even got a raise this year!

7. This blog, this hobby, and all of you - I don't get to spend as much time with my collection as I'd like, and definitely not as much money ;) but this blog and the community of fellow collectors I've had the honor of communicating with have been a joy to me. I haven't met any of you personally, but I feel a kinship with each of you. Thanks you!
I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving tomorrow, This has been a crazy year, and often it seems there hasn't been much to be thankful for, but now more than ever we need to find the good in our lives and give thanks.

Monday, November 23, 2020

Payday Pack - Trying To Score

Back in the "Before Times" I would celebrate my bi-weekly payday by heading to the local Wally World and treating myself to a pack of baseball cards. Those days seem forever ago, as my local store continues to have barren shelves with scarcely any packs to be had. 

I did however have some luck at my local CVS in the form of a repack box. I needed some fresh cards for my haiku series, and satisfied by itch to open at least temporarily.
The repack box contained one unopened pack of 1990 Score. Since this may be the closest I get to opening a pack in awhile, let's take a trip back 30 years and see what gems we can unearth...

3rd Place

1990 Score #310 Roger Clemens
It's safe to say in 1990 Roger Clemens was my favorite player, and pulling this card would have been a cause for celebration when I was 15. Wow, even for a team with the color red in their name, that border just overpowers the card, doesn't it?

2nd Place

1990 Score #487 Kirk Gibson
It almost seems appropriate after the latest World Series that the sweet swing of Dodger icon Kirk Gibson would make an appearance. This is just an all-around great photo, but it's nowhere near the best in the pack...

1st Place

1990 Score #172 Mike Heath
This, my friends, is the clear champion. Be honest - how many of you recall this card from back in the day? I know I didn't. This is an amazing shot, and probably one of the best cards in the whole set. It makes be happy to rediscover such a underappreciated card, and is one of the key reasons why repacks are fun to open!
Other Contestants Not Appearing On Stage:
#73 Vance Law
#87 Rick Mahler
#93 Pete Incaviglia
#330 Jim Abbott
#315 Dennis Eckersley
#55 Willie McGee (The MVP's insert)
#676 Kiki Jones (FRDP)
#481 Tom Glavine
#484 Mike Bielecki
#168 Ron Hassey
#152 Barry Jones
#609 Mike Stanton (RC)
#611 Charles Nagy (RC)
#629 Chris Hammond (RC)

Friday, November 20, 2020

TCDB Trade Recap - Cards From Las Vegas, NV

TCDB member Brian knocked off some missing Red Sox cards, and helped me complete a set!

That Mark Grace was the last card I needed to polish off the beautifully marbled 1994 Post Cereal set. As for all those 1986 Red Sox, I was a bit surprised I needed so many! 

Favorite Card: As much as I enjoy that airbrush job on Lollar's card, I have to give this one to the set completer Mark Grace!

Thanks for the trade Brian!

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Repack Haiku #179 (John Wockenfuss)

Required reading:
Night Owl's post "Brush With Greatness"
Hard hits have a cost
1982 Fleer #286 John Wockenfuss

When I pulled this card, I immediately thought about the fantastic article written by fellow blogger Night Owl, who had a chance to interview Wockenfuss. Both the blog post and the newspaper article it's inspired by are worth your time. Sadly, Wockenfuss is battling dementia, but Greg uses baseball cards to help him connect with some baseball memories.

Monday, November 16, 2020

Time Travel Trading Update #47

OK, first things first: If you read my post from last week, you'll know I had to make another little swap with myself. (It was the only way to cure my PSC!) Anyway, I decided to replace the 1989 Fleer card I needed with an oddball card: 

Speaking of oddballs, when I showed off those beautiful Jay Publishing Yankees last time, I had a gut feeling that Bo from Baseball Cards Come To Life would be the one who ended up with them. Even though he gave everyone else a full day to lay claim to them, he ended up being the only one to show any interest. I sent the Yankees and a few others to him, and as usual he responded with a bevy of great cards!

Why, yes, that is the late, great Bob Gibson making an appearance:

Check out the star power in this batch!

Bo throws in a quartet of 1961 Topps as well:

We'll finish things off with a couple of great cards from 1956:
These are great additions, thanks again Bo! 

As always, this project only works if I have people to trade with. Any of these cards are available, and all I'm asking in return is an older card. Make me an offer!

The Time Travel Trade Stack:

2018 Topps
#502 Xander Bogaerts

2017-1018 Pocket Schedule
Carolina Hurricanes

2017 Bowman
#12 Trea Turner

2008-09 O-Pee-Chee (hockey)
#128 Tim Thomas

1998 Score
#68 Scott Rolen
#74 Mark McLemore

1994 Sportflics
#113 Pete Harnisch

1993 Classic Draft Picks (basketball)
#33 Will Flemons
#67 Bennie Seltzer

1992 Fleer Ultra
#594 Dave Righetti

1991 Upper Deck
#778 Dave Righetti

1990 Fleer
#629 Jose Canseco (POD)

1990 Upper Deck
#626 Frank Viola

1990 Pro Set - Theme Art (football)
#10 Super Bowl X Pittsburgh Steelers / Dallas Cowboys 

1989 Topps Hills Team MVP's
#7 Will Clark

1989 Score
#495 Larry Parrish
1987 Donruss
#414 John Pacella
#458T Jim Ray
#496T Tom Murphy

1974 Wonder Bread (football)
#8 Bob Griese 

1973-74 O-Pee-Chee (hockey)
#53 Richard Lemieux

1973 Topps
#29 Tony Taylor 
#30 Tug McGraw
#68 1972 Leading Firemen (Carroll/Lyle)
#75 Vada Pinson
#79 Jim Willoughby (RC)
#80 Tony Oliva
#102 Rudy May
#116 Ralph Houk (MGR)
#145 Bobby Bonds
#215 Dusty Baker
#225 Albert Oliver
#230 Joe Morgan
#232 Ken Singleton
#240 Bobby Murcer
#258 Tommy John
#325 Boog Powell
#329 Ed Kranepool
#365 Rico Petrocelli
#368 Bill Buckner

1972 Topps
#33 Billy Martin (MGR)
#43 Rick Wise
#163 Tug McGraw
#197 Johnny Briggs
#225 World Series Game 3 - Manny Sanguillen
#231 Casey Cox
#239 Tom Timmermann
#266 Bobby Bolin
#363 Ron Klimkowski
#373 John Mayberry
#438 Maury Wills (IA)
#451 Tony LaRussa

1972 Topps (football)
#111 Jim Tyrer
#114 Bob James (RC)

1971 Topps
#16 Ken Singleton (RC)
#63 AL 1970 RBI Leaders (Howard/Conigliaro/Powell)

1969 Topps
#66 Orioles Rookies
#75 Luis Aparicio
#80 Norm Cash
#107 Checklist 110-218 - Bob Gibson (CL, ERR) 
#131 Chris Cannizarro 
#139 Andy Kosco
#182 Bill Rigney (MGR)
#205 Juan Marichal
#257 Phil Niekro 
#260 Jim Wynn 
#309 Ken Henderson
#60 Luis Aparicio
#348 Tug McGraw
#366 Andy Kosco

1966 Topps
#46 Howie Koplitz
#307 Barry Latman
#352 Alex Johnson (RC)

1965 Philadelphia (football)
#193 John Paluck

1964 Philadelphia (football)
#172 Ken Gray (RC)

1964 Topps
#18 Billy O'Dell
#30 Ron Perranoski
#45 Milt Pappas
#92 Steve Ridzik
#341 Jim Roland 

1964 Topps - Coins 
#7 Frank Malzone
#111 Jack Meyer
#114 Hobie Landrith

1959 Topps (football)
#80 Joe Perry

1958 Topps Zorro (non-sport)
#83 Rude Awakening

1957 Topps
#212 Rocky Colavito (RC)
#249 Dave Pope
#406 Bob Hale

1956 Topps 
#80 Cincinati Redlegs (TC, VAR)
#284 Ike Delock

1956 Topps Flags of the World (non-sport)
#70 Jordan

1955 Topps
#45 Hank Sauer

1954 Bowman
#16 Jim Wilson
#73 Don Mueller

1954 Bowman Power For Peace (non-sport)
#91 USS Coral Sea (CVB43)
1953 Topps

1952 Bowman
#57 Clyde Vollmer

1938 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America Tenth Series (J9-6) (non-sport)
#2 Black-throated Green Warbler

1922 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America Third Series (J7) (non-sport) 
#7 Prothonotary Warbler

1915 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America First Series (J5)  (non-sport)
#1 Quail

The Time Travel Trading Project is simple in concept. I started out with a random pack of 2018 Topps Series 1 baseball cards. My aim was to trade every card in that pack for something older. Each card I receive in turn is then made available for trade, with the goal to get the oldest card I can get.

Number of trades completed: 65
Unique trading partners: 37

Number of cards mailed out: 213
Year of oldest card mailed out: 1955

Number of cards received: 443
Year of oldest card received: 1915