Friday, December 29, 2023

The Greatest Red Sox Cards Of 2023

I can't believe I've been doing this for 5 years now! I have to admit though that this year was the toughest one yet. For the first time, I didn't have Stadium Club to provide at least a few worthy contenders. I'm hoping it's just a one-time blip, but at least the door was opened for some more variety. That's a good thing, right? So without further ado, here is my expertly chosen list of greatness:

Honorable Mention: 2023 Tops Now

#144 Fair Or Fowl?

This is technically a Red Sox card, at least according to TCDB. Truth be told, if I were to do a list of the worst Red Sox cards of 2023, it would probably win. It's badly cropped, the ducks are just standing still, and it's altogether not that interesting of a card. I like ducks, though, and this is whimsical enough to at least be worthy of a mention.

10. 2023 Topps Update - Action Stars

#AS-14 Rafael Devers

Most of the time, the last spot on this list is tough to choose because they're are so many great contenders. This year it was tough because so few stood out. I'm not overly fond of the "Insert player in front of generic computer generated background" type cards, but this one at least looks cool. Here's hoping Devers launches a lot of "bombs" next year!

9. 2023 Topps

#283 Matt Strahm

When I was in college, I had long glorious hair. Like Strahm, it often flew in my face whenever I did anything active.

8. 2023 Topps Heritage - Then and Now

#TAN-10 Luis Tiant/Nathan Eovaldi

Two Red Sox post-season heroes for the price of one! Just to give you a glimpse of how baseball has changed: The back off this card reveals El Tiante led the AL with 7 shutouts in 1974. In 2022, Eovald also led the AL in shutouts....with 1...a lead he shared with 6 other pitchers...

7. 2023 Topps Holiday

#H8 Masataka Yoshida (SSP, VAR)

Maybe it's the eggnog talking, but I do enjoy these Holiday sets, especially since they've stepped up their game beyond just adding oversized snowflakes. I especially enjoy their short-print, which feature such novelties as candy cane bats and Christmas light necklaces.

6. 2023 Topps Archives

#112 Babe Ruth

I'll say this for Ohtani-mania: It has paved the way for more cards of Babe Ruth as a Red Sox. Of course it would have been nice to show him pitching since he's listed as a pitcher, but seeing a younger, dare I say slimmer Babe on cardboard is always nice.

5. 2023 Bowman - Bowman Spotlights

#BS-7 Triston Casas

In stark contrast to the Devers Action Star card, I love this one for it's sheer simplicity. Take those two logos in the upper corners away, and it'd be perfect. No text, no fancy graphics, just a simple illumination of the player.

4. 2023 Topps - All Aces

#AA-5 Pedro Martinez

If you have any of this insert and have seen it in hand, you know how much better it is than what a screen shows. Pedro was a true Ace, and provided exciting moments in spades!

3. 2023 Topps

#242 Jarren Duran (FS)

Earlier this month, Bob over at The Best Bubble had a post showcasing some great cards of players flying through the air. The illusion of Jarren leaping over his "Future Stars" designation makes this a worthy inclusion to any mini-collection of that ilk!

2. 2023 Topps Living

#629 Jason Varitek

I gotta give artist Angel Aviles credit, this is a great rendering of the former Red Sox captain! The look of determination, the eye black, the shine off his helmet - everything about this card is well done!

1.  2023 Topps Archives

#77 Tris Speaker

I am 48 years old, and for the most part I conduct myself as a mature, responsible adult. However I can't help but snicker like a 12-year-old boy every time I look at this card. Why? Because Topps captured this on cardboard:
Tris Speaker, a Hall of Fame legend, is getting kneed in the groin. There ain't no way around it, knee is right there below the belt. I doubt he's wearing a cup. You can't unsee it now. You're welcome. It brings me way too much joy, and for that I deem it the greatest Red Sox card of 2023!

So there you have it! Do you agree with my rankings? Any cards that I might have missed?

Relive The Greatest Red Sox Cards Of:

2019 *** 2020 *** 2021 *** 2022

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Repack Haiku #337 (Moises Alou)

Made the All-Star team
For five different ball clubs
Six times overall
1991 Donruss #38 Moises Alou (RR)
Outside the first team he ever played for (Pirates - only 2 games) and the last team he ever played for (Mets), Alou represented every other franchise he suited up with at an All-Star Game. Not only that, he got a hit as a member of each club:
1994 - Expos (1-1, 2B, 1 RBI - Ended the game with a walk-off double!)
1997 - Marlins (1-2)
1998 - Astros (1-3, R)
2001 - Astros (0-1)
2004 - Cubs (1-2)
2005 - Giants  (1-1, 2B, BB, R)

As an All-Star, he batted .500/.546/.700 with 2 R and a game winning RBI - not too shabby!

Monday, December 25, 2023

Merry Christmas!


Have a 

It's the best time of the year!

I don't know if there will be

but have a 


Merry Christmas to all of you out in blogger-land! May your stockings be filled with cardboard! (And yes, I did just repost this from previous years - I'm not lazy, I just have a lot of presents to wrap!)

Friday, December 22, 2023

Trapped In Time: Remnants Of The 59th and 62nd Trades

It was bound to happen sometime. I knew if I did this Remnants series long enough, I'd get to a personal swap that I did with myself. Cards I was hoping to get rid of may end up back in my doubles box. Such is the nature of things.
Trade #59 (Personal collection swap)
Added to My Personal Collection 08/18/20: 1978 Topps #135 Ron Guidry, 1978 Topps #375 Tommy John, 1978 Topps #686 Gaylord Perry, 1981 Topps #41 Rangers Future Stars (RC),  1981 Topps #231 Joe Beckwith, 1981 Topps #234 Lou Whitaker, 1981 Topps #341 Dwayne Murphy,  1981 Topps #399 Orioles Future Stars (RC), 1981 Topps #493 Dan Quisenberry, 1981 Topps #495 Dusty Baker, 1981 Topps #570 Ken Singleton, 1981 Topps #635 Bobby Bonds, 1981 Topps #666 Detroit Tigers (TC), 1981 Topps #696 Alan Ashby

Added to the Time Travel Trade Stack 08/18/20:
  • 1981 Topps #194 Rod Scurry
  • 1981 Topps #250 Ron Guidry (See Trade #129)
  • 1981 Topps #365 Graig Nettles
  • 1981 Topps #374 Tom Hutton
  • 1981 Topps #415 Ben Oglivie (See Trade #72)
  • 1981 Topps #438 John Montefusco (See Trade #62)
  • 1981 Topps #465 Bill Russell (AS) (See Trade #251)
  • 1981 Topps #477 Luis Gomez
  • 1981 Topps #494 Bob Walk
  • 1981 Topps #569 Al Williams
  • 1981 Topps #632 Alan Bannister
  • 1971 Topps #63 AL 1970 RBI Leaders (Howard/Conigliaro/Powell) (See Trade #228)
  • 1971 Topps #67 AL 1970 ERA Leaders (Segui/Palmer/Wright) (See Trade #63)
  • 1971 Topps #69 AL 1970 Pitching Leaders  (Cuellar/McNally/Perry) (See Trade #115)
Roughly two years after making this swap, I completed the 1981 Topps set. I have numerous doubles should anyone be working on this set!
Trade#62 (Jeff: Wax Pack Wonders)
Traded 08/27/20: 1957 Topps #235 Tom Poholsky, 1957 Topps #371 Bob Lennon, 1960 Topps #186 Dave Sisler, 1971 Topps #290 Tony Oliva, 1981 Topps #438 John Montefusco, 1981 Topps #600 Johnny Bench (AS)

Received 08/31/20:
  • 1978 Topps #148 Andre Thorton
  • 1974 Topps - Traded #270T Ron Santo
  • 1966 Topps #46 Howie Koplitz
  • 1955 Bowman #14 Gus Keriazakos (RC) (See Trade #65)
  • 1955 Bowman #34 Clint Courtney (See Trade #65)
  • 1955 Bowman #173 Chico Carrasquel (See Trade #65)

Our second batch of remnants comes from Jeff (Wax Pack Wonders). If that Ron Santo is giving you a case of Time Travel deja-vu, it's because a second one was just sent my way and featured in the last Time Travel Trading Update! One comes in, another goes out! Will the other Santo languish in trade purgatory as his brethren did? Time will tell!

All the above cards are destined for my personal collection unless someone claims them! All I need is a card, any card, older than the one you're getting. It's that easy!

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Repack Haiku #336 (Geno Petralli)

Caught Hough's knuckle-ball
(At least tried to catch it), and
Ryan's milestone win
1989 Topps #137 Geno Petralli
Besides catching Ryan's 300th career win, Petralli had the unfortunate task of catching Charlie Hough's knuckler. In 1987, he tied the record for passed balls in one inning (4), in one game (6), and set the modern-day record for passed balls in one season (35).

Monday, December 18, 2023

Time Travel Trading Update #84

Welcome to the last Time Travel Trading update of 2023! I want to start off by thanking everyone for a great year. Not counting personal swaps, I completed a total of 53 trades with 18 different collectors! That's impressive, and I hope next year is even better. Thanks again!

I also want to mention that any trades made from this post may be delayed for the holidays. I'm hoping to get all cards mailed out that week between Christmas and New Year's Day. So no rush on your end either, OK?

Let's give Scrooge a run for his money and kick off this time travel adventure in style! Our first trade comes from Greg (Crocodile Sports Cards). Greg is working on the 1970 Topps set, and I let him know of a particular place he might be able to find some needs. A trio of cards one year their senior made their way back to me!

Oh, and I hope you found those other cards by now too, Greg!

I recently made a TCDB trade, where a couple of cards from the list were requested. They were junk wax era cards, so I didn't think anyone would miss them if I swapped them out for some slightly older junk wax era cards.

Speaking of the TCDB, Mark Z. claimed a nice lot of cards, and sent an ecclectic variety of cards in return:

In addition to the normal baseball and football cards, we get another racing card and an interesting non-sport. I'm not familiar with Francesco Quinn or the 2009 Donruss Americana set, but hopefully there will be someone interested in it!

Of those 53 trades, 11 have come from Bo (Baseball Cards Come To Life!). Our latest trade nets some popular Pacific Legends, O-Pee-Chee, and vintage baseball cards

I have a feeling those Pacific Legends and O-Pee-Chee will find new homes soon!

A good number of those 53 trades also came from Brendan (The View From The Third Floor). I sent a trio of cards his way, and he sent me that plus more in return:

Those All-Time Record Holders were such a great subset. It's a shame Topps can't do a proper update without ostracized legends like Pete Rose or Barry Bonds.

Next, we have a new voyager on out trips through time. I was contacted through the TCDB by a gent named Scott. He gave me a choice of cards for the 1955 Topps All-American football card I had, and I ended up choosing not the oldest card, but one with some great name recognition:

I am amused that two separate trades netted me a card from 1951 Bowman, both baseball and football. You never know what's going to come in!
Finally, we have Greg (Night Owl Cards), who just got his cards in under the deadline for this post! We've got a nice lot of 1979 Topps football and some great vintage!

My sincerest thanks to all my trade partners this month, this past year, and for the past 6 years!
As always, these cards are all available in exchange for an older card. You can claim your cards below, or through the TCDB (Kep75). Let's make some trades! 

The Time Travel Trade Stack:

2022 Topps Opening Day - Opening Day Autographs
#ODA-LWJ LaMonte Wade Jr. (AU)    
2021-22 Donruss - Magicians (basketball)
2021-22 Donruss (soccer)
#183 Jose Macias (RR)
2020 Leaf Draft - Gold (football)
#66 CeeDee Lamb (AA)
#77 Collin Johnson (TD)   

2017-18 Donruss (basketball)
#75 Chandler Parsons
2017 Topps - MLB Award Winners
2015-16 Donruss (basketball)
#49 John Wall
2015 Panini Prizm Collegiate Draft Picks (football)
#92 Sammy Watkins
#146 Todd Gurley

2012 Topps Stickers
#237 Bernie Brewer (MAS) 
2010 Bowman - Prospects Black
#BP51 Chase D'Arnaud
#BP56 Rolando Gomez

2010 Bowman Platinum - Prospects
#PP38 Brian Johnson     
2010 Topps Chrome (football)
#C141 T.J. Houshmandzadeh
2009 Bowman - Chrome WBC Prospects
#BCW18 Tao Bu  
2009 Donruss Americana (non-sport)
#50 Francesco Quinn
2008 Topps New York Yankees
#NYY8 Jason Giambi
2007 Upper Deck MLB Rookie Card of the Month
#ROM-4 Ryan Braun 
2007 Playoff Prestige (football) 
2005 Playoff Absolute Memorabilia
#44 Shawn Green
2004 Bowman Chrome
#263 Jeff Allison (FY, RC) 
2004 Just Rookies - 05 Preview Autographs
2002 Fleer Maximum
2002 Upper Deck World Series Heroes
#88 Andy Petitte
1999-00 Topps (basketball)
#16 Eric William 
1999 SkyBox Metal Universe (football)
#116 Tiki Barber
1999 Stadium Club
#214 Tony Saunders 
1998 Pinnacle Performers
#14 Hideo Nomo
1997 Collector's Choice
#215 Glenallen Hill  
1997 Pinnacle Inside
#111 Matt Williams

1997 Pinnacle X-Press
#64 Craig Biggio   
1997 Upper Deck
#13 Mark Lemke

1996 Leaf
1996 SP
1996 Upper Deck
#358 Todd Worrell
#425 Mark McGwire
1995 Finest (football)
#124 Trent Dilfer     
1995 Skybox Jumanji (non-sport)
#31 Help Us Finish
1995 SkyBox Lois & Clark (non-sport)
#73 Be Mine!
#74 I've Always Loved You!
#75 Do You Love Me?

1995 SkyBox Lois & Clark - Holochip Etched Foils (non-sport)
#BJ3 Belle Curve 
1994-95 Finest (basketball)
#43 Rex Chapman  

1994 Collector's Choice
#636 David Justice (UC&P)
1994 Finest
#413 Mark Portugal
1994 Fleer
#295 Tino Martinez 
1994 Panini Stickers
#207 Sean Berry
#208 Wil Cordero 
1994 Classic Four Sport (multi-sport)
#145 Chad Penney  
1994 Indianapolis Motor Speedway Indianapolis 500 Champions Collection (racing)
#NNO Danny Sullivan
#NNO Mario Andretti
1993 Leaf
1993 Stadium Club
1993 Classic '93 Hockey Draft (hockey)
#40 Saku Koivu 
1993 Classic Four Sport (multi-sport)
#246 Mike Rathje
1992 Front Row Draft Picks
#46 Ed Christian   
1992 Pinnacle
1991-92 Upper Deck (basketbal)
1989-92 Racing Champions Stock Car (racing)
#01126 Geoff Bodine
1991 Score
1991 Score Rookie & Traded
#58T Fred McGriff 
1991 Topps
#575 Robin Yount

1991 Ultra
#130 Lou Whitaker  
1991 Upper Deck
1991 Fleer (football)
1991 Pro Set (football)
1991 Pro Set Platinum (football)
#81 Lawrence Taylor

1991 Topps Desert Storm (non-sport)
#147 Working Together   
1990-91 Pro Set Super Bowl XXV Silver Anniversary (football)
#88 Nick Buoniconti 
1990-91 Fleer (basketball)
#21 Kelly Tripucka
#21 Kelly Tripucka

1990 Fleer
1990 Pacific Legends
#34 Don Kessinger

1990 Post Cereal
#22 Pedro Guerrero 
1990 Score (football)
#436 Chet Brooks (RC)
1990 Topps Traded (football)
#102T Howard Cross (RC)
1989-90 Fleer (basketball)

1989-90 Hoops (basketball)
#64 Armon Gilliam

1988 Card Collectors T-206 Reprint
#NNO Matty McIntyre
1988 Donruss 
1988 Pacific Legends I
#33 Don Newcombe
#70 Vic Raschi 
1988 Topps Toys "R" Us Rookies
#13 Mike Henneman
1988 Topps Traded
1987 Fleer
#101 Rickey Henderson 

1987 O-Pee-Chee
#201 John Cangelosi (RC)
#284 Joaquin Andujar
1987 Topps 
1986 Donruss
#595 Carlos Ponce (RC)
1986 Fleer Baseball's Best Sluggers vs. Pitchers
1985 Topps #403
Cory Snyder (OLY, RC) 
1985 Topps (football)
#53 Lions Team Leaders (TL)
1985 Topps - Glossy NFL Stars (football)
#9 John Riggins
#11 Lawrence Taylor
1984-85 Topps (hockey)
#3 Tom Fergus 
1984 Donruss

1984 Fleer
1984 O-Pee-Chee 
#166 Terry Kennedy
1983 O-Pee-Chee
#104 Ron Guidry

1983 Topps Drake's Big Hitters
#14 Dave Kingman
1982-85 Galasso Baseball Hobby Card Report T-206 Reprints
1982 Dover Publications Reprints National League
#15 Robin Roberts
1982 Fleer
#185 Gary Carter 
1982 Topps
1982 Topps (football) 
1981-82 Topps (hockey)
#51 Dale McCourt (TL)
1981 Donruss  
1981 Fleer
#427 Steve Braun

1981 Topps
1980 Topps 
#65 Al Bumbry
1979 Kellogg's 3-D Super Stars
#25 Darrell Porter (COR, SP)

1979 Topps 
#413 All-Time Record Holders: Home Runs (Maris/Aaron) (ATRH)
#414 All-Time Record Holders: Batting Average (Hornsby/Cobb) (ATRH)
#415 All-Time Record Holders: Stolen Bases (Brock) (ATRH) 
1979 Topps (football)
#11 Chester Marcol
#28 Morris Bradshaw (RC) 
#54 John Sanders 
#61 Ted Fritsch
#86 Butch Johnson 
#315 Preston Pearson
#362 Scott Dierking
#382 Joe Fields
#389 Ed O'Neil (RC) 
#479 Terry Nelson 
#493 Curtis Johnson
#510 Harvey Martin 

1978-79 Topps (basketball)
#118 Kevin Porter 

1978 Topps  
1977 Dover Publications Classic Baseball Cards Reprints
#10 Lefty O'Doul
#18 Jimmie Dykes
#99 Hal Chase
#NNO Melvin Harder
#NNO Fred Merkle
1977 Topps
1977 Topps (football)
1976 Funky Sales Corp Funky Facts Baseball
#2 In A Trance
#3 Fans Vs Players
#5 Baseballeese

1976 Topps

1976 Topps (football)
#69 Tommy Nobis
#189 Ken Johnson (RC)

1975 Topps
1974-75 Topps (hockey)
#13 Syl Apps
1974 Topps - Traded
#43T Jim Wynn
#270T Ron Santo 
#458T Jim Ray

1972 Topps  
1971 Topps
1971 Topps (football)
#8 Walt Garrison (RC)
1970 Topps
#2 Diego Segui
#287 Fred Talbot   #390 Willie Davis    
1970 Topps (football)
1969 Globe Imports Playing Cards Gas Station Issue
#2♦ Paul Casanova
1969 Topps
#19 Ken Suarez
#42 Tommy Harper
#64 Bill Monbouquette 
#297 Deron Johnson 
1969 Topps - Four-in-One Singles (football)
#NNO Ralph Baker
#NNO John Bramlett
#NNO Billy Martin
#NNO Bob Talamini 
1968 Topps
#14 Jerry McNertney

1968 Topps (football)
#146 Ode Burrell
#172 Miller Farr

1967 Topps
1965 Topps
#17 Johnny Romano
1963 Topps
#26 Ray Moore
1962 Topps
1961 Topps
1960 Topps
#69 Billy Goodman
#139 Carl Mathias (RC, RS) 
1960 Topps (football)
#28 Jim Ray Smith 

1959 Topps
#140 Charlie Secrest (RC, RS) 
1958 JCM 30a Doyusha Team Name Back (solid front w/o borders)
#456 Dick Brown (RC)
#473 Bill Renna (UER)
1958 Topps (football)
#3 Joe Schmidt 

1957 Topps
1956 Topps (football)
#42 Tom Fears
#51 Ted Marchibroda
1955 Bowman
1955 Topps
1955 Bowman (football)
#9 Don Stonesifer
1954 Topps
#215 Ed McGhee

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

1953 Topps
#254 Preacher Roe
#223 Johnny Vander Meer 
1951 Bowman (football)
#118 Frank Reagan

1948 Bowman
#10 Buddy Rosar (RC)
#15 Eddie Joost
#15 Eddie Joost

1948 Bowman (football)
#28 Paul Governali (RC) 
1939 Wills's Garden Flowers by Richard Sudell (non-sport)
#46 Sweet Sultan 

1938 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America Tenth Series (J9-6) (non-sport)
#2 Black-throated Green Warbler
1938 Churchman's Boxing Personalities (boxing)
#45 Ted Broadribb
#48 Arthur J. Elvin 

1937-38  Diamond Matchbooks Tan 6 (hockey)
#NNO Glenn Brydson
1935 Church & Dwight Useful Birds of America Eighth Series (J9-4) (non-sport)
#10 California Jay

1933 Church & Dwight Useful Birds of America Fifth Series (J9-1) (non-sport)
#5 Indigo Bunting 
1925 Sports Records (multi-sport)
1924 Imperial Tobacco Co. of Canada (ITC) Dogs Series (non-sport)
#4 Otter-Hound

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
1910 Champions (T218) (multi-sport)
1890 N245 Sweet Caporal Actors & Actresses (non-sport)
#NNO Frankie Raymond

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: 281
Unique trading partners: 72

Number of cards mailed out: 1,520
Year of oldest card mailed out: 1910-11

Number of cards received: 2,240
Year of oldest card received: 1890