Wednesday, September 25, 2019

State Of The Count - September 2019

I started the daunting task of counting all my cards back in May of this year.  I just wanted a ballpark figure so when people ask, I can give them a round number.  And I was just curious myself as to the totals of some sections of my collection.

Well, it's September and I haven't finished.  The National got in the way, and then the monster box hoard took over the room, so I didn't get done counting so I could put the August loot away.  But in the meantime, here's where I am....

The spreadsheet I set up has everything broken down by fixture (rack, cabinet, shelf) and then by section.  Each section is separated by sport.   For the pics below, I consolidated some figures and left out a few stray GUs here and there.  But the grand totals are accurate to this point.

The big box rack was the first place I started.  Was interested in how many Redskins bulk singles are in those cases - the two shoe boxes are actually extras.  (The only extras in the room besides the new hoard.)  Neat that it came out to an even number (plus or minus a card or so).  This is the bulkiest part of my collection, obviously.

On the opposite wall from the rack is the football and hockey cabinet.  The top windowed section is small sets.  The left and center sections are one opening, and the right section is walled off from the others.  Below is a row of bindered sets, and in the small (silverware) drawer are mostly gamers and autographs.  The big drawer is basically empty.  Then below are the bigger completed sets.

Back at the doorway end, the baseball binder shelf houses full sets and multiple set binders.  There's some extra starters on the bottom and a few batches that don't fit anywhere else.  Counting binders wasn't as hard and arduous as I initially thought.  Most of the time I counted pages, multiplied by nine (or in certain cases by 4 or 6) and then subtracted the empty spaces (that I tallied as I counted the pages).

Next to those is the baseball cabinet.  This piece of furniture is the most full.  Sometimes I wonder if I should be concerned about the gross weight of all this being in one room.  I don't hear creaky floors or anything, so I'm not worried so far.

Again, there are small sets (mostly traded/updates) up top, player collection binders in the middle, and the big sets on the bottom.  And more gamers in the small drawer.  The big drawer is storage supplies - toploaders, card savers, one-touches, and different odd size bags and sleeves for shipping and storing in boxes.  Plus some wax wrappers and dummy cards.

The last fixture that stores my collection is the football (etc.) binder shelf.  Football and hockey vintage and other nice sets, plus my Charlie's Angels, other football leagues, Space and Astronaut binder, other non-sports, golf and basketball collections.  These will be the last things to enter on my spreadsheet....

...And then I can add all the stuff that showed up as I was starting to count...

...and all that I got on the multi-state tour and in the mail since then.

So the (so far) bottom lines look like this:

I have a feeling the Grand Total will reach over 200K by the time I'm done.

What do you think your Grand Total would be right now?

Monday, September 23, 2019

Leading Ladies Of Sports Broadcasting #U1

Special bonus addition to the Leading Ladies set.  This little hottie just started on DC Sports Live on NBCSports Washington.  They revamped the cast with two other dudes I've never seen before and the lovely Miss Alexa Shaw.

She's got a really nice website (Editor's note: website isn't there any more) that profiles her career and more.  Starting as an intern at Fox Sports Southwest while attending TCU, she moved up to sideline reporter for Texas high school football games, and later reported courtside for the WNBA Dallas Wings (2018 & 2019).

This past July she moved to DC and was hired for the DC Sports Live show with Nick Ashooh and Wes Hall, who came from the NBA Wizards Outsiders show, which explains why I don't know them.

It's a lively show with lots of personality, which Alexa fits quite well.  She's got a killer smile and keeps right up with the boys.  She's a petitie little thing, but has a big presence onscreen.

Her smile and style were too irresistable, so I had to add her to the Ladies' series, if only as an update issue.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Northernmost Point Of The Six State Tour

Regular posting has fallen completely apart.  It's frikkin' Saturday and I'm finally getting something done.  Ah well...

Continuing the tour recap from back in early August, we now go to our favorite cardboard repository - the "warehouse" in Clio, Michigan.  Thanks to Matt and his peeps at Collectibles Unlimited for allowing us access to their secondary site, which like I mentioned before is their "special inventory" site that they generously allow us to come and rummage through the literal piles and stacks for whole days.  Next time, if he's OK with it, I should take pictures of just the sheer volume that we saw.

So what did I come away with this time?

 There's always a few extra boxes around, so we just pick one out and fill it.  I found one of those cool red and blue ones.  Great mix of baseball, football, and hockey.  Old variations, a greats set, Broders, vintage, lots of set hits, and some other oddballs.

A couple wacky Broders of Bo Jackson.  The gold one is the third or so that pairs him with the Big Hurt.

I had been itching to go back to Clio because I knew there were several boxes of 1990 Upper Deck that I hadn't checked for variations beyond the 101-199 copyright lines.  I was able to find several of the later numbered goofs like the offset positions, and "Jamie" Weston instead of Mickey, on his card (#683) and the checklist.

 Nice snag on a 2011 legend variation of the Babe as a Bosox pitcher...

A little different angle to show the bulk stacks of the hockey greats set and '92 Gold Winners, 1995 Topps, '95  and '96 Stadium Club football, and '96-'97 UD hockey.  Manon Rheaume is peeking from the lower left corner - finished her six card intro to the Classic set.

An uncropped look at the shiny and swirly Redskins I grabbed hoping I don't have them already....

And finally, I hit the mother lode on 1996 Ultra Sensations.  Picked through my list of all four colors and even got some of the rarer rainbow golds.  These are one of my new favorite '90s football sets.  The gold are the basic issue, the blues are the next most common parallel, and then the marble gold and pewter.  None of them are serial numbered or of significant value, but I think they're cool.

Nice way to sum up the selection at the warehouse - a rainbow of everything you might be looking for!

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Bo Brings Life To My Capitals Collection

Made another trade with Bo of Baseball Cards Come To Life! recently.  Sent him some vintage baseball for a mystery amalgamation of Capitals cards, some hockey set needs, and a few more baseball variations.

 A few more for the 1991 Topps master base set.  Coolbaugh is missing the streak across his hat, Patterson had a photographic dermatologist treatment, Liliquist's "TM" is a variant size, and Naehring has a spot on his batting glove.  Some of these could be called printing flaws, but were significantly corrected, so to me they're worth getting.

 On to the hockey - two hits to a legends set from 2000-01 Upper Deck....The "other" Bure and Brodeur guys.

 Then he knocked my 1996-97 Upper Deck flagship set down to two dozen, few enough that I put names on them.

The rest were an amazing random assortment of cool, shiny, eclectic, and fascinating Capitals cards.

 Except for a couple that I recognized the design from, I don't remember having really any of these.

The tough part is going to be sorting them into my team collection box.  I had a few I was trying to put away just the other day and I found that what I thought were sorted correctly into the right years between 1994 and 1997 were all mixed up.  I can't keep the dual dates straight in my head and invariably mix piles together.  I started a document that is basically printouts of each major set by year so I can have a visual guide.  I was going by the stats on the back - and identifying each set by the year AFTER the last stat year - until I found a set that had the stats for the same year it was produced only as far as the All-Star break.  At that point I gave up and started the document.  Of course, sets like Finest have a few different looks to them, and most rookies are a variation of the base design too, so it still may not help.  I'll never be able to recognize hockey cards like I do baseball and football.

Anyway, thanks again to Bo Rosny!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

The Mega-Sort Has Begun

My posting schedule is all jacked up.  Between the 15 monster boxes, football season, and adult responsibilities, I can't seem to keep up Monday - Wednesday - Friday posting.

Anyway, here's a quick glimpse at the six baseball boxes from the monster hoard.  I finally broke down and stacked them on the floor in groups by year and piles by set.  This consolidates all the chunks I kept finding in different boxes.  It's amazing to me how this kind of stuff gets so thoroughly blended together over time.  At least I assume it was over time and multiple people sifting through.  It may just be that they all got dumped on the floor and picked up hastily.

So when you walk into my card room now, this is what you find.  I managed to empty one box completely.  The other partial boxes on the couch are big chunks of the same sets for the most part.  The full box on the floor is everything that is older than the year 2000.  There is about half a row of 80's and some 70's, including a good stack of '74s - mostly stars.

The first three stacks at the top against the box are 2000, then two for 2001, and the ones between the boxes are 2002.  The next row is 2003, then 2004 with the double end, and 2005 at the bottom.  I actually started at the far end with 2006 against the far box and above the end of 2003, and then 2007 over from that against the couch, with 2008 and 2009 below.  It's not pretty but effective. 

Here is a closer look at the 2005 pile.  There is a bunch of Leather & Lumber, Studio, Prestige, Donruss Champions (another pile about that big in my extras already), Upper Deck, Donruss Elite, and Diamond Kings.  I've got 3/4 of a monster box of 2005 extras that I'll be combining with these.  That's my biggest year in extra stuff.  If you have any big lists from these sets, let me know.  I'll be showing all these piles in more detail later, and once I combine them with my other extras, there will be more sets with big chunks available.  And of course, I'll probably snarf a few set starters for myself for things I don't have.

I'll also take requests for bulk team trades from all this.  I know many team collectors just focus on Topps, but I've got all the different companies represented well.

And there are a lot of star cards and serial numbered parallels in this batch as well.  Rookies too!  There are a lot of Greg Maddux, Roger Clemens, Pedro Martinez (a bunch went to Gavin at BBCBreakdown), Jason Giambi, Vlad Guerrero (Sr.), Manny Ramirez, Randy Johnson, Frank Thomas, Mike Piazza, Nomar, Ken Griffey, Jr., and to a lesser extent -  Ichiro, David Ortiz, Albert Pujols, Jim Thome, Chipper Jones, and Mike Mussina.  So if you collect those guys and need them in these kind of sets, or your down to the big stars for the whole base set, let me know those too!

Friday, September 13, 2019

Sixth Stop On The Six State Tour

The next leg of the trip was more a return home than another venture into unknown lands.  We got stuck in Nashville after our shop visit, so the trip back to Michigan was made overnight with only brief stops.  Sunday was basically lost to travel and fatigue.  We got up Monday with no planned journey farther than Stuart's family home - a few blocks from his apartment.

I've probably visited him six or eight times since 2009, the year before the National was in Baltimore - an hour from my house.  We had been talking on the phone about cards for months, but hadn't met in person.  We figured it was a good idea to make sure neither of us was a psycho before committing to going to the convention the next year.

He likes to tell the story that we first contacted each other over a box of 2002 Upper Deck 40-Man for sale on eBay in 2007.  Stuart won the box, so I emailed him to see if we could trade singles from the set.  He responded, but I never got the message - must have gone to my spam box.  Then about a year later, he posted on Sports Card Forum about building the set.  I answered and sent my remaining wants.  He still had a stack pulled from the first communication that he realized matched my list, and figured out I was the same guy that bid on the eBay box so long ago.  This started a free-form exchange of cards between us that continues to this day.   We just send anything from PWE's to two-row shoeboxes (and bigger if we deliver them on visits.) all the time without really matching up each transaction. We've been back and forth to Michigan or Maryland pretty much each year thereafter.

So as we were climbing through some of his collection (literally), and finding binders and boxes to put away some of the singles he had picked up on our trip, he pulled out some things for me to take home.

A set of 1991-92 Topps hockey, including the Team Scoring Leaders inserts.  Highlights include Jagr second year card and Guy LaFleur tribute cards.

Some 2002 Traded and 2007 Heritage singles to potentially knock off some numbers on my current wants.  Didn't end up needing many of these, so they're available...

And some nice vintage stars!  Really shocked me with these!  Sorry, these are not up for trade.  The 66's will go in my star binder and the 68's to my set build. 

Thanks to Stuart, who is always glad to thin out the hoard a little.  Look him up on Sports Card Forum as BseballCommish75.

Next time...on to the Warehouse!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

The Stars Aligned In Seattle

Saw a neat little article on about the Mariners and their won-loss record.

From 1995 to 2019 as of today - September 11, the Mariners record is....

1,995 and 2,019.

 Thought that was kinda cosmic....

Monday, September 09, 2019

500 Total, 400 Official

My last post was my 500th to the blog in general.

But since there were 96 posts before I proclaimed this an "official" card blog, this means that my post about the hoard that I bought is actually my 400th "official" post.

I was also able to calculate that the post about the first two visits to "Kevin & Dad's" shop in Middleburg was my 300th post.

Not that any of this makes an impact in anybody's life at this point.  My blogging has deteriorated into a haphazard schedule and I've relied on loot posts for about two weeks.  I'm publishing the one item I write at the time instead of putting in a little more effort and getting a few posts ahead.

I've already got plenty of stuff to send out and I haven't come close to getting all my stuff put away or counted yet, so no great celebration for the milestone, just continuing business as usual.

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Mountains Of Cards In Music City

After the bat factory tour, we immediately headed even further south to Nashville, Tennessee.  Stuart knew about a shop there from a previous trip.

It's another one of those shops that you can find treasures, but you have to dig.  It's located in a small shopping center just west of Route 41A and Old Hickory Blvd.

We affectionately call it "Clio South". 

There are a lot of oddball items, gaming cards, and toys.  We were there just for the cards.

Spent a few hours.  This is what I came away with.

The Cris Carter is on top of a significant stack of '95 Topps football singles.  Also found some of the Hit List inserts.  The rest are set build hits - '08 Score, '95 Ultra Senstations (watch for them in a future post), '95 SP, 1983 Fleer Team Action, '06 Rookie Debut, and '02 UD XL.

Some random Redskins that didn't look familiar.  Pacific, a Rookie Debut short print, Mayo mini, and two more XL's.

On the baseball side, some of those famous 1991 Topps variations, including one you don't see often.  A few 2002 Traded and '08 A&G set hits, plus a couple oddball player collection singles.

That rare variation was the white border Chris Hoiles.  It will reside with my copy of the Whiten card with the hand outside the border.

When we were done digging, the owner simply asked us how many we had.  We paid 10¢ each for everything.

Thursday, September 05, 2019

Went A Little Batty After The National

Trying to crank this one out before halftime of the Packers/Bears game is over.

Let's break up the loot posts with the one stop on the trip that wasn't about cardboard.  After leaving Chicago, we journeyed south to Louisville, Kentucky and stayed right downtown.  The next morning, we got up and went a few blocks to the Louisville Slugger bat factory and museum.

Louisville Slugger is not actually the name of the company that makes the bats, it's just the product line.  Hillerich & Bradsby was founded in 1884 and is still family owned and operated.

In the lobby outside the museum, there is a large wall display of all the nameplates of all the players that have used or are using LS bats throughout the history of the game.

There is a nice multi-area display in the museum that shows the different kinds of bats, a lot of the great players that used them, and other features of the manufacturing process and history of the product.

The factory tour is quite interesting and walks you through each step of the process.  Photographs aren't allowed on the tour, so these pics are some I found online. 

You walk right through the place while they're working, so you have to stay in certain areas for safety.

It's neat to see each step in the manufacturing, including the diverse finishes they use.  Some bats are flame treated, some are dipped in varnishes or coatings, some get decals or paint.

And you get a small souvenir bat at the end of the tour. 

Well worth the visit if you're ever in the area.

Now, back to football.  Next time, another quick stop in Music City.