Saturday, 20 May 2017

Custom Card: 1988 Topps Stephen Cardullo

A small tribute to the recently released Stephen Cardullo in the form of 1988 Topps. Cardullo was signed by the Rockies before the 2016 season after 4 years of independent league baseball, winning the Canadian-American Association MVP in 2015. He eventually earned a call-up and hit two home runs, one in each game of a double-header, on his birthday (disappointingly no Topps Now cards though). Earned a spot in the 2017 roster mostly due to Ian Desmond being hurt. Not a household name, but a great story, Purple Row recently has a great article on him that is worth the read.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

To Peel or not to Peel (aka Golden Mailday)

I fought the urge to call this post "From now on, we'll all be taking golden showers" but couldn't resist mentioning it. A couple recent acquisitions in my current parallel madness phase I am going though. Really nice looking cards, but I am not thrilled with now they scan, this was the best one with the scanner lid open, any tips on scanning refractors?

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Recent COMC Order

COMC mailday also means my other online purchases come though the mailbox service, the above Rocket Ismail autograph was liberated and returned to it's rightful home in Canada. This was when the CFL was a big deal with Wayne Gretzky, Bruce McNall and John Candy buying the Argos and signing The Rocket to a big deal. This is from the 1991 All-World set that might beat any junk wax era in terms of production. Oddly the 100 card base set has 10 Rocket Ismal cards, not including the above auto and a Promo card.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Custom Card: 1996 Upper Deck SP - Ryan Hanigan w/ Parallels

I love doing customs, especially when I am happy with the result, and I am very happy with this one. Instead of modifying an old scan, I built this from scratch, obviously using 1996 SP baseball, one of my favorite designs of all time, with a few tweeks. Foil is nearly impossible to duplicate digitally, so that is gone giving it more of a 2007 SP Rookie Edition feel. Also gone is the gold foil border, replaced with a black border, trimmed with gold. Another foil element was the SP logo, which I redid adding the gold faux-foil border as well. The last thing that bothered me was the team name. I replaced the all caps team name with something more normal, and added the full position instead of the abbreviation.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Panini Fake Patches (aka Maybe Topps isn't so bad?)

Wow, look at that card, 4x Hall of Fame Quarterbacks, 1/1 laundry patches, that is the kind of card people pay big money for. But wait? Game-used Mitchell and Ness jerseys? Mitchell and Ness doesn't make NFL game jerseys. This is a $600 per box product with Jerseys they went down to the sporting goods store and used. Panini released a statement on this basically saying that this card was made in error, along with three other laundry tags. But trust us, everything else in the product is legit, really it is, trust us, buy more boxes.

Monday, 1 May 2017

30 Year old Socks

My Pelle Lindbergh collection is coming along nicely, with the latest addition being my second relic card feature hockey socks. It is labeled as jersey, but as a good hockey playing Canadian, I am pretty sure those are socks. In fact I was playing hockey when I won the auction for this card, set the bid in the dressing room and it ending while I was on the ice.

This is from 2014-15 Masterpieces, a set I really like and have a couple really nice cards from. Upper Deck has only done this set in 2009 and 2015, hopefully we see a release a little sooner than a six year gap. 

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

SeƱor McLinton

A one card mailday, but a pretty cool one. A 1977 Topps Mexican Harold McLinton, from a team set that I have been working on, off and on, for a long time. It's a little off-center, but in good shape and while not one of the "Dirty Dozen", it is still one of the harder cards in the set to come by. I hope to get this one to PSA, my dream is to PSA the whole team set, and hopefully there will be an update on that soon.

McLinton himself played for the Redskins from 1969-1978, and was named one the teams 70 Greatest Players in 2002. He died tragically in 1980. 

Saturday, 22 April 2017

2017 Gypsy Queen - The Good, The Meh, and the Ugly

It has been a few weeks since 2017 Gypsy Queen dropped and having time to get used to this years offering of the only set I build every year, I came with up some thoughts on what was a very different product from past years.

The Good:
- The autographs are always gorgeous and this year they really shine with a slightly different, and in my view better design than the base cards. As with the base set, the parallels are pretty meh, but overall I am a huge fan of the autos and the checklist has a nice mix of current and retired players.
- The base card design has grown on me, it's not my favorite GQ design, but it is fine. I really dislike the top with the team name, if it was more like the auto design I would be a bigger fan. I love the card backs, the number in middle was a complaint of some, but after sorting two boxes worth of base I had no issues with it.
- The high end cards look great, booklets, auto patches and Leather and Laces all look good, but way to high end for me, for a retro style set Gypsy Queen does high end very well.

The Meh:
- The inserts were fine, but a little boring, I liked Fortune Tellers more than I thought I would. In the past we had photo-centric sets like Play at the Plate, Glove Stories and Sticky Fingers. Nothing like that this year. I really miss Glove Stories, there were some great cards in those sets.
- The parallels were a big "meh" for me, if you read this blog (or care to go back to Top Parallels posts One & Two) I like parallels that give something different and usually flashy. Leaving a players name off, taking the black out, or making the photo Black & White doesn't add anything, in fact it literally takes things away.
- The short prints going from 6 per box to 2. Less cards to chase, but less chance of pulling one, again leading to me not wanting to buy more packs.

The Ugly:
- I think 2017 Gypsy Queen will be remembered more for what it didn't have than what it did.
1. Minis and all the mini parallels - This one really bugged me, for me in the past it has added value in pc cards and trade bait. I would pick up the odd pack hoping for a cool mini, no chance of that now. I feel very certain I won't rip another pack of Gypsy Queen this year.
2. Framed parallels - These have been around since the start in 2011, and they wouldn't have been such a huge loss other than the fact this was the only set that did them, and if they were replaced by something worthwhile, but they were not.
3. Base and mini framed relics - I don't collect relics so this didn't bother me personally, removing them takes some value out of a box, but with the price drop, it's a wash.
4. Printing Plates - Did these get scrapped as well? I have seen none, just more value removed by Topps.

Summary: Overall, I am very disappointed in this years offering. I just feel Topps took a lot of the fun out of this set, comparing my wantlist to other years, I really don't care that much about anything other than the base set. I will admit, my two boxes sucked and if I had pulled a big card I might feel a but different, but if I knew this years product was so boring, I would have just bought a base set off ebay and chased the short prints. Topps if you are reading this, please, bring back mini's at least, come up with some good parallels, the mini retail foils last year were great, how about full size foil parallels, how about some acetate, even take the price back up, just please, do something interesting with it in 2018.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Gypsy Queen Set Help

Set help going both ways between Sportscards From The Dollar Store and myself, staring one of the box loaders, I am still torn between "looks amazing" and "hard to store/display", but leaning toward looks amazing.

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Remember the Astrodome / TCDB Trade

A Trading Card DB trade that I didn't realize until later was with Remember the Astrodome, giving my first taste of 2017 Heritage. I will probably never be a huge heritage fan (unless they start the use in-game photo's, or until we get to 1971) but I always like the expanded checklist that give players like Saskatchewan born and Team Canada vet Dustin Molleken cards. I also get to check Cristhian Adames' weirdly spelled name off the One of Every Rockies checklist.