Saturday, August 30, 2014

Sometimes The Pain Stings For Years

While playing a rehab game with the Seattle Mariners Single A team (Everett Aquasox) in Boise the once highly regarded prospect Jesus Montero went in to the stands with a bat in hand to confront a heckler. He was eventually restrained by the pitching coach but the damage was already done.
Things have not been going well for Montero since his trade to the Mariners. In 2013 he was suspended for 50 games in connection to the Biogenesis probe and then he showed up to spring training in February 40 pounds overweight. The Mariners sent him down to minors in May after only 17 At-bats with the team. He was supposed to return to the Mariners this week but after his actions in Boise the team has suspended him for the remainder of the season. He will not be playing at any level.
What made this whole situation worse is that the heckler is a Mariners scout. It began with the scout, Butch Baccala, yelling for Montero to hustle off the field in between innings (which seems like a fair suggestion from a scout to a player hoping to make it back to the big leagues) but eventually digressed to Baccala having an ice cream sandwich sent to Montero in the dugout making fun of his weight. This was what set off Montero who then grabbed a bat and headed in to the stands where he began to scream at the scout and throw things at him. The team is going to use this time to “re-evaluate” Jesus Montero to see what they can do to address his issues on and off the field. Which probably should be read as “We are considering if it is better to keep him or dump him”.
By the time spring training rolls around in 2015 he will be 2 seasons removed from his amazing 2012 season. He has been replaced at catcher by an even better young prospect in Mike Zunino so he would most likely move to DH full time. It does not help that he also has the A-Rod/Biogenesis stigmata working against his image.
He is still young (only 24 years old) but is it time to move Jesus Montero cards? His autographs can be found for under $5 and his base rookies under $1, it may be too late for anyone who jumped on the Yankees Montero prospect bandwagon and paid big for his rookie cards only 6 years ago. I am guessing that the people that dropped hundreds of dollars for his 2008 Bowman Chrome autographs are feeling some pain right about now.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Another Update

Yesterday’s surgery went well, hopefully this will be it and I can finally begin to heal properly. I am looking forward to getting back to the gym but I do have to allow time for healing before I hit the treadmill. Until then I have my cane to help me get about.

I had a stack of envelopes from the last few days, always fun to open, so I have some sorting to do and a stack of cards to organize and scan including cards from my second trade of the year with Gavin from Baseball Card Breakdown.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Encyclopedia Brown And The Case Of The Missing Signatures

If you are looking for a Kevin Durant autograph that isn’t an autograph as well as being an eBay 1/1 then I have found the auction for you. This 2007-08 Sweet Spot Signatures Durant autograph card, where the autograph has almost completely disappeared, can be had for only $3,535.35
If Kevin Durant isn’t your cup of tea than how about a 2007-08 Sweet Spot Signature Kobe Bryant autograph card where Kobe’s signature is also pulling a disappearing act? This eBay 1/1 can be yours for a discounted $2,424.24
The seller, from China, suggests that if you purchase these cards you should contact Upper Deck so you can request of an exchange for an equal value card. I am pretty sure Upper Deck would tell you to forget about it if you tried asking for a replacement of a 7 year old card.
Sadly the 2007-08 Sweet Spot Signature cards are notorious for disappearing ink. I couldn’t even imagine dropping hundreds, if not thousands, when these came out only have to a blank card within 5-7 years. It is odd too that the 2006-07 and the 2008-09 releases do not have the same problems, does anyone know what was different in the 2007-08 version?

Monday, August 25, 2014

Up Up And Away...


Yesterday the Action Comics #1 auction that I talked about last week ended at an unheard of $3,207,852 after 48 bids. This tops the previous high of $2.161 million for a slightly lower graded (CGC 9.0 but without white pages) Action Comics #1 that sold in 2011. This auction has brought about a number of sellers who are using the national attention to sell their copies of Action Comics #1, original and reprints, as well as a couple of unscrupulous people looking to profit on buyers caught up in the frenzy.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Congratulations Arizona Rattlers On Another ArenaBowl Championship

Tonight the Arizona Rattlers played the Cleveland Gladiators in ArenaBowl XXVII, Arizona’s fourth straight appearance in the title game.
The game was a complete dismantling of the Cleveland Gladiators by the Arizona Rattlers. Cleveland was the overall best team in the AFL this year with a 19-1 record heading in to tonight’s game, the Rattlers are 17-3. With Cleveland knocking on the door of the legendary 20th win (no Arena League team has ever won 20 games in a season) some analysts were picking the Gladiators to win, though apparently nobody told the Las Vegas bookies (who picked AZ by 5 ½ points) and more important, nobody told the Rattlers players.
With the 72-32 win the Arizona Rattlers have won the last three ArenaBowls, only the Detroit Drive (now defunct) were able to match three straight ArenaBowl wins in 1988 through 1990. This was the largest point differential in ArenaBowl history and an amazingly fun game to watch as a Rattlers fan.

Friday, August 22, 2014

The First Trade Of The Year

I set a goal in January to interact more with other bloggers and while I have posted more on other blogs and I have sent out a couple of cards I haven’t had a proper trade until this week (I made two trades this week). I was contacted by Brandon, a fellow Arizona collector, and after reading through my Trade Bait lists he offered up a nice collection of cards for some baseball and basketball cards I had listed.
There were a total of 7 cards going in each direction. First up from the collection the he sent to me is a trio of University of Arizona products. Steve Kerr is one of my player collections so I was happy to pick this 1991-92 Upper Deck International Steve Kerr #195. There are a couple of international sets, one has an Italian back and the other has a Spanish back, this is the Italian version.
There is the 1999-00 Collectors Edge Jason Terry Gameball #JT. Jason Terry was part of the 1997 University of Arizona National Championship team and was part of the 2011 Dallas Mavericks NBA Championship team. He was drafted by the Atlanta Hawks in the First Round of the 1999 NBA Draft, he has had a decent career and was recently traded to the Sacramento Kings.
The final Wildcat is Jerryd Bayless 2008-09 Press Pass Class of 2008 #CL-8. Bayless was drafted in 2008 in the First Round by the Pacers and traded to the Blazers on Draft night. He has bounced around the league, playing with 6 teams (not counting the Pacers). He recently signed with the Bucks heading in to the 2014 NBA season.
The other 4 cards are from the 2014 Topps UFC Knockout release. Three base cards: Mendes, Tate and Benavidez and a Cat Zingano relic #/188.

Zingano is the #1 ranked opponent in the Women’s division, she is on a 8-Win streak and is 11-1 counting her amateur record, her only loss was in 2007. Cat is scheduled to fight Amanda Nunes at UFC 178 next month.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Collection In An Instant

I came across this really interesting story the other day about a sports memorabilia collection that had been appraised on the television show Antique Roadshow while they were filming in New York on August 9th.
The collection had been passed down through 5 generations to the current owner. Her great-great-grandmother had run a boarding home in Boston, the same boarding house where the newly formed Boston Red Stockings were living in 1871 and 1872. Included were early baseball postcards, autographs, photographs and letters.
According the Leila Dunbar, the Antique Roadshow appraiser, the “Crown Jewel” of the collection was a letter sent to the boarding house owner (the great-great-grandmother) saying that the players were missing her cooking. The letter was signed by Hall of Famers Albert Spalding, Harry Wright and George Wright. In all it is estimated that the entire collection could be worth as much as $1 million if sold as a complete set.
The episode will not be shown until next Spring but I was able to find an image showing the collection from the show.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Art Gallery: 2009 Breygent Dexter Angle Batista

One of my favorite shows of the last decade was Dexter, I think the actors had such a wonderful connection and the story lines were so absorbing. I would actually record the entire season before watching it because I found myself getting anxious waiting for the next episode so I figured if I recorded it I could watch the entire season in a weekend at my leisure so I didn’t have to wait another week to find out what happens. Needless to say I am quite disappointed with how the series ended, well the last 10 minutes of the final episode.
When it comes to characters, David Zayas’ character Angel Batista is among my favorites. He was the stable character to the madness that was the Miami Metro Police Department. So when I saw this card show up I wanted it.
Dexter sketch cards rarely sell for less than $20 and when it is a main character, like Batista, you can expect to pay closer to $40-50 range. This card showed up with a BIN of $10 plus $2.32 shipping I didn’t even think twice and hit the BIN button. This was an insanely low price but the seller had a 100% feedback and I know sales like this do not show up often. This is the most I have ever spent on a sketch card but I am very happy and this is easily one of my favorite sketch cards.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Wants And Trade Bait Updated 8/19

It has only been 8 months since I set my blog goals but I finally got around to adding links for my Wants and Trade Bait. The tabs are located above, just below my banner. If you find anything of interest send me an email and let me know. You can also find my trade list on Zistle.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Lincoln Against Teenagers

I came across this interesting 1952 Topps Look N See Abraham Lincoln card which happen to have 5 holes in it, which I assume are from BBs or pellets. Would this be a case of art imitating life?

Poor Abe never stood a chance, five shots and at least three of them were kill-shots. I can see a group of teens in 1952 with their Daisy BB guns taking pot shots at Lincoln laughing the whole time.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Six Degrees Of Seperation

Occasionally you catch an interesting story and you find a distinct connection that you never knew was there, and never expected. I was recently reading a story about an amazing sports memorabilia find and along the side bar was a link to a story about the highest graded Action Comics #1 up for auction so I took a look. I have never been a comic book collector though I have read them and just about anyone who has spent time around comic books or comic book collectors know that Action Comics #1 is the first appearance of Superman.
A lower graded copy sold for $2 million, the only comic book to ever top that price, and this particular copy is a CGC 9.0, the highest graded AC#1 ever. While reading the story I saw that the owner, Darren Adams, owns a comic book shop named Pristine Comics. The name rang a bell but I couldn’t place it right away. I took a look at the auction and scrolled through the auction details and got to the bottom where Pristine Comic’s address is and it hits me like a ton of bricks.
Pristine Comics is located inside a store called West Coast Sports Cards in Federal Way, Washington. A place I called my LCS for nearly 15 years when I lived in the Seattle area. I knew Darren when he ran the first incarnation of West Coast Sports Cards on the corner of 320th and Pac Highway across the street from Sea-Tac Mall in Federal Way, he later moved up the hill to a larger location which is where he opened the Pristine Comics section inside of the sports card shop.
I hope the sale goes well for him, the auction is currently sitting at $1.75 million after 21 bids and over 7 days left on the auction. With this being such a high profile auction they are only allowing pre-approved bidders to keep the bids honest. I like that a portion of the sale is going to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, a foundation that is dedicated to curing spinal cord injuries, something that is personal to me.

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Day Of 250!

My back is healing well, the pain has subsided since my surgery Wednesday but I am still extremely stiff. My doctor told me it normally takes 2-3 days for the healing process to begin so I am right on schedule. I still have the second surgery on August 27th so I get to go through the process again in two weeks.
I have some mail that piled up over the past couple of days and I finally got to opening it. I always love getting cards in the mail, especially Griffey cards. Today’s mail included two Griffey cards which puts me at the 250 unique Griffey card plateau.
The card, 1992 Stadium Club #400, was actually in my possession at one time. It was one of my first Griffey cards that I pulled from a pack when I got back in to collecting but when my ex-wife threw away part of my collection before our divorce the card was lost to the trash gods. I picked this one up from eBay for .98 cents (shipped). I get frustrated having to repurchase ghost cards but sometimes I have no option, such is the case here. Now on to 500 unique Griffey cards!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Just Some Updates

I am setting up this post in advance because I am having back surgery tomorrow morning. The surgery is actually split up in to two surgeries, one for each side, with my second surgery coming in two weeks on August 27th. I have a laundry list of health issues dating back eleven years and a number of surgeries but now my spinal cord is beginning to break away (L2, L3 and L4) and the bone chips are pushing against my lower nerves causing damage and sever pain. Hopefully these two surgeries will be it and I will be done so my spine and spinal nerves can begin to heal. I should be home sleeping by the time this posts if my surgery schedule goes as planned.

On the card side I have completes my trade and sell list and I am finishing up with my wants lists. I have begun posting items on eBay and will shortly add my trade and want pages to the blog after I have begun to heal in a couple of days. In all I have nearly 200 items on my trade list so hopefully I will be able to offer something for plenty of readers.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Durant Eventually On The Move?

Kevin Durant has brought up the subject that when his contract with OKC is up in two years he will seriously consider returning to Washington D.C. where he was born. Personally I love the idea, not for the reason that most people do but because I dislike Clay Bennett with a passion. The man is a liar and a thief and losing Durant would put a hit on Bennett’s wallet and he deserves anything that will damage his ego.
For Wizards fans this would be a great addition to a young team and definitely strengthen the lineup in one quick swoop not to mention keep the team in the playoffs for the next decade.

Monday, August 11, 2014

RIP Robin Williams

My wife just called me to tell me the terrible news that Robin Willaims passed away today of what appears to be self inflected asphyxiation. I am pretty torn up inside because my generation grew up watching Robin Willaims from his main stream introduction on Happy Days and then his jumping off point Mork & Mindy through his recent television program The Crazy Ones. Just going down his IMDB list brings back so many memories, my favorite Disney film has always been Alladin and I don't know how many hundreds of times I have watched Good Morning Vietnam. Any one who grew up in the 1970, 1980s and 1990s will be quick to list off a whole slew of Robin Williams shows/movies that have made an impression on them one way or another.

He has been fighting drugs and alcohol through his life and apparently has been dealing with depression recently, his loss leaves a huge hole in the heart of the comedy world. Sadly the eBay Toads will be showing up soon to reap off of the worlds loss.


I have been hunting for a card that has alluded me for nearly 20 years, mainly because of price. When Skybox was getting ready to release the 1994 Simpsons Series II release in 1994 they issued 10 promo cards including two Willy “The Dupe” Dipkin baseball cards. The first one B1 contains the Bongo logo and a write up about the upcoming release and the second one P4 actually has stats on the back like a real baseball card.
When the set was released I picked up a box and was able to complete the set, even pulling a rare Arty Art card. But I was unable to get my hands on one of the promo cards. It wasn’t until I joined eBay in 2000 that I was able to even catch a glimpse of one but the prices were always to high. Even 20 years later the prices are still higher than I would normally consider paying for a promo card. The B1 Dipkin, the more common version, still sells in the $15-30 range with the rarer P4 version often topping $50, though there is a P4 currently offered for $40.
Last week I saw a B1 version posted for $4.99 and I forgot to bid, fortunately it ended with no bids and was relisted. This time I posted the minimum bid and waited as the time ticked down. In the end I won with the $4.99 bid plus $1 shipping and this beauty is mine.
The card is based off of Billy Ripken’s 1989 Fleer “F**K Face” card, replacing the “F**K” with “FISH”. I am pretty excited to finally own one, I am still on the hunt for a P4 version with his stats on the back but I am unwilling to spend the insane prices that are being asked currently.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Vintage Card Of The Month: 1933 Goudey Indian Gum Joe Logston

This month’s VCoM comes from the 1933 Goudey Indian Gum series, these cards were included in penny packs of Goudey Gum in 1933. The 96-card checklist was made up of military commanders, Native Americans, pioneers and Western scenes. Some of the names on the checklist; Pocahontas, Billy the Kid and Buffalo Bill. This is card #66 from the set.
Joe Logston was your typical early American pioneer, his stories always revolve around killing people and things with his bare hands and surviving through situations that a normal human being would perish. One of the most repeated tales about Logston is about the time he killed two big Indians after they ambushed him. They had him dead to rights but he prevailed and not only killed both Indians, but he knocked out one guy with a single punch and then used the Indians own knife to kill him.
This card is surprisingly in amazing condition, the edges are straight, the corners are slightly rounded but still hold their shape, the colors are beautiful, the cardboard is still solid and the back is legible and besides some discoloration from wear on the edges is beautiful. The glaring problem is the ink stains on the front, some of the ink has begun to break down but is still visible. On the humorous side, with the ink splotches over his eyes it looks like Logston is wearing sunglasses.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

When You Need A Laugh

I came across this card and it made me laugh. Someone at Rittenhouse has a sense of humor. Without the complete comic panel the context of this card’s imagery is really off-color humor. Seems like Bucky has given Captain America quite the "come from behind" surprise.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Should We Believe Preseason Hype?

It is time to begin stocking up on Geno Smith rookie cards.
Following a recent poll of NFL coaches and execs regarding next season’s potential starting NFL QBs Geno Smith was rated as the #32 ranked quarterback. His response, "If I'm No. 32, by this time next year or the year after, I expect to be in the top 5."
The poll ranked QBs in four tiers with Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Andrew Luck rounding out Tier 1 as the Top 5 QBs. So apparently Smith, who threw for 3,046 yards, 12 TDs and 21 INTs for an NFL worst 66.5 QB rating, plans on over taking Andrew Luck (the #5 Ranked QB), who threw for 3,822 yards, 23 TDs, 9 INTs and a 87.0 QB rating.
Geno Smith had some good outings last year, in the Jets 8 wins Smith threw 10 TDs compared to 5 INTs and an 89.6 QB rating. On the flip side in the Jets 8 losses he threw 2 TDs compared to 16 INTs and a 39.6 QB rating and includes two games with 0 TDs and 3 INTs and two games with a QB rating of 10.1 or less. At this point he isn't even the best QB on the Jets roster.
I don’t doubt he has the ability to get better but then so did Mark Sanchez, who got better over his first three seasons before collapsing on 2012. I think Smith’s biggest obstacle to overcome will be the Jets themselves.
I think we can hold off on rushing to snatch up Smith’s cards, I seriously doubt he will be a Top 5 QB within the next two years unless 27 other QBs suddenly succumb to a 17-week flu.
At least he isn’t like some of the other Jets players like CB Dee Miliner claiming to be the #1 player at his position, even though he only played in 13 games and was benched multiple times, or like LB Calvin Pace who claims the Jets have the league’s best defense, even though they were ranked #20 last year, #19 in 2012 and #20 in 2011.
To add insult to injury Michael Vick yesterday said that he feels that Geno Smith is 10% better than last year. When you consider that Smith was a hyped up rookie you would expect a significantly better than 10% increase in skill. He should be running the First Team with precision now, not still learning how to read defenses and run through progressions.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Green Lantern + Big Bang Theory Sheldon Wardrobe Card = Awesome

I am a huge Green Lantern fan and I enjoy Big Bang Theory so I think that Cryptozoic did a wonderful job with the placement of the shirt piece so that Hal Jordan’s masked face is perfectly centered in the window. Sheldon's (Played by Jim Parsons) shirt relic cards tend to run more than the other actor's relic cards with his Green Lantern shirt relic cards usually topping $50 or more, but paying $1,200 is quite a bit more than I would ever consider paying for something like this but I can understand the premium that a card like this would demand.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Instant Collection, Just Add Wasted Money

For the up and coming collector I found the deal for you, 1.2 million collectibles for the low low price of $20,000 plus shipping (not listed). For the price of a car you get an amazing collection that breaks down to only 17 cents per item. These items are part of a closing store’s inventory, if this is the type of product the store attempted to sell I can understand why it is now closed.
The collection is made up of junk wax complete sets, boxes, hand collated collections, singles, Starting Lineups and other collectible items. Toss in some “hits” like Brian Griese jersey relics and Travis Wilson autographs, vintage cards form the 1970s and 80s (vintage?), rookies from amazing players like Brady Quinn and on and on.
About the only thing of true value is a Barry Bonds autographed baseball and a couple of pucks signed by Mike Richter and Adam Graves. The collection might be fun to look through and some items could be useful to player collectors but in all honesty there is very little value, despite the fact that the seller lists Beckett values up to $40 for various cards. The seller, who has 100% positive on 151 feedback, has only 2 feedback in the past two years and has not sold anything since 2011.

This is the type of listing that belongs on Craigslist.

Friday, August 1, 2014

The Best Of All

Today I close my week of Griffey with my favorite Griffey pulls/pick ups of all time. I began collecting Ken Griffey Jr. cards in 1993 shortly after I returned to collecting. Selecting Griffey was an obvious choice for me, he was my favorite player on my favorite team.
My collection was actually pretty decent but sadly when I was divorced in 1997 my ex-wife was quite vindictive and before she left she trashed a portion of my collection while I was at work, which is why I have so many Griffey ghosts. In the past 17 years I have been slow building up my Griffey collection, which is why I only had 92 unique cards earlier this year, partially due to my frustration of not wanting to re-purchase cards that I once owned.

 My Top 10 All-Time Griffey cards in chronological order…

My first pick up was the 1989 Upper Deck #1 Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card:

That was followed up with 1990 Leaf #245:
One of my favorite products in 1993 was Studio and this 1993 Studio #96 was my first Griffey pulled from a pack:
In 1996 holograms and die-cuts were becoming the rage and Upper Deck was leading the charge by putting them together with the SPx release. I still remember pulling this 1996 SPx #55 during a visit to my LCS:
Glow in the dark cards are awesome, there just aren’t enough of them around. This 1997 Score The Franchise #1 glow in the dark parallel was an eBay pick up a couple of years ago. I have since added the 1993 Upper Deck Glow Stars #111 to my collection too:


I have never pulled a Griffey autograph or relic, which sucks, but I have added a number of them to my collection. I picked this 2006 Sweet Signature #138 autograph about 6 years ago:
I love oddball cards, the more odd the better. One of my favorites is this 1999 Upper Deck Happy Holiday #HH-1 Santa Hat relic, a 5x7 card. These were Upper Deck exclusives given out to employees and vendors. Over the years UD has also produced Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant, Wayne Gretzky and Tiger Woods holiday related cards:

By far my favorite Griffey relic card is my 2000 Upper Deck Ovation Japanese #S-KG Shoe relic. I am enamored with the Japanese culture and when my LCS got a couple of packs of the Japanese 2000 UD Ovation in 2001 I bought them all in hopes of pulling anything Griffey related and had no luck. I hunted this card down shortly afterwards for roughly $25, an insane bargain. By far this is the most yellow relic I have ever seen (And I love it):

This 2000 Stadium Club Play At The Plate #PP4 Dirt relic card is my third favorite Griffey relic card (after the next card on the list). The dirt included is from a batter’s box but it doesn’t say any specific stadium.
The final card on my list is the 2003 Upper Deck Vintage #CA-KG Capping The Action baseball cap relic. I really dig the design with the old-school television set displaying the baseball cap relic.
Like yesterday I am slipping an 11th card in to my Top 10 list. This card is more a sentimental selection due to the timing of its addition to my collection.
In 1999 I took my girlfriend to Las Vegas on a much needed vacation. We went for a walk and ended up at the legendary Smokey’s Card Shop. I picked up a pack of 1999 Topps Gold Label and opened it in the shop. While talking to the owner’s wife she asked who I collected and before I left she pulled out this card from behind the counter and handed it to me because in her words “We were a cute couple”. Two days later we were back home in Seattle and I took my wife to the place where we had gone on our first date and proposed. We were married later that year and 15 years later she is still my rock as well as having a lucky hand when she is selecting packs.