Sorry for the prolonged absence. The move to NJ and less disposable income has resulted in a longer than expected delay from posting recently. I've unpacked some of my collection but still have a good amount of unpacking to do.
Enough with the excuses and onto my first box break and product review since my move to NJ. Last week I purchased a box of 2013 Panini Triple Play off eBay with some eBay bucks that were about to expire. I really enjoyed last year's set and was hoping to see some improvements in 2013, but I have to admit that I was rather disappointed with some aspects of this years' release. Here are a few bulletins on what I enjoyed and didn't enjoy about the box break:
- Product Images: The set features cartoon-ish drawings of players and it worked really well last year as it provided a unique take on the player's picture on a sports card. This year they mixed up the drawings a bit and some of them are so far off base that it really took away from the player's picture. There seem to be 3 different types of drawings, the Dustin Pedroia type (very good), the Anthony Rizzo type (poor, low grade) and the Starlin Castro type (awful, caricature like). Just my personal opinion, but I think Panini could have selected some better quality pictures for some of the cards this year.
- Collation: Last year's collation was pretty weak as a box break didn't even yield a full base set. To make matters worse, the sticker collation last year was abysmal with collectors getting 3-5 of the same sticker in a box. This year's set collation improved dramatically as I was able to put together a full base set in the one box that I purchased. The unfortunate news is that the sticker collation is still an issue that Panini needs to fix. Three R.A. Dickey stickers and ten overall sticker doubles in one box should not happen.
Overall, for the price it is a very enjoyable break and a fun set to put together. I love the tattoos and eye blacks for kids (and some adults!), and it's definitely still a significant upgrade over the initial Triple Play set that came out over a decade ago.
What are your thoughts on the Panini Triple Play product? Is it better than Topps Opening Day? Which of the two would you rather purchase: Panini Triple Play or Topps Opening Day?
Well, the move is complete and the unpacking process has begun! Unfortunately, I haven't been able to begin unpacking my card collection yet, but that is on the list of "things to do" this weekend. Once I get my card collection unpacked and get settled in, I plan on making some purchases and sharing the results with everyone. Also, I plan to get back to actively trading and sending out TTM requests.
Wish me luck this weekend as I begin to unpack and post your thoughts on what baseball product I should purchase first!
Until next time.
I don't think it was too bad for my first video. I failed to recognize TWO Venezuelan backs and one white chrome from the box. Hopefully they get better from here on out. If you are interested in any of the cards pulled, please email me or leave me a comment on this blog post.
Thanks and keep collecting!
With all of the through the mail autograph requests that I sent out for Spring Training, it's hard to believe that it's been 21 days since my last success. Needless to say, I was thrilled to see another successful return today, especially since I'm moving in a few weeks and have concerns about future TTM returns not being delivered to my new address.
Justin Masterson, former Boston Red Sox pitcher, signed both a 2012 Topps Allen & Ginter card and a 2012 Topps Heritage card for me through the mail. I've read that he's a great signer and was really excited to see the biblical scripture on the card as well. I had the chance to meet Justin at an autograph signing at the Shriner's show that was put on by the Greater Boston Sports Collectors Club (GBSCC) and got his autograph on a cool 8x10 picture. He is a very nice guy and was great with all of the fans that got his autograph that day. It's nice to see that he signs autographs through the mail as well, and I'll have to try him again as soon as I can dig up a few of his Ginter cards from when he was a Boston Red Sox.
I'm a big fan of Justin Masterson and I hope he has a great season in 2013! Until next time, keep collecting and reach out to me if you'd like to make any trades.
THIS is what eBay should be! A true auction site where people list their items at $0.99 and they sell for what the market truly dictates it's value is.
As a collector of BGS/BVG cards, especially 9.5's, of my favorite players, I saw this item post on eBay with a starting price of $2.99 (not $0.99, but not bad for a starting price). The S&H cost was $0.99 and it was a true BGS 9.5 of Bobby Doerr, one of my favorite Boston Red Sox players. How could I not pass up this item? I put in a low starting bid which would at MOST totaled out to $5.00 if it reached my max bid. What did it end up selling for? $3.98 TOTAL, including the S&H cost.
This is the eBay that I miss the most. No high starting bids, no BIN prices, no fixed price items. Just good ol' fashioned auctions with low starting prices that sell for what the item is truly valued at by the market. I have been cutting back on my purchasing due to the upcoming move, but I couldn't pass up this item as it's rare to find BGS 9.5 Bobby Doerr cards posted on eBay (or anywhere else for that matter!).
Until next time, keep collecting and trading!
It is with mixed emotions that I finally announce that my family and I will be moving to Southern New Jersey in mid-April. While this is the best move for my family and I from a personal and a professional standpoint, it's bittersweet to be moving away from an area that we've called home for the past five years.
In addition to helping to re-establish my love for the sports card collecting hobby, the area is home to some of my favorite sports teams: Boston Red Sox, Boston Bruins, Boston Celtics. I've enjoyed being able to witness World Championships for each of my favorite Boston teams while living in Massachusetts, which I think is a pretty cool achievement.
The Boston area is a hot bed for sports card collectors, both in terms of the number and quality of shows, but also the Greater Boston Sports Collectors Club. The GBSCC meetings have been great and the annual convention has been a must-visit every year since I moved up here.
I'm looking forward to our move and finding new card shops / shows to attend. I hope to meet a ton of new collectors and attend a few Phillies and Flyers games. I'll likely have a tough time posting updates until after the move is completed, so I hope you all stay with me and continue to visit. Be on the lookout for a lot of great new features, posts and TTM successes upon my return.
For my friends at the GBSCC, say hi to Sibby Sisti for me wherever he is.
A business trip for work brought me to Northern Virginia and close to the home of the infamous hobby collector Chris Harris a/k/a @StaleGum. I sent Chris a few messages through Twitter and arranged to have dinner while I was in the area.
Chris is a very passionate collector who shares his thoughts and views on Twitter, and this has earned him his fair share of fans and detractors on Twitter. His debates with Chris Olds from Beckett are legendary, as they both have very passionate views about the hobby that we all love. Despite exchanging numerous messages over the past two years, we had never had the opportunity to meet in person so I was excited to finally meet one of my card collecting friends from Twitter.
Chris arrived with a box of cards full of stuff from my Want List, and the box also contained my first official "Bipping" (for those unfamiliar, see the origin here: Thorzul's January 2010 Blog Post
. I opened the box and immediately saw a handful of 1986 Fleer Update Bip Roberts XRCs. Oh Chris, why did I not see this coming? The even bigger surprise, was that I had also been Moore'd! He was "kind" enough to include 55 copies of 1989 Topps Brad Moore cards. Too funny!
It was a great night, we talked cards, the hobby, sports, sports radio and a variety of other topics. Chris is a great guy and I'm glad that we finally had a chance to meet. I recommend you give him a follow on Twitter (@StaleGum) and check out his website (StaleGum.com
). You may not agree with everything he says, but you'd be hard pressed to find someone more passionate about the hobby and their collection.
Until next time...
I was psyched to get two cool TTM Autograph returns last week. I had quite a hectic week, so I apologize for not posting these (or other posts) sooner.
The first return (top of the picture) was from Andrew Bailey. From what I've read, TTM requests to Red Sox players have been historically difficult to achieve as there is a rumor that the Red Sox prevent their players from signing during the season. This success was sweet not only because of the rare Red Sox success, but also because he's in a Red Sox uniform on the card. It'll be interesting to see if there is a turn in success for the Red Sox this year, as they have added some players who have a historically been great TTM signers (Napoli, Dempster).
The second return was cool for me, because as a dog owner I always thought it was cool that Tony Hoard signed these cards for his dog too. Being that these cards were released quite a few years ago, I was taking a chance that he was still actively signing these. Needless to say, I was happy to see this one return and my dog was happy too!
I have at least two more posts coming this week, so stay tuned to the site for more blog updates this week. Thanks for reading!
This year, I had purchased and ripped two boxes of 2013 Topps Series 1 and pulled two of the Spring Fever redemption cards. I was heading away from home for a few days, but was lucky enough to have the trip scheduled for the day AFTER the Spring Fever packs were released to the public. I made a late trip to my local card shop (Batter's Up in Tewksbury, MA) on February 20th to redeem my cards for two Spring Fever packs. My card shop was fully stocked and prepared when I arrived, so it was a quick and easy redemption process.
The guys at Batter's Up are very friendly and I always have great conversations with them whenever I visit. While I was at the shop, they had a few extra packs from National Hockey Card Day so he gave me two packs of those as well. I saw that they had a blaster box of 2012 Topps Gypsy Queen, so I picked that up too since I was thinking of trying to complete the set.
My two packs of Spring Fever were good, but unfortunately I didn't receive an autograph. Some players of note were: Mike Trout, Cal Ripken Jr., Stan Musial and Matt Kemp. While I really like the cards, I am happy that I didn't go overboard and purchase a lot of the redemption cards. It seems like others have complained about the pack collation and receiving a lot of extras.
All the cards are for trade and I also have the cards from my National Hockey Card Day packs for trade.
Until next time, keep collecting!
Below is an article that was contributed by Carrie Van Brunt-Wiley, Editor of the HomeInsurance.com Blog:
Whether you plan to pass your collection down to your kids or make a profit later, here are a few basic tips for keeping your baseball card collection in top condition for as long as possible:
Store your cards in plastic sleeves Help protect your cards from liquid, dirt and other contaminants that could potentially damage or destroy your collection. Choose acid-free, PVC-free plastic sleeves or hard plastic sleeves to ensure the cards won’t be eaten away by toxic chemicals, too. If you have any concerns about the way you’re storing your collection, ask an experienced collector for expert advice.
Keep your cards in a sturdy binder Help prevent curling or curved cards by storing them in a flat, sturdy binder. If your cards are out on display, make sure they’re in a case that offers sturdy support and not in an area where they would be exposed to harmful heat.
Keep cards away from sunlight If your cards are on display, don’t set them up in direct sunlight. This is a quick way to lose color and even valuable signatures on your most prized cards. Plus, light could cause serious damage to the paper stock itself and cause it to deteriorate over time.
Keep especially high-value cards in a fire-proof box or safe deposit box Depending on how much your collection is worth, you may need to take a few extra precautions to help protect it against accidents and theft. Consider storing your most valuable cards in a fire-proof box or safe in case a fire or natural disaster strikes your home, or store your collection in a safe deposit box at your bank for even greater peace of mind.
Insure your collection Another way to help protect your baseball card collection is to make sure it is properly insured. Your homeowners or renters policy includes personal property and contents coverage, which protects items in your house or apartment or condo from fire and other specified events, including wind and theft. However, this coverage often has limits for collectibles and high-value items. Check with your insurance agent to see whether you have enough coverage.
If not, you have two options: You could schedule an endorsement on your homeowners or renters policy to increase the limit of your coverage, or you could purchase a personal articles floater from a specialized vendor. Many companies offer expertise in insuring baseball card collections and can help you make the smartest decisions possible about protecting your most prized possessions. This article was contributed by Carrie Van Brunt-Wiley, Editor of the HomeInsurance.com blog. Carrie has been writing insurance news and consumer information for HomeInsurance.com since 2008. She graduated from the University of North Carolina in Wilmington in 2005 with a B.A. in Professional Writing and Journalism.