The Trading Post: Marie of A Cardboard Problem

Hey all.  So I guess I’ll start with the most recent trade to arrive and work my way back.  This package arrived sometime between Tuesday and Thursday this past week from Marie of A Cardboard Problem.

Some specific Cubs player collections..

A nice mix of specific Cubbies I collect.  The only one here I might have already is the ’10 Aramis Chrome.  The Attax look great!  Which reminds me… The random coupon generator at Target finally spit out something useful last time I was in there.  It gave me a $2 off an Attax starter set coupon.  I will have to be sure and use that sometime, if only for the novelty of having a coupon for sports cards (and the trade bait, oh the tradebait).

Btw, when is topps going to realize that the flagship set’s base cards look better without the foil and ditch it.  The price-per-card of Opening day and regular is about the same anyway.  Just lose the messy, hard to read foil touches on the name already.  Jeez.

New Hawks and Fukudomes make it worth getting up in the morning. 🙂

And Ryan Dempster is staring into your soul.  He says it’s dark and moist in your soul, like a humid midwestern night, and that it smells like burnt cheese and Hai Karate.  Is that normal?

I don’t even want to talk about the Cubs this year and Soriano being the only guy being an offensive threat and hitting home runs means I can’t blame it on him.  So I’m just going to move on to the big prize.  A prize so rich that it completes my unlikely trifecta of one of the hottest young stars in all of sports!  Behold!

Derr-... Soriano?!

Oh yeah, there were two of these Heritage Fonzies.  Neither one seems to be a variation or anything, so I’ll be sure to send one along to the BigD crew when I get around to trading with them (got a TON of stuff for you guys).

The Big Prize..

That’s more like it!  A jumbo swatch from one of the longstanding favorites of Donruss and now Panini’s stalwart Absolute Memorabilia brand: Tools of the Trade.  The card is #’ed /49 and has a nice-but-not-obnoxiously-overbearing-shine that the scan doesn’t pick up at all.  All in all, it’s an outstanding addition to my collection, and a great way to cap off what may be my first (if not, then still only second completed trifecta.

I do have one gripe, and it’s for Panini.  It would be nice if they said what the swatch was supposed to be.  I just figured it was jersey when I watched it being pulled over on ustream, but the lil white dots you see on the swatch are kinda… shimmery, I guess, and the fabric is softer than any that of any other jersey cards I had on hand.  It also feels slightly thicker/puffier than plain jersey, but not enough to think it’s a shoe or prime/patch.  I really have no clue what it’s supposed to be.  Too hazard an insane guess, I’d say it’s some part of a tuxedo.  It is kinda satiny-feeling, now that I think about it.  None of the obvious choices seem right, so why not?

So yeah, until I find out otherwise, this is Derrick Rose-worn tuxedo.  That classes up my trifecta a bit.  Haha, yeah! 😛  Thanks, Marie!  Will have your stuff out this week.  Bye.

More jumbo swatchy goodness next time...

No One’s Going to Read this Post

Heh…

My first second thing to do now that I’m back is to get some old trade posts up.  So, here goes.  This trade comes to me courtesy of No One’s Going to Read this Blog.  This isn’t quite the usual trade, oh no.  This one started as an art trade, a sketch card for a sketch card.  Then when I couldn’t decide on who I wanted, I suggested it be a twofer, one real person, one fictional character.  And so it was done.  I did an Adrian Peterson and a group shot of the Fantastic Four for Jeremy (you can check my deviantART link on the sidebar if you’d like to see them, as well as some of my other work), and I received the following two cards in return:

 

Starlin Castro
Raven from Teen Titans

Very nice work all-around.  I can’t quite find the words to adequately to explain what it is about the cards that makes me like them so much, but who really wants to read a critique anyway?  Suffice to say I think they are great, and welcome additions to my sketch card collection, as well as the individual collections I have for each.

 

The back of Jeremy's cool custom sketch cards.

On top of the sketch cards, we also ended up finding a few regular cards on our respective wantlists to trade.  Here are just a few of the cards I received (the ones I was able to get scanned before they got sorted away).

 

Aramis w/ fancy-pants border.

More '09 A&G minis...

The Cubs Power Trio on '07 Goudey

Finally, an Action Packed Billy Williams..

And that’s all for this one, sports fans!  A fun trades it was.  It’s good to be blogging again. 🙂

Until our next…

Trade With Marie

So I finally got around to sending card stuffs (most notably that Ticket to Stardom Pujols Ticket stub) to Marie in December, so she sent some cards back.  As it turns out, that is how trading works. 😛

Anyway, here are all the cards I didn’t have already:

Starting off strong with numbered Zambrano and Ichiro and an awesome Rogers Hornsby insert...

The Riot and a couple of sweet '08 Sweet Spot base cards. I think I like 'em even better than the '09s. David Ortiz... now that's a real athletes body right there. Cool to get him since it doesn't happen very often anymore.

The good baseball playing Hoffpaiur on old school SP-style. Much like refractors and holograms, one can never have too many die-cuts.

Here’s a Soriano and the back of the Hoff.  Not a big fan of the topps206 base cards.  Not close to A&G, everything is way better than Uncanny Valley Goudey, it’s on par with Goodwin Champions, a bit below Obak.  And topps Heritage & UD O-Pee-Chee are N/A cuz they aren’t artsy and OPC doesn’t rip off any specific sets (not that there wasn’t an intention to for the parallels).  I’m sick of retro sets in general, but that’s a matter for another post.

Finally, the hits:

Ryno with porn stache and Aramis Goodwin Champions jerseys. Awesome!

I actually got the same Aramis from my Secret Santa at almost the same time.  I thought it might be karmic retribution for contemplating selling the Pujols after offering it to Marie, but there are at least four reasons that doesn’t make sense, none that are worth going into here.  And although facial hair is a pain in the butt (for my lazy arse at least), cards depicting Ryne Sandberg with a ‘stache never, ever go out of style.  Love the ivy behind him too.  That is so cool.  About as perfect as a card of a Cub can get.

And that, was an awesome trade.

I’m gonna be so sad if Hawk goes into The Hall as an Expo, but if the Cubs don’t retire his number regardless, I’m totally jumping ship for a year-and-a-half like I did when they traded Maddux when I was little, I’m just sayin’.

I’m serious man, I’ll totally do it! >=/

Wicked Ortega Trade 2: (Insert Clever Sequel Title Here)

Now attached to the front of a binder...

Lest you think it’s only random packs I’ve gotten crazy awesome cards from packs lately, I present a selection of most of the cards I received in my second trade with Don Wicked Ortega.

Some Cards!

A guy that can hit close to .300 and steal 50+ at an 80% clip?  Why did we get rid of Juan Pierre again?  Aramis, D-Lee (recent official addition), and Big Z are specific player collections, and it’s always nice to get a Marmol.  I think that is only my 4th or so.  Chuck McElroy from any team are welcome cards are welcome.  Soto, where were you last year? We could’ve used you.  We had some bum catching last year that only hit .218!

HAWK, mini Shin-Soo Choo, and off-center Kosuke

Andre Dawson and O-Pee-Chee, two great tastes that go great together!  I need more Shin-Soo Choo, I think he’s gonna be a star one day soon.  That is my second Kosuke black parallel, and they might have both come from Mr. Ortega.  Indeed, he sent me all the Kosukes in this lot in the first trade, so umm… hey fellow Cubs bloggers, I think I should spread the love around.  I have a handful of Cubs dupes from The Don, from both trades, so if you be needin’ any early-’90s Upper Deck or the Fukudome cards, I got ya hookup.  I know I have a small number of extra Ryne Sandbergs from that era as well, so shoot me an email or leave a comment or something, and I’ll send all extras I have (there are a few newer ones too).

Ryno time!

Aside from the Hall of Famer, is future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux when he was young, and George Bell appears to be pointing Paul O’niell in the direction of some no-doubt fine tail.  Also, this trade has brought to my attention severely lacking I am in Mark Grace cards.  He lead the most awesome decade ever in hits!  I gotta get my grubby little mitts on more of him sometime soon, especially shiny ones like that Ultimate Victory.

More good stuff! I think we gots the wrong Jose Reyes though...

Actually, the Ticket to Stardom Fukudome wasn’t in the first trade, because the set wasn’t out yet!  Why do people hate on Artifacts/A Piece of History?  It’s now at or below $40 (not including shipping…) for a hobby box.  I encourage everyone to give it a shot at this way lower price point and see if they still don’t like it.  My box is on the way (or will be if they ever get and/or confirm the payment, was Dave & Adam’s closed the entire week?), and Field of Cards enjoyed his.  Right, what was I saying.  Ooh, look at the pretty Kevin Tapani card… @_@ *droolz* Taste the purple…

Shiny Fonsie!

It’s not as subtle as it’s UD3 ancestors, but it sure is effective.  The old cliche that I’ve been fortunate to rarely need to use holds true here, the scan doesn’t do this card a lick of justice.

Another try at the whole CF of the future thing, a card that made lmao, and... a Yankee?! Wat?

I think I need to start stocking up on Sam Fuld cards.  Well, I need ’em anyway since he’s a Cub, but here’s hoping he’s he real deal.  Anyone got any?  Eventually every Cubs, O’s, and Expos/Nats collector has to get themselves a Chipper rookie someday right?  But I still couldn’t help but have myself a hearty chuckle at getting a future Hall of Famer’s rookie because a guy from my team that didn’t do much happened to share his card.  Igawa?  I’ve dramatically pared down my Asian player wantlist from any and all to about a half dozen + the Chunichi Dragons (WBC I want all of, regardless of country), and he isn’t on it.  But I just wanted the card because it looks really cool.

Alright then, that’s all well & good, but only those that bleed Cubbie blue will think any of that is crazy awesome.  So let’s get CRAZY awesome… Behold!:

topps Dan Haren sketch card!

Isn’t is a beauty?  Gotta love that dreamy stare, lol.  And guess what!

It be a 1/1!

This card is awesome on so many levels.  I’m kind of a wannabe artist, as you know if you’ve been reading for awhile.  And precisely because of this, I collect sketch cards.  But they are very expensive, and thus hard to come by for someone poor like me (Fortunately the great CK Russell thought highly enough of my abilities to agree to an art trade for a personal sketch card from her).  So getting this (only my second at the time, got a third in my Fantastic Four Archives box), is mindblowingly awesome.

I’m so thankful to Alfredo for being willing to trade me this absolutely wicked awesome card.  I still don’t know what to say, because “thank you” doesn’t seem like enough.  Honestly, the whole time until I saw him post what I sent, pleased with the trade, I was fretting that the four or so hits I sent in return weren’t enough.  Granted, I do this with almost every trade I send out, but this was whole other level nervousness.  I said thank you didn’t seem like enough, but it seems that is all there’s left to say.  So from the bottom of my heart, thank you, Alfredo.  Thank you so much…

I am curious about something though.  Can anyone tell me who drew this card?  They got mad skillz. 🙂

Finally, one more thing before I go.  I have more thank yous for everyone who has come by my blog the last few days!  For the first time ever, I received over 100 hits three days straight (today remains to be seen).  It doesn’t seem too long ago that I could barely crack double digits when I posted something, let alone on days that I didn’t, so while I’m sure most of you have long since felt this elation, I’m now starting to feel like maybe I’m actually getting somewhere with this thing.  So thank you everyone, and may you all have the happiest of holidays, no matter what you celebrate, this time of year.

I feel like I won an Oscar, thanking everyone like this… You guys rock!

Wicked Ortega: The First Trade

Ya know what’s funny?  Due to the distraction of coloring sketch cards, that last post actually took at least five hours to do, lol. 😛

Anyway, here’s a selection of cards from my first trade with the Don hisself, Wicked Ortega.  And remember, this is less than half of what he sent.  He sent so much, there were even multiples of a few cards.

Sweet Lou

Start it off with the manager.

Aramis and KOSUKE~!

Why do Sweet Spot’s base cards have to come from hit-a-pack packs that cost $20??  The three years I have some from (2005, 2008, and 2009) are about the nicest looking sets from each of those years.  If set builders could get just the base cards in the standard 8 pack, 5 cards per pack, $20 blaster version with an outside chance at a hit (instead of those horrible ripoff $30 tins), they’d be all over it, or at least far more likely than with retail versions of more expensive sets like the always hugely uninspired SP.  Hell, you could even guarantee the jersey in the $20 blaster, because the Sweet Spot jerseys look like utter crap this year.

Wait, what was I talking about?  Oh yeah, the trade.  Umm, the infield power insert is hella tight, and the O-Pee-Chee subsets, inserts, and black border parallels have grown on me a lot.

Big Z!

I want to get all the versions of the Fukudome and Zambrano topps cards.  I think I have four of Z, the three above, and a Chrome refractor, and I think I have three Fukudomes, though I’d have to check.

Then we have Zambrano’s no-no.  Umm, no-hitter.  Is anyone still bitter about that?

OPC would’ve been so awesome if Upper Deck wasn’t so stingy with the amount of cards per pack.  This is a recurring problem I have with them.  It seems like they are as clueless with low end cards as topps is with the high end stuff (UD flaship very aside, though I’m very hesitant to even call it low end).  It really is a shame, because OPC mostly kicked ass otherwise.  It really nailed the fun, colorful ’70s retro feel without resorting to using a past design (yes topps, that jab was at you).  I just couldn’t bring myself to buy more than a couple packs when there were so few cards per pack and I knew there was no chance at anything special.  At 8 cards for the same price, I can guarantee I would’ve bought at least another half-dozen packs.

Goodwin Champions suffered from this too, maybe worse than any other, though SP and Icons aren’t good for making retail versions, and need a couple more cards per pack just to mitigate the suck, like topps did with Ticket to Stardom.  8 cards per pack is pretty much the cutoff point where crap retail versions of higher end than flagship stuff to starts to become tolerable.  It is also where I stop caring so much that stuff like OPC is the cute chick that has nothing else to offer.

Hmm… I seem to be mode-locked in rant mode.  More cards!

Yes!

I love the arty old arty checklist cards.  Was so glad they brought them back in ’09 Upper Deck Heroes football (even though I pulled a Packer).

All kinds of good stuff!

We got vintage!  We got minis!  We got more proof that blue makes any design they throw on card look better (the Derrek Lee Timeline)!  We got Shawon Dunston Rookies!  My Shawon-o-Meter is at .298 and rising.  How about you?

A Turk Wendell rookie, Dwight Smith cuz I can, a Randy Myers Silver Signature parallel, and... a scandalous pic of the mayor of Souvenir City poopin' in a bucket of baseballs.

Yeah, I went there.  Deal with it. 😛

Lots of groovy random stuff here.

You can never, ever go wrong with sending me Pinnacle cards. And is Ted Lilly playing up to that fat contract or what?

I wonder if these came from the same play...

Lee, Soto, some Sorianos, and Derrick May, my secret shame...

I thought Derrick May was gonna be a superstar when I was little.  I was wrong, and I guess… I’m just gonna have to put it behind me. *sigh* 😥

Yay Rynos!

Okay, I feel a little better now.

These are several thousand year old cave drawings...

But seriously though, Moyer’s been around since I was about two years old.  I dunno how I’m gonna handle it when he retires.  It’s like… he’s been there as long as I can remember.  What am I supposed to do if he’s not around, man?

The fun just doesn't stop!

I know Big Z is a great power hitting pitcher, and if quit pitching to focus entirely on hitting, he could probably go .265-25-80 or better on a yearly basis, but this isn’t Micah Owings we’re talking about here people.  Zambrano is actually a really good pitcher too, he even has a no-hitter.  You don’t have to show him hitting all the time.

Have we got time for one more?… Okay, here ya go:

Fergie!

Good stuff, good stuff.  Give it up for Wicked Ortega everybody!  I gotta sleep some more now.

I still want a Shawon-O-Meter hit counter…

2009 Allen & Ginter Blaster

I cannot believe I found these at K-Mart.  The blaster kinda sucked overall, but I can knock a few more off the wantlist.  Let’s breakitdown:

Pack 1 (easily the best of the bunch)

9 Ryan Theriot

280 Shin-Soo Choo

125 Randy Johnson

AGHS4 Carlos Zambrano Baseball Highlights Sketch- Keeper!

275 Vlad Guerrero Mini- Double Keeper!

NP66 Joba Chamberlain National Pride

Had I not had the first two, this pack would’ve been four outta six in keepers.  As it is, two is still solid.

Pack 2

210 Johan Santana

181 Aaron Rowand

41 Victor Martinez

326 Cameron Maybin SP

93 David DeJesus Mini

NP65 Carlos Delgado National Pride

Whole lotta trade bait.

Pack 3

184 Chris Young

11 Jacoby Ellsbury

60 Matt Holliday- The Cards could wreak havoc with the landscape of the National League picking up Holliday AND Mark DeRosa.  Two legit bats to protect Pujols when there were really none before.

93 David DeJesus

164 Erik Bedard Mini

NP64 Francisco Liriano National Pride

Pack 4

94 Paul Maholm

18 Clyde Parris

178 Adam LaRoche

321 Kelly Shoppach SP

279 Jon Lester Mini

NP67 Adrian Gonzalez National Pride

Crack the Code ad- These things make good decoys.  They add size to the pack being a 7th card, and weigh more and give the pack a level of rigidness close to that of a hit pack.

Pack 5

121 Ryan Church

232 Everth Cabrera Padres RC

250 Grady Sizemore

282 Eric Chavez

218 Bobby Parnell Mets RC Ginter Back Mini

NP68 Ichiro Suzuki National Pride- Woohoo, keeper!

Pack 6

113 Rafael Furcal

202 Conor Jackson

92 Joe Mauer

329 Carlos Gomez SP

66 Alex Rodriguez (horrendously miscut) Black-Bordered Mini

NP69 Ryan Rowland-Smith National Pride

Pack 7

187 Brett Myers

244 Carlos Beltran

17 Manny Ramirez

215 Jed Lowrie Ginter Code Parallel

61 Burke Kenny Mini!

NP70 Carlos Pena (damaged) National Pride

8th and final pack

227 Neslson Cruz

55 Alex Rios

96 Geronimo- Keeper!

317 Jeff Baker SP

237 Walton Glenn Eller Mini

NP71 Josh Hamilton National Pride

Well, there ya go.  Nothing to write home about.  About to fall asleep, so I’ll mess with adding stuff to for trade and want lists later today.

OH… MY… GOD!!!!!!!!!!

I had a post ready to go in preparation for the completion of my second trade with Shane from Shoebox Legends.  All I had to do was fill in what he sent and add the links and it’d be ready to go.  But now that I have the package he sent, just… whoa!!!!

First of all, here is the background of this trade: He pulled a beautiful Spectrum Carlos Zambrano jersey #’d to /15 over on A Pack A Day awhile back, but had no use for it himself, so he said make an offer if you want it.  So I did, and he accepted.  What it basically ended up being was two ’05 Heritage Jed Lowries (regular & mohagany), and an Allen & Ginter Jason Varitek jersey for the Big Z.

I also threw in most of the Red Sox that had built back up after our last trade, as well as most of the two packs of Goudey I had bought between the trade being accepted and actually sending it out.  Finally, I sent out the only two worthwhile packs remaining in Target’s bargain bin along too.

Anyway, this is just incredible.  I can’t even wait to try and get some scans to put up before I post this.  Here is what my dawg, my boy, my man Shane hooked me up with.

Packs- If I am accepted, I will post these on A Pack A Day.

1992 Stadium Club Hockey- Man I do loves me some Stadium Club, and I do enjoy the occasional Hockey pack.

1986 Major League Leaders Baseball

2005 Upper Deck All-Star Classics Baseball

Cubs Singles-

Top Case (Top To Bottom)-

1993 Fleer Ultra- This here is on of my all-time favorite sets.  It just oozes class.

Candy Maldonado, Greg Hibbard, Mike Harkey (a personal fave from my youth), Jose Guzman, Randy Myers, Dan Plesac (showing *hopefully* proper bunting technique on the back of the card), Rey Sanchez (ah, there’s a name from my younger dayz *le sigh*), Tommy Shields (your guess is quite possibly better than mine), Jose Viscaino (bittersweet memories of lost youth), Matt Walbeck Rookie, Willie Wilson

And the rest (still in order)

2008 SP Legendary Cuts Alfonso Soriano (I approve this design), 1986 Major League Leaders Ryne Sandberg (oh my yes), 1991 Upper Deck (The first cards I ever received) “MVP Lineup” Ryno, Hawk, and Taco Bell, 1992 Score Bob Scanlon, 2007 Topps Heritage Rich Hill

Second Case (Top to Bottom)-

2008 Topps Alfonso Soriano, 2008 Upper Deck Ted Lilly, 1987 Topps Rafael Palmiero (w/ sweet nonsensically rainbow-hued Future Stars insignia), 2001 Topps Stars Eric Young (not this guy), 2001 Leaf Rookies & Stars Fred McGriff (I liked him long before he came to the Cubs), 2001 Fleer Premium Kerry Wood, 2001 Upper Deck MVP Bill Mueller (this design is straight up swank), 1994 Topps (another of my all-time favorite set designs) Shawn Boskie and Dan Plesac, 1994 Score Steve Buechele (picture is indescribable, something for the ladies of dinged corners to dissect I think), Jose Viscaino (another fascinating pic), and Eddie Zambrano Rookie Prospect

Sandwiched Between the Cases

1977 Topps Larry Biitner and 2006 Bowman Heritage Derrek Lee mini

I’m pretty sure I have none of these cards, and I know for a fact the only two that I could even possibly have already are the Topps Soriano and UD Lilly.

The Crown Jewel

2008 Upper Deck Spectrum Carlos Zambrano Game-Used Jersey (w/ Pinstripe) SS-CZ #’d/15

And now for the holy s*** moment.  I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw this…

The Reason I Almost Fainted-

2005 Upper Deck Vladimir Guerrero UD Game Patch GP-VG

OH… MY… GOD.  This is just incredible.  Above and beyond anything I could have ever hoped for.  Was there a nice hit in one of those packs of Hockey?  I don’t know what I did to deserve this, but thank you thank you thank you 745,121 times THANK YOU!  Shane Diaz you are an awesome man.

PS: After a “buggy” start to today, things just keeps getting better & better.  I got down to the office this morning to pick up this package of improbable greatness.  And while I was writing this post (and the reason I still haven’t finished it until now going on 7pm), Jacky Muffin came back!!!!  Eleventy billion hearts. ❤

Until our next,

Me