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...

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Trading Day Pt. 2: The Search for Curly’s Gold

Here is the other package I received (last) Monday.  These are from Too Many Grandersons hisself.  Behold!

Suh-weet Walter Payton reprints, Gold Hester, base blue Manning parallel /500, Urlacher (foil and thus poorly scanned) insert from rookie year, and more Urlachers (have at that code)! How much better does that blue parallel look than the boring black borders that they've trotted out most of the last 10 or so years?? A set that looks that good I might actually consider collecting, as I once did the the '02 Gridiron Kings (even picked up about half the Legend SPs in a lot once upon a midnight's dreary).

More Bears! Greg Olsen, Bernard Barrien black parallel from one of the single greatest set designs in the history of cards, Cutler, some rookies, and my personal favorite, my first and Julius Peppers as a Bear.

Last of the Bears... The more I think about, the more I think Rex' dad was right about the Bears mismanagement of QBs, especially in the Super Bowl. Fortunately, in getting Martz, they seemed to have wised up to some degree. Not sure I like the total abandonment of the running game though. Somehow Bronko was the only card I already had amongst the Bears.

Moving on to baseball now…

Vladdy! I may have the Own the Game & one of ToppsTownies, but the rest are new to me, three I've never even seen before. The Diamond King is the gold parallel version #'ed to /2500.

Ichiro! Don't get a lot of him in trades. The '04 Own the Game in the middle just insane. And a rookie of the BEST catcher in baseball. Well, he's in that elite group with Mauer, McCann, and Victor Martinez (and maybe Posey in a year or two) at the very top anyway.

And a few of my favorite Cubs to finish it off. I really hope Big Z sticks around if it's between keeping him or Dempster. In fact, I think I'd just rather Dempster leave regardless. Something bothers me about him.

Thanks for the great cards!  I’ll get together something worthwhile to send in return… eventually. *sigh*

.::~Outtro~::.

Old School Group Break Loot & Stuff

I was a little late to the party so there weren’t many teams left to choose by the time I happened across the Old School Group Break, but there were a couple I thought might give me a chance at something of interest.  So, on a whim, I decided to enter and chose the Chicago White Sox and Minnesota Twins.

I did okay I guess.  Three so-so hits and one insert that’s apparently a really tough pull.  Read that the Upper Deck Rivals inserts only fell around 1:240 packs on someone’s blog.  But I was really hoping for some crazy early 2000s inserts and parallels, so I was a little sad to be completely shut out on those.  It turned out okay though when I gave up my Twins base cards for a few Cubbies.  I just figured I’d get some nice base cards & maybe & insert or two, but woah!  Take a look…

I think I'm gonna keep a couple of the Franks. Think I'm going to pare down my Griffey collection too, and then just keep a few of each guy that I like. Also keeping the throwbacks from this bunch.

I had completely forgotten David Wells played for the White Sox for awhile.  And look at the size of Frank’s arms in that Studio card.  Great googly moogly…

Here's some backs and a couple of the Cubs I received in lieu of Twins base. The Gibson and Youk came from packs of topps and I don't know why I scanned them with these. Sorry. >.>

And what fine backs they are.  I don’t think I scanned but maybe half of the White Sox base cards I received, so there’s plenty more where these came from.

Here's the hits and inserts and extras and extra hits!

Amazing cards all around, but those extras just blew me away.  Though a bit unnerved by him turning white all of a sudden, I never could bring myself to dislike Sammy, so I greatly appreciate the three in the top row.  I for one loved what he did at the congressional hearings, because quite frankly I think the whole steroid thing was/is a bunch of BS.  And though his time with the Cubs ended poorly, the good times still override it for me.

The Kerry Wood/Rick Ankiel dual bat card is really nice looking, though I’m not sure I can keep it.  Why would you make a dual card of hated rivals in the first place, let alone a hit?  I’m not so sure a Cardinals fan would care to have it either.  Did Kerry make any fans with Cleveland yet?  W/e, the card itself is really nice looking and I have no dual hit cards to speak of.

The Sam Fuld auto is epic.  I have high hopes for the guy.  I guess Nady is useful if he still has power, but I hope there’s room for Fuld to get a lot more playing time this year.

Oddly enough, I have no issues with the Morneau/Thome card.  In fact I quite like it.  I guess the rivalry thing just matters when it comes to your own team.  Huh…  Hard to believe it’s an Upper Deck card from the end of the decade, when they seemed to not be able to get much of anything right (I been there Upper Deck, no disrespect).  It was kinda cool to get both teams I picked on the same card though.  And as mentioned near the top, somewheres I read it was a very tough pull.

The hits were meh, as also mentioned.  Durbin’s yet to do anything of note.  I dig the Kip Wells just for the fact that it is an Autographics and the fond memories of the past I get from that.  The Mark Buehrle is easily the best player of the three, and the card is #’ed to /56.

Thank you very much, John.  If you do another group break in the future, you can count me in.  Hopefully next time I’ll get there early enough for the Cubs and maybe Mariners or Dodgers or some other team in my upper tier.  😀

Finally, while we’re on the subject of group breaks, I kind of have the itch to host a group break.  I enjoyed this one so much that I’d like to do mine in a similar style and price range.  I’d like to do pick out boxes from throughout the decade though.

This proposed group break wouldn’t take place until around opening day of the baseball season, because I want to get a lot of my ridiculously overbooked trading queue caught up on first, and besides, wouldn’t that just be an awesome time of year to do one?  Also, I’m still not going to have a scanner by then unless I get it one for free or win one or something, but the weather should hopefully be getting a bit nicer by then, so I will hopefully have a good bit more and faster access to the one I have access to now, so that I may be able to pull this off fairly efficiently, or what qualifies as such for me anyway.

The actual box bustin’ itself for this group break would happen on either my justin.tv or ustream channels over the course of multiple days, because I like to take my time when busting boxes of cards.  And that way everything will be documented, and people can come and go as they please during the breaks (hopefully a decent amount of people will bother to show up for them anyway; sorry in advance for not having boobs or an especially flashy personality :P), and they will be highlighted for those that can’t be there for the festivities, but do want to see what went on before the scanning.

So is anyone interested?  Let me know if you are, and please spread the word.  I think this would be a pretty exciting way to count down and kick off the baseball season.  I’d like to have enough people on board and everyone paid and get the teams chosen by mid-March at the very latest.  Otherwise we probably won’t be done in time.

We’ll start delving deeper into this should people start getting interested, deciding on the actual boxes to buy and cost to enter and whatnot.

I totally came up with most of these initial details on the fly, but is everything sounding sensible enough so far? 🙂

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!