Monday, July 16, 2018

here's a post with all original content

well, all of my posts include original content, and when i am inspired by someone else's post i do try to link or at least reference it in my writing.  no, what i mean by today's title is 2015 topps original buybacks, baby!

i have a saved search on ebay for 2015 topps original 1978 buybacks, and not too long ago i checked and found this card up for sale:
how i enjoy the penguin's 1978 topps card!

for some reason, the 2015 buybacks appealed to me greatly, while i was lukewarm at best at the 2014 versions, and the 2016 and 2017 buybacks are not my favorite, either (although i do have some dodgers from all three of those years).  i have tried my hardest to complete the 1978 topps dodger team set as stamped and reissued in 2015, and ron cey was one of the few cards that i was missing.  no longer.

the other cards that i had not seen previously were tom lasorda, elias sosa, terry forster, lance rauhtzan (pretty sure that topps did not stamp the 4-in-1 rookie cards), and doug rau.  well, doug rau
was offered up by the same seller as the cey!  rau's card is looking a bit rough, but as i mentioned, i had never seen one previously so i jumped.

these cards showed up on ebay through comc's consignment seller, so i went to the comc website and quickly bought them.  i decided to see if the seller had any other interesting buybacks to add to my 'ready to ship' queue, and found a couple.

while the seller did not have a 1978 topps terry forster buyback, they did have this crazily-diamond cut 1975 topps league leader buyback card featuring forster and dodger dr. mike marshall
i also found the latter's 1976 topps card boughtback and stamped
and a 1979 ron cey buyback as well.
it's always worth pointing out the nbc game of the week sighting!  while i paid full asking price for the two 1978 cards, i made an offer on the three previous cards, and the offer was accepted a day or two later.

i love it when a saved search pays off!

in related news, there are a few 2015 buybacks on comc that i do not own, but have not purchased.  for the most part, those are offered up for sale by everyone's favorite overpricer, joelshitshow.  one of those cards was bill singer's 1969 topps card, so i was happy to see one on ebay 
that i was able to get for about 10% of what the hitshow wants for it.

while the 2015 buybacks (especially those few '78s i'm missing) are my main buyback focus, i'm still looking for other new dodger buybacks to add to my collection, and am actually looking forward to trying to pick up a bill russell rookie buyback in next year's heritage release!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

stare off!

matt at once the cub and the 2018 opening day blog sent me a complete dodger team set from 2018 topps opening day which included the 'before opening day' inserts seen below
i thought it was an interesting pairing, as bellinger and puig seem to be locked in as stare down.  or, they could both be wondering who the funky muncy is and where did he come from?

thanks matt!

Friday, July 13, 2018

not my team card

one of the nicest cards that i've seen from 2018 topps series 2 features fireworks and dodger stadium
but not the dodgers.  that's the diamondbacks' team card which uses a photo from the pregame ceremony prior to the 2017 nlds game one.

there is another anti-dodger team card in series 2 - that of the pirates

which features josh harrison and medusa-like john jaso celebrating harrison's no-hitter ending, shutout-ending, extra-inning game-ending home run off of rich hill last august.  gross.

that was at pnc park, obviously, but we head back to dodger stadium courtesy of ehire adrianza's card
h/t to brian at highly subjective for noticing the 'la' logo in the lower right of the card which places ehire in the visitor's dugout at the ravine.

also included in series two are a number of 1983 style all-star cards, one of which was hall of famer rod carew.  the back is all about carew's performance at the 1980 midsummer classic which was held at dodger stadium:
no cards for steve garvey, davey lopes, bill russell, reggie smith, bob welch, or jerry reuss unfortunately, although of that group of dodgers who appeared in the game, only reuss did anything of note - he struck out the side (a real murderer's row, too - darrell porter, buddy bell, and tommy john (!)) in his lone inning of work and wound up with the win for his trouble.

i don't plan on keeping that carew card, but i did pick up another that i will keep - the walmart manufactured relic thingy showing the all-star game logo
the back references dodger stadium, so i'll put this in my dodger stadium collection.  as an aside, i am not so patiently waiting for 2020 topps update that should be full of dodger stadium cards thanks to the all-star game's return to blue heaven in july of that year.

back to team cards - this is more my style 
even though the celebration above was short-lived (the photo is from game 2 of the 2017 world series - a game that the dodgers ultimately lost).

and this one is really what i want a team card to be
this was the last card i needed to complete my upgrade of my 1979 topps set, and it is glorious.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

time for another round of 'quien es mas macho?'

i skipped the road to opening day set from topps now this year, but i did pick up one card on the cheap.
kiké hernandez is a fan favorite, and i enjoy this card the same way i enjoy the 'big glove' mickey hatcher and yasiel puig cards from years past even though this card is more along the lines of the 1986 donruss scott bradley card
so, i ask the question: quien es mas macho?

topps missed the mark on kiké's card by just putting the "of" designation rather than "if - of" (hernandez has played everywhere but pitcher and catcher again this year), but bradley's card is too stiffly posed. plus, one of his many gloves is obscured by the yankee logo.

some may say that my bias is showing, but i don't care - kiké es mas macho!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

now batting .667 with dave roberts and the usps

last year i had a near-ttm success with dave roberts. i sent another card midseason and then again during spring training.  they both showed up with the envelopes intact last month.
one got smudged, but that's ok.

i had received signed cards from roberts before, but i really want this manager card signed. i now have signed managerial cards from all of the los angeles dodger managers except bill russell. even though he has signed a number of cards for me, i failed to send a mother's card of him as the manager before he stopped signing through the mail.

thanks doc!

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

free investment advice

i suppose people (hello, fred wilpon) have received worse investment advice than that found on the back of this 1992 baseball card magazine ramon martinez card
admittedly, i did take advice indirectly from beckett back in the late '80s and early '90s and so i had a decent stash of rookie cards for folks who didn't pan out. today, the more interesting information on the back of that card is related to ramon's younger brother, pedro "who could be every bit as good". yeah, if only ramon were every bit as good as pedro.

here's the front of ramon's card
plus another from the set - eric karros and tom goodwin
these are just a couple of the cards that i received a while back from arpsmith.  thanks adam!

Monday, July 9, 2018

revisiting a 36-year old set build

i was recently digging through a banker's box at my folks' that contained a few of the sets that my dad and i built in the late '70s and early '80s.  one of those sets was 1982 donruss, and i was intrigued enough to sort through it.

to my surprise, i found that our set included the phil garner reverse negative
as for the other errors, the set had the corrected version of alan trammell's diamond king card (last name spelled correctly), but the error version of his base card (his last name spelled "trammel" on the front).  we had the correct shane rawley card but the error juan eichelberger card.  our card of the chicken was the correct version with the "tm" next to its name, but it was also signed.
i have a vague recollection of maybe being able to send this card off to be autographed. there are quite a few of them out there, and i can't believe they were inserted into packs.  i haven't opened the box this set was in for at least 30 years, so it has been that way since the '80s.  anyone have any recollection of obtaining the chicken's autograph back then?

to finish with the errors, our set had the error randy lerch card (showing him on the braves rather than the brewers), and there was no diamond kings checklist.  i did order one off of sportlots, so we'll see if i get the error or corrected version. i also ordered another chicken card, but the site didn't differentiate between the other errors so i passed.

i found a couple of other cards that i hadn't thought about for a long time.  here's rod carew's card in the set
the first card that i saw showing a player's necklace was reggie smith's 1978 topps card.  on that card, however, the gold chain was static. i remember looking at carew's card here and really noticing the necklace in all of its movement. i thought it was strange.

here is probably my favorite card in the set.  i was a fan of billy ball in oakland.
tommy lasorda's managerial cards were always a disappointment (other than the golf cart shot on his 1988 topps card and the multi-player jog on his 1992 topps card).  after seeing the card above, i always hoped to see a card of lasorda doing what billy is doing, or at the very least giving out one of his bear hugs.  no dice.

there are very few dodger cards showing them in their home park (mike scioscia is the only one that comes to mind), but there are a few reds cards that show dodger stadium in the background, like joe nolan
and mario soto.
by the way, i finally updated my dodger stadium mini collection have list.  it's larger than i had thought.

there was at least one double play card that i hadn't yet added to my other mini collection, and that was of the immortal luis aguayo
he actually played the entire decade of the '80s, but i have no recollection.

i added craig reynolds' card to my double play collection, too
it looks like a dp turn, although i don't know why frank taveras would try to break up a dp with a head first slide.  i think the photo is from spring training as i could find no play at baseball reference that would shed light on what was going on there, so like i said - it looks like a dp turn and i will consider it that until proven otherwise.

finally, i give you 34-year old bill stein's card.
gives 37-year old gaylord perry a run for his money.  i find it funny that i referenced the ages of both perry and stein in a post nine (nine!) years ago.

Friday, July 6, 2018

my post-dodger bill russell collection is fairly complete

i was pretty happy when i found the bill russell shreveport swamprats card, and i was even more excited when i found his 1999 grandstand rancho cucamonga quakes/surfers card
that was because i didn't even know that it existed until a year or so ago.  it didn't show up on the list i was using to catalog my russell cards.  anyway, it's mine now and it helped me pretty much complete my post-dodger collection of the shortstop of the team of my youth.

i'm including russell's albuquerque dukes cards in this pursuit mainly because i don't really collect dodger minor league issues as part of my dodger collection.  here's russell's 1992 fleer procards card
and his 1992 skybox card
barring any other unknown cards, i think all i have left to chase are the various parallels of the 2001 topps devil rays team card - other than that my bill russell post-dodger want list is complete!

Thursday, July 5, 2018

another patch for another school shooting

the cubs and marlins wore a patch on their jerseys on opening day of the 2018 season.  no, the patch was not to mark the start of another baseball season. it was instead to honor the 17 individuals killed at marjory stoneman douglas high school in parkland, florida on february 14.

ian happ hit a home run on the first pitch of the season, and was given this 2018 topps now card as a result.
the patch is visible on his left chest, above the 'g' in 'chicago'.

the parkland shooting joins columbine, virginia tech, northern illinois university, and sandy hook as school shootings to have generated a memorial patch and/or other means of recognition by major league baseball and its players, and those are just a small sampling of the similar occurrences over the last few years.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

sorting out my non-dodger tommy lasorda collection

since returning to the dodgers in the late 1950's, tommy lasorda has remained loyal to the organization. he has bled dodger blue and paid homage to the big dodger in the sky.  there were rumors at one point back in the 1980's about him going to manage the yankees of all teams, but there was no truth there.  the only team that has successfully enticed lasorda to shed his dodger duds has been team usa.

tommy successfully managed team usa to gold in the 2000 olympics, and, as a result, he has a few cards showing him in the 'other' red, white, and blue uniforms.  like the primary starters from the team of my youth, i collect tommy's post-dodger cards which means i have a few cards that are appropriate for posting today.

the first card of this collection is tommy's 2000 upper deck victory card (not shown), but upper deck has revisited that gold medal winning team a few times, including in 2004 in their usa baseball release
this is actually primarily a doug mientkiewicz card (that's dougie with his hat on backwards), but the manager of the team is present as well (i think that is ben sheets to tommy's left, and mike neill to tommy's right).  mientkiewicz once told me that tommy almost got the team into a fight, and that there was a movie in the works about the 2000 usa baseball team until the recession came around.

here's a card from panini's 2013 usa baseball set
this is a 'gold medal' parallel, numbered to 25

and here is an insert from the same set, assigning 'diamond king' status to lasorda
tommy's love of country may actually exceed his love of the dodgers. and pasta.

there aren't too many of these cards that i need, but i do need some - here's the list.

happy 4th!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

if you had told me 40 years ago...

...that i would one day get a 1978 topps jim palmer card signed through the mail, i would have been pretty incredulous.  as it turns out, you would have been right, as this showed up in my mailbox the other day.
i was a big fan of this card when i first found it in a pack back in the summer of '78.  palmer was the american league equivalent to don sutton in my mind thanks to the all-star shield, and so i held him in high regard for that and other reasons.

i recently noticed that the 3-time cy young award winner and hall of famer was signing through the mail, and gave it a shot.  it took just a couple of weeks for the return, and i am very pleased. 

thanks jim!

Monday, July 2, 2018

one last time, avert your eyes

i have a sickness. i am drawn to these mutilated cards like a moth to a flame.
this one is frank howard, the 1960 national league rookie of the year. he kindly signed his 1988 pacific legends card for a fan, and sometime later, some guy in a suit looking to make some money cut it up, surrounded it with glitter, and stuck it in a slab.

and i'm the damn fool that bought it.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

i collect any and all don sutton cards

i've been spending some time with my long neglected post-dodger career player collections. these are the cards that i collect of the primary starters from the team of my youth that left the dodgers to play or coach or announce elsewhere.  aside from the infield, this includes dusty baker, rick monday, reggie smith, steve yeager, tommy lasorda, and don sutton.  don sutton was the first to leave. 

the fact that sutton began his career as a dodger means that i collect all of his cards (as opposed to someone like reggie smith who played for the red sox and cardinals before he entered my radar and collection).  sutton has some pretty decent cards from his travels, including some nice looks as an astro:

2005 upper deck hall of fame cooperstown calling green /25
1982 kellogg's
1982 o-pee-chee in action
those are just some of the recent additions to my don sutton post-dodger collection.  i think that, as cool as the tequila sunrise uniforms are, sutton's variety of cards as a brewer is a bigger highlight of the collection.  here are some brewers gardner's cards from 1983
and 1984
pretty sure gardner's was a bread company.  food issues are great, just like the 1985 mother's cookies a's card of sutton shown below

after oakland, sutton went to the angels, who (like the dodgers) had a deal with smokey bear to promote wildfire prevention. here's a 1986 smokey's angels don sutton card
that features his post-300th victory press conference.

still, it is tough to beat the brewers for oddball suttons.  this is a 1992 brewers carlson travel oddball
that celebrated the 10th anniversary of the brew crew winning the american league pennant.  you'll notice that united airlines is also a sponsor.  more suttoning, by the way.

here's the back:
yet another sponsor! tv-6 witi wanted in on the action.  that's great stuff.

here's yet another sutton brewer oddball - a 1994 miller genuine draft brewers 25th anniversary card
truly, the appropriate sponsor for a brewers card.

you may have noticed that there are 9 cards featured in this post, which means i am using it to qualify for daniel's contest at it's like having my own card shop.

you can see which sutton cards i still "need" here - any help is appreciated!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

a marlins memorial patch for the pride of bayamo

from their inception in 1993 up until april of 2017, the marlins' spanish broadcasts had been handled by rafael 'felo' ramirez, a cuban born announcer who had been calling sports since 1945.  he passed away in august of 2017, prompting the marlins to add a memorial patch to their right sleeve.

the marlins were already wearing a patch on their chests for teammate jose fernandez who passed away near the end of the 2016 season, so the felo patch - a microphone with 'felo' superimposed upon it - went on their sleeve above the all-star game patch.

i picked up a 2017 topps now card of jt realmuto that shows both memorial patches
and then pulled this giancarlo stanton card from 2018 topps that shows the felo patch as well.
i also pulled this dillon peters card from 2018 topps gypsy queen that shows the patch.
i think i'll keep the peters card in my memorials binder.

ramirez, also known as 'the pride of bayamo', announced games in puerto rico and venezuela for decades, to go along with his years of all-star game and world series work for latin american stations.  he received the ford c. frick award from the baseball hall of fame in 2001.  he was 94 years old when he passed.