Monday, May 31, 2021

from a to z three ways

another a to z challenge! this one courtesy of the diamond king after the musical challenge put forth by the collector. for the latter, i just listed my favorite bands in the comments but figured i would do a post for this list.

i decided to limit my favorite players to those that i've been able to follow during my fandom otherwise the list would be largely populated by hall of famers. however, i'll also list players representing each letter that are favorites from the group of "oldtimers" that were retired before i started following baseball, as well as current, active favorites.

favorite a: roberto alomar. i'm not happy with this pick given alomar's recent ban from baseball, but if i am being honest, i was a big fan of his during the 1990's. i can't pretend that dave anderson or billy ashley or don aase were more deserving of my fandom.

favorite retired a: hank aaron. 
no contest, although i do think highly of rich/dick allen.

favorite current a: ronald acuna jr. i don't like to see him hit against the dodgers, but otherwise, he is fun to watch.

favorite b: don baylor. my first favorite non-dodger player, baylor gets the nod over dusty baker, george brett, johnny bench, wade boggs, and even more recent guys that i enjoyed following like jose bautista. i considered putting mookie betts here, and in a year or two, maybe he will overtake baylor.

favorite retired b: ernie banks. mr. cub was among the first hall of fame players for whom i actively pursued cards. his 1971 topps card was a favorite.

favorite current b: mookie betts. 
2020 world champion and a five tool talent.

favorite c: ron cey 
and rod carew. 
i am going to declare a tie here, and that says a lot about how i feel about rod carew.

favorite retired c: ty cobb 
over roberto clemente. another tough one. i was amazed (and still am) at ty cobb's stats, but i chose clemente as the subject of a fifth grade report in the early years of my baseball fandom. it's a toss-up.

favorite current c: miguel cabrera. i really hope he gets to 3,000 hits...

favorite d: andre dawson. the hawk! 'nuff said.

favorite retired d: al downing and don drysdale. al downing was the first former major leaguer i met who had been a dodger, and he was very nice to me. he asked me questions about little league and wished me luck. i was awestruck. and then there is big d who i can't discount as a favorite.

favorite current d: jacob degrom. he's been on my fantasy team the last few years and i expect 7 scoreless and 10+ strikeouts every time. too bad the mets don't score any runs for him.

favorite e: andre ethier over darrell evans. evans was sneaky good with some big career counting stats, but ethier played for the dodgers long enough for me to appreciate him more.

retired e: luke easter. the first 1951 topps card i owned was of easter, and it inspired me to learn more about his career. his big league tenure was hampered by injuries, but he was a great player. his first name was luscious! not lucius, but luscious! that's fantastic.

current e: eduardo escobar. former twin alert here. even though he plays for the dbacks, i like escobar thanks to his tenure with the twinkies. he was a good guy, and somewhere we have a photo with him and brian dozier.

favorite f: carlton fisk. i was confused when he changed his sox, but for a card collector he was a standout on cardboard as well as the field.

favorite retired f: jimmie foxx. little kids (like i was) dig the long ball, and foxx was the national league's answer to babe ruth. i was furiously a national league fan, and so celebrated foxx as the national league and right-handed single season home run record king when my yankee-fan neighbors would mention ruth or maris and 60/61 homers in a season.

favorite current f: freddie freeman. not much to choose from here, and freeman was a beast on my fantasy team a couple of years ago.

favorite g: steve garvey 
over vladimir guerrero and nomar garciaparra and shawn green. lots of my faves have "g" last names, but nobody is unseating the garv.

favorite retired g: lou gehrig. 
the iron horse is easily in my top 5 favorite players of all time.

favorite current g: vladimir guerrero jr. having a breakout season this year, and i am wondering if the guerrero father/son tandem will pass the bonds father and son in combined offensive categories. it will be fun to watch.

favorite h: rickey henderson over orel hershiser. 
rickey was always exciting to watch and, while i will always be thankful for 1988, rickey is the greatest of all-time.

favorite retired h: gil hodges. i think hodges should be in the hall of fame.

favorite current h: enrique hernandez. just a guy who has fun playing the game, and came up big in big moments for the dodgers.

favorite i: cesar izturis over whichever iorg brother got the game-winning hit in game 6 of the 1985 world series. there wasn't much to enjoy about the dodger teams in the early part of this century, but izturis at least won a gold glove.

favorite retired i: monte irvin. another career that was too short thanks to racism and small-minded men.

favorite current i: jonathan india. not a lot to choose from, but i really hope the angels can make a run and they will need players like india to do it.

favorite j: reggie jackson. this might seem counterintuitive, but even though reggie broke my heart in 1977, i was in awe.

favorite retired j: shoeless joe jackson. i suppose i've bought in to the idea that jackson didn't know what was going on in 1919 and that his performance shows he tried to win. 

favorite current j: kenley jansen. i have a lot of respect for jansen with what he has been through the last few seasons. he still wants the ball and has had some strong outings this season. still, time waits for no man.

favorite k: clayton kershaw over matt kemp. if kemp had been able to play his entire career with the dodgers, maybe this ranking is different.

favorite retired k: sandy koufax. 
a no-doubter.

favorite current k: clayton kershaw. 
the rare current favorite is also my all-time favorite. 

favorite l: dave lopes. 
it takes a true favorite to get me to make a t-shirt with this on it:

favorite retired l: jim lefebvre. my dad's favorite player from the post-koufax era dodgers.

favorite current l: francisco lindor. i am glad he's out of the al central for the twins' sake.

favorite m: joe mauer 
over eddie murray and paul molitor. i never got tired of watching mauer hit.

favorite retired m: willie mays. 
here's where my national league tendencies show in choosing mays over mantle.

favorite current m: adalberto mondesi. rooting for the son of a former favorite dodger of mine.

favorite n: hideo nomo. 
what a great time to have been living in southern california - 1995 and nomomania.

favorite retired n: joe nuxhall. nothing like learning about nuxhall as a 10-year old and realizing that you only have five years to break his record of being the youngest player in big league history.

favorite current n: omar narvaez. he was on my fantasy team a couple of years ago after i forgot to draft a catcher and he played well. i keep an eye on him as a result.

favorite o: al oliver. i enjoyed following his career which included a very short stint with the dodgers. definitely a hall of very good player at the least.

favorite retired o: mel ott. i saw his name a lot as a young fan thanks to the placards on the outfield fence at candlestick and so learned about his career early on.

favorite current o: shohei ohtani. it is hard not to be amazed by what ohtani is doing this year. i hope he stays healthy and plays for a long time.

favorite p: mike piazza 
over yasiel puig. puig's 2013 season is one i will never forget, but to have mike piazza on the scene after the worst season in dodger history restored hope for a lot of fans, including this one.

favorite retired p: satchel paige. i jangle when i walk sometimes.

favorite current p: joc pederson or albert pujols. 
i haven't followed joc as closely as i thought i would this year, and with pujols now on the dodgers, i think i am rooting harder for the machine.

favorite q: jamie quirk. because he was in the 1978 topps set.

favorite retired q: frank quilici. former twin player and manager is the reason i chose him here. met him once at a twins event, too.

favorite current q: cal quantrill. a canadian son of a former dodger.

favorite r: pete rose over bill russell. a tough one given my love for the infield, but rose was larger than life to me as a kid, and he signed my autograph book even though i annoyed him.

favorite retired r: jackie robinson. lots of choices here, but jackie makes me proud to be a baseball and a dodger fan.

favorite current r: hyun-jin ryu. wishing him all the success in the world in toronto dunedin buffalo.

favorite s: ryne sandberg over steve sax and reggie smith and tom seaver and ichiro and don sutton. again, lots to choose from here, and on another day i might choose sax over sandberg. it's that close.

favorite retired s: duke snider. 
i was thankful as a kid to have snider as a comeback to the other neighborhood kids (giant and yankee fans) touting mays and mantle.

favorite current s: corey seager. world series mvp!

favorite t: jim thome. amazed at how hard he hit the ball and thankful that he played for the twins where i could see him hit in person a few times.

favorite retired t: jeff torborg. caught a few no-hitters and was in the 1978 topps set with a manager card that showed him as a dodger. i don't consider it to be a dodger card, but it was cool nonetheless.

favorite current t: fernando tatis jr. so much fun to watch. he's also been on my fantasy team for the last 3 years and so what if he celebrates his home runs?

favorite u: chase utley. 
i didn't care much for him in 2008 and 2009, but i always respected his game.

favorite retired u: bob uecker. i read "catcher in the wry" at a young age and also watched "mr. belvedere", but i think i first knew uecker from miller lite commercials.

favorite current u: julio urias. not overly pleased with this one because of the domestic battery arrest, but he brought home the 2020 world series title and for that i am thankful.

favorite v: fernando valenzuela 
over robin ventura. just like 1995 and nomomania, it was a blast to be a dodger fan in 1981 and fernandomania.

favorite retired v: dazzy vance. with a name like dazzy, how could i not like this former dodger? he showed up in a book of dover reprints that i got in 1979 and i was sold.

favorite current v: joey votto. hoping that this canadian finishes strong with counting stats big enough for the hall of fame.

favorite w: dave winfield. i thought it was amazing that he went straight to the majors from college and was drafted in multiple sports. i was happy, however, that he turned in to "mr. may" in the 1981 world series.

favorite retired w: maury wills over ted williams. only because i am a dodger fan do i put wills over williams. knowing that wills held a record for stolen bases when my fandom began was huge.

favorite current w: jesse winker. he's on my fantasy team this year, so i am hoping his breakout season continues. when i went to a game in cincy a couple of years ago, i had no idea who he was. some kids near me were yelling at him while he was doing sprints before the game, and them yelling "winker" over and over had me thinking they were yelling "wanker" for some reason.


favorite y: steve yeager over yaz and yount. tough to beat the catcher from the team of my youth and the guy whose card is in my header.

favorite retired y: cy young. you learn about 511 career wins pretty early when you start reading about baseball history, and it's a number that stands out.

favorite current y: mike yastrzemski. i like family ties in baseball, even if this one plays for the wrong team in the nl west.

favorite z: could make a case for todd zeile or joe zdeb, whose name confounded me as a kid opening packs of 1978 topps, but this letter goes to richie zisk, for whom i was happy when his 1979 topps card came out with the all-star designation he missed in 1978.

favorite retired z: don zimmer. a former dodger, but the fact that he was still around the game when my fandom began cements his status here.

favorite current z: ryan zimmerman. not a lot to choose from, but it's nice to see that the nationals' first ever draft pick panned out nicely for them. i still miss the expos, though.

finally, i am following fuji's lead and adding my favorite bands a to z list here as well:

the alarm - wish i had seen them in concert. i still play their albums quite often, even the newer stuff that mike peters has released.

black rebel motorcycle club - love their sound and evolution over the years. i saw them live at first avenue a few years ago. stood behind the sound desk and never realized that the guy running the desk was michael been from another favorite band of mine, the call. i knew his son was in the band, but sadly didn't recognize him.

the cult - just a fun band to crank with the windows down back in the 80's. saw them live at first ave a few years ago as well, and ian astbury sounded great. somewhere i have a pick that billy duffy threw in to the crowd at the end of the show. the last mosh pit i was in, and likely ever will be in, was at that show.

the doors - started listening to them in 1987 or so and couldn't get enough for a couple of years. la woman is a fantastic album. still waiting to hear from mr. mojo risin'!

echo and the bunnymen - another band that i started listening to in the early 1980's and still listen to today. i saw them live in 2005, and even though it was just two original members remaining, ian mcculloch's voice is pretty much all they need. their newer albums hold up really well against the older stuff.

foo fighters - i was introduced to this band by a friend who was disappointed that they didn't sound more like nirvana. i only knew a couple of nirvana songs, and so was not predisposed to any expectation. i haven't bought their last couple of albums, but i still give them a listen fairly often. i saw them live in the mid-aughts with weezer and kaiser chiefs. great show and loud!

golden smog - this is a supergroup that is most often comprised of members of wilco, soul asylum, the jayhawks, and run westy run. i've seen them live three times - all good shows.

the hold steady - these guys are my current favorite active band. i've seen them and their lead singer
craig finn a handful of times and it's always a positive, high energy event. i was supposed to see them at first avenue in may of 2020 but we all know how that turned out. the show is rescheduled for this fall - cant' wait!

inxs - "listen like thieves" is one of my favorite albums. i stopped listening to them as often when their popularity peaked, but not because i wasn't a fan. i was just discovering other bands. such as...

the jesus and mary chain - their first album "psychocandy" was so different that i was confused as to why i liked it so much. then their second album "darklands" came out and i was hooked. easily one of my favorite top 5 albums, there is rarely a week that goes by that i don't listen to it. i was supposed to see these guys live back in 1988 (with iggy pop!), but the show was canceled.

keane - a couple of good albums in my collection. 

lloyd cole and the commotions - late 80's/early 90's stuff, sort of like robyn hitchcock maybe? this band was part of the soundtrack to my high school years.

midnight oil - thanks to richard blade and video one, we were introduced to midnight oil well before "diesel and dust" was released. i've seen them live twice - once in 1989 and then again just three or four years ago.

nada surf - the same friend who introduced me to foo fighters got me listening to nada surf. you might be familiar with "popular" from their debut album, but my favorite album of theirs is "let go".

oasis - sure, "wonderwall" and "champagne supernova" are great songs (assuming you like oasis) from "(what's the story) morning glory", but my favorite from that album is "don't look back in anger".

perfect - this is a band founded by tommy stinson. stinson was the bassist for the replacements, and perfect was his second post-replacements group. they were active in the late 90's just before stinson took a job with guns n' roses. it took a while for me to find their album which wasn't released until well after the band broke up.

queen - not a lot of choices here, but queen has a tremendous catalog that stands up forty years on.

the replacements - it's unfair that my favorite band starts with the same letter as another top-5 band of mine - r.e.m. oh well. i listen to the replacements just about every day, from their early, post-punk releases to their last, post-alternative album. so many good songs and clever lyrics. i saw them live twice - first in 1989 and last on their farewell tour in 2014. i've seen lead singer paul westerberg live many times since moving to minnesota. a real american treasure, this band.

simple minds/the smiths - it's a tie. maybe that's not fair to r.e.m. to declare this letter a tie and not the letter "r", but these two bands were a huge part of my high school and college days. early simple minds stuff is just as good as their more popular songs, and listening to the smiths let me feel down when i wanted to feel down without making me feel lost. i never saw either band live, but did catch morrissey in concert in 1991 or 1992. 

talking heads - i was once chastised by my friends by bringing a talking heads tape to the beach instead of something more appealing to the ladies like wham!. i didn't care.

u2 - my second favorite band of all-time, and the one i've seen live most often - seven times i believe. also one of two bands of which i have a card in my collection
(the other is a custom of the replacements). my favorite album of theirs is "october", and even though i avoided "pop" when it was released, these days i celebrate their entire catalog. "the joshua tree" had a huge impact on my friends and me when it was released - such a seminal event in the music part of my life.

violent femmes - i heard the dodger organist play "blister in the sun" during a game the other day. i would have never thought that song would make it in to the mainstream. i was supposed to see them live in the early 90's but the trip didn't pan out. i did get to see them finally in the early 2000's however.

wire train - this was a band that a friend's brother turned us on to (along with some other favorite bands of mine like translator and the grapes of wrath) in the mid 80's. they were from san francisco, and "in a chamber" became the soundtrack to our weekends. 

x - it was tough to be in southern california in the 80's and not hear a lot of x being played. i have a few songs of theirs on my ipod, and guitarist john doe has put out some solo stuff that i enjoy as well.

yaz - one of my cousins gave me "upstairs at eric's" and i was blown away by alison moyet's voice.

zuzu's petals - this is a band that i knew nothing about until i moved to minnesota even though i think they were dissolved by the time i got here. lead singer laurie lindeen married paul westerberg, which is how i learned about them. their drummer, linda pitmon, married the dream syndicate's steve wynn, and i saw them perform together at a benefit concert for soul asylum's bassist in 2004.

these were a couple of fun exercises! anyone have another a to z challenge?

Saturday, May 29, 2021

if i could turn back time

if i could go back in time, i wouldn't want to do anything that might screw things up on a global scale like tell christopher columbus that there is no shortcut to india. instead, i would do small, selfish things like sneak a peek at my ancestors and invest in some stocks. i would also pick up multiple copies of cards like roberto clemente's 1955 topps rookie card and george brett's 1975 topps rookie card.  while i do have two of the latter, the former will likely never be a part of my collection, but i do have this card
as well as this one
that came my way from diamond jesters as part of his time travel trades.

both cards, as well as this dean chance card
are from 2001 topps archives - a set that i was all in to back when it was released. i selected these cards because i am not totally certain that i completed the set back then, and i'd like to make sure to have the complete run of archives/all-time fan favorites from 2001 through 2005.

i also claimed this 1957 topps card
for my set build. it's the penultimate card in the set, and adding it brings me down to needing just 58 cards. my set is 85.7% complete!

thanks for the trade matt!

Friday, May 28, 2021

70 years of topps and 50 years of steve garvey, or is it 71 and 51?

i am a little annoyed with the way topps numbers things. not cards themselves, at least not as part of this rant, but rather the "70 years of baseball" theme that has been a big part of their 2021 flagship release. back in 1991, topps added "40 years of baseball" to their logo, and in 2001 it was "50 years". gold parallel cards beginning in 2002 noted "xx years of collecting" - and that year it was "51". then in 2011, topps had an insert set called "60 years of topps" similar to this year's "70 years of topps", except they used reprints of actual cards. back then. strangely, they ignored 1951 and so the insert set in series 1 just had 59 cards. at the time. prior to this, i assumed that they were celebrating anniversarys, but with that set it seemed as though they were ignoring their 1951 set and were considering the 2011 set to be their 60th year's issue rather than the 61st set that they produced. 

it didn't make sense to me that topps would ignore 1951 and i finally had some clarity when, in 2016, they issued buybacks in flagship with a "65th anniversary" logo. that made it clear to me that they do in fact consider '51 to be their inaugural year for baseball cards (and rightfully so). as a result, i have come to accept that when topps says "xx years of baseball" or "xx years of collecting", they are really saying that it's their xxth anniversary. just like someone might say they are celebrating 50 years of marriage during the year in which their 50th anniversary occurs.

that still doesn't explain the situation that is made worse because of heritage, as the decision to start with the 1952 design in 2001 seems to confuse people at topps. i believe it was in 2008 (when the 1959 set design was used), that topps started issuing "50th anniversary" buybacks, even though it was really only the 49th anniversary of the set. that practice has continued even as the recent flagship sets celebrate the 35th anniversary of designs that are 14 years separated from the heritage designs. for example, in 2020 heritage featured the 1971 set design with "50th" anniversary buybacks while flagship had 30th anniversary cards of the 1985 design. you can't have it both ways, topps.

this year, however, things are a bit more clear. i can give topps credit for the "70 years of baseball" insert set that features cards with new photos on old designs that starts with 1951 (mookie betts) and ends with 2020 (hank aaron) - that's 70 years of baseball! and, according to their checklist, the manufactured relics feature the "70th anniversary logo" which also fits with the current year. of course, this would be less confusing if only topps had added a "th" to the 70 in the logo itself.

enough ranting and text!  i picked up a couple of the steve garvey "70 years of baseball" autograph cards for my player collection - here's the base version
and here's the black version.
it's numbered to 50, even though the official checklist says that the black version is numbered to 199. here's the gold version numbered to 25, 
but the official checklist says that it should be numbered to 50. a red version also supposedly exists that is numbered to 10 (based on other subjects i've seen on ebay), but the checklist says that red parallels are 25 in number.  there's a 1/1 that i assume is correctly identified as "platinum" on the checklist.  i wound up deleting the /199 version from my garvey checklist and updating the numbers accordingly, and i'll leave it that way until i actually see a card from this set numbered to 199. 

garvey first appeared in a topps set in 1971, so this is the 51st year that he has had cards issued (although topps has missed a few of those years), and the 50th anniversary of his first cardboard appearance, just as it is the 71st year that topps has issued cards and the 70th anniversary of their first set. regardless, i am celebrating seeing him back in the topps fold.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

my favorite cards of the year - 2004 edition

i recently introduced my mini collection focusing on my favorite cards from each year that i've been a collector. the basic gist is that i wanted to create a space for the cards that i most appreciated having in my collection in the year that they were released. these were cards that i acquired in the year that they were issued, and that i considered to be my favorites at the time. i have disallowed (most) cards that are already in other mini collections in order to avoid having a mini collection consisting of more steve garvey, double plays, and dodger stadium cards.

in 2004 i started working in downtown minneapolis. that made it easy to get to the metrodome to see the twins who were in the midst of a dominating run in the american league central. i was buying a fair amount of cards, too, but still sticking to mainly topps for unopened wax.

favorite non-dodger card: topps doug mientkiewicz 
so this is what it was like to see a game in the metrodome. the field was sunk below the seats, and there were superamerica signs all over the place. "sa" was a gas station/convenience store that has since been taken over by the speedway brand. i think i heard a while back that 7-11 bought speedway, and if that is the case, then my convenience store experience will have come full circle as 7-11's were the store of choice for my neighborhood to pick up cards, gum, and candy back in the late 1970's. in fact, when i first moved to minnesotain 1997, the superamerica near my work sold packs of cards at the register.  anyway, this doug mientkiewicz card was one of the few topps cards that i had seen that so obviously featured the homerdome, and i was happy to have it.

favorite dodger card: upper deck legends timeless teams steve yeager (1981)
i had considered stopping my collecting ways in 2003 until i saw the dodger-heavy checklist in upper deck's sp chirography set. i had no thoughts about stopping in 2004, but if i had, one look at the very dodger-friendly checklist for the fourth iteration of upper deck's legends release would have had me reversing course. i was all in on the legends sets in 1999, 2000, and 2001, and then followed suit when upper deck introduced similar sets in 2002 and 2003 with sweet spot classics. they took a slightly different turn in 2004 with this set as not all teams were represented, but what did i care - the dodger teams of 1974, 1977, 1980, 1981, and 1988 were all there. my favorite card in the set, even including the four steve garvey cards, is this one of steve yeager. when i first saw it, i knew exactly when the photo was taken - in the visitor's locker room at yankee stadium following game 6 of the 1981 world series - and i knew exactly whose left arm is draped around yeager - pedro guerrero's - and whose face is partially showing to yeager's left - ron cey. these were the co-mvp's of the series, and yeager's smile still brings almost as much happiness to me as he was probably experiencing at the time.

my sincere apologies to robin ventura's 2004 topps card, which was another favorite due to the fact that it captures his inside-the-park home run. i enjoyed being able to connect the card to an exciting moment, but yeager's card above reflected a greater moment for me and couldn't be beat.

up next, 1988. stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

five. five dollar. five dollar jeter.

you are not going to believe this one. i made the decision to add derek jeter to my hall of famer collection sometime around the new year. the only reason he was left out of the collection in the first place was because his on-card autographs are pricey. i decided that it was not a good enough reason if i could plan for a purchase, so that's what i did. i set up saved ebay searches and began to assess the market. i passed on a few cards early on that i probably should have pulled the trigger on, but i wasn't completely confident in what a good price was. most cards are listed as buy-it-now rather than auction, and the "bin" price is usually a stretch goal for the seller, in my opinion.

anyway, i wound up pulling the trigger on a card for the collection in late march (i'll post about it in the future when i get to jeter's spot in my collection). it was maybe a bit more than i wanted to pay, but i was ok with it given that i had planned for a big purchase like that. still, i kept the ebay saved searches active, and looked at the results every other day or so. about a week after i made my purchase, i saw a listing for a card that had a "bin" below market value. i decided to take a shot and see if i could flip it and help defray the cost of the card i intended for my collection.

then, a week or so after that, i got an alert from one of my other ebay saved searches (this one is focused on 2004 upper deck legends timeless team autographs) that a ken holtzman autograph from the set was listed with a $4.99 "bin". that's a good price for cards from this set which i am casually stockpiling. i will never complete the autograph set, but i keep an eye out for cheap and cheap-ish cards to add. anyway, i added that card to my cart and checked out what else the seller was offering. i found this 2017 topps clearly authentic andrew toles autograph 
for the same $4.99 price, and i added it to my cart as well. toles' story is sad but not (yet) tragic. his reported battle with mental illness will hopefully help others seek medical care and perhaps help remove the stigma around it. at last word, he was with family and was still eligible for health benefits through major league baseball. i hope that he is getting the treatment that he needs.

i also found one more card in the seller's inventory and added it to my cart:
that is a 2003 fleer flair sweet spot autos derek jeter autograph card. here's the back:
it's numbered to 312 which is a weird number, but these oversized cards were used as box toppers. i have a ron cey box topper from this release (and also sent one to night owl a long time ago), but the box i bought back in the day featured a kazuhiro sasaki autograph which was kind of a disappointment. like the others i have seen, the jeter autograph is on card, but i get that an oversized card is not the ideal collectible for many. the card was identified in the listing as an autograph, although it was listed as - no joke - "derek jater". any guess as to what the price of the card was?

now, i should mention that i made this purchase on march 30 but waited until april 1 before i received the invoice with combined shipping. i was a little nervous during the time between purchase and payment that the deal would be canceled, but i assure you it was no april fool's day prank as i received the cards, and besides, what business would prank themselves like that? the only explanation i can think of is that the card was accidentally listed as buy-it-now rather than an auction and/or that the person listing the card was not well versed in the market. the seller is a well known business that i've bought cards from (usually vintage lots) for years, which makes things even more surprising. for whatever reason, this seller honored the sale and sent me the card, and i went from zero jeter autos to three in a matter of weeks. crazy.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

paul waner is in my hall of famer collection

just like craig biggio a couple of weeks ago, i added paul waner to my hall of fame collection based on his accumulation of more than 3,000 hits. he's represented in my collection by this card:
that's a 2002 topps tribute milestone materials relic card. here's the back:
it's fitting that the milestone being represented is waner's 3,000th hit, which was recorded on june 19, 1942. i suppose i could have postponed this post for three weeks or so to get closer to the anniversary, but oh well.

"big poison" as he was known (to his younger brother lloyd's "little poison") starred for the pirates from 1926 through 1940, winning three batting titles and the 1927 national league mvp award. however, it was as a boston brave that he reached the 3,000 hit mark in 1942 - the seventh player in history to do so. in addition to those batting titles, he was also a two-time league leader in runs scored, hits, and triples, and also led the league in rbi in 1927.

that 1927 season was a big one for waner. in addition to being the league's mvp, he led the pirates to the pennant alongside his rookie younger brother. unfortunately for the pirates, they were swept by the yankees in the fall classic and the club didn't win another pennant until 1960.

after leaving the pirates, waner played for brooklyn and boston, then returned to brooklyn (a dodger double dipper) before finishing his career with a handful of appearances for the yankees in 1944 and 1945. he wound up with 3,152 hits which today is good for 19th all-time, and a .333 batting average which ties him with eddie collins for 26th all-time. when waner retired, only seven men had reached base more times than he, and nobody had recorded more putouts as a right fielder - nor has anyone since.

here's my hall of famer collection as its been documented so far:

babe ruth - 2003 topps tribute world series edition world series tribute relic 351/425

honus wagner - 2001 topps tribute relic

nap lajoie - 2002 topps tribute milestone materials relic

tris speaker - 2011 topps tribute dual relic green parallel 53/75

eddie collins - 2002 topps tribute milestone materials relic

george sisler - 2004 topps tribute hall of fame tribute relic

rogers hornsby - 2004 topps tribute hall of fame tribute relic

jimmie foxx - 2013 topps tribute retired remnants relic 91/99

mel ott - 2011 topps tribute quad relic 15/99

paul waner - 2002 topps tribute milestone materials relic

dizzy dean - 2001 topps tribute relic

hank greenberg - 2004 topps tribute hall of fame tribute relic

zack wheat - 2002 topps tribute milestone materials relic 

bob feller - 2001 topps archives certified autograph

jackie robinson - 2004 topps clubhouse collection clubhouse relic

ted williams - 1992 upper deck baseball heroes autograph 1067/2000

roy campanella - 2001 topps tribute relic

stan musial - 2002 topps team topps legends autograph

yogi berra - 1998 donruss signatures significant signatures 1640/2000

sandy koufax - 1998 donruss signatures significant signatures 1707/2000

roberto clemente - 2005 donruss greats hall of fame souvenirs relic

warren spahn - 1999 upper deck century legends epic signatures

mickey mantle - 2000 upper deck legends legendary game jerseys relic

ernie banks - 1999 upper deck century legends epic signatures

eddie mathews - 1999 fleer sports illustrated greats of the game autograph

willie mays - 1997 topps willie mays reprints certified autograph

al kaline - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

duke snider - 2003 upper deck sp authentic chirography hall of famers 144/250

bob gibson - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

hank aaron - 2004 topps originals 1979 topps all-time record holders rbi 03/32

frank robinson - 1995 upper deck autograph

juan marichal - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

brooks robinson - 2001 topps golden anniversary great autograph

don drysdale - 1993 nabisco all-star autographs

harmon killebrew - 2000 upper deck legends legendary signatures

pee wee reese - 2001 topps tribute relic

lou brock - 2018 topps archives signature series 1989 buyback 53/61

willie mccovey - 
2004 upper deck sp legendary cuts legendary sigs 46/50

ray dandridge - 2006 upper deck sp legendary cuts a place in history cut autograph 31/43

jim hunter - 1998 donruss signature series significant signatures 0736/2000

billy williams - 2013 topps museum collection autograph 054/199

willie stargell - 2000 upper deck legends legendary signatures 

johnny bench - 2019 topps definitive collection legendary autograph 09/25

red schoendienst - 2012 panini cooperstown signatures 038/549

carl yastrzemski - 2000 fleer greats of the game autograph

joe morgan - 2001 upper deck hall of famers cooperstown collection signature jersey

jim palmer - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

rod carew - 2004 topps retired signature autograph

fergie jenkins - 2013 topps five star baseball autograph 154/333

gaylord perry - 2003 topps finest finest moments autograph

rollie fingers - 2018 topps archives signature series 1978 topps buyback 1/3

hal newhouser - 1993 front row premium all-time greats autograph

tom seaver - 2013 topps five star baseball autograph 44/50

reggie jackson - 2018 topps tier one tier one talent autograph 19/60

steve carlton - 2018 topps five star career year autograph 43/45

mike schmidt - 2002 topps archives autoproof 1980 topps buyback 048/147

phil niekro - 2017 panini donruss recollection collection 1983 donruss buyback autograph 13/33

don sutton - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

george brett - 2001 topps finest finest moments autograph

robin yount - 2001 upper deck ultimate collection ultimate signatures 112/150

carlton fisk - 1999 upper deck century legends epic signatures

tony perez - 2004 fleer national pastime 2002 fleer greats authentic autograph buyback 30/59

kirby puckett - 1998 upper deck retro sign of the times autograph

dave winfield - 2003 upper deck sp authentic chirography hall of famers 121/350

ozzie smith - 2019 topps finest finest origins autograph

gary carter - 1999 fleer sports illustrated greats of the game autograph collection

eddie murray - 2004 upper deck sp legendary cuts legendary sigs 45/50 

dennis eckersley - 2017 topps archives signature series 1984 topps buyback 47/99

paul molitor - 2016 topps museum collection archival autographs 021/125

wade boggs - 2005 upper deck baseball heroes autograph red parallel 30/49

ryne sandberg - 2016 topps five star autographs gold parallel 17/50

bruce sutter - 2003 topps all-time fan favorites certified autograph

tony gwynn - 1997 donruss signature series millennium marks autograph 0702/1000

cal ripken jr - 2018 topps high tek portraitek autograph 32/75

goose gossage - 2003 topps finest finest moments autograph

rickey henderson - 2016 topps tribute certified foundations of greatness autograph 49/50

jim rice - 2005 upper deck past time pennants past time signatures

andre dawson - 2000 fleer greats of the game autograph

roberto alomar - 2015 topps high tek pattern 1 grass/waves gold rainbow autograph 50/50

bert blyleven - 2004 upper deck legends timeless teams autograph

ron santo - 2004 topps retired signature autograph

tom glavine - 2019 topps tribute autograph 18/90

greg maddux - 2018 topps luminaries masters of the mound autograph 13/15

frank thomas - 2019 topps tier one autographs 42/70

craig biggio - 2013 topps five star baseball autograph 019/333

pedro martinez - 2018 topps high tek portraitek autograph 09/60

ken griffey jr - 2003 upper deck game face autograph

mike piazza - 2014 topps five star autograph 35/50

tim raines - 2018 topps tribute tribute autograph green parallel 26/95

vladimir guerrero - 2000 upper deck legends legendary signatures

jim thome - 2020 topps archives signature series 2012 topps mini 1/1

jack morris - 2004 donruss timelines recollection collection 1986 buyback autograph 23/45

alan trammell - 2001 fleer greats of the game autograph

roy halladay - 2017 topps archives signature series 2004 topps buyback 15/23

ted simmons - 2013 panini golden age historic signatures

larry walker - 1997 donruss signature series authentic signature

joe jackson* - 2001 upper deck sp legendary cuts sp legendary debut bat card

pete rose* - 2018 panini flawless legendary signatures 15/25

barry bonds* - 2001 bowman heritage autographs

roger clemens* - 1995 upper deck autograph

alex rodriguez* - 1998 upper deck sp authentic chirography autograph

*not currently in the national baseball hall of fame

you can find the full list of hall of famers (and some not - yet) that i aim to include in this collection at my want list site.