Sunday, April 28, 2019


I woke up late Saturday morning to discover that Topps had joined the usual suspects in spamming my inbox.

There, among the advertisements for walk-in tubs, weight-loss supplements and teeth-whiteners that had escaped the spam filter, was a breathless Topps message stating that cards were available of Vlad Guerrero Jr. only for the next 24 hours!

I had somehow managed to avoid most Topps Now advertising so I don't know why suddenly I was receiving these emails. Another one arrived earlier today. There were only 3 hours left!

At the exact moment that the second email arrived, I was online checking out the prices on my needs for the 1976 Kellogg's 3-D set. I can't think of two kinds of cards that are farther apart on the card spectrum. An underpriced oddball from the '70s that you could find in your cereal box or an overpriced slicked-up online exclusive, get it now or it's GONE FOREVER (not really).

Topps had become as useless to me as the spammer attempting to sell me life insurance. Neither knew what I really wanted. What I'd really buy, if I had the cash.

Fortunately, people who read my blog do know what cards I really like and three packages sent recently demonstrate that quite accurately.

I will start with a guy I traded with long ago from the Old School Breaks blog. John found a nifty 2019 Clayton Kershaw short-print and offered it up.

This is considered a Clayton Kershaw card and on the back Kershaw's stats are listed so I guess this is a variation card?

On the front, it could be the card of Manny Machado or Matt Kemp or Chase Utley. But since Kershaw is the only one whose face is shown that's still on the Dodgers I suppose Kershaw makes sense.

John sent along a few other Dodger cards:

I knew I needed the Bellinger card, but I was surprised to learn that I needed the other two cards, too. That's a 4-for-4 package!

This is what I want spammers. Not your sketchy home loan come-ons.

Another non-spammy envelope arrived recently from Commish Bob from The Five-Tool Collector blog.

He slipped a couple of very-much-wanted cards between these two protectors:

No offense to Topps Heritage or these two fine cards but I have a few of these already. I don't not have a few of these:

Yay! 1956 Topps wants!

I particularly like receiving the famed card of poor Schoony chasing down a ball that eluded him. What an interesting picture choice.

The Schoonmaker card features something offbeat on the back, too.

That is a several miscut back. I don't already own the Harry Brecheen cards. Can I cross that one off the list now, too?

Those are two terrific cards that meet collection needs that mean a whole lot to me right now. '56 Topps is never spam.

Finally, a package from Dennis of Too Many Verlanders that goes straight to my current collecting heart.

Weeeeeee! 1975 Topps buybacks!!

I have about half of these already, but the other half I don't! And that brings me up to 283 cards in my quest to complete a buyback version of the 1975 Topps set.

I especially like the Tommy Hutton card here just because my offer for that card has been declined twice on COMC and now I have the card for free so there, stupid seller. You lost out on your buck fifty or whatever I offered.

Dennis also sent a 2002 Elite card of Paul LoDuca that I needed but since Elite cards scan like suck, I'll avoid showing it.

But all of the cards in that very welcome envelope were decisively unspammy.

Speaking of that, while I was writing this, I received another email from Topps advertising the latest version of Topps Now cards.

It seems that I'm going to have to take some unsubscribe action against Topps. Or, better yet, mark it as spam.


  1. Nice 1956 cards. The action photo of Schoonmaker just shows that Topps was making cards for kids and had no idea their product would be revered and scrutinized by adults like us 60 years later.

  2. It would surprise me if someone from Topps is reading this post and stealing the idea of creating five different players' trading cards with the same exact photo with all of them in it. In fact, I guarantee it'll happen one day.

  3. Eventually, they'll run the hype machine beyond overdrive and it will come flying apart. Then they'll go back to buybacks.

    P.S. If Blair and Patek are extras, I'll give them a home.

    1. Blair is a dupe. I'll send it when I have a suitably sized card stack for you.

  4. Yeah, like Topps is going to stop printing Vlad Jr. cards anytime soon. I'll be shocked if he doesn't get his own subset sometime soon.

  5. That's an awesome Kershaw SP. Plus a ton of other good cards.

  6. Usually I like when baseball cards show up on my Facebook feed (a rare thrill), but even I was starting to get sick of the Vlad Jr. ads over there after a while.

  7. I hope Vlad Jr isn't a bust but see him in the same light as Prince Fielder. Nearly 20,000 printed!!?? Topps NOW hasn't been special for a long time. Three years maybe??