Not even two weeks into my start as a card blogger, I received a late-September package from Dave of Tribe Cards, which was then called "Indians Baseball Cards. Always."
It was a prize for answering a trivia question correctly on his blog. There were lots of those then. Trivia questions. Card prizes. Baseball cards flying across the country. Very exciting days.
I couldn't believe my eyes because this was all new to me. Also, the box was huge, more than 100 cards of different Dodgers and it included a couple of autographs, I believe, and -- holy crap, a 1950 Bowman card of Carl Furillo.
Dave's generosity was well-known then and continues to be legend among the veterans of the blogging world. He isn't nearly as prolific in sending out "just because" card packages because, you know, we've determined he's actually human and not some sort of card-sending cyborg. But still, every once in awhile, he gets the itch to send out a bunch of cards to people.
He gave an announcement last winter that he was shipping out cards again for anyone who would sign up. I quickly put my name in but I think one or two Dodger fans beat me to requesting Dodgers goodies and I believe I resigned myself to leftovers. I don't really remember. A lot has happened between last winter and now and, honestly, the card giveaway disappeared from my mind.
But then, a few days ago, Dave announced he had finally gotten cards packaged and that some had already shipped. Not even 72 hours later, I went out to my mailbox to discover this:
Oh, yeah. Now that takes it back!
That's a priority mail box, tracked and insured, costing Dave $12.60 to send via the United States Postal Service. And who knows how many of these boxes he sent.
The box was filled with Dodgers treats -- even though I finished third in requests. There were regular-sized cards, oversized cards, minis, little round discs, you name it. The oldest card in the box wasn't a Dodger card -- it's the 1976 Fleer Baseball Firsts at the top of the post. But I love those Laughlin-illustrated cards.
Just about everything else was Dodgers.
I admit, many of the cards are already in my collection -- I'm much more of an accomplished collector than when Dave first sent me cards.
But this box was well worth digging through because just when you thought it was something you already owned, it turns out you didn't!
This isn't a simple 1990 Topps card, silly.
It's a 1990 O-Pee-Chee card, Monsieur!
So are all of these.
How could I miss the strange miscutting that appears on many OPC cards?
The box showed an incredible awareness. How did it know that I was missing that card? I didn't even know!
A 2015 Panini Donruss Zack Greinke. Not already in my collection. How? Why?
I don't know. I just know the box knows.
A 1996 Fleer glossy team set card of Mike Piazza. Happens to be the only card from this set that I'm missing. And I do not have a want list up for the 1996 Fleer glossy team set. Spooky.
In 2018, Topps issued a 30-card insert set on Cody Bellinger and I gathered maybe just under half of them before giving up because, geez, 30 cards? Then parallels on top of that?
Dave sent four cards from that set -- three regular ones and a parallel -- and I needed them all!
Another card from one of those "Let's Drive the Player Collectors Crazy" insert sets. The back says that after Game 7 of the 1955 World Series, Koufax went to his night class at Columbia University.
These are all cards I thought I owned already, but turns out I didn't. So now my 2019 Topps Heritage Dodgers team set is complete AGAIN!
OK, let's move on to the cards that I knew right away that I needed, no looking through my binders, no assuming I have it already, I knew straight away:
How about those? Those last two are something else. But I enjoy the electric Elite Kershaw most. Love it, in fact.
All right, a few more needs before I get out of here.
Speaking of Throwin it Back, this is a card I own a couple versions of already. But it is in such great shape, I'm sure it will outshine one of the other ones.
People tell me I will never be finished with cards I need from the Junk Wax Era, and I don't really believe them. I'm confident I'll track down all those Dodgers some day.
However, I do believe that I will never land all of the Mike Piazza cards from the 1990s. They seem infinite.
I get unnecessarily excited when I land an eTopps card. It's probably only the fourth or fifth one in my collection.
All needs from that Upper Deck 2005 set where you play a game or something. I'm much too dismissive of these sets but I'm just not interested in playing games with my cards.
This is the "original back" version from the 2010 Topps Your Mom Keeps Throwing Out Your Cards insert series. I'm not showing the back, so you'll just have to believe me.
All of those are minis that fit into one of my A&G mini binders, either the Dodgers one or the frankenset one. The Kazmir fills an empty frankenset slot, which is very very exciting. 😊
This sticker takes me back just because it was one of my first experiences with Fleer stickers. These appeared in 1981.
On the back was a different All-Star Game. I loved these. Not as much as the World Series ones, but still very cool.
I think I've covered most of what I wanted to show with that big ol' long box. There are still plenty of dupes around for anyone in a Dodger card frame of mind. (I plan to get together an envelope for bbcardz soon and this will help matters, not that I need help with Dodgers dupes).
OK, I just want to show one more card.
I bet you think it's going to be an autograph or something super-low numbered or maybe another 1950 Bowman card like the first time.
I have never seen such a massive diamond-cut on a Donruss card. This made me stop what I was doing and just stare at it for awhile. Wow.
I sure do appreciate Dave still doing this after all these years. As usual, I don't know where he gets the inventory, but that's one of the great mysteries that was so exciting about receiving those cards out of the blue during the first few months of blogging.
Thanks for taking me back.