Monday, June 6, 2011

Best trading bud ever

I just sent off nine happy bubble mailers to card collectors across the country in a long overdue quest to get caught up in trades. I plan to tackle five or six more that will get sent out at the end of the week. That will then allow me to see what is buried at the bottom -- long forgotten agreements, aborted bids to send out "just because" packages, the best of intentions flattened and mangled and gasping for air.

One of the packages sent out today was to madding at Cards on Cards. I have traded with Kerry for the last two-and-a-half years. There are a handful of other bloggers that I have traded with for just as long, but not nearly as often. I have counted 14 separate transactions with Kerry. (I think Nachos Grande has me down as trading with him a whole lot more than that, but my records at the downtown office don't match those numbers).

We're both the same kind of collectors. Set collectors. Team collectors. Retail buyers. Card show purchasers. So we're always able to find stuff each of us like.

Now that I've sent some Cardinals off to Oregon, I can officially show my side of the 14th trade between Night Owl Cards and Cards on Cards. I think I have now traded more often with Kerry than everyone in my entire collecting history besides my brothers. Ya gotta love the internets.

First, we have this. These are two cards from the '93 Fleer Update set, featuring teams that could disappear tomorrow and I wouldn't miss them. The cards were used as packaging material, which seems appropriate. But I'll also say, thank goodness I have all the '93 Fleer update Dodgers already.

Here is some cardboard irritant. Irregular, oversized cards that refuse to be stored in any page-type material. These are something called Cadaco discs, which were issued during the time when 75 percent of all baseball cards in history were issued, between 1988-93.

The Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards is somewhat helpful with the description. It says they were intended for use with a board game, and that the numbers on the edge indicate the likelihood of that player performing a specific baseball task based on their career stats. Yeah, I don't know what that means either.

Some clear plastic Fleer EX from the turn of the century. These are cards that force collectors to use the word "technology" when describing them. I'm uncomfortable using the word "technology" with cards. They're cards, not scientific breakthroughs that will save lives. Sometimes we get too excited as collectors.

Some Topps Pristine. One of the nicer looking versions of Topps Pristine, which is pretty much the same as Topps Finest as far as I'm concerned. Might explain why we don't have Pristine anymore.

Alfredo Gonzalez was a top prospect for the Dodgers and is compared to Eric Gagne on the back. He had a "change-up from hell" according to Bill Bavasi, the Dodgers' player development guy at the time. But Gonzalez played pro ball from 1998 to 2009 without playing in the majors. I guess his other pitches were not from the netherworld.

Speaking of Gagne, here is one of the many relic cards of Game Over. I requested this card on the Cards on Cards site.

In interest of full disclosure, I requested this card, too. I have no excuse other than to say "it's a disease."

This is the blue parallel version of a card that only exists, I am convinced, so Bowman could use this photo. VanSlyke is still in the Dodgers organization and doing surprisingly well in Double A Chattanooga, but he was never a big prospect.

Bowman thought enough time had elapsed between the 1968 Topps burlap set that it could churn out another burlapy design. Still don't like it.

Topps Tek "technology"!

Upper Deck SPx "technology"!

Bowman gold parallel "technology"!


I think I've officially run out of things to say.

One day -- maybe around about trade No. 84 -- madding and I will run out of cards to send each other, especially if this sole license thing is here to stay. Instead, we'll have to trade Target fliers or credit card offer mailings or empty sports drink bottles -- anything that I have in abundance.

Let's hope I'm too senile by then to know the difference.


  1. I counted by total packages I think. Speaking of trades, I've got another one in the works for you - probably won't get it in the mail 'til next least that way you can have a chance to get caught up on your posts!

  2. Just curious, is Scott Van Slyke any relation to Andy, one of my childhood heroes.

  3. I had a couple versions of the game from which those discs came (probably even that very version). Basically each player would draft a team and then you'd simulate a game by putting those discs into a board that had a spinner right in the middle, then each number would correspond to an outcome like a hit, strikeout, HR or whatever (with the better players having larger sections for the better outcomes, of course). I remember playing tons of games of that whereas lots of people older than me grew up with Strat-O-Matic. Definitely lots of fun.

  4. I had one of those Cadaco games too. I'm pretty sure I always drafted Babe Ruth first since his homerun "slot" was much larger than anyone else's. It's probably not a big wonder why my younger brother didn't like playing with me...

  5. 1. I'll never stop pulling Dodgers. Even if I stop buying cards, somehow I will continue to get Dodgers.

    2. There seems to be an unending supply of '90s and early '00s Dodgers cards in 5 cent bins at card shows I go to. It's not hard to justify spending the occasional quarter or dollar on a stack of cards that I know someone else will appreciate.

    3. Sadly, my first reaction upon seeing the 1993 Fleer Update cards was thinking that something had gone horribly wrong with your package in transit. At some point a few years ago I actually bought that factory set off eBay for something like $3, only to have it arrive in a manila envelope with no other protection and many dinged corners. I salvaged most of the Cardinals cards for my team collection, but some of the cards ended up in even less suitable shape.

  6. If I remember correctly, on those Cadaco discs, slot 1 was Home Run and slot 10 was Strike Out. The Gibson and Sax discs seem to support this theory. And I think 5 was Triple.