Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Cards + knowledge = not making a fool of yourself on the air

Each night the local late night news presents a trivia question to the hack sports guy after he gets done butchering the day's highlights.

On the weekend, the backup hack sports guy takes his shot at the trivia questions. My guess is the only reason the backup guy is still employed is that he's no threat to the primary sports buffoon. That is demonstrated almost every weekend when he stumbles through trivia questions that the primary buffoon usually answers correctly.

Last weekend's question was: "Which player was on a pre-World War I baseball card that recently sold for over $1 million at an auction?"

This is easy for any card collector to answer. And I can even point out an error in the question. The card in question -- the T206 Honus Wagner -- actually sold for over a million dollars in 2000, which is now 12 years ago and no longer "recent."

But the poor weekend sports boob's answer was this: "it's either Christy Mathewson or Ty Cobb."

Well, A) that's not an answer. Pick one or the other. B) you're wrong anyway.

I was rather surprised that someone who follows sports allegedly as closely as a guy who gives scores on the air would not know the answer to the question. I thought everyone -- even my mom -- knew about the Honus Wagner baseball card.

I guess that's what happens when you're so immersed in collecting that you don't pay attention to what "outsiders" know and don't know about our hobby.

Recently I completed a trade with Scott Crawford on Cards! Scott is one guy who has the history of collecting down. If there is a notable card or player from the past, he's chasing down the card. If there is an upcoming prospect of note on a card, he's chasing down that card, too. He knows which way the hobby is beating and loves its history, too.

He especially likes his Brooklyn Dodgers, which means he's got a bunch of cards that I want.

I was able to land the 1959 Topps Gil Hodges that you see here, and I got a couple of other key older Dodgers, too.

But first I'll show you some more current cards:

Prospect type guys.

These are cards I never buy. In fact, the Ethan Martin card is the first Razor card I have in my collection. I am not a member of Razor's key customer base. I can't even tell you if Razor is still around. I hope that topic  never comes up when I have to answer a trivia question.

Another prospect card. But Lindblom has already pitched in Dodger blue and I'm already rooting for him to do good things in the years to come. So I'll ignore that Purdue uniform he's wearing.

This is a mini UD Goudey card from 2008. I always forget about these things. They're not my kind of mini, but I'm happy to cross it off the list -- if I have a list for these. Something else I'll have to check.

Minis that are more my speed. Here are a couple of A&G minis of departed Dodgers. The Kent card is an A&G back when people cared about stuff like that. The Furcal card -- as you can see -- is a black border and people still do care about that.

Not much to say about this card except I needed it and I like Fleer Tradition from '02. End of story.

Somebody actually let a 2001 Bowman Chrome card out of their possession. My theory as to why I have a hard time tracking down these cards is that people fear that a Albert Pujols rookie will be mistakenly stuck to the back of whatever card they're sending and then there goes that mansion and yacht.

More Beltres from his card collecting heyday. I'll be peeling off that protective coating when I get a moment -- maybe in April. But there's nothing wrong with 2000 Bowman's Best. So bright and sunny.

Three Gold Rush needs from 1995 Score. This is how long the gold obsession has been going on with cards. Early '90s, in fact. So why are we supposed to care in 2012?

OK, this is the biggie of the package. Out of the handful of 1971 Topps cards that I need this was the one -- besides Roberto Clemente -- that I expected to have the most difficulty in acquiring.

But, look! Here it is. Do I care that there's a crease? Not in the least.

I still need another version of this card because there's a Dodger in the middle, but the main objective here is completing the '71 set and I'm down to needing just EIGHT MORE CARDS.

I expect to be having a giant completion party next month. You're all invited.

Frank Howard's rookie card, dudes. Frank Howard's rookie card. I am so excited.

Cards just keep getting cooler, eh?

The 1954 Topps cards look terrific in a page together. All those bright backgrounds. I also like '54 because it's such a small set, which gives the illusion that you can actually complete it. I need just 10 more Dodgers to finish off the set. I can do that, right? I refuse to look at a price guide to see if this is possible.

When I have time I will marvel over this Labine card and actually look at the back of it. But for now I'll just appreciate the fact that I have it.

There is one more thing that Scott sent me, which I don't even remember saying I wanted:

Well, you heard Steve. Get 'em on!!!

I used to work in the men's department of a department store and I know we sold McGregor. I don't remember if there were pictures of Steve Garvey or other athletes on the tags. There probably were. But not once did I consider tearing off the tag for my collection.

People collect the strangest things.

Which is probably what that sports anchor guy thinks about us card collectors.

But at least I know what the T206 Wagner card is.


  1. Watch out, Garrett Gould!!! That T-Rex is coming through the Stargate to bite off your junk!

  2. The Garv does look like a sleazy fitness freak. Cool oddball item.

  3. " i am elmer j. fudd, millionaire. i own a mansion and a yacht"

  4. It's a RAPTOR, not a T-REX and it likely will bite off his junk! ;)

  5. Awright, who hid Frank's glasses??
    He looks perturbed!

  6. To be fair, you can be a sports fan and not know the first thing about sports cards. I bet you a green dollar that all of my uncles have heard of Honus Wagner and that not a one of them have even HEARD of the famous t206.

    BTW, knowing about the t206 automatically gets you cool cred from me.

  7. I can't recall what your opinion is of Beckett, but this might be something you'd be interested in watching: Ripping Retail Retro: 1975 Topps Mini

  8. Cool. I ripped a pack of '75 minis on my blog several months ago.