So, I was back at Walmart early, early, early Sunday morning -- 2:30 a.m. to be exact -- to finish up Mother's Day shopping. Yeah, sometimes I'm a last-minute guy.
Even for 2:30 a.m., the store was beyond dead. Just a couple customers, and some workers. Everyone must've been getting their beauty sleep because mom likes to get up with the roosters. I wandered around that vacant store like a king in an unfamiliar castle and after several disorienting passes through departments that I never wish to enter again, I staggered through the card aisle and saw something new.
There were three shelves of cardboard bins, stuffed with what I would call "modern party favors." It was a bunch of kid stuff priced very low that I think was probably put there for moms to pick up cheap for birthday party prizes.
Mixed among the items were -- lo, and behold, baseball cards.
Shaking out of my Mother's Day shopping haze, I grabbed one of these:
And I grabbed one of these:
I think sometimes 2007 Topps gets a bad rap. There were a ton of these, by the way.
There were also Upper Deck boxes for $2.98. Probably from 2008, because those things are everywhere. I ignored them.
Then I shifted my eyes over to the right and saw what you saw at the top of the post.
2013 Opening Day blasters for $2.98.
That's 77 cards for $2.98.
Stunned, I grabbed one box. Yeah, I know -- only one. But I'd been in that store for far too long and I still had to set up the Mother's Day Presentation and, good god, MOM GETS UP WITH THE ROOSTERS!
I vowed to myself that I'd return to Walmart the following night.
And I did.
And this is what I got:
Isn't it glorious?
That's what photos look like when you take them at 3 a.m., by the way.
Now, I've bagged on Opening Day in the past. I'm one of those guys that doesn't really understand why it exists. The inserts are nice and all, but I rarely buy much of it.
However, ignoring $2.98 blasters is not in my nature. I wouldn't think it's in the nature of any card collector.
This afternoon, in what is a very busy day, I opened up all the boxes.
Here is the loot:
I haven't had a chance to go through the thing and see if I have the entire set. (Probably not as I don't remember seeing a Kershaw card in there).
But I did pull out the inserts and I now present them for you to see.
I actually have a second Pirate Parrot card that I missed scanning.
Of course, the best part of Opening Day from last year are the blue sparkly parallels. I pulled a number of them, most of which will be sent to respective pleasant blog folk (I've already worked out 1 or 2 deals).
Two of the blue sparkles were Dodgers:
I have the Crawford card already so some Dodgery fan will get that one. The Kemp is very welcome and arrived in the very last blaster I opened.
As for the other inserts, I don't have any plans to complete any of them, so if I haven't already reserved cards for some people, they're available.
It was pretty cool finding a bargain like that. It doesn't happen very often. And, yeah, there was part of me that felt like I was snagging merchandise meant for kiddies, the mean old man taking candy from babies.
But even though it's Opening Day, we all know kids aren't buying this stuff. These cards are definitely for adults.
And that's why I'm going back tonight to grab the few discounted blasters that I spotted tucked in the corner of the shelf on the way out of the store.
$2.98 is $2.98.