Friday, August 4, 2017

Stay inside, don't interact with people, get cards

I don't know why I just wrote that. I'm not telling you to do that. I think that when I'm done writing this someone will think that I am implying that. But I'm not. Talking to humans is good. Getting fresh air is good. Getting lost in traffic is good. Spending too much for parking is good. Standing next to sweaty, unshaven people named Frank is good. ... Oh, gosh, there I go implying.

So, anyway, The National has come and gone again and I didn't go anywhere again. But I do have new cards.

How do I do that? I stay inside and don't interact with people, silly.

OK, seriously, I get new cards every year at the same time people are journeying to The National because my birthday happens to be a couple of weeks before The National. People give me cash for my birthday, I order cards for my birthday, I wait for the cards to arrive, and they usually show up right after The National wraps up.

It's very convenient. And when I think about hotel room costs and big-city driving at the same time, it makes me happy that I didn't have to deal with that. I just have to shut out that part about shopping at table after table of nothing but cards and meeting real, live card fanatics.

So I'm shutting that part out and showing what I ordered off of COMC. It's pretty damn good stuff if I do say so myself, and if I came away from The National with it, I couldn't have been more thrilled.

Let's start with the four elusive Dodgers short-prints from this year's Heritage. Heritage short-prints don't come to my house like they once did. Yet, Topps piles Dodgers into the SP group almost every year. So, fine, I'll get them all myself. Here they are. Stupid Topps.

I also nabbed one of the blue parallels because the Dodgers wear blue. It seemed very necessary.

In 2014, Topps Chrome released an insert set called "Topps Shelf". I loved the look of them, which of course, automatically made them impossible to pull. So, fine, these are all mine, too. They are all beautiful. Absolutely my kind of card.

Another elusive card that took way too long to nab. This is the last of the 1979-style cards from 2016 Topps Archives that I needed (not including those SPs, of course). This means I need to do a "finale" post all about the '79-style items, even though I think I've done a couple about the set already. The completist in me needs to be silenced.

This card floored me. It showed up when I was doing my post on Walter Alston a few weeks ago. It's from the 1975 TCMA All-Time Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers set. It's the first set I ever ordered through a catalog, heck it's the first complete set I ever owned (12 whole cards).

But the thing about those cards is they're purple. This card is black and white! It's some apparent variation. I haven't had the time to look up the details, but my mind is still trying to handle this.

I've been looking at this version for almost 40  years!

Did you know Sportflics put out "team preview" cards in 1987? You did? I had no idea and stumbled across this card as well. The world is a wild and wonderful place.

I am very slowly trying to add 1978 SSPC Dodgers cards to my collection since nobody wants to charge normal prices for them. The latest addition is this glorious card of a sour-looking Tommy John in some sort of knock-off, very '70s "Dodger" T-shirt. If ever track down Mr. John in my town again, I'll see if I have the courage to ask him to sign this.

I didn't do so well with 1976 Hostess needs this time around -- the Roger Metzger at the top of the post is the only one I nabbed. But I love this trifecta of '76 Kellogg's cards. Three solid '70s players, non-Dodger favorites. Also, I love that the cards are pristine white, practically out of the cereal box. Yellowed Kellogg's cards make me sad, and the pure white just emphasizes what a beautiful set '76 is.

What's this? Don't I have a 1977 Kellogg's Ron Cey card already?

I sure do. I've owned one since 1977, which means it's fairly worn (but not cracked!). As a known Penguin collector I felt it was my duty to obtain an updated version. Also, if I ever decided to pull the trigger on collecting the '77 Kellogg's set, guess what card won't be the last one I need!

That's a bunch more 1975 Topps buyback cards. Some good stuff there, like Tommy Davis, Reggie Smith, Bernie Carbo and a favorite of mine from way back, Bob Stinson.

Throw in the Jeff Burroughs All-Star card and Darold Knowles, the first card I ever pulled out of a pack that I bought, and these are classics on top of classics! This brings my '75 buyback set to 175 cards!

The next milestone is 200 and I know I'll get there, hopefully before the end of the year. Now that I know that there's at least one '75 Nolan Ryan buyback out there, I'm even more hopeful than ever.

Getting close to the end here now. Can you tell?

I landed this '58 Drysdale pretty cheaply. I know it has flaws, but not ones I care about a bit. This card allows me to do this:

That's my complete run of Drysdale's Topps cards! I probably should do something about that bite mark in the '59 card now, but it's not bugging me at the moment.

The '58 card ended up last because what a weird card. They barely got Drysdale's head in the card and then just the head! That '58 set is an odd one.

Finally, a Sandy Koufax card I've wanted for a long time.

There are still basic Koufaxes I need in my collection, 1957 and 1958 most notably. But neither of those can touch this one, one of Koufax's greatest cards.

This is another one of those cards I didn't think I would land even up until a couple of years ago. But it is now mine and I have also now completed the 1963 Fleer Dodgers team set!

Now, I hope you know why I said I would have been thrilled to walk away from The National with those cards.

That doesn't mean I'm saying "don't shop for cards with your fellow human beings." I'm not.

I think what I'm saying is: I didn't pay for parking, gas, tolls, hotels, meals or admission but still have these cards.

But, please, by all means, attend card shows.

Sweaty, unshaven Frank will get lonely if you don't.


  1. !) It would be worth flying up there to hear TJ's response to that card.

    2) I'm with you on the '63F Koufax. It's just a great card. Congrats on landing it.

  2. There'a 75 Ryan buyback that's been on ebay for a while. It looks like you have competition.

  3. Fantastic Don Drysdale lineup of consecutive year cards. The bite in the 59 card is of no consequence, You have a 1959 Drysdale and that is all that matters. I have a few of these, but not very many. I am very envious of this collection. The year-to-year string looks great!

  4. Cleveland next year should be doable as a one day event for you next year I'd bet. I've done the Buffalo to Cleveland drive, it's not bad. We did home by the CT border to Toledo in one day though so maybe I'm just a little nuts.

  5. I can't believe you're up to 175. Awesome!

  6. A time-traveler just told Tommy John "In 40 years nobody will remember your 288 career wins or four All-Star games, they'll just know you for the UCL surgery". I love his shirt, though.

    Love the 1963 Fleer Koufax! And I'd almost forgotten about that 1975 Bob Stinson, which means it's time for me to spend some quality time with my 1975 Topps binder.

  7. Drysdale is always good, but oh, boy...that blue parallel Puig!

  8. My summer break has finally arrived and there aren't any shows nearby during the next two weeks. What does that mean? It means I'm going to embrace staying in doors, avoiding people (as much as I can... except for the lunch/dinner dates I have planned), and I'm sure I'll pick up a few cards during that time.

  9. I guess I've never seen the '64 Drysdale, but that's pretty weak on Topps part. I know they weren't shy about recycling photos from set to set back then, but you'd think Drysdale would merit a new photo each year.

    Still an impressive run you have there on display.