Sunday, May 31, 2020

Online dime box

After all the coronavirus stuff kicked in, I had no idea when was the next time I would be able to go to a card show, which was a frightening thought. Already I missed digging through cards, especially dime boxes, and just being around people. There's still no date in sight for card shows returning, but at least I was able to take advantage of a dime box.

 How, you may ask? Or maybe you already know from blog posts by other baseball card bloggers. For a while now has had a sale reducing the prices of all their cards from 25 cents each to 10 cents, and believe me, I took advantage of it. I spent a good amount of time digging through the inventory, and emerged with a whopping 249 cards! That's about $10-15 more than I've ever spent at a real dime box, the reason for my affluence being a check from my grandparents.
The 3 stacks in the picture are my pile of Yankees, my pile of player collection cards, and my pile of random cards, which as you can see, got a little big. It will be hard for me to figure out where to start this post, but I'll have a try.
I always enjoy getting O-Pee-Chee cards, so I got a lot of Yankees and other players. It's rather ironic that for a lot of the OPC cards I don't have the Topps card yet.
These look like regular old Topps cards, but they're actually O-Pee-Chee. For some odd reason OPC cards in both 1990 and 1991 have the Topps logo on the front. Whenever you see what looks like a 1991 Topps card in this post, it's actually a OPC card.
I always enjoy getting cards of failed Yankee phenoms, like Kevin Maas, Ruben Rivera, and Brien Taylor here.
For the last two years of the brand's existence, they used designs different from Topps. These 4 are from the final set, 1994, and the Paul O'Neill card in the picture above is from 1993.
Going through the cards made me realize how much I've fallen behind in keeping current with collecting Yankees. Though 3 of the 4 players above played vital parts in the Yank's success in 2019, these were the 1st cards I've gotten of them. Part of the reason is that I made a decision to stop buying retail except on very rare occasions, and the other is that although I always mean to start trading cards, I never do. Hopefully I'll get to that sometime soon.
Same story as above. I did not particularly enjoy Neil Walker's stay in New York, and I doubt he did either. He hit .219, for which I dubbed him "The Hitless Wonder". Oh well.
These two were actually my 1st two 2020 Topps cards at all. The design is okay, the photos are good, and they still have full-career stats, so I can't complain.
I thought Renata Gallasso Glossy Greats were a steal at 10 cents, and I also enjoyed getting a couple of TCMA minor league cards.

To avoid the risk of going on forever, I'll end the post here, and a follow-up will appear in a few days. Generally when I say it takes a month for me to write the 2nd post, but as it's summer break and I'm sitting around the house anyway,you don't have to worry this time.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Right place, right time

Sometimes you're just in the right place at the right time. One day I was browsing on Comc, as I do too often, when I noticed that a couple tobacco baseball cards were heavily discounted. This was perfect, as I love getting any baseball cards made before World War 2, and these were the cheapest I'd ever seen, outside of some really beat-up T205 commons. And they weren't just mere commons. The one I was itching to get the most was a T206 Fred Merkle, known for his "boner".

The only problem was money. I technically had enough, but that was earmarked for a card show that was coming the next weekend (yes, this was a while ago). I was very anxious about it, when finally I remembered something.

 My Uncle Charlie, a little after Christmas, had asked if there was something he could get me for a late Christmas present. Being me, I had kept on putting it off, which turned out well. I had originally planned on asking for just  a baseball book or two, so it turned out to be very providential that I put it off.

Late that night, with my mind still going way past it's normal rate, I had bought the Fred Merkle, which my Uncle got for me, and another card.
Beautiful, isn't it? Though Merkle is just remembered for the error which lost the 1908 pennant race, he was actually a pretty good player, finishing 7th in the MVP voting in 1911, and 18th in 1912. He hit .273 for his career, pretty good for the dead ball era, and after he was done in the major leagues starred in the high minor league for a couple years.
And now for the other card. This was my first T205, and I was not disappointed. I think the set would be as popular as T206 if it wasn't missing the attention-catching errors and scarcities that T206 has in relative abundance.  I chose Doc Crandall for my 1st example as he had a very interesting career. He was one of the 1st relief aces, for one, leading the NL in games finished every year from 1909-1913. He was also a very good hitter, and in fact in 1914, while playing in the Federal League, he was used as both a pitcher and a 2nd baseman. It worked pretty well, as he went 13-9 on the mound and hit .306.

Also, he won 354 professional games, most of them in the majors and the Pacific Coast League, the best minor league at that time.
And here are the backs, from when they knew how to make good backs.  T206 had simple but attractive backs, and T205 was one of the very first sets to have statistics on the back.They were both Sweet Caporal cards, which is interesting.

Thanks for reading, and also thanks to Uncle Charlie, who made these cards possible.