Sunday, January 29, 2017

Another Transatlantic triple break (part 45379)

It's time for a new presentation of my favorite game show : Transatlantic Triple Break with Matt and Brian !

The participants this time were a box of 2004 Bowman and one of 2000 Finest. I didn't own any Blue Jays from those sets, so it was a great choice for me.

I had no idea inserts existed also in a refractor version. Pretty cool. I'll never get used to Boggs in that uniform...

More inserts, and a couple base cards. I've always liked Finest, even if it's a little over the top sometimes.

Speaking of which, that box topper is also mine ! Supersized Pedro is always scarier.

And finally, some much needed Blue Jays for my collection. I'm reading David Well's biography right now...and it's quite something !

Onto Bowman, with its combination of chrome, base and parallels. Here are the Blue Jays

The people at Bowman wanted to make sure I got as many variations of Youkilis as possible. Base, chrome, gold and refractor.

Now, for the trade portion of the package !

I don't know if that auto was IP or TTM, but it's definitely legit. And I love the choice of the card also.

Brian sent me some great cards once again, but this one is my favorite : 1969 Aparicio !

A great variety of PC players !

I love that Moon card. It's acetate, which allows you to have a great view of my table underneath it.

And finally, some modern Blue Jays (and a very cool Ultra insert feat Jose Cruz jr), including my first taste of 2016 Bowman's Best. I should have a closer look at that set, actually, I like what they did with the base cards.

Thanks again Brian, can't wait to see what you pick next !

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Box Break : 95 SC (here comes the Ring leader)

Like many of you, Stadium Club is one of my favorite sets to collect. I don't think there's been a single mistake in any of the SC sets across the years, including their debut set (remember that big Kodak logo ? Nobody remembers Kodak anymore...). Which shows that the people at Topps know exactly what great uncropped photography should look like...

Anyway, I got a box of 1995 SC a few months ago packed with everything I love about Stadium Club !

Nice clear acetate of one of my favorite players from that era. Pretty cool insert.

Another great looking insert (I showed the Joe Carter the other day). Griffey would've been a better pull though !

Ooooooh, coooool, 3 units ! I must find a phone in the US and try this out. Those are actually very tough pulls, so I was lucky to get it. 20 years too late, sure....I wonder if this counts as a Blue Jays card ?

And of course, SC as I said is all about original and crisp photography. Here's proof !

There may be a future HOF in that bunch

And probably not in this one...

Another fun 90s box to break !

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Yay, Box breaks ! (yay)

I have several box breaks to show, even though most are pretty much uneventful. But if card blogging was only about showing off cards with monetary value or super rare inserts, I'd been out of the game for a long time now. It's funny because in my line of work (I work in a comic book store) I deal with collectors all the time. People who only want specific limited editions or first editions only. They are willing to pay a lot of money to have that one book of which only 300 copies were made, all signed. Being a collector myself, I should be able to understand them. Truth is, I don't really. But hey, to each their vices, and at least their money goes to me.

Anyway, for Christmas I got a bunch of stuff, including cards.

At the very bottom of that pile, there's a box of 2002 series 1 Upper Deck. I plan on getting a box of every series of flagship Upper Deck from 90 (I don't really know if 89 can be found, and I already have the Griffey rookie) to 2010. I can only rely on websites that offer combined shipping, otherwise I'll end up paying $70 for a box of cards, so that limits my range, but I'll get there some day !

There were no guaranteed hits in that box, so I'm glad I got one, even if there's Roger Clemens on it (I've always had a soft spot for Posada, too bad he lost his on the HOF ballot). I seem to remember those came 1:240

UD has always been great at designing inserts, except for a short period when they overdid it with foil everywhere. Nothing too exciting there, but solid designs nevertheless. And here's a nice list of PED users

Here's a design I really like ! Looks like it was a Braves hot box.

Woohooo, new Griffeys ! I already had some from that subset, generously sent to me by Junior master Junior Junkie, but not those. UD grabbed every opportunity possible to include Griffey in their products. It must be a nightmare to be a Griffey supercollector.

Bret Boone...ah well.

As is the case with Stadium Club, flagship UD is all about photography. Nothing really fancy this time, but still nice to browse. The backs are somewhat lackluster so I won't show them, but I like the overall look of the cards. Simple efficient design

Some household names and players I like.

You can hardly ever go wrong with horizontal shots !

Those weren't on the Christmas pile, but I bought a bunch of packs for our transatlantic triple break (more on that another day), and treated myself to a few extras, including 12 fat packs of 2016 A&G. I really like what they did with this year's design. Besides that, it's business as usual, with some minis :

Happy to get some Blue Jays, of course, including a black bordered.

I didn't notice at first that that Mendoza (had no idea who she was before seeing that card) was hand-numbered. I still don't know who I could possibly send this to, but it's still a fun card to have.

Even though the fat packs were completely random and chances of not getting any hits are high, I did get one. But then again, it's as if I hadn't really gotten one. Nice orange, though. But c'mon, who cares about Greenberg's tie ?

So there you go. Always fun to bust open packs. Can't wait for the next ones, but I need to save up a little bit first, each shipment costing me a couple hundred dollars each time. Maybe I can reach out to my clients and launch a kickstarter. They'll understand...

Monday, January 16, 2017

I fought the 90s and the 90s won

As anybody who's been paying even remotely attention knows, I'm a 90s guy. I enjoy the newer aspects of the hobby (ie not having only a 1:20 000 chance of getting an autograph), but I'm all for the nostalgia of days past and for the craziness of card manufacturers (a time where there were more than 1 licensed, that is). So it's quite naturally that I looked at my Blue Jays checklist and decided to grab some 90s inserts that were missing in my collection. As always in that case, I turned to COMC who offer unbeatable flat shipping rates to international destinations (that would be my case). Let's hope Trump doesn't ban overseas shipping altogether just because he doesn't like our cheese.

Aaaah, first day issues. I wonder if today all cards are first day issues ? I also really liked those Bowman previews. I had the Albert Belle and the PIazza (great cards) and was missing the lone Blue Jay.

No more than 6500 Gold stars produced, says the back. Impressive.

 There were definitely some great players to collect in 93-96 when you were a Blue Jays fan ! Some good looking Pinnacle inserts there. The Cooperstown one actually looks like something Upper Deck could've designed

Didn't get much better than SP in those days, and Holoview in particular. Always nice to see Delgado as a catcher.

I really liked Leaf back in the days, especially their inserts. They seemed to be the most inventive of all (well, Pacific being in a league of their own, of course)

And of course, I had to grab some Joe Carters...I already have many of his, but I still managed to find some cool ones I was missing.

 A hologram !

 Those Stadium Club inserts are awesome. If you look closely, you'll see that those are the Members only versions. I took them because they're pretty much priced the same as the normal ones.

This one I got on ebay. Those signature series are a little confusing and frustrating, as you have few players who sign a lot of cards. I still like that 95 SC a lot, and Green was a favorite of mine, so I'll try to chase a few. Especially since he's not really a big name and some of those cards are very low numbered

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

All the minor leagues that are fit to print : another trade post

After the package sent by Matt, it's about time I showed the one sent a couple of months ago by my other good friend and partner in triple break crime : Brian, from Highly subjective.

For this break, Brian chose some Topps Debut. I got the boxe's main hit (the patch card), a cool low numbered Mookie Betts (01/25) and a couple of guys I've actually heard of. Because I have to admit I don't follow baseball close enough to know everything (or anything, for the matter) about the minors, nor to know exactly who made it or not. But hey, cards have always been a way for me to learn more about players !

As always, the box break was completed with trade fodder :

A numbered JR Smith. His bloopers sometimes make more noise than his plays (let's just say he's not always the smartest apple in the batch), but he's still a very talented player. And there's nothing not to love about those 3 football cards (Museum !)

Since Brian knows I can't find packs of cards where I live, he'll sometimes include a few unopened ones. Always awesome to rip packs ! I see those Babe Ruth for cheap online all the time, maybe I'll grab a box one day, they're pretty fun.

PC players, including a nice shiny Rolen and my first 2016 Stadium Club. I really hope to find some boxes within my price range (around $50) someday in the near future.

 100% certified 90s cards ! Alomar, even in an Orioles uniform is still Alomar !

More 90s greatness. I love those SP cards. I seem to remember those inserts were pretty tough to come by, and packs very expensive to begin with (maybe not as expensive as 93 Finest, but still)

A couple of pitchers. One is shiny refractory, the other had an amazing career.

 Some nice Heritage inserts and your usual white modern patch (I need to check if Arencibia is still around)

And finally, just like that, a Brett Cecil Yellow printing plate ! Always amazing to get one in a trade. Brian actually pulled it from a pack, so yay, lucky me.

Thanks a lot Brian, and I still need to show off the cards I received yesterday...the cards just keep coming, it's Christmas everyday. Woohooo