Wednesday, March 6, 2024

TTM Success: Tom Dukes

   Grabbing TTM off the bottom of the pile, this nice return came from Tom Dukes.  He was a relief pitcher in the late 60's and early 70's for a couple of teams including the Orioles.  He didn't have a mainstream Orioles card released during his time in Charm City but was immortalized in the 1991 Crown Orioles set.  

    He was traded to the Orioles along with Pat Dobson in the 1970-71 offseason from the Padres.  He bounced around the league as a relief pitcher but was fortunate enough to be with the Orioles for their 1971 pennant run.  He pitched in two games in the '71 series against the Pirates, throwing four innings of 2-hit ball.                          

In addition to my card, he included a signed custom postcard of himself.
He also answered my question that I included on an index card:

I sent out on November 11, 2023 and got it back on November 27, 2023 for a 14-day TaT. Thank you very much Mr. Dukes!

Tuesday, March 5, 2024

2 blasters of 2023 Stadium Club

Even though I put these cards away a couple weeks ago, I wanted to show the spoils of my two blaster boxes of  2023 Stadium Club while they are are still somewhat fresh in my mind.  Stadium Club was quite late to the market this year but it's usually worth waiting for.  I heard that it was delayed because the printer actually printed the front of the card on both sides and the whole print run needed to be trashed and redone!  Anyways, I'll lead off with my favorite card of the break:

I've always been a fan of Stadium Club over the years.  Some of the cards of legends of the game, like the Babe Ruth above, have not necessarily shown them actually on the field.  I dig this Orange parallel of George Herman behind the wheel of his car. 

A couple of the inserts that I pulled. I've always enjoyed the INSERT version of Stadium Club Chrome but the base set Topps put out for a few years can suck my toes.  Hats off to my scanner that doesnt believe the bottom left of the Chrome Machado exists.

This was a Acuna insert hot box(es) even though these 2 particular inserts do nothing for me.  Stadium club inserts are quite polarizing.  There's great ones like Instavisions, Beam Teams, Never Compromise and Lone Star Signatures then theres crap like Virtuosos of Velocity and Chief Fantasy Professionals.  woof!
I got two black foils and they were pretty decent players.  I can't complain too much with these guys.
I'm quite happy with these 2 red foils.  Chipper is a guy I collect and the Larkin might be of interest to a certain collector that has a Grande sized collection.  Also, its pretty cool that these are "color match" parallels.  Do you get into color match cards?
Probably the best hit of the box was this Photographer's Proof of Dansby Swanson.  These are hella rare, having a print run of 25.  They aren't numbered so of course nobody looks twice.  I've actually found a JD Martinez Photographer's Proof card in a dime box.  It still languishes on my COMC account to this day.

I didn't get any Orioles cards in either box.  It would be nice to pull cards of the team I actually collect but that's just the way it goes. I'm actually quite pleased otherwise.

Saturday, March 2, 2024

Colonial Heights Card Show: Value?

    Value can mean many different things to different people. I am, through and through, a bargain hunter.  Some may call me cheap, but I know what hard work is and the value of a dollar.  When I go to card shows, I like to take my time and go through all of the dime and quarter boxes that time allows and I've been rewarded by finding some either undervalued or simply misplaced great cards.  It can be mind-numbing for some with a short attention span and the "pelican case mafia" has given me a lot of sideways looks over the last few years.  To each his own... I personally don't put value in what opinions that people may have on my cards.

I went to a smaller card show 2 weeks ago that is about a 20ish minute drive from my house.  I hadn't originally planned on going but at the last minute I decided to go.  In the past, its been a smaller show because of space constraints and this time it was only about 12 or so tables set up in half of the Moose Lodge.  Initially disappointed, I was able to find a couple boxes to dig through.

The first table right inside the door was where I spent most of  my time.  There was a 5000 count box of penny sleeved cards that the dealer said was 50 cents a piece.  I got down to business.  I don't keep a close eye on Topps' website or subscribe to their Brooklyn Club (or whatever its called) so I miss out on all of the online exclusive sets.  No worries, I can buy their tears for a fraction of what they paid.  I was able to grab a handful of Topps Chrome Cosmic from the past 2 years for myself (O's above) and a couple of non-Orioles for other people I know.
My assault on the box continued and I was able to pick out some neat-o inserts of the bigger names of the hobby today.  Its funny to look at the Corbin Carroll card and see that he was ranked as low as he was by the "Bowman Scouts".  I found out that guy is awesome at baseball during the playoffs this past year!
I don't do as much prospecting as a I used to but picking up rookie cards of promising young guns of the game is something I have done more of the last few years.  It makes it better that each of these is a parallel so that adds a little value IMO.  Royce Lewis is also great at baseball in case you hadn't heard and this silver foil parallel now resides in my "good rookie card" box.  I picked up the Logan Gilbert and George Kirby parallels because they are good young pitchers and I think they would look great as Orioles.  There were rumors earlier in the offseason that the Orioles and Mariners talked about them. The Mariners need infield help and the Orioles have (had?) an excess even after trading for Corbin Burnes.  I'm a sucker for the Mojo Refractors and it doesn't hurt that Pasquantino is a local kid.  He played high school ball about 20 minutes in the opposite direction from where this show was held.  Hopefully he turns in a fully healthy season this year.

When I picked up this Cal Ripken, I didn't think I had it already.  I got home and looked in my album and I already did.  Topps has done some confusing SH!T with Stadium Club the last few years so I had screwed up my want and have lists because of it. .  I love Chrome, I really do.  I love getting Stadium Club Chrome INSERTS from regular Stadium Club packs.  I do not love a whole Stadium Club Chrome base set especially when the numbering is all FUDGED up.  There is no consistency between the releases the last few years.  I haven't seen anything about a 2023 Stadium Club Chrome set so maybe Topps came to their senses and stopped with the confusion (wishful thinking?)

Any ways, I finished up with this particular dealer for 8 bucks for 20 cards.  I didn't show all of the cards but they were all epic, trust me!

I moved onto another table with a bunch of boxes sorted by sport and team.  I love it when they do that!  For another buck, I was able to get a green parallel of underrated Dean Kremer from Gypsy Queen and a Topps <shudders> Holiday card of Oriole short-timer Shintaro Fujinami.  I mostly love Gypsy Queen even after they ditched the minis but I could really care less about Topps Holiday.  Its just not a product I can get behind.  In 2023 Topps gave the ax to Gypsy Queen, Opening Day, Fire, and Gallery, bastardized Big League, did not introduce anything new but kept the Holiday collection. Let... that... sink.... in.

So on the whole, I spent less than 10 bucks and was home around noon.  Both huge wins in my book!