venerdì 29 gennaio 2016

Closing time!

So I'm closing this series of posts (I'm also running out of titles connected to piching) by showing you probably one of the best cards that I recently picked up. It's one of the best because:

- it features 3 autographs on it!
- all the autos are from at-the-time Yankees players
- it's very shiny

I'm out of reasons but I'm pretty sure you're going to agree with me that this is a pretty cool piece of cardboard...

The card comes from 2008 Topps Co-signers, and it's the first Tri-signers card that joins my collection.
As I said, there are 3 Yankees on it, despite none of them (as far as I know) is still wearing the pinstripes.
One of the players has also been involved in PED use scandal, and no, there's no A-ROD autograph on this card...

The last detail I'm giving about it is related to the numbering of the card...which is nowhere to be found... I will never understand the logic (if there's one) behind the choiches made by card companies when it comes to number cards. Come on, how could you not number a card like the one that I'm about to show?!

There's so much shine on this card that I'm barely able to look at it without my sunglasses on!

Funny thing about it is that I already owned autographs of every player featured on this card, since I have 2 Joba autos (one is in a dual auto booklet from Topps Ticket to stardom and the other is from Upper Deck), I have a Topps Turkey Red Chrome card signed by Melky (the one that apparently used PEDs) and I'm pretty sure I also have something signed by Hughes.

That's it for today

On the mound

Today I will complete the rotation of pitchers currently in the roster of my mailbox...
This time there will be 2 autos and a patch card, so no jersey cards unreasonably pricey.

First things first, the least valuable card  in today's pitchers selection comes from 2014 Panini Immaculate Collection, subset Immaculate Swatches Prime, is numbered to 99, features a nice patch-like fabric piece, and depicts David Holmberg of the Cincinnati Reds! here it is!

The prices for this card range from 2,75 to 10 dollars on COMC, which is a very wide range in my opinion, what do you readers think?

Next, and second in the rotation for today, is an autographed card coming from 2014 Topps Tribute, subset Tribute to the Pastime Autographs Blue, and as the short name suggests, the card has a blue background and is numbered to 50.
So the numbering is decreasing and the price is increasing, ranging from 9 to 20 dollars!
The player that signed this card is Matt Moore, of the Tampa Bay (no more Devilish) Rays!

The last card, and first in order of current asked price on COMC is the one that you wouldn't expect.
It's a non numbered, non crazy-patch, non inscribed, but rather very basic blue-ink autographed card coming from 2007 Upper Deck Artifacts, subset Autofacts.
There's only one currently on COMC and the price for it is 24 dollars, which is crazy high!
This card was signed by Andrew Miller, and is coming to you right now!

Now, in the best case scenario these three cards would sell for a total of 54 dollars, and the best thing about it is that I paid a total of 3 dollars for them!
But since I'm never going to sell my cards, I guess that I will never account for this 51 dollar profit...

In the next post I'll conclude this pitching theme mini series of 3 episodes, by showing a very cool card, that for a third has nothing to do but pitching!

Keep collecting everybody and CIAO!

giovedì 28 gennaio 2016

In the bullpen

Good morning/evening everybody!

Today I'm going to post some nice pics of cards currently in my mailbox, all bought from eBay, and obviously, as suggested by the title, depicting pitchers...

I'm starting with a nice set of three cards, one autograph, a game used jersey and a patch card...all come from different sets, two produced by Topps and one by SP.

Let's go in a sort of ascending order from the least "precious" card to the highest priced card. The prices come directly from the suggestions that COMC makes for each card in the mailbox (except for those "unique" items in the database/marketplace).

The least worthy card is the patch card (quite a surprise for me), and manufactured by SPx in 2007, included in the set Winning materials gold patches, and also numbered to 99!
It's a beautiful (in my opinion) 4 color patch of James Shields

This wonderful card is priced at 3 $ on COMC. Considering that I won the auction on eBay for a dollar, and summing up the shipping fees and the processing fees of the mailbox, I would have spent less by buying it directly on COMC!

The second most (or least, depending on the point of view) expensive card of this trio, is the autograph card. Wow that's a twist! You're probably now wondering what kind of crazy jersey piece will be featured in the most pricey card of this post... you're going to be very surprised!

So, the card in the second place in this trio comes from 2013 Topps Tier One On the rise autograph, it's numbered to 399 (which is a very high number), and it's valued between 3.9 and 7.5 dollars.
In this case, the total paid for card, shipping and processing falls in the middle of the top and bottom prices suggested. The autograph belongs to "Nasty" Nate Eovaldi.

And now, the most valuable card of this post, valued at a whopping 8.24 dollars, is the card that you would never's the regular grey jersey piece, that could belong to every player, and included in every set ever produced.
In this particular case, the jersey belonged to Johnny Cueto, and is included in 2013 Topps Tribute to the stars set. Maybe what makes the card so valuable is the fact that the card is numbered to just 50... who knows!

I hope you liked the theme of this post, and especially the cards featured in it... soon I'll post some more pitcher-themed posts!

Let me know what you think and as usual, keep collecting!


lunedì 18 gennaio 2016

Some honorable mentions part 1

What deserves a mention in this post is a selected list of autographs / relics sets  that I'm considering to actively chase besides the more advertised 2013 Tribute WBC and 2015 Tier one relics.
Since the wanted cards from those sets show up rarely on ebay, despite the significant number of cards that could help fill in some spaces in the checklists, I could begin looking for some other sets, instead of running after every nice and unexpensive card that I see.

A set that could be fun to chase is 2014 Panini Immaculate. It's a set of which I already own some cards, the complexity could be the choice of the theme to collect. I currently have some cards from every (non patch or autographed) subset.
I'll try to show an imagine of cards from each subset, depicting a card I already have, and maybe my readers could help me decide which one is better. I'll also add the current completion status and the population of every subset, and possibly the numbering of the cards.

2014 Panini Immaculate offers the following themes:

- Immaculate Collection: Immaculate Hitters (Currently owned 4 of 25, numbered to 10,49,79,99)

- Immaculate Collection: Immaculate Pitchers (Currently owned 2 of 15, numbered to 49,79,99)

- Immaculate Collection: Immaculate Swatches (Currently owned 6 of 95, numbered to 15,25,49,99)

- Immaculate Collection: Singles Materials Prime  (Currently owned 5 of 38, numbered to 25,49,79,99)

- Immaculate Collection: Premium Materials  (Currently owned 2 of 41, numbered to 49,79,99)

As you can see, lots of great cards, but so far very few in my collection..should I try to put together at least one of these?
Soon another post of possible new sets that are currently teasing my collecting appetite!

Keep Collecting and CIAO!

sabato 9 gennaio 2016

Cutting down the expenses!

Hello everyone!

The title might be misunderstood, so let me clarify immediately.
I haven't decided to reduce the budget for cards pickups, but the exact opposite, because I've been able to snag some nice cards off ebay for even less the usual dollar!

I don't know why this thing fascinates me so much, but I really cannot ignore a card that has been signed by a professional player, or that features a chunck from his jersey, especially when the cost for it is significantly lower than the price of a coffee at the bar.

The first card costed me 1 cent, so it's the lowest you can go on ebay today, as long as people will start giving stuff away for free!
The card comes from a beautiful set (IMO), a set to which every now and then I try to add some more pieces, such as the one coming. It's 2005 Donruss Studio Portraits, where a selection of 100 players is portrayed in beautiful sketch like cards. The thing that makes the set interesting, is that every player has several variants, every one connected to a specific Donruss brand (you can recognize it on the back of the cards) and every one is numbered to a low numbered of specimens, and also the front can be b/w or colored, in different tones and with different frames colors.
The card I'm about to show features Nomar Garciaparra in a Cubs uniform, is numbered to 70 and on the back advertises the brand Zenith.
After all this talking, here's the card!

I love especially the logo on the bottom left of the front, that reminds me of the old cabinet cards.

The next card costed 25 cents, so I'm rising the bar dramatically here!
The card comes from 2007 Upper Deck Elements, the set is called Clear Cut, and it is pretty rich in terms of featurings, since it has a piece of jersey with pinstripe and an autograph as well!
The player? Austin Kearns, a decent player I would say, so no problems in paying a pretty quarter for this card!

Maybe the sticker auto is off centered, and apparently there's a little smudging near the Nationals logo, but hey, this card comes almost for free!

From the same seller I was able to pickup two more cards, one of which is the next to come.
It is from 2008 Upper Deck Masterpieces, and is a Jersey card of Torii Hunter.

If I'm not wrong, he recently retired, and since the card has been made by a manufacturer that also "retired" from the hobby, I thought that would be a cool addition to the collection. Also, I had no cards of this player before, so now he's in the Completist team too!
By the way, this card costed 50 cents, I'm such a big spender recently!

I apologize for the bad quality of the pictures but I'm taking them directly from the auction...

So for the total of 76 cents I got 3 nice cards, and gave a home to three good players that otherwise could have remained in auction for the coming months.

I hope you liked these close-to-free purchases... to be honest I bought more cards (relics) for a cent each but I already archived the transaction on ebay and I don't know if I'll ever be able to find them again...

Have a nice weekend and keep collecting!


lunedì 4 gennaio 2016

Keep on completing!

Good evening (if you're reading this post from Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania) and good morning (if you're in the American continent)!

I don't know if it's because today is my last holiday before returning to work tomorrow, or is just my collecting nature, but I decided to look for a couple key cards in order to complete some more sets...

The sets I'm focusing on are those that I'm the most close to complete, such for example 2010 Upper Deck. This is sort of an historical set because is the last year in which Upper Deck produced baseball card. I'm obviously not considering products like Goodwin Champions and World of Sports, but the good old fashioned baseball card sets.

So, in order to complete this set, the only missing card until ten minutes ago was the #491, depicting David Price in Tampa Bay uniform. Not a particular card at all, but it seemed the hardest to find in this set, that I can now declare complete!

Here's the card I'm talking about

For the more curious of you, I paid it 35 cents, which is totally ok considering the card that it is and in line with my price policy.

The second set closest to completion is 2006 Topps, of which I was missing 2 cards.
Since one of the two cards is the infamous Alex Gordon rookie card (you know, the one that is either cut out, entirely blank except for the golden border or even available in the old fashioned regular version), I could only focus on the other missing piece.

I'm talking about the card #508 featuring Dan (or Danny) Haren in the Athletics uniform, here it is

Once again, not a particular card at all, except for the fact that has been very elusive until today.
The price for it? 45 cents!

So today, for a total expense of 70 cents, I completed a set, a narrowed down to one missing card another set.

I don't know why it took me so long to realize the incredible and helpful potential of COMC, you don't pay for the shipping, you don't to wait for the card to arrive, and apparently there are no processing fees at all, since the card is already present in the database.

A great day has been!

Thank you all for taking the time to read this post, and see you soon!


domenica 3 gennaio 2016

I'm officially a big spender!

As I mentioned in my previous post, I was uncertain about an "expensive" purchase of a card that would have been very useful for my chase for completeness. In this case, the completeness of the 661 card set which is 2012 Topps Base set.

Well, as the title suggests, I dediced to buy it...the reasons could be briefly recapped as follows:

- I won't buy a box of Topps 2012 just hoping to find this particular card;
- The same card was also available on COMC, but at a higher price;
- It's a card that I can not even hope to find inside a mixed cards lot off ebay;
- The total I paid for it is 10.50 $ shipping included, which is pretty reasonable considering that with this particular card I can write the 2012 Topps set off my wantlist, and focus on the remaining 10.000 sets from various manufacturers that I'm still chasing...

The card I picked up is represented here below, and the picture comes directly from the ebay auction..

It's the card number 661 from the Base set of 2012 Topps.
It is also the Rookie card of Bryce Harper, and is also available in 2 other variants / shortprints (if I correctly unterstood the Wikipedia page dedicated to this card), not mentioning the Autographed version of it and the cards included in the Update set.

Considering the big step that this cards allowed, maybe I can treat myself right every now and then and purchase some more "expensive" cards in the future...

Keep collecting folks!


Let's keep posting!

Wow what a start, it's already the second post of the year and it's just the 3rd of January!
I know that also the previous post was written today (I published it 2 minutes ago to be precise), but I feel like I want to share some more toughts with my readers (or reader, probably)...

Since the collection has been recently moved from the apartment to the basement due to space issues, and I bought and built a showcase that is still sadly empty, I spent a couple weeks thinking about a solution for the cards currently in the collection, and those (hopefully many more) that will join it in this new year.

So, this was the previous situation:

- all the relics/autos/graded cards are in boxes/drawers in the "hobby room";
- all the cards that are not relics/autos/graded are stored in my monster boxes (that I showed in an older post in its shelf);
- such boxes are fully loaded and have been moved in the basement (not before I securely packed them with cellophane);
- I have no more empty boxes and penny sleeves, and both of these useful items are very hard to find, especially on ebay, and buying them from DAcardworld would cost like a month of my rent just for the shipment;

Since just a single lot of cards that I could buy on ebay in the near future could be very tough to manage in the above boxes, and I would have no penny sleeves (because every single card of the collection MUST be at least penny sleeved), what to do?

Here's the solution!

Even if it could appear sort of a non-sense, the solution is in fact pretty simple...

1) Buy binders and pages; DONE (thanks to Santa Clause, aka my girlfriend);
2) Take out from the monster boxes only the complete sets that I've been able to complete so far and store them in the binders. In this way I not only clear space in the boxes for new cards, but I also can recycle penny sleeves, since the Ultra Pro pages (and probably all the others existing) are not wide enough to keep the cards sleeved. DONE (in fact so far I only completed a couple sets and some small insert sets from the 90s);
3) In this way part of the collection is back in the apartment, in a form that is also pretty cool from a design / furnishing point of view.

But (hopefully), sooner or later also the binders will be too many and the problem will reappear...but it's the kind of problem that I can't get enough of, since we're talking about huge amounts of cards!

Before I end this posts, maybe I can show a couple more cards that I bought in December...

First card is from 2001Upper Deck Legends Legendary Game Jerseys and is a pants (so not jersey at all) piece of Dave Winfield

Then is the next card, that is not included in the specific 2013 Tribute WBC page simply because it is a subset that I'm not actively chasing, due to the high prices and way to extensive variety of cards that it would require. It's nonetheless from 2013 Topps Tribute WBC, but it's a base card, but it's in the numbered version. It's Philippe Aumont gold version numbered to 25!

So here it is for the second post of 2016!
Best regards to everyone from Italy and KEEP COLLECTING!!

New post

Well, now that the new year has arrived, I feel like it's time to look back at the 2015 season to check how it's been.

I'm very satisfied about the way that the blog looks today, with the sections recapping some of the sets that I'm actively chasing, and most importantly, I'm extremely proud of the wantlists that I finally managed to put together after so many attempts and years of collecting (I might be wrong but I think I've been collecting since 2008, so I'm entering my ninth year in this amazing hobby).

I posted the incredible number of 24 posts, versus 15 that were posted in 2014. It's a decent improvement, but I still feel like I could have done better (or should I say more)...

So my goal for this new year is to at least double the posts of 2015, reaching hopefully the 50 posts mark.

I don't think that I will buy enough cards and in a way so constant throughout the whole year, but I will think about something different from the usual "here's what I got recently"to fill 49 more posts.

I've received a nice stack of cards from 2015 Tier One relics set for Christmas, but at the same time, I bought some goodies for myself off ebay (I will show some of them later).

I hope everybody in this beautiful community is fine, and has began the new year in a great way.
Speaking of other collectors, I might also try to be more active under a trading perspective in this new year, despite I completed several trades in 2015 and found new collecting and trading partners, especially here in the old Europe.

I'm considering wehter or not pick up a pricey card off ebay, that would help me complete the 2012 Topps Base set, this would be against my policy, but sooner or later I will have to face the fact that such a card is impossible to win for a dollar on auction, and there's no way that I will ever buy a box of 2012 topps just hoping to pull it...I guess that we will see...

So, as I promised before, here's some new cards that are sitting in my COMC mailbox!

First is a dual relic card, and features a bat piece (pretty unusual considering that the card depicts a pitcher) and a really sick patch (which is the reason why I bought it). Here's a 2005 Donruss Zenith Z-Combos Prime numbered to 25 of A.J.Burnett!

I really like the patch on it, but the shiny metal finishing of the card is a bit disturbing, especially when it comes to scanning it!
Next is an autographed card, from a set that I really like, especially when it comes to autographs.. I'm talking about 2014 Topps Stadium club and this signature was executed by Livan Hernandez

I tried a couple times to win a card signed by him (but it was both times from 2015 Tier One) so I'm happy to finally add his auto to the collection.

The last card that I will post for today is a pair of cards! Same player, same type of cards (autos) and same ebay seller that I bought 'em from.
So the player is a Mexican pitcher that I like, and that is also featured in the 2013 Topps Tribute WBC set, and since it's not Sergio Romo, it can only be Yovani Gallardo!

The auctions for these ended at a ridicolous 0.25 $ a piece, and I've been more than happy to take them from the seller...the first card is from 2010 Topps Finest Moments Autographs, while the second comes from 2007 Bowman Sterling, and is also the Rookie card of Gallardo.
None of them is numbered, but the blue ink on them is enough for me!

I hope you like the cards and contents of this post, and I wish you all a great 2016!

Keep collecting!!