Sunday, June 29, 2014

2008 Upper Deck Cleveland Indians Fan Pack

Wow, I haven't busted a pack in here for a long time !

But a few days ago I received a pack in the mail that is very worthy.

A Cleveland Indians fan pack I never heard of before !

Chunter, a big Braves Fan over at Chip & Dale, with whom I've made several trades, sent an email about this pack.

He found it at a Walmart for $1.00.

He wanted to know if I was interested.

What !!?? Are you kiddin' me !

Even if I had seen these these before I'd still be interested in another or two, or five, or ten !

I know absolutely nothing about this pack and have never seen one before, for the Indians or any other team.They are available on ebay for Red Sox, Yankees and Indians and apparently were available in 25 ct. cases and 100 ct. "master" cases. They carry a pretty hefty price but are not selling too well. Probably because they are mostly just common cards and not much of any substantial value. More of a curiosity factor..Which they would have gotten me there ! 

I probably would have been more excited about the contents back in 2008 than I am now as there is not one single card of a current Indian player !

However there was one quality card !

So here's what was inside.

2007 Upper Deck Series 1 and 2
8 Series 1
4 Series 2

2008 Upper Deck Series 1
7 cards

2007 Upper Deck Future Stars
2 cards

2007 Upper Deck SP  Legendary Cuts.
These two are a step up !
Nice cards of Feller and Lemon.

2007 Upper Deck Artifacts
Victor Martinez

And finally the card that made the pack for me.

2007 Upper Deck Masterpieces

You may not be able to tell, but it's the glossy version !
Only one I have.

So thank you Chunter !

I'll be watching out for a pack of Braves for you !

Saturday, June 21, 2014

2014 Topps Major League Movie Jumbo

As soon as I read that Topps was offering a "Special Edition" pack of cards based on the "Major League" movie, I knew I had to get a pack! The wrapper in old school wax-coated paper! It has the great feel I remember as a kid.  The delivery guy left it on the porch and we had a rain come through. The outer box showed signs of water damage as did the paper wrapper that encased the pack. The pack itself had some water on it, but because of the wax coating, it was fine as were the cards inside!

As mentioned, the cards are 5"x7". They are styled after 1989 Topps Baseball, the same year the movie was released. The photos are certainly on par with those found in 1989 Topps products. By today's standards, they are grainy, out of focus, and generally reflect baseball photography of the 80's.

The main differences between the '89 cards and these come by way of insignia. There is a "Major League" movie logo in the upper corners and the "Wild Thing" baseball logo in a lower corner.

I suppose no "Major League" card set would be complete without Jobu. And, we all know the line from the movie where Jobu gets his comeuppance. It's not safe for work or children, so I won't post it here. Haha!

The Rachel Phelps card is my only gripe. Team owners are not featured on cards. Managers are featured on cards. I think Topps should have had Lou Brown instead of Phelps. But, in the scheme of things, I won't complain too much.

I love the use of this photo because it comes just as Dorn decides he is going to play along. He is ready to be pummeled repeatedly by grounders.

Harris is infamous for his use of "pitching aids." I wish Topps would have used a more "traditional" photo for a pitcher. I also wish they would have made one of "Willie Mays" Hayes. 

The backs of the cards resemble 1989 Topps as well. Each card features information about the featured photo on the front. There is obligatory copyright info (including that of Paramount Pictures) at the bottom. I wish they would have done stats for the players I am sure someone somewhere has tracked each of the players' stats in the movie. In fact, I found some made-up stats HERE and a slew of rosters, fan-cards, etc HERE.

Regardless of the shortcomings, this is a welcome set for fans of the movie!

Friday, June 20, 2014

2014 Topps Series 2 Retail


Hope everyone's ready for the weekend.  Packs of this starting appearing on the Target shelves a couple of days before the "official" release date.  Good's a pack of 2014 Topps Series 2!

Great bounce-back after losing Mr. Padre
It's the standard 330 card set, with all them parallels and mostly-boring inserts.  This was the third pack I bought...let's see what I got:

#603 - Starlin Castro
#441 - Mike Pelfrey
#417 - Chase Headley
#489 - David Price

I sure hope there's a Topps guy looking at all the card blogs out there and reports to management that the blogosphere does not like close ups of pitchers pitching and batters batting on the majority of the cards in the set.  If they're just paying for Getty images, find some better ones!

#573 - Adam Lind
#478 - Billy Hamilton (checklist)

I like the season highlights appearing on the checklist cards.  Topps could make it better by putting a sentence or two on the back to give more info on the highlight. 

#212 - Jason Heyward (Future Stars - SP)
#BM-10 - James Shields (Breakout Moments)

This is why I posted the third pack.  Looks like Topps expanded the Future Stars concept to players that missed the Future Stars branding the first time, because Topps didn't use it for a while.  I do like that they used a picture of them in their Futures jersey, although there's a few brain cells thinking it could be a photoshop job.  

#451 - Luis Garcia (RC)
#465 - Justin Morneau
#597 - Mat Latos
#473 - Mike Napoli

Speaking of photoshops, bad job on the Morneau.  That purple looks like it can glow in the dark.

Here are some backs for you:

Anyway, that's the pack.  More later...thanks for reading!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

2012 SP Signature Baseball 3-Packs

2012 SP Signature is a unique and fun product.

Each box contains 3 packs of 3 cards. All cards are sticker, certified autos. 3 per box are dual autos.

No pictures or team logos on cards.

The result is a straightforward, fun break for hitseekers. In the past I've pulled a Red Sox quad auto (Yaz/Rice/Lynn/Evans), Duke Snider Auto, and some other cool ones.

Boxes run $90 right now. Lets see how I did...

Austin Maddox is first, now in the Red Sox system.

D-Lee! Not too shabby. 300+ homers, couple of ASG's.

Double Auto... Pedro Alvarez and Colton Cain. The latter hasn't made the bigs yet.

Next pack...

Looks like I cut off some of these scans. Sorry. Jhoulys Chacin... how fun is that to say.

Luke Hochevar... at 30 years old a solid, average pitcher.

A couple Mariners here. This break isn't super impressive so far.

Oh well, one more pack...

Danks/Flowers... looks like I'm not hitting a quad auto today...

Ian Kennedy. No disrespect, solid player, but this hit is still looking like a dud... just one more...


Okay! Albert! I can live with this break. I can definitely live with this break.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

1989 Upper Deck Baseball

The new kid. The evolution of the hobby. The game changer.

Welcome to 1989 Upper Deck baseball. This is the pack that changed the hobby forever. New card stock. Unique photography. Back side images. Holograms. Everything in our hobby changed when these packs hit the market, especially considering the first card that Upper Deck released. Somehow, my LCS got in a box of 1989 Upper Deck. I bought a pack since I do not own a copy of card #1. Let's see if I am now an owner of one of the hobby's most iconic rectangles.

Wax wrappers were another change in card collecting after the release of Upper Deck. Who remembers these foil packs? You could win a Mantle, according to the front. Plus - 15 cards. FIFTEEN!!! And I think that was for a buck if I recall. Let's go three at a time.

The familar 1st base path design, that they continued thru their next three years to complete the baseball diamond. The Ellis is poorly framed. UD got better in the coming years.

We start seeing UD different take on the images with the Shelby and the Slaught.

Almost a PATP with Pena. And look - a real checklist. If I had to guess, before I ripped the pack open, I would have known one of the 15 cards was a checklist. When these were common place in sets (as opposed to the "checklists" they have now), I pulled one in dang near every pack I purchased.

Well, I got a rookie, but it wasn't Junior.

I am sorry for those that got the Chris Berman nickname in their head with that last card. Let's turn over the cards and show the best 3 reverse sides.

Ruffing blowing bubbles. That is the type of shot that won the fans over to UD, among other reasons. The pack also said I would get a 3D team logo hologram. I got two!

Well, today is Father's Day, which means Panini packs, which means if there are still packs left in this box, I am buying a couple more. There's gotta be a Junior in one of them, right?

Thursday, June 12, 2014

1998-99 Topps Basketball Series 1

We're in the thick of the NBA Finals now, so to get everyone pumped for tonight's Game 4, here's a pack of cards from more than 15 years ago. Hooray...?!

26 - Elliot Perry - Perry was a fringe player who eventually developed into a solid backup point guard.

71 - Alan Henderson - Here's the back of these weird cards, which do not look very Topps-like. Hey, it was a lockout year.

96 - Wesley Person - I guess Person is responsible for the dunk here, but only about 8% of the player shown in this photo is actually Wesley Person.

83 - Clifford Robinson - Uncle Cliffy! Nice!

- 1998 NBA Draft Redemption #27 - Oh man, I wonder if Topps can fulfill this one for me. The #27 draft pick ended up being Vladimir Stepania, who had a pretty unremarkable 6 year NBA career.

3 - Rod Strickland - Here's a look at the then-brand new Wizards look.

4 - Keith Van Horn - Keith Van Horn is just showin' off.

52 - Matt Maloney - Well... enjoy the Finals, folks.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

2013-14 Panini Rookie Anthology

Soon, licensed Panini cards in the hockey realm will be but a fond memory. As much as we like the exclusive Topps baseball license (re: sucks), I am sure this exclusive releases to UP for NHL cards will be just as fantastic (re: more sucks). But until there is no more Panini, let's enjoy them. And enjoy the fact that Panini decided to do a full on dump of all memorabilia and auto cards in their last few releases.

My wife and daughter chipped in for a Father's Day gift of a box of Rookie Anthology this year. It comes 10 packs to a box, 5 cards be pack. Guaranteed 4 hits, though I have seen 5, and other people have seen as many as 7 hits in a box. Let's post what was, to me, the best of the 10 in my box.

Wrapper. Boring. Blue. Silver. White. Dual rookie. We done? Good. Moving on.

Crisp images on an ok background. I prefer the ice surface behind the players. but I think Panini likes to focus on the one player alone. Whatever. Not too much foil - just the name and the logo/lines at the bottom. No too shabby a design. The color bar behind the player is gradated. You'll see it better in another card. Simple team logo upper right. Jeff likes this.

Now you see the background gradation. Eh - I could do without it. Martin need to step aside - Cory is the future in the Devils nets.

Here's the backs. If I asked you to mock up what you thought the back would be like, I am sure you all would have gotten about 70-80% correct, just missing out on the player stats.

Here comes the dump. Of the 5 cars in the pack, two are not Anthology, unless it's an Anthology hit. I was pulling Prizm, Score inserts (like this, gold and black borders), Select - you name it. It's a Red Wing. In fact...

Yeah - two Dead Wings in the same pack. "But Jeff - you said this was the best out of the box. Did you go all turncoat on your beloved Blackhawks?" Nope, cuz this baby saved the pack, and made the box.

OH YEAH!!!! Luxury Suite is another card set you can pull. Plus I pulled some Titanium hits. This baby was sandwiched between the two flying tires. It's a beautiful in person as you would think.

If you visit my blog, you can see the rest of the hits from my box, plus a few packs of the product too.