Friday, September 29, 2017

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee Hockey - Retail Pack

It's not always easy to find hockey cards in Texas and finding some O-Pee-Chees at retail has been tougher than I anticipated.  I love Texas for so many reasons but this is certainly a shortcoming. 

I had stopped at various Targets and Walmarts at least a half dozen times before finding anything.  I found an unopened box, but it wasn't a blaster.  I asked a cashier to do a price check, thinking it would come back "item not found" and it did.  She opened it up, tried again and success.  Normally I wouldn't buy normal packs but since they were out of a previously unopened box, I snagged a couple.  Since then I've looked for more and haven't found any.  Anywhere. 


LINK:  2017-18 O-Pee-Chee NHL Hockey Cards

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #101 Alexander Ovechkin
When set images were released months ago, I felt the design was the best in years and was excited.  When I opened my first pack and looked, I wasn't as thrilled.  I don't know why.  After a few days and another look I am again on-board. 

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #101 Alexander Ovechkin (back)
The backs are typical and what I expect from O-Pee-Chee.  What I would like to see is no dead space.  It would be great to fill the space with bios or cartoons, like in the "old days."

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #64 Mats Zuccarello

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #335 Andre Burakovsky

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #286 Logan Couture

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee Retro #54 Reilly Smith (front)

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee Retro #54 Reilly Smith (back)

I don't see much of a difference on the Retro backs.  Either make them much more discernible or just leave them the same. 

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #127 Joel Eriksson Ek

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #487 Kyle Turris

2017-18 O-Pee-Chee #433 Nikolay Kulemin
You can follow APTBNL on twitter at @namedlater and me at @beansbcardblog.  Please take a look at and follow my personal blog, I Feel Like a Collector Again. Happy collecting!

2017 Donruss Football - Retail

Here's the last pack of four from my Target retail spree.  This is 2017 Donruss Football.  Cover pictures are sticking with the NFC North -- Aaron Rodgers and Mitch Trubisky.  These are 8 cards for $1.99 in the retail format.

#187 - Franco Harris - This is a nice starting card to pull out.  Good to see some legends in this pack (it won't be the last).  The design is pretty solid -- a nice big player picture framed by team-color diagonal accents in the back.  You also get a team logo that is unobtrusive and the player's name with the Donruss logo at the bottom.

The backs don't do the standard Panini "repeat the picture from the front" -- instead, they give you an oversized team logo, a small write-up, and a teeny stats box.  Not the worst I've seen, but nothing to write home about.

#60 - Randy Moss

#252 - Jeremy Maclin

#213 - Eddie George

#57 - Marvin Jones

#263 - Ndamukong Suh

#298 - Joe Thomas

#327 - Patrick Mahomes - Rated Rookie - Always nice to see the classic RR logo!  Mahomes is in a great situation in KC...Alex Smith is running things to give him time to learn and grow.

And that's it for this pack!  I really like the design on these.

Recapping the four 2017 retail packs:
Best:  I'm going to have to go with 2017 Score -- Good inserts, good design, and a great value.
2nd:  I will say this pack - 2017 Donuss.  I really like the design on these and the inclusion of several "legends."
3rd:  2017 Panini Prestige - These are nice looking, but I didn't see much value in the pack.
4th:  2017 Panini Football - The design on these was ridiculous and forced every player into a "keyhole."

Until next time, you can check out my infrequent postings at Royals and Randoms.

Take care!
-Josh D.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

1994 Skybox Star Trek: The Next Generation The Episode Collection - Season One


Hope everyone is doing well.  Thirty years ago this week, this show premiered:

Because The Next Generation was in syndication, the premiere date varied, depending on where you lived...but 30 years ago on the week of September 28th, the second live action entry in the Star Trek universe debuted, starting a successful 7 year run and spawning three more Star Trek series, as well as kick-starting the syndicated television show market.

The premiere episode, "Encounter At Farpoint", aired as a two-hour TV movie.  My father recorded the episode thinking it was a new Star Trek movie.  He later said that he wouldn't have recorded it if he knew it was just a TV show.  I didn't watch the show at first; I watched the episode later (maybe during Christmas break), and got hooked.  The Next Generation became my show, since until that point I had only seen a few Star Trek episodes here and there.

Back in 1994, Skybox began releasing sets commemorating each season of The Next Generation. We've already seen Season 5.  For the 30th anniversary, here's a pack of 1994 Skybox Star Trek: The Next Generation The Episode Collection - Season One!
Image copied from the interwebs because I forgot to get a pic of the pack wrapper.
8 cards come in a pack, 108 cards in the set.  Here they are, in numerical order:

#6 – Mission Chronology
#5 – Mission Chronology

I purposely reversed the order of these two to show the image.  The first 9 cards of each season set
formed an image; in this case, it's the comm badge used for The Next Generation.  The text you can 
barely see should be the famous Star Trek intro ("Space...The Final Frontier....").  

Each set also had a 9-card subset, also forming an image, focused on a crew member.  Captain Picard
and Data were the focus for Season 1.

#12 – Encounter At Farpoint Part 1 Episode 1C
#28 – Lonely Among Us Episode 7A

Each episode gets 3 cards in the set so two-parters get 6.  This allows for a more comprehensive
review and more images from the episode.

#72 – The Arsenal Of Freedom Episode 21C
#81 – We’ll Always Have Paris Episode 24C

The numbering did not reset for the next set, so Season starts with card #109.

#83 – Conspiracy Episode 25B
#90 – Production Credits

Skybox did go on to make sets for Deep Space Nine and Voyager, but they did not follow this Episode Collection format.  I wish they did.

Here are the backs for the Mission Chronology cards.  Not only do you get a nice image in the front, but you get a pretty cool timeline on the back with a quick recap of the season's episodes.

Here are the rest of the backs:

Even the backs flow nicely.  You can tell the "C" cards at the top "end" the 3-card block, while the "B" card at the bottom "connects" the "A" and "C" cards.

Anyway, that's the pack.  It was sets like these that caused me to ease up on the baseball and basketball card purchases during my college years.  I have all 7 sets in a binder and they still look great after all these years.

Happy birthday Next Generation...thank you for the many years of entertainment and influence.  Thanks for reading!

Monday, September 25, 2017

50 Assorted Houston Oilers Cards

I went to Astros game last week and stop by one of many team shops in the stadium. I found this at one of the shops and picked it up. It contains 50 random cards of Houston Oilers who are now Tennessee Titans. The cards will be posted by year and set.
1981 Topps: 58 - Mike Renfro - man when I bought this I never expected a card from over 35 years ago to be in it.
1982 Topps: 97 - Ken Burrough; 101- Vernon Perry; 106 - Greg Stemrick - Topps kicked ass with this design. One note NFLPA license the cards. I wonder when NFL properties license came to be.

1987 Topps: 307 - Warren Moon; 310 - Ernest Givins; 313 - Dean Steinkuhler - got Warren Moon who was face of the Oilers from mid 80s to the early 90s. Also got Givins rookie card who was one of many go to guys for Moon. He finished his rookie yard with over 1000 yards in receiving.
1988 Topps 1000 Yards Club: 7 - Drew Hill - 1988 Topps insert set of players who went over 1000 yards in 1987 season. 1987 also the year the players went on strike and owners field the teams with replacements. Due to the strike 750 yards was the requirement to be in 1000 yards club. Hill finished the season with 989 yards in receiving that season. 
1988 Topps: 103 Warren Moon; 105 - Alonzo Highsmith; 108 - Curtis Duncan; 107 - Ernest Givens - Alonzo Hold Out became a bust
1989 Topps: 94 - Johnny Meads; 105 - Allen Pinkett
1989 Score Supplemental: 322S - Allen Pinkett; 415S - Tony Zendejas - the classic 1989 Score football design. Supplemental set is Score version of Topps Traded/Update series.
1989 Pro Set: 146 - Drew Hill; 149 - Warren Moon - Pro Set debut set with another Moon card.
1990 Score: 407 - John Grimsley; 441 - Mike Rozier; 534 - Sean Jones; 584 - Bruce Matthews; 631 - Lamar Lathon
1990 Pro Set: 359 - Warren Moon - I was 10 years old when I went to supermarket and saw stand of this heavily over-produed set.
1990 Fleer: 125 - Steve Brown
1990 Stars and Stripes: 1 - Warren Moon - junk wax era produce sets like these which comes with candy canes
1991 Star Pics: 97 - Darryll Lewis - 2nd round pick went to Pro Bowl once
1991 Pro Set: 27 - Earl Campbell - made the Hall of Fame that year. The carnage from his playing days took a toll on him. It was evident when I met him at autograph signing a decade ago.
1991 Pacific: 179 - Bubba McDowell
1991 Bowman: 180 - Warren Moon - Bowman designs were really bland during their first three years of the brand return.
1991 Pro Line Portraits: 67 - Al Smith; 125 - Haywood Jefferies; 280 - Mike Dumas - Pro Line jumped in the game and instead of game shots they did candid shots. I got two cards of Mike Dumas.
1991 Score: 619 - Warren Moon - Score award winners subset
1992  Topps: 715 - Bucky Richardson - he got a card despite being drafted in the 8th round. Back of the card listed his position as RB with rushing stats despite being a QB.
1993 Upper Deck: 375 - Ernest Givens - despite 787 yards in receiving he caught 10 TDs in 92 season
1993 Skybox Impact: 120 - Haywood Jeffires - even Skybox got into football card market.
1994 Pinnacle: 235 - Ray Childress - He's been inducted in college and Texas Hall of Fame. How come he's not enshrined in Canton? I got two of this same card.
1995 Topps: 179 - Ray Childress - another one of him
1994 Bowman: 34 - Ray Childress - this about become a theme
 1994 Upper Deck: 52 - Ray Childress - four (five if you count the double) random Childress cards in this pack
1995 Skybox Impact: 58 - Haywood Jeffires; 60 - Lorenzo White; 171 - Steve McNair - Oilers down year netted them the late Air McNair with 3rd overall pick.
1995 Skybox Premium: 49 - Haywood Jeffires; 50 - Gary Brown; 161 - Steve McNair; 181 - Chris Sanders - Skybox put out Premium set which I can't tell the difference between this and their Impact brand.
1996 Classic NFL Rookies: 76 - Steve McNair
1997 Collector's Edge: 145 - Kevin Dyson - 1997 sets would have Oilers name for the final time as they moved to Tennessee after 1996 season becoming the Titans. Several things on this: tried find info on this Collector's Edge set and I believe its filled with parallels. This one is Odyssey parallel set. Also Dyson will forever be known as the receiver in "The Last Play Tackle" from Super Bowl 39.
1997 Upper Deck Collector Choice: 181 - Anthony Dorsett

 Those few early 1980s cards were a surprise to me. Then there's Warren Moon was one of favorites when I was kid. Now that's a trip to nostalgia of 1980s and 1900s Houston Oilers days.