Tuesday, March 31, 2020

2000-01 Fleer Game Time

With the abrupt end to the NBA season, it appears that Vince Carter may have played his last game. Nearly two decades ago, he was on the cover of packs of cards like these.

14 - Patrick Ewing - Yes, Patrick Ewing really played for the Sonics. I (almost) have proof here.

7 - Karl Malone - This is a small set, so there's a lot of stars.

18 - Jason Kidd - A star.

44 - Anfernee Hardaway - Penny never lived up to his potential, mostly due to injuries. But he was certainly a huge star for a time.

The stats on the back are... not presented all that well. Oh well.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

1999 Fleer Tradition Retail

The nostaglia trip continues with another baseball pack from the late '90s. This one features the notorious J.D. Drew as the cover guy. By the way, I have no idea what kind of store Just Treats is or was. Anything with that price sticker on it was something I found at a card show.

273 - Wally Joyner - I always think of Joyner as one of the stars of the '80s, but he played throughout all of the '90s as well.

466 - Charlie Hayes - This design does little to distinguish itself from Fleer Ultra (full bleed photos, nice photography, thin glossy cards) while other Tradition sets usually go for a more "retro" look. I believe at this time this was essentially the de facto Fleer flagship set.

373 - Carlos Perez - The ol' hat-in-the-mouth trick (?).

86 - Brant Brown - Here's a look at the back design. It looks very nice.

83 - Mark DeRosa - The early days of the MLB Network personality.

498W - Gregg Olson Warning Track - I don't have a lot of these red parallels, so I was somewhat surprised to learn that these are a one-per-pack retail pull.

206 - Kevin Millwood - Nice throwback jersey here.

269 - Matt Stairs - One of the issues with this pack, and a lot of older packs with UV coating, is that the cards stuck together. You can see some of the evidence here on Matt's jersey.

126 - Carl Everett - I usually find the '90s Astros logo to be pretty hideous, but this is a pretty slick looking Starter jacket that Everett has.

293 - J.T. Snow - Well, that's adorable! I wonder what this mini-Snow is up to these days.

Friday, March 27, 2020

1998 Fleer Sports Illustrated

This is an odd one. First of all, I'll point out that the wrapper is wrong. There are (depending on what you count on cards) at least 7 cards in this pack. It's not like the pack was overstuffed or anything. I think this is normal. I also defied the naming convention the brand would expect you to use by calling it Fleer Sports Illustrated, when it's really Sports Illustrated (Presented by Fleer, perhaps). I think that's okay, because there's precedent for it.

192 - Larry Walker - We start things off with a subset card of the recently elected HOF member Larry Walker. Subsets appear to be a big thing in this set, as you'll see.

56 - Joey Hamilton - Here's the base design. I think this set was trying to be Fleer's answer to Stadium Club, only with the whole famous magazine theme. This must have been a St. Patrick's Day game.

136 - Ken Caminiti - Here's another subset design. That's an awfully big ribbon.

140 - Darryl Kile - This one is for my DK collection. I can't complain about that!

50 - Ben Grieve - According to the wrapper, Grieve was one of the featured autograph subjects in this product, which really takes you back to a time when people were hoping for Ben Grieve cards.

4OD - Cal Ripken Jr. Opening Day Mini Poster - This is one of the non-cards, a foldable mini poster of the Iron Man along with the Orioles schedule for the year.

44 - Jason Giambi - Here's what the backs of the base cards look like. It's always the same picture of the bat knobs.

134 - Charles Johnson - That's World Series champion Charles Johnson, guys.

Even the freebie checklist at the back of the pack doesn't look all that bad. This folds over similar to the mini-poster, but it's just half the size.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

2019-20 Panini Contenders Basketball

New basketball cards were pretty tough to find on the shelves this (past?) season, as retail flippers started running rampant throughout the hobby. Zion Williamson picked up the torch passed to him by Luka Doncic's hot cards from a season ago. Somehow I found a blaster of Panini Contenders that was past its expiration date. Here's one of the packs.

31 - Donovan Mitchell - Let me just say that Contenders isn't the most imaginative product. You get the same stuff and the same kind of design year after year. People mostly seem to be into it because of the autographs, I guess? I don't mind the look, it just seems like I've seen it all before.

88 - Paul George - With all of the natural backgrounds taken out of the photos in this set, the posed shots of players in their new uniforms do not look so out of place.

46 - John Collins - Collins was hit with a sizable suspension earlier this season, which caused my fantasy team's hopes to take a hit. Imagine that... being concerned about your fantasy team!

79 - Mike Conley Red Game Ticket - Here's my first basketball card look at Mike Conley as a member of the Jazz, where he's been somewhat underwhelming so far. This is some sort of red parallel.

29 - Darius Bazley Draft Class - This insert doesn't look all that different from the base design, except that it's been turned on its side.

90 - Russell Westbrook - Another old guy, new team.

48 - Jonas Valanciunas - The penultimate card.

6 - Andrew Wiggins - We end with Wiggins, who has since been dealt to the Warriors.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

2020 Donruss Baseball Hobby Packs

Stopped by my LCS a week or so ago, before the world went on lock down.  I picked up two packs of the new Donruss to try it out.  I decided to put together the set last year.  This year I've decided to only put together Topps flagship and Update so this will be my only taste of Donruss.  I also ended up mixing all the cards up so I can't remember which cards went with which pack so I figured I feature the contents of both packs.

Again this year Panini gives us a base set that's very Donruss like, but looks original, and of course a retro throwback sub-set.  The Rated Rookies and Diamond Kings are in there as well as a bunch of inserts and parallels to chase. Here are the 4 main base card types.  The Base, Rated Rookie, Diamond Kings and Retro 86.

I was also really happy to pull a PC card of my guy Robin Yount.  It's my first 2020 Yount card for the collection.
 Here are the rest of the base cards.

There are a ton of parallels in this set.  22 in fact.  One of the more common parallels is the unnumbered Holo Blue Parallels which I got one per pack.  It's hard to tell from the scans but these are shiny and bluish.

I also got one Career Stat Line of Josh Bell.  The stat line parallels are numbered to whatever stat is being feature.  In Josh's case his 287 RBI's so far.

I also got one insert. A Mookie Betts Elite numbered to 999.  Again these scan terribly but it's very shiny. 

Lots of great inserts and parallels.  Of course the cards suffer from lack of logos and the photoshopped colors, but Donruss is always a fun break with fun insert designs and lots of serial numbered cards.  I however am going to save all my money for more toilet paper.  Stay safe out there.