Tuesday, November 24, 2020

2020 Topps Archives Retail Blaster Pack


Hope everyone is doing well.  With the card bros intercepting the poor card vendors (4 were there the last time I worked at Target when the vendor showed up), it seems less and less likely that I'll be able to come across a retail pack of Archives in the wild.  Like many of you, I ain't buying packs from eBay, so in lieu of a retail pack, I decided to scan one of the packs from the blaster box I was somehow lucky enough to come across (when I showed up for a Target shift the day after the vendor was there, there was just one box of Archives left).

Everyone should know the deal:  300 cards in the set, honoring the 1955, 1974, and 2002 sets.  Here's the checklist in case anyone has any cards from the set to worry about it.

#105 - Chris Paddack
#123 - Jason Heyward

Packs start off with the 1974 cards.

With all the rambling about trying to find packs in the wild, I had forgotten to mention the whole new Blogger thing.  Was Blogger always cool with taking in pictures directly from the computer?  I've been uploading the files to Blogger and then bringing them in all this time.  New Blogger also seems to think I reside eastern Australia.  Otherwise, I don't think I've had too many issues with using the new setup.

#135 - Yoshi Tsutsugo (RC)
#242 - Matt Olson

I jinxed myself once I typed about the lack of issues with new Blogger...it wouldn't let me drag Yoshi and Matt over to the post and I had to upload it the old fashioned way.

We move onto 2002 with the Olson here.

#212 - Orlando Cepeda
#313 - Javier Baez (Nickname Poster)

The Nickname Poster cards are 1 in 5 packs.  They appear to be universally liked in the blogosphere.

#91 - Jordan Yamamoto (RC)
#24 - Xander Bogaerts

And we end with a couple of 1955 cards.  

Here are some backs because gobble gobble:

Anyway, that's the pack.  Hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving, and if you're out shopping on Black Friday, be kind and respectful to those retail workers.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, November 15, 2020

2000 Bowman

 Allow me to reintroduce myself.....my name is Hov Alec! While you might not have seen my name, I've been here before. You see, I was actually the second person to post a pack on this very website...in 2009. That was somehow over eleven years ago; I was about to graduate high school. Funny how time flies!

So where have I been? I've actually been collecting and reading blogs the whole time! I've never really known what to comment or post, so I've been a longtime lurker all this time. No longer! It's time to get my act together and actually start posting some of these fun packs I've accumulated.

I'm not sure about your part of the country, but by me the card shop is becoming an endangered species. Imagine my excitement to discover a new place this summer that actually sold baseball cards: while watching a local TV profile on a comic shop, I saw telltale old boxes of Topps in the background. The rest is history...if you consider some new products alongside a wonderful assortment of late '90s/early 2000s products fun (which, conveniently, I do).

Now that I've given a long enough introduction, let's get started with some good stuff: 2000 Bowman. We've had the chrome version of this here before, but this is the regular version. Let's see who actually made an impact, and who became barely a memory!

First, the wrapper: (and if you're interested in odds, check this out)

We start off with our promised one-per-pack insert from the Retro/Future parallel. It was kind of a cool idea: veterans were featured on an old-timey TV, not unlike 1955 Bowman, while rookies got a modern flat-screen setup.

I lead with all of that since it's a foil front, meaning this scan shows nothing of the front design.
279 - Josh Girdley (played six seasons, never higher than A)

150 - Brad Baker (played until 2007; made it to AAA)

419 - Barry Zito! One of the bigger names with a rookie card in this set. There's a tiny bit of paper loss from where it stuck to the previous card, but this makes this pack worth it for me already.

336 - Matt Watson (played in the majors! Played 46 games across three non-consecutive seasons (2003, 2005, 2010) for three different teams...impressive!)

193 - Alfonso Soriano (Had a good major league career! Sadly, his real rookie cards are from 1999)

201 - Andrew Beinbrink (born in Naples, Italy, which is cool! Made it to AAA)

207 - Ben Sheets (Can you imagine how killer this pack would have been in 2000?)

278 - Calvin Murray (five years in the majors!)

37 - Kevin Brown (our lone representative from the veteran portion of the set...there are apparently 140 veterans to 300 rookies)

272 - Leoncio Estrella (62 career games in the majors, across three seasons)

That was a solid pack; certainly better than expected. I leave you with a sample card back:

Thank you all for reading today, and for having me back! I'm excited to hopefully post a bit more regularly (and/or actually start a blog of my own one day). Until then, we won't call this a comeback, right, since I've been here for years? Thanks.

Friday, November 13, 2020

2020 Panini Absolute Football Value Pack


I'm not really a football collector, so this is probably the first time I've bought a current year football card pack in well over a decade. I basically only collect Oregon Ducks cards. However, it's rare that you see any sports cards available at retail these days, so when I saw a new football pack I grabbed it. Since I barely pay attention to the NFL, I'll play a game of "have I heard of this guy or not?" with these.

53 - JuJu Smith-Schuster - I've heard of him! Maybe it's because his name is JuJu?

11 - Daniel Jones - I've heard of him! He took over for Eli Manning, and if you're going to have heard of anyone on a team, it's probably the quarterback.

34 - Josh Jacobs - I have not heard of him, but it looks like he had a great rookie season.

91 - Aaron Jones - I have not heard of him.

87 - A.J. Brown - I have not heard of him. Lots of boring names so far.

45 - Drew Lock - I have heard of him! I'm not really sure why. I think it's the starting quarterback thing again.

3 - Tyler Boyd - I have not heard of him. Here's what the backs of these cards look like.

71 - Michael Thomas Green - I've heard of him! Despite his boring name, I'm pretty sure I know who he is. This seems like a retail only parallel.

28 - Baker Mayfield Green - I've heard of him! 

167 - Justin Herbert Green - I've definitely heard of him! Herbert was pretty much the only card I was looking for in this set, and I managed to actually snag a parallel version.

RZ-RW - Russell Wilson Red Zone - I've heard of him! He's one of the biggest names in the game, of course. I actually knew who he was before he went pro, as my Ducks took care of his Wisconsin team in the 2012 Rose Bowl when he was really hyped.

FF-IB - Isaac Bruce Fantasy Flashback - I've heard of him! In fact, I'm really bothered that Bruce's photo is obviously not from 1996 as the Rams didn't wear gold until much later.

152 - Javon Kinlaw - I have not heard of him. It looks like all of the rookies are on foil covered stock.

176 - La'Mical Perine - I've heard of him! Well, sort of. I think it's because I accidentally left a Jets game on the TV the other day.

133 - Dezmon Patmon - I have not heard of him.

190 - Tee Higgins - I have not heard of him. I guess the rest of the pack is going to be rookies, so chances are slim here.

148 - James Proche - I have not heard of him. Proche sounds like some sort of dessert.

106 - Anthony McFarland Jr. - I have not heard of him.

164 - Josh Uche - I have not heard of him. I bet I could find a taker for this card, though.

122 - Dalton Keene - I have not heard of him. Nope.

Thursday, November 05, 2020

2020-21 Upper Deck MVP Retail Hockey

  Picked up a pack of the recently released 2020-21 Upper Deck MVP.  If you have seen one year of MVP, you basically seen them all.

  Leafs star Austin Matthews on the pack cover.  Retail edition with 5 cards per pack.

  The odds on the back.  Basically 2 out of 3 packs will have an insert or parallel.  As Meatloaf said, "Two out of three ain't bad."  Except Meatloaf wasn't talking about sportcards. 

First card is Bryden Schenn of the Blues.  The front design is familiar if you have opened any MVP from the past several years.  It changes slightly each year but it is easily recognizable from season to season.  

And so too are the backs easily recognizable from season to season.  Recognizably bleh.  All that space but they limit it to five seasons of stats.  The one neat thing is the having the pronunciation of the name included on the back.  Great for those European names... or North American names if you are European.  

Brandon Sutter.  Second generation of the Sutter clan.

Patric Hornqvist who was pretty qvist about his trade to the Panthers this summer.  After the trade a neighbour tweeted a picture of Patric's Penguins' equipment tossed in the front driveway.  Letting it air dry was the response from the club.  In an interview regarding the trade, he lamented "Pittsburgh didn't want me."

Speaking of unwanted players.  Tyler Johnson recently went unclaimed on waivers.  The Lightning were hoping to shed themselves of his $5 mill a year contract, including a no-trade clause.  There were no takers.  

And to continue the theme of unwanted players.  Longtime New York Ranger Henrik Lundqvist had his contract bought out by the time this offseason.  He quickly drove down the I-95 and signed with the Washington Capitals.  It'll be a big night when he returns to Madison Square Gardens.

And that ends an underwhelming pack of 20-21 Upper Deck MVP.  We succumbed to the odds and came up empty handed for inserts and parallels but ended it off by giving three misfits a new home in our collection... unless of course someone wants to trade.