It had been a while since I did a custom card tutorial, so I thought I’d break down 2016 Topps flagship and try and recreate it. I think this is a fairly accurate representation. I’m still writing up the tutorial, I’ll probably post it on Monday, but here’s what to look forward to…
I had purchased one of those oddball 5×7 cards in the past, a 1/10 Mookie Betts to be specific, but I guess I didn’t realize Topps was just going to run with the idea for pretty much every set and/or variation. They’re selling them online, usually in sets, and dealers are buying them and breaking the set into singles. Usually I avoid oddball stuff, but when a saved search comes up with something like “Mookie Betts, 10/10, 0 bids, $0.99, 10 minutes remaining” it’s kind of hard to ignore.
There it is, 10/10 (lower left corner of the back – blue side), in all it’s “I’m never going to find a box for this” glory. Luckily the seller shipped it already in a 5×7 top-loader and inside a rigid photo mailer. Also luckily, he combined shipping…
This one is from a “team set”, again an online exclusive. Numbered 21/49. I can actually appreciated that they didn’t go nuts printing this stuff. Let’s be honest, this isn’t a “baseball card” in the traditional sense, this is a “collectable”.
I couldn’t help myself. I’m not even sure what set it’s from, I’m assuming it’s an “insert” from Heritage. It’s featuring Nolan Ryan, George Springer and Mike Foltynewicz. This one is #/99. All three of these were $0.99 with combined $3 shipping. Not a bad score. I figure with Nolan Ryan (and his museum where he signs things) being about a 10 minute drive, this might be a fun “card” to get signed. I wonder if I can get all three at some point. We’ll see.
Like I said, I usually don’t go crazy with things like this, but they seemed like solid pickups and the price was definitely right.
It’s not every day you get to cross two cards off your Most Wanted list. One of these is relatively new, but impossible to find. The other has been on my want-list from the very beginning.
Back on Valentine’s Day, my wife surprised me with a “let’s go to the card show!” day trip. We’re not big Valentine’s people, I don’t need a special day to tell my wife I love her, and the mark up on flowers is insane, so we usually keep it low key. Going with me to the card show is probably the best gift she could have given me. Not only that, she actually stood there, for hours, thumbing through dime boxes, looking for Sox cards with me. She was finding more random refractors than I was. It was really nice to have a second set of eyes (and hands) to cruise through the boxes. She’s awesome that way.
So, this is the first round of scans. I grouped them by player, just for my own scanning organizing. Round two is all the fun stuff (autos, rare finds, etc), but this is a good majority of “the rest”.
There’s always those random cards you pick up at random times that don’t quite fit into a post on their own. Sure, I could mention how I picked up two Astros cards for no particular reason, but the truth is I just added them on to something else I was buying and I plan on giving them to Sam at some point. Does that entire train of thought deserve it’s own post? Probably not. Am I going to show them to you anyway? Of course I am. lol.
I had been browsing random sellers looking for a few Bowman cards and I ran across these two. I think the blue is actually /199 or something similar, and refractor autos are always nice.
Here’s another card I wasn’t actually looking for, but I thought was nifty enough to add to the basket. I think the wave refractors were tough pulls, and the colored ones doubly so.
There’s the card I was actually trying to buy. I’m on this kick to try and nail down the important/rookie/quintessential cards for current memebers of the Red Sox. Since Rodriguez factors into the starting rotation for the forseeable future, I figured a Bowman card (before his rookie card) from the minors made sense. I’ve got plenty of his cards from this year with RC logos on them, but I wanted that “first” card as well.
Speaking of random rookie cards. How about a Matt Barnes RC patch card from Immaculate? Not too shabby. I have no idea if Barnes will work out this year now that they’ve decided to make him a part of the bullpen, but hopefully the reduced innings and more time to perfect his control will be a good combination.
Finnegan, who got traded to the Reds in the Cueto deal, was just along for the combined shipping ride with the Matt Barnes. I love it when sellers just jettison nice cards for nothing. I have no idea what a box of Immaculate costs at the moment, but somebody definitely lost a couple bucks on this one. All the better for me. Trade bait if anyone wants it.
Now, that’s a pretty nice pickup if I do say so. I already had a Gold border 2011 Bowman Chrome, but this one is graded. So, now I own 2 of the 50 copies of this, and the only one that’s ever been graded (Population Report). Yay!
Last card for today. A very nice Noe Ramirez patch/auto from Bowman Platinum. Ramirez spent most of last year in AAA but got called up in Septemeber when Tazawa was shut down for the season and spent a month or so as the bullpen setup guy. He looked pretty good in his 17 appearances, with the exception of one really bad day against the Astros at Fenway (hit a batter, 4 runs allowed, etc). If he wins a bullpen spot in spring training he’ll be a good bullpen piece, if not then another year in AAA should give him a bit more experience.
Apparently I was on a “bullpen pitcher” buying frenzy and didn’t realize it.
In other news, the Houston card show is this weekend. Going to try and hit that and splurge on completely random junk. I’ll be back next week with complete and utter random nonsense.
So, does having three Triple Threads give me nine total threads?
There’s something about 2015 Triple Threads that just wasn’t really working for me. The background sort of looks like Inception, or Museum Collection. The colored parallels are just different colored clouds. At least National Treasures has the decency to change the color of the foil. Then there’s the fact that every swatch is gray/white. Topps has too many products. At some point they need to cut back. Plain gray swatches in a product that costs $180 a box and contains only 14 cards is pretty unacceptable. How many products does Topps have at that level that they’re saving all the patches for? Let’s count: Dynasty, Five Star, Museum Collection, Strata, Supreme, Tier One, Tribute and Triple Threads? EIGHT?!?! Eight ultra premium brands. No wonder a patch is hard to come by.
I digress. The lot of these three was next to nothing. I think I paid $5, shipped, for all three. I wanted it primarily for the Holt, especially since Nava is no longer with the team, and Castillo seems to be hit or miss so far (no pun intended). Good cards for the collection, but not exactly display case worthy.
I’ve always liked the verse that Nava puts on all his autographs. Philippians 4:13 – “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”