Friday, July 31, 2009

Orel Hershiser Topps Tattoo

In 1986 Topps came out with a tattoo set. I was lucky enough to find one of my favorite player, Orel Hershiser.
I wonder how this ...
would look on Josh Hamilton ...

Could he be Bobby Flay's cousin?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

That's not Rod Carew

I had a successful day of bidding last week on ebay. Three Hall of Fame relic cards from the same seller. Shipping was a flat $3.00 for all orders won if the cards were paid on one invoice. I spent a total of $9.59 on the three cards. That's $3.20 per card (on average), $4.20 per card if you consider shipping.

So, what did I win?
  • 2009 Icons Legendary Icons Jersey Wade Boggs
  • 2009 SP Legendary Cuts Legendary Jersey Jim Rice (41/75)
  • 2003 Finest Refractor Bat Rod Carew

What did I receive in the bubble mailer today?
  • 2009 Icons Legendary Icons Jersey Wade Boggs
  • 2009 SP Legendary Cuts Legendary Jersey Jim Rice (41/75)
  • 2003 Topps Finest George Foster Autograph

It is a very sweet card. Shiny and the pen was put right to the card. No sticker here.

George Foster is not in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Doesn't mean that I don't like the card. I really, really do.

But, my moral compass quickly started spinning wildly. I knew what I had to do. I contacted the seller and told him that what I received is not what I ordered.

While I waited for his reply, I thought that he might respond with, Oh, my mistake. Go ahead and keep it. I'll get your Rod Carew out later today. Sorry.

Nope. Here's what he said...
Send back i will fix
I responded that I could send it back if he'd provide the postage paid bubble envelope. Then I wrote and asked if there was any way to stay within the boundaries of ebay rules, could I buy it from him.

His reply...
we have sold that to another customer :(

No, Thank you for being honest. No offer to knock some off the next shipping fee if I win another auction from him. Just 12 words, an emoticon and no punctuaion.

I'll be shipping it back to him either Wednesday or Thursday.

When I get the Rod Carew card, I'll post about it.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Brooks Robinson Autograph Card

1993. I was a newlywed, and I was collecting cards. Money was tight, but we enjoyed crackers. I cunningly put together a plan to have cheese and lots of crackers one night. It got me the the proofs of purchase that I needed and I got to spend some quality time with my wife. Double bonus.* I sent in the $5 required and a few weeks later I got this in the mail.

1993 Nabisco All-Star Autographs, Brooks Robinson
(card not numbered)

Not what I wanted. I think I checked the "I want Ernie Banks card" box. But I'm very content with the card.

They even sent this spiffy Certifcate Of Authenticity. It must be Authentic because the "O" of "Of" is captialized.

Dinged Corners blogged about this set earlier this year. There's a nice write-up from Promo, a marketing website.

So, this is post 200. I thought about doing some contest, some big retrospective, wax melodically (or wax methodically) about the importance of following through on a project started.

Nope. I've got nothing. Well, I've got a job, a wife and kids that love me, a supportive cardblog community, two and a quarter score Gint-A-Cuffers that are waiting for rules clarification, a mess of cards and books. And a Brooks Robinson Autograph Card. Overall, I'm a very lucky man.

* I have no idea if that is the way it happened. In my head it sounded good as I was typing.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


So, I've pulled together some of my more interesting cards that I will offer up for tradebait. If you've read this blog for the last few months you should know by now that I'm focusing some of my collecting power on obtaining Relic / Autograph cards of members of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  • 2000 MLB Showdown 2000, Promo, Andruw Jones (error card 0 OB=10)
  • 2002 SP Legendary Cuts, George Foster (Bat) (card # B-GFo) - traded
  • 2006 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection, Dan Uggla (Jersey) (card # UGM-DU) (numbered 03/50)
  • 2007 Upper Deck Black Baseball, Dan Uggla (Sticker Auto) (card # PR1-DU) (numbered 73/75)
  • 2008 Topps Allen and Ginter, Jeff Francis (Auto) (card # AGA-JF)
  • 2008 Topps Allen and Ginter, Felix Hernandez (Jersey) (card # AGR-FH) - traded
  • 2008 Topps Heritage, Clubhouse Collection, Dan Uggla (Jersey) (card # CC-DU)
  • 2009 Topps Heritage, Black Bordered Chrome, David Price (card # C12) (numbered 51/60)
  • 2008 Upper Deck Series I, Dan Uggla (Jersey w/stripe) (card # GJ-DU)
  • 2008 Upper Deck USA Baseball, Robbie Grossman (Jersey) (card # USJR-RG)
  • 2008 SPx Baseball, Bill Murphy (Sticker Auto) (card # 101)
  • 2008 Upper Deck, Ballpark Collection, Dan Uggla / Howie Kendrick (Dual Jersey) (card # 156)
  • 2008 SP Legendary Cuts Baseball, Dan Uggla, (Jersey w/stripe) (card # DS-DU)
  • 2009 SP Legendary Cuts BROWN , Sparky Lyle (Jersey) (card # LM-SL) (numbered 30/50)
I've received some of these in trades, some from ebay purchases, some from contest winnings. The links will take you to

Oh, I've got lots of other 'common' cards and some oddball that I can toss in. Make me an offer. Let me know what you have to trade and what you'd like. Yes, I'm pimping myself. Well, my cards.

My HoF cards

These are the Hall of Fame Relic / Autograph cards that I own. I figured that I had better list them so I know what I have. Also good if others are going to be sending me cards out of the kindness of their heart. I wouldn't want them to part with something I don't already need. Links go to my blog entries.
  • 2001 Upper Deck Vintage, Timeless Teams, Willie McCovey (card # J-WM) (link)
  • 2007 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic, Dennis Eckersley (Card # CM-DE) (link)
  • 2009 SP Legendary Cuts, Legendary Memorabilia, Billy Williams (card # LM-BW), numbered 73 of 125 (link)
  • 2007 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic, Classic Memorabilia, Red Schoendienst (card # CM-SC) (link)
  • 2005 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic, Classic Materials, Jim Bunning (card # CM-JB) (link)
  • 2009 SP Legendary Cuts, Legendary Memorabilia RED, Ernie Banks (card # LM-EB), numbered 57 of 75 (link)
  • 2004 Fleer Hot Prospects Draft, Double Team, Eddie Murray (card # DT-EM) (link)
  • 2006 SP Legendary Cuts, Legendary Materials, Phil Niekro (card # LM-PM2) (link)
  • 2008 Upper Deck Masterpieces, Ryne Sandberg (card #19), in person autograph (link)
  • 2004 SP Significant Swatches, Don Sutton (card # SS-DS) (link)
  • 2006 SP Legendary Cuts, Baseball Chronology Materials, Robin Yount (card # BC-RY) (link)
  • 2005 Upper Deck Legendary Lineage, Jim Palmer (card # LL-JP) (link)
  • 2008 Donruss Playoff Prime Cuts, Gary Carter (card # 34) (link)
I also have lined up (either own, purchased from ebay, sportlots or trade):
  • Brook Robinson
  • Paul Molitor
  • Carlton Fisk
  • Rod Carew
  • Wade Boggs
  • Jim Rice
Soon, I'll be listing my tradebait, cards I'm willing to part with to increase my collection.

I'm also at a crossroad as to whether or not to collect members of the Hall of Fame that weren't selected by the Baseball Writers (read: those selected by the Veteran's Committee).

Maybe I should focus on the Veteran's Committee selections. In theory, they played with the members they voted on, they have a better grasp of who should be a member. Or maybe not.

Monday, July 20, 2009

To the Moon, Alice

In honor of the 40th anniversary of the (alleged) moonwalk, Topps has issued another card in the 2009 Allen and Ginter subset, World Biggest Hoaxes, Hoodwinks and Bamboozles.

(card # HHB-21)

Over the years there has been much speculation whether the Apollo 11 trip to the moon was real or not.

Checking the only source on the Internet that I actually trust I found this cornucopia of information. Read it and decide for yourself.

Surfing the web, I have found quite a few sites looking to debunk the "Hoax." It seems that real scientists would spend more time doing real science experiments than trying to hide what they know is true.

Happy Anniversary, Buzz and Company.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Gary Carter and Terry Fox

Now you might be asking yourself, "What do Hall of Famer Gary Carter and journeyman pitcher Terry Fox have in common?"

2008 Donruss Playoff Prime Cuts,
Gary Card (card #34), numbered 27/30

1965 Topps, Terry Fox (card # 576)

The answer is that both of these cards came from my folks.

Oh, I guess I could have spent hours searching for some sort of twisted Six Degrees of Mantle thingo, but I won't.

Gary Carter is the only Expo to be selected as part of the Hall of Fame. The one in Cooperstown. He is also a member of the Mets Hall of Fame and the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame. He played for 19 seasons, ending up as an 11 time All-Star. He collected three Golden Gloves and five Silver Sluggers. He helped the 1986 Mets win the World Series with two home runs in Game Four. He was also only one of six Mets players to play in all seven games of that series. On the other side of the field, the Red Sox had eight players in all seven games.

Terry Fox completed his seven seasons with 29 wins and 19 losses and 59 saves. He started out his Major League career in Milwaukee in 1960 with Red Schoendienst, Hank Aaron, Warren Spahn and Eddie Matthews. Nice club to start with. He then shifted over to the American League where he spent a little over five seasons in Detroit before being sold to Philadelphia.

But what caught my father's eye when he found this card is that he played in Knoxville (Smokies). He also played for the New Iberian Pelicans, the Austin Senators, the Sacramento Solons, the Denver Bears and the San Diego Padres (AAA in 1967, before they became the San Diego Padres). Gotta love the Minor Leagues.

Again, thanks to my folks.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bisbee's Boys of Summer

Bisbee, Arizona. Home of the Copper Queen Mine and about 6,100 residents. Artisans and hippies call the county seat of Cochise county home. So do the Copper Kings Baseball Club. They play at Warren Ballpark, the nation's oldest continuosly operating ball park. It opened in 1909 and is celebrating its centennial this year.

I used to live in Cochise county. My folks still do. They have attended a few game at Warren Ballpark, including the scheduled Centennial celebration on the Fourth of July. But, it got rained out. The make up game is on August 1st.

My folks sent me a the first series of baseball cards produced by The Friends of the Warren Ballpark. They were able to get three of the cards signed.

The second series of cards was due to be released at the Centennial celebration. I'm assuming that they'll be available at the make up game.

My folks also sent other goodies in the box, some of which I'll share later. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

We Got Pants

The Night Owl recently blogged about two different pants cards. Duke Snider and Alex Rodriguez.

Now it is my turn.
2001 Upper Deck Vintage, Timeless Teams, Willie McCovey (card # J-WM)

Another ebay conquest. Cost of the card: $1.31. Shipping: $2.50.

$3.81 for "an authentic piece of pants worn by Willie McCovey in an official Major League Baseball game." Not bad.

Willie McCovey played in four different decades. He started in 1959 in San Fransicso. He played through the 1960s with the Giants before being traded to the Padres of San Diego. His contract was purchased by the Oakland Athletics and the he was granted Free Agency. He signed with the Giants and finished the final four years of his career there, ending in 1980.

He was selected as Rookie of the Year in 1959, the Most Valuable Player in 1969 and won the Hutch Award in 1977. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1986.

In his first Major League game, he went 4 for 4 against Robin Roberts of Philadelphia, with 3 runs and 2 RBI.

And I've got his pants.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Father's Day take

Yes, it has been a few weeks since Father's Day has passed. My children (read: wife) were kind enough to get me a few packs. A wax pack of 2009 Topps Heritage and a rack pack of 2009 Topps, Series 1.

Out of these I got my first numbered pulls. I don't often buy packs. I pulled a Chrome Max Scherzer (card # C97), numbered 1894/1960.

Then a Gold Bordered Mark Teahen (card # 141), numbered 0582/2009.

I also pulled a Turkey Red Ian Kinsler (card # TR6). It is just a nice card.

My wife got me Tony Dungy's new book, Uncommon. I haven't yet started it, but I hope to soon. She also got me a shirt. My son got me a PS2 baseball game. We haven't played it yet. Need to do that. And I got an Andrew Peterson CD, Ressurrection Letters, Volume II.

I sent some of the Topps Series 1 cards out to Dayf to help him with his want lists.

The shiny Diamondback will be going to my dad for part of his Father's Day gift. See, I'm not just slow at sending out trades.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Dennis Eckersley Jersey Card

Here's a card for my Hall of Fame Game Used / Relic / Autograph collection that I picked up on ebay. $0.50. Yep, fifty cents. Shipping? $1.50. Cheapest one, yet.

2007 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic, Dennis Eckersley
(Card # CM-DE)

Dennis Eckersley started with Cleveland and then went on to Boston, the Cubs, Oakland, the Cards and then returned to fininsh his career with Boston. He pitched for 25 seasons. In 17 of them he had more wins than losses. About half way through his career he went from a starter to being one of the best relievers of his time. While with the A's in 1989 he helped win the World Series with a save in game four. He was selected to the All-Star game six times. He won the American League MVP award in 1992.

Looking back on photos of Eckersley, he was a leader in the flowing mane movement of the 1980s.

He's also the pitcher that gave up the famed Kirk Gibson Home Run in game one of the 1988 World Series. Thanks, Dennis.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Another Fictitious Card

Edited. New card added.

I redid the card. The first one (below) wasn't at the standard baseball card size. I rushed it and got some advice to move the text from the lower right corner. The new one (above) is a bit better, I think.

What, with all the commissioning that has been going on, I haven't had time to do a proper post.

Imaged lifted from site, photo credit to Steve Matteo / AP.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Next Commissioner

There have been nine commissioners of Major League Baseball. Kenesaw, Happy, Ford, William, Bowie, Peter, Bart, Fay and Bud. Yes, we're all on a first name basis.

I get to join their august ranks. No, not as a commissioner of Major League Baseball, but as the commissioner of Gint-A-Cuffs.

I weaseled volunteered my way into the position. Beardy, in a moment of extreme exhaustion, agreed to meet my demands suggestions for compensation.

I see my role as answering questions about the rules (which are so messed up it isn't funny), making rulings on scoring, keeping the official Gint-A-Cuffs blog up to date with relevant information and finally, in early September, declaring a winner.

Kenesaw was involved in looking at payoffs with the Black Sox. I've seen Eight Men Out a few times, so I sort of understand graft. But I've never experienced it myself.

So, if any of the participants feel the need to enlighten me, you can find my want lists to the right.

I promise, as commissioner, to work in the best interests of Gint-A-Cuffs.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Last Commissioner

The Last Commissioner is the title of a 2002 book by Fay Vincent.

The book is a delight to read. Mr. Vincent splits up the chapters, telling a story and then providing a list of favorites. Yankees, Fenway moments, Guardians of the Game. The story chapters are typical, but unique to him. Life story, growing up, very foundational. Then comes his introduction to Bart Giamatti. Their friendship and work load. Pete Rose and Bart's death. George Steinbrenner. It is all there. It is a fairly easy read, but Mr. Vincent (or his editors) don't take the time to clean up the language. This is not a bedtime story to be read to Lucy.

I haven't finished the book, but I'm about 80 % of the way there. I'm really curious what his take on being run out of the office will be. I think I know.

Mr. Vincent doesn't pull many punches. He likes the umpires. He's not too keen on a few owners or the current commissioner. Or the way that the Steve Howe issue ended up.

In the list of Yankees he writes of Tommy Henrich (page 207):
I know his true age. The Baseball Encyclopedia lists his birthdate as February 20, 1913; in actual fact, he's three years older than that. "When I signed," he said, "I took three years off my age. It was better to be eighteen than twenty-one." When means when he played his final game in 1950, he was forty.
Baseball-Reference lists him as being born in 1913. Baseball Almanac says 1913. Wikipedia also uses that date (but can you really trust them?).

But wait. The ever so accurate sides with Mr. Vincent.

Now my brain is in a tizzy.

When in doubt, go back to the original sources. According to US Census images from, we see that a young Thomas D. Henrich was age 6 in 1920. He was living with his folks, Eda and Elizabeth Henrich in Massillon, Stark County, Ohio. You can find young Tommy on line 33.

Many times in the census records, you will find a person 'fudge' their age. Every decade they will only age nine years. Call it vanity, longing for youth, failing minds. But a six year old doesn't do that. Or his mom or dad on his behalf.
"Eda, you think little Tommy might make it in the big leagues?"

"Well, you know 'Liz, maybe. Hey, when that census taker, or any rev'nuer comes around asking questions, shave off a few years from his age. You never know, it might work out for him."
Here's the book page from the publisher, Simon and Schuster. You can see the table of contents and read the first chapter.

And here's a 2003 Upper Deck Play Ball card of Tommy Henrich. Card # R-5. The cards from this set are reprints of the 1941 Play Ball cards.

This lists his birthdate as 1916.

You figure it out.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Billy Williams Jersey Card

Similar to the Ernie Banks Jersey card, this Billy Williams is nice to look at.

2009 SP Legendary Cuts, Legendary Memorabilia, Billy Williams
(card # LM-BW), numbered 73 of 125

And, like the Ernie Banks card, Upper Deck came out with a slew of variations on these cards. The Billy Williams card has the same print run as the Ernie Banks card. There is the standard base card (greenish) - print run of 125, Blue - print run of 100, Red - print run of 75, Brown - print run of 50 and Violet - print run of 25. I don't know anyone who will try and collect every variation. More info on this set can be found at Upper Deck's site for this set.

For 13 years Ernie and Billy played together with the Cubs. In 1962 and in 1965 they were both selected to be All-Stars. Ernie played all of his games with the Cubs. Billy was traded towards the end of his career and finished his final two seasons with the Athletics as a Designated Hitter. Billy had a .290 Batting Average over his 18 years in the big leagues.

I picked this HoFer card up on the ebay for $0.99, plus $2.75 shipping, well below my $5 target. I told you it would average out. I like the blue uniform, as it goes nicely with the cap, but the quailty control on this particular card is horrid. The centering of the print is off every which way.

All that being said, I still like the card.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

By Cracky

I received a box of cards from my dad a few weeks ago. He was at a flea market in the Phoenix, AZ area. The box contained hundreds of cards, mostly Topps, mostly from the 1988-1990 timeframe. Some of the cards were very fun to look at. I've taken the Braves and the Mets to head out with some Dinosaurs Attack cards going to a few fellow bloggers.

One fo the fun items in the box was an unopened box of Cracker Jacks from 1993. Inside was a miniature reprint of Joe Jackson. There were 24 cards in this set, issued for the 100th anniversary of the invention of the snack.

I opened the box, found the prize and ditched the snack. It was 16 years old. What did you expect?

So, would the card be worth more still in the box? It would have been MIB (Mint In Box). What about in that little wrapper? The card itself seems to be a bit of a miscut, left to right. Doesn't really matter, for now it proudly sits atop a pile of other cards.