Oddball Ortiz’

Just a quick post showcasing a couple of sweet looking David Ortiz pieces I recently picked up. The blanket was from my LCS, while the other game piece was from eBay.

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2006 Topps Turkey Red B-18 Felt Blanket

The first piece is this 2006 Topps Turkey Red B-18 Felt Blanket. This cool piece measures 5.25 x 5.25” and was issued as a box topper for the Turkey Red product. This is considered the white background version as I have also seen an orange background on eBay. Big Papi is one of 20 different blankets in the checklist but haven’t come across how many were produced of each nor the pull rate of a hobby box.

I had been eyeing this for close to half a year before I recently pulled the trigger. It’s not expensive by any means at a sale of six dollars, but where it wasn’t a standard card size it wasn’t something I was racing to grab. But alas, I’m coming around on odd shaped Red Sox collectibles as they are starting to look great in my Red Sox oddball album. Keep that in mind fellow bloggers if you come across some old Red Sox postcards, advertising panels, team issued photos …. I’ll certainly trade for them.

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2016 Topps Heritage “1967 Punch Out” Box Topper # 67POB-DO

This next piece is one I just happened to see on eBay and thought it was pretty cool. Packed randomly into 2016 Topps Heritage hobby boxes, Ortiz is one of 20 cards in the checklist. The original versions from 1967 are scarce and will easily run you north of $100–300 for the star players. Next to some of my relic Papi pieces, this is one of the coolest items I have of his.

I gotta say, without Ortiz in Red Sox camp, it’s been a very quiet and boring Spring Training. Supposedly, the Red Sox television network (NESN) is bringing in Big Papi to do some color analysis work this summer. The current, and long time analyst Jerry Remy, is battling cancer once again. Best wishes to the him getting well and back into the booth.

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Tradin’ with Tony

Today I’m picking up where I left off last week with another recent mail day package. A couple weeks ago, I sent Tony over at Wrigley Roster Jenga another package with some cool Cubs cards and last week, received these goodies …

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Leading off, some Red Sox reprints and Conlon Collection cards. Tony helped me cross off three names from my All-Time Red Sox Collection:
• 1934 Goudey Bill Werber reprint
• 1941 Play Ball reprint of Hall of Famer Joe Cronin
• 1992 Conlon Johnnie Heving

Always a great package when I can knock three names off that list!

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Next are five new David Ortiz cards I didn’t have, always great to get some cards of one of the games greatest clutch hitters of all time …

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So good miscellaneous Red Sox here—all new ones to the collection. I love the two Bogaerts cards as I don’t have too many of his. And love the 1983 Topps Dwight Evans sticker — I still have this in the sticker album from when I was ten years old.

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Next a couple of 2016 Topps Archives “1969 Supers” … would absolutely love to see an entire 700+ card set in this design. Would be absolutely one of the top three designs of all time in my opinion.

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And to close out the package, some 2016 Walmart Marketside pizza cards. While we have a couple Walmarts around, I am a bit of a pizza snob and if it’s not New Haven style, wood fire oven pizzas, I’ll generally pass. Maybe if Walmart does this line again this summer, I’ll take a look and maybe pick up a couple pizzas for the kids and I’ll keep the cards.

Thanks again Tony, and hope we can do later on this spring as I have another big stack of Cubs to send your way. Thank you again for reading!

A Walk Off … the Plank

Thank God it’s Friday!! Man, these short work weeks have been a pain in the behind work-wise. People off for school vacations, rush jobs coming in left and right, and somehow I have had a little time (granted it’s usually between 12–1 AM on the east coast) to write. That’s been pretty easy this week with all the trades coming in and on that note, let’s Walk the Plank.

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So a couple weeks ago, the great Mark Hoyle started a Twitter conversation with myself and Matt at Bob Walk the Plank, introducing us to each other and suggested we’d be good trading partners. Matt wanted to start small and said he’d find some stuff and shoot it my way so this is what came in the mail today. Okay, uhm Matt … the above card is not small. First off, it’s big, as in pretty damn thick big! Second, this card carries some value here. being a dual relic. The card above is from the 2012 Topps Five Star line featuring a dual auto on card/jersey relic of Adrian Gonzalez. This is a beautiful card Matt and I can’t thank you enough! I certainly wish I had a Pirate card of the same stature but I’ll see what I can come up to send your way.

AGon was one of those players that then GM Theo Epstein, had coveted for a couple of years. In December of 2010, the San Diego Padres traded Gonzalez  to the Red Sox for a player to be named later, Reymond Fuentes, Casey Kelly and Anthony Rizzo. Man, we could use a guy like Rizzo here in the Hub. While Adrian played well in he brief time in Boston, I wasn’t an overly big fan of his but I don’t know why. I didn’t dislike or hate him, but he wasn’t the dirt dog that a Dustin Pedroia or Kevin Youkilis was. He just seemed to lack persona or something. Any how, it’s a pretty sweet looking card I have to say.

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Also in the package were these 1976 Hostess cards. A couple of Sox in Fisk and Lynn I didn’t have along with two ex-Sox in Reggie Smith and Ted Sizemore.

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And to close out, more ’76 Hostess cards. The Johnny Bench is a real beauty as is the Lou Brock and you have to love the tequila sunrise that Big Bad Bob Watson is laying down. Thanks again Matt and I definitely will get a return package out to you soon!!! A shout out to Mark Hoyle for the introduction as well! Thank you for reading!

Sox Madness from Cardboard Hogs

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Today’s trade post comes from Ken over at Cardboard Hogs. This package was loaded with Sox cards and probably ranks in my top three Red Sox packages that I’ve received! With that, lets jump in (and into Spring as it’ll be 65 degrees in the metro Boston area today!)…

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Leading off, some Sox vintage including a 1966 buyback. The 1968 Topps George Scott will go into my ’68 Topps set album as I’m positive this was is in much better condition!

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Next up, some of my Sox favorites that I am putting pages together of. The 2017 Moncada card is perfect in that this card crosses his name off of my All-Time Red Sox collection. I absolutely love the shot of a diving Mookie on that Stadium Club!!

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Here’s another card to cross off for the All-Time Collection — Andrew Benintendi! Two needs right off the bat — thanks Ken!!! The rest of the grouping is some Heritage Chrome madness and a mini Bowman Chrome of the Rafeal Devers, the third baseman of the future. I haven’t bought a Bowman pack in probably six years so I had no idea they did minis — pretty sweet!

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Next up, Big Papi and LOOK!!! It’s a 2015 Topps Heritage Action variation card short print!!! This package just keeps getting better …

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Sox relics!!!! I thought people had sent all the cool stuff to Mark Hoyle, Shane at Shoebox Legends, and the Sox Fan in Nebraska. Thanks Ken!!! As I have mentioned in the past, I love the Heritage relics that it’s great to land three here. This is my first auto of Matt Barnes, so that’s pretty cool. The Gold Pedroia I have never seen before but it’s pretty damn cool — and heavy.

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Following all those awesome Red Sox cards was how this trade first came about. Ken was working on a couple of Heritage sets of his ow and I was able to fill a number of short prints and he was able to do the same.

Well boy did Ken do that! I have been working on the 2014 Topps Heritage set, but haven’t filled a need for this in easily a year. I have all the base (I believe) but of course it’s the short prints I need. With this trade, I was able to cross off 16 short prints. The really awesome thing is, the three above — Cabrera, Darvish, and Verlander (I love you Kate Upton) are of the action photo variations!!!

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Here is the rest of the 2014 Heritage short prints in the package. One of these days I ‘ll complete this. With the show I just attended, I was able to cross off another of these SPs in Nolan Arenado. Not bad, 17 SPs crossed off in a span of three days.

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And to wrap up all this awesomeness, I also received a partial set of 1988 Topps United Kingdom Mini set for my 1980s album. The UK Minis is an 88-card “American Baseball” set released exclusively to the British market. Each card measures 2 1/8″ X 3″, or about the size of a 1975 Topps mini.

Man, awesome, awesome trade package Ken — I hope you were just as happy with you as I was with this one — really hope we can do it again down the road! On that note, time to step outside and soak up some sun while it’s nice out. Thank you for reading kids!

Oddball Mania with Collating Cards

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Ahh it almost feels like Spring here in New England, and with that, the first Grapefruit games will be on TV and radio this coming weekend. Today’s post is one I received last week from Steve at Collating Cards! I had sent him a bunch of cards for his various set needs and the above is what came back my way. He is one of several great trade partners I have connected with via Twitter.

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Now I preface this post with I AM A RED SOX FAN, just want to be clear as many of these cards are Braves. And while they may be a bunch of Braves cards here in the package, they all hit my various wants right now which is fine with me! The above are a variety of Topps Heritage Relics. Plain and simple — I love the Heritage line for the look and feel, the photography, the inserts, box loader, sample panels … everything. And while the Heritage products are a bitch to put a set together, it’s not stopping me from putting together an album of my favorite cards from the line (2001 – present). My two favorites from this lot are the 1962 Carlos Santana as the only other relic from this year I have is Ichiro. The other is the Julio Teheran as that is from a retro flannel-like jersey.

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Next up, the first of many Topps archives inserts and one Topps Lineage Hank Aaron “1964 Stand Up.” I love the original Stand Up set and this is my first from the Lineage product. I like the Tall Ball of Otis Nixon as well, since that is my first of this insert too.

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Next up, more inserts from both the Archives and Lineage in the form of “1969 Deckle Edge.” I have a feeling the 1968 Topps Game card will get more run a couple weeks from now when the 2017 Topps Heritage (1968 burlaps) rolls out.

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The last group of Topps Archives inserts … “1977 Cloth Stickers.” I went from having a couple cards to now two pages worth.

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One item that Steve mention in our Twitter messages were these Nomar Garciaparra Twizzlers cards. Heck, they’re still in their wrappers! These cards were produced by Upper Deck in 2002 and somehow I never saw them in stores around here in Red Sox Nation. These are the two Nomah cards in the set, that also consists of other sports stars like Alonzo Mourning, Kevin Harvick, Donavan McNabb, and Garciaparra’s wife — Mia Hamm. Another great item for my Sox oddball album!

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Breakfast!!! Kellogg’s style with Bob Horner (1982, 1981, 1983). Only my second 1982 Kellogg’s card too.

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More 80s oddball goodies here! From the top, 1986 True Value cards of Seaver and Yount, 1989 MSA Weis Winners of Canseco and McGwire, and a 1981 MSA Peter Pan Sunbeam Bakery Horner disc. These three discs are my firsts for either series — great oddballs Steve!

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Other 80s cards included these 1985 Topps Send-Away Glossies …

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… and these 1988 Topps Glossy All-Stars found in rack packs …

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… and to close out, a near set of 1989 Topps Glossy Rookies that were found in jumbo cello packs.

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And to close out this great trade package, we have a handful of Topps the Magazine insert cards and a Ted Williams “1953 Topps” from a 1983 issue of Baseball Cards magazine. This is a card I had as a kid but along the way got lost, thrown out, or traded away. Now, I have a copy once again!

Thank you again Steve for a great traded package!! Let’s do it again down the road.

Well Worth the Wait

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So way, way back in the Summer of 2012, when I was busting a new box of Allen & Ginter, I was pretty happy to pull this relic card of a local celebrity of sorts. Keegan, a New England native, was the new, rising star on the PGA Tour and could hit it a ton. Since then he’s played well but hasn’t captured a Major since the 2011 PGA Championship.

Fast forward a couple of months and you can see from my writing on the card above, this relic was to have shipped that November. Nothing came. And so every couple of months, I would check back and the card was in a constant, some sort of “pending” state.

So recently, the Topps Twitter account had given someone a customer service number to call regarding an overdue redemption and armed with this information, I called them a couple weeks ago. They were great and taking my info and said they could send out a replacement. I did ask them, since it was almost FIVE YEARS overdue, if they could send something Red Sox or at the least baseball orientated. The rep put it in the redemption notes and would see what they could do.

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Fast-forward to yesterday and the above and below showed up in my mailbox!!! This awesome, tri-color patch relic of Big Papi is from the 2015 Topps Tribute line, numbered 23 of 25!!! Sweet Christmas in February!!!! This more than beats a Keegan Bradley swatch of spandex-like golf shirt. Looking at the swatch, I can tell it’s from the Sox road blue jerseys that carry the red numbers with white stitching.

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Here is a look at the back of the card. Even my son and wife were impressed when they saw the card! Along with this card, and a note apologizing for the lengthy delay, they also included this card below …

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… a game-used relic of Javier Baez, numbered 231 of 399, from the 2016 Topps Tier One line. I have a feeling I know where this card is going to ….

I gotta say, five years was worth the wait and kudos to the Topps Customer Service team for taking the time to listen to me and help out a loyal customer! Thanks Topps!

Trade with Kin Yields Completed Pages

So Kin over at I Feel Like a Collector Again sent this package in return with me helping him out on his 1986 Topps set. I gotta be honest, I wasn’t expecting these in return that’s for sure and they are beautiful condition! He said he got a heck a deal and I hoping he can find some others for another future trade.

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In the package was nine burlap beauties that you’ll see ended up completing FOUR pages in my 1968 Topps set album. Always love vintage leader cards, especially when they contain THREE HoFers on one card!!

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This batch here came in handy as you’ll see below.

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Also in the package, was four 1973 Topps that completed TWO pages towards my set and with the 1984 Topps Mike Krukow, I’m one more card closer to finishing that set. So with that, let’s see some completed pages …

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1968 Topps #91-99

Card that completed the page: Ed Kranepool (92)

Favorite card: Gary Sutherland (98), just a cool vintage bunting pose during spring training. The green grass, blue cloudless sky, and a brand new, bright red Phillies cap, lotta goodness here. Not gonna lie, I almost went with the Senators Rookie Stars because at first glance I though the guys name was Dick Hold, not Nold.

Best photograph: Gary Sutherland, see above.

Best career: Rocky Colavito (99). Rocky was six-time All-Star for three different teams (Cleveland, Detroit, Kansas City) and also finished in the top five voting for MVP four times. A fan favorite wherever he went, he slugged 374 homers and knocked in another 1,159 runs. Over the course of 14-year career, he batted .266. above he’s pictured as a White Sox, but would be purchased by the Dodgers in March of 1968, only to be released in July and finished out the season with the New York Yankees. The is Rocky’s last Topps card.

Number of Red Sox: Zero.

Past/Future Red Sox: Goose egg again.

Interesting fact: Tom Phoebus (97) became only the seventh pitcher since 1900 to pitch shutouts in his first two games. In his 1966 debut, he pitched a complete-game shutout, beating Dean Chance, 2-0. He struck out eight, walked two, and allowed only four hits. Five days later Phoebus got his second start and pitched his second shutout. Pitching against Catfish Hunter in Kansas City, he blanked the Athletics 4-0. Oh, he also threw a no-hitter during the 1968 season against the defending American League champion Boston Red Sox at Memorial Stadium on April 27.

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1968 Topps #118-126

Card that completed the page: Two this page; Mel Stottlemyre (120) and Jimmie Hall (121).

Favorite card: Mark Belanger (118), just love the camera angle, the vintage flannel Baltimore road jersey. Just a nice looking card.

Best photograph: Gene Mauch (122) photographed calling out for a beer, hot dog, or trying to get Dick Allen’s attention. Not sure but wished manager cards of today were as interesting as this one.

Best career: Toss up between Mark Belanger (118) and Mel Stottlemyer (120). Belanger was one of the best slick fielding shortstops of the 1970s, winning eight Gold Glove Awards. A career .228 hitter, he was named an American League All-Star in 1976 and played all but one of his entire 18-year career with the Baltimore Orioles. He finished with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1982. Stottlemyer was a five-time A.L. All-Star selection and was the glue that held those New York Yankee rotations together during the middle 1960s thru the early 1970s. He donned the Bronx pinstripes for his entire 11-year career, going 164-139 along with a career earn run average of 2.97.

Number of Red Sox: One; Jose Santiago (123). After a trade with the Kansas City Athletics, Santiago was an integral part of the Sox pitching staff as the chief swingman. His best stretch came from 1966-1968. In his five years in the back bay, Jose went 33-23 with a ERA of 3.42

Past/Future Red Sox: One; Gene Mauch appears as a Red Sox in the 1957 Topps set at #342 — a card on my Sox want list.

Interesting fact: In writing up about this page, I learned that Jose Santiago was named to the American League All-Star team in 1968. Actually Stottlemyer was on the same All-Star team as well, but neither appeared in the the mid-Summer classic won by the N.L. 1-0.

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1968 Topps #190-198

Card that completed the page: Dan Frisella (191)

Best career: Carl Yastrzemski, just ask @Markhoyle4

Number of Red Sox: One; Carl Yastrzemski Checklist (192).

Past/Future Red Sox: Zero, but Don Buford’s son Damon played some for the Sox in the late 1990s and he was a heck of a fielder.

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1968 Topps #586-594

Card that completed the page: Dick Nen (591).

Favorite card: Really not one here that screams out to me. I do like the old Angels cap with the halo.

Best photograph: Not a lot to like with the high numbers. A number of “traded” guys without hats and in old team’s uniforms.

Best career: Tommy Harper (590)

Number of Red Sox: One; Lee Stange (593).

Past/Future Red Sox: Three; Jim Pagliaroni (586), Dick Schofield (588), and Tommy Harper.

Interesting fact: Dick “Ducky” Schofield is the father of former Major League Baseball player Dick Schofield and the grandfather of current MLB outfielder Jayson Werth. Ducky, Dick, and Jayson all played for the Los Angeles Dodgers at one point in their respective careers.

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1973 Topps #10-18

Card that completed the page: Fred Gladding (17)

Favorite card: George Hendrick (13) in a page of blue and gray uniforms, the classic Oakland A’s uniform keeps pulling me in.

Best photograph: Maybe the Leroy Stanton (18)? Reminds me of the classic Topps photographs from the 1957 and 1959 Topps sets.

Best career: I’ll go with Don Sutton (10) in that he is Cooperstown.

Number of Red Sox: One; Sonny Siebert (14).

Past/Future Red Sox: One; Don Zimmer was a manager and coach for the Sox.

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1973 Topps #127-135

Card that completed the page: Milwaukee Brewers team card (127).

Favorite card: Pete Rose (130). It’s not the best image of Pete Rose as he looks like he’s watching a pop-up go foul, but it is the Hit King.

Best photograph: Dave Roberts (133). Can’t beat the yellow mustard Padres unis on a sunny afternoon in Wrigley, right?

Best career: Pete Rose. All-time MLB hit leader. A shame he’s not in the Hall of Fame.

Number of Red Sox: One; Eddie Kasko, manager … and look who else is on the coaches card … one Lee Stange from the 1968 Topps pages.

Past/Future Red Sox: One; Ted Sizemore (128).

Interesting fact: I’ve met Pete Rose’s then, long-time friend Tommy Gioiosa. So back when I was a kid, this guy would periodically come into the baseball card store where I worked over the years. Both owners knew him and the guy would always bring in autographed Pete Rose balls, 8×10 photos, and occasionally autographed, game used bats, batting gloves, even cleats I believe for us to sell. Gioiosa would be the one to tell the world that the All-Time Hit King had bet on baseball.

“I’ve sat in his office and watched him bet on baseball games, including the Reds and many other baseball teams…”

— Gioiosa in a televised interview conducted by ESPN, 1990.

And on that interesting note, I thank you for reading and thank God the sounds of Spring Training are in the air.

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Also of note, looking to find trading partners who collect New York Yankee, Oakland A’s, St. Louis Cardinals, and Texas Rangers … would like to streamline my collection while helping out other collectors. Hit me up on Twitter, email me, or leave a comment.