One Mail Day — Two surprises

So just a quick shout out to great baseball card traders out there!!! Saturday I received two envelopes, one was completely out of the blue …

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Kin and I traded a couple weeks back when we connected via Twitter. He man’s the blog I Feel Like A Collector Again as well as helps run Bean’s Ballcard Blog. As you can see above, Kin crossed off five 1968 Topps and a line drive single off my 1965 Topps sets needs! Kin was worried these just might be “fillers’ for me but these are A-Ok in my eyes — no upgrades needed here. Thanks for the great surprise!!

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Next up was the great Mark Hoyle. He had given me the heads up on a Heritage Sox lot he picked up and these were the dupes — all short prints!!! I am steadily making a serious dent into this new Heritage set, especially with the 100 SPs.

By the way, if you are reading this and if you are a Red Sox fan, you NEED to follow Mark. He tweets out pictures from his Sox collection that are unmatched anywhere else. Run through his images and you’ll see Sox cards and other collectibles you had no idea existed.

Thank you again Kin and Mark, I’ll find something to send back to you in short order!

 

 

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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.

Latest LCS Nets Three Completed Pages

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As part of a recent LCS haul, the owner had a small album of 1968 and 1969 Topps cards and I was able to grab the four cards above towards my 1968 set I am building. All four in turned help me complete three pages! Lets take a closer look …

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1968 Topps #208-216

Card that completed the page: Long-time Dodger, Willie Davis (208)

Favorite card: Dave Morehead (212), just a classic spring training pose in Winter Haven. His best career moment came in 1965, throwing a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians. After the ’68, he would be drafted by the expansion Kansas City Royals.

Best photograph: Toss up between Willie Davis sporting a classic pose at Shea or Morehead.

Best career: Jim Bunning (215). Hall of Famer, author of two no-hitters, seven All-Star selections, and oh yah … United States Congressman

Number of Red Sox: One; Dave Morehead.

Past/Future Red Sox: One; Gary Peters (210) was traded to the Sox in December of ’69 for a couple of warm bodies. He would pitch for the Sox through the 1972 season compiling a 33-25 record and an earn run average of 4.23.

Interesting fact: In 1976, Bunning tried to become a part-owner of the Houston Astros.

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1968 Topps #298-306

Card that completed the page: Rusty Staub (300).

Favorite card: Minnie Rojas (303). I love those old California Angels uniforms, especially the caps that had the silver halo stitching around the top.

Best photograph: Dick Green (303) and the A’s player patting him on the shoulder after another excellent fielding play.

Best career: Rusty Staub, a six-time All-Star, enjoyed a 23-year career playing for the Houston Colt 45’s/Astros, Montreal Expos (twice), New York Mets (twice), Detroit Tigers, and Texas Rangers. He would among over 2,700 hits, nearly 300 dingers, drove in 1,400-plus runs and hit .279.

Number of Red Sox: Zero.

Past/Future Red Sox: One; Mike Ryan (306) who had been a .201 hitter with the Sox from 1964-1967. After the ’67 season he was traded with cash to the Philadelphia Phillies for Dick Ellsworth and Gene Oliver.

Gene Michael almost appeared with the Sox. He signed as a free agent in February of 1976 but was released a couple months later.

Interesting fact: Minnie Rojas’ career last only three years (he was 32 as a rookie in ’66), but in 1967 he led the A.L. in saves with 27 and games finished with 53.

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1968 Topps #379-387

Card that completed the page: Two here; Boog Powell (381) and Jim “Catfish” Hunter (385)

Favorite card: I’ll go with Boog Powell here set against the backdrop of old Yankee Stadium but I’m also a sucker for All-Star cards.

Best photograph: Joe Foy (387), I just love these vintage, classic fielding shots … really wish Topps would bring this style back to todays flagship issue. I feel there’s too many action shots and would like to see some classic poses and candid imagery.

Best career: Catfish as he’s in Cooperstown and was one of the American League’s best pitchers during the 1970’s with the Oakland A’s and New York Yankees. He grabbed one Cy Young Award in 1974 but easily could have grabbed another in either 1973 or 1975. He also was selected to eight All-Star teams during his career.

Number of Red Sox: One; Joe Foy who had flashes but will be one of many, many on the list of “what might have beens” for the Red Sox. While a good teammate, had some off the field issues as well as conditioning question marks. After three years, Foy would be exposed to the expansion draft in the Winter of ’68 where the Royals would select him in the 4th round.

Past/Future Red Sox: Two; Gary Peters (379) yet again and Ramon Hernandez (382). Ramon wrapped up a nine-year career in Boston after the Cubs traded him for Bobby Darwin in May of 1977. After 12 appearances the Sox had seen enough and released him in August that Summer.

Interesting fact: Foy was named the 1965 Minor League Player of the Year by The Sporting News, won the International League batting title, was chosen to the International League All-Star team as a third baseman, and was named the league’s rookie of the year and Most Valuable Player.

And with that, four more crossed off my 1968 Topps Set quest. Thank you for reading!

Custom Sox: 1968 Topps Floyd Robinson

In my pursuit of obtaining one card of every player to put on a Boston Red Sox uniform, there are many cases where a player never appears on cardboard as a Sox. My solution, create custom cards to fill in those gaps. Today’s custom card for my All-Time Red Sox collection is of Floyd Robinson. Floyd’s last card was #404 shown below from the 1968 Topps Set as a member of the Oakland A’s.

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This was a quick design to turn around as, thanks to Topps, the picture of Floyd is of the hatless variety and taken from his White Sox days (most likely from 1964-65). In general, I try to find an image of the player in an actual Red Sox unit but Floyd was one of those guys in where I could not find.

A solid player for the White Sox in the early sixties, he found his way back to the Junior Circuit when he was shipped to the aforementioned Athletics from the Cincinnati Reds after the 1966 season. His tenure in Oakland was uneventful and was sold to the Boston Red Sox on July 31 as the 1968 season neared the playoff stretch.

Floyd would appear in 23 games for the Sox over the last two months, garnering only 24 official at bats. Used mostly as a defensive replacement in left and right fields, he’d muster three hits, a run, and a stolen base. His only starts came during a five-day span in late August. His best game for Boston came on August 27 when the Sox took it to Cleveland 7-1 at Fenway Park. Robinson, starting in left field (Yaz played first base that day) would go 1-4, a run, two runs batted in, along with that one steal (off of future Red Sox pitcher Stan Williams). His last game would come against the Yankees on September 29 while going 0-1 and with that an end to a nine-year career as a lifetime .283 hitter.

The Design Process

In tweaking the design of this custom card, my first step was re-typesetting the fonts on the front of the card. I needed to recreate the magenta position/team circle to give the custom card a cleaner, finished look rather than pasting another from a 1968 card. Next was retype setting the circle text using Futura Black Condensed and also needed to play a little bit the horizontal scaling and positioning of the type. One thing I noticed was that the type is not perfectly centered within the circle — as a designer, not sure why they didn’t but can only guess it wasn’t high on the priority list when putting the design together in the plate room. Take a look at a number of other 1968 Topps cards and you’ll see the same — as a designer I want to center the type — but in keeping it real to the original I left it off kilter.

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Next was cleaning up the FLOYD ROBINSON text below the picture and here I used Futura Bold Italic but found that the angle in the italic version pushed the text too far right. So I went with Futura Bold and manually skewed the text to align with the original. To finish off the front, I did some Photoshop work to eliminate the White Sox pin stripes and darken the jersey to look more of a road gray version the Red Sox would have had in 1968.

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On the backside of the card, I cleared out the OAKLAND A’S and replaced the copy with BOSTON RED SOX. Here I used Benton Gothic Black. Using Benton Gothic Condensed, I retyped the bio write up but tweaking the last sentenced to reflect how Robinson arrived in Boston.

At some point, I plan on printing this and others I have created, as well as future planned custom cards. Thank you for reading and look forward to any feedback you may have.

 

Holy Bleepin LCS Haul!

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Ok so last Friday I posted the above image from an afternoon at my LCS. Today I have another vacation day as the schools have a half day (too bad I am watching kids this afternoon or I would be back there or maybe Central Sportscards in RI) so I am just finally getting a chance to shoot and post. Alrighty lets jump in ….

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First up, some vintage Topps sets needs. I almost missed the 1959 Topps Mathews as it was obscured by a couple of other cards in his vintage case. The other two 59’s I may upgrade down the road but for right now they work for me. Thought I had the ’68 Topps Frank Roby but nope — card looks like it just came out of pack too!

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More vintage or semi vintage Topps needs — this time a bunch of 1973s including the great Bob Gibson! The Gibson was another card I have seen many times and thought I had, but nope.

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Moving into my childhood years, some 1984 Topps and I am now just a couple of cards shy from completing this set. I still need to track down a partial Traded Set as I have the Gooden RC already. I haven’t checked in a while to see what a complete goes for so maybe that’s the easier route.

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FINALLY! The 1980’s “black beauty” is complete. I thought I was going to be one card shy, but in a large monster box of 1986 Topps was the guy to close it out … Scott Thompson. I have an 800 count box of doubles from recent trades should anyone be tackling this set. Was also able to pick up a few more rack pack Glossy All-Stars as well as some “Traded to …” O-Pee-Chee cards. I know a couple of these guys do not appear in the traded set, such as Mike Stenhouse how is pictured in a Twins uniform but designated as a Red Sox player.

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Next, some miscellaneous interests I collect …
• 1969 Topps Deckle Edge Bob Gibson … he actually also had an OPC version but didn’t grab that.
• I love vintage combo cards and really need to put together a want list.
• Vintage leader cards, same with these — love having a card with 3-4 HOFers on it. List to follow.
• A couple of guys in Newsom and Bender to add to my No Hitters Collection

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A bunch of random Sox here, including an Oil Can Boyd rookie. I don’t have a 53 Bowman B&W so didn’t mind that it’s got some creases. He probably gave it to me for free. The Josh Beckett Opening Day card is cool … it opens up a different bunch of ways. That had been sitting in a Sox box for the last year so I rescued it. The comic issue (help me out Mark Hoyle) is I believe Rico Petrocelli but I think it’s missing the cover or something. Not sure the year.

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Moving along to my current favorite Red Sox player — Mookie Betts. Grabbed some I didn’t have and one of them is a rookie card too (Stadium Club).

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Now onto a whole mess of Kelloggs!!!! First some 1975 versions including a sweet Brooks Robsinson, Gaylord Perry (got doubles if anyone collect Indians or Kelloggs), and the original Fergie. These guys are not too curved so hopefully they stay that way.

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Some major star power in this collection of ’76s!!!! Eck rookie, Joe Morgan, Rose, Yaz, Rice, Brock, Bench Carter, Reggie!!!!! This stack is curved but really want to put into sheets.

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Some 1977 Kelloggs including The Bird’s rookie card and a sweet looking Dave Winfield.

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And the last of the cereal goodies, a 1973 Billy Williams, 1978 Reggie and NL MVP Dave Parker along with a few 1979 versions.

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Next we move onto the other 1970s food issue — Hostess cards!! We got the super-fro Oscar Gamble leading things off with some 1975s.

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Next a start on a partial set of 1976 Hostess. Some better stars here with Morgan, Niekro, Perry, Parker, and a poorly cut Nolan Ryan.

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Some 1977 Hostess above and it’s too bad that the stack the owner had was even larger but they were all trimmed TOO much (see the Vida Blue) that I passed. So, only a couple here that I chose.

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A couple of 78’s and I’ll be trimming up Boomer so he’s got a cleaner cut.

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And lastly, a handful of 1979 Hostess cards. Man, could the Mariners PLEASE bring back the trident!!! Between the two Bill Steins cards, it really is a classic look

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Next couple of images are some cards I find appealing so I try to grab when I can. The above are some Topps Archives inserts including my first “1972 Basketball” and “1969 4-in-1” cards.

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Next some Panini Golden Age inserts — all of these are my firsts. I love the Tip Top Bread cards and I think there’s a couple more Pre-Wars players I need.

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Up next, we go round and round with some Colgan’s Chip discs. I could have grabbed some other current players but this is early 1900s era set that I wanted just players who played during that time with the exception of a couple of guys like Satchel Paige and Jackie Robinson.

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And lastly, we close with one of my favorite vintage sets of all time — the 1955 Bowman set. I have a couple of others so this will be a set I will try to work on here and there. As you can see, this is a collector’s grade looking collection and that is fine with me. I would love to trade for any similar condition cards to help me build this set. The Yogi cost me a buck, and the lot probably five bucks total. So if you can help me out, please drop me a line.

As you can see, I hit on a wide variety of needs on this trip. I must have easily killed four hours and with then exception of a couple people towards the end, I was the only one there. It truly was some well deserved “me” time.

 

A Whole New Game

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1968 Topps Game

The 1968 Topps Game cards are probably the most popular insert set of the 1960’s. This 33-card set full of Hall of Famers measure just smaller than a standard size 1968 Topps bubble gum card. They were issued with the 1968 regular baseball cards and are very similar to the Topps Red Back and Blue Back sets issued in 1951. The cards were designed to be used as a baseball card game. I also believe that these 1968 Topps Game cards were also sold in complete box sets.

I had picked up about eight of these cards over the last year to go at the back of the 1968 Topps set I am working on. However, I saw an auction for a complete set that I couldn’t say no and also just a smidge over $40. The Mantle has some wear but alone runs anywhere from $20–$40 in this condition.

Looking at the Matty Alou (and Clemente) reminded me to ask Pirates fans or Uni-Watch fans, why did the Pirates have those sewn/glued on rectangle “P” patches on these hats in the 1960’s? No other team did this to my knowledge.

I do wonder, how a couple of players failed to make the cut. Bob Gibson, Lou Brock, Tony Oliva, Boog Powell just to name a few. Overall, this is a beautiful set and a real winner.

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