Sunday, March 18, 2012
The St. Patrick's Day Card Show, Pt. 1: The cheap stuff
I love card shows.
The one I attended yesterday was the be-all, end-all of card shows. Four hundred or so tables, thousands of cards, and not a care in the world.
It doesn't get much better in this hobby.
My dad and I spent a good four hours at yesterday's show, scavenging each and every glorious aisle of cardboard.
The final count totaled 534 cards. That's actually a bit less than I usually find at these shows, believe it or not.
However, I don't think I've ever matched the sheer awesomeness level of the cards I found at any other card show in my life. I found so much good stuff, in fact, that I'll have to break this "show" post into four parts.
I would've had this post up yesterday, but I was out celebrating one of my friend's birthdays last night. (No obnoxious St. Patty's day shenanigans were involved, thankfully.) One of the best feelings of a card show is coming back and dumping all the day's "finds" onto the floor, then going through and re-observing every card I bought.
I had to wait until I got home at around midnight to fully observe "the spoils". I was up until about two in the morning admiring all the new pieces in my collection.
So without further ado, let's get on to part one of the "St. Patrick's Day Card Show", shall we?
Why not start with the dime boxes?
The only downside to yesterday's show was that there was a few less dime boxes than usual. But as you'll see in the later posts, everything else I found more than made up for that.
However, that doesn't mean there weren't still gems to be found. One of the dime boxes I came across had cards from all sports mixed in. I usually don't even look through those types of boxes because it's a bit of a hassle to sift through hundreds of football and basketball cards to find those few baseball cards I might need.
However, I saw a few cards I needed in the front of one of the rows of the box, so I figured I should at least dig a little until I can find ten cards I need, in order to get the final total to an even buck.
I'm glad I did, or else I wouldn't have found the great Goodwin Champions Rube Waddell mini at the top of the post. For the most part, I didn't much care for last year's Goodwin set. Seeing guys like Ryne Sandberg or Robin Yount in street clothes isn't that intriguing.
However, finding anything of guys like Waddell or Cap Anson is always a plus, which is one reason I've warmed up to the set a bit lately.
Here's a couple more from that dime box.
The "Hall of Fame Stars" inserts from 2010 Topps Pro Debut went under my radar when they were released.
However, I've managed to find a few of them in dime boxes over the last couple years, and I'm a big fan. I love seeing cards of future stars like Palmer before they made it to the bigs.
The card vendor that my dad and I jokingly nicknamed "Milosh" was at this show. (I mentioned the origin of that nickname in this post.)
I don't mean this negatively, but I don't know that I've ever seen a guy so desperate to make a sale at a card show. The guy actually found me while I was at a different table and told me that his set-up was a few tables down. It's probably because I've bought quite a few cards from him the last couple shows.
"Milosh" didn't have too much new stuff since last month's show, so I didn't find a whole lot from his dime box.
However, the Bowman International Marlon Byrd was one of the big "finds" of the day. Whether it was intentional or not, the blue background of the card works great with the "Cubbie Blue" that Byrd wears.
Let's stray away from the dime boxes for a moment and take a look at these two cards.
The Ethier cabinet card was one of the more surprising finds of the day. One of the tables I came across had a big tub of scattered cards, priced at 8/$1.
I grabbed a few handfuls and didn't find anything too spectacular. I was just looking to find eight cards to get the 8/$1 deal.
I was shocked when I first saw the Ethier. Such a gem scattered amongst a bunch of otherwise unspectacular cards.
The SPx Grace card came from a quarter box I found at a table which I'll go into more detail about in a later one of these posts.
In terms of more recent cards, the selection wasn't too great at that table. However, I found a stack of those SPx cards in one of the rows. I still can't decide whether I love or hate that design.
I just knew I had to have that Mark Grace card.
Here's a couple more from that box.
Does it get much better than a "Shoeless Joe" card for a quarter?
Morales a dime, Upton a quarter.
I bet you could hypnotize someone with these refractors.
I found a big stack of these in one of the quarter boxes I came across at yesterday's show.
I might have overpaid a bit, but I've had a tough time finding these Hygrade All-Time Greats cards anywhere, and I didn't want to let them slip away.
Besides, it's not every day that I add a new Dick Allen card to my collection.
A couple more from the same quarter box.
The Conlon Collection color inserts are other cards I've had a lot of trouble finding. I found about ten of them for a quarter each. An absolute steal.
I was really surprised I didn't already have that Jim Thorpe card. Given how big of a fan I am of both Thorpe (I did a report on him in my 8th grade Social Studies class) and Conlon Collection, I would've thought I'd already have that card.
No need to worry anymore.
More from that same quarter box, and more cards that I've had a tough time finding over the years.
I found about 25 of these TCMA cards for a quarter a piece. The Rocky Colavito card was one of the best finds of the day, because it's the first card I have of him in a Yankees uniform (he briefly played for them towards the end of his career).
That quarter box was like the "land of the lost". I found a ton of cards in there that I've barely seen anywhere else.
"Yaz" was also a quarter box find. It was one of the more aesthetically pleasing cards I found all day.
What is Mike Hampton doing there, you wonder? Hampton as a Mariner is one of my favorites from my "Short Term Stops" collection. Until yesterday, I thought I had every card of him in an M's uniform.
The dime boxes proved me wrong.
The McCovey was another pull from the 8/$1 box I mentioned earlier.
There was only one truly spectacular dime box at yesterday's show, which contained a bunch of base cards from '90's sets that you almost never see. I walked away from that table with a total of 125 dime cards.
The Brosius might be my favorite card from that table. It certainly stands out in my binder next to pictures of guys sliding to break up the double play.
I might have mentioned it before, but I seem to find cards from the Pacific Nolan Ryan set in every dime box I go through.
I usually just pick out a few of the better ones. For instance, I chose to pass on the card of Ryan riding a horse and instead purchase my first card of him swinging a bat.
However, I love the Ryan cards that Coke issued in the '90s. The one shown here might be my new favorite Nolan Ryan card. Pitch-black backgrounds are the greatest.
Score was doing the whole "Gold" thing way before Topps made it famous.
Or maybe I should say infamous, depending on how you look at it.
More great dime finds.
The Edmonds is a fantastic new addition to my new "Cardboard Masterpieces" collection.
A few more great shots.
I especially like the Ray Durham one because it's probably from one of the first Cubs-White Sox interleague games.
Not only that, but they've got the throwbacks on.
Let's close out this post with a couple more fantastic shots.
I love cards of guys "at the wall". It doesn't hurt that the Cubs logo is proudly plastered to the right of Ellis Burks on his card.
In one of the greatest pictures I've ever seen, Milt Thompson is disposing of a beach ball that found its way onto the field. Or perhaps the Phillies decided to play a baseball game with a beach ball one day and Thompson is robbing a home run. (It's probably the first one.)
This is just the start of all the great cardboard I found at yesterday's show.
Look for "Part 2" later tonight!