Friday, September 27, 2013

Flea market countdown, Pt. 2: Cite your sources

I often wonder where some vendors get their inventory.

More than once at card shows, I've had guys tell me they have a couple dozen more dime boxes tucked away in their garage. And I'm always shocked to see sellers who have stacks upon stacks of vintage cardboard on display.

Where the heck does it all come from?

Like any other hobby, though, I guess people just have their sources. As far as the flea market goes, I'm still not sure where my regular vendor's reservoir is located.

As I briefly alluded to in yesterday's post, he's told me in the past that he doesn't buy much new product. Given that he's a fairly elderly guy, I don't think he frequents card shows very much.

Maybe he goes around the city buying up old collections. Maybe he just has an outside source for cardboard. Or maybe he's holding up card shops and taking all their stock. Whatever it is, I don't care. (Okay, maybe I would care if it were that last one.)

I'm just lucky to be able to dig through so much good cardboard on a weekly basis at my local flea market.

I haven't a clue where he found it, but finding a beautiful 2013 National promo of Jim Abbott in my guy's quarter box has to be one of my better finds of the year.

Even though it was almost two months ago now, I guess my National experience isn't quite over yet.

I actually went a little crazier with the quarter cards this time around.

All in all, I snagged about 25 pieces from the quarter bin, which is about double my usual intake. Those, along with over 300 dime cards and a few fifty-cent/dollar pieces (which you'll see in a bit), only set me back fifteen bucks.

It's just another chapter in the never-ending saga of flea market bargains.

Like the dime boxes, many of my quarter finds were made up of 2013 material. This GQ Buster Posey mini was one of my premier gets.

Other things may change, but my love for minis will never go away.

Sorry to get all sappy on you there.

More 2013 inserty goodness.

GQ really knocked it out of the park with the "Dealing Aces" series.

This is a fantastic card for a few reasons.

1) It's Carlton Fisk. The man is, and will always will be, awesome.

2) It's a play at the plate. And I'm sure you all know how much I love those by now.

3) It might well be a continuation of one of the better PATPs ever featured on cardboard.

Fisk's '77 Topps issue features former Yankee second baseman Willie Randolph sliding into the legendary backstop. I'm not one hundred percent certain, but I'm fairly sure Randolph is the runner on this GQ "Collisions at the Plate" shot as well.

So, could we have a continuation of one of the more famous plays at the plate in cardboard history?

While it'd be hard to prove, I think there's at least an outside chance.

I've already gushed on and on about how much I love this year's Opening Day inserts, so I'll save you the spiel.

Fantastic action shot aside, new cards of fellow "birthday boy" Josh Reddick are always appreciated.

As is anything of Evan Longoria or Mike...ahem, Giancarlo Stanton.

Those "Ballpark Fun" inserts might be the best insert set of the year. And I like Opening Day's blue sparkles more than Flagship's emerald parallels.

Whoops. There I go raving about Opening Day again.

Sorry about that.

Manny Machado is the basis for one of my newest player collections.

All I can say is that I'm extremely glad he won't miss an extended amount of time with that knee injury he suffered this week. I saw it live, and, at the time, I thought it was a torn ACL for sure.

As it happens, Machado is part of an ever-growing list. He's one of the few current big leaguers younger than myself. I'm about five months older than the standout third sacker.

It's weird to think about, but I'm admiring cards of guys who are younger than I am.

In a strange way, though, it's actually kind of nice.

Also from the quarter box was this awesome "throwback" shot of Jim Thome.

The guy has surefire Cooperstown credentials and was one of the nicest human beings you could ever meet.

Yet I'm sure he won't get 100 percent of the Hall of Fame vote come 2017. In fact, how no one has been unanimously voted into the Hall yet is beyond me.

Maybe Thome will be the first.

More South Siders!

Only this time, we're looking at a couple fifty-centers.

There really needs to be more Luis Apracio cards in the world.

Now we're getting into the big stuff.

Dollar box material.

I only bought two dollar cards this time around, but I sure think I made them count.

Finding anything of "The Mick" is fairly tough when it comes to dime or quarter boxes. I usually have to plunge into the fifty-cent and dollar bins for cards of his.

And I don't mind one bit.

Even for a whopping buck, I didn't think twice about adding this spectacular piece to my collection.

It's a double bat barrel, bro.

I've seen this card in the dollar box during my last few trips to the flea market.

Yet, for whatever reason, I passed each time. I guess I'm kind of hesitant to drop a buck or more on anything that isn't vintage.

This time around, though, I cut the BS. I finally bought the card I'd seen over and over again.

Such an amazing piece of "Robbie" deserves a rightful home in my Reds binder. And not to mention my HOF collection.

I mean, could I honestly spend a buck any better?

I could've gotten a double cheeseburger at McDonalds. Or maybe a pack of gum. Or I could've paid for about twenty seconds of my college tuition.


I'll take the Robinson.

In the end, a buck was more than worth it.


petethan said...

You little snot! Digging players younger than you...! Wait a few years and it'll be the ones who are older than you. (Please don't retire, Mariano Rivera!!!! You're all I've got!)

beefman said...

Nice to know there's another blogger out there who Apariciates Aparicio cards!


Nick J

Fuji said...

Nice flea market finds. I'm headed to a mall show today and can't wait to stand in front of those dime boxes sifting through the goodies. It's straight up cardboard meditation for me.

Ana Lu said...

The Carlton Fisk card is a terrific card!