Thursday, July 24, 2014

A labor of love, Pt. 2

We're back with Part 2 of the tremendous box from my buddy Wes.

Before we start, I'd like to emphasize that this is not the same Wes of Jaybarkerfan fame. Yes, this is in fact a different Wes who likes to generously drop flat-rate boxes of cardboard on people.

Coincidence much?

As I showed in yesterday's post, Wes neatly divided all of the cards he sent into individual themes. Most of the ones I featured last night featured terrific mini-collection hits.

While I love my mini-collections, Wes went even further by developing a few random themes that he thought I'd enjoy.

Let's kick things off tonight with a section that pretty much speaks for itself.

Awesome Photography





Clothing Oddities (For Baseball Cards, At Least)

Baseball card or not, I'd say that what we have here is most certainly a clothing oddity.

Part of me wishes I could forget these '92 Bowman fashion model-esque shots all together.

Unfortunately, they'll forever be ingrained in my memory.

Cool Cards

This was an exciting section because it gave virtually no clue as to what I'd find inside.

Even with my Manny Trillo fandom, I'd never seen that '84 Fleer "Superstar Special" issue prior to this box. Definitely a cool card in my book.

At first, I couldn't figure out why Wes included the DeShields in this batch. I have a hard time putting "cool" and "1991 Donruss" in the same sentence.

That's when I noticed the shiny Expos necklace hanging down on Mr. DeShields's bright red Expos jersey.

Huh. I guess '91 Donruss can be cool.

Did I really just say that?

Minor League Cards

If you look closely, you'll find a ton of gems in early-to-mid '90s minor league sets.

This fantastic "grip" shot of future star Jason Schmidt is just the beginning.


Those "Soaring Stars" inserts should get more publicity.

They have a very '72 Topps feel to them.

Game Cards

Ever since the demise of MLB Showdown in 2005, I've been about as far from a "gamer" as possible.

And yet I still continue to have a fascination with game-themed baseball cards.


Tandems and Trios

Vince Coleman and Willie McGee absolutely tore up the basepaths for the Cardinals in the late '80s.

You won't find many better tandems in baseball.

Tricks with Bats, Balls, and Bases

Wes included a lot of great cards in this section, but I featured the Coleman because it matched up well with the fellow '86 Fleer issue.

I developed an even greater appreciation for Fleer's "Superstar Special" subsets after digging through this package.

Star Cards

Every package needs a little star power, right?

While we're on the topic of '86 Fleer, I can't say I knew that Tommy John card in the top-right even existed before this box came along. It's only my second card of John as an Oakland A.

Iron Men, broken bats, and '84 Fleer are always fun, but the the Ty Cobb in the center of this page stole the show.

It's a gold-bordered parallel of one of my favorite cards ever.

Government Issued Cards

Wes really went to town with this section.

I'm not much for politics, but I enjoy collecting cards of important historical figures and events. I've been meaning to get my hands on more of those Topps "Campaign" inserts for a while now.

Oh, and I'm glad UD's prediction about Chicago hosting the 2016 Olympics was wrong.

This city is cluttered enough as it is.

Vintage and Old Timers

New cards of Vida Blue and Josh Gibson are always a thrill.

I really have to get around to showing my Negro League collection one of these days.

Fun with Bubbles

Most epic bubble ever?

Well, almost.

Goofin' Around

Yes, that's a sword on a baseball card.

What is it with Jose Lind and sharp objects?

Something You Don't See Everyday

You can add the Murphy to the "How Have I Never Seen This Card Before????" category.

I always thought laptops were more of a mid '90s innovation. I had no idea they were around in 1990.

Heck, they were already popping up on baseball cards by then.

That's a medicine ball cameo on the Vaughn.

The '90s never cease to amaze me.

Spot the Oddity

Wes added a new and exciting game to complement the "Spot the Error" challenge from his last batch.

This one's called...




Above are eight seemingly normal baseball cards from various eras and brands. However, each one has a slight quirk or, dare I say, oddity that sets them apart from your run-of-the-mill pieces of cardboard.

Can YOU spot them?




Here's the answer sheet that Wes included with the eight "Spot the Oddity" contestants.

How many did you get?

The only one I missed was the Tibbs. I wouldn't have caught the inordinate amount of space between his name and the #53 in that shot if Wes hadn't pointed it out.

That does it for this edition of...




We'll see you next time.

Oversized Cards


Back to normal.

The final item I pulled out of this glorious box was a large envelope filled with oversized cards. I've never made it a mission to hoard these types of pieces, but I'll certainly take any people want to send my way.

I had a few of those '80s oversized Donruss issues, but I never knew UD produced plus-size cards in 1996. I've actually been on the hunt for a standard copy of that Worrell for a while now.

The Guzman is one of those happy accidents that tend to pop up on cardboard every now and then.

Let's take a moment to appreciate the humor of an oversized card of a guy wearing an oversized mitt.

Now this is a thing of beauty.

That's Jay Bell at the plate in front of an elegant natural backdrop. I assume what we have here is a spring training shot of some sort.

My jaw dropped in awe when I first saw it.

Now that I think of it, this whole box left me awestruck. One great stack of cards after another. Every single one courtesy of an all-around great guy in Wes.

The thought, care, and time he put into crafting this box is a perfect example of why I love this community so much.

Let's all give Wes a standing round of applause.


Jeff said...

That's the Angels' Spring Training home in Tempe. I went down for spring training one year and saw my Angels play four games in 3 different parks, but that mountain was one of the most awesome sights of the trip.

Marcus said...

Great stuff! The checklist, Jose Lind, and Chris Gill cards are all great, and ones that I have in my binders as well. Wes is pretty awesome.

Bo said...

Chris Gill is missing a tooth on that card - see my interview with him. Any chance that card is up for trade?

Comatoad said...

Nice cards. I kind of miss the old MLB Showdown cards, as I used to play in a league at a local card shop back in the early 200's. That used to be a lot of fun, especially since the first year was a draft - everyone bought a deck and a couple packs. They were all laid out on the table and you were able to draft your player. My first round pick t hat year was Randy Jones, who led me to a 2nd place finish.