Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas in the fall

Before I start, I'd like to wish all my blogging buddies out there a very Merry Christmas!

I'll be working tomorrow (the airport never sleeps), but I wanted to get a post up before the holiday since this blog has been dormant for about a week now.

The other day, I noticed that I still had a few trades to post from my pre-hiatus days. I figured it'd be as good a time as any to run through a few PWEs/small packages I received before my hiatus back in October, when, you know, there were actually leaves on the trees. (My apologies for the delay in posting them.)

The first batch of cardboard comes courtesy of two separate envelopes I received from Shane of "Shoebox Legends" fame. I've found that I've kind of stumbled into a PWE war with Shane as of late, which is nice because I honestly never know when something from him is going to show up in my mailbox.

This first PWE kicked off with an awesome play at the plate of The Wizard (of the Electric Diamond variety) that I'd somehow never seen before.

Shane was also nice enough to add a couple parallels to my blossoming Corey Kluber collection.

Subconsciously, I think I try to collect at least one current guy from every big-league club. My brain must've noticed the lack of current Indians in my binders, and figured the Klu-Bot was a good fit.

Not a bad choice, considering the guy's a former Cy Young winner and all.

Shane's second PWE started with this terrific A&G mini of my favorite current White Sock.

Definitely one of the best bat barrel shots in recent memory.

More player collection hits, new and old.

As a Cubs fan, I feel a little conflicted about my decision to start collecting Matt Carpenter. He's a rival, sure, but I'll be darned if the guy can't hit. 

But seriously, dude, try not to hit so much against the Cubs next year, okay?

Shane capped off the PWE fun with a couple of the most (in)famous throwbacks ever.

These have been rather famously dubbed the "Bloody Mary" and "Technicolor" jerseys of the '70s, and I think both labels, for better or worse, fit rather well.

Here's a first.

I found this sweet Donruss Preferred Vlad tin inside of a package I received from Tom of the terrific "Waiting 'til Next Year" blog.

It's the first time I've ever received a tin via trade, and now I kinda wish companies would package more of their cards in tins nowadays.

This package was stocked with standard-sized Vlads as well from both his Expos and Angels days.

And just when I thought all was right and well with the world...

...Tom went ahead and Biebered me.

I have no words, except, just...why, Tom?


But back to happy, Bieber-less thoughts.

I received this Clayton Kershaw insert as part of a return package from Shane (yes, another shane) from the "Cincinnati Reds Baseball Card Collector" blog. Shane noticed that I'd picked up a Kahn's Pete Rose oddball at the National this year, and asked if I'd be willing to part with it.

I did like the Rose, but when a guy with a blog title like that contacts you, there's a good chance he needs the card more than you do. I didn't mind parting with it. And, hey, did you know Clayton Kershaw shares a birthday with Wyatt Earp?

You do now.

These two leaping legends came from a trade with Bryan of the "Golden Rainbow Cards" blog.

Am I the only one who actually liked the yellow parallels last year?

I don't often make it a point to track down Photo Variation SPs these days, but this one was on my most-wanted list.

I don't know if reader Jeremy T. knew that when he sent it over, but it's a treasured add to my binders either way. The base version of Paulie in 2015 Topps will be ranking very high in my Cards of the Year countdown, and this SP comes very close to matching the base card's beauty.

Just by looking at this shot, even a casual fan would know how much Konerko meant to the South Side of Chicago.

The PWE I received from the Tony of the terrific "Off Hiatus Baseball Cards" was, ironically, the last envelope I received before I went on my hiatus.

Inside, I found a fantastically odd assortment of cardboard, which is par for the course with Tony. First up is this Jeff Reardon, a card that didn't strike me as anything strange until second and third viewings. Only then did the questions start coming.

1) Is that an airbrushed cap?

2) Donruss did airbrushing?

3) Since when did the Expos wear plain purple hats?

Up next are a couple sweet oddballs of Ryno and The Kid.

Tony has probably added more oddballs to my collection than any single blogger I've met.

Case in point.

Harmon Killebrew is one of my all-time favorites, and I like to think I've built up a formidable collection of his over the years. Even so, this '65 Topps Embossed card of The Killer had escaped me until Tony came along.

These Topps Embossed cards were never the best-looking, but, then again, there's no such thing as a bad card of Harmon Killebrew, is there?

Finally, we have a PWE from Jeff of the terrific "Wish They Still Came With Bubblegum" blog.

A&G might not come with bubblegum, but it does come with minis, and Jeff was nice enough to shoot this King Felix my way. Hernandez is one of those guys who I've basically been forced to collect. His cards seem to pop up everywhere I go. I think this mini finally pushed me over the edge.

I can now say the words: I collect Felix Hernandez.

Here's a couple of my favorite Cubs cards of 2015.

The Banks is a gold parallel of his legendary 2015 Stadium Club issue, and the Russell is one of many cards I hope to accumulate of the young Cub second baseman in the years to come.

That Russell-for-Samardzija deal is looking pretty good right about now.

A couple for my Griffey and Freddie Freeman collections.

I was never the biggest fan of stickers as a kid, but I've always liked them on baseball cards.

And how about a neon-yellow George Brett Kellogg's issue to close things out?

The number of cards in my Brett collection has almost tripled in the last year or so, and this will definitely take its place as one of the centerpieces in that fold.

With trade partners like this, it really does seem like Christmas is a year-round phenomenon here in the blogosphere. (Bieber aside.)

Here's hoping Santa fills your stockings with cardboard goodness this year.


P-town Tom said...

Being is Beibered is a sacred right of passage that all true members of the cardsphere must experience. (At least, that's what I told myself when The Card Papoy Biebered me.)
Happy Holidays!

Anonymous said...

To answer your Jeff Reardon questions...
1) Yes, it's a Mets cap with the logo airbrushed out. The Mets used to wear pullover jerseys with two-button collars and blue/orange trim around the collar and sleeves.
2) I'm not sure I remember any other examples of Donruss airbrushing
3) It's not supposed to be purple.

Funny thing is, I wanted to see if my own copy looked that way, and I couldn't find it at first... then found it with my Mets cards rather than with my Expos cards.

The throwback cards are cool, but I wish they'd used someone other than CC "I'm wearing a tent at all times" Sabathia.

Zippy Zappy said...

"But seriously, dude, try not to hit so much against the Cubs next year, okay?"

In Carpenter's defense, it's not exactly his fault that Cubs pitchers decide to pitch to him and give him a chance to hit.

Hackenbush said...

Merry Christmas, "St." Nick.

shoeboxlegends said...

Glad you enjoyed the cards, Merry Christmas Nick!

Ana Lu said...

Those 2 leaping cards are too bloody good!
But above all..Happy Christmas Nick

beefman said...

Nick, I have the Vlad tin as well, but it's box sized. If I ever find the lid, it's on its way to Chicago! It's currently filled with the pack wrappers that I keep, but I will happily fill it with cards for you.

Nick J