Thursday, September 13, 2018
How I use COMC
My strategy for using COMC is basically to not have a strategy in the first place.
Both quality- and quantity-wise, there's just so much to sift through, and any hope of holding to a specific plan a is pretty much lost within a few seconds. It's like a card show if that card show was attended by every dealer in the country. Sometimes I get so overwhelmed that I don't end up buying anything at all.
But therein lies the great thing about COMC: sometimes you hit the jackpot.
I can't really recall all the different rabbit holes and trap doors I fell through in cobbling together my recent COMC order, but I'm certainly happy with the spoils.
Finding mini-collection hits is more of a happy accident than anything -- there's no way to specifically search for double plays or throwbacks, after all -- and the Punto is doubly spectacular since I'd long assumed he never had a card as a Cardinal.
Starting Lineup cards are a common COMC search of mine since I rarely see them out in the wild, and better yet, I again lucked into a couple themed hits with these two.
If I use COMC for any one specific thing, it's oddballs.
The trouble there is that oddballs are a world unto themselves: you could spend an entire collecting lifetime chasing them down and still not discover them all. In the meantime, I'm grateful for whatever I can scrounge up, whether that be TCMA or Shakey's Pizza or something called Zeller's.
Also: how cool is that SLU card of Babe Ruth as a Brave?!
My main oddball go-tos are probably Kellogg's and Permagraphics (I think I've just about exhausted COMC of the Hostess cards I need at this point).
Shiny legends are a must, and I always try to add at least one liquorfractor to every COMC order.
I'm also partial to using COMC to snag various online-only Topps releases since I don't have the budget or brain space to actually keep track of these in real time.
The Kershaw is from Topps's "Throwback Thursday" series (which are actually pretty cool, though I'm not sure what set that one's supposed to honor) and the Perez was a fun Topps On Demand single I got for pennies on the dollar.
Somehow I never thought to search COMC for Japanese cards before now.
Other stuff I bought that didn't really fit in anywhere else: including the Spaceman as an Expo and a Gwynn that's been a dire need for years now.
I'd also like to note that Carlos Baerga, which is a strange card from last year's Archives Snapshots set (another online-only release!). Young Carlos never did crack the big-league roster with the Padres, actually making his debut with the Indians before ever suiting up in San Diego. So it's odd then that Topps would choose to feature him as a Padre.
Sadly, it's not quite a zero-year card since Baerga played a half-season in San Diego a decade later (1999), a stint so forgotten that I can't even find a picture of it on the internet.
By now, you may have heard of yet another online-only Topps release, one claimed to have been designed and curated by none other than Bryce Harper himself.
Me, I'll take the Christie Brinkley cards.
Photo variations are another addicting COMC search, but thankfully a cheap one: I don't think any of these cost me more than a dollar.
One thing I don't use COMC for very often is vintage, oddly enough: you can scope out some good deals, but I've found it takes a ton of time I'd rather spend searching for liquorfractors and oddballs.
But sometimes the two worlds collide in the form of...vintage oddballs!
Finally, here's a card I was just plain sick and tired of not having in my collection, well worth its title as the most expensive card of this order (a whopping $1.75).
But for now I must go: because now, as always, another COMC rabbit hole awaits.