Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Grocery shopping can be fun!



A few days ago, I was on my way back from my sister’s house and stopped at a grocery store a few blocks south of my town. Usually I go to the A&P about two blocks from where we live, but I was already in the car and this one was on the way, so I dropped in. Plus, while still an A&P, it’s just larger and a lot nicer than the one closest to us.

I paid for my groceries, and headed out the door. However, a sight made me stop dead in my tracks:
Those aren't Reese's and Paydays! They are cards. Baseball cards in a snack vending machine!

I had never seen this before. I had seen the slot machines where you put in a quarter and two or three cards come out, but have never seen packs in a vending machine. Amazing.

Now, for the most part, there was expected crap. Packs of 1996 Topps and 1991-92 NBA Hoops, for example. But there was some good stuff too, including 2014 Topps Olympics, and a few team bags. There were also Mickey Mantle HR cards in top loaders.

It’s rare that I have cash on me. I’m one of those annoying people who buys a pack of gum with a debit card, but I had a few singles, so I opted for a 25-card team bag (“B8”), with Jason Giambi on the front. I figured that would be a little more enjoyable than a pack of 1996 Topps. Plus, it would give me something to post about. See what I did there?
 
  
It contained the usual junk, for the post part, although I did get two cards from the ‘70s which I didn’t expect. Everything else was about what you’d imagine. Still, a very fun surprise at the grocery store. I’ll have to stop back and check it out again.

Welcome Chase Headley!

Welcome to NY, Chase Headley. Let's hope a change of scenery brings him back to his 2012 form. Regardless, nice gamble by the Yanks for a career minor leaguer and a high-A pitcher.
And so long to Rafael DePaula. I like ya, don't love ya, but I wish you the best. I've always got this 1/1 auto to remember you by!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

I've got gas...

...station cards.
Tricked you.

I still hit up the Lisia app once in awhile. I think many of us can agree the site has jumped the shark for the most part, but once in a while, there are deals to be had.

For a measly amount of credits, I won this cool Sunoco/Coca-Cola 2001 Dream Team set. I actually figured it was a little older than that, but 2001 it is. I feel like there is a massive lack of oddball sets like this nowadays...cards on cereal boxes, in Twizzlers, at gas stations, Denny's, etc. I'm sure it has to do with the Topps-exclusive, but stuff like this is great. Here is the Dream Team set:
 
I remember the 1994 Fleer Sunoco set as well, which were just Fleer base cards without the foil. My dad's co-workers always used to give them to him for me every time they filled up. I probably got 2-3 per week.
 
What are some of the better oddball sets you remember in the not-so-distant past?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Are parallels...refreshing?



When this card arrived in the mail the other day, the first thing I felt? Refreshed.

It was refreshing to see a Topps 60 insert in red. I saw so many of the navy blue ones (I swear they fell three per pack) back in 2011, that they became very redundant. Surely, you remember these:
 
It was nice to see a card design I’ve seen a million times, but in fresh, new color. Sure, the auto helps, but I feel like even if it wasn't signed, the red stands out in a different way.

Oops. I think I just justified and made an argument for why parallels exist. It's easy to bemoan parallels, especially when there are so many of them. But I admit, it's nice to see a different color splashed in for some variety.

I better stop. Here, just enjoy the card again.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

$ All about the green $

First off, this post has double meaning. Currently, I'm in Vegas for work. No, seriously. Why else would I willingly go someplace where it's 120-degrees out in July? Although, I've been getting plenty of back sweat going into NYC every day for work as is, so I guess it's not a huge deal going somewhere hotter.

In between my work conference, I'm sure I'll find a few minutes to hit the tables. Goal: don't throw away all my kids' college money. Win some GREEN.

Speaking of winning some green, here are two new green Pinedas for my PC, which is up to 80 different cards of Big Mike. Not too bad.

The first just arrived over the weekend from Judson over at My Cardboard Habit. He was cool enough to drop me a line saying he had it, and sent it my way via PWE. The green in Series Two is just as pea-like as Series One. I still need a bunch of the other Pineda parallels from Series Two, if you've got any. Anyhow, Judson, thanks for sending this my way!

The next is a little higher end, and costs a little more green if you will. It's from a product I'm not rich enough for (but maybe I will be after this week cha-chinnng), but found a really nice deal on. It's an emerald auto/jersey from 2013 Topps Triple Thread.
Pretty nice card with some vertical pinstriples. I see these cards with horizontal pinstripes sometimes and it looks so bad and sloppy. This has one of the nicer sets of stripes I've seen. This ran me just north of $5...it probably would have gone for $40 back in April when Big Mike was pretending to be a real pitcher.

Still, it's nice, high-end, and I like it. A lot.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Yearly HR Derby post

I think I recycle this post every year on the night of the HR Derby. This, along with the dunk contest, was must-see TV for me growing up. It would equal a sleepover with buddies. Pizza, ice cream, candy, snacks. It was an event.

Like the dunk contest, I think it's gotten pretty stale. MLB does keep trying to switch the format to find something that works, although it tends to keep just ending up a bit flat, not to mention inconsistent. Maybe it's me in my older age, just not enjoying something I used to. Wouldn't be the first time.

Regardless, I'll still watch. I always do.

Besides being at Yankee Stadium in-person in 2008 to see the Josh Hamilton HR Derby show, my favorite HR Derby memory is easily from 1997, when Tino Martinez won. That was awesome. I remember watching it and living and dying by every swing. I was 13. It meant something, watching my guy take on guys like McGwire and Griffey and coming out on top.

In 1998, a few sets had Tino in his HR Derby jersey, and I made just to gobble those cards up. It's still one of my fondest memories of him.



Saturday, July 12, 2014

Camo - something PINEda is not good at


When I got this 2014 Topps Series Two Michael Pineda Camo parallel in the mail, I sort of chuckled a bit. Camouflage certainly is not one of Michael Pineda's strong points, as we all saw earlier this season with the pine tar incident.

I've never owned one of these camo cards. They are cool. It's a bit lighter-colored in person than I would have thought, but still is a nice change-up from the solid color parallel.