December 14, 2015

Ripping A Pack Of 1980 Topps MLB Superstar Photo Cards

I pulled this unopened pack that had been waiting patiently for me for 35 years from a quarter box at the recent Atlanta area card show. I had never opened a pack of these 5x7 photo cards and after doing a little research on the product it is no surprise why. 

These cards were created by Topps as a test issue to check the interest level of over-sized photo cards of some of the best players in the majors. As you can see from the checklist for the set from the opposite side of the packaging there are 60 cards in the set with about 50% of the players actually qualifying as a "superstar."

I picked out this pack in particular because of the card on the back. No matter what else is in the pack getting a Nolan Ryan as one of the five cards makes it a winner.

You begin to understand that these might not have been a completed product when you take a look at the reverse side of each card. I imagine that a full statistical breakdown from each player would have been included on the back of each card once the set was completed. 

The next two cards feature Jack Clark and Darryl Porter who both have interesting facial hair...Clark with his near Wally Moon quality unibrow and Porter with his muttonchops and impressive mustache. 

Reading up on the set it seems that a handful of cards were printed far more often than other and Steve Garvey's card was one of those. The other more frequently printed cards include some of the key cards on the checklist including Mike Schmidt, Reggie Jackson, Rod Carew, George Brett, and Dave Parker. 

But as I mentioned at the beginning, the highlight of the pack is Nolan Ryan's card with what seems to be a slightly oversized Houston Astros cap that is sitting oddly on his head. Getting the old price guide out it also seems that Ryan's card is the most valuable in the set with a book value of about $4.00.

December 13, 2015

My 2015 Andy Pafko Collection Pickups

2015 is coming to the end and so it is time to sort out my additions to my Andy Pafko collection that haven't been taken off the needs list yet. As you can see I added several duplicate copies of Pafko's early Bowman and Topps cards. Many of these came through eBay auctions and some also arrived in trade packages from Reader Mike D. who I've been trading with for years now. 

The highlight of this new group is in the bottom right, an original 1957 Spic-n-Span card. These were issued by a dry cleaning company in Wisconsin and featured just Milwaukee Braves players from the time. It was one of the key original cards from Pafko's playing days that I was missing and it is now one of the jewels of my collection.

December 12, 2015

$10 Challenge Card Exchange With Dave The Cardboard Junkie

At this past week's card show, Dave the Cardboard Junkie and I recorded a new episode of the Trading Card Preservation Society podcast and also did a $10 Challenge in which I picked out $10 of stuff for Dave and he picked out $10 of stuff for me. We did the exchange live on the podcast so you can hear it all there and here are photos of what we got.

We will start with what I got Dave. We being with a complete 1988 Panini Baseball sticker set that has a new sticker book and all 480 stickers. This set me back $1.00 and the seller seemed very happy to get rid of it. There was another complete set in the $1.00 bin and as I drove away from the card show Dave was going back in to snag it! 

If there is one thing that Dave might like MORE than stickers it might be old mini tobacco cards. I found one on the table of probably our favorite seller at the show and picked it up for $2.00. The English tobacco cards were made for a much longer period than the American versions and this card dates back to somewhere in the 1930's.  

Knowing Dave is the biggest Atlanta Braves fan I know, I had a ton to choose from in picking some great cards for him. I'm talking Chipper Jones rookies for as far as the eyes can see. I tried to find something more unique and rare that he might not already have in his collection. I ended up going with a semi-rare 1962 Topps Stamps of Hank Aaron for $6.50. It's missing a couple pieces of the deckle edge but was a great looking piece.

Dave went the opposite route from me and went big on one card and found a great deal. I'm working towards completing the 1972 Topps set and be brought in one of the key rookie cards of the set. It's Carlton Fisk and Cecil Cooper's cardboard debut and although I appreciate how great Fisk was as a catcher, I'm a little more excited to finally have Cooper's rookie as he was a Brewer's legend and I am a Wisconsinite after all. I even got to meet him and got an autograph a few years ago when I was visiting my parents in Wisconsin.

1972 Topps #79

December 11, 2015

My Top 5 Favorite 2015 Topps Journey To Star Wars: The Force Awakens Cards

Don't forget to enter to win some Star Wars Card Trader digital packs here.

I've opened about 20 retail packs of Topps' first The Force Awakens card set with more sets to come in the near future I'm sure. So I've made a pretty good dent into the set but I don't quite have a complete one yet so if I missed an obviously great card that you think should be included in the list, give me a comment.

5. #F-2 Poe Dameron Foil
4. #F-4 Finn Foil

The foil inserts are definitely my favorite inserts from the set and it is exciting to pull cards for the new characters even before the movie has arrived. The reverse side doesn't give you any additional information about the film however and the colorful foil cards really bring them to life. I imagine that Poe and Finn might have a similar relationship to Luke and Han from the original Star Wars. Disney is currently trying to find a "young" Han Solo for a future anthology Star Wars film and just about anyone is in contention. It seems to me the perfect actor would have been Oscar Isaac for a new Han Solo movie but obviously that isn't a possibility anymore.

3. Movie Facts #9 Victory at Endor

Although the base cards come in a variety of colors, the black version of "Victory at Endor" frames the image perfectly. Darth Vader's viking funeral on Endor has become a much more important scene since Vader's melted mask shows up in The Force Awakens and I'm excited to see if we learn how Kylo Ren's obtains it. 

2. Story Summary #6 The Rancor Feasts

While all of these selections are personal, this one is REALLY personal. I had a lot of Star Wars figures as a kid but I didn't have many of the bigger toys. My Mom actually made me an Imperial Walker out of cardboard as a kid and I probably treated it nicer than all other "official" toys. One of the big toys I did have was the impressive Rancor figure who could nearly eat an entire figure in its impressively huge mouth. I imagined hundreds of alternate stories that saw Chewbacca, Han, C3PO, The Emperor, etc...getting thrown down into Jabba's Rancor pit. Luke was the only one to escape. 

1. #S-9 BB-8 Sticker

While I'm excited for all the new Force Awakens characters [particularly finally figuring out what Andy Serkis' character Supreme Leader Snuke looks like], I'm looking forward to seeing BB-8's scenes the most. I will probably have my mouth slightly opening thinking how the heck did they get that to actually work. I was lucky enough to pull this BB-8 insert in my very first back of Journey to the Force Awakens and I was hooked on the set immediately.

December 10, 2015

Win Some Star Wars Card Trader Digital Card Packs

I'm going to be posting a lot about Star Wars in general and The Force Awakens in these next few days as we approach next Friday's premiere. So let's start with a little giveaway. If you are a fan of Star Wars Card Trader you can win three packs of digital cards by leaving a comment to this post with your first Star Wars memory. I'll take all the entries over the next couple days and randomize them and find a winner.

My first Star Wars memory was of my my Dad taking me to see Return of the Jedi around 1985 or 1986 when it was being re-shown in theaters again. It was being screened at the small theater at the local university in my hometown and, while I remember going, my Dad frequently reminds me I was describing to him and just about everyone else in the theater what was happening on the screen from moment to moment. I was a big fan of "Rootie-Dootie" at the time and would yell it every time the droid appeared on screen.

December 9, 2015

The Trading Card Preservation Society Podcast Episode #12 Is Here With Force Awakens Predictions

Today Dave the Cardboard Junkie and I are back with another episode of the Trading Card Preservation Society. We recorded this episode at the Roswell, GA card show and we cover four main topics. We begin with a $10 Challenge/Secret Santa gift exchange from the card show. 

We are both very excited about the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens and we offer a whole lot of predictions about the movie. We vote "No" on any mention of midi-chlorians and "Yes" to a scene of pure fan service! We also squeeze in a discussion on the finally released 2015 Topps Doctor Who and talk about the Netflix series Jessica Jones. Colligere Omnia!

You can stream the episode below, download it directly here, and [in a few moments when the feed updates] also find it on iTunes and Stitcher