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Group Break entries are now closed, the boxes have been ordered and secondary teams have been randomized. Follow THIS LINK for final team assignments.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

(Group Break) Pimpin Ain't Easy - The Daily Dimwit

Hey everyone, Sam at The Daily Dimwit is getting ready for another group break and has one spot left that needs to be filled. He will be opening one box each of 2009 Topps Unique, 2008 Topps Co-Signers, and 2007 Upper Deck SP Legengary Cuts. There is just one slot left but teams like the Mets, Tigers, Reds, Rockies, Blue Jays, and many more, are still available. Go check it out before the last spot is taken.


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Just the Hits, Ma'am" - 2010-2011 Panini Black Box

I got a little curious at my LCS and decided to pick up a discounted box of 10-11 Panini Black Box Basketball. I'm not a huge hoops collector, but I do like to pick up the occasional product from time to time. In addition to two base cards (Julius Erving and Ty Lawson, both /99) here are the three autos and three relics I pulled.

Dominique Wilkins Flag Patch Auto 1/10


Vlade Divac Flag Patch Auto /149 Redemption


Raymond Felton Auto 7/24


Blake Griffin Jersey 53/99


Dual Jerseys - Lamar Odom 97/99 Andrew Bynum 92/99


I flipped the Dominique on Ebay, and redeemed the Divac. I'm still waiting on that one. I think if he hasn't signed the fabric and sent it in by now, he probably isn't. Now I just have to wait the four month window to request a replacement, but that was the idea all along. I'm keeping the Griffin, but the Felton, Odom and Bynum are all for trade.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

2012 Topps Archives - 2 Boxes (Bryce Harper Auto!!!)

The more and more I read about 2012 Topps Archives, the more I was anticipating its release. Not only does it revisit some classic Topps designs, but it has plenty of on-card autographs of players from the 70s, 80s, and 90s that don't get a whole lot of modern-day hobby love. So naturally, when the product was released earlier this week, I ran to my LCS as soon as I could and picked me up a couple of boxes.

The big hit, of course, was a redemption for an autographed card of Nationals rookie and hobby superstar Bryce Harper. Alongside Yu Darvish, Harper's cards have been selling for boatloads of money, especially ones with his autograph, so this should go a long way in making back some of the money I have been spending on cards.


Besides the Harper, I got four other autos. Each box is guaranteed to contain two, so I'm guessing the Harper was added in as an extra hit, due to its scarcity, the same way they throw in printing plates and relics. Still, I was very happy with my other four. Box # 1 gave me the Ken Griffey (Sr.) and the Jim Wynn, while Box #2 gave me the Harper, along with Bill "Spaceman" Lee and John Kruk. All four are fantastic pulls, in my opinion. None of them will fetch a whole lot on the secondary market (maybe the Griffey) but it's just really cool to be able to pull autographs of players like these.


As if the extra auto wasn't enough, Box #2 also gave me a 1/1 printing plate of Cardinals closer Jason Motte. The black version of the plate gives a good amount of detail in the photo, but due to the card design, Motte's name and position do not show up. Still, it's pretty cool to be able to pull four hits out of  a two-hi box.


Look, I know Topps takes its fair share of flack from some collectors, a lot of which is deserved, but this release has been getting a lot of praise from collectors. The throwback designs of the set are cool, and the fact that ALL of the autographs in this release are on-card (except for Gary Carter) shows that they put a lot of effort into this. I love what I have seen so far from Archives, and despite completing the base set with my two boxes, I might end up buying some more, just for the fun of it.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Just the Hits, Ma'am: TNA Impact Wrestling: Reflexxions

I figured I'd dip my toes into the TriStar pool and pick up a box of TNA Impact Wrestling: Reflexxions. As a wrestling fan, I'm definitely a WWE guy, but the hits included give me a good shot at getting some pretty cool items, especially with the  former WWE superstars on the TNA roster. Each box contains seven "hits," which include 1 multi-relic or signed mat card, 1 dual auto, 2 other autos, and three serial-numbered cards, one of which is a low-numbered foil parallel. Without further ado, here's what I got:

Quad Relic - AJ Styles, Abyss, Matt Morgan, Christopher Daniels 101/199

Dual Auto - Christy Hemme & SoCal Val 28/50


Autos - Traci Brooks 18/50


Robbie E - 25/50


Foil Serial Number - Robert Roode 5/40


Velvet Sky Lending a Hand 10/10 Gold


Ric Flair Silver 10/40


There you have it. I'm keeping the quad relic and the foil Roode, but anything else is up for trade. Let me know if anything interests you.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Trade With Things Are Funner Here

Sometimes you come across a card at the LCS specifically to trade with a specific blogger. Such was the case with a Roy Halladay Quad Relic from Topps Marquee that I was able to get my hands on for a VERY reasonable price. This actually ended up being my first trade with Julie at Things Are Funner Here. I shipped the Halladay off to her, along with a couple others, in exchange for the following cards:


Thanks for the trade!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Trade With It's Like Having My Own Card Shop

With one trade and one card, I managed to complete two collecting goals of mine after swapping with Daniel at It's Like Having My Own card Shop. Daniel posted on a pack of Sweet Spot that he had opened, and I got pretty excited when I saw this card as his big hit:


For the longest time, I have been wanting one of these Sweet Spot Signatures cards. I know they're manufactured "relics" but they look REALLY cool, and after being a Kerry Wood collector for a few years, this is my first autograph of his. I had to part with an Al Kaline bat relic from 2012 Topps Tribute for this card to add to Daniel's 3,000 Hit Club Bat Card Collection. He still has a few left to go, so if anyone has the time, go check it out and see if you can help the guy out.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

2011 Panini Plates & Patches 2-Pack Break

My LCS must have had these two boxes of Panini Plates & Patches sitting on the shelf untouched for a long time, because I got quite the deal on them. Never one to pass down a good sale, I decided to open up a couple packs and see how my luck would turn out.

Each pack comes inside a small box, and contains three autographs (one of which contains a piece of memorabilia), three relics, and five serial-numbered base cards. Here's what my two packs gave me:

Pack1
On-Card Auto/Two-Color Patch of Taiwan Jones 227/499


A nice looking card, but it can be had for about 5 bucks on Ebay.

Eli Manning Jersey 121/199


Nothing wrong at all with pulling an Eli jersey, but for a high-end product, I don't want to see a plain white jersey. Sorry to be picky, but that's just the way it is.

The rest of the hits were less-than-spectacular, so I'll just do a quick rundown.

Shane Vereen Jumbo Jersey 43/50


Marcedes Lewis (another white) Jersey 45/48


Colin Cochart Rookie Auto 19/99

Marcus Cannon Rookie Auto 72/100


Base Cards: Aaron Rodgers 115/299, Michael Vick 180/299, Tarvaris Jackson 20/100, Buster Skrine Rookie 4/100, Charles Clay Rookie 38/50


With the best hit being a plain-white jersey swatch, I was REALLY hoping to get a better box with number two.

I would.

Jake Locker Auto/Jersey 10/25


I know it's the bane of most collectors' existence, but in this case, I was okay with this being a sticker auto. Granted, he may never have held this card in his hand, but with as many rookie auto cards are put into football products (and there ARE many), the way I see it, this allows me to get my hands on a great card. After all, I'd rather receive a sticker auto of a top-tier pick than an on-card of a fifth rounder.

Von Miller Rookie Auto Redemption /??


An auto of the number two pick in 2011. Not bad at all. Instead of flipping it on Ebay, I decided to redeem it myself. There aren't any of the actual card floating around, from what I can tell, and if they never get Miller's items back, I'm surious to see what the replacement will be.

Anyway, here's a quick look at the rest.

Akeem Ayers Rookie Auto 55/350


Terrell Suggs Jersey 286/299


Shonn Greene Prime Jersey 14/25


A.J. Green Rookie Blitz Jersey 286/299


(Notice the lack of plain white jersey swatches in this pack)

Base Cards: Knowshon Moreno 269/299, Mike Sims-Walker 50/299, Nick Fairley Rookie 16/100, Peyton Hillis 39/50, Jordan Todman Rookie 212/249


Well, there you have it. One good pack, one not-so-good pack. This pretty much goes to show you, that you can't judge a product by just one pack. The problem with going high-end, though, is that sometimes, one pack is all you get.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Miracle on Ice Autographs #2 & #3: Steve Christoff & Eric Strobel

I picked up card numbers 2 and 3 for my Miracle On Ice autograph collection from In the Game Decades: 1980s. In 2011, In the Game tracked down all 20 players from the 1980 USA Olympic Hockey Team and inserted on-card autographs into packs of Decades: 1980s. These two in particular are of Steve Christoff and Eric Strobel.


Steve Christoff played college hockey at the University of Minnesota, where he won an NCAA championship in 1979, leading his team with 77 points in the regular season. He was picked 24th overall by the Minnesota North Stars in the 1978 NHL Entry Draft and played in the Stanley Cup finals in 1981, losing to the New York Islanders. Christoff was traded to the Calgary Flames for the 82-83 season and played his final year in 83-84 with the Los Angeles Kings.


Eric Strobel, like Steve Christoff, was an NCAA champion with the University of Minnesota in 1979 before winning Olympic gold. He was drafted 133rd overall by the Buffalo Sabres in 1978, but his pro career was a short one, as he retired after breaking his ankle in a 1980 AHL playoff game.

So far, I have 3 out of 20, but I am getting closer, as I am expecting to add Buzz Schneider to my collection as soon as it arrives in the mail.

11-12 Panini Preferred Basketball

After decided to shake things up and get myself a non-hockey product from my LCS, my eyes were drawn to an odd-shaped box of Panini Preferred basketball. The box is long, wide, and thin, kind of in the shape of a magazine.

The draw with this product is simple. One four-card box contains three autographed cards and one six-to-eight swatch booklet. I figured with odds like that, I'd be a fool not to try it out, right?

Well, I hit a good one. Here are my hits.

"Inducted" Booklet featuring Larry Bird, Wilt Chamberlain, David Robinson, Julius Erving, Patrick Ewing, Dominique Wilkins, Karl Malone, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.This is an absolutely STUNNING card and not only does it feature eight hall-of-famers, but some REALLY BIG historical names. This would be worth the price of the box alone, but there was more...


Alonzo Mourning Blue Die-Cut Auto 1/15
Of course, the Ebay-1-of-1-ness of the card is cool, but Mourning's cards actually fetch a pretty respectable return on investment. Other copies of this card have sold on Ebay from $50-$100. Not bad at all. Two good hits, but it trails off from there...


Brandon Jennings Red Die-Cut Auto 4/25
Huh?


Darrell Griffith Red Die-Cut Auto 6/74
Who?


No doubt, I hit a pretty good box, but with each one guaranteed to give you some MAJOR hits, this is too good of a product for any basketball fan to pass up. Even casual fans, like me, who only purchase basketball when burnt out on the product they usually get will find a great amount of fun and satisfaction with Preferred.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Trade with My Cardboard Mistress

I always enjoy opening up my mailbox and finding that friendly manilla envelope, especially one as packed as this. I completed a trade with Spankee at My Cardboard Mistress and got some MAJOR set building help, in addition to some pretty cool additions to my Cubs and Penguins collections.

2008 Sweet Spot Jersey Jim Thome
As someone universally regarded as one of the nicest guys in baseball, and someone who is never tied to any steroid conversations, I've become a BIG fan of Jim Thome. Despite being clean, he has put up some very impressive numbers and is a sure-fire hall of famer as soon as he calls it a career.


05-06 Sidney Crosby Rookie Season Jumbo Box Topper
I believe these were included along with a 20-card Crosby set from upper deck. It's a great looking card. Now I just have to figure out a way to display it.


06-07 NHL Rookies Jumbo (Incl. Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal)
When you have six of the year's hottest rookies and two of them are from your favorite team, it means two things. One, your team isn't doing so hot, and two, your team will soon be turning things around. Sure enough, three years later, both Malkin and Staal were raising the cup.


2009 Fathead Tradeables Carlos Zambrano
Despite becoming overpaid and certifiably insane, I still have a place in my heart for Zambrano. On one hand, it was unfortunate he had to leave. On the other hand, not having to pay him $15 mil a year (or whatever it was) will free up some space to build up a contender.


Thanks for a great trade. They were all welcome additions to my ever-expanding collection.

Friday, May 4, 2012

2011 Timeless Treasures

I found a tin of 2011 Timeless Treasures at Wal-Mart and figured I'd take a crack at it and see what I came up with. Each tin contains five cards. Two are serial numbered "base" cards and the remaining three are relics, autos, or auto-relics. Here's what I got.

Tom Brady Jersey 106/250
If you're going to pull a relic card from outside of your favorite team, you want it to be Brady. He has both a high trade value and a high resale value, so you should be able to get something decent in return.


Chris Johnson Jersey 129/200
Don't know much about Johnson, but he's Tennessee's number one running back, I think, and a pretty deent player. I do like, with this card, how the color scheme matches the team colors and has a similar-colored swatch. 


Allen Bradford Auto 266/299
The autograph is done on a white piece of leather, similar to that of a football. It's nice, but I'd rather it be a tan leather, and thus, more football-like. 


Barry Sanders 320/499
One of the best players of all time at his position. I really like how Panini has a tendency to go black-and-white with their retired player photos. It separates them from the active guys, which I think is a good thing.


Michael Crabtree 79/499
Any 49er fans out there? Don't care for this one too much. Nothing against him, I'm just indeifferent, I guess.


Well, there ya go. Not a horrible product, but for the money spent, to get two single-color jersey swatches and a rookie auto was a bit of a dissapointment. Oh well, they can't all be winners.

(Card Draft) Pimpin' Ain't Easy - Plaschke, Thy Sweater is Argyle

Real quick, everybody. Greg, who writes over at Plaschke, Thy Sweater is Argyle is hosting a trade bait draft and is in need of a few more participants. What make his different, though, is that he has included hits from not only baseball, but hockey, football, and basketball as well, with names like Ryan Braun, Hanley Ramirez, Amar'e Stoudamire, Chris Paul, and many more, this will be sure to provide something for everybody. For just $25, you'll get, I think, 31 cards, and there's a good chance that at least 3 or 4 will be autographs or relics. So go sign up, so we can get this thing going!


Thursday, May 3, 2012

Trade With Nomo's Sushi Platter

It's a little belated, but here's the results of a trade I recently made with Spiegel of Nomo's Sushi Platter. In exchange for something (I forget what, exactly), he sent me a few cards for my Cubs collection, including two in particular that I especially enjoy.

2003 Playoff Piece of the Game Bat Sammy Sosa - I have a few jersey relics of Sosa already, but if you are going to have any, you at least need a bat card, right? What I like about this card in particular is that on the back side, it actually shows a picture of the very bat from which it was taken. I guess companies were able to go that step before relics were so overproduced that they need more than one item for their set.


Starlin Castro Museum collection 104/199 - I've managed to walk away with only buying one pack of Museum Collection this year, and I'd like to keep it that way. I like the product and all, but I'm afraid if I get any more, I'll be heading down a path that I won't be able to turn back from. Getting a serial-numbered card from one of my favorite current players helps me stay true to that. Man, this is a good looking set, though.


Thanks for another great trade. I love the cards that were sent and they all have been placed an a good home of an appreciative Cubs fan.