Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Mail Day: From Chris at The Collector

Chris from The Collector blog sent me a surprise card and boy was it fun.  I've been eyeballing this card for some time.  Like I told him I can't tell you how many times I've looked at this card lately wanting to pick it up but just didn't pull the trigger.  Chris thought of me when he saw this on COMC and I love it.  Steve Bartkowski is a top 3 all-time favorite of mine.  This Fabric of the Game relic is from Panini's 2011 Certified Football set.  It is numbered /49.  He threw in a 2019 Score All-Hands Team Julio Jones for good measure.  Big thank you to Chris.  This made my day.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

2014-15 Panini Excalibur Basketball Premium Hobby 15-Card Pack

2014-2015 Excalibur Basketball:  This pack is from a premium box and is part of my Steel City Collectibles Black Friday purchase.  Premium boxes deliver three hits.  I did not get a hit in this pack but I'd never busted these before so it was fun.  Derrick Rose has had a bit of a resurgence the last two seasons and I pulled two his cards.  This one is my favorite and is a Knight Court insert.  I like the design in the background behind the player.
These guys have all had their time in the NBA limelight.  Rose has an MVP on his resume, while Tony Parker is a decorated multiple champion with the Spurs and Kevin Love helped the Cavs win their only NBA championship. 
The base cards are simple and nice.  Maybe too much white but that really doesn't bother me too much.  The bottom corners are nice looking.  I think they could have duplicated that in the upper corners as well or done something up top to help frame it better.  The backs are nice but devoid of stats which is a shame.
This Tony Parker Nobility insert is pretty cool looking.  This was a good pack and I really like the inserts I pulled.   The Karl Malone below was another sweet looking card and I like the jersey he is wearing in the photo.  It isn't my favorite Jazz uni but it is a nice one and one you don't see that often.

BREAKDOWN:15 – Total Cards
3 – RC
1 – Nobility
1 – Juggernauts
1 – Knight Court
1 – Retired Great

Sunday, December 8, 2019

2010 Playoff Contenders Football Blaster with Autograph

2010 Playoff Contenders Football:  This was another part of my Black Friday purchase from Steel City Collectibles.  Fun grabbing older products like this one.  I like the design that includes a full helmet which I really like.  Maybe a bit too much white but overall I enjoy the look of these cards. 
  Fun pack as you get to go down memory lane and see stars from the past..or present in the case of Drew Brees.  I'm a fan of the Contenders brand and this set is one that works for me.
The backs are pretty cool with a full ticket with another helmet and plenty of color.  The Sean Lee is a Playoff Ticket parallel.  
Definitely not a bad pull back in 2010.  Three star quarterbacks who would go on to win a total of four Super Bowls.
Not a ton of inserts with this blaster but I like that retired greats were a part of those I pulled.  The scans don't do these justice.  Each blaster comes with one autograph and NaVorro Bowman was mine.  He was a really good player as a three time Pro-Bowler and a four time All-Pro.  He only played until the age of 29 with a torn Achilles in 2016 probably helping shorten his career.

25 – Total Cards
2 – Retired Greats
1 – Super Bowl Ticket
1 – Legendary Contender
1 – Rookie Ticket Autograph
1 – Rookie Playoff Ticket Parallel
1 – Rookie of the Year Contenders

Friday, December 6, 2019

2004 Playoff Honors Baseball - 10 Packs

2004 Playoff Honors Baseball:  This 10 pack lot was part of my Steel City Collectibles Black Friday purchase.  My order arrived Sunday and I'll so a post on all the different cards throughout December.  While I had looked these up online prior to Black Friday you don't really get a feel for them until they are in hand.  The design is OK but I doubt you can tell how really really small the font and those logos are.  I'm not sure who thought that was a good idea.  I did pull a Roger Clemens relic which was great...him in a Yankee uniform not so great.  It is at the bottom of this post.
     It is fun opening packs of brands I've never seen before and these were no exception.  Seeing these past stars again is fun.
Retired greats are included in this set which is pretty cool.  I don't really remember seeing retired players in sets from the 2000's.  Not that I was that active back then.
Wait is that Manny hustling?  Maybe he just tripped.  Nice photo on the Jorge Posada card.
Not many inserts but the ones I did pull were numbered cards.  The Class Reunion (Draft Class of 1995) is numbered to 1995 and the Awards (AL MVP 1990) is numbered to...yep 1990.  I dig it.  The backs of the base card d0 have small photos that differ from the front which is nice.  The font size is still an issue though.
Overall this was a fun trip down memory lane.  The design is OK but really the font is a huge turnoff because it is so hard to read.  Still I'm happy I picked these up. 
Roberto Alomar in a Diamondbacks uni is not something you see very often...of course neither is Miguel Cabrera in the Outfield.

850 – Total Cards
4 – Retired Greats
1 – Awards #/1990
1 – Class Reunion #/1995
1 – Players Collection Game Worn Jersey #/250

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

2019 Topps Gallery Baseball

2019 Topps Gallery:  This year's Gallery offering has art I really like.  The fact that they aren't all head and shoulder takes is a plus in my books as well.  The '17 Gallery base cards seemed to consist mostly of those types of cards and got boring pretty quickly.  The silver borders aren't spectacular and I think I like the wood border parallels more.  Again the art is good and probably my favorite of the last three years.  Mike Trout seemed like a great way to start off this post.
  Pulling an Acuna Jr. insert is a win here.  The art on his Masterpiece card looks nice though the border is a bit bland.  I'd expect the border to stand out a bit more.  The Molina and Rizzo cards added to a really nice pull in this pack.
The backs are fine though not spectacular.  The backs from the last two years were definitely better. with either more style or color or both.  Again the wood borders work well on these cards.  
  I like this horizontal wood border parallel but Taylor Ward's face looks a bit off.  Overall I'm very happy with this pack.  The art is good and I was happy with my pull which provided me some star power, personal collection guys and I snagged three Braves to boot. 

I can see me picking up more of these if I get the chance.  The price point isn't great but I like what I've seen so far.  This Donaldson is a good looking card and maybe my favorite from the pack.

12 – Total Cards
7 – RC
2 – Wood Border
1 – Masterpiece

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Random Wax: 2019 Donruss Football

2019 Donruss Football:  Another pack of the 2019 Donruss football which has plenty to like including retired greats like my man John Elway.  Ironically he, and my man crush, Tom Brady both beat my Atlanta Falcons in their two Super Bowl appearances.  Ouch.
Jared Goff and the Rams have really struggled this year.  Goff has more interceptions than touchdowns and has to turn his season around if they are to have any chance of making the playoffs.
More retired greats are always a good thing.  Ozzie Newsome is not only a hall of fame tight end but was also a great General Manager for the Ravens.  In his last draft he drafted Lamar Jackson who of course is starring in his second year in the league.
Robert Quinn is having an outstanding year for the Cowboys.  He already has 9.5 sacks for the 'Boys.  This is a fun brand and I know there'll be more in my future.

McCaffrey is a stud and helped put my fantasy team in the playoffs.

30 – Total Cards
1 – Elite Series
4 - RC
4 – Retired Greats
4 – Blue Parallel

Saturday, November 30, 2019

2019-2020 Upper Deck Hockey

2019-2020 Upper Deck Hockey:  I always look forward to the Upper Deck's hockey release because they do such a good job on their cards between the design and photos.  This year's design isn't a favorite of mine but it is still good.  This Tuukka Rask photo definitely definitely stood out to me.  Between the look in his eyes and the cool mask it is a winner.
Again the photos is something Upper Deck does a great job with.  Both of these are nice.  I'm picturing Matt Murray just finishing off a save there and the Max Domi shot is great with the Red Wings player flat on the ice watching the ice as a nice bonus.
The backs have a picture that  is a smaller/truncated version of the front photo.  Love the color and the colored team logo.  Very solid back.  I know foil logos on the front is an Upper Deck thing but it seems like a color team logo would be nice in some of the designs.  That said maybe the foil lets the photos do the talking while the logos take a backseat.
Some nice work on these horizontal offerings.
I had to add this Rasmus Dahlin photo because it just seems a bit different and out of place.  Dude is having a good year but this photo may not be his best look.  My Young Guns card in the pack was this checklist card below.  This was a fun pack.  May see more of this throughout the season. I enjoyed it quite a bit.
26 – Total Cards
1 – Young Guns

Thursday, November 28, 2019

2019-2020 Hoops Basketball Holiday Box

2019-2020 Hoops Basketball:  After enjoying my Topps baseball holiday blaster I was looking forward to Panini's basketball offering.  I am not that excited about this product.  Last year I thought the basketball holiday design worked better than what we saw with Topps baseball.  This year not so much.
I did have a big pull with this Zion Williamson Rise n' Shine insert.  It has already gone to a good home but it was obviously a nice surprise.  Each of these boxes come with a rookie relic. 
     This year you have a bit of a snow cloud and some very small snow flakes.  Last year's snowflakes were big and had a nice design.  You almost don't notice them in some of this year's cards.
Overall I liked my pull and of course there were plenty of stars.  At a minimum I'd think these are basically "parallels" of the non holiday set.
These inserts are all ones I like.  The snow cloud actually worked pretty well on these.  The snowflakes are hard to discern depending on the background.
These Hoops Tributes are a great nod to Hoops designs of years past.  They also have a great mix of current, young and past stars.  Definitely a fun inclusion.
The rookies are well represented in their own base cards and inserts.  Overall a fun box but the winter theme fell flat for me.  I really liked what Panini did last year and what Topps did this year really upping the Holiday spirit.

88 – Total Cards
18 – RC
7 – Hoops Tribute
5 – Retired Greats
2 – Get Out The Way
2 – Light Camera Action
1 – Arriving Now
1 – Class of 2019
1 – Frequent Flyers
1 – Rise N Shine Memorabilia

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Random Wax: 2016-2017 Panini Threads Basketball

2016-2017 Threads Basketball:  This is another reduced price pack of these cards.  The Greek Freak highlights my pull.  I feel I'm the only person who still calls him that.  The guy is a beast on the court though.  
More star power in this pack.
Not the most exciting pack I've ever busted but for a reduced price I'm not complaining.  
The Front Row Seat and Board of Directors cards are both nice inserts. The latter provided me a nice retired great.  These packs are random finds and I may look for different packs in the future but still a fun bust.  These wood rookie cards (below) are a favorite of mine as well.  They are very thick and just kinda cool.
15– Total Cards
3 – RC
1 – Wood Rookie
1 - Retired Great
1 – Front-Row Seat
1 – Board of Directors