Friday, December 20, 2013

Long Overdue - 2013 Topps Allen & Ginter Want List

I can't believe it's the 20th of December and I'm just now collating my lone hobby box I bought of 2013 Topps Allen & Ginter and creating my want list!  I do have to admit looking at all of these cards and figuring out what I'm missing in both the base set and in the various inserts, it has me a little excited about trying to fill in some of these holes.

I'm sure most of my fellow card bloggers have long since finished their collection of A&G, or at least have put a sizeable dent into their want lists, but if you are looking for a trading partner or have a bunch of commons to trade I ask that you keep me in mind.

As for my want list, here is a direct link.

What little I have left from my box to trade (includes lots of minis and all 3 relics) can be found here.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A few picks up during the off season

I have cut my card buying WAY back for several reasons and I don't intend on ramping it back up until some things change.  However I'm still a sucker for beautiful cards and good deals so I may snag a few things here and there.  While I have just about cut out set building for the time being, I'm still focusing on a few players.  Here is a sampling of a few things I've picked up over the past several months.

I don't always care for the Triple Threads brand, but I loved the last auto I picked up of Tim Hudson so when I found this one for a few bucks it was hard to ignore.  Sadly this card marks the last year of Hudson truly being an ace on the club.

If you can't tell this is one of the cards from the internet only 2013 Topps Mini set.  I know the parallels are a bit tough to pull and this pink Breast Cancer Awareness parallel numbered #22/25 was under $5.  Still haven't messed with picking up the base mini or the gold mini parallel.

Chrome and die-cut?  Sold!  I don't know what this insert set is called, but it came in a lot with a orange Refractor - both from 2013 Topps Chrome.

I loved the Pinnacle brand back in the day, but I was only so-so impressed w/ the one pack I bought earlier of the new 2013 product.  I grabbed this one insert to see if it would tickle my fancy and I have to say it's pretty sweet looking in hand.  The card is covered in a holographic like prism w/ gold foil stamping.  The center of the card is a clear acetate and apparently comes in a variety of colors with different words.  This Heyward only set me back a buck.

I'm not really sure how I started a Jeff Taylor player collection, but I amassed just about every single auto of his from his rookie year last year.  So why not continue the trend with the new 13-14 offerings?  It's not like his autos are expensive.  Plus he is a great young player that when I do watch my Bobcats play, I enjoy watching him play and put up the 3 pointer.  This card hails from one of the earliest sets in the new basketball card season, Panini Prestige.

NBA Hoops I believe made it's come back (thanks to Panini) last year and in the 90's it was always one of my favorite sets.  After it was released I checked the checklist to see if Jeff Taylor had an autograph in the set and I was happy to see that he was included.  However these red and blue parallels are lame and seem pointless to me.  This red bordered parallel is #d 47/50.  Still need to pick up the regular version and perhaps the blue that is #d to 25.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I was reminded last week at church of what I should be most thankful this holiday season and that is God's love.  Lord knows I don't deserve everything I've been blessed with or deserve the awesome people in my life.  It's easy to get fixated on being grateful for family, friends and physical possessions.  There is nothing wrong for being thankful for those things either, but this year I wanted to make sure that I send my thanksgiving upward to the One that has blessed me more than I deserve.

Colossians 3:17

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Colossians 2:6-7

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.

Psalm 95:1-2

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.

Psalm 100:4-5

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.

1 Corinthians 1:4-5

I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every way—with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge—

The band Petra summed up all of this with their song "Thankful Heart" from their 1986 album, Back to the Street.

Friday, November 22, 2013

One more Huddy auto

One nice thing about not having to worry about building sets is it allows me to focus more on my player collections, such as Tim Hudson.  This beautiful auto relic comes from the 2013 Topps Tripe Threads set and is serially numbered 01/18!  I'm still trying to wrap my brain around seeing Huddy in a Giants uni come next season.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pack Break: 2013 Topps Garbage Pail Kids Brand New Series 3 (rack pack)

A few nights ago I took my oldest daughter to Target to buy her a treat as
instructed by my wife.  Before we headed back to the toy department, I stopped by the card section to see if anything new caught my eye.  Sure there were lots of new Panini baseball sets I know nothing about.  Football card season has started so there were several new things, but I'm still having a hard time bringing myself to buy a pack of cards these days.  I thought about buying another rack pack of GPK Chrome, but I didn't want to drop $10 on a few cards.  Thankfully the new series 3 GPK cards were finally in $2.49 a pack now?  I saw they had rack packs too and did the quick math to see what was the better deal.  10 cards for $2.49 or 21 cards + a bonus sticker for $4.99.  Grabbed the rack pack and headed on back to find a Barbie or something girly for my daughter.

I grabbed several packs of series 1 and a few of series 2, but never actively tried to

complete the set (a or b) because I was building so many sport card sets.  Now that I'm not really chasing any one set, I just may have to put more focus on GPK again.

I ended up buying a second rack pack last night and I was very disappointed that 19 of the 21 cards in my 2nd pack were dupes!  The collation was horrible.  I'll try a 3rd rack pack, but if I get similar results I may just have to resort to trading to fill my holes.  That said I'll list my dupes for anyone wanting to make a trade.  Just look for my trade links in the left hand side bar.

No odds listed on the pack for parallels?
Bonus sticker
Adam Bombing insert 1:4 (packs)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Thanks for all the years of service Tim Hudson

Last night while getting pumped for the big Monday Night NFL game between my Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots, I got word that Tim Hudson was no longer a Atlanta Brave.  I heard there was a chance that Huddy may not return to the club in 2014, but I chose to be ignorant and just enjoy the rest of the Braves' run for the playoffs.  After the team clinched I was glad to see Tim in the clubhouse w/ his teammates celebrating.  I believe he was interviewed at that time about his future and he was vague.

Tim spent 9 seasons w/ the Braves and won 113 of his starts while losing 72.  He pitched 9 complete games, 5 being shut outs.  He finished with a 3.56 ERA w/ the Braves.

Being a NL guy, I never knew much about Tim Hudson prior to him joining the Braves in 2005.  However it didn't take long for me to gravitate to being a huge fan of his for several different reasons.  1) The guy was a beast on the least before injuries kept creeping in.  When he was pitching I just felt better about the Braves' chances at winning that particular game.  2) The guy off the field was just as impressive with what he and his wife do w/ their organization, Hudson Family Foundation, working w/ children in need.  3) His faith.  If you've followed my blog for very long then you know where I stand in my beliefs.  Though I've dropped the ball w/ my Sunday Verse posts over the last 6 months, a lot of players I collect cards of are players of whom I can relate too from a faith perspective.  Tim is one of these guys.  For that reason he'll remain a staple in my card collection despite changing his Braves jersey for a Giants jersey.

When Tim was drafted by the Athletics he joined Barry Zito and Mark Mulder and became a key part of their rotation.  After all these years later, Tim will rejoin his former teammate, Zito, in the same state he started his professional baseball career.

I admit it'll be weird watching Tim pitch against the Braves next season, but I can't help but still root for him...just as long as he is not too harsh on my team!

These last few weeks/months have been rough on us Braves fans.  Of course to lose to the Dodgers in the playoffs hurt.  Seeing all that payroll "wasted" on Uggla and B.J. Upton hurts.  Then we hear that the team is leaving Atlanta for Cobb County and Turner Field will be demolished.  Granted I've only been to a handful of games @ Turner Field, I loved that stadium and I thought it was perfectly fine.  I'm not a resident of Atlanta or Georgia for that matter, so I really can't comment on the ease of accessing the stadium (I always use the MARTA system when I visited), but from a fan experience I always had a blast.  I can see why Braves fans are so frustrated right now, but let's put aside some of that frustration and wish Tim and his family the best of luck out west.

Thank you Tim for your years of service in Atlanta.  You'll be missed by everyone in the clubhouse and by everyone in the stands and especially by those of us behind TV screens in South Carolina.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Friday, November 1, 2013

Looking to help a new baseball card collector (age 7)

Over the weekend I saw a post by an old friend of mine who's son has recently taken an interest in collecting baseball cards.  He posted a picture of his 7 year old son holding a 2013 Gypsy Queen Jackie Robinson card and the smile on his face was priceless!

They live in Charlotte, NC no too terribly far from me, but they are originally from Philly.  I'm not sure if he has any other favorite players outside Phillies and Jackie Robinson, but I'd like to get a little "welcome to the hobby" package together to present to him.

To accomplish this I'm reaching out to me fellow blogger friends.  I know I haven't been as active over the
last 6 months or so, but I've met a lot of generous guys and gals through my blog.  If you would like to participate and send something related along those lines, drop me a line (flywheels at or leave a comment.  I really think it'd would be cool to have a Phillies relic card to give him as well.

I'm planning on going through my mess of a collection this weekend to see what I can find, but if any of you Phillies fans are reading this and have some dups laying around please let me know.

Some of you have business cards for your blog.  If you have something like that include it w/ your gift and perhaps I can get his dad to share some of these great blogs w/ him as well.

Thanks for considering helping out!

** UPDATE - NOVEMBER 2, 2013 **

I found out from his dad that his favorite players right now are Derek Jeter and David Ortiz!  Of course he likes the Phillies too, but was pulling for the Sox in the World Series.

PC Additions: NC State Football - Mike Glennon

Nope, I haven't traded in my Carolina Panthers allegiance to become a Buccs fan, though earlier in the season when the team kicked QB Josh Freeman to the curb it gave Mike Glennon a chance to show what he is capable of.

I don't have the funds to go all out and buy up everything of his that I can find, but occasionally I'll run across a good deal.  Staying away from buying too many packs means the only way I can get the cards of the team/players I want is to trade or buy them individually.  I got "lucky" and found 3 of Glennon's RCs on one lot for the low price of a buck.


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Sunday Verse

Isaiah 43:11-12

I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior. I have revealed and saved and proclaimed— I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “that I am God.

I hope everyone has a great week!  As of this morning, I'll be in the minivan w/ the family making our way down to Walt Disney World in Florida.  My oldest daughter, Olivia, just turned 4 last week, so this is I guess a continuation of her birthday.  It's probably been 15 yours or more since I've been Disney World so to say I wasn't excited would be a huge understatement.  Have a great week everyone...I know I will!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Pack Break: 2013 Panini Pinnacle

I've documented my reasons for my lack of activity here on my blog, but that hasn't stopped me from checking out the card section at Target when I stop in.  I should be organizing my Allen & Ginter cards to see what I still lack, but other things have kept me from doing so.  I haven't wanted to dive into a another set, but that pack ripping itch got the better of me the other day when I was out running errands.

A few weeks back I picked up a auto of Jonny Venters from this set for cheap.  It was decent looking enough, but I had really seen what the regular cards from the set looked like.  I saw a few images online, but nothing replaces holding said item in hand in order to make a final decision.  That said I grabbed one retail pack of the new Pinnacle cards the other day to satisfy my desire to rip something new.

When the inaugural Pinnacle set came out in 1992 I was hooked.  I was still new at collecting cards and Pinnacle was one of my first introductions to the next level of cards, "premium" if you will.  I loved the slick glossy black look of the cards.  I'm sure Panini is hoping that retro feel will be popular w/ today's collectors as well. If this were a fully licensed product, I'd be all over it.  Without the team name and logos though I just can't that excited.  Of course I knew this going in, but again I wanted to see what these were all about first hand.  Love the simple and slick design.  I like the up close images as well.  Panini has done a good job replicating a set from my childhood and if money wasn't an option I still might buy more.  However I'll just have to stick with this one pack.  At least it yielded me an Evan Gattis RC.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Defeated! Atlanta's 2013 season comes to a close.

The Atlanta Braves' season came to a close last night with a loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.  While it was a great season for the Braves, to say I'm frustrated is a huge understatement.  I'm proud of what the team accomplished, but October just isn't their month.  Heck, September hasn't been too good to them either in the last few years.

Where do I start?  Everyone knew that Dan Uggla has been struggling offensively for a good part of the season.  Just in the last few weeks of the season he had Lasik surgery and had to play several games in the minors before re-joining the team.  That didn't bother me too much as Evan Gattis was sent down to AAA right before the end of Gwinnett's season to hopefully get more at bats and work on his swing.  However, to bench Uggla for the first playoff series in favor of Elliott Johnson?  That's ludicrous Freddi!  What were you thinking?

Yes, I get it.  The Braves need offense and Uggla has been struggling, but you can never under estimate good defensive play.  Just look at the Braves' performance in the field in game 1 against the Dodgers.  It was horrible!  While Elliott maybe the funny guy in the dugout, Uggla should have been in the starting line up.  I'd rather have his glove in the field and hope he gets lucky with one at bat.  Lord knows there are enough other bats in the line up to rely on.

I haven't been on Twitter much, but I couldn't help to send a few tweets during the playoffs.  Man on man has Brian McCann been killed online.  Yeah, I get it he caught a lot of flak when he was standing on the 3rd base line barking at that Marlins player who hit a home run in the last weeks of the season, but that jerk's jaw was moving faster than his legs were while rounding the bases.  He apparently had some history w/ Braves pitcher Paul Maholm, but there was no need for him running his pie hole to every Braves infielder.  Just drop your bat and tag the bases and be done with it.  McCann was just coming to the defense of his pitcher and fellow players.  Outside of that instance, I don't see why McCann has taken so much heat.  Granted his play in the playoffs left a lot to be desired.  A lot.  McCann went 0-13, 4 strike outs alone in game 4 of the NLDS.  He's a free agent after this season and reports state he should command anywhere between $15-18 million on the open market.  The Braves already have two young catchers in the organization so I just don't see the Braves waiving that kind of cash in his face.  It'll be weird not seeing McCann behind the plate for the Braves, after all he is a GA native and was drafted by the club back in 2002...however Evan Gattis isn't an outfielder and he belongs behind the plate.

And speaking of Mr. Gattis, El Oso Blanco came out of nowhere it seemed earlier this year and was on fire.  I remember searching eBay to see if he had any cards earlier this year and his only release was from a minor league Topps Heritage set and man on man what that card trading for some crazy numbers!  Thankfully Topps fit him into later releases, but the timing of that combined w/ my loss of interest in collecting like I used to means I only have a few RCs of his.  Gattis has a good arm and a monstrous swing and good presence behind the plate.  However he is abysmal in the outfield.  I know Freddi Gonzalez wanted his bat in the line up and that is why he was trolling left field against the Dodgers (that and B.J. Upton's offense was no where to be found).  Gattis may eventually win a gold glove behind the plate, but never in the outfield!

Pitching was also a major factor in the teams loss to the Dodgers.  Kris Medlen was the game 1 starter last season against the Cardinals in the one game playoff.  Watching game 1 of the NLDS against the Dodgers I swear was like deju vu.  I love Medlen, that kid is a great pitcher...just not so much in the post season.  Mike Minor pitched an excellent game 2 and I think he has a bright future on this ball club.  Julio Teheran had a rough outing in game 3, but is a great young pitcher and will bounce back next season.  When it was announced that long time veteran Freddy Garcia would be taking the mound for game 4 with the team's season on the line, I'm sure many of the fans (including myself) were really nervous.  However he pitched a much better game than I thought he would.  If only the bullpen wouldn't have "dropped the ball" there would be a game 5.

I knew the end of the season / post season would be tough on the club when several key pitchers started dropping like flies.  Of course the big blow to the team was the loss of veteran pitcher Tim Hudson.  I was glad to see him w/ the team celebrating after they clenched the division and in the dugout for the NLDS, but I so wish he could have taken the mound.  Also loosing Jonny Venters and Eric O'Flaherty in the bullpen didn't help  Brandon Beachy made his return to the club in the 2nd half of the season, only to re-injure himself and be lost for the rest of the season.  While other guys did step up at times and shine, there just wasn't much consistency in the bullpen outside of Craig Kimbrel.  He was lights out just about every time he took the mound...he just couldn't get out there against the Dodgers enough!

This whole post isn't all doom and gloom however.  Several Braves players stepped up to the proverbial plate and were consistent all year.  Freddie Freeman, should be the National League's MVP, was fantastic.  I can see him being the next guy to play his entire career w/ the Braves.  Chris Johnson, the "throw in" to the Justin Upton trade last winter.  Who would have figured he would be competing for the batting title at the end of the season.  In fact Chris' bat was one of the few bright spots of the Braves offense against the Dodgers in the NLDS.  Andrelton Simmons.  This guys defensive talent is scary.  Batting 7th or 8th most of the season, he surprised a lot of people w/ his at as well.

All season long the Braves were streaky.  There were times they would be on fire and went on several double digit win streaks, only to follow them up w/ horrible losses to under .500 clubs.  Just look at how they were swept by the Marlins in the final weeks of the season!  However honorable mention goes to several key players who stepped in at various points in the season and helped the team.

Gerald Laird, who has one year left on his contract, could really help continue to mentor the likes of Evan Gattis.  Reed Johnson, got some playing time in the outfield at times, but was mainly used as a great, reliable pinch hitter from the bench.  Jordan Schafer was re-acquired from the Astros, the team they traded him away two in 2012, gave a nice spark to the team with his speed...both in the outfield and on the base paths.  Injuries slowed him down a bit, but I would rather see him in centerfield than a certain other overpaid guy with initials that reference an off colored sexual act.  Tyler Pastornicky is another young guy that migrated back and forth between Atlanta and AAA Gwinnett.  Injuries took him out for the season as well, but I like him as a back up for Simmons moving forward.  Jason Heyward may not be living up to some people's expectations, but I like what he did as the Braves lead off batter.  He needs to stay in right field though...he just doesn't seem comfortable at center or in left.  At the tail end of the season the team called up Joey Terdoslavich from AAA and he had some good success.  I got to see him play in person a few times when Gwinnett came to town to face the Charlotte Knights so I was happy to see him get a chance to help out the club.  I'll also throw Alex Wood on this list.  Sure he had a rough outing against the Dodgers in game 3 after Teheran was pulled in the 3rd, but outside of that game Wood was impressive.  I might be a little biased since Wood hails from my hometown of Charlotte, NC, but I think he surprised a lot of baseball fans this season.

In closing I will give the Dodgers some much as it pains me.  Clayton Kershaw.  Wow.  Now I know why everyone raves about this guy.  Of course living on the east coast I don't follow the west coast teams much and rarely do I get to see certain players play.  Unless they are playing my Braves (or sometimes Red Sox when I watch the AL) I don't follow their careers and progress.  Clayton impressed me.  I already respected him for being a devout Christian like myself, but his baseball skill has very much left an impression on me.  The Braves just happened to run into a very good, and very hot Dodgers team in October.  The Dodgers did the things necessary to win games that the Braves simply did not do.  Both teams had their fair share of injured players so I'm not going down that path, I'll just leave it as it is.  The Dodgers were the better October.  I'm proud of the Braves and I look forward to seeing what happens in the off season.  Of course I'll be ready come spring next year as well.

Thanks for a great 2013 season.  I guess the bright side to the Braves being out of the playoffs is this.  I won't have to worry about missing any games the rest of this week or next week since I'll be at Walt Disney World!  I will have to tune in though and root on the Pirates to take out the Cardinals and Dodgers.  And for my wife, I'm hoping the Sox get back to the World Series as well...though I wouldn't be upset to see the A's there either.  I like pulling for the small market teams.

Oh and one last thing.  Yasiel Puig.  Still don't like him and I still think he is overrated.  That is all.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

NLDS, Braves & new cards = Euphoria!

So tonight I'll be sitting on the edge of my seat, hoping and praying the Braves offense will come alive and manufacture some runs tonight against Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers.  I feel good about the series, but that doesn't mean I'm not worried.

While I wait for the game tonight, I thought I'd share a random lot of Braves cards I picked up on the cheap side.  It's been awhile since I got anything new, so I gotta say it was really fun opening up this little bubble mailer.

Look at that baby face!  And to think Chipper actually picked the Nationals to win the division at the beginning of the season!

Half way through the 2013 baseball season I kinda gave up building the base set, so I didn't buy much of Series 2.  That said I was happy to see this  "The Greats" card in the lot.

I still love the annual Allen & Ginter release and these framed mini relics look really good this year.  Glad to see Heyward back in the line leading off at that!

Gotta be my favorite card of the lot.  #d 33/35 with a huge red jersey swatch, love it!

What a better way to end the "slideshow" than with a awesome painted card from 2013 Museum of John Smoltz?

If I have time, I'll probably tune in to the Pirates/Cardinals game this afternoon as well and cheer on the Bucs.  While it may not feel (temperature wise) like October around here, I sure am glad my team is still playing.  #FeartheChop #Choptober

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Sunday Verse


Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Blogger Generosity: Cardboard Hogs

Gotta love trying to play catch up.  So many of you have already saw the picture of my work desk with the stacks and stacks of cards.  Last night I was working in my room trying to make sense of the mess I've created and I uncovered even more cards that I forgot I had!  Who knew one guy coming back into the hobby a few years ago could accumulate so many cards?!  Most of the cards were generously sent to me by fellow bloggers, which leads me to today's post.

Kenneth of Cardboard Hogs, a blog I've only known about for a few months now, was gracious enough to send me some free 2013 Topps Allen & Ginter.  Being a Redskins fan, I don't see much baseball on his blog, but recently he opened a few packs of A&G and didn't want to keep ' to the mailbox they went.

I still haven't collated the box of A&G I bought so I don't know which of the cards sent I need for my set, but here are a few cards I pulled out of the bubble mailer to share.  What would a post on this blog be without a Brave?  I believe Hank Aaron fits that bill quite well.  Tommy Lee...just because I wanted to show his card.  The Across the Years set is one I'm still on the fence whether I want to build or not.  No mini inserts, but I'll take the Civilizations of Ages Past and Martial Mastery cards.  The 3 minis will eventually end up on my trade list, but I'm not ready to start trading again so just sit tight if you're interested.

I made lots of progress getting ready of other clutter in my room last night.  I hope to be able to really tackle the cards within the next few weeks.  In the meantime expect more "catch up" posts such as this.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

I'm sure the bullpen really misses this guy

The Braves could have clenched yesterday with a sweep of the Nationals...yet the Braves were the ones swept.  The magic number still stands at 4.  I'm not one of those fans that is yelling all doom and gloom, but the bullpen did get roughed up by the Nat's bats.  Venters I'm sure is missed, but now even more so than ever.

By the way, I think I knew Panini had the Pinnacle license, but when did this set come out?  This one flew under my radar, but then again everything card related has been flying under my radar of late.  Still not a bad purchase for $.99.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


That's the way I feel as I look at the stacks and stacks of cards on my computer desk at home.  Have you ever felt this way?  I'm at the point where I'm almost ready to just walk away from card collecting.  I still love, I really do, but I've just fallen so far behind on cataloging new cards and trade bait.  On top of that I feel as if this blog has become too much work and almost a burden.  I feel as if I owe all of you guys that have been so great to me something in the form of regular and entertaining posts.

I'm not a quitter though.  I will find the time to power through all of this, I may have to hold off on some of the blog projects I had going like scanning all of my Braves inserts, autos and relics.  Eventually I'll get back to semi-regular posting, I just don't know when that will happen.

I recently bought a rack pack of the new 2013 Topps Football and while I loved opening the pack, I just couldn't muster up the excitement that I had last year to want to build the set.  Thankfully though the recent box of Allen & Ginter I opened (and even a few packs of Garbage Pail Kids Chrome) have renewed my desire to keep collecting.

I guess going forward I need smaller and more concise collecting goals.  One thing that is apparent is I can't build (or attempt to) so many different sets.  I need to focus on one or two sets until they are done...or at least a few cards away from being done.  While I won't stop collecting my Atlanta Braves or my hometown Carolina Panthers and soon the be Charlotte Hornets again, I don't see myself searching out deals at card shows (that rarely come to my area) or online at eBay.  I'm still open to trading of course, but I've got to get my extra cards in order before I can attempt to do anymore trades.

The other realization I came too is I need to pair down my player collections.  I've expanded it way too large over the years so I need to reel that in a bit.  Eventually I'll edit the sidebar w/ the players I'm actively collecting.

So there you have it.  I just wanted to give a real update on why I've been absent of sorts.  I want to walk away, but I know I'll miss it if I I just need to put in the time and effort to get caught up and then make the necessary changes so I won't feel defeated.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sunday Verse

PSALM 116:1-2

I love the Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live.

Been a long week for me, but I got a chance to finally open my hobby box of 2013 A&G and a hobby box of 2013 Topps WWE.  Now to find the time to collate the cards and scan the goodies found inside!  Anyone else running into the problem of just not having enough time during the day to accomplish what you need to / want to?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Not a Mini Beachy

Earlier this week I finally sat down with my hobby box of 2013 Topps Allen & Ginter...but this post isn't about the box.  Not to spoil the box break post I plan to do, I didn't get a Braves hit so off to eBay I went.  I only did a search to see what cards Tim Hudson and Brandon Beachy had in the set and walked away with one relic of Beachy for just a buck or so.

Nice design and all, but the framed mini relics are just so much cooler.  I won't complain too much as I'm just happy Topps included Brandon in the set, esp. seeing how he just returned to the active roster a few weeks ago.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sunday Verse

It's time I get back on track...

Romans 14:8

If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

In the midst of everything my family and I have had going on, my wife's family has had a few rough spots with illness and her grandparents.  Thankfully both are doing better and seem to be bouncing back faster, and stronger than anyone first thought.  I was very happy to hear however that my father-in-law lead his father to accept Christ laying in his hospital bed.  The doctors kept saying they would surprised if Roland (my wife's grandfather) made it out of surgery.  Both my father-in-law and his dad felt so much better going into the operation knowing that his future has now been secured up above.

I hope everyone has a great week.  NFL is almost here and the baseball pennant chases are getting exciting...go Braves!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Pack Break - 2013 Topps Garbage Pail Kids Chrome

I know I've been out of the loop these last few months and I may have lost some readers, but I'm still here and messing with cards...just not nearly as much as I used to.  This is for many reasons, but I do have something new to share for a change!

Last week while getting a few last minute items for the big local Transformers convention I had been helping with the last 12 months prepare for, I stopped into Target and of course peeked at the card section before leaving.  I was half curious to see if retail Allen & Ginter had landed yet (it had), but I resisted thanks to having a hobby box coming in a matter of days.  What caught my eye was some shiny pink Garbage Pail Kids packs.  They looked different and upon further inspection I found them to be Chrome versions of the very first series from 1985!  Sold!  I had to see what these were like.  With being out of the game for awhile these completely caught me by surprise.  Enough talk, let's rip!

Only 4 cards per pack, but that's typical for any Topps Chrome product.  Inserts include: Refractors 1:3, Prism Refractor 1:50, SuperFractor 1:9,967, Printing Plate 1:2,490, GPK Redemption 1:21,900, Chrome Concept Sketch 1:3, Chrome Concept Sketch Printing Plate 1:3,340, Artist Autograph Base Parallel 1:498

The scan makes these really sharp and shiny cards look blurry and dull, but man oh man do they look good in hand!  The Dead Flora card is one of those Lost GPK cards that was never published in the 80's, similar to what they did w/ the GPK Flashback series.

...and speaking of the Lost cards, here is another.

The last card of the pack was one of the Chrome Concept Sketch cards!  Boy, Blasted Billy sure did undergo a big change from conception to final image.  Nice touch Topps for inserting these images.

All in all, I love these!  I'd love to tackle building the set (or at least the A set), but one of the reasons I've dropped off a bit from collecting cards is 1) I'm so far behind on cataloging what I have, 2) Price of new cards and 3) Just being a little burnt out.  I have to say opening this pack was a lot of fun and takes me back to my childhood.  Don't be surprised if you see a few more packs opened here in the near future.  Up next (I hope), a box break post of 2013 A&G!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Sketch cards - Who actually draws them?

Last month I approached a local friend of mine who I knew was a great artist to draw and donate something to a charity auction I'm overseeing next week.  He recently told me that he had finished the piece and also asked me if I still collected trading cards.  I told him that I've backed off the cards a little, but yes, I was still collecting.  He then proceeded to tell me that Topps had contacted him about supplying several sketch cards for an upcoming Topps UFC set of cards!  Since being told the news, I haven't actually had the chance to ask him how all of that came about.  I figured Topps used famous artists or whatever.  Guess not.  Here is a test sketch he just finished of Hershel Walker who went 2-0.  Can't wait to see the final product once he's given his actual assignment by Topps.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

2013 Panini NFL Sticker Collection Album Preview

Thank goodness the 2013 NFL season is almost here, because for the first time in a few years I'm a little burnt out on baseball cards.  While I don't plan on buying up lots of football cards this season, I am happy for a little diversion - that being Panini's latest NFL sticker album.

I dropped into Target a few days ago to check on something and I decided to check over at the trading card section for the first time in a month or so.  I saw the prominently displayed new gravity feeder w/ the sticker album and packets and proceeded to flip though the album.  The first thing I noticed was one of the included stickers was missing from the wax paper insert.  I thought that was dumb that someone would steal one sticker.  I grabbed another album and flipped through to find the same thing - another sticker missing - the same one actually.  Then I turned the sheet over to see what number it was to figure out the player.  Wouldn't you know, it's none other than the Patriot's Aaron Hernandez!

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Panini has thus removed Hernandez from all future products.  Wonder if they'll reprint these sticker albums or issue a sticker to cover up his name/spot?

I really like this year's layout for each team much better than in past years.  Most teams have their QB featured with the team's leaders printed on foil stickers.  9 additional players get regular stickers w/ last year's stats listed underneath.

Did you think I wouldn't share my team's page?

The regular stickers have a nice, clean design.  The team logo stickers feature the prismatic foil while the rookies use the same 2013 Score design.  Team leaders again feature a different design and are printed on silver foil.  New this year are NFL Rush Zone mascot stickers.  There is also two Rush Zone themed pages in the back of the album, one for players and one for characters from the related cartoon.  Also new this year in each pack is a redemption sticker so you can also start a digital sticker collection.  Unfortunately this feature doesn't go live until sometime in September.

The first of the special pages you'll find after the teams is a two parter.  The left highlights the Class of 2013 inducted into Canton, Ohio while the right page gives tribute to Super Bowl XLVII.

Panini has again teamed up w/ Pop Warner and features some exclusive stickers along w/ some concussion health tips.

Since I have two daughters in the house the only cartoons I see on TV regularly are along the likes of Dora the Explorer, Max & Ruby and Mickey Mouse Playhouse.  That said I'm not familiar with this new NFL Rush Zone cartoon that will be appearing on Nick Toons.

All in all this looks to be a fun album this year and with 488 stickers I'm sure I'll be working on filling this up for awhile.  I will probably end up w/ duplicates at some point so if you want to trade just let me know!