Sunday, February 28, 2010

A Refractor By No Other Name

Everything about this card is so pleasing to my eyes.  Turkey Reds always are to me though.  This was one of the last cards produced of Lastings in a Mets uniform, thank god, before we'd see him move on to Washington and then Pittsburgh.  Its an on-card autograph and claims to be a refractor on the back of the card, where it tells me I've recieved an authentic Autograph card of Lastings Milledge from 2007 Topps Turkey Red Basball.  Couldn't have gathered that from the front I guess...  While the back lists the card as a refractor, the Topps official name for the set is Chromographs (strange bit of word play there.  This particular set, the D group, was a 1:177 hobby packs pull from the 2007 Turkey Red Set.  It books for $15 but I picked it up the other day on the bay for just $7.
2007 Turkey Red Chromographs #LM
Lastings Milledge 

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Box Break: 2010 Topps

There are many reviews out on 2010 Topps Series One and have been for weeks, but as I just busted my first yesterday, I'll share my experience with you all.  I purchased a retail box (24 packs / 12 cards per) from Amazon for $39.99.  As I've already gone over some of the base cards I'll leave those out of the scans and just talk about the inserts.  I pulled no relics or autos from this box.

Base Cards: 223/330 (67.5%) No Duplicates
Inserts: 65

Lastings the Floridian

Just got this one in the mail a couple days ago.  For $0.48 from The Dugout Cards I got this pretty unique looking insert from Allen and Ginter's.  The front features an inset portrait of Lastings, which is an exact replica of his base card from the years A&G set, and the Florida flag, which is his home state.  The card is about two and half times thicker than a regular A&G card.  On the back the bio features the story of Lastings leading his team to the Little League World Series in 1997 followed later by a high school state title.  I like this card and the particular design very much. Thoughts?
2008 Topps Allen & Ginter's United States #US9
Lastings Milledge

Friday, February 26, 2010

A Year Too Late

I'm going to step away from the 2004 Topps for at least a post - sort of.  It seems as though Bowman has two rookie cards of Lastings' Milledge: one from 2006 and one from 2005.  However, the 2005 seems to be his true Bowman rookie, as part of the Draft subset.  What's strange is that Lastings was drafted in 2003, only to appear on a card as a draftee two years later.  Even more strange is that the 2006 Bowman is marked as a rookie card, when he'd already been in the league at least two years (he was injured most of his first year).  Regardless, enjoy the shinies.

<- 2005 Bowman Chrome Draft Refractors #154. Lastings' autograph bugs me, its just so ugly, though there are much worse out there. Book price ($6.00) paid ($1.31). Avzen Sports

2006 Bowman Chrome -> Refractors   #211.  Rookie card stamp, but not really a rookie.  Love if someone could explain that to me. Book price ($2.50) paid ($2.00).

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Let the Low Ends Keep Pouring In

2004 Topps had a ton of parallels, at least more than I've seen in most base sets.  I'm just beginning to crack the ice when it comes to all the parallels for Lastings' rookie cards.  As a part of a lot for $1.50 which also included two of the 2004 Topps #680 base Lastings' cards I acquired these two relatively cheap gems:

<- 2004 Topps Pristine #138
Numbered 018/999 this card has a glossy, chrome, bumped finish.  #138 is the uncirculated print, with #137 the common, and #139 the rare.  The set has Refractor, Gold Refractor, and 4 Printing Press (1/1) Parallels each.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Pack Tear: Panini 2009-10 Basketball

I needed a storage box for all the cards I plan on giving a good home to, since I'm starting from scratch here at university, so I headed over to the local card shop on the other side of town.  I picked up a 3200 ct / 4 row box and while I was there 2 packs of 2009/10 Panini basketball.  Its got the local boy Blake Griffin on it after all.  While I do have a full box of Panini headed this way sometime in the next week, I couldn't resist the urge.

And the Player Selection is in...

My previous attempts at collecting have all been mismanaged and disorganized.  I would usually buy anything on ebay which caught my eye, whether I particularly liked the player or not.  Of course this was way back in 2003/2004 when memorabilia cards weren't absolutely everywhere and they still meant something special.  However, this time I've decided that, since I don't really have a home team (other than the Thunder), I will adopt a player new to the league some time in the last 8 years.  The player I decided on was Lastings Milledge.  Since I haven't even really watched a baseball game in ages it was really just a shot in the dark.  My goal, initially, will be to collect all of his rookie cards (of which Beckett says there are only 10).  However, I'm going to do my most earnest to actually acquire all the parallels to his rookies as well.  That puts the total to somewhere around 50, not including the 1/1s.  Many of these are hefty buys - the Topps base refractor goes for upwards of $50 in most places - but I will try to pace myself in building the collection.  The total number of cards containing Lastings as of today is 655, so I've got a hill to climb but its not nearly as steep as most.  Whether or not his cards become even more valuable, or he flops as a professional doesn't really matter for me.  I'm in it for the collecting, and of course the spreadsheet upkeep.

The complete rookie set can be viewed in my Beckett collection.

To start things off, we'll just go ahead with the most common card of Lastings out there.  I very much like this card.  There are a myriad of colors to choose from, the grass and dirt are well definied, and the cards showing his typical robot arm.  Of course, it doesn't hurt that its from the set that IMO is the best base design of the last fifteen years.
2004 Topps #680
Lastings Milledge RC DP FY

The Windup Prior to the Delivery: 2010 Topps Baseball Rack Pack

My impatience grew pretty heavy after I had ordered my first box of Topps 2010 Baseball so I got on over to Wal-Mart on Saturday for a little gift to myself. My purchase were two rack packs at $4.99/each. At 36 cards per pack they are a pretty good value at only $0.13 per card, about the same cost per card as a retail box from Dave and Adam's Card World though with a much lower hit rate than a hobby box/pack has. I didn't manage to get any million card codes, relics, autos, or parallels out of either pack (strange to me), but I did pull a good number of inserts.  I'm not going to put pictures up for all the cards I pulled, but only highlight a few, so that the full review can be saved for the box break coming soon.

Of the base cards I pulled there were four which really stood out to me:


The obligatory #7 Mickey Mantle is gorgeous, the #117 David Dejesus is perplexing in how he's positioned himself, the #97 Luis Durango I like how he's reaching for the base, but we can't see it (though a horizontal card here may have provided a better overall image), and the #1 Prince Fielder is both hilarious and breath-taking at the same time (definitely a once in a lifetime sorta moment there).

The Beginnings

I've recently gotten back into the hobby of collecting sports cards (and by recently I mean over the last two weeks), after a six year hiatus. I'm towards the last year of university and have grown bored with video games and drinking to excess. My plans with this blog are to provide regular box breaks and highlights (text and pics only) and the occasional insight on the industry. This will be my first, hopefully successful, set build; I've tried a few times when I collected in the past, but lacked the necessary funds, time, & want to do so. My first set to focus on will be 2010 Topps baseball, at the same time I'll be starting on Opening Day and Heritage. While these will be my main focus, I've got hundreds of dollars worth of boxes en route to my place right. The boxes bits and pieces of everything and I plan on breaking everyone for the readers.