Saturday, August 26, 2023

A quick break from the 1980s...

 I had to make a quick, 3-day trip to Albuquerque. It really wasn't that quick because its a 10-hour drive. While I was there I looked up card shops on Google and found 5 shops. I was only able to visit 2 of the shops before I had to return home. It would've been 3 but the other one was closed. 

The first one I visited was kind of small and really wasn't very organized. All of the sports were mixed together. It was difficult to find anything. The graded cards and the ungraded cards were in the same display cases all mixed together and in general, I thought the prices were kind of high. I did find a $1.00 box and went through about two stacks of cards, but it was difficult to find anything. Once again everything was mixed together and the cards were facing forwards, backwards, upside name it. Plus, some were in penny sleeves, some in top loaders, but most weren't in anything. I'm not saying that a $1.00 box has to be divided by sport in numerical order by year, but some semblance of order would be nice. The guy working the store was pleasant enough, but all he would do was try to get me to buy the expensive stuff, even when I let him know several times that I couldn't afford it. When I get back to Albuquerque, this store will be marked off the list. 

The second store wasn't really a card store it was an autograph store that had cards. The card section wasn't very big, but had some nice cards. I was pressed for time, so I only went through a couple of rows in a $1.00 box. I got a few cards, so my trip wasn't a total loss. 

I'm starting a player collection of Jim Abbott. I'm not sure why I haven't already done that because I think his story is awesome. The Trout cards, Acuna Jr. and Witt Jr. are also for player collections. The Ryan is not a 1984 card, but a 2012 reprint. I have a friend who loves everything Nolan so I picked it up for him.

I asked the guy at the store if they had any room on the prices of the cards and he said that their margin was so low that the price is what it is. It wasn't my best purchase at card store, but it wasn't bad either. The store, All in Autographs, had some really great autographs, pictures, helmets and some baseballs. I found a nice picture of Hank Aaron in his blue Braves uniform in a follow through of his swing that was autographed, or so I thought, that I was prepared to buy, but the guy working the store pointed out that it was a reprint, so I put it back. Thought that was pretty cool that he did that though. I know that if I'm ever in the market for an autograph or have some time to kill, I'll go back for a visit.

I had some mail waiting for me when I got home...

All three of these were Ebay pick-ups for my player collections.

Well, that's all of the quick break from the 1980s. I'll get that second post on the '80s up real soon!

Isaiah 40:31

Sunday, August 20, 2023

The 1980s

 I thought I'd write a little bit about my 3 favorite sets from the '80s and my 3 least favorite sets. 

This won't be a deep dive into the sets like my friend Night Owl does, but will hopefully be a little informational and more opinion than anything else. The 3 favorites are not ranked in any order, just like my 3 least favorites aren't either. I'm also sticking to Topps. If I included any of the other ones, there's no doubt that 1989 Upper Deck would be in the top 3 and 1981 Donruss in the bottom 3. 

The first of my favorite sets of the '80s is 1980. Now, like everything else in life there are things about this set that aren't my favorites, but overall, I really like the look of these cards.


The 1980 set released in April and contains 726 cards. 66 of those cards were double printed. I am a fan of the design of the card. It's a clean look with the name on the top, the position ribbon on the upper left and the team name on the ribbon in the bottom right corner of the card. The cards also have a facsimile of the player's autographs. I know there are some out there that don't like those, but I don't mind. Kind of gives you an idea of what their autograph might look like. There are 74 rookie cards led by:

This was the first "big" card that I got when I started collecting cards. They were selling for $1.00 in 1981. Should have loaded up on them for a $1.00 a piece. If I only knew then, what I know now. This is still one of my favorite cards. I was a big Rickey Henderson fan. He was a game changer leading off the game. If he walked or got a hit, it was like a double because he was swiping second. A few of my favorite cards from the set...

Of course I pick my Texas Rangers team card. The reason for this card though is the scoreboard in the background. The state of Texas scoreboard was a significant characteristic of the old stadium and it's fitting that it made it onto a baseball card. 


I like the All-Star designation on the cards. It's enough that it shows who was an All-Star but it's not overbearing either. I also like that it's on the player's regular card without having a separate card in the set. 


I've always been a fan of the action shots on cards. I love the Gary Carter card. I wasn't a huge fan of Gary Carter, but I think that's a cool card. As far as Nolan Ryan goes, 60 feet 6 inches drops down to about 55 feet with that stride and then the ball is coming a 100 mph. Wow!


I think the Joe Niekro card is a great picture of him showing his knuckle ball grip. I included the victory leaders card because I thought it was pretty cool that both Joe and Phil led the National League with 21 wins that season. Obviously, it was a good year for the knuckle ball. Does anyone still throw the knuckle ball? The last one that I can think of was R.A. Dickey who reinvented himself throwing it.

My last card is Ozzie Smith's 2nd year card. Known for his glove I think this card of him swinging the bat is pretty cool. Ozzie has a career .262 average to go with that glove.

That's it for this one. I'll have the next one out soon!

Leave me a comment about your thoughts on the 1980 Topps set.

Isaiah 40:31

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Ramblings of an old collector

 It's been a long time since I've posted. It's been a long time since I've read any of the blogs I follow too. I've got some catching up to do. Here's just some random thoughts...

National Sports Card Convention

Another National has come and gone without me attending. I'm pretty sure there will be many others that share the same fate. I really would like to go at least once. Watching the Youtube videos from the convention makes it look really fun. I was going to say cool, but from what I understand it definitely wasn't cool!


I really don't collect autographs. I have several autographs, but its not something that I'm hunting down and really chase after. I will pick one up when I find one for the right price and of the right player. I'm always a little leery if the autograph is real or not. The majority of the autographs I have I got myself. That being said, I have bought some from some very reputable people that I trust. I did pick up an autographed card the other day on Ebay. 

I have really become a Marcus Semien fan. I just love the way he plays the game. 

TCDB Inventorying

I haven't gotten real far since my last post. I have added a couple of sets and some insert subsets, but other than that not much else. I just haven't been in the mood. I'm more interested in doing other things, like acquiring more cards!

TCDB Trades

When I started putting this post together I had just completed my 20th trade on TCDB. It was nothing earth-shattering, but moved me closer to completing a couple of sets. 

I'm already up to 24 completed trades with 3 more in transition. I finally initiated a trade. I messed up though because it ended up being an international deal to the UK. It cost me more to ship the cards than what they were worth. It's nothing against the guy I'm trading with, its just not worth it because of the shipping. Lesson learned...check where the trader is from before initiating a trade!

In my last post I talked about maybe shutting down my "store", because there just wasn't enough movement. I'm not looking to make a ton of money(though it would be nice!), but would like to recoup a little bit to help fund the collecting. Well, in the last 3 weeks I've more than doubled what I had made in the first 5 months. 

I will put it out there again; here's the link to my "store". If you go out and give it a look and find something that you'd like to trade for instead of buy, let me know and we'll see what we can work out.

Semien and Seager


Is there a better one-two punch in baseball right now? Seager is unbelievable. Sprains his thumb, comes back and his first at-bat hits a home run. 

Grading cards

I've been following, reading, watching videos, etc...about grading and I have to say that my stance has not changed. Grading is good for one thing and one thing only...authenticating that the card is real, the auto is real and if the card has been altered. By the way, from all that I've seen its not even a for sure thing either. 

2023 Topps

I've finished my set and my grandsons' sets of Series 1 and 2. Trying to decide if I'm going to do the update series too. I have a ton of doubles if anyone is in need of anything. 

Random Act of Kindness

I've continued to send out at least one RAK a month. There is no system or plan on how I do it. I just find a card that I've got and that someone needs and off it goes. I'm trying to build a pretty good address book so I don't have to ask for addresses and the cards can just show up. Now let's be real here, it's not like I'm sending anyone a 1953 Mantle, Aaron or Mays, but if I've got something that's not too pricey then why not do something nice for someone. We need a little more nice in the world.  I'm not making any promises, but let me know what you're looking for and I'll see if there's anything I can do!

Isaiah 40:31

The Seventies-My favorites Round 1

The Seventies were my youth. The movies "Jaws" and "Star Wars" came out. Disco was king. The A's and Reds dominated ...