A place where Colorado Rockies baseball card collectors (all 3 of us) can waste some time reading about our favorite sport. The Rockies and their cards will be the primary focus, but I like to go off on tangents as well so anything and everything baseball related may be covered here.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The RETURN of the Budget eBay Collector for June

For the moment, I have put the Sunday Afternoon Blaster on hiatus.  It is somewhat for financial reasons, but mostly it is because my local Wal Mart has run out of interesting buys.  I will still occasionally buy a blaster here and there and maybe it a monthly feature or if I find a new location to purchase them it will  be back and stronger than ever. 

With the temporary departure of one longtime feature, I figured why not bring back another feature that has been on the shelf for a bit, the Budget eBay Collector.  For those of you new readers that have not seen The Budget eBay Collector before, here is the link to the description of this idea. 

I will be starting up again on June 1st, but not before I get some input from my loyal readers "i.e. you guys."  In the first edition, the only limitations I put on myself were no cards from the "overproduction era" of cards (1986-1993).  The second edition, I made it more difficult by limiting myself to only parallels, serially numbered cards, vintage (1975 and before), and hits.  I completed both successfully.

Now my question for you is, what will the terms of this month's buying adventure be?  Feel free to leave a comment with a suggestion or idea for me.  My first thought was to go with an all Hall of Famer attempt, but there are many routes I could go, such as all oddball cards or all non-baseball.  Let me know what you think and the more ideas the better.

Friday, May 27, 2011

May Group Break Results from Thorzul Will Rule x 2

Thorzul will Rule

Boxes Busted in the first
2005 Fleer America's National Pastime
2006 Upper Deck Sweet Spot
2007 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classics

Boxes Busted in the second
none (a cheapo mystery lot)

Along with Colbey, Thorzul's (Bill) break is one of two that I try to get into each and every month if financially possible.  This month, Bill had two different breaks going on.  The first (well second chronologically but first here) was his regular break with one team and one randomized team and a handful of mid-high end products.  The second was a cheapo break with only one team.  I snagged the Rox in both of course and my randomized team was the Diamondbacks which I desperately tried to trade before the break started.  Luckily (well somewhat luckily), I was unsuccessful.  Let's take a look at my new loot.

I didn't get a hit with the Rockies in the first break, but I did pick up some new base cards.  And for a team collector getting a few base cards you don't have is almost as good as getting a hit.  I like this design for some unexplainable reason.  I think my favorite part is the ghostly purple swoop above the solid purple swoop.

I was shut out on the 2007 box and this is the only card I got out the 2005 box other than one more below.  I like this design as well, but would like it even more without the silver logo that reminds me of mid 90s Donruss.

Here are the two DBacks I got from the 2006 box.  Snore, they are for trade.

My hit for the break was a buyback.  It surfaced in the 2005 National Pastime box and was a buyback from way back in 2001, precisely 4 years earlier.  I mean it is a nice jersey swatch of a complete jerk, but the only thing that stands it out as a buyback is the blue Sharpie numbering on the front.  What is stopping someone from just randomly labeling an old jersey with a numbering and calling it a rare buyback?   I think it is numbered to his jersey number, but it is for trade to any Schilling collectors out there.

Now we get to the meat of my break.  In my $8 lot I got not one but two autos.  The Chad Bettis is technically a USA jersey/auto, but he is in Colorado's system and Bill graciously included it in my pack.  I have two other Bettis autos already and this one fits real nicely with the others.  The Aneury Rodriguez auto is from 2008 Donruss Threads.  He was traded to the Rays for Jason Hammel in 2009 and is currently in the Astros bullpen.

For $8 getting those two autos would have made me happy, but I also got two serial numbered cards.  The Jeff Francis is the base card from 2007 Topps Triple Threads and is my first from that set.  The second card is a Barndon Durden blue chrome refractor from 2005 Bowman.  Durden was released druing Spring Training this year after making it to AAA and I don't believe he has caught on with anyone else.

Also in my lot was a pair of Xponentials from 2008 Upper Deck X, a set that is really starting to grow on me.  The Helton is an X2 and was needed.  The Holliday is an X3 and is a dupe and thus up for trade.  Let me know if you need it.

Everything else I got was a dupe, but I thought I would show them off in case you need them.
2010 A&G This Day in History Carlos Gonzalez
2010 Ticket to Toppstown Todd Helton

I also got the entire team set from last year's Topps 100, including my favorite player with him name misspelled on the front.  It is spelled correctly on the back, but for future reference it is spelled Friedrich NO SECOND E.  These are all duplicates as well and can be had in a deal.


Thorzul's breaks are usually either a home run or a groundout.  I have been lucky enough to hit a couple of homers with him.  The first break did not go so well even with the Schilling jersey and that had to do mostly with having two expansion teams and basically being shut out of one of the boxes.  But it was still fun.  The "el cheapo" break more than made up for it.  There is no way I could have gotten all of the cards I received for $8.  All in all I consider it a successful pair of breaks averaged out.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Barry Bonds: Not Such a Bad Guy After All?

I am torn because this man is the one name I said I would never write on this blog.  But after reading this story on Yahoo, I have a new found respect for Barry Bonds.  In case you haven't clicked to read, Bonds has offered to pay the future college tuition of the children of Bryan Stow.  Stow is the Giants fan that was nearly beaten to death earlier this year outside Dodger Stadium.  It is stories like this that make me appreciate my love of sports all the more.  Sure I may say I hate a player, but that is never the actual case...most of the time I just hate the uniform.  And honestly, Bonds acted and reacted like a jerk most of the time.

I am not going to suddenly become a Barry Bonds collector by any means, but I no longer have a problem typing his name on this blog.  Who knows, one day I may be comfortable typing the name of the jerk that played second base on the Giants with Bonds.  NAAAAA!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Joy of a Completed Set - 2011 Topps Heritage

I got home from work today ad saw a thick yellow envelope in my box from Sportlots.  I knew.  My quest to complete 2011 Topps Heritage was complete.  Yes I am missing 5 New Age Performers and all of the gimmicks, but I have every card from 1 to 500, so it is a completed set.  Joy and hallelujah.

What was my final card you ask?

Now I may not be the first to complete it, but I am currently the happiest to complete it.  Now I just have to wait for the High Numbers Series to fully complete this set before the end of the year.

After yesterday's coolest card ever pulled and today's completed Heritage set, I just can't wait to see what happens tomorrow.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Hobby Box Break - 2005 Topps Rookie Cup Edition (Coolest Card EVER Pulled)

Hey guys, I was searching eBay for decent ideas and prices on my next group break coming up in about a month when I happened upon a hobby box of 2005 Topps Rookie Cup for a semi-decent price.  I noted in my 2011 Mountains to Climb that I wanted to find a set from 1996-2005 to work on this year and I think this is it.  I have always like the scans I have seen of these cards, but in person the color really pops.  This is a beautiful set.

Since I am building the set, I won't bore you with a pack by pack breakdown and I'll just show you a small sampling.

The box promises two autos and 12 numbered parallels, but I got SO much more.

Base Set - 93/150
Doubles - 0
Autographs - 2
Numbered Parallels - 26!!! (more than one per pack)


As some of you know, I am a sucker for the colorful uniforms of the 1970s.  I really wish a few team would go back to them (especially the Astros).  I also chose to show the Chris Sabo from this set, because I had not seen many cards of him sans goggles.  He looks like he is as blind as Mr. Magoo (look it up, kids).  I forgot to scan the backs but they are solid gray (parallels are corresponding color) with the Rookie All Star year stats and full career stats.


Each pack also contained a reprint of a former member of the Rookie All Star Team.  They also included years that did not include the cup.  This is just a small sampling of the 48 I got.  Most were from the 1990s, but I got several from the 60s and 70s.  What I like is that not only did they include Hall of Famers like Rod Carew and fan favorites like Ron Santo, they also included guys that didn't really make much of an impact like former Indians manager Pat Corrales.


BLUE #'D TO 50

This is the only blue parallel I pulled from the box, but I did get a player I liked.  The blues are my favorite colored parallel.  It really pops in person.  It does suck that the best looking parallel is also the rarest because otherwise I might try to put together a blue set also.  I still might, but if they were the 499 ones I definitely would.

GREEN #'D TO 199
The greens are the next rarest and I got this nice Hall of Famer along with a few others.  Actually this card was made before Dawson was a Hall of Famer, but it still works.

Others I received
#84 Reggie Sanders
#101 Jason Kendall
#137 Rocco Baldelli

The yellow is probably the least appealing to the eye, but the backs look great in yellow.  This was Joe Torre before he sold his soul to the devil in the mid 90s.

Other yellows I received
#53 Brook Jacoby
#57 Vince Coleman
#76 Chuck Knoblauch
#122 Bengie Molina

It is always nice to pick up a numbered Pujols, because a lot of people collect him and prices soar on eBay (which I am currently suffering through with Tulowitzki). 

Other Oranges I received
#6 Jonny Gomes
#37 Chet Lemon
#68 Gary Sheffield
#101 Jason Kendall
#102 Billy Wagner
#130 C.C. Sabathia

RED #'D TO 499
Here is the 1975 Topps All Star Rookie catcher who has been in the news recently for his unfortunate health problems.  I always liked Carter as a player when he wasn't a Met and I hope he can make a full recovery from his current issues.

Other Reds I received
#3 Joe Torre
#21 Al Oliver
#122 Bengie Molina
#127 Adam Dunn
#138 Scott Podsednik
#139 Brandon Webb

I saw a single card box topper pack and honestly had no clue what could be in it, because there was no mention of it in any reading I had done on the set.  It turned out to be a chrome reprint of 1996 Topps Garret Anderson #'d 21/25.  Gawd, I love this set.

This is the first of two autos and they are also color paralleled with each color having 100 less than the base card parallels (except blue which is still 50).  There are 10 cards #151-160 that are comprised of 2005 1st round picks.  The only disappointment with this box is I did NOT get the best player of the group of 10, Troy Tulowitzki.  Jacob Marceaux topped out in 2009 in AA with the Marlins and later White Sox.  He last pitched in 2010 in the independent leagues and had an ERA over 9.00, so this card won't pay my mortgage.  But it still looks cool (even with the sticker auto).

Brandon Snyder is arguably the 3rd best auto from the 151-160 subset after Tulo and Yunel Escobar, which should tell you the quality of the others.  Snyder has made the majors though, so he has done more than me.  The only other player to have made the majors out of the group is current Rangers reliever Ryan Tucker.  I do seem to pull quite a few low numbered Orioles autos though since before today my only 1/1 pull was an Orioles prospect autograph.  Yes I said BEFORE today.

This would be the coolest card I have ever pulled.  This is a gold parallel reprint an original relic of 1965 Topps rookie catcher Mike Brumley from the second incarnation of the Senators (which later became the Rangers) That is an actual metal cup embedded in the card.  I was opening the pack and saw something thick and I knew there were no jerseys in this set, so I was befuddled.  I literally screamed like a little girl when I saw this card.  Sure it could have been a bigger name, but that is part of the fun of a set like this.  It is hard to see but right above the cup there is a gold 1/1 along with the 1/1 hologram on the back.

What do you think?  Is this one of the coolest relics ever or have I drank the Kool Aid?  I will try my best to find another box of this set because I want them all.  I LOVE THIS SET!!!!!

Stay tuned for the coolest card I have EVER pulled from a pack later tonight

The headline says it all.

A couple of quick group break plugs

Hey all, I just wanted to throw in a couple of group break plugs (that I am part of) for my fellow bloggers in Internetland. 

Indians Baseball Cards - David is doing a Buck-A-Box style break meaning he is opening 5 boxes and if your team has possible cards in that box you pay $1 for them.  Teams start as low as $3 (c'mon cheaper than a single pack).  He is busting 2 boxes of 2011 Bowman along with 2009 A&G, 1990 Topps Head Up, and 1988 Sportflics!  Cubs, Reds, A's and others all still available for $5.  Let's help a guy out.

The Daily Dimwit - Sam is at it again this month with a CASE of 2006 Upper Deck Ovation.  The cost is $30 but that will get you your team plus one random team.  There are three slots left and several surprising good teams are still available.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sunday's Afternoon Blaster - 2010 Bowman Chrome

Welcome to this week's Sunday Afternoon Blaster.  Since the Rapture did not happen or maybe it did and I was left behind.  Either way, I decided to celebrate by doing the same thing I did last Sunday...buy a blaster of cards.  This set was about one person and one person only...Stephen Strasburg (aka Mark Prior 2.0, aka David Clyde Part 30).  Don't get me wrong I hope Strasburg has a nice comeback and a great career, but it probably won't happen and it is also why I am not a prospector.  I will also avoid Harper-mania this summer because he will probably become the next Travis Lee.  Most prospects fail kids, sure you might miss out on one big one, but you also didn't pay for 150 busts.  Enough of my rant, let's take a look at last summer's hot set.  Goal for this box is one Rockie I do not own, which should be easy enough since I only have one base card and 2 refractors.

Card coloration is it's availability

white = I'm keeping it
green = available for trade
red = already claimed/traded

Today's blaster is 2010 Bowman Chrome...8 3 card packs, nothing guaranteed.

On with the show.

pack one
122 Hanley Ramirez - Marlins
15 Chris Carpenter - Cardinals
BCP167 Rawley Bishop - Tigers

pack two
78 Kevin Slowey - Twins
195 Jason Donald - Indians
BCP159 Anderson Hidalgo - Twins

pack three
5 Jair Jurrgens - Braves
132 Tim Lincecum Refractor - Giants
BCP156 Kevin Mahoney - Yankees

pack four
38 Troy Tulowitzki - Rockies
USA-18 Blake Swihart - USA Baseball
BCP219 Robbie Erlin - Rangers

pack five
106 Francisco Liriano - Twins
151 Shin-Soo Choo - Indians
BCP147 Brayan Villarreal - Tigers

pack six
77 Nelson Cruz - Rangers
115 Lance Berkman - Yankees
BCP210 Matt Davidson - Diamondbacks

pack seven
130 Aaron Hill - Blue Jays
152 Raul Ibanez - Phillies
BCP196 Jason Kipnis - Indians

pack eight
79 Paul Maholm - Pirates
USA-9 Dillon Maples - USA Baseball
BCP133 Rafael Dolis - Cubs

Design: D+
Bowman is known as the home of the rookie card, not as the home of great design.  Bowman looks way too similar every year with the black border and different shaped photo.  I understand that there are only so many ways to make a card design, but they really need to change it up a bit.  This one is boring even for Bowman

Inserts / Hits: C
Not much of anything, but at least my refractor was of a star (even if it is the worst possible team for me to get).  The regular veteran refractors (1:6 packs) don't really stand out in this set, because I was ready to complain about missing out on one when I went back through and saw on the back that Lincecum was one.

Value: D
This was not a discounted blaster so I spent the full $19.99 on it.  Yeah I knew it was not worth the price, but I figured why not take a shot.  I love busting wax even though it is often overpriced and it would be easier and cheaper to buy singles.  I will still buy more as long as I am able to (but not of this product).  Check back in 3-5 years, because the grade may go up as the prospects become rookies.

Rox in the Box: 1
I did accomplish my goal of getting a needed Rockie. The only base card I had for this set was Brad Hawpe, so getting Tulo was nice.  Not $20 nice, but still not horrible.  Since there are only 24 cards per blaster and 8 of them were Indians, Twins, and Tigers and 2 others were USA high school players; I consider myself lucky to have gotten one Rockie, let alone Tulo.

Will I Collect This Set: F
Nope.  One word: curlitis.  Well one made up word.  You all know about and are probably sick of hearing about the curling issue for 2010 chromes.  Plus I have no interest whatsoever in the USA baseball guys.  I think Topps is just trying to get another Mark McGwire instance where this set sells like mad 15 years later (like the 1985 Topps in 1998-2000).

Overall: C-
Over-hyped prospects, generic design, awful quality control, and only 3 cards per pack means this was not my best purchase ever.  But it was still (barely) better than getting a 1990 Upper Deck Gem Mint Fred Lynn, so it could have been worse.  Well, the world could have ended, so it REALLY could have been worse.  Claim away for any you might want.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

April Group Break Results from A Cardboard Problem

A Cardboard Problem

Boxes Busted
1 case 2011 Gypsy Queen

I bought into this break about three months before the set was even released, while we still thought this was a 450 card set.  As I mentioned in the last break results, the Rockies were woefully underrepresented in this set with 0 autos or relics and I would have skipped this break had I known that.  It's not the lovely ladies at A Cardboard Problem's fault by any means, but the Rox were not worth the price, but I did finish off the team set and got several minis.  Let's check them out.

These are the three cards I got for the base set that I did not get in Dimwit's break.  The Helton is a "common" while the other 2 are short prints.  I got 2 of each of the short prints (the 2nd Fowler is already traded, but if you need #332 Wigginton let me know).  I also got at least 5 copies of the six common Rockies, which I broke up and randomly inserted as a bonus in my group break packets (assuming they weren't sent back).

I did 2 of the 3 bronze bordered cards featuring Rockies.  The three are "the big 3" of CarGo. Tulo, and Ubaldo.  I picked up the Ubaldo on eBay, but these two came from this break.

These 4 minis are the regular back variety.  I actually have two of the de la Rosa and Helton so if you are building this set let me know and they are yours.

These two are the red Gypsy Queen backs.  No differences between the fronts at all.  I am not a fan of "back variations" because in the binder pages parallels should at least look different on the front (even a stamp or something to set them apart).

Well that was my break.  No big scores (or even little scores like a sepia or leather mini), but that's okay.  Every team cannot win every break and my bad results from this break meant some other team had a great one.  It will all come back around in the next one.  Thanks for reading.