Archive for December, 2008

The Crown Jewel

Posted in Collecting, eBay, Tim Lincecum with tags , , on December 20, 2008 by aybayz

Remember a couple posts back, I talked about the 2007 Bowman Chrome autograph card and how it was the centerpiece of my collection? Remember how I said it could easily be replaced if I found a card that was one step up in terms of parallel-ness? I found this on eBay today, and from the looks of it, it is in very good condition. You rarely see these up for auction and when you do, they normally go for an exorbitant amount of money. I would estimate that a card of this stature could easily sell anywhere from $400-600. Since it’s Christmas time, it might sell in the higher range. Right now, it’s only $246, but there’s still 10 hours left. I actually put in a bid of $250, but that will probably be outbid by the time I wake up. It’s fun to at least have a hand in this, although I’m not sure I would pay for it if I did win. I would probably have to sell off a bunch of cards to help pay for it and also borrow some PayPal money. Blue refractor parallel versions easily sell for over $300. If I could, I would easily give up my regular refractor for this gold one. I read Gellman’s post a few days ago about trading in your other cards and selling them to upgrade to a nicer one that you like. I’ve never thought about that only because I want to collect every single card ever made for that given player and selling two or three cards to obtain one card would be counter-productive; however, I would make an exception in this case. Here’s a nice look at this rare beauty:

lincecumbowmangold

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Some Holiday Artwork

Posted in eBay, Tim Lincecum with tags on December 17, 2008 by aybayz

The Giants were kind enough to send this e-mail out to everyone on their mailing list today:

Happy Holidays!

Contest Mailday and the Season for Giving

Posted in Collecting, Tim Lincecum with tags , , on December 15, 2008 by aybayz

I received two packages in the mail today, one from Ross over at Box Busters, and the other from Steve over at White Sox Cards. They were both cards from contests from a week or two ago. They both left me with some sweet Giants cards. This brings me to a problem I was thinking about for a while. Over the past few months, I have accumulated a ton of cards from various people through trades and such and I have been running out of room. What am I going to do with all these cards? I collect mainly collect only one player, so as you can imagine, I don’t really look at my other cards that much. I like having Giants cards, but I am simply too one-minded to collect and organize all of them. I thought surely someone else would appreciate them more than me. Then a lightbulb went off in my head. Everyone seemed to have some holiday card giveaway to other bloggers these days. I remember a while ago, I read somewhere on Wax Heaven that Mario planned to donate some cards to a children’s hospital. That was a great idea! I always hear on the radio how people have Toys 4 Tots and also random toy drives for kids. I have put together all my loose cards and such and I decided to donate all of them to a good cause. That way, I’m saving on room and shipping costs. When it comes down to random single cards, I am just not great at collecting that. I am only keeping a few select cards on top of my Lincecum collection. Those of you who I’m trying to build a stack of cards for, do not worry. In the coming new year, I plan to bust some boxes so that should fill the trade queue pretty quickly.

In the meanwhile, I have decided this is the extent of my collecting in order of priority:
1. Tim Lincecum
2. Giants silk cards (starting with 2008 Allen & Ginter team set)
3. Giants autographed cards (both in person, through the mail, and certified autographs) & HOF relic cards
4. Matt Cain and Barry Bonds

BTW, on another note, Dave posted an entry yesterday night on how Target was selling Topps Stadium Club blaster boxes for $2.99 instead of the advertised $19.99 price. Supposedly, they mixed up the bar codes of the blasters with those of the individual packs. Several people were able to take advantage of this loop hole. I promised myself that I would not touch another store bought blaster again, but at $2.99, it was too good of a deal to pass up. I stopped by the local Target this afternoon in hopes of grabbing one. When I got there, I found one blaster box left in the card aisle. I took it and hastily walked over the manual scanner to check the price. I scanned it repeatedly, but it kept saying there was no match. I thought, maybe they really did screw it up. I walked over to the checkout with another item and was about to pay when $19.99 popped up. I guess Target finally corrected their mistake. I awkwardly told the cashier that I didn’t want it and walked away empty-handed. I like the stain-glass look of the Beam Team cards, which is why I wanted to try a blaster, but oh well. I leave you with card #72 in the collection, from Ross’ package. As I have said before, I am not a big fan of parallels at all, but the parallels found in UD Masterpieces really works. The frame really makes the piece stand out. I love it:

Blog Bat Around – The Centerpiece

Posted in Collecting, Tim Lincecum with tags , , on December 12, 2008 by aybayz

This topic is an easy one as my favorite card in my collection is this one:

This is a 2007 Bowman Chrome Refractor numbered out of 500 card. It’s the first card that I got to start the Tim Lincecum collection and also the one that got me back into the  hobby. It began by me following him as a player. I noticed that he was blowing out the hitters in the minors and thought it would be wise to pick up a card of his and just follow his path and career through the majors. What started as a small interest has ballooned to a quest to find every card of his. I bought this card off eBay for $90 shipping included, which is a steal now. I became paranoid that it was only in a penny sleeve and toploader so I decided to make a trip to PSA headquarters to have this card encased. I was going to be in the area anyway so I dropped it off to be graded along with a couple baseballs. It was not my intention to grade it to increase the value, but really to preserve it in a more protective case. When the grading returned to me, I was shocked to find that it was given a Gem Mint 10, which is the highest for PSA. Now I know that Gellman has these rules for grading cards and I think this card and its grading accidentally falls into all those categories. I’m not a fan of grading just any card either, but I think I was pretty lucky to have this one done. By looking at similar items and past sales, the last time I checked, I think a Refractor numbered out of 500 that was a PSA 10 sold for around $350. Not bad for picking this up for $90. I think grading cost like $20 or something so it has definitely appreciated in value. It doesn’t hurt that Tim also won the Cy Young this year. I have went back and forth on selling my entire collection in recent months, but I have thus far convinced myself not to. I’m not sure if I would ever sell this piece. If I do sell it, then I woudl sell everything else off as well. That would also mean the end of the hobby for me.

I think with player collections, it’s always about obtaining more of the player and trying to get every card that’s ever made. However, I would jump at the chance to buy the same exact card if I saw it for the right price. But I also believe that with every player or team collection, there is one card that defines the collection. For me, it’s this one because it’s his first autographed rookie card and comes from Bowman. The only card that’s better than this one would be the next parallel up, which is the X-fractor numbered out of 250. From there, it’s the blue parallel refractor numbered out of 150, etc.

As for attaching memories or sentiment to certain pieces, I don’t think I do in this case. I would not be sentimental about a card that I bought. On the contrary, I would have more sentiment in a piece in which I got the autograph in person or if I opened a box and got a hit of a lifetime. Otherwise, buying a card off eBay does not really create any special memories for me.

1/1’s have flooded the market and I’m pretty sick of them now. Unless they are unbelievably good looking such as the superfractor, 1/1s don’t really mean much to me. Any card that’s serial numbered could technically be a 1/1 because there’s only one of that number in the series. The thing that made me dismiss chasing 1/1s was the printing plate. These are supposed to be 1/1s, but there are acutally more due to different color plates along with different parallel versions. In addition, they aren’t even very good looking. I just see them as gimmicks and I would gladly take an actual card over a printing plate.

Leaps and Bounds Mailday

Posted in mailday, Tim Lincecum with tags , on December 9, 2008 by aybayz

I received two HUGE packages today in the mail: one from Mario at Wax Heaven and the other, a monstrous box of Giants and various other cards from Jeff over at I am Joe Collector. Jeff was giving away tons and tons of cards for his “First Person Gets ’em Giveaway.” Looking at the amount of boxes he buy from his entries, it’s not surprising that he has accumulated such a large amount of cards. But his generosity is duly noted because of the work and effort he had to put into each package, let alone doing such a large number of these packages! I can’t imagine all the work put into it. The box I received was literally stuffed with cards and then buffered with checklist cards to make sure the cards within were protected and didn’t move around during shipping. The shipping cost itself was $6.80 so you can imagine how much this giveaway cost Jeff. It was a very nice gesture and it’s people like Jeff who keep this online community of bloggers/collectors strong because sometimes it’s not about the money or gaining cards, but the satisfaction of leaving other collectors with a smile on their faces. I really appreciate it Jeff! Thanks again. I would post pictures of the box, but there are just way too many good cards to go through. I will probably take a few pictures later when I figure out what I’m going to do with all these cards. One card that I will post is a Topps Finest Tim Lincecum card that I found in the box. Topps Finest is probably one of the nicest cards and card designs that the company came up with this year. Now I have the base to go along with the refractor parallel.

The same generosity can be said of Mario. He not only runs the #1 sports card blog on the internet today, but finds time and money to put together packages for other bloggers, despite himself trying to save up enough to finish his Bowman master set for Jose Cruz Jr. He sent over a bunch of Tim Lincecum cards for my collection as well as two beautiful Robb Nen Bowman Chrome cards. These are from the same product in which he’s trying to procure his Jose Cruz Jr. master set. I must agree that these are some of the nicest cards I’ve ever seen for the Bowman Chrome series. I really love the vertical stripes design and also the American flag parallel card (I guess this is the supposed International parallel?). But the cards that I was really forward to were the Lincecums. My favorite of the bunch is probably the X-fractor parallel. I did not own one before this package so it’s really nice to have. It’s too bad that they don’t serially number these anymore out of 250, but serial numbers don’t mean that much to me. With all these additions to the collection, I am now up to 71 different and unique Lincecum cards in my collection. Thank you for the contribution!  I really appreciate it and I hope to send some cards in return during the holidays.

Side Note: Lately, there has been a lot of talk about how horrible Topps has been as a company and their card designs this year. You can find entries on this topic on both Wax Heaven and SCU. I really agree with their take on the situation and I have my own speal about how horrible Topps has been. Expect a future entry on this. For now, it’s going to be a busy week, so there might not be another entry for a while…unless the Giants pull off a huge signing/trade or blunder by signing an old, crappy veteran who’s way past his prime.

Oh, check these out:

Mailday from Saints of the Cheap Seats

Posted in mailday, Tim Lincecum with tags , , on December 8, 2008 by aybayz

A real quick mailday shoutout to Dan over at Saints of the Cheap Seats, who sent over a 2007 Bowman Chrome Lincecum base card. I’ve been looking for this card for a while now so I’m very happy that I have it now. I really like this card because I still view this as his “true” rookie card. Regardless of what’s happening with all the Razor, Tristar, etc. products, I still consider Bowman as the “Home of the Rookie Card,” and I consider Bowman Chrome as the flagship product. I already have his two rookie autos from Bowman Chrome (one is the regular auto and the other is the refractor #’d out of 500). I believe they also have parallels of this same card as a refractor (#’d out of 500), X-fractor (#’d out of 250), blue refractor (#’d out of 150), and also in orange and gold. Unlike the other stupid parallels out there, the parallels that go along with the bowman chrome series are nice because they are chrome refractors. This brings me up to 65 cards, with three more on the way from a recent eBay auction. They’re nothing big, but cheap cards from 2006 from Just Minors. Thanks again Dan for the package!

2007-bowman-chrome

Set Complete!

Posted in Allen & Ginter, Collecting, mailday with tags , on December 5, 2008 by aybayz

I can’t believe I finished my first card set already! I thought it would take forever, but the time went by really fast and it was also very fun along the way. I received the last four cards that completes my 2008 Allen & Ginter set from PunkRockPaint. He is a fellow card collector and also resident San Diegan. When I stumbled upon his blog a month ago, I thought he did the coolest things to cards. He is a photoshop wiz and makes amazing card designs. He is an artist. The people at Topps needs to take notice as he does a much better job than them on some of their cards. They need to fire those clowns over there who are either doing a terrible photoshop job on certain cards or making gimmick cards. Take alook at his blog as you will not be disappointed.

Anyway, back to Allen & Ginter. The 2008 card set wowed me and the design is what drew me to the set. I completed the set within 4-5 months through various trades and such. Who knew that trading online with complete strangers would be such a fun and rewarding experience. Anyway, it was fun while it lasted and the journey has finally come to an end. The only card I’m sort of missing is the Fukudome no number. I’ve given up trying to trade for it because it is valued much higher than any other base card. The cheapest one I’ve seen sold on eBay was for $7, which is a huge price drop from the $20-25 I’ve seen sold in previous months. I guess the last month or two in the season coupled with his horrible postseason dropped his card value. I think this will be it in terms of putting a set together for a while. I can now focus on just Giants and Lincecum cards. Ah the satisfaction! Anyway, here are the last four stragglers:

punkrock1