Sunday, October 23, 2005

New York Yankees Scrapbook Collection
What I would want is kind of a set of cards to flip through at the most basic level, with a showcase of various prominent Yankees players over the years, featuring the cards I've collected. It is a type of collection, where a little bit of everything is needed to make this possible, if only on a small scale.

I think it would interesting what I could come up with my current collection and what I could add on the cheap. The core of the collection would be base cards, but also certified autographs, material cards, retro cards, et al.

I don't particularly care about value, just a visual representation of the organization that has won 26 championships.

Cheap Cards
I think baseball cards should be displayed. Maybe with so many other cards, I should make an effort to a display and showcase the more aesthetically pleasing (if not particularly) valuable cards; maybe jersey and patch cards displayed along with photographs and/or other items in a particular theme to have fun with what I've collected.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Mail Call
A 1960 Topps Willie Mays PSA 5 finally arrived in the mail- I won it in on Sept. 28 but held off on paying it until about two weeks later.

I was bored (in the newsroom) - so I was looking for an impulsive purchase on Ebay. I put in a bid in the last 30 seconds and withstood the other snipes. I don't know if this was a prudent purchase because the card looks 'beat up,' more like a '3' or a '4' and it doesn't look like it has good 'eye-appeal.'

I figure when you consider buying a low-end box or half a box of a premium baseball card product, then I'd rather have the Mays.

On the other hand, 'just to have the card' isn't a good enough reason to pick it up.

The surface of this particular card has some paper loss. I suppose this is a collectible card, though not something that would likely be considered by serious collectors.

If it is the novelty of images that you want, why bother with low-end vintage star cards, when you have modern cards featuring Hall of Famers of the '60s, '70s, et al.

Don't bother with having something just for the heck of it. If you want to have a Willie Mays card, get a modern retro card of Mays for several dollars and spend the money you will have saved on something that has been signed, something that isn't beaten up and maybe something that adds to your collection.

Nostalgia is for the birds.
Discerning eye and specialization in topics

At times, I think I want everything under the sun and I’m afraid that I’ll implode because I think I have so many interests, yet don’t have the means to pursue each seriously. I’m afraid that I’ll be accumulating stuff as opposed to adding items to my collection. I’m afraid that that I’ll overlook important details that will be lost in the fever to pick more stuff up.

As modern collectors, a discerning eye for what one purchases is important because purchases today maybe tomorrow's trash. One might be collecting for fun, but in 10-15 years, you don't want your collection to be worthless, especially if you put in a good amount of time and effort building it up today.

This isn't about collecting whatever you want for fun. It probably wouldn't hurt me to pick up a box of 1988 Donruss in order to go through it for fun, even though the brand is worthless.

On the other hand, not every product that comes out is going to be valuable, even in the near future. You don't have to buy a case of something, not every single card you see is worth picking up, not every prospect with a nice rookie year parallel autograph card is going to have a long and productive career. Temper your enthusiasm to believe the hype.

Also specialization in collecting anything is important. You don't exactly want to be collecting many things, but don't have one special subject to focus on. Also, collecting can be a complicated process because you have to familiarize yourself with many terms and levels of collecting lingo that basically have to do with your collection's value. If one doesn't have the knowledge or just doesn't care, then you go about things and later on find that you've blown your wad on nothing of significance.

Be aware of what you collect, so that you maybe picking up less things, but at the same time your collection has a bit more quality.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

2005 Donruss Zenith Break
I'm ambivalent over buying unopened boxes. It is a hit and miss gamble. It becomes impractical if I don't pull anything of significance [out of a box] like I would expect.

With some money, I picked up a box of Zenith last Saturday at the bi-weekly cards show for $48.

Base cards - 69/250; minus Don Mattingly, which had a nicked corner

Museum collection (1:3) - Rocco Baldelli, Roger Clemens, Greg Maddux, Nolan Ryan, Grady Sizemore and Dmitri Young.

Artist Proof (1:16) - Mark Teixeira

Gold AP (#'d 50) - Mike Young #'d 36/50 - damaged!

Z-Team (1:11) - Mark Mulder, Albert Pujols - damaged!

Mozaics (1:8) - Arizona Diamondbacks (Shawn Green, Troy Glaus and Luis Gonzalez) and Seattle Mariners (Adrian Beltre, Jeremy Reed and Richie Sexson).

Positions (1:21)
- Catchers; Ivan Rodriguez, Mike Piazza and Victor Martinez

Spellbound (1:11)
- Alex Rodriguez; 'E'

Red Hot (1:16) - Mark Prior

White Hot (1:65) - Ted Williams - damaged!

Team Zenith (1:31)
- none

Roll Call Autographs (1:24) - none

Epix - Pat Burrell (117/350), Hideki Matsui (089/250), Scott Rolen (166/250) and Nolan Ryan (190/250).

Auto/GU - Dale Murphy auto (098/100), Cal Ripken Jr. bat/patch (04/25) and Bernie Williams jersey.

The three nice insert cards (Gold AP, Z-Team and White Hot) being damaged 'fresh out of the pack' was a bummer, but the Cal Ripken Jr. bat/patch #'d to 25 made this break a keeper. Overall, the base cards decent and the base card parallels are nice to look at. On the other hand, I don't really like the multiplayer insert cards (Mozaics, Positions) nor truly captivated by much of the non-parallel inserts (Z-Team and Epix).

Saturday, October 08, 2005

A card that has arrived in my mailbox is a 2005 Upper Deck Sweet Spot David Wright - this is a nice card because this is Wright's first Sweet Spot autograph (on baseball leather).

I really like the design of the Sweet Spot autograph inserts and was looking for another young star's certified autograph to be included in the set.

Among hitters, Miguel Cabrera, Adam Dunn, Delmon Young, Rickie Weeks, Mark Teixeira, Victor Martinez are prospects/rising stars whose certified autographs (not exactly Sweet Spot autographs) I've picked up for my collection already (albeit second or third year certified autographs).

The Wright is another name to add to this personal collection of players I think are going to be real good over the next 10-15 years.

Hopefully the black ink stands the test of time and doesn't fade 'prematurely.'

Friday, October 07, 2005

My 1961 Topps PSA-5 Ed Mathews finally arrived that I purchased from Ebay.

44 years ago, the Mathews card maybe have been equivalent to a 2005 Topps Eric Chavez card today that is a little worn, a little off-center but has been graded.

On the other hand, for $8.50 shipped, how can I go wrong with this card featuring a Hall of Fame member and 500 home run club member? $8.50 doesn't buy you a pack of 2005 Upper Deck Sweet Spot.

It is like having an honest-to-goodness antique 'relic' from 1961 in my grasp.

The card may not featured an autograph or a piece of a bat or comparable 'game-used' material but I feel like I can have a vintage card in-hand (even in a slab) and sense the history packed into it just by looking at it.