Sunday, May 01, 2022

A card show trip recap - dollar boxes of doom

I finally had to see if I can make it back to the tables where a couple of the big time regulars were still plugging along doing some damage - I’m still trying to get things started as far as my rummage goes and I will never know what I could have picked up without getting first crack at the boxes.

I got a peek at the personal notebook / wantlist one older collector had - his 'notes' were written up like hieroglyphics and I had to roll my eyes for a moment at the indescribable level of detail.

I guess as random as things get, other collectors might be more particular - where cards I might think about aren’t necessarily something that would register to them. 

It was probably too late, but I wanted to be deliberate and still wanted to look at every card- I don’t think I ended up with the fresher ‘easter egg’ material but was still able to flag some cards that piqued my interest.

It may not mean anything, but maybe I can count on other collectors having different interests - I can’t help where there might be some obvious gets but there might be a tendency to gravitate towards your sports first where football and basketball cards may ‘dominate’ someone else’s stack while I'm primarily a baseball guy.  

I was able to build up a couple of bricks of cards that was whittled down to 60 for the time I spent - I have to remind myself to enjoy these moments, where it's all fun and games here rather than some chore to come up with all assorted cards.
I am obligated to show the Angels material I picked up where I do have that one MLB team to follow - I may have had a copy of the 1987 Fleer Chuck Finley rookie card over 30 years ago, but who knows where some random card ends up finding its way out of my collection.

It's not such a 'big deal' card where even for a dollar or less, I'd rather end up with it, than pick it up outright - I relented because it maybe a scratch the itch card for my loose collection of Finley cards, but this copy may actually be the glossy version, which makes it a little nicer.

Grabbed some cheap Ken Griffey Jr. cards where despite the idea he's an old dude now and by that extension, the collectors who were following him are now old too - it's still fun to have a bit of nostalgia over his cardboard where he was 'The Kid' in his prime years.
I remember lugging around the 1990 Fleer as one of the most common Junior cards in my collection as a beginning collector over 30 years ago - what makes this particular copy 'special' is that it's the Canadian version, which I know little about except of the notation on the back where it says 'PTD. IN CANADA.'
Some Don Mattingly action - reading through this Baseball Think Factory thread, maybe post #82 stands out, "I think there's a pretty decent segment of baseball fans who, even if they aren't Yankees fans, really just gravitate to the idea of Mattingly's perceived greatness in the 1980s."
Some Cal Ripken Jr. and Tony Gwynn action - if nothing else, cards that have a bit of shine to them.
Took a picture of the cards twice to show the reverse image of Gwynn on the 2000 Topps Finest Features subset card that looks sort of like an insert - dual sided cards are both neat and annoying at the same time.
Some other 1980s legends for my decade / binder stars - despite Biggio and Smoltz starring more through the 1990s, they made their MLB debuts at some point in the 1980s and I classify their cards as belonging to the decade where they first reached the big leagues.

I left the Boggs insert in a previous dollar boxes of doom raid but decided to just grab it to scratch the itch - it is a dual sided card like the Ripken Jr., featuring Scott Rolen on the reverse.

Binder material for 1990s guys - the Jeter maybe an ugly card that was basically only licensed through the player, but I guess it's still a pre-rookie prospect card of an all-time great.
Minor league cards of junk wax era guys - there maybe something about seeing relatively familiar players and/or managers [in the case of Joe Girardi] who played and/or starred in the big leagues pictured as minor leaguers.

Junk wax era MLB cards of Ellis Burks, Mike Greenwell, Girardi or Greg Vaughn might be filed away in my A-Z commons archives - but seeing their junk wax era minor league cards may take my mind to different places.

Mini-collection material - though he might be a pariah in the NFL, the refractor card of Antonio Brown was too nice to leave behind.

Though it might literally be worth what I paid - I also like the David Robinson card with a Michael Jordan cameo.

Other sports - I question myself after picking up a couple of cards pro wrestling meathead Brock Lesnar.

I know better where most low end Jordans from the 1990s aren't the ones really sought after like his real harder to find inserts / parallels from the same era - but I'll throw in the occasional base card with a nice action shot.

It might be another parallel card, but I made the Tony Romo a keeper just because past a successful career as an NFL quarterback - he has carved out as a second career as basically the best TV analyst in pro football.

I wouldn't normally pay attention to women's soccer cards, but I may have a few of them dumped into the boxes and when I came across it, I relented to add a card of Dennis Rodman's daughter Trinity - there might be some novelty factor as a bloodlines tie there.

Odds and ends - these maybe a more realistic snapshot of the types of cards sitting in the dollar boxes of doom at every show date.

At times, I'm content to be pickier, but maybe this time I bit on some of the hits that others probably pass over most of the time - Kenta Maeda parallel, Eric Chavez bat card, first year Bowman Chrome auto of a rank-and-file big leaguer, Kevin Gross autograph [a one-time Angel who was utterly forgettable in his only year with the team] and a David Dahl autograph.

When he was coming through the minor leagues, I had Dahl tabbed as a future hitting star for the Colorado Rockies - I wouldn't have thought I could land a certified autograph for one, lousy dollar.

Old school odds and ends - I wanted to put the Catfish Hunter back in the box, because it's not the most attractive looking card, but there is a shine to it and it is numbered [to 1974] on the back.

Maybe making a pair of George Bretts keepers are par for the course - I like the old-school, pre junk wax era mid 1980s cards like from 1985 Fleer.

I find Robin Yount and by extension, his cards boring for a baseball legend - but his 1979 Topps is a keeper just because it's a nice looking card of a guy who was already a veteran of 6 MLB seasons when this card was printed.

I want to say I already did a 'book report' on Yount once - he was really at his best in the 1980s where he really had a prime of 5 great offensive years as a shortstop and then another 5 great offenisve years as a center fielder, before his hitting numbers started to really wind down when I might have first really been aware of him in the early 1990s.

I've ended up with a number of Mike Scott junk wax era cards from the Houston Astros - he was basically a guy who took a while to develop in the big leagues, may have been at the top of his game for a five years stretch then was otherwise done through his 30s.

Maybe with his rookie card in hand, I quietly sneak him into my binder stars collection to flesh out my 1980s books just a little bit - even if I end up featuring more of a 'fan favorite' type than true star with some lasting power.


Fuji said...

I had the Orosco/Scott rookie card back in the day... and it was one of my most treasured cards. Didn't have the Greenwell or Burks minor league cards, but I'm sure they were pretty valuable at some point too.

Nick said...

Everyone collects their own way, but I personally could never be the kind of collector who brings a pencil and notebook to a table. Checking numbers off a list just isn't as much fun for me, I guess. Glad you finally got to hit those dollar boxes, and it looks like the wait was well worth it! That minor league Girardi is particularly excellent.

Jon said...

His notebook may have been intentionally difficult for other to read. After noticing so many people trying to read mine when I was still attending shows, I started writing everything in code so no one could read it, especially the dealers who want to see what you're looking for that way they can try and upsell you on whatever it is.

Laurens said...

I wouldn't have realized keeping a wantlist on you at shows is like protecting your signs in baseball, where you have to watch over your back.