This is a list of the trading card projects I work on that are my priorities - there really isn't a day where I don't look through collecting forums and/or blogs or look something up on eBay, but because it's a hobby I enjoy only by myself, interest in playing with my actual cards is something that wanes from time to time.
Having an opportunity to spell some things out for about the 500th time and go over my various trading card projects in somewhat of a 'show and tell' setting - gives me some hope, where I don't feel like collecting is strictly all for nothing.
1. Personal collection cards - I once read a blog post lamenting the absurdity of having a PC, but it’s about having a collection of centerpiece cards [due to value and/or sentiment] as opposed to merely hoarding all sorts of miscellaneous cards [and never really evolving and/or getting more sophisticated, regardless of what I may actually put in my PC].
There was a movement to reboot my PCs starting in November 2016, where I’ve wanted to make my collections a bit more well rounded - by adding certain pickups like miscellaneous rookie cards like the Clemens pictured, weeding out certain cards, re-ranking the order in a Google Sheets file I created and then physically rearranging my cards.
Maybe my PCs are always going to be kind of ‘all over the place’ and thin all-around between the varying degrees of quality, years, types, subjects, et al - if nothing else, I want to have a good, representative collection of cards I can pull out and have a good look at once in awhile.
2. Regional collections - I'm trying to corral what I have in an order that makes sense even though I don't see myself as a comprehensive team collector as far as picking up all cards from a specific team year by year, card by card, product to product.
A.) Personal collection cards - it’s a work in progress and I kind of want to mimic what I've tried to do with my main PC, where I've tweaked and rebooted parts of my collection so it doesn't feel as random.
B.) All-time autograph collection - this is basically trying to count out and list all the autographs [IP/TTM/certified/purchased] in my collection; the goal is to get as many different players as I can; though completion isn't realistic, I'll live with 'highlights' I know I have in my collection, while adding fillers along the way, even if I'm missing some obscure and likely 'impossible' autographs to get for one reason or the other.
C.) A-Z singles / A-Z inserts collections - it’s a work in progress to account for notable, yet to miscellaneous team related cards.
A-Z singles - means my collection of notable pulls, finds and purchases that 'maybe worth something' like prospect cards or parallels of team stars that may not really be worth much at all, but are fits in my regional collection.
A-Z inserts means any pulls, finds and purchases that are probably not worth much - yet are still a little more unique than base cards.
D.) Loose card projects - anything that doesn't fit as a PC, as part of my all-time autograph collection, that can't be slotted as an A-Z singles or A-Z inserts additions.
Binder stars - I guess I've made it where I've set aside cards of selected players to put in a book; hard to deal with prominent players who have spent time with other teams, but I try to collect as many cards for guys who have played for my team.
Frankenset - this collection basically serves to showcase at least 500 random Angels cards by numerical order; I'm kind of surprised there seems to be Angels cards to count 1-500, though I'm still missing 60 assorted, random cards to complete the first 500.
Opening Day Starters- maybe inspired by at least a card blogger or two, maybe I want to put together a collection of cards to showcase a team's Opening Day lineup.
Maybe my Angels cards are just kind of 'loose' all around with a mash-up of cards - so like my Angels frankenset project, my goal is really to use up much of my base and ‘lesser’ insert cards for something relevant.
Organize by year in the following order - 1B, 2B, 3B, LF, CF, RF, SS, C, P and DH [if applicable].
Shoebox - as part of my team boxes spelled out below.
3. Collecting topics aka mini collection cards - I’d like to think my mini-collections is my centerpiece collecting project where I could just do my own thing.
Maybe the main reason for these collections is to be a card geek - trying to keep up with ‘trivia’ as well as hunting cards that ‘pop’ with some personality, even if they are all common and/or otherwise forgotten.
I may have 25-30 'official' ones and 5-10 'unofficial' ones - I probably was influenced by the baseball cards subsets of their early 1990s [1992 Upper Deck - Bloodlines, 1992 Pinnacle - Shades, Grips, Donruss Triple Play - awesome action] as well as being bored and trying to see if collecting random cards for the heck of it, to put in one specific mini-collection category was viable.
My yearly goal is to add 500 'new' collecting topics cards - I say yes to adding one more card that can possibly count toward a mini-collection, no matter how esoteric.
4. Award winners collection
- the purpose of this collection is to round up and to showcase MLB award winners [Most Valuable Players, Cy Young and Rookie of the year] through baseball cards.Between base cards, parallels, retro cards, vintage cards, memorabilia / certified autograph cards, in-person/TTM autographs
- this is kind of a frankenset project for me where things are mixed up.
The most important aspect of all the wrinkles within this collection is the cards used are era [retro cards are actually OK] and team appropriate - with some exceptions that I’ll chalk up to ‘not worth worrying about.’
5. A-Z singles - I need to maintain upkeep of my collection of notable pulls, finds and purchases that 'maybe worth something' but may not really be worth much at all and may not fit any of my collections.
6. IP/TTM autographs - I don't get to do it as much, but it's not entirely out of my system and I feel I can still get subjects to scribble on trading cards or what I'd call my 'claptrap of junk' I lug with me to spots where I presume I'll see someone worth looking to get an autograph from.
This is more of a list of the trading card collections I may work on from time to time - but perhaps a little unfocused or seem a little vague.
1. Topps year-to-year run [1978-present]
- though the run doesn't exactly go back to the 'vintage years' of the 50s, 60s and early 70s, I'm looking to get at least one regular issue Topps card each year for the teams that were in existence in 1978 through present.
Obviously for the expansion teams that have sprung up since, including the Miami Marlins, Colorado Rockies, Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Rays - will only have Topps cards starting from the teams' first seasons in Major League Baseball.
- I'm trying to make it so there is a system for listing and putting away assorted pulls, finds and purchases.
I have my inserts in binders but because it maybe easier to access my inserts when I need to add new cards to the collection
- there maybe a push move my inserts to boxes and put a mini-collection in a binder or at least have more pages for my assorted decade, binder stars.
3. Decade / binder stars
- these consist of the base cards and common inserts / parallels I’ve pulled from various breaks or have found through other means; I sort all the cards I have by player in ABC order, by decade the players made their debuts.
This collection isn’t something I'll go through on a regular basis but once in a while
- it's fun to see how many assorted cards I have for players in a binder, from the national stars I followed to everyone else.
4. Team boxes - this collection is a smorgasbord of cards sorted by team, so I can flip through them as a casual collection; at the moment, I have a shoe box for my American League cards and a plastic card box for my National League cards.
Maybe there is kind of a ritual to build up the boxes bit-by-bit - then maybe spending a couple of hours at a time going through the cards to see what I have, to be able to add and subtract.
Nothing is permanent and I weed cards from this collection from time to time for various 'needs' like rediscovering mini-collection cards or a card for an active player involved in a transaction
- I try to keep in mind at least 10-15 'anchor' players for a particular team, whose cards I'll look to add to make the individual teams more well rounded.
These collections can include cards of prominent stars, postseason heroes [if applicable], other players from championship teams - players who may have passed in more tragic situations than natural ones, long retired stars, etc.
Having these team boxes maybe a response to repack breaks over the years where rather than just putting all the crap I'm flipping through into my A-Z archives - I decided to put together a team collection of cards to see what I can come up with.
5. More loose card projects
- these are the various ways that help me sort of bide my time and milk out a unique card collecting experience since I do end up enjoying rummaging through cards as long as there is more cardboard to look at it.
As is, I’m juggling multiple things, trying to push multiple buttons as a process to cobble together up random cards and to put them into specialized themes - these projects keeps me involved in collecting in a fun, if simplistic sort of way.
Milestone numbers - 500 home runs, 3,000 hits, 300 wins, 3,000 strikeouts
Hall of Famers - inspired by a card blogger or two, a card for each member of the Hall of Fame as I stumble upon them.
- I look at mlbtraderumors.com
365 days a year, so perhaps it shouldn't matter, but I'd still like to keep a 'Rolodex' of about a 100 or so random cards to reflect a particular year's [in-season, off-season through the end of spring training] moves.
- a random assortment of cards from notable pros in multiple sports, from a selected number of California colleges.
This collection isn't meant to be comprehensive, but a collection of cards from schools I've heard about with good athletic programs - Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State, UCLA, USC, Stanford and Cal.