Friday, March 29, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 18-10

18. 1939 Play Ball Al Schacht #113 - my oldest card in my collections.

17. 2023 Topps Now Shohei Ohtani #OS-19 - this could have been a centerpiece card for an all-time Angels Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection, but feel it has too much appeal not to be in my main all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection.

16. 1995 Pinnacle Ken Griffey Jr. #128 - I may have this card in my collection, but where it was 'easy,' I saw a copy during a card show rummage and pounced on it.

15. 2021 Topps Stadium Club Babe Ruth #32 - a goofy card with Ruth posing with a big bat.

14. 1989 ProCards Cedar Rapids Chris Lombardozzi #935 - having lunch in the dugout.

13. 1998 Upper Deck Larry Walker #355 - I've passively wanted this card for the past two or three years, without doing anything about it.

I finally spotted one in a Twitter sale and couldn't pull the trigger fast enough to claim - I think I have a soft spot where dogs end up being objects of affection, even if I have not owned one for the past 15 years.

12. 2001 Multi-Ad Myrtle Beach Pelicans Dinger The Home Run Dog Dinger The Home Run Dog #26 - it looks like a main theme to this page are doggos.

11. 1984 Fleer Jay Johnstone #495 - one ot the classic, yet random common cards of the 1980s.

10. 1987 ProCards Lenny Randle #27/1064 - an all-time classic junk wax era minor league card.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 27-19

27. 2021 Topps X Sports Illustrated Mike Trout #1 - I figured to get a cool looking Trout SI cover card in at No. 27 as a tribute to his greatness.

I originally wanted to tease at least two or three Angels cards in my Top 100, though after thinking about it - what I want to do is have a Top 100 of only Angels players' cards as a regionally focused all-time Top 100 cheap azz collection.

26. 1992 Bowman Chipper Jones #28 - because of the mainstream choices, this was a $25-$30 card at Chipper's peak MVP year in 1999 and I bought one for that price, thinking I had a key card that was forever going to be worth something.

Looking back, I didn't get the motivation for Topps to show all these minor leaguers [and maybe not just recent draft picks around the time the set was released] out of uniform - to make a high school yearbook inspired baseball card set.

I kind of like the Jones because the portables or storage containers in the background - reminds me of my formative years from elementary through high school, where I had my share of classes in portables.

25. 1989 Upper Deck High Jim Abbott #755 - I might have another copy of this card I can sneak into strictly an Angels all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection.

24. 1996 Score Select Ken Griffey Jr. #6 - I thought this would be a good card to replace the 1995 Pinnacle Ken Griffey Jr. #128 I originally wanted for this spot.

23. 1992-93 Topps Archives Michael Jordan #52 - I didn't know I needed this card until I regretted skipping past it during a card show rummage last year.

I ended up snagging a copy on COMC, then got another chance to pick up one during another card show rummage - where the temptation to play pretend that I actually have a Topps branded faux Jordan rookie from 1984 was just too much.

22. 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson #482 - I remember the early 1990s hype around this iconic rookie card, so it was a no brainer to add the off-condition copy I purchased a couple of years ago to my Top 100 collection.

21. 1994 Topps Archives Roberto Clemente #251 - though regular sized, this becomes a what if 1954 Topps card, picturing Clemente as a Brooklyn Dodgers minor leaguer stashed away with the Montreal Royals.

20. 1977 Topps Mark Fydrich #265 - I don't have that lingering nostalgia for Fydrich, but he was a unique, one year wonder who was quirky and different.

19. 2019 Topps Series 2 Frank Robinson #529 - is the seemingly no-nonsense Robinson presiding over the clubhouse here as Kangaroo Court judge?

Friday, March 22, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 36-28

As far as my Top 100 collection goes, I wanted cards that are generally recognizable that teases some notoriety or nostaglia - that's probably not a case for every single card, but I want to see where it makes sense to have certain cards in my Top 100 collection, even for more esoteric reasons.
36. 1989 Upper Deck Kirk Gibson #666 - a card I wanted to get into my Top 100 since it captures part of an iconic moment in World Series history.

35. 1990 Leaf Frank Thomas #300 - I had to add his most popular mainstream rookie card, where it would have a centerpiece to my Big Hurt collection during the junk wax era, if I'd veen lucky enough to get a copy.

34. 1990 Score Bo Jackson #697 - Bo was the biggest phenomenon during the junk wax era, until he got hurt in an NFL game.

He gradually started to lose relevance as he came back and tried to play only baseball through the mid 1990s - but his legacy as a two sport star has been revived at various points as part of Gen X nostalgia, foisted upon a new generation.

33. 1991 Score Jose Canseco #441 - the year this card came out, I might have wanted it so badly and resorted to ripping loose packs from the supermarket to pull a copy of this card.

32. 1999 Bowman Chrome Josh Hamilton #431 - in my Top 100, I was playing around to match a spot in my Top 100 according to a subject's uniform number.

I don't have good memories about the former big leaguer's ending with the Angels and some of the off-field stuff that has come out in the past 10 years - but when he was on that straight and narrow path at intermittent points of his big league career, he was an undeniable force.

31. 1988 Classic Update Blue Travel Edition Eric Davis #213 - whenever I come across a notable gum card like this one, I just shake my head.

When 'easy,' maybe I've resorted to buying another copy of a card I've had, just to add to my Top 100 outright - maybe I don't particularly like the idea of having to dig a card up from another collection to put in another.

30. 1997 Score Ken Griffey Jr. #14 - this one is from the Randy Johnson inspired inserts where he took the pictures for the cards.

FWIW, in 2023, Topps revived the idea of The Big Unit taking photos for cards with a 1992 Bowman inspired insert - mostly with younger MLB players posed in civilIan clothing.

29. 1999 Fleer Sports Illustrated Greats of the Game Joe Rudi #52 - the image was taken from the 1972 World Series, where Rudi makes an awesome outfield action catch against the wall in Cincinnati.

28. 2013 Topps Opening Day Buster Posey #ODS-4 - I was doing the numbers thing where Posey was No. 28 and wanted to give the longtime San Francisco Giants star a micro-mini tribute.

This card ends up being a random addition where I see if it works within a Top 100 collection - the lenticular 3D nature of the card makes it stand out just a bit more than just another insert.

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 45-37

45. 1989 Upper Deck Nolan Ryan #774 - from Upper Deck's inaugural set, I wanted the Houston Astros 3D Ryan from the Low Number Series and the Texas Rangers football Ryan from the High Number Series paired together in my Top 100.

I bought back the football Ryan specifically for a Top 100 collection and also had a copy of the 3D Ryan - however since the 3D Ryan was in my decade stars / binder, I didn't want to pull the card and move things around.

Go figure I started a dig through some older bubble mailers and did not realize I had both a copy of the football Ryan and a copy of the 3D Ryan - set aside as 'unique cards' long before I started my Top 100 collection.

I already had a pair of Ryans teased towards the back end of my Top 100 so maybe the number of cards for one player in my Top 100 gets redundant- I'll probably save the 3D Ryan for another all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection.

44. 1991 Donruss Studio Jeff Kunkel #126 - I'm a gum card afficionado though I realize at least one other collector does it better about rounding up cards with notable bubble gum imagery.

I remember trying to play in a winter league version of Little League in junior high - it might have been a practice where someone left a bubble in the dugout somewhere.

One of the assistant coaches took a good look at it and said "dang, that looks like an old man's sack."

43. 2021 Topps On Demand Yogi Berra #CC-4 - as part of on-flight programming available during a trip overseas in late January, I watched It Aint Over, a 2022 documentary devoted to Berra's life and playing career.

I gave myself a pat on the back where I already had a couple of his cards slotted as Top 100 material - Berra was an unconventionally unique individual who was a great catcher [3 MVPs] and a larger than life personality based on his Yogi-isms.

43. 2021 Topps On Demand Josh Gibson #CC-4 - go figure during a trip overseas in late January, I was able to watch another baseball related docuomentary, The League, devoted to early black players in pro baseball, the formation of the Negro Leagues and players like Gibson, who never got a chance to play in Major League Baseball.

Besides a celebration of the style of play and a look back at the ugly things like segregation - there was a business aspect as far as running the league and individual teams.

There were would be player movements as owners wanted to the best players - where the owners would resort to trying to poach the biggest stars from one team to theirs.

42. 1994 Score Bob Welch #547 - the cameo of presumably Welch's son batting against his dad makes this late career era card of a pitcher [R.I.P.] outright fun.

41. 2021 Topps Allen and Ginter Chrome Alyssa Nakken #285 - I saw a Topps Now Nakken in another collection [Twitter / X] like the one I've built and was inspired to add a card of a woman trying to put her work in MLB, coaching in a professional sport dominated by males.

40. 2021 Topps Allen and Ginter Kim Ng #226 - I also felt inspired to squeeze in a card of the first woman general manager in the big leagues, may she get another opportunity.

Maybe I wanted to get diversity into my Top 100 collection - by adding cards featuring women, player of color and at least a couple of foreign born subjects.

39. 1975 Topps Herb Washington #407 - I found a pair of these Washington cards for a dollar each, where I made one copy part of my Top 100.

38. 1965 Topps Masanori Murakami #282 - I was happy to find the rookie card of the first big league player from Japan for $2.00.

37. 1995-96 Pinnacle Olaf Kolzig #134 - one of the really oddball standouts of my Top 100, taking a closer look at the hot dog in Kolzig's hand, he has his name written in mustard.

Saturday, March 16, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 54-46

54. 2007 Upper Deck Masterpieces Ozzie Smith #19 - I like cards that depict the unique, timeless moments, like the all time great shortstop doing a backflip.

53. 1987 Classic Update Yellow Travel Edition Joe Niekro #120 - I like this card because it's rare a player is shown caught up in an incriminating moment on the field.

I looked up a clip of this incident where Niekro ends up being thrown out of the game for scuffing balls - this actually happened in against the Angels, but this card is firmly entrenched as a Top 100 card and not a card for my stadium collection.

52. 2010 Topps Turkey Red Yogi Berra #TR83 - it almost looks like Berra is balancing his catcher's mask on his forehead just like this blog says, but taking a closer look, maybe he is just flipping his mask off.

Maybe the distinction doesn't matter where I turn a random $0.50 find of an all-time great - into something part of my Top 100 collection.

51. 1992 Topps Stadium Club Ruben Sierra #387 - looking like he's the man, presumably in a photo op back in Puerto Rico.

50. 2001 Fleer Ultra Jason Giambi #21 - there might be a couple of other 'fun' Giambi cards [2000 Topps Gallery #99 and 2002 Fleer Ultra Baseball #188] I really want, but this one stands out for the wild hair.

49. 2020 Topps Update Sean Murphy #U-216 - pie in the face cards are fun.

48. 1989 Upper Deck Gary Pettis #117 - the card within a card illusion elevated this common into something odd.

47. 1976 Topps Kurt Bevacqua #564 - a true trading card relic of the 1970s.

46. 1972 Topps Billy Martin #147 - the infamous giving the bird card.

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 63-55

The idea for a Top 100 project collection was probably four years in the making, but it never got anywhere - only within the early months of this past year where I was really motivated to put something together

Past the pandemic, I had noticed the build up of the different bulk cards I'd rummaged at card shows - while that was great for my assorted mini-collections, I kind of lost my way listing out cards in a spreadsheet and putting cards away for some closure.

I got tired of the idea aimlessly collecting mini-collection cards where I needed to see if I can dig from the piles - so maybe I needed to scrutinize what I found, to see if there was Top 100 fuel outright.

I wanted to curate a Top 100 set where I had something to build on - but I also didn't want to think too much about it, where I needed that first all-time collection to get off the ground.

63. 1996 Best Tucson Toros Dave Hajek #10 - thinking about the random cards that end up in my Top 100, this one is definitely on fire.

62. 1992 Upper Deck Tom Selleck #SP4 - I liked Mr. Baseball, but had to look the part up on YouTube, where Frank Thomas makes an appearance.

In the movie's universe, Thomas is Ricky Davis, the young hot shot pushing the longtime veteran star [played by Selleck] off the New York Yankees - which explains why The Big Hurt was in Yankees colors as shown on the card.

61. 2001 Multi-Ad West Michigan Whitecaps Brian Saltzgaber #28 - the subject blowing a bubble makes a random, no-context minor league card of a coach infinitely more fun to look at.

60. 1998 Skybox Premium Dwayne Rudd #29 - I love the viking horned helmet worn by a player who plays for the [Minnesota] Vikings.

59. 1990 Hoops Sam Vincent #223 - one of my early inspirations for a Top 100 set was this NBA card, though I did not realize there were two versions and I'd gotten the corrected version showing only Vincent and without the Chicago Bulls player wearing #12 on this card.

58. 1998 Upper Deck Choice Dino Ciccarelli #93 - one of my early inspirations for my Top 100 set was this hockey card, featuring a photo op where the player is feeding a rhino at the zoo.

57. 2013 Topps Jurickson Profar #286 - I figured this pie in the face card wasn't a bad find for a little over a dollar, where it's a fun variation of a one time uber prospect, turned into a disappointing, but perfectly average rank-and-file player.

56. 2021 Topps Stadium Club Ronald Acuña Jr. #56 - it was part of a recent purchase, so I figured it would be 'easy' to sneak in a card of a 'here and now' baseball star, teasing his wild hair [as of 2020 or whenever the image was taken].

55. 1994 Topps Stadium Club Orel Hershiser #400 - I don't know what is going on in this card, I thought he was cleaning up after a cow milking competition at the ballpark, but this story from gives more context about sod.

Sunday, March 10, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 72-64

I am going to be a little preoccupied through March and probably through April - I've been trying to draft posts where I have images and something to say for individual cards listed that covers the rest of my all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection.

I hope my Top 100 stuff covers things as far as blog material goes through the rest of the month - where I schedule to drop the posts every three or four days.

If the Top 100 posts suddenly stop before running its course - I might have decided to hold things back and resume things in May.

If the Top 100 posts does continue to completion, it would probably be last things posted - until through at least some time in May.

72. 2021 Panini Donruss The Famous San Diego Chicken #261 - I like this reinvented version of the Donruss SD Chicken cards from the early 1980s, where the foil finish gives it a modern, shiny vibe.

71. 1984 Fleer Roy Lee Jackson #158 - has there ever been a baseball card other than this, picturing an athlete singing the national anthem? I think the opposing team's catcher and home plate umpire adds something extra to what is a pleasantly goofy card.

70. 1967 Topps Claude Raymond #364 - one of the rather infamous Raymond zipper undone cards from the late 1960s, the other [1966 Topps #586] is a high number, so it might cost a little more to get.

69. 2007 Upper Deck Gary Matthews Jr. #225 - this was the catch that probably earned the outfielder a big free agent deal with the Angels after the 2006 season.

I had to take a closer look, but this card is an Angels card rather than as a Texas Ranger - Matthews Jr. would have a second Angels card within the 2007 Upper Deck set with an updated, if pedestrian spring training batting picture.

68. 1985 Topps Rusty Kuntz #73 - I had to have at least one cult favorite type in my Top 100, if primarily by how funny their name might be read at first glance, what is a Rusty Kuntz anyway?

67. 1993 Milkbone Will Clark #7 - it's odd seeing a mustache or facial on notable players who haven't been pictured with them, on seemingly just about all of their cards.

66. 1998 Topps Stadium Club Brad Ausmus #257 - besides a clunky 'prop' laptop used for a photo op 26 years ago, who would have thought that technology would be utilized in dugouts the way it has in the been just the past 10-15 years.

Short of 2017 Houston Astros like shenanigans, players, coaches and team personnel - have tablets or other means of trying to get an edge during a MLB game.

65. 2019 Topps Big League Christian Yelich #375 - I figure I'd go do a thing and pair up the two random 2019 Topps Big League award winner subset cards that both tease a Hank Aaron [R.I.P.] appearance.

64. 2019 Topps Big League J.D. Martinez #374 - A nice photo op with both Aaron and Martinez.

Friday, March 08, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 81-73

81. 1996 Upper Deck Roger Clemens #VJ13 - he had that unhinged personality on the mound that was unsavory as it was fascinating when he was at his peak powers.

80. 2001 Topps Stadium Club Adrian Beltre #87 - this might have just been another awesome action collection card of the 2024 Hall of Fame inductee, but it sneaks into my Top 100, because it's a great image of Beltre going all out in foul territory, trying to catch a ball.

79. 2021 Topps Allen and Ginter Andrew McCutchen #207 - the plan was to have a pair of Uncle Larry themed cards in my Top 100, but maybe one was enough for now.

78. 1978 Topps Reggie Jackson #413 - a playing era subset card of the legend that would be known as Mr. October, I snuck it into my Top 100 as an acknowledgement of greatness.

77. 1987 Topps Kevin Mitchell #653 - I wasn't thinking much about this card, but with the awesome play at the plate action, is this the greatest actions shot pictured on a Topps card in the 1980s?

76. 1973 O-Pee-Chee Pat Corrales #542 - the granddaddy of all play at the plate cards, I picked up the Canadian version because I wanted something different. Now I might be looking for the original Topps version.

75. 1991 Score The Griffeys #841 - this single subset card from a junk wax era set gives off a classy black and white vibe, picturing a big league father-son duo that would end up teammates, playing in the same game and hitting back-to-back home runs.

74. 1999 Fleer SI Greats of the Game Ed Kranepool #55 - because I like seafood, this card is more interesting where Kranepool is shelling a lobster and enjoying a meal on table prepared for him right at second base.

73. 1992 Donruss Triple Play The Famous Chicken #138 - I like how the GOAT of mascots is shown faking to make a baseball play.

Monday, March 04, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection - 90-82

I ended up buying a binder of cards for about $6 at a card shop - I was probably looking to remove the cards and throw away the sheets and the binder, but it might be easier to leave things intact where I do not want more loose cards to worry about.

As is, even though the sheets are probably 25-30 years old and kind of a flimsy, non-Ultra Pro brand - on first glance, they still seem fairly clean and have held up.

Maybe part of the problem of putting a home brewed card project together was not having a vision to put things together to see how things would look displayed in pages - what I did for my all-time Top 100 cheap-azz keepers, was set aside enough of 'used' pages to have something to display a collection in.

I used a fresh penny sleeve for every card going into my Top 100 and put them in the appopriate pocket from #1 through #100 - there is a sense of accomplisment seeing the cards come together in pages as opposed to merely another pile, another brick destined to be squirreled away in a box somewhere.

90. 1996 Upper Deck Collector’s Choice Dante Bichette #135 - to sneak one more card to my all-time Top 100, I may consider pairing this with the parallel listed at #91.

I am not a collector who tries to worry about having the base card with a parallel - but when a card falls into my lap, it's nice having the base card to complement the more special card [even if there are more than one parallel type].

90. 1988 Fleer Exciting Stars Orel Hershiser #20 - taking the place of the Bichette is a card showing an unconventional image, where the seemingly easy going Hershiser is just chilling out, waiting for his turn to take BP.

89. 1995 Topps Stadium Club Jeff Montgomery #286 - closers were called firemen because they stopped rallies and helped put fires out in ballgames.

88. 1999 Multi-Ad Sports Tampa Yankees Dennis Twombley #25 - looks like he has choice of all the fresh fruit.

87. 2019 Topps Update Cole Tucker #US197 - too bad has hasn't been a better big leaguer, but married to actress Vanessa Hudgens, he has been blessed regardless.

86. 1994 Upper Deck Curtis Pride #250 - Pride was a good human interest story for my beyond the glory collection as a deaf player who was great athlete and played professional baseball.

I figured the one time Angel needed some Top 100 love - where I can tease his rookie card.

85. 1991 Donruss Studio Steve Lake #216 - a junk wax era common from what a baseball set trying to be a little classier, I was looking for a copy of this card in recent years and grabbed a couple of copies for $0.50 each.

84. 1992-93 Fleer Ultra Harold Miner #293 - Fleer manages to immortalize the one-time NBA player from the 1990s, dubbed Baby Jordan facing up against the man himself.

For my Top 100, I will include the occasional cards from other sports besides baseball, where there might be a cap of 10-15 at the most - though I expect to create a Top 100 for NBA, NFL, hockey and other sports, where future Top 100s will end up with less non-baseball subjects.

83. 2000 Bowman Jim Morris #164- I don't know where it ended up, but I do remember getting to sign something like an index card, when he made it all the way to the Major Leagues in 1999.

82. 1988 Fleer Sammy Stewart #616 - this was not a card I had intentions of adding to my Top 100, but it's a quirky card of a guy giving thumbs up with a dumb smirk on his face, R.I.P.

Saturday, March 02, 2024

My all-time Top 100 cheap azz keepers collection

Maybe a home brewed card project like this was a long time coming, but basically not something I've thought much about - as I've picked up all sorts of cards through the past five years, I was inspired by posts on Twitter / X and through other card blogs to finally put together a Top 100 that ends up a teasing a collection of cult favorite cards, some cult favorite subjects and unique mini-collection cards.

I wanted cards that fell reflected sentimental favorites [cards and players] and personal touches - but also cards that was sheer randomness.

Following a curated set blueprint of sorts, there will be cards within my all-time and future versions of my Top 100 cheap-azz keepers - that are a reflection of what I like and have tried to collect.

As far as rules go, I think I'll end up spelling them out as I go along - but want to get things started, where I have these posts made up as part of a routine.

100. 2010 Topps Update More Tales of the Game Joel Youngblood #MTOG-1 - it’s not the greatest feat in baseball history, but the logistics of Youngblood playing for two MLB teams in one day fascinates me.

99. 2022 Topps X Lauren Taylor Wave 2 Lauren Taylor Aaron Judge #33 - I was not familiar with the card at first, but with the number 99 prominent, I thought it would be cutesy to have it as my 99th card within this Top 100.

98. 1963 Topps Jim O’Toole #70 - I learned about the art on the back of this card, where it looks like the player depicted has something going on as he kissing his wife.

Vintage cards [pre-1973] might be teased in future Top 100s, but since collecting them has never been a big emphasis - it's harder to round up any number of cards to start choosing from, other than the occasional wrinkle.

97. 1986 Donruss Scott Bradley #396 - this card is literally worth a penny, where it's not even in 'minty' condition, but I like the picture where the player poses with multiple gloves to say he can player several positions.

96. 2022 Topps Stadium Club Nolan Ryan #23 - a nice shot Ryan in cowboy attire posing with his dog, this seemed like a familiar image as maybe seen on the next card.

95. 1992 Donruss Coca Cola Nolan Ryan Career Series Nolan Ryan #26 of 26 - presumably moments within the same shoot as the previous card, so I decided to pair them up.

As far as player duplication goes, there might be subjects with three or four cards within my Top 100, though I've tried to keep it between one or two - sometimes it's nice to pair up cards, but at other times, I'm good with spreading them out.

94. 1994 Score Kevin Brown #99 - Brown never seemed to be a warm and fuzzy guy as a player, but he is having fun wearing a faux throwback uniform and goes all out with 'painted' facial hair.

93. 1991 Classic Update Blue Travel Edition Todd Van Poppel #177 - I was thumbing through some miscellaneous pick ups and figured I'll add this card to my all-time Top 100 as a nod to the junk wax era.

Headlined by Van Poppel, I could imagine Classic thinking they were doing a thing here putting four pitching prospects / draft picks on one card - where you might have the rotation for a World Series contender for the mid 1990s or even through the early 2000s.

Doing some quick research, it looks like it was Baseball America who first printed the picture and started the hype - this story on The Athletic goes all out, looking back at that infamous pitching foursome that never really made it happen.

93. 1991 Classic Update Blue Travel Edition Kirk Dressendorfer #177

93. 1991 Classic Update Blue Travel Edition Don Peters #177

93. 1991 Classic Update Blue Travel Edition Dave Zancanaro #177

92. 1992 Upper Deck Mark Gubicza #459 - added this one [also signed TTM] because the subject of Gubicza's hockey hair [think Jaromir Jagr] might be occasionally brought up on Angels broadcasts and this is the card referenced.

91. 1996 Upper Deck Collector’s Choice Silver Signature Dante Bichette #135 - I like this because it's such an in your face, punny card.