Archive for the Semiannual Card Shop Tour Category

Semiannual Card Shop Tour: The Results (Part 2)

Posted in Semiannual Card Shop Tour with tags , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2011 by Cardboard Icons

I feel a bit like a troll breaking my Card Shop Tour purchases into two posts, but truth be told, the singles themselves are worthy of their own showcase.

As noted in Part One, I went through binders upon binders of discounted relics and autos, and scoured through a showcase of discounted “better” autos and relics.

In the end I walked out with six singles on top of the packs I discussed in the initial post.

The first card was a 2009 Topps American Heritage autograph of firefighter/writer Dennis Smith:


A high-dollar card?  Not really.  But it stood out to me among the dozens of autographs featuring failed baseball prospects.  Smith was a firefighter for the New York City Fire Department and is an accomplished author.  Here some backgroundCost: $5

There’s something neat about buying an autographed card of a player who has since passed away.  Even neater when the card is a hard-signed copy, like this 2005 Topps Johnny Podres:

Podres passed away in January 2008, yet his autographs are still being released today.  Why?  Because Podres signed a slew of stickers for Topps. Podres auto appeared in the 2010 Topps 206 set as part of the framed mini set.  His signatures are not rare.  But it’s always nice to know that the subject handled the card on which they placed their pen. Cost: $7.50 (Marked $15, with a 50 & off sticker)

I don’t do a whole lot of football. But this year I am catching the NFL bug with both of my local teams playing well and the recent death of Al Davis.  And when I saw this 2005 Leaf Certified Fabrics of the Game Cliff Branch patch card, it made me think of … “the greatness of the Raiders.”

That is a black jersey with a silver patch, and appears to be from one of the numbers. The card is mint and is serial numbered 20 of 25.  I did a bit of internet research before I bought this and there are almost no Branch jersey cards “available” on the market.  They exist, they just are not being offered for sale.  This one seemed like a no-brainer. Cost: $12 (Marked $24 with 50% off sticker)

Patches are a bit of a theme for the day.  Here is another no-brainer: 2004 Ultimate Collection Game Patch of Jim Catfish Hunter /75.

The card is a bit quirky … it’s Jim Hunter without a beard and sporting his 70s Oakland A’s jersey, yet the swatch and patch are from a New York Yankee jersey.  The back of the card even states this as such.  Either way, this card hailed from a product that I believe was some where in the neighborhood of $100 a pack.  Cost: $7.50 (Marked $15 with a 50% off sticker)

Bonds. Love him, hate him, he is the All-Time Home Run Champion.

Check out that sweet patch.  Yes, it is legit.  This is not an eBay special — concocted by some a-hole with nothing better to do than defraud unknowing buyers.  This is a prime swatch card featuring a black jersey with a black and orange patch, and the gold border of another patch.  Cost: $20 (Marked $40 with a 50 % off sticker)

Umpires.  Nobody wants a card of an umpire, especially one that was signed by one.  Um, I do.  I always thought the 2004 Bowman Heritage Autographs featuring umpires were some of the coolest and inexpensive cards made. On Monday I got THE card from the set that I always wanted, Steve Palermo.

Some of you younger baseball fans — those born after Upper Deck made its debut in 1989 — might not even know who this guy is. Palermo was a Major League umpire until July 7, 1991 when he was shot during a robbery at a restaurant after a Texas Rangers game.  Palermo had come to the aid of two restaurant waitresses who were being mugged in the parking lot.  During the struggle, Palermo was shot and the bullet severed his spinal cord, instantly leaving him paralyzed and effectively ending his career.

Palermo has recovered to some extent and is now a speaker.

With all that said, what the hell was this card doing in the bargain bin?  Instantly one of my favorite cards. Cost: $5

Introducing the “Semiannual Card Shop Tour” (Part I)

Posted in Semiannual Card Shop Tour with tags , , , , , , , on October 17, 2011 by Cardboard Icons

About 18 months ago I discovered a new-to-me card shop about 45 miles from my home.  The first time I went there it was awesome.  The shop did things differently.  They sold items of their own, and they did a little consignment among their better customers.  The end result was binders upon binders of cards that were decently priced.

On Monday I decided to venture out that way and incorporate a trip to another shop that is about 35 miles from my home.  I’ve made this trek before to both stores, but my trips always seem to be about six months apart.  Henceforth, I am dubbing this journey from here on out as the “Semiannual Card Shop Tour.”

There was nothing I was looking for in particular except for a deal.

Let me start off by saying that the card shop that was furthest from my house was a complete waste of time. There was nothing new in terms of bargain singles, and judging by the conversation I overheard between employees things didn’t sound too promising for this card shop.

The only thing I bought there were two packs of 2011 Topps Update and a single pack of 2011 Topps Heritage MILB.  The card shop doesn’t allow you to pick your own packs out of fear that someone might be searching, so they do all the grabbing for you.

Here are the results:

2011 Topps Update Pack One:

201 Topps Update Pack Two:

2011 Topps Heritage MILB

Despite the fact that I really don;t like other people picking my packs, I guess I can;t complain much.  Got a short print diamond parallel from the first Topps pack and a blue tint relic from my Heritage MILB pack.  Nothing major, but much better than a pack of commons.

*  *  *

One of the great things about living in the San Francisco Bay Area is that there are quite a few card shops to choose from.  It might take a bit of driving to get to them all, but they are out there.  In particular there are three stores in my area that are owned by the same guys, but each store is unique.  One deals heavily in vintage, the other has a good mix of both, and the third has a pretty good size collection of bargain game used and relic cards among a mix of everything else.

The latter of the three shops was my destination on Monday.

I went through a handful of binders of autographs and relics, and then hit a showcase with better autos and relics that were all marked half off.  I also picked up the same cocktail of packs that I got at the first store.

Here are the results:

2011 Topps Update Pack Three:

2011 Topps Update Pack Four:

2011 Topps Heritage MILB Pack Two:

Pretty solid results from these packs.  I got to pick my own, which I had mixed emotions about.  There were only six or seven packs in each of the boxes remaining.  My expectations were low, and the result was a Paul Goldschmidt rookie, a Roger Maris  short print variation and an autograph.

So, wanna see the singles I brought home?

Stay tuned, Part Two is coming shortly … Part Two HERE.

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