Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Accidental Set Acquisitions

I wasn't certain if the Taylor MI show would be viable a couple weekends ago but made it thanks to my bestie needing a Jim Price auto.  I took $80, picking up Heritage High singles and dime card finds.  I was leaving with $25 in my pocket which never EVER happens. My friend stopped to look at one more table. I'm so glad she did because ....

Old Guy on the right.
The next table over was loaded with 1000 count boxes containing two or three sets each.  No mixing of cards allowed. Boxes were 'as is.' There was an older gentlemen with boxes already set aside. Fortunately, he didn't know much about the years 1996 - 2006. He was looking through each box.  I chatted with him politely while working the other end of the table. The only cards in front of him that caught my eye were UD Vintage.  It was quite obvious to me, he hadn't made it to this end because...


Most of these boxes would've been in his stack. I pulled every box that contained cards I wanted or thought would be fun trade material. None of these cards were specific to my want list, which by the way, has been greatly revised.

One by one, I've gone through each box to find complete base sets. The original owner included the parallels pulled too! I've decided to keep the majority of them intact but am busting a few for trading.

One of the first sets broken was 2001 Fleer Futures. These were some of the last cards I purchased when I stopped collecting in 2001. With their sandpaper finish, I thought they were ugly then but bought them anyway. As a collector, that's what I was supposed to do...buy everything. 

The future was ugly.
The same box also contained 2001 Ultra and Greats of the Game.  I was fortunate the stranger started at the other end of the table. He now had at least ten boxes set aside, greedy old snot. This was mine! I didn't have a complete Greats set. Looking all 'Stadium Club', Ultra has been on my wish list for years - one of its best issues.

Great find!

My favorite Ultra is Michelob but these will do in a dry moment.

ULTRA GOLD
The second box contained 98 Ultra and Dugout Axcess. Though I don't care for the font, this Ultra had been on my radar for many of the photo selections used. Now I have the whole set!!  I'd come across an Axcess card or two in dime boxes. Thin and flimsy cards, I can't help but wonder what these sold for originally. I've plucked some keepers including the Name Plates. The rest - bye bye.

EXCESS

Cam, catcher beauties, floating bats, musicians and baseball! Piazza Pizzazz!




Gold Parallels here too!

Box three provided 2006 Fleer Tradition, Fleer Showcase and Ovation. Tradition does nothing for me. I kept the Verlander rookie and Tigers but the remainder is...meh.  The choice to break Ovation wasn't as easy. Of 126 cards in this set, 41 are short-printed and not included here. I love these cards but have no space for sets I'll never complete.

NON-TRADITIONAL
BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO



Showcase? A beautiful set headed for the binder! Hey old guy. Look what I got!
SHOW-OFF
Two boxes remain.  One contains 2000 Skybox and Skybox Metal. What a cool set Metal was in its time.  There are a healthy number of parallels too. No need to rush a decision on this one. I lean toward keeping it intact.  Skybox on the other hand, or three arms...


made the decision easier.  Favorites kept. Cards like the one above and these:



fit nicely into my collection. While the full bleed colors are sharp, most of the set has a blurred or shadow effect that doesn't appeal to me.



METALISTS

EMERALD GEMS

The final box was nothing less than miraculous as far as 90s sets go. I couldn't believe my eyes. Stealing a quick glance at the old guy to make sure he wasn't encroaching upon my territory, I calmly removed this box from the bottom of a stack. Every single card of the three 1998 Fleer sets within were accounted for: Sports Illustrated, SI Then and Now and SI World Series Fever.

SPORTS ILLUSTRATED

THEN AND NOW


WORLD SERIES FEVER



If you've stayed with me to this point, you may wonder what all of this glorious cardboard cost.  The old guy had someone take ten boxes to his car but he was still stacking 'em high. Why he didn't just buy out the table, I'll never know. I do know I saved him at least $25. That's all I had left.  $5 a box. All sets but one were complete.  I still can't believe the deal.

Thanks Old Guy!

27 comments:

  1. That's crazy and I'm totally jealous! Will you be heading to the Taylor show this weekend? I've been trying to get Paul (Scribbled Ink) to go too.

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    1. Hey Dennis!!! No more shows for me til after Christmas. I also try to stay away from ebay during this time. It was total luck to find these sets. I know a couple of them have held their values too so at $5 each - what a freakin' steal!

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  2. Nice job. My wife would kill me if I did this. :p

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  3. As I said on Twitter, a table like this would easily wreck my budget if I saw one at a card show. It's tough finding singles from a lot of these checklists, let alone whole sets! The Sports Illustrated box is probably my favorite of the lot, especially the Griffey, which has been a Dime Box Dozen need of mine for many months now (which makes me even more jealous of your finds, of course).

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    1. Nick, if I weren't such a completist, I'd add that Griffey to your nearly-ready-to-mail box. But no, I'm selfish and greedy, a bit like that Old Guy.

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  4. Really not my era of cards and definitely not my sweet spot, but you can't argue with that deal.

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    1. no arguments from N.O.??? Hope you feel better soon!

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  5. At $5/set you got some amazing deals. I look back now fondly at that era, they may have been overproduced but they were each unique compared to today’s even more overproduced parallel cookie cutter sets.

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    1. today's over-production makes the 90s card selection seem minimal in comparison.. The hobby is out-of-control.

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  6. I wish I lived near Taylor MI. Actually, I wish I lived near any place that had any kind of card show. Oh well, such is life in Atlantic Canada. NO card shows in this end of the country. Another great post with lots of interesting cards. Thanks.

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    1. Yes. I noticed the "Pick Pockets" tab

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    2. Thank you Fred. Glad you found the pockets tab. It's there for trade pals like yourself. I appreciate your generosity!

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  7. Wow! The Greats of the Game and Legends of the Game cards are easy purchases. Definite must haves!
    I'm also partial to the Sports Illustrated set and the Metal set. You can't go wrong with shiny!
    You did the right thing by saving all those awesome cards from having to go home with that old guy at the other end of the table.

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    1. I think so too! Who unloaded his mini-van for him, I wonder? I mean, old guys drive mini-vans right? Just amazing luck for me this time around. It usually passes me by.

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  8. Ultra Golds and the Greats of the Game? Now that's a sweet find. Congratulations!

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    1. thanks Fuji! I'm sure my friend believes she deserves the credit. If she hadn't made one last stop, I would've missed it all!

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  9. Ultra was the best. Better than stadium club. There, I said it. I need to go d one of those Pratt cards for my dodger stadium collection

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  10. Congrats on those awesome finds!

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  11. Wowza, what a haul! That ‘01 Greats of the Game set is phenomenal. ‘98 Ultra has long been one of my favorites. And that SI box! So great!

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    1. Hey Bru! Thanks for commenting. If you should need/want any Astros from the sets I'm breaking, please let me know. I'll share. :)

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    2. Yes please! Shoot me an email with which ones you're breaking and I'll see what I still need. marc [dot] brubaker at the gmails.

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  12. Great post!! I loved collecting in the late 1990s and early 2000s, some good memories came back when I looked through the cards on this post. I think the Sports Illustrated sets and the Metal Universe cards were my favorites out of this group.

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