Friday, October 14, 2016

Zistle Trade #64: bbronzan

Well, the San Francisco Giants were eliminated from the postseason earlier this week.  It ended the ridiculous even year streak the Giants were on (#BeliEVEN).  I am not sure "streak" is an accurate description, though.

Fittingly, my next Zistle trade included a bunch of Giants.  I reached out with a trade offer to Brandon, who collects Giants.  We made a pretty quick trade and sent off our cards.

I received a bunch of Jeff Kent cards in this trade which makes sense as Kent had his best playing years with the Giants.  I always think of Kent as a big loss for the Mets.  He played well for the Mets, but the team was pretty terrible.  He also wasn't known to have the best clubhouse reputation.  Maybe he was bitter for being traded from the Blue Jays during the start of their back-to-back World Series wins.

Furthering the Giants connection, Edgardo Alfonzo also played for the Giants.  His case is a bit different than Kent's.  Alfonzo had his best years for the Mets and is beloved by Mets fans.  He played pretty lousy for the Giants.

Marco Scutaro is another Giants connection from this trade.  Marco made his MLB debut with the Mets in 2002.  He spent some time with the Cleveland Indians and Milwaukee Brewers before that, but never reached the big leagues with either team.  Scutaro bounced around from the Mets to the A's, Blue Jays, Red Sox, and Rockies.  In 2012, he was traded to the Giants mid-season and helped the Giants win the NL West title.  He went on to hit .500 in the NLCS, win NLCS MVP honors, and drive in the winning run in Game 4 of the World Series as the Giants swept the Detroit Tigers.  Some may remember this image from the NLCS.

Overall, this was a solid trade!  Thanks again, Brandon!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Blogger Trade: All Cardinals All the Time

Next up is a trade I had completely overlooked!  Not the first time and probably won't be the last. 

I had a stack of cards that I have been trying to figure out who sent them.  Zistle keeps track of trades, so I know it was not from anyone there.  I searched my inbox, but couldn't find anything that wasn't accounted for already.

Well, somewhere in that stack was a note from Ray.  I recall leaving it there to remind when I got around to scanning those cards.  I guess I hid it too well, because it took me long enough to see it again.

Anyway, Ray has a great blog over at All Cardinals All the Time.  It is like my little blog here, but much better written.  Ray reached out via email (I found our emails later) with a list of cards he needed from my Zistle collection.  A little back and forth later and we had a nice trade worked out.

Ray sent over a nice stack with some great cards.  It is always nice to be reminded that the Mets were one of Rickey Henderson's nine teams during his long, Hall of Fame career.  He was voted the Comeback Player of the Year in 1999 for his one full season with the Mets.  He was released the following year just over a month into the 2000 season.     

Ray also sent along a couple of nice throwbacks.  The first one being the above Rey Ordonez wearing a New York Cubans uniform.  The New York Cubans were a Negro League team from 1939 to 1950.  The second one, with Tom Glavine, might be a Cubans throwback, too.  I think Ordonez is in the home uniform and Glavine in the road uniform.  The Mets would wear these throwbacks a couple more times in 2010.

Sorry it took so long to get this trade posted, Ray.  It was a pleasure and I hope you need some more Cardinals!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Zistle Trade #63: jtcrawfordcr (Goodbye Zistle?)

Well, we will continue clearing out my draft posts with another Zistle trade.  Sadly, it looks like Zistle will be coming to an end at some point.  Some may know and some may not, but Zistle was sued by Beckett, which shall be known henceforth as Dickett.  I know, not very creative.  Anyway, Dickett thought Zistle infringed on their copyrights by allegedly using their checklists.  My guess is that the owners of Zistle had to let it go due to legal fees.

It is a pretty shitty move by Dickett.  I purchased their price guides back in the day, but I have not used them for much of anything since then, so I can't really boycott them.  I hope anyone who used Zistle or, at the very least, cares about having options in a marketplace decides to boycott. 

Back to the trade.  This one was another with John.  He reached out with an offer.  I did not have a problem with said offer, so a quick deal was made.

Matt Reynolds made an interesting piece of history last season.  He spent the entire 2015 season in Triple A with the Las Vegas 51's and had yet to make an appearance in the big leagues.  We all recall the hoopla of Ruben Tejada, Chase Utley, and the slide which resulted in a broken leg for Tejada.

With an infielder short, the Mets called up Matt Reynolds making him the first modern player to be added in the middle of a series without having major league experience.  He didn't get to play in the playoffs and was dropped off the roster for the World Series.  He eventually made his MLB debut the following season on May 17, 2016 in place of a scratched David Wright.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

COMC: #1

I have tried various routes of procuring cards over the last few years.  Zistle trades has by far been my favorite way as you only have to pay postage to send out packages.  eBay is easy enough to find good deals, but shipping costs add up.  Just Commons is an easy way to find a lot of base cards for cheap.  It is pretty easy to find enough cards to get free shipping.  Blowout Cards is a good place to find decent prices on hobby boxes and packs.

Check Out My Cards was the one place I had yet to try.  I am sure if you are reading this blog, then you know of COMC and what it has to offer.  I decided to give it a try last year for their annual Thanksgiving sale.

I went into this venture without a game plan.  I figured I would browse around, put a watch on some cards, or just buy if I liked the price enough.  It was a bit overwhelming at times, but overall a pleasant experience.

I thought I ended up with some decent cards without having a true game plan.  The above 1999 E-X Century cards of John Olerud and Robin Ventura are printed on thick acetate stock and look pretty cool.  Also, I don't see many Todd Zeile relic cards available, so it was nice to see one with the Mets. 

There are not too many Richard Hildago and Marlon Byrd Mets relic cards out there either, so I had to grab both when I saw them for real cheap.  Even better, they both had a pinstripe!  I also found a great David Wright photo variation for less than $2.

I recall seeing the Travis d'Arnaud card (below in the middle spot) on another blog.  I can't remember where I saw it, though.  Apologies to that Blogger.  I do not keep up with Bowman releases very much, so I never saw it before that post, but I recall really liking the card's design.  Also, got some other shiny cards to match.

Rounding out this COMC purchase is one of my favorite photo variations.  It is a fitting send-off card for Bobby Abreu.  PNC Park, where this photo was taken, really gives some great imagery for baseball cards.  Maybe someone at Topps saw this and thought they could make an insert set out of it?

Overall, I can't really complain about COMC.  It is pretty simple to navigate and make purchases.  If you are entrepreneurial spirited, then you can take to card flipping and probably make a decent return.

We are not too far away from Thanksgiving now.  Maybe I should start making a game plan?

Monday, September 5, 2016

Zistle Trade #62: sam383

Next up is another Zistle trade with Dave.  This time he reached out looking for a bunch of commons and was patient waiting for my acceptance.

I think the most interesting card, besides Ramon Castro hamming it up on his card, is that Doc Gooden Bowman card.  Gooden is shown wearing number 64, but we all know him for his number 16 during his Mets tenure.  Gooden did wear number 64 during his first big league camp, but changed over to number 16 once called up, but this card was in 1993.  My best guess is that he is either in Spring Training or doing a rehab stint somewhere in the minors on this card.

Like a lot of ball players and their chosen uniform numbers, Gooden was no different in his choices.  Along with 16, the occasional 64 with the Mets, and 11 with the Yankees, Gooden chose his uniform numbers based on his birthday (11-16-64).

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Blogger Trade: gcrl

Up next is a Blogger trade with Jim at garvey cey russell lopes.  This was a trade that started way early last year and took a few months to complete.  It did not take us a few months to agree to a trade, but rather put together a trade package to send to each other.  It was probably more my procrastination than his, but we eventually got this trade done.

I find Blogger trades make me more nervous than Zistle trades.  You can see what cards you get and what cards you are sending with both sides agreeing to a Zistle trade.  Blogger trades seem to be rather blind in most cases.  You might know some of the cards ahead of time, but generally not every thing you get.  I believe this trade was blind.

Jim sent along a rather interesting card.  The above 1999 Topps Stars n' Steel Mike Piazza.  The set is a pretty basic 44 card set with just two parallel versions.  The interesting part is the cards are printed on 0.25 gauge metal.  It was rather surprising to look through a bunch of cardboard and come across one that was metal.

I received some pretty great cards from Jim in this trade.  Some cards finished some team sets and some cards started some team sets.  

Jim finished up his blog last year with a nice "goodbye" post.  He is still collecting and trade, though, which is always nice to see.  Thanks for the wonderful trade, Jim!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Zistle Trade #61: scottbdoug

Up next is another Zistle trade to our neighbors of the north.  Scott reached out with a request for our third trade.  He requested a stack of set needs and sent out a bunch for me.

I think the most interesting card received was the 2002 Topps prospects card featuring Brian Cole.  Cole was an up-and-coming prospect in the Mets minor league system and was showing great promise.  He was one of the players, along with David Wright and Jose Reyes, the Mets were going to build around.  Tragically, his life were cut short after a car accident. 

Sports Illustrated ran a wonderful 2013 article entitled "The Best Player You Never Saw."  The article is a great read for baseball fans that discusses Cole's impact on a number of players who played with and against him, including CC Sabathia and Albert Pujols.

Zistle Trade #60: halos17

Let's keep the line moving with another Zistle trade.  I sent a trade request to Rob offering up a bunch of Tim Salmon cards.  Rob countered back with a larger request asking for all of the matches I had for him.  Since I like receiving more cards, I was down to work out a larger trade.

I know a lot of junk wax era sets do not get a whole lot of love, but the 1986 Donruss set is not too bad.  The cards above show are some pretty clean looking cards.

I am not sure why I like the 2009 O-Pee-Chee set, but I do.  It has a pretty cool retro design with some good images.

Overall, this was a very pleasant trade!  Thanks, Rob!

Friday, September 2, 2016

Zistle Trade #59: hittinaway

Next up is another Zistle trade.  Nick reached out with a trade request mostly for a bunch of Tim Wallach cards.  I thought it was a strange request since I know there was already a big Wallach collector out there who literally wants every Wallach ever made.  Nick said those Wallach cards are sent out to another collector, so they just might end up at the Stackhouse Law Office, if they haven't already.

Nick sent out the request with just what he was looking for while leaving my side blank.  Instead of picking a bunch of random cards, I thought I would keep it simple and select based on set.  Nick had a complete team set of 1994 Studio, so that was a good starting point.

Nick was kind enough to throw in some extra cards to the package.  Most of those extras will go into the trade pile, but there were still some cards that I needed.  Thanks for the extras, Nick!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Blogger Trade: Tony L.

In the five months I went between posts, the Mets have played five months of up-and-down baseball.  The team has been plagued by injuries with some key pieces going down with season ending injuries.  Other players have been dealing with nagging injuries most of the season.  Other players have not played up to expectations.  Despite all of this, the team is still in playoff contention which in my eyes is still an accomplishment.  

Up next is a trade with Tony.  Many of you might know Tony.  He has his blog over at Off Hiatus Baseball.  Check it out if you haven't done so.

Tony reached out sometime last year on my Topps project page (which I still need to flesh out or just delete).  He said he could help me out with a bunch of my 1970's Topps needs.  His comment totally went unnoticed by myself as I did not realize it was there until months later.

Eventually, I got back to Tony.  Luckily, he still had those cards.  He sent along a bunch of Topps needs that are much appreciated.  

It looks like Topps used a couple of nice action shots in their 1978 set.   I wonder what the percentage is of action shots versus posed shots for vintage Topps sets.

I think the 1979 Topps set is pretty decent.  The set does not really have many memorable cards.  The most memorable is definitely Ozzie Smith's rookie card when he was with the San Diego Padres.  I think the set has a simple design that works quite well.  I also like the use of the "vintage" Topps logo.  I am not sure if vintage is the correct term, but I think it was the first year they put their logo on the card fronts.

Tony was kind enough to send along some non-Topps needs, too.  He also sent along some Donruss, Fleer, Score, and a few oddball cards.

I thought Sportflics cards were pretty cool when I was younger.  I wonder how long it will take Topps to make digital cards like this for their app.  Gif cards?  It still won't get me to use the app, though.

Thanks for the great trade, Tony!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Zistle Trade #58: mkaz80

I had a good run of posts there for a hot minute.  I figured out how to schedule posts, so I got a bunch of draft posts published.  I made a pretty good jump in catching up to present day.  Then the Summer came with beach trips, yard work, and going to some baseball games.  Now, I am sort of back where I was wanting to get closer to present day.  So, let us start to catch up, again.

This next trade was completed at the start of the year and was a real New York Mets trade.  Mark is Mets fan with a healthy collection of Mets cards of his own.  He has his own blog over at This Way to the Clubhouse.  It is fine read not only for Mets fans, but card collectors in general.

I have been meaning to work out a trade with Mark for a while now.  It sounds like he was doing the same.  We are essentially the perfect trade partners.  We both have plenty of duplicates that the other needs in their collection.  Even after this trade, I still have over a hundred Mets cards Mark still needs according to our Zistle matches.

This was one of the larger trades I have completed on Zistle.  It would take me a while to scan all of the great cards I received, so there are some of the highlights.

The cool thing about these large trades is that you can see the changes to the team over time.  Starting above, George Foster represents the early 80's Mets.  Gary Carter arrives from the Montreal Expos and we go into the mid to late 80's Mets with Dwight Gooden, Howard Johnson, and Lenny Dykstra.  The 1990's start with some veterans hitting their declining years and young players just starting their Major League careers.

During the mid-90's, the new crop of players takes full effect with Jeff Kent, Rey Ordonez, Todd Hundley, John Franco, and Rico Brogna.

Towards the late-90's, some younger players were traded and established players like Bernard Gilkey, Carlos Baerga, Robin Ventura, John Olerud, and Mike Piazza were added to the team.

The early to mid-2000's saw the arrival of David Wright and Jose Reyes.  The highlight play from those years is depicted by the center card above.  The Catch.  Then we have our first no hitter from Johan Santana.

This was a fantastic trade with Mark.  Look forward to the next one!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Zistle Trade #57: gasypo

I was browsing the Trade Recommendations section of Zistle when I came across Gabriel's name.  I saw he was a Chicago White Sox collector and knew I could help him out.  I reached out with a trade request for a near complete White Sox team set.

Gabriel did not have too many matches from me to choose from, but that was alright.  Matching the number of cards in a trade is not always the most important factor of a trade.  It is fine as long as both sides are happy with what they receive.

I only received two Mets cards in the trade with the remaining majority being non-Mets needs.  I am happy with Mets I received, though.  The Robles cards is the Rainbow Foil parallel, but the scan does not really show it very well.

Gabriel has his own blog over at White Sox Card Adventures.  It looks like he is big on TTM autos and even got a couple of the cards I sent him signed. 

Zistle Trade #56: paulb

Next up is a Zistle trade with new trade partner Paul.  Paul reached out with a trade request mostly for some Yankees needs.  A small tweak later and we had an agreement.

Paul sent an nice eclectic mix of Mets.  Here are the highlights.

The 2000 Topps Gold Label is definitely the slickest looking card of the bunch.  My favorite card though is probably the 2005 Fleer Tradition Update Mike Piazza (Tale of the Tape).  It is not the best looking design, but I like the color contrast and the turning down of the background color.

Paul, thanks for a nice and easy trade!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Blogger Trade: Bo

Our next trade is a Blogger trade.  This time with Bo over at Baseball Cards Come to Life.  Bo made a post about obtaining about 40,000 cards from Craigslist. 

Bo sent out a lot of cards to various traders.  I ended up receiving a small USPS Priority box bull of Mets.  The majority of cards were early 1990's releases, but there we still plenty that I still needed for those sets.

Even while getting 40,000 cards, I was still able to send Bo the same sized box back in return.

Some interesting cards in the cards shown above.  First, there is Jeff Kent is letting former Met Mark Carreon smell his armpit.  Second, there is Ryan Thompson suffering from some abdominal discomfort.  Not sure why Pinnacle would chose this for his ball card.  Finally, there is power hitting Carl Everett about to murder bunt a baseball.  Very intense.

I really like receiving Lance Johnson Mets cards.  He only played for the Mets for a season and a half, but he was pretty great for the Mets.  His career year was with the Mets in 1996.  That year he was an All-Star starter and led the National League in hits, singles, and triples.  He had a WAR of 7.2 that year, too (if you are into sabermetrics).

I wish Topps would get him on some Archives releases.  I do not believe there are any auto or relic cards of him out there, Mets or not.  Anyone know an address to send a card to him for a TTM auto?

Zistle Trade #55: Gerry

Not too long after our first trade was completed, Gerry reached out with a second trade request.  Our first trade went down with out a problem, so of course I was down for another.

We have another appearance of a mustached Bartolo Colon during his first stint with the Mets.  This time showing him before he was about to go out a bash a few home runs during Spring Training batting practice.  I also received a nice card of Dave Magadan playing with the Florida Marlins.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Zistle Trade #54: scottbdoug

Here is another trade with user scottbdoug.  Scott has not been on Zistle very long, but he has settled right into the community.  He is one of the more (maybe even the most) active member on the forum and often times posts useful information for traders.  Also, it looks like he has a blog going on over at Cardboard Collecting.

This time he reached out with a request with some Fleer set needs.  Here are the Mets (along with some post-Mets Gary Carter) I received.

I am not sure if it is mandatory or just customary for Canadians to offer O-Pee-Chee cards, but I seem to get them mostly from Canadian traders.  I am sure those cards are just more plentiful up north, but I wonder if anyone feels like they have to throw them into an offer just because, you know?  I am not complaining though, as I can just ask for them to be taken off the trade.  Just wondering.  I will stop now.

Blogger Trade: Hoyle

I believe many of you have traded with Mark before and know how he is a generous trader.  I do not believe he has a blog of his own, but simply reads and comments on blogs.  I saw somewhere that he collects all the Boston teams and I had a stack of Patriots and Celtics cards looking for a good home.  A couple emails back and forth and we were set.

I believe one of things Mark is known for is sending out some vintage goodness.  This package was not short on that at all.

Even with all of those 1972 Topps cards Mark sent my way, I still need about twice as many to complete a Mets team set.  Without looking into it, that year has to be the most Mets base cards found from Topps flagships release.

You can see a contrast here in the photography styles used on vintage cards compared to modern cards.  It seems like most vintage cards used posed shots the majority of the time while modern cards are mostly action shots.  Of the four modern cards shown above, three would be considered action shots.  Of all of the vintage cards, there are only two with action shots.  There is probably a perfectly good reason for this, of course.  Less advanced technology, maybe less on-field access at games, or maybe nobody back then really thought actions were all that interesting.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Zistle Trade #53: Gerry

Next up is a Zistle trade with new trade partner Gerry.  I think Gerry reached out to me in the past with other requests, but I was either taking a quick hiatus or was dealing with a number of other trades at the time.  It was really just bad timing.  This time though, we got something worked out.

I received a few 1996 Topps Bazooka cards from Gerry.  Bazooka cards were around all throughout the 1960's before disappearing in the early 1970's.  They had brief comebacks in the late 1980's, 1995/1996, and early 2000's.  They have now be relegated to being a subset, most recently as part of the Topps Heritage releases. 

Zistle Trade #52: BucCollector

Next up is another Zistle trade with user BucCollector.  David reached out prior to last season's playoffs with a trade request for some Pirates with some Mets coming my way.

He had high hopes for his Pirates making it to the NLCS to face my Mets.  It was definitely the match-up I wanted to see, but it just was not meant to be for the Pirates.

Blogger Trade: Gavin at Baseball Card Breakdown

Next up is a trade with Gavin over at Baseball Card Breakdown.  I hope every one reading this is already following his blog, and if you are not the please do so.

Gavin posted some trade bait cards awhile back and I saw something I liked.  Apparently, there was another time even a little further back where he did this and I responded about being interested in something.  I did not remember the first time, but Gavin did and still had that card on hand.  Kudos to you, sir.

We were able to work out a larger trade as I had some cards for his set needs and his various player collections.

I was probably most intrigued by the Ron Swoboda card below.  It is from the 2004 Topps Retired Signature set.  I believe that this set was a high-end version of Topps Archives.  While Topps Archives uses old card designs for current and retired players, Topps Retired used that year's design for retired players.  I would not mind if Topps continued with this type of release.  Maybe leave retired players out of the Topps Archives release and put out a set just of retired players using the current Topps design? 

All said and done, this was a great trade and very much appreciated!  Thanks Gavin!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Zistle Trade #51: Bumfan

Here we are with a second Zistle trade with Adam.  I reached out to this Northwestener to see if he wanted my Seahawks and Sonics cards, along with some other football cards.  I had a decent stack to send, but since we already traded there was not much he had in terms of matches.  Of course, he was doing me a solid by taking those basketball and football cards off my hands, so I had no problem with the number of cards involved.  

I received some nice Mets cards along with some great options for my potential former/former future Mets players collection.  I should probably come up with a better name for the collection.

Zistle Trade #50: danculbertson

This Zistle trade was with user danculbertson.  Dan was looking for a few Topps needs and sent some back in return.

The combo Tulowitzki/Reyes card is quite interesting now that they have been traded for one another.  I wonder how many cards feature multiple players that were later traded for each other?  There has to be some collector out there that has that collection going, right?

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Blogger Trade: The Card Papoy

For most of 2014 and part of 2015, I was on a quest to find good homes for all of my non-baseball cards.  I looked around for bloggers and collectors who would take them off my hands.  I found quite a few of great traders in the process.  One such trader was Kevin over in France.

A lot of you might be familiar with Kevin over at his blog, The Card Papoy.  Check out his blog if you have not already.  Kevin collects New York Knicks, so I reached out to him to see if there was any interest.  He was nice enough to take any Knicks cards I had, so I sent them his way.

When I reach out to people like this, I never request much in return.  Kevin sent back a nice trade package from France.  Some of the highlights are below. 

Thanks for the trade, Kevin!

Blogger Trade: Brandon

I have been trying to catch up on my Zistle trade posts that I have neglected the trades I have completed off of Zistle.  With that, let us get a few of those in over the weekend.
Brandon is a fellow card collector who reached out via email.  He's done a some trading with a bunch of other, more caught up, Bloggers.  He looked over my Zistle trade and want lists and put together a nice trade package.

Here is what I received from Brandon.  Not a bad mix of parallels, relics, and an auto card.

I think this trade was completed just about a year ago.  Brandon, sorry for the slow turnaround!  Thanks for the trade (and your patience)! 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Zistle Trade #49: mj262

This Zistle trade was with user mj262.  Apparently, Matt lives not too far away from me.  I saw his post on the Zistle forums about wanting to get rid of some recent Donruss product.  I thought he would be a good target for a trade proposal, but he beat me to the punch.  He sent along a trade request looking to unload his cards.

I know in the past I have said that I am not a fan of the Donruss/Panini brand.  The lack of logos will probably always look strange to me.  Their cards do not vary pictures much as players are shown in similar poses to hide any logos (or for there to be less airbrushing).  I guess they do the best they can without an MLB license.

 Matt was kind enough to throw this Jon Niese relic card, too!