Stadium Fantasium

…Where Life's a Pitch

Mailday: Yet Another Transaction at Trading Cards DB

Thanks to a Twitter account that I created to promote Stadium Fantasium (@bbcardz–follow me!), I got in touch with a fellow member of Trading Cards Database and made a deal to acquire a nice lot of 2018 Topps Heritage base short prints. As it turns out, this fellow TCDB member is also a fellow hobby blogger. He is J. Meeks of My Cardboard Habit and here are the cards he sent:

Some 2018 Topps Heritage Base Short Print Cards
2018toppsheritage484500

The 14 short print cards pictured above are cards I need to help complete the set. However, five other short prints were included in the deal that are duplicates. They are:

  • 415 Matt Wieters (Washington Nationals)
  • 423 Kyle Hendricks (Chicago Cubs)
  • 429 Mike Leake (Seattle Mariners)
  • 442 Josh Reddick (Houston Astros)
  • 497 David Freese (Pittsburgh Pirates)

These five duplicate cards are now listed in the 2018 Topps Heritage section of the Stadium Fantasium Trading Block (along with other available 2018 Heritage duplicates). Gotta give a huge thanks to J. Meeks (Twitter handle @cardboardhabit) for these great cards. Of the Heritage base short print cards, I now need only 60 along with 17 regular base cards. If things go right this year, I hope to complete this set by year-end or at least before 2019 Topps Heritage is released. Stay tuned…

Mailday: Unexpected Goodness from Crackin’ Wax

There are quite a few good people on the Internet who host case breaks but the one who really takes it to the next level is Christopher (and his lovely wife LQ) at Crackin’ Wax. What sets these great case breakers apart is that some of the case break proceeds go to charity (over $11,000 to date) and they also manage to host free box breaks for those who have bought spots in the previous month’s case breaks (see how it works).

So after buying spots in CW’s 2018 Topps Series 1 case break and in the 2018 Topps Heritage case break (my blog post here), I had two entries in CW’s March Free Box Break. Six winning entries would be randomly awarded a divisional spot. Winners and the product would be revealed the day of the box break on YouTube. As luck would have it, one of my entries was chosen and I was assigned the American League Central Division. And the product was a box on 2017 Topps High Tek Baseball. Each box contains 40 cards and includes two on-card autographs in addition to variations and parallels. Here are the cards I was lucky enough to receive:

2017toppshightekx3
2017toppshightekx2

Being a low-budget set collector, I had not paid any attention to this high-end product. Now that I have these in hand, I can see that they are not your traditional baseball cards. Featuring current and retired stars, these cards are actually see-through plastic (acetate) and are much more attractive than the scans indicate. I was also lucky enough to get one of the two on-card autos in the box–woohoo! And in case you hadn’t noticed, one of the cards shown above is former Angels outfielder Jim Edmonds. It looks like I was sent this card by mistake since the Angels don’t play in the Central division of the American League. I’ll be getting in touch with Christopher to see what to do about that.

In any case, I gotta give a big thanks and a tip of the Stadium Fantasium cap to Crackin’ Wax for these unexpected goodies. If you haven’t already, head over to Crackin’ Wax and take part in one of his case breaks. You’ll be helping out a charity organization and acquire cards for your collection at the same time. You could also get free bonus cards via a free box break.

To my genuine surprise, there always seems to be a pretty good abundance of good things happening here at Stadium Fantasium. Stay tuned…

My $50 Fantasy Baseball Team: Stadium Fantasium

Wednesday (March 27) was the last of my three drafts for the 2018 fantasy baseball season. This league is a Yahoo 12-team head-to-head public money league. My team in this league is Stadium Fantasium. The entry fee for this league was $50 and the top three teams will win $300, $180 or $70. In this draft, I had the sixth pick.

Stadium Fantasium Draft
1. (6) Mookie Betts (Bos – OF)
2. (19) Anthony Rizzo (ChC – 1B,2B)
3. (30) Cody Bellinger (LAD – 1B,OF)
4. (43) Kenley Jansen (LAD – RP)
5. (54) Buster Posey (SF – C,1B)
6. (67) Edwin Encarnacion (Cle – 1B)
7. (78) Elvis Andrus (Tex – SS)
8. (91) Miguel Sanó (Min – 1B,3B)
9. (102) DJ LeMahieu (Col – 2B)
10. (115) Joey Gallo (Tex – 1B,3B,OF)
11. (126) Rich Hill (LAD – SP)

12. (139) Trevor Bauer (Cle – SP)
13. (150) Ian Desmond (Col – 1B,OF)
14. (163) Eduardo Núñez (Bos – 2B,3B,SS,OF)
15. (174) Jake Lamb (Ari – 3B)
16. (187) Evan Gattis (Hou – C)
17. (198) Dylan Bundy (Bal – SP)
18. (211) Kevin Gausman (Bal – SP)
19. (222) Jake Faria (TB – SP)
20. (235) Félix Hernández (Sea – SP)
21. (246) Hyun-Jin Ryu (LAD – SP)
22. (259) Michael Wacha (StL – SP)
23. (270) Brad Ziegler (Mia – RP)

This league has the usual five pitching categories (Wins, Saves Strikeouts, ERA and WHIP). We also have the usual five hitting categories (Runs, Home Runs, RBIs, Stolen Bases and Batting Average).

I hope I did alright in this draft. I may have drafted a reliever (Kenley Jansen) too early (fourth round) but he was the best player available at the time. It also looks like my starting pitchers may be weak compared to other teams because I didn’t start drafting SPs until the 11th round. Perhaps I can trade one or two of my seven(!) players who can play 1B for another SP. Like every other fantasy team manager, I have a lot of optimism and high hopes for my team. Stay tuned…

My Trading Card DB Fantasy Baseball Team: BBCARDZ

On Monday (March 26) I drafted players for my team (BBCARDZ) in the Trading Card Database‘s “TCDB2_Roto” rotisserie baseball league. It’s a 10-team league made up of TCDB members. I expect this league to be very challenging seeing as I have not participated in a rotisserie league for maybe 10 years or more. This is not a money league so there are no cash prizes. Hopefully the players I drafted below will have good seasons and I can finish among the top teams.

BBCARDZ Draft
1. (6) Mookie Betts (Bos – OF)
2. (15) Giancarlo Stanton (NYY – OF)
3. (26) Cody Bellinger (LAD – 1B,OF)
4. (35) Josh Donaldson (Tor – 3B)
5. (46) Dee Gordon (Sea – 2B)
6. (55) Edwin Encarnacion (Cle – 1B)
7. (66) Chris Archer (TB – SP)
8. (75) Dallas Keuchel (Hou – SP)
9. (86) Roberto Osuna (Tor – RP)
10. (95) Trevor Story (Col – SS)
11. (106) Edwin Díaz (Sea – RP)

12. (115) Rich Hill (LAD – SP)
13. (126) Matt Carpenter (StL – 1B,2B,3B)
14. (135) Rougned Odor (Tex – 2B)
15. (146) Justin Smoak (Tor – 1B)
16. (155) Ender Inciarte (Atl – OF)
17. (166) Ian Desmond (Col – 1B,OF)
18. (175) Danny Duffy (KC – SP)
19. (186) Trey Mancini (Bal – 1B,OF)
20. (195) Taijuan Walker (Ari – SP)
21. (206) Jake Faria (TB – SP)
22. (215) Mike Clevinger (Cle – SP,RP)
23. (226) Austin Barnes (LAD – C,2B)

This league has the usual five pitching categories (Wins, Saves Strikeouts, ERA and WHIP) and the usual five hitting categories (Runs, Home Runs, RBIs, Stolen Bases and Batting Average).

For this draft I had the sixth pick and did not have to draft while at work. Again I think I did ok. I did draft a couple of closers this time but did not draft a catcher until the last round. Catcher is such a thin position so I might not take a big hit at that position. My hitter-heavy roster should make up for any catcher shortcomings. Like every other baseball fan, I can’t wait for Opening Day. Stay tuned…

My $100 Fantasy Baseball Team: Diamond Kings

Sunday (March 25) was my first of three drafts of the 2018 fantasy baseball season. This year I am in four Yahoo fantasy baseball leagues (one of which each team’s roster is that of an actual MLB team–thus no draft is held). Yesterday’s draft was for a 12-team head-to-head private money league called So Cal All Stars and my team is the Diamond Kings.

This is my third year in this league. In 2016, I finished in 9th place but last year I finished in 4th place, narrowly missing out on the 3rd place cash prize. Hopefully this year I’ll finish in the money. Of course, that will depend a lot on whether I had a good draft and my players have a good season. Here are my draft results:

Diamond Kings Draft
1. (5) Mookie Betts (Bos – OF)
2. (20) Joey Votto (Cin – 1B)
3. (29) Josh Donaldson (Tor – 3B)
4. (44) Carlos Carrasco (Cle – SP)
5. (53) Byron Buxton (Min – OF)
6. (68) Chris Archer (TB – SP)
7. (77) Miguel Sanó (Min – 1B,3B)
8. (92) DJ LeMahieu (Col – 2B)
9. (101) Trevor Story (Col – SS)
10. (116) Whit Merrifield (KC – 2B,OF)

11. (125) Nicholas Castellanos (Det – 3B,OF)
12. (140) Ian Desmond (Col – 1B,OF)
13. (149) Eduardo Núñez (Bos – 2B,3B,SS,OF)
14. (164) Eddie Rosario (Min – OF)
15. (173) Russell Martin (Tor – C,3B)
16. (188) Dylan Bundy (Bal – SP)
17. (197) Kevin Gausman (Bal – SP)
18. (212) Chase Anderson (Mil – SP)
19. (221) Jake Faria (TB – SP)
20. (236) Alex Cobb (Bal – SP)
21. (245) Tanner Roark (Was – SP)

Our league has the usual five pitching categories (Wins, Saves Strikeouts, ERA and WHIP) and a not-so-common category–Losses. We also have the usual five hitting categories (Runs, Home Runs, RBIs, Stolen Bases and Batting Average) along with On-base Percentage.

Having the fifth pick in the draft, I think I did ok, considering I had to use my mobile phone to draft players while I was at work. I’m glad I pre-ranked the players but my draft probably would have been better had I picked up a couple of closers for the Saves category. Hoping to salvage that category, I dropped my 12th and 14th round picks (Ian Desmond 1B-OF and Eddie Rosario OF) and picked up two undrafted closers (who may or may not have a lot of save opportunities). They are Joakim Soria of the Chicago White Sox and Blake Parker of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. I really did not want to drop Desmond and Rosario but I figured they would spend most days in a BN (bench) spot not accumulating much in the way of stats.

Depending on how full my plate is at work, I will try to post weekly recaps/standings of each of the four leagues I’m am in. Of the four leagues I was in last year, my best finish was third place but it was not a money league. Hopefully this year will be better than last. Stay tuned…

Blog Bat Around: What I Collect

Inspired by “Blog Bat Around” blog posts by the brilliant minds at Night Owl Cards, The Collective Mind, The Shlabotnik Report, Cardboard History, $30 a Week Habit, Not Another Baseball Card Blog and others.

 

Being a low-budget set collector, I try to keep my collecting wants pretty simple but like most card collectors, the collection can still get pretty huge. Most of my sets are incomplete but I’m pretty sure most of them are at least 80% complete. As I slowly inventory these cards and others, I’ll post wantlists and trade lists on the “Wantlists” and “Trading Block” portion of the blog. Eventually, all of these cards will make it out of their 800-count boxes and into binders. The cards/items featured below are from my collection. Although most of the card images I use feature the Los Angeles Dodgers, I am not a team collector nor a player collector (ain’t got time for that, unfortunately).

 

BASEBALL

Topps Baseball

Various Topps Dodgers Cards

If I had to guess, Topps flagship baseball comprises maybe about 60% of my total collection. I have incomplete Topps flagship baseball sets from 1969 through the present (except for 1971 of which I have none). Besides flagship, the only other Topps baseball cards I have are some 2002 Topps Total (very low priority) and 2018 Topps Heritage (82% complete–very high priority).

 

Along with the usual base cards, I like to collect the error/variation cards, inserts, parallels, autos, relic, pre-production cards and even wrappers (which will also go into binders). I don’t really expect to obtain every single parallel/insert/relic/auto set (unless I get a huge raise in pay) but it would be cool if I could complete a few and maybe even complete a master set. There is one recent trend in insert cards that I am not excited about and that is buyback cards. I have a handful of them and those will go on on the Stadium Fantasium Trading Block in the near future.

 

Fleer/Donruss/Score/Pacific

1981 introduced new baseball cards by companies other than Topps. I was curious about this fresh new product and bought plenty of Fleer and Donruss baseball cards along with Topps. I have incomplete Fleer (or Fleer Tradition) sets from 1981 through 2006 (except 1994). As for Donruss, I still need to finish the 1981 through 1993 sets and the 2004 set. Score did not have as long a run as Fleer or Donruss but I did manage to collect near-complete Score sets from 1988 to 1993, 1995, 1997 and 1998. The only Pacific product I’ve ever collected was the 1980-83 Cramer Legends and Pacific Legends in 1988 and 1989. I even have some 2000 Skybox Dominion baseball cards (a 300-card set released by Fleer that I may yet complete).

As with Topps, I like to collect error/variation cards, inserts, parallels, autos, relic cards and wrappers from Fleer, Donruss, Score and Cramer/Pacific Legends. I also like the stickers and puzzle pieces included in the packs of these cards.

 

Food Issues and Oddball Sets

I’ve always been attracted to the not-so-easy-to-collect cards from cereal boxes, packages of cookies, other foods and even nearby restaurants. These “food issue” oddball sets were plentiful late last century but are almost nonexistent now. I suspect that for most companies it’s just not economically desirable to include baseball cards with their product. Still whenever I walk into a market, I make it a point to visit the cereal aisle to see if I’ll be pleasantly surprised to find a cereal product with a free baseball card packed inside. Generally I try to avoid the factory sets and store sets such as the ones from KMart, Toys ‘R Us and Kaybee. So here are the food issues and a couple of other oddball sets I’d like to complete some day (listed chronologically):

  1. 1970-82 Kellogg’s
  2. 1983 Donruss Action All Stars
  3. 1987 Ralston Purina
  4. 1987 Topps Nestlé Dream Team
  5. 1988 Nestlé
  6. 1989 Topps Cap’n Crunch
  7. 1990-92 Jumbo Sunflower Seeds
  8. 1990-92 Post
  9. 1991-97 Denny’s Holograms/Grand Slam
  10. 1991-93 Jimmy Dean
  11. 1992 Score Proctor & Gamble (I have several original cello-wrapped packs of this 18-card set)
  12. 1993 Hostess
  13. “National Trading Card Day” cards from various years

FOOTBALL

Topps and Other Football Sets

My football collection consists mainly of 1969-74 and 1976-79 Topps (all near-complete, I think). I also have a complete set of 1970 Kellogg’s football (purchased via mail-in offer in 1970) and a few 1971 Kellogg’s also. Rounding out the football card collection is 1989 and 1990 Pro Set. As I get around to inventorying my football sets, I’ll be putting the dupes in their own football section of the Stadium Fantasium Trading Block, along with a few other random football cards from other sets obtained from NPN (No Purchase Necessary) offers or from other collectors over the years.

 

NON-SPORT

The only two non-sport card sets I think I’d like to complete are the 1992 Lime Rock MAD Magazine (Series 1 & 2) and 1992 Pro Set Dinosaurs. I’m almost embarrassed to admit that MAD Magazine and the 1991-94 ABC-TV show Dinosaurs are two guilty pleasures of mine–gotta love them! Most of us enjoy MAD Magazine for its iconic satire of pop culture. Conceived by the late Jim Henson of Muppet’s fame, Dinosaurs was a rather under-rated sitcom/satire featuring the voice talent of Stuart Pankin (from HBO’s classic “Not Necessarily the News”), Jessica Walter, Sally Struthers, and Kevin Clash (Sesame Street’s Elmo). Other periodic Dinosaurs characters were voiced by Sherman Hemsley, Michael McKean, Christopher Meloni (from “Law and Order SVU), Tim Curry, Michael Dorn, Robert Picardo, Dan Castallaneta (aka the voice of Homer Simpson), Jason Alexander, Julie Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards, Buddy Hackett, Jeffrey Tambor and Tony Shalhoub. Good times!

 

So there you have it. The scope of my collection may be rather limited compared to other collectors but it’s more than enough for me. This is why I’m proud to say that I’m never bored. Along with following the Dodgers, managing my fantasy baseball teams and writing this blog (oh, and maintaining a relationship with the fiancée), I always have something to occupy my non-working quiet time. Will there ever be a light at the end of the tunnel? Stay tuned…

Mailday: Another Trade on Trading Card DB

Thanks to the awesome trading features on the Trading Card Database, another great TCDB member reached out to me to propose a very nice trade. dsorek offered nine of the cards I needed to complete the Topps Series 1 base set. In return I sent a couple of Cubs 1983 inserts also from Series 1. I’ve only been a TCDB member less than a month and I just realized that after both parties deem the transaction as “Completed”, the site added the cards I got to “My Collection”–how cool is that? Thanks dsorek and Trading Card Database for making this happen!

Nine cards from 2018 Topps Series 1

With these nine cards, I am only two cards away from completing the Series 1 base set (not including short prints). As of this post, I now only need #275 George Springer and #347 Kolten Wong, at least until Series 2 arrives. Until then, stay tuned…

Mailday: More Goodness from Nachos Grande

A few days after fellow blogger Nachos Grande hosted a 2018 Topps Heritage three-box break, I checked out the wantlist on his blog and saw that he needed some 2018 Topps Series 1 base cards. I was able to come up with nine cards and we worked out a trade. He sent me some needed 2018 Topps Series 1 inserts and a 2018 Topps Heritage base card.

Huge thanks to Chris of Nachos Grande for a much appreciated trade and for an awesome Nachos Grande blog post about our trade! I’m so looking forward to more terrific future trades with Nachos Grande! Stay tuned…

Case Break Loot: 2018 Topps Heritage from Crackin’ Wax

Gotta give major props to major case breaker Crackin’ Wax (Home of the Charity Case Break) for recently hosting a case break of 2018 Topps Heritage baseball. This particular group break raised money for the Diamond Blackfan Anemia Foundation, Inc. and the YouTube video can be seen on the Crackin Wax YouTube Channel. I wasn’t one of the lucky first ones to choose the Dodgers spot in this break so I went ahead and got the Cubs spot. As it turns out, I didn’t get a relic or autograph card but I’m more than happy with the cards I did get. Here are the highlights:

Many Duplicate Cubs Base Cards for Trade

Overall I have at least five duplicates of every regular Cubs base card available. Email me at bbcardz(at)stadiumfantasium(dot)com.

 

Short Prints and an Action Variation!

 

Heritage Inserts

 

Two Chrome, a Chrome Refractor and Three Purple (Hot Box) Refractors

 

1969 Topps Bazooka Ad Panel Box Topper

Although I’ve had spots in previous Crackin’ Wax group case breaks of Topps flagship baseball, this case break was the first that I got to see live on YouTube. I love that some of the proceeds go to charity. The case break hosts, Topher and his wife (LQ), are very entertaining and keep us viewers amused during these breaks. They are my go-to case breakers. Be sure to check out the Crackin’ Wax website and Crackin Wax YouTube channel. Stay tuned…

Case Break Loot: 2018 Topps Heritage from Nachos Grande

Gotta give a big Stadium Fantasium shoutout to blogger extraordinaire Nachos Grande for hosting a nice three-box group break of 2018 Topps Heritage, which can be seen here on Nachos Grande’s fanofreds YouTube channel. Chris also busted and distributed a few bonus older packs of Topps, Donruss, Fleer Ultra and Upper Deck baseball cards. For this group break, one spot got you a team of your choice plus a random team. I bought two spots and chose the Cubs and Mets (even though I chose 3rd, the Dodgers and Angels spots had already been snapped up–doh!). The random teams I got was the Rangers and Blue Jays. Here are the highlights of what I got:

Regular Heritage Base Cards I Needed

Short Print Base Cards I Needed

Insert Cards

Heritage Action Variation!

 

According to the odds printed on the back of Topps Heritage packs, these Action Variation cards are about 10 times tougher to pull than the short prints.

A Sampling of Bonus Extra Cards

All in all, I’m pretty happy with my share of Nacho Grande‘s group break. These cards get me considerably closer to completing the Heritage set. Even the bonus cards may help me complete some of my sets (whenever I get around to inventorying those sets). If you haven’t already, check out the Nachos Grande blog and YouTube channel. Thanks Chris!

Mailday: First Trade on Trading Cards DB and Vintage Goodness

Trading Card Database Trade

The Trading Card Database (aka TCDB) has been one of my go-to resources for helping me properly identify various cards in my collection. I’ve been using that wonderful site for years and have been so impressed with its growth and usability. So I recently decided to register as a TCDB member and contribute some card images of my cards that weren’t already on the site. I also input my 2018 Topps cards onto their “Collection” feature and created a trade list and wantlist of 2018 Topps cards. In case you didn’t know, what’s also cool about TCDB is that reports are generated of member trade lists and wantlists so that other members can initiate trades. This resulted in a very nice TCDB member named SteelPerogie offering to make a small trade with me. He asked for a couple of ’83 inserts of the Cubs and offered a couple of ’83 inserts that I needed (pictured above). SteelPerogie even included a couple of Topps coupons, which I immediately used to buy more 2018 Topps Heritage cards. Of course I’m especially happy to get the Bellinger card. Now I’m only 77 cards away from completing the 2018 Series 1 (100 cards) portion of the 1983 insert set. I’m not in an urgent rush so I’ll be pretty happy if I can just get to 50% of this insert set before the end of the year. Thanks Steelperogie!

Vintage Goodness

The day I received the ’83 Topps inserts, I also received a 1969 Topps card that I purchased from an eBay seller. The acquisition of this near-mint #375 card of HOFer Harmon Killebrew means I only need five more cards to complete the set, not including the variations and deckle edge inserts. I know NM condition cards of the elusive five will cost an extremely pretty penny but I’m in it for the long haul. The 1969 cards are the first I ever bought as a youngster, so these are pretty special to me. I also input my 1969 Topps cards and deckle edge cards into the Trading Card Database. Perhaps TCDB will also have a hand in helping me complete the ’69s.

Stay tuned…

Box Break: 2018 Topps Heritage, Hobby Box 2 of 2

Two Hobby Boxes of2018 Topps Heritage Baseball

So I busted the second box of 2018 Topps Heritage and it was also quite a decent box but nothing earth-shattering. The main thing for me is that I hope it will get me within 75% of completing the first 400 cards of the set. Here we go with the box highlights:

Some Base Cards

 

Short Prints

 

Inserts

 

Rookie Variation, Black Border Variation and Chrome Refractor Parallel (#’d to 569)

 

The Hit

I would have been a wee bit happier getting a Dodgers game-used card rather than one of the Astros but I recognize that an Altuve GU is still a big hit. After all Altuve is the 2017 AL MVP, a three-time batting champion and five-time All-Star. At this point, none of these are for trade unless there are duplicates (which can be found in the Stadium Trading Block). Oh there’s something I forgot to mention in these Heritage box breaks…

The Box Toppers

As of this post, I still have not opened these two toppers (or is it box loaders?). If I can find some suitable binder pages for the ad panel cards, then I will attempt to collect the 15-panel set. I would much prefer to store the ad panels in a binder page along with the rest of the Heritage set. As for the “original” 1969 card, I will probably trade it away unopened. It turns out that Topps did indeed insert original 1969 cards but then foil-stamped them with a 50th anniversary logo. This effectively alters the card and diminishes the collectibility/desirability of the card in my opinion. As a set collector, I don’t see a foil-stamped 1969 card belonging to any real set. Besides, I’m 99% of the way to actually completing the ’69 set and I’m extremely sure none of the box loader ’69s will be a card I need to complete my set (the cards I need are high $ cards).

So how far will I get in collecting the first 400 cards of the set? Stay tuned…

Box Break: 2018 Topps Heritage, Hobby Box 1 of 2

Two Hobby Boxes of2018 Topps Heritage Baseball

I took the plunge. Yes, for the first time since sometime last century, I made a major purchase of a Topps product that was not flagship baseball. Being a low-budget set collector, I’d always ignored all other Topps products. But 1969 is the first year I collected Topps baseball cards and I just could not resist the idea of making a run at collecting at least the first 400 cards of 2018 Topps Heritage, which features today’s players in the 1969 Topps baseball card design. The last few years I’ve made a lot of progress towards completing the ’69 set and my appreciation for the design has only increased. Now I’m only  5 cards away from completing the set. I’m also about halfway to collecting all of the white letter variations and other variations. My ’69 wantlist can be found in the Stadium Trading Block.

So I bought two hobby boxes of Heritage at my local card shop (Hall of Fame Baseball Cards). The plan here is to share each Heritage box in separate posts and then post a separate review afterwards.

Some Base Cards

A sample of some 2018 Topps Heritage baseball cards

A sampling of 2018 Topps Heritage base cards

 

Short Prints (Base Cards #’d 401-500)

2018 Topps Heritage inserts from box 1

 

Inserts

2018 Topps inserts from box 1

 

Base Variation and Chrome Parallels

2018 Topps Heritage Base Variation and Chrome Parallels

 

The Hit

2018 Topps Heritage Relic Card from Box 1

 

Box 1 of this product was a pretty decent box. The Trout variation and Polanco jersey card are especially nice cards. There’s more to follow so stay tuned…

 

Group Case Break Loot: 2018 Topps Baseball Series 1

2018, Major League Materials back of #MLB-KB Kris Bryant

Have you ever participated in a group/case break? In case you didn’t know, it’s where a trusted host or case breaker purchases a case (or cases) of a card product and sells a team spot/slot to card collectors. Each spot gets you all of the base/inserts/hits of that particular team. Some case breakers let you pick your team (PYT) while others randomly assign a team. This year I went a little crazy and bought four spots in three different 2018 Topps Series 1 case breaks. Shortly after Series 1 was released, my local card shop, Hall of Fame Baseball Cards, ran a random team break of a case of Series 1 hobby boxes and a random team break of Series 1 jumbo boxes. I also bought a spot in a PYT case break of Series 1 hobby boxes held by Crackin’ Wax. Each case breaker also included cards from the Topps Silver Pack promotion. Here are the teams I ended up with:

HOFBC Hobby Box Break: Cleveland Indians, Toronto Blue Jays

HOFBC Jumbo Box Break: Baltimore Orioles

CW: Chicago Cubs (I would have picked the Dodgers but they were already chosen by someone else)

Of course when you participate in these case breaks, you end up with quite a few base card duplicates. Here are the notable cards.

Parallel Cards

Inserts

The Lone Hit

So out of these four case break spots, I got only one hit but its a pretty good one…

Whatever duplicate I got in my jumbo box will be listed in (hopefully soon) in the site’s Trading Block. My ultimate goal is to see how far I can get in building a 2018 Topps master set.

WordPress Notes

As a baseball card/computer geek, I love this pursuit of building a decent baseball card blog. To that end, I am experimenting with displaying card images in galleries such as those above. If you haven’t already, hover your mouse over any card image above. Then click it. To get back to this post, I suggest clicking the ‘Back’ arrow next to your browser’s address bar.

Because of the sheer number of images I wanted to post, it took a lot more time than I wanted to add a second post to the blog. But I do like the result of posting the card images in galleries. The WordPress plug-in used above is called FooGallery. I’m not 100% sure I will continue to use a gallery plug-in to display images in posts. It’s definitely different from the way most hobby bloggers post their images. But I’m wondering if it’s overkill and worth the trouble. However, I am definitely leaning towards using this gallery plug-in to display cards in the Trading Block. This would allow those checking out my trade lists to see a large image of a card they are interested in obtaining. I think this feature would especially be useful to show the condition of vintage cards I want to trade. fwiw, my duplicate vintage cards go back only to around 1966 and I don’t have a whole bunch of ’60’s vintage..

Dodger Notes

Spring training games have begun and I’m happy about that. But it is still disturbing to me that there are plenty of really good free agent players still not signed to a Major League roster. I won’t be surprised if this situation results in some kind of litigation. Anyways its nice to hear my Dodgers back in action on the radio (can’t see ’em on TV since the Dodger network isn’t available on my cable provider in SoCal).

Things to Do List

  • Inventory my sets
  • Create and maintain wantlists
  • Create and continually update trade lists for the Trading Block
  • Add new features to Stadium Fantasium such as some kind of card wish list
  • Increase participation in the card collecting community (tweeting, posting my Stadium Fantasium Facebook page, reading and commenting on other blogs, etc.)
  • Discover other hobby blogs and add them to the ‘Blogs To Root For’ list in the right sidebar.
  • Join some fantasy baseball leagues
  • Keep a list of ideas for new blog content

Stay tuned…

Box Break: 2018 Topps Series 1 Jumbo w/ 2 Silver Packs

Ok, here we go…

Hi there and welcome to Stadium Fantasium! Here from time to time I will be sharing my passion for MLB Baseball (mostly the Los Angeles Dodgers), baseball cards (mostly Topps), fantasy sports (mostly baseball) and the local (Southern California) sports teams (again, mostly the Dodgers). On today’s menu is my jumbo box break of 2018 Topps Series 1 baseball cards along with two Topps Silver Packs that I got when I purchased my jumbo box from Hall of Fame Baseball Cards in Arcadia, CA. Yeah, I know this post is kind of late to the Topps box breaking party but who has never been late to a party? So, let’s keep the party going and show off some of the cards I got…

Some Base Cards (and a Short Print!)…

So the first 2018 Topps cards I pulled was the Pirates’ John Jaso. I do like the design of the base cards although the waterslide element does remind me of the artwork from one of Topps other card products, Wacky Packages. And just in case you didn’t know, the bottom right card is the short print version of Adrian Beltre card #254.

Some Parallel Cards (Topps Gold)

I also pulled a number of rainbow foil inserts but won’t show them here since the foil effect doesn’t scan well. Suffice to say that my most notable rainbow foil card is a Manny Machado #25.

Some Insert Cards (Some #’d Even)

Of the tougher inserts to pull, I ended up with a Superstar Sensations Blue Jose Bautista SSS-7, 1983 Topps Black Victor Robles 83-85 #’d to 299 and a MLB Awards Black Austin Hays #’d to 299.

 The Hits!

The Posey Major League Materials card that I pulled features a piece of bat. I saw the same card pulled on a video box break but that one featured a white jersey swatch. The Aaron Nola MLB Spring Training Logo Patch is the blue version and serial #’d 63/99. I’d have to say these are some pretty decent hits out of my jumbo box.

Silver Packs (Would You Believe I Actually Pulled an Auto?)

The Victor Robles auto is #’d 29/99.

What next?

Overall, I’m pretty happy and satisfied with this box and the silver pack cards. I’ve glanced at a few other online box breaks and some of those were a bit meh. None of the inserts/hits are for trade/sale. I’m not much of a trader and I have never sold any of my cards (but I will post a tradelist of dupes I’d like to trade). I still need to inventory the base cards on an Excel spreadsheet to see how close I am to completing the set and then create a wantlist along with a few other things to grow the blog. The long-term project is to gradually inventory the rest of the sets I’ve collected over the years (including some vintage baseball and vintage football) and post wantlists for those sets.

And of course I’ve got to figure out what fantasy baseball leagues I want to join (or maybe even create a league). I’m considering trying a variety of head-to-head money leagues (categories overall win, categories multiple wins and points). Normally I try to do my fantasy baseball drafting during the last week or so before the MLB season starts.

Stay tuned…

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About Me

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Long time set collector with a particular passion for Topps flagship baseball cards along with some cards from other sets/sports (almost no Upper Deck, Panini, high-end or hockey to see here).

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