Friday, December 6, 2013

Out with the New, In with the Old - Buy Me Some Peanuts and Cracker Jack!

Under the title "Out with the New, In with the Old", I've posted a few times about selling off some modern cards that don't really fit my collection and using the proceeds for some vintage greatness.  Well a couple of months ago I decided to make a play at a card that I've been drooling over for quite sometime.  The card cost more than my self-imposed card budget for an entire month, so I decided to test the waters with some eBay sales in a fundraising campaign.  I gave up quite a bit to come up with the required funds, including...

Yes, I parted with my Tyler Seguin Young Guns rookie.  I felt sort of obligated to get a copy of this card given all the hype when Tyler was first drafted, but I have to admit the novelty wore off pretty quickly.  I've thought about ditching it numerous times even when he was still with Boston, so once he went to Dallas I knew it was time to let this one go...

I also figured it was a good time to let my Bobby Ryan Young Guns rookie go, while the excitement of his migration to Ottawa was still in the air.  Apparently my instincts were correct, as this card surprisingly netted me north of $20.

Not all of my auctions did so well.  These two batches of 1970 Topps, in pretty good shape...

...brought home just 99 cents each.  A set builder somewhere out there got a good deal with these.

I finally purged out a few scrub autos that came in a lot with some Hartford Whalers autos a long time ago.  I've been staring at them for what seems like forever so it felt good mailing these out, especially with a profit made.

I was a bit reluctant to let this Feller autograph go, but I've got a few of Bob's autographed cards, including some I like better than this one.

Ditto.  Once I obtained an on-card Goudey auto of Rollie Fingers this one became expendable.

To my surprise, someone actually paid $1 plus a couple bucks shipping for this basic Matt Kemp RC.  I had listed it figuring someone would grab it for a buck for the combined shipping if they were already purchasing something else, but it didn't play out that way.

I also purged out a large stack of no-name Young Guns rookies from various years...

...and some Topps Heritage yellow name/yellow team name short prints...

...a lot of Turkey Red #'d refractors...

Here are some more of the common Young Guns rookies...

My pursuit of 2012-13 Panini Classics Signatures autographs left me with an extra Sean Burke, so off to eBay it went.

I had an entire spare Red Sox team set from the dreaded Topps Heritage High Numbers set.  I was surprised to get close to $10 for this.

I also sold a large lot of insert and parallel and star cards, all New York Yankees, I think close to 100 in all.

Well, that was certainly a large haul of cards to part with for just a single card in return.  It was a good feeling mailing out a huge stack of unwanted cardboard though.  Besides, I think the trade-off was well worth it.

So, what was the one card I wanted to have so badly?

It's a really old one, in fact it's now my oldest baseball card.

I have always wanted just one card from this set.  Any card would have been fine, but making this one even greater is the fact that it's a Red Sox card.  You've waited long enough if you've read to this point, behold!

Holy freakin' crap!  I have had this card for around three weeks now, maybe slightly more, and I still can't believe I actually own it.  This is by far the greatest vintage baseball card I own.  The fact that Cracker Jack is so intimately tied to the game of baseball makes this set really unique, and the design is just plain classic.

There are a few Red Sox players on the checklist, but what sold me on this particular card is the awesome, prominent, old-school Sox uniform.  A good deal of the cards from this set feature closely cropped portraits of the players' shoulders and head, sometimes wearing a cap, sometimes not.  Most of the uniforms and hats of the era were very subtle if not completely devoid of logos, so even the cards where you can see more of the player can be relatively bland.  The end result is that for most of the cards in the set, if you covered up the team name on the bottom it would be a challenge to say the least to identify.  Not Heinie Wagner though, the blazing red "Red Sox" on his uniform can't be missed, and matches the background color of this set perfectly.

Here's a better look at the front in larger scale.  I'll save you a complete and thorough summary of Wagner's life and career, but if you're interested in that sort of thing I highly recommend this write-up over at SABR, which is maybe a 10-15 minute read.  Here are just a few reasons why this card rules.  Charles, aka Heinie:
  • Was born in the 1800s.
  • Had a reputation for fighting early in his career and was once arrested for punching an umpire in the face.
  • Was team captain for the very first game ever played in Fenway Park in 1912.  Had a hit and a stolen base.
  • Was a key player when the team won the World Series that very same 1912 season.  In game 8!  In extra innings.  Against Christy Mathewson.
  • Was Babe Ruth's "adult babysitter" during his early career.
  • Was a member of four World Series champion Red Sox teams.
Here's a look at the back.  Yup, they're upside down.

That's better.  You can click the scan for a larger version if the print's too small to make out.  I love that the bottom is labeled Rueckheim Bros. & Eckstein, which was the name of the company at the time (later changed to The Cracker Jack Company in 1922).

Well, I certainly need to do this again.  Time to start rounding up some more cards to sell...


Greg Zakwin said...

Congrats on the sweet addition!

Pro Set Cards said...

What a sweet "Heinie" you have there! You gave up lots of cardboard to get it, but I would say you are ahead big time there!

Captain Canuck said...

very cool.

so there's a Heinie Wagner, and a Honus Wagner.

also very cool

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