Saturday, March 1, 2014

Support Your LCS - Baseball and Hockey Grab Bag Edition!

I've been out of some hobby essentials (like toploaders) for a week or two, and yesterday afternoon I finally found some time to swing by the only remaining reputable (in my opinion) hobby shop in my area.  Since I was picking up supplies I took a look around of course, like any good collector would.  There were packs of all the latest product, some cool vintage, but none of that came home with me.  Here's what did:

Yup, I could not resist the allure of the grab bag.  I always used to go for these when I collected as a kid just because it's a cheap way to add a good chunk of cards to your collection.  The shop owner hand packs about 70-80 cards of a given sport into a paper lunch bag, folds and tapes it shut, and voila.  Sort of  like a poor man's repack, except I think these are infinitely better than the 100-cards-for-$5 repacks I've bought a few times at retail outlets.

I'm not one of those collectors who has every junk wax card ten times over, really all that I have has come from trades and busting repacks and grab bags like these.  I think that allows me to enjoy these more since I don't end up with 50 dupes or anything crazy like that.  Any doubles I do end up with only bolster my trade profile on Zistle, so it's really a win/win.  Here's a look at some of the cards I got from this one...

Love him or hate him, Guillen was certainly an interesting personality and this isn't a bad looking card as '88 Donruss goes.

Here's a 2007 Bowman Chrome Carl Crawford.  These two cards were right next to each other in the pack, which is a good example of just how broad a range these cover.

Here's my very first 1999 Bowman card, of a really good player too, Mr. Tim Salmon.

I love the Conlon set, I've completed the entire first series and really should go after the rest of the run.  If you're a fan of pre-war baseball history or cards you really can't go wrong with these.  Of all the baseball cards in this post, this was the lone double, and I don't think I'll have too difficult time finding a home for Charlie Root.

Never heard of this set, will probably end up trading this one away at some point.

Now this card I really like.  The simplistic design and full-bleed photography of 2003 Donruss is right up my alley.  Colon has had a really long, decent career, and the fact that this card depicts him in one of just 17 career games with the Montreal Expos makes it a keeper for me.

Here's a second '03 Donruss, what a great photo.  If I ever get caught up and bored (ha!) and need another set to collect, this one might be it.

I don't know too many baseball fans who don't like Vizquel, and after such a long career he's already back in a coaching capacity.  That's a man who just loves the game right there.


Hideki Matsui and Eric Hinske were the other two 2004 Leaf cards in the package.  This was another set I hadn't seen before as 2004 fell during a stretch when I didn't collect for many years.

I got a kick out of this terrific '80s Diamond King, where Harold Baines shows off the bizarre uniforms the Sox sported at the time.

Here's another set I'd never heard of, 2004 Upper Deck Diamond Collection Pro Sigs.  A little too busy for my liking, but still an interesting early-career card of a guy with some big wins for my favorite team.


A 1998 Topps Chrome Manny wasn't a bad card to pull, I'd have plucked this from a quarter box any day.

I even got a new Red Sox card in the form of this 1985 Topps Al Nipper.

This was another nice card given where it came from, Johan Santana's 2006 Bowman Heritage.  These are based loosely on the 1949 Bowman design, a set which I'm a big fan of.  This card is also a short print!

Here's a 2007 Topps insert of Johan based on the DeLong cards from the 1930s.  There were two or three of these inserts included.

Never had any 1997 Bowman Chrome cards before opening this...

...now I have two.

SP Authentic is too rich for my blood in pack form, and I'm not a hit chaser, so getting a couple of singles this way works.


I chose to scan this Phil Hughes from 2009 Topps Updates & Highlights just because I like the photo.

Here's an interesting card of a two-sport star from an obscure set, 1991 Score 100 Rising Stars.

This Bowman Chrome Matt Holliday will go into my trade box, but it's nice to see cards as recent as 2012 in here.


Look how skinny Braun's arms look in this one...


Not a huge fan of these Fleer Tradition cards.  I see what they were trying to go for, I just don't think it worked.

Same goes for the League Leader subset.

Cool painting on this Erstad Diamond Kings card.

In closing a couple of minor stars in 1989 Fleer format...

Not bad at all, and the best part?  These cost $1.  And there were about 30-35 more cards that I didn't even scan (although these were my favorites).  I'm not sure I'll ever be able to buy retail wax again.  I'm glad I had the sense to grab a hockey one as well:


First card in the stack was this great celebration shot of Dave Bolland.  I'd seen this one before a couple years back on other blogs but forgotten about it.  Certainly a keeper.

I had no idea that in the late '90s Bowman released a CHL set.  I got three cards from it...

...the best of which by far was this Brenden Morrow.

Never made the NHL, even for a game.

Included in this grab bag were 10 cards from the 2013-14 Score set.  Current year hockey cards for less than two cents each?  Yes please!  I got my very first look at this set when Douglas from Sports Cards from the Dollar Store sent me the Shawn Thornton in a PWE, and I have to say I'm a huge fan.  I don't need another 600+ card set to chase right now, given that I just finished one, but I'll certainly accumulate these on the cheap.

Here's another one.  There seem to be a lot of celebration shots in this set, but I'm not complaining.  Seeing this card makes me really angry that Upper Deck just got an exclusive deal with the NHL to produce trading cards.  Ugh.

I got three goaltenders from 1993-94 Ultra, none of which are spectacular...


...but all of which are new to me.

One of my favorites has to be this SP Authentic card of Bruins pest (and goal scorer) Brad Marchand.  Again, I don't buy any mid-level cards like this (or any wax at all most of the time) so it's nice to get a sampling of cards from this set.

This one's even better than the Marchand.  Definitely would have picked this up from a quarter or even fifty cent box.

Unfortunately they came with a Canadien, but I guess that's a small price to pay.

Believe it or not, this Palffy was actually on my Zistle want list.  I probably had 10 copies of this card as a kid, but I really beat on my cards and precious few have survived in my collection to this day.  I always loved the Canada Cup subset from '91-92 Upper Deck.  I also got a Brett Hull Team USA card from this same subset which went into my trade box.

My first three cards from 2012-13 ITG Heroes & Prospects.  I don't really follow minor league hockey at all, so I've never heard of any of these guys.



I'm sort of out of the loop on recent sets, so I assumed this card, #251, was the first card of 2012-13 Upper Deck Series II.  Apparently there was only one series of UD flagship last year though, and this card was an "Upper Deck Update" insert from SP Authentic.  Nice to see the Winnipeg Jets again either way.

This card screams mid-'90s for sure.

One of my favorite players back in the day, I would have been psyched to land this card when it was released.

I got six cards from the 2012-13 O-Pee-Chee set, including long time Devil Patrik Elias...

...and former Bruin Mark Stuart.

Also got a Marquee Legends short print of Bryan Trottier.  A short print in each grab bag, not too shabby.

Here's one of the retro parallels as well, a decent little representation of 2012-13 O-Pee-Chee right there.

Here's another new-to-me from 1992-93 Score.

Love the Hollywood mask on this 1995-96 Summit Kelly Hrudey.

In closing, a rookie card of a guy who I think does a great job on NHL Tonight, Jamie McLennan.  Like the baseball grab bag, there were a good 30-40 hockey cards I didn't show here (including your obligatory '90-91 Pro Set).

It was a ton of fun to go through these, and to score around 150 unique cards from all different years for just $2 is an unbeatable value.  I will be ripping and posting more of these for sure!

6 comments:

Mike Gutierrez said...

Great cards. As a Yankees collector, I don't think I've ever seen that Dion Sanders card. I also dig the Islander cards.

Great grab bags.

Nick said...

I'd be all over those for a buck!

Fuji said...

Kudos to your LCS for putting some decent value into these. I busted some grab bags I picked up at the flea market a few weeks ago and had a lot of fun going through them, except mine didn't have any new cards.

Oh... one more thing. This post just proves how awesome and diverse the hobby and the collectors are. I too found a few of those 2001 Fleer Tradition cards in my grab bag. But I absolutely loved them. In fact, I loved them so much... I went out and picked up a set off of eBay.

shoeboxlegends said...

Thanks guys! Fuji you are so right, different strokes for different folks!

Mark Kaz said...

Wow, that's a solid purchase! I totally agree about 2003 Donruss baseball; very nice looking set. That Bartolo Colon card is pretty cool b/c, like you stated, he was only there for a blink.

Mark Kaz said...

By the way, I have a small stack of Sox cards that aren't on your Zistle site (that is, if I'm using it correctly!). Shoot me an email, and I'll gladly send them your way. (Sorry for leaving a comment, but I couldn't find your email or contact info on here!)

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