Sunday, April 12, 2015

Now THAT was a Card Show - Part 1 - Dime Box & Red Sox

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to make it to the first truly large card show I've been able to attend since getting back into the hobby in 2007.  It was a weekend affair, held at the Shriner's Auditorium in Wilmington, MA.  Just over an hour's ride from my house, and the commute plus my weekend schedule allowed me three hours of browsing right when the show opened yesterday morning.  It's a little hard to tell from the photo, but this was a very large show, I would say easily 200+ dealers set up.  There were a ton of autograph guests, and all of the major authenticators/graders were set up on site as well.  I didn't bother with any of that though, with just three hours to use up I was roaming the floor the entire time.

I got there a few minutes before doors opened and there was a line down the street.  Despite the crowds the show was large enough that you very rarely felt crowded at any vendor's table, which is great as I'm not a big crowd person.  If you are a baseball collector, especially a vintage baseball collector, you would be amazed at the sheer quantity and selection on display.

I first took a sweep to see if I could locate any dime boxes.  These always seem to be the most crowded places at the few shows I've been to, so I figured I'd hit them up before the crowds got really bad.  There were quite a few tables with them, and I settled on one that I liked best after a quick scan and began digging.  Picked up this Matsuzaka Wal-Mart parallel for my next package to Mark Hoyle (who I met at the show! - more on that next post).

There were a few of these 2013 Topps Series 1 Wal-Mart parallels, and knowing that Mark from This Way to the Clubhouse is chasing the set I decided to grab all of them.

Unfortunately I went 0 for 5.

Was worth a shot, these will help bolster my trading profile on Zistle anyway.

The awkward facial expression on this one wasn't enough to keep me away from a Nolan Ryan card I knew I didn't have for a dime.

Some cards were just too interesting to leave behind for the price.

I'll probably end up trading them in the end.

That's two new Nolan Ryans!

I don't think folks in 1994 would have possibly guessed that a Frank Thomas Finest card would be in a dime box.

Here's another one I don't necessarily plan on keeping, but found interesting.  I like the idea of position players that convert to pitchers.

I grabbed this Travis D'Arnaud rookie on the off-chance that Mark Kaz didn't have it already.  He did, so into my trade box it goes...

Ditto for this one.

This classic pose of Frank Thomas was one of my favorite cheap pick-ups of the day.  Can't believe I didn't have a copy of this one already.

Speaking of well done base cards, here's a great one from 2012 Topps.

I think I find more Nomar Garciaparra cards in dime boxes than any other Red Sox player.  I guess he was just the biggest star during the time when the most sheer cards were being produced.

I added three Mets cards from 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes to my stack.

Mark Kaz had all three already, but...

...I needed each of them for my very slowly building set.  Instant karma.

Certain cards, like this Jim Edmonds serial #'d /1952, I picked up knowing full well that they were destined for the trade box.  In this case the card was just too shiny to leave behind.

At a certain point of flipping through the rows I think anything shiny just started to stick out to me as a matter of fact.

Here's one I'm definitely hanging onto.  What a great painting of Campanella with the skyline backdrop.

I would have grabbed every single Fan Favorites card I could find, but unfortunately this was the only one.

After receiving a giant stack of 2013 Allen & Ginter from Night Owl recently, I was happy to find another one I needed at the show for just ten cents.

Yeah, I was definitely in somewhat of a trance and amazed by shine.  Hey, it was early and I'd had a long drive.

I've only been fortunate enough to comb through dime boxes a few times, but I seem to come away with a new Ken Griffey Jr. card every time I do.

Here's another one that got dropped into Mark Hoyle's stack after the show.

1994 Stadium Club Finest insert of The Big Hurt for 10 cents!

1995 Sportflix UC3 is a collecting guilty pleasure of mine.  I guess I put these in the "so bad they're good" category.

I have very few 2002 Topps Heritage cards.  Even though their original 1953 counterparts put them to shame, I do like Jim Thome so figured this was worth a dime.

This is a reprint of Bautista's first Bowman card that was part of a cross-product insert in Bowman last year.

Closing out the dime box cards is this '93 Upper Deck SP Cal Ripken Jr.  I like how the stripes on his stirrups complement the stripes in the upper left corner of the card.  There were some other cards grabbed from these dime boxes, but all of those are headed off to other folks that I trade with.

This same vendor had a box of dollar cards, or six for five dollars.  I grabbed six, three of which are headed out in the mail soon.  I'm keeping this 2009 Goudey 4-in-1 for myself though, as it fits both my Nolan Ryan collection and my Boston Red Sox collection.

This insert from 1998 Pinnacle is called Spellbound.  The idea is that you collect a few cards to spell the player's name.  Great, now I'll feel obligated to find the N, O, A and R cards.

Last up, a die cut Trot Nixon, sitting in the batting cage and pondering the meaning of life.

The dime boxes were fun and all, but they eat up a lot of time.  At this one table alone I'd spent over 30 minutes picking out just $9 worth of dime and dollar box cards.  Since I had planned on attending this show for a while, and had a decent budget, I really wanted to add at least a couple of significant cards to my collection.  I managed to score a handful, so I figure I'll end each card show post with one of them.

The nice thing about a show this big is that there were dealers who specialized in just about everything.  One guy had three tables of nothing but T206 and other tobacco cards.  Others had monster boxes on end of singles, painstakingly sorted by year and set.  Then there was the friendly gentleman named Tom, who carried nothing but 1952 Topps.

That is where I made my first significant pick-up of the day in the form of this Clyde Vollmer!  As I was looking through the amazing mass of '52s that Tom had to offer I decided it was time I gave this iconic set a little more love.

It helped that Tom was down to earth and extremely reasonable with his pricing.  For no more than a blaster would have set me back at Target (less when you consider tax) I was able to add this vibrant and well-centered card to my vintage Red Sox collection.  I was elated after this, what a start to the day, and I still had over two hours to kill with some cash burning a hole in my pocket.

That's all the scanning and cropping I can fit in today, I'll have at least two or three more posts in the next few days covering the rest of the show...


JediJeff said...

Some fine cards you scanned for a dime each. Quality dime box pulls for sure.

Frankie.M said...

Wow, that's one of the vert few Frank Thomas cards that feature him on the A's! Nice Mo also! It seems like you had a great time. Are you going to the National in Chicago this year?

majpasqua said...

I've been to that show many times. Always found great stuff there. Oh how I miss that place!

Mark said...

Sounds like an awesome show. The big show around here is coming up next month, and I'm pretty much counting down the days. When you find a loaded dime box like that, you can't go wrong.

Nick said...

Nice finds! I also attended a card show today and had the "too shiny to leave behind" thing happen to me many, many times.

Mark Hoyle said...

This show was definitely worth the drive. If you show up with a wantlist most times you leave with everything checked off. Great 52

Mark Kaz said...

Great job landing that '52!! Some pretty great dime finds, also. Thanks for keeping me in mind, Shane!

Tim B. said...

Great haul! I can't wait to see what else you were able to find. No shows in my area mean I have to live vicariously through others.

John Hazen said...

Nice Finds there. Love when you can find both vintage and some really nice parallels.

Fuji said...

Chicle is such a beautiful set!

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