The Legend

The Legend

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Big 1000 and a Contest

This is actually post 999, but I figured I would go ahead and get things rolling.  First and foremost thanks to everyone who reads about my card exploits. The interaction is what makes blogging fun. I feel like I've gotten to know many of you without actually meeting in person.

For those who don't know the origins of this blog I'll go ahead and share a quick link here.  Long story short, my daughter was born very premature and spent months in the hospital. When she finally came home she was on oxygen for 7 months. During this time my wife and I had to stay up all hours of the night to make sure she didn't pull the oxygen from her nose.  This created a lot of downtime in the middle of the night.  In that time I started the blog.  She has grown up a lot!

Image may contain: 1 person, indoor

Now for the contest.  I'm only going to pick one winner, but it will have a BIG prize.  Like all my other contests I'll cater to your collection. I promise it will be awesome. To enter all you need to do is comment below. No need to promote or blog pimp. Just one entry per person.  I'll pick a winner once the comments stop coming in.

Thanks for making the last 999 posts so much fun!

Monday, March 20, 2017

A Blue Transcendent Monday

March is always a huge pain in the butt for me.  Historically I blog less, comment less, and trade less due to work responsibilities. While I planned ahead more this year by scanning some cards in bulk, my cardboard time is severely lacking. Thankfully by Thursday it will be smooth sailing and I'll celebrate by watching my Mountaineers play in the Sweet 16. 

New purchases have been lacking minus one huge WVU acquisition that I'll eventually showoff in the coming weeks. Baseball wise this has been the cream of the crop lately....

2016 Topps Chrome Transcendent 65th Party Starling Marte 1/1

I'm sure most of you heard all the hoopla surrounding the Topps Transcendent set. The whole 25k box of cards that included an invitation to a private party in which Kris Bryant attended.  At the party cards were given out to each participant.  Of course like anything card related many ended up on eBay. These special stamped 1/1's were about the only thing you could find a halfway decent deal on. 

This Marte sold for around $20.  I actually kind of regretted the purchase after I made it, but at least the card has a decent story and utilized the blue chrome card. This will probably be it for me with these stamped Transcendent cards.  One taste of how the other half live was enough....

Thanks for reading! 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Tony Pena, Croissan'wiches and Mountaineers

KO Rob is a frequent participant in our community without running a blog himself.  He and I have talked beer and swapped cards a few times over the last handful of months. I loved our first trade as it featured a lot of vintage Mountaineers.  This time it was a little bit of everything, but the main event was a couple of Mountaineer beauties.

 I love these tall Topps basketball cards.  Rob started off with a bang by sending me the most famous Mountaineer of all time.
 Rob apologized about the condition of this Rod Thorn.  I say it just has more character.

 This doubles as a sweet oddball and an excellent coupon!  I wonder if my local Burger King will honor it.  It is only 30 years old..

 Rob has a great feel for my collection. Always fun to see a card of former WVU great and Collegiate Hall of Famer Darryl Talley.

I've been neglecting my Jerry West collection for too long.  Maybe seeing these great cards Rob sent me will motivate me again.

 Now for the Pittsburgh portion of our show. The star of this bunch is the Harry Greb boxing card. Some guys just naturally look tough, I feel Greb falls into this category.  I feel like I would have had trouble even making eye contact with.

You really have to squeeze in everyone to fit a football team shot onto a card.

I had these six cards appraised. 7.5mil seemed a little light. Time to get Sotherby's on the phone. 

Thanks again Rob.  This was such a unique bunch of cards. Thanks so much for spending the time putting all these together.  I'll be hitting you back soon.  Shoot me an email sometime and we can talk about some beer trading too! 

Thanks for reading. 

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Year 2 NOW

The Pirates got card #1 again with this Tyler Glasnow.  I wasn't even aware Topps was producing individual Spring Training NOW cards. I knew about the team sets and I figured they would go all in on the World Baseball Classic (which they have).  Thankfully a friend of mine gave me a heads up when this Glasnow went live.  I would have missed it for sure.  

I plan on experimenting with different ways of getting the Pirate releases.  I'll continue with eBay for the most part, but I may purposefully let a few go and see how much I can find them for a couple months down the road or even after the season.  I noticed several of the non rookies only selling for a few bucks on eBay. We'll see how this plays out. 

Hope everyone is enjoying March Madness.  WVU punched their Sweet Sixteen ticket this afternoon! Looking like we will have a date with Gonzaga. 

Thanks for reading. 

Friday, March 17, 2017


2016 Panini Pantheon Al Oliver Auto /25

It feels like Panini dumped a lot of similar looking high end sets near the end of 2016 into early 2017. Off the top of my head I can remember National Treasures, National Treasures Collegiate, Immaculate, Black Gold and Prime Cuts. I wasn't aware of Panini Pantheon until I found this Al Oliver card. 

I'm a sucker for certified autos of Pirates from the late 70's. The excitement of seeing a new Oliver autograph supersedes any other deficiencies the set may have. If this would have been a current Pirate I would have probably passed on buying anything from Pantheon.  The whole thing just seems a little dull.  At least with National Treasures you get on card autos.  

When looking through my Oliver autos I have in my collection I believe this is the first set he has signed for as Pirate since the 2007 Sweet Spot set. Way too long! Maybe Panini will listen to my request for more Phil Garner autos too. 

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Veale the Hipster

The Pirates are my team so I would collect them no matter what, but it is nice to have some cardboard legends to chase down.  The likes of Tekulve, Parker, Madlock and Times Man of the Year Bob Walk makes things more exciting. Last week my pal Oscar from All Trade Bait, All the Time sent me a reminder of another great cardboard hero.

 Mr. Bob Veale! Just look at those glasses.  I can almost picture Bob sitting down drinking a PBR and listening to indie music.  Bob Clemente, Bob Moose, Bob Veale, Bob Walk......The Pirates bred Bob greatness.
 Pendleton and Hoak are linked by trade.  It was a deal full of sweet nicknames.  The Pirates sent Whammy Douglas, Pendleton, The original Frank Thomas and John Powers to the Reds for Harvey Haddix, Smokey Burgess and Don Hoak.

 Pretty much one of the coolest uniforms ever.

 Gene Freese had a couple stints as a Pirate and was born in West Virginia.

 Always fun to have a dual card in which both guys had nice careers.

I will never have enough Bay cards. He is my most frequently looked at auctions. Thanks to Oscar I have one less to look for!

Thanks for the wonderful vintage surprise Oscar!

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Licensed Panini Baseball

As collectors we are always looking for ways to find the cards we desire at the best price possible. From scouring auctions to hitting card shows/shops, we are always looking for that great deal.  The best case scenario is when the card companies bring the deal to you!

2016 National Treasures Collegiate Gerrit Cole Auto /49

The last couple of years Panini has created a few collegiate oriented sets like Contenders and National Treasures Collegiate.  Both sets are really nice.  The thing is very few people care about college baseball. 

Obviously the big benefit is the licensing.  Photos of guys looking like they are wearing plain pajamas are replaced by bright, vibrant college uniforms such as this Gerrit Cole.  The issue is that this is likely eliminating a good portion of team collectors.  You can find singles of good players for pennies on the dollar.

For collectors like myself this is great.  I classify myself as a Pirates collector but in the loosest of ways. This is a cool card of  a current Pirate and I wanted it.  It only set me back $6. I know I saw several Kyle Schwarber Indiana University autos for much cheaper than the Cubs equivalent. Take a look, you may find something.  

Thanks for reading! 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Pirates in Order

It is nice to be trading with Tom from The Angels, In Order again! It has been way too long.  I've been sitting on a ton of Angels cards so it will be easy return fire.  

As usual Tom packed an envelope with an eclectic group of cards with several surprise autos!

That might be the most forced intimidating face ever, but I love it. John Smiley was won of the more underrated components of the successful early 90's teams. 

 Varsho is very aware of finding a good spot where his auto will be legible.

 I get my fair share of Wehner as he has been an announcer for the Pirates for the last handful of years. He would handle the away games and Steve Blass would take the home detail.  If I recall I believe Blass is retiring so Wehner will have a full time gig.  I will be using the mute button a lot.....
 You don't see too many guys have 15 year careers as a bench player like Bill Almon.

 You'll never get this Gary Redus card JBF!!!

 It is rare that I don't choose a Clemente card as my favorite, but I love The Waner Brothers card.

 The Pirates always release or trade their homegrown catchers like Tony Sanchez and Reese Mcguire. They use the Yankee pipeline to fill that need (Russell Martin, Francisco Cervelli, Chris Stewart).

Really hoping for big things from Josh Bell this year. Just hope he holds up defensively as he looked pretty bad last year.
 I love the old stock Jason Bay card.
 Gold Liriano!!!!!
This is the 94 Donruss Special Edition Van Slyke. I remember this set well as a 12 year old.  It was a big deal to get one back then (still is!).  Basically it was a gold parallel set of 100 of the best players in the league.

Thanks for the cards Tom! I'll be sure to hit you back with some Angels soon.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, March 12, 2017


I love March Madness. Just finished taking a look at the bracket.  My Mountaineers are a #4 seed this year and open things up with Bucknell.  Hard to say how the Mountaineers will do this year.  I'm hoping for a nice a run after we bowed out in the first round last year.   Either way I always enjoy this time of year as the end of the tournament helps bring in baseball season.

Some of my best in person sports moments involve WVU tournament games.  I watched WVU beat Duke to go to the Sweet 16 one year and then I witnessed one of the bigger upsets in school history when WVU defeated Kentucky to go to the Final Four.  That Kentucky team had John Wall and Demarcus Cousins.

Here are a few of my favorite basketball cards in my collection.

Thanks for reading!

May your bracket not be busted....

Saturday, March 11, 2017

1952 Trades

I've been sorting through some vintage cards I bought a few years back. Of course by sort, I mean get distracted and start looking names up on baseball reference and SABR.

 1952 Bowman George Strickland
1952 Topps Ted Wilks

When I was sorting the cards my initial thought was "hey that Strickland card is cool"  so I pulled it aside to showcase on the blog. As usual I started reading about George Strikland and found out that both he and Ted Wilks were traded to the Indians and 1952. 

When I saw the name Wilks I immediately knew I had shown a card of him before.. I featured him in a post about some vintage Bowman.  As I got a little further in my vintage stack I noticed I had a nice 52 Topps Wilks.  It was destiny that these two cards be put in the same post.  

Both guys are not well known, but each had about 10 year careers.  The Pirates were short tenures for each with Strickland staying around 3 years and Wilks part of 2 seasons.  

I love the vibrant colors of each card and both are in really nice condition. Gotta love vintage cards. They tell so many stories...

Thanks for reading. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Just a Pack

I had one of those days where I just needed to open a pack of cards. It is always a nice distraction from the daily grind.  Time to hit the emergency stash. 

Today I dug out a pack of 2008 Bowman.  That doesn't seem like that long ago, but holy shit 9 years! You could definitely sense the time gap from the base cards. 

This was a cool card to start things off with. Zippy would be proud that I showed this one off first. 

 See what I mean about 2008 being a long time ago.  Markakis is the only one seeing regular playing time out of the bunch.  I read that Crawford is trying to get back on a roster, but I have a feeling he might be done too.
Poor Jeremy Bonderman was on some really bad Tigers teams. He did manage to carve out a career pitching in parts of 9 seasons.

I definitely didn't do well with the 1st year cards. Without looking I would say the ship has sailed for all these guys.

Big 12 tournament time.  Let's Go Mountaineers!

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Gil and Ted's Excellent Adventure

2016 Immaculate Collection Hodges/Kluszewski Dual Relic /10

I thought this was a neat combo even if it lacks Pirate subject matter. I guess it can be loosely considered a Pirate card since Kluszewski had a short tenure as a Bucco, but it will be sent to one of my Dodger buddies. You can never have too much Dodger trade bait! 

You can really find some nice deals on some high end sets from Panini. In the last few months I've found some nice Pirate cards out of National Treasures and Immaculate for pennies on the dollar.  That is rough for whomever busted those cases. 

Back to the Pens game. Thanks for reading! 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Off the Wall!

It is fun breaking the ice with a new trade partner. So many great people in the blogging world so little time to trade with all of them. A few weeks back Shane Katz from Off The Wall  sent me a message about a possible trade.  If I recall Mark Hoyle sent him my way (thanks Mark!). I told Shane that I would break the ice as I always have to replenish Red Sox cards and it would take a little time to get some useful cards.  

About a week after I sent Shane the package he sent me quite the Pirates bomb in return.  It was 3 team bags full of Black and Gold goodness. 

 I feel like if this was a Red Sox card it would be the perfect wallpaper for Shane's blog. It seems like every trade package I receive a trade package I get a cool UD card.  Man, I really miss them.....
 Jerry May intimidating runners with his cannon arm.

The pioneering "closer" of baseball.
 So many minis! I didn't have many of the Goodwin versions so I was happy to see those.
 Fleer Tradition was a favorite of mine back when K'mart was a thing in my area.  They always had tons of it on sale.
 I feel bad for Sean Rodriguez.  That car crash he was in was scary. I know he is out for the whole season, but it could have been so much worse for he and his family.

 Dreaded Cutch!!!!
 I'm always a sucker for a good manager card. Clint Hurdle should start smoking in the dugout like Jim Leyland.
 Does this Beimel count as an autograph card? I say yes! These were three of my favorite cards in the bunch Shane sent.
 Keith Osik doing his best Jason Kendall impersonation with a great catching card.

 I always spend time discussing Pacific on my blog.  I was collecting on a pretty tight budget in the late 90's so Pacific was always a go to pack bust. Kind of cool to see some of those sets doing well on the secondary market now. The Prizm Guillen is really cool.

 Three super cool Ultra cards. I like Kevin Young going all Pete Rose into third.

 Mike Spanky Lavalliere looks like a guy that would be pretty fun to have a beer with.

 The vintage portion of the program is pretty epic. Thanks a ton Shane for sending all these my way.

 John Candelaria set the stage for Bob Walk's flowing hair and mustache.

 Put Bonds in the Hall of Fame please....

 The Ginter Clemente is great but I love some diecut.

 Now Shane is really trying to get my attention.  Ten time sexiest man of the year Bob Walk.

 Wakefield didn't get a ton of Pirate releases so I'm happy to receive them when I can. If only Wakefield would have came in against the Braves instead of Stan Belinda.

Thanks so much for all the great cards Shane. It was a blast going through all of them.  I think you might receive beer from me before our next trade of cardboard!

Thanks for reading.