The Legend

The Legend

Wednesday, December 30, 2015


It feels good to sit and relax. After a whirlwind Christmas full of family gatherings things are getting back to normal. I took off work today which means I'm done until Monday! Have all kinds of fun stuff planned as one of my good friends is coming in from DC to stay with me tonight. We are going to sample a bunch of beers, hit a local brewery taphouse and watch some football.

Now to something even more exciting...

2015 Immaculate Jung-Ho Kang Auto /99

Patience finally paid off for adding a Kang auto to my collection. For the longest time his autos were outrageously priced, but he eventually signed enough cards to help bring the price to a more respectable amount. This card set me back just less than $20. 

For as long as I've collected the Pirates their really hasn't been a comparable to Kang in terms of cardboard prices. Being that Kang was the first position player to make the jump from the KBL I was expecting high prices. The thing that caught everyone by surprise was how good he turned out. This caused even more price increases. Pirate players that come up in the system generally have lulls in which card prices fall. Even stars like McCutchen and Cole had times where it was a buyers market. Kang immediately went to Pittsburgh and prices reflected that. 

It will be interesting to see how he does in his sophomore campaign. He'll have an extra challenge of returning from a broken leg and MCL tear as well. Generally speaking the second year in the league is hard on hitters as pitchers adjust and have better scouting reports to exploit weaknesses. What Kang did last year was a huge bonus for the Pirates, but expectations will be much higher this year. If he struggles that would open the opportunity to purchase more cards, but if he succeeds Kang has a chance to price himself into the stratosphere. For the sake of the Pirates I hope he prices himself out of my collection.  

Thanks for reading! 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Too Many Awesome Cards!

My good buddy Dennis (Too Many Verlanders) hit me with a blockbuster trade package right before Christmas. I went back and looked and this marks the 14th time I've received cards from the Michigan/Tigers fanatic. That amount probably puts him on the Mount Rushmore of Bob Walk trade partners. 

As usual Dennis mixed in a combination of Pirates and Mountaineers in the package. 

I've had a nice run adding manager cards this month. The only sad thing about this card is that Kluszewski isn't showing enough of the guns.

Dennis knows I'm a sucker for the original Frank Thomas!
For as long as the Pirates have been around they really don't have a great history when it comes to star pitchers. Most of the recent Hall of Fame pitchers that played for the Pirates either had a short stay or were at the end of their careers.  Probably the most notable pitcher in modern times was Bert Blyleven, but he only had 3 seasons with the Bucs and he left on bad terms.

With that being said the Pirates do have some great names in history like Vern Law and Roy Face. What a cool looking card of what appears to be spring training. It appears that Vern Law has to poop from the grimace.
A very young Al Oliver. If he could have had a couple more big seasons he would have made it to 3000 hits and the hall of fame.
A very small stamp of the Cobra!
56 Topps Dale Long
These are the kind of manu-relics that I can tolerate. Very nice Pops!

I was glad to see Archives finally add some cool Pirates to the Fan Favorites autos. The set is always one of my favorites every year, but they were rehashing guys like Al Oliver and Dave Parker over and over again. Having guys like Kendall was a welcomed change.
Cutch is like Tekulve, he doesn't have bad cardboard.
It was a stretch to call Bream a fan favorite since he scored the run to win the NLCS as the member of the Braves. He is from the Pittsburgh area so I guess there's that, but I think if you ask most Pirate fans to give you a top ten fan favorites he wouldn't crack it.

Personally I thought it was a cool card and the bible verse makes it unique.

WVU time!
I was really pulling for Sims to get more playing time with the Bucs this year since Doug Martin sucked so bad last year. Unfortunately for Sims, Martin balanced back.
Bulger is probably the most notable Mountaineer to make a big impact in the NFL in the last 15 years.
One of the cool things about collecting Sims cards is that their is a lot of color in the jersey cards. I've been trying to get some of the patches that feature the full Buccaneer, but they still bring in a good bit of money.
Now for my two favorite cards of the bunch. Geno has had a tough go as a pro, but that doesn't stop me from collecting the ex Mountaineer. He holds just about every passing record in school history so he still holds a soft place in my heart. This is an awesome plate from Bowman Sterling.

I chose this card as my favorite because of the great WVU uniform patch. Ultimate Collection is the go to set if you like players featured in their NCAA uniforms. What a great looking card.

Holy smokes that was a ton of great cards. I could ramble on about them forever. Thanks so much Dennis. Look forward to keeping the pace in 2016. I'll be hitting you back with a few more cards here soon since my last package was a little light.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Yes Suhr!

eBay can sometimes test the nerves. Whether it be a non responsive seller, poor shipping or just the length of time to receive your card it will eventually test your patience. Such was the case with this card.

1933 Goudey Gus Suhr

This card took just shy of 4 weeks to make it to my house. It was won over around the 23rd of November, but didn't arrive until the week before Christmas. I didn't raise much of a stink as these are busy times so I cut the seller some slack. It just always erks me when the seller expects payment within a certain period of time, but can't send the card until 3 weeks after the auction was won. Also, the card was just slid into a top loader without any other protection. 

With all that being said, the deal on the card was pretty good. For about $15 I was able to get a cool Goudey card in reasonable condition. I've been branching out more and more trying to find unique Pirate items. More times than not this usually means a vintage item.  In the past month I've added 5 vintage cards on eBay. Hopefully in the next few weeks I'll be able to showoff a few more.

As far as as Gus Suhr goes, he was a very productive player for the Pirates in the 30's. 

Here is a couple interesting tidbits I found in the Baseball Almanac

"A .279 career hitter who is arguably the best fielding first baseman in Pirates history, California's Gus Suhr had a memorable nine-and-a-half-year Pittsburgh career that included two National League records. The first was a 70-game errorless streak at first in 1936; the second was 822 consecutive games played in a streak that ended on June 5, 1937, when he left to attend his mother's funeral."

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Jeff Sends WVU Royalty

I hope everyone had a nice holiday. Mine was full of family and too much food. I feel like I need to eat salad the whole month of January to make up for the damage of the last few days. Too many good bakers in my family and not enough will power for me.

I'm still attempting to get all the envelopes showcased I received before Christmas.  This time it was my good pal Jeff who sent a pwe.  A while back he featured a Mario Alford auto that peeked my interest and he was nice enough to immediately send it my way.  Also, being the cool guy that he is he also threw in some extras!

 Alford only played two years at WVU, but made the most of it as a slot receiver for the Mountaineers. He was a late a draft pick by the Bengals, but has only seen minimal action.
 Jeff sent me a slew of Tavon Austin cards. It has been fun watching the Rams get Tavon more involved this year in the offense. This year alone he has 5 receiving, 4 rusining and 1 punt return touchdown.

I'm a huge sucker for the SP Authentic cards as they feature the college uniform.

 I hope that one day Geno gets another chance at being a starting NFL quarterback. I really want him to go to the Rams so he can throw to Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey.

Jeff has sent me a few Kevin White's over the past few months which is greatly appreciated. I still haven't focused too much on him myself so I need all the help I can get.

It was nice to see Stedman Bailey get releases from the hospital. In case you didn't know he was shot in the head in Florida over a month back. Miraculously he survived and has already been released.

Those throwback Steelers uniforms look like bumble bees.

Thanks for always hooking me up with unique cards Jeff. This was a nice bolster to my WVU collection.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Lost Collector Found Some Cards

A while back AJ aka The Lost Collector mentioned that he found a couple of Aramis Ramirez cards for me. It turns out he must have found a 90's treasure trove.  December has been 90's month here at Bob Walk headquarters.

It is hard to choose if I like these frequent flyer mile cards or those cards that look like credit cards better. Opening Skybox products in the late 90's early 2000's was quite the visual experience.
 You name the gimmick Pacific did it. While this is the "checklist" card it doesn't make it any less cool.
 In order to keep the structural integrity of this card in place I didn't open it. In case you don't know these are from Collectors Choice and were called Evolution Revolution. This particular version is of Al Martin.

 Aurora was actually a pretty cool set. This is a very young Aramis Ramirez.
 More Pacific of the newly retired Pirate thrid baseman.
 I love this card because of the Hill Cats uniform. Aramis was a pretty big prospect so this card probably fetched a decent amount around the time of his debut.
 I miss sets like MVP and Collectors Choice. Upper Deck gave some nice choices for those collecting on a budget and still made them look unique. Topps struggles to make sets for the budget minded collector.
I think Vance Worley just signed with the Orioles if I'm not mistaken. I'm guessing he'll have a pretty good chance to make the roster.

Some Bowman rounds out the pwe. Harold Ramirez is probably the most high end of the prospects featured.

Thanks for the great 90's Buccos AJ. I need to find a few more Yanks before I have enough to send something your way.  Hopefully right after the New Year!

Thanks for reading and have a nice Christmas Eve!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Cracked Kendall Christmas

Julie was nice enough to send a long a very nice Christmas card full of Jason Kendall cheer.

 Leaf Signatures seems to be one of the sets that all us bloggers are in agreement with. It is universally loved. Simple design, on card signature and decent photos is a good recipe for an auto card.

This is how I remember Jason Kendall. He generally didn't look happy. I guess playing on perennial losers will do that to you. Even though he supposedly hated Pittsburgh the guy always left it out on the field. I always imagine how much he would be loved on these current Pirate teams. I have a soft spot for guys like Kendall, Brian Giles and Jason Bay who never got to taste winning in Pittsburgh. 

Here is the nice Michigan themed card Julie sent along. I'm pretty sure my parents still buy Vernors Ginger Ale. I've also been to the Kellogs plant in Battle Creek. I think my longest stay in Michigan was accompanying my Grandfather to a conference in Traverse City. I remember lots of cherries and wind.

Thanks for the cards Julie.  Hopefully my return package hit your doorstep today.

Happy Festivus!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Korea By Way of P-town

Tom is a constant help with my Pirates collection.  About once a month I receive an envelope of various sizes full of good stuff. This particular envelope was small in size, but packed a punch. Overall this probably marks our 10,000th trade. Actually I'm not sure how many this makes, but we like to trade!

 Of all the current Pirates, Jung Ho is by far the least represented in my collection. His first few cards were through the roof on eBay more because of the novelty of him being the first position player from the KBL to transition to the MLB. To a lot of peoples surprise Jung Ho turned out to be a good player and his cards went up even more.

Do they call these something other than purple refractors.  How about Purple Nurple parallels? Whatever they are called they are very shiny and quite appealing.
Pirate cards still hold up pretty well without the license.  I guess the Pirates aren't too worried about his recovery from a torn MCL and a broken tibia thanks to freaking Chris Coghlan. They felt confident enough to trade Neil Walker and word is Kang should be ready at some point in April

I'm not bitter....


Baseball is weird.  They stop collisions at home plate but you can destroy a guy to break up a double play. In all seriousness I actually got tired of hearing the Pittsburgh media bitch and moan about this play.  One thing I was happy about was that the Pirates didn't hit someone during this game.  That could have gotten really nasty.
Jordy had lost most of his playing time when the Pirates were firing on all cylinders last year as his bat took a big step back last year. He played pretty well after Kang's injury.  At least for the start of the upcoming season he will be slotted back in shortstop and Kang will play third when healthy. Of all the starters, I'm guessing Jordy will have shortest leash.

Quite a bit of speculation when Bell might be available to help out this year. The Pirates weakest position is by far first base, but Bell barely has any AAA at bats.

Thanks Tom for the great cards, especially the Kang's. I'm slowly accumulating some of his stuff now. His autos finally dipped in price some as he was featured in just about every set from June on. Maybe I'll buy one for myself for Christmas.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Oscar Sends Skinny Bonds

Late post tonight as I was cheering on my Mountaineers to a victory over Eastern Kentucky. It was the final tune up before conference play starts.

My good buddy and fellow craft beer enthusiast Oscar from All Trade Bait, All The Time hit me up with a Christmas card full of goodies. I'm trying hard to get all the cards posted before Xmas, but I'm running out of days. It is a good problem to have!

Speaking of beer, do you know anybody that trades beer. I have some friends that do it. It is not the easiest venture because of shipping costs, but they have it down to a science. I would love to do it, but WV is not a good beer state. Our selection is getting better, but still bring up the rear when it comes to choices. Fortunately I'm less than 10 miles from the Pennsylvania border and about 30 miles from Maryland who have much better selection. Plus, I have two friends who hook me up with stuff as one is from the DC area and the other grew up in New Jersey.

Enough beer rambling. On to cards!

Milner had a nice long career, but is probably most known for his involvement in the cocaine issues that plagued the Pirates in the last 70's early 80's. He even had to testify in court. 

 In case you didn't know this was a Gold Leaf Rookie they made sure to place it in big black font in the background. I'm loving all the mid 90's cards I've been receiving lately.  The 90's cardboard is making a comeback. Invest all your life's savings...../don't do that.
 It is kind of cool to see Bonds back in baseball as the hitting instructor for the Marlins. How long to all of them are suspended....I kid, I kid.  Seriously though, could you imagine Giancarlo Stanton on juice.
 I have a sneaking suspicion that the Pirates are going to trade Melancon.  He is going to make almost 10 mil dollars. The Pirates have a long history of letting relievers walk when a payday is coming.

Manager cards are awesome!
Thanks for the nice Xmas note and cards Oscar. I put something in the mail for you on Saturday so I hope it gets there before Friday, but the mail seems to be moving slow.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Custom Breakdown

Let the good times roll on with the Christmas cards. This time around it was of the custom variety with our resident creative guru blogger Gavin from Baseball Card Breakdown. Gavin and I have had a very good year with trades and winning contests from each other. While we didn't ship a ton of packages we made sure they packed a huge punch.

 I was happy to see one of Gavin's new Cardsphere Heroes get shipped my way. Cutch is a pretty popular guy on the blogosphere and he plays a vital role in my Pirates collection. I'm always jealous of the creativity of guys like Gavin. Thankfully he shares that creativity with the rest of us so we can enjoy it!
Gavin was nice enough to ship some of the Pirates from his recent breaks. Sets like Pro Debut offer a nice option for those who like collection prospects or dig the minor league uniforms.
 Gold label is awesome! I've made some additions recently from this set that I'll be showing once I make it through all the awesome packages from other bloggers. With the help from Gavin I shouldn't need much more.

Unhittable! Getting Walk cards always makes me smile. Plus Gavin gets bonus points for sending that custom Walk during the World Series contest.  That is displayed prominently in my office!

Thanks for the custom Cutch Gavin. You should be getting a package from me sometime this week. Hopefully the mail isn't too slow. Here's to a bunch of fun trades next year.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

White Christmas

I've been working hard the past couple of nights to finalize some mailings to make sure they arrive for Christmas.

Pretty much all my regular trade partners and contest winners should expect something.  I was still a few cards short for Brad, Mark Hoyle and AJ. Yours will probably be coming in early January. Please contact me if you want to start swapping!

It felt good to get those out in the mail because I had been receiving quite a few envelopes the past couple of weeks and wanted to make sure I returned the favor. One such package I received recently was from Angus of Dawg Day Cards. Angus peppered the blogosphere with xmas cards full of cardboard goodness. Blogger xmas cards are the best!

 It is cool to see the Jets having a good season, but I wish Geno was the one leading the way. I'm guessing this will be his last year in Jets green.
 Sidney Crosby has been very quiet for the Pens this year, so Malkin has had to try and put more on his shoulders. Love receiving Pens cards!

 Some old Pen stickers. Schock and Bianchin have some glorious sideburns. Any time I see cards from this era it makes me think of the movie Slap Shot.

White Christmas!
 I loved Diamond Kings baseball so naturally Gridiron Kings would be top notch.
 Here is Kevin in his college garb. Looks like that was the Oklahoma State game from last season.
 Some diecut goodness from Prizm. Cool looking card.
 White Christmas ends with the base rookie from Prizm. It was ashame that Kevin got hurt this season. I'm sure the Bears are expecting big things. I felt he had the best chance of any of the recent Mountaineers drafted to make a huge impact.
 Jumbo Pena! Obviously Pena's time in Pittsburgh is remembered more for the time he was traded for Andy Van Slyke, but he was a very good player in his own right.
A very festive shot of the Library of Parliament.

Thanks for the holiday cheer Angus. I'm still accumulating some cards for you, but rest assured I will hit you back with some cool stuff.

Thanks for reading!