The Legend

The Legend

Monday, October 8, 2018

Hello Neighbor

Hard to believe its been close to four months since I announced my blogging retirement.  I do miss it, but the work reasons I cited for leaving are still very much present.  With that being said I figured I do one of those back to school things where I talk about my summer.  It will also help the blog from becoming totally dormant when/if my current schedule changes. 

Most of my hobby time over the summer was spent organizing.  I got the majority of my WVU collection in binders which like any organization project took ten times longer than I hoped.  Initially I figured it would take 5 binders, but quickly figured out about 3 times that was needed.  I have way too many Steve Slaton cards!

I'm in preliminary stages of planning out my Pirate organization project.  I feel like I'm going to need several industrial engineers on retainer. Right now my thinking is getting long term Pirates like Cutch, Marte, Neil Walker and Jason Bay in binders while organizing monster boxes for shorter term guys.  Time will tell.

New arrivals into the collection have been WVU dominated.  2018 was an odd year for Pirate releases. Checklists continued to be dominated by the likes of Gregory Polanco and Starling Marte.  While I like collecting each guy, I'm more than set on having a nice rounded out collection of each.  Just type in Starling Marte in trading card database.  SO MANY CARDS!

In some ways its kind of a throwback to the early/mid 2000's when most of my new additions were retired players. 

I bought this redemption not long after Archives released.  This has always been a nice way to save a few bucks over the years.  As I expected, the turnaround was very short so the gamble paid off. 

As the summer ends in Morgantown everything shifts to football.  While football will never be a favorite sport for me I do enjoy this time of year.  I live within walking distance of the stadium so our house becomes somewhat of a meeting ground for all my out of town friends during home games.

 As usual with most of my posts over the years I just throw a bunch of pics with complete disregard to timing and subject matter. 

I rarely buy non core collection stuff these days, but made an exception for this Bill James auto. 

 Four years ago my wife and I decided to have a combined birthday celebration in which we hosted a few friends for an Oktoberfest themed tailgate. Fast forward to present day and that celebration has blossomed into a huge party which we had close to 60 people over.  The sausages were direct from Wisconsin.  Its a good bit of work to pull this party off now, but we love it. 

 As I mentioned above, the WVU collection has taken center stage since my retirement.  The fact that former WVU point guard Jevon Carter actually has cards is a big deal.  I enjoy college basketball a ton so I'm glad I'll have something to look for besides straggler Joe Alexander and Devin Ebanks cards.
 Good lord I'm jumping around like crazy....

The obscure retired autos from Heritage can be tough to find and expensive.  I've been trying to dig up some stragglers that I've missed over the years like this Harding Peterson.

 Back in the early summer I picked up a handful of Will Grier cards from the Leaf Army set knowing they would be too expensive once the season starts.  I'm glad I did.
 One of the few 2018 cards I picked up.  Loved the Homestead Grays uniform pic too much not to buy it.
 I went to Asheville NC in August.  If you like craft beer I highly recommend a visit.  They have almost 40 breweries within the city limits. 
 Asheville is also famous for being home to America's largest home, the Biltmore. 

 With so many breweries in Asheville you have to do things to set yourself apart.  Of course having great beer is always number 1, but good food is nice too.   This was dubbed Spanish surf and turf featuring bone marrow and octopus.
 Cool mural at Green Man brewery.

 This is a shot of Canaan Valley in WV. 

 Cool shot from a Black Bears game in Morgantown. 

So, while I'm not blogging I'm still very much involved in all my usual shenanigans.  At the very least this might help reduce the amount of Viagra and "make money at home" comments on my old posts. 

Hope everyone enjoyed summer! For those still lucky enough to have their chosen baseball teams still actually playing, good luck!

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Bob Walk the Plank is Retiring

You may have noticed I haven't been commenting on blogs as much nor have I been trading. The last couple of months I've had some drastic shifts in my job that really narrowed the time I have for extra curricular activities.  The workload has been stressful and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

With my free time I've decided to not spend my time in front of the computer.  A little more family time, travel and experiences.  At some point the opportunity may come up to get things rolling again, but for now the blog is closed.

I figured this was a symbolic time to shut things down as tomorrow marks my daughters 5th birthday.  As many of you know she is the reason I had the time to start the blog.  She was born at 25 weeks weighing only 14oz.  It was touch and go for a long time.  When she finally came home after months in the hospital she was on oxygen for an extended period of time.  This caused my wife and I to be up all hours of the night making sure she didn't pull the cannula out of her nose. Lots of long nights helped me get the blog up and running.

 This is her holding a picture of herself in the hospital

  Sharing a dance.

While the blog will be closed, I will continue to collect.  My Twitter account will be active showing new cards and I'll still trade.

I never thought in a million years this little blog would turn out this way.  I've met some great people (even in person) over the years.  While its an end of an era, just remember I'm not going away.  You just won't be seeing cards on here everyday.

Big virtual high five to each and everyone of you.  When I first started many of you made me feel very welcomed and I hope I made a few of you feel that same way over the years.  Let's continue to trade, keep in contact via email/Twitter and buying cards.

Bob Walk the Plank signing off.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Circling Back Around

As most of you know I'm an unapologetic Topps Now collector.  I got in early so I have several of the hard to get Pirate cards including the very first NOW card produced Francisco Liriano.  Since I've been quiet on the new card front, I decided to see if I could fill a hole in my collection.

Until just a few weeks back the Pirates only had two NOW autos that were both related to the Spring Training set from the beginning of last season.  When the set was announced I used the coupon that has been given each year and got a nice discount.  I was lucky enough to get this parallel Marte autograph.

The original checklist had originally announced three signers (Marte, Glasnow and Taillon).  As it turns out the production was so low that the Glasnow was never produced to my knowledge.  So the hunt was on for the Taillon.

I finally tracked the Taillon down last October

That left the base Marte auto to finish out the Pirates auto set.  I had seen a few hit eBay, but for the longest time I didn't care.  Basically it took a seller marking the price way down on a BIN or best offer.  The seller took my first offer and here we are.
Not too shabby! So far the NOW ride has been pretty fun.  The Pirates have had the perfect checklist since the start of the program.  They fall right in the middle in terms of cards produced and have only had one auto that wasn't Spring Training related (Austin Meadows).  I took a gamble and jumped on it quick as they sold out super quick.  Hopefully that one doesn't bite me in the ass.

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018


2015 Steven Brault Elite Extra Edition Auto /25
I'm still in recovery mode from the Flogging Molly/Dropkick Murphys concert.  I had a little too much fun. I'll be a bit more brief than normal as I deal with a bad headache.  

I was sorting some cards this afternoon and came across this Steven Brault auto.  Nothing really notable about the card other than the fact its a diecut.  The reason I'm posting it is that it reminded me of a unique event.  Brault is singing the national anthem before tonight's Bucco game.  Its been mentioned several times by Pirate announcers that Brault is a talented singer. He'll get a chance to showcase his talent tonight.  Fingers crossed for a cool Topps Now card.

Thanks for reading.  

Monday, June 18, 2018


2006 SPx Paul Maholm Auto 1/1

I've been on a nice run of keeping my overall card spending down.  The card above is the most I've spent on a baseball card in over two months ($15).  Kind of funny its Paul Maholm.. 

Every so often I talk about having eBay tunnel vision when something pops up that I know I want to add.  This was one of those cases.  I have an odd fascination with the pitching staff from the Jason Bay era Pirates.  Guys like Maholm, Zach Duke, Ian Snell and Tom Gorzelanny are all guys that I really enjoy collecting.  I have most of the "common" cards, so my hunt usually consists of lower numbered parallels. 

When dealing with these players usually your main worry is that the shipping will probably cost more than the card itself.  With this being a 1/1 I knew I was going to spend a little more money, but you just never know how high things will get.  Thankfully $15 was a manageable amount.  In my mind I was thinking $10ish, but I wasn't going to let $5 stop from getting a nice addition.  

Thanks for reading! 

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Father's Day Walk Off

It had been a while since Marc (Remember the Astrodome) and I swapped cards.  In some ways we are probably not the greatest trading match as Marc collects a little bit of Buccos on the side.  Marc looked past those details in our latest swap.  Much like the package from Nick I showed yesterday, this one also felt like it would be a good day at the card show.  So much great variety. 

Marc brought the heat right away.  To me this is the blog trading version of the bat flip.  Check this out. 

 The legend looking in tip top shape.
 The prototype delivery. I'm sure this is studied today.  Pretty sure I head Max Scherzer say that he owes his top shelf stuff to Walk.

 The stache and hair were almost at perfect symmetry here.
 You can see Walk almost laughing on this Leaf card.  He knows no one can hit him.
 Someone made him mad.
 I've been thinking about being Bob Walk for Halloween this year.  Just don't know if I can get my hair that perfect.

 Wrigley cameo
 A few years back I tried to dissect what the best Walk card would be.  It turned out to be a fools game because they are all great.  Non official list would have this 88 near the top.

Alright, time for the "other" cards of mere mortal players
 I hadn't seen a Warning Track variant in a while.
 The green cards should be called "Matrix" variants.
 This is one of my favorite Hermansen cards.  Never a fan of the blurred out backgrounds though.
 It was exciting to see Don Hoad in DK as a Pirate.  I've been trying to get a few of the relic cards from the set, but they actually sell pretty well.  Think a few Pirate fans shared my excitement.
 A trifecta of cool Cooke cards.
 Al Martin is one of my favorites to collect as he was one of the few Pirates besides Kendall to be in most of the mid/late 90's sets.  Kendall can sometimes be a little pricey when trying to collect obscure parallels so I often use Martin to get my fix.

 Gotta love the Matt Morris card.

I think UD Victory might get the award for showing a guy in one uniform, but the team list is something else.
 Cordova is a fun guy to collect.  He was really good as a Pirate.  They found him much later in his career after a successful run in the Mexican league.
Elias Diaz has been a nice surprise this year.  Makes me wonder if the Pirates will try to deal Cervelli.

/tear for Cutch.

Thanks for the great cards Marc.  These were a ton of fun to go through.  Hope you are enjoying Gerrit Cole.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Virtual Dime Box

I live in an area that is void of card shows/shops.  I'm not going to wax poetic as most of the ones in my area that closed never adapted to online pricing.  As much as I want to support local business, it is not good for my collection to drop $40 on a Jason Bay auto.  

These days I live vicariously through blogging friends that have good shops/shows/flea markets to attend on a regular basis. Of course our most notable dime box digger is Nick.  This latest installment of cards from Nick is what I would imagine a perfect dig for Pirate cards would turn up. 

Early/mid 2000's was a tough time to be collecting Pirates.  The only area team wise that was represented well was sets featuring retired players.  Team Heroes is a nice example. 

I think Fleer might get the award for most obscure sets in the 2000's.  Today these have become hard to find.  Very happy to have this Honus in my collection.
I'm a fan of any card that shows the beautiful skyline in the background.

This card has all the loveable wear I like to see on a vintage card.

Is that a faceless Chuck Tanner in the background?

I've begun the process of trying to pick up some Josh Bell cards.
A Dime Box special with a short term Bucco!
More mid 2000's legend sets.

Always an underrated set for great photos.

Legendary Cuts was very fancy pants when it came out.  The base cards are not super easy to find.
My favorite here is the Cole in the Bradenton Marauders jersey.

If I recall, Nick told me that Gorzelanny was from his neck of the woods.  Pokey Reese was always fun to watch in the field.  A shame his bat never came a long.
Two Pacific cards and a Spanky.  I bet LaValliere got all the ladies.

Mitch Keller is the Pirates biggest prospect.  He looks to be on track to join the team next year.  There was some talk that the Pirates may push him if they could stay in contention, but that doesn't look like the case.
It has been a few years since I dipped my toes in the Gypsy Queen game.  Always nice to receive some in trade.
When these Joey Bats Pirate cards started showing up in Topps sets I was pretty happy.  Kind of funny considering how bad he was with the Buccos, but I wanted them all!
Charlie Hayes son Ke'Bryan is a huge prospect in the system.  He has made his way through the system really quick.
Talking about cashing in.  This is the Dime Box equivalent of winning the Powerball in consecutive weeks. Must be nice to throw around cards like this in the mail.  You are a baller my friend. 

This was such a fun stuck to go through.  Thanks so much Nick. 

Thanks for reading!