Sunday, June 25, 2017

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 14,962 Cubs cards from 121 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1967 Dexter Press Glenn Beckert   All of the pictures in the Dexter Press set seem to have been taken in the exact same spot at the the Cubs spring training home in Scottsdale.  See the catcher just to the right of the Cubby bear patch on Beckert's shoulder?   He's in nine of the other eleven cards in the set. 

1980s: 1988 Revco #2 Andre Dawson This card is from the one and only set that Revco issued.  Interesting Cubs / Revco connection... the drug store chain filed for bankruptcy in 1988 and was bought by Sam Zell.  Zell later bought the Tribune Corporation, and with it, came the Cubs.

1990s: 1993 Topps Rockies #373 Mike Morgan  This is from a parallel set Topps issued in 1993, one with the Rockies inaugural season logo, the other for the Marlins.

2000s: 2008 Baseball Heroes #37 Kosuke Fukudome The card mentions Fukudome's MLB debut in 2008.  He hit a ninth inning home run to send the game into extra innings.  The Cubs went on to lose the game anyway.  That seems to sum up Fukudome's career....looks good but the end result was not good.

2010s: 2013 Team Issued #65 Scott Sanderson  Home game #65 was on the 21st of August and Sanderson wore #21.  The Cubs played the Nationals, the former Expos, and Sanderson also pitched for the Expos.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Series Two 1987

The Series Two added another 100 cards to the 1987 set.  This version of 1987 is divided into two parts, All Star and Rookies


The Cubs netted five All Stars.  It's nice to see Maddux as a Cub and not a Brave.  Ryno now has two cards in the 1987 set.  He had just one card in the original 1987 Topps set.

As for Rookies, there was just one Cub..

...the 2017 ever-present Rob Zastryzny.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Series Two Inserts

The number of Cubs inserts from series two is off the charts...there are 28 different cards (compared to ten base cards).  It continues to amaze me just how many insert sets Topps cranks out.

Right now I've got 21 of the 28.  The ones I'm missing were retail exclusives, which Brentandbecca doesn't get.   I've ordered the others off of Sportlots and Ebay and I hope to have them soon.

With the 21 I have in hand,  I'm going to break them up among several posts.  Today I'll start with a couple new sets.

Arrieta and Bryant are in the 20 card Major League Milestones sets.  Kudos to Topps for using pictures from the game on the card.  It is almost like these are Topps Now Lite cards.

The Cubs have only one memorable event among the 50 in the Memorable Moments set.  But boy was it memorable!  This is Anthony Rizzo after he caught the throw from Kris Bryant for the final out in Game 7.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

2017 Series Two Cubs

My series two shipment from Brentandbecca has arrived!

There are ten Cubs in the base set of series two.  I knew what each of the cards would look like (except for Rob Zastryzny) because the nine were in the factory team set.

Were there any differences?

Just one, Anthony Rizzo.  His series two card is horizontal, different from the factory team set's vertical version.

I was hopeful that the series two cards of Jon Jay and Koji Uehara would be different from the factory set's photoshopped cards.


I was disappointed.


Finally, the card for rookie Rob Zastryzny, who is showing up in way more sets that he should be.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

1981 Cubs Cartoons

Today I've got the Cubs cartoons from the 1981 set.  These are the last player-specific cartoons for the next 25 years.

There were 27 Cubs players in the base and update set.  Only 17 got cartoons as the others had career stats that were too long to fit in the drawings.  The cartoons also came in pairs; the players got two.

None of them contain the player's name,  You'll have to guess who they are.  Topps had a thing about off-season jobs this year.  We have a welder, teacher, and carpenter.  Topps also likes family members as two fathers, a brother, and a wife are mentioned.

The oddest?  Probably the guy who wrote a song for Bruce Sutter's wedding and the guy that breeds Persian cats.

Scroll through the cartoons and at the bottom I'll have the names of the players.

From top to bottom: Doug Bird, Tim Blackwell, Doug Capilla, Ivan DeJesus, Steve Dillard, Leon Durham, Jesus Figueroa, Steve Henderson, Willie Hernandez, Ken Kravec, Mike Krukow, Dennis Lamp, Jerry Martin, Joe Strain, Bruce Sutter, Scot Thompson, and Mike Vail.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Upgrading Willson

I had a chance to get a better certified autograph of Cubs catcher Willson Contreras and I did so.

Last year I picked up a Bowman auto because it met my rule - certified autograph, shows player as a Cub, from a year that he played for the Cubs.

Though it does show him as a Cub, it is a spring training shot and it has a minor league look to it.

I saw an auction for a 2017 Tribute autograph.  It started at a low price and never got very high.  For under eight bucks I was able to upgrade.

The picture looks much better, as he is shown at Wrigley Field.  

The only down side is that Willson's signature has gotten sloppier.  It has gone from a D- to an F.  I doubt that I'll ever be able to upgrade the signature.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Blog Bat Around: The Origins of Your Player Collections

P-Town Tom offered up the lastest blog bat around topic - the origins of your player collection.

There are five different Cubs players that I collect.  Some I go after harder than others.  My collection has two parts, the team sets and the players.  If I have a card of the player in the team sets, I won't necessarily duplicate it for the player collection.

Regular readers should be very familiar with two of the players that I collect.  I write about them often.  You'll also be surprised when you see which player I've got the most of.

Here we go:

Player #1: Darwin Barney
Why do I collect him? A couple years after I got back into collecting, I decided I wanted to start a player collection of a current Cub.  Starlin Castro was the obvious choice, but he was very hot at the time and too pricey for me.  So I gravitated to Darwin Barney.  I like the way he played and the way he presented himself on the field.  He was also not a big name so I didn't think there would be much competition for his cards and the prices would be affordable.

I was right.  During his time with the Cubs I was able to get almost all of his current cards and parallels except for the really low numbered cards.  I was also able to go back and get minor league and college cards.  It was a fun chase.

Cards in Player Collection:  192
Cards in Set Collection: 44
Total Number of Darwin Barney cards: 236

Player #2: Billy Williams
Why do I collect him?   Easy answer here - Billy is my all-time favorite Cub. Kinda makes sense to collect you favorite guy.  A couple years ago I decided to try and get all of his cards on the PSA master collection set.  I got off to a good start but have stalled lately.  Most of what I have left are very rare and very expensive cards.

Cards in Player Collection:  295
Cards in Set Collection: 115
Total Number of Billy Williams cards: 410

Player #3: Ernie Banks
Why do I collect him?  Another easy answer - he's Mr. Cub.  Gotta have him if you collect the Cubs.  I'm not as intense with his as with Billy's because there is way too much out there and it would break the bank (no pun intended!).  Besides, since he was in so many sets and inserts, I already have a decent number of his cards in the set collection.  I could just cherry-pick cards for the player collection.

Cards in Player Collection:  195
Cards in Set Collection: 247
Total Number of  cards: 442

Player #4: Andre Dawson
Why do I collect him?  I really just backed into being a Dawson collector.  Several years ago a reader sent me a huge stack of Dawson cards and most were not in my set collection.  Since I liked Dawson, I decided to use the stack as a start of a player collection.  His is the smallest player collection, though the total number of cards is up there because he was with the Cubs during the junk wax era

Cards in Player Collection:  68
Cards in Set Collection: 217
Total Number of  cards: 285

Player #5: Ryne Sandberg
Why do I collect him?  Ryno was my favorite Cub of the '80s and '90s, so collecting him was an easy choice.  It was also an easy choice because he was in just about every set of that era, often with multiple cards.  By not even trying I have, by far, more cards of Ryne Sandberg than of any other Cub.  It's not even close.

Cards in Player Collection:  180
Cards in Set Collection: 634
Total Number of  cards: 814