Thursday, September 30, 2021

Heritage 2021 Traded - The Bullpen Purge

 I might as well keep going with these.

Yesterday I showed the Cubs big three traded, Baez, Bryant, and Rizzo.  Today I've got the bullpen purge, as the Cubs also dumped their 7th, 8th, and 9th inning guys.

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Heritage 2021 Traded Cards

 I don't recall that Topps did any of the traded cards in this year's Heritage like those from the 1972 set.

The originals were in the last series so maybe Topps is saving them for Heritage High Numbers.

I decided to make three painful traded cards. They aren't my best work, but they'll suffice.

I've got nothing else to say about them.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

2021 Finest Flashbacks Cubs

 The online-only brand Finest Flashbacks returned for a second run.  Year one must have done well as Topps raised the price of a box from last year's $55 to $199.99 for 2021.

The set consists of 220 cards. The first 200 are active players while the last 20 are short-printed retired players.  There are seven Cubs total include on short-print.  

The design mimics the look of the 1994 Finest.  I suppose you could also call Finest Flashbacks "Finest Heritage."  They are doing the same thing that Heritage does with Topps - work the the designs of the original one year at a time.  Last year Flashbacks did the initial Finest release from 1993.  This year they moved on to 1994.  




And doing a little comparison,


here's a 1994 Finest next to a 2021 Flashbacks.

The 2021 Sandberg card has a different design...


because that's what the 1994 Sandberg looked like.

Monday, September 27, 2021

Five Years of Funky Fire

 This year was the fifth year for Topps Fire.  The concept has been the same for each of the five years, with the base set divided between three different funky designs.  

How funky, you ask. Take a look for yourself.

Each year, not only is the design funky, but so are the name fonts.  Each design has its own font, except for 2019 when the same font was used on all three.

Most years saw the designs use three different main colors.  Yellow is the most popular, showing up in four of the five years.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Five Random Cubs Cards

  I've got 19,486 Cubs cards from 285 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1962 Post #191 Jerry Kindall  The RNG starts us with a Post card for the second week in a row.  Notice the write up, which says that KIndall took over at shortstop when Ernie Banks moved to the outfield.  Banks didn't last long, just 23 games in left field before moving to first base.

1980s: 1985 All Star Game Program Gary Matthews  No respect for the Sarge in the All-Star Game program and they spelled his last name wrong.  There should be two Ts, not one.

1990s: 1997 Bowman #237 Mark Grace What is that sticking out of Grace's back pocket?  I assumed a batting glove, but since he is batting he'd be wearing his gloves.

2000s: 2001 Team Issued Fergie Jenkins This is one of ten reprints that the Cubs gave away throughout the 2001 season.  The first 30,000 fans got this card on July 25.

2010s: 2011 Topps TLMP #RS Ryne Sandberg Seems like Topps was stretching when they did these throwback manufactured patches.  I can't think of any connection between Ryne Sandberg and a Cubs logo from the 30's, 40's, and 50's.

Saturday, September 25, 2021

70s Saturday - 1971 Kelloggs Cubs

 Here's the 1971 Kelloggs Cubs.  The Cubs make up five of the 75 cards.  Beckert, Hickman, and Kessinger were All-Stars in 1970, so their inclusion makes sense.  Kelloggs was nice enough to add Ernie Banks, a sort of send-off card.  Billy Williams finished second in the 1970 MVP voting, yet didn't make the All-Star team.  Kelloggs wisely included him in the 1971 set.



Friday, September 24, 2021

Craig Kimbrel Follows the Autograph Rule

 I haven't been adding too many cards to my rule-following autograph collection because there haven't been many new Cubs players with autographs.  Today's card is a catch-up.  

I pay pretty close attention to the autograph checklists from Topps but often forget to look at what Panini releases.  A recent review of their 2020 products led me to an autographed card for Craig Kimbrel.

This is from 2020 National Treasures.  It shows Kimbrel as a Cub in a year he played for the Cubs so that checks all the boxes of my collection rules.

I now have 141 certified autographs of players that had a certified autograph card that shows them as a Cub from a year that they played for the Cubs.

Terry AdamsMatt GarzaKevin Orie
Arismendy Alcantara   Leo GomezAngel Pagan
Albert AlmoraTom GorzelannyBob Patterson
Moises AlouKevin GreggEric Patterson
Adbert AlzolayAngel GuzmanCorey Patterson
Jake ArrietaJason HammelDavid Patton
Javier BaezTodd HaneyCarlos Pena
Darwin BarneyIan HappBilly Petrick
Francis BeltranBrendan HarrisFelix Pie
David BoteKevin HartLou Piniella
Milton BradleyKyle HendricksMark Prior
Roosevelt BrownJose HernandezBrooks Raley
Kris BryantJason HeywardAramis Ramirez
Scott BullettBobby HillAnthony Rizzo
Freddie BynumRich HillHenry Rodriguez
Marlon ByrdNico HoernerHenry Rodriguez
Jeimer CandelarioMicah HoffpauirChris Rusin
Victor CaratiniCesar IzturisAddison Russell
Andrew CashnerBrett JacksonJeff Samardzija
Larry CassianReed JohnsonRey Sanchez
Frank CastilloJacque JonesRyne Sandberg
Welington CastilloMatt KarchnerKyle Schwarber
Starlin CastroDavid KeltonScott Servais
Ronny CedenoBrooks Kieschnick   Jorge Soler
Rocky CherryCraig KimbrelAlfonso Soriano
Matt ClementBryan LaHairSammy Sosa
Steve ClevengerTommy LaStellaGeovany Soto
Buck CoatsJunior LakeSteve Smyth
Tyler ColvinDerrek LeeMatt Szczur
Willson ContrerasJon LeiberRyan Theriot
Juan CruzJon LesterOzzie Timmons
Yu DarvishCole LiniakSteve Trachsel
Wade DavisGreg MadduxDuane Underwood
Blake DeWittDave MagadanJermaine Van Buren
Rafael DolisDillon MaplesJosh Vitters
Scott DownsCarlos MarmolTodd Walker
Jason DubuoisSean MarshallTodd Wellemeyer
Carl EdwardsScott MooreRandy Wells
Kyle FarnsworthMatt MurtonTurk Wendell
Mike FontenotRod MyersJerome Williams
Kevin FosterThomas NealKerry Wood
Dexter FowlerRoberto NovoaTravis Wood
Kyuji FujikawaJames NorwoodMichael Wuertz
Kosuke FukudomeWill OhmanCarlos Zambrano
Sam FuldAugie OjedaRob Zastryzny
Sean GallagherMike OltBen Zobrist
Nomar Garciaparra Ryan O'MalleyJulio Zuleta

Thursday, September 23, 2021

2021 Fire Cubs

 The Topps Target-exclusive brand Fire came out a couple of weeks ago.  The set was pretty much the same as in the past.  It has three different bold designs.  There are five Cubs cards among the 200 in the set.  All three designs were included.



Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Beckett and Topps Cost Me a Few Extra Bucks

 My go-to site for team checklists has been Beckett.  They will have a set's checklist on their website within a day of the set's release.  Not only do they have the checklist, but they have another list that has been broken down by teams.  I use the team list to make my own Cubs shopping lists.

Beckett makes their checklists based on what Topps has released.  Unfortunately for me, Topps screwed up the checklist for both wave 4 and wave 5 of 2021 206.  Each list shows a Cub player whose card did not show him as a Cub.

Usually if there is a team mistake on a checklist it becomes known almost immediately.  Checklists come from Topps just days before a product's release. Collectors who have bought and listed the cards see the mistake and spread the word.  

That doesn't work for 206.  The list comes many weeks before we get to see the cards since the cards are printed based on how many were sold.  The Topps wave 4 checklist shows Alfonso Soriano as a Cub.  Craig Kimbrel is a Cub according to wave 5's list.  The lists at Beckett show the same thing.

So I bought the Soriano and Kimbrel card.


Now I'm out a few bucks.  Any Yankee or Sox collectors out there want these?  I have no use for them.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

2021 206 Wave 5 Cubs

 The fifth wave of 2021 206 netted me two more Cubs.  Neither of the two are on the Cubs current roster.  


In fact, they haven't been on the Cubs roster for 110 years!  Topps went very old school with the Cubs in this wave.  Both of these were included in the original 1909 T206 set.



Topps even used the same pictures as the originals.  I haven't decided if that is a good thing or a lazy thing.

Monday, September 20, 2021

I Waited Out the Seller and Finally Got the Program

 My Cubs program collection is nearly complete.  I need just six of the 110 different game programs the Cubs issued between 1982 and 2009 (they went to a monthly program in 2010 instead of the quarterly so I'm just getting one per year from 2010 on forward).  The six I'm missing have never been listed on Ebay since my hunt began.

A month ago a seller listed a lot of 26 different media guides, yearbooks, catalogues, and programs. One of my missing programs, 1992 #1, was included.  I messaged the seller to see if he would sell me that one separately.  He said he didn't want to because then he'd have to retake the pictures for the listing.  

Being proactive, I downloaded the pictures and blurred out 1992 #1 in any of the pictures that it was included in.  I sent the seller the pictures and asked again, politely.  He again declined.  He was more interested in making the $69.99 on the entire lot.

I knew that the lot was overpriced and sure enough, the auction ended with zero bids.  He relisted at the same price and a week later, zero bids again.  He lowered the opening bid to $49.99 on the third try, but the auction still failed to attract a single bid.  On week four the initial bid dropped to $29.99, but still nothing.  I debated putting in just the opening amount but decided that was too much for one book I needed and 25 I didn't.

As soon as the fourth auction ended, I messaged the seller again, letting him know I was still interested in the one program.  This time he was agreeable.  He realized making a little is better than making nothing at all.  We agreed to a price and the book was mine.

The cover featured the new skipper in 1991, Jim Lefebvre.  Cubs Febvre was not contagious.  The team won just 78 games, with 20 of those coming from Cy Young winner Greg Maddux.

Notice how the bottom mentioned baseball cards inside.  Those were the Ballstreet Journal cards.

This sheet has nine cards and was included in both the first and second program of the season.  A second sheet was in the third edition while the fourth edition was cardless.

With this program, I now have all of the 1992 programs.

I'm also down to needed just five more to complete my collection, 1984 #3, 1990 #1, 1995 #2, and 1996 #2&4.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 19,484 Cubs cards from 285 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1963 Post #175 Don Landrum  The Post cards had lots of their Cubs pictures, like this one, taken at Wrigley Field. That wasn't the case with the Topps cards of this era.

1980s: 1989 Team Issued Vance Law  You typically think of third base as a power position.  Not with Vance Law.  He hit 7 homers.  The Cubs released him after the season so he could sign with a Japanese team.

1990s: 1996 Bowman #348 Brian Stephenson  Bowman really blew it with this one! Stephenson spent the 1996 season in AA and was 5-13 with and ERA of 4.69.  Those are not the numbers of a good prospect.  He never rose above AA.

2000s: 2000 Bowman #273 Ruben Quevedo  Here's another big miss. Quevedo spent the 2000 season with the Cubs and posted a record of 3-10 and a Jumbo Jet ERA of 7.47

2010s: 2012 Topps Mini #172 Reed Johnson  Alfred Hitchcock would have loved this card -- attack of the killer pigeons!