Friday, June 30, 2023

Two Non-TTM Autographs for My Latest Team Project

There were two other autographs I needed for my latest project and I couldn't get them through the mail.

I can't send away to get autographs from people that have passed away.  Herman Franks died in 2009 while Bobby Murcer passed away a year earlier.  I have to trust that both signatures are legit.

Have you figured out the team yet?  Yesterday I had the catcher, shortstop, third baseman, and center fielder.  Today I've added the manager and right fielder.  

And the team is.... 

....I'll tell you on Monday!

Thursday, June 29, 2023

My Latest TTM Project

 I recently sent out four TTM requests and had all of them back within three weeks.  I've been pleasantly pleased at how successful I've been with my TTMs.  In all I've sent out seven requests.  All have been returned and the longest wait was 22 days.

As much as possible I've been asking the players to personalize the request and all have done so.  Three of my four recent additions were personalized.  The one that wasn't was because I had to get his signature through a service called Past Pros and they charge extra for the personalization.



All four players were together on the Cubs for just one season and I'm working on getting signed cards from the entire starting lineup.  Can you figure out the year?

I'll have a couple more from the team tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

2023 Series 2 Topps vs. Wrigley Wax

 There are five Cubs players with cards that we not seen prior to the release of series two.  But since all five had played in games with the 2023 Cubs, I had made my own version of their cards.  Today will compare what Topps came up with next to my cards.

My cards are on the left and the right side has the Topps card.

I used the official Cubs headshot for Assad's card while Topps used a candid that had a shadow covering his face.  The action shots are similar.  I forgot to put the rookie logo on my card.


My picture is an actual photograph while Topps had to Photoshop.  They put the jersey logo in a pretty odd spot.


Another case of a real picture vs. Photoshop.  Real wins!


The jersey that Topps Photoshopped looks nasty.  They made it look like a long-sleeve shirt.  Also, there is a little bit of a logo on the jersey under his glove and it is really in the wrong place.


We finally once again have an actual photo on both cards.  But I don't know why Topps didn't use his official headshot.  The side view action type picture seems out of place.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

The Rest of the 2023 Series 2 Cubs Inserts

 By my count there are eleven basic insert sets in series two, sets that are just cards and not serial-numbered.  Yesterday I showed the three 1988 sets and today I've got the Cubs from the other eight sets.

Actually, it is just the other five sets.  The Cubs were skunked in three (Heavy Lumber, Home Run Challenge, and Significant Statistics).

Dansby Swanson is one of 20 in the Favorite Son set, representing the state of Georgia.

All Aces was in the first series and continues in series two with an additional 25 cards.  I really like that Topps continued the numbering from series one, making these #26-50.  I wish that they would do that with all of the insert sets that were also in series one.


Legends of the Game has 30 cards including these two.  They are chrome cards and the scan gave them a blue tint, which looks nice with the Cubbie blue.

Christopher Morel was one of 30 Stars of MLB.  This set was also in series one and is numbered from 31-60.  There weren't any Cubs in the series one set, so Morel is the only one of 60 that Topps considers a star.  Ouch!

The final insert set is World Baseball Classic Stars.  Topps didn't put MLB teams on the cards, instead they used the country.  That makes sense for a WBC set.  Marcus Stroman is in the set for Puerto Rico,  but I went ahead and got the card for my Cubs set.

Monday, June 26, 2023

1988 Cubs Inserts from 2023 Series 2

 Topps salute to 1988 continued in series two.  In addition to the usual regular and chrome cards, an All-Star set was included.  Cubs players were in all three sets.


Two off-season signings were included in the regular set.  Both ended up with photoshopped cards.  Bellinger's looks ok, but Swanson's jersey is really off.


The chrome cards in the silver packs have three Cubs.  Between the grass and ivy, there is a lot of green in the background of Dawson's card.  It looks better than the purple behind Swanson.

Ryno was a starter for the NL in the 1987 All-Star game and should have had a card like this one in the 1988 set.  Instead, Topps made an All-Star card for Juan Samuel, who was the NL's back-up second baseman.

The Cubs did have one player get an All-Star card in 1988, so we can do a little comparing.


The big difference is that the 2023 card has a hyphen between All and Star.  The grammar police got to Topps.

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Five Random Cubs Cards

 I've got 21,162 Cubs cards from 316 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1949 Eureka #63 Gene Mauch Mauch played for six different teams over his nine year career.  He played more games for the Cubs (125) than for any other team.  The Cubs were really bad which is why a guy can hit .226 for them but make so many appearances.

1980s: 1988 Fleer #415 Andre Dawson  Cards with a picture taken at this angle give you a good idea as to how much of a crown there was to the playing field at Wrigley.

1990s: 1992 Pinnacle #115 Andre Dawson  Duel Dawsons!  This one has him taking a swing at Shea.

2000s: 2008 Bowman #68 Felix Pie  We were expecting Pie but ended up with a vanilla wafer.

2010s: 2013 National #4 Ernie Banks  Does Topps still give away a special set at the National?

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Comparing the Main Brands - 1993

Year - 1993

Main Brands -  Topps, Donruss, Fleer, Score, Upper Deck

Number of Players Included Among All the Sets: 43

Players Included in Every Set:  17

As we roll through the junk wax era, the number of different players is going up.  Rookie cards seem to be the reason for the bump.  Companies were catering to the collectors who wanted to snap up blocks of cards of the next Mickey Mantle.  Those speculators didn't end up with college funds, they ended up with kindling for the fireplace.