Saturday, January 16, 2016

Reminiscing 90's:1988 Slimer Ghostbusters Album Stickers

Key notes for April 2nd 1988:
April 2nd 1988 was a Saturday
Ronald Reagan was President
Most Popular Movie released in April of 1988 was  Beetlejuice (awesome movie)
Most Popular Book around this time was The Icarus Agenda by Robert Ludlum
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single on April 2nd 1988 was Man In The Mirror by Michael Jackson.
SPORTS N/A

FEATURED TOY:
Yes, these are 1988. However, they are close enough to me to 1990's as I really took to the Ghostbusters more in the 90's than in the late 80's.

A little info on these:
  • Grocery Rack x (5) Packs Per Rack
  • Retro 80s Non-Sport Ghostbusters Stickers
  • Produced by Diamond Manufacturing Company

FEATURED CARDS:
These are players that just plain scared me when my teams played them. They always found a way to shine when the Giants, Yankees and Knicks were the opponent.

So many times Jordan took down the Knicks, so many.....

Every time Deion was on the field, the Giants found him unstoppable especially in the return game.


When I saw these guys batting, despite the good Yankees pitching in the 90's, they scared me.
These are just a few of the players I could have gone with. I almost grabbed Tim Hardaway or Reggie Miller for the Knicks. The Giants could have shown Brett Favre or Emmitt Smith and the Yankees could have had Mo Vaughn among others.

I also could have taken this whole scare part another way as well. But stay tuned for that, there may be some more Ghost busting to do!!!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Nightmarish Rodney Hampton Mail Day

Without any argument, Stadium Club of the 90's was not only a popular product, but it put out some amazing base cards, parallels and inserts.

One of those cool inserts came from 1995 Stadium Club called Nightmares. The checklist was full of players that would give you Nightmares. Other than this Hampton, I only own one other of these.


The backs each had a specific creature that would give you a Nightmare. Hampton's was a Vampire.
 

These inserts fell at 1:18 packs and still hold a decent value today. Hampton was one of the lower-end ones so I lucked out in terms of paying under $1 for it. However top players still can be a decent price especially in decent condition as the backs were known for bad corners. Luckily this Hampton was mint.

What's one of you favorite inserts from Stadium Club?

CAPTION THIS CARD!

This card is crying out for a Caption.


Leave a caption below for this card. Please keep it free of language and clean please for our younger audience

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Breakin Wax REVIEW:2015 Panini Contenders Football (BIG BOOM!)

There are a few products that I can't wait to come out on a yearly basis and one of the top if not the top is Contenders. Why? It's hard not to see that in the football card market this is top dog for autographed rookie cards. It's the must have and one that I did need to have.

In every box of 2015 Contenders is 24 packs with 5 cards per pack. You should find 5 autographs per box with some coming with 6.  You should also find  3 PENNANTS, 2 ROOKIE OF THE YEAR CONTENDERS,1 MVP CONTENDERS,1 LEGENDARY CONTENDERS AND TWO OTHER INSERTS. Each box will roughly run you around $130.

The base cards simply don't change much. That's something I have no problem with. I think they look nice and stick with the theme that has been throughout the product since 1998.


The inserts look much nicer than past years. They seem to be all die cuts as well. (of course you could also find base card parallels that I didn't get that are not die cut)




 
 
These remind me of two things. One, they look like the ones that were used in Rookies and Stars. Two, back in the 90's Contenders had felt die cut pennants that were awesome. I kinda like this addition and seem to fit this product better. Time to put some felt on these and break out the leather inserts now!


Now onto the main course of Contenders. The rookie autograph tickets. Along with parallels, Sp (these are always so unknown early on that you are never sure you have one til Panini releases the info) the tickets have variations too.

Unlike past years, they are easy to spot. Here is a Lorenzo Mauldin auto I pulled. This is a plain RPS (yes this is also a Playoff Ticket parallel but you get my point)
 
 
Now here is an image off Panini Knights Lance of a variation of Ty Montgomery. Notice the helmet is exchanged just for a logo. Like I said, easy. There are also College uni variations too but those as well are easy to spot.
Panini America 2015 Contenders Football QC15
 
Here is another parallel I pulled. This is a Bryan Bennett Championship ticket numbered to 99. I love the rainbow shine.







 
The box seemed a bit flat until this found it's way into the second to last pack......
HOLY BOOM BATMAN!! TODD GURLEY AUTOGRAPHED VARIATION ROOKIE CARD REDEMPTION. By far my greatest 2015 haul.

Overall, what can I say, I got a great pull in the box. I can't say each box is going to have one of these, but I will say you can never go wrong with Contenders. There are so many offerings and big ticket chases. Yes, pun intended. I didn't even touch base on the veteran or coaches autographs in the product too that you can check out HERE. You also won't find any of those weak jersey card fill-ins like with most products. You only find straight up autographs, unless you buy retail.

I will also note that not all autographs are going to be somebodies and some you may never see them on the field, but what's fun are the ones that slip through the cracks and become stars. Like Victor Cruz or that guy named Tom Brady. You just never know. It's at least great to have the chance to snag one. I wished the product had Will Tye however (he is the Giants rookie TE who led all rookie TE's)

Comments on your thoughts on Contendes are welcomed below.
 
Writers Note: Look for some of these cards in future giveaways and #SCCGivesBack mail days. Stay Tuned and make sure to thank Panini America and Tracy Hackler.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

What If.....(Yes, A Powerball Post For YOU To Join In On)

So how many of us collectors stood in line today for a Powerball ticket for a chance to win a record breaking 1.5 BILLION dollars and have dreams of being able to purchase that one card or many cards for our PC's? I can only assume many of us. (of course I would pay all of the bills off first, save some to be safe for life, then rest would be used for fun but with that big of a jackpot that should still be a decent amount)

So for tonight before our dreams become a reality or fall to disappointment, I want to know....

What's the one card, I am looking for just one but feel free to say more, that you would pick up for your PC if you were to win the Powerball jackpot?

By the way, I have always dreamed of owning a 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle and that would be mine.

Breakin Wax REVIEW:2015 Elite Extra Edition Baseball Hobby HOT Box

When you think of prospecting products in baseball, usually the first thought that pops into everyone's mind is Bowman. Yes, it does me to but I am not as big of a fan of it as I used to be. Feels like Topps had put that on repeat.

So as normal, I think outside of the normal collector realm and found something I enjoy 100 TIMES more than Bowman, Panini Elite Extra Edition. Not only does this have prospects, it's LOADED with autographs, parallels and jersey cards all for about the same price. Why wouldn't you choose this over it.

See why I am so into this product as you read on.

In every box of 2015 Elite Extra Edition you will find 20 packs per box with 5 cards per pack. Most boxes will average about 6 autographs and 1 jersey card. Mine came with an extra. There are some HOT boxes that can land you up to 10 hits. Boxes will run you roughly $90.

The base cards are sharp. Foil done in a design similar to 1997 Donruss Preferred featuring the prospects in their college uni's. There are also 200 cards in the base set so that's not completely out of reach in a few boxes.

 So you take an already great looking base set and add some color and rainbow to it. Even more impressive. You can find four numbered cards per box. There are also die cut parallels.

And harder to find ones. This one of D-Backs prospect Domingo Leyba is numbered to 10.

There are other inserts besides the parallels to find. These aren't quite as impressive, but not bad in design.
  

I would have liked to seen this done in foil.

Now onto the autographs. You get regular base and parallels to these as well. Including chances at printing plates. I pulled some pretty decent ones for myself including

Kaprielian (even prettier in person) and
  

Jeter's future replacement?, Kyle Holder. This one is numbered to 10 as well. That makes two low numbered pulls so far.

Each box also comes with one jersey card. I thought the design popped on here.

I also pulled this autographed jersey card numbered to 50 as well. Like I said, this product is impressive. But even more impressive was my final pull....

A Boston Red Sox top prospect Yoan Moncada Rookie autographed silhouette /10. The silhouettes are making their EEE debut this year and I think it is an added winner for sure. One of my favorite designed rookie cards on the market.
Overall, not to sound cliche-ish, but Panini hit a home run here. Great looking base cards, impressive parallels and hits galore. I found value around every corner here and every pack I busted brought more excitement. 

This isn't even all of the awesome stuff that EEE offers. Check out the details on The Knights Lance, HERE. You will see even more offerings that I didn't pull such as Passing The Torch autographs that have Mariano Rivera on them.

Writers Note: Look for some of these cards in future giveaways and #SCCGivesBack mail days. Stay Tuned and make sure to thank Panini America and Tracy Hackler.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Monte Irvin

Sad day in baseball today with the news of HOFer Monte Irvin's passing at age 96.

I was sorting through cards tonight when I stumbled on this Monte Irvin card from 2004 Sweet Spot Classic and thought I would share it.

Do any of you guys have any memories of Monte or own any of his cards?

Let me know in comments!

Breakin Wax REVIEW:2015-2016 Panini Court Kings Basketball Hobby Box

Court Kings makes its return for another season bringing basketball cards to life with it's bright colors and artistic layouts.

This product I didn't get to open last season but it was one that struck my curiosity. So combine those two things and here we are.

Every box of 2015-2016 Court Kings comes with 10 cards per box.. Each hobby box of 2015-16 Court Kings Basketball will deliver four base cards, two Rookie Cards, one autograph card, one memorabilia card, one Portraits insert, one additional insert and one Box Topper. Boxes will run you just under $70.

The box is kinda cool as it's a very solid cardboard box. Something I am re-using for storage. Here is what the pack content looks like once the box is opened.
  

I wasn't lucky on the end of pulling an auto with my box topper, but I will admit this is really cool looking. Quite the angle. Probably some of the best looking box toppers I have seen.

You won't find many base cards in a box either. They do look nice and have that canvas feel. However, set chasers will have to bust a few boxes if they want to complete a set.
 

This one is numbered to 299 and was the ONLY rookie card from my box. This design has the feel of 90's card. Also reminds me of a wall that might have been painted in Fresh Prince Of Bel Air.

Portrait Insert. This one is numbered to 100 and is a red parallel.
 

Dwayne's got swagger. My other insert in the box.

I may not have gotten the two spoken of rookies, but I did get three pulls instead of two. First off, the jersey cards look really impressive done with the artistic layout. This one is the Artistic Endeavors. This is numbered to 299 as well.

Really awesome looking card here in Art Nouveau. Great balanced layout, HUGE swatch. Doesn't get any better than this. These are numbed to 299. There are also eye popping prime swatches in these. Just check them out HERE.

Up next, a Jrue Holiday autograph as my autograph in the box. This one was numbered to 35 and is signed on-card!!

Overall, bit of a weak break. I did get a bonus hit in my box, but there wasn't a lot going in terms of value overall. However, I will not tell you to stay away from the product. There is some rare inserts, tremendous swatches, top notch autographs from vets and rookies plus the artistic look of the cards is well done. It's something I would at least take another chance on.

Writers Note: Look for some of these cards in future giveaways and #SCCGivesBack mail days. Stay Tuned and make sure to thank Panini America and Tracy Hackler.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Not Going Digital

Digital cards seem to be one of the hottest things in the hobby right now. The only problem, I don't like it and sometimes I don't get it.

I have always been about physical objects. I still listen to CD's in a download era. I still buy DVD's in a Redbox/download era. I still pay by bills by mail in an email era and I still buy cards from a store. Why? Because I can physically see what I paid for. I don't have to give it back. I won't lose it due to a glitch. I know my bills will arrive safely.

I guess you can call me old fashion, but I don't get the appeal of having pictures of cards. If I wanted just pictures, I could just as easily go to Panini's blog and grab this....

Panini America 2015 National Treasures College Marcus Mariota 

Boom! I even got this for free! HUGE HIT!!

Paying to get nothing seems pointless and doesn't appeal to me. I have seen other collectors pay $80 for a digital card that they will never touch and it makes me shutter. I have heard other pay even more. Big shutter. Those types of numbers could land you something pretty significant you can actually hold.

But, I guess, big guess,  I can see the appeal for some. Opening digital packs to chase your favorite teams/players might be fun. Trying to land the rare cards before your friends. For me, I would rather open up a physical pack and do those same things. Pulling a digital autographed card or rare card is as appealing to me as that picture of the Mariota above. It's just a picture that holds no value.

I am not saying there isn't a place in the hobby for digital cards. There obviously is and it helps keep the card companies going which is a good thing. I guess I am mainly saying it definitely isn't for me.

Other than not being able to physically touch the cards, here are a few other concerns that I have about them.
  1. They hurt LCS'. You can't buy digital cards from them and if you are spending all of your hobby funds on digital, we will continue to see the LCS' disappear. Would probably hurt card shows as well.
  2. I am hoping it is being used as a bridge to collecting for kids but not the whole idea of collecting. If the future of collecting all goes digital because we teach kids this way, the hobby could disappear.
  3. Bonding with kids and other collectors. There was nothing more memorable for me than sitting down with my father and sorting cards and getting together with friends and trading. You can't do that on your mobile device correctly. That's like having Christmas dinner and texting the person across from you asking them to pass the mashed potatoes. Where is the human interaction most of us seek?!
But I do have a solution as a way to help with these concerns and still move forward with the digital cards. These ideas may also draw me in if ever put forth.
  1. Instead of buying packs of digital cards, buy packs of real cards to find codes to unlock digital cards. Make these digital cards run at 1:4 or 1:6 packs. Don't let us know who it is, what kind of pull it is or how rare it is. Part of the fun will be the unveiling!
  2. Once the digital card is unlocked, give the person a choice of claiming the card as a physical card or letting them risk it in a fantasy type game. 
  3. If the person decides to gamble their card and they lose, they don't get the card or a prize. If they win,well that's up to the company what happens from there.
I find this solves all of the dilemmas I see with digital cards. It keeps physical cards as top priority which keeps LCS', bonding, and may help draw in kids who want to not only collect but play an online type of game. I know that many of you won't agree as some of you fought back hard against me and my beliefs  about the digital cards, but I know some that will agree.

I don't think digital cards are horrible overall if they are used the right way. If they are used strictly to make money and are not here to help the hobby expand, than that means they are not being used the right way.

These are just my thoughts. You can leave yours below but if you disagree, please don't be on the attack. Make your points valid and without threats. It's great to have a discussion, not great to turn it into a war. We are all in this hobby together.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

The Study Of Kids+Collecting

I was curious how some kids would react to some unopened packs of 1991 Leaf Series 2 and some 1991-1992 Upper Deck basketball that I had lying around. So I got a group of kids together that consisted of some that have collected before and others that had not. My main experiment was whether the kids could enjoy the simple part of collecting or if they would get bored with it and needing to open packs with autographs and jersey cards. It was also a way to see what would catch their attention as a way for card companies to take note. (Not sure if they will ever see this by the way)

The kids featured, names and pictures of the kids withheld for their privacy, age ranged from 6-10 years.

Let's break!

Of course with ripping packs, you must teach the proper technique which I did here



In this Leaf pack, it yielded a silver foiled puzzle piece which immediately caught their attention. It got their attention so much that they immediately wanted to bust another pack long before they finished looking through the rest of the cards.

Why was it appealing, well, they wanted to get all of their pieces.

Another favorite thing from the Leaf packs, the design and the Gold Leaf Rookies. They were popular. Only three were pulled from roughly 20 packs I brought so kids were ripping away trying to outrace each other for the next GOLD one. They also enjoyed finding the likes of Ken Griffey Jr, Mark McGwire and Barry Bonds in their packs.

This was the best of the three Gold Rookies....

After busting the baseball, we moved onto the basketball that was just as big of a hit. The biggest thing was this....

 

As soon as one pulled this, the others started ripping to find one for themselves. I had only brought 10 of these packs and this was the only one that was found. What was exciting was that none of them were upset, it actually left them wanting more which was a very good sign.

My study above shows kids would still enjoy the simple things in collecting. It also makes me wonder if some of these innovations were brought back maybe kids would be drawn in again. Honestly, the market is so flooded right now with autographs,jersey cards and parallels/sps/photo variations that a product as basic as these two might be a breath of fresh air. I think it can sometimes scare younger collectors, newer collectors or returning collectors off with so much of that stuff. It can be confusing at times. Even some of us seasoned vets still can't figure out the whole sparkle and photo variations and get frustrated. Imagine what a newbie must feel.
I remember when I was a kid busting, it was all about Collectors Choice. The Stickers, the cool photos and some fun inserts. Not to mention a DEEP checklist with many of my favorite players from my team and others.These are things that are lacking in a lot of today's "kid friendly" products. 

I think one of the problems is that the hobby is trying to advance too fast and leaving some of us behind or pushing newer collectors away. What should be happening is looking at the past and seeing what worked and why the hobby was so popular at one point. That's how I would approach it.

What do you guys think of my little bit of study and do you think YOU would be happy opening up packs like these still?