2016 SportsNet LA Vin Scully Poster Set

I thought I would finally take some time to officially catalog a Vin Scully collectible that has been available all season at Dodger Stadium this year.  As you may know, SportsNet LA has been passing out special commemorate posters to fans for fre…

Surprise from The Phillies Room
There are few things as exciting as heading to the mailbox, and seeing an unexpected package waiting for you. The anticipation starts as soon as you see it. What wonders could be inside? For me, that anticipation is always heightened when the return address indicates it’s from The Phillies Room. Jim has always been one to surprise me with wonderful additions to my collection. As usual, I was not disappointed with the results. Want to see what he sent? I won’t show you everything, but here are a few of the key elements of the package.

Big Papi.

With less than a week left in David Ortiz’s regular season career, these additions were appropriately timed. Of course, the thing that stuck out immediately (pun intended) is the Fathead. These aren’t something I usually purchase, so it’s always welcome when one is included unexpectedly. In fact, I don’t believe this is the first time Jim has added one to my collection. Is it weird that I’m almost as excited about the perfectly sized rigid holder it came in? Ok. It’s weird. But, will make the Fathead much easier to display. As tempted as I am to actually use the Fathead, wall space is scarce in Section 36. It will be much easier to find a home sitting on a shelf. For now at least. Papi was also represented on a Topps Bunt card. I’ll admit to being confused by this. Topps Bunt is an electronic card set…that has physical cards? I do have a Topps Bunt account (section36), and have been accumulating cards on it. Although, I’m not exactly sure what to do with them now. I also see that the Ortiz card Jim sent says I can “Collect and trade this card in the Topps Bunt app today!” So, maybe if I use the code in very small letters on the back, I can add that card to my digital collection? (Unless, of course, Jim has already added the card to his.) I guess that would be a reason to have a physical card to a digital set. Like Disney Infinity, the physical item would provide the digital access. I guess I should buy some physical Bunt packs at some point. The “Perspectives” card is a fun one, including a great shot of Ortiz making some fans happy. The Walk Off Wins card could be an insert set made up exclusively of David Ortiz cards. I doubt that this is the case. But, this card celebrates Ortiz’s walk-off in game 5 of the 2004 ALCS. I don’t need much convincing to think about that game again.

With the retiring old guy covered, Jim also made sure to remember some rookies. Of course, Ted Williams isn’t exactly a rookie this year, but he once was. This Rookie Sensations card is a fun way to celebrate that. And, a “Rookie Sensation” Williams certainly was. On the back, Topps points out that Williams hit .327 his rookie year with 31 HR and 145 RBI. Just for fun, he added 44 doubles. That’s insane. How insane? In Mike Trout’s first full season he went .326/30/83. Yikes. Of course, the actual rookie included in the package was Yoan Moncada. He hasn’t exactly hit the ground running after making the jump from AA to Boston. But, he was the top prospect in baseball for a reason. Here’s hoping he figures it out, and mans the hot corner for the Sox for years to come.

So, a big thank you goes out to The Phillies Room for those cards, and the rest of the cards in the package. I can’t think of a better way to enhance a long Red Sox winning streak than to get some unexpected cards. Thank you Jim!

I’ll be getting something out to you soon.
Wallet Card at another ORegon phone exchange

The Adams Real Estate sign is not the only painted ad with an ORegon phone exchange still visible in midtown Manhattan. A few blocks away on Third Avenue there is another one advertising air conditioned apartments for rent. Unlike the Adams Real Estate…

True One of a Kind Pokémon Card!

Dave & Adam’s Card World has recently acquired an incredible piece of Pokémon memorabilia! We are currently selling a Blank Base Set 1 Unlimited card that has been signed in person by four individuals responsible for making Pokémon the incredible franchise it is today. The card has been signed by: Tsunekazu Ishihara – President of […]

The post True One of a Kind Pokémon Card! appeared first on Dave & Adam’s News.

Check Out My Cards: Volume VI (Dinosaurs!)

The 2015 Upper Deck Dinosaurs set was one of my favorite releases from last year.  In fact, I ended up opening a couple of hobby boxes of the product – enough that I am now quite close to having the full set!I ended up liking the base set so much …

1987 Spokane Indians at the mall – Terry Gilmore

Today is a sad day for baseball, of course. The Jose Fernandez accident instantly reminds fans of the Steve Olin/Tim Crews deadly boating accident, and Yankee fans of course remember Thurman Munson, another big star who died suddenly during his playing…

Not a Good Day

First Jose Fernandez and now this sad news:Golf legend Arnold Palmer has died.  Arnie was 87 years old.

1969 Custom Cards

A few years ago, John Hogan at the “Cards That Never Were” blog made a batch of custom baseball and football cards for me at my request.  I noticed that John did not include these images on his own blog, so I am posting them here so they can be ap…

1968 Custom Cards

A few years ago, John Hogan at the “Cards That Never Were” blog made a batch of custom baseball and football cards for me at my request.  I noticed that John did not include these images on his own blog, so I am posting them here so they can be ap…

Walter Roy, Rookie Roommate – 14

Read the March 2015 interview: Walter Roy, Gung-HoOriginally published Jan. 17, 2014The first couple roommates for Javier Lopez didn’t work out. Then he moved in with Walter Roy, and another teammate. The group was rounded out by Roy’s wife.The two wer…

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1966 Custom Cards

A few years ago, John Hogan at the “Cards That Never Were” blog made a batch of custom baseball and football cards for me at my request.  I noticed that John did not include these images on his own blog, so I am posting them here so they can be ap…

Jose Fernandez

I was surprised and saddened to learn that Jose Fernandez died in a boating accident early this morning. Such a tremendous talent, gone way too soon.Fernandez defected from Cuba and played high school ball in Florida before being drafted in 2011 by the…

Trade Stack 76: NL Central Foes Join the Stack!

Here is how this works:Every so often (i.e. whenever I feel like it), I will add a card to a “Trade Stack”.  Whenever the stack becomes appealing enough to someone, that person needs to comment on the post saying they’d like to claim the stac…

Five Random Cubs Cards

I’ve got 14,423 Cubs cards from 109 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades. 1900s – 1970s: 1909 T206 Jake Pfiester Throwing This is one of two cards of Pfie…

1949 Bowman PCL Baseball #5, Xavier Rescigno

This Bowman PCL type card comes from the sort of set that tilts me to extravagance. It’s been a white whale in the hunting, vanishing further into the distance each time I got close. Sometimes, one would appear at a show for $150. I’d skip it as “too pricy” and then see the same card appear on eBay for $300. I’d swear at myself, vow to “just buy it” when one appeared at a show, and then see nothing but slabbed copies for $500.

1949 Bowman PCL #5, Xavier Rescigno

This month, at last, a friendly dealer sold me this PCL #5 at a double-digit price, no haggling. It feels trite to say karma delivered at last, so let’s stick with “patience is a virtue.”

My new #5 looks about the same as “normal” 1949 Bowmans (set profile), so why all the high prices? On the surface, it is like other 1949 Bowmans, with a blasé, block-color design that only looks good on guys like Satchel Paige. But that’s not the real PCL story.

1949 Bowman #224, Satchell (sic) Paige 

The real PCL story is rarity. Bowman packaged and sold their MLB packs all over the USA. Probably hundreds of thousands of MLB cards remain in the hobby, but I suspect just a few hundred cards exist for each PCL player.

My new #5 bears a great nickname, Xavier “Mr. X” Rescigno (career story). Kids in Pittsburgh might’ve remembered Mr. X as the day-in, day-out Pirates reliever during wartime, but his skills declined once peace returned and the rest of Xavier’s career happened in the minors.

Pacific Coast League players appeared on cards as far back as the 1900-1920 tobacco era, but almost always for sale in or near PCL cities. Bowman’s PCL set was a unicorn: an East Coast attempt to sell West Coast ballplayers.

Philadelphia-based Bowman published this one series of 36 cards, labeled them “PCL No. 1 – 36,” and salted them into late-season packs of the “normal” 1949 baseball set. Furthermore, it’s believed Bowman test-marketed them in just two cities: Philly itself and Portland, OR. That’s a tiny window of opportunity for collectors, so it’s fortunate that test marketing wasn’t the only way this set survived.

Note the edges of my Rescigno are hand-cut, not factory cut, but it’s otherwise the “right size.” This means it was never in a factory-wrapped pack of cards. You can bet dollars to donuts that it came from a factory scrap sheet cut up by Meyer’s junk shop on Filbert Street in Philly.

Meyer’s paid garbage collectors to scavenge for potentially valuable factory discards like uncut baseball card sheets. Shop hands later scissored the sheets by hand into single cards and sold them to collectors. Kudos to Dave Hornish for finding a 1978 article from The Trader Speaks that tells the story.

PCL’s hand-cut card story, via Lew Lipset and Net54

If you like similar tales from the dawn of postwar collecting, check the whole thread on Net54 for more. Also catch this thread with personal recollections on the factory-cut cards.

So how rare are PCL cards? A low grade Bowman MLB single might be $2-3, but low-grade PCL singles run $50+. If any of Bowman’s 36 PCL players were considered superstars, they’d cost $1000+.

Hand-cut cards represent a hefty percentage of what’s known in today’s market, so finding cards from this set would be twice as hard without Meyer’s efforts to make a buck back in the late 1940s.

Here’s another look at the PCL card back. Today’s collectors can also find the “baseball game and bank” under the name “Sealtest Dairy Products.” The on-box game used white pins to track gameplay on the base paths shown on the panel below.

Hunt Auctions sold this game and bank for $100 in 2010

I suspect Bowman bought a bunch of baseball tchotchkes on the cheap and added them as on-card promos to sell more packs and track how many customers they had in various cities. An earlier MLB series showed this ring ad instead.

Here’s that ring in the flesh.

If you do go hunting 1949 PCL cards, bring a lot of patience and/or a lot of money. If possible, bring both!

Value: This #5 cost me $90 and I’d happily pay that price again for a factory-cut version.

Fakes / reprints: I doubt anyone officially reprinted the PCL set, but fakes likely exist due to their rarity. Bowman MLB and PCL sets use the same card stock and basic design, so you can study MLB versions to familiarize yourself with what real PCL cards will be like.

Even more subjective and arbitrary

Got some more cards in a trade with Highly Subjective and Completely Arbitrary. He hit my wantlists for several mid-1990s sets.Weird to see Mark Eichhorn apparently pitching overhand. Todd Hollandsworth looks like a 1960s coffee shop sign with a C…