Saturday, December 28, 2013

New pickup: 1934 Batter Up v2

There are certain moments, when cards go on eBay and I say to myself, "Yep, I'm going to win that card." I bet more collectors feel that way as well.

I had decided at the NSCC this past August that I wanted to go after all color variations of the 1934 Batter Up # 57 Hank Greenberg.  I bought and graded this one a few years ago, and was a fan of this issue ever since.

At the National, with this in mind, I found two Batter Ups that I pondered, and passed, and pondered, and passed, and offered and counter-offered several times on both cards.  I had to pass on a blue version (shown in this link) because of back damage, and the fact that the dealer's price was too high for the card.  I think I might have already explained this story once here before, but I'm not remembering so I'll just continue.

The second of the two cards I was much more interested in.  A black tinted, raw, sharp card. Guy was asking $300 for it, but $250 if I decided to pay in cash.  I mulled the buy over, and over, and over the three days I was there. I finally gathered up the stones to withdraw the money (with trouble I might add, Wells Fargo didn't take kindly to me withdrawing large amounts in Chicago, Illinois without telling them in advance.)

I was at the table. Took the card out of the book that I found it in, and heavily inspected it.  I found a slight tear where the end of the bat reaches the top edge of the card, and I was immediately turned off. It created a tear in the card, and for $250 I couldn't warrant spending that on a card I know didn't meet the grade for the price.

I passed.

So, present day, I found the card on eBay, and like I said, I knew I was going to have it. I placed my bid with 6 days and change left and carefully watched the auction, padding my bid twice once the activity came from other bidders. I won the card easily, and now it's a day away from arriving, and I can't wait to own it.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Flea Market pickup

On a cold day in October, my family and I went to the Columbus Market in New Jersey, somewhere my mom had always wanted to go but never had the chance.  We visited the antique buildings instead of the street-fair-like flea, which ended up being fruitful.

I took a quick left and lapped around the room searching for any signs of sports cards. Turns out if I had just turned right I would have come to the area of which I was interested; the sports cards.  My dad had flagged me down to bring me over, and I spent the next 30 minutes combing through bargain bins.  I came across a bin labeled "Ted Williams" among bins labeled "Derek Jeter" and "David Wright". In the back of the box I found the below card for a dollar:

This marks the first card of Hank Greenberg that I bought from a flea market.  Pretty pleased with the card for a buck!

Monday, August 19, 2013

A Thank You Post

Over the years that I have been collecting Hank Greenberg I have run across many people who have gifted me cards, asking nothing in return.

This thread is a thank you thread to those people!

Steve Rittenberg: 
Steve, member of OBC gifted me this card in 2010 after the Baltimore National. He asked if I needed the card, and simply gave it to me.

Thanks Steve!

Jonathan Roth via Gerry Rittenberg:
This was originally given to my brother for this Bar Mitzvah in 2007 by my Dad's first cousin Gerry, but then was traded to me by my brother for a 1960 Topps Mickey Mantle/Ken Boyer. Thanks to both of them for helping me acquire this card!

A member of FCB, he sent me this while I was at school, and I hadn't checked my mail for over 2 months! Needless to say, a cool note, and a cool card

Bought a bat card from him, and included was this! A 2010 National Chicle Cowhide 1/1! Couldn't believe it, still one of the most selfless acts I've ever been a part of.

Chris Gilmore and the FCB 2010 National crew:
At the 2010 National, stopping by the FCB booth for the second time, soon after breaking a box of 2010 Tristar Obak, the crew gave me these two cool cards! On the house!

Also a member of FCB, flight had this card that I wanted, and we could not agree on a price, so he decided to send me the card for free! A nice gesture, no doubt.

Greg Plotkin (Bigfan5):
Greg is one of the nicest guys, with the best reputation on FCB. He sent this to me after we had an agreement that I followed through with, as did he. He told me that he saw this and immediately thought of me. It feels nice to think that my collection is so notable that people think of me when they see Greenberg pieces that I could use.

Forgot :( cannot find username on FCB:
I'm sorry to say that I forgot who was generous enough to give this to me, but it was my first Greenberg autograph on a postcard. I remember being floored by the generosity. and I feel bad about forgetting who sent this to me all those years ago.

Chris Gilmore and the FCB crew:
My first cut autograph is courtesy of Gilmore and the FCB crew came when I was a broke college student and I posted this card that was listed poorly on eBay. Chris was generous to buy the card for me, and simply said to, "Pay it forward". 

A once-in-a-lifetime Card: Now Mine

It's not often that a collector has a truly pleasant experience with a seller, but I can now say that I have.
In the post I wrote recently about 2012 Panini National Treasure I spoke briefly about an almost unobtainable card that I saw in the checklist. The card is a booklet of a cut signature paired with a jumbo piece of lumber. A card, no doubt, that could be the centerpiece of any collection.

After that post was published there were two more of those cards, numbered to only 5 that appeared on eBay. Aside from those two, there was one that surfaced that was a slight variation in that there was no nickname stencil in the other half of the booklet.

I then watched carefully as the high BIN prices were set, and never met. The National was approaching, and I knew my plans to go, do I figured I'd try to find one there. With no such luck of course.

A day after coming home from Chicago I had the itch for more. I looked up the completed, unsold card listing from one in Florida (the other being in Taiwan and I was not about to pay $30 to ship a card) and contacted the seller about the card since I hadn't seen it relisted.

Luckily he still had the card, and we came to an agreement (easily I will add). He gave me time to get paid from work to fund the card.

I paid for the card today, 8/19, it's in the mail and I am happy as a clam. And should get the card by end of week :)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

2013 National Recap

So, it being my third ever national (2010 bmore, 2012 bmore and 2013 chi), and having a job allowed me the opportunity to travel to the national, as well as spend, what I want, on the cards that I want.

Going into the show I think everyone has the list of cards in their head (or paper) that they'd pay nearly anything for to acquire. For me, those were the 1937 O Pee Chee and the 1936 World Wide Gum.

I flew in Thursday morning from New Jersey and get to the show at about noon. Much like Eric, I wasn't blown away by the size and energy by the show this year, maybe the correct term was overwhelmed.

It took me a bit of time to get started on Thursday with my purchases, but I eventually stumbled upon a clean 1934 Goudey that seemed suitable for the upgrade I desired.

I bought it raw, bargained the seller down considerably, and made the purchase. After which I ran right to SGC to have graded :) the attached image is from my phone before the card was graded, it got a fair. A bit disappointed with the grading, but understood it. I didn't care though, the card has such incredible color and eye appeal and for the price I really couldn't complain.

I then ran into a seller I am familiar with that I know constantly stocks Greenberg. Along with that comes the same story he always tells me, about how 15 years ago he would sell all the Hank Greenberg stuff he had to his daughter, blah blah blah. I did find this interesting piece that I knew existed, but knew very little about. The attached pennant is what I bought. The designation is BF3, produced in 1937 and distribute alongside gum packs. When I got back to the hotel room I researched the pennant and found some great information about it. There are a ton of different colors that these come in, and Greenberg is in three more variations of this issue. A unique buy, for sure!

My last purchase for Sunday came as I would like to say, at the buzzer. I found this with less than 15 minutes to go in the day before the floor closed, and managed to again negotiate the price. The attached pin is from 1938, and I had been wanting one for a very long time. Needless to say, I ended Thursday on cloud nine, easily the best day I ever had at a single show.

Friday came with more expectations, and they were met. I knew the sellers stuff, at the prices I didn't want to pay. I did however, make a really cool purchase this day.

I will be playing in a wooden bat league starting after Labor Day, so knowing I needed a bat, I thought to myself that it'd be awesome to buy a game used bat and use it in the league. So Friday I started this thought with a vendor, and he informed me that they sell bats for people to use them all the time. So I became tickled. I spent the next hour holding and swinging three bats, and chose to buy a black Louisville slugger Jerry Hairston Jr. bat for $50 shipped. Pics to be added upon arrival. I picked up some T206 commons for my brother, then headed, once again, into the final half hour of the day.

I had previously seen the last attached item and remembered it was there, so I simply went and bought it! It's a 1936
Sporting Life record book, accounting for many stories about records and past World Series' played. I began to read the book last night, but decided against it because the book is a bit brittle.

So there it is! My recap. Written in 22 minutes while commuting home on the bus from New York. A great national to be had!

Thanks for reading peeps.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Happy birthday to me [23]

This post Sunday (6/9) marked my 23rd birthday.

Gifts always surprise me. Although I don't trust those responsible of gifting me to gift me cards, I was rather surprised and impressed this year. 

My Mom is part of the board of trustees for the temple (1st VP) and while at a meeting, the Rabbi, and avid reader presented the group with two books, one being John Rosengren's Hank Greenberg : The Hero of Heroes.  Mom conveyed that she needed to get this book for me.

Later that week she saw the Rabbi again, and he said that this was the best book on Hank Greenberg he had ever read. This sold her, as if she wasn't going to get it for me in the first place.

I'm not much of a reader, but I have already completed one chapter. The first chapter, titled Leshono Toivo stories Greenberg's struggle with his decision of playing or not playing his rookie year on Rosh Hashanah day in 1933.  I did not realize how the city of Detroit was so invested in this decision. As I was reading, I was envisioning how this decision would pan out in modern times. Would it be a big deal? 

I'd like to do a book review when I finish it, whenever that will be.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post, look out for more about the book and about the collection as I always look to add to it.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

National Treasure

With my second pickup from 2012 Panini National Treasures, comes this card:

This card is numbered to only 25, and features Detroit's two most feared hitters in the 30's. This card highlights both Greenberg and Gehringer leading the American League in 1934 with 63 doubles and 50 doubles, respectively.

This card cost me $50, a price I am pretty happy with. It's pretty much the only premium card from the set I would be able to afford at a decent price, at least for now. Many of the cards have superstars attached to some incredible piece of memorabilia, be it a jersey, patch or even glove in this triple including Jimmie Foxx and Mel Ott.

Who knows, if that stays reasonable I might snag that one as well, I don't own a glove card outside of this cool 2003 Joe Borchard card that isn't on eBay. Too lazy to scan it.

My best steal??

It's been a while since I have updated the blog, been busy at work!

I wanted to share with you all a steal of a steal that I got last month off of eBay. I won the above card for $0.99, PLUS shipping.

This is a 1946-49 Sports Exchange All Stars variation. I love this photo, and love this card.  I also have this card with the biographical information not filled out.  Seeing the biographical information on the card is amusing.

The information includes Hank's place of birth (New York, NY) height (6'4'') weight (215) nationality (Jewish) (lol) service (US Army) bats (right) throws (right) eye color (brown) hair color (brown) and who he is married to (Caral Gimbel).

The simple fact that they would include who he is married to is bizarre to say the least, and Sports Exchange shows their cultural ignorance by including Hank's nationality being Jewish. He was born in Greenwich Village, NY, not Tel Aviv, Israel.

Oh well. It's the 40's.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Good Wood

The most recent product release of 2012 Panini National Treasures Baseball has yielded 10 different cards with Hank Greenberg and his often used bat displayed on it. I have bought one card which should be arriving on Monday (3/11) so I will put that up when the time comes. I'm not into the different color variations of a card (although I am guilty with 2007 Premier baseball), so I will try to acquire as many as I can.

Except this went up for auction the other day.

That shit ain't fair.  A B/O (best offer) was hit for under $1,299. only numbered to 5. I have a realistic chance at 8 of the other cards that Greenberg is featured on, but this one, and the bat knob card that is said to exist are way too far out of my price range.


On Friday I received a card that has long been on my want-list.

It's numbered to only 25, from 2002 Fleer Platinum and it cost me far less than what I've seen them go for in the past at $59. I also didn't have much competition in terms of other people bidding on this one.

I guess patience really is a virtue. According to the 2011 Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards these cards are not priced due to scarcity. And I landed mine for a healthy $59. Needless to say I am incredibly pleased with this buy.

In fact, there is a similar card that is on eBay right now for a BIN (Buy It Now) of $180.

2002 Fleer Platinum Cornerstones Hank Greenberg Jimmie Foxx Dual Bat 25/25

This ranks as my second card that features both Jimmie Foxx and Hank Greenberg, the first being

Remember to check back on Monday/Tuesday when I reveal which bat card I got from 2012 National Treasure.

Until then.

Monday, February 4, 2013

SGC Poppage!

I love screenshots. The only reason the Play Ball is graded 0 is that I asked for same or better grading, and I am guessing it did not reach that minimum. No matter, I'll resubmit it and have it changed into the SGC holder at a lower grade.

What I was REALLY concerned about was the dimensions of the 1938 Goudey card.  It measured about 1/8'' smaller than the verified dimensions of 2-3/8''x2-7/8''. I was truly, truly scared, but seeing that it came back at the PERFECT grade, I became ELATED. Probably made my week. Definitely made my week.

I'll post more pictures when the cards arrive.

Thanks for tuning in!