Friday, December 9, 2016

Card of the Day - 2016 Allen Ginter : Corey Seager Mini Frame Autograph Black Parallel (11/25)


Well that was fast...

Even though I expected this card to be redeemed pretty fast as when I entered the code online I already knew this card was in stock at Topps. A week after inputting said code I had this card in hand and I am not disappointed.

Unlike the Kershaw mini frame that I received and was promptly disappointed in I knew unless Seager really had a bad day signing there was no way I was going to be let down by the young superstar. Kershaw has a tendency to drag his autograph to the end of the card which affects its grade if you submit it to BGS. Seager though has a compact signature so if he was to drag his auto to the edge of the card then something was going on. With this being limited to just 25 I hoped it would come in tip top condition so I can turn it into a gem mint 9.5 by BGS and I think it will do just that as I see nothing wrong with it. Thank you Corey for signing your cards so fast. Other players could learn from you.


Eleven
of
Twenty-Five

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Thursday, December 8, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-SIX - 2016 Topps Heritage Mike Trout Base Gum Back Variant Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Topps Heritage Mike Trout Gum Stain Back Variant 

Hoping that both my gum stain variants come back in gem mint form but if 1 was more of a sure thing it would be this Trout one over the Kershaw version. I saw nothing wrong with and if you look at it here it looks almost dead on centered and under the loop is where you see that seems to be the only flaw of the card as it is ever so off centered. Gold banner or bust BGS.


Guess Beckett went nit picking with this card but considering it is a paper variety I should just be happy that a gold banner adorns this variant.


I didn't say it in my original write up but thought this had an outside chance at receiving a perfect 10 but instead it received 4 9.5's which is fine by me. Though I love this card I may or may not use it for trade bait to get something I really want/need but having it now in this case makes it much easier to move it I ever go that route. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-FIVE - 2016 Topps Chrome Mike Trout Base Photo Variation Green Refractor Parallel (21/99) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Topps Chrome Mike Trout Photo Variation Green Parallel (21/99)

Other than the cards being shiny the best thing about chrome cards are that they usually come out of the pack in better condition than their paper brothers. This one is no different.

While green is not my favorite color being numbered under 100 at the same time it being a photo variation of Mike trumps the color being just meh to me. When I received this I hoped it would be in gem mint condition and to me that is what I see as there is not a flaw that I can see. Hope to add this to my growing gem mint photo variation collection of Trout. 


Expected gem and received gem.


While I love these photo variations every time I look at green parallels from this year's Topps Chrome release I like them a little less. The design was not one of Topps best and other than the black parallel it makes me think I should unload it/them to get something more desirable. Once this came back as the strong 9.5 I thought about it more and more and I think I might flip this for a need instead of this card which was/is a want. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin



Tuesday, December 6, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-FOUR - 2014 Topps Tribute Clayton Kershaw Base Autograph Pink Parallel (27/45) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2014 Topps Tribute Clayton Kershaw Pink Autograph (27/45)

I am not a fan of pink cards and the only reason I nabbed this one is that it has an autograph of Dodger great Clayton Kershaw. That said I can live with the color if BGS slaps on a 9.5 or 10 on it and from my analysis it looks like there is nothing that should stop that from happening. We shall see. 


Another Tribute autograph of Kershaw and another 9.5 return with surfaces earning the low grade of the card with a 9. I was confident that this would gem but I also thought it would have a minimum of 4 9.5's with an outside shot at a pristine 10. It wasn't even close as there was only 1 10 in the subs. Still not a fan of pink cards but gold banner autographs of Kershaw trumps all of that nonsense. 


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Monday, December 5, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-THREE - 2013 Topps Tribute Clayton Kershaw Base Autograph (59/99) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2013 Topps Tribute Clayton Kershaw Autograph (59/99)

I landed this Kershaw auto on a great purchase from a friend on Instagram and I hope to turn into gold as the only thing I see wrong with it is a corner on the back side is a tad frayed. I think it shouldn't drop that sub to anything less than a 9 so hopefully everything else holds up and it comes back with a gold banner.


A slight surprise on this one. Not the overall grade as it earned the gold banner as expected but that a sub grade came back with a 9 instead of a 9.5


I saw a frayed corner on the back and thought that might cause it come back as a 9 but thankfully it didn't as surfaces, which I saw nothing wrong, earned that irritating 9. If both would have done that then I would have had a strong mint 9 card instead of this weak gem mint 9.5. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Card of the Day - 2013 Topps Heritage : Clayton Kershaw Base Mini Parallel (53/100)


The 2nd of 4 cards from The Dutch Card Guy and look it's another mini but a Heritage one this time instead of a Ginter version.

The more and more I collect cards this 2nd time around in the hobby the more I like to pick these up. 1 because they are usually numbered and more limited (as this one is) and 2 I just like the look of a miniature card. Another reasonable price was asked from Dutch and now I own this beauty. Though the value would not go up all that much I would have loved to turn this into a gem mint from BGS but I think if I was to submit it it would come back as a 9 at best as there are edge issues with the card. Even with that it doesn't take away from the overall great look of the card and I'll be keeping it no matter what. Have to learn that not all cards have to be slabbed.


Fifty-Three
of
One Hundred

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Card of the Day - 2013 Allen Ginter : Clayton Kershaw Base Mini Parallel Red Back Variant (2/25)



This is the first of 4 cards I ended up getting from The Dutch Card Guy awhile back. For those that don't know he is located in the Netherlands and is really easy to deal with and is a great blogger. His loss has become my gain (and others) though as he made the hard decision to quit collecting Clayton Kershaw cards. I  have always admired his collection and wanted a lot of what was in it and now was my chance. While I wanted quite a few autographs of Kid K the price was too high for me at the present moment (will be revisiting him though in future for some) so I ended up with just 1 autograph and 3 great numbered parallels.

I ended up with 2 numbered Ginter cards as I have been on the hunt for these for years and rarely see them for sale. A fellow blogger has them and I have pestered him for years trying to get him to release them but to no avail but when I had the chance to get this one now I jumped at the opportunity. This red back is numbered out of just 25 and looks to be sure lock for a gold banner from BGS. 1 Ginter down 1 to go.


Two
of
Twenty-Five


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Friday, December 2, 2016

Card of the Day - 2016 Topps Chrome : Corey Seager Base Autograph Orange Refractor Parallel (13/25) BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


I hate the color but I finally took the Orange plunge since I am going for the full rainbow I would have had to acquire this horrendous color at some time down the road but what better time when you have an eBucks promotion and funds from other auctions.

In my possession prior this card's acquisition was the purple (#/250), blue (#/150) and the green (#/99). What was/is left over to acquire to get the full rainbow is the base (not numbered), refractor (#/499), gold (#/50) and the red (#/5). I am realist and even though I have picked up my fair share of hard to get cards I do not think I will ever have the full rainbow. While the base and refractor will be picked up at some time and the gold while rare is still doable I honestly do not think that the red will ever be owned by me. With all that said the only other one to grab was this Orange one which is numbered out of only 25. A rarity in its own right. Being a Dodger fan it hurts my eyes to see this color but in the end the project trumps the color.


9.5's everywhere

This card had been on eBay for over a month as it's auction rolled over the following month since it did not sell. The seller had a crazy asking price but did offer an OBO option. Well eBay sent out an email stating buyers would earn 10% and with auctions ending I wondered it I could sneak in and grab this at a steal. Sent an offer that was more than 50% off his asking price and was surprised not only did it not automatically decline but he countered close to my offer and nowhere near his original asking price. A little more negotiating between us and I secured this high grade Orange autograph of Corey.

Having 4 of the 5 "hard" colors this quickly is nice and hopefully at the very least I can locate the base and refractor before next year starts and if I am really lucky the Gold. Either option is fine with me.


Thirteen
of
Twenty-Five

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Thursday, December 1, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-TWO - 2016 Allen Ginter Clayton Kershaw Base Mini Parallel EXT Variant Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Allen Ginter Clayton Kershaw EXT Mini Parallel

Love these mini Ginters and the only then I love more is when they are encased in a gem mint 9.5 case which is what I expect this Kershaw card to be in.

I picked this up from a friend and was not disappointed when it reached my house as I see nothing wrong with this and hope this will be an addition to my long running great luck in Ginter returns from Beckett.


While the Seager EXT was a major disappointment (still holding out hope maybe I can get a bump on it) there was nothing but happiness for this Kershaw EXT as not only did it come back as a gem it came back as a strong gem with 3 9.5's subs to go along with a 10. 


A thank you once again to the friend that must rename nameless do to the fact that the card was acquired by him under the notion it was for him. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY-ONE - 2014 Topps High Tek Clayton Kershaw Base Black and White Parallel (15/15) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2014 Topps High Tek Clayton Kershaw Black and White Parallel (15/15)

Just like the black and white Tek card of Trout that is also in this batch I believe this card will gem as it is made or plastic which helps condition issues and under the loop I see nothing wrong with the card. If I could pare this and Trout as gem mints to the Koufax I already own that would be a nice little 3 card set considering the print run is just 15 for these parallels.


While the design is definitely not my favorite I do love these High Tek cards for the simple reason as since they are plastic and not the traditional paper they tend to grade well since conditioning issues are kept to a minimum.


I have submitted numerous High Tek cards and every single one has come back as a 9.5 or better with the exception of one. Obviously this is not the exception. Ha Ha. The sub grades were strong like usual with this brand with them checking in as 10,9.5,9.5 and another 9.5. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number THIRTY - 2013 Bowman Chrome Corey Seager Base Purple Refractor Parallel (86/199) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2013 Bowman Chrome Corey Seager Purple Refractor Parallel (86/199)

Trying my luck once again with a purple parallel. This is the only numbered color from the 2013 BC set that I do not have in a gem mint grade. Will this be the one to finally earn that gold banner? We shall see as my other copy had terrible centering and earned an 8.5 for that sub grade. This one while not perfect is a lot better so I would say its safe to assume that centering earns at least a 9. With that and nothing else I can see wrong I am crossing my fingers for that gold banner. 


Litterly the last card to be added to the batch as I picked it up from the Post Office just 30 minutes prior to the grading event. Even though this is not an autograph or overly limited it is/was one of the most important cards in the group. Why you ask? This is the only colored and numbered parallel in my 2013 Bowman Chrome (main set) that I did not have a gem mint copy of. I have had multiple purples but each one came back as a mint 9 with each one having centering being the issue and holding it back from a 9.5. Well when I saw this on the computer screen I knew that it wasn't perfect centering but it was the best I had seen so I took a chance. 10, 9.5, 9.5 annnndddd 9. Hot damn. Finally got my purple gem for my collection and all it took was almost 2 years.


That 9 was for centering as expected and a thank you goes out to the seller again as he was honest with me with everything else and now I am down to just 2 (X-Fractor and Green) to get upgraded and I will have a full 9.5 rainbow.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Monday, November 28, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number TWENTY-NINE - 2016 Stadium Club Clayton Kershaw Base Photo Variation Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Stadium Club Clayton Kershaw Photo Variation

This Stadium Club Kershaw card is just like the other one in the batch as it also has a slight fraying issue on 2 corners BUT in this card's case it is very minimal and I think that sub grade will hold at a 9 and hopefully the other 3 subs will earn a 9.5. 


As expected this card came back as a gem mint 9.5 with the corners coming at a 9 which also was expected. 


I surprisingly have had decent luck in this batch with Stadium Club (Mike Trout withstanding) but I am/was very uneasy when submitting these cards. I might end up acquiring this brand from others once they are graded as I feel I am taking a risk. That said I am glad I know what to look for when I submit cards but wish Topps would make these in better quality to minimize condition issues.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Card of the Day - 2016 Topps Five Star : Julio Urias Base Autograph Gold Parallel (#/50)


As most of you know I love the Five Star brand and wait for it's release with baited breath every year and this go around is no different other than the fact that the first card I have acquired from this year's set is not Mr. Kershaw but of the young ace in training Julio Urias.

I decided to get back into the Julio game and this is my 2nd autograph and 2nd overall card since I made that decision and for some reason his cards are really cheap to acquire right now but I expect next year that won't be the case. 

Even though this is a redemption card I have a funny feeling that it won't be too long (i.e. over a year) till I have the real McCoy in my hands. I expect this will be the 1st of many Urias cards I pick up this off season as unlike Trout/Seager/Kershaw I don't think high prices will be on his cards other than the super limited which I won't be going after anyways. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Card of the Day - 1956 Topps : Sandy Koufax Base BVG Graded Very Good-Excellent 4.0


And here it is. The final piece. Such a satisfying feeling when you finish a project that while doable seemed to destined to be a multi year pursuit but in the end took less than 12 months.

Sandy does not have that many numbered cards in the modern sets that are released by Topps and while I chase after them there just isn't that many. I decided that I wanted to do a vintage project and what better subject than Mr. Koufax. After debating on what I would go after I decided on a 12 card goal which would be a card from every year that Sandy played in the majors which was from 1955 to 1966. 1 year 1 card. No league leader subsets or anything else. Just the main card in each set. The kicker was that they had to be in BVG cases and while I knew I would come across my fair share I knew that a lot of times there would not be one for a specific year. Out of the 12 cards I ended up acquiring 2 raw and submitting it to BVG for encasing. Since I didn't really care what condition the cards were in (no major visual issues were to be accepted though) it freed up some choices.

While I thought his rookie card from 1955 would be the hardest it ended up being this 1956 to be the final piece of the Koufax puzzle. During all the time I was picking these up I only came across a few BVG graded ones and each had an ending price that I was not comfortable with. My timing was perfect when this came up on a simple BIN as I had just sold some books and with a click of the button my project was completed.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Friday, November 25, 2016

Card of the Day - 2016 Topps Chrome : Corey Seager Base Autograph Green Refractor Parallel (41/99)


I guess I really am going try to get the full rainbow of Corey Seager autographs from this year's Topps Chrome set.

Is this project feasible? If money wasn't an issue of course it would be but I live in the real world so I don't know if I will ever acquire each color but with this green one in hand now I do own 3 to my name now. I have the purple, blue and now green which has the lowest print run of the bunch at 99. I did not want to pick this up with any out of pocket money so I had to decide if I wanted this card or keep cards I already had. Bird in the hand or see if the grass is greener on the other side of the fence? Well I decided to try my luck as I unloaded a Koufax auto (the horror I know) and a graded and limited Trout card for this and "yet" another Kershaw autograph. I considered it helping two separate projects at the same time while not losing too much as I still have 2 gem mint Koufax autos in my collection and while the Trout is nice it wasn't a "need". Instead I added to my quest to 100 Kershaw project and picked up another Seager colored autograph.

Of course now I have added yet another card to my next BGS batch which will happen in March of next year. This looks to be a semi lock to gem so be nice to me Beckett.


Forty-One
of
Ninety-Nine

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Thursday, November 24, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number TWENTY-EIGHT - 2013 Bowman Chrome Mini Corey Seager Base Green Refractor Parallel (73/75) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2013 Bowman Chrome Mini Corey Seager Green Refractor Parallel (73/75)  

One of the few cards in the batch that I think has a legit chance at coming back as a pristine 10 as everything checks out except for centering which is maybe 51,52/49,48 as it is almost perfectly centered. There are no corner issues, nor edge problems and surface is clean. Can it earn a 10? Sure but if it doesn't I see no way it doesn't earn at minimum a strong 9.5


While centering did not get a 10 as I thought it would this card did come back as a strong 9.5 as expected. There were 3 9.5's and a 10 when all was said and done and with it another fine addition to my THIRD (My God) Bowman Chrome rainbow project for Corey Seager. I barely got one done with upgrades still needed for it and I am taking on 2 more? What am I thinking? Ha ha. Fun stuff.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number TWENTY-SEVEN - 2016 Gypsy Queen Mike Trout Base Mini Parallel Gold Variant (1/50) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Gypsy Queen Mike Trout Gold Mini Parallel (1/50)

While a gold banner on a gold parallel is the optimal result of said parallel I am really stretching it here and thinking this returns with a 9.5 attached to it.

While centering and surface looks good there are 2 corners that have issues. I have seen worse on other gem mint cards so it will come down to which grader I get for this card. Hoping for gold but halfway expecting silver. 


Once again I guess I was lucky to get the grader who was in a good mood the day this card hit his/her desk. I saw 2 corners with issues and as expected they did not receive a 9.5 but thankfully they did earn a 9 as the other 3 categories earned the needed 9.5's to make this an overall 9.5 card. Surprisingly I have had great luck with GQ in this batch while in previous batches they have never gone my way. Guess every Penguin has a good day once in awhile.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number TWENTY-SIX - 2016 Gypsy Queen Corey Seager Base Mini Parallel Gold Variant (46/50) Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Gypsy Queen Corey Seager Gold Mini Parallel (46/50)

Just like the Trout and Kershaw ones I am holding my breath in the hopes of this gold parallel earning a gold banner to make the case color coordinated. Unlike the Trout one though this Seager card only seems to have 1 bad corner so it has a chance at a gold return but still not banking on it.


A pleasant surprise awaited me for this card when I received its result from Beckett. During my inspection I suspected that 1 corner might be an issue when it came to get the card graded but BGS thought not and gave that and the other 3 sub categories 9.5's. Very happy with that considering I truly hate gold parallels with silver banners. They just look ugly to me with that color combination but thankfully this one is not be one of them.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin

Monday, November 21, 2016

September 2016 BGS Submission Result Number TWENTY-FIVE - 2016 Gypsy Queen Corey Seager Base Photo Variation Now BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5


2016 Gypsy Queen Corey Seager Photo Variation

Out of the 3 paper products I collect (Ginter, Heritage and GQ) the Gypsy Queen brand is a distant third in wanting and quality as unlike Ginter and Heritage I usually receive good returns. I am hoping this time I get a different result with the few GQ I have in the batch.

Out of all of them I would say this is in the best condition and that is with its 1 frayed corner. It's not terrible but it isn't minor so hopefully I get a grader in a good mood when this shows up on his desk.


Guess I indeed got the grader who was in a good mood when sat down with this card.


Frayed corner in my eyes meant nothing in his/her eyes as that sub along with all the other 3 scored at least a 9.5 and this card became yet another solid return from this batch. While there were some disappointments in the beginning a lot of these gems mints are not of the cheap variety aka no 9's among the sub grades. While this is not a big money card I do love the way it looks in its new BGS case. 

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.

-Penguin