Dodger Pitchers and Catchers Report

Saturday, December 20, 2014

BGS Submission Update Seventeen - 2010 Allen and Ginter : Clayton Kershaw Mini Frame Autograph Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $80

Second to last post and spoiler alert they are of the same player. THE best pitcher in baseball today. One Mr. Clayton Kershaw.

When I did up the original post I had all my Kershaws near the bottom of the pile. I was expecting very little and when it came to the 2012 Museum card that's exactly what I got. Allen and Ginter cards have always been a mixed bag for me as sometimes I think one should grade out high and it doesn't and then one that will barely and hopefully make a mint 9 comes back as gem mint. These have always been my Achilles heel when it comes to pre-submssion grading.

While I saw nothing wrong with the card I still tempered my expectations. As I've stated before I want all my Kershaw autograph cards to come back as at least mint 9's (they don't) and gem mints are just pleasant surprises. Well this came back as a pleasant surprise as it earned the coveted gem mint status with one sub grade of 10. Autograph was perfect as well and I now have another gem mint Kershaw card to call my own.

Only thing wrong with this card is its border which is punk ass orange.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Card of the Day - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Yimi Garcia Base Photo Variation

Another staple of my collection that I will still collect, even with the refocus, are photo variations.

I have a couple of the big names (Kemp, Kershaw) and still looking for others but within the Bowman Chrome brand they like to spotlight the variations on up and coming players. I luckily picked up Corey Seager earlier in the year from the 2013 release but this year's release has a few that hold my interest and I was able to pick up my first one.

Yimi Garcia was called up this year for the first time and with that I thought this card would command a little more than I paid for it. Book has this card valued at $10 but I only paid a quarter of that which makes this a nice little pick up at a reasonable rate.

Hope to see him with the team next year.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

BGS Submission Update Sixteen - 2014 Topps Chrome : Jose Abreu Base Autograph Refractor Parallel (312/499) Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $120

We now come to the last non Dodger of the batch and the 2014 AL ROY Jose Abreu.

With so many of his autographs out there now the value of his cards are being watered down but I still had no intention on buying his cards as they didn't hold that much interest to me. Now if I could score it at a major discount and flip it into a gem mint grade and then possibly flip it again for something that does hold my interest then that is another matter all together.

I originally "won" this on a 4 box break held by Alex of Chavez Ravining much to the chagrin of a few people. Though it was a redemption card I had already seen them pop up on eBay so I didn't think it would be that long till Topps redeemed it. I was right as within 2 weeks I had it in my hands and I knew I would submit it for grading. I was confident it would earn a gem mint grade as I was only worried about a small potential flaw on the surface. Guess BGS didn't see or care about it as surface received a perfect 10 as centering did as well. Only knock on the card were the corners which got a 9. No matter as it still ended up being a gem mint card.

A nice investment in a random box break. Was my plan all along and it worked to perfection. Now, to flip or not to flip? You know I will and did.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Trade with Fellow Blogger : Frankie of My Life In The Sports Card Hobby

A new reader of the blog and a blogger himself, Frankie of My Life In The Sports Card Hobby fame and I have done our first trade and it couldn't have gone smoother.

A little awhile ago Frankie posted about some acquisitions of his and one of them caught my eye. Though it is not a parallel which is what I am after mainly, if I can acquire a Dodger autograph with no money out of pocket I have to take a stab at it. I approached Frankie to see what he was looking for but originally we couldn't come to a deal. A couple weeks passed and we reconvened and he stated the card was still available.

With a little back and forth of what he would find acceptable in return Frankie ended up stating just send me some cards my way. With a rough figure of what the Guerrero card is worth I picked out 5 cards that hopefully he will like. Instead of mailing me the redemption card he emailed me the code and I have gone and redeemed it already. The waiting game begins and hopefully it won't be too long.

Thank you again to Frankie for the smooth trade and hopefully it won't be the last. More importantly I hope he enjoys the cards I sent his way.


Have a blessed day and thank you for reading.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

BGS Submission Update Fifteen - 2003 Topps Tribute : Kirk Gibson Series Signatures Autograph w/Relic Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $80

We are down to the last 4 submission results and it's only autographs from here on out. Woo Hoo.

When I first stumbled upon this card I knew I had to have it. I had been looking for a Gibson autograph to replace the signed ball I had of his but it had to have him in Dodger blue and if at all possible on card. The Dodger blue requirement was hard enough as most have him in a Tiger uniform but the on card autograph I thought was just a long shot. Well low and behold this one came up on eBay and after some back and forth with the seller we settled on a price. Well below book. As a Dodger fan how can you not love this card? It shows Gibson in his post home run trot on his two bad knees, has a relic in the shape of 88 and a nice clean and crisp autograph.

When I purchased it I didn't have an intention of having it graded but I did want it in excellent condition which the seller promised me it was. Well when it came in I saw no flaws and thought that someday I would have it graded. I knew the autograph would grade out to a 10 as there is no issues whatsoever and BGS agreed with me once again as each sub grade received a 9.5.

This is one of my favorite autograph cards and now it just looks even better in a gold banner BGS case.

Raise your hand if you love gem mint cards

Monday, December 15, 2014

Card of the Day - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Yimi Garcia Base Autograph Blue Refractor Parallel (34/150)

The Yimi autograph collection continues in its backwards fashion. First the limited black bowman collection, then a side step to a photo variation and now this blue refractor parallel. I am still on the hunt for the base refractor but that should be easy enough to pick up.

I expect Yimi to be on the big league club next year as I thought he proved enough this year to earn a roster spot. If he is not on the club then I expect him to one of the 1st to be called up if something is not working at the major league level.

Blue is always the best parallel when it comes to Dodger cards and this one is no different. So when I finally was able to lock this card in for a mere five bucks after multiple losses I was more than happy to scoop it up and take another step to completing my 2014 Yimi autograph collection. Only one more to go.

34 of 150

Sunday, December 14, 2014

BGS Submission Update Fourteen - 2013 Topps Chrome : Matt Kemp Base SP Photo Variation Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $50

One of if not the best card purchase money wise just got a little bit better.

As stated before I picked this card up in the middle of the 2014 baseball season for a mere 99 cents. The seller had mislabeled his auction (have I told you how much I love these types of auctions?) and had it as a BIN. Had to rub my eyes but I did and the card in the picture happens to be a $50 card of the Bison himself. This is a great looking card by itself as it shows Kemp in jersey number 42 for Jackie Robinson day and is perched right next to the Robinson banner at Dodger Stadium. He even has his socks up high which is always a great look. Great card indeed.

When my Kershaw photo variation card came back as gem mint in the last batch that made up my mind to also get this one graded and hopefully pair it up since they are both from the same year. Didn't see any issues on the card and BGS agreed with me as all four sub grades came back at least with a 9.5 with edges scoring a 10.

A very nice return on 99 cents.

One of my favorite non autograph cards of Kemp

Strong 9.5

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Card of the Day - 2014 Topps Chrome : Erisbel Arruebarruena Base Autograph Refractor Parallel (131/499)

Erisbel makes his second autograph appearance on the blog and this time it is regular refractor version.

Already have the blue one in hand but still needed the black and base refractors to complete the 3 card project. For some reason this card has an assigned book value of $25. Little steep there for a player that has done almost nothing at the big league level. I still attribute these high prices on him for being Cuban. The same thing is happening for Alex Guerrero autographs and I do not think any of them are in line with what they have produced on the field. That said, I still wanted this card.

Onto the bay and with numerous options I just had to pick the right auction to bid on. Locked in on a few and I ended up winning if for a mere $3.94. Now, that seems more like it price wise. $25? Phssh. Onto the final piece of the autograph puzzle, Mr. black border.

131 of 499

Friday, December 12, 2014

BGS Submission Update Thirteen - 2013 Bowman Chrome : Corey Seager Base Blue Refractor Parallel (32/250) Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $25

If Corey ever (or should I say WHEN) hits it big I will be very happy with my graded collection of Seager cards. BGS has been very good to me in the returns of all the Corey cards I have submitted so far and this one is no different. Granted I have been a tad irritated by the autograph grades on a couple of cards but other than that it's been gem mint all the time.

I picked up this card on a wicked deal back in early 2014 (think it was in the $5 ballpark) and wanted to have it graded. Just had to wait for the right batch to include it in and this happen to be the one. I originally thought that this card was in excellent condition with the exception of some centering problems on the back of the card. Well I was right as BGS gave centering a 9 but all the other sub grades came back with at least a 9.5 with edges scoring a 10. Yet another gem mint card for my Corey collection.

Keep the gem mints coming

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Card of the Day - 2014 Topps Chrome : Yasiel Puig Base Black Refractor Parallel (98/100)

Book value : $15
Yeah, no.
I love me some Dodgers and love me some black parallels but the assigned prices to some of these new releases just boggle my mind at times. Even though the card is limited and numbered to only 100 I just can't see how people would spend that much for a new card that is not a rookie but to each their own I guess.

Well I sat on the sidelines till this card became more reasonable in price and once Bowman Chrome was released this card's price did indeed plummet. I watched various auctions and prices continued to go downward until it hit the $5 mark and with that I jumped back into the auction pool to see what I could pick it up for. This one showed up on the bay for a starting asking price of just $2.99. Very reasonable in my eyes and on the last day with no bids on it I put mine in and ended up being the only person to do so and with that I won my black Puig for the set.

$15- not so much
$2.99 - all day everyday

98 of 100

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

BGS Submission Update Twelve - 2013 Bowman Chrome Mini : Hyun-Jin Ryu Base Blue Refractor Parallel (96/99) Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $10

The only reason I added this to the batch for grading is because I thought I had an outside chance at a Pristine 10 grade on it.

I already have Ryu in gem mint form on another card and though I collect his cards I don't need more than what I already have in graded form but when I pulled it out of the box and looked it over I thought it looked to be in the best shape of all the cards I was going to submit. I was almost 100% sure that it would come back gem mint (which it did) but held out hope on earning my second Pristine grade. That will have to wait as it "only" earned a gem mint grade.

All the sub grades earned at least a 9.5 with one earning a 10 so it is a solid gem mint grade but I would have needed 2 of the other grades to earn a 10 to get my Pristine grade. No biggie. I tried and didn't get what I wanted but I still received a gem mint in return. Can't complain about that.

Somewhat close to Pristine

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Trade with Fellow Blogger : Jesse of Section 117 @ Banner Island Ballpark - 2014 Bowman Chrome Kris Bryant Base Autograph

Jesse and I have known each other since we first met on the last weekend of the 2013 baseball season at Dodger Stadium. I have done 11 contests and he has won at least 3 if not 4 of them. I am too lazy to go back and check fact so we will go with that. This though will be our first trade. I say will as it's technically not done yet. Jesse can found on Twitter or seen posting baseball topics at his blog Section 117 BIB which is where I found this card.

His wife and mine both bought us a box of 2014 Bowman Chrome recently. While mine did not yield a "great" card his luck was definitely better than mine. Shout out to the wives again for investing in our habit, I mean hobby. Ha Ha.

I soon found out and saw that he put this card up for sale on eBay. Kris is a super prospect of the Cubs and he has a chance to break camp next year with the big league team. Though not a Dodger I did/do want an autograph of his and what better brand than the rookie haven better known as Bowman Chrome. So with my wanting the card and Jesse with having the card I approached him to see if we could work something out.

With no bids on the card as of yet he took it off eBay and said we could do something. He was looking for more $$$ than cards so this now became a trade of a few cards and more $$$ but to his credit he was kind enough and trustworthy enough to send me the card before payment has been paid in full. I sent him a few cards to offset a little of the cost but I am in the process of selling digital comic codes and to send the proceeds of the sales his way. A couple of payments have been made with more to come.

Once the card was in hand I figured it is almost guaranteed to earn a mint 9 from BGS with an outside chance of a gem mint 9.5. A corner gives me pause so we shall see. It has been almost 15 months since our first meeting and finally our first trade is done (almost). Thank you again and hopefully this isn't the last trade we do.

Monday, December 8, 2014

BGS Submission Update Eleven - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Julio Urias Base Blue Refractor Parallel (203/250) Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Beckett Book Value : $ 15

I added a couple of cards to the batch that normally I wouldn't do but considering that the total number of cards was getting bigger and bigger I thought why not. 

As stated I already have this card as a black parallel which I also got graded and it came back in gem mint form. I so love me black and blue cards so I thought why not couple it with a blue one if I was confident that it also would come back gem mint. I took out my loop and scanned this blue one and came away thinking it would grade out 9.5. I put it with all the other cards and as predicted it did in fact come back gem mint. 

Having black and blue gem mints makes me want to go after the other colors of the card rainbow but that would constitute me starting a new project. I am not ready to do that just yet. 

Another gem mint Urias added to the collection

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Player Appearance / Signing Recap : Steve Sax @ Dr. Liu's Optometry On December 6th, 2014

Sax and I back in February of this year.

Began the year by meeting Steve Sax for the first time and now I am ending the year with meeting him one more time.

Back in February Dr. Liu hosted a Sax in store signing and I ventured over to the office for the very first time. You can read the recap HERE . How things can change in a little under a year. 10 months separate February and December and in that time I went from collecting primarily signed baseballs to almost stopping that completely (aside from the occasional black ball) and moving onto cards and getting 8x10's signed. With that said I sold off the Sax ball and was now looking to replace it with a signed photo by him. I originally thought I would do the "traditional" baseball photo and then I remembered a project I thought I may or may not do. Enter The Simpsons.

Back in 1992 The Simpsons did the baseball episode entitled "Homer at the Bat" which is classic to this day among fans. Below is the Mr. Burns baseball team that he put on the field during that episode.

As you can see there are 9 former baseball players. Being in Los Angeles I believe I have a good chance at getting Mattingly and Scioscia at some point this year. Canseco should be obtainable once his finger is better from being shot off by Jose himself. Ha Ha. The others are going to be hard but that leaves us with Steve for now. What better way to start the project than with the former Dodger? Off I went to Dr. Liu's with photo in hand to get the first autograph of a project that let's be real probably won't ever be completed. Won't stop me from trying though.

Headed off to the office and I barely made it as it was close to 3;45 but it looked like everyone that wanted Steve's autograph had already been there and gone as there was no line. I paid my fee and promptly placed my photo in front of Steve and now I have the first signature for the photo. Said thank you to Steve for once again showing up and signing for fans and I was on my way.

Thank you again for Alex Lui and his staff for hosting and promoting yet another smooth signing. I look forward to the next one.

Wide view

Closer view

Also for more information on Steve Sax's foundation and his cause please visit his website at this address : Foundation

Saturday, December 6, 2014

BGS Submission Update Ten - 2014 Allen and Ginter : Clayton Kershaw Mini Frame Autograph Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $150

We come to the last of three annoying BGS gem mint grades and dammit if it isn't one of the Kershaw cards.

I submitted 3 different Allen Ginter Kershaw cards and this was the most disappointing one. I knew going in that I might not like the return grade but there was no way I wasn't going to submit it. The condition of the card looked great and even though I have had issues with my A&G submissions in the past I was confident that this would come back to me with a gem mint grade. I was rewarded with that confidence as it did indeed earn an overall gem mint grade. Now the autograph grade.

ARGH !!!

That damn 9 showed up again. I know why it happened but I just hate BGS's thinking when it comes to this issue. I might not like it but I can understand and accept a streaky autograph but if said autograph is perfect but just happens to go to the edge of the card why must it be docked? There is nothing I can do about it but live with it but at the end of the day I don't think it should be a strike against an otherwise perfect card. Nonetheless I add yet another gem mint autograph card of Kershaw to the collection so it can't be all that bad.
= )

Hey, look at that spiffy gem mint grade

Hey look at the irritating autograph grade

Friday, December 5, 2014

Box Break Over At Yankees and Jays.

2014 Stadium Club

Caitlin of Yankees and Jays. is trying to fill up spots in her upcoming 2014 Stadium Club box break that she is hosting very shortly. 

You can read about entry fees and how many teams you get HERE 

I personally will not be joining in as my team was already claimed by another person but from my recent trade I completed with her as seen HERE she is trustworthy and will for sure run a clean break. Good luck to all that participate and don't forget to showcase your hits on your own sites.

Trade with Twitter Friend Mike AKA The Phillies Guy

Upper Deck of Kuroda

I did my first trade with Mike also know as The Phillies Guy on Twitter a couple of weeks ago. He sent out a Tweet asking if anyone had a couple of Jose Fernandez cards that he was in search of and I noticed I happened to have one.

Donruss of Piazza

The one I had was the photo variation that was only included in the 2013 Topps factory set which my wife bought me as a Christmas gift last year. Thanks go out to her once more for contributed to my "habit". With no attachment to that card as I am not a Marlins fan and I already have the one card I really want of Jose (BC rookie card) I saw no reason to not help out a fellow collector.

Andruw Jones in Blue
Reason I selected this one to post was to irritate Dodger fans.
Ah, remember the days with his F'ing smirk?

Value for the Hernandez card is minimal and I told Mike to send back whatever he felt like as anything I "needed" would not be of equal value. Knowing I am a Dodger fan he sent over quite a few cards from sets that I haven't seen in ages.

Old school Upper Deck of the straw man

As you can see from the above pictures he sent me a wide variety of players from different sets and years. There were too many to post (feel bad, quantity wise he sent way more than needed) so I posted a few of my favorites.

Thank you again to Mike for a problem free trade and I am glad I could help out a fellow collector. Look forward to our next trade.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

BGS Submission Update Nine - 2012 Bowman Sterling : Corey Seager Base Autograph Now Graded and Slabbed a Gem Mint 9.5

Original Submission Post
Beckett Book Value : $30

I should have known better not to submit this one. I pushed my luck and it didn't work out.

I already have a copy of this card in BGS gem mint condition that I submitted in the last batch. I came across another one and said why not have two of Corey? I knew the signature was a tad streaky and that it would probably earn a 9 grade. I thought maybe I can sneak by and they wouldn't notice. Yeah, they did.

All the other sub grades came out great so I now have another gem mint autograph card of Corey but this one has the less attractive autograph grade. The reason this one is posted after the previous Bowman Sterling Corey card from Tuesday is that the other one was the limited refractor and if I had to have one of the two come back not perfect I would have preferred this one over that one. Instead they both came back with a slight imperfection grade. Oh well. I tried and it didn't work out.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Trade with Fellow Blogger: Caitlin of Yankees and Jays.

I scored my biggest (price guide wise) trade to date with a relatively newcomer to the blogosphere.

Caitlin of Yankees and Jays. fame has had a card on her trade bait for quite sometime and I approached her months ago but she was more in the selling mode at that time than trading mode so I passed at the time but kept it in the back of my mind as I would check in again to see if her stance would change.

Trout, Ethier with a dash of Adrian

I contacted her a few weeks ago to see if the card was still available and it still was but she was more receptive to trading it now. There was still a little money involved as I paid off one of her box breaks she entered that was hosted by Nachos Grande . That thankfully was the only money out of pocket. 

One more Trout and one more Adrian

Now the fun part. With the card being of higher book value than usual I had to come up with a package that was acceptable to her. I was getting one autograph but I ended up giving up a few to get that one. The big 2 were the BGS graded Abreu that I pulled from a  Chavez Ravining box break. The only reason I entered that break was to pull that specific card for the purpose to trade it for a more desirable autograph. Plan worked to a "T". Next up was the one card that hurt the most but I had to give something to get something and that something was a Giancarlo "Mike" Stanton 5 Star autograph. Hurt to part with it but I am already on the hunt for another copy.

Kid K and the Bison

After that one we agreed on a Trumbo autograph card and a Nick Castellanos autograph card that I also pulled in the box break that yielded the Abreu. I had no attachment to either so I was okay with those. I also believed there was a Nathan Eovaldi autograph but again no big loss to me on that. The Stanton one still hurts the most.

2014 Topps Class Ring Insert of Trout

Though I was only after one card from Caitlin she was kind enough to throw in some other cards that you have seen as I have typed out this post. The biggest of the batch is the Trout right above this paragraph. I am no longer collecting relic cards so if anyone is interested in this feel free to contact me. A lot of great cards were included in the package but the prize is this one :

2014 Topps Strata Autograph of future Hall of Fame member Ken Griffey Jr.

21 / 25

Finally, this beauty is mine. When I first saw it on Caitlin's trade bait I wanted it but the timing was not right till now. I had an autograph ball of Griffey but we all know what happened to that (ball purge) so I have been on the look out for a long time to reacquire Ken's autograph. There were two requirements though, one it had to be an on card autograph and two it had to have him in a Mariner uniform. I associate him with the Mariners and glad he was able to retire as one at the end of his career.

I could have waited till January and used my eBay bucks and gift cards to get Griffey's autograph but why wait when I could get this one for cards I wasn't too attached too and swap them for a card I really wanted in my collection. Caitlin now has cards she really wanted and I now have a card I really wanted. A win win of a trade.

Thank you again to her for our first trade. Though it took some time to get the logistics figured out the trade was completed without a hitch. Look forward to our next one.


... she did throw in one last card though. A unique one at that. One I might have to replicate somewhere down the road for myself. Here we go :

1 / 99

A self made card! Now why I haven't thought of or gotten around to doing this for myself? Who wouldn't want a Penguin card? Don't answer that. Ha Ha. As you can see it is numbered 1 of only 99. That's right, I received the first one. A true one of one.
= )