Sunday, May 31, 2015

Card of the Day - 2008 SP : Matt Kemp By The Letter Autograph "E" (16/25)

Though it won't see the light of day for a couple of months this is my first post about Kemp since he was traded to the San Diego Padres. While he remains my 3rd favorite player I understand why the front office did what they did. I personally think they should have kept him one more year at the very least but they were against the wall on this one as Ethier and Crawford are near impossible to trade and Kemp held the most value. I will miss Matt and watching him man right field and I wish him the best. With that said, I will not stop collecting his autographs and while I won't be looking for that many more I still have one major project I dream of finishing. The 2008 SP autograph patch set.

Honestly, prior to me getting this card I thought I would never finish this project but with it in hand I have some renewed faith that I might actually get this done. This is by far the hardest project I have under took since I began to collect cards again and with only 25 copies of this card in existence and the need for 4 of them I didn't think I would finish it. Also prior to this "E" card I haven't even seen one for sale in almost a year. The only one I did see was part of a bulk sale and I couldn't convince the seller to break it up and sell me just the "E".

Well when this card showed up I was all over it and put in my bid and then contacted the seller to ask if he would end the auction and sell it to me outright. He said no so I had to play the bidding war.I had to figure out how high I was willing to go to acquire this elusive letter. To make matters worse I was going to be in a movie at the time of the auction's end. Oh boy. So with two hours left and before the movie started I put in a larger than normal amount and crossed my fingers it didn't get too high or worse I got outbid. Happy to say when I checked my eBay that I won the card for a minimal amount and I was now the proud owner of the 1st of 4 needed "E's".

Can I do it?
Not sure but I am going to continue to try.
22 down.
3 to go.

16 of 25

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Card of the Day - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Clayton Kershaw Base Bubble Refractor Parallel (60/99)

Who wants bubbles?

I sure didn't when I heard of this new parallel that came out in last year's Bowman Chrome release. They are enough parallels for me to chase after and when I saw these on line they did not strike my fancy. Of course that can change when an opportunity presents itself and that is what happened when I ended up acquiring this interesting card.

This card books for $40 but have seen eBay sales anywhere from $10-$17/18 but again I had no interest in it. One day I decided to make a dent in my base refractor needs from this same set (they don't get their own post) and continued to browse the seller's inventory for other Dodgers and specifically Kershaw and Joc. Didn't find any Jocs but I did find this Kershaw and he wasn't asking much for it (BIN auction) and considering shipping was free and I was getting a break on the overall price due to the bulk purchase I added this to my stack.

Once in hand it confirms my need to not pursue the other Dodgers (just not as nice as blues and blacks) but I am happy that if I was to have one of these it is of Kid K. Card looks to be in great condition and I might even see what it grades out to when BGS heads back into my area. I scratched my bubble itch and now can move on and not look back for more.

60 of 99

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Friday, May 29, 2015

Which Card Would You Want In Your Collection aka Should I Swap Out One Of Mine For Another ???

Daily readers know that I have recently acquired a 2014 Bowman Chrome refractor autograph, which also has been graded gem mint, of Cubs star Kris Bryant. While nice and sparkly I question if I really need it in my collection or am I just in awe of the current performance of another young star or the constant love of a past Dodger great? I have decided to ask you which one you would want to have in your collection if you could only have one and only one?

First off here is the Bryant that I currently own :

A very nice card and numbered as well. He is only 23 and could have a great career and even if he doesn't achieve hall of fame statistics I am sure he will have a good career at worst. He is "already" 23 while this next player is "only" 22 and won't turn 23 till the end of the 2015 season.

Bryce has been in the league for a few years now but this is his first one that he is really starting to show off his potential and at 22 the sky is the limit. Is this year a flash in the pan or the start of something great? If neither of those are your cup of tea how about a Dodger legend?

Sandy F'ing Koufax. Nuff said.

All of these are great cards and while I would love to have them all I think one is manageable at this time. So I as you, which one would you pick to keep or acquire? Kris is hot right now in the card market and if he performs on the field his Bowman Chrome will be the card to have which I already do. Or do I go with Bryce who I already have an autograph of but would love to add another to the collection. And then finally do I get my 2nd Koufax autograph?

So in final, I have a Koufax, I have a Bryce so the acquisition of either would mean I have two and none of Kris which I only have the one at this time? Sell high? Stay in a holding pattern and just figure another way to get my grubby little hands on the other two beauties? One last note, acquiring either Bryce or Harper with the sale of Kris would net me some extra dinero for another card as well.

What...would... you... do?

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Card of the Day - 2015 Topps Tribute : Joc Pederson Autographed Black Printing Plate (1/1)

Up till late last year I had never owned a serialized one of one card and now I have two of them.

As I alluded in yesterday's Bryant post I picked up two cards for the sale of my one BGS pristine Bryant card and this is the second of the two and it's a dozy.

For those that have not heard this years 2015 Tribute issue has been totally recalled by Topps due to a quality issue involving most of the autograph cards. They used a new process to enhance the cards but instead it caused bubbling and smearing issues instead. Instead of the continued bad press they decided to issues refunds and take back their cards. Even with that there were a lot of cards that made their way onto eBay and thankfully that day and at that time I was searching for a Joc autograph.

I had just acquired the BGS 9.5 refractor of Bryant and wanted to land one more "great" looking card and since I was behind on Joc autographs and Joc cards in general when compared to my Seager and Urias collection I figured I would look for a nice Joc auto. Typed in "Joc auto" into the search box and this was the 1st card to pop up as it had been live on the bay for the grand total of 15 minutes. I knew of the Tribute issues but at the same time this is a printing plate so they would not be applying their new procedure to this "card". The autograph was clean with no issues and corners looked sharp. It was a BIN auction so I hit the button and completed the transaction and had the card in hand within a week.

After the card was in hand I went back and looked at sales of autographed plates and Joc cards in general from the Tribute release and all I can say is I scored a great deal as this card was highly under sold to me and I couldn't be happier. I plan to get this graded by BGS and unlike a lot of plates that seem to have surface issues this one looks great in person. I expect no less than a gem mint return. Not too shabby for no money out of pocket. Thank you again to Kris Bryant and his pristine grade. Ha Ha.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Thursday, May 28, 2015

Card of the Day - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Kris Bryant Base Autograph Refractor Parallel (446/500) BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5

To acquire or not to acquire this card. That was the question. To help me out I went to Twitter and asked my go to friends when it comes to matters like this, With the assistance from Alex, Aus, Derek and Jesse I decided to pick this card up. Money out of pocket? Zip, Zero, Nothing.

So why did I need to seek out their advice? Because I already owned a Bowman Chrome autograph of Kris and I only needed one so I thought I was done, Of course I sent in for grading by BGS and low and behold it came back a PRISTINE 10. Well that is a base autograph aka non-refractor and non numbered. If Kris was a Dodger I wouldn't have had this discussion but being a Cub I looked at what was best for my collection. Do I keep a 10 or "downgrade" to a 9.5? I leaned towards the 9.5 but wanted to see what my fellow collectors had to say and they all thought I should go the 9.5 route.

At the time of this writing there are 46 pristine base autographs and 357 gem mints. Those also are not numbered so there can and will probably be countless more in the near future. On the numbered refractors there are "only" 156 gem mint 9.5's in existence. There will probably be more but there can only be so many more since they are numbered to 500.

With the decision made I was determined to turn the pristine card into 2 cards? How so? Well at the time of this acquisition the 10 card was selling on eBay in the $600-$700 range and probably will go up shortly. The 9.5 one was selling in the high $400 to low $500. That would mean if I could sell my 10 for let's say $650 I could pick up a refractor 9.5 Bryant for my collection and then another card with what I would have left over from the sale. Of course the 2nd card would depend on what I had to fork over for the refractor. Thankfully I picked it up for less than I thought I would be able to.

So with that I turned a pristine base autograph of Bryant into this nice numbered refractor in a gem mint grade and a little left over to pick up another great autograph card. More on that tomorrow. Till then, woo hoo on this transaction.

Never get tired of seeing gold.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Eighteen - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Kris Bryant Base Autograph Now Graded PRISTINE 10

Original pic and thoughts :

2014 Bowman Chrome

The one of the six that I think are border line but the one most likely to pull out a 9.5 overall grade. I picked this up on a trade/purchase with my good friend Jesse with the intention of submitting it and getting a gem mint card of the supposed next Cub's superstar. As I told Jesse there is only one "issue" that I saw with the card but unlike the Five Star and Stratas the one corner in question is not as blatant. Thinking here is that it grades out to a 9.5 but keeping my expectations tempered.

Result and thoughts :

BAM !!!

A pristine 10 of a super prospect. You just can't ask for more. 

As stated up above I picked this up on a trade/purchase with my friend Jesse back in Dec./Jan. as I wanted an autograph card of this Cubs prospect. When in hand I expected it to grade out to a gem mint as I saw one corner under the magnifier that gave me a slight pause to anything higher. Well BGS says here that there is no flaw and gave it a perfect 10 with the same grade on the autograph (which I wasn't really worried about). 

Sales of this card have gone over $600 and my wife who calls these 10's minty fresh or winter fresh wants me to sell it. Guess she wants a new purse. Lol. I have no intention at this moment to unload this even though it is tempting with that 10 attached to it but I am going to roll with it and see how he does when/if he gets called up this year. There is not a shortage of these as this one will be at least number 62 in the pristine club but the demand is big enough to continue to drive this card's price higher and higher. Now if this comes back a black label pristine 10 then I might really have to think about selling it but I shall see when and if that time comes.

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

The 3rd and final pristine from my most recent submission batch and my last chance to acquire my 1st black label from BGS. It was not meant to be so I will have to wait and try again the next time I submit cards. Still having a BGS 10 of the hottest prospect in baseball is nothing to sneeze at and I will take it any day of the week.

Even though there are 55 that have been graded this high it has not squelched the demand which is still higher than supply. Well I decided to sell this beauty off and by the time this post goes live it will have been long gone. I actually went and bought/acquired two cards (which I will showcase in the next two days) from the anticipated funds of this card's sale. Though I love having 10's I decided to sell this when the market was at it's highest. I made the mistake of holding onto a Kemp card when he was scorching hot and that wasn't going to do that again. 

The card sold promptly as expected and even more than I thought it would. If Kris makes it big this card's value will skyrocket even more but since he is not a Dodger I will not feel bad that I let it go as tomorrow's post will show that I found a nice replacement for it. 

18 cards and 17 satisfactory results with some being greater than expected. I already have another batch that is up to 20 cards and will be submitting those once BGS is back in my area for a raw card review event. It's an addiction. 
= )

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Card of the Day - 2013 Bowman Inception : Corey Seager Base Autograph Gold Parallel (57/99)

Back to my other rainbow project of Dodger super prospect Corey Seager. They are both hard to complete as the Chrome one is all about limited colored non autograph parallels that there are more than 15 to find. This Inception one is "easier" as there are not as many to hunt down BUT they are all autographs though so that makes the cost higher.

The base and the blue are in hand and I was still on the hunt for the other 3 that are "realistic" to acquire. Red, green and this gold one. I basically have given up on hoping these can grade out to gem mint as this brand is notorious for chipping issues and this card is not immune to it. The main thing I want is a nice clear and non streaking autograph which this card has. Book has this valued at $50 which is the same as the blue one I recently acquired but I was able to pick this one up for a couple dollars cheaper than that one.

I am not the biggest fan of gold parallels as the color is not all that attractive to me but wanting to complete rainbow sets requires you to pick up some colors you normally wouldn't. With that said this is another Seager autograph for the collection and that is never a bad thing. Two more to go.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


State of the Day : Dodgers Social Rewards Update 1.2 Million and Still In First

Call me pleasantly surprised.

I knew come the last part of May I would be crossing the 1.2 million threshold in the Dodgers Social Rewards program but what I didn't expect was that I was still perched at the top of the standings. I fully expected to knocked out of first and reside in second for the rest of the 2015 baseball season till I could work myself back up during the off season. As a matter of fact in early April it looked like that was the path I was headed as my lead was cut from 13K down to low 9K and assumed it would evaporate soon after. But then it didn't

I noticed one day that the 2nd place person had missed his daily point input which gave my lead a day reprieve. Then a funny thing happened, the glitch that made my lead disappear last year seemed to have disappeared itself. I was no longer losing my lead day in and day out and in some instances was adding to the lead. Will this last? I don't know but I hope it does as even though I have not won a single thing from this program I enjoy my 1st place position. I have almost 700 tokens and not a single thing to use them as it seems the Dodgers are choosing to just do a promotion here and there and one at a time unlike last year when there were more at the same time and more all together.

The 1.3 million threshold should come sometime in late July early August and if I am still in first at that time then it will probably be safe to assume I will be there till the 2016 baseball season comes around but we shall see. Till then I still hold out hope I win something on this program.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Monday, May 25, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Seveteen - 2014 Bowman Draft : Julio Urias Base Chrome Black Refractor Parallel Now Graded PRISTINE 10

Original pic and thoughts :

2014 Bowman Chrome Draft Black Parallel

As with Seager I have taken on the project of acquiring the 1st year Bowman Chrome cards of Urias in rainbow form and hopefully have them all in gem mint form. Realistically that probably won't happen and 9's will be fine but with that said I see no flaws on this card other than maybe it is slightly off centered but that shouldn't stop it from a 9.5. 

Result and thoughts :

Prior to this batch I only had 1 card come back as a 10. Now with this batch that number has grown to 4. Now the question is does this Urias or the other 2 come back as a "black label" pristine 10? For those that don't know there are two types of pristine 10's. One is if 3 sub grades are 10's and the other is a 9.5, which is what my Puig is, then there is the new black label where all 4 sub grades are 10's. We shall see what my 3 earned when the results are posted in a month. A black parallel of Urias in a black label? Yes please.

I actually thought the blue parallel of Urias from this same batch was in better condition than this card and in fact earned gem mint status but BGS thought this card was perfect and I am not one to argue with them. This is one fine addition to my ever growing Urias collection. 

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

Of the 3 pristines that I received this was the one I really wanted to earn a black label for visual purposes in addition to value. What can make a limited (75) black parallel even better? A nice black label to make the whole case color coordinated. It was not meant to be though as with the pristine Kershaw I am "stuck" with a plain old 10.

This is the Bowman Draft chrome and not the Chrome prospects chrome so that makes this the only one in existence that has earned a 10. There is a Chrome prospects that earned a 10 (black label too) and I saw it sell on eBay for a nice round sum of $200 a couple months ago. Since is not a black label and these draft chromes have a tad less demand I would like to think that this is probably worth $120-$150 on the open market. No intention to sell but that could change when he makes it to the big leagues as demand will be even higher than it is now. Till then I will enjoy this fine one of one in the world. Viva Mexico.

Might not be perfect but it is pristine

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Sunday, May 24, 2015

Card of the Day - 2015 Topps Museum : Clayton Kershaw Base Blue Parallel (73/99)

Chipping away at my wishlist as I was finally able to get my hands on the elusive Kershaw. Hard to get as I didn't want to spend much. Lost out on quite a few copies as the cost was prohibitive to me so I just had to wait it out.

There were a few auctions where this was included in a batch of other card but I didn't need or want those and those auction closing sale price was way more than I was going to spend so those were never really an option. A couple I just plan ignored as shipping was unreasonable. $4? Really? Finally found this one which was coupled with the base version which I have no need for as I don't collect those.  Typical 7 day auction with acceptable shipping cost. Kind of surprised I won the lot as I successfully sniped it at the last minute with a low ball bid. I did not expect to win it but happy that I did.

A great deal for sure and glad that the Kershaw pursuit is over. Only big name (higher expected price) left is Trout and I expect to lock him up soon as the prices have dipped in recent weeks. Once again the base card is available if anyone would like it.

73 of 99

Base which is available for trade

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Saturday, May 23, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Sixteen - 2011 Allen and Ginter : Clayton Kershaw Mini Bazooka Parallel (10/25) Now Graded PRISTINE 10

Original pic and thoughts :

2011 Allen and Ginter Bazooka Mini

Now for the six cards that I just "know" will grade out to a gem mint 9.5. Of course I've said that before and some have come back lower but on the other hand I have thought some cards would crap out on me but they received a 9.5 instead so you just never know.

This Bazooka card is numbered out of 25 and I so love these low numbered cards to earn 9.5's as if you have one chances are they can't all be perfect so you could have one of only a handful. This being Kershaw just wants me to have gold banner even more. 

Result and thoughts :

I wanted a gold banner for this card and basically expected it. It earning a 10 though was not on my mind but I am not gonna turn it down.

With this card being numbered to only 25 I made the decision to include it into this batch as I usually want all my numbered Kershaws to be graded. As with yesterday's Urias card I am more than happy that it came back with a perfect 10 and now the only question is did it earn a black label 10 or an old plain 10? Either way it doesn't matter to me (yes I would prefer black label) as anytime you can add a 10 to your collection, especially one that you didn't expect, it is a good day. 

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

Post sixteen and I have 3 left to showcase. They are all pristine 10's so the only question is would one of them get the even harder to acquire new black label from BGS? Pristine means at least 3 of the sub grades are a 10 with the other being 9.5. Nothing more, nothing less. A black label is where all the sub grades are 10's but with raw grades just giving you the final grade you don't know if it earned a black label or not. Even if none of them earned a black label I am more than ecstatic to add 3 more Pristines to my collection as prior to these I had only one to call my own.

The other Pristine I have in my collection is of Yasiel Puig and whether it was now or later I always wanted to have a Kershaw in that club as well. While there are other Kershaws that I would have loved to get an overall 10 I can't hate on the fact that this limited and numbered out of 25 and is now my 1st pristine Kershaw. 

The sub grades were posted and sad to say it was the old "boring" non black label pristine that this card earned. Ha Ha. Nonetheless a great addition to my collection.

10 of 25
1 of 1 graded gem mint

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Friday, May 22, 2015

Kershaw #walletcard Contest Blog Specific Point Earning Opportunity # 6

It's been quite some time for a blog specific post about the #kershawwalletcard contest so to celebrate Memorial Day weekend how about one pertaining to Captain America?

I've been going back and forth between baseball books and comic books as I have been catching up on some older Marvel stories and I just finished up with this Omnibus. Great read by the way.

So for one point in the contest what does Captain America and Wolverine have in common? As always leave your answer in the comment section of this post. I might be on the road or asleep but the time stamp will verify the winner if there are multiple correct answers.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Card of the Day - 2014 Bowman Chrome : Julio Urias Base Purple Refractor Parallel (72/199)

Another hit for the Bowman Chrome rainbow set that I am trying/will complete for Julio Urias.

For long time readers you know I am trying to complete the color parallels for both Urias and Seager and I was lucky to acquire the purple Seager on a trade with Luis last year which in turn graded out to a BGS 9. That is the other thing, I am not only trying to do the rainbow but to also have them at least come back from BGS mint and hopefully gem mint. Thankfully mint is usually obtainable and even on it's worst day I think this Urias will earn that with gem mint being a decent possibility.

With the prices of all Urias cards going up I wanted/need to lock these down before he hits the majors and they will get yet another price bump. This card could be had for less than $7 a couple of months ago but at that time I wasn't collecting them. Ugh. This one put me back a little over $12 but with comic codes (as always) in hand it didn't cost me anything out of pocket.

One more down and many, many more to go. A fun but long project continues.

72 of 199

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Fifteen - 2014 Topps Five Star : Clayton Kershaw Base Autograph (4/50) Now Graded Gem Mint 9.5

Original pic and thoughts :

2014 Topps Five Star

Second of the two Kershaw autos in the submission and just like the other I am hoping for the best here. The "issue" with this one is that I can tell one corner is slightly not razor sharp. Question is will that at least earn a 9 so the other sub grades hopefully earn a 9.5 so I can yet have another gem mint Kershaw autograph in my collection? Hope so.

Result and thoughts :

The Five Star brand is my love/hate relationship in the hobby. These are just beautiful cards that I can't get enough of but they are a bitch when it comes to grading. The thickness of the cards causes a lot of corner issues and I have had my fair share of them. Even when everything else looks good they can drag the whole overall grade down. I have been lucky with Frank Thomas, Sandy Koufax and a couple others but then more than a handful others have been less than gem mint. I have never gotten a Kershaw Five Star in a 9.5 grade ... until now. 

I was really worried about one corner but thankfully it scored at least a 9. Signature is perfect as that earned a 10 and I am curious of what the other subs are going to come back as. All I know though is I have added another gem mint Kershaw autograph to the collection.

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

We are now at the 15th recap post out of 18 and the final 9.5 gem mint return. This I deemed the best of the 9.5's due to the sub grades and what kind of card it is and of course the player involved. We are talking about the best pitcher in baseball, Mr. Clayton Kershaw.

My history with the Five Star brand and the 2013 issue specifically has been about 50/50 and when it has come to Kershaw it has always been on the wrong side. I have gems of Trout, Frank Thomas and the immortal Sandy Koufax. On the other hand Biggio, Gibson and others have struggled to earn a mint 9 with some earning 8.5's. The problem with this brand is that the thickness of the card invites corner issues and that is usually what marks my submissions down. Not this time !

Solid !!!

My one and only Koufax card came back with a gem mint grade with 3 9.5's and a 10 and now I can pare him with this beautiful Kershaw which came back with the exact same grades. It's hard enough getting an overall 9.5 on Five Star but to get a solid 9.5 is even rarer. When I received the RCR of 9.5 I breathed a sigh of relief as I really wanted a gem mint Five Star of Kershaw and now with the sub grades in it wasn't even close to a 9. 

A few Kershaws I might part with in the future, this is not one of them.
= )

Gem Mint all around

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Card of the Day - 2006 Allen and Ginter : Robinson Cano Mini Frame Autograph

A Yankee makes a rare appearance on the blog.

I know that Mr. Cano is a Mariner now but if I was to had his autograph (which I wanted to) it would have to be with him in pinstripes. I am sure he will have a decent career in Seattle but to me I will always associate him with New York.

If healthy Robinson will probably join the 3000 hit club and might even make the Hall of Fame. I have seen this card on eBay numerous times but each time something else came up that was more pressing or the end price was too much for me. I even saw it in BGS graded form and wanted in on that but those went for even more. This card happened to be on a BIN auction but there was another copy that was ending in a little over a day on a traditional auction. I put both on my watch list to see which one I could win and when the traditional one reached a higher price than this BIN version I quickly snatched this one up. I always find it funny when a card gets bid up higher than a BIN one that is going for a lower amount.

Card arrived in great condition and I have even put into my BGS pile. Debating if I send it but at the very least it will get the raw review treatment.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Fourteen - 2011 Gypsy Queen : Clayton Kershaw Mini Leather Parallel (2/10) Now Graded Gem Mint 9.5

Original pic and thoughts :

2011 Gypsy Queen

My new favorite mini in my collection and what would complete my happiness? Why a gem mint grade of course. Only 10 of these cards are in existence and not one has been graded yet by BGS. I would love to have the only one to be a gem mint and I think it has a tremendous chance at that. I see no flaws so we shall see what BGS thinks.

Result and thoughts :

Even though this was lower on the list of earning a gem mint grade I would have been very disappointed if it didn't earn at least a 9.5. This card, as stated before, is my new favorite NON autograph of Kershaw and with it being numbered out of only 10 and none being graded so far I wanted to be 1st and possible the only one to achieve gold status. Thankfully I did just that.

I find it kind of funny that BGS kept it in its mini rigid holder and placed it into their holder. Just like the Piazza Dynasty card I wonder if they ever took it out or graded it while it was in the holder? Don't know and don't care as I got the grade I wanted. Obviously I submitted to BGS for slabbing and I am curious to see the sub grades as I didn't see a flaw so I wonder how close to pristine it was. Ah, pristine, to this day I only have one card that earned that elusive grade and this would have been a great one to make it 2. It wasn't meant to be but I am more than happy with this card's results.

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

Even though my batch did include some pristines I was kind of surprised that this was not one of them. When I submitted it I could see nothing wrong with it and wondered how close it got to earning that hard to obtain 10. With it now back in hand I see it wasn't that close but I am still very happy with the end result.

This card is numbered out of only 10 and this is now the only one that has been graded and thankfully it came back in a gold banner. It is a strong 9.5 as it earned 3 9.5 sub grades and 1 10. Centering was one that I thought was perfect but that was one of the 3 9.5's but I am not going to complain as when I submitted it all I wanted was a 9.5 and that is what I got back. Great card got better

Leatherly goodness

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Movie Review : Mad Max Fury Road

It has been 30 years since the last Mad Max movie appeared in theaters. The 1st 3 movies featured a young Mel Gibson in the title role and helped propel his movie career here in America. With this relaunch we now have Tom Hardy of Inception and Batman fame in the lead role. A shaved head Charlize Theron is also a main player in what Warner Bros hopes is the start of another money making franchise.

As a child I came across all 3 of the movies that starred Mel Gibson but I don't remember how or when as when they were released I was 5, 7 and 11 so I know I didn't see them in the theaters. Guess when the parents were away I snuck watched them on TV. I have always been fascinated with post-apocalyptic themed movies/books/games etc and these films fit the bill. Loved the Mel Gibson flicks and I like Tom and Charlize so I had to give this new go around a shot.

Highlights :

  • Charlize back in a down and gritty role. She is a pretty lady but other than "The Italian Job" her best parts/performances have been when she "uglys" down.
  • Top notch vehicle chases. 
  • Doesn't try to pretend it's something when it's not. This movie is just an excuse to see mayhem and action with disregard to any form of a so called plot.
  • A character that plays only the guitar and nothing else while the vehicle they are attached to is in constant battle. Adds nothing to the film but I for some reason enjoyed watching it on screen and laughed every time he showed up.
  • Film presents new ways to do battle as there are various new techniques on display that I haven't seen before.

Low Lights :

  • At times it was very hard to hear what characters were saying. A real problem when you were trying to catch their names which a lot I did not.
  • While I knew this was a action film 1st and everything else was secondary I would have appreciated a little more plot. Even for a summer film the plot here is sparse.
  • The director either didn't care if you knew about past Mad Max movies or just assumed you did and that is why you are watching this new entry into the franchise but some history into the world of Max would also have been appreciated to this viewer.

Final Thoughts :

I knew going in what to expect for the most part and that is what I ended up getting from this film. I wanted to see mayhem and lots of explosions with multiple vehicle chases and I was not disappointed in that aspect. While I enjoyed seeing all of that I felt that the movie was about 15-20 minutes too long. Unlike Avengers 2 which is about the same time length that movie did a better job of moving the story along in between the big battle/action scenes which this movie did not. I wanted to know more of Mad Max and his history/nightmares and also how Charlize's character was where she was prior to meeting Max. They inform us how but from that time to present time (years between) we don't know what drove her to be who she is and why she is doing what she is doing. Again, a little back story on characters would have been nice.

So while this movie delivers on the action front it fails in the story area but with that said it is a Mad Max movie in the summer movie season and that is basically what I should have expected to see. For me I guess I wanted just a little more out of this film. Mad Max fans and action junkies will absolutely love this film and would grade it much higher on their own scale I'm sure but for me it gets dinged for being too much of a mindless movie. In the end though if you are going to watch this watch it on a big screen to appreciate the action as a home viewing would take away from it I feel.

Final Grade :


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Card of the Day - 2013 Bowman Chrome : Corey Seager Base Yellow Refractor Parallel (2/10)

A card acquisition almost a year in the making and once it made it into my grubby little hands I can say it was well worth the wait.

This yellow! parallel has been on the bay for the better part of 10 months on a BIN auction with a best offer option. The asking price was way too much to my liking and there were too many other autographs and parallels that were easier to obtain with less hassle. But I still kept it on my watch list and there it stayed as every month it would restart its 30 day countdown till it reset itself every ensuing month. There was always at least 3-7 people with the card on their watch lists so I am unsure if there was ever a formal offer sent to the seller. I would say after all that time it was safe to say there was but obviously nothing to his liking.

On a particular day eBay was running a 10% eBay bucks promotion and I thought maybe it was time to see if I could land this yellow beauty. Recent sales for me had me in the black and thinking if he was reasonable I could acquire it and earn some extra bucks for a future purchase. All day the seller and I went back and forth on offers till we agreed on an amount that was good for the both of us. A week later the card was in my hands.

Though I want my rainbow parallel projects of Seager and Urias to at least grade out to mint 9's when I acquire a card with this low of number of copies (10 in this case) I really want it to come back a gem mint 9.5. With some looking underneath the magnifier I can say it pretty much is a gem mint 9.5 but it also has a chance at a pristine 10. Now wouldn't that be nice? With only the red parallel (5) with a lower number (other than the one for ones) this might be my last "very limited" numbered parallel of Corey.

Two of only Ten

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Sunday, May 17, 2015

BGS Result Update Number Thirteen - 2014 Topps High Tek : Yasiel Puig Low Tek Diffractor Autograph Now Graded Gem Mint 9.5

2014 Topps High Tek Puig Autograph

Just like Seager, uh duh.

So that is it. 6 more cards were added to the BGS submission pile and when I get the results later this week and the actual cards back next week it will be interesting to see the sub grades from all the cards that either gem minted or pristined.  

Final Submission Result and Thoughts :

The second of 2 "no duh" submissions is showcased here. Just like the green parallel of Seager this Puig card was already acquired with a guaranteed grade of gem mint and the only thing that was to be found out was what would the sub grades come out to be.

Turns out it was a very strong gem mint with 3 9.5's and topped off with a 10 to boot. Obviously the autograph also was a 10. I do not have many autographs (3) of the Dodger's favorite Cuban but the ones I do are great. This now sits aside a gem mint Bowman Chrome blue parallel from his rookie year and a sweet spot signed black ball that I acquired in person back in 2013. I definitely have quality if not quantity when it comes to Yasiel.

Clearly a gem mint

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.