Monday, November 4, 2013

Local Card Show - A Cure for What Ails Ya, Part I

I've been very much on the wrong side of "meh" lately and I needed a pick-me-up. It just so happened my doldrums happen to coincide with the weekend of the one "big" annual card show and charity auction which is sponsored by the local park district. 

A one dollar entry free for the best show within a hundred mile radius?  No problem.  I was pleased to pay it.  When I first walked in there were many items available for silent auction and I put bids on two: a Ron Cey autographed baseball card and an Albert Almora autographed baseball.  We'll see if I get lucky and finish as the top bidder, but I left the show early so I'm not holding my breath.  I figure if they haven't called me by now I probably missed out.  C'est la vie.

I did a little reconnaissance around the large gymnasium before quickly formulating an attack plan.

Bargain tables first.  I've saved these for last in the past and been burned.  This time, it was my turn to strike first!  And strike I did!

On the left is a unopened box of 1989 Swell Baseball Greats.  I had never seen these before today, and that's saying a lot because I grew up in the junk wax era.  There's one box listed on eBay for $31.50 with shipping included.  I took home this one for five bucks. It should make for a fun break during the cold months of winter!

On the above right is my quick $4 version of Stonehenge. A dollar each for some of the update sets of my youth.  I could never find the strength to purchase these during my middle school days.  Ponying up $15 for 132 cards was a tough pill to swallow back then, especially when I could purchase 9 wax packs for a third of the price of an update set AND have the joy of opening packs.  Good things come to those who wait.  Right?

Next I made my way to a minor league vendor.  I've seen him at a couple of different Midwest League parks doing the autograph hound thing with his son.  I had to sneak a peak at his inventory. On his table was a huge stack of signed baseballs and a few really nice team signed bats.  I found his Cubs prospects binder and purchased these two for my collection. 

These were by far my priciest purchases of the day at $5 each, but I didn't have a Matt Szczur autograph yet and I'm a sucker for anything Albert Almora. The pricing of his autos was a little out of whack.  A 2013 Bowman Chrome Carlos Correa was $5 and a 2012 Peoria Chiefs Kenny Socorro was also $5.  Everything was $5.  I'm kicking myself over passing on both Correa and Socorro.  For one, I think Correa for $5 would have been a steal. Secondly, I'm mad that I didn't offer him a buck for Socorro, the former Peoria Chiefs first base coach that my friends and I would cheer for in 2011 & 2012.  Yes, we cheer for the first base coach.  Moving on.

Right around the corner was a gentleman who had a pile of 2013 Bowman parallels and I picked up nine more toward the completion of my FrankenSet.  I only need about a half dozen more cards and I'm always looking to update my set.  If you have any Bowman Chrome that you're looking to get rid of I'll give you a more than fair deal.  Just drop me a line!

There were a couple of gentlemen with cases of vintage cards from the 50s and 60s.  One was selling everything at 75% off, but his sticker prices were HIGH and it smelled more like a mark up than a good deal.  The other guy was selling everything at 50% off and his price tags seemed more reasonable.  He even offered to let me go through his boxes of commons to help me finish my set.  Problem is I'm not working on a vintage set at the moment.  Man, I wish I were. He had some sweet deals.

I picked up a couple of loose Cubs cards from random tables before making my final stop.

This one is actually a business card that features Tinker, Evers, and Chance.  I don't know that I've ever paid for a business card before, but it was only a dollar.  But hey, it's a card show two hours south of Chicago, the card features three players from the last World Championship team, and I'm a Cubs fan.  Sold.

Another buck for the Bowman Chrome mini of the Vogelmonster.  I think it's official.  Yes, it is.  My man crush on Dan Vogelbach is just stronger than my crush on Albert Almora.  Don't judge.

A quarter for a nice card of Wrigley Field!  This one is going straight to my binders.

A 1993 Topps Stadium Club Ryne Sandberg, I believe it's a promotional card, and a 2013 Wrigley Field giveaway Sandberg were my last purchases before I settled in at the only dime box at the venue. 
The Stadium Club card was two bucks and the Archives giveaway was only a dollar.  I was pleased with both purchases and I'm now sitting 689 different Sandbergs in my player collection.  Nice.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with my finds and purchases.  It took great amounts of restraint to not open up my wallet further while stopping by the vintage tables, but I didn't succumb to the voices in my head.  Yes, you know the voices I'm talking about...  the ones that make you buy cards.  Again, don't judge.

Stay tuned and you'll get to see my real finds of the show.  Dime boxes!  Wait.  I'm sorry.  They weren't dime boxes after all.  15 cards for $1.00 would be a more accurate description. 

Thanks for stopping by and checking out half of my card show haul!


  1. Nice pickups. I may get a few better deals on Cubs cards in my neck of the woods but you certainly get a better selection!

    Local Cubs minor league autographs and Wrigley giveaways? I wish!

    1. Forgot to mention, I don't know how well you'll do collation wise on the Swell box, but I'd be interested in any Cubs dupes. I have some Swell from 1990 but no 1989. Thanks.

    2. Hopefully I'll have some Cubs duplicates that I can share with you. Be patient though, I'm saving this box for my winter break.

  2. Awesome find on the Swell Greats box! Looking forward to seeing what the 15/$1 boxes had in store!

  3. Excellent pickup on the Baseball Greats... You can't go wrong for $5. I have a few individual cards from that set, but have never seen a pack, much less a box... and I was also around in 1989, so I don't know what that says.

    I'm not sure if you're aware, but the 1993 Stadium Club Sandberg is from bunch of team sets they did that year; they were 30 cards per team and sold individually... A book I have says they were made for 16 different teams and sold in Wal-Marts.

    1. Yeah, I was wondering about the Sandberg. I did a quick eBay search and I couldn't find the card and it didn't look like the other '93 Stadium Club releases. Thanks!

  4. It is so cool that the Cubs have a baseball card giveaway day. I hope other teams start following suit.

    1. Yeah, the cards are pretty neat, too. They repeated a few players and they only used 15 or 16 different designs in the 82 card set, but it's still pretty neat!

  5. I hope I'm around for the Swell Party.