Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pack Pull Auto: Travis Wood

I bought my second round of Gypsy Queen packs this week, and got my first auto hit of the series.  For some reason, Topps was able to update the front of Travis Wood's card after he was traded to the Cubs, but the back side still has the Reds logo and team name on it. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spring Training TTM: Travis Snider

  • Travis Snider 1/1- It's been a while since I sent any cards out, so it was a nice surprise to find an envelope waiting for me today.  Travis signed his 09 Topps rookie card from Blue Jays camp.  Sent 3/13 (41 days)

Monday, April 23, 2012

2012 Gypsy Queen Pack Break

Last year's debut of Gypsy Queen didn't last long, as it sold out in my local shop after just a few weeks.  Over the course of that time, the price shot up from around $5/pack to $8.50.  Luckily I picked up this year's offering early enough that it's still $5 each, but we'll see how long that lasts.  I bought 6 packs, and despite a beautiful design and card style, I didn't get anything thrilling.  That is, until I opened the final pack.

The only insert cards I pulled were from the "Sliding Stars" set, which is a nice variation on the "Wall Climbers" set from last year.

Of the five mini cards I received, three were normal backs, while Joe DiMaggio and Lonnie Chisenhall featured the Gypsy Queen back parallel.

As I was writing this entry, I stumbled upon Sports Card Radio, which features a visual gallery of all of the SP's from this year's set.

After using the website listed above, I realized I had SP variations of Ian Kinsler and Miguel Cabrera.  I also found out that my big pull from the final pack was even better when I discovered it was an SP as well.

FenwayFrank's Fresh Find: 
Robinson Cano Framed Mini Magenta Printing Plate SP Variation #1/1 


Friday, April 20, 2012

Fenway Park 100th Anniversary Open House

I left work pretty late yesterday, but I had just enough time to stop by the stadium and walk part of the warning track.  When I was heading up towards the EMC club to see what marginal player of yesteryear was signing autographs, I noticed Kevin Millar preparing for an interview with a local news network.  He showed off his 04 World Series ring and poked fun at Larry Lucchino for a few minutes, then signed for a few minutes, much to the displeasure of his handler that wanted him to leave right after the interview.

  • Kevin Millar- 09 Topps U&H

Rangers @ Red Sox, 4/18

The final game played before the 100th Anniversary of Fenway Park was yet another disappointed loss for the Sox, but I got a few autographs down on the field before the game.  I missed Josh Hamilton on two separate occasions; once while he signed next to the Red Sox dugout, and once behind home plate on the visiting team side.  I don't know how, but I've never been able to get him in person.  Luckily, I picked up a pair of autos to make up for it.  Andrus has one of the coolest signatures in the game, but I can't figure out why he strikes through his signature with two lines.

  • Brandon Snyder- 11 Allen & Ginter RC 
  •  Elvis Andrus- 09 Topps RC

Monday, April 16, 2012

45 Minutes at Fenway: Early Morning Graphing

I got to the stadium around 7:15 this morning and had a very narrow time frame to get autos, since I had to leave by 8 to get to work on time. I managed to get a couple before heading off to work:

  • James Shields- '11 Topps Diamond Duos, commented on how cool he thought the card looked
  • Stephen Vogt- '11 Bowman Prospects

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Rays @ Red Sox, 4/14

After a great start to the season yesterday, I headed back to Fenway this morning to get some more Rays autos before the game. I was able to get 80% of the starting rotation, as well as a few relievers. All in all, a solid Saturday morning.

  • James Shields- 09 Topps
  • David Price- 11 Gypsy Queen
  • Jeremy Hellickson- 11 Topps RC, 12 Topps Gold Futures
  • Jeff Niemann- 09 Topps U&H
  • Jake McGee- blank Rays card
  • Fernando Rodney- 09 Upper Deck

Friday, April 13, 2012

Tek & Eck: Opening Day at Fenway, Post-Game

When I left work today, the score was 4-1 with the Red Sox leading in the top of the 8th inning. About 35 minutes later when I arrived at Fenway, the game was still in the 8th, with the Sox racking up 8 runs against the Rays bullpen before the inning was over. Here's what I got:

  • Wade Davis- 12 Topps
  • Sean Rodriguez- 09 Topps
  • Dennis Eckersley- 01 Fleer Beantown's Best
  • Jason Varitek- 09 Topps

Varitek was definitely the highlight of the day. While his taxi/limo/SUV was waiting at the traffic light outside the stadium, he rolled down his passenger side window and signed a few before the car drove off. The only time I got Eckersley last year was on Opening Day, so that makes two in a row now. I'll be back at it again tomorrow afternoon as the Rays come in.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Spring Training TTM: Josh Reddick

  • Josh Reddick 1/1- This year, I sent out quite a few cards to guys that didn't have a good return rate. Josh was one of my "change of scenery, change of heart" experiments, and it paid off. I wasn't able to get his autograph during the past few years with the Red Sox, but I guess the trade to Oakland made him change his outlook now that he'll have the opportunity to play on a regular basis. Sent 3/1 (37 days)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

3 Spring Training Returns: Chris Parmelee, J.J. Putz, & Dave Bush

  • Chris Parmelee 2/2- On a team with multiple injuries, Chris fought his way into the Opening Day lineup for the Twins this year. He personalized his 12 Topps rookie card, and also signed a combo card with him and some of his rookie teammates from the 12 Topps Heritage set. Sent 3/20 (16 days)
  • J.J. Putz 2/2- The Diamondbacks reliever signed cards from the 08 Topps and 08 Allen & Ginter sets. Sent 2/21 (44 days)
  • Dave Bush 3/3- Dave signed cards from the 08 Upper Deck, 08 Topps, and 09 Topps sets from Phillies camp. Sent 2/25 (40 days)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

2 Spring Training Returns: Vance Worley & Gaby Sanchez

  • Vance Worley 1/1- The young Phillies starter personalized his 12 Topps card in blue sharpie. Sent 3/2 (31 days)
  • Gaby Sanchez 1/1- I already had Gaby sign his 09 Topps rookie card, but for some reason he had one in the Updates & Highlights set as well. It's almost identical to the picture used in the base card, which you can see here. I received the U&H card back signed from Marlins camp exactly one year after I got the base card signed. Sent 3/1 (32 days)