Friday, May 13, 2016

Taking Delivery - Thoughts on Topps Now with a card in hand

Before hell froze over and Aaron Hill had a 3 home run, one of those being a game winning grand slam, day and the Brewers actually getting a card in the Topps Now set, I was pretty sure they wouldn't all season.  So I decided to pick up a card when Jake Arrieta pitched his no hitter.  I'm a closet Cubs fan, not a collector, but I've always had a soft spot for the lovable losers even when the Brewers joined their division.  So I figure I'd share what you get when you order a card from Topps Now.  First off you get an email with your FedEx Smartpost tracking number and an estimated delivery date, that was, at least for my Alaskan address, long into the future.  I don't know much about the Smartpost option but I'm guessing it's FedEx's version of parcel post.  Well I'm happy to say that my card arrived a full 5 days before the estimated delivery date, which was still 3 weeks of waiting.  

The first thing I noticed is that the post mark is from Florida, where I guess Topps has a printing facility.  The next thing is the envelope they used, it's huge.

Inside that envelope is a smaller envelope.
And in that envelope was my card in, ung, a card saver.  No penny sleeve and I could plainly see that the corners were a little dinged most likely from inserting the card in the card saver.

The card itself is very glossy.  I meant to do a gif showing the glossyness, but didn't.  If you're wondering about card thickness.  The advertised 16pt thickness is the same as a standard card you'd pull out of a pack of flagship baseball.   Other than that the card looks exactly like the mock up you see on the website.  

Overall the $9.99 price tag is a little steep, but the card was very well packaged.  I'm not sure what Smartpost costs on a single card, but it seems like some of the packaging is a little overkill and I would much have preferred a card in a penny sleeve and top loader over a card saver.

Well there you go.  That's kind of what you can expect when you order a card from Topps Now.  I'd expect shipping times to the lower 48 would be much quicker than to Alaska or Hawaii.

Oh and I did order an Aaron Hill card too.

Friday, April 22, 2016

2016 Free Comic Book Day May 7th!

Mark your calendars and check out the website to find a participating store near you!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Goodbye Mr. Haggard

I'm not a fan of new country.  There are a couple acts I can stand, but I grew up listening to classic country or as it was known in those days country.  My father was a big country fan, so Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, David and Lefty Frizzel, Loretta Lynn, the list can go on and on.  And of course there was Merle.  I just saw the he passed away today.  And believe it or not Merle graced some cardboard in his day too.  Today was his 79th birthday.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Topps wants to give you cards right MEOW! I mean NOW.

You might have missed it. Or not.  Topps launched a new on demand service with the start of the regular baseball season called Topps Now.  What is it?  I'll explain, but you can go over to the Topps' website to check it all out or to order cards.

Basically Topps is going to pick the best happenings of the day and make baseball cards out of them.  I'm  not sure if they'll only do 2 at a time or if there will be days with more than that, but so far only 2 per day have been released.  Of course as I write this it's only day 2 in the program.  The days cards are only available for 24 hours and that's it.  Then once the ordering window closed Topps will announce the print run of each card.  Card ship within 3-5 days and so far they cost $9.99 each, but you can get that down to $3.50 if you order 20 for $70.  Shipping is included in the price which is nice.

I can't tell if people were put off from the price or just the lack of PR, although Topps did post about this on social media, but the first two cards have print runs under 400.  As a matter of fact the Liriano card has a print run of 266 and the KC World Series card of just 356.

Here are the first 4 cards.  The second two are still available for a short while.

 Here's what the back looks like.

So here's my 2 cents.  Honestly I like the idea, but.... well first there's the price.  The multiple card deal works great for dealers I guess, but who wants to order 20 cards if you don't plan on selling most of them off.  I like the comment I saw on Cardboard Connection that it would have been great if Topps had made it so you could set up an account drop $70 bucks into it and pick and choose the cards you wanted at the discounted rate, it would also make sense to be able to hold those cards instead of getting them one at a time to reduce the shipping cost burden.

I'm also worried how far Topps is going to have to stretch to find stuff worthy of making a card out of.  I'm sure there will be days were Topps might have find it difficult to choose the best of the best, but I'm sure there will be days were nothing that remarkable happens.  I mean for today's cards I could have seen the Cubs getting one or Arrieta for the 9 to nothing beating of the Angels.

Overall I think the card's design is OK.  I'm not blown away, but I'm also not put off.  I do think this will be a great way to pick up some cool rookie cards of guys who get called up.  Imagine if this had been around during the 2010 Strassmania, or Troutapoloza, or even last year with Kris Bryant.

I sure this will remind people a lot of eTopps, but with Topps not holding the card in an account and shipping them out the door in less than a week, Topps could get half way through the year and if this is disaster just shut it down pretty easily.  And as a scientist I do love a good experience.  So I have to tip my hat to Topps, in theory a neat idea, lets see how this plays out.

What do you guys think?

Edit 1:  I was just looking over Topps' Twitter feed and they answered some  questions.  First they said there is no set number of cards produced each day. I'm not talking about print run here I'm talking about subjects.  So we could see none on a boring day or 10 to 15, unlikely, but I like there is no constraint there.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Food Issues - Looking for the Ryan Braun Marketside card

Hey everybody,
I'm sure you've all heard that Wal-mart and Topps have teamed up for an official food issue baseball card set.  That's actually pretty exciting.  I've looked up here in Alaska and so far no pizza boxes with baseball cards, but I want to throw this out there for anyone who's managed to open a few of these packs if you pull a Ryan Braun card, the only Brewer in the set, I would really like to trade for it.

So leave a message or send me an email if you find one I'll make it worth your time.

Packers of Yore - Ingle Martin

I recently had my box over at COMC sent to me.  I've been doing challanges and making a few bucks in store credit here and there.  I've also been picking up cheap autographs.  And when I mean cheap I mean $2 or less.  Sure they aren't of superstars, but one of my collecting goals was to try and start picking up more certified autographs of Brewers players.  Along the way I ended up picking up this sweet 2006 Upper Deck Exquisite Rookie Autograph of former Packers Quarterback Ingle Martin.

Who's Ingle Martin?  Why he's the Packers 5th round pick from the 2006 draft and the guy sitting three rows back behind Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers.  Ingle may have only made league rookie minimum with the Pack, but that was probably a sweet job.  Showing up to practice and getting to hang out with the kicking crew and hold footballs for kicker Dave Rayner.  You may scoff, but Ingle did get actually NFL playing time.  He got the last two snaps of the last game of the 2006 season.  The Packers routed the Bears who didn't bother to show up because they already had locked up the division with a 13-3 record.  The Packers beat the Bears that day 26-7 which is almost as bad as the Bears beat the Packers in the first game of the season beating them 26-0.  Ingle got to get on the field and kneel down twice, his official stats are -5 yards.  Ingle would go on to bounce around club's practice squads and even decided to try UFL, he officially retired in 2009.  But Ingle is still involved in football coaching the Christ Presbyterian Academy football team in Nashville and has a very impressive 67-6 record.  

So why did I pick up this card?  Well first off, Ingle is a part of Packer history.  Sure he's was a third string quarterback that didn't do anything in the NFL, but he still put on a Packer uniform every week in 2006.  Second I only paid $1.88 for this card and this is an on card autograph numbered to 60!  Sure he has a terrible autograph that looks like a lightning bolt, checkmark, and MX, but to be fair Ingle and rookies in general sign thousands and thousands of cards.  And of course I get to share Ingles' story.

Monday, March 28, 2016

TTM Success Taylor Jungmann

I only sent 4 spring training TTM's out.  And I finally got my second one back, I'm still hopeful for the other 2, but I'm not going to hold my breath.  So I got Brewers future star Taylor Jungmann.  I'm really excited because with this success I can mark off 2016 for my Topps Brewers set.

TTM Stats
Taylor Jungmann
Date Sent: 1/16/16
Date Recieved: 3/28/16
Address used
Maryvale Park
3600 North 51st Avenue
Phoenix, AZ   85031