Monday, January 31, 2022

Galen Cisco Return

Today I received a return from Galen Cisco, who signed his 1963 and 1969 Topps for me.  This was my third request to Mr. Cisco.  The first in 2004, and the second about two years ago.

He previously signed a 1963 Topps for me, but I had an extra, so I sent it along.  I think this most recent one is a nice upgrade to the original one signed in black ballpoint back in 2004.

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Blyleven, Morgan and Shamsky Returns

Yesterday I received three returns.

Bert Blyleven signed his 1973 Topps nicely for his $20 fee.

I've got most of the cards I want from Mr. Blyleven.  I haven't decided if I'll pay $20 for some of his 80's cards when he was on other teams.  I may also try to upgrade a 1972 Topps that he signed in thick, black sharpie at TwinsFest in 2012, but again, I haven't decided if I want to spend $20 on an upgrade.

95-year-old Bobby Morgan signed his 1953 Topps and a Rowe Picture Card for a $10 donation to St. Jude's Children's Hospital.  I bought the Rowe Picture Card on eBay.  I don't know anything about them.  His name and team are printed on the back, but there is nothing else.  No date, stats, copyright.  The card is smaller than a standard baseball card.  About the size of a '52 Bowman.  It appears to have been hand-cut, as the edges aren't very straight.  Does anyone have more information about them?

Finally, Art Shamsky signed his 1971 Topps.  The ballpoint pen is a little light, but I didn't send a fee, so beggars can't be choosers.  I seem to be saying that a lot lately.

I have about 20 requests out, as well a couple private signing items.  I have a handful of cards to send out from recent eBay purchases as well.  After that, I might do a quick scan through the recent returns on SCN for the sets I'm working on to see if any tough signers have started signing again and then start working on the easy signers on some sets from the 80's (1983, 1985 and 1987).

I decided not to set any specific goals for this year.  Last year was busy and expensive, so I want to slow down a little, or at least spend less, this year.  I do want to send out more magazines, balls, and oddball stuff, but I say that almost every year.

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Tony Kubek TTM Return

I haven't added many new cards to my 1963 Topps set, but I finally quit procrastinating and sent a card to Tony Kubek.  I'll never complete the set, but it seems like a shame not to add a 50's Yankee to the set if I have the opportunity. 

Mr. Kubek asks for a $35 donation to WELS, which he noted goes to "...assist those in need."  It's not cheap, but it seems to go to a good cause, and probably helps keep his mail volume to a reasonable level.  He also wrote me a nice, short note regarding a comment I made in my letter.  It's nice to know that at least sometimes the player reads what I write!

In 2009 I sent in his 1958 and 1965 Topps to a signing with MAB.

I also have a 1958 Yankees team ball that is missing his signature.  At this point though, I'm too afraid to send it through the mail.  It has Berra, Ford, Larsen, Skowron, Shantz and more.  He doesn't seem to do paid signings anymore so I might not ever get his signature on it.

Monday, January 24, 2022

Chuck Knoblauch 1991 Twins Poster

Last month I posted about a poster I got signed by Shane Mack via FanHQ. 

Today I received the second poster from this set that I've gotten signed.  This time by Chuck Knoblauch, via Jamie Blye.  This was a much smoother signing, as I just decided to have it signed in blue rather than risk another issue with silver on these posters.  While there are some light scratches on this poster, it's not as bad as this picture makes it look, since the light hit them at just the right angle so as to highlight them.

I still haven't decided how to store or display these due to their odd size (7" x 18").  I have one box that fits these exactly, which I intend to use for mailing them out when I get them signed.  It's already got several layers of tape on it though.

Steve Rogers and Bob Veale

I received two ttm returns today.

I was wondering if I'd see my cards back from Steve Rogers that I sent last August.  He's normally a good signer and came through again for me.

He has four cards in the 1983 Topps set, and he signed all four of them for me, including his base card, his All Star card, his Expos Leaders card, and his ERA Leaders card.

I also received a nice return from Bob Veale who signed his 1969 Topps.  The card got stuck to the return envelope flap gum a bit so there is a little paper loss, but not too bad.  He was also kind enough to answer a question in my letter and sign that as well.

Friday, January 21, 2022

Kenta Maeda 2021 Topps Heritage Real One Autograph

I didn't receive any ttm returns today, but I did receive an eBay purchase.

I am assuming there won't be many opportunities to get autographs from the Twins this year, so I decided to buy this certified card of Kenta Maeda.   

The only other card I have from this set so far is from Randy Dobnak, who signed it for me ttm.

I also received a 16-card lot of 1971 Topps cards I bought on eBay.  This lot including some oddball cards, including some checklists, playoffs cards and league leaders.  The card I was looking for was Ken Reynolds rookie card, which also includes Archie and Bob Reynolds.  Was this a coincidence, or did they purposely put three Reynolds on the card?  

Anyway, it's a high-number card and I was able to buy the entire lot of cards for about the same price as other sellers were asking for just this card.  Ken and Bob appear to be good signers, but Archie does not.  I'll try to get at least Ken and Bob and then wait and see if I can get Archie at a paid signing or something less risky than just trying to send it ttm.  The card's too expensive for me to just try sending it to him first and probably not get it back.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

1960 Topps Chuck Estrada

Just one return today with a single card.  I've sent to Mr. Estrada a few times over the years, and he's been a generous signer.

This time he signed his 1960 Topps rookie card for me in a little over two weeks.

Back in 2012 he signed his 1961 Topps with the Topps All Star Rookie trophy on it.

In 2015, he signed the 1961 Topps AL Games Won Leaders card (from 1960).  He was the third one to sign it, but since then I've gotten it completely signed.  You can see how beat up the card got by sending it ttm 6 times.  Sometimes you can even see color rubbed off onto the inside of the envelope.

Here it is after Jim Perry signed it to complete it:

Here it is after Milt Pappas was the first to sign it:

You can see that it started out as a pretty nice card.  Pappas' signature was a little smeared and I debated starting over but figured it would end up with some flaw after having six people sign it, so I just kept going.  It's kind of like getting that first door-ding on your new car.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

More Vintage TTM Returns

I already had six out of the seven items signed that I received today, but in almost all cases I 'd rather get a duplicate card from the 1958 set than a new card from a 199x set.  I suppose I'd take a Hall of Fame player from the 90's, but you get my point.  I'm not sure what that means for me and this hobby in the next several years when there are no longer players around from the 1950's and 60's, but we'll worry about that then.

Many of these cards are also upgrades to either the previous signature or card.  That doesn't always work out, but it did today.

Jack Curtis signed his 1962 Topps for me.  This is the only card (and player) that I did not yet have and adds another card to my collection of cards with the Topps All-Star Rookie trophy on them.

Bud Daley signed his 1958, 1961, 1963 and 1965 Topps.

And Al Weis signed his 1964 Topps (with the Topps trophy) and a Ron Lewis 1969 Mets postcard, to which he added his jersey number.

Saturday, January 15, 2022

A Handful of TTM Returns

 I forgot to post my returns from yesterday and I received two more today.

Yesterday, Dave Hillman signed his 1960 and 1961 Topps for me.  I had enclosed a 1959 Topps which he returned unsigned.  He wrote me a short note on my letter which I really couldn't read, but I think it was referring to his poor eyesight, which may be why he didn't sign the 59 Topps.  It has a facsimile autograph on it so maybe he thought it was already signed?


Tom Qualters signed his 1955, 1958 and 1959 Topps for my collection.

And the final return from yesterday was from Bennie Daniels, who signed his 1961, 1962 and 1965 Topps.

Today I received a return from Bob Skinner, who signed his 1960, 1961 and 1962 Topps.  I had these cards signed by him already but was hoping to upgrade to blue ink, which didn't happen.  Oh well.  I don't like to make requests when I send a request, especially when they sign for free, so beggars can't be choosers I guess.

And finally, Carlton Fisk signed his 1973 Topps, which has the Topps All Star Rookie trophy on it.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Bob Heise Return

After receiving this return that I sent around Thanksgiving, I'm wondering why I sent it.  I already have both his 1971 and 1972 Topps signed by him, although the 71 was purchased. 

I had bought a bunch of high number 71 Topps from an eBay seller, so I'm guessing I included this one as well, so I'd have a ttm signed card rather than just the purchased card.

Anyway, Bob Heise was kind enough to sign his 1971 and 1972 Topps cards, as well as the 1972 Topps Brewers team card for me.  His is the first signature on the team card.

I haven't exactly harassed him with autograph requests.  My previous request was sent to him in December of 2010.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Bat Display Cases

I didn't receive any autographs in the mail today, so I thought I'd post about some changes I made to the basement where I display as much of my collection as I can.

It's mostly centered on Twins players, but I have a few vintage items displayed, as well as one display case in the corner with some of my Mego action figures and Star Wars toys.  I wish I had another level in the house to display more of those items, but I'm lucky I have as much room as I do.

Anyway, I got tired of my autographed bats gathering dust while being stacked up in the corner of the room so over the holidays, I ordered an eight-pack of bat display cases from Michael's.

The quality of these cases isn't the highest.  In fact, one of them has some pretty bad gouges on the front edge where there was some issue with the router rounding off the corners.  It was painted over, packaged and shipped, so quality control isn't very good either.  I didn't bother trying to return it.  It is hung very close to the ceiling so it's not very noticeable.

The best part about these cases is their price.  Purchased as an 8-pack, I paid less than $25 each including shipping and tax.  They are also quite flexible, meaning you can hang them horizontally or vertically, and change the direction in which the bat lies by switching two plates that hold either the fat or skinny part of the bat.

I hung all eight of them the other day, making use of some wall space close to the ceiling where many other items wouldn't display well.  Hanging them was easy, with just two screws needed for each one.  A couple of them do hang over the couch, so hopefully a falling case doesn't cause a concussion at some point.

These eight individual cases join two five-bat displays I already have on the wall.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Garry Jestadt and Bob Johnson Returns

I received two more returns todays.

Garry Jestadt signed his 1970, 1971 and 1972 Topps that I sent to him last October.

And Bob Johnson signed the 1971 Topps Royals team and AL Strikeout Leaders cards, as well as his 1972 and 1973 Topps.

This Bob Johnson, a pitcher, played in the majors from 1969 to 1977.  There was a position player named Bob Johnson that played from 1960 to 1970 who has passed away, and another Bob Johnson, a catcher, who played from 1981 to 1983.