Found and needed

1 03 2010

If you’ve sent me a trade request since my return to blogging, I’m sorry I haven’t followed up with you yet. But I do have a decent excuse, aside from the usual lack of time and energy. Over the course of the past few years, I’ve been employing what I like to call “the Procrastination Technique” when it comes to filing cards. It involves setting aside a stack of cards to deal with at a later time and then never going back to them until they accumulate into stacks so big they could fill three 800 count boxes. Then you tuck them away in the bottom of the closet with pithy notes like “please deal with me” or “cards in need of a home” and you forget about them completely.

For those of you who think that this a great idea, let me tell you after my years of experimentation that it is not. And I’ve finally budgeted my time to deal with these boxes and figure out exactly what’s there.

Now, before you think it’s all wheat in those boxes, it’s not. It’s mostly chaff -damaged cards that I’m not sure what to do with.  Some of it, though, is cards I pulled out for trades that I never heard back from, and some of it is cards I pulled out to scan. Some of it is random packs and inserts that came from who knows where. And thankfully, some of it is cards that I actually need for my sets, acquired by trade or some other means.  However acquired, a year and a half later I’m going to get to them. If you sent me some of these cards, I cannot thank you personally. Sorry about that. But quit seeking glory on a baseball card blog and enjoy the positive karma of helping a collector out instead, okay?

First, the cream of the crop, a 1981 Topps Dan Driessen.  Why is this the cream?  Well, it’s on top for one.  But it’s also a) a Cincinnati Red and b) from the first set I ever started collecting.  Now, 29 years and a dropped box later, I’m only eight cards from completion.  When I was a kid, I never thought it would take so long.

I could have sworn that I had this card a long time ago, but apparently I was wrong. That’s why I keep my wantlists written down instead of going from memory, I guess. There’s only two things that could make this card better. One is a 500’s series yellow border. The second is if it was the last card I needed from the set. Instead, it’s the second to last card (anyone got a ’88 Score Jose Guzman for trade?), and fittingly the second best card I’ve found so far.

I also found a Rick Aguilera from this set, taking me two steps closer to the end. I wonder if those heckling Cardinals fans knew that if they could get Templeton to flip them off he’s be traded for Ozzie Smith. They must have, right?  And I always forget how great this set was until I pull it out to sort some cards from it.

Fourth best of the stuff I’ve found? It’s this Steve Sax card from ’83 Donruss.  He was nestled in a box next to a Rafael Ramirez from this set which I also needed, and now I’m only missing two handfuls of these for my base set.  I seem to remember this as one of the higher book value cards from this set twenty-five years ago.  Does that sound right to anyone else?

Finally, for those of you who like your eyes, you should stop reading now.  But this card gets the honorary fifth spot since it helps complete a set.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you…

Like I said, there’s chaff in those boxes. But this chaff (and two of his friends) puts an end to my third 1989 Donruss set. Please do not be jealous.

I had actually scanned all three cards side by side, but it looked awful on the preview and I don’t want to frighten any new readers away.  To be honest, all that this Leach beats out is a bunch of 2009 Upper Deck cards and a 1989 Upper Deck Tracy Jones.  There’s really not much competition there.

So to those of you who sent one or all of these, thanks.  I’ve got another box left to sort, and then hopefully the trading will begin.




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