Monday, July 26, 2021

Absolutely!

Sweet Spot autographs from Upper Deck made all collectors nervous of fading autographs in the future.  

Panini has recently tried the same concept. Time will tell how they hold up over the years.
Absolute Baseball recently came out for 2021, but Cutch signed a total of 12 of these baseball themed cards for the 2020 product. Among the 12 are 6 of the red stitch baseballs, 5 of the green stitch baseballs, and 1 of the red/blue stitch baseballs.  That's it! 12 of them total.

Very few active, non rookie, players signed these style cards.  Most of the checklist consists of retired players, many of which were Hall of Famers or dominant players that are borderline Hall of Famers in their day.  The active players checklist contains Cutch, Jordan Hicks, Shohei Otani, Dustin Pedroia (he hadn't officially retired yet), and Dylan Carlson.  

Retired players in the Hall of Fame include Frank Robinson, Chipper Jones, Pedro Martinez, Cal Ripken Jr, Frank Thomas, Ken Griffey Jr, Dave Winfield, Barry Larkin, Don Sutton, Eddie Murray, Jeff Bagwell, Wade Boggs, Reggie Jackson, Mariano Rivera, Ozzie Smith, Vladamir Guerrero Sr, Randy Johnson, John Smoltz, and Whitey Ford.  That is a stacked lineup for Hall of Famers.  Print runs range from 10 to 50 depending on the player for the standard red stitch baseballs.

Retired, non Hall of Famers include Paul Konerko, Dwight Gooden, Omar Vizquel, Don Mattingly, Roger Clemens, and Rafael Palmiero.

There is a video of the 1/1 Cutch being pulled on a YouTube break and I have tried to acquire it to limited response.  I do have the green foil, green stitches also, but will be sharing that off next March.  


Sunday, July 25, 2021

Sketch Sunday

I mentioned that one of my goals was to add some original art and oversized pieces to my Cutch collection and through the Twitterverse I stumbled across @soxsketcher who does 8x10 sketches of athletes using only a sharpie marker.  It's absolutely awesome!!!  In case you can't tell by his twitter handle, he is a Chicago White Sox fan, but his art is stunning no matter the subject matter.  

Knowing that I would be requesting a commission of Cutch and his art style really lends itself to Black and white images, I requested that Cutch wear a Pirates alternative black jersey.
He crushed it!!!

If you are interested in your own commission, hit him up.  You won't be disappointed.  Tell him CollectingCutch sent you.

Friday, July 23, 2021

Frickin Jackpot Foil Friday!!!

I did it!!!

I beat the odds!!!

Now before I reveal my amazing card, let me give you some back story on why I am so excited about this card.

Many people aren't in love with the Project 70 art cards and I completely get it.  Many of them I am scratching my head on as well.  

With such a broad range for this project I knew there would be some cards I really liked and some cards that just didn't appeal to me at all.  When the project first hit I said I would get any of the Andrew McCutchen and Roberto Clemente cards that were released.  If something struck my fancy I would pick them up as well.  If a collector committed to an artist's entire run through Topps they could qualify for a free print at the end of the project that depicted that artist's entire run.

Well, Cutch was one of the first cards to appear in the set as he was Blake Jamieson's first card of the set.  In addition to Cutch and Clemente I was also going to add any cards that Blake Jamieson produced.  

Early on in the set, Alex Pardee, another artist released a Ronald Acuna Jr card that looked like it had crossed paths with a Venom symbiote.  Being a big comic book fan I grabbed the Pardee Acuna and had to add Pardee to the list of cards I would always buy during the 70 hour ordering window.
Now my list consisted of anything Cutch, anything Clemente, anything Blake Jamieson, and anything Alex Pardee.  

At $19.99 per card this was going to get expensive.

Then Ermsy (one of my favorite artists from last year's Project 2020) created a tripped out Dock Ellis.
I'm a Pirates fan and love the no hitter that Dock threw while supposedly on LSD.  I grabbed that card as well.

Then other artists started making more cards of Dock Ellis.  At one point Dock had more cards than Mike Trout in the set.  

I hit the reset button and got back to basics.

Cutch

Clemente

Blake

Pardee

Nothing else unless it really catches my eye.

Then a funny thing happened.
Blake Jamieson, who is one of the most awesome people on this Earth, released a card of rookie Jarred Kelenic of the Seattle Mariners.

I like Blake as a person and really want to get a print of Blake at the end of the project, but do I want to spend $20 on a Jarred Kelenic card?  

I literally waited until the final hour before I pulled the trigger and ultimately got it.  One more player I don't care about and I'm not going to continue this though.

A few more Clementes were released.

Then Blake released a Randy Arozarena card.  I don't care about the Tampa Bay Rays.  I have no extra love for 1968 Topps.  As a matter of fact, I hate 1968 Topps.  Despite wanting that print because of the Cutch appearance I was dropping Blake's cards from my list.  I just didn't want to spend $20 for a guy who was potentially involved in a domestic abuse case on a team I don't care for on a set design that is easily in my personal list of top 5 worse Topps designs pre2000. 

Sorry Blake.

But then just a few days later, something amazing happened.

Andrew McCutchen was getting another card in Project70 and it was by Chuck Styles, a Philadelphia artist with strong ties to Black Lives Matter.  What a perfect match!!!!

And the card depicted Andrew's alter ego, Uncle Larry.

Perfect!!!!

And then Pardee started his mustache guys cards.

I loved the Randy Johnson with the screaming ball and the dove.  

The Dennis Eckersley and Rollie Fingers were also great.
But then there was a Polar Bear for Pete Alonso.  It's a great nickname and it actually made sense for Alex to draw Pete as a scary bear, but quite honestly....it seemed to obvious.  I loved Alex's weird interpretations he had done.  

I was out on Pardee.
I was out on Jamieson.
I was only in for Clemente and McCutchen cards again, which is what I originally set out for.
Then something crazy happened.

I picked up another batch of mail and noticed this invoice with 3 Project 70 cards inside from Topps

Ok, I knew I bought an artist proof (and discussed hoping to hit a foil when I revealed the card back on this post a month ago), but there was three cards inside this package and according to the invoice numbering it looks like I was getting something special inside.
Artist Proof with silver frame limited to 51 copies
Base

Foil!!!! Limited to 70 copies
Put on those sunglasses
😎 😎 😎
Holy foilboard Batman!!!

I am super stoked about getting this card.


Needless to say I could turn my $20 investment into $150+, but honestly I would rather keep the McCutchen in my collection than pocket the extra $130+ profit I could make.

With all the hype around sports cards in the past 18 months have you chosen to hold onto cards that you know you could flip for an easy profit, but instead chose to hold onto them because they mean more to you than some extra dollars?

Have you ever felt like you hit a cardboard lottery?


Thursday, July 22, 2021

A kaleidoscopic look at life lessons through baseball cards


I have been rummaging through my binders and I have to say, I never truly appreciated some of my cards as much as now.

When I was getting a new McCutchen card nearly every day it was just buy it and put it away.  I never took the time to really appreciate what I had as I was always looking for what I didn't have.  

That's the problem with being a completionist rather than a collector.  However, it is absolutely impossible to collect every unique card of a modern star player.  Not only are there hundreds of 1of1s being produced these days, but even the cards numbered to 50 are becoming difficult to acquire.  Case in point, not a single Mother's Day pink parallel from 2021 Series 2 Andrew McCutchen has hit eBay yet and the product has been out for nearly 2 months.

I have been looking back at what I have more than what I don't now and that is a pretty cool feeling.  Don't get me wrong I still do daily searches on my usual sites, but the buying has been far more limited than before.

It wasn't until I dug out a binder and looked at some parallels that I noticed the kaleidoscope type refractor the Topps Chrome prism refractors give off.

When shined in the right light, these things are awesome!!!!

Ooooh, the 2015 Prisms look awesome!
The back for all the prism parallels don't have any distinguishing identification like Refractor or a numbering system unique to prisms.
Personally I think the 2016 (seen below) is the best of the prism refractors.
Here is the 2017
Here is the only McCutchen Giants prism refractor from 2018
And the 2019 is McCutchen's first Phillies prism Refractor
Cutch didn't appear in 2020 Topps Chrome so he didn't have a prism refractor released last year.  I am curious if Cutch will appear in 2021 Topps Chrome.

Has there been a parallel that you never appreciated until years later?




Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Rabbit season, Bucks season, Duck season?

If the title of this post makes you think of the Looney Tunes, it was done intentionally.  I just got done watching Space Jam: A New Legacy starring LeBron James and while I do have mixed feelings on the film there were several things I wanted to quickly throw out as my first impressions.
1) Settling the G.O.A.T. debate via comedy
When faced with the basketball game challenge LeBron James wanted to build a super team like he has done in Miami, Cleveland, and Los Angeles by trying to recruit Superman, Iron Giant, and King Kong.  Michael Jordan got the Looney Tunes who averaged in heights up to 3ft tall and requested comedian Billy Murray lace up his sneakers for 1 play.
2)The Looney Tunes are the greatest cast of cartoon characters ever assembled 
3)The lack of actual NBA players and references in New Legacy was kind of surprising for a game that has so many individual stars recognized world wide.  

The best player in the NBA, Gianis Antetokounmpo, reportedly turned down a part for New Legacy so that he could focus on his off-season training and not be involved with scheduling conflicts that may prevent him from being the best player on the court for the Milwaukee Bucks.  He now has a World Championship and Finals MVP on his resume. 

Congratulations to the Milwaukee Bucks fans out there!

I am sure that Gianis will be adorned on many magazine covers in the near future  to celebrate the team's victory.

Oddly enough, the Greek Freak has only appeared on two issues of Sports Illustrated over his 8 year career.

April 8th, 2019 and January 9, 2017 are the only times Gianis has appeared on the cover despite world wide fame.

My favorite player, Andrew McCutchen has also appeared on the cover twice oddly enough they were printed exactly one year apart.

Details of the covers can be found on this 2019 Big League Baseball black and white parallel numbered to only 50 copies.
The back of the card gives a few bits of trivia that aren't exactly common knowledge.
Cutch has since surpassed Ian Kinsler for runs scored since 2009 and Ian didn't play in 2020 or this year.  Kinsler is going to be a participant in this year's Olympic games as he is representing Team Israel.  
Earlier this month he joined the Long Island Ducks to help get him prepared for the Summer Olympics.

Team Israel faces off against Team USA in the first round of play on July 30th.

Will you be watching any of the Olympics?

Did you watch any of the NBA Finals? 

What is your favorite Sports Illustrated cover?

Monday, July 19, 2021

On the search for the truth


Following up on my Discovery Channel Shark Week style event, I am turning today's post into an Expedition Unknown to try and find out more information about this card you see below.
It says it is from All Sports Magazine, which was a legit magazine in the 20th century.  I can't find any print copies from 2015 which this card is supposedly from.  

Furthermore I am confused by the numbering 6/7.  

At first I thought it was the month(s) of publication meaning this card came from a magazine for June/July.

However finding Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera cards from 2015 numbered 4/7 and 6/7 have proven that theory invalid.

If you have any information about this card or a theory on it's existence, please comment below.

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Fish Are Friends, Not Food

Today is the last day of Shark Week programming.  I'm saddened by this as I always enjoy learning more about sharks each year.

I will FINish up the week of celebrating this Jawsome event by highlighting some more former sharks that are teammates with Cutch.

After all... fish are friends, not food

I have shown off a few of my former Jupiter Hammerhead, JT Realmuto, and a few Clearwater Threshers too.  

Today I am going to look at another former Clearwater Thresher who is a current teammate of Cutch.  

I am talking about Rhys Hoskins

Now before I go showing off a pair of Rhys & Cutch combos I wanted to talk about Rhys' 2015 season in Clearwater A+ ball.  

In 67 games with the Threshers, Rhys hit at a .317/.394/.510 slash line good for a .904 OPS.  He also collected 39 RBI, 29 BB, and clubbed 8 homers in those 67 games.
Pretty good numbers for the former Clearwater "ninja shark".

Now for the cards...
Above is a dual autograph from the Target exclusive Topps Fire product.  
It is limited to only 25 copies.

Above is the on card autographs of Cutch and Rhys from 2019 Topps Five Star.  It is limited to only 10 copies.