Friday, July 31, 2009

Connecting at Day One of the National Sports Collectors Convention

as posted on the Cardboard Connection

To me, Day 1 of The National Sports Collectors Convention is more about meeting people than it is about finding the right sports card.

Earlier in the week while building my game plan for Wednesday's Sneak peek, my list became more about meeting the collectors I talk to on blogs, web sites, and on The National Facebook Group and less about finding the last hard-to-find card for my team set. I had a list of people that I needed to meet and plenty of dealers from previous shows that I wanted to find.

As I walked around Wednesday's 4-hour preview, it became apparent that I wasn't the only one with the same thought. I found more people talking to each other, introducing themselves to trading card moderators, magazine editors, and bloggers than busting wax and sifting through the bargain bins.

I think this is a sign and a credit to the hobby getting better connected. The increase in blogs, trading forums, and social networking sites is making it easier for collectors to meet, trade, and share card reviews. But the National is just warming up and the next few days will be more about cards, memorabilia, and collections than it will be about networking tools, tips, and trade secrets.

Multiply the 4-hour sneak peek by 10 and that should give anyone who attended the National on Wednesday a pretty good idea of what to expect Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The big names begin rolling through the autograph pavilion, the rows between tables swell with collectors and the Ferris Wheel in the middle of the I-X Center will endlessly rotate a steady stream of laughing kids.

That's right, the 30th Annual National Sports Collectors Convention is punctuated with a Ferris Wheel in the middle of the Cleveland I-X Center. Hang on, the next few days are going to be a wild ride!

Special thanks to the Cardboard Connetion for allowing me to work with them.

- Don't forget to comment for a chance to win the Tristar Obak Carlos Santana card. I'll pick up some more this weekend.
- Follow the twitter updates: or follow hashtag#NSCCShow.

My National Sports Collectors Convention Day 1 Report

as posted on Sports Collectors Daily

Attending the "sneak peek" of the National Sports Collectors Convention is like having one potato chip - you can't do it. You want more.

No one eats a single chip and after getting a taste of the National Wednesday night, I'm ready for more too. It's hard to take everything in when you first walk through the National's front entrance.

Tristar's autograph pavilion is making noise, a 100 year-old card worth close to a million dollars is staring at you as walk through the entrance, countless wrapper redemption promotional signs are calling your name and a giant Ferris Wheel in the middle of the Cleveland I-X Center is pulling at your inner-child. What's not to like?

In the few hours I was there Wednesday night I was able to find some old friends, meet some new dealers, and most importantly, make plans for later in the week.

You can't fully take in a once-a-year event in hours, you have to experience it in days. If you are going to the National this week be ready to walk, get set to find anything collectible you're looking for, and get going.

Special thanks to Sports Collectors Daily for allowing me to work with them.


- Don't forget to comment for a chance to win the Tristar Obak Carlos Santana card. I'll pick up some more this weekend.

- Follow the twitter updates: or follow hashtag#NSCCShow.

Free Carlos Santana Tristar Obak Card

This is Carlos Santana Tristar Obak Card is exclusive to the National Sports Collectors Convention and I'm giving it away for free.

I picked it up Wednesday night at the Tristar booth. The Obak cards look pretty cool. This is Santana in his Akron Aeros uniform and is numbered N3 on the back. There is a small "National" logo on the back, top left corner.

Here are the rules:
- Leave a comment by Sunday Night, August 2, at Midnight ET.
- One comment per person.
- I'll use a random generator to pick a winner.
- I'll ship it to you for free in a top loader.

Follow me on twitter this weekend (@jamesryanj) or follow the hashtag #NSCCShow. I'll update with pictures from the National and try to get more to give away.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Twitter Updates from the National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland

Tonight I'll be twittering and sending pictures to my twitter feed from the National Sports Collectors Convention.

You can follow me on or follow all the National Sports Collectors Convention twitter updates with #NSCCShow.

Here are a few other twitter IDs that will be sending tweets:

  • @CardInformant
  • @VOTC
  • @TracyHackler
  • @sportscards
  • @sportscardfund
  • @sportscollector
Freedom Card Board will also be there and I've been told the Beefy Cheddar will do some live blogging. If someone has that twitter ID, please leave it in the comments. There is a bigger list of twitter IDs on the The National Facebook Group.

More on how to follow the National hashtag #NSCCShow here.

Blake Griffin and Tyler Hansbrough Free Autographs

Updating my story from Sunday, July 26 . . .

Blake Griffin and Tyler Hansbrough will be signing free autographs at the National Sports Collectors Convention on Saturday, August 1. I originally reported the signing after reading the PaniniAmerica twitter feed.

Sports Collector's Daily is reporting that players will be signing special cards for the National event.

I'll try to pick up a couple for some a contest next week!

I'll update my success (or failure) on twitter this weekend. Follow my updates at or anyone's National twitter feed at #NSCCShow.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

T.S. O'Connell Says He'll Blog from The National?!


T.S. doesn't blog from his own site why would he think he's going to blog from the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention?

P.S. T.S. - I know I've said this before, but it isn't a blog if you aren't taking comments. It's a column.

Your National Sports Collectors Convention Checklist

If a fanny pack is your thing, then Velcro it to your Hammer pants this week for the National Sports Collectors Convention.

Personally, I break out the JCPenny back-to-school back-pack when attending card/autograph shows and I'll definitely be in the spirit for this week's National.

The Voice of the Collector Blog had a cool Do's and Don'ts list last week.

Here's my packing list for the 2009 National in Cleveland:

  • extra Official MLB baseball (you never know who you'll see walking around)
  • cards you'd like to get signed if you see someone
  • mini helmet of your football team
  • bottle of water
  • meal/granola bars (food is always expensive and it tastes as good 7-Eleven hot dogs.)
  • pens and sharpies
  • hand sanitizer (apply, apply, apply)
  • digital camera (again, you never know who you'll see walking around or at a booth)
  • pad of paper (take notes on the prices/products you see so you can comparison shop)
  • cards you'd like to trade
  • eBay pricing (know the price of your wish list before you go)

$6,500 for 2009 Allen & Ginter Card isn't Enough

This Abe Lincoln 2009 Allen & Ginter 1/1 DNA relic card finished with a high bid of $6,450 on eBay, but it wasn't high enough!

The reserve price was not met. The Buy it Now price was $14,999 - but it did come with free shipping.

Here's the link to the auction.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Dealers and Exhibits List at The National

Who are the dealers and exhibit booths at this year's National Sports Collector's Convention? Here's a link to an eight page .pdf with a list of everyone.

If you really want to find people (OCD anyone?) you can reference the booth numbers on the dealer/exhibit booth list with the floor plan map. For example, Hollywood Collectibles has booth numbers: 521P, 620P, 517P, and 616P. When you find those locations on the map, you'll see they make up a 2x2 square in an aisle - instead of thinking it stretches 4-across.

The list is dated from May 12, so there could have been some changes and not all of the booth numbers are assigned, but it's the most up-to-date version I could find.
Reminder: I'll be twittering from the National Wednesday night, Saturday and Sunday. You can follow me on or follow all the National Sports Collector's Convention twitter updates with #NSCCShow. More on how to follow the National hashtag #NSCCShow here.
Don't forget to check out the The National Facebook Group - I'll have this update and others will be updating group throughout the show.

Last Day to Order National Sports Collectors Convention Autograph Tickets

If you are getting autographs at this year's National Sports Collectors Convention (the National) in Cleveland, then today is your last day to order tickets.

Here's a list of the player's at this year's National. You'll definitely want to order now to avoid the Tristar pavilion line nightmare. Usually that area is just a cluster of confused people walking around like zombies.

Order your tickets ahead of time if you can and pick the tickets up at the will-call booth. You can call the order in (713-666-9595) or go here.

Big National Sports Collector's Convention Announcement

The folks at The National are teasing a big announcement today.

  • Will we have a Lebron James sighting?
  • Shaq O'Neil?
  • Will it involve TriStar and the autograph pavilion?
  • More card redemption promos?
  • Perhaps it is related to Panini's twitter message on Friday with Blake Griffin and Tyler Hansbrough?
I should get a text message with the update when it's available. I'll provide an update when I have the information.

Update: 7/29 - the National site confirmed their big announcement was Panini America's twitter message five days earlier. Has anyone at the National worked in Marketing? Ever?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Blake Griffin and Tyler Hansbrough Autographs at The National?

Panini America's twitter feed announced Friday that Blake Griffin and Tyler Hansbrough will be signing for them at the National Sports Collector's Convention.

Does that mean it's a public signing at their booth?

If so, I can't imagine you can bring your own item to get signed, but Panini would probably have promo cards with the players signing them (if this is a public event).

I sent a twitter reply to Panini America (@PaniniAmerica) asking for clarification. I'll update this post when I get clarification.

I'll be twittering from the National Wednesday night, Saturday and Sunday. You can follow me or follow all the National Sports Collector's Convention twitter updates with #NSCCShow. More on how to follow the National hashtag #NSCCShow here.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Best Mets Autographs are in Florida

The Mets spring training facility in Port St. Lucie, Florida has been home to some of the best Mets autographs this baseball.

With half of the teams' stars on the DL (or so it seems), "... the autograph hounds parked along Peacock Boulevard can attest, the Mets’ training facility is where the action is — and has been all season."

Here's the rest of the NY Times story.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Steiner Sports Not Attending the National Sports Collector's Convention

Steiner Sports, one of the biggest names in sports autographs and memorabilia will not be attending this year's National in Cleveland!

I received a twitter reply from them today confirming their actions.

I find it hard to believe the premier dealer in Yankees, Mets, Dallas Cowboys and Notre Dame memorabilia is not attending the show of the year.

Follow the National tweets with hashtag #NSCCShow.

Baseball Hall of Fame Autograph Show

I admit... I've never been to the baseball Hall of Fame. (sigh) I'd like to go, but it seems there just isn't an easy way to get there and each year I put off the trip for one reason or another. I need to push myself and just load up the car and go.

If I were going, HOF induction weekend would be the time I'd like to go. So many players seem to come back every year and sign a ton of autographs.

MAB has their Hall of Fame Spectacular this weekend. The list of players includes:
Mike Schmidt
Earl Weaver
Sparky Anderson
Johnny Bench
Tom Seaver
Jim Rice
Wade Boggs
and a tons more!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Will the Feds Be at This Year's National Sports Collector's Convention

Last year the FBI walked through the The National gates to investigate some sports memorabilia fraud. Will we get a repeat this year?

Operation Foul Ball hit the PSA tables and a few others during last year's National Sports Collector's Convention.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Derek Jeteer 2009 Topps World Baseball Classic

This spring one of my Topps 2009 packs had a WBC IOU enclosed.

On Friday I received the scanned card - 2009 Derek Jeter #2. It looks like a refractor, but I can't see where it says that on the card - plenty of sellers on eBay are listing it as one though.

I'm not a Jeter fan, so I'll have to decide what to do with it.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The National Wrapper Redemption Scoop

Upper Deck, Press Pass, Sport Kings, Panini America, and Tristar announced their wrapper redemption program's at the 2009 National Sports Collector's Convention.

Here's the link to the announcement from the NSCC. Check out The National facebook group and the #NSCCShow hashtag on twitter.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cobb T206 More Valuable than Wagner T206?

I'll take either, but prior to reading this article, I didn't know the Ty Cobb T206 is more scarce than the Honus Wagner T206.

"A Cobb with Cobb advertising back sold recently in an auction conducted by Goodwin and Company out of St. Louis. The card, professionally graded fair by Sportscard Guaranty, drew 25 bids and sold for $57,903. A nice price, certainly, but nothing like the six figure bids drawn by the Wagner on the occasions when one comes up for sale."

More from the T206 Card article here.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sports Card Show Business For Sale

Interesting eBay auction here. Someone claiming to sell a "Sports Card Show Business." Really, all he's selling are cards he claims are Beckett valued at $100k.

Some interesting cards in the lot... who's bidding? Who's starting their own card show business on this?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Meet the Mets and Bring Your Bling

What's next? A used car sale in the Mets dugout? Bring your hand-me-down Mets shirts to Citi Field? How about garage sale in the parking lot? is hosting a 2-day Sell Your Gold campaign to Citi Field. And when you bring your bling, you can meet Mookie Wilson, George Foster, Darryl Strawberry, Eddie Kranepool and Ron Swoboda.

Thanks BBTF and SNY.TV

The National Sports Collector's Convention Floor Plan

It's a good idea to know where things are when you get to the National. The IX Center in Cleveland is pretty big and this floor plan should help out.

As you walk in (left side of pdf), you immediately start to see all of the dealer tables. If you haven't been to a National before, it's almost overwhelming when you first walk in. I recommend taking your time and look through each row - you never know what you'll find.

Along the left side of the IX Center (top of pdf) you'll find the Corporate area. Here you'll see booths for Topps, Upper Deck, Beckett, Sports Card Forum and more.

At the end of the IX Center from where you entered (right side of pdf) is the TriStar autograph pavilion, autograph ticket booth, and photo area. This area will get really crowded on Saturday and Sunday as the big name guests arrive.
Unless you have an autograph ticket, I'd recommend staying away from this side of the IX Center. The player lines are so long you really can't get a good view of them. Unless you have a great camera with a powerful zoom, you really can't get a good picture of the athlete signing autographs.

On the right side of the IX Center from where you entered (bottom of the pdf) are the snack, bathroom, and resting areas. I recommend bringing meal bars and your own bottled water.
Hopefully this map can be your plan of attack for getting the most out of this year's National Sports Collector's Convention.
Don't forget to share your experiences and help others on the National Facebook group.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Cardboard Kid Builds A House out of Baseball Cards

I see a future architect... Art Vandelay should be worried. I think mentions wanting to get into Beckett about 10 times. Chris Olds - do you hear this?!

1991 Score - Like a Trip to the County Fair

A trip to the fair or amusement park isn't complete until you've over-paid for elephant ears, cotton candy, grape soda, and a caricature of yourself on a roller-coaster.

At least, that's what I think of when I see the 1991 Score baseball cards.

I think you can remove Howard Johnson's head and place it on the body of a little kid going on a Cedar Point ride.

Pete Rose - Still Waiting for Bud Selig to Flip a Coin

During a question and answer session with the Baseball writers on Tuesday, Bud Selig said the Pete Rose reinstatement case "is under review."

My opinion is probably in the minority, but I'm a big Pete fan and I think he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame.

However I think the majority of fans believe Bud Selig should rule on the reinstatement case.

For twelve years, the appeal file has sat in Selig's in-box! I don't think it's fair for any judge or ruling body to receive an appeal or reinstatement case and then not make a decision on it for over a decade.

Bud Selig needs to rule on the Pete Rose case and be done with it.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tony Romo Gets Up Close and Personal With UD Diamond Club Members

Tony Romo Gets Up Close and Personal With UD Diamond Club Members

I guess membership does have it's privileges. UD Diamond members got a chance to have a Q&A with the Cowboys quarter back Saturday night at the Los Angeles Sports Museum.

I'm a huge Cowboys fan, but I'm not so sure about Romo. I think he's lost his way a bit and has been a little distracted by the spotlight. Hopefully he turns it around this season, is in shape for the long haul, and stops turning the ball over late in the game!

The list of athletes who have been to this event is amazing! (Romo, Lebron James, Bo Jackson)

This story links to the Cardboard Connection blog.

Posted using ShareThis

Family Day at the National Sports Collector's Convention

Sunday, August 2 is Cleveland Plain Dealer Family Day at the National Sports Collector's Convention.

For $25, a family of up to 6 people can attend the show. Tickets are only sold on-site. There will also be a Kid's Trading Table for kids to trade cards with each other.

You are also entered into a raffle for sports collectibles that will take place from 2:00 - 3:00.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Tiger Stadium Seats - More for Sale

More Tiger Stadium seats are for sale! A four row seat will set you back $400.

Not a bad price considering Shea Stadium seats were $869 for two and nothing against Shea, but Tiger Stadium was around a bit longer. The Detroit Historical Society is selling them. You can find more info here.

Thanks to Cardboard Connection for the tip.

Vintage Baseball with the Ohio Village Muffins

I stepped back in time on Sunday and went to Ohio Village to see Vintage baseball - 1860s style. The Ohio Village Muffins play vintage baseball all spring/summer.

The Muffins had a decent crowd gathered for Sunday's double-header.

EDIT: FlickR photos.

Following the customs of the 1860s, the players do not use gloves, bats are not bigger than 2.5 inches in diameter and the ball is 10 inches in circumference with a single piece of leather covering them.

They follow rules from 1860 as originally recorded by the New York Knickerbockers. Some of the rules include:

  • The ball is pitched underhanded from anywhere behind the pitcher's line.
  • The batsman must stand on or straddle a line through home plate.
  • The pitcher must deliver the ball as requested by the batsman, who holds out the bat to indicate where the ball is to be sent.
  • Pitches are not judged as balls or strikes, but the umpire may call a strike if the batsman persists in not swinging at well-pitched balls.
  • An out is declared if - a hit ball is caught on the fly or the first bound, including foul ticks to the catcher.
  • After scoring an ace, a base runner must report to the tallykeeper for the run to count.
  • There is no bunting or sliding.
Labor Day Weekend has the "Ohio Cub Base Ball Festival" with 19 gentlemen's and 3 ladies' vintage teams.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Allen & Ginter Card Collection

The blogosphere was buzzing with the latest version of Allen & Ginter cards. It seemed that half the card blogs out there had a review or box break.

Collector's Weekly has an interview with Dave Campbell, a collector who specializes in 1880s Allen & Ginter cards. I wasn't familiar with the sets before reading this article.

The interviewer asked an interesting question about "success as a collector." How do we grade success? Is it completing a set? That's probably a milestone, but I'm not sure I'll ever consider my collection a "success."

Here's the rest of the article.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

New Stats on the Back of Baseball Cards?

We've grown accustom to seeing batting average, home runs, RBI, SB, wins, Losses, Saves, and ERA stats on the back of baseball cards. could this be changing?

Will we soon see stats that measure a right fielders arm, accuracy, and speed to reach a ground ball? Which short-stop has the greatest range?

On Saturday, July 11, a group of baseball executives will be presented with data captured from a new camera and software system which records the exact speed and location of the ball and every player on the field. The system has been tested this season in San Francisco and may roll out to every team in 2010!

I didn't like this part of the article:
"The data could be made available to the public on a subscription basis, Bowman said, although what data is released and in what form could be affected by clubs’ competitive concerns."

I don't want to see teams choosing which stats to release to the public. This should be available to everyone. Baseball is a game of stats and we don't need a gate-keeper telling us which ones we are allowed to receive.

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Dolphins Nick Buoniconti Still Undefeated

The CSA Autograph show in Chantilly, VA is this weekend and Dolphins Hall of Famer Nick Buoniconti is the advanced ticket sales leader.

It's really not a big surprise to see him at the top. Buoniconti has been a requested guest for years and took the lead in advanced ticket sales virtually the minute his name was announced as a guest.

There are 58 confirmed autograph guests at the pavilion and several others will be in different areas of the show. Over 30 hall of famers will be there.

The CSA Show begins July 10 and finishes July 12.

The Top 10 in Advanced ticket sales:
1. Nick Buoniconti
2. Santonio Holmes
3. Randall McDaniel
4. Bruce Smith
5. Ike Taylor
6. Jim Rice
7. Mewelde Moore
8. Billy Shaw
9. Dan Fouts
10. Rod Woodson

Other notables at this show include: Meadowlark Lemon (15), Andrew Dawson (25), Art Donovan (29), and Bill "Ready" Cash (46).

If anyone is going, please send me Flickr link or photos - It would be great to post them on the blog as a follow-up.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mets Howard Johnson Autograph Contest

I'm a big HoJo fan and when I saw this contest at I nearly cried (being dramatic - long week at work).

The Murphaholics (maybe still buzzing from Daniel Murphy's first base flip last night) have a contest to win an 8x10 autographed picture of Howard Johnson.

To enter the contest, you have to give your definition of a triple threat.... but not the typical average, speed, defense answer. Take a look and good luck!

Lenny Dykstra Files for Bankruptcy

The economic recession has taken down the Len Dykstra empire.

"Nails" was featured on HBO's Real Sports a few years ago and interviewed by Bernard Goldberg. Lenny seemed to be on top of the world with the sale of his car wash business, the beginning of his player's only magazine, and an economic empire that could handle just about any financial curve ball.

Today, Lenny is out on strikes after seeking Chapter 11 protection.

I was a big Lenny Dykstra fan. He was such a catalyst on the '86 Mets. His home run start off Game 3 in Boston (in my opinion) saved the series for New York.

I met Lenny about 2 years ago at an MAB show in New Jersey. He had more people in line to get his autograph than any other guest. Maybe we'll be seeing more of Lenny on the autograph circuit now?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sports Illustrated Cover: Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan

There is a great cover to this week's Sports Illustrated: Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan!

It is coming out at a perfect time for autographs too. Next month I'm going to an MAB show on Long Island where Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan will be signing. Tom Seaver is also signing this month at the National.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Twitter the National #NSCCShow

The hashtag #NSCCShow is being used for tweets about The National Sports Card Convention or "the National."

I sent tweets to quite a few card bloggers this weekend and this should build us a pretty good community for delivering, receiving, and getting the most out of this year's National in Cleveland.

If you're on Twitter and tweeting about "the National" use #NSCCShow in your tweet so others can join in the conversation. Sample tweet, "Topps just announced their promotion for the National. Check out the link to my latest blog post. #NSCCShow"

Hashtags allow both twitter users and non twitter users find conversations about different subjects. I had to use #NSCCShow because "#the National" and "#National" were already being used by different political and news groups.

Twitter and Non Twitter Users
To search for twitter conversations and information about the #NSCCShow:

  • Go to and type #NSCCShow.
  • This will bring a list of tweets using the #NSCCShow hashtag. Another search is

Use any of the searches above and add it to your RSS reader. The URL to save the #NSCCShow feed is

TweetDeck Users
is Tweetdeck? Tweetdeck is a free and pretty cool application by Adobe AIR that you download for free to your desktop. There are other free Twitter applications for your PC, I personally like tweetdeck.

  • Click the search icon in tweetdeck and type #NSCCShow.
  • This open another column (if you have less than 10 columns) and continually refreshes as long as you keep it.

Twittering with a common hashtag, #NSCCShow, will also be helpful while you're at the The National. If you have mobile alerts. You can send and receive tweets about different booth contests or special autograph guests.

You can follow me on twitter at I generally tweet more about internet and social media marketing than sports cards/memorabilia, but I will be tweeting about the #NSCCShow.

Studio Cards Were Like Awkward Family Photos

I never liked the '91 Studio Leaf cards. Why do I want an awkward family photo or high school graduation photo on my baseball card? It looks like the bat is stuck to Howard Johnson's face.

I want the photo of HoJo hitting or stealing a base... or triple clutching and throwing it in the dirt.

The only thing I found interesting about this card was the back: "Hobbies & Interests: Likes deep sea fishing...enjoys R&B and soul music...likes to watch Gilligan's Island reruns...collects fish. Hero Jesus.

How do you collect fish? You mean a fish tank? And who doesn't watch Gilligan's Island reruns - I thought they were all reruns at this point.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Mets Gary Carter is My New BFF!

Former Mets great Gary Carter is still taking my questions on his Long Island Ducks blog. I asked him in the comments section a few weeks ago who he would choose to run a young, up and coming team. Last week he responded.

A week earlier he responded to my criticism of his "Ultimate Team List."

I give Gary a ton of credit. He could be like other high ranking players who have (tried to) run blogs and never react to the questions or comments. [cough, Pete Rose, cough]

Gary Carter, or at least someone close to Gary Carter, reads the comments and responds. Gary is really using social media to be transparent and connect with the readers. He's using his blog to make a connection to me and other readers he's responded to.

Nice job Gary Carter... my BFF 4-Ever. Now if I can just get him to return my text messages..... :)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Carlton Fisk Autograph Cancellation - No Problem for CSA Shows

If you've attended an autograph show, then you know that anything can happen with the autograph guests. Players can be late for their own signings and sometimes they cancel at the last minute leaving you to scramble for a refund from the show promoter.

CSA Shows is taking guest canceling to a new level. Carlton Fisk recently canceled at the Chantily, VA based show for his July 12 appearance. If you ordered an advance ticket you can get a refund, an exchange or a special offer. For every one Carlton Fisk advanced ticket you purchased, you can 2 Jim Rice autograph tickets or 3 Andre Dawson tickets!

Fisk baseball autographs were $75 a piece. Rice autograph baseball tickets are $55 a piece and Andre Dawson autograph baseball tickets are $30 a piece. Obviously you are getting a real value for the exchange. This is a great job by CSA Shows.

The summer CSA Show is July 10, 11, and 12. You can also follow the show promoter on twitter: @CSAShows.

The National is Almost Here - Join the Facebook Group

I'm really starting to look forward to the National Sports Collectors Convention (the National) later this month. I usually go for the autographs, but I'm not thrilled with the Tri-Star autograph line-up this year. They have some big names, but not really players I'm chasing.

This year, I'm looking to get more cards than autographs. I'm hoping to add to my '62 Topps Mets team set and my '52 Bowman Small Texans team set.

Don't forget to join the National Facebook group I created in the winter. I've eliminated some recent spammers and posted some new information about events going on at the National. Hopefully we get a meet-up going too. If nothing else, share a beverage at the convention or some place nearby.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Comiskey Park Anniversary

White Sox Park, later named Comiskey Park, opened on this date in 1910.

At the time, White Sox park was the biggest and most expensive park in major league baseball. The Sox lost to the worst team in baseball at that time, the St. Louis Browns 2-0.

Ed Walsh was the best player on the White Sox that season, who weren't that far removed from the "Hitless Wonders" team that won the World Series. Walsh started 36 games and finished 33 of them going 18-20 with a 1.27 ERA!

In the park's final season (1990) Bobby Thigpen set a new major league saves record and two up-and-coming stars began to establish themselves: Frank Thomas and Sammy Sosa.

I wish I could have made it to the old park before it was taken down.

1962 Topps Mets: Hook and DeMerit

I picked up two more '62 Topps Mets for the team set I'm building: #4 John DeMerit and #94 Jay Hook. I found both at a local card show this weekend.

Jay Hook began his career in Cincinnati before joining the expansion Mets. In 1962 Hook lost 19 games which wasn't even good (or bad) enough to lead the team! Roger Craig lost 24 games that year. Hook spent 3 seasons in New York going 12-34 with a 5.22 ERA.

John DeMerit's first season with the Mets was his last season in MLB. DeMerit had three hits in 1962 - one of them a home run.