Tuesday, 6 February 2018

COMC Black Friday: Kevin Johnson; and Christmas pack 26

I bought more Kevin Johnson cards than Tim Couch cards in my COMC Black Friday order, but I don't think that Johnson will ever make up the ground on Couch to take over the lead in my collection. That being said, let's look at the Johnson cards that I bought.

Top (l-r): 1999 Bowman - Autographics #A26; 1999 Collector's Edge First Place - Gold Ingot #161
Bottom (l-r): 1999 Collector's Edge Advantage - Rookie Autographs #172; - Rookie Autographs Blue Ink #161 (#/40)
I was surprised to find a bunch of inexpensive Kevin Johnson autographs on COMC when I was looking around. I jumped at them.

When my order came, I thought that I might have accidentally ordered the same card twice. It took a couple of minutes, but noticed one was hand numbered out of 40 on the back. I double checked my order and saw that one was black ink, and the other was blue ink. I'll blame the lighting in the room for not noticing that before.

The photo in the Advantage cards may appear to be a Browns uniform, but they're not, it is Johnson in his Syracuse college uniform.

L-R: 1999 Collector's Edge Triumph - Millenium Collection Blue #T164; - Signed, Sealed, Delivered #KJ
We all know that a lot of the chrome type cards don't show up well in scans. The logos and the name on the card on the left are in blue, hence the blue parallel. If you're curious about the photo, it is the same as the autographed card beside it.

Top: 1999 Press Pass - Autographs
Bottom (l-r): 1999 Score - Rookie Preview Autographs; 1999 Skybox Premium - Autographics

Three more cards of Johnson in his Syracuse uniform.


I'm still working on opening those Christmas baseball packs. The pack for this post is...

...1992 OPC Premier!

 Only 8 cards, but look at that French on the cards.

You know what, it really isn't that special to me. I grew up with regular O-Pee-Chee and their bilingual cards. I was always more excited when I was able to get a pack of Topps cards.

Ummm, this is an interesting start to the pack. Doubles in the first four cards. At least it is a former Met.

I remember Delino Deshields breaking in with the Expos. I think Dodger fans remember him as well.

Two Hall of Famers, a multiple All-Star World Series hero, and a Phillie that I don't remember. But he's got a good smile.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

COMC Black Friday: Couch; and Christmas pack 25

My COMC Black Friday order included some Tim Couch cards. By numbers, I'm closing in on 500 different Tim Couch cards. This may sound impressive, but according to the Trading Card Database he has over 1800 cards to collect. I'm sure that I will always be adding to my Couch collection.

Top Left: 1999 Bowman's Best - Rookie Locker Room Autographs #RA1
Top Right: 1999 Collection Edge Advantage - Rookie Autographs #159
Bottom Left: 1999 Collector's Edge Triumph - Commissioner's Choice #CC1 
Bottom Right: 1999 SkyBox Molten Metal - Gridiron Gods #5GG
 A couple more autographs for my collection.

As a former number one pick, Couch appears in a lot of insert sets. I already had a parallel of the Skybox Gridiron Gods card so this one looked familiar. I'm glad that I double-checked against my collection and didn't just pass it by.

Top Left: 2000 Topps Chrome - Preseason Picks #P11
Top Right: 2002 Donruss Gridiron Kings - DK Originals #CK-14 (#/1000)
Bottom: 2002 Fleer Box Score - First Edition #187 (#/100)
The Preseason Picks card is similar to a team card and has photos on the back of Kevin Johnson, Jamir Miller and Darrin Chiaverini.

I'm happy to add the Gridiron Kings card to my collection. I wonder if any of the athletes try to get the original art of themselves.

Top: 2002 Fleer Showcase - Air to the Throne #2 AT
Bottom: 2002 Score - The Franchise #FR-8

With all the white space in the middle of the Fleer Showcase card I could understand if people don't like this card, but I think it is better in hand than in the scan.

I wish that Tim Couch had turned out to be the elusive franchise quarterback, and that it was him that the Browns were struggling to replace after a long career, but his Browns career ended after the 2003 season. With a five year stretch of starting games for the Browns, one could argue that we are still struggling to replace him. Maybe this year.


Next up from the Christmas baseball packs that I received is...

...1992 Leaf Series 2.

Let's see what I got!

I'm not going to complain about finding a Met card in my pack. I liked Saberhagen with the Royals and was happy when the Mets traded for him.

It is interesting that all the fielder cards have photos of plays at a base.

The black border of the checklist caught my eye right away. I knew it would be something different, but when I saw that it was a checklist card, I just figured the checklists were black. I flipped it over.

Oh, okay, it is one of the Leaf Black Gold parallel cards. And Ryne Sandberg appeared on the back. Cool!

I don't remember Gary Varsho but I like the photo of him sliding.

Another action shot on the Jody Reed card.

Another crooked scan. I should probably have paid more attention to my scanning than the curling that I'm watching as I am doing this. (Page Playoff game for the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in case you wondered.) I may wind up posting it later, but that's what is on right now.

Rhodes sure wound up having a long career, but I guess that shouldn't surprise me too much after he became a left-handed relief pitcher.

Bill Landrum also gets added to the list of players that I don't remember, but it is a nice photo in an Expos uniform. Too bad the shade under the cap obscures his face a little.

Once again, some good memories with this pack, and I really enjoyed some of the photos in this pack.

Saturday, 3 February 2018

COMC Black Friday: Chiaverini; and Christmas packs 23 - 24

My COMC Black Friday order continues with another member of the 1999 expansion Cleveland Browns.

After wide receiver Kevin Johnson was chosen with the first pick of the second round, the Browns selected a second wide receiver in the fifth round of the draft - Darrin Chiaverini from Colorado.

The Trading Card Database shows 155 different Darrin Chiaverini cards are available. Twelve of them are from his time with the Dallas Cowboys and in the Arena League, leaving 143 cards that would fit in my collection. The cards below bring me up to 64 of them.

Top (l-r): 1999 Bowman Chrome - Refractor #192; 1999 Collector's Edge Masters - HoloSilver #46 (#/3500)
Bottom (l-r): 1999 Donruss #183; - Stat Line Career #183 (#/97)

Once again, I'll show one of the card backs to give you some information about him.

Darrin Chiaverini had a good rookie season. He was third on the team in receptions and receiving  yards (behind fellow rookie receiver Kevin Johnson, and veteran running back Terry Kirby) with 44 catches for 487 yards, and second to Johnson in touchdown receptions with four.

Top (l-r): 1999 Leaf Rookies & Stars #229; 1999 Pacific Paramount - Copper #59
Middle: 1999 Playoff Absolute SSD - Honors Red #AH-149 (#/200)
Bottom: 1999 Playoff Absolute SSD - Honors Silver #AH-149 (#/100)

I like the die-cut Honors inserts. There are three versions (I'm missing the Honors Gold), and these are the first that I own. There are eight Browns on the checklists so I'll have to look for more of them in the future.

Top (l-r): 1999 Playoff Absolute SSD - Coaches Collection Silver #199 (#/500); - Purple #199
Bottom (l-r): 1999 Playoff Absolute SSD - Red #199; 1999 Playoff Momentum SSD - X's #196 (#/300)

I owned the Blue base card and the Green parallel of the Absolute SSD cards before buying these. I still need the Coaches Collection Gold, and the Orange Parallel. I love the clear plastic centers to these cards.

I also already owned the O's version (#/25) of the Playoff Momentum card so I was very happy to find this one to complete the X's and O's pairing.

Top: 2000 Fleer Tradition - Autographics Silver (#/250)
Bottom (l-r): 2000 Leaf Certified - Mirror Red #34; 2000 Playoff Absolute - Coaches Honors #41 (#/300)
I like Chiaverini's signature. Really, only the initials are fully recognizable, but I like the angled D and the C. I already owned the base version of this autographed card and still need to add the Gold parallel version of it.

Others may look at the design of the Autographics card and think there is too much wasted space, but I love the design and it works really well with the on-card autograph.

I already owned the regular versions of the two base cards at the bottom of this scan.

Top (l-r): 2000 Playoff Prestige #45; 2000 Quantum Leaf - Infinity Green #67 (#/100)
Bottom (l-r): 2000 Score - Scorecard #46 (#/2000); 2000 Upper Deck Encore #54
It is kind of nice to look at four different cards, and see four different looking photos. Great photo of the ball coming into the receiver in the Score card, and I enjoy the shot of Chiaverini running to the camera with the ball.

Darrin Chiaverini played two seasons with the Browns before being traded to the Dallas Cowboys  before the 2001 season. After one season with Dallas, he signed with the Atlanta Falcons where injuries disrupted his 2002 season. He then moved on to the Austin Wranglers of the Arena Football League for 2004-2006. He is currently the Co-Offensive Coordinator, and Wide Receivers Coach for the Colorado Buffaloes.


Continuing on with the Christmas baseball packs, we find...

...1991 Score! One pack each of Series 1 and Series 2.

Series 1 Pack:

A nice start to the pack with Winfield, a nice action shot of Greg Myers, and a beautiful uniform on Dan Pasqua.

 So, as long as Morandini held onto the ball in this photo, I'm sure that he liked that the card. If he wound up dropping it on landing, I'm sure it wouldn't be a favorite. A lot of ball is showing in the picture.

Even with Eddie Murray moving on to play with the Mets and other teams, I still really only think of him as an Oriole. I don't necessarily find it odd to see him in other uniforms but if you asked me about him, I'd think Orioles.

Before moving on to the Series 2 pack, I'll show off the two World Series Magic Motion Trivia cards. And really, the interesting part of them is the backs, so that is what I'll show. 

Series 2 Pack:

Okay, David Cone was one of my favorite Mets pitchers. I saw him pitch a couple of times in Montreal against the Expos.

I don't remember ever seeing Martinez pitch in person, but listened to a lot of his games on the radio, and watched them on tv. I don't think that I have a friend in Ottawa that follows baseball that couldn't tell you Dave Van Horne's call of Martinez's perfect game:

I own a set of 1991 Score, but I had forgotten about these Franchise cards. I enjoyed seeing them again.

I had to orient the flag card properly to scan. I couldn't scan it vertically because the proper way to show it would be with the stars in the top left corner, which the card doesn't do.

All right! Thanks, Score! All of the cards I was supposed to get in each pack were there!

Comparing the two packs, I think I prefer the second one but I enjoyed opening both of them.

Thursday, 1 February 2018

COMC Black Friday: Abdullah; and Christmas packs 20 - 22

As with many other bloggers, I took advantage of the Black Friday sale at COMC to add to my collection. At some point, after buying a lot of cards without much more of a plan other than making sure I don't buy something that I already own, I decided to narrow my search down to Browns from the 1999 expansion team.

I have a lot of cards of the expansion Browns team. I'm closing in on 500 different Tim Couch cards, by far the most of any player in my collection. He was the first overall pick in the 1999 NFL Draft.

Second in my collection is Kevin Johnson at just under 300 different cards. He was the first pick of the second round.

But the Browns had two second round picks. With the 45th pick of the 1999 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns selected a Clemson linebacker, Rahim Abdullah.

The Trading Card Database lists 45 cards of Rahim Abdullah, all from 1999. Before the COMC order, I had five of them. I decided that needed to change.

L-R: 1999 Collector's Edge Advantage #151; - Gold Ingot #151; - Rookie Autographs #151

I won't show all of the backs, but I figured this back could give a bit of information about him.

L-R: 1999 Collector's Edge Fury #151; - Galvanized Preview #151

Looking at the above cards, you can see that the tiger paw has been removed from the Clemson helmets. It almost makes it look like he's already wearing his Browns helmet.

L-R: 1999 Collector's Edge Supreme #131; - Galvanized #131 (#/500)

Unlike the previous cards, you can see the paw prints on the uniform shoulders here, but still not on the helmet.

Rahim Abdullah played in 29 games with the Browns in the 1999 and 2000 seasons, starting thirteen games in 1999, and four in 2000. He had an interception against Baltimore in the Browns third game of their expansion season, and recorded two sacks near the end of the 2000 season.

L-R: 1999 Leaf Rookies & Stars #226; 1999 Skybox Metal Universe #227 

The photo in the Leaf card has Abdullah in his Browns uniform, and it appears as though it is against the Ravens. Since they didn't play the Ravens in pre-season, and since he has the ball, it is quite likely that this photo was taken after his interception in Baltimore on September 26, 1999.

The Skybox photo shows the tiger paws on the uniform and helmet.

L-R: 1999 SAGE - Autographs Bronze #A1 (#/650); - Autographs Gold #A1 (#/200)

L-R: 1999 SAGE - Autographs Red #A1 (#/999); - Autographs Silver #A1 (#/400)

There are still two more SAGE autographs to chase: #/50 and 1/1.

Rahim Abdullah does not appear to have played football in 2001, and then made his way to the CFL where he played for both Edmonton and Calgary between 2002 and 2007, winning a Grey Cup with the Eskimos in 2003.

His final year of professional football was with the Grand Rapids Rampage of the Arena Football League in 2008.

I don't really remember Rahim Abdullah playing with the Browns, but I didn't get much in the way of televised Browns games then. I do remember being surprised hearing his name in his CFL debut as he blocked a field goal against my hometown Ottawa Renegades.

I'm happy to have added these thirteen Abdullah cards to my collection, especially the Leaf card that appears to be a photo of his only interception with the Browns.


The Christmas baseball packs for this post are from one of the most easily identifiable cards sets ever made.

I have three packs to open, and hope to pull a Pro-Vision card.

I don't even want to think about how many of these packs I opened back when they came out...

Pack 1:

The wax from the back of the pack is right on the face of all the stickers. Nice to get a couple of All-Stars with Stieb and Bonds.

A couple of Expos cards. I like that Aldrete's card shows him playing first base as it lists him as an outfielder. Also nice to see an early Tino Martinez card.

Winningham is the second player from the Gary Carter Expos/Mets trade in this pack, joining Fitzgerald's card above.

Puckett adds to a pretty good pack, except that it didn't have any Mets in it.

Pack 2:

Not the Pirate pitching Bob that I was looking for in here.

In my memory, Campusano was Sal, not Sil. I remember him coming into the league with the Blue Jays.

Nice to get Nasty Boy Dibble after getting some Charltons in earlier packs.

Okay, these five cards saved this pack. Hundley might be the worst of this group but he had a good long career and made a couple of All-Star teams. And he's a Met.

Pack 3:

I always liked Segui. Nice photo of Canseco finishing a swing. And I do not remember Dale Mohorcic at all.

I think I would have preferred if Phil Clark's photo was taken behind the plate, but nice to see a catcher crouching in his gear.

I'm not going to complain about getting a Griffey card, and you have to like the racing stripe going down Gardner's leg.

What?!? Shorted another card??? I think this is the third time in four posts now.

I remember the odd time where I would get shorted, and I also remember getting an extra card once or twice, but I'm now wondering if it happened more often than I remember. I mean, really, when I bought a cheap box of cards, especially with these packs having fifteen cards in them, I don't think that I would really have noticed.

Oh, well, I have lots of 1991 Fleer boxed up in my house. It isn't as though I'll miss one more card.

Once again, it is fun to open these packs and be reminded of players that I haven't thought about in a long time.

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Breakdown of contest winnings and Christmas pack 19

As can be seen with this blog, I am mostly a Cleveland Browns collector, but I do like baseball and every now and then find cool baseball cards that I want to keep.

Before Christmas, Gavin at Baseball Card Breakdown held his Beermas contest and it featured a prize that caught my eye so I entered. As it turned out, I lost the contest but Gavin was tricky and actually had two identical prize packs and had a second chance draw. I was lucky enough to win the second draw.

Here is the card that caught my eye to make me enter the contest.


What a cool card!

Like most people, I knew about him from his perfect game in the 1956 World Series. I didn't know a lot about his career though.

Although I remember being told that he had lost 20 games in a season with the Orioles (21 in 1954), I wasn't aware that he made his debut with the St. Louis Browns the season before their move to Baltimore. They aren't the Browns that I collect, but it is a neat Browns link!

I also wasn't aware that he pitched 15 years in the majors, ending his career with the Cubs in 1967.

Coincidentally, there was a Browns link with one of the baseball cards that Gavin included.
Regular readers of Gavin's blog will know about that he collects his Guys from Granite, so I'm sure he has been sent multiples of many of them. I thought it was a pretty cool card when I looked at it, but then I turned it over to read the back.
Brian Giles shared the high school backfield with "Touchdown Tommy", the Cleveland Browns first round pick (9th overall) in the 1992 NFL Draft. Pretty neat! 

The prizes also included a couple of cards of a favorite of a bunch of friends of mine. No Browns tie in with him. He's a Viking.

I'm sure some of you caught his tv appearance, but most of you might recognize him more in his work uniform.

There were also a couple of early cards from the World Series champions.

And other prospect cards.

As a Mets fan, I appreciate the Reynolds card.  As a baseball fan, I appreciate the Rhys Hoskins card. As a Mets fan, I do not appreciate Rhys Hoskins doing so well.

There was also a note included with my package.

It wasn't just any old note, however. Being in a package from Gavin, it was on the back of one of his customs, a mini Dude. And the Dude came with friends.

Gavin, you do an amazing job with your cards!

Even if the package had ended there, it would have been great, but Gavin also included some cards for my collection.

There was a Met for my Opening Day binder.
I originally had Wayne Garrett's 1971 Topps card sitting in the page for the 1970 starters. It is nice to put the 1970 card in its proper place.

He also sent me some Browns.
Top (l-r): 2010 Panini Epix #23; 2011 Topps Platinum - Green #148 (#/499)
Bottom (l-r): 2011 Panini Totally Certified #196 (#/299); 2013 Panini Prizm - Blue #16

I must say that I really like both colored parallel cards here. It also helps that they are so easily identifiable.

Top (l-r): 2014 Panini Elite - Turn of the Century #127 (#/199); 2015 Topps Field Access - Autographs #64
Bottom (l-r): 2016 Panini Prizm - Prizm #128; 2016 Panini Plates & Patches - Blue #24 (#/50)

Everybody remembers Johnny Manziel as a Browns first-round pick from 2014, but he was their second pick in the draft after Justin Gilbert. Gilbert may have even been the bigger disappointment.

The Plates & Patches card is pretty sweet. I just picked up my first card, a base card, from that set on my last trip to Arizona. I was thrilled to see this one in the package.

Gavin, thanks for the great prize package and the extra cards that you added for my collection. They are greatly appreciated.


On to the next Christmas baseball pack.

1991 Conlon Collection from The Sporting News.

I love this set. I own factory sets of this series and the fourth series. I really need to remember to look for the missing second, third and fifth series.

Great names in here, and amazing photos. What a set! How can anybody hate these cards?