A blog about baseball cards... and the Padres

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Penny Box

I wrote a few weeks ago about some of the singles that I picked up from the once-a-year card show that I attended.  Nothing too spectacular, but some solid pickups, including a few vintage Friars.  I also mentioned that I picked up a few others things on the trip.

One of the things was a big box of miscellaneous cards.

With the lack of "dime boxes" at the show, it was nice to come away with a score that, if averaged, would probably amount to less than a penny a card - even if I didn't just get to choose the ones I want.

The guy I bought 'em from had about a dozen of the boxes, which were clear plastic and looked very organized.  I searched briefly through a few of them to find out which ones weren't just football, and paid him five bucks.  He threw in a few binder pages, which I just ran out of.  Again.

Anyways, as you might've guessed, nothing huge or particularly noteworthy in the box, but there were some cool looking cards that managed to find their way into my binders.  One thing that I liked about the box I chose was that there was a good variety of sets, and they were mostly organized that way.  I probably liked this box more than most would, because the cards were almost all exclusively from the early 90s.  Here's a break down of what made the binder cut, starting out set by set:

We'll start off with 1993 Fleer.  Not a fan of this set at all, and it was the most plentiful in the box. If you need any cards from this set (wether you're building it for some reason, or you're a team collector), let me know.

Ug.  Ugly gray borders that aren't made better by the name and team line on the left side.  Despite that, there were a handful that made the cut into a binder.  Buddy, current skipper for the Padres, is here during his Giant days (while a former Padre catcher is now the manager for the Giants).  I liked the Thome for the throwback cap, and Stan Belinda and I share the same birthday.

There weren't very many from 1993 Donruss, but this was the best one by far.  The card is just as dark as it looks here, might've been a printing error.

1993 Topps has a soft spot in my heart.  I must've had so many of these cards as a kid.  And I'm probably in the minority as a person who liked the vertical stats on the back - easier to read when they're in pages!  I don't think I'd ever seen the Griffey from this set, however.  This is Dale Murphy's last card from Topps, as 1993 Upper Deck would be the only release that would show him in a Rockies uniform.

Speaking of 1993 Upper Deck, here are a couple more cards that made it into the binders.  Cory Snyder is casually blowing a bubble as he makes a warning track catch at Wrigley Field, and Scott Radinsky signing a ball in the bullpen (or dugout?) for a Sox fan handy enough to lower down a baseball with what appears to be a tin can and some yarn.  Radinsky is awesome.

I was pleasantly surprised by the decent chunk of 1994 Pinnacle in the box.  '92 Pinnacle is one of my all time favorite sets, but not all of the following releases were as sharp.  I might go as far as to say that I like the '94 set almost as much.  Dennis Martinez looks ridiculous here, too cheesy to pass up.  Gotta love El Presidente.  John Flaherty was a fan favorite during his short time as a Padre, don't see too many cards of him, so this was a keeper as well.

The best of '94 Pinnacle was to come however...

This wasn't the best card from '94 Pinnacle, but these are two Brian Harper cards that I didn't have previously.

I under the impression that I had all of Tim Wakefield's cards from his Pirates days.  Apparently I was way wrong.  Checking out COMC.com shows that there are 29 different cards of Wake as a Buc, and that's not including the different parallels of those cards (although they weren't quite the rage in the early 90s as they are now).  Makes the six that I have seem pretty tame.

Here we have a trio of former and future Padres.  Kotsay gets the middle treatment here because the dude is still playing!  Best as I can tell, the only guys that got the "Rookie Class" treatment from 1998 Collector's Choice that are still around are Todd Helton and Paul Konerko.  Not bad company.  Sterling Hitchcock is one of my all-time favorite Friar pitchers, and Bip is the man.

Along with the stacks of cards organized by sets, there were also a few cards that were organized by players, all All-Stars.  Not too many that struck my fancy, but these two Fisk cards look sharp.  Dig the throwback uni's with the black border of the '91 Score, and an almost identical swing on the card from '90 Topps.

Probably one of the coolest finds was a set of five of the "Masked Marauders" cards from 1998 Collector's Choice.  I already had two of them (Brian and Charles Johnson, who aren't related), and these bring my total up to five.  Looks like there are nine of these (?), so the only ones I need to finish this mini-collection would be Sandy Alomar Jr., Javy Lopez, Mike Piazza, and Ivan Rodriguez.  These look cool.

Probably the funniest looking card was this Joe Carter card.  Few things look cooler than an outfielder perfectly timing a jump and robbing a home run.  But why would they choose to use a picture of a futile attempt of catching a home run (a la the 1992 Triple Play card of Tony Gwynn)?  Maybe because a guy wearing a Don Mattingly shirt is taking a fly ball to the gut.  I had a good laugh when I saw this one.

As great as the cards from '94 Pinnacle were, there was one that stood out above the rest...

An Archi Cianfrocco sighting!  I already had the difficult-to-photograph "Museum Collection" parallel of this card, but not the plain old base card.  Looks very sharp.

Overall, very much worth the five bucks.  Pretty fun to look through, especially since most of these cards came out during my prime collecting years.  Like I said, if you need any cards from these sets, I might be able to help you out, so lemme know.


  1. Those are always fun to look through. My LCS sells 1500 ct boxes of cards for 10 bucks. One box I bought had a ton of 2011 Topps Update and even included the Mike Trout RC!

  2. Congrats on all the loot for so cheap!

    I'm a huge fan of Pinnacle cards, so everything from them you've posted above I think looks great, from the Benito (obviously) through the Cianfrocco (again, obviously). Also, those Fisk do look great paired together.

    Classic drop-knee Bip stance...made it!

  3. Congrats on pulling an Archi. I love that Joe Carter Pinnacle card.

    If I ever come across a penny box, I'm going to dive in like Scrooge McDuck in the Money Bin. Can't believe you pulled a Griffey!

  4. Great find! For a penny each, you really can't go wrong. Love those Wakefield cards!

    Because of what I just posted on my blog this afternoon, it's ironic that you'd feature that Carter. :)

  5. Nice finds! That Scott Rad is one of my favorites of his.
    I've got the Sandy, Jr. Masked Marauders card; I'll send it your way next batch.