Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Honus Wagner Video

 Saw this video of Honus Wagner with audio on Net54 and wanted to share it with you all.


I love seeing videos of old prewar stars and games in action.  Here's a video where they interview Honus Wagner and you get to hear him talk and see him take batting practice and do a bit of fielding.  I always imagined he had a strong German accent for whatever reason, but he really doesn't have one at all.



Wagner was considered one of the games greatest shortstops when he played.  He's known to the general public because of his famous T206 baseball card that consistently sells for more than a million dollars.  This generally makes the news every time it happens and spreads the mystique of Honus Wagner.  

But beyond the baseball card, Honus was a great player and a first ballot Hall of Famer.  He was known as The Flying Dutchman because of his speed and German heritage.  He won eight batting titles in his career.  That record has never been broken to this day (although it has been matched by Tony Gwynn).

Wagner debuted in baseball in 1897 and played until 1917.  He started with the Louisville Colonels and when the National League dropped four teams after the 1899 season, the owner of the team took Wagner to the Pittsburg Pirates the next year and Honus continued with Pittsburg though the end of his career.

I hope you enjoyed the video folks.  I thought it was really cool.

Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one.

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Baseball Art

 Well, I just felt like showcasing some of the baseball art that I enjoy here.

There are many many baseball artists out there, but I just wanted to share a few here with you.  These are different styles but all very cool.

I have a degree in fine arts with a concentration in painting so I am naturally drawn to baseball paintings.  Would I like to do my own baseball paintings?  Yes, I would.  However at this time in my life I don't have the time or space in my home to set up for painting.  It is something I will get into when my kids are a bit older and I can dedicate some space to it.

So I live vicariously through other artists and dream of someday producing something of my own.

First I wanted to share a painting by Kadir Nelson.  Kadir doesn't exclusively paint baseball art, but this work is simply fantastic.


This image captures the great Cool Papa Bell sliding into third in a close play.  I really like the elongated figures and the drama they display.  You can see Cool Papa's long leg reaching third before the throw make it to the glove of the third baseman.  It reminds me of the loose uniforms and lanky looking players in the Negro League back in the early part of the 1900's.  

Next up is a water color panting by Noah Stokes depicting the great Human Vacuum Cleaner Brooks Robinson fielding a ball in his signature diving defensive play.


Noah captures the action beautifully with great detail in the water colors in Brook's figure.  The contrasting loose brush strokes in the background work perfectly to highlight the player which is much more detailed.  We see Brooks holding the ball in his glove showing he has snagged it for the out.  The touches of red in his socks, pinstipes on his pants and number really stand out as well.

Christopher Arndt brings in our next piece.  This is a stunning image of the Washington Nationals ballpark at dusk with absolutely stunning skies. 


I really like paintings of stadiums like this that show expansive views of the park including the entire field.  The scoreboard in the background has so much weight to it and feels so imposing.  Even the well manicured lawn with the lines and the well manicure dirt look great.  It really feels like you're at the park in your seat watching the game.  

Our next artist isn't a painter at all, but instead Tim Carroll actually cuts up junk era baseball cards and glues them back together to form "paintings" of mostly baseball cards.  Tim has so many works to choose from but I went with one that I really like a lot.


Here is a 1955 Sandy Koufax rookie card made up of thousands of pieces of cut up baseball cards.  The face of Sandy is made of hundreds of cut up faces of other ballplayers arranged to form his visage.  Tim has done so many other cards from tobacco and candy prewar cards to modern cards.  His work speaks for itself.

My last couple of works are from my favorite baseball artist, Graig Kreindler. I chose these two pieces because they have the advertisements in the outfields.  For some reason I find it really cool when he paints the ads that were on the walls of the outfieldl


This is an image of the great Mickey Mantle at bat.  I love the wide angle image and the overcast weather  But the ads strike me for some reason.  I also really like the water tower in the background and the scoreboard on the right side.  

The next one features the Splendid Splinter Ted Williams up to bat.  


This one has great advertising as well as two large oil signs in the Gulf and Cities Service signs outside the stadium.  Here is a detail of Ted where you can see the brushstrokes.


There are so many more sports artists out there that I obviously could've profiled here.  But I just wanted to share a few of the ones that I really like.  If you're interested in this stuff or any of the artists please look into it on your own. You'll be surprised what you can find out there.

Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Recent Pick Ups

 I recently received some new cards and took some pics of some cards I got a while ago.

First we'll look at the cards I received a while back but just got around to taking pics of.  And I apologize now for the quality of the pics.  My scanner can't handle a graded card well at all, so I had to take phone pics.

First up is a new 1933 Goudey HOFer Harold "Pie" Traynor.  


This card is rough, but if you read my blog then you know I don't mind that at all.  And I love 1933 Goudey HOFers in SGC slabs. I just feel like they are presented so well in that black border.  

Next up is a sweet T210 Old Mill Series 7 card of Cooney.


I'm a big fan of T-sized cards that have full body poses as opposed to portraits and this one fits just right;  It also has a nice red border that isn't too broken either.  This is my first and only T210.

This next card I just received the other day from a CCA win.  What's CCA, or it's Cardboard Currency Auction and you offer cards for others to bid on so you get chips and you bid on lots you want with your chips.  It's a fun way to move cards around between collectors.  If you're interested in it just contact me.

This is a 1972 Daily Juice Roberto Clemente.


This is actually a very common card and one of Clemente's easiest cards to obtain to be honest.  At least that's what I've read.  But I never picked on up so I'm just thrilled to get this one finally.

Now for the cards that I just got in a recent trade.  I sent out three of my E98s for these three E98s in return.  I'm just thrilled with this trade and the cards;



That's it for now folks.  I hope you liked my new pick ups.  I should have some more coming soon as I recently won some cool stuff in the latest Brockelman Auctions.

Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one;

Friday, October 30, 2020

Amazing Zeenuts Find

 A collector recently obtained an amazing find of 126 Zeenuts.

What makes this an amazing fine is not the number of cards, but the fact that every single one of them still retains the original coupon at the bottom of the card.  

Now, it's not unheard of to find a Zeenut with the coupon attached, but it is not common in the very least my collecting friends.  Most all Zeenut cards have had the coupon torn or cut off.  Only about 1% of the cards have a coupon attached.

Collector Rhett Yeakley was contacted by a gentleman outside the hobby and posted about it on the vintage baseball card message board Net54.  Rhett explained in his post that the gentleman...

...inherited [the cards] from his great uncle (I believe) whose parents had operated a corner grocery store in Northern California for many years in the early part of the 20th Century. His great uncle was a young boy and he imagined he would get these cards from his parents or possibly from classmates (like most young kids in the S.F.-Oakland area would). 

There were 126 cards in this collection that ranged from 1929 to 1932.  Zeenuts were distributed starting in 1911 and continued every year until 1938.  Issued on the west coast, they only include players of the Pacific Coast League.  They were issued with Zeenuts candy, hence the name.


Here is an ad from a period paper that mentions the 1912 series.  One photo in every package.

Here's another image of a period ad showing the packaging for the candy.  

The coupons could be used to redeem prizes from a small catalog of items.  Here is an example of some of the prizes that kids would be looking to get with the coupons.


Now, lets see the collection right?  Here's the pic of the cards all laid out for display.


But wait, there's more!  Rhett has a YouTube channel where he shows off cards and talks about them.  If you're into vintage/prewar cards you should check it out.  

Here's a link to Rhett's YouTube channel:  Stars of the Diamond

Please subscribe to his channel if you have an account.  The more subscribers the more cool videos he'll likely put out for us collectors.

Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one.


Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Recent Pick Ups

 It's been a little while since I shared some new pick ups.

I've picked up a few new cards since my last pick ups post, but I only have a few of them scanned at this time, so I'm just sharing five tonight. 

Also I'm working on a trade for some new E98s that I'll share with you when I have them.  I'm pretty excited about those ones.

Two of these recent cards are baseball and three are boxing.  You know me, I like those boxing cards.

We'll start with the boxing cards.  The first one is a not so commonly seen card; a W565 strip card of Ace Hudkins.  


Sorry about the blurriness of this one.  I like the huge borders on the left and bottom.  It was obviously on the bottom left corner of the sheet.  I picked this one up because of the borders and the fact that you don't see it very often.  I'm not saying this is a rare issue by any means, but it's not everywhere on eBay everyday either.

Next up is a pair of boxing cards from the same set.  These are W529-7 Big Heads.  I really like this set for the colors and the comic-like images.  These have the same checklist as the more common 529-1 set of 10 boxers.



I should clarify that I am not 100% certain these are the type 7 W529s but I think they are. These two examples are really nice ones too.  No creases and well cut long ago.  The colors just pop in person as well.  The bold solid backgrounds are striking.  The boxer's names are printed along the top of the card.

The next card to show you is a really cool little card from another set that you don't see all the time.  You can usually find some on eBay with ridiculously high buy it now prices, but not usually affordable examples.  

This is a 1933 E285 Rittenhouse Candy Co. card.  These are little cards with the design of a playing card, so it's no surprise there are 52 cards in the set.  On the backs of the cards in a letter that is included in the words Rittenhouse Candy Co.  The idea was that if you could spell out the full name you could win a prize, however even after all these years it has never been spelled out in full.  



My card has the U on the reverse.  Nothing special there.  Oh well.  There should be small borders at the top and bottom of the card and no borders on the right or left sides.  They come in several different colors but not in multiple colors per card. 

The last card to share is another E90-1 for my set in progress.  I'm (very) slowly working on this set, adding a new card every few months maybe.  This is one of my favorite sets but there are so many really tough cards in this one that I don't know if I'll ever complete it.  The Joe Jackson is a pipe dream for me.  



This example is of Bob Groom and you can see it is severely miscut to the right.  So much so that you can see the card next to Bob.  It's just a little tiny sliver of the next card, but I think it might just be another Bob Groom card.  Yes, there are two holes punched in this one, but you know I don't care about that.  I think the miscut is just too cool to make the holes matter.

Well, that's some of my recent pick ups guys.  I hope you enjoyed them.  Let me know what you've recently added to your collection.  I'd love to hear from you.

Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one.


Saturday, October 24, 2020

Five Most Aesthetically Pleasing Prewar Sets

 So a recent thread on the Net54baseball.com message board asked what the five most aesthetically pleasing prewar sets were.

I Spent a little time thinking about it and posted my five choices.  Now, there are a lot of really nice prewar sets out there and nobody's list is going the same as someone else's list.  (Well, maybe two people would agree on all five, but you get my point.)  

Many nice choices were made, and of course I agreed with some of them with my list.  Many folks chose the N162 Goodwin Champions which is a wonderful choice.  Beautiful cards.  Several T206 entries made lists as well as T205.  

Here are my five choices:

1. 1912 Boston Garters


These are absolutely beautiful cards in my opinion.  I love the colors and the images.  And the fact that the Mathewson card pictured above even has a player whacking another player over the head with a baseball bat.  What?!  Also, the oversize cards present wonderfully in a nice black SGC holder.

2. T3 - Turkey Reds


T3s are absolutely gorgeous cards.  They all have wonderful colors, many have the red and orange sunset skies in the background like this Ty Cobb example.  Many also have stadiums and some have cityscapes or other buildings.  The soft green fields contrasted by the burning sunsets work very well.  As does the purple showcased in many skies.  Then the nice mat style borders and nameplates at the bottoms present the images in a concise framed composition.  A great choice in my mind.

3. T212 Obaks (All three years)


T212 Obaks were distributed from 1909 through 1911 and they are distinguished as three separate sets known as type 1, type 2 or type 3.  The 1909 set is easily identified by the fronts as they have a different look to them than the other two years.  The 1910 and 1911 set are not as easily identifiable by the fronts (although some of the 1911's have a certain brushed out paint-like background that is associated only with that year).  But the backs are the easiest way to tell what year you have.

The 1909 set has blue text in Old English font.  The 1910 set is also blue backed but has block letters and one of thirty five different slogans, and the 1911 set has red text on the back.

They are all beautiful cards though.  So I picked them in general instead of choosing one of the years.

4. N321 S.F. Hess California League


Again, I like the background colors in these cards as well as the uniforms of the 19th century and the splashes of color on them.  There are 40 cards in the set and they are quite rare and expensive so I highly doubt I will ever have one in my own collection (when I am able to afford one there are many other cards I would buy before picking up one of these)but they do make my list all the same.

5. T205 Gold Borders




For the T205s I put them in a specific order of which types I like best.  First is the minor leaguers (shown above) with their ornate gold borders and action poses.  There are only twelve minor leaguers in the set but they each have a unique border and nice image.  They also have the team logo on shields in the upper right and left corners.

After the minor leaguers I like the American League design.  These cards have a nice diamond made of base paths or bats with the team logo, gold border, and period equipment at the bottom of the card.  The player's name and team are printed in a scroll under the players portrait image.  The National Leaguers are my least favorite of the three.  These are portraits with the players name printed as an autograph below the image with team and league printed under the signature.  

So what are your five favorite prewar sets?  What do you think of my choices?  I'd love to hear from some of you.  

Enjoy the hobby all...it's an aesthetically pleasing one.

Saturday, August 29, 2020

The Ultimate Ty Cobb Back Run

A complete Ty Cobb Red Background T206 back run has been completed.

T206 collector Jamie Blundell began his journey on a whim in 2011 when he acquired a Ty Cobb red background with a Drum back. 

In 2013 Jamie saw an image of a Ty Cobb back run with 17 different backs and he decided to put together his own run. He made a checklist of all the backs which came to 30 different.  Some of those backs are extremely rare and would be almost impossible to obtain.  But Jamie started working on it nonetheless.

Over the next 7 years Jamie would chase down card after card.  His second one was the elusive Lenox back making his first two the Drum and Lenox which are both very tough. 

He then plowed through several backs acquiring 22 different examples in 2013 alone.  Including a 1 of 1 Broadleaf 460 back. 

He continued to add cards including a blank back, a Ty Cobb back, and just recently he obtained his final card.  The T214 Victory.  There was a great article about Jamie's journey on the blog ThatT206Life.com that you can read here.  It was written back in Feb. 2017 before Jamie finished his run. 

The story culminates here in a Net54 post when Jamie announces he obtained the final card.

Here is the complete run for your viewing pleasure.

Click to Enlarge
Enjoy the hobby all...it's a great one.