Saturday, December 18, 2010

1992 LK "L and K" Decals

In the early 1990's (1991 or 1992) Moore Sports Ltd. distributed a series of mugs, steins and other random glassware which included various baseball player decals produced by LK Sports. I've never been a big fan of collecting glasses or commemorative plates, so I didn't pay much attention to these, that is until Beckett produced their "official" checklist, and this item (1992 L and K Decals 17) was on the list.

The story is that in the mid to late 1990's a dealer obtained about 40-50 uncut sheets of both the front and back of these decals. These were obviously never meant to be sold as "cards" (and don't even get me started on why Beckett would include this on their list and leave out other more legitimate cards), but now I had to see if I could track one down. It took quite a few years, but I finally found one on eBay a few weeks ago for a fairly reasonable price.

This is the front and back of the decal, which overall measures about 3 1/2" square. These were printed separately, since unlike cards, these were meant to be physically applied to some sort of glass collectible.

Such as a mini plate...

or a coffe mug...

or a beer stein...

or a clear drinking glass...

and a large beer mug.

Most of the items feature a 1992 copyright on the front, and a 1991 copyright (with stats through 1990) on the back. But, there is a variation of the decals which includes a 1991 copyright on the front, and a 1992 copyright on the back, but still has stats through 1990.

I want to thank fellow Rickey collector Scott and Ken for providing the pictures of all of the other LK items, none of which came from my collection. Most of the background information came from BAM! Cards, more of which can be found here. If anyone happens to have anything that isn't shown here, just let me know, as I'd love to have as many listed as possible.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Random Pics of New Rickey's

I haven't had much time to put a decent post together recently, but I have scanned some of the newer cards I've picked up. The commentary will be lacking, but if anyone has a question on any of them, please don't hesitate to ask!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

2010 Topps Hat Patches and Bat Barrels

Topps decided to try something new this year, and released a series of manufactured Hat Patches and Bat Barrels in their sets throughout the year. I'll never be able to own an actual hat patch or barrel, so it is nice to at least have the opportunity to obtain the next best thing.

Rickey had four different hat patches (each #/99), two vertical and two horizontal. I'm still not sure how the A's patches made it through any sort of quality inspection (maybe there wasn't one?), but all of the patches are cut this way, almost as if they were planning on it being a horizontal card, and then changed their minds.

While I did like the patches, I was a little skeptical about the bat barrel relics. Fortunately, these far exceeded my expectations, and are actually much nicer in person than they appear online, and they even look pretty good online.

There are three different parallels, the base #/99, the black version #/25, and a pink version numbered #1/1. The pink version has not yet surfaced on eBay, but I hope it does just so I can snag a picture for this post. The Jeter below recently sold for $250+, and I have a strong suspicion that the Rickey will go for even more.

Topps currently has plans to release manufactured glove cards in 2011, but unless the checklist changes, Rickey has not been included. But, this is only for Series I, and who knows what they have in store for Series II or Update.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

2002 Upper Deck Vintage Timeless Teams

Although I appreciate that Topps has included a multitude of different Rickey Henderson cards in the new 2010 Triple Threads release (50+ if you include 1:1's), it's nice to actually be able to acquire all of the cards in a release. The feeling of "completing" a set or year is one that I will always enjoy, and given all of the Rickey's in circulation, I'll always have something new to work on.

Rickey didn't have a base card in the 2002 Upper Deck Vintage release, but he did have two different quad relic cards that I could track down.

The first card is vintage 80's A's, featuring the likes of Canseco, Dave Parker, and Don Baylor. Not the most high-end of relics, but a fun combination, and one that I doubt you'll ever see again.

This second relic was the hardest to come across, and believe it or not, thanks to a badly worded eBay auction, was actually cheaper than the first! With Griffey, Gwynn, and Bonds, there's a lot of hits represented on this card. Although Bonds will probably never get in, you've already got two Hall of Famers represented, with a third (Griffey) just waiting for his turn. A fun card, from a fun set, with no parallels, prime, or autographed versions. There were only two Rickey cards in the set, and both are interesting additions to the collection.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

1994 Target A's Pogs Giveaway

Here's another odd Rickey items that I was finally able to obtain. Back during the pog craze of the early- to mid-1990's, the A's decided they wanted to get in on the act.

These sheets of 6 pogs (or Collector Kaps in this instance) were given away at three separate A's home games (series I, II, and III), or so I thought. Since there were 20,000 given away at the first game, I always wondered why I was never able to track down the Rickey sheet (and still haven't, the pictures of the full sheet are courtesy of fellow collector Scott).

It wasn't until much later that someone brought to my attention the anomaly that was the 1994 baseball season. A strike ended the season early, with the A's last home game occurring on August 11. The sheet featuring Rickey was scheduled to be distributed during one of the A's final homestands, and thus was never given away. So, the few sheets that have surfaced were probably snagged by A's employees or randomly given away before they were ultimately probably all discarded.

Here's a close-up of the Rickey pog, complete with facsimile signature.

It's interesting that the pack includes a Pepsi logo, since the front of these were sponsored by Target.

If anyone out there has a complete sheet, or even more singles of the Rickey pog, please don't hesitate to send me an e-mail. I know of quite a few other Rickey collectors who'd still love to get their hands on one of these!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

1995 Classic Phone Card

This 1995 Classic Phone card is one that I've been trying to track down for quite some time. It was a fairly limited release, and I don't recall ever actually seeing any back in the late 1990's. I don't even think I knew that it existed until I saw it listed on the Beckett checklist.

There were a total of 57 $10 phone cards in the set, which included everyone from Cal Ripken Jr. to Denny Neagle. There was also an autographed Ripken version, which I can realistically assume was nearly impossible to find.

The cards are a little smaller than normal (about 2 1/8" by 3 3/8"), and are printed on a credit card like plastic with rounded corners. It was an interesting idea, but I don't think it really caught on.

The back of the card included the instructions on how the phone card could actually be used. I'm curious as to the price point on these, if they were sold for $10, or included some sort of "collectible" premium. I believe that the phone number at the top was at one time covered by a little scratch-off panel, which would indicate that this card was actually used. But, since the card expired in December 1996, that doesn't really matter.

Overall, a great addition to the collection, and the final card I needed to finish off the 1995 official Beckett checklist, with all 70 cards now in-hand and accounted for.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Very Burbank Birthday

Now that my latest birthday is behind me, it's time to revel in the spoils. My lovely wife gave me a Beckett gift certificate, and I also received some other funds which were partially used towards expanding the Rickey collection.

Most player collectors probably have a love/hate relationships with Burbank Sportscards, and I do as well. If you're looking for that hard-to-find 90's insert or parallel, there's a good chance that they have it. You'll also probably pay an arm and a leg in the process, so it all comes down to how much you want it. But, with a little digging, you can surprisingly find a few "deals" hidden among the $499 autographed relics.

1994 Stadium Club First Day Issue #654 (print run 2,000) -- I'm not sure why I haven't been able to track this one down already, as with 2,000 of them out there, it shouldn't have been too hard to find. But, 1994 Stadium Club finally complete, for a total of 9 cards including Golden Rainbow, Members Only, and First Day Issue parallels.

1996 Leaf Signature Platinum Press Proofs #142 (print run 150) -- I've never seen this card for sale on eBay, so even though the price was a bit high, I have a feeling it would have been much more had it actually been put up for auction. This now completes the 1996 Leaf Signature set, with a base card along with the gold and platinum press proofs.

1998 Circa Thunder Rave #87 #/150 -- It was nice to finally be able to track this one down, but the elusive Super Rave #/25 is still out there somewhere!

1998 Pacific Platinum Blue #9 (print run 67) $10.65 -- I now have all 3 of the 1998 Pacific Parallels which included the Silver and Red Threatt (yes, it's spelled with two "t"'s) versions.

1999 Upper Deck Encore FX Gold #58 #/125 $19.05 -- This is another card that I don't remember ever seeing for sale on eBay. It's also nice that 1999 Upper Deck Encore only had two cards, the base card, and this parallel.

2003 Donruss Elite Throwback Threads #25 #/250 $9.90 -- There are 3 "base" Throwback Threads in the 2003, all #/250, but this is the first one that I've picked up so far.

2003 Topps Chrome Refractors #186 #/699 -- I recently purchased the Gold Refractor #/449 as well, but am still looking for the Black Refractor #/199 and the Uncirculated X-Fractor #/50.

2003 Topps Tribute Contemporary Memorable Materials Relics #RH $15.45 -- Although not serial numbered, these 2003 Topps Tribute relics don't surface very often, as they are pretty nice looking cards. Plus, most of them feature Rickey in vintage A's gear, which is always a plus!

I had a lot of fun on my Beckett shopping spree, and the early holes in the collection are slowly dwindling. The thrill of the hunt in tracking cards down one-by-one is fun, but every once in a while, adding a stack of cards all at once can be just as fun!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

September 1982 A's News Special Edition

A few weeks ago Oakland A's Collectibles posted a special edition of the A's Magazine with a great drawing of Rickey Henderson on the cover. I asked John, who runs the blog, for some more details about the magazine, and he said that the whole issue was dedicated to Rickey! He was nice enough to send over scans of the entire magazine, which I can read, but once uploaded to Photobucket, they don't open up large enough. (If anyone can provide any technical assistance, it would be greatly appreciated). You can at least enjoy the pictures in this great vintage piece of Rickey memorabilia.

Thanks again John!

Monday, July 19, 2010

2010 All-Star Legends and Celebrity Softball Game

During All-Star weekend in Anaheim, Rickey Henderson participated in the celebrity softball game, which was played on the Sunday before the game (although it was shown on TV tape-delayed after the Home Run Derby on Monday). Here's a clip of Rickey's lead-off homer (one of two homers that he hit) and the ensuing classic-Rickey home run trot.

Although I was not able to attend the game, a fellow Rickey fan was (thanks David!), and he talked one of the photographs on hand into e-mailing him some extra shots of Rickey. The photos below are courtesy of photographer Jon Gaede.

From what I saw of the game (the Home Run Derby ran over, and I forgot to extend my DVR timer), Rickey always looked like he was having a lot of fun!

Interesting group picture, MC Hammer (who also homered), actor Michael Clarke Duncan, and Rickey.

While attending the weekend festivities, Rickey was also signing autographs at the All-Star Fanfest. This ticket was recently sold on eBay, and surprisingly, also comes with an MLB authenticated hologram.