Welcome to my blog!!!

I have collected baseball cards and autographs over the years. I still have boxes full of cards (as well as newer cards) that are just sitting there. So, I have decided to see how many of them I can get autographed. I use through the mail as my preferred route for this adventure. I also have an account on Zistle and The Trading Card Database for trading purposes (stevienicks77).

Monday, December 31, 2012

Top 5 of 2012...#1

1.  Terry Steinbach - sent c/o Scholarship Fund.  He charges $2.00 per autograph, but I don't care.  I don't mind making a donation to a scholarship fund; god knows I needed every scholarship I got to get myself to college.  I was a little disappointed because they took so long to come back (228 days).  I actually thought I might have to write this autograph request off.  I'm actually thinking of writing to Mr. Stenbach again this year.  He's one of my Top 5 favorite baseball players of all time.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Top 5 of 2012....#2

2.  B.J. Surhoff - sent c/o Home address.  Mr. Surhoff's 1987 Topps card was one of the first baseball cards I ever had.  Plus, he's a catcher!  I wanted to make sure I got an autograph on at least one card of him in his catcher's gear, then the other card I couldn't pass up the 1988 Score.  I was thrilled when I got these back!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Top 5 of 2012...#3

3.  Mike Napoli - sent c/o Rangers Spring Training.  I had tried to get Mr. Napoli's autograph last year, but he sent me my cards back with a pre-signed card of himself.  I decided to try it again, and I'm glad I did, because I was successful!  He only signed 1 of 2, but I'm still happy to get the one back!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Top 5 of 2012...#4

4.  Gene Larkin - sent c/o Home address.  This was a request that I thought was long gone, but, 562 days later, my cards were back, and I was happy.  He was one of my favorite players from the 1987 Twins World Series team. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Top 5 of 2012...#5

I was lucky enough to expand my TTM collection this year.  I had many choices for this list, and it was hard.  So, over the next five days, you'll see what my top five autographs of the year were.

5.  Gregg Olson - sent c/o Home address.  Gregg is formerly from Omaha, and I like to collect players from Iowa/Nebraska.  I remember him winning Rookie of the Year for the Orioles.  I always liked his 1989 Topps card.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Top Debbie Downers of the year

With all the end of the year lists, I also include a Top 3 Debbie Downer list.  I guess I'm pretty thankful that I only had three Debbie Downer's all year!

3.  Alan Trammell - coach, Arizona Diamondbacks.  I had been reading that he had been signing a lot, so I was disappointed to get this back unsigned.

2.  Tim Bogar - coach, Boston Red Sox.  This guy didn't sign my card, and didn't bother to seal my SASE to send my card back.  I'm surprised the card came back, and in the shape it did.  This is the actual card:

1.  Paul Assenmacher - send c/o Home address.  After 413 days, I get my card back, unsigned, with a letter/list stating that he now charges for his autograph, and some company now handles it.  I can't believe that there is that big of a demand for Mr. Assenmacher's autograph!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Top NFL TTM's of the year

I don't typically send out many TTM requests to NFL players, but the few that I do are players that I watched growing up.

3.  John Offerdahl - sent c/o Home address.  His 1987 Topps football card was one of my first football cards I had ever collected.  However, I sent this card to him for a autograph, but he kept it, and gave me a testimony card instead.  The testimony card is great and all, but I wished he would have kept the 1989 Topps, instead.

 2.  Kevin Butler - sent c/o Home address.  Who doesn't remember the Bears winning the Super Bowl in the 80's?  I do, and it was huge back then.

1.  Tom Rathman - sent c/o Home address.  Former Husker and 49er.  I was a huge 49ers fan when I was a kid.  Who wasn't?  Montana, Craig, Rathman, Lott, Rice....Super Bowls.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Adam Kennedy

I got an awesome return from Adam Kennedy yesterday.  I actually sent this to his house, not to his team.  And, it was a pretty quick turn around...12 days!

Adam Kennedy
Signed 3/3
Sent c/o Home address
12 days

Top TTM of December

I really didn't get many TTM's back in the last month of the year, but the one that was my favorite was the one from Tyson Ross, back from the 2011 Arizona Fall League.  I love the Bowman design with the Oakland A's colors!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Top TTM of November

This was another player that I was hoping to get at the All Star Fan Fest, but was shut out.  However, since I live in the same city as Jeff Montgomery, it was one of the quickest returns I have ever had!

Christmas goodies

Even though we had snow this week, I did get some TTM mail back before Christmas.  I have started to target catchers as part of my TTM journey.  I am going to try to get cards signed from every team.  I started toying with the idea back in November, and I got my second one back this week from Marc Hill, former catcher for the White Sox.

Marc Hill
Signed 1/1
Sent c/o Home address
10 days

Next up is one I sent out back in November to a former Cubbie, Shawn Boskie.  I got it back this week, along with a testimony card!

Shawn Boskie
Signed 4/3
Sent c/o Home address
32 days

Finally, a big haul back from Scott Bailes.  I really liked the 1991 Bowman style, for some reason.

Scott Bailes
Signed 5/5
Sent c/o Home address
11 days

Friday, December 21, 2012

Top TTM of October

This TTM is another one that I had written off, but I got it back 562 days later.  I also write more about Gene Larkin later this month.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Top TTM of September

Gregg Olson is a former Oriole and former Nebraskan.  I write more about this TTM later this month.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Top TTM of August

This is not necessarily a TTM auto, but it was my most important autograph of August.  I had just been to all the All Star Game festivities in July, and I was shut out on autographs, although I tried!  I received this Frank White autograph in a trade.  From the comments on the post, this autograph has made its rounds in the blogging world!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Top TTM of July

My Tom Herr TTM was one I had written off, but, 509 days later, I got my cards back!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Top TTM of June

This month I got a return from former Husker and 49er Tom Rathman.  You'll see more of him in my end of the year posts.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Top TTM of May

I was lucky enough to get a quick return from Jason Motte from the Cardinals.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Top TTM of April

A Mike Napoli spring training return was my top autograph from April.  More to come later this month on Mr. Napoli.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Top TTM of March

I got my autographs from Chris Schwiden from the Mets spring training camp.  He was released and signed 4 times within a month this season (Mets, Blue Jays, Indians, & Yankees).

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Top TTM of Feburary

My favorite TTM back in Feburary was from Derrick Robinson, minor league player for the Royals. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Top TTM of January

The first month of the year produced two huge autograph requests back for me, from B.J. Surhoff and Terry Steinbach.  More to come from these two guys in my end of the year posts.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

A return from the 2011 Arizona Fall League

I got a card back this week that I had written off long ago.  I had two that I didn't get back from the 2011 Arizona Fall League, but now, that total is one.

Tyson Ross
Signed 1/1
Sent c/o Phoenix Desert Dogs
 407 days

Chris James was a big prospect in the Phillies system when I first started collecting cards.

Chris James
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Home address
10 days

Rick Wrona was part of the 1989 Cubs team that won the division.  I remember Joe Girardi and Rick catching games for the Cubs on WGN.

Rick Wrona
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Home address
18 days

Former Royal Rick Luecken personalized two cards for me!

Rick Luecken
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Home address
14 days

Finally, Doug Jennings signed 3 cards for me.  He's a former Athletic and Cubs.

Doug Jennings
Signed 3/3
Sent c/o Home address
11 days

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Trade with SDre31 on ZIstle

I got some pretty cool cards for my player collections from SDre31 on Zistle.  We had to do a couple of revisions, but in the end, it worked out for both of us, and I'm happy with what I got.

I am SLOWLY putting together the Bowman Platinum set.  I didn't realize it would be this hard!  I did get one card knocked off my list, CC Sabathia.

Next, I got quite a few Joba Chamberlain cards for my player collection.  I don't have many of Chamberlain, so this helps!

I also was able to get some cards for my "old" players collection!

As well as some cards for my "current" players collections!

He also, again, helped me out on one of my newest player collections, Jeff Conine.  I love those old Marlin uni's.  I think I am probably the only one.

 Finally, a Cub rookie card.   That's all I'm going to say.

Ebay purchase...D'oh!

I am currently collecting all the Home Run Derby and All Star Game cards from the 2012 Topps update set.  I was short just a few, and I saw this awesome lot for sale.  They had almost every card from the set available, so I knew I had to win so I could get the few cards I needed to finish up my set.

A couple of days go by, and I win the auction.  Now, the fun; I get to pick 25 cards.  I had my list of 9 that I needed, then the rest were going to be fun cards/trade bait.  I sent a message with my cards I would like.  The seller even gave me (2) David Wright All Star Cards, one for my player collection, and one for the All Star Game set.  A couple of days go by, and my cards arrive.  I open the package, and...

I screwed it up!  When requesting cards, I somehow (!) managed to forget to put in the All Star Cards for Mike Trout and Yu Darvish!  Grrr!!  Needless to say, I'm STILL missing two cards.  I said screw it, I'll scout Zistle and trade for them.  No go there.  So, I go back to ebay, and I buy them separately, from two different ebay stores.  I got lucky because there is free shipping and I'm paying less than $3.00 for both.

Matt Harvey was part of the "extra" cards that I wanted as part of the lot.  I might start a player collection, we'll see.

The rest of the cards are trade bait.  Here they are:
US14 Jeremy Hefner RC
US20 Christian Friedrich RC
US42 Yoenis Cespedes RD
US98 Hector Santiago RC
US151 Jordany Valdespin RC
US157 Kole Calhoun RC
US161 Brian Dozier RC
US171 Rhiner Cruz RC
US213 Trevor Bauer RC
US221 Drew Smyly RC
US232 Andrelton Simmons RC
US236 Lucas Luetge RC
US265 Will Middlebrooks RD
US269 Drew Hutchison RC
US321 David Carpenter RC

622 days!

I don't know what's been up lately, but I have been receiving many TTMs back that I had long written off.  I have been just ecstatic that I have gotten these back!  I only send TTMs to the players I want, so when I don't get one back, I'm disappointed.  However, I received my longest TTM to date, 622 days!  Last year, I had read that Mike Mussina was a good signer.  When a couple of months rolled by, I figured my cards were gone.  The Orioles are one of my favorite teams, so that is why I wanted Mr. Mussina's autograph.  I am SO glad to have gotten these cards back.  I always like the 1994 Pinnacle set.

Mike Mussina
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Home address
622 days

Now, a quick return from Shawn Barton.  He was a prospect in the Mets system before being traded to the Mariners.  I'm going to add the minor league card to my Mets TTM collection!  The signatures came back a little smudged.

Shawn Barton
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Home address
8 days

Mike Birkbeck sent me a card I had never seen before, his 1989 Donruss.  He kept my duplicate 1988 Donruss I sent him.  I must say, I like Mike without the 'stach!

Mike Birkbeck
Signed 4/4
Sent c/o Home address
64 days

Lastly, my fourth return from the Arizona Fall League.  I only sent 6 out this year, so percentage wise, I'm not doing too bad.  David Adams is a prospect for the New York Yankees.  Another signed 2010 Pro Debut for my collection!

David Adams
Signed 1/1
Sent c/o Scottsdale Scorpions
30 days

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Frank DiPino & Denny Walling

I guess I should have waited to post yesterday, because after I got my mail, I had a couple of familiar envelopes in there.  These were special because they were both ones I had kinda written off already.

Denny Walling is the hitting coach for the Norfolk Tides, the AAA team for the Orioles.

Denny Walling
Signed 3/3
Sent c/o Norfolk Tides
212 days
I wanted to get Frank DiPino in my player collection, because he's another one of the Cubs I would watch almost daily on WGN back in the late 80's.

Frank DiPino
Signed 3/3
Sent c/o Home address
250 days

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Behind on my TTMs, part 2

I had too many labels on my first post, so I decided to break it up into two posts.  Maybe it warrants two posts since its been so long since I've gotten to blog.

I was worried that the few TTMs I sent to players in the Arizona Fall League were all going to be a lost cause, but, low and behold, they started coming in the last week or so.  This first one is neat because he's a catcher!

Kellin Deglan
Signed 1/1
Sent c/o Surprise Saguaros
24 days

Logan Darnell is a pitcher in the Twins system, and he signed 2 for me!!  The chrome scan looks bad, but the card and auto came out great!

Logan Darnell
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Peoria Javelinas
12 days

Mike Belfiore is a pitcher in the Orioles system!!!

Mike Belfiore
Signed 1/1
Sent c/o Mesa Solar Sox
23 days

One RTS in this group, from Tommy Greene, former Phillie and Brave.

Finally, the last TTM of the group, from Roger McDowell, former Met and current Braves pitching coach.  I had written this one off, so I'm so glad I got it back!  I love the 1988 Fleer!

Roger McDowell
Signed 2/2
Sent c/o Atlanta Braves
180 days