Sunday, October 7, 2012

Building A Set Without A Box

There are a few basic ways you can build a set.  You can always purchase a finished set, relying on the hard work, sweat and furrowed brows of others to bring all of the cards to you, depriving you of the chase and joy of completion.  You can always purchase a box, which will get you well along the way, but almost always your purchase depreciates as the packs crinkle and the foil opens, cards worth less as they spill forth from the package.   Or you can wait for someone else to buy a whole bunch of cards and list them on eBay as a lot and build your set from there.

So, as you probably surmised, I opted for Plan C recently and picked up about 80% of a 2011 Topps Lineage set in one shot.  Given that this was a one bid affair, I ended up paying more for shipping than I did for the cards themselves.  Actually, I'm fairly certain my spending on cards can be broken down into pre-war, shipping, post-war, since I almost always pay more for shipping than the cards themselves if they are from the last 70 or so years.  Regardless, it was a good deal cheaper than purchasing a box, which I researched in great detail and wisely decided against. 

Mixed in with base cards I needed to list, sort and update my want list with, there were also a fair number of inserts included.  Aside from the diamond anniversary Heyward, which I chose not to scan for some reason, below are some of the highlights of the package.


These rookie cards almost made me go to the store and purchase some Drake's Coffee Cakes, as the design is also very reminiscent of the Topps Drake's cards from the late 1980s.  Otherwise, these rookie cards left me cold.

I did appreciate the 1975 Mini Tris Speaker though.  Almost enough to attempt to collect the entire set.  However, looking at lots of these cards online, I thought they were prohibitively expensive and more importantly, I keep looking for new ways to spread myself thinner and thinner, which I should really avoid.


There were also a few refractors.  While the Brooks Robinson was nice, he is really only my second favorite HOF Robinson from the 1960s Orioles.  The McCovey was a much stronger image, especially when the scanner brings out the blue in the cards.  I wonder if he ever thought as he was batting that someday we would be discussing how he would look on blue foilboard.  I suspect not. 

Most importantly, I'm only about 10% away from finishing the set, which is none too shabby considering I purchased a grand total of one pack of Topps Lineage when it was in the stores. 

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