Saturday, December 3, 2022

Philly Baseball Card Show Report - 1965 Topps Set COMPLETED

On Saturday morning, Doug and I made the hour-plus drive to the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center at Oaks for our first baseball card show since March.  The Philly Show, known formally as the Philadelphia Sports Collectors Show, moved from the Valley Forge Casino Resort to the facility at Oaks presumably to accommodate more dealers and more people.  The place was packed, and by the time we departed around 2pm, it was difficult to navigate our way to the exit.

We arrived in a steady rain right after doors opened at 9am, secured our autograph tickets and started walking the floor prior to the arrival of most of the crowd.  My goal for the show was simple:  Find the last four cards needed to complete our 1965 Topps set.  That goal was achieved and then some, as summarized below.
  • The first two cards needed to complete our set took a while to find, but I eventually added the Orlando Cepeda and Gordy Coleman cards within the first hour of walking around.  I still have no idea why the Coleman card proved to be so elusive.  Spying a great looking 1969 Topps Roberto Clemente card at the same table I found the Coleman card, I swung a deal to add that card as well.  I told the dealer the Clemente card marked by first big purchase for our new 1969 Topps set, which seemed to genuinely make his day.
  • We made a brief pitstop to the autograph section to secure signatures from Phillies outfielder Matt Vierling.  We were told no photos by Vierling's handler.  Photos were taken anyway.
  • With Cepeda and Coleman out of the way, I turned my attention to the Tony Perez rookie card and the BIG final card needed for our set - Mickey Mantle.  Perez came quickly, as I found a gorgeous version of the card for sale from dealer America's Pastime from Fair Lawn, New Jersey.  Again looking to bundle that card with another card needed for our 1969 Topps set, I set my sights on the Reggie Jackson rookie card.  What followed was my first of two successful negotiation sessions of the day, as I was able to add both cards for what I deemed to be extremely reasonable (and fair) price.  The Jackson card will find its way under the Christmas tree for Doug, so please keep that one quiet for now.
  • The Mantle card finally entered our collection and completed our 1965 Topps set relatively quickly and somewhat surprising.  Most of the vintage Mantle cards these days appear to be graded, with very few available "raw" as the dealers termed cards not yet slabbed.  After walking most of the floor, I had made notes on the locations of five non-graded Mantle cards, with prices ranging from the ridiculous ($2,000) to the reasonable (less than $500).  I found a nearly perfect raw Mantle card from Sports Card Plus from Cooper City, Florida, but the price was way too high.  Next to the 1965 Topps Mantle was am equally pristine 1969 Topps Mantle.  I'm sure I'll embellish this story upon retellings for years to come, but to cut to the chase, the dealer and I started negotiating what he'd sell both cards for in a combined packaged deal.  We landed on a combined price somewhat easily, and both cards were ours.  Our 1965 Topps set was complete and a huge chunk for our 1969 Topps set was also out of the way.  Typing this now, this is still hard to believe and somewhat shocking.
There was a little more added after those big hauls, as we were looking to kill time until it was time to obtain autographs from Kyle Schwarber and Bryson Stott.  I'll be sure to cover those purchases on both my Diamond Stars blog and my newly launched 1969 Topps blog.  We added autographs from Schwarber and Stott before making our escape from the over-crowded show.  Schwarber was especially friendly, shaking both our hands and telling us the Phillies would be returning to the World Series in 2023.

Doug made out extremely well too.  He did a lot of free-style picking, as he likes to call it, adding a great assortment of autograph and relic cards from this year's N.L. Champions, particularly cards of Rhys Hoskins and Aaron Nola.  He was extremely pleased with the autograph from Schwarber, with the slugger adding "2022 N.L. Champs" under his signature.  We also picked up quite a few supplies from the Ultra Pro table as he looks to work on displaying his growing and impressive autograph collection.

Memory Lane

Valley Forge 1 - September 2010 - Thinking of my Dad
Valley Forge 2 - October 2012 - Doug's first baseball card show
Valley Forge 3 - September 2014 - Meeting Darren Daulton
Oaks 1 - October 2015 - Meeting Pete Rose and Steve Carlton
Valley Forge 4 - September 2016 - Phillies acquisitions and 4 Phillies Legends
Valley Forge 5 - December 2016 - Meeting Don Money
Valley Forge 6 - September 2017 - Doug's big day
Valley Forge 7 - December 2017 - Ben's first baseball card show with Mike Schmidt and Rhys Hoskins!
Oaks 2 - December 2018 - Meeting Matt Stairs and Cole Hamels
Valley Forge 8 - March 2019 - 5 Phillies Autographs and Vintage Phillies Additions
Valley Forge 9 - September 2019 - Closing in on 1971 Topps set and Andrew McCutchen
Valley Forge 10 - December 2019 - Finishing 1971 Topps set, Starting 1965 Topps set, adding key autographs from Ryan Howard and Brad Lidge
Valley Forge 11 - February 2020 - More 1965 Topps cards, Jimmy Rollins, Mike Lieberthal and Jim Kaat
Valley Forge 12 - December 2021 - Huge haul of 1965 Topps, Jim Thome
Valley Forge 13 - March 2022 - Easy like Sunday morning, close to completing 1965 Topps
Oaks 3 - December 2022 - 1965 Topps set completed, dent made in 1969 Topps, Schwarber, Vierling and Stott


Alan Deakins said...

-Just really it! Glad you finished the '65 set...

Fuji said...

Congratulations on completing the 1965 set. Wrapping it up with the Mantle makes it extra memorable.

John Bateman said...

Congratulations -

I put together a 1969 Topps set about 5 years ago (before the pandemic price madness).

I have been thinking about putting together a lower grade set 1965 Topps set but the price of any Mantle may stop me. However, out of all the 1960s Topps sets, the 1965 set is probably the best looking. Love that pennant design.

Steve F. said...

Congratulations on a great haul from the show! I am working on 1952 (1-310 only--need 23) 1968 (need 5), 1969 (need 11--and have a bunch of doubles; I'll be in touch) and 1971 (need 11) right now. I still need the 1969 Mantle, 1968 Ryan and 1952 Berra--the only big-price ones from those sets. I never thought about trying to combine purchases to get a deal. Maybe I will try that in Oaks in March.

By the way, the September show in Oaks had some sort of Comic-Con thing next door. As I walked up to the card show, I was passing people dressed like Chewbacca, the entire Incredibles family, Iron Man, etc. It was very odd....