Sunday, December 3, 2023

Baseball Card Show Reports - Washington Township & The Philly Show

I think I'm slowly coming out of the November slump caused by the Phillies' unceremonious and unexpected exit from the postseason in Game 7 of the NLCS.  As we get closer to Christmas, I find myself thinking less about the past and the what could have been, and thinking more about the future and what might be.  There's a mental health and wellness lesson in there somewhere, but instead of digging deeper into that topic, here's a look at recent happenings with the Phillies and the hard-working support staff at The Phillies Room.  We've attend two (!) baseball card shows within the past month.

Nola Re-Signs / Hoskins Likely Departs:  It's been a relatively quiet offseason so far for the Phillies, as there thankfully aren't a lot of holes to fill.  On November 19th, the Phillies locked up starting pitcher Aaron Nola, signing him to a seven-year, $172 million deal, that will have him wearing a Phillies uniform through at least the 2030 season.  Nola has the chance to put himself towards the top (or at the top) of several all-time Phillies pitching categories, and I'm happy he's coming back.

On the other hand, I'm sad to see that Rhys Hoskins' days with the Phillies are likely at an end.  Club President Dave Dombrowski recently confirmed that Bryce Harper will be the team's first baseman going forward, leaving no real spot for Hoskins.  Hoskins is a Phillies Room Favorite, and it's going to be tough seeing him in a different uniform.

Baseball Card Show Report #1 - Washington Township:  My wife Jenna found an announcement on Faceback for a baseball card show to be held at St. Charles Borromeo Hall in Sicklerville, New Jersey on November 18th.  I gathered my lists and we made the short drive to what the organizers called the "First Ever Sports Card Show" in Washington Township, which I find hard to believe given the number of baseball card stores in the area back in the 1980s and 1990s.  Potential mislabeling aside, it was a decent-sized show with mostly modern stuff and slabbed Pokemon cards.  I found the one dealer selling vintage cards, and cleaned him out of every 1969 Topps card I needed for our set, along with a few 1959 Topps cards for our next set build.  Credit to Jenna for finding the show, and if it happens again, I'll gladly make the 10 minute drive over there.

Baseball Card Show Report #2 - The Philly Show:  With our oldest son Doug sitting for the SATs (!) on Saturday morning, our only choice for attending the December Philly Show was Sunday.  Honestly, I'm fine with going on Sunday as it's much less crowded, and we were able to actually browse dealer tables.  I still only browsed half the hall, as my allotted budget was gone after seeing only a portion of the show.
  • eBay has taken over official sponsorship of the show, complete with a new logo and increased advertising.  The quaint, bubble-lettered logo that had been in place since the 1980s is gone and has been replaced by a more edgy, modern logo.  And so it goes.
  • I didn't mess around this time, and headed right for Uncle Dick's Cards, finding the second neon
    green binder of 1969 Topps cards, #301 to #664.  Within 45 minutes, I had accumulated another stack of commons, with some semi-stars, from #301 to #498 in the set.  There were three or four other oldish collectors sitting in a row with me, all going through our chosen binders and meticulously crossing off our checklists along the way.  Uncle Dick prices his cards reasonably, most of which were $1 before a final discount, and everything is extremely organized.  Definitely my kind of dealer, and it will be my first stop when we go back to the Philly Show in March.  I need to finish off the second 1969 Topps binder, going from card #500 through #664.  I added 145 new commons to our set, putting me a little under 2/3 of the way there.
  • Doug secured autographs for me from Tom Herr and Bobby Wine on Phillies Alumni photo cards.  Wine was great, taking his time to appreciate the photo of him in his younger days, and pointing to the bleachers behind him in the photo, telling Doug, "That's where [Dick] Allen used to hit 'em."
  • I found three reasonably priced and not too beat up Diamond Star cards for that set build.  I'm getting closer on that one, with mostly the uber-expensive and rare high numbers remaining.  Bill Hallahan has been harder to track down than I would have expected, but I found a nice version of his card from Clean Sweep Auctions.  Carl Hubbell and Ducky Medwick were surprise purchases, found, in all places, a bargain bin.  I had no intention of buying any more Diamond Stars cards at the show, but once I saw the prices for both, I couldn't resist.
  • William Shatner was there.  Not somebody I'd expect to see at a sports card and memorabilia show, but it was cool to see Captain Kirk up close and personal.
  • On the way out, I recognized Phillies great Art Mahaffey by the exit and I asked if he wouldn't mind posing for a picture with Doug.  He finished his hot dog first, and then graciously posed for us.

1 comment:

deal said...

Wow Mahaffey looks great. About a decade he was signing at an area show and his grand daughter (5ish) was with him and he said that she was his helper for the day and proceeds were going into her college fund. I suspect she is going through her own SAT experience right about now.