Guaranteed Winners (AKA “In The Black”)

I’ve been pretty inactive on this blog, as you can likely tell.  I wish I could claim it was simply due to work taking over my life again, but it’s not true.  I’m simply having a tough time finding the inspiration or motivation to write.

Baseball cards are still great, and I’m not currently planning to stop collecting, but I need to find a new direction if I’m going to keep blogging.  Right now it feels like a chore.  I’ve been focusing a lot more attention on video games and a YouTube gameplay channel that I hope to launch before the end of the year.

I’ll explain my process a bit so you know where I’m coming from.  I scan all my incoming cards in batches of 9 into a master image that get scanned into my player folders.  When it comes time to post, I’ll break up the scan into individual cards and label them with the specific card name (to go into a “posted” folder).  Completed Master images go into a different folder.  Then I post the card scans to a website – currently I’ve been using – and label them there too.  Then transition the images to the blog. I do this extra step because wordpress has limited space.  Anyway, then the images get put on the blog through url copy/paste and then resized.  I tag all the cards in various ways so I can search past posts more quickly, and then think of crap to say.  All told, a simple post is a couple hours and some of the bigger ones I’ve done with 30-50 cards will take several days.

I don’t really see my methods changing, but maybe the size of the posts will.  I would love to share a trade in one long post, but I absolutely hate the thought of starting and writing that post.  I may limit things to 9 cards max and see how that goes (after getting through all my drafts with saved images).  Ultimately, I would like to keep the blog active.  It would be great to achieve my goal of posting & commenting on all cards in my collection.  I certainly want to keep the trading avenues open.  Anyway, just wanted to vent a bit.  I don’t think there are any easy answers.

This post is a perfect example of my waning interest.  I originally wanted to post this in celebration of the 82nd win, and now look at where we are. So, instead I have to rationalize this title by saying that whatever happens in the rest of this season, there’s no way to be disappointed or upset.  I’d be surprised if we win the NLCS.  I’m thrilled we weaseled our way into the Wild Card.  I’m honestly satisfied with a winning season.  Everything else is a massive bonus.

What better way to celebrate their winning by showing off some of my own winnings.  Who really had the better season?  Answer: The Cubs.

I haven’t won or obtained any of the other Obak cards

To fit the subtitle, most of these will be black parallels.  By the way, here’s a perfect example of using past tags to quickly find a post, because back in July of this year (aka probably 5 posts ago at the current rate) I showed off the other Starlin Castro black mini #/50 and talked about how hard it was to find a cheap auction.  Well, shortly after, this one came along.

Winner of the Rookie Cup

That means that it, along with these next two were bought after my self-imposed ban.  I made exceptions for some lower numbered things at low prices.

Winning vignette

But, after these three, I don’t think I’ve picked up any Castro cards.  The suspension will likely be over once the season starts next year (unless the Cubs win it all – then all bets are off).

Winning materials

These silk cards are really fun.  I like the small window in the front that lets you feel the threads.  I guess you could also mix and match silks to sell “jersey number 1/1″s as well, but clearly I didn’t fall for that trap with my win.

Maybe not a winning team

Do you remember when Chrome contained the entire set?  And also the full Traded set?  I don’t, because I wasn’t collecting then.  But I do know this is #/100 and from the 2002 Traded version of Chrome.

Winning auctions of other people’s losses.

I’m trying to diversify my Dempster collection and find more non-Cub items.  I’m pretty sure I have over 50% of the Cubs-era cards, but overall I’m at about 33%. Nabbing this cheap relic helps.

Was not the winning pitcher of the game

Ryan made two All-Star teams – 2000 & 2008.  It’s great to see, but also created quite a few more cards I needed.  By the way, in the 2008 game, he struck out all 3 batters he faced.

Will have to win another of these, too

The Upper Deck golds are annoying.  They’re very hard to tell apart and seem to be decidedly more difficult to find than the Topps Black.  I found a dealer with this and the two Kerry Wood ones I needed for a low BIN.

Just a portion of my wins

Lastly, we have Dempster’s penultimate Topps Black card.  I still haven’t found a 2014 one in my range.

There you have it.  I have a bunch more ebay victories to show off, but that will have to be another time.  This 9 cards thing seems somewhat manageable, but still not likely for every day.  Either way, I have a few older long posts as previously mentioned that will eventually find time here.  I hope.

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