Monday, January 31, 2011

Nick Swisher Signed Baseball

One of the things I want to do this upcoming season is add more autographed baseballs to my Yankees collection. I would love to have a "Yankees Wall" of nothing but signed balls in my future man cave. I say future because where I live I can't have one. So, everything I have is stored away in those huge rubbermaid containers until the day I can proudly display my treasures. For now, though, I will show off what I have (and any future additions) on the blog.
I try to get balls signed at either free signings, ball parks or TTM. At most signings, baseballs are just too expensive, starting at 30 bucks and up. Since I'm on a strict budget for the time being, I will snoop for cheaper or free alternatives.
About almost two years ago, Nick Swisher apperared at the AT&T Store at the Empire State Building in Manhattan for a free signing. I decided to take the day off from work and head on over. Unfortunately, due to subway issues, I arrived late and there was a long line ahead of me. I was outside when I got on line. Lucky for me, AT&T personnel close off the line about 2 people behind me, so that pretty much guarenteed me an auto.
Once inside, the line moved pretty quick. There was a strict one auto per person and you could get your picture taken with your camera with Nick. While on the line, I also entered a contest with the local radio station, Z-100, for Yankees tickets. Not a huge fan of top 40 radio (give me rock music, alternative and new wave anyday), but for Yankees tickets, I would have entered in at a rap station.
Finally, after about a half an hour, I got to meet Nick. I had a baseball for him and he signed right on the sweet spot. I asked him how he liked playing at the then new ballpark and he replied, enthusisaticlly, he loved it and would love to play out his whole career at Yankee Stadium. I got my picture taken with Swish (Horns of course) and shook his hand and left with my new possession.

I was feeling pretty good about meeting Nick when I heard my name being called out. I loudly responded and a gentlemen came up to me informing me I was the winner of the Z-100 contest for tickets to Old Timers Day. Thrillsville! Sure, I would be up on top of the right field upper deck, but who cares, I was at the very first Old Timers Day at the new ball park.

What a great day.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Patrik Elias-All Star

Today at 4pm, the NHL All Star Game will be held in RBC Center, home to the Carolina Hurricanes. This year, my favorite hockey team, the New Jersey Devils, will be represented by the franchises all time points leader, Patrik Elias. At the half way point in the season, Elias has been one of New Jersey's bright spots in an otherwise dismal season. Elias has scored 13 goals with 24 assists, good for 37 points. He leads the team in total points, assists and game winning goals with 4.

Elias was drafted in the second round (51st overrall) by the Devils in the 1994 NHL Draft. He was called up to the Devils during the 96-97 season and finished that season with 2 goals and 3 assists in 17 games played. He went back down for 3 games in Albany before being called back to New Jersey for good. During his career, he's been a part of top scoring lines like the A Line of Elias, Jason Arnott and Petr Sykora and the EGG Line of Elias, Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta. He holds the NHL record for most overtime goals in a season with 4 and holds just about every Devils scoring record you can think of. He has also won 2 Stanley Cups, assisting on the Cup winning goal in 2000

The above card is from my personal collection. Its a 97-98 Be A Player Autograph from his rookie year. I have a small Elias collection with a few other autographs, a couple game used cards and a game used stick I picked up from the Devils Draft Party a couple years back. He is always a player I have considered collecting as he is not expenisve. He has always been a good player for the Devils and I hope he decides to retire as a Devil. I have no doubt his number will hang from the rafters of the Purdential Center after he retires.

Friday, January 28, 2011

2010-2011 Artifacts Brodeur, Elias, Parise Triple Patch

I recently added this goergous card to my Martin Brodeur PC. It's a 10-11 Artifacts Tundra Trios Triple Patch card of Marty Broduer, Patrick Elias and Zach Parise. The card is # 11/15.

I aquired this card through a trade on a site I frequent called Trading Card Central. I have been a member for years and it has some real nice people on it. The gentleman I got this from actually offered it up to me. There were a couple of card he was intrested in that I no longer had. He finally agreed to trade it for my 08/09 Ice Evgeni Malkin Autographed swatch card I had. At first, I was doubting the trade. I was actually hpoing to hold on to the Malkin for a Brodeur auto, but once I saw the card in person all my doubts erased and I'm very pleased to have it. I never would have been able to afford it if I had to buy it off ebay or something.

I have another Brodeur on it's way in. Not nearly as nice as this one, but still a pretty cool card to add to my growing Brodeur PC.

New Have List Added

I just wanted to post up a quick blog to bring your attention to a new page I have at the bottom of my blog. I posted my Mark Teixeira Have List. I'm always looking for trades to add to the Teixeira PC. At your leisure, please peruse it and if there is anything you might have that I need, please give me a shout and maybe we can work something out.
It took me all evening (save a half an hour at 11:30pm to watch Batman on HUB) to type up the list and then another 15 minutes for me to figure out who the heck I managed to put up the Broduer Have List before. That reminds me, I need to update that list too. Between work, gym and life, been a bit too busy to do that.
Yawn, gonna hit the sack. Good night everyone.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

An Open Letter To The New York Jets

Dear New York Jets,

With your AFC Championship game just hours away, I felt compelled to write. I just wanted to find some way to convey how excited I am and what this game to myself, the fans of this team and most importantly, this franchise. A franchise that was once a laughingstock, is now one game from the Super Bowl.

I have been a Jets fan since 1980. My earliest memories of the Jets is watching Richard Todd toss touchdown passes to Wesley Walker and Joe Klecko terrorize the opposition at the old She Stadium. Freeman McNeal shredding defenses and the Sack Exchange bringing down the QB. As fond as those childhood memories are, I also can say in the 30 years I have been a fan, I have seen anything that can happen, happen. From AJ Duhe and the 1983 AFC Championship game against Miami, dubbed the Mud Bowl because Miami didn't cover the field during days of pouring rain, to the 1986 AFC Divisional playoff game against Cleveland where a late hit on Bernie Kosar by Mark Gastineau on a 3rd and long allowed the Browns to drive down, tie the game in regulation and then win the game in overtime. To Dan Marino's fake spike to John Elway and Denver beating the Jets in the 1999 AFC Championship Game. To Bill Belicheck resigning after 2 days as Jets head coach to last year's loss to the Colts in the AFC Championship game. What I have not seen in my lifetime is the Jets in the Super Bowl. Let's face it, New York City still belongs to the New York Football Giants. Especially after they pulled off a shocking win over the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Yet, this city is in a frenzy over the Jets for the first time since probably 1969 when Broadway Joe won Super Bowl III. You guys can own this city if you win two more games. Everyone is wearing Jets cap, stores are hanging Let's Go Jets signs in their windows and Mark Sanchez has surpassed Derek Jeter as NY's resident dream boat. It's a great time to be a Jet fan. Plus, no one likes you guys. They say you talk too much. Who cares?? I'm glad to see some swagger in this franchise. For too long all I have seen are Jets players with their heads hanging down after a heartbreaking loss. Since Rex Ryan has taken over, there has been no taking a backseat to anyone, no more "Same Old Jets". This team has been to the AFC Championship game for the past two seasons, no Jets team can say that. Now is time to take that next step. This team can do it. This team is good enough to be in Dallas, playing for the Lombardi Trophy.

So, as I rest my weary head tonight, I will say my prayers and include a special prayer for the Jets. No one expected you to be in Pittsburgh and no one expects you to be representing the AFC in the Super Bowl. You have been proving the critics wrong so far. A win tomorrow would be a swift kick in the rear to all those nay sayers. Tomorrow night, I want my facebook status to read "Let's have a F'ing Snack, The Jets are going to the Super Bowl". Make it happen.


Long Time Jets Fan

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

2010 Mark Teixeira Cards

With The 2011 baseball cards set to be realised within the next month, I wanted to take a sec and reflect on the 2010 Mark Teixeira cards I was able to add to my Teixeira PC during the past year. The collection stands currently at 222 cards and I'm anxiously waiting for the new releases so I can add more to the growing collection.

Here are the cards I bought, traded, begged, pleaded and cajoled for in 2010:


Topps Finest base

Topps Legandary Lineage Teixeira/Gehrig insert

This was an insert I picked up at a card show for a penny. Love that price

Topps Peak Performance
Allen & Ginter base
Topps 206 base
Bowman base
Topps 206 Gold Border Paraell
Topps Attax
Allen & Ginter This Day In History Insert. Teixeira's bithday is April 11th, same as mine.
Topps 206 mini

Topps Legandary Lineage Teixeira/Mantle
Topps Heritage All Star
Topps National Chicle base
Topps Opening Day Toppstown card
Topps 206 base 2
Topps base
Topps Heritage
Topps Turkey Red insert
League Leader cards
Now for the Upper Deck cards. Bear in mind there wasn't much due to UD losing the MLB license:
Pure Heat insert

Upper Deck base

Biography inserts
Obviously, this is not all the Teixeira cards that were released in 2010. I am still working on getting to as complete as possible. I would most likely have to pass up the high dollar cards, but that's fine as long as I'm happy with my collection.
I'm sorry for the cruddy pics. I really need to get a new camera or buy a scanner.
I will also be working on getting my Teixeira have list on here. I'm always looking for Teixeira cards, GU, autos, posters, bobbles, figures, etc.
Bring on 2011 Topps!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Yanks Reel In Soriano

Yanks finally pull the trigger on a deal which brings former Rays closer, Rafael Soriano, to the Bronx on a 3 year, 35 million dollar contract. He will have an average salary of $11.67 million per year and he can opt out of the contract after each of the first 2 years of the deal.
The plan is for Soriano to be the primary set up guy and then take over for Mariano Rivera once his current contract expires. Rivera just re-upped with the Yankees for 2 more years this past off season. This signing for the Yankees seems to be a good one as he can become the closer in 2 years, if he decides to stay in New York.
I personally think it's a good move for the Yankees. Soriano went 3-2 last season with a 1.73 ERA with an AL leading 45 saves. He also had 57 strikeouts in 62 1/3 innings and posted a WHIP of .802. With Rivera, Soriano, Joba Chamberlin, David Robertson and Boone Logan, the Yankees could potientally have one of the best pens in baseball. It reminds me of the 1996 Yankees, with Rivera, Jeff Nelson, Graham Lloyd, David Weathers and John Wettland, if the Yankees had the lead after 6, the game was over. I think that is the plan Yankees GM Brian Cashman is looking for. To recreate "The Formula, as Former Yankees manager Joe Torre called it then.
Right now, all signs are pointing toward Andy Pettitte retiring which would leave the Yankees with a thin starting rotation. If the Yankees can have a pen that they can give a lead to after 6 innings, that would help the alot. There doesn't seem to be anything intresting, starting wise, that would help fill the void Pettitte would leave behind, even if the Yankees pick up Justin Duchscherer, which is the rumored next pick up for the Yankees. A strong pen can keep a lead for the Yankees or hold team down for the Yankees to try and come from behind to win a game.
The next couple of months will be very intresting....

Sunday, January 9, 2011

My Three Favorite Signed Mini Helmets

A great game by the Jets.. well, almost. Yeah, they eeked out the win by 2 points over The Colts, but Mark Sanchez drove me absolutely nuts in this game. Over throwing, under throwing recievers, yet when it counted he made the most of his throws. None was more improtant than the throw to Braylon Edwards with under a minute left in the game to give Nick Folk better field position to kick the game winning field goal.
Loved the ground and pound game by LT and Shonne Greene and the defense made the stops when they needed to. Now the Jets play Tom Brady and the New England Patriots next Sat @ 4:30. Not going to be an easy game, especially on the road. If the Jets win this game, then I will be convinced they are Super Bowl bound.
To celebrate tonight's victory, I will show off my three favorite signed IP mini helmets:

Don Maynard-I got this throw back signed by Maynard a few years back at the Long Island Sports Card Show at Hofstra University. Nice guy,but didn't really say much. Still, it was an honor to meet the greatest wide out in Jets history.

Curtis Martin-Remember when I said I didn't get Martin to sign my Jets football when Iwent to training camp? This is why. I managed to get him on this mini helmet. After practice, he ran in from the field and started signing by the stands. I was the last one he signed for. The only bad thing was there was this guy behind me that kept pushing me to get to Martin. There was two small kids in front of me and because of this guy, I kept practically falling on them. I told him to quit it cause of the kids. He actually told me he didnt care about the kids. C-Mart came over and the started to sign for the kids. He actually tried to cut in front of them. I couldnt take the guy's rudeness anymore and put myself in his way so he couldnt get to cut in front of the kids. Martin saw that and said thanks, signed my mini helmet and ran off. The guy behind me was livid and actually followed me out, threatening to kick my butt. Just when I thought I would have to fight this guy,the kids dad showed up. This dude was about 6'6'' and stacked. He was watching froma few rows back and scared the dickens out of this guy without saying a word. The guy ran off and the kids dad wanted to thank me for looking out for his kids. To me, kids come first in this hobby. They are our future and really, I love seeing the smile on a kids face when they meet their favorite athletes for a few seconds. I always try to let a kid go in front of me at a sporting event and if I don't get the auto, then it wasn't meant to be.

Joe Namath-A couple of years back, Namath did a free signing at a Sprint Store in Manhattan. Very rare to see Namath at all anymore much less a free signing. I made sure I took the day off for that one. Funny thing was, practically no one showed up. They were letting people come back for 2nds. I wish I bought a football or jersey to have him sign. Oh well, I'm just glad I got to meet Mr. Jet. I did ask him inscribe Super Bowl III MVP,but he said he couldn't as his older brother would beat the s*&# out of him as he isn't the MVP of his house. Okkkkkkk. I guess that was code for "Steiner Sports has me under contract and I can't inscribe that". Oh well, I'mjust thrilled to have his autograph in my mini helmet collection without having to shell out $400.00 at a convention.

I do like getting mini helmets signed. I think they are a great way to build a football autograph collection. Plus, they don't take up as much room as footballs do. Hopefully, when I do get a man cave, I'll have built the collection and will be able to display them prominatly.


Friday, January 7, 2011

2005 New York Jets Team Signed Ball

One of my pride and joys of my New York Jets collection is this team signed ball, although I would hesitate to call it team signed as it's not the complete team. There is no Chad Pennington or Curtis Martin (There is a reason why there is no Martin on here, which I will explain tomorrow). No Wayne Chrebet or Lavernus Coles. No Herm Edwards or Shaun Ellis. Dispite the lack of bigger stars, there are 27 signatures on this ball and I'm very pleased to have it.
I went to Jets training camp in the summer of 2005, when the team was in Hofstra on Long Island. It was my first Jets training camp and I have not been to another since they moved their camps upstate to Cortland. It was the first 2 days of camp, so you can imagine who crowded it was. I was able to pick up this ball at the tent Modells put up and it came with a marker. Not knowing any better, I used the pen instead of a sharpie. At times the pen faded while the player was signing it..

Off the top of my head, I can remember getting signatures of players such as Jay Fiedler, Kevin Mawae, Mike Nugent, Kerry Rhodes, Justin McCareins, Chris Baker, Jehrico Cotchery, Brooks Bollinger, Bryan Thomas, Victor Hobson, Terry Bradway and Mike Tannenbaum on the ball. There are others, but I just don't remember who else signed it. I tried to keep a cheat sheet of who signed, but in the rush of getting signatures, I forgot to keep tabs at times.

I had a lot of fun going to training camp and would love to go back again. The Jets have a beautiful training facility in Florham Park, NJ. I'm not sure why they just don't have camp there. I'm sure Rexy has his reasons. Maybe it's too close to the nightlife of NYC and he doesn't want his players distracted? Anyway, until I can get a car, I will not be making the trip to Cortland for training camp.

Also, with these white pannel balls, I have heard that the signatures will eventually yellow or fade. I hope not. I have had the ball for 5 years and so far, the ball looks as good as it did the day I got the autographs. But next time, I'll just get an official ball and a paint pen. Or maybe a regulation sized helmet.


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Chad Pennigton Game Used Helmet Card

Chad Pennington was the Jets QB from 2000-2007 before he was let go in favor of Brett Farve. He was a first round draft pick, 18th overall, taken out of Marshall University by then Jets GM Bill Parcells. He took over the position from Vinny Testeverde after the fifth game of the 2002 season, when the Jets were 1-4 and led them to a 9-7 record and the AFC Eastern Division title. Dispite injuries that plagued him throughout his career, he managed to lead the Jets to the playoffs 3 times, including a 41-0 thumping of the Indianapolis Colts in the 2002 Divisional Round. His lack of arm strength was always an issue, but when he was healthy, he found ways to beat you. An incredibly smart football player, he was a finalist for a Rhodes Scholarship, he is the NFL's all time leader in completion percentage with 66.1%. I truly believe, had he stayed healthy, he could have lead the Jets to the Super Bowl. He's going to be a hell of a coach one day, if he goes that route.
I used to collect Pennington. I have autographed cards, game used cards, base, inserts and rookie cards. Out of all the cards I own of his, I think this one is my favorite. It's a game used helmet card from Leaf Limited. I believe it's from 2005. What I love about this card is that the T and the S from the Jets emblem on the helmet is so prominent. I saw it at the Westchester County Sports Card Show in White Plains, NY one year. I asked the dealer how much it was, with trepidation as I figured he would say it was a 50.00 card. To my surprise, he said it was 10.00. I couldn't get my wallet opened fast enough and it now sits proudly in my Jets collection.
I have been thinking about re-starting the Pennington collection. I really don't collect any Jets players right now. None of the players we have now are ones I follow with interest. The main reason I stopped collecting Pennington was because he went to Miami. Miami is a team I pretty much despise and I just couldn't see myself collecting any cards of Pennington in a Dolphins uni. If I do resume, it will only be of his Jets years. That's how I choose to remember him.

Monday, January 3, 2011

2009 Leaf Certified Ronnie Lott Game Used Jersey Card

Although I really don't mention them too much, I am a huge NY Jets fan. Have been since 1980. Anyone who follows the Jets knows that just making the postseason is usually cause for celebration in it's self. Sure, it's not like we haven't been to the playoffs before, but it usually ends in defeat for us. Sometimes in stunning fashion. From AJ Deuhe intercepting Richard Todd in the 1982 AFC Championship Game, dubbed the Mud Bowl to Mark Gastineau's late hit on Bernie Kosar in the 1986 AFC Divisional game to the more recent flops, like letting John Elway back in the game in the 1998 AFC Championship Game to Doug Brien missing field goals against Pittsburgh to last years AFC Championship game and Peyton Manning waking up in the second half. I guess I shouldn't complain. Lots of teams haven't sniffed the playoffs in a while. I guess it's the way the Jets lose is what's haunting. Just when you believe they can pull it out, the bottom drops. Let's hope this season is different. It's a toughie right out the shoot when they travel to Indianapolis and face Peyton Manning and the Colts on Saturday night for the 8pm game.
In celebration of the Jets making the post season, I've decided to show off my favorite Jets memorabilia this whole week. Today, we start off a game used jersey card of Ronnie Lott from 2009 Leaf Certified. Some may say it's a patch card, but I don't think it is. The part of the jersey they use is of the sleeve of the jersey, so you have the white paint in the card. It's a beautiful 2 color card with the white and green. Just pops out at you when you look at it. I'm very pleased to own it.
Even though Lott was toward the end of his career when he played his 2 seasons with the Jets from 1993-1994, he still had something left in the engine. There was a couple of times I remembered seeing a flash of green and the QB on the ground with Lott on top. It's too bad he played on two mediocre teams finishing 8-8 and 6-10 his two years there. By that point the 10 time Pro Bowler was just a complementary piece to the Jets defense. I'm just glad I got to see him play in NY on a regular basis for 2 seasons. Now, if I can just find a decent priced auto of him in a Jets uni, that would be awesome.
Lets Go Jets!
PS-Moe over at My 2008 Topps set, is holding a contest. All you have to do is follow his blog and you will be entered into a contest to win a box of 2010 Bowman Chrome. Here is the link:
Head over and follow him. Tell him Yankeesjetsfan sent you.