Saturday, November 13, 2010

Mike Piazza: Trifecta and More

Borrowing a little bit from a post on DrewsCards, I’m going to post a recentlt completed Trifecta with a little extra sauce.  It’s great to be back up and running on Windows Live Writer.  There is absolutely no good blogging software for the Mac so now I’ve got Windows running virtually on my Mac.


This right here is the card that started it all.  I first read about Mike Piazza while doing research for my Robot Baseball fantasy league.  He was listed as one of the top prospects in the book that I had and so I grabbed him for my team.  By the time 1992 Bowman was released, Piazza was in the midst of his Rookie of the Year season and most dealers had his card hidden away.  I was lucky enough to find one person willing to sell it for the first Beckett listing of $3.  It wouldn’t stay there for long as the whole set shot up in popularity and this soon became a $60 card.  Even thought the price or both the complete set and this card have dropped since the 90s, this still remains one of the few sets from that era which is still worth a 92Fleergood amount of money.  This is also one of the best looking cards of all time in my opinion.

Piazza’s other rookie, form the 1992 Fleer Update set eluded me up until this year.  This set carried a high price tag from the day it was released due to Piazza tearing things up his rookie year.  There also didn’t seem to be nearly as many sets out there in 1992 as there are these days.  I was finally able to pick up the whole set for a great price on eBay which also allowed me to add the Tim Wakefield from this set to my collection at the same time.

PiazzaSwatchI’ve picked up a decent assortment of Piazza relic cards over the years.  I like these kinds of cards, but I don’t love them.  I pick up the ones that I like, but by no means do I have to have all of them.

This jumbo swatch is something that you don’t see every day.  Most swatches are tiny little things, but the Super Sweet Swatches from 2006 Upper Deck Sweet Spot are great looking cards.  Only 299 of these cards exist.

PiazzaGinterOf all of the Piazza bat cards that I have, I think that this one would have to be my favorite.  The framed minis from Topps always look pretty good and this card is no exception.  The bat chip is a little small, but then again so is the mini that it is encased in.  This was an eBay acquisition back in 2007 for a whopping dollar plus shipping.

In second place is my 2005 Bowman Sterling shiny refractor bat card numbered to 199.

Back in the year 2005, I had a little more disposable income than I do now.  I had also soured on opening wax because of all of the short prints and other annoying things that were going on at the time.  So, I bought a lot of singles on eBay.  There was one card that I kept buying and buying and buying even though I already had a copy in my collection.


That card is Donruss 2005 Prime Patches PP-20.  While they all have the same card number, there are different variations and even different looks within the same variations.

This first card here is one of the most plain variations that you can get.  This card is numbered to 150 and should contain jersey swatches from a Dodgers jersey and a Mets jersey.  There are even corresponding pictures on the card.  This is something that Upper Deck would fail to master right up until the day they lost their baseball license.


This next version has more relics, but it is still numbered to 150 copies.  From the top and proceeding clockwise, this card contains a white jersey swatch, black show swatch, gray jersey swatch and a white pants swatch.  You can’t really tell which swatches are from which team’s uniform, but I don’t think it’s really all that important.  It would be more of an issue if I was only a fan of Piazza while he was with a certain team.

The next card is where things start to get interesting.  This card is now numbered to 88 so you know that it must be almost twice as good as the 2005-1cprevious card.  This card starts out similarly to the previous Piazza card, but then it ends with a bang.  The first three relics are black shoe, white jersey and black show.  The final windows contains a three color prime jersey patch.  I know this is above the Dodgers logo, but I think this most likely is from a Mets jersey.  I could be wrong though since it is tough to keep track with all of the jersey variations that exist.

I forget exactly what order I purchased these cards in, but after acquiring one, I would see another one with a nicer looking patch piece and would purchase that one as well.  I’m now cornering the market with three of the 88 copies of this card.


I’m guessing that this might have been the first version of this card that I purchased since the patch leaves a little to be desired.  There are three colors again, but this time there’s orange instead of black.

I would have liked more variety on the other relic pieces in these cards.  I don’t understand the need for two shoe swatches.  I would have loved a piece of bat or even pants just to have something different in there.


Here’s the final version of PP-20 in my collection.  This one isn’t as nice as the first patch, but looks like it is probably taken from the same section of the jersey.I like this one a lot because it has a different colored swatch in the second shoe window.  The white jersey swatch isn’t quite big enough for the window which is a little disappointing.  The card still looks good though.

These days with limited funds, I don’t think I’ll ever go crazy grabbing multiple variations of a card like that.  The closest that I’ve come is probably the Topps Tek cards or the awesome Polo Grounds inserts.


This Tools of the Trade card from 2005 Playoff Absolute Memorabilia is an example of what I was talking about in regards to variety in the types of relics in a card.  Here you’ve got little swatches from a jersey, pants, a bat and a shoe.  What else do you need?  Oh yeah, there is one more thing.


Here’s the Piazza Sweet Spot card that I just picked up on eBay.  Luckily this is from the 2006 set so the ink won’t fade into Bolivia. /miketyson  It’s not the lowest numbered Piazza autograph out there and it’s technically not an on-card auto like I was searching for, but it’s an awesome card and I’m so excited to add this to my collection.


One more card for good measure before I go.  Here's the Topps Update Bat Barrel card that I picked up at the big Shriners Card Show.  I may have a hard time picking up the regular version of this card for the same price that I picked this one up for.

My take on manufactured cards: All cards are manufactured.  If they decided to stick a patch or bat barrel in there doesn’t matter to me as long as it looks good.  All of these manufactured cards look much better than any of the millions of boring, plain jersey swatch cards out there.

So, there you go.  A little glimpse into the highlights of my Mike Piazza collection.  Hope you enjoyed!

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1 comment:

Fuji said...

Great Trifecta... Drew is a genius... I give that guy much props. I love checking out everyone's Trifectas. Keep em' coming.

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