There are good players and there are great players. And once in a generation comes along a player that is elite. The best of the best. They are the players that change the game forever. Ones that not only leave their impression on a team or city but on an entire era. Bobby Orr is at the highest level among the heroes of hockey. Read More
Like many red-blooded Canadians, Phil Esposito grew up around the ice. That’s just what he did, every moment he had he played, he loved it and always played for fun. My consistency in posting lately has been on ice too. We recently sold our house, moved into a rental and have started plans to build ourselves a new home. Busy, busy, busy and it has been taking away some of my blogging time. Enough of that though, back to Phil. Read More
Mike Mussina seemingly has always been overshadowed by an era of baseball dominated by the likes of Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, and Greg Maddux to name a few. But in our current Sabrmetrics Era, when you do the math, Mike Mussina ranks right up there with some of the greatest to ever play. Read More
Roy Halladay’s induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2019 was bitter-sweet. Joy for his induction but yet sadness for his memory. Since his death in 2017 many baseball fans were patiently waiting and hoping that he would be a first time ballot entry. HOF Voters did not disappoint, Halladay was voted in on his first year of eligibility. Read More
I remember it well. Randomly inserted autographed cards inside packs of baseball cards. It started in 1990 with Upper Deck inserting Reggie Jackson into their packs. With Mr. October only signing 2500 copies collectors ripped packs in search of these diamonds in the rough. Upper Deck, seeing the results of their labor, quickly signed Nolan Ryan the following year in the same manner with the same limited number of copies. These were the sparks that ignited the flame. Read More
Every January the MLB announces the Hall of Fame Class that will be enshrined that upcoming summer. February brings us the NFL Hall of Fame Class during Super Bowl weekend. And this year February will also bring us the much-anticipated, You Tube Sports Card Hall of Fame, Class of 2019. Every Hall of Fame has a commissioner and the Tuber HOF is no different, the innovator of this card community buzz is Mike Moynihan, also known as Baseball Collector on his You Tube Channel. Read More
I remember the peak of the sports card boom of the 1990’s. It was the birth of chase cards, also known as insert cards. Then along came game used jersey cards and in the back ground, very subtly, there was a powerhouse coming to light – on card autograph’s! Likewise, in that same decade, was the Seattle Mariners. They gave us All-Stars like Ken Griffey Jr., Randy Johnson, and Alex Rodriguez. But in the back ground, very subtly, there was a powerhouse coming to light… Read More
The closer is the only position in baseball that has no margin for error. There is an expectation of perfection. Your job is to come into the last inning of a game, get handed a bad situation then you’re expected to take out the competition without flaw. There is a pressure that the closer must endure and he’s expected to strive through it. Read More
It seems to me, the Baseball Writers Association of America, the folks that cast ballots on Hall of Fame inductions, are as divided as the U.S. Congress. I’ve read the articles, I’ve watched the episodes and I’ve heard the debates on who should and should not be allowed into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Read More
Mr Speaker. Mr Vice President. Members of Congress. My Fellow Americans. After celebrating the birth of my Savior I enter the New Year with much anticipation and hope. The Flagship: Topps Series 1 Baseball is due to release in two weeks or so. And collectors across our great land eagerly anticipate Wednesday mornings for the release of this weeks Topps Living Set. Read More
I remember growing up as a kid listening to the radio. Typically at the end of the year there was a popular radio program I loved to listen to, Casey Kasem’s Billboard Top 100 of (insert year here). It was a classic radio program and it gave us the favorite songs of that year. I’ve been watching some of my favorite You Tube Sportscard channels over this four-day weekend and noticed a theme. Read More
In an effort to minimize distractions I am posting here publicly my collecting goals for the 2019 year. The purpose is to help me prioritize my collecting, does this mean that I will not relapse into another distracting episode? No. Read More
The dawn of a new year is almost upon us. I typically like to carve out some time to evaluate where I’ve come, where I’m at and where I’m headed. I do this exercise for every aspect of my life, card collecting and blog included. This is the second full year of alltimegreats.blog and the only thing I regret is not starting sooner. Read More
My last three post have been dedicated to the iconic rookie card. We’ve dissected it’s past in an effort to Understand the Complexities of the Rookie Card and we’ve looked at the original definition in an effort to gain a more definite, distinct and clear understanding via The 10 Commandments of the Rookie Card. Read More
Collectors today have options. There is something for every type of sports card collector. But the one thing most, if not all, sports card collectors have in common is the rookie card. We can collectively appreciate and recognize the value found in them. However, it’s been a bumpy road. Read More
It’s no secret. This website is centered around my passion for collecting rookie cards of Hall of Famers. When asked, “what do you collect?” it typically brings a smile to my face. A better question would be, “what are you collecting right now?” For me, it doesn’t matter the sport, card manufacturer, nor the era it’s going to be rookie cards of Hall of Famers. Read More
Today when you think of the San Francisco Giants one can quickly refer to Barry Bonds. I mean who can blame you, he won the MVP four times in a row and is the current reining home run king. But before Barry there was Willie and I’m not speaking of Willie Mays, another Giants great, I’m speaking of Willie McCovey who died recently and caused baseball fans everywhere to remember his legacy. Read More
Settling in on a Sunday afternoon getting ready to watch Game 5 of the World Series. Boston Red Sox lead the Los Angeles Dodgers 3 games to 1 and more than likely will go on to win their 9th World Series Championship. So it got me to thinking about Boston legends like: Jimmy Collins, Joe Cronin, Bobby Doerr and Carl Yastrzemski. More modern-day legends like Jim Rice, Wade Boggs, and Pedro Martinez. But of the 11 Boston Red Sox Hall of Famers none is more intriguing to me than Teddy Ballgame. Read More
Sandy Koufax had a slow start in the major leagues. Drafted in 1955 he struggled the first two years in the league, in fact he couldn’t find the strike zone to save his life but he watched, observed and learned. The result. He evolved into the most dominating pitcher, without a doubt and with no equal. Read More
It’s been about 7 weeks since my last post. Once upon a time, prior to a complete home remodel which included a new kitchen, a new bathroom, floors, paint and new interior doors with trim, I had the free time to write. But enough of that let’s talk cards. Also, once upon a time, prior to the athleticism and dominance of Michael “Air” Jordan there was a man who revolutionized the game of basketball, he was a man ahead of his time, his name is Julius Erving! Read More
Brian Urlacher was the type of football player that was expected to get a sack. He was expected to get the interception, the big hit and when it came to crunch time everyone expected him to make it happen. Why did they expect that? Because that’s what he consistently delivered. Read More
If you get a chance talk to a baby-boomer (someone born between 1946-1965) about baseball card collecting. I’m sure you’ll hear plenty of stories of how they were purchased for pennies, how they traded them, played with them and put them on their bike spokes so that it would make that cool clicking noise. Read More
It’s been said, “For the rare breed who dare stand between the pipes. Alone and vulnerable. The job description is simple. No matter how, no matter what – just stop the puck.” – Author unknown. Newly inducted Hall of Famer Martin Brodeur did just that, for 22 seasons he stopped pucks better than anyone else. Read More
My previous post was on All-Time Great, Marcel Dionne. The following day the NHL released the names of the 2018 Hall of Fame inductees. Martin St. Louis was one of those chosen for this years class. “Marti” and Marcel have one thing in common, their size. Marti St. Louis stands at 5′ 8″ tall and because of that some feel he went un-drafted in 1997. Read More
Marcel Dionne, also known as, “The Little Beaver” was drafted 2nd overall by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1971 draft. He was affectionately given that nick-name because he was only 5′ 7″ tall. He was short but stocky. His super power ability was to weave through defenders at high speeds allowing him to be one of the greatest scorers in NHL history. Read More
Earlier this month, on June 6th, 2018 St. Louis Cardinal great Red Schoendienst passed away at age 95. My condolences to friends and family. In this post I’d like to pay homage to this 1989 Hall of Fame inductee and I’d like to start with his name. Read More
Wanting to up my Hockey Greats category while watching my beloved Cubbies play Philadelphia, I was surprised to hear that the Phillies were in first place the week prior. I couldn’t help thinking that perhaps they found inspiration in the Eagles winning the Super Bowl. So I decided, why not keep the Philly theme going and show some brotherly love to All-Time Great, Bobby Clarke. Read More
Have you ever been to a Target Store to buy some packs or blaster boxes of cards only to find yourself overwhelmed by the amount of choices that are available to you? You may get that same feeling inside a card shop or card show but at least in these type of venues you’ll have a person there to assist you on how to make heads or tails of what seems to be endless choices of card manufacturers and their various brands. Read More
Randy “Super Freak” Moss never suffered from low self-esteem. His perspective was that he was the best ever. He proclaimed it with such conviction and passion that he reminded me of a modern-day Cassius Clay who often proclaimed publicly, “I must be the greatest!” Call it arrogant, cocky, or just confident here’s what we need to keep in mind when considering Hall of Famer Randy Moss. Read More
Typically when I write about any player I do not like to focus on the drama that individuals allegedly have had in their lives. If you look at my “About This Blog” statement you will notice that I decided long ago that this website is to educate and inspire collectors to gain a greater respect and appreciation for the featured Hall of Famer. Terrell Eldorado Owens also known as T.O. has challenged my optimism! Read More
In my line of work there are Union Organizations that have come into Work Agreements with the Carrier. When there is an alleged violation of those agreements the organization has a right to file a grievance, also known as a complaint. There is a process and procedure established to respond to these complaints in an effort to keep good labor / management relations. Well I want to file a grievance against Topps Now! Read More
Ray Lewis, nicknamed “Sugar” played his entire 17 year career with the Baltimore Ravens. Some may say that he didn’t play for the them, instead they’ll claim that he is the Baltimore Ravens. But he’s not just the face of the franchise. Between 1996-2012 he was the Original Raven, the Team Captain, the General, the heart and soul of the team and the City of Baltimore. Read More
Locker-room talk implicates that the NFL Hall of Fame is biased towards defensive players because their “not game changers.” Brian Dawkins disproves that bias. Not only is he a Hall of Famer but he was a definite game changer too. Read More
Robert Brazile nicknamed, “Dr. Doom” played his entire 10 year career (1975-1984) with the Houston Oilers. His craft was the outside linebacker position but obviously he was no ordinary linebacker. Brazile set a new standard for the position and for his entire career he maintained a standard of excellence. Read More
March 4, 2018 was the inaugural “Call to the Hall” for the Sports Cards & Memorabilia – TUBER – Hall of Fame 2018. This prestigious honor is given to the You Tube channels within the sports card community that are considered the best of the best. Read More
January brought us the MLB Hall of Fame Class of 2018. February brought us the NFL Hall of Fame Class of 2018. And March brought us the much-anticipated inaugural, Sports Card & Memorabilia Tuber Hall of Fame Class of 2018. Every Hall of Fame has a commissioner and the Tuber HOF is no different, the innovator of this card community phenomenon is Mike Moynihan also known as Baseball Collector on his You Tube channel. Read More
Jerry Kramer (not the guy from the show Seinfeld) nicknamed Zipper, was a 6′ 3″ 245lb Guard that played for the Green Bay Packers between 1958-1968. He was highly thought of by his coach Vince Lombardi who said, “Kramer is the best Guard in the league.” Such high accolades by such a prominent figure like Lombardi comes with good reason. Read More
My last post was on newly inducted Hall of Famer and former San Diego Padre Trevor Hoffman. As a blogger I often seek for something to inspire my next post. Hit with the flu and feeling a bit under the weather this past week or so, all I wanted was rest. I finally mustered up enough strength to defend myself from my family who accused me of being a baby when I’m sick, of course I disagreed and opted to watch some television. I came across an MLB Network Premier. It was a documentary on Hall of Famer and also former San Diego Padre, Tony Gwynn. Read More
It was something right out of a movie. The San Diego Padres find themselves in a bit of a pinch trying to get the final out of the eighth inning. Manager Bruce Bochy comes out to relieve his pitcher and immediately there is a buzz that starts to come from the stands, the fans knew it was “Trevor Time.” Bochy signals the bullpen and simultaneously cues the entry music for his closer Trevor Hoffman. It was the opening notes of AC/DC’s song, Hell’s Bells. The crowd loved the bantering of their opponents as the eery toll of the bells blasted through the speakers as Trevor Hoffman made his way to the mound. Read More
Two things have always stood out to me about newly inducted Hall of Famer Jim Thome. For starters his socks. They were worn about as high as they can go and the cuff of his pants were about an inch or so below the knee cap exposing most of his socks. The other memorable characteristic is in his bat stance. He would get set by pointing his bat to center field prior to each pitch. Thome’s sock fashion made him a trend setter but it’s his performance at the plate that made him one of the all-time greats. Read More
Today when I think of baseball’s big men I think of 6′ 7″ Aaron Judge or 6′ 6″ Giancarlo Stanton. Likewise when I think of big men at the turn of the century I think of 6′ 3″ 235 lb Vladimir Guerrero. He was a strong man with long legs and what appeared to be even longer arms that gave him the unusual ability to hit anything you threw at him. Read More
Larry Wayne Jones, Jr was given the nickname “Chipper” by his family who viewed him as a “chip off the old block,” referring to his father who was a teacher and baseball coach at a local high school. The influence of his father paid off as the Atlanta Braves chose Chipper as the No.1 Draft Pick in the first round of the 1990 Draft. Read More
Happy New Year everyone! Well recently I’ve just completed my first full year of blog post. Established in December of 2016 I must say I’ve had an absolute blast putting articles together. For 2017 I published a total of 33 post, that’s an average of 2.75 post per month. What I’ve enjoyed most, (besides the researching, learning and writing about what I’m absolutely passionate about), was how it has evolved. There was a dramatic difference between my first and last post of 2017. Read More
Back into the hobby for a few years now, I’ve set out to collect rookie cards of Hall of Famers. But you know what happens next don’t you? It happens to so many of us. Like that scene in the Disney movie “UP”. A pack of talking dogs are scheming a diabolical plan to catch a certain bird but no matter how determined they were when they sensed a squirrel in the vicinity they would immediately stop. They had some serious distractions going on. They were in mid sentence and SQUIRREL! they would lose focus. Read More
It’s no secret. I did not collect baseball cards between 2004-2014 and I casually followed baseball during that time. But when I got serious about my card collecting again I got caught up on things. I recall learning that Donnie Baseball was not in the Baseball Hall of Fame. I remember my displeasure as I released a frowning “WHAT!?” followed by this surprised, drawn out statement, “UN-BE-LIE-VABLE!” Read More
On Sunday December 10, 2017 Baseball’s Hall of Fame Veteran’s Committee announced their picks for the 2018 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. The Committee voted and it was a proud day for the city of Detroit as two of their own were chosen: Jack Morris and Alan Trammell. There were 10 players on the ballot. Read More
Jack Morris’ 18 year career began in 1977 and ended in 1994. He played on four different organizations: Detroit Tigers 1977-1990; Minnesota Twins in 1991; Toronto Blue Jays in 1992-1993 and Cleveland Indians in 1994. His weapon of choice was a fastball, a slider and his go to pitch the split-finger fastball. Over the years there has been much debate about Jack’s entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Read More
Recently, we lost the oldest living Hall of Fame baseball player. Bobby Doerr died on November 13, 2017 in Junction City, Oregon, at the age of 99. He played his entire 14 year career for the Boston Red Sox between 1937-1951. Read More
Congratulations are due to Houston Astros for being the 2017 World Series Champions! The Astros were established in 1962 and have never won the championship title – that’s 56 years! Looking into things a bit further I was equally impressed with the career of the first Astro ever inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, Craig Alan Biggio. Read More
As a collector Roberto Clemente is one that I personally collect. As we would say in the collecting community, “I PC Roberto.” For that reason this post may seem a bit biased, but with good reason. When you consider all that he accomplished on and off the field one can clearly see why he’s considered one of the all-time greats of the game. Read More
Shaquille O’Neal has almost as many nicknames as his size 23 shoe. He is also known as: The Big Aristotle, Hobo Master, Shaq, The Diesel, Shaq Fu, The Big Daddy, Superman, The Big Agave, The Big Cactus, The Big Shaqtus, The Big Galactus, Wilt Chamberneezy, The Big Baryshnikov, The Real Deal, The Big Shamrock, The Big Leprechaun, Shaqovic and…. The Big Conductor. In case you’re wondering that’s 18 total nicknames.
Morten “The Great Dane” Andersen, also known as “Mr. Automatic,” played in 25 NFL seasons. The first 13 years with the New Orleans Saints and an eight year stint with the Atlanta Falcons made up the majority of those years. He is only the second Kicker enshrined into the NFL Hall of Fame, second only to Kansas City Chiefs Jan Stenerud who was inducted in 1991.
The story of Kurt Eugene Warner is considered one of the greatest stories in NFL history. He is considered by many as the best un-drafted NFL player of all-time. After high school he attended the University of Northern Iowa and earned a degree in communications which serves him well today as a television football analyst.
After a very successful National Convention held in Chicago just two weeks ago the baseball card industry captured that momentum nicely with it’s National Baseball Card Day. At first, my thoughts wandered a bit; Is this like Christmas in July? Do collectors have their own holiday now? Do I get the day off from work? It’s a holiday, right?
Head south on Lake Shore Drive you want to get onto I-294 westbound, you have several ways on how to get onto I-294 but what do I look like Google Maps you mook! I say that jokingly with a little bit of Chicago attitude of course. The Donald E. Stephenson Convention Center hosted the 2017 NSCC and it’s literally a stones throw away from Chicago’s O’Hare Airport.
At first glance one would ask, why would a player who only played 7 years in the NHL be inducted into the Hall of Fame? To me it didn’t seem like he did much but then it hit me; it’s called the Hockey Hall of Fame not the NHL Hall of Fame. When you look at the totality of his career one quickly sees his worthiness as an All-Time Great.
Rogie Vachon had Bruce Lee like reflexes and hands. In his 16 year career as a goalie he never allowed a single goal on a penalty shot. This impressive statistical fact alone shows us what made him one of the greatest goaltenders of his day.
I recall a time when I was in denial. I was in my mid-thirties and my waist size was a 34. At least that’s what my head was telling me. In reality I was every bit of a size 36. Everyday I went into my closet and squeezed into my pants and at the end of the day I was in severe pain due to the skin indentations caused by the pressure the pants were leaving on my waist line.
Legend has it that as a young teenager Eric Lindros played power forward and had a way of physically dominating players much older than he was. He was able to score quite frequently as well and these two attributes were at the core of his success. He had big man physical presence with the agility and finesse of a smaller man.
I will try to restrain myself as I make this declaration. It is my unqualified opinion and the opinion of many who are qualified, that Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all-time! His accomplishments on the court, and his marketing star power put the NBA on the mountaintop for many years.
Honus Wagner started his career as a professional baseball player at the turn of the century. For every bit of a decade he dominated in just about every batting statistic in the game. He was no defensive slouch either, in fact to this day he is regarded as the greatest shortstop to ever play the game.
Baseball at the turn of the century was a sport with a tarnished image. It was a sport known for the lazy and uneducated, men who spent their time gambling, boozing, or womanizing. Little did anyone know that a young man was being raised in Factoryville Pennsylvania that would enhance the image of the professional baseball player.
It has been said and well documented that Walter Johnson was a humble man. A gentle natured giant that was not only a legendary pitcher, but a role model of good sportsmanship. He was such a gentleman he preferred not to throw a pitch inside due to concerns that he might hit someone.
Magic Johnson played for the Los Angeles Lakers for 13 years. He was nicknamed “Magic” while playing for Everett High School in Lansing, Michigan. A sports writer for a local paper gave him that name after Earvin scored a triple double the night before.
Larry Bird is the only person in NBA history to be named MVP of the league, Coach of the Year, and Executive of the Year. In his playing days, his super-hero like quality was in his defensive anticipation. He had a feel to know where the opposing teams next move was going to be and would respond accordingly. He wasn’t the fastest, he wasn’t the strongest, but he was one of the smartest, and his knack of anticipation caused many turnovers and frustrated many opponents.
Chamberlin is considered one of the All-Time Greats of the game and one of the most dominant players in NBA history. Monte Johnson, former teammate, has been quoted saying, “Wilt had unbelievable endurance and speed…and was never tired.” He had multiple nicknames but wasn’t a fan of any of them, except for one, “The Big Dipper.”
William Felton Russell holds the title of Most Winningest Player in basketball history. He led his alma mater at the University of San Francisco to 2 NCAA Championships in 1955-56. He then went on to the 1956 Summer Olympics where as captain of the Mens Basketball Team dominated the olympics and beat Russia for the Gold Medal. He then started his NBA career where he and the Boston Celtics went on to win 11 NBA Championships.
Jeff’s grass-roots are from Boston, Massachusetts. He grew up a Red Sox fan which suited him well when he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in 1989. However, it was short-lived when the Red Sox traded him to Houston in 1990.
Tim Raines Sr is regarded as one of the greatest leadoff hitters and baserunners in baseball history. He was voted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2013 but it did not come that easily here in U.S. He received 86% of the vote in his tenth and final year of eligibility in 2017.
A good indicator of a players impact upon the game they represent is whether or not they’re inducted into the Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility. This was the case with Ivan Rodriguez, earning 76% of the vote in his first year eligible (75% of the vote is needed). When receiving the call of his induction Ivan was over-joyed and came to tears of the news. One could see that being inducted meant a lot to him.
Taking a closer look at the career numbers of Brett Favre one must take notice that he has over 6,000 passing completions for total yardage of over 70,000. But most impressive is that he is the first quarterback in NFL history to pass for 500 touchdowns!
What makes Piazza’s statistics and achievements remarkable is that he was drafted in the 62nd Round of the 1988 draft and was the 1,390th overall pick! Expectations were not very high for him but he got his foot in the door and made the most of it. The other remarkable fact we have to realize about Piazza is that there aren’t too many catchers in the Hall of Fame, he is only the 17th catcher inducted all time.
George Halas, better known as “Papa Bear” is one of the NFL’s pioneers. He was founder and owner of the Chicago Bears which started in 1920 and played an important part in establishing the Chicago Bears as an NFL team.
Babe Ruth is best known as a home run hitter, a true slugger of his day. What many folks don’t know about Ruth is that he started his major league career as a pitcher and a really good one! In 1916 he finished the season with a 23-12 record, with a 1.75 ERA and nine shutouts, both of which led the league. Those would be Cy Young worthy numbers today!
On the field Cobb was known for his over the top aggressive base running and his ability to hit the ball to all parts of the field. A true craftsman of the sport he loved. After his retirement he’s been quoted as saying, “I never could stand losing. Second place didn’t interest me. I had a fire in my belly.”
In my adventures of buying sports card collections I’ve seen a lot of enthusiasm. I get it! You’ve had these sports cards in your possession for 20-30+ years now. These cards have been stored for so long you forgot you had them. You see my business card pictured above and you have an “aha” moment! “It’s been so long they gotta be worth something? Right?” Well, this is what I’m trying to help you figure out.
During the mid to late 1980’s through the mid to late 1990’s there was a sportscard boom that swept the nation. Much of it in my opinion was brought on by several factors: sportscard manufacturers competing against one another creating new designs, new concepts thus creating high demand. Mammoth homeruns being hit with alarming frequency, and lets not forget about the influence Michael “Air” Jordan and the Chicago Bulls had on the hobby.
Along with his jaw dropping career achievements The Kid was a cultural icon, known for his silky smooth swing, big smile and backwards ball cap Ken Griffey Jr has left his mark in the game of baseball as one of the All-Time Greats! Read More
In business there is a motto that says, the key to any business is: location, location, location! The sports card business has a motto of its own that is equally important: condition, condition, condition! Did I mention it’s all about condition. It’s importance should never be brushed off nor ignored. When purchasing, selling, trading or handling, condition should always be at the forefront of our dealings.
Many folks have visiting a foreign country on their bucket list. My wife has Italy on her bucket list, my son really wants to visit Japan. A good rule of thumb when entering a foreign land is to learn the lingo. At the very least the basics like, “where’s the bathroom?” Sports card collecting is no different. You may feel like your entering a foreign land so let’s go over some of the basics:
“I understand that you have options. There’s a lot of things drawing for your attention. A lot of different hobbies you could get into.”