Not only were these 3 purchases all made to celebrate an extra couple days off, but they will likely be my last card purchases until the very beginning of August. For those of you who don't know why you will at the very end of this post.
Before deciding on some packs of Stadium Club, I went through the baseball dime box at my LCS as I routinely do every time I visit the card shop. The owner restocks the box about once or twice a month, so I make sure to check it out each time I go there, and for the days where I want some cards but don't want to get sucked into what I typically spend at the baseball card show, I know my LCS will have a dime bin ready for me to search through.
First up, my very first look at the 2018 Bowman base set since I never ended up buying a blaster or even a couple packs since I'm really not big into prospects. As for the base set, they've repeated a mistake Topps made 2 years ago by cutting off part of the logo in 2018 Bowman just as they did in 2016 Topps. The base set is designed very similarly to 2017 Bowman which is not necessarily a bad thing, but they lose me when they decide that cutting off part of a team logo will look good.
Speaking of 2017, a gold Noah Syndergaard parallel made its way into the dime bin as well much to my pleasure. Syndergaard along with fellow Mets starter Jacob DeGrom is having a fantastic year despite how dismal the Mets have been. In fact, both starters have been so spectacular that the acting GM outright said that they're both up for trade. Kinda shows you where the Mets are at right now. Personally, I admire Syndergaard's consistency and would take him over DeGrom if he can stay healthy, though DeGrom does lead all of baseball currently with a 1.84 ERA
Finding set needs hidden amongst all the other dime cards is one of the main reasons why I continue to return to my LCS even at times where I really shouldn't due to how easy it is to get sucked in and buy stuff there. I wasn't sure if I needed Rizzo or Jones, but I knew they'd either go with the 1987 inserts from last year or to the player collections. Turns out Rizzo is a need but Jones is not, so it still worked out and gave me 1 card for the set and 1 more card to boost my Adam Jones player collection.
I also stumbled upon a need for this years' 1983 insert set from 2018 Topps Series 1. I never went after any of these inserts like I did last year for the 1987 cards, so I have far fewer of the 1983 cards than I would like to. Still, I find myself slowly chipping away at the set bit by bit, and this Yoan Moncada card will truly help me out.
Bradley's recent hot streak has caused me to go for it and buy a rookie card of his that I already had purchased a while back. I know he's had a tough year, but a .277 average in the last 15 games is certainly a bright spot for the perennial Gold Glove contender. I've always said, if he can remain the defensive wizard that he is while hitting .260 or above, then nothing more could possibly be asked of him. We've seen some progress from him as of late, so we'll just have to wait and see how this season turns out.
I also discovered some shiny cards in the dime bin as well, because who doesn't love a nice refractor or parallel. Whether it be a green Bowman Platinum, a pink Donruss Optic, an absolutely awesome green parallel of Reggie Jackson made better by the sunglasses and the fact that he's on the A's, or an X-Fractor of Felix Hernandez from Topps Chrome, there were plenty of options for shiny and chrome cards in the dime bins this time around, and I'm not even showing all of them.
Speaking of shiny cards, this Ken Griffey Jr. card looks way more gold and shiny in person than it does when scanned. There's absolutely zero information about a year or set on the back, so my only clue of what this card is that it comes from the beginning of his career with the Mariners. No matter what, I'm still determined to find out what this card is.
However, there was some tough competition even for the best Ken Griffey Jr. card of the entire purchase thanks to this awesome Glove Stories card from 2012 Topps Gypsy Queen. Known for making insane catches in centerfield, Griffey is doing just that as a member of the 90's Mariners team that also had Edgar Martinez and prime Randy Johnson. How that team never won a World Series is beyond me.
One of my favorite and most respected athletes to ever play the game of baseball, Roberto Clemente is one of my favorite guys to see in the dime bins or even just at the card show in general. He's always been one of me and my dad's favorite players ever, and we jump at every chance we get to add new cards of his to the 50+ card player collection we have for him.
Now that I've reached the final card of the post, I'll use it to explain why exactly this will probably be the last purchase until the beginning of August comes around. The Don Mattingly card above does an excellent job of explaining something that I was certainly aware of but didn't truly hit me until I saw the date on Sunday. The card above is a card from the 3014 National Sports Collectors Convention. For those of you who don't know, I will be in Cleveland in just under a month to attend the 39th annual National. It's my very first time at the National and I intend to take full advantage of opportunities such as giveaways, autograph guests, and of course, whatever baseball cards come my way, and there will certainly be plenty of those.
That's why I'm holding off on cards for a bit. I want to ensure that I have the best time possible when I go to the National for the first time. After all, it's only something I've been dreaming about for years now, and it's finally so close to happening.