Box Breaks Upcoming!

Hey everyone,

With school starting I’ve been spending a lot of time in my classroom getting it ready so I haven’t had a lot of time to post here since returning from my trip down south.  I did pick up a box of 2016 Stadium Club which was a blast to open.  I’ll gladly post a review of it if you would like.

I had 3 boxes waiting for me when I got home:

2000 Ovation

2000 Showcase

1997 Metal Universe

I’m going to review them in that order and will have a review up by Friday evening.  I hope everyone is doing well and you’ve added to your collections as I have.  Things will slow down collecting wise for a bit but I’ll keep the readers updated if any major additions come along.  Thank you for checking in 🙂



Epic Mailday : 2 out of my top 3!

When summer break began, I knew I was going to have a little extra free time since we teachers get the summer to ourselves 🙂  It hit me that this was as good of an opportunity as I’d get to try and put my A-Rod collection back together.  While it’s been a little spendy, it’s been a fun ride so far.  I found my way to FreedomCardBoard thanks to Corockies, and ever since then my collection has taken a Huge step forward.

One member suggested I make a wantlist so I decided to make a top 3 most wanted cards.  It’s been a month since I made that list and I’ve been fortunate enough to purchase 2 out of the 3 cards on that original list!

#1 on the list was this beauty:


1999 Ionix HoloGrFx (1:1500 Packs)

If you’ve read my Ionix breaks from this year, you remember that I mentioned that this HoloGrfx insert was my most wanted card, after selling the first one I ever had 4 years ago. They fall at 1:1500 packs which isn’t even one per case!  I wonder how many were produced…my guess is 50 of each player but it may be as many as 100.

A big shout out to gradedeflator on FreedomCardBoard for hooking me up.  He originally posted it in the 90’s Insert Thread that has a huge following after I mentioned how nice his Piazza HoloGrFx was.  We then cut a deal for it and it was waiting for me after my Alaska Cruise.

#2 on the wantlist was this sweet insert from 1997 Donruss:


1997 Donruss Power Alley Die-Cut (#d to 250)

Donruss has some wonderful looking inserts and they, along with Leaf, are knowing for their serial #d inserts in the 90’s.  These also come in a non die-cut version which are #d to 1000.  While this card is #d to 1000, the first 250 were die-cut versions.  I remember seeing Magicpapa’s Griffey and thinking I had to find the A-Rod.  Well 7 years later, I finally have one in my collection.

A big thanks to George Kalfus at freedomcardboard for messaging me about this card.  One just popped up on eBay and I knew it would cost a pretty penny or three for it.  George messaged me the same day 🙂 I absolutely love it man, thank you!!

I bet by now some of you are wondering what #3 was right? Well just to get it out there that I’m looking for it, it’s this card.

The owner at the time was a user by the name of cubuffs13 who is on sportscardforum.  I remember seeing this card for sale many years ago and passing on it.  Let’s hope on shows up one of these days.

Before I sign off for a few days I have a couple of things to look forward to in the future.

First off, I have two 2000’s boxes coming in after I get back from my trip to Arizona.  A box of 2000 Showcase, and 2000 Ovation.  There’s a slim chance to find something spectacular but they should be fun breaks for me regardless.

Secondly, I will be in Arizona and should have some time to swing by some card shops while I’m there and also pick up my 1996 and 1997 Fleer Metal sets my buddy has been holding onto for me.  I’ll be sharing those and the story behind them next week.  Until then, thanks for the read and thank you to everyone who keeps me excited about collecting still, especially all of you are FreedomCardBoard.


Box Break: 2000 E-X (Very nice hit!!)



24 Packs

4 Cards per pack

Price: $43 + shipping






Hey everyone!  I know it’s been a couple weeks but I have a great excuse.  I was out working on an Alaska Dream Cruise ship as the children’s coordinator and I had one amazing experience 🙂  Here is a shot I took of Dawes glacier to prove I really have been busy.


Anyhow, I did return home to an epic mailday and a sealed box of 2000 Fleer EX baseball. The E-X sets have always been something I enjoy looking at.  They have thicker stock and typically have really good looking inserts not matter what the year.  They became famous later in the years following this set, and in 1999 for their translucent base cards.  In the past I opened several 1999 E-X Century boxes when they were in the 40 range and the base cards are quite nice.

The following year Fleer went back to these for the base cards:


I was only 10 or so away from the base set so that was certainly exciting!  A young man who goes to church with me loves baseball cards and is getting into collecting the “old school” cards.  He’s going to be putting most of my breaks’ base cards into organized sets, most of which he will be keeping for his own collection.  Someone has to teach him about the good ol’ days right?  A handful of base were peeling off the cardstock but thankfully my Rodriguez was not one of them.

Prospects (1:12 Packs)

There are 30 prospects in total that come in this set, the most of the time being Rick Ankiel, Pat Burrell, and Alfonso Soriano.  They stand out a little with their gold lettering and prospect wording.  There were two in this box:


Generation E-X (1:8 packs)

Every set has to have some easier to find inserts with talented young players.  This set fits the bill here.  Nothing major to write home about but as you all know, I do love shiny inserts whether they’re tough to pull or not.  I received 3 in this box; Alex Rodriguez, Shawn Green, and Adam Kennedy.


E-Xciting (1:24 packs)

These reminded me of a fleer ultra insert from the 1996-97 Basketball set called Fresh Faces.  Coming in at 1 per box, you always hope to find a player out of the 15 card set that you’re happy to get.  While the uniform isn’t the “right” one in this picture, it was great to see The Kid.


E-Xplosive (Random Odds)

These inserts are all #d to 2499…yeah in a 2000 product!  My feeling is that Fleer wanted to give collectors the feeling of getting a numbered card, no matter how high that number might be.  There was one in this box of one of the best hitters of all time:


E-Xceptional (Random Odds)

There are 3 different subsets of these Jambalaya look alikes: Red (#d to 1999),

Green (#d to 999), and Blue (#d to 250).  I managed to pull one Green from this box.  They are really unique feeling and looking cards!  My card tried to throw itself at me like a broken bat…thankfully I was prepared.


Skybox Autographics (One game used or Autograph per box)

Well this blog sure has luck with 2000 boxes containing big time autographs doesn’t it?  If you remember, when I reviewed my box of 2000 SPX I linked John’s Break where the best pull this blog has had showed up.  This one is probably the best card I’ve had the pleasure of pulling out of an Old School box so far:


Yeah that’s a sledgehammer he’s swinging!  I’m sure that’s how to got to be jacked when he played 😉 Nevertheless, what an awesome On-Card autograph to see come out of a pack. Barry was an amazing hitter regardless of what he did off the field.  I still remember his All-Star Game homerun that hit the Giants logo in 1998.  I also remember that he did try to have fun although he was pretty standoffish to reporters.  He’s now the hitting coach for the Florida Marlins who seem to be in the Wild Card hunt now.

I sold the card to a collector on the best forum around Freedom Card Board.  I know he will appreciate this as much as I do when a nice A-Rod arrives in the mail.

Final Thoughts/Grades:

Collation: A

3 Duplicates.  Enough Said!

Condition: B

Having some of the base cards peeling off the cardstock is going to make it a little tougher to put this base set together.

Pulls: A

Not much can beat a Bonds on-card autograph.  The reason this box doesn’t receive an A+ is because there were no Credential parallels.

Value: B+

Outside of a high-end autograph or Credentials parallel, these aren’t highly sought after cards in general.  I was very fortunate to find the Bonds which is going to allow me to purchase another box + an A-Rod.

I do hope everyone enjoyed the review and for those of you at FCB, I do want to give you all a big shout out because you’ve been a huge help in finding some of my most highly sought after Alex Rodriguez inserts!  Mailday update will be coming when my most recent purchase arrives.





…my 1998 Flair Showcase Row 0 set has been completed!

Hey everyone, John here! I had to update everyone on a long outstanding project of mine that has FINALLY been put to rest! Back in September 2007, I decided to do something I thought was crazy and attempted to collect all 120 1998 Flair Showcase Row 0 cards. Seeing how there are only 250 possible sets to be completed and many individual cards are likely sitting in collectors’ personal collections, I knew it wasn’t going to be an easy task. For several years, I had been stuck needing just three cards to complete my set: #3 (Frank Thomas), #9 (Mark McGwire), and #16 (Livan Hernandez). I had come close to winning a couple of these cards in the past but to no avail. To be honest, I had pretty much given up on the set until my OSB co-author Matthew reminded me about it, asking if I had ever completed the set on this old mailday post. Shortly thereafter, I started scouring eBay once again and was fortunate enough to find a seller who had ALL THREE cards I needed. Needless to say, I did whatever it took to make sure those cards landed here! To show you how difficult this was, here’s the breakdown of this set’s print run:

Cards #1-30 (250 of each)
Cards #31-60 (500 of each)
Cards #61-90 (1000 of each)
Cards #91-120 (2000 of each)

All the years of searching through various online hobby forums, eBay, Sportlots, and others I can’t even think of right now has paid off! The entire set has been scanned to my Photobucket account and can be found here. But let me just post a teaser pic for you guys here. I know there’s at least one card on this page that you would love to have Matthew. 🙂


Old School Hits: 1998 E-X 2001 Destination Cooperstown


In the 90’s there were a select few inserts that fell in packs at extremely rare odds.  One example were the HoloGrfx Inserts I mentioned earlier at 1:1500 packs.  I’ll talk more about these next week 😉  Another example are Cramer’s Choice inserts from Pacific.  These came in at a rate of 1:720 packs.   You would like to think that an insert that is that hard to find in sealed boxes would not only get you really pumped over pulling one, but have the looks of something extremely unique.

Here we have one of those types of cards.  These inserts, Destination Cooperstown, come from Fleer E-X2001 and fall at 1:720 packs.  This being a case hit, makes them very hard to come by if you can even find a loose box of this stuff.  They are the only card other than Pacific’s Ornaments inserts that come with a piece of string attached to them.

Just imagine what this would look like inside a sealed pack?!  This set features 15 of the game’s top players and were made to resemble luggage tags.   Finding a copy of this card with the original string is even harder which makes this Alex Rodriguez one of my rarest cards I own to date.

They tend to sell anywhere from $45 to $400, which is what a Griffey sold for in June.  Here is the checklist for those that might be targeting one of these for your collection.  I’d like to thank from the Freedom Card Board forum for selling this to me.  He’s an awesome guy!