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!


Quick Update

Any of you that open boxes, know that there is risk involved when it comes to this hobby.  Today box 3 of Ionix came in the mail at the price of $45.  I’m going to keep this short and simple…it was by far the WORST box of this product I’ve ever opened.  No parallels, no major inserts, and out of the 3 inserts I received were duplicates from the last box! Yeah I feel like I just wasted $$ but that’s the risk you take.  Safe to say that unless a box of this pops up for super cheap, that this will be the last box of Ionix I purchase:) I am eyeing a box of 2000 EX or 2000 Showcase next.  I’m going to lick my wounds and post and update as to how many base sets of the 60 base cards I have from 3 boxes.


(My face while opening the last few packs…I knew I received a beatdown)

While it ended on a sour note, it was sure exciting to find a Warp Zone in box #2.  Stay tuned for an “Old School Hits” post that comes from E-X2001.  I was lucky enough to find something extremely rare that a member on Freedom Card Board was selling.  Pretty excited to write about the card here by the end of the week.

Until next time!



Ionix Box Break (Box 2)

After a so-so first box, I found this box the day after via Auction on eBay.  Now the story on this box is interesting to start off with.  In the listing, which was listed as “1999 Ionix Baseball Cards”, the picture was of an unsealed box…this typically isn’t a good sign.  But I won it for $17 with free shipping.  Already I’m thinking this is too good to be true.  This box did take an extra 6 days to arrive in Sitka…yep the mail here can be unpredictable.

After opening the package the packs are practically falling out of the box, but all 20 of them were sealed!  At this point, I’d be happy with 20 packs of base a Techno SP’s to help me with the set I’m building.  However, today I had a pleasant surprise halfway through the box.  Let’s see what all this box had to offer:

Price: $17 (Best deal of all time?) 20 packs with 4 cards per pack

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 2.05.17 PM

Base: 70 with close to the same # of duplicates

This is to be expected with such a small base set (60).  But the card I talked about in my last blog post was waiting on the back of one of the first few packs:)


It’s sure fun to pull a card I have fond memories of finding when I opened my first packs of Ionix in 99.  Still can’t believe I got 2 packs for $10 but I still remember trading in a super rave insert from 99 Thunder for it of a no name pitcher.

Techno (1:4 Packs)

Just like the last box, there were 5 within the 20 packs.  In this box was Manny Ramirez, Nomar Garciaparra, Chipper Jones, Tony Gwynn, and  Juan Gonzalez.  What’s even better is I need all of these for the complete 90 card set.


Hyper (1:9 Packs)

In the last box there was only one of these, but in this box, as stated on the box in Ant-Man size font, there were 2 in this box. Can’t beat two Hall of Fame players😉


Nitro (1:18 Packs)

The first surprise of this box was getting an extra insert.  While these aren’t the most desirable looking inserts, I’ll always take an extra one to help with the set.


Not sure what is going on in Piazza’s card, but I’m guessing he either just struck out, or popped on straight up to the first baseman.

At this point you know what three inserts are left…see if you can remember which one I said was the best looking insert in Ionix.


Warp Zone (1:216 Packs)

I was sure excited to see the back of this card when I opened the pack!  I quickly found a sleeve and toploader.  This set shouldn’t be too tough to put together minus the Jeter and Griffey.  But man, they sure do look nice!


What wasn’t pulled:

Base Reciprocal ( #d to 750)

Cyber (1:53 Packs)

Techno Reciprocal (#d to 100)

HoloGrFx (1:1500 Packs)

Update: In my everlasting search for an Alex Rodriguez of this, I’ve only spoken to one person who has one.  He is holding onto it so I’m still searching hard for one.  However, I did just purchase a Techno Reciprocal of A-Rod that I will “show off” when it arrives:)

Final Thoughts/Grades:

Collation: B

Still a lot of dupes, but not nearly as often or as many.  I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to put my base set of 60 together now and I received 5 new Techno SP’s.

Condition: A-

I feel like this is an awesome grade considering the box was sitting open in someone’s shop for 16 years.  Only one card was dinged but I got a duplicate of it in perfect condition.

Pulls: A-

It is my hope to one day post an A+ with a box of Ionix but I don’t think it can get much better than this, especially with the history this box had.  I’m still excited about pulling a Warp Zone from a pack!

Value: B

I don’t see a reason to change this grade as I’m guessing some of you use this grade to help you decide what old school boxes to buy (other than Ionix since you’re saving them for me, right?). Hopefully you don’t buy any 90’s boxes with the hopes of reselling anything. That’s just a bonus at this time period.

Thanks for the read, and stay tuned for box 3 as it’s currently in Kent, and could be here tomorrow or Friday!


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