A month or so ago, I posted about the tip jar just to the right of these words. I am very thankful that I got a number of $2 tips from folks who are enjoying this blog. I won't name names, but the folks who are supporting this are some of the same folks who supported the Skeet-and-Veryl fundraising, and I'm grateful for that support.
I am really, really thankful, though, for the $25 tip I got tonight. Thanks for your support, not just now, but throughout the years.
If you like reading this blog and want to encourage it, feel free to use the tip jar as you see fit.
I was thinking more on my way home from work the other day about the post I wrote about the huge number of APBA sets that are currently for sale. I wondered what kind of collection I could build quickly if money were no object. That is, how many sets could I buy if I just started buying one of each that was available?
So I came home and went right to eBay. It's even more amazing that I thought.
I've seen folks comment about how hard it is to wade through all the listings on eBay, since there is a huge amount of single teams (most of them are mine) and some guy has decided to list every single card from a 2011 APBA football set individually.
So I have created this directory of APBA sets for sale on ebay. Just click the ones you want to see, and you'll go right there.
Some notes: I left out prices that I thought were ridiculous. Somebody is trying to sell a 1953R set for $130 or some stupid number like that. I left him off. Also, none of these sets are mine, nor are they being sold on my behalf. I'm not associated with the sellers, nor can I help you if you have a problem with a seller. This is created solely for your convenience.
Read the listings carefully. Not all sets are perfect Mint sets. The usual eBay advice of "caveat emptor" apply.
I am so pleased at the response by readers of this blog to my numerous posts asking for donations to an effort to provide an appreciation gift to former APBA employees Skeet Carr and Veryl Lincoln. The original goal as set by Scott Lehotsky and Roy Langhans, the brains behind the effort, was $1000 for each. Thanks to your generosity, Skeet and Veryl each received far, far more than that.
You may remember Scott Lehotsky's name from the "Of Dice and Men" documentary video. Scott was present at the dinner, and recorded the proceedings. He has produced a series of videos from the dinner, and has kindly permitted me to post them here.
Part 1: Veryl tells the story of driving the "APBA Caravan" from Lancaster to Alpharetta during Hurricane Irene. Attendees are (clockwise): Wayne Green, Roy Langhans, Mitch Tolleson, Veryl Lincoln, Greg Wells, Skeet Carr, Ted Knorr, Ron Seamans, Lynne Seamans, John Cochrane. Part 2 tomorrow.
Of all the posts I've done so far on this blog, the most popular one so far has been the one about my entire APBA collection fitting on a card table. Over the next couple of weeks, I'll take you on a tour of that collection. Hopefully it will give you some insight into why I did it. I don't think you should do yours the same way; but perhaps it will push you to think of what you really want to accomplish, APBA-wise, and take action to make it happen.
I decided about a year ago that I wanted to slim down my life, not just my APBA collection. My son is now in middle school, and I turned 46 in August. It's that time. Anecdotal research through some old APBA Journals indicated to me that the average season player takes about three to five years to finish a 154-to-162-game season, with 16 to 24 teams. Hopefully I'll have enough time left to play at least five to six projects in my life.
When I thought about it in that context, I decided that I would only need a fraction of the collection of cards that I currently owned. I also decided that I would concentrate on doing the five or six projects that I would find really fulfilling and fun.
The first step was building a league that I had contemplated for a long time. I mentioned in my post about my favorite APBA boards ever that those boards inspired me to start this process. I decided that the time to start that project was now. But what would be next?
I went to the next project that I have wanted to do for a long time. I wanted to make a list of the franchises in the 1960s; take their best team; and play a 162-game season, using the 1969 regular-season schedule and division structures. I called it the Decades Best League project; I wrote about it in a previous post.
I wanted to do this with the cards and boards from the original time period. I already had a set of boards from 1962; as I mentioned in the post, I wanted this to be kind of a time capsule - pretending I was in 1970, going through the standings in my old Sporting News Guides from each year, choosing the teams, then pulling them out of their original sets.
About 10 years ago, I started saving teams that might fit this project when I bought sets missing cards or teams. I even set aside loose cards and partial teams, hoping I could round up the missing cards later. Thus when I started I already had teams like the 1965 Twins and 1963 Dodgers.
I went ahead and created Decades Best Leagues for the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s. That makes six projects for me to play with.
Over the summer, I re-read Rob Neyer's "Baseball Dynasties: The Greatest Teams of All Time." There is a chapter about the worst teams ever. I decided to put together the worst teams for each franchise of the "APBA era," post-1949. That would be project #7.
A couple months back, a fan posted on one of the Delphi forums about an idea about expansion teams. I decided to collect those and create a league with them too. That's project #8.
Finally, I decided to hold onto a copy of each Washington Nationals team since the team came to DC.
With that collection of card sets stored in baseball card boxes with the lids cut off, and my collection of boards from each of the decades, I now have an APBA collection that fits on a card table. If I allow five years for each project, I have 40 years of APBA projects ahead of me. At that pace, I'll be 86 when I'm done.
I've mentioned before that I've been buying and selling APBA collections since the late 1990s. I have never seen more sets for sale than I am seeing right now. Whether on eBay or on the APBA Between the Lines message board, people are selling large quantities of collections all at once.
Now, to be fair, original early 1950s sets are not coming out of the woodwork. But it's interesting to me that the lines of delineation between what's really rare, and what people think might be rare, are becoming much more clear.
The law of supply and demand is coming into play, too. Sets that came out about the same time, with similar print runs, but with different demand, are pulling dramatically different prices.
I have a couple theories about why this is happening:
1) Guys are realizing that they'll never get around to playing all the cards they've bought. 2) The economy is making guys think about whether they would rather have card sets or cash. 3) The new APBA policy of reprinting sets in the near future is making guys think twice about keeping older sets that might sell for a premium now, with fresh sets in the $30-40 range within the next couple of years.
Pretty simple question here. I am able to produce Baseball for Windows disks for the 2011 Pacific Coast League and International League. I would offer each league for $13.95 plus postage. Please answer as appropriate.
Please note: I will NOT be able to offer a card set for either league, no matter how much demand. I must still use the unpopular design that was a result of my previous agreement with APBA.
About ten years ago, I received an email from a lady in British Columbia, stating her husband had recently passed away. He had been an officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force. He left behind a collection of APBA cards among his effects. I purchased the collection, and although it was a small one, it was maybe the most interesting one I have purchased.
These boards were included (click for a larger version):
Also included were a complete 1953 set, a complete 1961 set, and some of the single-column Great Teams of the Past. Since GTOPs have been a favorite of mine since I first started playing APBA in 1977, I kept those; I didn't forsee myself using the other sets, so I sold those.
What was interesting about those sets is that they were still in the original boxes from APBA, and they were addressed to the RCAF officer at two different addresses, both of them air bases in Canada.
Many years ago, when I first came across single-column pre-1958 cards, I fell in love with them right away. I have always wanted to put together a back-in-time league of teams, using GTOPs. I decided to hang on to these boards, and set them aside for a special project.
That special project became the idea behind getting my entire collection to fit on a card table. I'll explain more in a future post. For now, check out those boards!