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Monthly Mailbag - November 2022

I must admit, I am an incredibly thankful collector! Last month was a great month for the collection! I was able to locate and acquire a few really big cards that I thought I may never be able to add as well as some of the newer release stuff. This month started out (and ended) with a bang too...allow me to show you what I've been able to pick up this month:

2004 Donruss Timelines - Recollection Autographs #1233, SN3. This card comes from a pretty massive release. There were 1,578 different cards in the checklist, of which, Rolen is featured on seven. Unlike the monstrosity that is current Topps Archives Signature Series sets, these cards have an available checklist though. Scott has a grand total of only 14 cards with his seven cards each being serial numbered to three or less. Three of the cards are 1/1s. This particular card has a very nice bold on-card autograph from the 2004 era. This card has the serial number which is foil stamped on the back, and also features the foil stamping "Recollection Collection" on the front as well as Donruss' "Authentic Signature" embossing over the tail end of Scott's signature. Definitely happy to add this one to the collection this month!

2000 Upper Deck Legends - Commemorative Collection #61, SN100. If I've said it once, I've said it a hundred times; I miss Upper Deck almost as much as I miss Pinnacle. These Commemorative Collection cards were randomly inserted into packs of Upper Deck Legends which were released back in August of 2000. They used a beautiful shiny foil on the front of these cards and they serial numbered them to just 100 copies. The serial numbering on the back is in the classic 90s to 2000s dot matrix style which I thoroughly enjoy...second only to hand numbered cards in my opinion.

2022 Topps Archives:

Green #161, SN125 | Silver #161, SN99 | Red Hot Foil #161, SN50 | Orange Hot Foil #161, SN15

In true frugal form, I waited a little while to let the newness of these wear off a bit before I started adding them to my collection. The prices have settled and they are now available at a very reasonable price. The Green parallel was inserted at a rate of 1:88 packs, the Silver parallel was inserted at a rate of 1:109 packs, the Red Hot Foil was inserted at a rate of 1:215 packs, and the Orange Hot Foil was inserted at a rate of 1:172 packs. Those insertion odds seem a bit askew to me, given the fact that the Red Hot Foil cards are serial numbered to 50 copies while the Orange Hot Foil cards are serial numbered to just 15 copies. But I try not to give myself a headache trying to figure out Topps math sometimes.

1999 Finest - Gold Refractors #35, SN100. I have been trying to add this card to my collection for quite some time now. I was finally able to strike a deal for this beauty and I could not be any happier! These Gold Refractors with the deckled edge just scream 90s. This particular copy is one of the pack pulled versions that is serial numbered to 100 copies. It still has the protective peel on it (which I intend to leave intact). I know they shine brighter with the peel removed, but I just cannot bring myself to remove the peel unless it is bubbled or beginning to peel up at one of the corners/edges.

1999 Topps Gold Label Class 2 Red #74, SN50. These cards are beyond tough to track down! They are serial numbered to just 50 copies, but you have to look incredibly close on the back of the card to the right of the player picture to see the serial number stamping. It doesn't have a foil treatment on it that most collectors are used to. Instead it almost appears to be embossed into the card material. Regardless, these cards are rare! These Class 2 Reds were inserted at a rate of 1:237 Hobby packs and 1:296 Retail packs. With 300 cards in the set, you can really begin to see the big picture on just how difficult it is to pull one of these of your favorite player.

1999 Upper Deck - View to a Thrill Quadruple #V22, SN10. Back in 1999, a card numbered to 10 was a huge deal! This card is absolutely stunning in-hand too. The holographic foil they used on these shines like the brightest refractors of today. Throw in some die-cut action and what you have is an incredibly desirable card. I lost out on this one in an auction awhile ago, but recently acquired it from the Moler Collection.

2000 Pacific - Platinum Blue #331, SN75. These Pacific parallel cards can be tricky to track down sometimes. I love the platinum blue foil they used for these and I wish there was more of it present on the card. These are limited and serial numbered to just 75 copies and I have a feeling that these are just one of those cards that sits in someone's commons box, never to be thought about again. Which is rather unfortunate because I know there are still collectors out there looking for these for their favorite player.

2000 Pacific - Copper #331, SN99. Similar to the Platinum Blue just above this one, the Copper parallel is limited and serial numbered to 99 copies and I'm sure there are many of them sitting in commons boxes across the country. This one actually came from the same seller as the Platinum Blue and he threw it in as a freebie! Both of these cards were recently liberated from packs, so perhaps there are more of these cards out there sitting inside of unopened boxes. Which still blows my mind, I've never been one to be able to just sit on unopened wax. I tried it once, three days later I ripped everything open.

2003 Fleer E-X - Essential Credentials Now #64, SN64. There is just something about acetate cards that I'm drawn to. Don't get me wrong, I love my cardboard. But acetate cards just have a totally different feel to them. And this Essential Credentials comes from a long, storied lineage of great looking cards bearing the same name. I believe Fleer could have chosen a better image of Scott for this card as he looks kind of awkward here but I love the card nonetheless.

2004 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection - Platinum #116, SN10. Scott had a career year in 2004, so it's no surprise there were so many cards made of him that year. And who better to make cards of him than Upper Deck! They knocked it out of the park with this one in my opinion. I'm a huge fan of the picture they chose for this one. The throwback uniform with the high socks is a timeless look. What isn't represented very well here in the scan is the foil treatment Upper Deck used on these Platinum parallels. It's quite shiny and these cards being limited to just 10 copies means that you almost never see these surface for sale. So I'm definitely happy to add this one to the collection!

2005 Playoff Absolute Memorabilia - Team Quads Swatch Single #TQ-68, SN135. I was finally able to add another 2005 card to the collection! There are just so many of them that it's almost overwhelming sometimes. I like the idea behind this card with the quad theme and the four pieces of game used memorabilia. I just wish they would have used the same kind of game used material for each player. Instead, we're given three pieces of baseball bat and one little swatch from a jersey.

2005 Topps Heritage - Chrome Black Refractors #THC21, SN56. Just look at this beautiful card! While us 90s collectors are very critical of more modern refractors for their lack of depth, I can't help but love this card. It's got that 90s feel to it for sure! With this being limited to just 56 copies (a nod to the 1956 Topps design), they can be quite elusive. I was able to add this card to the collection via a multi-card deal with Mr. Moler.

2006 Topps Heritage - Chrome Black Refractors #19, SN57. Similar to the card above, this gorgeous card is limited to just 57 copies (a nod to the 1957 Topps design). While adding these cards to my collection, I realized that I don't have either of these cards in the refractor version. I'm glad I was able to add the more rare black refractor versions to the collection for sure, but now I need to track down the refractors for each of them.

2007 Bowman Chrome - Orange Refractors #148, SN25. I tried buying one of these years ago but lost the auction. I was able to add this one this month as part of the Moler deal. I know the Orange parallel isn't a lot of people's favorite - it isn't team matching for the Cardinals and it isn't one of the primary colors or gold. But I really, really enjoy this card. Which, of course, looks far better in-hand than it does in this scan.

2022 Topps - 1987 Topps All-Star Baseball Autographs Black #87ASA-SR, SN50. I know Scott is knocking at the door of Cooperstown, but his autograph seems to be in everything these days. I was finally able to add this card to the collection for a solid price. Up to this point, everyone seemed to be asking at least 2x what I felt the card was actually worth. I love the on-card autograph here, and the picture they chose of him is a classic Scott batting stance pose. Beautiful card all around!

2022 Topps 206 #4. Similar to the past couple years, Topps 206 was released as an online exclusive. There were 8,162 Wave 4 packs sold, so I can only imagine that the Rolen cards in this release won't be very plentiful. I know a lot of people don't care for these tobacco sized cards because they aren't the "standard" size for trading cards. But I love them! Luckily I have magnetic one-touches as well as penny sleeves specifically designed for this size card. They keep them from bouncing around inside the case so they don't get beat up and they'll look great for years.

2022 Topps 206 - Sweet Caporal #4. The first parallel I was able to grab at a good price was this one. With several parallels having stated print runs, they are known to be rather scarce. This Sweet Caporal doesn't have a stated print run, however, with some quick math, we can deduce that there are only around 27 or 28 of them that were printed. They were inserted at a rate of 1:3 packs. The only difference between this one and the base version above is the back of the card which is where it gets it's name.

2022 Topps 206 - Wood Paper Stock #4, PR20. Like I mentioned above, some of these 206s have stated print runs and this one has a stated print run of just 20. When I saw this one pop up for sale, I jumped on it because sometimes, you just have to strike while the iron is hot. And the seller wasn't asking a million dollars for it or anything wild. I wasn't sure how I would feel about the "wood paper" on the front because I had never seen any of these in person, but I have to admit, I'm a big fan of them! Hopefully the ink holds up on these.

2022 Topps 206 - Piedmont Back #4. Que DJ Khaled - and another one! This Piedmont Back was made available at a great price and instead of trying to wait it out to see if the prices would drop a little more, I decided to snag it now. The Piedmont Back cards were inserted "at least 1 per pack", so rough estimates put this card in the print run neighborhood of around 82 or so. Not very many by today's "junk wax era 2.0" standards.

1999 Pacific Paramount - Copper #181, PR2635. I am starting to see a little bit of a pattern emerging here. There is just something about these Pacific parallels that I seem to be attracted to right now. These Copper parallels were a one-per-pack insert, but with 250 cards in the set it could take a lot of packs to track down your player. I was able to get the print run from Matt and Company over on The Essential Credentials podcast on YouTube who got the information directly from Mike Cramer himself! If you haven't checked out The Essential Credentials show, I strongly urge you to do so, especially if you're into 90s cards!

2000 Pacific Crown Royale - Limited #109, SN144. Yes, another Pacific card has been added to the collection this month! Who doesn't love a great looking 90s die-cut card? I'm not typically a huge fan of landscape oriented cards, but the die-cut treatment on this one, combined with that classic throwing pose of Rolen's, mixed with some foil and serial numbering on this one lead me to grab this one as soon as I saw it pop up for sale. The "Limited Series" foil on this particular copy seems to be double stamped, which would be a huge deal in the numismatist community, but in the baseball card community it just means that I want to track down a copy that isn't double stamped.

1998 Topps Tek - Pattern 70 #88. My 69th card from this run is Pattern 70. It would have been way cooler if this was my 70th card from the set, but I'm excited just to find another one that I need for the collection. With the addition of this one, I'm down to just needing 21 more patterns to put this set to bed. Now the Diffractors, that's an entirely different story. I still need a lot of those before I'm even 1/10th of the way complete.

2000 Pacific Crown Collection - NSCC #215, SN1. I'm not sure what the story is on these, but I saw this one listed for sale fairly inexpensively, so I added it to the collection. It definitely isn't my favorite 1/1 in my collection, but it is a Rolen card that I didn't have - even if it is just a plain sticker slapped on the front of a base card and hand-numbered 1/1. If you have any information on this card (or others like it) please reach out and let me know!

2021 Topps Dynasty - Dynastic Deed #DAP-SRO3, SN10 (Patch). I wanted one of these cards so badly when I first saw them last year. The only problem was that they were so expensive. Patience was certainly a virtue with this one though. I actually bought a different Rolen card from a seller on ebay and he reached out to me asking if I collected Rolen cards. I messaged him back, telling him that I exclusively collect Rolen cards. He quickly replied saying that he knew of this card and he put me in touch with the owner. I reached out to the owner of the card and after some quick negotiation, the card was en route to my collection!

That wraps up my newest pickups for the month of November. I'm hoping with Scott's HOF bid, people will start selling more and more of their Rolen cards and unearthing cards that are tough to find! I'm excited to see what next month has to offer!


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