Sunday, February 21, 2016

Package From Ryan

I love getting packages in the mail from Ryan of This Card Is Cool.  Ryan is always on the lookout for stuff for me and he's pretty good about finding it.  And sometimes he picks up stuff that he figures I'd be interested in, even if I haven't said anything.  And he's usually right - I am interested in it.  So packages from Ryan always contain good stuff - some things that I know I'm getting and some things that are a surprise.

The package I got from him yesterday was no exception.  I'd been eagerly awaiting this package since he told me he'd be shipping me stuff when he was back in the States in early February AND since he'd found a couple cards that I was looking for from the 2000 Upper Deck Olympics set (that he busted a couple boxes of a few months back).  Sure enough, there were two of the five cards of the baseball team that I don't have in the box:

2000 Upper Deck Olympics #229

2000 Upper Deck Olympics #220
The card of Akahoshi is especially cool as it is one of the rare "pre-rookie" cards of a player in Japan.  Akahoshi was playing for JR East of the industrial leagues when he was selected for the Olympic team - he wasn't drafted by the Tigers until October of 2000.

I ask Ryan to track down opened box sets for me as they can generally be had extremely cheaply - frequently 500 yen or less - but that price skyrockets when I have to pay kuboTEN fees.  Ryan found three box sets for me - one he'd been looking for for most of 2015 but the other two were released late in the year.

In January of every year since 2011 BBM has published a box set commemorating the players who have retired during the previous year.  I usually refer to this set as "Farewell" but the translation of the title is more along the lines of "Regret at Parting Ball Players".  Last year's set contained 36 cards celebrating the careers of 32 players (four players - Atsunori Inaba, Makoto Kaneko, Alex Ramirez and Tomoya Satozaki - had two cards each in the set).  The photos in the set are usually action shots from when the player was active (and may be from a year previous to last year) or from their retirement ceremony.  Beyond the players mentioned already, the set includes cards for Masao Kida, Shugo Fujii, GG Satoh, Yoshinori Tateyama and Tomochika Tsuboi.

2015 BBM Farewell #09

2015 BBM Farewell #13
Hrioki Kuroda's return to Japan and the Hiroshima Toyo Carp last year was documented in a box set called "Homecoming" that was released in November.  It's an 18 card set and each card appears to commemorate some event from the 2015 season.  There's a card for each of the 11 wins he got and for reaching some milestones (like his 500th game between MLB and NPB).

2015 BBM Homecoming #12

2015 BBM Homecoming #18
Epoch published a Dragons box set in November as some sort of cross promotion with Mizuno.  The set was called "Chunichi Dragons X Mizuno" and was very similar to some similarly named sets that Front Runner put out in 2014.  In fact the "R" symbol to indicate a rookie was identical in this set to the symbol used on the Front Runner cards.  The set has 24 cards but only featured 12 players.  Each player has two cards in the set.  The set includes Masahiro Yamamoto, Kazuhiro Wada, Michihiro Ogasawara, Masahiro Araki, Takuya Asao and Daisuke Yamai.

Epoch Chunichi Dragons X Mizuno #01

Epoch Chunichi Dragons X Mizuno #15
Lastly, Ryan included a handful of loose cards from a couple Front Runner box sets that I didn't have.  He sent four cards from the 2014 Lions Signature Edition set (including one of Takeya Nakamura, one of my favorite players) and ten cards from the 2015 Giants Game Used Bat set (which was similar to the Dragons X Mizuno set in that it had two cards for each player in the set).

2014 Front Runner Lions Signature Edition #04

2015 Front Runner Giants Game Used Bat Edition #02

2015 Front Runner Giants Game Used Bat Edition #09
Ryan sent out a number of packages when he was back in the States.  Jason got some cool stuff from him as well.

Thanks as always Ryan!  And let me know what I owe you for these!

1 comment:

R Laughton said...

Very cool gesture! Class act!