Are You Asking For an Ice Bucket Challenge?!

Posted: August 24, 2014 by Crackin Wax in General
Tags: , ,

This is the first mail day I’ve had since the Holiday Gift Exchange. How freaking sad is that? Okay, so there was that one redemption from last year that came in earlier this year, but that hardly counts, right? Now today’s mail day was an honest-to-goodness for really-real actual mail day with trip to the post office and everything!

It all started when the lovely Stacy, one of the many Braves/Barves fans that I follow, tore open a fresh box of 2014 Bowman Platinum. I just happened to be logged into Twitter as she was live tweeting her results. She thought of me when she realized that she had a Twins hot box. Imagine my jealousy. In all the cases that I’ve busted, I’ve never pulled any Twins hits. In fact, the one and only Twins hit I’ve ever pulled, this Upper Deck Artifacts Joe Mauer jersey, was pulled in 2007.

Now, in defense of my very sparse mail days, my want list has been thinned out over time. Naturally, more items are added to the list each year as new products are rolled out, but I’ve whittled my list away fairly well. Oddly enough, I still haven’t snagged my big item yet—the 2013 Bowman Chrome Byron Buxton auto. I’ve got just about all of the other Twins Rookie/1st Year/Prospect autos out there, though. Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, Michael Cuddyer, Miguel Sano, Matt Bashore… ahem. So when I saw that Stacy had something new that I hadn’t even entered into my want list yet, I had to negotiate. Since I count myself as a lucky guy and since Stacy is a ridiculously generous person, I got WAY more than I paid for.

Once again, this post and my Twins RC/FC/Prospect AU Personal Collection is brought to you by my super cool new transparent case binder by UniKeep!

Now, before we get into the cards, I just have to mention the weird experience at the Post Office. It seems like every time I go there to pick up any of my mail, whether it’s just a bill or a case of cards, they’re never simple experiences, nor are they consistent. On this occasion, a yellow note was left in my box explaining that my parcel was too large to fit into my box.


Yes. THAT package. I’ve had parcels, envelopes, boxes and other miscellaneous packages MUCH larger than a #000 bubble padded envelope crammed into my p.o. box. I wonder who thought that this little guy, all by its little self, was too big to swim in the capacious space that is my post office box?

Contained within that padded manilla envelope of bubbly goodness was the 1 card I paid for and a handful of others given up out of ridiculous awesomeness.

Click To View Larger Version

click to view larger version

Pictured above is a 2014 Bowman Platinum Lewis Thorpe Gold autographed prospect card #’d 31/50. Lewis is an 18-year-old southpaw from Melbourne (I swear, what is it with the Twins and their Aussies?) and is currently the youngest player in the Class A Midwest League as a member of the Cedar Rapids Kernels. Welp, that’s it. My aspirations of being a big leaguer are all but over. This kid was born AFTER I graduated high school. I’m not a fan of this year’s Platinum design, and I’m very surprised that a kid as young as Thorpe is already getting away with the two-loop signature. Yeah, I’m an unabashed design snob, but I love that I have this card.

Because Stacy is so freaking cool and felt that I overpaid her for the Thorpe, she threw in the other Twins hit she pulled from her box of 14BP! It’s my second Miguel Sano auto—and now my first of his from 2014!

click to view larger version

click to view larger version

By now, most collectors have heard of Miguel Sano. He has been listed as one of the very top prospects in all of baseball for the last couple of years and will hopefully make an impact once he makes his way to the big stage. Did you know that he stars in a documentary called Pelotero?

Oh, and did I mention that Stacy is super freaking awesome and generous? Look what else she stuffed into that super huge package that could not possibly fit into my more-than-roomy p.o. box! (Just to make sure there is no confusion, the envelope she used was perfect.)

click to view larger version

click to view larger version

Can you believe that? Not only did she throw in an extra MIGUEL FREAKING SANO auto, but her sweet ass tossed in a base Jose Berrios, a base and chrome Eddie Rosario and a base and chrome Alex Meyer! My lame ass is SUPER grateful for these fantabulous additions to my personal collection!

It’s nice to count on friends within the hobby, especially when they’ve got what you’re looking for. It’s a huge bonus when they’re as giving as Stacy is. And to think, I didn’t even have to T-Rex tag her for the extras!

I am always looking for just about any Twins FC/RC/Prospect AUs. If you have any that you’re willing to give up, PLEASE let me know! Thanks!

A clue! A clue!

Hello dear readers of Crackin’ Wax! It’s Amy again, a.k.a. @literalquirk

First off—thanks very much for the fantastic response to my inaugural piece on Crackin’ Wax. I heard from quite a few of you via comments and tweets and your encouragement means a lot! Writing it made me realize how much I’d missed “writing for assignment.” As a few of you know, I’m a chef by trade (I work on a corporate chef team from 9-5) so a lot of my writing leans toward that topical direction. I write restaurant reviews, “romance copy” for recipes, and take more photos of food than I care to admit. Needless to say, writing about trading cards and collecting…I mean, THE HOBBY, and sports, in general, is pretty far removed from any realm of my expertise; I’m barely a novice, but that’s never stopped me from having an opinion.

The assignment Chris gave me for this go ‘round was to share my perspective as a female on the hobby as a whole. (I’ll bet you ten bucks, that when Chris proofs this, he’ll snicker and read that as “a-hole”.) Editor’s note: I totally did.

As I’m involved in the community only by proxy and the occasional ill-timed, on-camera facial expression, I don’t feel that I can aptly speak for what it means to be a female involved in the hobby, but rather to speak toward what I’ve learned, in general.

One card is just like another. WRONG.
In 2006-ish, Chris decided to get back into card-collecting—specifically baseball cards. My experience with trading cards of any kind came in the form of obsessively purchasing Garbage Pail Kids cards in the 80’s—let me tell you, when I finally scored that elusive “Acne Amy,” I was one happy camper. So, I definitely understood the appeal of collecting sets. To be completely transparent here, I was a bit taken aback by my 30ish year old husband jumping into a hobby that I (wrongly) thought was only reserved for teenage boys.

As Chris showed me the designs and card-types and spoke to layout form and stats, I started to see trading cards as much more than parity to “Acne Amy’s” and the like—I found it pretty fascinating. I learned general terminology like base-card, relic, hit, set, case-break and enjoyed opening the packs with him. I was warned about dinging corners and how to properly insert them into top-loaders. I learned how a SASE* was used to request an autograph and watched him send them off to his favorite players. This semi-direct interaction with ACTUAL pro-athletes was awesome! (Though, I’m still waiting for my Nick Punto auto. ARE YOU READING THIS, NICK?!)

Collecting cards means trips to Target and sending SASEs off in the post. WRONG.
The cards themselves were a lot of fun for Chris to collect, but I think what he enjoys more than the cards are the opportunities to TALK about the cards and interact with the community. I think simple, low-key, recreational card-collecting is a mere gateway drug to the harder, meth-like experience of Card-Breaks. Am I right?? One day, you’re just sitting in your home, staring at your Twins base-sets and, all of a sudden, hear the siren call known as Brent & Becca! Ohhh Ooooo OOOOO! Next thing you know, YOU. MUST. GET. YOUR. TEAM’S. SLOT!!!!!!! Chris participated in a few (eleventy-six) breaks and decided that he’d like to give it a whirl. This is where things got interesting…

All serious card collectors/breakers are dudes like Kevin Smith and Jeff Albertson (Comic Book Guy) and only interact with humans when they come out of their mom’s basement. Holy shit, so WRONG. (Wait, can I say shit on here?)
Through case-breaks on this blog, and consistently being tagged in Chris’ tweets (regardless if I have any idea what he’s talking about), I’ve been able to interact with some seriously awesome people. FUNNY, SMART, ORIGINAL, GENEROUS (with a capital G!) people! Some are super-fans, some are fans-for-fun and others are just in it for the community. I think I fit into the second and latter categories—I love the friendly banter and wisecracks you all toss in one another’s general direction. I appreciate the fact that I can be a part of it with not even knowing enough to be dangerous. The Hobby’s community is good-natured enough to let this girl join the game, even without a glove.

…and I don’t know if it’s old-fashioned to say this or not, but I’m blown away by the strong female presence in Chris’ breaks—I LOVE IT. There’s something pretty fantastic about a smart, articulate female, knowing her way around a sporting hobby. Don’t even get me started on Sooz; that woman is a Phenom! So, please keep up the break-attendance, ladies—I enjoy seeing your names on the post-its during my sort-a-thons. (I’m 99% sure Deb’s name will always be under the Phillies’ stack!)


Card-collecting/breaking is a tough thing to describe to those that aren’t part of the hobby—when I talk about Chris’ charity breaks with friends and co-workers, I almost need to have a preliminary, half-hour long conversation describing what being part of The Hobby really means. Do any of you have a hard time articulating this to others, too?

I definitely intend to learn more about trading cards and am currently being talked into doing an on-camera break of my own (please accept my apologies in advance). Maybe even attend a card-show with Chris?! I’ll be the one standing next to him, trying to tap into my minimal knowledge of trading cards while internally cringing when someone calls him Topher.

*I’d always read that as a “SASE-Y” and thought it was a kind of a stamp. Bonus totally useless side-note: I also thought “facsimile” was pronounced Fassy-smile. (I apparently flunked out of postal-school.)


Xander Bogaerts Shae Simmons Kris Bryant
Kean Wong Gosuke Katoh Byron Buxton



All dates and times subject to change

SELL SHEET | CHECKLIST (unavailable)

Due to demand from many of my followers, I have added one more case break to the schedule for 2014. You’ve asked me to do a case of 2014 Bowman Chrome, and you’ve asked me to make it random—so that’s what we’re going to do! My case of 2014 Bowman Chrome is being provided by Blowout Cards and, as of my purchase, they only had 4 cases left! That tells me that, with just shy of 2 months to go until release day, this product is going to be in high demand. I have each random spot listed at $45, so get them now while you can!