“Pin-Up” of the Week: Ozzie Smith/Harry Kalas 2002 HOF Cooperstown

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I think the biggest surprise in baseball this season are the Phillies.  Nobody thought they would have a winning record.  That includes the fans.  Now I know its early in the season, but things have been going great for them.  They’re currently 21-15, and sitting in third place in the N.L. East Division.  The Phillies have even had a couple of moments worthy of Topps Now cards.

Former Phillies broadcaster Harry Kalas continues to be a major focal point in my collection.  I rarely get to add anything though because he doesn’t have that much merchandise.  He isn’t someone that manufacturers jump on when its time to make new cards.  I’ve got a feeling the cost to use his image might be too high.  Upper Deck, Fleer, and Sportkings have all made cards of him.  Topps literally only made one card.  It was a cut signature from 2013 Topps Series 1, and I own it.  I’d love to know if the one-of-one sketch from Sportkings Series E was ever redeemed.

Every now and then a Harry Kalas black patch pin will show up.  It resembles the patch the players wore when he passed away.  I’ve only seen the above pin one time.  Who, how, and where it was distributed remains a total mystery.  Cooperstown 2002 perhaps?  I picked it up a few years ago.

Card of the Day: Harry Caray 2004 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic #35

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“Pin-Up” of the Week: Harry Caray’s Restaurant Group Pin

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Baseball has been around for a long time.  Over the years it has seen it’s share of colorful characters.  One of those colorful characters would have to be former broadcaster Harry Caray.

Harry Caray called games for the St. Louis Browns/Cardinals, Oakland A’s, Chicago White Sox, and Chicago Cubs.  Chicago is where he is known for doing his best work.  He loved getting the crowd to sing “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” during the 7th inning stretch.  That was his signature thing to do along with those big glasses and funny catch phrases.  He occasionally liked to get off topic too.  I can still see Will Ferrell doing him on Saturday Night Live.

Like a lot of popular sports figures, Harry Caray got into the restaurant business.  Its not that uncommon for them to fizzle out after a few years, but Harry Caray’s restaurants are still going strong.  The Harry Caray Restaurant Group currently has seven restaurants under their management.  They opened their first place, Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse in 1987, and it just snowballed from there.  They even have a place in Rosemont for those collectors looking to attend the National next year.

Pins like this pop-up for sale every now and then.  They don’t sell for too much, about $12.00.

Card of the Day: Harry Carson 2013 Leaf Masterworks Sketch Auto

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Topps Comes Through With HK Cut Signature Redemption

Lately Topps hasn’t been receiving the best feedback from collectors when it comes to their redemption cards.  Many are left out in the cold for months (sometimes years) wondering when they’ll get that card they’re due.  Unfortunately for some collectors the wait ends up in a total disaster.  They’ll get that bubble mailer in the mail, rip it open, only to find a replacement card not worth nearly as much as the card they were originally promised.  I don’t know what to say, other than they need a better system with improved communication.  An official Topps blog would be nice.

I rarely redeem redemption cards, let alone buy one.  But I certainly didn’t have a choice when someone posted the Harry Kalas 2013 Topps Series 1 Chasing History Cut Signature redemption for sale back in May.  Normally this is something I would never do, but I thought I’d take a chance on it.  My thinking was this.  Harry Kalas passed away back in 2009, and Topps didn’t have to chase him down for an autograph like they have to with many living players they issue redemptions for.  It was good enough logic for me to pull the trigger on the card.  After seeing that the Babe Ruth cut signature from 2013 Topps Series 1 was shipped, I was hoping the status on my card might change, and that’s exactly what happened a few days ago.

Here it is.  The Harry Kalas 2013 Topps Series 1 One-Of-One Chasing History Cut Signature.  He doesn’t have many cards, and this is one of the rarest for the former Phillies broadcaster/announcer.  Kalas rarely has cards appear in products, and that makes it even a bigger deal for me when I hear he is going to be included within something.  I have all of my Harry Kalas cards uploaded to Sports Card Album.  One of these days I’d like to get much more uploaded, as I have boxes full of relics and autographs I wouldn’t mind trying to sell.  Plus some other stuff I’d just like to show off.  At least this redemption card story has a happy ending.

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I’m still looking for the following HK cards:

  • Harry Kalas 1984 Tastykake Phillies Broadcasters #7
  • Harry Kalas/Gary Maddox/Richie Ashburn 1988 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #39
  • Harry Kalas/Chris Wheeler/Andy Musser 1990 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #35
  • 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game Mike Schmidt/Harry Kalas Announcing Greats Dual Auto #’ed/25
  • Harry Kalas 2004 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black #’ed/100
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black Stitch #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Red-Blue Stitch #’ed/40
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Premium Back Redemption Sketches #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Series E Top 50 Broadcasters Cut Signature #’ed/1

2013 Bowman Box Break + New HK Pickup

I decided to drink the Kool-Aid and try a box of 2013 Bowman.  I usually don’t go for this kind of stuff, but it was a fun box to break.

Here are the most notable cards pulled:

Auto

  • Jairo Beras Bowman Chrome Auto

Mini Refractors

  • Tyler Skaggs
  • Alen Hanson
  • Ty Hensley
  • Courtney Hawkins

Ice Parallels

  • Carson Kelly
  • Austin Jackson

Blue Parallels

  • Jesse Hahn #’ed/500
  • Nelson Cruz #’ed/500

Sapphire Parallel

  • Tim Lincecum RC Reprint

Bowman Top 100

  • George Springer
  • Gregory Polanco

Notable Chromes

  • Gregory Polanco 
  • Byron Buxton

Notable RCs

  • Shelby Miller
  • Manny Machado
  • Jurickson Profar

Notable Prospects

  • Carlos Correa

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On a side note, yesterday I made a new addition to my Harry Kalas collection.  This one is going to be a biggie.  I’m not a fan of redemptions, but this time I didn’t have a choice.  I was able to acquire the Harry Kalas 2013 Topps Series 1 Chasing History Cut Signature #’ed 1/1.  Its already been redeemed and I’m now waiting on Topps.

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Kalas Cut Added To The Collection

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On Monday, UPS dropped off the newest addition to my Harry Kalas collection.  This is a Harry Kalas 2012 Leaf Executive Collection Masterpiece Cut Signature serial numbered 1/1.  Leaf started their Executive Collection last year, and I had been looking for a Kalas item to send in to them.  I finally came across a PSA/DNA certified signed index card that worked perfectly.  Leaf’s Executive Collection basically allow collectors to create their own cut signature as long as the autograph is certified by either PSA/DNA or JSA.  Leaf did an excellent job on the turnaround time.  It only took a few weeks.  No Harry Kalas autographs were submitted for the 2011 set, and this is the first one in 2012.  The chrome border used for the Masterpiece 1/1 cuts look a lot better than the plain white ones from last year. 

I guess you could say I’m a Harry Kalas supercollector.  He doesn’t have that many cards, and when his autographs pop-up collectors go nuts over them.  The longtime Phillies broadcaster has a big following, especially in Philadelphia.  This is one card that will stay in my personal collection for quite some time.

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Here is my other Harry Kalas one-of-one I own.  Sports artist Monty Sheldon did this sketch card for me.  Sheldon has worked on many products with Topps such as Chicle, Allen & Ginter, and Gypsy Queen.

I’m still looking for these cards:

  • Harry Kalas 1984 Tastykake Phillies Broadcasters #7
  • Harry Kalas/Gary Maddox/Richie Ashburn 1988 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #39
  • Harry Kalas/Chris Wheeler/Andy Musser 1990 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #35
  • 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game Mike Schmidt/Harry Kalas Announcing Greats Dual Auto #’ed/25
  • Harry Kalas 2004 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black #’ed/100
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black Stitch #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Red-Blue Stitch #’ed/40
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Premium Back Redemption Sketches #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Series E Top 50 Broadcasters Cut Signature #’ed/1

Cooperstown Baseball Mailday!

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This past week I took a business trip for my job, that is why all you’ve been seeing is “Card of the Day” posts.  Today that’s going to change!  Yesterday in the mail I received one of my newest purchases for my Phillies/Harry Kalas collection.  This HK card comes from 2012 Panini Cooperstown Baseball.  It may very well be just a base card, but I needed it.  I wish the Voices of Summer cards had parallels, but they don’t.  I guess I can be glad that HK has a new card at all since he doesn’t have that many.  I really like this product even though it’s non-licensed.  Teaming up with the Baseball Hall of Fame was a nice approach.  The back has a nicely detailed bio about HK too.  Here is what it has to say:

“OUTTA HERE!”

Kalas won the hearts of Philadelphia baseball fans with his easygoing style, his mellow, baritone voice and his deep devotion to the team.  His signature home run call – “Swing… and a long drive… this ball is outta here!”- was as familiar as cheesesteaks and the Liberty Bell in the City of Brotherly Love.  “Harry the K” called the first game at Veterans Stadium in 1971, the first game at the new park in 2004 and three World Series (1983, 1993, 2008).  He was also the voice of NFL Films.

Card of the Day: Matt Ryan / Harry Douglas 2008 UD SP Rookie Threads Multi Marks Dual Auto

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Harry Kalas Makes Cameo Appearance In ’89 Upper Deck

The Phillies 2012 season has officially come to an end.  They finished the year 81-81 which seemed like a dream a few months ago.  If you’ve been reading Sports Card Info for awhile, you know what a fan I am of the Phillies former broadcaster Harry Kalas.  Harry Kalas doesn’t have a ton of cards, which in one way makes him easy to collect.  But then on the other hand the cards he does have rarely show up for sale and when they do be prepared to open your wallets.

Here is a little discovery I made today:

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At first glance, it looks like your standard Mike Schmidt 1989 Upper Deck #407 base card.  Look harder.  Who is that interviewing Schmidt?  It sure looks like Harry Kalas to me.  ’89 Upper Deck Baseball has been released for 23 years, and its still shooting out surprises.

For those of you interested, here is my Harry Kalas wantlist:

  • Harry Kalas 1984 Tastykake Phillies Broadcasters #7
  • Harry Kalas/Gary Maddox/Richie Ashburn 1988 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #39
  • Harry Kalas/Chris Wheeler/Andy Musser 1990 Phillies Tastykake Phillies Announcers #35
  • 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game Mike Schmidt/Harry Kalas Announcing Greats Dual Auto #’ed/25
  • Harry Kalas 2004 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black #’ed/100
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Black Stitch #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas 2005 UD Sweet Spot Classic Signatures Auto Red-Blue Stitch #’ed/40
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Premium Back Redemption Sketches #’ed/1
  • Harry Kalas Sportkings Series E Top 50 Broadcasters Cut Signature #’ed/1