I was thiiiiiis close to making it home under budget. Seriously. And I even would have skipped the third day of the show.
But as fate would have it, I guess going back wasn't the worst thing in the world. First, let me flash back to last year's show. I blew the budget out of the water, but landed some of the centerpieces of my collection thanks to a fellow Pirates super-collector I met named Todd. He was retiring and downsizing, and in the process parting with some pieces. But that was supposed to be a one-time deal, so I was shocked to see him back again this year.
We chatted for quite a while Friday, but just about all the stuff he had brought with him were the same items he had last year. The prices were still good, but wall space is a finite thing, and there was nothing that screamed "must have" to me.
So fast forward to about 15 minutes before the show is set to close on Saturday. I was squaring up on a couple deals, and as I headed for the door I made a stop by Todd's table just to say bye and to make plans to get together sometime at PNC Park.
|Devil Rays Inaugural baseball|
Ok, so here's the part that cost me my Sunday. I'm a sucker for a deal. Don't judge.
|Dock Ellis Three Rivers ball|
I consider myself pretty well versed in the various oddball Pirates memorabilia out there. Yet somehow I had no idea they made a commemorative baseball for the final season at PNC Park.
|Bert Blyleven World Series baseball w/ Game 5 winner inscription|
|Chuck Tanner WS baseball with 1979 World Series Champs inscription|
But the one thing I can't resist is unique memorabilia. I just love having pieces in my collection that are one of a kind, or damn close to it. And from what I was seeing, this box was full of just that.
|Dave Parker 1979 All-Star game ball - Parker won the MVP and made one of the most impressive throws of all time|
Lucky for me, I was saved by the bell as the show closed down. I told Todd I would be back the next morning to see what we could figure out.
|Jason Kendall and Brian Giles 2000 All-Star game ball|
|multi-player signed ball from Pirates Fantasy Camp instructors. Matt's favorite Bob walk is at the bottom of the panel, but check out the signature 4 above that.|
|Don Robinson 1979 World Series baseball with Game 2 Winner inscription.|
|The Original Frank Thomas|
|Nellie Briles, 1971 World Series Game 5, 4-0, 2 hit shutout, base hit and rbi! Inscription on Three Rivers ball.|
|Sweet spot from Briles ball above|
|2000 Pirates team ball|
While I would have been perfectly happy to have walked home Saturday without spending any extra money, and having a day at home certainly would have been nice, it's almost impossible for me to pass up the chance to add some great and unique items. Finding the space to display everything? Well, that's sort of a different story. But one step at a time, right?