Inspiration Behind One Million Cubs Project

Most ideas are not original, rather using the same premise from something already in existence. The One Million Cubs Project is no different. It was an idea born by not one or two projects in place by others. This project was spawned by four separate ideas.

First, the thought was born by an overwhelming amount of trading cards in my collection. Many of which are commons and hard to sell even in large lots. Initially the plan was to eventually sort the nearly 1.5 million cards in this collection and slowly list the entire inventory on Sportlots.

Over time that plan was foiled because thousands upon thousands of these cards range from 1979 through the 1990’s and cards from these sets will sit on Sportlots without a single purchase. During my time on Sportlots, I’ve taken the hours to sort and list thousands of cards from 1982 Topps only to sell $0.36 worth of cards in a year from that set.

So what do I do with all these unwanted cards? Team traders was the answer. Team trading has been an off and on hobby of mine since 1998 when I would make a few trades with people from the classified ads of Sports Collectors Digest or Beckett or Tuff Stuff. It only got easier with the dawn of social media and blogs.

That was the base of the project. Trading unwanted cards from other teams for Chicago Cubs cards. Acquiring one million Cubs cards was still not the plan.

Sorting through some 1991 and 1992 Conlon Collection baseball cards is when the plan was starting to simmer. As I pulled aside the Cubs cards there are several players in the set in which it is the only card of that player. Cards of obscure Cubs players have always intrigued me, which is why I read with much interest the blog of Tony Burbs.

Tony is collecting a card of every Cubs player from their all-time roster. Maybe this could be my aim with these Conlon Collection cards, my affinity for the Larry Fritsch “One Year Wonders” sets, in addition to my love for the Rookies App on my iPhone creating custom cards.

But I’ll leave that project to Tony, and I’ll just hoard Cubs cards. My second inspiration has always been a blog read for me. The Wrigley Wax blog has been online for several years. Each day, the blogger posts about cards from his Cubs collection. It could be acquiring pieces for player collections, purchasing team sets, or a piece about random cards from his collection. With the One Million Cubs Project, I will be borrowing ideas from Wrigley Wax.

By this time, I had started to conjure up the idea of collecting toward a milestone. Since I have more than a million cards and most are unwanted, it would be great to trade them for Cubs. Swapping cards and making a million….Cubs cards.

Collecting one million Cubs cards seems like a crazy idea, and it probably is. However it is not as crazy as the third blog that inspired this project. Corey Stackhouse is attempting to collect every Tim Wallach card. You may not think that’s crazy, because many collectors attempt to complete a player’s card run. But that’s not what Corey is attempting to do. No, he is attempting to collect EVERY Tim Wallach card, like all three million (just a blind estimate) 1988 Topps cards that were printed of Wallach (and others).

In the end, the One Million Cubs Project was hatched from these three blogs and will have similar posts and ideas from these three.

So, who wants to trade?

Introducing The One Million Cubs Baseball Card Project

More than a million cards have accumulated in my collection. Throughout the time I have collected, since around 1987, Chicago Cubs baseball cards have almost always been my target.

Multiple times over the years my collecting habits have changed, but holding on to Cubs cards has almost always survived my different collecting direction.

Over the past two years breaking boxes and cases has taken precedence, and of course I hold aside the Cubs from these breaks. Buying large collections and lots is another focus. The latter is how I have accumulated almost 1.5 million trading cards.

About 60,000 cards are listed in my Sportlots store and a few hundred are posted on EBay. What about the rest? More than a million lonely cards just sitting…and sitting…and sitting.

It was time for a change. And that is what led me to the one million Cubs project. The ultimate goal is to collect a million Cubs cards while simultaneously trading off my million extra cards.

How will I do this? I would like to conduct bulk trades in medium flat rate boxes, but will also conduct smaller trades.

At this time I have begun cataloging my Cubs collection. My estimate is somewhere in the neighborhood of 75,000 Cubs cards. So far I have about 600 entered into my spreadsheet. A new blog highlighting this project will be introduced in the coming days, including the two blogs that were the inspiration for the Million Cubs Project.

Also, follow the project on Twitter @onemillioncubs

Please let me know if you want to trade.