Chaos and Kanji is the blog where I write about my adventures through Japan!

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Baseball Card Stores in Japan: Mint Kanda

Continuing my exploration of baseball card shops in Japan, I head towards (but not into) Akihabara. I'm now in Kanda, though far from Kanda Station. Mint Kanda is located just east of Jinbocho Station, a good walk north from the Imperial Palace area. Kanda is pronounced like panda, but with the Japanese "ah" instead of the "a" sound like "can".
 Let's start with the good stuff. Dancing Heroine is a card set devoted to the cheerleaders for all the baseball teams. I have a feeling I could please a lot of people by showing off every card in this set. I might just do that. Mint Kanda had the best price on this set, so I picked one up. There are autographs and other special cards but I have no interest in any of those. Thankfully, many of the stores (or customers) open up boxes of the stuff for the hits and the sets can then be sold off cheaply.
 As with most Mint locations, there are singles of recent set releases, including this BayStars team set.
 There is a foil parallel, just like every other BBM team set issued this year.
 Plus, one regular insert set. This one is titled Yokohama On Fire.
Mint Kanda had the best prices on most current Calbee singles so far. I picked up this checklist for 50 yen, (I think) completing my type collection for this year's release.

I believe every Mint has the same basic selection of current wax and boxes, some American releases, plenty of soccer (it's pretty popular right now), and game cards. The single cards and sets differ from location to location. Kanda doesn't have much space for single base cards, but they have a nice selection of cards in the display cases, some with decent prices. There are several large boxes of singles from BBM and Calbee, but there isn't much choice beyond that. You may have better luck at some of the other shops. The limited selection and lack of tourist attractions nearby makes this a location worth visiting only if you are a die-hard card shop fan. Similarly low prices on singles could be found at other card shops, and the unopened product is available elsewhere. This location is for local Kandians (I just made that up. Isn't it clever?) to get their hands on boxes without traveling to crowded Akihabara or taking the trip towards Ikebukuro. That said, I enjoyed spending time looking through the singles and some day might return to really dig deep into the boxes. 
Google Maps is your friend.
Mint Kanda is located at 3-14 Kanda Ogawamachi on the first floor. Look for the Mint "M" logo on the door when you're in the area. Really, you can't miss it. Just head down that street at the McDonalds (once you leave Yasukuni Dori, don't head down any other alleys; you should see Mint on the left hand side of the street with the arrows pointing to the upper right). The Kanda location is open noon to 8PM daily.


  1. Noon to 8PM. Now there is a business that understands that most of its customers are probably working from 0700-1700. If only more American businesses could grasp that fact!

  2. Yeah. Most stores actually make decent hours. I wrote on my other blog (Chaos and Kanji) about the post office - they can redeliver with a phone call, sometime within just a couple hours, as late as 9pm. However, banks and some other businesses follow extremely tight hours (9-3 or worse). And ATM fees and availability change depending on the day and time (many ATMs close somewhere around 9PM or have higher usage fees).