Saturday, June 23, 2018

Be back tomorrow

Been almost a month since I have posted. Lot going on, but I will get a post up tomorrow with some updates on a lot of stuff and plans for the future. Missing the 2x3 headquarters - it's all dusty here. And is the Jimmy Hoffa in the corner behind that stack of '92 Upper Deck?

Ok - talk to you tomorrow. Until then, here's a card that even Prince would say "damn - get a real mustache".

Mustache in training....


Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Break it down!!

I think I have only ever participated in one group break online with all those breakers you can purchase from via ebay or directly on their sites. Main reason is the price. Yeah, sure, whatever - I don't get all the extra cards, and hopefully I get what I want, but I still think many breakers are overpriced. My opinion - I could be wrong.

Survey SAYS....!
But when bloggers do group breaks, I try to get in on the ones I find fit my budget and fill needs in the Sox box. Been is a couple over the past months, and it's about time I thank the breakers and share some spoils. First up, Colby from Cardboard Collections did what he called an affordable group break. The price was right, and it almost didn't happen, so I grabbed a 2nd slot to get it filled. Along with my Sox, I picked the Pirates, and my random teams ended up being the Indians and Tigers. A lot of AL Central for me.


There were three boxes in the break: 2002 Topps Gallery and 2004 Topps Clubhouse Collection. Colby also threw in some bonuses, one being a blaster of Diamond Kings. I think I pulled the whole Sox team set from Gallery, along with that sweet Kendall in a throwback.


The Clubhouse Collection was a hit per pack product. I grabbed the Pirates since there was a Clemente relic, but nothing from my other teams. Fortunately, if you are going to be shut out of 75% of your teams, when you score twice on your main, it's a joyous thing. I look forward to your next affordable break, Colby.

The other recent was run by new daddy Chris at Nacho Grande. Chris called it retro, breaking six total boxes: 02 Fleer Triple Crown, 12 Coopertown, 97 Sports Illustrated, 09 Bowman Chrome, and both a 98 and 12 box of Gold Label. I had my White Sox and the Brewers (blah). Chris threw in some random packs as well, so let's look at the good stuff.


Two for the player collections. I need another Paulie from my throwback binders. I really would like to see the Sox bring back those 1917 uniforms. One would have thought they could have made an appearance for a few games last year. Sigh.....


These really constitute my only "hits" from the break. A black foil Moncada, a city variation of Abbott, and a needed Big Hurt, if only a class 1. Not sure when the next time Chris will do another break, being he had to go and be a dad (FOOL!). Seriously - I wish nothing but the absolute best for your whole family. Fatherhood just gets better and better.

Unless your baby grows up to be a degenerate.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Them's the bre.....wait, what's this?

As I was about to put together another amazingly witty and humorous post....


......Well, it's got a lot of laughs and smart thoughts....


....Which, by that, means that people could get a chuckle or two while reading, or gain insight into new....


.....it is my first post in nine days.


Thanks for the support, Michelle. Anyway, as I was saying, I was going to write up one post, until I took a look in a folder and realized I had a tons of scans within that are a few months old, and I venture to say the actual mailer was from sometime in 2017. Let's do a little cleaning, and a lot of thanking, to the sender - Matt from Once A Cub. I am long overdue with a return package (where have we heard that before), and Matt really dropped a hell of a bomb on me with this mailer.

Image heavy post for you dial up users. Also, how about an A/S/L for you dial up users as well.


See that really, REALLY pathetic box on the left side of my baker's dozen commons? The one that has a crapload of empty space? These eight cards made all the white space. I'll need to get eight more into the list. It's not like I don't have filler for the wants. That Garcia at the top is the unique combo of a throwback and a bunt. Considering it was the longest on the list, I put it in both collections on Zistle (RIP). Who knows if a 2nd will come into my possession.


Double Plays. Vizcaino is from Spring Training I am sure. I think the Miller is too, though that could be old Shea in the background. Never been to the park.


Throwbacks as well. I still need to finish the Franchise Flashback set from 2015 Opening Day. I hope the Dodgers bring back the proper powder blues in the future.


Yummy, yummy bunting. If you look close, that Garvey is nowhere near a bunt. However, Matt dropped a note on that card stating "terrible bunting form". I agree. And humor gets it a pocket in the binder.


Sox box!!!! I'll take any Sale rookies out there. You have your standard Pacific scan, which means you cannot see anything on the card in the Magglio. Nice TRU purple (RIP)   ʞıupǝspod ʇʇoɔs :ɐ


These were new additions to their respective player collections. Crede pre high cuffs.


Matt also sent a ton of cards as possible inclusions to the Hidden Gems binder. So let's see who made the cut in each image I scanned.
Bolton: nice image of a ferris wheel in the back ground, but no
Alou: Interesting position, but didn't make the cut. But I may have to revist that decision
Altuve: Nah - bad cropping
Fernandex: ditto
Rodriguez: Also bad cropping, but almost was forgiven
Wolf: Currently no, but another I may revisit


Reddick: Nah. Better for a Stadium Club release.
Ramirez: Maybe for the bad shop job, but no.
Ladd: Currently no, but most likely the first of the revisits to make it. Great afro
Gibson: In. No brainer
Cole: Tempting, but passed. Composition is all off
Buhner: YES! Wait - no. Rules are it has to be on the front of the card. Damn rules....


Guiterrez: Perfect framing - it's makes the cut.
Brett: Are you even asking? How amazing is that photo????? No brainer - in.
Logan: TOTALLY IN!!!! I need to get that card TTM'd.
Cabrera: Currently on the fence. You would think it would be an easy in, but I wish it was not so zoomed in. More green would have made this card.
Blanco: This. This is what I mean about too zoomed in. Plenty of tan to encompass the subjects. It's in.

And a few last randoms words:


Score Gold Rush scans like total shit.


Bunting looks great, no matter how busy the design is.


Matt buried me in Panini Diamond Kings from the White Sox. I'll find a place for the dupes.


BOOM! Hits. The red GQ relics were numbered to 50 if I recall. Trey is currently in AA with the Birmingham Barons. Garcia is a sparkle variation. It's on the bat barrel under hit arm pit. And Buehrle is just an awesome relic of an awesome pitcher.

So a very belated thanks, Matt. You done my collection and my scanner well. No side eye from me.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

BBA: Sign up the team


So the latest Blog Bat Around was suggested by Zippy over at Torren' Up Cards. If you have seen others, I won't get into too much detail. Just click the link if you want the ground rules. Let's just right into it.

Catcher:

From the start, I have a tough call with the backstop. But I am going to go with a guy that has 13 rings, 18 All Star appearances and 3 MVPs. There was none better during his era.

Honorable Mention: Gary Carter

First Base:

Going with Moose at first. Five World Series rings and an 8 time All Star - it's tough to put any of the other autos I have above him, even if their might be some room for argument.

Honorable Mentions: Paul Konerko, Frank Thomas, Pete Rose

Second Base:

This one is tough. There just isn't enough hard data to decide if the honorable mention could take this spot. Different eras and different leagues. If we Iguchi had a full MLB career, who knows. But I am going with the HOF member with 9 All Star appearances, even if the other has a WS ring.

Honorable Mention: Tadahito Iguchi

Shortstop:

Weakest position I have in the autograph binder, so let's go with BoSox fav Bucky "F***ing" Dent. He is a three time All Star with 2 World Series rings, nabbing the MVP award in one of those two fall classics.

Honorable Mentions: Alexei Ramirez, Ozzie Guillen

Third Base:

The only "not on card" auto in this post, since I own it, he has to got the spot. You would be hard pressed to find anyone that played 3rd base better. You can argue Schmidt's batting numbers, but position wise, Robinson set the bar everyone is trying to beat: 18 All Star appearances, 16 Gold Gloves, 2 World Series wins, an AL MVP and a World Series MVP, and a first ballot HOFer with 92% of the vote.

Honorable Mentions: Robin Ventura, Joe Crede

Outfield:

Two of these are no brainers for the readers. Kaline's HOF career with 18 All Star games, a World Series win and 10 Gold Gloves. Then you have Raines with seven mid summer appearances, 3 WS rings and 4 times stolen base leader. And when you see a few of the honorable mentions, you my question my selection of Harold Baines. But Harold deserves a spot in the hall (in my opinion) and would be the third player in the grass on my team. Six All Star appearances and a ring in 2005 - he gets the third spot.

Honorable Mentions: Minnie Minosa, Juan Pierre, Boog Powell, Aaron Rowand, Sandy Alomar

DH/PH:

He didn't make first base cuz I could put the Big Hurt here. Why are you even reading this? Of all the roster spots, this was the easiest.

Honorable Mentions: Harold Baines

Starting Pitcher:

Before I even post an image, let go with the Honorable Mentions, cuz holy shit - you try and pick from this list:

Steve Stone, Chris Sale, Jack McDowell, Ralph Branca, Curt Simmons, Clayton Kershaw, Mark Buehrle, Billy Pierce, Orlando Hernandez


Ultimately, I am going with Bullet Bob. Sure - his career is not much. Just 9 All Star games, 2 World Series rings with the MVP award in both, another MVP award in the regular season, 9 Gold Gloves, 2 Cy Young awards and a no hitter. BIG WHOOP! In the future, there is a chance Kershaw could take his spot in the rotation, but maybe not. I can really only think of a couple guys that would take this position that sign and can be easier autographs to acquire: Koafax or Ryan. But unless luck shines upon me, or one of your readers are generous (please don't be - I could never repay the kindness), Gibson will be my starter.

Middle Relief:

Yes, one of these was more a starter and the other a closer, but they did have some relief appearances, so that is my excuse to work them out of the pen. El Duque had a famous relief appearance during the 2005 playoffs, getting the ChiSox out of a bases loaded/no one out jam. Foulke was part of the famous White Flag trade and worked with Bobby Howry in closing out games in the 90s.

Honorable Mentions: Cliff Politte, Brandon McCarthy, Addison Reed, Erik Johnson, Gerry Staley. Alex Colome

Closer:

This spot is probably the easiest to debate, and some of the honorable mentions could get the nod. I'm going with Roberto, though. Of all the closer autographs, he has the most saves, and his stats are equal or better then the ones mentioned below. But I would put any of the players mentioned here on the mound in the 9th with confidence.

Honorable Mentions: Bobby Thigpen, Keith Foulke, Dustin Hermanson

So there you have my team. Ya know - I bet one of the readers of my post, or any of the others BBAs, has a Strat-O-Matic and can find out which blogger has the best autograph team. Someone with plenty of time and no life should really get on that.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Clearing the pile

I while back, I mentioned how I have a stack of incoming packages at the edge of my desk that needs attention. Less because of the sorting and far more because I need to say thanks. Failure to post and give props to those that took the time to send me awesome rectangles sure gives the impressions I am an ungrateful bastard.

100% more baseball cards. 100% less Nazis.
Let's have at it. Starting with an oldie but a goodie. Many, MANY moons ago Dennis at Too Many Verlanders had a giveaway of stuff he just didn't want. I jumped at a single item, but Dennis being Dennis (ie too cool) included a couple packs of UD Heroes. Highlights?


But the one item I asked for was an old Starting Lineup figure.


That little beauty sits on a brick from Old Comiskey in my room. Pepper passed away a few years back, so TTMing that card is unfortunately not an option, but she has autos on eBay if I so desired.

Peter from Baseball Every Night dropped a PWE on me a couple months (or more) back.


Remember when Bowman came back with the oversized cards? Yeah - that was a mistake. Peter also dropped some current year cards on me. I was toying with a Moncada PC, but 5 seconds later I came to my senses and decided against it. Thanks Peter.

Trevor from Bump and Run selected a stack in the TTS giveaway (it is boxed up with 3 others and should go out this week). But in the kindness of Trevor, he sent over cards feeling like he needed to return the favor. They were NOT needed, but certainly not refused, either.


90's inserts - amirite?


Some binder and set needs. I will complete that 2008 UD set someday. Not a lot of those in dime boxes, unfortunately. Always nice to see the Padres brown uniforms on cards. Someday, San Diego...


And a few current Sox, and that sweet, strangely thick Rowand gray swatch for the PC. Thanks Trevor.

Last, but not least, is Gavin from Baseball Card Breakdown. Curiously, his note in the package didn't comment about my manliness or other power I possess. Just a simple "here". So what does here include?


Atomic refractors and a blue Fulmer. Yes, I now collect Joey Bats. If you have dupes, I want them. I'll explain later.


I lot of shiny. I put all these together cuz I wanted to see how shitty the scan would look. Except for the refractors, I was not disappointed.


VINTAGE! That '63 was a card that was not on my list, which means I will have to shuffle a ton of cards in the vintage team set binders. I have built in extra card spaces in the pages, so hopefully it will not be a lot of "shift one to the right" moves.


A couple for the Crede binder, and a sweet (not sick) Petrick patch. This is the 4th relic of Ben's in my collection. And as beautiful as a relic is, the best you can get from a Gavin mailing is his customs.


Boom. The back of the Pierce makes it look like a picture frame you would hang on the wall or set on a mantle. And the Ozzie....well, that speaks for itself. Another fine custom from the episode Homer At the Bat. Thanks Gavin.

Again - a hearty gratitude to all you for the great cardboard. Just a few thousand stacks or less to go.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Sucked in.

It's not my fault. I was just fine the way my life was going. This is all Topps doing! BASTARDS!


I drank the Kool-Aid.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Hidden Gems: It's a little different

One of the constants through baseball cards, into the 70's, was the photo selections. Posed, whether a head shot, pretending to pitch, pretending to hit, pretending to field... In the early 70's, Topps did get some action photos into the sets, and that joined in with the posed head shots, pitching shots, batting shots, etc.

But I think when Upper Deck joined the game, they really changed it up. Sure, a lot of the norms remained on the card board, but they started throwing in images that I guess you could day humanized the players. Far more candid images, like signing autographs, laughing with your team mate, with kids, changing roles..... You get the idea.


Most of Frank Thomas' cards are of him doing what he did best: beat the ever loving snot out of a baseball. If not at the plate, he was at first. On occasion, he was sitting in the dugout or standing on deck. But here's a Frank you don't see. Let's call him Chill Frank. Possibly stretching, but I am certain he is just relaxing in the grass during pre game warmups. Maybe he is waiting for his turn in the cage, or he just completed it. At this point in his career, Frank was afforded some luxury. He is still larger than life, taking up most of the card real estate. But it's still Frank Thomas - who you know, but slightly different.

By 2012, Garbage has over 20 years in the business with a few critically acclaimed albums, band struggles and break ups, reunions and then a continued drive forward. They have garnered numerous nominations and a few awards (LeAnn Rimes - really?). Garbage is one of my fav bands and are probably best known for one of their first single releases, Stupid Girl.


Fun fact, they are all pretty drunk in this video thanks to a few bottles of wine. Anyway, it's a great song all around with a driving beat and a slick bass line hook. We jump ahead to 2012, Garbage reforms and remade their first big hit, and it sounds quite different.


The drum beat is still there, but more subdued. The bass line is all but gone from the forefront (except for the 2nd verse), with a hard, heavy guitar sound just blowing out your ears. It's the same song you know, but different. And I like it a lot.