Monday, January 25, 2016

Bunting will drive you crazy

* I'm at home with bronchitis.  This post has been a work in progress over the last 8 hours.  I scanned, went to bed, cropped, went to bed, uploaded, took a nap, and now I'm hoping to write something semi-coherent. Here goes nothing.

I spent a grand total of 10 minutes looking for cards of Rangers bunting.  I thought it would be easy, but after going through quite a few cards, I only managed to find four.  Let's take a look and find out if a Bunt is worthwhile or not. (If you're not interested in these Bunting cards, you still might want to read to the bottom).

First up is this lovely 1993 Pinnacle David Hulse.  I really cropped it too close for you to get the true effect of chipping on the black border.  David played parts of 5 seasons in the majors from 1992-1996.  The first three years were with my Texas Rangers and the last three were with some Milwaukee club.

David had 14 sac bunts and 19 bunt singles in his time with Texas.  He also had 69 career steals including a high of 29 in 114 games in 1993.  He was pretty quick.

Darryl Hamilton played 13 seasons in big leagues, but only one with Texas.  It was 1996, the year of the Rangers first ever playoff appearance.  Darryl had 7 sacrifice bunts and 6 bunt singles in 1996.  

Our final bunt card is this nifty Mark McLemore.  Mark was one of my favorites when he was a Ranger and he still works for the team doing post game and sometimes in game TV work.  Mark played for 19 years, 5 with Texas.  He had 39 sacrifice bunts and 16 bunt singles for the Rangers.  He also stole 83 bases in Texas and 292 for his career. Not too shabby.

The thing about the Bunting cards above, even given the stats, is that there is no way to tell if any of these was a bunt single OR a sacrifice.  They could just has easily, and honestly, more likely have been foul balls or run of the mill outs.  Not knowing makes me a little crazy since I love to be able to figure out the game.  

However, I wrote all of that, not to talk about bunting cards, but to talk about BUNT cards.  You know, the Topps app where you get digital cards.  I jumped in head first last year, even though it's the most inane thing really.   I spent a little money early on, spent a little more in the playoffs ended up winning one of the REAL LIVE ACTUAL PRIZES!  The top 100 Bunt players in the Playoffs won a real prize to cover the sorrow of having all those digital cards you could never get your hands on.  My prize for 24th place was this:

It's a beautiful hand painted bat from the Mitchell bat company.  The kind that sell for $245 on their website.  I got my choice of bats and picked the one that was most patriotic.  It says it's #2, but I don't know what that means.  Anyway, playing Bunt is a beatdown if you've every tried to do it competitively.  The problem is you don't just set a lineup.  You can move players in and out of the lineups ALL DAY AND NIGHT depending on their game.  You basically have to watch every game on the computer and move hitters in when they homer or steal or triple or blah blah blah.  It's mind numbingly hard to do it and be competitive.  

That's why I won't be doing it again.  But I'll always have this beauty to remind me how it feels to beat your head against the proverbial wall and win a real prize.  


  1. Impressed that you finished so high up. Congrats! The bat is really cool.

  2. Congrats on the good finish (and feel better too)!

  3. Get better. You should have had Brett Butler on your team. I can come up with 25 bunting cards just by pulling his.

    Topps Bunt? I'll never figure out the appeal of that thing. Thank you for confirming I had pegged it correctly.

  4. Oh man that bat is fantastic! Sorry you are not feeling well, get better soon.

    I still haven't looked at Topps Bunt yet. The concept still seems foreign to me.

  5. David Hulse? Y'all can have him. Now Darryl Hamilton (RIP), that's a good "some Milwaukee team" member. :-)

  6. Hope you feel better... and congratulations on winning the beautiful bat.