Friday, April 30, 2010
Here in Dallas it looks something like this.
The Dallas Cowboys went 11-5 and won their division. Playoff payoff...nope.
The Dallas Stars went 37-31-14 and finished dead last in the NHL's Pacific Division. To add insult to injury, Stars fan favorite Mike Modano may be leaving/retiring. Playoff payoff....maybe next year.
The Dallas Mavericks just finished the regular season 55-27, their 10th straight year of 50+ wins. They got handled by the Spurs in the first round of the playoffs 4games to 2. Playoff payoff...not really.
That leaves us with the Texas Rangers. I won't say that my favorite time of the year is when the Rangers are the only game in town, but it does keep me focused on the game I love the most. Of course the Rangers are 10-12 and already have as many blown saves as converted saves (5). They are only 1.5 games out of the division lead.
People around here are really quick to lose interest in baseball if the Rangers aren't playing well and I expect to hear the Cowboys talk start up in earnest any day now. The local sport radio station will be talking Cowboys. The local papers will be talking Cowboys. There is nothing worse than seeing an off-season Cowboys story on the front page of the sports page while the Rangers get relegated to page 2. Such is life in what will always be a football town and football state.
I'm not complaining about being a 4 sport town (well, we're spread out so it's more like a 4 sport region). I just wish the Rangers got a little more love.
So, what's it like in your city?
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
My mother-in-law, bless her soul, will occasionally pick up a few random packs of cards or even a blaster for me while she's shopping. I appreciate it, I really do. It's something even my wife won't do and it's always nice to be gifted cards you can't or won't buy for yourself. She doesn't know anything about cards so she just picks up whatever catches her eye at the time. It has been a while since she's done it, butwhen I made a trip over there yesterday, she handed me 5 packs of cards. I literally blew the dust off the packs and asked where she got them. Of course, she didn't remember, but she said they had been in her garage for a "few months".
The U.S. Civil War was my primary focus in college and I have a decent collection of books covering the topic. There were a number of cards from the packs that covered the Civil War and this "The Treaty at Appomattox Court House" was one of them.
My son was excited to see this card of FDR. I can't believe I'm saying this, but if anyone has any dupes of the presidents, I'd be willing to make a sportscard trade for them so my son can try to get the complete collection. I'm not even sure of the checklist at this point.
The last and best??? card I got was this one:
An Andrew Johnson Letter Patch #'d out of 50. Seriously, the manu-patches are OUT OF CONTROL. Now, if you could get me one of these that Johnson signed, maybe at some Rookie President's Photo Shoot, then that would be something. I'd like to see the Presidential Jersey this was modeled after. I got another good laugh from this card, but my son thought it was "so cool Dad!" So it looks like I may have another collector in the house, even if he's not into baseball cards. I don't know if packsearchers were hitting this product, but they missed this one.
I'm not a big fan of graded cards (modern ones especially) and the number one thing I think about when I see Robin Ventura is Nolan Ryan making Ventura sorry he ever left the batter's box. That said, one way to get on my good side is to send something for my kid and the kid loves anything USA related. I haven't given him this card yet, but he's going to love it. He'll think it's super special since it's in it's own protective case.
This 2007 Turkey Red Ivan Rodriguez is no Turkey. I like the TRs, especially when they show a little action. I can live with Pudge in a Tigers uni, but I'm not looking forward to seeing the first cards of him with the Nationals....meh.
Here's the reason I delayed posting the trade while waiting for some sort of positive contribution by Frank Francisco. Last night, Frankie got his first save of the season by pitching the final inning in a win over the White Sox. Thanks for rejoining the party Frankie....keep it up. The design on this card is terrible, the sticker is atrocious, but Frankie's sig is decent and it's my first auto from him.
This is a new addition to my Johnny Bench PC (that's player collection all you haters...lol). The 1971 Topps N.L. Home Run Leaders with Bench riding high with 45 homers. It's dinged and creased and damaged...but so is every catcher I ever saw and it gives this card some character. This card looks like it was just involved in a play at the plate and I love it.
If you don't believe in the power of the blog-nation, just put out that you're starting a new collection and see what happens. I posted that I was going to start collecting Washington Senators (the ones that moved to Texas) and bloggers have blown me away with their generosity. Marck has sent over a few Senators and this 1966 Topps Johnny Orsino is the latest. The fact that he's a catcher is a bonus.
Johnny didn't make the trip alone.
Woody Held, circa 1965, made the trip from Florida with Orson. What a great name! I seriously need to make a wantlist/checklist for the Senators. I like these '65 cards so much, I'm thinking about adding them to my collection goals along with the '73s.
Marck, thanks so much for the incredible cards. You know I'll be on the lookout for more goodies to send your way.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
2010 Heritage Lance Berkman--I believe I've made it fairly clear that I think this set is boring. I'm still trying to put the base set together so checkout my wantlist on the side or go help out the Troll who put up his list as well.
She also included a card that is well traveled. So far it has been to the following places around the blog-nation.
and now Dallas, TX
Trade Bait started this 2009 Goodwin Curtis Granderson on a barnstorming tour around the country. I do believe I'll be sending this one on it's first overseas trip. Where would that be you ask? Stay tuned to Trade Bait's blog to find out.
Sarah, thanks for the cards and including me on the "Grand" tour.
I have a choice of 6 different Wally Worlds to shop at depending on the direction I drive. Five of those are within a 10 mile radius of my house and I pass another one on the way to work every day. The card aisles at all 6 are very different. I wondered about that until I happened to stop by the card aisle one day and the vendor was there stocking the shelves. I asked her why the stores varied so much and she said it all depends on the vendor who supplies a particular store. Of the 5 stores closest to me, she only stocked one and said the other 4 had two different vendors. The store she stocks has a limited selection and so do two of the other stores. One store has a good selection and one store is the one where I find discounted blasters. The vendor told me she "knows" some of the local "collectors" because they will sometimes be waiting for her to arrive at a store and will start weighing the packs with a scale. I laughed and said those guys are called "packsearchers" and most legitimate collectors consider them the scum of the earth because they aren't collecting, they are poaching to sell the "hits" on ebay for a buck or two. As you might imagine, she didn't care about the packsearchers until I told her I don't buy packs if I can tell a packsearcher has been rummaging through the boxes. (That's not true, but don't tell her!) It always comes down to money and she seemed upset that they might be costing her some sales.
I like to shop at the store that carries discounted blasters. Sometime late last year I picked up a discounted 2007 Topps Turkey Red blaster and I bought 4 or 5 discounted blasters of 2008 Stadium Club. I'm always checking there for good stuff. Usually, it's picked over, but sometimes, like the Turkey Red, I find a box hidden behind other stuff.
One more thing the vendor told me is that I should talk to the vendors if I get a chance. It never hurts to let them know what cards your most interested in because they might be able to find something different when they stock up.
I know a lot of people refuse to buy retail. I get it. I don't blame them. I also understand why some people buy retail. It's more widely available and generally cheaper. My local card shop is so overpriced, I only buy supplies and the occasional older pack from him.
I am looking forward to buying a couple of Hobby boxes of 2010 Ginter and participating in this year's version of Gint-A-Cuffs. I'll be buying those on-line though...last year the shop was about$40 higher than the on-line shops on a box of A&G.
Monday, April 26, 2010
I was really surprised Jordan Shipley went before Colt McCoy in the draft and sorry they went to Cincy and Cleveland. The upside is maybe they'll get some playing time on those teams. My son really liked these two cards.
This will be his second Tony Romo jersey card. I think I'll save this one as a little reward after the State-wide testing is finished at school this week.
I haven't been back into collection long enough to be jaded by the Turkey Reds. I still like 'em and this 2010 Topps Turkey Red Cal is very nice.
Julio Borbon is smiling on this 2010 Heritage Chrome card because he's been hitting a little bit lately and that gives him a chance to do what he does best...run!
Jeremy, thanks again! I hope you enjoyed the cards I sent you!
Oooh, a 1966 Topps Gaylord Perry's brother card.....I mean Jim Perry card.
Hey, I couldn't resist using the other code after that and this came up next:
A 1971 Phil Hennigan. Not too shabby and way better than a 2007 Adam Lind. Nothing personal Adam.
On a side note, I've completed 30 trades where I made the offer and probably another 5-10 where someone made me an offer. I'm all for making trades and you never know what you can get unless you make an offer. I did get a good laugh over the weekend when someone offered me a 2007 Ryan Howard for my 1952 Bruce Edwards.
Ok, enough rambling. Vote in the poll if you want to...and bring on Series 2.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
In each instance that I found where Finley attempted to score on a play at home against the Dodgers in 1991, he was successful. This play highlights a great example of what a catcher has to put up with and I wonder if Gary Carter, playing in his 18th season, might have been less inclined to turn away from the contact earlier in his career.
This is a 2001 Leaf Limited Todd Helton Lumberjacks bat card, #354/500.
They show the actual bat the ultra small piece of bat came from and I think they could have gotten 1000 or more bat pieces this size out of that bat. At least with the photo, I know they had access to a Todd Helton bat to get this piece. Still, I'd like to know a little about the bat like when it was used.
The card manufacturers have to do something to give some value to the "hits" they put in the products. Knowing more about the hits we pull is one way to do that.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
The old man practically threw this card at me. He hated the Cubs and my friend, who made more trips back to the old man's house, got a lot of old Cubs cards. I didn't know who this guy was, but I took the card anyway. Even to this day, I don't know much about him other than his numbers, so I don't appreciate him the way I should. When I received this card the best thing about it was it was my first card from my birth year. It would be the only 1970 card I had for a number of years.
1970 Topps Billy Williams
Billy Williams played 18 years in the majors, 16 with the Cubs and 2 with the A's. He had some amazing numbers. He scored 1,410 runs, had 2,711 hits, smacked 426 homers and drove in 1,475 RBIs while hitting.290. Throw in 90 steals and that's a real nice career.
Williams was the 1961 Rookie of the Year and a 6 time All-Star. He hit 20 or more homers 14 times with a career high of 42 in 1970. Williams was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1987 by the BBWAA.
First up, Rangers circa 1974.
I can't explain it, but I really like the Dave Nelson card. Maybe because it's so different from any of the other Rangers cards from this set. David sent a total of 19 different 1974 Topps Rangers. All I can say is WOW! I think he more than doubled my collection of ' 74 cards.
1971 Topps Paul Casanova, Senators. That is a new addition to my small, but fun collection of Senators cards. Casanova is a great name...I wonder if he's mentioned in the Great Sports Name Hall of Fame?
1963 Topps Bob Schmidt. Let's run down the list. Vintage, check. Senator, check. Catcher in the "position", check. I have two copies of this great card now, one in hand, the other in my Topps MCG portfolio. I love it.
Friday, April 23, 2010
I've been around long enough to know that one player can't make all the difference, but the Rangers need Kinsler back on the field and at the plate. He can't do anything about Frank Francisco throwing BP to hitters, but he could be the spark they need to get back on track.
Chris Davis was hitting .188 with no homers and 1 RBI in 48 at bats this season.
The Rangers called up this guy to replace him:
Justin Smoak was hitting .326 with 2 homers and 5 RBIs through 14 games with the AAA club.
Smoak is scheduled to make his Major League Debut later today against Detroit.
Welcome to the Show Justin. Good luck!
Next week you should see stuff from:
No One's Going to Read this Blog
A Rookie (baseball) Card Collector
The Collective Troll.
Thanks in advance you three!
Thursday, April 22, 2010
That shot isn't goofy, it's creepy. Really, really creepy.
I like the red glove. A lot. That is so cool I want one.
This Checklist is the best action card I've seen from Heritage this year. Of course, it's a World Series Play at the Plate so that helps.
This Lance Parrish play at the plate is one of those with too little information to determine the when, who and result.
Matt Wieters is going to win this battle with Chone Figgins.
You have to love that effort from rookie Ike Davis of the Mets. Oh, to be young again....and talented.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
This nice Michael Young is from 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes and has an ultra rare grey swatch. Ok, the swatch isn't rare and I could probably build a Rangers road uni if I took all my grey swatches and sewed them together, but that's not the point. Thanks to Chris, I have another Young card I didn't have before.
The Rangers went on a crime spree against Tim Wakefield and Victor Martinez.
Elvis Andrus stole had 3 steals.
Nelson Cruz also had 3 steals.