Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Two more from Ball Four

I forgot how to write. Like, completely. I'll probably get it back; this has happened before, although not to these extent. I just realized I wrote 'these' where 'this' belonged. I could have corrected it, but leaving it illustrates my point of where my head is iat.
Anyway, I collect cards of guys who were in Ball Four. I recently received two such cards. You just saw them.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

57 Joey Cora cards from Just Commons

It's been almost a couple weeks since I've checked in here. Last time I showed off the two Allen & Ginter's cards from my most recent Just Commons purchase. I got 94 other cards in that order, exactly half of which were of Joey Cora. The reason I got 57 Joey Cora cards was that they only had 57 Joey Cora cards. Of those 57, there was actually one I didn't already have a copy of; it's the 1998 Topps Chrome card pictured above, to the right of his regular Topps card from that year. There are still a handful or two of Joey Cora cards I know of that I don't have even one copy of, and undoubtedly numerous other oddballs and Japanese cards to be concerned with too. Fortunately, I'll be knocking a few more off the list this week. I have a couple-hundred Coras on the way, and at least three of them are new to me.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Back to the Just Commons order. Here's the team-by-team breakdown of the 57 Coras:
-Padres: 4
-White Sox: 27
-Mariners: 24
-Indians: 2

I would do a card-by-card look at how many of each I got this time like the guy you should be sending all your Tim Wallach cards to does, and what that brings me up to on each, but I'll wait 'til the couple-hundred in transit show up to do a full inventory. I know at least 34 of them are his 1988 Topps card, which will double me up on those.

I'll be back when the next batch of Coras get here, so cross your fingers that the postal person comes through and I have a two-post day. Well, two posts on here. I'm already at two posts total since I did a birthday post about Woody Williams possibly having the best day at the plate by a Padres pitcher earlier this morning over at Gaslamp Ball. And in case you wondered, yes, that image I used is from his 2000 Keebler (after they bought out Mother's) card. Too bad I don't have a pitcher-at-the-plate card of him, huh?

Speaking of mini-collections that Dime Box Nick has, I'll end this with a pair of Short Term Stop cards whose photographs were taken less than a second apart.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Another A&G Post

I didn't pull any Padres in the one pack of 2014 Allen & Ginter's that I purchased, but I did pick one up in my latest Just Commons haul. While it's a great card of fellow West Virginian Jedd Gyorko, it's nowhere near as awesome as the other card I ordered from this set, sight unseen. I noticed that Judah Friedlander has am A&G card this year; I'm a huge fan of 30 Rock and have enjoyed his work since I first saw him on VH1's "I Love The..." series about a dozen years ago, so it was worth the 15 or 20 cents it cost just to check it out even though I don't really collect non-baseball cards. The front is great (shouldn't this be a Pacific card since it has Spanish and English?), but the back is where it really shines.
(click image to enlarge)
So good. This copy is going to have rounded corners in no time from being shown to everybody.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Getting around to Allen & Ginter's

Hey, everybody! Long time, no type. Well, here at least. I still type all the time (some would say too much!) for Gaslamp Ball, including a fair amount of card posts. But since the pack of cards I got and am writing about now contained no Padres, now seemed like a good time to dust off the old cardblog. I just made a Just Commons order the other day that included several non-Padres, so my next hiatus shouldn't be as long.

But I digress.

It seems like everyone else in the world has already dipped a foot in the Allen & Ginter's pool this year, so I'm late to the party. Fashionably late, but late nonetheless. I'm not much of a pack guy, especially when it comes to current products because I collect next to no active players, save for Padres, and there are typically fewer of them in sets than there are guys from other teams. In fact, not only was this pack devoid of Friars, so were the eight packs of 1991 Leaf I got from the hobby shop's discount bin the same day. Nine packs, 106 cards, no Padres: Story of my life.

But I digress.

Even though I knew the odds were against getting something I'd want to keep, I decided to spring for an 8-card hobby pack just for the experience and see how they look in-hand. From what I saw on other blogs, I liked this year's design more than recent issues, and I figured someone out there would need whatever cards I wound up with, so what the hey? Before I digress again, let's dig in.
Not a bad start. I wouldn't call myself a Reds fan, but I watch a lot of their games because I live in their viewing area, and passively root for them 156 games a year (the other six being when they play the Padres, of course). I don't collect Votto, but he seems like an interesting guy and I like that we share a birthday (along with Randy Johnson, Arnold Palmer, Roger Maris, and others).
Up next were a pair of All-Star infielders on horizontally oriented cards. While I don't care one way or another about either of these guys, I do love the horizontal cards. The design seems to fit them better, and the images they chose -- at least on these two -- were perfect for the format.
Pudge! Ever since the Rangers mothballed the Nolan Ryan-era uniforms, they've been flipping between blue and red as their primary color seemingly every other year. The one Rodriguez is wearing here is from the beginning of the flip-flop era, before tweaks were made here and there, including adding beveling to the lettering and eventually taking it back off.
I don't know or care much about planes but, yay, insert! The design is nice and all, and I'm sure I can find someone who needs it who'll give me a Joey Cora card for it. This was the first of three inserts (minis are inserts, right?) in this pack. The only insert I was hoping for was one of the Little Lions cards, because cats are the jam. In fact, my brood recently grew by two twin baby boys. They're actual identical twins, which the vet said is rarer amongst felines than it is with humans. Here's a picture of my little lions Tony and Tobias with their cat-sister Cora and their dog-brother Chester.
Since they're twin kitties, their favorite team is from the Twin Cities, and their favorite Twin is Kent Purrbek.

But I digress.
Here's the second insert I pulled. While I don't plan on holding on to it, it's a great-looking card. I enjoy the matte black background along with the lettering and little line-drawings. I'm not crazy about the name "Pastime's Pastimes", but it's not their responsibility to run these things by me, the guy who will buy one pack of their product regardless.
The penultimate card of my pack was the Jered Weaver mini. I cast it aside as soon as I saw it because I simultaneously spotted the card behind it. Yes! Craig Biggio is one of a handful of never-Padres who I collect, so this awesome addition to my player collection of him was a great way to finish an already-good pack. Of the eight packs of 1991 Leaf I opened the same day, the only card I had any use for was also a Biggio, so it was quite a Craigeriffic day of collecting.

All in all, I'm pleased with the pack I got. I wasn't expecting any Padres, so I wasn't disappointed. I did well on inserts, and all of the cards seem like ones someone would want. Adding a keeper card to the mix at the end was just a bonus. As for the cards themselves, I'm a fan. I won't be buying any more packs, but that's just because I wouldn't have anyway. I did order Jedd Gyorko's card from this set on my last Just Commons order; speaking of which, I should be back in a few days with a breakdown and a look at the non-Padres I got.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Joey Cora 1993 Topps Variations

My quest to collect as many copies of every Joey Cora card ever would be so much easier if his career took place ten years earlier than it did. As it played out, the second half of his career was chock-full of parallels and inserts. The parallel craze took off with Topps Gold in 1992 and they brought it back for a sophomore season. Along with Topps Gold, it was also the second season of Topps Micro, although it's not considered a parallel. The Micro cards were only sold in complete sets, as were the cards stamped with the Rockies and Marlins inaugural logos in gold foil. Topps would repeat this in 1998 with sets stamped with Diamondbacks and Devil Rays logos, but that's a post for another day.

Monday, October 28, 2013

51 Photographs

Trevor Hoffman is no stranger to great baseball cards. He's been pictured signing, bunting, and wearing catcher's gear, among other things. Hoffman's 1998 Upper Deck Collector's Choice All-Star card might be the best of the bunch. Trevor seems to be enjoying himself immensely, which makes me wonder even more what he's focusing in on. There's a nearly-endless array of possibilities, but in honor of his uniform number I'll narrow it down to my 51 best guesses as to what he's snapping pics of.
  1. Teammate and fellow All-Star Tony Gwynn
  2. A kid. The scoreboard does note that it's Kids Day.
  3. Fellow All-Star pitcher and pro photographer Randy Johnson.
  4. The San Diego Chicken
  5. The Swinging Friar
  6. Greg Vaughn, in his first full season with the Padres
  7. Legendary broadcaster, former player, and war hero Jerry Coleman
  8. Gary Coleman
  9. The photographer whose camera that is
  10. His wife Tracy
  11. Former Friar and fellow 1997 All-Star Joey Cora
  12. A locally stationed member of the Marine Corps.
  13. Then-current San Diego mayor Susan Golding
  14. Chargers legend Junior Seau
  15. Padres owner John Moores
  16. Padres manager Bruce Bochy
  17. A local businessperson trying to impress a client
  18. Then-Padres broadcaster Rick Sutcliffe
  19. Ron Burgundy
  20. The Padres' dugout
  21. The opposing team's dugout
  22. Thirteen-year-old San Diego resident Cole Hamels
  23. Harry the Heckler
  24. Hall of Famer and former Friar Willie McCovey
  25. Padres beat writer Bill Center
  26. The press box
  27. ESPN loudmouth Chris Berman
  28. Archi Cianfrocco looking for his first baseman's mitt among his five other gloves
  29. Elvis
  30. Tupac
  31. Joan Embery from the San Diego Zoo
  32. Former Vice President Dan Quayle
  33. Sugar Ray lead singer Mark McGrath with two groupies
  34. The grounds crew
  35. Clean-shaven rookie first baseman Derrek Lee
  36. California governor Pete Wilson
  37. Beach Boys member Brian Wilson
  38. Occasional Beach Boys member John Stamos
  39. Teammate Joey Hamilton signing autographs
  40. Teammate Ken Caminiti eating a Snickers bar
  41. Winners of a local radio contest
  42. Fernando Valenzuela serving as a translator for a younger teammate
  43. Weighted bats in the on-deck circle
  44. Third base coach Tim Flannery tying his shoes
  45. Rickey Henderson stretching
  46. A security guard catching someone trying to sneak onto the field
  47. Bullpen coach Greg Booker working with Tim Worrell on his grip
  48. Local golfer Phil Mickelson
  49. Two visiting Giants fans smoking a joint while another one watches out for security
  50. An usher showing people to their seats
  51. Outfielder Ruben Rivera trying to sell Archi Cianfrocco's first baseman's mitt

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Bips & Brackets

It's still Bip Roberts's fiftieth birthday on the west coast, so I'm sneaking this post in right under the wire. I also did a post about Bip over at Gaslamp Ball earlier today. It's a card post; I picked out 10 cards of him with the Padres. Ten, of course, because of his uniform number.

Since Bip is pictured here with the Reds, that gives me a legitimate segue into talking about Nacho Grande's Blogger Bracket Challenge. Round 0 was  fun and I'm looking forward to seeing what my prompt card is for the first round of bracket play; the unveiling will be at 7:30am. I'm glad he had this contest because it has gotten me writing on this blog again, however briefly or inanely as it has been.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Better Off Dread

Whenever I see a card of Rickie Weeks or anyone else with long dreads I get kind of bummed out. Not because I'm a stone-faced, finger-wagging Steinbrenner type bemoaning these dang players these days with their flat bills and sideburns. Far from it, actually. It just makes me miss my dreads. I had them for about three years and have regretted it ever since I shaved them off a couple years ago. My hair is fairly long now but I'm not going to knot it up because I'm growing it out to donate to Locks of Love and they do not accept dreadlocks. Donations have to be a minimum of 10 inches and I'm almost there; the shortest part of my hair, the sides and back, is currently around 8 1/2" while the top is 15-ish. I'm looking forward to getting rid of all of this because I can't wear a hat without looking like I have a mullet, and otherwise I look like a hippie. It's for a good cause though, so I can't complain. Besides, time flies so before you know it it'll be 2016 or so and I'll look like a poor imitation of Rickie Weeks yet again.
(This post was written as my "Round 0" entry for Nachos Grande's Blogger Bracket Challenge. Head on over and check out the the other entries.)

Friday, August 9, 2013

Happy Birthday to Bob Scanlan

Former pitcher and current Padres radio analyst and more Bob Scanlan turns 47 today. I just dropped 845 words about him over at Gaslamp Ball, so check that out if you're into that sort of thing.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Kruk, Henke & Other Stuff

Along with the few Joey Cora cards and cards of guys from West Virginia that I got from Just Commons last week, I picked up a few Padres, including a neat autographed letter patch card I wrote up elsewhere, a handful of '93 Upper Decks for my set I'm building, and some cards for my player collections. The two John Kruk cards pictured above are ones I had in my younger days but haven't had copies of for years. Kruk also qualifies as a guy from West Virginia but he's the of them that I collect in earnest, as opposed to just being satisfied with having one random card of each of the other guys.
I especially like that throwback on the back of Krukky's '94 UD CC card.
These Kruks, like most I acquire these days, are also "new again". I did, however, get some Tom Henke cards that are completely new to me:
I didn't have too many Flair cards when they came out in '93- just the Kruk and the Tony Gwynn, if I recall correctly- but I thought they were the coolest thing in the world. I still think they're pretty great. I just started typing a bunch of adjectives about the cards from that set but I deleted all of them as I imagined someone reading them and saying "That's what she said".

That Pacific issue is my first card of Henke with the Cardinals. He pitched his final season for them in '95 and went out on top. Well, not like John Elway or whatever because the Cardinals didn't win squat that year, but he had a great personal season. His ERA was a blink and you'd miss it 1.82 in 54.1 innings over 52 appearances. Henke was named to his second All-Star game; I was going to get into the details of both of his appearances but I'll save that for its own post.

My Tom Henke collection is still fairly small since I only started collecting his cards last summer when I discovered that he made his MLB debut the day I was born.

Oh, and here are those '93 Upper Decks that I mentioned. Nothing too special; I just knocked a few cheap ones off my needs list.
Here we have some "Star Rookies" who didn't live up to the star part. Manny Alexander did end up letting a clubhouse attendant take the rap for some steroids he had in his car, so he's got that going for him.
Dan Plesac seems like a nice guy. A little overbearing sometimes, sure, but ultimately likable. I really enjoy that Community Heroes subset card of Dave Stewart. When I think of him I think of intimidation and intensity. This is neither of those.

Wow, I'm actually posting here fairly often lately. Good times. For me and hopefully also for each of the seven to twelve people who will read this.

Monday, July 29, 2013

R.I.P. Frank Castillo

I just saw on Deadspin that Frank Castillo died yesterday. The 44-year-old former starting pitcher drowned while on a boating trip with a friend. I knew his name sounded familiar but the picture they showed of him in a Red Sox uniform just didn't register. Then when I read that he had pitched for the Cubs, it clicked. I dug into the Cubs section of my junk box and there were these two cards.

My thoughts go out to his friends and family, especially his friend he was out on the boat with. I can't even begin to imagine how traumatic that has to be.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Common Bond Contest

What is the common bond between the following ten players? First person to respond correctly in the comments wins, uh, some cards, I guess. But not these ones (I can't imagine any of you would want any of these anyway).
Alright, start guessing!

...or actually researching it if you're so inclined.