Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Repack Haiku #129 (Adam Eaton)

In first World Series
Hit two jacks against Astros
Helped team earn those rings 

2018 Topps Heritage #255 Adam Eaton

Strasburg may won World Series MVP, but you have to think Eaton was on the short list of contenders. He had at least one hit and one RBI in each of Washington's 4 wins!

Monday, November 18, 2019

Time Travel Trading Update #36

Last month, I put four cards on the proverbial chopping block. No one wanted them, so they have been pulled from the trade stack and joined the rest of the 1973 Topps cards in my collection.

It wasn't a complete loss, however! I managed two more trades, and now there's a dozen new cards to tempt you with! Will there be anything you need for your collection? Read on!

The first trade came via the TCDB. A Pirates fan named David offered up some great cards for some of the Pittsburgh-centric cards in the stack.

Starting off with a couple of newer cards:

As well as some vintage, including the rookie card of Indians legend Rocky Colavito!

David also included a Carolina Hurricanes pocket schedule as filler/protection. I know some people collect these, so I figured I might as well put it up too!

Gavin at Baseball Card Breakdown also made a trade for a short stack of 1976 cards. In return, I got a few more classic 1972 cards. Anyone want a vintage card of Hall Of Famer Sparky Anderson?

Thanks for the trades David and Gavin!

I've got one more trade currently in the works. That trade will put me at 48 completed Time Travel trades! I'd like to get to 50 before the end of the year! I'll need your help to do it though! Help me keep this project going! Comment below or send me a trade offer through the TCDB (My handle there is Kep75).

The Time Travel Trade Stack:

2018 Topps
#502 Xander Bogaerts

2017-1018 Pocket Schedule
Carolina Hurricanes

2017 Bowman
#12 Trea Turner

2016 Topps Heritage 
#215 John Jaso

2015 Topps Allen & Ginter 
#119 Paul Scheer 

2008-09 O-Pee-Chee (hockey)
#128 Tim Thomas

1998 Score
#68 Scott Rolen
#74 Mark McLemore

1994 Sportflics
#113 Pete Harnisch

1993 Classic Draft Picks (basketball)
#33 Will Flemons
#67 Bennie Seltzer

1992 Fleer Ultra
#594 Dave Righetti

1991 Upper Deck
#778 Dave Righetti

1990-91 Hoops (basketball)
#168 Glen Rice (RC)

1990 Upper Deck
#626 Frank Viola

1990 Pro Set - Theme Art (football)
#10 Super Bowl X Pittsburgh Steelers / Dallas Cowboys 

1989 Fleer
#29 Bob Welch

1989 Score
#495 Larry Parrish

1986 Topps
#5 Rose Special '75-'78
#6 Rose Special '79-'82
 #401 Fernando Valenzuela (Turn Back The Clock)

1985 Donruss #557
Mark Langston (RC)

1985 Topps
#694 Joe Carter

1982 Donruss
#NNO Checklist 545-653

1982 O-Pee-Chee E.T. The Extraterrestrial (non-sport)
#15 Among Elliott's Toys

1981 Topps 
#100 Rod Carew (AS) 
#210 Jim Palmer

1980 Topps
#2 Willie McCovey (HL)
#143 Bruce Bochte
#157 Willie Wilson
#290 Steve Garvey (AS)
#605 Terry Forster
#671 A's Future Stars

1979 Topps
#25 Steve Carlton
#130 Bob Watson
#214 Boston Red Sox (TC) 
#465 Reggie Smith
#680 Carlton Fisk (AS)
1978 Donruss KISS (2nd Series) (non-sport)
#99 Paul Stanley - PENDING!

1978 Topps
#295 Bill Lee
#373 Jim Willoughby
#424 Boston Red Sox (TC)
#482 Rick Miller
#706 Rookie 1st Baseman (Cage/Cox/Putnam/Revering) 

1976 Topps
#70 Roy Smalley/Roy Smalley Jr. (FS)
#78 Cecil Cooper

1975 Topps
#310 '74 Victory Leaders
#378 Derrel Thomas
#402 Bob Tolan

1974 Topps
#38 Don Kessinger
#67 Tommy Helms
#107 Alex Johnson
#141 Pat Bourque
#158 Jack Billingham
#158 Jack Billingham
#227 Mike Lum 
#349 John Vukovich 
#372 Ken Reitz
#572 Enzo Hernandez
#638 Ken Sanders
#660 Larry Dierker

1974 Topps - Team Checklists
#NNO Montreal Expos

1974 Topps Traded
#458T Jim Ray
#496T Tom Murphy

1973-74 O-Pee-Chee (hockey)
#53 Richard Lemieux

1973 Topps
#29 Tony Taylor 
#30 Tug McGraw
#68 1972 Leading Firemen (Carroll/Lyle)
#75 Vada Pinson
#79 Jim Willoughby (RC)
#80 Tony Oliva
#85 Ted Simmons
#116 Ralph Houk (MGR)
#145 Bobby Bonds
#225 Albert Oliver
#230 Joe Morgan
#232 Ken Singleton
#240 Bobby Murcer
#258 Tommy John
#325 Boog Powell
#329 Ed Kranepool
#365 Rico Petrocelli
#368 Bill Buckner

1972-73 Topps (hockey)
#8 Stanley Cup Trophy

1972 Topps
#43 Rick Wise
#163 Tug McGraw
#197 Johnny Briggs
#231 Casey Cox
#239 Tom Timmermann
#358 Sparky Anderson (MGR)
#363 Ron Klimkowski
#373 John Mayberry
#438 Maury Wills (IA)

1971 Topps
#16 Ken Singleton (RC)
#63 AL 1970 RBI Leaders (Howard/Conigliaro/Powell)
#71 AL 1970 Strikeout Leaders (McDowell/Lolich/Johnson)
#90 Joe Pepitone
#95 Luis Tiant
#105 Tony Conigliaro
#146 Ralph Houk (MGR)
#183 Gil Hodges (MGR) - PENDING!
#195 AL Playoffs Game 1 - Powell Muscles Twins!
#208 Billy Martin (MGR)
#270 Rico Carty
#328 World Series Game 2 - Bufird Goes 2-4 (WS)
#374 Clete Boyer
#374 Clete Boyer
#388 Al Oliver

1971 Topps (football)
#22 Ken Avery (RC)
#110 Floyd Little (AS)

1970 Red Rose and Blue Ribbon North American Wildlife In Danger (non-sport)
#32 Polar Bear

1970 Topps
#47 Bob Miller
#390 Willie Davis

1969 Topps
#66 Orioles Rookies
#131 Chris Cannizarro 
#139 Andy Kosco
#182 Bill Rigney (MGR)

1969 Topps (football)
#73 Bennie McRae
#115 Randy Johnson 
#154 Sam Baker
#175 Joe Morrison

1968 Topps
#4 1967 AL RBI Leaders (Yastrzemski/Killebrew/Robinson)
#7 1967 NL ERA Leaders (Niekro/Bunning/Short)
#44 Frank Kostro
#181 Jerry Zimmerman
#309 Ken Henderson
#348 Larry Colton/Dick Thoenen
#449 Gene Oliver
#519 Jerry Stephenson 

1967 Philadelphia (football)
#109 New York Giants (TC)

1967 Topps
#366 Andy Kosco

1966 Topps
#154 Chuck Hiller

1966 Philadelphia (football)
#104 Rams vs. Browns

1965 Topps
#17 Johnny Romano
#27 Dick Bertell
#86 Les Narum
#87 Nelson Mathews
#108 Don Mincher
#111 Lee Thomas
#178 Dalton Jones
#307 Barry Latman

1965 Philadelphia (football)
#193 John Paluck

1964 Philadelphia (football)
#172 Ken Gray (RC)

1964 Topps
#18 Billy O'Dell
#45 Milt Pappas
#92 Steve Ridzik
#341 Jim Roland 

1964 Topps - Coins 
#7 Frank Malzone

1963 Topps
#155 Bill Stafford

1961 Topps
#32 Ray Sadecki
#38 Bob Lillis
#96 Billy O'Dell
#258 Jack Sanford
#267 Norm Siebern
#399 Cliff Cook (RC) 

1960 Topps
#138 Art Mahaffey (RC, RS)
#186 Dave Sisler 
#289 Willie Jones
#414 Don Williams (RC)

1959 Topps
#298 Tex Clevenger
#424 Ken Aspromonte
#424 Ken Aspromonte 

1959 Topps (football)
#80 Joe Perry

1958 Topps Zorro (non-sport)
#83 Rude Awakening

1957 Topps
#212 Rocky Colavito (RC)
#235 Tom Poholsky
#249 Dave Pope
#371 Bob Lennon
#406 Bob Hale

1956 Topps
#21 Joe Collins
#103 Willie Miranda (white back)
#156 Johnny Antonelli

1956 Topps Flags of the World (non-sport)
#70 Jordan

1955 Bowman
#25 Minnie Minoso
#208 Ed Fitzgerald

1954 Bowman
#16 Jim Wilson
#73 Don Mueller

1952 Bowman
#57 Clyde Vollmer

1938 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America Tenth Series (J9-6) (non-sport)
#2 Black-throated Green Warbler

1922 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America Third Series (J7) (non-sport)
#7 Prothonotary Warbler

1915 Church & Dwight Useful Birds Of America First Series (J5)  (non-sport)
#1 Quail

The Time Travel Trading Project is simple in concept. I started out with a random pack of 2018 Topps Series 1 baseball cards. My aim was to trade every card in that pack for something older. Each card I receive in turn is then made available for trade, with the goal to get the oldest card I can get.

Number of trades completed: 47 (1 pending!)
Unique trading partners: 29

Number of cards mailed out: 139
Year of oldest card mailed out: 1956

Number of cards received: 306
Year of oldest card received: 1915

Friday, November 15, 2019

Payday Pack - Sweet Ninja Moves

I bought a pack of Topps Update, and didn't pull a Vlad Guerero Jr or Pete Alonso card! What's up with that? I thought they set it up so everybody gets one! No? Oh well...

3rd Place
2019 Topps Update #US69 Shed Long (RC)

Outside of having a great baseball name, I picked this card because I'm drawn to the object he's got in his pocket. What is that? A glove? One of those oven mitts they put on for stealing bases? Nunchucks? Whatever it is, it's huge and I wouldn't expect a back pocket to be able to fit it.

2nd Place
2019 Topps Update - Perennial All-Stars
#PAS-23 Ryne Sandberg

Despite the issues with the player representation on the set, I really like the design Topps used on the front. The red, white, and blue waving banner along with the circle of starts really drive home the theme of this insert set.

1st Place
2019 Topps Update #US37 Tim Beckham

In real time, you'd just see another player sliding into home plate. This frozen moment shows Beckham as a martial artist ready to fight his way to victory! Bruce Lee would be proud.

Other Contestants Not Appearing On Stage:
 #US82 Jose Alvarado
#US173 Reunited (Springer/Gonzalez) (VC)
#US12 Paul Goldschmidt
#US291 Nate Lowe (RC)
#US273 Wade Miley
#US276 Spencer Turnbull (RC)
#US158 Brian Dozier
#US150 Keston Hiura (RC)
#US101 Joe Kelly
#US218 Mitch Keller (RC)
#US194 Max Muncy (AS)
#US18 Christian Walker
#US162 Scott Alexander
#US71 Queen City Kings (Dietrich/Puig) (VC)
#US9 Masahiro Tanaka (AS)
#US106 Yasiel Puig (150th Anniversary parallel)
#FB-14 Bryce Harper (The Family Business insert)
#BH-17 Bryce Harper (Bryce Harper insert)
#US43 Josh Naylor (RC)
#US231 Mike Shawaryn (RC)
#US208 Carter Kieboom (RC, RD)
#US14 Jose Suarez (RC)
#US193 Marcus Stroman (AS)
#US93 Michael Brantley
#US122 Kris Bryant (AS)
#US201 Kevin Pillar
#US298 Carlos Santana (HRD)
#US17 Edwin Diaz
#US221 Shelby Miller
#US212 Wei-Chieh Huang (RC)
#US249 Nick Margevicius (RC)

Thursday, November 14, 2019

TCDB Trade Recap: Cards From Gilbert, AZ

I completed a nice little trade back in September from a TCDB named John.

My favorite card here is the Daniel Nava rookie card. Nava's big league journey is amazing:
  • Failed to make college team as a walk on, ended up becoming the equipment manager.
  • Transferred to a junior college, and played well enough to earn a full scholarship to go back to his original college
  • Went undrafted, signed with an independent league team (where he was cut from the team, but brought back)
  • The Red Sox bought the rights to him for essentially $1.
  • Made his Major League debut in 2010 and became the 4th player ever to hit a grand slam in his first at-bat (and only the 2nd to do so on the very first pitch)
  • 2013 World Series Champion
His perseverance is the stuff of Disney movies.

Thanks again for the trade, John!

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Repack Haiku #128 (Khris Davis)

Two forty seven
The four year streak has ended
Long live this weird stat!
2015 Topps #115 Khris Davis

We were all pulling for you, Khris!

Monday, November 11, 2019

An Awesome Prize And An Awesome Discovery!

Happy Veterans Day to all those who have served! I have nothing but respect for those men and women who have put on the uniform!


One of my favorite blogs to follow is Baseball Card Breakdown. Gavin does these amazing custom cards and animated .gifs that simply blow my mind.

Recently, Gavin launched a new blog devoted to the 1991 MusiCards set. It a wonderful trip down memory lane as he discusses some of the great musical acts of the time. He highlights the musicians from each card in the set, along with some that didn't make an appearance on commercially produced cardboard. And yes, you'll find those wonderful customs there too! If you're not following the blog, you're really missing out!

To celebrate the release of his new blog, Gavin held a contest. Thanks to the Nationals dominating Game 4 sweep of the Cardinals in the NLCS, I was one of the two lucky winners! I got to choose one of six possible prize cards. Every card there was a gem, but for me, there was really only one possible choice:


Like Gavin, I am a big fan of the Simpsons, and the classic episode "Homer At The Bat". For those who've never seen it, it features Homer playing softball with a bunch of Major League superstars.  Gavin used his creative talents to whip up some customs of all the players, and managed to get this autograph. It's even better looking in hand, and is easily one of my all-time favorite cards in my collection.

Here's an interesting little side story. I've been a fan of Baseball Card Breakdown for a long while, long before I even entertained the thought of having a blog myself. I remember reading about these customs a long time ago, and started digging through the Baseball Card Breakdown archives looking for the original post to link back to here. I came upon his 700th post contest, where he first unveiled the Boggs autograph and held a contest to win one! On a whim I decided to read through the comments, and found this one:

Yep, my very first comment on a baseball card blog! Ironically, to enter a contest to win one of Gavin's autographed Wade Boggs customs! Just think about that - Because of this card, I started interacting on more blogs, started my own blog, and started trading with bloggers. It was my first real step into becoming a part of this fantastic community. Obviously, I didn't win then, but over three and a half years later, I'm now a proud owner. Funny, isn't it?

Thanks again for the contest Gavin! I'm looking forward to many more great posts and customs!

Friday, November 8, 2019

All-Time Red Sox/Nationals Lineup

I know, I know...this is over a week after the fact, but...

Congrats to the World Champion Washington Nationals! It was a fun series and I was happy to see my local team come out on top!

Last year, when the Red Sox and Dodgers were fighting it out, I thought it would be fun to construct a basic lineup of players that have donned both uniforms. I decided that I wanted to do that again this year and see which players have played for the Red Sox and Nationals.

First of all, a disclaimer: I didn't include the Montreal Expos in my search. Sorry - different city, different names, different teams in my opinion. Maybe be I'll reconsider if I can find video of crowds  celebrating in the streets of Montreal after Game 7.

While last year's Red Sox/Dodgers team was full of Hall of Famers and All-Stars, this one was full of journeyman and afterthoughts. There wasn't much to pull from in Washington's 15 years of existence. How bad was it? Out of the 11 players listed below, I couldn't find cards of them in both Red Sox and Nationals uniforms for 6 of them!

Catcher: Sandy Leon

2014 Choice Syracuse Chiefs #19 Sandy Leon
2019 Topps #419 Sandy Leon

Sandy Leon was an up-and-down backup catcher for the Nationals from 2012-2014. They sold his contract to the Red Sox and he's become a highly regarded pitch framer for them. Despite his offensive deficiencies, Boston's pitchers love having him behind the plate.

1st Baseman: Adam LaRoche

2009 Topps Updates & Highlights
#UH264 Adam LaRoche
2011 Topps #513 Adam LaRoche

Adam LaRoche's tenure in Boston was the pure definition of "blink and you'll miss it":

He won a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger for the Nationals three years later!

2nd Baseman: Wil Cordero

1996 Ultra #312 Wil Cordero
2005 Topps Total #561 Wil Cordero

Here's where I started to get creative. Cordero played only 38 games at second in his two years with Boston, but none in his 29-game sunset season in Washington. That's all it took to earn the starting 2nd Base position!

Shortstop: Stephen Drew

2014 Topps #585 Stephen Drew
2016 Topps Heritage #594 Stephen Drew

Like Cordero, Drew also ended his career playing for the Nationals.  He was the starting shortstop for the 2013 World Series Champion Red Sox team.

3rd Baseman: Alex Cora

2006 Upper Deck #535 Alex Cora
2010 Topps Update #US-4 Alex Cora

Yet another player who spent the final days of his professional career donning the Curly W! The current Red Sox manager was a versatile fielder who played all 4 infield positions for both teams.

Left Fielder: Jonny Gomes

2014 Topps #274 Jonny Gomes
2011 Topps #598 Jonny Gomes

Jonny spent 43 games with Washington in 2011. Two years later, he becomes a fan favorite in Boston!

Center Fielder: Marlon Byrd

2012 Topps #144 Marlon Byrd
2005 Topps Updates & Highlights
#UH55 Marlon Byrd

Byrd's short 34 game stint in Boston was the start of a journeyman career that saw him play for 8 different teams in over the final 5 years of his career.

Right Fielder: Wily Mo Pena

2006 Topps Turkey Red
#519 Wily Mo Pena
2009 O-Pee-Chee #409 Wily Mo Pena

On August 17th, 2007 The Red Sox traded Wily Mo to the Nationals for Chris Carter. I'm pretty sure this is the "biggest" trade the two teams have made with each other.

Starting Pitcher: Doug Fister

2017 Topps Update #US131
2014 Topps Allen & Ginter
#212 Doug Fister

Fister's last game as a Boston Red Sox was Game 3 of the 2017 ALDS against the Houston Astros. He gave up 3 runs in 1 /13 innings, retiring only 4 of the 9 batters he faced. Ironically, that was the only game Boston won that series.

Closer: Jonathan Papelbon

2014 Topps Update - World Series Heroes
#WSH-JP Jonathan Papelbon
2016 Topps #266 Jonathan Papelbon

The best player to have played for both teams, Pap was a 4 time All-Star in Boston before finishing his career (another one!) being remembered for choking out Bryce Harper. I wonder if any Nationals fans mind that little skirmish now...

Designated Hitter/Pinch Hitter: Matt Stairs

1994 Fleer/ProCards
#664 Matt Stairs
2011 Topps Update #US32 Matt Stairs

Last time, I had a managers spot. In the short history of the Nationals, there hasn't been anyone that has managed the Red Sox too. Instead, I decided to honor the legendary Matt Stairs! Apparently there must be something about ending your career in Washington, because Stairs becomes the 5th player on this list to retire as a National!

Not the most impressive team, is it? I still bet they could beat the Orioles or Tigers though!