Thursday, June 29, 2017

Payday Pack - Arch Madness

Awhile back, I showed off a discounted Stadium Club pack. I actually bought the last two packs, and haven't had a chance to show off the second pack until now. Although I love the Stadium Club sets, I don't buy a lot because of their price. I'm happy to add these to my collection. Unlike the last pack, it was easier to choose my Top 3 from this one.

3rd Place
2016 Stadium Club #230 Brock Holt
Another Red Sox to add to my collection! Sadly, the Brock Star has been dealing with concussion symptoms for most of the season. Here's hoping he makes it back soon.

2nd Place
2016 Stadium Club #129 Adam Jones
 That my friends is the look of a man that has a pie and is ready to share with a special teammate...

1st Place
2016 Stadium Club #156 Randal Grichuk
I've only been to St. Louis once, and I made a point to go up inside the Arch. The name on the card may say Randal Grichuk, but the Arch is the star of this photo!

The others:
#59 Ken Giles
#102 Ichiro
#249 Yasmany Thomas
#96 Adam Eaton
#47 Brandon Crawford
#169 Kevin Pillar
#I-16 Carlos Correa
#218 Brandon Belt
#14 Chris Davis

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Repack Haiku #6 (Mike Huyler)

Unknown Mike Huyler
Reminds me of actor from
Mrs. Doubtfire

1991 Line Drive AA #111 Mike Huyler

When I first saw this card, the guy looked familiar - the nose, the chin. It eventually dawned on me he looks like the actor from Mrs. Doutfire...

The actor is William Newman, and he had a very successful career playing bit roles in movies and television. The two I recognized him the most for was in Mrs Doubtfire as the boring monotone Mr. Sprinkles, and as the doctor in the TV miniseries The Stand.

Monday, June 26, 2017

SEC - Bracket Match Up #5

Extra! Extra! El Tiante advances!

I waited awhile to post this one because I didn't know what to do if the last match up ended up without votes. Do I treat it like a tie-breaker? Eliminate both cards and treat it as a bye? Beg on forums and social media? Flip a coin? The answer to this still eludes me. Fortunately, I got a late vote (thanks Kin!) to buy me some time should it happen again. I'm hoping it doesn't.

Today's match-up features two vintage cards, one well known, the other an oddball find:

1956 Kahn's Weiners Smoky Burgess
1971 Topps #450 Bob Gibson

The Case for Smoky Burgess: My favorite 1960's oddball, this is a 61 year old card with an advertising slogan that make you want a hot dog.

The Case for Bob Gibson: A classic Topps design, a Hall of Famer - what's not to like? My uncle would want you to vote for Gibson.

Last week I struggled to get votes. Please make this easier on me - comment below!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Repack Hiaku #5 (Tom Paciorek)

I have always liked
the 85 set design
I can't explain why


Gotta love those 80's White Sox uniforms!

Monday, June 19, 2017

SEC - Bracket Match Up #4

Tie-breaker Enforced! Read All About It!

I gave this one some extra time, in the hopes that I'd get just one more comment. It wasn't meant to be, and I had to use my tie-breaker. Bye Bye Jimmy!

Our next match-up has some great international flavor to it. If I did this during the World Baseball Classic, I would have totally played up the countries of origin here. We have one of the greatest pitchers to come over from Cuba against arguably the greatest pitcher from Panama.

1968 Topps #532 Luis Tiant
2015 Topps Eclipsing History #EH-6 Mariano Rivera/Whitey Ford

The Case For Luis Tiant: Burlap is cool again, right? El Tiante has always been cool.

The Case For Mariano Rivera: Don't vote for him. It's a Yankee card.*sigh* Okay, Okay...greatest closer of all time...blah blah blah...future Hall of Famer...blah blah blah...Metallica rocks.

I have my favorite, who is yours? I leave the vote in your hands!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Payday Pack - That One Card

Yesterday was payday, so as usual I popped by Wally World to grab a pack. There was one pack of Archives left, so I grabbed it. I liked last year's Archives a lot, and had seen fairly positive reviews of this year's set on other blogs. Whenever a set is released, I obviously look to see what Red Sox are in it, and there's always at least one card that stands out. That one card that I hope to get above all others. Archives was no different, and ever since I saw it, I hoped I would pull it in what few packs of Archives I may buy. Did I get it in this pack?

Spoiler Alert: Yes!

Here are my 3 favorite cards:

3rd Place
2017 Topps Archives #188 Ozzie Smith

Padre Ozzie rocks that afro!

2nd Place
2017 Topps Archives #33 Miguel Sano

Something about the way he is posed makes him look almost majestic.

1st Place
2017 Topps Archives - 1960 Rookie Stars #RS-3 Andrew Benintendi

The original Rookie Stars also featured a young Red Sox outfielder with a long name. Will Benintendi have a Hall of Fame career like Carl Yastremski? Time will tell, but he's fun to watch, and this if my first card of  his!

The Others:
#20 Jonathan Lucroy
#52 Bo Jackson
#13 Jorge Alfaro
#63 Ryon Healy
#6 Ryan Braun
#246 Wil Myers
#256 Ian Desmond
#290 Kevin Gausman
#252 Evan Gattis
#206 John Lackey
#RO-13 Francisco Lindor
#172 Rich Hill
#152 Victor Martinez
#182 Justin Turner
#158 Hunter Renfroe

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Single Elimination Championship - Bracket Match Up #3

Extra! Extra! Cutch Pulls Plug On Laser Show!

Cutch advances! I honestly thought this one would be a little closer, but nope. The Red Sox fan in me is sad to see Pedey's run end here, but this is my blog and the Bosox are well represented, so no worries.

Today's match up features two men who made their name more for being entertainers than for being ball players. It's an interesting pairing, and to be honest I don't have a clue who will win.

2016 Topps Archives - Bull Durham Autographs #BDA-J William O'Leary
1987 Conlon World Wide Sports Series 2 #9 Al Schacht

The Case for William O'Leary: It's an autograph! Bull Durham is one of the all time great baseball movies! His name is William but you want to call him Jimmy!

The Case for Al Schacht: Antiquated photography looks fantastic. The story behind the card was amazing. Whether or not you vote for him, there's a decent chance you'll see him staring at you in your dreams tonight.

The time to vote is now!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Repack Haiku #4 (Milwaukee Brewers)

I stumbled upon
an uncorrected error
What was seven games?

2006 Topps #281 Milwaukee Brewers TC

2006 Topps #281 Milwaukee Brewers TC (back)

While coming up with something to write about, I noticed the back had something unusual. It had the phrase "7 games" written twice with no context. Being unfamiliar with the set, I went looking on the TCDB. Turns out this card is missing some sub-headers, and the 7 games refer to the longest wining and losing streaks for the team. Further research shows other team sets also were missing these sub-headers, and it was not notated as of yet on the database. I sent a quick message to the Admin, and now it is properly notated as an UER.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Single Elimination Championship - Bracket Match-Up #2

I have to start by giving a shout out to the website - The above image was created from their Newspaper Clipping Generator. Pretty cool, huh? Yeah, so the Ernie Banks record was unsurprisingly the winner. Hopefully this post will generate a little debate.

Our next bracket pits two former MVPs against each other:

2012 Gypsy Queen - Autographs #GQA-DP Dustin Pedroia

2015 Topps Pittsburgh Pirates #PIP-1 Andrew McCutchen

The case for Dustin Pedroia: It's an autograph, which is always a cool thing to get. I like the way the card captures Dustin staring down a ball, intent on making the catch. Plus, it's a Gypsy Queen!

The Case for Andrew McCutchen: Let's start with that picture. This is just an awesome shot, showcasing Cutch's mighty swing and flying dreads. The 2015 set is one of the most unique and better designs in recent Topps history.

It's time to vote! Leave a comment with who you would pick, and why!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

30 Day Challenge: The Aftermath

It took longer than 30 days, but I finally completed the Challenge! My thanks to Off Haitus Baseball Cards for creating something that I had so much fun reading, that it made me want to start up a blog and share my thoughts as well. I had a lot of fun with this.

So where do we go from here?

A fight to the death, of course!
(OK, maybe not to the death...)

I highlighted a lot of great cards in the past month plus. Enough for me to fill out a 32 card bracket in fact. So, here's what I'm going to do. Using the tools available at, I randomized the list of cards 30 times and seeded each pairing into a single elimination bracket. I'll post each match and let you vote on who advances.

Disclaimer: I'm withholding the Mantle autograph from this tournament. I would think it'd be an uncontested winner, lessening the fun of this exercise.

To vote, just leave a comment with your choice on which card is better. In case of a tie, the older card wins. Let's kick this off with our first match-up:

1962 Auravision Records Ernie Banks

1988 Leaf #255 Tim Wallach Canadian Greats

The case for Ernie Banks: Not only is he a Hall of Famer, but he's one of those inner circle Hall of Famers. Throw in the fact that this "card" is a playable record, and you have one of the better oddball cards around.

The case for Tim Wallach: Tim Wallach was a very underrated player during his day. Ernie Banks may have been  "Mr. Cub", but Tim Wallach could have very well been "Mr. Expo". This card features the great Donruss artwork we all know and love, and this may be one of the best examples of a card border matching a team color scheme.

What say you, faithful readers? Who should advance, and why? It's up to you - have at it!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

30 Day Challenge: Day 30

Courtesy of Off Hiatus Baseball Cards

Day 30: Your Favorite Card In Your Collection

The best card in my collection doesn't represent my favorite player. It doesn't even represent my favorite team. On the contrary, it's a team I don't particularly care for. It's not from a popular set, or even from one of the major companies.

The card itself isn't really all that special.

The crown jewel of my collection earned its place because it represents my greatest day as a collector. For my 15th birthday, my parents took me to a card show in Niagara Falls, NY. We arrived at the convention center, and I found myself at the largest sports card and collectables show I had even been at. The place was huge, and despite being there all day, I don't think I came close to seeing all the tables. A big reason why is because I spent most of my time there waiting in line. At the end of the room, on a raised platform, a ballplayer was signing autographs.

This player wasn't an active player. He retired long before I was even born. I knew who he was though, and knew he was an all-time great. I was star-struck. I waited in line for what seemed like an eternity, but eventually the line moved and I found myself staring greatness in the eye. He smiled at me as I handed him my card, the only card of his that I owned at the time. He signed it quickly, and handed it back. I could barely muster a "Thank you" as I made way for the person behind me. The rest of the day was mostly a blur, because I was overjoyed at the card in my hands. I was now the proud owner of this:

1987 Hygrade All-Time Greats - Promos (Red Backs) Mickey Mantle

In all my days as a collector, nothing will ever top the day I met Mickey Mantle.

Well, there you have it. The 30 day Challenge is complete! I feel a genuine sense of accomplishment.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Repack Haiku #3 (John Farrell)

Next up in my poetic endeavor:

Red Sox manager
Might be worth sending away
for an autograph

1991 Donruss #106 John Farrell

I've contemplated sending a few doubles out for potential signage. This might be worth shipping up to Boston. It'd be cool to get his autograph.

Monday, June 5, 2017

30 Day Challenge: Day 29

Day 29: A Favorite Card From Before 1950, Whether You Own It Or Not

1941 Play Ball #63 Dom Dimaggio
One of the better baseball themed books I've read was "The Teammates", which told the story of the lifelong friendship between Ted Williams, Bobby Doerr, Johnny Pesky, and Dom Di Maggio. Williams and Doerr are Hall of Famers, and Pesky has his number retired by the Red Sox. That leaves the younger brother of Joe, who was a great player in his own right. "The Little Professor" has a fairly strong Hall of Fame case himself, and is one of those players I wish I could have seen play. I wouldn't mind owning a card of Dom someday, whether it's this one of another.

The Teammates statue at Fenway Park
Courtesy of Off Hiatus Baseball Cards

Friday, June 2, 2017

30 Day Challenge: Day 28

Day 28: A Favorite Relic/Manufactured Relic Card

I only have one relic card. It's not a baseball card, but it'll do.

2006 Bowman Sterling #BS-LE Lee Evans (MEM)

I don't really collect football cards, although a few have made their way to me. A former coworker of mine gave me this one because I'm from Western New York, and like most people from the area, we support the Buffalo sports teams. He also gave me a Marshawn Lynch rookie card, which was nice of him.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Payday Pack - Boot To The Head

I don't spend a lot on cards. Between work, family and the responsibilities of adulthood, I just don't have the time and funds I'd like to devote to the hobby. Still, this doesn't mean I won't satisfy my desire to open a pack. I'll usually reward myself on payday by buying a pack, and I try to keep it limited to just that biweekly purchase. (Spoiler: It doesn't always happen). I decided to share my spoils with you few readers.

I've been tempted to buy a pack of either Gypsy Queen or Bunt. The blog reviews I've read have been fairly positive, and they both look pretty good. I held off on that temptation, however, because Wally World had cards on clearance. I picked up a pack of last year's Stadium Club instead.

Initially, my though for this blog post was to share my 3 favorite cads in the pack. Stadium Club makes this problematic because the photographs in this set are amazing. I could make a serious case for 7 out of the 12 cards. Although there were better pictures, I'm giving these three the edge based on amusement factor:

Honorable Mention
2016 Stadium Club #141 Mookie Betts
As a Red Sox fan, it's always a good pack when you get Mookie in it. It's a great action shot too!

3rd Place
2016 Stadium Club #38 Frank Thomas
Did the White Sox have to get permission from Nike to use that swoosh on his batting glove?

2nd Place
2016 Stadium Club #216 Noah Syndergaard
Noah and Travis d'Arnaud are throwing some serious side-eye here. I wish I knew the context, because they don't seem to believe what they're witnessing.

1st Place
2016 Stadium Club #93 C.J. Wilson
What is going on here? Is C.J. trying out for an MMA league or something? He's really going all out here, just like his hair. Throw in that his sky-blue glove looks huge in perspective to his hand, and we have a winner!

The others:
#105 Bryce Harper
#234 Kyle Gibson
#28 Dee Gordon
#181 Manny Banuelos
#232 Sean Doolittle
#CS-3 Josh Donaldson
#231 Starlin Castro
#157 Mike Leake

What do you think? Would you have a different Top 3?