Sunday, March 31, 2013
Saturday, March 30, 2013
The second in a series of Gem Mint Vintage All Stars. This 1969 Rose is gorgeous. Pete is in his lefty stance in the batting cage, ready to smack a well-placed single into shallow left field. The card captures perfectly the majesty of Rose's preparation, dedication, form, and focus. A true treasure of card collecting goodness. I think. It's hard to tell since this card obviously found its way into a wood chipper.
Friday, March 29, 2013
Bowman's history of issuing cards of minor league players alongside those already on major league rosters leads to a lot of nonsense (which I did in fact praise a while back), but it also leads to excellent cards like this one. Who knew Trevor Hoffman was a Red? Drafted as an infielder then converted to a pitcher, we let him go to the Marlins in the expansion draft before ever getting a big league call-up. He went on to have mild success elsewhere. Bowman jumped the gun, however, and now the only official rookie card of Hoffman is plastered in red. Excellent.
Thursday, March 28, 2013
In an effort to promote my blog and to share the Reds collecting love with all of you, I am updating the giveaway page to include all kinds of goodies. I am purging all sorts of my doubles, so check out the giveaway page in the sidebar. I will be spending some time the rest of today adding to it. I would love to get all my doubles outta here, Jay Bruce style. Go Reds.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
GERRY STALEY STARES INTO YOUR SOUL. This card has always jumped off the page. A strange look on his face combined with the all-too-common ink offset in the '55 Bowman series leads to quite a piercing gaze from Staley. This is the set that killed Bowman for 34 years. I'm not sure the TV design looked modern even then. It's been growing on me though. It's hypnotizing. And I'm only 4 away from completing the Reds set. On Staley, he only pitched half a season for the Reds but snuck onto a card wearing a Reds jersey. In fact, this is the only baseball card of him as a Red. Good thing he made it count.
Monday, March 25, 2013
Amidst the hundred hours of basketball I watched this weekend, nothing stood out more than the 'sabermatician' Butler employs. Nerdy guy on the sidelines that the coaches consult to decide who starts at small forward that day. Love it. I can't imagine that dude has any real say over the roster, though, but I bet he's got a cushy job since no one around him will have any ability to gauge how well he's doing. I couldn't help but think of the sabermetric poster boy, Scott Hatteberg. Hit .289 and .310 in two full seasons with us. Then in 2008 he was benched in favor of Joey Votto, then released to make room for Jay Bruce. So, yeah. That turned out ok. I like this card though. Great pic of Hatteberg knocking the ball loose (you can see it in front of the catcher's mask). Ain't no math gonna help with toughness.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
With all the latest starter/closer hoopla around Chapman lately, I feel the need to post a card of his. Most of his cards are fairly normal. This one however, looks like he's summoning a little Street Fighter 2 hadoken energy for his next pitch, which is surprisingly accurate. I suppose there's an argument that it would be foolish not to at least try to find out if he can be a starter, but this year is no time to experiment. It's championship time and we have a guaranteed lights-out closer. I'm fine with "wasting" money on Broxton to keep Chapman where he is. On a card-related note, stop it with the short prints in every effing set you put out, Topps. Yeah it's cute with Heritage, seeing as that's what happened 50 years ago, but you're really gonna make me stretch for a Frank Robinson high number in Ginter? Terrible.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
Friday, March 22, 2013
I've always had a soft spot for catchers. Probably because I was one. Ok, definitely because I was one. It was a lot of fun putting on this peculiar armor to go into some strange battle of bats, leather, and hide. All the other wusses on the field were just prancing around in their polyester pants while I was ready for WAR, dammit. Of course they weren't fainting from heat exhaustion, so I guess there's that. This card here is quite excellent. Definitely stands out in the series. To a non sports person this mask must be very confusing. Hernandez does not look like a man to be trifled with here. No catchers do.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
I suppose it was difficult for some kids to refrain from scratching cards like this. The scratch-off style cards of my youth (the 90's) I always managed to avoid scratching. Not out of some faint notion of future value (I knew a '93 Triply Play scratch card would never be worth anything), but out of just not wanting to ruin the card. That and the little game you play with these isn't terribly entertaining. But not only did the kid who originally nabbed this card avoid scratching, but even avoided perforating the individual players. So my Griffey gets to traverse this mortal coil with an epic Buckner-stache and with Mike Easler donning one of the worst baseball uniforms of all time. Nice. Maybe if another one of these falls into my lap, I'll give it a good scratching.
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Monday, March 18, 2013
Have mercy. As much as I loved the always feisty Marge Schott (overt racism and Nazi memorabilia collection aside), I hated this big, stupid, hideous dog of hers. Look at this thing. It's drooling all over our championship trophy. Why did Kahn's waste good card space on this beast for 9 years? Come on, Kahn's. You're the official wiener of the Big Red Machine. Class it up a bit.
Sunday, March 17, 2013
Tobacco cards started out very small at the beginning of the century, but upon their comeback release in the 1950's, they had apparently gone the other way with a whopping 3.5" x 4" release. I don't know when it stops being a card and starts being a poster, but it's still an interesting set, though not terribly well-known. Great artwork. An order of magnitude more realistic than the Topps set of the same year. On the back it says I can redeem 50 (!) stubs for a "big league style" baseball cap of the team of my choice. I don't know how much tobacco was included in a Red Man pouch, but judging by the size of these cards, 50 pouches is quite the endeavor. Ah well. Only 49 stubs to go! Oh wait, offer expired in 1954.
Saturday, March 16, 2013
Friday, March 15, 2013
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Ah, the first Reds card of newly acquired Shin-Soo Choo. Photoshopped hat aside, I was pretty happy to pick this up in yesterday's mail. A welcome bat to replace Stubbs. Is Choo the missing piece for a Cincinnati title team? Are my hopes set a tad too high? Let's go 'yes' for the former and 'no' for the latter. World Series. Guaranteed.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Generic Bowman set. Great picture of Cueto (about to smoke some hapless batsman) obstructed by the huge signature box, which brings me to the reason for choosing this card. You gotta love a man who's official MLB signature is all block caps. Very nice. I've seen versions prior to 2009 and versions from the past couple years that are standard squiggly cursive, so I don't know what the deal is here, but it always jumps off the page when I see one, and there are many.
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
A trip in the way-back machine for this one. What's not to love about the T-206 set? Pop gets his tobacco. Junior gets his collector card. A hundred years later it shows up in my collection. No need for a hyper-expensive pristine-condition version. These beat-up ones survived a century of abuse. They're tough. And a note about Lobert: He once raced a horse around the base paths in a Chad Johnson-esque publicity stunt (he lost by a nose). Nowadays we race sausages and watch frisbee dogs. Not much has changed.
Monday, March 11, 2013
Now, about the card. The 1953 Topps set is excellent, with much better artwork than the iconic '52 set. Mine is off-center, but I don't mind. I'm in for quantity, not quality. I'd talk more about this card, but all I can see is Jerry Seinfeld. So we'll just leave it at that.
"This is the old left-hander, rounding third and heading for home."