Wednesday, November 12, 2014

I was never afraid of Cujo

My mom and my sisters used to love watching Stephen King movies and reading his books.  They read and watched every single one.  Then a few years ago, they just became uninterested in his product.  Though if you ever see The Night Flier for sale on DVD somewhere cheap, let me know, my mom has wanted that one for a long time.

I can't say I didn't watch any of them.  I still love watching Stand By Me, I remember some scenes from Pet Semetary.  I think I sat though most of It one time.  I even watched some of Sometimes They Come Back just to see if I knew any of the film locations (It was filmed in Missouri).  I'm not a thriller/horror/whatever you want to call his movies. I am basically a comedy guy, documentaries guy, and depending on my mood dramas.  I have gotten into crime series as of the last few years, but that's the most suspense I watch.  I'm not even a huge action fan, but will watch them on occasion.

Let me know if you see this for sale!

Having said all that, Cujo was one of Stephen King's movies.  This post isn't about his movie.

THIS is the Cujo I am talking about.  Recently I saw a couple Curtis Joseph rookie cards on Listia.  I'm not going to ever say I'm a big hockey fan, but I remember the first time I watched a hockey game on TV.  At the time I never seen it so it was pretty cool to see this new sport (new to me at least). It was the Buffalo Sabres and the Tampa Bay Lightning.  After that I became a fan and picked the Blues to root for because they were the closest team.  After a couple years, the luster wore off, but I still watch highlights.

At the time I watched, there were some players I really liked, among them was Curtis Joseph.  When I saw these cards I wanted to get them if they were cheap.  The card on the right ended first and I won for I think 25 points. After that I figured I could spend a bit more on the one on the left.  I won that one for about 270 points.  Personally I like the Topps card better.  Both are nice cards and I'm reminded of how much I liked the jerseys the Blues wore in the 90s.

Today I don't have a favorite team, but my mom is a fan of the Penguins and sometimes I'll watch hockey especially in the playoffs just to tell her who won.  She's a big hockey fan.  I am still puzzled by it because nobody else in the family really likes hockey and she doesn't like cold weather so ice hockey wouldn't seem to be something she likes.

I have some more hockey cards that I may show off one day, but I wanted a short post (which isn't so short anymore) and already had these scanned.

Thank you for reading today, and have a great night.  Before I go, I want to give a heads up.  If I don't post for the next few days don't be alarmed.  I may lose access to the internet for a few weeks, and if I do, I won't have a way to post.  I'll still likely write stuff, and then post stuff at a later date.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Jaw Dropping finale from Off Hiatus

Yesterday I think a lot of people thought I was joking when I said my jaw dropped when I saw the final cards from the package I got from Tony from Off Hiatus Baseball Cards.  I wasn't joking, my jaw dropped, and I even let out what could be described as a squeal of some sort.

I didn't look quite like this, but close.

Let me be honest, when I started this blog, I had no expectations.  I was going to do it to post some stuff and figured I would quickly get tired of it and it would be another venture I just lose interest in.  There have been many in the past, and this is one of the first ones I have managed to keep in interest in.  I think it is because I made it a habit to write daily in my trial period that it still remains fun and interesting.  Along the way, I have interacted with a lot of great bloggers and unlike my other attempts of various things, I felt like I found an online family.  I can't wait to meet more members of my extended online family.

Okay, let me get back on topic, these cards I'm about to present were not on my radar, as a matter of fact, I didn't even consider these cards because I figured they wouldn't be available to someone like me. So let's take a look.

Okay, don't feel let down, the George Brett card may not fit the bill I just made.  I wanted to include it because I scanned all the other cards in the package, so I had to include it.  Chalk it up to not scanning it in the right spot.  I do appreciate the card though, don't get me wrong.

The Freddie Patek card is the first card that saw my jaw drop.  While it is fairly attainable, it wasn't on my radar just yet.  I figured it would be a couple years before I started going after any cards in the set.  There is something about quirkiness that I like in baseball cards.  For many years baseball cards was as much of a pastime as the game itself, but in recent years it has become more of a novelty or better put- a tight knit community that people don't think about.  I miss the days of cards of some sort on packages of food or anything else.

Next is an autographed card of Pat Sheridan.  Talk about making my jaw drop!  I was stunned when I saw this.  It is a crisp autograph and a pretty cool card to boot.  Going back to my post yesterday, Tony definitely harkened back to a better time.

At this point, I would have been happy if this was it, but it wasn't.  I decided to skip to the last card I saw first because the other two cards I want to talk about a bit more.

This may not be vintage, but it flashes back to George Brett's rookie year.  It is the closest I have gotten to his rookie card, and both his rookie and this card were on my radar, but my jaw still dropped because I didn't think I'd get either one so soon.  I really don't know what to say other than thanks.

The final two cards are ones that need some further reading before I show.  Dan Quisenberry is one of the most underrated players I think in MLB history.  While other pitchers are still talked about years after they retire, Quiz is really only talked about in Royals circles, or when the Royals are in the spotlight and the news needs filler.  He won the Rolaids Relief Pitcher 5 times, a multiple time all star, and the only pitcher to appear in every game in the 1980 World Series.  For more on Q, just look at his stats on Baseball Reference.  His stats may not do justice, but he had comparable stats to pitchers in the Hall.

Why the bio on Dan Quisenberry?

This is when I let out the squeal.  Then I started to get a tear in my eye.  I'm not ashamed to admit it.  Dan passed away from a brain tumor in 1998, which you can read about here, or check out his Wikipedia bio, and you might think about his inclusion into the Hall.

A couple months ago I was thinking about former Royals I would like autographs of.  Some seemed fairly attainable, some seemed possible, and some seemed unattainable.  Among those I listed as unattainable was Dan Quisenberry. I thought to myself, "it would be so great just to find an autograph of Dan, even if its just on an index card."  That's why I got a tear in my eye.

What makes it better are these aren't just random cards. The 1981 Topps is from the year after the Royals made their first World Series appearance (the one where he pitched in every game).  It is a good card in its own right, but having ink on it makes it much better.

The other card is from 1985, the year they won the Series.  This isn't just a regular Topps card though, it is a Glossy Send-In. I can't think of a better card to get signed.  It is perfect because it makes it easy to read, plus it is an action shot.  Just writing this makes me want to tear up a bit.

Thank you so much Tony for the great cards, I could have never imagined anything close to this when we first exchanged emails.  Nothing I have to give you can even compare to this package.

That will wrap it up today.  Thank you all for reading, and if you are a Veteran I want to thank you for all that you have done. Thank you to everyone, and have a great night.

Also, be sure to check out Tony's blog, you won't be disappointed.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Coming back from Hiatus

On the heels of getting the two packages from Julie, I also got a package from Tony at Off Hiatus Baseball Cards.  He let me know it was coming, but I was still surprised when it came.  I feel bad I haven't sent anything to anyone who have sent something, but I really am working on getting them together.

I love when someone sends a personal note.  I think I will include notes to my packages, just hope they aren't as long as my posts.  Another reason to love this note?  Tony uses the word harken.  That is a word I want to use more often, I do use it, but I could always use it more.

Again, if you read my blogs you know I actually like these advertisements.  I never had the Slam Derby cards, or if I did, I tossed them.  2000 was the year I graduated, so I am curious what other dates they have for cards, I wouldn't mind some other dates.  The MLB 14 cards still have the code intact.  I'm not sure if they are used, but if not, feel free to use them.  I don't have a PS3 (or PS4) so they are of no use to me.  I might have some extras around too if anyone needs some.  Speaking of which, I have some of those Kid Reporter codes too if anyone wants them. I was going to sell them on Listia, but they aren't worth the trouble.

Let's look at the loot.  I think I've seen Gene Garber's name more in the last 3 weeks than I ever have before.  I have received some cards, and found some that I had of him, but I was so young I don't remember him as a Royals player.  I do remember Bill Pecota but really by name only.  Next to them is a couple Bowman cards.  I'm glad Bowman resized their cards, as I'm not a fan of the larger cards. I needed both of these so they were nice additions.  If your last name is Davis, you have a good shot at being on KC's squad.  Mark and Storm in the early 90's, and Wade today, they even have a Kyle DAVIES in the minors, its close enough.

1992 Donruss is always a nice addition, as I liked the set and still do.  Tim and Mike look good on these cards with the blue design matching the powder blues.  Next to them is a couple O-Pee-Chee's. Kirk Gibson is a 1991 Premier which is one I needed, especially since he's a Royal on the card.  I think I like the 1991 card as opposed to the 1992 design.  I have a few of the '92's but not the Magnante so this helps me inch closer to completion.  Which reminds me I made some progress on my lists this weekend, and should be updating them soon.

Let's move on a few years.  The Royals wasn't free spending but did manage to mix some good veterans with some young guns which made the team at least watchable.  Dean Palmer was someone I liked in his time in Kansas City.  I don't think I have any cards from this set, so this will allow me to start a new want list.

Next is Jermaine Dye.  What is odd about my Dye collection is that most of his cards I have are from other teams and not the Royals.  While I'm not a fan of this design, I thought Pacific Paramount was an underrated set.  It worked I thought because of the cheaper price and smaller sets.  Though it was at a time when all the card companies made 25 different sets under the same banner, I wish there was 4-5 different companies still making cards for each sport, just limit them to two or three brands.

Another Johnny Damon that looks like a great addition to my collection.  I seriously need to update my PC of his because I have gotten a lot of his earlier stuff this year.  I hope to work on getting more of his stuff next year.  I should put that on my list of things to do next year if I do one.

Finally is Jeff King.  This is a nice card.  Aurora was another set/brand I thought was good at the time, but looking back Pacific sets all looked similar.  This is a nice addition to my cards as well.

Carlos Beltran is another person I might work on building up next year.  I have gotten a few of his lately, and wouldn't mind making an actual PC of his since he has spent most of his career outside of the Royals system.  This card was one I didn't have so I like it.  As a matter of fact I don't have a lot of Beltran cards in KC, so I definitely need to work on that next year.

Zack Greinke is someone I still like. I was never a huge fan of the ToppsTown cards, but I had a lot of them.  Somehow though, I never had this one.  Depending on what else I hope to accomplish next year, I may add Greinke to my list of PC's I want to start collecting.  He's been gone long enough to have enough cards.  I'll make that decision later though.

These A&G cards fascinate me. I've seen them all over and have a few, but not this one of Brian Bannister. I think the appeal to me is the flags on the cards.  It mixes a little bit of geography with baseball.  At one point I was a huge geography person, and still today I love looking at maps, those these days its more Google Maps than Road Atlas'. I would like to see a set of baseball cards mixed with geography a bit more.  While we're at it, I know it would be boring, but I think it would be cool to see a trading card set of the periodic table of elements.  Maybe I'm the only one besides science teachers though.

Moving on, is a card featuring Dan Reichert and Mark Quinn.  Two names many Royals fans know, but the rest of baseball doesn't.  I'm okay with that,  I could even go without hearing their names a while. Nothing bad about them, its just that they didn't bring too much value to some of the worst teams in Royals history.  This card is a nice addition though as I have very few Skybox baseball cards.

Let's get to current product.  The Bo Jackson card was one I was going to get at some point, if I didn't already have it on my COMC list.  I thought the Bowman is Back inserts were pretty nice when they came out. Bo looks really good on this card.

Two different Jeremy Guthrie cards from 2014 Topps.  Both were ones I needed and adding them to the base card and the Walmart Blue ones I already have, I might chase getting all of the variations.  Anymore I don't go for all the variations, sticking mainly to the base set and the Walmart Blue which the border matches well with the Royals colors.

I wasn't aware Alex Gordon had a card in the Play Hard series, but I don't get too many Opening Day cards anymore unless I need a fix.  I like this insert, much better than some of the others Opening Day put out.

Turkey Red?  They still make these? Let me say these don't look too bad, but I don't get why they need to make them still, just another set to make a buck I guess.  Posed shots aren't my thing, but I like the blue sky background of the Gordon card.  These will look nice once I put them in my binder.

I hated the diecut '89 cards when I first got one in a pack I opened.  It wasn't so much that they are smaller, but the diecut part itself.  I have a few now, but the Billy Butler one had eluded me.  I think I need just one more for the team set (I think only 3 Royals were in the set), so one step closer is a good thing.

The next cards I saw made my jaw drop.  Seriously, I was speechless for like 10 minutes, which might be a new record for me.  Though since its getting a bit late and I have some stuff to do, I will show them off tomorrow.  That's called a tease in show biz terms, lol.

Thanks for reading and you don't want to miss my next post.  Have a GREAT NIGHT!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

I fell behind, so time to catch up a bit

I promised a different blog tonight, but I got sidetracked and lost track of time so I don't plan having time tonight to write it.  Though I hope to have it tomorrow.

That doesn't mean I won't have time for a short blog.

Last weekend I couldn't sleep overnight, which isn't uncommon, but I tried everything to get to sleep so I can be well rested before I spent the day at the Mizzou game.  One way of wasting time trying to get to sleep was to go on Listia and bid on some auctions.  I bid on I think 7-8 auctions, and when I got home found out I won 3-4 of them.  I didn't spend much on them, but I got a couple in the mail yesterday and figured I'd show them off.

 I won these in two separate auctions, but from the same seller.  I wanted both to add to my PC of these players and got them pretty cheap considering both are 2014.  These Allen & Ginter's are becoming more available now, and since they both were cheap, I jumped on them.

It still looks odd to me to see Beltran in a Yankees uniform, but looking back, I am glad he didn't take the Royals offer.  He didn't have a great 2014 and I'm not sure he would have helped KC in the playoffs. I hold no ill will towards him though, and hope he makes it into the Hall of Fame after he retires.

Speaking of Hall of Fame, Greg Maddux was never in doubt to make it in this year.  I think you could have put him on the ballot against the 1999 class and he would have made it easily.  I like how they chose to use him in a Braves uniform, as while I still enjoyed watching him play, it was odd to see him in any other uniform than Atlanta or the Cubs.

For a total of 369 points, I think I came out pretty good.

Again sorry for not having my expected post, but I promise to have it up soon.  Thank you for reading tonight, and have a great weekend.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Julie's Card-a-thon comes to a close

Today is the final day of the marathon of posts I guess I'll call Julie's Card-a-thon.  If you haven't had the chance, please check out her blog, A Cracked Bat.  I always enjoys her posts.

Today we will start with some chrome.  All solid cards, I like the Escobar card the most. I was a favorite of mine in the base set, and I think I have a couple of the parallels as well.  The Salvador Perez card is nice too as he looks really intense in the photo, which is a far cry from his happy persona.

Just look at the Emerald 2013 Topps card of Salvy.  That's more like it.  That's the one I'm use to.  I've never been one that needs to get every parallel of every card, but I believe I have a few of these Emerald ones now, so I might go after the rest.  I still prefer the base set cards though as they should be the main focus of the card companies, but thats a rant for another day.

Moving on, we have some 2011 Topps.  I really liked this set and still do.  The design might seem basic, but it works.  I don't remember having the Melky card, so that is a nice addition.  What is crazy in baseball is all the transactions in baseball.  Gregor Blanco, Melky Cabrera, and Chris Getz were all featured as Royals in 2011 sets, now 3 years later, now are on the team.  While I understand there are many reasons for this, I wish I lived in an era where players stayed on the same team for most of their career.  That's one reason I like George Brett and Derek Jeter as much as I do.  I know Jeter was able to stay a Yankee pretty easily, but its still nice to see them don the same uniform for so long.

Another player no longer a Royal is Zack Greinke.  He wanted out to go to a team with a shot at a Championship. Also for more money.  I'm not mad at him for that, it worked out for KC pretty well actually.  I would still like him to be in KC, but that's how the MLB works now.  Team loyalty went away a long time ago, and you have to do what's best for yourself.  I hope he wins a ring one day, but hope the Royals win one first.

How about some more 2012 Topps?  I'll be honest, I liked the 2011 set so much, that I didn't like this set too much.  As a matter of fact, I'm still not a big fan of them.  Though I will take them to finish the set.  I had a couple of these already, but still needed most of them.  A double dose of Frenchy, Pena sitting on the job, Johnny Gio getting to bat in a MLB game... this set had it all.  Again, lets look at the turnaround.  Moose, Crow, Escobar, and Gordon all played for KC last year, while Luke was out for the year on the KC 60 day DL.  I think Johnny was in Omaha all year.  Not too bad I guess Oh, and Salvy was obviously on the team.  Side note: Congrats to Salvy, Gordon, and Eric Hosmer on the Gold Gloves.

So only Frenchy, Melky, and Bryan Pena weren't in the Royals system last year.  Not too bad I guess.  By the way, I again love the Melky card.  He seems to have decent cards.

Here's some Flashback Friday cards.  I don't remember Felix Martinez.  This is a nice looking card though, so no complaints from me.

Another Kirk Gibson Royals card.  I like it.  Well.... I like the card, I am not a fan of the uniform selection of the card.  If you have powder blue pants, go with either a powder blue top or a white top.  I can't fault Kirk or Topps for that though.

I liked Brayan Pena when he was in KC.  I have nothing against him now, but I don't follow him anymore.  This is one of the diamond giveaway parallel card from the 2011 Topps.  I liked these when they came out, but the luster has worn off.  I'll take the base set any day.

This might be my favorite card in this package.  Sure I've spent this blog talking about my preference of base over inserts and parallels, but much like opening a pack of cards, find an insert is a bonus.  This was a nice bonus.  I hope myself and the rest of MLB haven't put Yordano on too high of a pedastal and expect too much from him.  Though having said that, it will sting less losing James Shields knowing we have Ace Ventura and Brandon Finnegan.

On the flip side is Kyle Zimmer.  He hasn't been a bust yet, but he hasn't been able to break through.  Last week it was announced he is having another surgery and will be out for at least the first part of next year.  His window of opportunity is closing.  Having said that, this is a nice addition to have.  Die cut cards have never been my thing, but it seems to be the hip thing now, so I don't plan on not collecting them.

I even got some hologram stickers!  I have some of these but non of the Royals.  I plan on using one of these on one of my binders and keeping the other intact.

Here's another Johnny Damon card I didn't have.  It's odd seeing him in a Royals uniform but being an Oakland card.  That reminds me that while I have been slow on updating the Royals checklist, I have fallen way behind on my Damon, Brett, and Maddux collections.

Speaking of which, how nice is this George Brett.  That's how a powder blue uniform should look.  The Triple Threads have an incredibly think card stock.  I was surprised when I first saw them.  This is a nice design and overall a nice cards.

We close up the Card-a-thon with Greg Maddux.  If you read Julie's blog you have seen this card before.  As a matter of fact, this is how the entire trade started (which I promise I will send something soon).  I fell in love with this card and when I held it in my hands it felt even better.  I can't wait to display it with my other Maddux cards.  I don't think I have very many #'d Maddux cards, so this was sweet to get.

Thank you again Julie for the great cards.  I don't think I have anything that will get you as excited as I was when I opened these packages up.

That will wrap it up today, but I still have another package to show off, and a few Listia wins I'll be showing in the coming days.  Thanks for reading and have a great weekend.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

A Second Cracking of the Bat

Today we will be looking at even more cards Julie from A Cracked Bat sent my way.  A very nice assortment of cards ranging from the early 90's to 2014.

First up is Gary Thurman! Okay, nobody has been that excited for him likely before, but I like the look of this card.  I have had one for a while, but never actually looked at it.  His eyes are drawing you in. He looks like Pinky, but I know in his mind he thinks like The Brain.  WE WILL TRY TO TAKE OVER THE WORLD! NARF!

I was always a fan of Ultra cards, at least the early 90's ones.  This is a nice addition to my collection as I was a fan of Brent Mayne.  Between Mayne and Mike Macfarlane, the Royals had the catching position pretty set.  Today if Salvador Perez goes down, we have... Erik Kratz.  No offense to Kratz, but he would have some big shoes to fill.

Embossed cards have always piqued my interest from the first time I got one in a school yard trade (the most I ever got excited over Shane Conlan).  I have had embossed football and wrestling cards, but never any baseball I don't think.  This has now changed as I have two.  These Action Packed cards are nice but I notice a little problem- not a lot of action.  Michael is standing in what is likely a corn field in Nebraska for his photo (which by the way, I like teams who resemble their MLB teams colors, but those uniforms are really bland even for 90's standards).  One day I need to go see Omaha play a game.  No longer known as the Royals, the Omaha Storm Chasers are still the Royals AAA affiliate and have won 2 straight AAA championships.  Shows that the Royals have talent in the minor league system, and hopefully it translates into the major league system.

At least the Jeff Granger shot is one where he is doing something.  He looks like he is pitching in a batting cage though so it makes me wonder if Action Packed got banned from MLB Stadiums and just randomly told players where to pose for pictures. I do like the baseball graphics on the card though.

A couple months ago in my first month of blogging, I think I mentioned I bought a box of cards at a flea market and it was filled with these Stadium Club cards.  What was interesting is that it didn't have very many Royals cards.  It surprised me because it had Cardinals cards and some fairly big names for the time, but not many Royals.  While I liked this set growing up, though held very few in my hand, after buying that box, I am starting to get sick of the set.  I think I'll see if I can finish the set on Just Commons to get it out of the way.

Anyone else notice Gary Thurman still TRYING TO TAKE OVER THE WORLD!  His eyes are still drawing you in.  Archie Corbin (who I never even heard of until now) isn't buying into it.  Maybe that's why Archie never became famous.  He should have been Gary's sidekick and they could have ruled!

After all these years I still like Mike Macfarlane and this Upper Deck set.  It was I think one of their first sets that had a fairly different design than their devut set.  In this photo, Mike is showing that he shouldn't be hired for kids parties because he can't juggle.

Next we have a mix of old and new.  I think I remember Rod Myers, but not too sure.  Team Best cards seemed cheap, but I still had a few.  I'm not sure if that was really the Omaha Royals logo at the time or what, but it just looks a bit off.

I would consider the Toys R Us card an oddball.  I collect oddballs, so this fits in nice.  I like how the jumbotron make a brief cameo in the background of the shot.  Overall this is a nice card.

Let's look at newer stuff.  Here is a very nice Bowman card of Billy Butler.  This is one of the finer action shots I've seen in a while. Match that with a powder blue uniform and the fact Billy was playing an actual fielding postion, and this makes a great card.

This Eric Hosmer card is my first for the 2014 Finest series.  I have to admit I was pretty excited when I pulled this card out.  The card does look a lot better in hand than I thought it would.  They even used a photo from a throwback game to boot.  Maybe next year I will search for some packs in addition to completing the team set.

Next is more Upper Deck.  Nice shot of Tom Gordon, I can't imagine them taking a better shot to be honest.  I am a bit confused at the Keith Miller card though.  You see the runner sliding into second, you see Miller protecting the bag, but you don't see the bag!  Either it  was just left of the frame (most likely as the runner looks to be just sliding) or someone used some software to remove the base from the photo.  While it would be funny if that was the case, I don't see that happening, but then again I've seen stranger.

Next is a 1994 Fleer Mike Mac.  There's a pile of dust surrounding him so I guess he is really trying his entertainment chops.  The last card of him was him failing as a juggler.  This one he may have secured a role as Pigpen in a Charlie Brown special.  I reality though it looks like he is blocking the plate from the incoming runner.  In 2014 that's a big no-no, but back then it was fine.  I'm not sure if I like the new rule, but its something I'll have to accept.

A couple days ago I showed some 1994 Bowman Julie sent with the last package.  Today here is some more she sent.  The two I like the most are the Jeff Granger and Johnny Damon cards.  I actually picked up the Damon card somewhere this year, but I'll gladly take another early years Damon.  The Granger card I like because of the bucket.  It makes me think of every spring when the MLB season begins I buy a bag or two of sunflower seeds and enjoy the free trial week of MLB I get from Directv.  By the end of the week, my tongue hates salt so much I don't eat seeds for the rest of the year.  That might not be a problem much longer since I plan on cutting DirecTV.

We will end the day on a few more current cards. I still feel sorry for Luke Hochevar for missing the entire 2014 season due to injury.  Though to be fair, I don't think we'd be in the position we was if he was healthy.  I hope he bounces back next year.

I have been liking the old designs on new cards Topps has been doing lately.  This is an awesome Alex Gordon card.  Awesome might be a bit much, but I really like it.

We round up this post with Salvador Perez.  In the two packages I got, I got 3 of these cards.  It allows me to show the front and back, so I'm not mad.  The back of the card is pretty cool how they show the stats.  Having 3 gives me the option of trying to get one signed TTM next year.  That might be the plan for a few of the cards I have doubles of.

That's going to wrap it up for today, thank you for reading, and tomorrow I will show the rest of the cards she sent.  I can't thank her enough.  Have a great day everybody!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

More cards from Julie, and yet still no Hot Dog

Yesterday I showed off some older cards I got in a package sent by Julie from A Cracked Bat: Baseball Cards and a Hot Dog.  Today I will be showing off some of the newer cards from the package.

Since starting my blog, and holding a few A&G cards in my hand, I have started to warm up to them.  I think the biggest reason is the card stock itself, not so much the design.  I am a fan of borders, but A&G seems to have too much white on the card for my liking.  Anyways, I like these cards, and these three were the core of the team for 2014.  My only fear for Perez is that he becomes injury prone.  As much as I want him to come back, I don't see Shields coming back next year.  As for Gordon, he was just awarded his 4th Gold Glove award (Perez and Hosmer also got Gold Gloves), and I see Gordon as this team's Mr. Royal.  Among all time Royals, he may not be the name most people consider, but I would put him in the top 5 all time just because he has remained with the team as long as he has, and has said he would take an option when his contract comes up despite the risk of losing a good payday.

I am much more of a fan of Topps Heritage.  I love this Gordon with the KC on the grass behind him.  Just like yesterday, this is a posed shot I am okay with.  He looks focused and not staring directly into the camera.

Jason Vargas I was a little rough on this year (the same can be said on my harshness of Jeremy Guthrie), but overall had a good season. While I didn't agree with it at the time, he was a solid addition to the team, and hope he continues his success next year.

Emilio Bonifacio was one of my favorite Royals heading into 2014 (only behind Perez and Hosmer, and probably Gordon).  Then he was placed on waivers.  He was picked up by the Cubs and started te season on fire.  Then he came back down to Earth.  I think he went to Atlanta at the trade deadline, but I always held out hope he would go on a tear again.  I hope he is playing in the majors again next year and hope I get to see him play (either in person or at the least, on television).

The Topps 206 line I remember from a few years back, as I liked the set some.  I never cared for the name, but prefer them over A&G.  Brian Bannister and Joakim Soria are obviously no longer with the team, but I enjoyed watching them as Royals.  I absolutely love the Billy Butler card.  While I guess officially he is no longer a Royals player (the team paid him $1 million to buy out his contract in hopes of re-signing him for less then his $12.5 million team option), I expect he will be back in Royal blue before his playing days are over.  If not now, he will go the Mike Sweeney route and sign a one day contract and retire.  Though I think he will be back in KC next year, I have mixed feelings about it.  I don't like a team having an exclusive DH player, but he can still play 1st base if needed.  I would prefer a hitter who is more versatile in the field and on the base paths.

I never saw these A&G cards before.  I actually like this design.  I think it has to do with the border and the design the most, but its not as much white.  I'm not sure how many Tim Collins rookies I have, but adding one more to the collection is not a bad thing.

The Gypsy Queen card of Frenchy I never seen either.  Jeff Francoeur endured a lot of stuff from Royals fans his last year plus on the team, but after he was gone from the team, I started to like him again.  One of my favorite stories of 2014 was the prank that his team pulled on him.

Before I go on, let me say I love this design.  I would not mind seeing a base set looking like this.  These are 2014 Topps Stickers.  They look and feel much better than the stickers Panini put out for the sticker books in the 80s.  These feel more like cards, mini cards at least.  The photos they used on the cards are pretty solid too.  After I saw these I looked up the other cards in the base set, and I may try finishing it up sooner than later if I can find them at decent prices.  I like how Sluggerrr has his own car...sticker.  I do wonder why Topps never names him on any of the cards.  They name Wally the Green Monster every time he is on a card.  Every Sluggerrr card I've seen just says Kansas City Royals.  Even the Mascot cards.

Living in the middle of nowhere I have been getting jealous of all the other bloggers showing off their 2014 Stadium Club cards.  I have yet to see them on shelves, though to be honest, money is a bit tight, so its not like I'd buy too many.  Thanks to Julie, I finally have some cards to put in my collection.  While it doesn't make me think back to the old Stadium Club sets, I still like the design a lot.  I am a fan of borders, but this design really works, and the card stock is nice and the photos are crisp.  I like how they didn't take all the photos from the same game either.  I can't wait to finish up the team set, and find a few others I've seen around (like the Clemente).

We finish up this package with a couple more 2014 Topps cards.  The first is a Topps Chrome of Salvador Perez.  With him winning the AL Gold Glove for catcher, it is no longer hyperbole when I say Salvy is one of the best catchers in baseball.  As I mentioned earlier, if he can stay healthy, I see a long career.  If Billy Butler isn't retained, I can see Perez splitting time catching and being a DH next year and in the years to come.  While I'm not as enamored with Chrome as I used to be, it works really well with the design of the Topps set.

Greg Holland was on fire this year.  He has really started to make a name for himself, so much so some writers believe KC should trade him to get the max value for him as he might not be able to get any hotter.  This Chrome refractor card isn't done enough justice with this scan.  I don't know how many refractors I have, but its not a lot.  This is going to look great in my binder.  Now I just need to find some 8 pocket pages to display it properly.

Overall, I can't say enough to thank Julie for sending me these cards.  I already know I can't send anything that will match these cards, and before I even got the chance to, I got another package from her.  I will show them starting tomorrow.

I am working on my want list and completed sets lists slowly, but just updated them a couple days ago.  The want list only shows sets that I have at least one card from and shows what I still need to complete the team set.  If a set is not listed there, I have either not added it yet, or I don't have any cards from that set.  The completed set list shows all the team sets I have completed, and range from base sets to insert sets.  It doesn't matter if there is only one card in the team set, if I have all of them, it is a completed set.  Like I said, I hope to be updating them more soon.  As I do I will try to time stamp the last update I made.  As I finish it more, I will try to make it easier to read and access.

Thanks you for reading and have a great day.

R.I.P. Brad Halsey

As I do from time to time, I check out the Wikipedia page Deaths in 2014.  I skimmed it and saw a former MLB player died.  I clicked the link and the name sounded semi-familiar.  It was Brad Halsey.  I read his bio on Wikipedia, and I don't remember him besides his name.  I did find out he was born on February 14th, just like me.  As a matter of fact he was born one year before me.  I also found out he was optioned to AAA once because of a returning Jay Witasik.  I was never a Jay Witasik fan (so much so that I don't care if I mispelled his name), so I feel sorry for Brad.

He only pitched a couple years in the majors and was once passed over for Dallas Braden.  This might be wrong to say, but between Dallas and Jay, that shows the league Brad was likely in, but it could also be he just never got the right chance.  For the record I liked Dallas Braden at one point, but not so much these days. 

After he was released by Oakland in 2008, the Dodgers invited him to spring training in 2009.  He didn't make the cut and spent the rest of 2009 on a team called the Long Island Ducks.  In 2010, he was a member of the Gary SouthShore RailCats (thats a real team folks).  In 2011 he signed a minor league deal with the New York Yankees. 

He was a college teammate of Huston Street at Texas and was part of the teams 2002 College World Series Championship team.

His total MLB career stats was 14 wins and 19 losses with a 4.84 ERA.  He had 160 strikeouts compared to only 99 walks in appearances for the Yankees (the team who drafted him), Diamondbacks, and the Athletics.

It says the cause of death was a recreational climbing accident in Texas.  He was only 33.

R.I.P. Brad.

I plan to have another post later today, but had a few minutes and though I would post this.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

No Hot Dogs, but plenty of baseball cards!

Early last week I got a package from Julie.  We have wrote emails back and forth so it wasn't too unexpected.  However, what I didn't expect was the amount of cards she was sending.  As a result, I will break it up into two posts.

I will start with these 1994 Pinnacle.  I have stated many times already about my love for the 1994 cards, and Pinnacle was no exception.   Julie sent me almost the complete set.  As a matter of fact, I only need the Brian McRae card to complete the team set which I can likely find on COMC or Just Commons.  I didn't scan all the cards but picked out a few I liked the most.

There's Chico in shades, Chris Gwynn doing a Willie Mays Hayes (I've been cut already), Tom Gordon is the third card.  Nothing too special about the card, I guess none of the others stood out much.  I liked Tom a lot though.  Finally is Bob Hamelin.  I may post a lot of his cards but he only played a couple years, so I liked him so much I will probably post 95% of his cards I have.

Let's stay with 1994 and Bowman.  It wasn't until the last 2-3 years that I started to get Bowman cards so these were all new to my collection.  Julie gave me about half the set.  I like the Felix Jose card even though I was told  in high school that you should never take posed shots.  Always go for the action shots.  This has a Senior Picture vide to it, but I still like it.  The Jose Lind card is nice too as its an action shot.  Maybe what I like most is the clear view of the patch on his sleeve honoring Ewing and Murial Kauffman.  By 1994, the Royals were already bad, but after the Kauffman's deaths, a lot of the Royals spirit died too. 

Finally is David Cone who I can't say I remember him as a Royals player, but I do remember when he came back to Kansas City, some of that spirit seemed to come back, though it was short lived.

Next is 1996 E-Motion XL.  I never heard of these and probably wouldn't have gotten these otherwise.  I don't get the idea for the set but the design is almost like picture frames.  I'm five cards short of the team set, but not going to aggressively finish it right now.  I do like the Bip Roberts though.

Next is another 1994 set- Flair.  I'm not sure what to think of these cards.  They are different, but not a great design.  Though I will never complain getting two of my favorite pitchers.

Here is a few more cards I got.  I liked Michael Tucker when he first started playing, but as he seemed to fizzle, so did my fandom towards him.  Nice looking card though.

I have this George Brett card, but it is a nice card and from the year he won his last batting title.  That is a feat I don't think will ever be broken.  George won a batting title in 3 different decades, thats just unbelieveable to imagine.

I have this Chris Gwynn card.  I am still looking for one card to complete the set, I think its the Gary Gaetti.  The '94 Collector's Choice is one of my top 5 sets of all time.  One day, I may even try to build the whole set myself.

Finally is 1991 Donruss of Mel Stottlemyre.  I have acquired quite a few 1991 Donruss cards lately, so I should be getting close to completing the team set.  I should also be close to completing the entire set as well.

1990 Fleer is another set I'm close to completing if not there already.  In the past I never went after the cards with Royals and other teams on them, but as I tighten up my collection and focus on the Royals more, I will start collecting them more.

I always liked the 1992 Upper Deck set, but dont have a lot of cards from it.  So I will take two George Bretts.  The bat looks curved so I like the front shot.  The back shot is good too.  I didn't realize George was a full time DH by 1992 though.

We will close out today's post with some Kirkie!  I have always been a fan of Kirk Gibson, though I was on the fence about collecting his stuff besides Royals.  Now I have decided to keep on collecting.  It is nice to have PC cards of players that isn't known as a Royal.  I needed two of these cards (including the KC one), so these are nice additions.

But wait, there's more!  I know I had the Fleer card, as I have most of the Fleer cards that year.  I don't think I had the other two though. 

We will close up today with the Greg Maddux.  This is a card that fits nicely into my collection.  It's amazing to me how easy it has been to get his older cards and pretty cheap too.  It is a bit of a shame though in the same sense that his cards don't fetch higher prices.

That's going to be all today, but tomorrow I will show some of the newer cards I got in the package.  After I got this in the mail, before I even opened it, Julie sent me an email stating she forgot a card I asked for on one of her posts.  She mentioned another package was on the way.  Sure enough a couple days later, I got another package.  So I will post that package after I finish this one.

Then I got another package yesterday. It was from Tony.  I knew it was coming too, and I will show it off later this week.  All in all, you don't want to miss the next few posts, it is going to be a great week.

Thank you for reading and have a great night.

Monday, November 3, 2014

What I did this weekend

I didn't go into hiding this weekend, I wasn't hungover or arrested or anything (I don't even drink, so hangovers are a bit tough to get for me).  I just had a busy weekend and then a lazy Sunday.  I had plans in my head of doing blogs on Friday and Sunday, but things changed.  I didn't even get to catch up with reading other blogs until late last night.  It wasn't a complete wash though as I did get to scan some stuff to show off this week.  I would have likely been able to post yesterday if it didn't take so long to upload videos on Facebook.  I still prefer Youtube to post videos, but a couple years ago I posted video of a game on there and someone claimed I stole the video from them (they said they shot the footage, even after disputing it Youtube pulled the video), so I decided not to post sports videos on there anymore unless its high school or something.

Friday night was obviously Halloween, and my two nieces and two nephews stayed the night.  I knew with it being busy I wouldn't get much done, so the most I hoped for was a good night's sleep.  I got a few hours so I was happy.  I was able to bid on a few things on Listia, which most I won, and once I get them I will show them off.  I also got to watch The Muppets Movie more times than I planned.  Though I like the movie, so it was fine.

I'll skip Saturday for now, and tell you about Sunday.  Daylight savings didn't effect me because I was still awake during the hour you fall back, so I didn't get extra sleep that way.  When I finally fell asleep I got solid sleep.  So much that I missed most of the first half of the Chiefs game.  I did see the equivalent of a full game (would have been more if the Rams QB started the game better), and got to see some NASCAR including an interesting post race which racers got into a fight.  Can't wait for the suspensions, but since Jeff Gordon was involved, punishments won't be too harsh.

The Kentucky Wildcat busses.
Anyways, the meat and bones of this post will be on Saturday.  I attended my second Mizzou Football game of the year, and had a blast.  I even talked to my boss (I guess he's my boss, I considered myself employed by them still though I haven't worked a game this year), and he asked if I wanted to be an usher instead of a program seller for the final game.  I'm still thinking about it, I think ushering gets better pay and more hours, but you don't get a bonus.  Since the game is a day game on Black Friday, I imagine they will be short staffed, so it will still be easy money, so its something to consider.

I try to take one moon shot each game if the moon is out.
I took a ton of pictures, somewhere in the neighborhood of 300, but I'm not posting them all here.  I took so many because I am still getting used to my new camera I got in early August and still messing around with it.  One feature I am liking is the continuous shot, which I used a couple times during the game taking up most of the pictures.  If you want to see almost all of my pictures you can check out my Facebook page.  I don't make all my pictures public, but I did this album.  If you don't want to see them on there, I am going to pick a few to post here too, as you can already tell.  I also have some videos on there too. 

Nice view of the Stadium and the makeshift Team Store.
I went with my friends Jason and Crystal.  We started the day by going to the Zimmer Radio Networks Tiger Tailgate.  If you ever come to a Mizzou game and don't tailgate, this is a must for you.  Since we never tailgate we always go here (you might remember I posted the passes from old games a few days ago).  It is free as long as you have the passes, and you can pick them up in a variety of locations the week of the game.  They serve food from Burger's Smokehouse (I think its funny their name is Burger and they sell primarily ham. Their surnames are Burger btw), and Lutz's provides the chips.  They also have cake and either beer, soda, or water.  You can't beat that for free.

The view of the Tiger Tailgate as we were heading to the Stadium across the street.  I got to say hi to my friend Beazl too.

After the tailgate, we made our way inside the stadium who was just getting ready to open the gates.  When we go we generally get there as gates open as we hate how a lot of people wait until the last minute to get their seats.  For this game, I didn't have a ticket in the same spot as my friends, as I had a hill ticket.  A hill ticket is basically general admission, and first come first served on seating.  It usually gets crowded quick so if you want a good spot you have to get there when gates open.

A nice view of the hill and the rock M.  I stood along the wall at the bottom the whole game.
I lagged a bit before finding my spot on the wall directly to the left (or right depending on your location) of the goal post.  It was a great spot as you could see a lot of the action on the field and if you couldn't, the jumbo screen was directly behind me.  I never had a hill ticket before, but I might be more open to it in the future.  I honestly planned to leave my spot in towards the end of the third quarter to take pictures from other spots of the stadium, but I didn't.  I liked my spot I stayed there until towards the end of the fourth quarter once the game was pretty much decided.

Big MO, it was (maybe still is) the largest drum in the World.
The Helmet Car.  I forgot the official name.
The newly renamed MIZZOU-KA!
The Missou firetruck aka Truman's Taxi.

I think I enjoy the atmosphere of the game itself more than the game sometimes.  This game wasn't the greatest, and if I just wanted to watch the game, I could watch it on TV, but its the atmosphere that really makes the game come alive.  The attendance was a bit short of people's expectations, but there were 62,004 fans at the game, which I think is great.  While I wish every game is a sell-out, I don't think too many can complain about that.  The only complaints I might have had were the TV timeouts, which didn't seem too bad this game, and the temperature.  I expected it to be cold as the game was ending, so I was prepared.  I was feeling chilled earlier in the week, so I was worried I would be sick for the game, but I felt pretty good.

The third person on the left is Marcus James.  The 7th from left (in yellow) is Ben Askren.

Former Missouri Tiger and current Carolina Panther, IT'S KONY EALY!

One thing Mizzou does well, maybe other places do to, I can't say, is they manage to fill time in-between the action.  Every timeout they generally honor people on the jumbo and the field.  The top photo was to honor former student DA's or something (I honestly forgot).  I hear of three of the people they announced.  The first was former Missouri Running Back Marcus James.  Marcus didn't play a lot, but was a Tiger during the early 2000's.  I got to know him a few years ago while he played for an indoor football team nearby (I'll blog about that some other time).  Known as Superman, James still holds a record or two despite having minimal playing time.  Another name I heard of was Neville Miller.  People outside the Columbia, Missouri area may not know the name but I know him best as a weatherman.  While at Mizzou he competed in Track & Field and after he graduated served as a volunteer assistant coach for the Track team for a couple years.  He even qualified for the 2008 Olympic trials.  It looks like today he is a meteorologist for KMBC, the ABC affiliate for Kansas City,  The third name I heard of was Ben Askren.  Ben was an All-American wrestler for Mizzou and eventually made his way into MMA.  I believe he is undefeated in MMA, but while he should be in the UFC, has most notable competed in Bellator.

The second photo is of Kony Ealy.  Kony is probably only behind only James Franklin as my favorite players I have met.  I expect big things from him in the NFL, and won't be surprised when people start to take notice of him.  This week I was able to win a couple cards of him off Listia pretty cheap.

I think the card on the right is my first one of him as a Panther.

This week was a sad for the Missouri Tigers family,  as John Kadlec passed away.  Known to Mizzou fans as Mr. Mizzou, Kaddy done literally everything at Mizzou at one point or another.  I remember him most as the color analyst for the football games, but he did everything from being assistant coach to broadcaster, to ambassador to the school.  Someone mentioned he was the only person at Mizzou to have a lifetime contract.  The practice fields for the football team were long ago named for him, and before the game, they made a video package for him, observed a moment of silence, and even had Mr. Mizzou painted on the sidelines for the game.

Another advantage I had at the spot I was at besides being close to the action (and losing hearing due to the firetruck blaring and the Mizzou-ka popping off) was I got to talk to a couple people.  One I didn't talk to per se, but got a high five from him.  It was Truman the Tiger.  Truman has won multiple College Mascot of the Year awards, and might be most remembered in recent years for dropping the glass trophy of a Bowl game a few years ago.  A long line of people have been under the costume, including Dan Meers who is also known as KC Wolf!  The other person I got to shake hands with R. Bowen Loftin.  He is the new chancellor of Mizzou after Brady Deaton vacated the position.  Loftin is known for his bowtie, even going by BOWTIEger on twitter.  He is very approachable, and was very nice.  He walked around the stadium shaking people's hands thanking them for coming.

In the end, Missouri came out with the win, and in the process Shane Ray set the new team record for sacks in a season with 12, and has an eye on the SEC record. I can't complain with that outcome.

I also got some free stuff before the game like this koozie, a pair of sunglasses, and a sign for the game.  I like the free loot they pass out before the game.

All in all I don't think I could have asked for a better day.  The only thing I might have wanted was to see one of the players on Kentucky play.  One of the reasons I went was to see Steven Borden play.  He is a tight end for the Wildcats, and was listed as a starter.  I never saw him play once, and might have only caught a glimpse of him once on the sidelines.  The reason I wanted to see him so bad wasn't because I was a huge fan of his, to be honest, I've never seen him play.  The reason I wanted to see him play was because I am a huge fan of his dad.  His father Steve, is a little bit of a celebrity.  He appeared in the movie Ready To Rumble.  Alright, he's more famous than that.  Steve Borden is a professional wrestler known as... STING!  STING'S SON PLAYS FOR KENTUCKY!  I have been a huge fan of Sting since probably the 80's.  Since I never got to see him wrestle live, the next best thing would be to see his son play football.  Oh well, I still got to see my team win, and had a blast from the moment we left to go to the game, through the adventure of finding a restaurant that wasn't crowded post-game (we decided on Freddy's) until the time we got home, so I can't complain one bit.

How about a shot of the game!  This was the opening kickoff, Marcus Murphy with the run back.

I hope you guys enjoyed reading this today, and enjoyed the pictures I posted.  As I stated before, I take a lot of pictures, so if I am out of ideas one day, I might post more of these pics on another post.

Mizzou Arena from the backside of Memorial Stadium.
Stuff from the game, the hill ticket was my ticket.

I have a couple packages I got in the mail last week to show off this week and a few Listia wins and other surprises.  Since baseball season is over, I won't be posting as much Royals stuff as frequently, but will have a good amount of stuff to showcase.  I will start posting more Mizzou, Chiefs, and other random stuff, besides packages and Listian wins and such.  I don't think you will be too disappointed.

Thank you for reading and have a great night.