Friday, April 18, 2014

Custom Card of the Day: Votto Edition

I wanna take this opportunity to address one of the odd things about collecting for as long as I have. This is also pretty thought-provoking, and confusing, so anybody who wants to look at shiny objects for a while can just look at dayf's blog or something.

When I started collecting, the big rookies were Ryan Braun, Tim Lincecum and Daisuke Matsuzaka. The next year, people like Joey Votto, Evan Longoria, Jay Bruce and Josh Hamilton were breakout stars.

Within a few years, people weren't calling these players prospects anymore. I kept it in the back of my mind that people like Braun and Votto used to be rookies. And then they were being taken seriously as actual stars. Maybe it was the way I thought as a young player, but I just kinda thought that rookies became stars in a much slower, and less obvious fashion. Nobody knew what Ryan Braun and Josh Hamilton would become in a span of three years.

This was also during the years when I still thought that people like Jim Thome, Frank Thomas and Greg Maddux would continue to be good because they were good in the 2000's and 1990's, not really realizing that baseball players lose their quick abilities over time.

It took me a while to really stop underestimating how quickly baseball players can gain stardom, and how quickly baseball stars can stop being amazing at everything.

Joey Votto, for instance, was the big young star for a couple years, until he won the MVP. Then people just started calling him a star, or a veteran even. And when people were calling a guy who'd played five or six seasons a veteran, it was a little weird. He wasn't a veteran, in my eyes. He was too young.

I think this concept sorta clicked when I saw the old baseball cards of people I called stars. Like, I was calling it into question when these new players progressed through youth in baseball so quickly, yet I'd overlook players like Derek Jeter and Nomar Garciaparra, who did the same exact thing, only in the past. Evidently I viewed them differently because they started in my binders, and they didn't progress to their 'star' status while I was watching them (like Votto and Braun did).

It just never clicked to me, I guess. The past just fits differently in people's minds than the present.

Food for thought.

Coming Tonight (?): Helton's gone. Gonzo's young. Morneau's new. Rockies need a new veteran star figure.

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