Sunday, June 30, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Myers Edition

In January, when all those people up top, slurping on Big Gulps, pens behind their ears, all made their predictions as to which teams would land where, I'm fairly certain that many of them had two teams in two well-defined spaces. They all thought that the Rays would finish third in the AL East, and the Royals would finish fifth in the AL Central.

Of course, everybody thought that Wil Myers would be the one to rocket the Royals to glory, victory, and everything that Eric Hosmer couldn't own up to.

Well, this season Wil Myers is playing for the Rays, and he's currently stuck in fifth place, while the team he was traded from is now in third, flourishing under the failures of Chicago and Minnesota. And he's not the herculean, wonder-boy, amazing player that he was hyped up to be.

But give him a little credit. It's only his rookie season. I mean, some players who look good on the outside don't amount to much on their rookie year. I mean, look at Yasiel Pui...okay, that's a bad example. Look at Bryce Harp...that's also a bad example. Look at David Pri...okay, maybe not. Maybe it just varies, I guess. Like, not every player looks good their rookie season.

Wil Myers might have some great seasons in him. They just might happen later on. As of right now, he's not playing like we all thought he would play. But people need to learn to give him some time. You know, Philly gave Dom Brown some time, and look at him now.

So at least keep Wil Myers in your binders for now, but until he's gone through his third team in 2 years, don't take him out.

Coming Tomorrow- The catcher for a team I despise.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Goldschmidt Edition

I'm too tired to think of anything to say about Paul Goldschmidt. I know, he'll probably be an All Star starter, and he's on a very good team, and he's a great hitter, but I'm a little worn out. Probably because of yesterday's post.

Coming Tomorrow- A rookie for a 5th place team. However, he is a very good rookie...and had he not been traded, he would have been playing for another 5th place team.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Brown Edition

For every prospect that makes it, and for every prospect that pans out, there's always one prospect that fakes you out, and pretends they're not gonna make it while reestablishing themselves later.

I liken these fakeouts to Back to the Future, or more specifically, the last half hour of Back to the Future. I love the movie, but I've seen it so many times to grow accustomed to the number of fakeouts they use during the climax. Every time it looks like Marty's gonna get home safe, something happens. Or every time it looks like Marty's gonna get away with something, something else happens, to the point where you're screaming at the TV in exhaustion. They're gonna get out okay, but the car runs out of battery. He charges it up, but the cable falls. He gets the cable back up, but it won't reach. They're very annoying, but they pay off, eventually.

I'd like to think of Domonic Brown as reminiscent of the last 30 minutes of Back to the Future. Because every time you think things are gonna go swell, he has a setback. Best prospect in the organization, but he stops hitting. Rehabs it up for a season, but they trade for Hunter Pence. 19 home runs, but he fails to get any more in a week. It's the same sorta suspense that frustrates fans of Marty McFly.

But, there is, somehow, a perk to all of this maddening confusion.

How different would the movie Back to the Future be if Marty McFly gets to 1955, talks to his folks, gets them together, and promptly goes back home, without anything happening, without him endangering anyone's lives?

It would be one boring-ass movie, I'll tell you that much. No excitement. No real drama, or action. If all the little fakeouts were taken out, it'd easily be fodder for the Satellite of Love (MAJOR obscure reference there, folks. Only a certain breed of geek will get that.)

Now, lemme go the other way. How different would Back to the Future be if he goes back, and doesn't get the happy ending? He does all these things, and he ends up either dying, or killing Doc Brown, or doing something that off-sets everything, and it ends in a somber tone? No, that can't happen either. You can't just start something with so much potential, only for it to just end up a total mess. I mean...that happens a lot in movies (see Steel, Man of), but people don't like it when it does.

No, Back to the Future works because it has all the suspense, and things happen, and even when the little fakeouts happen, they amount to something. It's not a one note shoot to a happy ending, but it's not too bleak, either. Hell, if you want bleak, watch Back to the Future Part II (or The Hangover Part II). But it's a fine balance between ending well and ending horribly, by having moments where you're not sure it's gonna end well.

And that's what makes Domonic Brown's sudden rise to Philly fame so satisfying. It's been bleak, it's been suspenseful, and it's been a hell of a ride, but all that matters is that it's currently amounting to something. And all of those little fakeouts are pesky, and frustrating, but by the end (or at least by right now), Domonic Brown is playing well, hitting well, getting a million All Star votes (yet 10th in the polls), and making Philly fans happy.

You could argue here that it may not take money, or a sudden onset of fame, or a AmEx to ride this transit system. But all it takes is the fact that fans have waited a long time to see Domonic Brown play like everybody else hyped him up to be. And now that he is, it's a long like of relief, and satisfaction.

And the power of Brotherly Love.

(scoots away while dancing to Huey Lewis music)

Coming Tomorrow- What's that? You want more Diamondbacks? Fine, here's the probable starter at 1st base for the NL All Star team, unless the Cincinnati fans start stuffing ballots.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Wheeler Edition

First of all, that custom is awesome. I'd glad I got that photo before Sports Illustrated did.

Second of all, I'd like to crown the New York Mets as the Best Worst Team in baseball, for their feats of having great games and great players while doing everything wrong.

I mean, let's look, for a moment, at their pitching staff. They have Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler and Jon Niese, who are all doing very well, and are great additions to the staff. Also, they have Shaun Marcum and Dillon Gee, who do alright, but don't weigh them down that much. Again, those five are a solid rotation. I wouldn't be too disappointed with that.

What's disappointing is their starting lineup. Again, I'm not knocking the services of David Wright. What I am knocking, however, is the services of basically everybody else. People like Ike Davis, Justin Turner, Lucas Duda, Ruben Tejeda- all people who were really good two seasons ago, are barely hitting, and aren't playing well. They've turned into a dilapidated mess that can't hit. Look at Ike Davis- he's been demoted to the minors already this season!

And, like, two positions over, David Wright is having another All Star season at third. He's playing ridiculously well, like every other season where he's not injured. And if the Giants fans don't stuff too many more ballots, we may have an All Star season for someone on the Mets. Think about that- someone from the Mets, a team that has such roster stalwarts as Marlon Byrd and Ike Davis, will likely be starting the All Star Game.

Well, they'll always have that year they got beat for the NL East by the 2007 Phillies...and still lost in the playoffs.

Coming Tomorrow- Speaking of those 'champion' Phillies, the current best player on the team, though his custom would have been timed better had it aired a week ago.

Two Hanger Boxes of Topps Series 2

Of late, there's been a nice incline in people ripping hanger boxes, as I've seen roughly 50 of them throughout the blogosphere. And as a reward for finally getting my driver's license yesterday (but no big deal), I picked up a few hanger boxes at Target. So far I prefer Series 1, but let's see if these change my opinion.

Box 1-
644- Ryan Lavarnway. Nice, starting it off with a Red Sock. Just what I needed.
397- Mike Aviles. Jeez, he's on the Indians?
525- J.P. Arencibia. So we have a current Red Sock, followed by a former Red Sock, followed by a Blue Jay who I despise. Well, that's great. Who's next?
633- Victor Martinez. Another former Red Sock. Juuust great. If I didn't need these cards, I'd be really pissed.
530- Wade Miley. Finally, someone I don't despise.
459- Jesus Montero. Haaaaah. Mariners thought they'd be getting a really good catcher. Good one...
543- Donovan Solano, one of the many no-names starting for Miami this year.
365- Mike Baxter
612- Robinson Cano. I believe I have this one already.
365- Ervin Santana
354- Casey Janssen
538- Brett Wallace
591- Derek Holland
508- Felix Doubront. Double-mania.
489- Erick Aybar. Oh hey, a card I don't have!
344- Kris Medlen
604- Rafael Betancourt
570- Jeff Francoeur. Remember when everybody thought he was gonna be the next Chipper, and ended up being Jeff Francoeur?
108- Coco Crisp. Part of this incomplete roster.
WBC of Hanley Ramirez. Nice, another player I've heard of!
Chasing History Shiny of Matt Cain.
Chasing History Shiny of Gary Sheffield...on the Dodgers? I mean...Marlins I can understand, Yankees or Tigers I can understand...but he barely did much on the Dodgers. It says he broke the slugging record, but I dunno if that's worthy of a card.
Chasing History Shiny of Stan the Man Musial, truly a legend.
Chasing History Shiny of Jason Kipnis. Doesn't really deserve being in the company of the other three.
547- Glen Perkins, one of the few Twins I've heard of.
614- B.J. Upton, who is slowly becoming a mixture of Paul Reuschel and Ken Brett.
630- Andy Dirks.
602- Anibal Sanchez
610- Brandon Beachy, who keeps getting injured at the exact wrong times.
580- Jordan Danks
641- Bruce Chen
588- Jordan Zimmermann. Now I know it's two n's.
642- Austin Jackson, who is currently playing better than the guy he was traded for.
492- Jose Molina
635- Jedd Gyorko. Bahaha.
335- Chris Herrrrrrmannnnn.
646- Philippe Aumont. Probably the most Frenchly-named Phillie since...well, Juan Pierre.
648- Dan Straily.
435- Brandon Maurer RC
504- Sweet, I got a Michael Bourn!
553- Josh Rutledge
506- Andy Pettitte, which is awesome.
563- Nathan Eovaldi
389- Phil Hughes, who hasn't been pitching as well.
548- John Lackey. The hell happened to him?
497- Brett Myers
432- Jose Iglesias
586- Jose Quintana
522- Dallas Keuchel
355- Carlos Marmol, who is, deservedly, currently not on a MLB roster.
551- Wellington Castillo
592- Nick Markakis
343- Alex Avila
345- Jenrry Mejia
546- Carlos Quentin, who, according to my dad who was at the Padres game last night, cannot run for crap.
Chasing History of Mike Trout
Making their Mark of Anthony Rizzo
341- Lonnie Chisenhall EMERALD SHINY!
Code card. Blah. I unlocked Jurickson Profar. Yippee. I don't get anything.
72 mini of Gary Sheffield...on the Marlins. THAT is how it's done.
658- David Freese. Ugh.
377- JD Martinez
404- Ryan Madson, who hasn't closed a game since 2011.
559- Travis Snider
485- Ruben Tejada
472- John Mayberry, who is having a good season.
623- Robert Davi Alexi Ogando.
568- Steve Lombardozzi
439- Marco Estrada
589- Jose Fernandez RC, which is pretty nice.
338- Mike Trout ROY
483- Jordany Valdespin.

Box 2-
620- Hector Santiago
362- Yoenis Cespedes, who is playing very well.
416- Jordan Lyles.
452- RAAAAAAAAUUUUULLLLL Ibanez, who is surprisingly not playing for one of my teams this year.
417- Logan Forsythe
544- Tyler Chatwood
405- Hector Sanchez, Buster Posey's backup.
337- Chris Iannetta.
565- Torii Hunter, who is having a nice season.
458- Jake Peavy
537- Neil Walker
441- Jose Bautista, whose steroids seem to be wearing off.
414- Mark Buehrle. And we've come to the doubles portion of this box.
buncha doubles
340- Franklin Gutierrez GOLD #'D TO 2013.
Chasing History Shiny of John Smoltz, always a nice pull.
Chasing History Shiny of David Price.
Chasing History Shiny of Lance Lynn, who's okay.
Chasing History Shiny of YUUUUUUUU Darvish.
Cut to the Chase of Al Kaline, who's always a nice pull.
Chase it Down of Giancarlo Stanton.
578- Brett Jackson
656- Scott Diamond
491- Clayton Richard
450- Jay Bruce, who's been doing alright lately
348- Jonny Gomes
455- Buster Posey MVP
more doubles
407- Hey, it's Juan Pierre!
509- Brennan Boesch
541- Jon Lester
652- Jonathan Lucroy
510- Nate McLouth
375- Wilin Rosario
583- Alejandro De Aza
453- Troy Tulowitzki
600- Mariano Freaking Rivera. The greatest closer of all time, and a fitting sendoff, too.
587- Matt Cain, which is nice
654- Brandon Barnes
Chasing History of Jered Weaver
Making their Mark of Manny Machado
359- CC Sabathia cl EMERALD SHINY
code card. blah. At least I unlocked Prince Fielder.
72 mini of Willie Stargell, which is nice.
370- AJ Griffin
576- Julio Teheran
429- David Price
626- Gio Gonzalez
351- Asdrubal Cabrera
446- Chris Pamelee
512- Justin Smoak
334- Derek Norris and the midget
498- Martin Prado
428- Kyle McPherson
481- Justin Wilson
411- Jesus Guzman

Well, that was pretty nice. Good boxes, good inserts.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Morneau Edition

The Twins, once a team full of bright young prospects, has been reduced to a team of unknowns. Matter of fact, I often have trouble figuring out who all of these people are.

I mean, aside from Mauer, Morneau, and Vance Worley. Those three have some publicity, maybe less on Worley. But everybody else I've either never heard of, or I've heard of vaguely. People like Brian Dozier, Jason Hicks, Trevor Plouffe, and Pedro Florimon, whose name makes him sound like he should be launched out of a Pokeball.

I mean, there are teams like the Marlins and Astros, both of whom are mainly made up of prospects and rejects from other teams, but at least some of those rejects ring a bell in my mind. The Twins, I can't even guarantee that people will have heard of these people in a year. Like, what happened to Ben Revere, how he sorta ballooned up within a year. I don't know if that'll happen.

And it's not like they have some sort of monster prospect on deck. You'd expect the Twins to have somebody like Yasiel Puig or Dylan Bundy waiting in the wings, but they really don't. Most of their big prospects have been slapped onto the lineup, and have morphed into mediocre starters. They don't have a big time prospect, because they're been giving most of those away.

So really, I don't expect the Twins to really succeed this season, for that reason alone. And the people I have heard of are on the decline, All-Star nod or no. Will they even succeed in the future? Who's to say. Next year will probably be the huge 'The Twins are Somehow in First Place' year, or sometime soon.

I don't know how they'll get to first, but it could happen. Eventually.

Coming Tomorrow- Speaking of big time rookies, here's one for the Mets.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Scherzer Edition

Max Scherzer looks pissed. And he has a reason.

Max joined the team in 2010, right after they got to the first rung of the playoffs in 2009. For a good three seasons, Max had to deal with Justin Verlander being the total embodiment of Detroit pitching.

Even when he'd have a good season, Verlander would just come in and eclipse him. In 2011, he has a fairly decent season. What does Justin Verlander do? Win the Cy Young award AND the MVP. Last season, Max Scherzer has a better second half than Verlander. What does Verlander do to top him? Finish 2nd in Cy Young voting.

This season Scherzer has gotten off to a hell of a start, already racking up 10 wins, and being very high in the ERA rankings. Verlander hasn't had the start he's used to, but that's because he's used to be being better than Max Scherzer at everything. It's like they're brothers, just trying to top each other.

Scherzer is likely to get an All Star nod. Here's hoping Verlander doesn't try to top him by getting, like 3 nods or something.

Coming Tomorrow- The Twins are doing poorly this season. Their first baseman is doing alright, but his best days are behind him.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Masterson Edition

I always enjoy when the 'other guy' in a trade sorta outlives, in career terms, the bigshot they were traded for. Except of course, for when a consistent outfielder is traded for one who keeps getting injured. But really, I enjoy finding out what happens to the other guys.

Which is why I was glad when Justin Masterson, who was traded to Cleveland for Victor Martinez back in 2009, finally, and I mean FINALLY, started pitching like a champ this season.

This is a great time for it to happen, too. Last month, the Indians had a nice ascent into serious division talks, with a nice few weeks of vying with the Tigers for the head of the division (no doubt bashing my White Sox vs. Dodgers WS prediction to bits moreso than already). And the team is hitting, too. Hell, even Jimenez has some good games under his belt, and that hasn't happened since 2010.

So thankfully, Masterson has 10 wins under his belt, and he's been very consistent thus far. Meanwhile, Victor Martinez, the guy who he was traded for, has wandered into Detroit, and has sunk to a DH role every couple days. He's not hitting as well, he's not catching as well (obviously, because Avila isn't LETTING him, and also because he's gotten old), and he's not playing as well as he did back in 2008.

So in a way, you could say it was Cleveland's biggest steal since the Bartolo Colon trade, which got them Brandon Phillips, Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner and a few others. Which is nice.

Coming Tomorrow- The other awesome pitcher currently setting the NL Central on fire. From Detroit. And he ISN'T Justin Verlander.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Cole Edition

The Pirates have not finished a season over .500 since 1992. Let me put that in perspective. In 1992, Bill Clinton was a senator, Jim Leyland was managing Pittsburgh, Barry Bonds was thin, Bryce Harper was 1, and Topps was still putting out cardboard sets.

Gerrit Cole might not be old enough to remember 1992, but he can remember the Pirates losing, which sorta drills the point home. After Barry Bonds left, the Pirates hazardously tries to fill the hole of stardom with people like Jay Bell, or Tony Womack, or Denny Neagle, or...Kip Wells!?!? Like, toward the mid-2000's, they just stopped trying.

Of course now, the Pirates are a consistently decent team, obviously thankful that they don't have to come in sixth anymore, who are suddenly doing pretty well. I think they're currently at .589, and that's a good place to be a few weeks from the All Star break.

Gerrit Cole, even if he's only had a few games in him, is a good young pitcher. I don't know what this means for the long run, but he's certainly pitching well now. He's not at a Strasburg level, however Strasburg was hyped like hell. Cole has been getting surprisingly no hype, yet he's still a very good pitcher. Is he as good as somebody like Matt Harvey, who started slow and built up? Not yet. Again, with Cole, you might have to wait a little bit.

And as for the Pirates, hopefully they'll hang on and have a winning record this year. Hopefully.

Coming Tomorrow- Finally here's a custom of that Indians pitcher that's surprisingly consistent.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Greinke Edition

I want to use this 1990 Topps custom to address Topps Archives. Yeah, I know that people have basically been calling it a failure, but I want to address it from my standpoint. You're probably wondering what my seal of approval really means, and it if really matters at all. Well, Topps Archives is an idea that is very loosely inspired (and I use the word inspired also very loosely) by my own custom cards. And also, I liked last year's set.

So, let's examine 2013 Topps Archives in a few key areas.

Cardstock: The last two years, one of the main complaints to most 'vintage' Topps sets has been the cardstock, like it's too flimsy or it's not as good as the original cardstock is. While I'll admit that last year's Archives was a bit too glossy to be taken seriously as a vintage set, this year's set has indeed improved on that front. It's similar to how Heritage transitioned from its traditional stock to the A&G stock they've been using. Though it's still not perfect, it's at least a change.

Inserts: Last year I remember a lot of oddball inserts, like the Deckle edges or cloth stickers. This year's inserts are more composed, and are more reminiscent of earlier Topps sets. Like the 1983 All Stars, or the Tall Boys, or the other ones. I think it's definitely an improvement, though I'm disappointed that they're using the Super Veterans as a comparison set, rather than what it should be. I was waiting for them to compare a shot of Jeter now to one of him 20 years ago. But they're at least an improvement.

Set Choices: I don't think they're that bad. I mean, I'll say that they used some nice ones last year, though they still got four sets that I at least don't dislike. The 1982 and 1972 ones are personal favorites, and I don't mind the 1985 one. The 1990 set, while I was suspicious, grew on me. I liked seeing people like rookies and stuff in that design. It would have been funnier if they used the louder color schemes of the traded set, but I digress. I still think they were fine. If they do this next year, I would suggest 1969, 1974, 1976 and 1981.

Player Selection: While I'll admit that it's heavy on a few rookies that might not pan out, and the Tall Boys series has a few head-scratchers (Ellis Burks? Dante Bichette?), the selection is generally fine.

Hits: As usual, the autographs are amazing, and I'll never complain about getting an on-card auto of a famous 70's player. It'll be like getting an autograph of Scott Rolen or Chase Utley in 30 years. Fun to collect, even if it's not a hall of famer. I got my autograph of John Mayberry, and that's a pretty nice one.

Overall, I think it's a fine, while slightly flawed, set. People can talk smack, but I'll still collect it, because it's a good idea that sorta pays off.

Coming Tomorrow- A highly touted rookie for Pittsburgh. No, not that one. Or that one. OR THAT ONE! Yeah, that one.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Cano Edition

Robinson Cano is the only Yankee who is currently worth his pay. He's hitting like crazy, not getting injured, getting lots of All Star votes, all the good stuff. Really, he's one of the few favorite players who I can still count on, as Jeter, A-Rod, Teixiera and Granderson are all hurt, and Rivera's on the way out.

The only downside to all this is that there's a chance he might not be playing for my team next year.

I mean, ever since I got into baseball, Cano's always been there, randomly popping up and then taking control of everything. Initially, I thought he was one of those players that only Yankee fans really knew about, like the rest of the world wasn't really opened up to him yet.

And then, of course, he got good, and everybody saw how awesome he was, and he got like 50 all star nods. And now he's at the point that he's so good that he could be playing 2nd base for, like Boston or Detroit next year. Actually, I bet that if the Yanks don't take him, the Tigers will gobble him up. Not the Angels, because they have Kendrick. The Tigers will just, out of absolutely nowhere, take Cano if the Yankees don't.

Although part of me thinks that Cano would rather stay with the Yankees, and stay with the team that made him so good, than just risk becoming expendable somewhere else. And something tells me Cashman would rather spend money on him than on Granderson, which is sad because he's one of my favorite players.

So, whether he stays or goes, Cano is, and always will be, really awesome at playing 2nd base.

Coming Tomorrow- Four years ago, he was the best pitcher in the AL. Now he's probably one of the best pitchers in the NL. Seconded only to his team's first starter.

Blaster of Topps 2013 Series 2. Yeah, seriously.

I feel like I've had very good luck recently with retail shops landing new products. Back when I started the blog, I was lucky if the local Target could get the new stuff within a week of its street date. Of course, today I was at Target, and 2 days after Series 2's release, found a box. Things certainly have changed.

My guaranteed patch was a rookie card patch of Justin Verlander, which is awesome, considering what an awesome pitcher he's become. And also, I have that rookie card.

Now onto the packs,

Pack 1-
629- Trevor Plouffe. Not the best way to begin the series, but he's okay. I feel like the Twins are suddenly devoid of star power, for some reason. Like, they have Mauer, Morneau and Vance, but nobody else worth a damn. Plouffe is just evidence of this.
654- Brandon Barnes. Oh look, an Astros rookie (feigns excitement)
644- Ryan Lavarnway EMERALD SHINY. These have really lost their luster.
27- Oh hey, it's the poster boy, MIKE TROUT! And...HOLY MOTHER OF SOMEBODY, I GOTS MYSELF A SHORT PRINT! Instead of the regular version, where he's sliding with his mouth open, I have the version where he's signing autographs. That's AWESOME!
586- Jose Quintana
522- Dallas Keuchel
554- Resident Advisor Dickey RED...and he's on the Blue Jays. So, score for the Photoshoppers!
577- Oh, nice, I got a Matt Harvey.

Pack 2-
371- Jeremy Affeldt
359- CC Sabathia checklist, which is nice.
A Josh Hamilton 72 mini, always welcome.
411- Jesus Guzman
355- Carlos Marmol, who's sucking even more than the rest of his team. This is a rarity, because Carlos plays for the Cubs. (awaits boos)
543- Donovan Solano. Jeez, did the Marlins just hold open tryouts or something, because I've never heard of most of their starters.
609- Scott Baker
409- Logan Morrison RED

Pack 3-
437- Dayan Viciedo, who's certainly sprung up nice for Chicago
551- Wellington Castillo
549- Huston Street, who has become the third consistent awesome Padres closer in a row (Hoffman, Bell, now Street).
Making their Mark insert of Ike Davis, who has been certainly been making a mark in AAA.
OOOH! It's a World Baseball Classic insert of someone I've heard of! Anthony Rizzo, for team Italy. That's pretty cool.
455- Buster Posey MVP
365- Mike Baxter,
539- Phil Coke

Pack 4-
611- Drew Storen, probably a bit relegated after the Nats got a better closer in Rafael Soriano.
578- Brett Jackson
592- Nick Markakis, whose star has gone down a bit since his team got hot.
Chasing History insert of King Felix.
373- Derek Jeter checklist
612- Hey, it's ROBINSON CANO!
356- Greg Dobbs, former Philly
466- Jerome 'Not Jeromy' Williams

Pack 5-
519- Zack Greinke, on the Dodgers. Another point for the photoshoppers.
343- Alex Avila, who is already being considered an aging catcher after just 5 seasons. And that says something.
383- Matt Harrison RED
Code card. Fine, I'll bite
I unlocked Ryan Zimmerman. meh
Cut to the Chase insert of RICKEY HENDERSON! Awesome!
480- Lance Berkman on the Rangers
366- Ervin Santana
361- Erik Kratz RED. Funny, it's been a good year for backup catchers in the NL East.

Pack 6-
552- Francisco Cervelli. Just not for backup catchers in the AL East
345- Jenrry Mejia
605- Aramis Ramirez GOLD #D TO 2013. Wow, at least I got a semi-star from this.
Yoenis Cespedes 72 mini
354- Casey Janssen
538- Brett Wallace and his freakishly big Anime eyes
501- Tommy Milone RED
631- Chris Carpenter RED. Huh, the only Cardinals pitcher who isn't playing well. Hell, he isn't even playing.

Pack 7-
545- Alex Presley
555- Joel Hanrahan, who is injured this season, giving way for Andrew Bailey. So maybe next season then?
546- Carlos Quentin. Grr.
397- Mike Aviles EMERALD SHINY
Chase it Down insert of Cameron Maybin. So are these supposed to be as useless as those inserts from Topps Football?
572- Lorenzo Zoil Lorenzo Cain.
434- Wei-Yin Chen RED, the 2nd greatest Taiwanese pitcher
413- Brett Gardner RED

Pack 8-
387- Jean Segura.
591- Derek Holland, wearing a throwback
518- Nolan Reimold. I forget, is he back to being good again?
Chasing History of Carl Crawford. I mean, with that bad leg, I don't know if he can do much chasing...
529- Collin McHugh. Oh wow, a Mets rookie that ISN'T Zack Wheeler.
431- Blake Beavan
427- Chris Nelson. Traded to the Yankees.
351- Asdrubal Cabrera RED

Pack 9-
475- Garrett Jones
606- Mark Trumbo, who hates not being as good as the other Angels rookie
508- Felix Doubront
Making the Mark of Andrelton Simmons
564- Francisco Peguero RC
581- Hey! It's Andrelton Simmons. Funny, we were just talking about him...
446- Chris Parmelee
441- Jose Bautista. Because all steroids eventually wear off.

Pack 10-
515- Brian Roberts, between one of his many injuries
608- Ricky Nolasco, most likely trade bait in a month
632- RA Dickey Cy Young
Eddie Mathews 72 mini, which is awesome
439- Marco Estrada
493- Johnny Giavotella
367- Carlos Ruiz, who I will never forgive for taking steroids
414- Mark Buehrle

Well, that was a nice start to Series 2.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Dunn Edition

Here's a question: if Adam Dunn hadn't have sucked in 2011, would we be remembering his 2012 season at all?

I mean, here's a guy whose career has been thoroughly consistent. He hits well with the Reds. He gets traded to Arizona, cracks it open. Plays well for two seasons in Washington. And then they hand him to Chicago, and he has the one inconsistent year of his career, before hammering the crap out of the ball in 2012. Aside from that little fluke, you've got a consistently powerful hitter.

So, say in 2011, he goes to the White Sox and has a solid, albeit unspectacular, 30 Homer season. He gets an All Star nod, spends the year off the DL, and ends the year like he starts it. I'm not saying it happened, but let's imagine it did.

He goes on to do basically the same thing in 2012, only he starts a little grander than he finishes, and hits a few more home runs. If that were to happen, would people be as bat-crap crazy as they were for him after the poor season?

Well, no.

You have to remember, the people who saw Adam Dunn come back in 2012 had seen a different Adam Dunn, an inconsistent, slumping, ineffective one. So he comes back, and really gets off to a great start, and everybody loses their minds. Now, take away the crappy 2011 season, and the reaction goes down. People think 'oh, he's doing what he did last year. No big deal.' It's why nobody is too surprised that Dan Uggla's hitting well, or that Felix Hernandez is pitching well. These people have been so consistent that you learn to accept that. With Adam Dunn, it was surprising because of the year he wasn't good, and how it made an effect that he'd never be good again, only for it to be shattered.

Of course, now Adam Dunn's doing exactly what he had been doing before the slump, and now everyone's saying he's not as good as he was, and he's gone downhill.

You can't win with these people.

Coming Tomorrow- the only member of the New York Yankees who isn't infuriating the fans right now. Though, wait until the offseason and he might start.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Morse Edition

There are many advantages to being a word-of-mouth player. No, really.
A word-of-mouth player's career doesn't begin as a rookie. A word-of-mouth player settles into a number of teams, loses hope, and then all of the sudden sprouts out of absolutely nowhere, and starts playing well midway into his career. And then you look back into your collection and see this guy's been around for a while, and you might even have his rookie card and didn't know it.
R.A. Dickey is a great example of a word-of-mouth player, because the 2012 season alone landed him back in everyone's binders, solely due to everyone talking about how good he was. Mark Reynolds was another word-of-mouth player, because after his rookie year, he took like 3 or 4 years to sprout into this awesome player he is. Hell, I took JJ Hardy out of my binders for a period of time, and now look how he's playing. He's an early frontrunner for the All Star game, and this from a mediocre infielder from 2008.
But of late, Michael Morse has become the patron saint of the word-of-mouth player. Until the 2011 season, I don't think anybody outside of Washington knew who he was. I went to a Nats game in 2011, and all of the sudden the people were talking about Morse like he was some sort of God. And I'd never heard of him, really. I'd heard of Zimmerman and Desmond, but not Morse. And that game, Morse came late and promptly smacked the ball around. And there was the seed. From there, I scoured my collection for Michael Morse cards.
I didn't exactly find his rookie card, but I found a few cards of him on the Mariners (billed as Mike Morse) from 2006 and 2008. And I saw that he'd began as a middling, non-hitting outfielder, which was odd, because I thought the 2008 Mariners already had a Ben Broussard in their roster.
Yet last year, he really became a mainstay for the Nats. He was so powerful that he managed to hit a home run backwards.
Of course, now he's back with the Mariners, still hitting home runs, though his audience has gone down a tad. He's still good, he just sorta left the picture a little bit since he's on the Mariners, land of the dead prospects.
Yet I still enjoy it whenever he hits one out. Because I remember when I saw it like I'd never heard of him before.
Coming Tomorrow- He was awful in 2011. He was awesome in 2012. Now...he's alright, I guess.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Gattis Edition

I absolutely love this card, and it's probably one of the best I've done all year. It's that good.

Gattis is a strange case. And yeah, I mean that honestly.

Evan Gattis has been playing games this year behind the backstop for Atlanta. And he's been really, really good at it. He's a great hitter, great backstop, all around great addition to the squad. Justin Upton's not hitting, well who cares, we have Gattis. That's the mindset.

Only problem is that somebody else is competing with him for the job. Now, any other team, that somebody else would just be optioned or traded in a heartbeat. Here, we're talking about Brian McCann, an All-Star catcher, and the guy who took the stardom from Chipper when he left town last year. And he's competing with some guy who was called up in April.

Now granted, McCann spent the last few seasons on and off the DL. And also, he's beginning to contract Aging Catcher's Disease, (or Mike Napoli's Disease), where his days might be numbered solely because of his time spent behind the plate. But it must feel like an insult to come back from an injury only for the fans to NOT WANT YOU, because of this rookie that's doing your job better than you have. That must hurt.

I will admit that as of right now, I'm liking Gattis more than McCann. Gattis has a certain appeal to him, like he's more of a wild card than McCann, and he has more long term potential than McCann. Besides, there are a dozen other teams who need a really good catcher. We may see McCann somewhere like Seattle or even the Bronx next year.

But to conclude, I'm liking Gattis, and I hope he sticks around.

Coming Tomorrow- He had a nice season last year with the Nationals. Now, he's back where he started, panicked, depraved, and actually hitting.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Encarnacion Edition

The Blue Jays should be thankful that they still have Edwin Encarnacion, as he's the only one who's performing his job correctly, currently.

I mean, they got people like Jose Reyes, Melky Cabrera, Emilio Bonifacio, and all these heavy hitters just to hit, and the only one that's actually hitting is the one they got 5 seasons ago. Not even Bautista's doing anything for them. It's become the Edwin show.

To be honest, this doesn't surprise me. Encarnacion has this Colon-esque way of being consistent for a long period of time after he barely performing at all. And besides, last season when Bautista was on the DL, in came Edwin, bashing away, and hitting homers, livening the team.

I wouldn't be surprised if Edwin racks up more homers than anybody else in the majors, and the Blue Jays still end up in last. That might even happen.

Coming Tomorrow- Yeah, I know I'm a little late, but FINALLY, here's a custom of that huge mega superstar rookie out of Atlanta.

Three Rack Packs of Topps Archives Baseball

I know, I know, I just got some last week. But the appeal was just too enticing, and I felt like I needed some more. So I got 3 rack packs full of the stuff. The results weren't as good as that of last week's, but it's still pretty good.
Since these packs had a few doubles, I will give an insult for every double, and a compliment/joke for every card I need. And to help all set builders, all the doubles are in italics

Pack 1-
123- Jean Segura. His team had a great surge, then their lack of winning any games plummeted them to the bottom of the division. Ha.
200- Mike Trout. Sadly, not as good as Bryce Harper.
2- Gary Carter. I know it pains me to say something bad about a Hall of Famer, but he's a bit overrated in terms of catchers.
77- Tony Cingrani. Don't know 'im.
1983 All Stars of George Brett, which is pretty awesome.
60- ROBBIE! Robinson Cano! One of the best second basemen in the game right now. I hope we hang onto him.
127- David Price. So...something nice about him. Uh...he's right? Sorry, I'm not used to saying something other than the Happy Gilmore line.
164- Dan Uggla. Another really good second baseman.
17- Hanley Ramirez. WOW! Both marlins rookies from 2006 back to back. That's awesome.
112- Kris Medlen. Was a lot better last year
176- Jose Altuve. Just mentioning that he's on the Astros is an insult in itself.
105- Mike Moustakas. To be fair, his Royals team is doing pretty well.
26- Jayson Werth. Not as good as he was with the Phillies
83- Jim Johnson. Not as good as he was last year.
65- Paul Konerko. I'm glad he's been so consistent for the White Sox.
146- Eddie Murray. One of the Orioles' best hitters.
167- Rod Carew. Another awesome Hall of Famer.
21- Adrian Beltre. Hmmm...I have to say something good about, I can't do it.

Pack 2-
57- Todd Frazier. He's yet to really determine his own staying power
105- Mike Moustakas. He's not as good as Hosmer and Butler
153- David Ortiz. One of the best DHs of all time.
24- Ben Zobrist. He's better than people give him credit for.
1983 All Star of Nolan Ryan. Jeez, Topps. Can't you at least step up the collation?
84- Coco Crisp. I absolutely love his name.
121- Ian Kennedy. It's hard to say something good about a guy who was just given a mondo suspension for a brawl, but he was good last year
161- Anthony Rizzo. The one guy on the Cubs who's doing things correctly
42- Mariano Rivera. Greatest closer of all time. AND Topps gave him his card number, 42. Which is awesome
(The rest of this pack is all doubles. And it infuriates me so. So if anyone needs a Gary Carter, Tony Cingrani, Paul Molitor, Kyle Seager, Doug Fister, Robinson Cano, David Price, Dan Uggla or Hanley Ramirez, please take these doubles out of my hands.)

Pack 3- (none of these are doubles)
88- Derek Holland, with a weird mustache
102- Matt Moore, who's been pitching well
169- Pedro Alvarez
25- Dexter Fowler, finally having a great season
Chris Sale Tall Boy mini
108- Austin Jackson, who's cooled down since his huge season last year
174- Ike Davis, who's inconsistent as the wind
7- Jon Jay. Oh, a Cardinal
55- CC Sabathia, one of the Yankees' best pitchers, and who I still think was robbed in the 2010 AL Cy Young race.
96- Edwin Encarnacion, who's hitting well
106- Tim Lincecum. The hell happened to this guy?
165- Stephen Strasburg, who suddenly stopped pitching really well this year.
27- Manny Machado RC, which is awesome
73- Aroldis Chapman, a dominating closer.
139- Matt Holliday
196- Johnny Cueto
13- Ryan Zimmerman. Remember when HE was the biggest star on the Nats? Like, in 2009?
87- AJ Burnett, who's done well for Pittsburgh.

Those were some alright packs. Wish there weren't as many doubles, though.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Phillips Edition

(Is it cocky to have an All Star banner for a player who's ahead of the AS voting weeks before the All Star game? Yeah, but I've been right before)

Brandon Phillips is one of those players that has a number of consistent seasons, yet nobody really talks about him. The last time he played less than half of a season was the 2005 season, which he spent with the Indians, hiding behind Ronnie Belliard. He's had an incredibly consistent career, appearing in two all star games, and becoming one of the stars of the Cincinnati roster. Yet if people talk about the Reds, they bring up Votto, or Chapman, or Cueto. Not Phillips.

Is it because Phillips lacks the star power? Phillips should be a star in his speed, defensive ability, and leadership aspect, yet people still think of Votto as the leader. Is it because he's like the one they always forget, leave out? Is it because people think he isn't as good as he is?

Either way, Phillips is likely going to get the All Star nod this year, unless Chase Utley stages a last minute comeback. And then, maybe, people will see that he's a halfway decent ballplayer.

Coming Tomorrow- Though his team is doing awfully, he's hitting a lot of homers.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Beltran Edition

I don't hate Carlos Beltran.

Yeah, if you know me, you know that I hate the Cardinals with every fiber of my body. But I don't have Carlos Beltran. Why? Because he was good with the Mets, I guess. I never really had a problem with him, he never spat in my teams' faces, and he always seemed like a fun player.

There are other people on the Cardinals that I absolutely despise. Daniel Descalso, Yadier Molina, Allen Craig, even, yes, David Freese. And there are some that I'm just indifferent about, like Matt Holliday and Michael Wacha. And I have no problem with Beltran. Which is odd.

It's like not having a problem with David Ortiz. Like I think he's a great player, but my hate is reserved for the rest of that team. I can respect Beltran's stuff, and he can stand out from that dreary team.

Yet having the one player you like on a team you despise is much better than having a player you despise on a team you like. Like, seeing Cody Ross on the Giants was infuriating for me, because I liked the Giants. However, sometimes it just feels weird. This weekend, I watched Chien-Ming Wang pitch a game for the Toronto Blue Jays, a team I sorta dislike. And it's kinda weird.

Still, I'm glad Beltran's playing well again, and I hope he keeps it going. If not, I'll just have to root for Wacha.

Coming Tomorrow- The generally consistent Reds 2nd baseman.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Napoli Edition

And so, yet again, the Red Sox are on top. This was sort of bound to happen, as the Yankees and Red Sox have been alternating 1st and 2nd like those two kids on the block that would always wear matching shirts. It just becomes redundant after a while, to the point where you just want one of them to stop.

Unlike last year, the Red Sox actually have some respectable players on their team. Unfortunately, Mike Napoli is not one of them.

Napoli...I really don't get why he appealed to people with the Rangers. He was a sub-par catcher who hit .250 and just belted homers when he was healthy. He was in no way shape or form an impressive player. He was good, and he had some sort of fan following there, but there was a reason why he shared playing time with Bengie Molina during his last season.

Thankfully, Napoli has been hitting well for Boston, which I can understand. I mean, after all, they do feed off of players who do nothing but hit (see Ross, Cody and Ortiz, David). Napoli is at least having a nice season so far, but not to the point of deserving an All Star nomination. He may be good, but he's not THAT good.

As long as he's good enough to make Boston fans happy, he's fine by me.

Coming Tomorrow- One of the less infuriating Cardinals, and I say that solely due to his efforts in Queens.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Cespedes Edition

I feel like that, since last year was such a big year for rookies, Yoenis Cespedes became severely overlooked. While millions of fans were fawning over Mike Trout and Bryce Harper, Cespedes was quietly doing his thing, hitting home runs and acquiring the super-fan status he has today.

A lot of that has paid off. Cespedes, while being practically the only star in Oakland with a clean chin, has racked up a nice amount of hits and home runs, while also playing his position well. And now that he's left 'rookie' status, and leaked into 'serious player' status, people have begun to take notes and finally check him out.

And also, like I said, he's one of the few stars left on the A's, other than Josh Reddick and Jarrod Parker. The A's have a very thin team, yet they're still playing very well. Is it coincidence that there happens to be a Brad Pitt movie AND a Jonah Hill movie coming out?

You know, because...because Moneyball?

Ah, whatever. Just keep paying attention to Yoenis Cespedes. Something big's gonna happen soon.

Coming Tomorrow- Presenting one of the first place Red Sox. This one's the first baseman that used to be a catcher. Not that one, the other one.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: CarGo Edition

This was one of the first customs I made after getting the new and improved Photoshop Elements, and through that technology I discovered some technology that had been on the old one the whole time, just without my knowing. The shadowing makes the text look so much like the older one, which is always nice.

The Rockies have fallen to third, like most of us predicted would happen. They are only 1.5 games back, but it looks like those Diamondbacks I've been hyping up have finally been doing well.

Still, the Rockies are still a stronger team, stronger than the one from last season. They have a lot of youth, including the still-consistent Carlos Gonzalez, who seems like the Dante Bichette of this team, solely because he's probably not going to have too many achievements outside of Colorado.

Not much else to say tonight.

Coming Tomorrow- The A's traded away all the young guys who made the team great last year. Well, most of them. Because the sole reason to go to A's games still remains, the fun outfielder from Cuba.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Archives Mania! Part 2- Baseball

Alright, you've seen my David Wilson game used, and tales of RG3's and Pierce's. Now, here's the baseball stuff

Pack 1-
75- CJ Wilson is my first card. Alright. He's not as good as he was with the Rangers, but he wasn't very good with the Rangers anyway.
118- Brandon Belt. I like how they pull off the 1985 design. Especially this card.
43- Starling Marte, who is becoming very big for Pittsburgh
31- Brock Holt, who sounds like the alias of a Spider Man villain
99- JOEY VOTTO! A great player
120- Ted Williams, who's always great to pull. My only gripe here is that his stats are too small.

Pack 2-
80- Jered Weaver. Once again, the pack begins with an Angels pitcher in the 1982 design.
135- Adam Wainwright. See what happens when this guy stays healthy?
195- Dave Winfield. Once again, the third card in the pack is a Yankee. Although I'd much rather compare Granderson to Dave Winfield.
10- Matt Kemp. Didn't I just make a 1972 Matt Kemp this year? Ripoffs.
193- Adam Eaton rookie, which is pretty damn cool.
46- Justin Morneau, who's aged a little bit.
91- Brandon Beachy

Pack 3-
71- Darwin Barney.
103- Mike Minor
182- Andre Ethier, who just seems to be phasing out
And a 1969 4-in one of Warren Spahn, Sandy Koufax, Steve Carlton and Clayton Kershaw. As much as I love Kershaw, that's some pretty big company to be in.
128- Mark Trumbo
177- Starlin Castro, who always seems to do well for a crappy team
39- Lance Lynn, another Cardinals pitcher
98- Jesus Montero. So I guess we were BOTH short-handed in that trade?

Pack 4-
35- Adam Dunn, who seems a little too happy to be having a crappy batting average
74- Miguel Montero, who seems a little too happy to be an overrated catcher
117- Carlos Santana, who seems a little too worried to have an awesome record currently.
160- Felix Hernandez
1983 All Stars of NOLAN RYAN! That's awesome!
113- Jake Peavy
159- Troy Tulowitzki, finally having a nice season

Pack 5-
22- Alex Rios
79- Josh Willingham
112- Kris Medlen, who finally started pitching well last season
A Tall Boy insert of Dante Bichette. I just wish it were his son.
82- Tom Seaver. I wish they would have used a different photo than the one we've seen 10000 times.
150- Jose Bautista
188- Mat Latos, who's actually been doing well for the Reds
14- Yoenis Cespedes

Pack 6-
176- Jose Altuve, the only good player on the Astros
26- Jayson Werth, a reused shot from Heritage
83- Jim Johnson
123- Jean Segura, snagged in the Zack Greinke trade. No, not that one, the other one.
223- Matt Williams SHORT PRINT, which is kinda nice.
66- Tim Hudson, who got his 200th win this year
125- Kyle Lohse, now sucking for the Brewers
199- Eric Hosmer

Pack 7-
200- Mike Trout, who's actually pretty good.
2- Gary Carter, may he rest in piece.
77- Tony Cingrani rookie
ANNNND....WE have another hit. And it's even better than the David Wilson rookie!
This is a John Mayberry SR., the one for the Royals, not the Phillies, ON CARD AUTO. I absolutely love this, and think Topps is awesome for doing these. Even if Mayberry isn't a big star, it's still incredibly cool.
33- Corey Hart, who wears his sunglasses at night.
52- Desmond Jennings (brotha)
136- Nelson Cruz, who probably took steroids
181- Avisail Garcia

Pack 8-
144- Paul Molitor, which is pretty nice
184- Kyle Seager
41- Doug Fister, such an unfortunate name
57- Todd Frazier, of my mom's hometown, Pt. Pleasant
1983 All Star of Darrell Evans. Is it me, or are there only two cards in this set. I got the Ryan, I've got the Evans, and those are the only two I've seen
16- Cal Ripken Jr, the greatest Baltimore Oriole of all time
72- Harmon, the killer, Killebrew
111- Brandon Morrow to top it off

Well, that was an amazing box. I love both of these products, because they have great designs and even better hits. The on-card auto from this one is probably my favorite card I've gotten since the Bench/Posey game used last year. It's that good. This is a great set, and you can bet your ass I'll be getting more.

Archives Mania! Part 1- Football

I haven't gotten cards since the heyday of Gypsy Queen and Heritage. It has been a long few weeks without cards, so I needed some. Which is why I felt it necessary to head on over to Target and pick up two blasters. I already knew I'd be getting some Archives baseball, because that is indeed how I roll, but I saw that Archives football was FINALLY out, so I got a blaster of that.

I will open the football blaster first:

Pack 1-
and the first card is...
144- Steven Jackson, 1986. Alright, that's a good way to start, I guess
185- Phil Simms, 60's design. I like how they're incorporating legends in here with the current players. Simms is pretty nice.
43- Chris Long
69- Troy Polamalu, who fans of the 31 other teams love to hate
111- Ben Tate.
163- Greg Little. Those Browns are a good team that just gets unlucky
1- Andrew Luck. And that's the card I needed to get.
77- Torrey Smith, a member of the great Ravens team.

Pack 2-
129- Davone Bess
164- Ahmad Bradshaw. Kinda weird that these still have only 2011 stats.
46- Coby Fleener rookie.
91- Brandon Pettigrew.
217- Cool, a Louis Lipps short print! That's actually pretty awesome
119- Darren Sproles
186- Michael Egnew rookie
4- Jermichael Finley. I do not think he's still on the team.

Pack 3-
150- ROBERT GRIFFIN III! FINALLY! Finally I get an RG3 rookie!
179- Brian Urlacher, now on some other team
17- Carson Palmer. This set has been shelved so many times that Carson Palmer is still the Raiders QB. Wow.
96- Chris Johnson. I feel like the 85 set is kinda odd being reprinted. Never really liked it.
86- Chandler Jones rookie
128- Isaiah Pead rookie
151- Ryan Tannehill rookie, the third of the awesome QBs
23- Marques Colston

Pack 4-
103- Julio Jones
161- DESEAN JACKSON! Still awesome!
28- Ben Roethlisberger, still one of the more overrated QBs out there.
Brandon Lloyd 1000 Yard Club Insert. I love these.
63- Jay Cutler
106- AJ Jenkins rookie
166- Mohamed Sanu rookie
36- Matt Forte.

Pack 5-
53- Michael Turner
153- Brian Orakpo, on one of his off days from playing chess with the Geico cavemen
35- Kurt Warner, sporting a nice throwback with the Rams.
a 1970 glossy insert of Arian Foster, which is awesome
52- Kevin Kolb, still a disappointment for any team he comes across
142- Matthew Stafford, an underrated QB
178- DeVier Posey RC

Pack 6-
99- Pierre Garcon
141- Darrius Heyward-Bay, the love child of Jason Heyward and Jason Bay?
199- Robert Turbin RC. Did they stuff all the rookies into the 60's design?
201- Oh, cool! A short print of Willie 'Flipper' Anderson! Sweet!
24- David Wilson RC
64- Luke Kuechly, defensive ROY
133- Ryan Matthews
200- Ray Rice, one of the few Ravens who decided to stay on the team.

Pack 7-
26- Willis McGahee
54- Malcom Floyd
Annd....well, we've got a game used on our hands today
It is a 1985 design (sorta) game used of David Wilson of the Giants. He evidently did pretty damn well for the Giants last season, so that's nice. Always nice to pull a game used
105- Marshawn Lynch
38- Travis Benjamin rookie
56- Lamar Miller rookie

Pack 8-
154- BERNARD PIERCE, a Temple alum
49- Kendall Wright rookie
89- Reggie Bush, now on daaaaa Bears
117- Rashard Mendenhall
A Super Action insert of Alfred Morris, which is nice
101- Doug Martin rookie! That's awesome
181- Percy Harvin, now on the Seahawks.
32- And we end with JJ Watt

That was an awesome blaster, complete with a David Wilson Game Used, which is nice. A little later I will post the baseball blaster.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Gyorko Edition

Rookies. Can't live with 'em. Can't live without 'em.

In some cases, you absolutely have to live with them, because they make up 9/10ths of your team. And the Padres is one of these cases. Jedd Gyorko, Jedi Knight from the Planet San Diego (so that would make him a San Diegan, according to Fred Willard), is the Padres' starting 2nd basemen this year. And yes, we haven't heard of him either.

Gyorko is evidently doing well for the Padres, hitting as well as a rookie second baseman for a struggling team can. As long as he's not throwing bats and taking offense to beanings, he's doing just fine. Also, just like many other Padres, you can't find anybody else in the world with his name. Him, Yonder Alonso, Yasmani Grandal and Edinson Volquez should all join the All Odd Names Team, along with Adeiny Herchevarria and ex-MLBer Tim Spoonybarger. But I digress.

Gyorko is also sporting an awesome throwback uniform, one that dates back to the 70's, a time when nobody on the Padres was named Gyorko. Sure, there might have been a Gossage on their, but he's not like Gyorko. Matter of fact, his name is just fun to type. Gyorko. Gyorko.

Still, hopefully Gyorko will soldier on for his failing squad.


(Dear God, I hope he or his mom isn't reading this.)

Coming Tomorrow- Another Rockie? Another Rockie.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Puig Edition

I took yesterday off, partly due to forgetting, but mostly due to me being tired.

Evidently there's been a lot of buzz about this guy, namely being the fact that the Dodgers finally have someone who's hitting well. Puig, while another Cuban player like Yoenis Cespedes, one-ups his companion in Oakland by kicking off his career with a multi-homer game, and already establishing a great onfield presence.

So is Puig a great player for the long run? It's too soon to tell. It's like asking how the Avengers 2 is going to turn out. Just let thing get going, let the good stuff get really good, and then we'll know whether or not this will be totally awesome.

Coming Tomorrow- With the name of a Jedi knight, this Padres rookie was been doing surprisingly well, given the whole 'team in last place' thing.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Didi Edition

Look at those Diamondbacks go! No, really. I mean it this time. After all those times I've hyped up the Diamondbacks, they're still in (or circling) first. They have a young team in the place of all those stars they gave up. One of those youngsters was cobbled from a trade with the Reds.

Didi Gregorius was probably let go because the Reds had Billy Hamilton on deck, and he evidently held the 'speedy middle infielder' category. Because he's certainly played in an MLB game.

Didi has been smoking it up for the D-Backs, giving some much-needed speed to a roster that's all about bats (See: Goldschmidt, Paul and Hill, Aaron). Sometimes Didi even gives a much-needed run or two in between his speed on the paths.

So please, believe me when I tell you that Arizona's for real in this season's race for the top. Didi will attest to that.

Coming Tomorrow- Four years ago he was the best pitcher in the AL. Now he's struggling to retain his title while stuck on a middling NL team.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Ichiro Edition

Right now, the Yankees have a very nice team, despite falling 2nd in the standings currently. Still, the roster is full of future Hall of Famers like Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, quite possibly Andy Pettite, and of course Ichiro.

Ichiro, without any question, is the greatest Japanese baseball player ever to come to the US. I know there are a lot of Matsui purists, and a lot of people who think I should consider Hideo Nomo or Yu Darvish, but no. Nobody else comes close to the achievements Ichiro's pulled off in the last 13 seasons. He's had a number of consistently hit seasons, with some homers and fielding in there to boot.

What makes Ichiro so awesome is the fact that I can say that he played for my team. When all of this goes down, he'll probably enter Cooperstown in a Mariners cap, but he'll still have that speck in the corner that says he was a Yankee, and in my mind that's pretty awesome. I don't even care what the Yanks do with him after 2013, as long as he doesn't go to Boston. Just the feeling of Ichiro on the Yanks is enough to get me by.

Even though he hasn't had the greatest season so far, he's still one of the best, and he's still a favorite of mine.

Coming Tomorrow- Another Diamondback. This one's different. This one's NOT a pitcher!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Iwakuma Edition

I hate to give you another 'I'm tired, here's a card' posts, but it's been another long day for me. Hell, it's been a pretty long weekend. And there isn't too much to say about Hisashi Iwakuma, other than the fact that he's a great pitcher for the Mariners.

Coming Tomorrow- To prove that this isn't a bias against any race, tomorrow's an Ichiro custom.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Custom Card of the Day: Lincecum Edition

To coincide with that amazing Tim Lincecum custom, let's talk about last month. I know, it was only a day ago, but it needs to be talked about, because I'm doing these every month.

In May, I predicted 5 things would happen. Let's see if they did:

1. Granderson to come off the DL and start hitting like crazy again. Well, he did...for a week or so, anyway, until he got womped back onto the DL again.
2. Matt Moore to just chill down a little bit. This one hasn't really happened, but him and Masterson still have 8 wins.
3. The Dodgers to start getting good again.
4. The Royals to stay exactly where they are. This hasn't happened. The Royals are in last now.
5. Justin Verlander to be as hot as Anibal Sanchez and Rick Porcello are. Verlander has more wins, but less strikeouts than Sanchez, and is bested in both categories by Max Scherzer. He's getting there.

Now, 5 things that surprised me during the Month of May.
1. The Indians' awesome run. Like, mid-month these guys were going absolutely crazy, pitching well, hitting well, and playing great baseball (and sweeping the Phillies). Of course, now they're tied with Detroit for first, so it's sorta gone down a bit, but they're still in it.
2. Jason Grilli, the most surprising successful closer since Fernando Rodney last season. Grilli has been throwing consistently well in the ninth for the Pirates, a much-deserved season after a career of bit parts.
3. Look at those Diamondbacks go! Not only is the pitching awesome, but the lineup featuring young stars like Paul Goldschmidt, AJ Pollock, Didi Gregorious and more have been playing incredibly well, and ruling the NL West. Will they keep it up? Well, since the Rockies couldn't, you never know.
4. Domonic Brown. Ladies and gentlemen, as someone who has been waiting so long for success from this guy, I am happy to report that Domonic Brown is leading the NL in home runs, and giving the Phillies the bat they deserve. And this is a guy I thought was just gonna die in the minors after his first few seasons. Now he's playing so well. He must keep it up.
5. Granderson being sidelined within a week of his return.

And 5 things that didn't surprise me at all last month.
1. The Cardinals pitchers stayed the exact same level as in April. Yeah, people talk about how awesome they are, however they neglect to mention that they WERE that awesome last month. And they probably will be next month.
2. Jose Valverde returned to dominating in Detroit. Because what, were they gonna sign Brian Wilson?
3. Slumping Phillies. After three years, we all kinda saw this coming.
4. The Marlins and Astros continue to stay at the very bottom. Imagine if they have to play each other. That'll be something.
5. Miguel Cabrera is playing beautifully. This is always kinda bound to happen. However, he's currently leading in RBI and Batting Average. Now if only Chris Davis would let him have that May Triple Crown.

And finally, 5 things that I want to happen in June.
1. Granderson, Teixeira and Youkilis to all come back and start hitting...and maybe stick around for a while.
2. The Cardinals pitching to be exactly where it is right now in 30 days.
3. Both LA teams to start playing well.
4. The rest of the Philly lineup to start hitting well again.
5. The Yankees not to be mercilessly swept by any mediocre teams, like the Mets.

So that's May for ya. Bring on June.

Coming Tomorrow- A Mariners pitcher that is not Felix Hernandez who is pitching well.

Custom Card of the Morning: Grilli Edition

First of all, I love that throwback. That's just too cool.

I feel like Jason Grilli is one of those players that's just been around for too long and deserves a big break like this. I remember he was with the Tigers for a while, on those teams that either had Joel Zumaya or Fernando Rodney as a closer.

Thankfully, now he's pitching beautifully as the closer for Pittsburgh. I'm very happy for the Pirates, because they really deserve a season that's worth more than just 3rd place. The division is currently wide open, as the Cardinals, Reds and Pirates are all circling around the top 3 spots. The Pirates have a chance of taking the wild card, unless the Cardinals rotation succumbs to the firey death previously expected for David Freese.

I really hope the Pirates finish well, and I hope their closer is on the same page.

Coming Tonight- another 90's Upper Deck custom, plus May in review.