Monthly Archives: May 2013

Miami Marlins 2013 Topps Stickers Team Set

Miami Marlins 2013 Topps Stickers Team Set

While trying to stay on top op all of the new baseball card releases so I can continue to build up my Florida/Miami Marlins team set collection, I cam across this set of 2013 Topps Stickers.

Since I was alway doing some shopping with this seller, I bit the bullet and added this set to my order for just $1.00.

I had never seen the stickers in person, but I have to say that they are much nicer than what I was expecting to find.

Smaller than regular-sized baseball cards, the stickers feature very nice action images.  And of all of the 2013 Marlins sets that I have in my collection so far, this one is the biggest set with 9 players being featured and it is also the most accurate with 8 of the 9 players being featured still on the roster.

Have a look:

2013 TOPPS STICKERS

As for the Gary Sheffield sticker – it is nice to have, but I really don’t understand why he would be included in this one…

Joe Morgan 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen ‘Sliding Stars’

Joe Morgan 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen ‘Sliding Stars’

Of all of the base cards that I have from the 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen set, there is just one that I am still seeking – Joe Morgan.

And while that hun has yielding nothing for me just yet, I was able to recently grab the card of Morgan from the ‘Sliding Stars’ subset from the same 2013 GQ release.

Here is the card:

VINTAGE MORGAN SLIDING

If you know me and my passion for the stars of this sport, than you know that I really value what Joe Morgan brought to the game.  His style of play is exactly what I love about this game – and I am always excited to see his name featured on new checklists.

This card captures a very solid part of Morgan’s game – base running.  Morgan stole 689 bases during his major league career – good for 11th on the all-time list.  He also scored 1,650 runs during his playing days, including eight seasons of at least 100 runs or more.

Go Get ‘Em Joe!!!

Keith Hernandez 1987 Donruss – Come On Man, Zoom Out!!!

Keith Hernandez 1987 Donruss

For me, one of my biggest pet peeves with the images used on baseball cards is when you have fantastic action shots being used and part of the action is cropped out.

I like to see the whole story unfolded in front of my eyes, not bits and pieces.

And sadly, cards from the 1980’s feature a lot of badly cropped cards.

Just like this one of Keith Hernandez from the 1987 Donruss set.

Check it out:

HERNANDEZ 3

The card is nice.  The action is present.  But the fact that all of Hernandez’s bat is missing from the shot makes this card go from a solid ‘B’ to a ‘D’.

Just like that?

YES – Just like that!

Did You Know…

During the 1999 basbeall season, John Olerud set a New York Mets team record by drawing 125 walks.  Of the 125, only 5 were intentional.

‘Good Eye Batter, Good Eye’!!!

olerud

Happy Birthday Kenny Lofton!!!

Happy Birthday Kenny Lofton!!!

Baseball great Kenny Lofton turns 46 years old today.

One of the most underrated players from his era, Kenny Lofton was a throwback-type of player that oftentimes reminded you of the players from the generation prior to his. With lightening fast speed and great defensive skills, Lofton enjoyed a wonderful 17-season career.

Lofton was the kind of player that every team needs on their roster. A guy that can do it all, and will make the same level of effort when playing for a first place team with a 10-game divisional lead as he would for a last place team 20 games behind in the standings. Lofton’s desire to win and help his team was unmeasurable. And along the way, he racked up some very impressive career statistics.

A lifetime .299 hitter, Kenny lofton finished his career with 2,428 hits. He also captured 781 RBI, 1,528 runs scored, and an amazing on-base percentage of .372. He currently ranks 15th all-time with 622 stolen bases. When it comes to recognition around the league, Lofton tallied 6 All-star appearances and 4 Gold Glove awards.

In total, Kenny Lofton played for 11 different teams over the course of his career. Of his 17 seasons, 10 were with the Cleveland Indians. For his birthday I would like to give Lofton a little more appreciation. Let’s give him a career with just 1 team and make him an everyday player. Had that occurred, I think we could be looking at another member of the 3,000 hits club and possibly just the second guy to break the 1,000 steals mark.

Happy Birthday Mr. Lofton!!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Juan Gonzalez!!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Juan Gonzalez!!!

During the boom of the long-ball, there are few sluggers that put up the kind of numbers that Juan Gonzalez did.

During the 1990’s Gonzalez personified what you wanted out of the guy that batted clean-up for your team – home runs and run production.  From 1996-98, it could be said that Gonzalez was the most dynamic power hitter in the game.

His game was somewhat limited to the offensive side of the sport, but when it comes to offense, Juan Gonzalez put up numbers that many Hall Of Famers  would envy.

Gonzalez spent 17 seasons in the major leagues, playing 13 for the Texas Rangers.  And once he earned a full-time spot, in his third season with the team, he soared.  From 1991-2001, Gonzalez hit home runs at a rampant pace.  He connected for 40 or more dingers in five of those seasons, and had another 2 seasons of 35 and 39. 

The power led to a lot of runs being scored by the Texas offense and ‘Juan-Gone’ was responsible for a lot of runs crossing the plate in Texas’ favor.  He drove in 100 or more runs in eight different seasons, including one season of 157 RBI in 1998. 

While a solid slugger, Gonzalez did not fall into the ‘one-dimensional player’ group.  He is a lifetime .295 hitter and had seven seasons of at least 150 hits and five seasons in which he hit .300 or better.

Juan Gonzalez

Juan Gonzalez is a 3-time All-Star and a winner of 5 Silver Slugger Awards.  He captured the American League MVP Award in the 1996 and 1998 baseball seasons and also placed in 4th and 5th place in two other very successful campaigns. 

With all of the individual success that Juan Gonzalez had during his impressive MLB career, he only made the playoffs in four of his 17 seasons.  And in each of those four post-season match-ups, he and his teams were eliminated in the first round.

So, is Juan Gonzalez Hall of Fame worthy?

Should he be enshrined at Cooperstown among the greatest players to have ever played the game?

Like many of the sluggers that starred in the same era, Juan Gonzalez’s name has been linked to PED or steroids at some point over the last few years.  There are no reports , however, that have resulted in a positive test report for him.   Unfortunately, whether guilty or not, because the number of home runs that Gonzalez hit is similar to what others that have been positively linked to steroids have been able to amass, he is kind of guilty by association.

But, does he get your vote??

For me, it is a no-brainer!  Juan Gonzalez put up monster numbers during his prime seasons – many of which were greater than what the greatest sluggers in the game achieved.  And while a great source of power and run production, he did not excel at other areas of the game that would have established him as a ‘well-rounded’ player.  But, you cannot argue that for the role he had on offense, he was superb, even elite.

So, for me – YES, he deserves to be inducted.  And to be honest, I am shocked that he is off of the ballot already; after being on it for just one year and earning just 23 of 573 votes cast.  Maybe the writers know something that I don’t.  Maybe I missed an article somewhere.  Maybe being teammates with Canseco, Palmeiro, and A-Rod is enough to be ‘guilty by association.  Maybe, the writers have it all wrong…

Gavel

Am I crazy??

Sound off.  Please!

Jim Palmer 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen – Black mini

Jim Palmer 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen – Black mini

We are now more than a month removed from the release of the 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen baseball card set.

And for me, the best thing about the set is that it featured the three guys that I am building ‘Super Collections’ of – Andre Dawson, Fergie Jenkins, and Jim Palmer.

And while I am still seeking card of each player to complete the master sets of them from this release, I am very happy with the progress that I have been making.

My most recent score is a Jim Palmer card.  It is the Black mini version and is serial numbered as 55/199.

Have a look:

PALMER GQ BLACK

Just two Palmer cards and I am done.  Time to intensify the search!!!

Reggie Jackson 2008 Upper Deck Heroes – 1977, Named World Series MVP

Reggie Jackson 2008 Upper Deck Heroes – 1977, Named World Series MVP

Any time that I can add a card of Reggie Jackson to my collection, I will go for it.  And it said card happens to celebrate Reggie’s grand performance in the 1977 World Series, I will put in a little extra effort to bring the card home.

So, that is what I did with this card from the 2008 Upper Deck Heroes Of Baseball set.

Well, actually, it was not hard work at all.  I simply added it to my order from www.sportlots.com.

Check it out:

VINATGE REGGIE HEROES

I’m digging it – especially the 3-D effect that the card has with Reggie coming out of the circle in the center of the card.

A very nice addition to my Reggie Jackson collection!!

Carlton Fisk 1984 Topps

Carlton Fisk 1984 Topps

I’m happy to see so many cards of Carlton Fisk featuring him in a defensive position.  I think that ‘Pudge’ looks great with all of his gear on.

Want Proof?

Look no further than the newest card of Fisk in my collection – his 1984 Topps card:

FISK 6

And I love the small inset photo in the lower-left corner as well.  I cannot recall seeing another shot of a guy wearing his helmet in one of these pics – they are usually wearing the hat that they wear in the field.  I am going to have to do a little homework on this…

Happy Birthday Manny Ramirez!!!

Happy Birthday Manny Ramirez!!!

Manny Ramirez turns 40 years old today.

One of the most exciting players to have suited up over the last twenty years.  Ramirez blended the perfect amount of contact hitting, power hitting, and clutch hitting into his repertoire that made him a lot of fun to watch.

Unfortunately, suspension for the use of illegal performance enhancing drugs tarnished his image almost overnight and Manny went from being heralded as one of the game’s greatest offensive talents to a joke rather quickly.  A second suspension for the same infraction almost surely ended his route to the Hall of Fame and immediately changed the way he was viewed by the sport and its fans.

A 1-time shoe-in for the 3,000 hits club, the 600 home runs club, and the Hall of Fame, Ramirez is not battling for his image; an image that has been destroyed by failing two drug tests for steroids.

We wish you well Manny.  Thank you for the fun times while they lasted – it was a blast.

Happy Birthday!!