Monthly Archives: June 2013

1/2 THROUGH – Milestones To Look Forward To During The 2013 Major League Baseball Season

1/2 THROUGH – Milestones To Look Forward To During The 2013 Major League Baseball Season

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Well friends, we are amazingly 1/2 through with the 2013 baseball regula season, so I thought we should go back to the list of milestones I was going to track this season and see how these players are progressing.

For this 1/4 update all notes wil be added to the original post in GREEN.

For this 1/2update all notes wil be added to the original post in RED.

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I had a great time doing this prior to the starts of the 2011 and 2012 baseball seasons, so I thought I would give it another go as we prepare for the start of this upcoming campaign.

So, without further ado, I bring to you some of the milestones I will be looking for in 2013…

Ichiro’s push towards 2,800 career hits in the major leagues. He starts the season with 2,606.

37 games in and Ichiro has 32 hits – Not great, but not horrible either. As other Yankees return to the line-up, he should be helped.

Ichiro has 70 hits in 71 games and is well short of the numbers he would need to get to 2,800.  2,750 is more likely at this point.

PHOTO ICHIRO

Todd Helton marches towards 2,500 career hits. He starts the 2013 campaign with 2,420 hits.

Helton only has 18 hits in 23 games. 2,500 is still a strong possibility but it may not happen as soon as it should have….

Helton now has 40 hits in 53 games.  He is still on track and needs just 40 more hits to reach 2,500!

PHOTO HELTON

David Ortiz looks to capture the 2,000th hit of his major league career. He will start the season with 1,863 career hits.

Ortiz has 28 hits in 22 games and has been hot since returning to the Boston line-up. He needs 109 to reach 2,000.

Ortiz has 73 hits in 61 games.  He needs 64 hits to reach 2,000 this season.  If he stays healthy, he will do it.

PHOTO ORTIZ

Albert Pujols looks to join the ‘500 HR Club’. He will start his 13th major league season with 475 homers on his resume.

Pujols has only clubbed 7 home runs this year. He needs 18 more to reach 500!

Pujols will do it, but not anywhere close to as quickly as I expected.  He has 13 HR’s this season so far.  12 to go!

PHOTO PUJOLS

Ryan Howard looks to drive in the 1,000th run of his big league career. He will start the season with 920 RBI.

Hoawrd has only driven in 22 runs in 38 games. He is going to have to step it up to get to 1,000 by the end of the season.

Near the half-way mark of the season, Howard has 41 RBI.  He needs 39 more to reach 1,000.

PHOTO HOWARD

Ryan Braun looks to add another 30/100 season to his resume. He has done it for the last 5 seasons. Can he make it six in a row?

Braun has 8 home runs and 26 RBI in 35 games. If he can remain healthy, he is on pace to hit the 30/1000 milestone again.

Braun has been sidelined for most of the season.  He has just 9/36.  This streak is over…

PHOTO BRAUN

CC Sabathia looks to lock up career victory number 200. He will start the season with 191 career wins.

CC has 4 wins so far and is well on his way to 200 career victories. I’d like to see him do it before the All-Star break if possible.

CC is one win away fro 200 career victories – Go Get ‘Em CC!!!

PHOTO SABATHIA

Matt Cain is out to capture career victory #100 – he is currently sitting at 85.

Cain has 3 wins in 9 starts this season and is not off to the same pace he had in 2012 when he won 16 games. He’ll have to step it up if he wants to reach #100 this season.

Cain is 5-4 in 16 starts this season.  He has 90 career wins and can still make a run at 100, but the Giants are struggling right now.  #100 may have to wait until next year…

PHOTO CAIN

Justin Verlander is approaching 1,500 career strikeouts. He needs just 46 to hit the mark.

DONE!!! This guy is a beast and he is well on his way to 1,600 and beyond.

PHOTO VERLANDER

Tim Lincecum is nearing 1,500 career strikeouts. I’m still unsure of what his role may be this season, Lincecum needs 183 K’s to reach the mark.

Lincecum is faring well so far in 2013. He has 52 strikeouts in 48 innings of work. If he can stay on this pace, he will do it!!

Lincecum has 93 strikeouts in 95 innings of work this season.  He is 90 K’s from 1,500 and still has a good chance of reach the magical 1,500.  Hopefully he remains in the Giants’ starting rotation.  

PHOTO LINCECUM

So there you have it – These are some of the baseball milestones that I will be tracking as the 2013 season gets under way. Just like in previous seasons, I will offer up recaps of these possible baseball milestones as the season progresses – please stay tuned for that.

What are you going to be watching for this year??

See you around the 120-game mark!!!!

Thanks for reading!!!

Andre Dawson 2013 Topps Archives – 1983 Topps All-Star Card

Andre Dawson 2013 Topps Archives – 1983 Topps All-Star Card

Well, it took me a little bit longer than what I would have liked, but I did not overpay for this one.

The 2013 Topps Archives set was released a month or so ago so I immediately put a plan in place to grab the lone Andre Dawson card from the set for my player collection.  My plan included waiting for the right price, and the hope of Free shipping with it.

While I did not get the Free shipping I had hoped for, I still made out fairly well.  The seller that I bought the card from was asking just $0.65 for shipping which is more than reasonable in the Ebay world.

In total, I paid $1.40 for the card – Not a bad deal at all.  And certainly better than the $3-$4 I would have paid had I attacked the first few listings for the card when they first launched on Ebay a few weeks prior.

Here is the card:

DAWSON ARCHIVES AS

It’s fair at best.  Actually, let me re-phrase that – the card’s graphic design is outstanding but the image selection is horrible.  This image has been used in other Topps products ( I have a few vintage stickers that use this shot).  But for me, I would like to see an All-Star player playing All-Star caliber baseball when included in a set like this.

I will say that Dawson’s original All-Star card from the 1983 Topps set is not much better…  Have a look.

 

Florida Marlins 2008 Topps Opening Day Team Set

Florida Marlins 2008 Topps Opening Day Team Set

As I mentioned in an earlier post this week, I have always been a fan of the ‘Opening Day’ set. 

I just wish that the set felt more like a celebration of the event – give me more cards, give me a full team set, etc…

This is the Florida Marlins team set from the 2008 Topps Opening Day set.  Teh cards use the same graphic elements as the base set from 2008, just with a bright Red border.

Have a look:

2008 TOPPS OPENING DAY

Only five cards deep, I am left craving more.

Sure, it is nice to see Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla being featured, but Jeremy Hermida was not in the lineup for Opening Day in 2008.  And Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera were not even on the team.

Sheesh!!!

Carlton Fisk 1988 Donruss “Baseball’s Best”

Carlton Fisk 1988 Donruss “Baseball’s Best”

Carlton Fisk may have been one of baseball’s great legendary names of the 1988 season, but he was hardly one of ‘Baseball’s Best’.

During the ’87 campaign, Fisk played in just 76 contests.  His production was fine – .277/19/50 – but he was just not on the field enough to really impact the White Sox season…

If you extrapolate the numbers and put fisk into a regular season in which he played 150 or so games, he would have had 150 hits, close to 40 home runs and 100 RBI.

And that would have certainly helped stake the claim of ‘Baseball’s Best’.

FISK 10

Happy Birthday Mark Grace!!

Happy Birthday Mark Grace!!

Amazingly, Mark Grace turns 49 years old today!!

One of my favorite Cubs players of all-time, Mark Grace was so much fun to watch. It’s not often that you get to witness watching a player have fun day in and day out during his playing days. But with Mark Grace, that is exactly what you got!!

A guy with an incredible swing and defensive skills to match, Grace was an all-around baseball star. While never the most celebrated player on his roster, Grace was certainly the most consistent. His approach at the plate was consistent enough to yield him more hits than ANY other player in the decade of the 1990’s – WoW!!!

For Mr. Grace’s birthday I want to get him a flag. Not just an ordinary, run-of-the-mill flag though… I want this one to be special. I want it to be White in color with Blue letters and numbers. And while we’re at it, let’s slap his name and #17 on it and hang it from a pole in the outfield at Wrigley Field(a place Gracey called home for 13 amazing years)!!

Happy Birthday Gracey!!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Gil Hodges!!!

Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Gil Hodges!!!

I’ll be honest.  Of all of the players that I have covered with my ‘Hall Of Fame Debates’ this one took me the most time to research as I knew very little about Gil Hodges’ and his major league career.

Sure, I knew that he was a legend from the days of both the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers, but I did not know what put him in the same class of legends like Duke Snider, Jackie Robinson, and others.

So, I spent some time reading articles about Mr. Snider.  And I looked into his numbers.

And you know what, they are strong.  So strong in fact, that it seems as if Hodges could be considered underrated….

gil hodges

But is he worthy of Hall of Fame induction?  Does he get your vote??

Let’s look a little deeper…

Hodges was a slugger – he connected for 370 career home runs and drove in 1,274 runs.  He had nine seasons of at least 25 home runs and seven consecutive seasons of 100 or more RBI.  He also achieved the famed 30/100 feat in five seasons.

Hodges was also a pretty good contact hitter – good, but not great.  He has 1,921 career hits and a lifetime batting average of .273.  He hit .300 or better in just two of his 18 big league seasons.  And of his 1,921 career hits, 37.1% of them were for extra bases.

Hodges was an 8-time All-Star and the winner of 3 Gold Glove Awards.  And while he never was tagged as the best player in any single season, he did finish in the Top 12 for the MVP Award four times.

Hodges battled in seven World Series championships and ultimately won two titles.

It should also be noted that Hodges had a 9-year managerial career in which he recorded 660 wins and 753 losses.  He managed the 1969 New York Mets to the World Series championship in 1969.

Pretty impressize stuff, right? 

Certainly solid by all standards…

But does he get your vote?  Does he get my vote?

My answer is ‘No’.  While extremely good at points, I don’t see enough longevity with his numbers to say ‘Hall-Worthy’.  I like the 30/100 a lot, but it is not enough for me to get my vote.  If Hodges had a few higher finishes for the MVP Award to his credit I think it could help his cause, but he always seemed to be in the second tier and for me that alone puts him on the outside looking in.

Gavel

How about you?  What do you think??  Is Gil Hodges in or out??

Fegrie Jenkins 2013 Topps Tribute – Orange

Fegrie Jenkins 2013 Topps Tribute – Orange

I keep chugging away at this set.  And now, I have officially scooped all of the cards of Fergie Jenkins from the 2013 Topps Tribute set that I expect to.

Below is the Orange version of Fergie’s card from the set.  It is serial numbered as 27/50.

For the remaining cards, the ones numbered to 25, 5, and 1, are just way to hard to come by.  And when I do, the price tag is just something that does not work for my budget.

So, I will celebrate owning the ‘Orange’ version of this card, and I will consider this rainbow complete.

JENKINS 2013 TRIBUTE ORANGE

George Brett 2013 Topps Archives – 1985 Topps Design

George Brett 2013 Topps Archives – 1985 Topps Design

Topps did it again – A super vintage image of a great Hall of Fame legend in their Archives set.

This card of Brett uses the very popular 1985 Topps design, and my lone issue with the image/graphic selection is that by the time the 1985 season was reached, Brett was a 10-year veteran and was quite a bit older than what this image depicts.  So, while I like the image that was used, I would have liked to have seen one that was much closer to actually looking like it was taken close to the 1985 baseball season.

Here is the card:

ARCHIVES BRETT

And here is a link to Brett’s original 1985 Topps baseball card.  I’ll let you choose which one you prefer more.  But for me, that original version is a classic!!

Vince Coleman 1987 Donruss ‘Opening Day’

Vince Coleman 1987 Donruss ‘Opening Day’

I have always been a big fan of the ‘Opening Day’ baseball card theme.  And if there was anything that I would change about the set, I would expand the size of the set to include each player in every team’s starting line-up.  Sure, it may delay the release of the set as it takes time to produce the cards, but I would gladly accept this set in May or June if it was more fitting to the specific theme.

This card below is from the 2007 Donruss ‘Opening Day’ set.  It uses the same graphic design that the 1987 Donruss base set employed, but it has a Maroon border versus Black. 

Personally, I like the Maroon choice, but I think that it only looks good for teams that have Red in their color scheme – Cardinals =Yes, Royals = Not so much…

Here is the card:

COLEMAN 2

As for Coleman and his performance on Opening Day in 1987, he went 2-for-5 with a walk and a run scored in a 9-3 win over the Chicago Cubs.  Not a bad start to the season!!!

Happy Birthday Jeff Conine!!!

Happy Birthday Jeff Conine!!!

Jeff Conine turns 47 years old today.

Jeff Conine has been affectionately given the tag of ‘Mr. Marlin’ by the team’s fans. A testament to his playing days in South Florida, Conine’s performance and winning ways as a member of the Florida Marlins has solidified him as their most decorated player and one of it’s favorites.

A member of both World Series championship teams in 1997 and 2003, Conine was a key cog in the Marlins franchise for 8 seasons. Today, Conine holds a position in the front office with the team and also does some television work for the local channel that covers ‘The Fish’.

For his birthday, I think it would be fitting to give Mr. Marlin the honor of the first retired jersey in franchise history. I know that these types of honors are normally held for players of a Hall of Fame type caliber, but Conine is certainly the most accomplished Florida Marlins player(so far)!!!

Happy Birthday Mr. Marlin!!!

conine