Monthly Archives: February 2014

2013 Topps Archives ‘Tallboys’ Subset – Mike Trout

2013 Topps Archives ‘Tallboys’ Subset – Mike Trout

With the new 2013 Topps Archives baseball card set release, the ‘Mini Tallboys’ subset is easily one of the best parts of the issue.

The cards from this subset offer a very basic, but throwback feel that screams vintage. The set is 40 cards deep and offers a nice mixture of current players, stars from the 1980′s, and Hall of Fame legends.

This is the card of Mike Trout from the set:



Mike Trout is ‘Mr. Baseball’ right now.  He is the young face of the game, and he has yet to do anything to deter anyone from latching on and enjoying the show that he puts on.

There is nothing that Trout cannot do on the baseball field.  He is electric in the outfield.  He is explosive on the base paths.  And at the age of 21 he is getting the experience to become an elite hitter of the baseball.

If the Angels are going to become a playoff team again, it will be on the shoulders of Mike Trout.

Jose Fernandez 2014 Topps ‘The Future Is Now – No Fun For The Phillies’

Jose Fernandez 2014 Topps ‘The Future Is Now – No Fun For The Phillies’

Jose Fernandez is being featured twice in the ‘The Future Is Now’ subset that is part of the 2014 Topps Series 1 release.

The cards feature extremely sharp colors, and a nice backdrop that allows for the image to pop.

And the Orange coloring that acts as the back-drop of the graphics that fill the bottom of the card is a very nice complement to the Orange Marlins uniform that Fernandez is sporting.

Have a look:



Andrew McCutchen 2010 Bowman Platinum

Andrew McCutchen 2010 Bowman Platinum

This one is a bit different – but that hardly means that it is bad or unlikable.  I actually find it as a card that keeps drawing my eye back to it.

Have a look:

McCutchen bowman platinum


The card comes from the 2010 Bowman Platinum set and as you can see, it features Pirates’ superstar Andrew McCutchen.

The image selection works well for the card’s design, and I like the use of a McCutchen image in his Grey uniform versus one in White.  The Platinum theme is complemented by the Grey uniform very nicely.

1975 Topps Set Card 28/660 – #407 – Herb Washington, A’s

1975 Topps Set Card 28/660 – #407 – Herb Washington, A’s

Progress: 28/660

Player Name:  Herb Washington

Card Number: 407

Team:  Oakland Athletics

Position:  Pinch Run.

Image Style: Posed Running

Years In The Major Leagues:  2 years, 1974-75

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Washington appeared in 29 games in 1975.  He did not have a single at-bat, but he scored 29 runs while also stealing 29 bases.

Notes From Career:  Washington played in 105 total games between the 1974 and 1975 baseball seasons.  He never got an official at-bat, but he stole 31 bases and scored 33 runs for the Oakland A’s.  He won a World Series title with Oakland in 1974.  During that series, he entered into three games as a pinch-runner, but did not steal any bases or score any runs.


‘Hall Of Fame Debate’ – Todd Helton VS Lance Berkman

‘Hall Of Fame Debate’ – Todd Helton VS Lance Berkman

Before we get into the number-crunching, let me say that the conversation about either one of these players and their potential induction into Cooperstown as a Baseball Hall of Famer is a fun one.  Both players were stars.  And while never may have been tagged as ‘the best’ over the course of a season or multiple seasons, they both performed at superstar levels for many, many years.

Would I vote either of them into the Hall of Fame?  That is a great question, and one worth some time to think about.

But, we can put them in a steel-cage and let their numbers battle to help determine which one had a better career.

So, that is what we will do.

And here are the numbers:

Helton Berkman
Seasons 17 15
Games 2,247 1,879
Hits 2,519 1,905
200 Hit Seasons 2 0
150-199 Hit Seasons 9 7
Batting Average 0.316 0.293
.300+ Seasons 12 5
Batting Titles 1 0
On-Base % 0.414 0.406
Walks Drawn 1335 1201
Strikeouts 1175 1300
Doubles 592 422
Triples 37 30
Home Runs 369 366
30-39 HR Seasons 4 4
40+ HR Seasons 2 2
Stolen Bases 37 86
Runs Scored 1,401 1,146
100-Run Seasons 6 5
RBI 1,406 1,234
100-RBI Seasons 5 6
All-Star 5 6
Gold Glove 3 0
Silver Slugger 3 0
ROY 0 0
MVP 0 0
Postseasons 2 5
WS Titles 0 1


And now, time to break it down and cast a vote.

Ultimately for me, the players can be judged on a few base areas of the game: hitting, run production, defense, and star status.

While Lance Berkman was a supreme hitter, Todd Helton’s overall numbers are much better and more impressive.  His number of seasons above .300 is exceptional – 12 out of 17.

Power numbers are solid for both, and each offered similar home run, RBI, and run production.

Todd Helton won three Gold Glove Awards for defensive excellence at First base while Berkman was never recognized as an elite defender.

Lastly, Todd Helton is without a doubt the greatest Colorado Rockies player of all-time (to this point) and he has been the face of the franchise for 20+ years.  Lance Berkman is an Astros legend, and deserves his spot as one of the team’s best offensive players, but he has company there with Biggio, Bagwell, etc.

For me this battle is strong, but one man comes out on top every time (except stolen bases) and that player is Todd Helton.

He gets my vote!!


And now, it is your turn to vote – Todd Helton VS Lance Berkman


Andre Dawson 1995 Pinnacle “Artist’s Proof”

Andre Dawson 1995 Pinnacle “Artist’s Proof”

Yessir, another ‘Artist’s Proof’ for my Andre Dawson player collection.  This makes number three that I have picked up in the last few months.

This one comes from the 1995 Pinnacle set and it features ‘The Hawk’ in his Marlins uniform.  I have had the base card from this same set in my collection for years; it is nice to now add the ‘Proof’ card to the lot.

Have a look:



Virtually the same as the base card design, the lone difference is the golden stamp that is located North-West of the ‘Dawson’ stamping on the card.

I don’t know how many more ‘Proof’ cards are out there – but if I come across others that I don’t already have, I will go after them.

Fingers crossed!

Dustin Pedroia 2014 Topps Series 1 – Base

Dustin Pedroia 2014 Topps Series 1 – Base

Well, it took four retail blasters of 2014 Topps Series 1, but I finally pulled the base card of Dustin Pedroia for my player collection.

And while the card does not feature the sparkle that everyone is after, it does show off a pretty solid image.

Have a peek:



Based on the look n Pedroia’s face, and his position on the field, I am going to guess that he either just collected a game-winning hit or connected deep enough on a fly ball to allow for a game-winning run to score.

Either way, he definitely looks like a winner on this card!

Andrew McCutchen 2013 Topps Update – Chasing History

Andrew McCutchen 2013 Topps Update – Chasing History

While I was not a huge fan of the theme, the ‘Chasing History’ subset from the 2013 flagship set was designed very well.

For the most-part, I like the images that were used for the cards, and the splits between horizontal and vertical photos was a nice change of page.

This card of Andrew McCutchen is from the Update set.  And like most of the cards from this subset, the colors are sharp, the image is sweet, and the action is live!

Have a look:



Pretty nice huh?

Topps did a great job using the team colors of the Pirates with this design.  And the old-school uniform that ‘Cutch’ is sporting is a nice throwback too.

A solid addition to my Andrew McCutchen collection!

1975 Topps Set Card 27/660 – #404 – Ted Sizemore, Cardinals

1975 Topps Set Card 27/660 – #404 – Ted Sizemore, Cardinals

Progress: 27/660

Player Name:  Ted Sizemore

Card Number: 404

Team:  St. Louis Cardinals

Position:  2nd Base

Image Style: Posed Portrait

Years In The Major Leagues:  12 years, 1969-80

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Sizemore his .240 in 153 games for the Cardinals i 1975.  He connected for 135 hits including 23 doubles and 3 home runs.  Sizemore drove in 49 runs in 1975 and also scored 56 times.  He also had 21 sacrifice hits.

Notes From Career:  Sizemore’s best season in the big leagues may have his first.  The 1969 Rookie Of The Year Award winner hit .271 for the Dodgers with 20 doubles, 46 RBI, and 69 runs scored as a 24-year old rookie.  As a member of the Phillies, Sizemore made it to the playoffs in 1977 and 1978, losing both times in the NLCS to the Dodgers.


‘Wednesday’s Word Association’ – When I Hear The Name “Donruss”, I Think Of…

‘Wednesday’s Word Association’ – When I Hear The Name “Donruss”, I Think Of…


Word Association, Noun.  

Definition – the connection and production of other words in response to a given word, done spontaneously as a game, creative technique, or in a psychiatric evaluation.

Ex: Dog –> Bark

‘Wednesday’s Word Association’ – When I Hear The Name “Donruss”, I Think…


Dawson diamond king

For the first time in almost a decade, the Donruss brand of baseball cards has a new release for the collecting community.  And while the company may have new ownership, it is going to be nice to see that old Donruss logo again in the hobby.

But, what is the first word that you think of when you hear the word Donruss?

For me it is, DIAMOND KINGS.  Donruss had some pretty sweet releases during the early stages of their brand during the 1980’s and mixed in with their base sets was a few hobby-changing elements: Rated Rookies, vintage-style graphics, etc.

Enough said.

And now, When You Hear The Name “DONRUSS”, You Think Of…