Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thanks to all...and to all I'll see you after the weekend.

First, I want to thank everyone for their comments and visits. My daily readership has more than doubled over the past week or so and I'm excited about the new viewers. Of course, I also want to thank my longtime readers, without them this blog would have shriveled up and died a long time ago. Mo, CK, TCP, Karmic, Lester, and 3rdStone are the primary reasons I'm still writing - it's been their continuous visits and support that's shaped this blog into what it is today. If you don't read their stuff, you ought to - tell them I sent you.

Second, I want to thank all of the bloggers who have supported my baseball card interests. I've already completed 4 trades, and I've got another 2 ready to be mailed tomorrow...plus a few more in the works. The community of bloggers interested in cards has turned out to be a GREAT find on my part. Ebay is nice for exceedingly rare cards, but for set completionists (like myself) trading is the way sports cards were meant to be enjoyed. If you haven't checked out my want list, please do - then send me yours and we'll see what we can work out.

Finally, I'm off for the weekend, so there will be no new posts until Sunday (most likely). I hope you all enjoy the last weekend of political advertisements on TV. Just think, in a week neither Obama nor McCain will care what you think! (Just kidding...sort of.)

-Chris

Quick Hits - Volume XXV - Five Questions

It's baaaaaaack! My version of Quick Hits is simply what I think about certain issues. Quick Hits gives me a chance to talk about my team, my life, or anything else on my mind. If you aren't prepared for that, leave now! Without further ado, here we go!

1. Congratulations to my home state Philadelphia Phillies. Sure, I'm a misplaced Reds fan, but it's good to see the beleaguered city of Philly win something. (It probably wasn't quite as good for Lidge though since Howard plowed him over as soon as the last out was made!) My question for you: Did you watch the series? Did you care? Do you know of anyone who actually was rooting for the Rays (you won't find many in PA)?




2. Obama. I'm undecided about the whole 30 minute infomercial... My question for you: What did you think of it? Was it informative or overblown? Was it necessary for swing voters or a crass display of all that's wrong with big spending politicians?


3. McCain. He's certainly getting desperate...and he seems to be getting more and more grouchy and bitter with every hour that passes... Thankfully Election Day is less than a week away...and then we won't have to ever see Joe the Plumber again or hear him talk about Israel and who hates who... My question for you: Did Joe the Plumber help or hurt McCain's chances?




4. Williamsport, PA. The city I live in is hosting both vice-presidential candidates tomorrow. Joe Biden is speaking at 2:00 and Sarah Palin is speaking at a different venue in the evening. My question for you: Who would you rather see speak? (NOTE: this doesn't necessarily imply who you agree with or would prefer to be the second in command, but rather, who would you rather see live for any reason?)



5. Baseball cards. If you haven't yet checked out my needs list, please do! I'm in the process of working out some trades, but there are quite a few cards on my want list that I'm still looking for! Find the list here.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Trades? My Needs & Haves list.

Note!
My CURRENT WANT LIST can now be found here.


------------------------------------------------------
The want list below is only a back up...it is no longer current.  Please refer to the above link for current want lists.


My needs list:
(Last update: 2/10/10 - this won't be updated again...please refer to the above link.)
Grey text means the card is part of a pending trade but not yet in hand.
Green means I won the card in an auction or purchased online but card is not yet in hand.

2009:
Topps Heritage American Heroes Edition:
(Note: You can find the cards I have available for trade here.)
Base: 7, 21, 30, 49, 56, 58, 63, 64, 71, 80, 89, 94, 103, 105, 117, 123, 125
Obama/Lincoln Short Prints: 126, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 138, 140, 141, 142, 146, 148, 149, 150
Heroes of Spaceflight: HSF- 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27 (I'm also interested in acquiring any Spaceflight relics.)
Heroes of Sport: HS- 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 23, 25

Topps Allen & Ginter (Note: You can find the cards I have available for trade here.)
National Heroes (minis): 4, 19, 27, 39
Inventions of the Future (minis): FI5
Extinct Creatures (minis): 1, 3
Creatures of Legend, Myth, & Terror (minis): 2, 5, 7, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 18
N43 Boxloader: N43-DM (Daisuke Matsuzaka), N43-DW (David Wright), N43-AP (Albert Pujols), N43-JH (Josh Hamilton), N43-MC (Miguel Cabrera), N43-CJ (Chipper Jones), N43-EL (Evan Longoria), N43-AR (Alex Rodriguez)
Cabinet Boxloader: CB1, CB4, CB6, CB7, CB8, CB9, CB10
Regular back mini: 13, 25, 28, 29, 30, 46, 47, 50, 53, 55, 73, 75, 95, 98, 100, 110, 116, 118, 134, 142, 145, 153, 154, 159, 161, 176, 182, 192, 201, 205, 208, 226, 227, 234, 239, 242, 245, 260, 262, 264, 271, 275, 277, 278, 279, 280, 282, 288, 290, 295, 300, 307, 312, 315, 321, 327, 328

Upper Deck Goudey: (Note: You can find my '09 Goudey cards available for trade here.)
Base: 201, 203, 205, 206, 207, 208, 211, 213, 215, 216, 218, 219, 220, 222, 224, 225, 226, 227, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 237, 238, 239, 240, 241, 242, 245, 247, 248, 250, 251, 252, 253, 256, 257, 258, 259, 260, 261, 263, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 271, 272, 273, 274, 276, 277, 278, 279, 281, 282, 283, 284, 287, 288, 289, 292, 295, 296, 297, 299

Topps Heritage (Low and High Series): (Note: You can find my '09 Topps Heritage cards available for trade here.)
Base: 426, 427, 431, 434, 436, 437, 439, 446, 451, 459, 462, 467, 468, 469, 474, 479, 482, 483, 486, 487, 488, 492, 494, 496, 499, 500, 508, 525, 527, 534, 551, 555, 579, 586, 592, 596, 602, 616, 640, 656, 659, 663, 671, 680, 685, 688, 690, 691, 693, 695, 698, 699, 706, 707, 708, 711, 713, 716, 719, 720
Then & Now (Low Series): TN1, TN2
Then & Now (High Series): TN-1, TN-2, TN-3, TN-4, TN-7, TN-8, TN-9, TN-10
New Age Performers: NAP1, NAP2, NAP4, NAP8, NAP12
Baseball Flashbacks (High Series): FB-02, FB-03, FB-04, FB-05, FB-07, FB-09
Target Mayo: TME-HR, TME-JS, TME-RB
Wal*Mart Mayo: WME-AP, WME-DM, WME-DO, WME-DW, WME-EL, WME-GS, WME-JH, WME-MR, WME-TL, WME-VG
Rookie Performers: RP-02, 03, 04, 06, 07, 09, 10, 11, 12, 15
Topps Heritage Chrome: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 25, 27, 28, 30, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 40, 41, 42, 43, 48, 50, 51, 52, 53, 55, 56, 57, 59, 62, 64, 64, 66, 67, 69, 71, 73, 75, 76, 80, 81, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 92, 93, 94, 98, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 124, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 138, 140, 141, 142, 144, 145, 148, 149, 150, 152, 153, 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 163, 164, 165, 166, 167, 169, 171, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 192, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200

Upper Deck Spectrum:
Base:
5, 9, 10, 15, 21, 25, 31, 37, 41, 47, 53, 63, 69, 73, 85, 99

Topps Base Series 1 & 2:Base (black border from Wal*Mart): 199
Base (old school version from Target): 3, 30, 74, 101, 181, 182, 219, 232, 238, 250
Turkey Red inserts: TR1, TR11, TR18, TR24, TR27, TR36, TR47, TR55, TR61, TR63, TR68, TR77
Legends of the Game (Series 2) insert: Need (all #ed LG-???): Albert Pujols, Ichiro, John Smoltz, Mariano Rivera, Mike Schmidt, Paul Molitor, Robin Yount, Tony Gwynn, Wade Boggs
Topps Town (Gold Version): TTT24, TTT27, TTT29, TTT32, TTT33, TTT34, TTT42, TTT44, TTT46, TTT49
World Baseball Classic: BCS10, BCS21

Topps American Heritage:
Base: 127, 128, 130, 132, 133, 134, 135, 137, 138, 140, 143, 144, 147, 148, 149, 150
Presidents: AP1, AP2, AP4, AP5, AP6, AP7, AP8, AP9, AP10, AP12, AP13, AP14, AP15, AP16, AP17, AP18, AP19, AP20, AP21, AP22, AP23, AP24, AP25, AP27, AP28, AP30, AP31, AP32, AP33, AP34, AP35, AP36, AP37, AP39, AP41, AP42, AP43


2008:

Upper Deck base set:
#145, 262
Star Quest: (uncommon): 1-5, 7, 11-16, 18, 21-24, 27, 28, 30, 36, 40, 42, 43, 45, 46, 47, 49, 50, 54, 55, 57, 58
Star Quest: (rare): 2, 4-7, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20-27, 29-33, 38, 40, 41, 42, 44-57, 59, 60
Star Quest: (super rare): 1-5, 6, 7, 8, 10-15, 17, 18, 20-26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 33, 35, 37, 38, 39, 41-49, 51-57, 59, 60

2008 Topps Stadium Club: (Note: You can find my '08 Stadium Club cards available for trade here)
First Day Issue: (So it appears that the first day issue cards are all divisible by 3, at least in retail packs, for all the base cards. The rookie cards all (?) appear to have two versions. I'll try to update this list when/if I find a better, more definitive definition of what is out there, until then I'm calling the "a" version the version with the picture on the front that matches the picture on the back while the "b" version will be the version with the picture on the front NOT matching the picture on the back.) With that, here is what I need:
15, 30, 51, 78, 96, 108b, 110b, 111a, 117b, 120a, 127b, 141a, 146b, 148b

2008 Upper Deck Timeline:
Base: #214, 217, 228, 232, 235, 248, 249, 255, 262, 274, 276, 279, 288, 300, 302, 304, 308, 309, 332, 334, 336, 337, 339, 340, 341, 344, 345, 347, 356, 361, 363, 366, 373, 374, 375

2008 Topps Allen & Ginter:

Ancient Icons: #6, 17, 18
Team Orange: #1, 4, 6, 10
Regular Minis: #177, 221, 250, 300, 308, 350

2008 Topps Heritage (low and high series)
Base
: #456, 464, 465, 472, 480, 482, 484, 488, 490, 494, 495, 500, 699
Then & Now (low series): #TN5
Then & Now (high series): #TN5, TN6
Rookie Performer (high series): #RP4, RP8, RP9, RP15
New Age Performers (low series): #NAP12, NAP15
Flashbacks (high series): #FB1, FB3, FB7
Black Back Variations: #5, 23, 69, 227, 581

2008 Upper Deck Goudey:
Base: #202, 214, 228, 236, 251, 258, 266, 271, 285, 294, 302, 305, 310, 312, 313, 314, 318, 319, 321, 323, 324, 325, 327, 328
Hit Parade of Champions: #HPC-2, HPC-15, HPC-16, HPC-17, HPC-21, HPC-24, HPC-26

2008 Upper Deck Masterpieces:
Base:
#91, 92, 99, 100, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 112, 114, 115, 116, 118, 119

2008 UD Spectrum:
Base: #15 (Papelbon), 21 (Konerko), 34 (Ordonez), 64 (Rodriguez), 67 (Rivera), 86 (Sexson), 90 (Delmon Young)


2007:


2007 Topps Heritage:

New Age Performers: #8


2006:

2006 Fleer Greats of the Game:
Base: 8, 29, 30, 34, 53, 54, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 71, 85, 94, 95, 97
Cardinals Greats: BG, DD, OS, RS, SC, SM, TH, TM
Cubs Greats: AD, BS, FJ, GM, MG, RH, RS, SA
Decade Greats: BF, BJ, BM, BR, CR, EA, EM, JC, JK, MC, MO, MS, PM, PT, RC, RO, RY, SC, TG, TR, TS, WS
Dodgers Greats: CA, DB, JR, PR, SG, SS
Nickname Greats: AG, AH, AT, BE, BF, BH, BL, BM, CF, CH, DD, DE, DF, DM, DP, DR, EV, FR, FS, GF, GH, GM, GS, HE, JC, JM, JS, KH, LA, LP, MA, MF, MH, ML, MR, MW, MZ, RA, RB, RC, RG, RR, RS, SB, SF, SL, SM, ST, TB, TH, TR, WC, WM
Red Sox Greats: BD, FL, JF, LT, RP, WB
Reds Greats: BL, DC, ED, JM, TP, TS
Tigers Greats: AK, AT, DM, JM, KG, MF, TC
Yankee Greats: BR, GN, JD, RG, RJ, WF, WB


2000:

2000 Fleer Impact
Base: 8, 16, 23, 31, 32, 35, 46, 69, 91, 111, 120, 128, 132, 134, 135, 150, 156, 179, 188, 195
Mighty Fine in '99 (#ed out of 40MF): 1, 3, 4, 7, 8, 11, 12, 15, 16, 19, 20, 22, 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 31, 32, 34, 37, 38, 40


1997:

1997 UD Collector's Choice Series 2:
Base: #257, 307, 310, 311, 312, 314, 337, 361, 362, 377, 383, 424, 428, 434, 440, 444, 488, 490, 499
All-Star Connection: #4, 5, 10, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 22, 28, 30, 32, 33, 34, 37, 38, 39, 40
Big Shots: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 19


1991:

Score:
Base:
56, 125, 140, 155, 156, 240, 247, 265, 280, 308, 379, 397, 417, 444, 450, 483, 485, 486, 489, 493, 496, 499, 500, 502, 503, 504, 506, 507, 508, 510, 514, 530, 531, 559, 561, 564, 575, 593, 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 601, 602, 603, 604, 606, 607, 622, 623, 633, 634, 637, 641, 644, 676, 686, 697, 708, 709, 712, 714, 716, 717, 731, 732, 737, 743, 748, 758, 765, 769, 770, 773, 776, 780, 785, 788, 797, 812, 815, 817, 818, 824, 835, 836, 840, 841, 858, 869, 875, 883, 890, 892, 894, 895, 896, 897, 898, 899, 900


1987:

1987 Topps:
All-Star Commemorative Set: #2 of 22, 6 of 22, 21 of 22


1985:

1985 Topps: 3, 7, 16, 23, 181, 261, 298, 316, 325, 327, 328, 333, 339, 346, 352, 357, 381, 401, 405, 408, 419, 425, 428, 438, 439, 453, 454, 471, 472, 511, 521, 531, 536, 546, 561, 585, 603, 616, 638, 649, 654, 657, 664, 668, 671, 672, 693, 697, 713, 726, 737, 742, 744, 747, 752, 765, 771, 779, 791


Send me your list (email me at fanofZZreds.auctZZions@gmail.com, remove the ZZ’s) or respond via the comments section and I’ll see what I have.

I've completed many trades, check my archives for some write-ups. I'm willing to complete small or large trades (anything to knock off some cards from my lists!)

You can also check me out on eBay for more feedback. My eBay page.

Upper Deck Masterpieces: Review & Trades?

2008 Upper Deck UD Masterpieces Review:

Basics:
What I opened: 3 UD Masterpieces blister packs from Wal*Mart
What I paid: $2.99 each ($8.97 total), 4 cards per pack
What I got: 10 cards
· 9 out of 90 regular base cards (10% of the set)
· 0 short prints out of 30
· 1 Relic card: Greg Maddux "Captured on Canvas" (with pinstripe from Cubs uniform)

First, the packs (in the order I opened 'em):

Pack 1:


The first pack contained:
#10 Nick Markakis
#14 Daisuke Matsuzaka (the pack cover boy by the way)
#28 Travis Hafner
#73 Freddy Sanchez
Not a bad pack, but not exciting to me either. The Sanchez card is quite nice I think, it's a rather unique view for a baseball card.



Pack 2:




The second pack contained:
#17 Manny Ramirez
#55 Johan Santana
#83 Ozzie Smith
#87 Michael Young
Now THAT'S what I'm talking about. I'm a sucker for the "old school" players, so seeing a nice Ozzie Smith card made me happy. I especially like the horizontal picture for both Ozzie and Johan Santana...that's sideways done right in my opinion.


Pack 3:


The third pack contained:
#81 Ichiro
#CC-GM Greg Maddux "Captured On Canvas" Relic card
Although I really like the relic card design, I was disappointed to find out that my pack only contained 2 cards. Futhermore, I already had the Ichiro card (my only double so far), so that was a bit of a let down. However, the relic card is NICE! I like the pinstripe, I like the card design, and I like how the material swatch fits nicely with the regular card stock in this set (unlike with glossy cards - Upper Deck X I'm looking at you, blech). I also like the dark frame, and heck, even the gold-lettering works for me.



Overall, I like the set. I had bought a few packs previously, so I now have 31 of the 90 base cards (no short prints) and the one relic card. I guess I should be happy I pulled the relic, but I think I actually would have preferred to get more of the base cards! After buying a few packs, I've decided that I really like UD Masterpieces. However (and this is important), there are 30 short prints in the set, and I haven't gotten one yet. That tells me that they are MUCH too rare - and as such, I probably won't be collecting the Masterpieces set. (I've got enough difficulty trying to put together my Allen & Ginter, Heritage, and Goudey sets with their short prints...I don't need anymore!)
The bottom line:
I give the 2008 UD Masterpieces set a solid 80 / 100.
Pros: I like the small set size and the base card design. I like the thick cardboard stock. I like the mix of new and old players.
Cons: I don't like short prints. I think that 4 cards for $3.00 is a bit steep, especially when one of the cards is a double! I don't like how Upper Deck refuses to put insertion odds on their packs, including the insertion odds for their short prints.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

World Series Game 3 Thoughts

Yep, I went to bed. I decided it wasn't going to be worth the pain of trying to wake up early in the morning to watch game 3 of the World Series...especially after an exhausting Penn State vs. Ohio State game during the evening...one which I was happy with the end result but never felt comfortable with while the game was being played!


Thursday, October 23, 2008

World Series Game 2 Thoughts

Not much to say tonight except: "Congrats Tampa Bay on your first World Series win ever!"

This series is shaping up to be a good one. Two games in, the series heads to Philadelphia tied up at 1 game each. As a baseball fan (but not a Phillies or Rays fan), I'm rooting for a seven game series... That seventh game is the best game in all of sports in my opinion, better than the Super Bowl, BCS Championship, Masters (blech), etc.

Other thoughts:
1. David Price impressed me with his post game comments.
2. James Shields is good.
3. I'm ready to see a nicer stadium, the Phillies stadium is really nice...I saw them beat my Reds there earlier this year.
4. I'm so sick of political ads.
5. I think instead of "I'm X and I support this message", politicians should be forced to record "I'm X and support this negative attack ad." Those stupid ads aren't messages, they are attacks and should be forced to be labeled as such.
6. In the time it took me to write the above lines, I've been subjected to another two "messages"...
7. Back to baseball, Philadelphia better learn to hit with runners in scoring position or they won't make it to game 7.
8. Why won't Howard lay down a bunt? If he places it ANYwhere on the third base side of the field he crawl to first base while eating a cheesesteak and still be safe thanks to the Rays shift.
9. When you type "shift" make sure you put the "f" in the word...
10. The Phillies fielding was rather atrocious tonight, I wonder if they were a bit psyched out by the field conditions?

That's all I got tonight, see you in Philadelphia in 2 days!


Source:
http://baseballauthority.files.wordpress.com/2008/01/tampa-bay-rays.jpg

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

World Series Game 1 Thoughts

As I sat and watched game 1 of the World Series on my brand new TV, I thought the following:

1. The Backstreet Boys are still around?

2. (After listening to them butcher the National Anthem): Why are they still around?
3. What's with the blue mohawks sported by Rays fans?
4. Where did all the Rays fans come from anyhow? Didn't this team struggle to sell tickets forever?
5. Good start for Phillies says Joe Buck after the homerun in the top of the first.
6. Bad start for the Phillies says the same Joe Buck after a ball squirts under the defender's glove in the bottom of the first inning.
7. The catwalks are an interesting feature aren't they? What would the view of the game look like from the different catwalks?

8. Free tacos for America! Thanks for the stolen base Jason Bartlett.

9. (Flash forward to the bottom of the ninth inning): Phillies 2 outs away from winning game 1 - Evan Longoria at bat.
10. Longoria strikes out, second straight Ray to strike out in the ninth.
11. Seriously, Lidge is this good all of the sudden? Where's Pujols when you need him?
12. Crawford up - I'm happy for him since he hit a homerun. Poor guy has been a Devil Ray all his life, that's gotta be a painful career up until this year.
13. Crawford down to his last strike... It's a cement mixer says McCarver.
14. Crawford pops it up to end the game, Phillies lead the World Series 1 game to none.
15. Phillies stranded 11 runners - yet they won.





Congrats Philadelphia. 3 wins to go.


Well, game one is in the books. I wonder how many people watched the World Series this year? Will this be the lowest rated World Series ever? What do you think? Do you care who wins (I don't really...I just want the games to be close and exciting).

Sources:
http://blog.mlive.com/entertainmentnow_impact/2008/08/large_20080805_backstreet_boys.jpg
http://www.theage.com.au/ffximage/2007/03/01/fur_narrowweb__300x468,0.jpg
http://nymag.com/images/2/daily/food/07/10/29_tacos_lgl.jpg
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/1a/Philadelphia_Phillies_Cap_(1970_-_1991).png

The Fantasy Football Gods Must Hate Me.


My fantasy football roster:
Romo
L. Johnson
Reggie Bush
Burress
LenDale White
S. Holmes
K. Winslow
Giants D
J. Reed

Not a bad roster, except:
Romo's been hurt - and I traded away my backup (Eli Manning for Reggie Bush earlier this season)
Bush is now out - and the available running backs with any skills are nonexistent in my league.
Burress is a whack job who's been running his mouth - it's only a matter of time before he gets suspended AGAIN.
LenDale - well, I got lucky here, he's not hurt and he's producing.
Holmes - Mediocre so far
Winslow - Out.
Giants D - good mostly
Reed - hurt earlier this year, but seemed ok last week.

I'm not sure if you could draft a better (initial) roster that has turned out to be such a dud. I've managed to take down the league leader in both our head-to-head matchups, but I'm only 2-3 against everyone else...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Customer Service at Its Finest?

This weekend I walked into my local Wal*Mart, home of some of the least intelligent workers I may have ever witnessed.

Case in point:




I decided to buy a plant for my apartment. A couple of months ago I bought my first plant, and since I haven't managed to kill it yet, I decided to roll the proverbial dice and buy a second plant. I walked into the greenhouse, picked out a plant, and then I proceeded to the checkout.



Now, the day I went to Wal*Mart it was quite chilly (typical October weather in Pennsylvania). As such, there wasn't anyone working the gardening center, so I had to walk my little plant to the main cashiers. I got in line (the "express line", hah). The lady working there stared at my plant, panicked (because there isn't a bar code to scan), and immediately called for help. (I figured, "ok, she might be new, no big deal.") Hah.



The cashier's immediate boss (or I suppose an associate since it was Wal*Mart right?) came over and looked at my LIVE POTTED PLANT. She then glanced up at me, looked back at the plant, back at me, and finally asked, "What department did this come from?"



"Automotive."



Seriously, I was actually so stunned by the stupidity that I couldn't even manage a comeback (of course, it would've been wasted breath anyhow). Where else do you sell live plants? Stationary? Electronics?



And that, my friends, is what it takes to work for Wal*Mart apparently. That's some high hiring standards, hah.

On a completely unrelated note, please check out my 2008 Allen & Ginter needs here. I really would like to trade for many of the cards versus trying to buy them of eBay if possible!



Source:

http://img464.imageshack.us/img464/958/stupid3xn.jpg

Sunday, October 19, 2008

2008 Topps Allen & Ginter Retail Box Review

2008 Topps Allen & Ginter Box Review


Basics:
What I opened: 1 Retail Box from Wal*Mart (see my Target box review of ’08 Allen & Ginter here)
What I paid: $19.99
What I got:
· 36 out of 300 regular base cards (12% of the set)
· 4 short prints out of 50 (8% of the short prints) (#316 Ervin Santana, #323 James Bowie, #329 Jeff Clement, and #340 Carl Crawford)
· 2 regular back mini cards
· 2 black bordered mini black cards (#132 Gary Matthews and #170 Jake Peavy)· 2 Allen & Ginter mini backs (#120 Derek Jeter and #203 Jhonny Peralta)
· 1 No number mini card (Matt Cain)
· 1 World Leaders (#WL20 Susilo Bambang – Indonesia)
· 3 State Cards (#US8 Ian Snell, #US25 Ryan Howard, and #US33 Ryan Zimmerman)
· 1 Relic Card (#AGR-DW David Wright)

Overall, I was pleased with this box. I bought the box with the hopes of finding the last few cards I need (that didn't work) but to also fill out some of my insert sets. I needed the World Leader card as well as the regular mini back cards. The relic card was nice, especially since it is of a player that is actually good! The no number card is quite rare and will probably either fetch me a nice trade or go for a couple of bucks on eBay.


After my latest round of buying boxes and trades (with Jason V., Bailey Z., and Matt F.), I almost have the entire 2008 Allen & Ginter set. I decided to collect some of the parallel sets as well though – and I’m missing quite a few. If you have any of the following, I’d love to work out a trade with you. I have a LOT of 2008 Allen & Ginter, 2008 Topps Heritage, 2008 Upper Deck Goudey, and some 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes, as well as some 2007 Topps Heritage cards to trade. Let me know if you are interested:


2008 Allen & Ginter Needs:

Base and short prints:
#3 Benjamin Franklin
#149 Freddy Sanchez
#239 Brian Bannister
#305 Randy Johnson
#336 Allen Fisher
#343 Benjie Molina

State Cards:
#US45 Daric Barton

World Leaders:
#
1, 2, 5, 7, 8, 9, 12, 14, 18, 23, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 34, 35, 36, 38, 39, 40, 45, 48, 49, 50

World’s Deadliest Sharks: #WDS1, WDS2, WDS3, WDS4

Ancient Icons: #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 20

World’s Greatest Victories:
#
1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 15, 16, 19

Baseball Icons:
#1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20

Pioneers of Aviation (complete)

If you have any of the above available for trade, please contact me either by commenting on this blog post OR by emailing me directly at ZZfanofredsZZ.auZZctions@ZZgmail.ZZcom (remove the ZZ's first)!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

FanOfReds' Predictions Revisted: AL East


Now that the 2008 Major League Baseball regular season has drawn to a close, it's time to see how well (or poorly) I was able to prognosticate the final standings. Back in March, I posted on my Sporting News blog my predictions for each of the baseball divisions. Today, I take a look back at my AL East predictions. (Note: My AL Central predictions seem to have disappeared, so you won't be seeing them revisited!)



First, my predictions:


1. Red Sox
2. Blue Jays
3. Yankees
4. Rays
5. Orioles


What really happened? The 2008 AL East standings:


1. Rays (97 - 65)
2. Red Sox (95 - 67)
3. Yankees (89 - 73)
4. Blue Jays (86 - 76)
5. Orioles (68 - 93)


Well, I got the Orioles and Yankees spots right....and I got the Red Sox making the playoffs. I simply picked the wrong "little guy" to beat the Yanks!

I recall wanting to pick the Rays to be my sleeper team, but I looked at their team closely and didn't think they had enough pitching nor offense to compete - how wrong I was on that one! The Blue Jays were my disappointment of the year (and the Tigers of course), I truly thought they'd be decent. Of course, it's hard to say that they weren't decent, they did finish 10 games over .500...

Overall, I give myself a B+ for my AL East predictions. Next up, my AL West predictions...where clearly I might have made a few "minor" mistakes. Stay tuned.

Source:

http://www.mlb.com/images/2005/10/01/XZLCznZp.jpg

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Stories You May Have Missed: Volume III

Well, my television is still broken, so you can't blame me for seeking my news elsewhere. Luckily, the internet is full of wonderful news stories...and if it's on the internet, it's got to be true.

First, there is the final US Presidential debate tonight. I, of course, won't be watching it on TV but Yahoo shows the thing for free over the internet so I'll be watching there. That said, I already know what Obama is going to emphasize since one of his staffers apparently leaked the list to the media a bit early (as in this morning and not AFTER the debate. Oops.)

Now, some of you may belong to more sophisticated circles of friends, and perhaps you are on your way to a Debate viewing party. If so, may I offer a few humble suggestions gleaned from this piece of investigative *ahem* internet journalism *cough*.

According to the article, you are a terrible guest if you bring a friend along, drink heavily, eat all the food before anyone else, smell bad, talk only about yourself, and, most importantly, don't bring a gift. Seriously, I think a kindergartener could have come up with those ideas. "Mommy, I don't Bob to come over, he smells bad and eats my favorite candy." Yeah, good work Rubin and Mauceri. (And seriously, two people co-author that blog and NEITHER of them had the sense to say, "hey stupid, don't post such meaningless nonsense." Ouch.

Now, I thought that was bad, but then I found yet another entry on Yahoo... Apparently there is undying need amongst Yahoo readers to have top ten (give or take) lists about stupid stuff you ought to already know. For instance, today Yahoo featured an "article" on the 10 Reasons You Aren't Rich. I'm not kidding.

You know why you aren't rich? You don't have enough money. There, end of article. Of course, that doesn't satisfy the word count minimums, so Mr. Jeffrey Strain took it upon himself to state such brilliant nuggets of wisdom such as "you buy things you don't use" and "you don't understand value." Sorry Mr. Strain, there are rich people who don't crap about anything...there are rich people who buy things just because they can with no intention of ever using it...you know what ties rich people together? Money. They have it, everyone else doesn't.

And that my friends (as McCain will shortly say about 8 million times), is Today's Stories You May Have Missed. You're welcome.



Sources:

http://www.donkeydish.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/mccain_obama.jpg
http://www.dropshipsellers.com/images/moneykey.jpg

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Upper Deck Yankee Stadium Legacy Review

Last year, Topps created an insert set chronicling every Alex Rodriguez homerun that spanned the majority of their baseball card products. Despite my annoyance, Upper Deck decided to top Topps in 2008 and create a card for every single game played in Yankee Stadium.


Upper Deck's set has a whopping 6,661 cards in it - making it the largest set ever. According to their official website, if you are one of the first five collectors to complete the set you can watch a game for free and meet Derek Jeter... Color me unimpressed with that. If I complete a set of 6,661 cards (all inserts mind you), I'd expect a bit more than "meeting" Derek Jeter...and wouldn't it be terrible if you were the sixth collector to complete the set...you'd get nothing but boxes and boxes of cards that all look the same.





Now, I'm certainly not a Yankee fan, so this set isn't for me, I get that. However, it's the precedent that this set is setting that scares me. I've busted a bunch of Upper Deck boxes so far this year (look for my review of my hobby box of UD Goudey coming up in a few days). With each box, I've gotten a few different Yankee Stadium Legacy cards. I'm glad that someone likes them, because I'm listing my 61 different cards on eBay tonight. They certainly seem to sell fairly well, so I'm optimistic someone will be happy to add a large chunk of the cards to their collection. To them I say: "You're welcome." To the collecting community at large, I say, "Watch out."



Remember when relic cards were rare? Remember when it was exciting to pull a relic and know that you got a jersey of whatever player was on the front? Remember when those jerseys were actual game-used jerseys (not this game used relic crap that is code for "pants" that we see nowadays). Thinking back, remember when die-cut cards were cutting edge (literally)? Remember when Upper Deck busted onto the scene with that flashy hologram logo?

I'm afraid that ten years from now people will be saying things like "remember when sets only had 100 cards" or "remember when insert sets didn't span every set known to man" or even "remember when there was such thing as a base card"...

I see no good coming from these "super" sets that span the entire product line of a company. I suppose it encourages people to buy packs of cards from sets they normally wouldn't (like Upper Deck X), but I doubt that works all that well since eBay is such a player in the card collection market. Otherwise, the cards simply take up a slot in the packs that I’d rather not be wasted…

Since I’m a set collector at heart, I actually would rather have another Goudey card in place of those Yankee Stadium Legacy cards. Sure, the Legacy cards sell for a few bucks on eBay (or so I hope), but I’d much rather be able to buy fewer packs to assemble my own set. In short, I hope this is the last “super” set I ever see, though I’m afraid that the trend is only beginning…especially since the cards seem to sell.

What do you think? Do you like the super sets? Do you plan on collecting all 6,661 cards in the set?





The bottom line:


I give the 2008 Upper Deck Yankee Stadium Legacy set a x/100 where x = 95 if you are a Yankee fan and 5 if you aren't.


Pros: If you are hardcore New York Yankee fan, then this set is a dream set. There seems to be a nice variety of players featured on the front of the cards and the backs of each card has the boxscore for that particular game. The only way that Upper Deck could have improved the card would to have featured a star player from that game on the front of the card. Of course, on days where the Yankees got shutout there probably wouldn't be any "stars" to choose from.



Cons: If you aren't a Yankee fan, there's no real reason to like this set. It only features Yankees! Also, even if you are a Yankee fan, it's discouraging (to say the least) that the set is over 6,000 cards. I doubt many people will actually complete this set...which is a shame since baseball card sets are designed (or at least should be designed) to be complete sets!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Fanofreds' Predictions Revisited: 2008 NL West


Now that the 2008 Major League Baseball regular season has drawn to a close, it's time to see how well (or poorly) I was able to prognosticate the final standings. Back in March, I posted on my Sporting News blog my predictions for each of the baseball divisions. Today, I take a look back at my predictions for the NL West.


First, my predictions from March:

1. Diamondbacks
2. Padres
3. Dodgers
4. Rockies
5. Giants


How'd I do? The actual standings for 2008:

1. Dodgers (84 - 78)
2. Diamondbacks (82 - 80)
3. Rockies (74 - 88)
4. Giants (72 - 90)
5. Padres (63 - 99)


In a word, eesh (is eesh even a word, Microsoft Word seems to think it isn't). To be fair, I said that "I can see the Dodgers scrapping it out for the division crown late into the season, but I think they just don’t quite have enough to jump over San Diego or Arizona." That at least means I didn't rule the Dodgers out completely, despite picking them to finish third.


Overall, I give myself a solid C for the NL West. Sure, I was completely wrong on the Padres - but I wrote the division crown would be decided in the last week and I had the two teams that ended up battling for the crown tagged as such back in March. If it weren't for the Padres, I would have done fairly well with the West.


Well, there's half the divisions revisited. I'll be taking a look at my American League predictions in the next few blogs. I'm also in the process of writing up some baseball card blogs and updated trade lists, so stay tuned for those. Finally, I'm bound to whip something up that's completely random...stay tuned!


As always, let me know what you think...and I'm counting on my loyal readers to keep me informed of what's happening on TV since my TV is still broken. I've got to wait for Circuit City to call me back...and with the holiday tomorrow I'm doubting I'll be getting my television back before the World Series...which doesn't make me happy.
Source:

Friday, October 10, 2008

Baseball's Most Embarrassing People, Places, and Things

I found this link on another website - and I simply had to comment. First, read the article, then come back here.

...back? Ok, good.

My thoughts:

1. Seattle Mariners - Yeah, they were pretty much embarrassing this year...but not nearly as embarrassing as where I picked them to finish back in spring training (stay tuned for my AL West recap in the near future).




2. Shea - Ok, I agree here too, Shea's a dump.



3. Cincinnati Reds' owner and GM - Ha! This is what led me to the article in the first place... You can read all about what I think about the GM and owner's letter to the fans here.



4. Kyle Farnsworth - I completely missed this "story" when it occurred, and personally, who cares? I don't think poor Kyle deserves to be on the same list as Shea, the woeful Mariners, and the two bumbling front office members of the Reds.







5. Jim "Fresh Bagels" Bowden - Seriously, that's awesome. Any Reds fan pretty much hates Bowden for all the stupid things he did. The leather pants really were the icing on the cake though... Now poor Washington has to deal with Bowden - and he still covets the same losing players he did when he was the Reds' GM. In fact, he's managed to turn the Nationals into Cincinnati East (which isn't a good thing for Nats fans).
























Now, the real question is: Who or what do you think are baseball's most embarrassing people, places, and things?

My votes: Steroids, Clemens, Scott Boras, and the unbalanced division (6 in the NL Central, 4 in the AL West).




Sources:
http://urban.usc.edu/main_doc/images/Mexico%202006/17/1%20Cross-sectional%20%201%20City%20Tour%20and%20Tour%20of%20the%20Periphery/images/1d%20Plastic%20Bottles%20Sorted%20from%20the%20Dump%20%20with%20Residences.jpg


http://omgreds.com/uploaded_images/bowdensegway-748588.jpg

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

2008 Topps Allen & Ginter Box Break and Trades?

Review: 2008 MLB Topps Allen & Ginter
The Basics: What I opened: 1 Retail Box from Target
What I paid: $19.99
What I got:
· 36 out of 300 regular base cards (12% of the set)
· 4 short prints out of 50 (8% of the short prints) (#350 Kevin Youkilis, #319 Jason Giambi, #332 Dave Roberts, and #321 Wily Mo Pena)


· 1 unnumbered Fukudome regular sized rookie card (rare – rumor has it one per case?)
· 4 regular back mini cards
· 2 short printed regular back mini cards (#321 Wily Mo Pena and #302 Brad Lidge)
· 1 black bordered mini black card (#275 Nick Markakis)

· 4 different state cards (Louisiana – Jonathan Papelon, Iowa – Casey Blake, Rhode Island – Paul Konerko, and Maine – Tim Stauffer)
· 1 World Leaders mini insert – Guy Verhofstadt (Belgium)

Overall, I had decent box. The black bordered mini card is nice, if I were to try to collect one of the mini sets that would be the parallel version I would choose. They are rare, but so rare as to be super expensive (unlike the mini bazookas or no numbered minis). The Fukudome card was clearly the best card in the box, Beckett lists it at $50.00, meaning that one card was worth 2 and a half boxes! Of course, I doubt anyone would buy it from me for book price, but still, not bad.

The 2008 Allen & Ginter set is an extremely nice set overall. I decided to post a typical “retail” box breakdown on my blog but I have purchased quite a few different retail boxes as well as hobby packs in an effort to complete my own set. At this point, I am missing 25 of the 350 base cards (including short prints) and 6 of the state cards. If you happen to have some you’d be interesting in trading, please check out my want list at the end of the entry.


The 2008 Allen & Ginter set has a decent variety of inserts and parallels. Besides the ones mentioned above, there are also rare Deadliest Shark cards and rare Pioneers of Aviation cards. I have completed the Pioneers of Aviation set (as soon as the missing card arrives from the eBay auction I recently won) but I have only pulled a single shark card (and of course those sell for more). There is also a set featuring baseball icons (such as Cy Young, Pee Wee Reese, and Babe Ruth amongst others) and a set called Team Orange that appears to be extremely rare and full of fake guys (I don’t get it either). There are also a large number of relic and autographed cards – I’ve pulled a fair number of relics but no autographs so far from the set (which seems to be a common complaint from people). Finally, there are 1-of-1 relic cards including Abraham Lincoln and a Meteorite…it probably goes without saying that I haven’t even seen one of those cards let alone pulled one.

The rest of the insert sets are mediocre. I liked last years Flags of the Nations set but I don't really care about this year's World Leaders set.



I like the thick state cards (50 in all) - but I'm always happier to pull a relic instead of one of the states...It's hard to imagine a better "filler" set though - and it certainly beats getting a thick advertisement like Upper Deck likes to do.



The Bottom Line: I give the 2008 MLB Topps Allen & Ginter a 94/100.

Pros: I like the base cards (despite being similar to last year’s set). I like the eccentric mix of non-baseball personalities (and “other things” like Pluto and the Grand Canyon) thrown in. I like the relic cards and black-bordered minis. I like the Pioneers of Aviation subset because it is quirky. I like the short prints – enough to make collecting the set a challenge, but not so many (nor so rare) to drive prices up to impossible heights for the average collector.



Cons: I don’t get the Team Orange insert set – for how difficult they are to pull they are an immense disappointment (I’d much rather pull a shark or aviation card). It seems that the ration of relics to autographs is a bit too slanted – relics are easy to find but the autos are elusive. The Worlds Greatest Victory insert was a neat idea (the first person to crack the code gets to be on a 2009 Topps Allen & Ginter card) but you know that someone probably cracked it within a week or so of the products launch…rendering the inserts useless now.

-----------------------------

Cards I need (and would like to trade for - leave a comment below or email me at ZfaZnZofZreZdsZ.ZaZucZtioZnZs@ZgZmZaiZl.cZoZm (just remove all the capital Z's in that email address) with a list of what you have a what you want for 'em.

2008 Allen & Ginter Needs: (Last updated 10/09/08 @ 1:49 AM EST)

3 Benjamin Franklin
20 Vladimir Guerrero
24 Bobby Jenks
49 Shane Victorino
57 Ben Sheets
63 Jacoby Ellsbury
83 Masahide Kobayashi
84 Bonnie Blair
87 Aaron Rowand
105 Jonathan Papelbon
118 Geovany Soto
124 Greg Maddux
131 Todd Helton
149 Freddy Sanchez
179 Hideki Matsui
210 Carlos Lee
226 Rich Hill
239 Brian Bannister
245 Carlos Guillen
292 Elijah Dukes
305 Randy Johnson
312 Brandon Wood
336 Allen Fisher
339 Jack Cust
341 Ty Wigginton
343 Benjie Molina

State Cards Needed:

US11 Shane Victorino
US12 Jason Schmidt
US16 Nate Robertson
US32 Alex Rodriguez
US35 Nick Swisher
US45 Daric Barton

I have a TON of extra 2008 Allen & Ginter cards (both regular and short prints) that I would be willing trade - as well as some 2008 Topps Heritage, 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes, and 2008 Upper Deck Goudey - send me a list and we'll see what we can do.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

You know it's a bad day....

...when your alarm clock doesn't go off when it is supposed to.

...when you wake up in the morning and realize that your bathroom light isn't working.

...when you get to work and there is no place to park.

...when you are at work and your computer crashes without saving your work for you.

...when you head home from work and get stuck in construction.

...when you finally get home from work and realize your less than one year old television stopped working.

...when you drive all the way to Circuit City and the lady at the customer service counter tells you that your TV isn't covered under warranty despite being less than a year old.

...when that same lady then tells you that you have to pay Circuit City $30 bucks (non-refundable) just for them to "inspect" the TV.

...when you have to wait for "Bob" to finish his conversation or snack before coming over to the customer service counter to answer questions.

...when you have to argue with "Bob" and make him go onto Circuit City's own website and see that the TV has a 1 year warranty.

...when "Bob" finally agrees with you and waives the $30 fee...but then tells you they don't even ship TVs out of the store until Thursday...and it will take at least two weeks before they will contact me with my options for the TV

...when there's a presidential debate, October baseball playoffs, college football, and professional football all week and weekend that I've been planning to watch and now cannot...

...and finally, when you get a Comcast Cable bill in the mail the same day your (only) TV breaks.

There's always tomorrow, right?

Monday, October 06, 2008

FanOfReds' Predictions Revisted: 2008 NL East


Now that the 2008 Major League Baseball regular season has drawn to a close, it's time to see how well (or poorly) I was able to prognosticate the final standings. Back in March, I posted on my Sporting News blog my predictions for each of the baseball divisions. Today, I take a look back at my predictions for the NL East.



First, my predictions from March:


1. Phillies
2. Mets
3. Braves
4. Marlins
5. Nationals


How'd I do? The actual standings for 2008:

1. Philadelphia Phillies (92 - 70)
2. New York Mets (89 - 73)
3. Florida Marlins (84 - 77)
4. Atlanta Braves (72 - 90)
5. Washington Nationals (59 - 102)


Well, I ended up doing MUCH better in the NL East than I did in the NL Central. I had no faith in the Nationals (sinking so low as to call them Cincinnati Reds East) and they "rewarded" my lack of faith in them with a putrid showing in 2008. I figured the Phillies would win the East with the Mets second which also turned out correct. My only error was the placement of the Marlins and Braves...I figured the Braves would fall, but I didn't think they would reach 90 losses! Overall, I give myself an A- for my NL East predictions, I got the division winner and runner up correct (arguably the most important two final positions) as well as the basement dwelling Nationals, not bad at all. How did I do on the rest of the divisions, stay tuned! (Hint: there's at least one pick that I made that makes me shudder every time I think about it...if there were ever a reason to give a person an F-, that would be it...stay tuned!)



Source:





Why I am a Reds fan - and why I'm FanOfReds

This entry originally appeared on my Sporting News blog as part of Mo's Gain or Lose competition in May 2007. Now that I've moved into my new "digs" I thought I ought to introduce myself!

I am a Reds fan because of my dad. Growing up in upstate Pennsylvania (home to both the Pirates and the Phillies), I was the only kid on the block (so to speak) who was a Reds fan… In fact, I may have been the only kid in the whole town that was a Reds fan. I distinctly remember walking into the only town sporting goods store and seeing a Reds t-shirt for sale. I also remember walking back day after day, and that t-shirt was still there. Finally, the storekeeper marked the price of the t-shirt all the way down to $2.00, which was enough of a bargain for even a kid who would rather buy “cool” stuff to purchase. That purchase began a collection of Reds gear that would later encompass 14 different styles of Reds hats, countless t-shirts, a banner, a blanket, etc.

Long before I found the “bargain” in the store, my dad introduced me to a lifelong infatuation with the Reds. I suppose the defining moment of how I became a Reds fan actually occurred 20+ years before I was born!

You see, my dad grew up in a large family (5 siblings) and he was third oldest. Back in my dad’s youth, baseball cards used to be printed on the backs of cereal boxes. My dad’s oldest brother used to get all the American League cards and my dad’s second oldest brother used to get all the National League cards. Now, as you can imagine, this seemed entirely unfair to my dad and his next youngest brother. Thus, in an effort to maintain control over the majority of the cards, the two oldest brothers agreed to give the cards of one team (of their choice) to the middle brothers. My dad’s younger brother was “stuck” with the Detroit Tigers cards while my dad got “stuck” with the Cincinnati Reds cards. During that time, these were the two teams that got the fewest cards I guess.




Flash forward to 1989. I was a young boy and my dad gave me my first baseball card, a card that I value to this day I think. He gave me a 1987 Topps Cincinnati Reds Leaders card. I thought it was the most amazing piece of cardboard ever printed. I loved the wooden frame. I loved the fact that there were multiple Reds pictured on the front of the card. I loved the fact that the back of the card listed only Reds statistics and leaders. I also distinctly thinking how old the card was, even though it was only 2 years old at the time. From that moment on, I was hooked (both on the Reds and on baseball cards)!

A year after that, the Cincinnati Reds met the heavily favored Oakland Athletics in the World Series and swept them 4 games to 0. I remember being allowed to stay up late to watch the games and my excitement as Barry Larkin, the Nasty Boys, and the rest of the Reds utterly dominated the A’s.

17 years later, I’m still a huge Reds fan – though I haven’t had the opportunity to relive the joys of that World Championship. I guess I am lucky that I can remember even a little of my favorite team winning the World Series, but I hope I get to see another win before the end of my days!

Of course, there’s a second answer to Morrisseyweb’s prompt: “What was the defining moment that made me a fan.” As others have noted, Morrisseyweb did not specify a fan of what. In this case, it suffices to tell the tale of how I became fanofreds. My screen name (though entirely uncreative) speaks a lot about me. If you see a post by a person named fanofreds, you automatically know that I’m a Reds fan. Thus, if I am commenting on a Cardinals or Cubs article, you know exactly where my priorities lie. Just like “in real life,” I make no pretenses or effort to be something or someone that I am not. Now, as a mathematician, I value numbers a lot. Furthermore, as a quick perusal of my weekly should confirm, I am not a homer for my team. I have no problems stating where their weaknesses are (essentially, offense, defense, coaching, and ownership right now).

I also chose the moniker fanofreds because it was a name that I could remember – and it was a name that wasn’t already taken on the original iteration of hotmail. For the longest time, I had a hotmail account fanofreds that I used for everything!

In addition, the name fanofreds satisfied one more quirk of mine. Namely, I get a kick out of people thinking my name is fano fred, as in, I am some grossly infatuated fan of some guy named Fred. It happens all the time (and if any of you readers have made that mistake, don’t worry you aren’t alone)!

Finally, the name also serves a double meaning. Yes, it means that I am a fan of the Cincinnati Reds, but you do know what else I am a fan of? Hint: it is a sports team, but it is not a team listed under my TSN favorites. Give up? I am a fan of Manchester United soccer, a team that often goes by the nickname Reds!

I hope you enjoyed the look into my life a bit, especially since this particular entry was one of my most popular entries that I wrote on TSN. As always, I am interested in your comments!

-fanofreds




Sources:


Thursday, October 02, 2008

FanOfReds' Predictions Revisted: 2008 NL Central


Now that the 2008 Major League Baseball regular season has drawn to a close, it's time to see how well (or poorly) I was able to prognosticate the final standings. Back in March, I posted on my Sporting News blog my predictions for each of the baseball divisions. Today, I take a look back at my first prediction, the NL Central (home of my Reds).


First, my predictions from March:

1. Cubs

2. Reds

3. Brewers

4. Pirates

5. Astros

6. Cardinals


How'd I do? The actual standings for 2008:

1. Chicago Cubs 97-64

2. Milwaukee Brewers 90-72

3. Houston Astros 86-75

4. St. Louis Cardinals 86-76

5. Cincinnati Reds 74-88

6. Pittsburgh Pirates 67-95


I got the division winner correct (but so did most of America probably). I picked the Reds as second...which obviously was a giant mistake. I also missed terribly on the Cardinals, I truly thought that they'd be awful (who would have thought that Lohse would be any good, certainly not me after enduring his so-called pitching for the Reds in the past). Overall, I'd give my efforts a C-, barely passing thanks to picking the Cubs as division winner and the Brewers in the top half.


Sources:

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Stories You Might Have Missed: Volume II


With the political season in full swing, some people seem to believe they have voting tendencies all figured out. For instance, take your average smart voter. Smart people only vote for Obama, at least according to Luke Russert (son of the late Tim Russert), "The smartest kids in the state (Virginia) go there so it (University of Virginia) is leaning a little bit toward Obama." Later on, Russert took back his comments with an apology that he posted to his blog...

Russert isn't the only one who has been quoted saying that they have figured out the voters. Think about your bedroom or office. Is it clean and tidy? Is it colorful? Stylish? Organized? Cluttered?

According to New York University psychologist John Jost and his colleagues (who obviously have too much free time on their hands), "Conservatives and liberals leave behind distinct 'behavioral residue' that can be picked up by savvy scientists and possibly other observers."

For the record, Jost claims that conservatives have organized, brightly lit, and less cluttered rooms and offices while liberals have more clutter and color in their rooms. Furthermore, Jost's study claims that conservatives are more likely to have "organizational and cleaning supplies, including calendars, postage stamps, ironing boards and laundry baskets." Liberals are more likely to have "more CDs, a greater variety of CDs, and a greater variety of books."




Of course, there's more going on in the world than politics (even if the advertisements on every single freaking television station seem to indicate otherwise). In fact, there's only one October, did you know that? Leave it to Major League Baseball to remind us that the month of October only occurs once each year. They run advertisements telling us that *ahem* breaking news...and you expect MLB to be able to figure out who was doping in the late 90s and early 2000s? Seriously, Barry Bond's big head wasn't enough of a clue...these guys just figured out that those calendars they buy every year are actually correct, there's only one October in 2008 just like there was in 2007, and 2006, and 2005, and 2004... Apparently, they keep hoping there will be an extra October one year just like there's an extra day in February some years.

And finally, just to prove that Sarah Palin isn't the dumbest person on the earth (though the more she opens her mouth the more I'm not convinced), may I present the following contestant from "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?"




And now you know. You're welcome.






Sources: