Thursday, December 31, 2009

Larkin to the Hall of Fame in 2010? Let's Hope.

A tip 'o the hat to Redleg Nation for this article written by Jayson Stark.



As you all (should) know, I'm a huge Barry Larkin fan and believe he ought to be in the Hall of Fame. However, I'm not a HOF voter so what I think doesn't matter...but I'm curious - how many of you believe Larkin should be in the Hall of Fame (and secondly, is he a "first ballot*" Hall of Famer)?

*I don't get the notion of first ballot Hall of Famers, but a lot of people seem to bring the idea up. I tend to believe either you are good enough to get in the Hall of Fame or not, end of story. I don't buy that you aren't good enough the first time around but then you magically get better and thus more deserving, but to each his own.

And if you've happened to miss it, you can check out my (ever growing) Barry Larkin Card Collection by clicking on the link!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Why I Haven't Been Posting...

I haven't posted since Christmas for a couple of reasons:

1. I've been traveling - I've been at my parent's house and my grandmother's house.

2. I didn't have time to write any posts for the "queue" and have them automatically post over the holiday break.

3. My big present for Christmas was the following:


I've got a bunch of trade requests in my email, along with a bunch of post ideas in my head - all of which will be responded to (and/or posted about) after the New Year. Enjoy the holidays everyone!

Image source:
http://www.8bitreview.com/blog/files/russ_playstation3.jpg

Saturday, December 26, 2009

3 Pack Rip: 2009 Topps Heritage High Series

Three more packs of '09 Heritage High Series. Target didn't have any blasters, so I'm stuck buying loose (most likely pre-searched) packs...

549. Dallas Braden
554. David Eckstein
576. Garrett Olson
585. J.A. Happ
585. J.A. Happ (yep, same card in two different packs. Ouch.)
591. Felipe Lopez (another double, blech)
600. Jeremy Reed
613. Josh Bard
615. Juan Rivera
631. Laynce Nix



648. Trevor Crowe
652. Tyler Greene
673. Yuniesky Betancourt (already had this one too, bummer!)
676. Ryan Perry
677. Ryan Sadowski

Short Print:
714. Nelson Cruz

Rookie Performers:
RP-01. Colby Rasmus

Chrome:
CHR191. Derek Holland

Updates & Highlights:
UH89. Phil Hughes
UH94. Jarrod Washburn
UH143. Matt Maloney
UH146. Juan Cruz
UH316. Hunter Pence / Ryan Braun

UH311. David Huff (Pssh, I'm even getting Updates & Highlights doubles now, this is the second Huff card I have.)


Overall, not a terrible three packs, even though I got 4 duplicates. I'm always happy pulling short prints and chrome cards since those are both relatively hard to come by...and I'm crazy enough to try and complete both sets! All the doubles mentioned are up for trade of course.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Delivery Time! Trade with Charles from Behind These Hazel Eyes

Awhile back, Charles from Behind These Hazel Eyes agreed to take a few "clunkers" off my hands in return for a few '09 Allen & Ginter minis for my collection.

2009 Allen & Ginter minis:
334. Pat Burrell
335. Justin Duchscherer
344. Chris Young

Charles also sent along a bunch of assorted Reds cards, including:

2005 Donruss Team Heroes
Autograph!
Jacob Cruz

I won't lie, I don't remember Cruz being a Red at all...the back of the card claims Cruz is "one of the better pinch-hitters in the National League."

2006 Flair Showcase:
Base:
33. Ryan Freel
47. Chris Denorfia

These are thick, shiny cards that I've never seen before this trade. I must admit, I kind of like them!

Wave of the Future insert:
Cody Ross

'Ol Cody was a Red for about a week...just long enough to get a card with a Reds logo slapped on top of his Dodgers uniform. Kind of a cool card though, and I never bought any Flair Showcase cards when they came out.

2005 Bowman Heritage:
343. Jay Bruce

This card is thicker than a lot of the "dummy" cards in packs these days and is printed on a really dark cardboard. It kind of looks like Topps ran out of regular card stock so they headed over to the liquor store and grabbed a bunch of cardboard boxes, cut 'em up, and printed cards on them.

Thanks a lot Charles! And as always, if anyone else would like to work out a trade, please check out my want list and make an offer!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

2 Pack Rip: 2009 Topps T206

I picked up a few loose packs at Target the other day... Here's two of 'em.

2009 Topps T206

75. Jair Jurrjens
78. Hank Blalock

142. Evan Longoria
196. Jeremy Hermida
247. Huston Street
268. Aaron Poreda
272. Aramis Ramirez

Short Print:
Porecello

Gold parallels:
73. Joba Chamberlain
146. Tony Gwynn Jr.

Minis (both Piedmonts)
219. Roy Halladay
221. Joey Votto


I was really happy with the two minis, though you can see the corner of the Votto card is kind of crinkled which stinks. I'm no expert on this set, but I believe all the no numbered back cards are short prints, so it's nice to pull one of those as well (but man are they boring cards)!


I'm still undecided about whether I'm going to chase this set or not. I hesitate to go after another short print heavy set when I'm still missing so many short prints from the Heritage sets (both 2008 AND 2009)! We'll see...these cards may end up for trade at some point.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Delivery Time! Cards from Patricia of Dinged Corners

Another package found its way to my mailbox, this time from Patricia over at Dinged Corners. Awhile back, I commented on one of the posts at Dinged Corners that I was still looking for some '08 Topps Stadium Club cards - of which Patricia sent all the cards she had that she thought might be useful to me while filling my binder pages! Let's dig in:

Patricia sent me a bunch of base cards (that I actually didn't need, but I think my want list was a bit confusing - it's been updated by the time you read this post). Of course, I don't mind base cards - especially of a set as beautiful as Stadium Club! My two favorites that Patricia sent are two Reds, Votto and Cueto.

Patricia did send me two more First Day Issue cards (which are what I need still a bunch of):
39. Johnny Damon

138. Justin Masterson

Thanks a lot Patricia - and I'll be looking for something to return to you as a thank you in the near future! If anyone else would like to work out a trade, you know the drill. Check out my want list and make an offer!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Planar Model - TUVWXYZ Origami Star

Awhile back I showcased an origami model I completed - Five Intersecting Tetrahedra. Today, it's time to take a look at a second origami model - this time a planar model. Essentially, a planar model is a model in which "planes" (i.e. flat sheets of paper) are intertwined in such a way that each sheet of paper remains perfectly flat and intersects all the other sheets of paper. In origami terms, the "sheet" of paper becomes a "color" instead.

A TUVWXYZ planar star means there is a plane for each of the letters in the name, in this case, there are seven planes (represented in the photos by the seven different colors).


The model is from the book linked on the left:

Ornamental Origami - Exploring 3d Geometric Designs
by Meenakshi Mukerji



Model: TUVWXYZ Modular Planar Star







To begin, you need to choose seven colors - each color needs six sheets. After choosing your colors, fold 42 identical modular pieces, six of each of the seven colors. This is the easy step, though it is time consuming!

Once you've folded 42 individual pieces, it's time to put together the TUVWXYZ Star! The best way to start is to organize your pieces by color - you want them all handy while you juggle the partially-finished model and the remaining pieces that need to be added...

Slowly and methodically, you "weave" the different pieces together (of course, never use glue or tape) to complete the star.

Notice how each of the colors appears to be a straight plane - you can easily see the bottom "half" of the orange star intersecting the top "half" of the red star at a nearly 90 degree angle. All of the colors intersect the other colors at one point - the middle of the model!

Finally, here is the completed model. The green star is easiest to pick out but a little searching should allow you to find all seven stars of different colors!

That's all there is to it! The book I linked to above is a relatively new book (published in 2008) but it features a TON of great models. The nice thing about modular origami is that it (usually) requires a person to make a bunch of relatively simple-to-fold "pieces" and the challenge is a puzzle where you try to fit all the pieces together correctly! If you are interested in seeing more origami models, please let me know. I've contemplated starting an origami gallery of pictures on my blog - it'd certainly add some variety to the normal sports content!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

2008 Topps Stadium Club cards For Trade

Let's start filling want lists!
Here are my 2008 Topps Stadium Club cards available for trade. Contact me with any offers!

Last update:  1/13/16

Base:
2. Tim Lincecum
4. Todd Helton
5. Russ Martin
5. Russ Martin
7. Torii Hunter
7. Torii Hunter
7. Torii Hunter
8. Mark Teixeira
8. Mark Teixeira
10. CC Sabathia
11. David Ortiz
13. Alex Rodriguez
16. Jake Peavy
16. Jake Peavy
17. B.J. Upton
17. B.J. Upton
17. B.J. Upton
19. Jason Bay
20. Jorge Posada
20. Jorge Posada
22. Nick Markakis
22. Nick Markakis
25. Edinson Volquez
25. Edinson Volquez
26. Miguel Cabrera
26. Miguel Cabrera
28. Ryan Church
28. Ryan Church
29. Delmon Yong
31. Carl Crawford
31. Carl Crawford
32. Roy Halladay
32. Roy Halladay
32. Roy Halladay
35. Ken Griffey Jr.
37. Hanley Ramirez
37. Hanley Ramirez
38. Hunter Pence
40. Eric Chavez
40. Eric Chavez
40. Eric Chavez
43. Felix Hernandez
44. Magglio Ordonez
44. Magglio Ordonez
46. Fausto Carmona
47. Chris Young
47. Chris Young
47. Chris Young
53. Josh Hamilton
55. Dustin Pedroia
55. Dustin Pedroia
59. Derek Jeter
61. Vladimir Guerrero
62. Joba Chamberlain
64. Victor Martinez
64. Victor Martinez
64. Victor Martinez
65. Nick Swisher
65. Nick Swisher
65. Nick Swisher
67. Joe Mauer
67. Joe Mauer
68. Gary Sheffield
76. Johan Santana
76. Johan Santana
77. Dan Uggla
77. Dan Uggla
79. Derrek Lee
79. Derrek Lee
79. Derrek Lee
82. Manny Ramirez
86. Justin Morneau
86. Justin Morneau
86. Justin Morneau
89. Pedro Martinez
89. Pedro Martinez
91. Jackie Robinson
92. Mickey Mantle
95. Honus Wagner
98. Roberto Clemente

101. Luke Hochevar
101. Luke Hochevar
103. Nick Adenhart
104. Gregor Blanco
106. Eric Hurley
106. Eric Hurley
106. Eric Hurley
106. Eric Hurley
107. Clayton Kershaw
109. Garrett Mock
110. David Purcey
110. David Purcey
112. Joey Votto
112. Joey Votto
112. Joey Votto
112. Joey Votto
113. Jeff Clement
115. Brandon Boggs
115. Brandon Boggs
116. Johnny Cueto
116. Johnny Cueto
116. Johnny Cueto
118. Masahide Kobayashi
118. Masahide Kobayashi
118. Masahide Kobayashi
118. Masahide Kobayashi
122. Jonathan Herrera
124. Armando Galarraga
124. Armando Galarraga

125. Josh Banks
128. Carlos Gonzalez
130. Brian Barton
130. Brian Barton
131. Sean Rodriguez
136. Jay Bruce
136. Jay Bruce
137. Brandon Jones
140. Max Scherzer
143. Nick Blackburn
143. Nick Blackburn
145. Clay Buchholz
148. Chris Perez
149. Hiroki Kuroda
149. Hiroki Kuroda

First Day Issue (all are version "a")
6. Curtis Granderson
6. Curtis Granderson
42. Carlos Pena
75.  Ryan Howard
87. Jimmy Rollins
87. Jimmy Rollins

102. Daric Barton
128. Carlos Gonzalez
140. Max Scherzer

As always, check out my want list and make an offer!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Three Pack Break: 2009 Topps Heritage High Series

Yes, I call it Topps Heritage High Series instead of that terribly awful name. I call the Angels the Angels too instead of the Anaheim Angels of Los Angeles in California near the Ocean between Mexico and Canada. I say deal with it.

3 pack break of 2009 Topps Heritage High Series:

Base:
511. Andrew Bailey
513. Andruw Jones
519. Bud Norris (double)
553. David Aardsma
556. David Hernandez (double)
559. Delwyn Young
573. Fu-Te Ni

590. Jarrett Hoffpauir (double)
591. Felipe Lopez
617. Julio Borbon (double)
632. Billy Wagner

646. Milton Bradley
650. Jim Thome
673. Yuniesky Betancourt
682. Scott Podsednik

Short Prints:
697. Garret Anderson
700. Huston Street
710. Matt LaPorta

Updates & Highlights:
UH16. Brian Buscher
UH25. Orlando Hudson

UH83. Emilio Bonifacio
UH217. Craig Stammen
UH285. Ryan Franklin
UH303. Luke French

Well, I can't be too disappointed with those three packs. I was happy to pull a short print in each pack, but disappointed I didn't get any chrome cards (or inserts since there are so many to collect)! I'll keep picking up packs of this set here and there with the hopes of finishing it before Heritage 2010 comes out...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Nachos Grande Ranks MLB: #26 - San Francisco Giants

Nachos Grande favorite MLB teams from #30 - #1.

Throughout the offseason (and possibly beyond depending on time), I thought it’d be interesting to rank the Major League Baseball teams in terms of how much I like and/or dislike them. Of course, everyone knows my favorite team is the Reds, and probably everyone knows what my least favorite team is too…and so I’ll be writing up the team reports in an arbitrary order to keep things interesting. In the end, you’ll have my entire list. Also, ALL cards shown on each team's write-up are available for trade.

#26. San Francisco Giants


From an NL West team in my top 10 (Rockies) to an NL West team in my bottom 5 (Giants). There isn't much about the Giants that I like - and that's rather strange since I live on the East Coast and I don't really see/hear that much news about the Giants...

To me, the Giants are still the team of Bonds v. Kent. I didn't like Bonds, and I actually liked Kent even less, so having both of them on the same team was a no-brainer for me to root against the aforementioned team.

Team pros:
1. Everything I've heard about the Giants ballpark is good - but I haven't been there.

2. The Noah Lowry '08 Goudey autograph was one of the first autographs I ever pulled from a box - so that's something.

Team cons:
1. Bonds & Kent. 'Nuff said.
2. Boring team name, boring uniforms = generally boring baseball cards. Again, not a lot positive to say about the Giants.

Overall:
I challenge anyone who follows baseball to construct their own list (and I blatently stole the idea from elsewhere in the blog-o-sphere, I think it was Night Owl maybe that did this a few months ago)? Anyhow, it's amazing (to me) how I had such a negative reaction to the Giants when I was constructing my ranked list of MLB teams...and yet as I did this write-up I didn't have a lot of negative things to say... All I can say to general managers is that your team WILL be judged by its stars...and me not liking Bonds and Kent influenced my view of the Giants in such a negative manner that they ended up near the bottom of the barrel!


Nachos Grande Ranks MLB:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9. Colorado Rockies
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
17.
18.
19.
20.
21.
22.
23.
24.
25.
26. San Francisco Giants
27.
28.
29.
30.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Delivery Time! Trade with Paul from Carl Crawford Cards

I recently completed my second trade with Paul from Carl Crawford Cards. The first trade revolved around me giving an Allen & Ginter sketch card and some Tampa Bay Rays and me receiving a bunch of 1985 Topps cards.

This latest trade? I sent Paul a Melvin Mora '09 Goudey relic and a Carl Crawford mini card...and in return? That's right, another stack of 1985 Topps cards! It's a good thing for me that I keep getting cards that Paul wants since he seems to have a never ending stack of '85 Topps cards that I need!



Here are some of my favorites...

A checklist as a favorite?! Yep - because when I was a kid I used checklists as *gasp* checklists. Which means when I go back and try to fill in any missing holes, the completionist in me wants all those half-filled, marked up checklists out of the binder and replaced by fresh, crisp cards like the one above.
The 1985 Topps set isn't exactly chock full of great cards worth oodles of dollars. However, there are some pretty darn good players in the set, even if it is considered a "junk wax" set. The Schmidt card above is a great example of a nice card in an overproduced set.
Tom Brookens - a friend of mine (who passed away a few years ago) used to coach Mr. Brookens so he has a soft spot in my collecting heart as well!
Woah, that's not a "junk wax" card! That's a super thick, shiny parallel card from Bowman Heritage. I think there is a card like this produced for each card in that set - but I can't imagine putting the entire set together in a binder, it'd need to be extra-thick and would probably weigh a ton!


Thanks a lot Paul! And, as always, if anyone else would like to work out a trade, check out my want list and make an offer.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Nachos Grande Ranks MLB: #9 - Colorado Rockies

Nachos Grande favorite MLB teams from #30 - #1.

Throughout the offseason (and possibly beyond depending on time), I thought it’d be interesting to rank the Major League Baseball teams in terms of how much I like and/or dislike them. Of course, everyone knows my favorite team is the Reds, and probably everyone knows what my least favorite team is too…and so I’ll be writing up the team reports in an arbitrary order to keep things interesting. In the end, you’ll have my entire list. Also, ALL cards shown on each team's write-up are available for trade.

#9. Colorado Rockies




There’s been quite a bit of discussion within the card blog-o-sphere that there doesn’t appear to be a bona fide Colorado Rockies collector out there. Like (seemingly) most other people, I neither love nor hate the Rockies…and no, I don’t plan on specifically collecting them either.

I remember when the Rockies and Marlins both joined the big leagues – and I remember being quite excited the first time I pulled a Rockies card and a Marlins card. However, Florida was always closer in proximity to me as compared to Colorado, so when push came to shove I rooted for the fish over the Rockies – at least in the beginning.

At this point, I like the Rockies quite a bit – and definitely more than I like the Marlins. I will always think of the Rockies as the “Mile High” team with lots of homeruns and absolutely no pitching…even if that isn’t necessarily true anymore.

Team pros:
1. Everything I've heard about the state of Colorado is good - but I've never been there.

2. Todd Helton seems like a stand up guy - and he's been a Rockie forever. I appreciate longevity with one team.


Team cons:
1. I'm not a big fan of purple - and the Rockies feature plenty of purple.

2. Humidor.

Overall:
As the first team featured, I can't spoil much about my team rankings - but at #9 the Rockies are the unofficial leaders of the "teams I don't care much about one way or the other". When I constructed my list, I found it interesting that there were plenty of teams that I didn't like, relatively few that I did like, and a surprising number that I didn't have a lot of thoughts about one way or the other.


Nachos Grande Ranks MLB:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9. Colorado Rockies
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
17.
18.
19.
20.
21.
22.
23.
24.
25.
26.
27.
28.
29.
30.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Contest over at Condition: Poor

One of the most aesthetically pleasing blogs in all of the blog-o-sphere is having a giveaway for one of his custom cards that's been signed by a Notre Dame legend - Johnny Lattner. You can find the contest details here.


It sure is a nice card - that's obvious!

3 Packs of Topps 206: AKA - Topps Fails.

Christmas shopping = trips to Target.
Trips to Target = baseball card aisle visit.
Baseball card aisle visit = packs of Topps 206 cards.
Packs of Topps 206 cards = some of the worst cut cards in the history of mankind.

Let's dig in.

Pack 1:
6. John Mayberry
31. Andy Sonnanstine
137. Mark Teixeira
260. Andrew Miller
230. Miguel Cabrera (Gold Parallel)

Mini - Piedmont
283. Joe Saunders
Not the most exciting pack, but it's the first pack of Topps 206 that I've opened so that's ok. It means things can only get better from here right? (Wrong.)

Pack 2:
160. Thurman Munson
188. Glen Perkins
270. Matt Cain (Gold Parallel)
No number short print (1:4 packs):
Pedroia

Mini - Piedmont
56. Robinson Cano

Miscut card

Seriously, what the heck happened?

Pack 3:

30. Justin Morneau
41. David Hernandez
165. John Smoltz
5. Chris Young (Gold Parallel)
Checklist 3 of 7: Mickey Mantle
Mini - Old Mill (1:20 packs)
113. Tris Speaker

Miscut card

Wow. I don't even know what to say. When you get a pack with 6 cards...and one of them is completely trash by being miscut it's hard to be optimistic. It's even harder when you buy 3 packs and 2 of the cards are trash. I guess I should try to contact Topps - but really, I don't even know what they'll do - and it'll cost me more to send in the two cards than it would to buy a fourth pack...