Monday, May 31, 2010

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day to everyone. 

Stay safe, eat well, and always remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Just Because...

Top 10 MLB Teams  (records as of 5/30/10 at 11:00 AM, EST):

Tampa Bay     34    16    .680    -
Cincinnati        30    20    .600    4
NY Yankees   29   20    .592     4.5
Minnesota       29   20    .592     4.5
San Diego       29   20    .592     4.5
Philadelphia     28   20    .583     5
Toronto           29   22    .569     5.5
St. Louis         28   22     .560     6
Atlanta            27   22     .551     6.5
LA Dodgers    27   22     .551     6.5

It's been a long time since I've seen overall standings with the Reds so close to the top (currently second, four games behind the Rays).  Since I live in central PA, it's nice to see my Reds above the teams that have the most supporters around me as well (namely the Yankees and Phillies).  However, as a Reds fan, I've seen the Reds do well for spurts at a time only to fade away quicker than an extinguished candle - so I'll enjoy this while it lasts...but I'm not pre-ordering World Series tickets quite yet.

Happy Memorial Day everyone (at least all my US readers).  My own posting will be much more sporadic in the next few weeks as I am moving back to my hometown...finally leaving the apartment life for a house.  It's an exciting time, but I'll be extra busy since I'm moving all my stuff using my own car rather than hire a moving company.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Nachos Grande Group Break #2 - Final Leaderboard

Nachos Grande Group Break #2
Final Leaderboard
132/132 packs opened (100%)
  • "The Expansionists" - Carl Crawford Cards  (146 base / 10 inserts)
  • Atlanta Braves - Flywheels (49 base / 6 inserts)
  • Baltimore Orioles - Ryan  (44 base / 10 inserts)
  • Boston Red Sox - Card Splitter (45 base / 6 inserts)
  • Cleveland Indians  - Baseball Dad (37 base / 7 inserts)
  • Detroit Tigers - RoofGod (30 base / 2 inserts*)
  • Los Angeles Dodgers - Night Owl (48 base / 6 inserts*)
  • New York Mets - BA Benny (44 base / 3 inserts)
  • New York Yankees - LongLiveTheWho (64 base / 5 inserts)
  • Philadelphia Phillies - Dan (44 base / 3 inserts*)
  • Seattle Mariners - RGBCards (37 base / 4 inserts)
  • St. Louis Cardinals - Ike's Cards (43 base / 4 inserts*)
* indicates that the team "won" a random card raffled off as mentioned throughout the pack posts.

And there we have it, the second group break is finally over with!  All the cards (except for the Braves, Orioles, and Yankees) are in the mail.  The remaining three teams should go into the mail on Tuesday (since Monday is Memorial Day and the Post Office is closed).  Hopefully everyone is happy with their haul - I know I would be if I were you guys.  For the price of a blaster, most people got a bunch of inserts of their team plus a big pile of base cards.  Obviously, as with any group break, some teams will fare better than others but overall I think everybody did quite well.  I think I'll be taking a bit of a break from group breaks for a while - I'm actually moving in mid-June so that will be using a lot of my time.  Maybe I can have another group break before I start teaching back up in the fall, we'll see. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

2003 Honor Roll - Last Pack of the Group Break! (and Last Hit)

2003 Upper Deck MLB Honor Roll
Last pack of the group break!  Tomorrow I'll post the updated leaderboard for the group break - complete with a few "extras" that I'll throw in for some of the teams that didn't get a hit.  I'll also random off the the cards that went unclaimed as I noted throughout the posts.  By the time you read the post tomorrow, there's a good chance you'll already have the cards in hand if all goes well!

47.  Tom Glavine (Mets)

65.  Lance Berkman (Astros)
81.  Rafael Palmeiro (Rangers)
117.  Joe Thurston (Dodgers)
119.  Brandon Phillips (Indians)
DL-JG  Jason Giambi - Dean's List (Yankees)

This is a really nice card of Giambi with a swatch of pinstriped jersey.  Easily one of the nicest cards of the break - and it shows up in the very last pack!

1995 Topps Stadium Club - Final Pack (and Box Hit!)

1995 Topps Stadium Club
Final Pack!

2.  Bo Jackson (Angels)
11.  Carlos Garcia (Pirates)
20.  Cal Eldred (Brewers)
38.  Jody Reed (Brewers)
89.  Doug Jones (Phillies)
105.  Cade Gaspar (Tigers)

110.  Matt Smith (Royals)
123.  Charlie Hayes (Rockies)
154.  Junior Felix (Tigers)
200.  Javy Lopez (Braves)
224.  Doug Drabek (Astros)
231.  Hal Morris (Reds)
55.  Doug Jones - Virtual Reality (Phillies)

9.  Rafael Palmeiro - Clear Cut Finest (Orioles)

Now this is a sweet insert card - worthy of a box hit.  It's a clear card of Palmeiro, the scan simply doesn't do it justice. 

2005 Upper Deck All-Star Classics - The Rest of the Packs

It's time to finish off the third (out of five) boxes.  After these packs, there are only two packs left!

2005 Upper Deck All-Star Classics

1.  Albert Pujols (Cardinals)

4.  Barry Zito (Athletics)
9.  Curt Schilling (Red Sox)
14.  Frank Thomas (White Sox)
16.  Greg Maddux (Cubs)
20.  Ivan Rodriguez (Tigers)
21.  Jason Schmidt (Giants)
22.  Jason Varitek (Red Sox)
25.  Jorge Posada (Yankees)
33.  Miguel Cabrera (Marlins)
36.  Nomar Garciaparra (Cubs)
37.  Pedro Martinez (Mets)
39.  Richie Sexson (Mariners)
43.  Scott Rolen (Cardinals)
50.  Vladimir Guerrero (Angels)
50.  Vladimir Guerrero (Angels)
51.  Adrian Beltre (Mariners)
53.  Aubrey Huff (Rays)
53.  Aubrey Huff (Rays)

This is one of the few cards that came damaged out of the pack, luckily a second Huff card showed up in pristine condition in the next pack!
59.  Tadahito Iguchi (White Sox)
59.  Tadahito Iguchi (White Sox)
60.  Jake Peavy (Padres)
64.  Jeremy Reed (Mariners)
69.  Justin Morneau (Twins)
83.  Eddie Murray (Orioles)
83.  Eddie Murray (Orioles)
85.  Harmon Killebrew (Twins)
85.  Harmon Killebrew (Twins)
95.  Phil Niekro (Braves)

98.  Tom Seaver (Mets)
99.  Willie McCovey (Giants)
100.  Yogi Berra

2004 UD Vintage - The Last Packs (and the Box Hit)

The Group Break is in its final stages - it's time to finish off the 2004 Upper Deck Vintage box.  The box hit is hiding in one of the these packs...

2004 UD Vintage:

3.  Todd Helton (Rockies)
5.  Vladimir Guerrero (Expos)
9.  Derek Jeter (Yankees)

27.  Richard Hidalgo (Astros)
48.  Chipper Jones (Braves)
59.  Rocco Baldelli (Rays)
83.  Jeff Bagwell (Astros)
94.  Aramis Ramirez (Cubs)
99.  Danny Graves (Reds)
109.  Steve Finley (Diamondbacks)
138.  Ben Sheets (Brewers)
142.  Reggie Sanders (Pirates)
147.  Joe Crede (White Sox)
157.  Joe Borowski (Cubs)
158.  Jose Cruz Jr. (Giants)
162.  Bobby Higginson (Tigers)

174.  Livan Hernandez (Expos)
186.  Matt LeCroy (Twins)
192.  Mark Buehrle (White Sox)
198.  Mike MacDougal (Royals)
202.  Josh Fogg (Pirates)
205.  A.J. Pierzynski (Giants)
210.  A.J. Burnett (Marlins)
213.  Matt Kata (Diamondbacks)
230.  Al Leiter (Mets)
238.  Gil Meche (Mariners)
244.  Jose Lima (Royals)
261.  Rich Harden (Athletics)
266.  Alfredo Amezaga (Angels)
291.  Lance Carter (Rays)
293.  Robb Nen (Giants)
316.  Dontrelle Willis - World Series Highlight Short Print (Marlins)
SSM-37.  Roy Oswalt - Stellar Stat Man - Jersey Card

Since the Astros went unclaimed, I'm going to random this jersey card off amongst all the teams that didn't receive a "box hit" whether that be a jersey card or other rare cards.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

1997 Collector's Choice - The Rest of the Packs

It's time to finish off the Collector's Choice pack.  In order to make things interesting, I'll sort the cards by claimed teams.  In an effort to get this group break over with (and in the mail hopefully by the time you read this post), I'll forgo my usual witty banter and card numbering and let the scans of each team do the talking.  I must say, there were some pretty nice cards hiding out in the last few packs - I think the Indians, Orioles, and Mariners made out especially well.

1997 Collector's Choice

Braves

Cardinals

Dodgers

Expansionists

Indians

Mariners

Mets

Orioles

Phillies

Red Sox

Tigers

Yankees

2005 Upper Deck All-Star Classics - Packs 16 through 20

2005 Upper Deck All-Star Classics
Packs 16 through 20

3.  Alfonso Soriano (Rangers)
4.  Barry Zito (Athletics)
5.  Bobby Abreu (Phillies)

11.  Derek Jeter (Yankees)
12.  Edgar Renteria (Red Sox)
13.  Eric Gagne (Dodgers)
18.  Hideki Matsui (Yankees)
21.  Jason Schmidt (Giants)
23.  Jeff Kent (Dodgers)
25.  Jorge Posada (Yankees)
32.  Mark Prior (Cubs)
34.  Miguel Tejada (Orioles)
35.  Mike Piazza (Mets)
37.  Pedro Martinez (Mets)
38.  Randy Johnson (Yankees)
40.  Roger Clemens (Astros)
42.  Sammy Sosa (Orioles)
44.  Sean Casey (Reds)
45.  Tim Hudson (Braves)
46.  Todd Helton (Rockies)
51.  Adrian Beltre (Mariners)
54.  Brandon Webb (Diamondbacks)
54.  Brandon Webb (Diamondbacks)
55.  Dallas McPherson (Angels)
61.  Jake Westbrook (Indians)
61.  Jake Westbrook (Indians)

63.  Jeff Francis (Rockies)
63.  Jeff Francis (Rockies)
70.  Mark Teixeira (Rangers)
71.  Oliver Perez (Pirates)
79.  Bob Gibson (Cardinals)
80.  Brooks Robinson (Orioles)
80.  Brooks Robinson (Orioles)
87.  Joe DiMaggio (Yankees)
87.  Joe DiMaggio (Yankees)

91.  Lou Brock (Cardinals)
92.  Mike Schmidt (Phillies)
93.  Nolan Ryan (Rangers)
98.  Tom Seaver (Mets)
100.  Yogi Berra (Yankees)
99.  Willie McCovey - Serially-numbered 062/499 (Giants)

Not much to say about that card - it would have been a nice pull for someone had the Giants actually been claimed.  Unfortunately, the Giants weren't claimed so into the trade bin it goes.

Delivery Time! Trade with Tommy from Ginter, Gardner, & Game-Used

Despite being inundated with packs from the current group break, I've still managed to complete a few (relatively small) trades.  One of the most recent was with blog reader (and now blog writer) Tommy from the Ginter, Gardner, & Game-Used blog.

I sent Tommy a bunch of Yankee cards that he wanted and in return I was sent a few cards off of my 1991 Score want list.  Here's what I got:

1991 Score:
56.  Greg Olson

With a set as large as the 1991 Score set, it shouldn't be a surprise that there are a handful of cards with pretty cool photography.  Of the cards that Tommy sent me, this is my favorite photo - I'm a sucker for action shots, especially at the plate!
247.  Scott Terry
444.  Bryn Smith
633.  Kevin Elster
697.  Ken Griffey Jr.

This card is part of a subset that featured the "flying star" background.  I guess the idea is to make the players look extra special...but it kind of looks like they are about to be sucked down a black hole.
840.  Frank Thomas
841.  The Griffeys

This is a pretty cool card - celebrating the games when the two Griffeys played - including the game where Ken Sr. and Ken Jr. hit back-to-back homers.
858.  Ken Griffey Jr.

I've completed quite a few trades involving 1991 Score cards but I think this trade takes the cake in terms of star power - that's a lot of Griffeys!

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

2004 UD Vintage - Packs 16 through 20

Continuing the pack rips, here's another five packs of 2004 UD Vintage.  This particular group of packs had short prints in three of the five packs but no other inserts. 

2004 UD Vintage
Packs 16 through 20

26.  Torii Hunter (Twins)
30.  Brad Lidge (Astros)
32.  Garret Anderson (Angels)
39.  Ramon Ortiz (Angels)
44.  Jeff Kent (Astros)
46.  Adam Dunn (Reds)
63.  Brian Lawrence (Padres)
65.  Corey Koskie (Twins)
68.  Jay Gibbons

I always try to scan cards of players from claimed teams...but I was beginning to think I was going to have to pick an unclaimed player given the string of non-claimed teams represented by the first eight players!
72.  Randy Johnson (Diamondbacks)
75.  Johan Santana (Twins)
76.  Magglio Ordonez (White Sox)
97.  David Wells (Yankees)
107.  Bernie Williams (Yankees)
115.  Brian Roberts (Orioles)
117.  Rich Aurilia (Giants)
134.  Craig Biggio (Astros)
139.  Hideo Nomo (Dodgers)

143.  Jose Guillen (Athletics)
167.  Ken Harvey (Royals)
171.  Laynce Nix (Rangers)
178.  Joe Kennedy (Rays)
180.  Ryan Franklin (Mariners)
184.  Edgardo Alfonzo (Giants)
190.  Russ Ortiz (Braves)
192.  Mark Buehrle (White Sox)
201.  Jerome Williams (Giants)
214.  Kip Wells (Pirates)
218.  Tony Batista (Orioles)
218.  Tony Batista (Orioles)

Both of these cards came in the same pack.  I would have been quite upset by that if this were the one pack I bought from a hobby shop box!
226.  C.C. Sabathia (Indians)
246.  Xavier Nady (Padres)
248.  Victor Zambrano (Rays)
265.  Shigetoshi Hasegawa (Mariners)
281.  Cliff Floyd (Mets)
296.  Braden Looper (Marlins)
299.  Alfonso Soriano - Checklist 153 - 304  (Yankees)
330.  Sidney Ponson - Short Print (Giants)
333.  Armando Benitez - Short Print (Mariners)

345.  Austin Kearns - Short Print (Reds)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

1997 UD Collector's Choice - Packs 24 through 28

This may be a five pack break which has something for almost everyone, but the big winner here is Ryan who claimed the Orioles!

1997 UD Collector's Choice
Packs 24 through 28

1.  Andruw Jones (Braves)
23.  Dario Veras (Padres)
24.  Brian Lesher (Athletics)
32.  Ryan Klesko (Braves)
33.  Javier Lopez (Braves)
37.  Scott Erickson (Orioles)
44.  Rick Krivda (Orioles)
52.  Wil Cordero (Red Sox)

59.  League Leaders - Stolen Bases (K. Lofton - Indians & E. Young - Rockies)
60.  League Leaders - Wins (A. Pettite - Yankees & J. Smoltz - Braves)
61.  League Leaders - Strikeouts (R. Clemens - Blue Jays & J. Smoltz - Braves)
118.  Kevin Brown (Marlins)
120.  Bob Abreu (Astros)
122.  Todd Jones (Astros)
128.  Rod Myers (Royals)
129.  Tim Belcher (Royals)
137.  Brett Butler (Dodgers)

141.  Hideo Nomo (Dodgers)
142.  Ismael Valdes (Dodgers)
142.  Ismael Valdes (Dodgers)
146.  Mike Fetters (Brewers)
148.  Fernando Vina (Brewers)
148.  Fernando Vina (Brewers)
150.  Dave Nilsson (Brewers)
150.  Dave Nilsson (Brewers)
152.  Rich Becker (Twins)
160.  Henry Rodriguez (Expos)
165.  Rondell White (Expos)
167.  Rey Ordonez (Mets)
168.  Robert Person (Mets)
170.  Bernard Gilkey (Mets)
171.  John Franco (Mets)
171.  John Franco (Mets)
172.  Pete Harnisch (Mets)
179.  Jim Leyritz (Yankees)

191.  Jim Eisenreich (Phillies)
191.  Jim Eisenreich (Phillies)
193.  Darren Daulton (Phillies)
193.  Darren Daulton (Phillies)
196.  Lenny Dykstra (Phillies)
206.  Archi Cianfrocco (Padres)
208.  Greg Vaughn (Padres)
208.  Greg Vaughn (Padres)
211.  Rickey Henderson (Padres)
215.  Glenallen Hill (Giants)
217.  Marvin Benard (Giants)
226.  Rich Aurilia (Giants)
227.  Jay Canizaro (Giants)
233.  Joey Cora (Mariners)
233.  Joey Cora (Mariners)
236.  Bobby Witt (Rangers)
245.  Ken Griffey Jr. - Checklist (Mariners)
1/45  Greg Maddux - The Big Show (Braves)
2/45  Chipper Jones - The Big Show (Braves)

6/45  Roberto Alomar - The Big Show (Orioles)
7/45  Rafael Palmeiro - The Big Show (Orioles)
8/45  Eddie Murray - The Big Show (Orioles)

16.  Brady Anderson - Stick Ums (Orioles)
20.  Cal Ripken Jr. - Stick Ums (Orioles)

PP20.  Eddie Murray - Premier Power Silver (Orioles)

I told you this was a bunch of packs chock full 'o Orioles!

2003 Upper Deck MLB Honor Roll - Packs 18 through 23

Another handful of packs, this is the last of the MLB Honor Roll packs (except for one more which contains the relic hit which I finally found in the box)! 

2003 Upper Deck MLB Honor Roll
Packs 18 through 23:

1.  Derek Jeter (Yankees)
7.  Mike Piazza (Mets)

13.  Ken Griffey Jr. (Reds)
17.  Chipper Jones (Braves)
25.  Ichiro (Mariners)

31.  Alfonso Soriano (Yankees)
35.  Jeff Kent (Astros)
43.  Troy Glaus (Angels)
49.  Pat Burrell (Phillies)
53.  Bernie Williams (Yankees)
55.  Curt Schilling (Diamondbacks)
64.  Frank Thomas (White Sox)
66.  Lance Berkman (Astros)
67.  Shawn Green (Dodgers)

73.  Roberto Alomar (Mets)
79.  Eric Chavez (Athletics)
87.  Rafael Furcal (Braves)
88.  Rafael Furcal (Braves)
94.  Roy Oswalt (Astros)
97.  Larry Walker (Rockies)
100.  Jim Edmonds (Cardinals)

102.  Adam Dunn (Reds)
106.  Josh Beckett (Marlins)
109.  Magglio Ordonez (White Sox)
111.  Edgardo Alfonzo (Giants)
115.  Roy Halladay (Blue Jays)
121.  Kazuhisa Ishii (Dodgers)
127.  Mariano Rivera (Yankees)
129.  Travis Hafner (Indians)
130.  Travis Hafner (Indians)

2004 UD Vintage - Packs 11 through 15

2004 UD Vintage
Packs 11 through 15:

4.  Nomar Garciaparra (Red Sox)
6.  Alfonso Soriano (Yankees)

7.  Alex Rodriguez (Rangers)
19.  Orlando Cabrera (Expos)
20.  Odalis Perez (Dodgers)
53.  Hank Blalock (Rangers)
70.  Richie Sexson (Brewers)
81.  Jason Schmidt (Giants)
90.  Moises Alou (Cubs)
92.  Bobby Hill (Pirates)
100.  Jason Kendall (Pirates)
101.  Carlos Lee (White Sox)
106.  Miguel Tejada (Athletics)
122.  Jay Payton (Rockies)

132.  Eric Hinske (Blue Jays)
133.  Scott Rolen (Cardinals)
141.  Matt Mantei (Diamondbacks)
146.  Juan Encarnacion (Marlins)
149.  Mark Mulder (Athletics)
151.  Josh Phelps (Blue Jays)
161.  Adrian Beltre (Dodgers)
163.  Jorge Julio (Orioles)
172.  Mike Maroth (Tigers)

188.  Jeff Conine (Marlins)
191.  Melvin Mora (Orioles)
197.  Danys Baez (Indians)
199.  Zach Day (Expos)
209.  David Ortiz (Red Sox)
211.  John Vander Wal (Brewers)
216.  Rickey Henderson (Dodgers)

217.  Travis Hafner (Indians)
225.  Adam Eaton (Padres)
240.  Eric Milton (Twins)
260.  Chase Utley (Phillies)
280.  Jermaine Dye (Athletics)
286.  Tim Salmon (Angels)
290.  Tino Martinez (Rays)
292.  Francisco Cordero (Rangers)
297.  Jarrod Washburn (Angels)
347.  Vernon Wells - Short Print (Blue Jays)
Ugh, the short prints in the Vintage set are much, much too rare for anyone to realistically have a chance at completing the set...