Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Delivery Time! An EPIC Box from Alaska! (Part II)

Yesterday, I showed off the first part of a huge mail day package from David up in Alaska.  Today, it's time to continue our trek though the package as the snow falls down* outside.

*I'm writing this post on Sunday night so I don't actually know if there will be snow on Tuesday or not quite yet.  If I am to believe the weather folks there certainly will be plenty of the white stuff.  If it ends up as bad as some people say, I might be out shoveling when this post goes "live" on my blog.

David and I have traded a bunch of times - and most of those trades have involved some sort of LEGO figures!  This particular box, despite it's large size, probably had one of the lowest amounts of LEGO pieces in any of our trades...

That's a police chief minifigure which was some sort of exclusive (?) figure with a book if I remember correctly.  The figure didn't come with any sort of tools, nor any alternate face (or, for that matter, any back printing).  However, it's still pretty cool - and I can always use new LEGO figures for my City layout that I am determined to make at some point in the near future!

I certainly love acquiring new LEGO figures!  Thanks for that one David.

Now, returning to baseball cards that David sent me...

I am now the proud owner of a Joey Votto Xfractor chrome card.

I can only hope that Votto returns to being one of the best hitters in the league this year.  If he doesn't, I fear the Reds will be battling the Brewers for last place in the NL Central.  This is a disappointing end to a Reds' team that was supposed to be good for a number of years.

The two refractors that David sent me are indicative of the Reds' chances this year as well:

The first is Mat Latos who the Reds shipped off to Miami very unceremoniously.  I think Latos deserved better...and I think the Reds' rotation will definitely be much worse off without him.  The other refractor was of Jay Bruce who had, for lack of a better word, a horrid 2014 season.  He couldn't hit for average.  He couldn't hit for power.  Even his fielding seemed off.  All he could do (it seemed) was strikeout.  For the Reds to have any shot, Bruce will also have to be much, much better this year.

While thinking about the Reds' chances in 2015 makes me a bit sad...getting a whole bunch of 2014 Chrome base cards makes me quite happy!

David sent me what certainly appears to be the full Reds' team set (not pictured:  David Holmberg).  The Billy Hamilton card is the best, though I like the Phillips' expression of intensity as well.

I didn't buy any 2014 Topps Chrome - and now I can safely say I won't ever need to thanks to David hooking me up with all the Reds.

All things considered, the 2014 baseball card year was actually pretty solid.  I enjoyed the Heritage set, the flagship was alright (though I didn't buy it), Chrome was nice (see above), and then there were two great sets:  Topps High Tek and Topps Stadium Club.  From my recent group breaks, I can tell you that I enjoyed both of those sets A LOT (though for different reasons).  There will be a lot more in terms of one of those sets in a future post from this very trade package...but for now, let's turn our attention to an unlicensed set from 2014:  Panini Donruss.

I bought exactly 0 packs of the Panini take on the Donruss name but after seeing some of the cards David sent me I sort of wish I had given the set a shot.  For starters, the regular base cards are quite nice (though it is hard to get past all the Photoshopped hats, jerseys, etc).

There was also a Rated Rookie card in the mix - something that I used to love with the old Donruss brand name.

I don't know that Holmberg will ever be a great pitcher...but it's even more clear that he probably won't be a great fielder.  Still, it's an easy way to avoid team logos I guess if you photograph guys wearing their warm-up gear.

In an interesting twist, David also included a second Holmberg card for me which appears to use a photo taken right around the same time as the base card image.

However, it is a different image which makes me happy - Topps could do wonders with all their color parallels if each card simply showed a different frame from the same play (sort of like this one).

David also threw in a Studio card of Joey Votto.

I admit knowing virtually nothing about the Donruss set but I think this was some sort of insert.  Whatever it is, it's actually quite nice - and a solid throwback to the old Studio cards of yore (without the hideous border colors)!

Oh yeah, one more thing from the pile of Donruss that David sent me.

I've been Bipped Billied!

Thanks for the awesome trade package David...and I should mention that not only have I not gotten through the entire box yet, I haven't even shown off my favorite card from the trade yet!

So much more good stuff to come - stay tuned!

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