Saturday, July 30, 2011

Thorzul Helps with Three Years of Topps Wants

Bill over at Thorzul Will Rule and I completed our first trade.  He sent over some Topps cards from the last 3 years.  I am going to highlight a few of the cards that I consider really cool.  The first is a 2009 Josh Bard.  In a previous post I stated that my favorite position on the field was behind the dish.  Although the card doesn't depict Bard in action, I still like the catchers in full gear rather than with a bat in their hand.  Bard pictured with the Padres is now a backup behind former Royal and current Mariner, Miguel Olivo.

The 2010 cards shown are that of reliever Scot Shields and 2B Mike Aviles.  The shot of Shields should leave no doubt as to the strains put on a pitcher's arm.  No wonder some of the ligaments just snap.  Speaking of which, and I can say former Royal now, Mike Aviles came off Tommy John surgery during the 2009 season.  As of today, Aviles is a member of the Red Sox being traded for a utility infielder and minor league pitcher.  Aviles had struggled early in the season but recovered with a stint at AAA and was recently called back up only to be sent packing.

The 2011 highlights include 2 of my favorite action cards.  The first is the Indians' Jason Donald getting the White Sox Alexei Ramirez in a rundown.  Donald has played the whole season with the Indians' AAA team in Columbus but recently landed on the DL with a knee injury.  The next card is that of Rangers' SS Elvis Andrus turning the double play as Giants' Cody Ross slides into second.  Andrus is currently batting .281 with 110 hits for the A.L. Western Division leaders.

I have always appreciated good action photography on cards.  Although Topps has struggled in the photography department over the years, they do appear to be getting better with their action shots.  I want to thank Bill again for completing our first trade together.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Trade Bait for you Non-Sports Card Enthusiasts - Star Trek: The Next Generation

I hesitated to post this on my blog, but I decided if someone else wants/needs these and I can get some of my want lists filled then what the heck.  I must say that I have no idea how I acquired them.  I know that I had two partial sets at one time and I gave one set to a friend of mine.  So if you can give this batch of cards some T.L.C. then let's work something out.  These cards come from the 1992 Impel Star Trek:  The Next Generation set.  Here is a sample of some of the cards.

I have looked through the cards and it is not a complete set.  The 120 card set is missing cards 11, 29, 44, 49, 75, 82, and 113.  I do have 14 doubles and one bonus card (#1D - Cast Picture but with French words).  They are not in "mint" condition, but they are mostly in "excellent" shape.  They have been in a plastic case since I acquired them.  It bugs the heck out of me that I can't remember where I got them....but hopefully you will want them to come to you.

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Pursuit Continues - 2000 Upper Deck Legends - Legendary Jerseys

Thanks to a couple of purchases I have acquired 2 more additions to my pursuit of the 2000 Upper Deck Legends subset, Legendary Jerseys, both of which happen to be Giants.  The first purchase was a Bobby Bonds Jersey card that I bought for $1.04 + shipping.  A pretty good deal if you ask me.  I honestly don't remember much about Bobby as I grew up in his son's era.  I was first acquainted with Bobby during his 1980 season with the Cardinals which would turn out to be his next to last.  Even though he only played 14 years, he still hit a remarkable 332 homeruns and drove in over a thousands runs.  He was a three time All-Star, 3 time Gold Glove winner, and finished in the top 5 for MVP voting twice.  His best year was probably 1973 when he hit .283 with 39 homeruns and 96 runs batted in.  He also led the league with 131 runs that year along with being named the All Star Game MVP.  That game, played in the new Royals Stadium in Kansas City for the first and only time was one that I have heard stories about as my parents sat in the far corner of the upper deck.  Fortunately, Kansas City gets to play host again for the 2012 game.

My second purchase was for 2 Willie McCovey Jersey cards.  I hesitate to say purchase since I really came away with this one for free as I turned the second one around quickly on eBay and made my money back.  Again, about the only thing I remember about McCovey was the end of his career.  I do remember getting his 1980 Topps card that highlighted his 512th home run which set an all-time mark for National League lefties.  According to the back of the card, that came on a 3 run pinch-hit homer to defeat the Pirates on June 9, 1979.  McCovey finished his career with 521 homeruns and 1555 runs batted in.  He would be inducted into Cooperstown in 1986 with 81.4% of the vote.  He was the 1959 Rookie of the Year and the 1969 National League MVP.  His best year was probably his MVP season when he led the league in home runs (45), RBI's (126), on-base % (.456), and slugging % (.656) while hitting .320.

This brings my set total up to 5 cards out of 52.  The pursuit continues!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Trade with Potch Wheeler

Darren over a Potch Wheeler Cards came through in our second trade with some great cards.  Some that have even inspired a new upcoming series here at 26 Cent Summer.  He was able to fill some of my needs from a number of ongoing ventures including 2011 Heritage, 2011 Topps, and 2010 Topps Update.

First, my 2011 Heritage needs included 2 of the games best pitchers in Roy O and King Felix.  While the Phillies are continuing to lead the NL East, the Mariners are currently stuck in a 13 game losing streak that even the Royals have avoided this year.  Unfortunately, the Mariners still have a better record than my beloved Royals who are on their own streak...a winning streak of 3 games.  There's always next year or the next or the next.......

My 2011 Topps needs include future Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez who just happens to be comforting the emotions of Nationals phenom, Stephen Strassburg.  Even though Pudge is in the twilight of his career, the Nationals surely got everything that wanted as a mentor for their young players.  While this is a touching picture, I don't care for a player card that doesn't either show the players face or him in game action.  Rather we get Pudge doing what he does best at this point of his career....counselling the younger players.

Finally, we have some Royals cards that were thrown in to top off a great trade.  Two of my favorite Royals from the 70s and 80s in Willie Wilson and Dennis Leonard are here.  For those that don't remember the Royals in their heyday, these two were part of a great core of players that led the Royals to numerous division titles, 2 American League championships, and 1 World Series title.  

Wilson roamed the outfield at Kauffmann Stadium making great catches, but he is best known for his speed on the basepaths taking extra bases on ordinary hits and wreaking havoc with pitchers and catchers with his thievery.  Wilson led the league in triples 5 times while regularly stealing over 30-40 bases a season with a high of 83 thefts in 1979.

Leonard ruled the mound with a team record 3 20-win seasons.  He stills holds Royals records for complete games and shutouts.  Perhaps, his best season was in 1977 when he finished with a 20-12 record and........listen to this........21 complete games in his 37 starts.  He finished that season 4th in the Cy Young voting.

Finally, one of the cards that has inspired a new series here at 26 Cent Summer is this John Buck card.  Now John Buck is not a great Royal.  He was a below average catcher that the Royals received in a 2004 three team trade involving current trade deadline bait Carlos Beltran.  However, he does play my favorite position on the diamond and this card will be featured again in the near future.

Thanks Darren for a great trade!

2011 Allen and Ginter Pack Break - Trade Bait

So last night I broke down a bought a jumbo pack of 2011 Allen and Ginter at Wal Mart.  I can now say that I have been there and done that.  I have no intention of completing the set so if anyone needs any or all of the following, please let me know.  My wantlist page is updated.

84 - Gregory Infante
87 - Colby Lewis
94 - Josh Rodriguez
103 - Andres Torres
167 - Adam LaRoche
173 - Mariano Rivera
181 - Mark Buehrle
193 - Jorge De La Rosa
310 - Matt Kemp

HH81 - Neil Walker
AOM13 - Eutherians
Black Mini 134 - Matt Cain

Friday, July 22, 2011

Big Fun Game with Napkin Doon

If you haven't seen his last blog post, go check it out here.  Napkin Doon is putting together a Big Fun Game (white elephant gift exchange) and he is looking for entries.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

EMAW #3 - Veryl Switzer

(3rd in a series on great sports figures from Kansas State University - Every Man a Wildcat)

Veryl Switzer is a long-time KSU icon.  He lettered in football and track from 1951-1953 before embarking on a professional football career.  While at KSU, Switzer was an All Big 7 selection each year and was a 1st Team All-American in 1953 when he lead the nation in punt returns with a 31.0 average.
1954 Bowman #105
In 1954, Switzer was selected as the 4th overall pick in the NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers.  He would lead the NFL in punt returns during his rookie season with a 12.8 average.  He would continue to play for the Packers for another year before heading to the U.S. Air Force for 3 years.  Following his military career, Switzer continued his professional career in the Canadian Football League first with the Calgary Stampeders and finally the Montreal Alouettes.
1955 Bowman #35
After working for the Chicago Board of Education following his football career, Switzer returned to KSU in a variety of capacities including Assistant Director of Athletics until his retirement in 1999.  He has been inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame, the KSU Sports Hall of Fame, and the Kansas State High School Activities Association Hall of Fame.

Now for your history lesson...Veryl Switzer was born in the town of Nicodemus, KS.  Nicodemus is the oldest and only remaining all Black town west of the Mississippi.  It was founded by a white town planner and a black preacher in 1877.  Most of its founding members were freed slaves from Kentucky, known as Exodusters.  The town would grow despite horrible living conditions (high winds and drought in a farming community), but when the railroad bypassed Nicodemus, the town began to dwindle.  It is currently home to less than 40 individuals but it is a National Historic Site with a full-time park ranger and museum.  Check out the National Parks Service website here.
Veryl Switzer in front of the St. Francis Hotel in Nicodemus.  Switzer and his siblings
were born in this building that he currently owns and hopes to refurbish.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Another Pursuit - 2000 Upper Deck Legends - Legendary Jerseys

So I have to thank Sewing Machine Guy for this one!  When he started posting about his pursuit for the entire 73 card relic set from 2010 Topps Magic, I began thinking about what type of similar conquest I could look to tackle.  So off I went to my boxes looking for the start of my new pursuit....and there it was.  My first George Brett jersey card from the 2000 Upper Deck Legends set.  Then I realized that I already had the Wade Boggs from that set, but where was it?  Upon searching through more boxes I found it.  Two down and 50 to go.  But wait, there are three cards that are pant relics, do those count?  That Gehrig will be impossible to get.  What about that Koufax signed jersey card?  Oh what the heck, throw them all in and I guess we will see where we go.  


From the scan above you can see that I have added another card to the collection with a Frank Thomas purchase.  I also have a couple of others on the way via eBay.  How long will this take?  Probably too long.  However, it will give me something to chase when I get tired of the current set that I am working on, whatever that might be.  I probably should focus on doing one thing at a time, but what fun is that!