Saturday, July 31, 2010

Computer Crashed and I Need a Few Addresses...

I have a fancy address/blogger database on my home computer which took a dive this past week. I found a few of your addresses in emails and somehow I have a few memorized, but there are a couple I need again. Dark Ship Todd, Thoughts and Sox, Dan's Other World, Omega, Opoohwan, Democratic Duane, Paper Chase and Peterson are all addresses I can't locate. Sorry I am a mess... If you can email me with them I will get them all out on Monday. Sorry for the delays... Some of you will be thrilled with what was pulled. Some of you, well, that is the luck of the draw... As far as the person who had the Rockies-I feel like I owe you. You paid full price for the slot and I opened very little post-1993 wax and therefore you ended with few cards. I already added a bonus to the Marlins. Okay, that is all. My car broke down last week one town away, gotta try and get it home. Perhaps there will be more Wicked good stuff coming... Also, I have heard from the Twins and Tigers fans that they have recieved their cards, please let me know when you get yours. Go Rays! Troll out.

Friday, July 30, 2010

2005 Playoff Prime Patches

I have made all kinds of comments about this brand over the past year. It's design brings out the critic in me. Donruss Playoff LP went all out when it came to getting authentic game-used materials for its cards, but it seemed like they stopped there. I have never ripped any of this stuff, but plenty has come my way via trade. Most of those came from, you guessed it, My Past Time I Love It!. Here are 2 new Rays game used cards from 2005 Prime Patches. First is a serial numbered gem of centerfielder (then shortstop) BJ Upton. It is #ed 074/150 and the bat sliver was certified to having been used by Upton in an official game. Pretty cool, eh? It is, but I can't get over the tiny picture on the side and the tiny sliver breaking up the Tampa Bay logo and ALL OF THE WASTED WHITE SPACE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE CARD. Its one of those great cards that could be better. From the same set is an even lower serial #ed card (77/97) of outfielder Rocco Baldelli. This is from the Portraits series of the set. That seems a weird name for a card that has a black and white photo of the cards namesake SO DAMN SMALL. On the bright side the jersey swatch is a patch and is freaking awesome. There are 3 seperate bat slivers (excess?) too. All of them are certified game used by Rocco too. This is my first Rocco patch and I am pretty stoked about that, but again the design of the card drives me nuts... Again, cool cards that could be cooler... Thanks again Wicked! Since I have only posted 5 of the 400 cards I planned to post this week, Wicked Week on the Troll will be extended until its all been shown. Oh, and there are plenty more giveaways at My Past Time I Love It! so check em out! Go Rays! Troll out.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Wicked Card of the Day, Manu-Patches and Hall of Famers For the PC!

Wicked Week is totally in full swing on the My Past Time I Love It! Blog. He is giving away primo stuff on a daily basis, so if you aren’t going there and entering his contests you are missing out… Speaking of missing out, I have been living on the outskirts of the blog-o-sphere. I have been lucky enough to have amazing family and friends staying with us for the past week. They went home this morning. It was a tough goodbye, but it will give me a chance to get caught up on my posting. I haven’t acknowledged Matt Garza’s no-hitter yet, but that is coming don’t you worry! Not only will I acknowledge it and share my thoughts and my pride, but I will put together all of the unposted Garza gems that Wicked has shared with me. Anyway, I am starting slowly, but will get back on track. I will also be hitting the post office today. Okay, so I only have a few minutes of time today, so I am going to limit this post to just one single card. Fortunately it’s a pretty unique and interesting one… It is a modern card, coming from 2004 Sweet Spot Classic, but features my favorite vintage subject. This card actually made me flash back to this 1956 Topps card. You can read the original post about it right here. Anyway, moving on with the Wicked Card of the Day it is a 2004 Sweet spot Classic Patch card of Cleveland Indians outfielder Larry Doby. Doby was an All Star in 7 straight seasons for Cleveland. He went to 2 World Series with them and won 2 homerun titles before being traded to the Chicago White Sox prior to the 1956 season. The timing of the trade confused the folks at Topps back in 1956. Actually that card freaked me out as a kid. It lists him as a White Sox, but shows him in Cleveland gear. 55 years ago it is excusable. Anyway, in 2004 Upper Deck reversed the mistake. On the card Doby is listed as a member of the Cleveland Indians. It makes sense; he spent the bulk of his career with him and is one of their best players of all time. The odd thing about Sweet Spot is that they list Larry Doby as an Indian, but the Manu-patch on the card is a Sox logo. I have a scab on my head from scratching it wondering what the hell Richard P. McWilliam was thinking of when he gave this card his seal of approval. It is sooo ridiculous that I love it! Kind of like my pastime. Anyway, since I have never ripped a pack of Sweet Spot before I don’t know if this type thing happens often. Has anyone else seen a Manu-patch gone this wrong before? Thanks to Wicked for the card and thanks to all for reading. Larry Doby forever! Final exams tomorrow. Wish me luck. More to come in this Wicked Wicked Week. Oh, don't forget about the amazing giveaways you can find here! Go Rays! Troll out.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wicked Week Interupted for the COOLEST CARD in the WORLD!!!

So our company was able to rearrange their schedule and stay a little longer, so I have been away from the computer. Wicked Week may last two weeks, as long as it takes to get it all posted... Anyway, I checked the mail yesterday and got some interesting stuff but the most interesting package had a Big D! Custom Cards sticker for the return address. Some of you might remember the contest that Big D had on his blog Hey That's Mine a while back. Many entered and I was one of the winners. You can see some of the other great customs he made for the winners here. Adrian Peterson, Hunter Pence, Greg Maddux and Orel Hersheshier all shown in one of a kind custom fashion. Big D had revealed all of the winning cards except mine. It took me a while to send photos to him so mine was delayed a bit. Well, I now have the card in my hot little hands. As a winner I had the option to choose any subject that I wanted for the card. I thought about getting Danny Tartabull. I had a few cool shots of him in spring training with the White Sox which I took that would have made cool cards. I thought about Buck O'Neill. I considered Larry Doby, Roberto Clemente and many different stars of Negro League baseball. I considered trying to find pics of my Dad as a drag racer. I thought about adding another one of one card of Carl Crawford to that growing collection. In the end I selected my favorite athlete and favorite person in the world, the legendary Esther Gin N Juice, star jammer for the Bradentucky Bombers roller derby league. It took me a bit to find a suitable photo, but I did. It looks like Big D did some searching himself because he added an inset photo on his own and also added the team logo. Anyway, he did an AMAZING job on the card. I can't put to words how much I love this card and how proud I am to see my wife on a card. Anyway, here it is... Enjoy! Thanks SO much Big D! You outdid yourself on this one. I LOVE IT!!! Go Rays! troll out.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Its A Wicked World!

Today is day number one of Wicked Week and I only have a moment to post. There is so much to write and so much to explain. It all started with this post back in August of last year. I had just been bite by the Allen and Ginter bug and ripped my first box. I was a bit let down with the hits in the box. No autographs and just 2 relics, both Tigers. I was left with a Magglio Ordonez jersey and a Dontrelle Willis pants relic. Naturally they were up for trade and I posted them up. I didn't get any takers right away and after a few days I decided that the D-Train pants relic would be the start of a new collection for me. Before the Devil Rays I was a Marlins fan and I really liked Dontrelle. He wasn't at a good spot in his career and his cards were plentiful, so after some thought I announced to the blog-o-sphere that I was going to be a D-Train collector. It was that magical post that led me to "meet" the Wicked One in South Florida, Wicked Ortega of the My Past Time...I Love It! blog. Since that post nearly a year ago, a great friendship was born. Earlier today Wicked (also known as Alfredo) called me to tell me about a David Price auto he had found. Anyway, it all started with Dontrelle's pants, but turned into a lasting friendship that has yielded many trades and has shifted 100s of baseball cards from North to South Florida. This week I am going to catch up on the all goodies Alfedo has sent me which have slipped by unposted. Naturally I don't have the time today, but I wanted to tease the things to come. Alfredo has a great philosophy when it comes to cards, he "pays it forward" and many have of you reading this have felt his generosity. The header of this blog for this week is a card from 2009 SP Legendary Cuts of Roberto Clemente and Vlad Guerrero. Wicked sent it with this written on the toploader "You gotta love this one, as soon as I saw this I thought Troll". Many cards have made him think Troll and my collection is all the better for it. This week I will formerly thank my friend and fellow blogger and show all the goodies off to the world in the process. Aside from the Clemente relic you can check out my first Steve Carlton jersey relic and a green dandy of Satchel Paige. MUCH MORE TO COME IN THIS WICKED WEEK! There will be Rays a plenty, vintage, Negro League, Larry Doby, Danny Tartabull, Clemente, Steve Carlton, autos, relics and more! Its a special week on his blog as well. There is a contest brewing with tons of Hall of Fame autographs and amazing stuff up for grabs, so check it out. Go Rays! Troll out.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

READ ME!!! State of the Troll and Things to Come!

Things to come…
Greetings! Troll here. Very busy. We have family from Maryland visiting, so no time to post. All of the group break stuff is packed up. 10 peoples stuff has shipped and the remainder will go out on Monday or Tuesday. The Bradentucky Bombers Nuclear Bombshells (our B team) is going to Fort Myers for a roller derby Sunday. We will take the family and they will check out derby for the first time. Esther Gin N Juice is strictly A team, so she won’t be skating, but I will be working. Anyway, regarding the group break-all of the participants will receive something this coming week. Some of you are due oversized cards and I have a couple of packs I picked up to post for APTBNL that I will divvy up for you guys too. Anyway, some of you are done, but some might get some bonuses. Some of you got 100s of cards, some less, but most things turned out pretty even. I didn’t count cards, but it wasn’t very lopsided. The two teams that got the shaft were the Rockies and the Marlins. I feel like I owe you guys something. So much that was ripped was late 80’s/early 90’s so the newer expansion teams were underrepresented. The rule is and you all MUST comply-is that you must post at least one card you received from the break on your own blogs and send me a link. I can’t wait for everyone to get their stuff, it was more work than I had intended and I am soooo disorganized that I know now that I am not suited for this kind of stuff. Anyhoo, when I finally got my stuff together I had a blast sorting through all of the cards. There were so many players that I had forgotten about and so many great cards and goofy photos, it was great. I also obsessively added loose packs that were more modern and in the end there were quite a few “hits” and I can’t wait to see the reactions of the lucky ones who are going to get them. Okay, now with the group break done I can move on to some other things. I am going to make the next few weeks theme weeks. The week upcoming (July 26th) is special to me for a number of personal reasons and I am going to make that the first theme week. It will be a Wicked Week of Summer. Ideally it will be seven days worth of cards from the My Past Time…I Love It! blog on all of my different blogs. I realized I have over 400 unposted cards that came from him plus I will also show off some cards of his favorite players. It will be GREAT stuff. Hundreds of cards, autographed stuff, vintage, hits and Rays galore. Stay tuned. The following week will be International Week. It will include trades from the UK, Australia, Asia, South Africa, Canada, France and Mexico. Should I get any more international packages, they will be added too. There are still MANY countries that haven’t traded with the Troll yet. After that, it will be a week of linking your group break posts and a little commentary from me. Okay, so stay tuned and keep coming back. Wicked Week is coming!!! Go Rays! Troll out.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Searching For Anthony K...

The Killer B's are calling! Please send me your current mailing address... There is a box of junk wax with your name on it... Also looking to confirm (sorry if you already did) addresses for the takers of the Angels, Giants, Tigers, Athletics, Royals, Rockies and Indians... Go Rays! Troll out!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Can Opened, Cards Posted...

1998 Pinnacle Inside has been opened and posted. Read it here. Go Rays! Troll out.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Best Card of the Group Break and Some More Packs That Need a Home...

I know I said I wasn't going to post any of the group break cards myself, but I have to make one exception. There were some pretty awesome cards pulled. A couple of autos, several relics, a really low numbered card and plenty of Hall of Famers. There are also some unusual cards. Failed prospects, Bip Roberts on several different teams, Jose Rijo with several unusual props, glow in the dark cards, Nolan Ryan playing high school basketball, players eating, with their kids, making faces, wearing silly sunglasses and carrying oversized bats. It really has been a fun trip down memory lane for me. My wife has been helping me get the boxes ready to ship and this card came up. Now there a lot of cards that made us stop and laugh, but we agreed this was the best card out of the entire rip. Ryan, you might have to fight me for this one! It was a hard choice though. The '95 Collectors Choice was loaded with interesting photography. Aside from the cards, the old gum has been very interesting... I saved the gum from the 1978 O-Pee-Chee. 30 plus year old Canadian gum... It didn't look much worse than the 1995 Bazooka, that was pretty gross. Anyway... I found a few more packs than need homes. I only have a couple of each of these, but the first to claim will get them... Hersheys and Harleys. Have at it. Anthony K. I still need your address... Go Rays! Troll out.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Don't Call It a Comeback...

So I hadn’t planned on a third post today, but I read Marc Topkin's column, The Heater on Tampa Bay dot com and got giddy over the news and scheduled this one to pop up while I am at work. Rocco Baldelli is expected to signing a minor league playing contract with Tampa Bay today. He is set to begin play as the designated hitter for the Port Charlotte Stone Crabs of the Florida State League TONIGHT! Rocco hasn’t played in a game since last season with Boston. He was on the field with the Rays at home last week, basically just playing catch, but it was a shoulder injury that caused him to “retire” so seeing him throw from the outfield to third base is pretty huge. Now is an ideal time for Rocco to begin his comeback. He will need some serious time to get back into playing shape. I’m thinking 2 weeks with Charlotte, a few weeks in AA and then more time in Durham. He would need to be on the big league roster by August 31st to be eligible for postseason. If the Rays don’t need him, the Durham Bulls could certainly benefit from his bat in their effort to repeat as AAA Champs. I personally would LOVE to see the outfield of Rocco Baldelli, BJ Upton and Carl Crawford ONE more time. Good luck Rocco! We’ll be waiting for you! Oh, from a career milestone perspective Rocco currently has 59 career homers and 59 career steals. He also has 98 doubles. I would love to see Rocco belt his 100th double and reach 60 homers and steals. Obviously that doesn’t make him a Hall of Fame candidate, but it would be cool to see him reach those personal plateaus. It would also be cool to see him playing for the Stone Crabs. I am going to have to see if I swing a night off from work to check that out... For more baseball card awesomeness, please zoom over to A Pack to be Named Later as I am sure I have a post up. Go Rays! Troll out.

Una Cosa Mas... Soccer, Nick Markakis, Ebay, Ugly Cards, Brian Roberts, Carl Crawford and a Whole Lot of Rambling...

Please read the previous post if you are interested in soccer cards. I posted a stack of 26 packs of 1990/91 Pro Set UK cards searching for a new home. Well, I just found 3 more packs of that product, PLUS 1 single pack of 1992 Pacific MSL Pro Soccer cards. I probably have more packs, too, I just haven't found them yet. With this addition there are 30 unopened packs of soccer cards on the block. If you are truly interested, claim them and claim quick. I am off to work in an hour and would like to know that these cards will have a new home. Oh, if you do claim them, PLEASE be specifi as to how many you want. There are 30 packs here. Do you want 1, 10, 20, 30? Be specific AND send me your address. These must go SOON. Oh, speaking of addresses, still searching for a mailing address for Anthony K. Okay, back on track? My wife and I are having out of state visitors coming on Friday, so I REALLY need to clean up the guest bedroom which has doubled as the baseball (and soccer) cards EVERYWHERE room. If you REALLY like soccer and don't have anything have anything to offer I would be willing to consider future considerations or a pack to be named later... While hunting around the floor I found an envelope I got in the mail (postmarked 7/02) which for some reason I never opened. It came from a reader (?) named David from Mansfield, Ohio. One card and no note. This is the card. A 1997 Best card of flamethrowing right-handed pitcher Kerry Wood. It's another card of Wood making him appear to be a part of the Devil Rays organization. Now I will definitely send one of these cards out for a TTM attempt. Naturally I will now want to collect EVERY card of Kerry Wood masquerading as a Devil Ray. I love the unusual turns my collections take. My collection nearly took another odd turn this weekend. While showing off my 2010 Bowman Rainbow of Carl Crawford I mentioned that there was a 2010 Topps Platinum card (1/1) of Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis up for bid on the 'Bay. The Orioles are my second favorite American League team and I actively chase Brian Roberts cards. And speaking of B-Rob, here is a new addition to my collection that came from my good friend Captain Canuck of Waxaholic fame. Thanks Captain! I will actually post the rest of the goodies, I promise! Back on topic. I like Markakis. I like his style of play and like many bloggers I feel like he is a superstar in the making. I seriously would not have minded owning a 1/1 card of Markakis. He's a great player and it would have been a great centerpiece to one of the Markakis pages in my "Non-Rays" binder. I day dreamed about the idea of owning that card and hanging onto it until an Orioles blogger pulled a super awesome Crawford card and then trading it away. When I posted the card on Saturday it was at around five bucks. A few hours after I posted it I checked my Paypal balance and verified that I still had more than $20.00 in there. I decided to throw caution to the wind and drop a huge bid on the 1/1 card. I have personal rules and limits for myself. I will NOT let myself pay more than 20 bucks for a current card. I have broken that limit before and I probably will again, but as a general guideline I don't and won't spend that much on a non-vintage card. Anyway, I dropped my bid of $19.11 on the Markakis card and I was the high bidder. I was pretty sure I was going to win it and I immediately felt bad that I had bid so much for a card that I didn't need of a player that I didn't collect. I get post-bidding regret often. Anyway, on Sunday morning I saw the "you have been outbid" message in my inbox regarding the 1/1 card. I was disappointed and relieved at the same time. I didn't want to blow my weekly budget on a single Orioles card, BUT at this point I had thought about it so much that I REALLY felt like I NEEDED that card. I did something unprecedented, I went over my limit and I bid $31.11 for the card. It was a pretty stressful thing actually. I discussed it with my wife and beat myself up over it and made a pros and cons list and really went overboard over this auction. When I got the next outbid notice I didn't make a counter bid. I decided to wait on the sidelines and see what happened. In the meantime the seller of the card sent me an email. He said that he reads the card collecting blogs and thought it was neat to see one of his auctions posted. This was good news because I hadn't asked permission to use the image. I wrote him back explaining that I wasn't too interested in Markakis, but I really wanted the Carl Crawford platinum 1/1 so I was interested to see what the Markak went for. He wrote me back and offered to keep his eyes peeled for the CC version and asked how much I would pay for it. I replied between 15-20 bucks. He didn't write back. To shorten this long story 20 people bid on the platinum card including me. It sold for $122.50. Great news for the seller, but not so great for someone hoping to collect a team set of platinum 1/1s without taking a second mortgage out. Oh well, I should be happy with my Bowman 1/1 and leave it at that. Oh, while we are talking about rainbows I have noticed I have a few different colors of the CC from 2006 Bowman Originals and I have also thankfully received a few different colors of his 2010 Finest card. Does anyone know how many different Finest varieties there are this year? Oh, since this will likely be my only Troll post today and I am trying to cram a lot of stuff into one post... This weekend Play at the Plate brought up the topic of "Worst Picture on a Card". That REALLY got the old wheels turning. Even a good picture of Don Mossi would qualify, but there are SO many cards out there that could vie for that title. Since I am a player collector I naturally started thinking of the worst Carl Crawford card. I nominate this one. I will qualify this by saying that I do have TONS of respect and admiration for artists, BUT come on, this picture really sucks... This topic will return, you can count on that! Thanks for reading. I love this hobby! Go Rays! Troll out.

1990/91 Pro Set UK Football Association Collector Cards

Who wants 'em??? I am not 100% sure how I ended up with 26 unopened packs of this product. I have been hanging onto them for a while now. They seem cool. Twenty year old cards from a different continent, but I don't follow this sport and I never have and I feel like someone else would get more enjoyment out of them than me. I haven't ripped any, so I have no idea what they look like either. Here is the deal. I would like to ship all 26 to one person. I would like to get something off of my wantlists for them. I wouldn't mind adding packs to group break participants packages either. I just want their new home to be determined soon. Claim them, send me an email, blah blah blah. The one stipulation is that whoever gets them MUST post a pack on A Pack to be Named Later, okay? Now, who want them? Go Rays! troll out.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Group Break Pack Rippin'!

One pack, 4 Hall of Famers... Read it HERE. Go Rays! Spank those Yanks! troll out.


I don't know why, but if I get a card of one of my favorite players and I learn that there other versions of the SAME card available in other colors-I WANT THEM! I have become obsessed with Topps Parallels. It started with the GOLD cards and now I am craving the black versions. Platinum cards of Carl Crawford are still just legend to me, but someday I hope to see and own one of them. It is the platinum 1/1 cards that have kept me from completing the Topps rainbow for any Carl Crawford cards. With only one copy of each card they just don't pop up often. I think there are only 3 different 2010 Topps Platinum cards on eBay right now. The series 2 Nick Markakis is up for bid right now if anyone is interested... I should get back on track though. This post isn't about Nick Markakis, Topps Baseball nor my inability to finish a Topps rainbow parallel, this post is about Carl Crawford and 2010 Bowman and my ability to fulfill that rainbow. Yep, I did it. It was one of my collecting goals for 2010 and I achieved it and I can say that I am the only Crawford collector to do it. I am probably the only one who wanted to, but still... It all started with the black (base) version that came in a trade when Bowman first broke. I got the orange version a few weeks later in a trade. The next two were purchased from a reader and the final card was an eBay purchase. The gold one ended up being the last one I found and that came in the mail on Monday. I have been itching to post them all ever since. I really don't know what to write about them other than that as an obsessive completest player collector I feel pretty happy right now... Check em out, that is CC safe at home in Miami with a black border, a blue border, an orange border, a gold border and finally a RED BORDER! I like the back of the red card the best... Sweet. I am pretty happy with these. As I write this post CC is still in the midst of an MVP type season. He is batting .322 with 11 homers, 50 RBI, 108 hits, 21 doubles, 6 triples and 31 steals. He has scored 70 runs, has a .380 on base percentage and a .519 SLG%. Last night he had 2 hits in a loss against the Yanks in New York. Thanks for checking out my latest acquisitions... As a player collector I am on top of the world right now. Regular readers may recall that I am chasing the printing plate versions of this card-I am still stalled out waiting to find the magenta one. Now if the Rays crush the Yankees tonight I will be REALLY happy. If you have any CC cards you think I might need, drop me an email. Bacontowne at yahoo dot com. I LOVE this hobby! Go Rays! troll out.

Friday, July 16, 2010

A Future SO Bright...

In 1990 the Braves had the first overall pick in the draft and selected Chipper Jones. 20 years later he is still there. He has taken them to the postseason 11 times in 16 seasons. He won a World Championship with them. He has been an All Star 6 times and was the National League’s MVP in 1999. He has hit 432 homeruns, won a batting title and drove in more than 100 runs in 8 consecutive seasons. He was a good pick and a good fit. The New York Yankees had the first overall pick the following year. They already had an everyday cornerstone franchise player in Don Mattingly. They needed pitching. They wanted to keep up with the Joneses, actually the A’s. Oakland was the league’s dominant team and in 1990 they snagged a "can’t miss" power pitcher named Todd Van Poppel and the Yankees wanted to keep up. They picked the best pitcher in the draft, a high school kid who could throw in the mid 90’s with a good curve ball to boot. They picked Brien Taylor. He was a 6’3” left handed pitcher from North Carolina. They really thought he would be the next Dwight Gooden and expected him to be winning 20 games before he was 20. His “advisor”, Scott Boras knew he could do it. The Yankees coughed up a million and a half dollars and Taylor got his fingers sized for all of the rings he was going to win. He and the Yankees realized quickly that high school batters aren’t as good as big league batters and even though he was left handed and could light up a radar gun, maybe he wasn’t ready to be an Ace in the Majors. He started off in the Florida State League where he was 6-8 in his first pro season. He had a respectable 2.57 ERA and he did strike out 187 batters in only 161 innings. He was named Baseball America’s top prospect and was set to start the next season in AA, finish in AAA and be the opening day starter in the Bronx in 1994. He pitched in 27 games in ’93 in AA and won 13. His ERA raised a little and his Ks went down, but he still looked promising. He never made it past AA though. He blew out his shoulder in a fight and after losing a year to surgery he wasn’t the same pitcher. He eventually got his velocity back, but never found his control. He stumbled around in A ball from 1995 to 2000 going 3-15 over that span. He called it quits after giving up 8 earned runs in 2 innings as a 28 year old in low A ball. He learned a trade, had some kids, worked for his Dad, had some personal problems, but he is still alive and well and living with his parents in his home state of North Carolina. He lives on a street that was named after him in the home that he bought for his folks with the bonus money the Yankees gave him. I mailed him a letter a few years ago and he replied. He said he doesn’t follow the Yankees and he was working as a mason. He said his days of living lavishly were long gone, he was barely getting by. Obviously he has regrets, but he felt blessed to have the chance to fail. He was proud to be a blue collar worker and glad he had the chance to learn a trade after baseball. The ‘Bay wasn’t around in the early 90’s, but that didn’t mean that prospecting wasn’t. I discovered this card while ripping for my group break. When it came it out this card routinely sold in the $10-$20 range. His future looked SO BRIGHT he had to wear shades… Obviously there is a Strasburg reference in here. Brien Taylor was the second player to be chosen first overall and not make it to the major leagues. Stras has already made the majors. He will probably have a solid career. He looks sharp. I don’t hate the player; I hate his idiot collectors who make a mockery of the hobby I love. Thanks for reading! Go Rays! Troll out.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

An All Star Shout Out!

I just got home from work and I have yet to watch the game, but I will soon. I am still in the dark as to the outcome, but someone spilled some positive Rays stats and also told me that Carl Crawford did NOT repeat as All Star MVP. Still I felt congratulations and acknowledgements were in order… I understand that young Mr. Price threw GAS and that young Mr. Longoria hit a double and young Mr. Crawford stole a base… I don’t know if Soriano played, but as long as he didn’t blow a save-congrats to him as well.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Speaking of All Stars...

This guy went to the Midsummer Classic 15 times and is arguably the greatest rightfielder of All Time. He is most certainly my favorite player. I met reader Paul through blogging, but realized that he lives within 5 miles of me. We got together this weekend and did some face to face trading. The result was 23 cards being scratched off my ’65 Topps wantlist including this one, card #160 of Roberto Clemente. The list is up to date if you are interested… Thanks Paul! I am recording the game tonight while I am at work so don’t tell me what happens! Go Rays! Troll out.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Carl Crawford-MVP?

The Tampa Bay Rays are 54-34 and sitting in second place in the AL East. They are 9-2 in the month of July. They swept Boston and took 3 of 4 from Cleveland. Last night was another walk-off win and the pitching staff and bullpen are both exceeding expectations. The Rays have 3 players starting the All Star Game and another on the roster and you can still make arguments to add more. I would have to say at the halfway mark that this has been a successful season. The goal as a team won’t be achieved until everyone on the team has a ring on their finger, but I wanted to take a moment to look at one of my favorite players who is making a solid case for himself as the AL MVP. Carl Crawford is batting .321 with 11 homers and 50 RBI plus 6 triples and 31 steals. I know we are 88 games into a 162 game season and are more than halfway through, but since this is the “halfway” point I will just double his numbers for an easy end of season projection. Imagine Crawford ending the year with a .321 batting average, 22 homers and 100 RBI? With 62 steals? Those are MVP numbers if you ask me… The two Hall of Fame left fielders that Crawford is measured against most often-Lou Brock and Rickey Henderson-are still far ahead of Crawford in terms of career numbers. If CC can stay healthy and produce at this rate for another 10 seasons he will be in their leagues, BUT he has a chance to do something this year that neither of them were able to do in their amazing careers-and that is drive in 100 runs. I know that isn’t the goal for a basestealing top of the order guy, but he is also leading the league with 70 runs scored AND he is driving them in too. At the break Crawford has driven in 50. Brock’s career high was 76 in 1967. Rickey peaked in that department at 72 in 1985. Crawford has already won an All Star MVP which neither did in their careers. I think adding a World Series ring and an AL MVP along with a few more stolen base titles will solidify him with those 3 as the greatest left fielders of the past 50 years… Just some food for thought… Shown in the above post are my latest PC acquisitions... It is GROWING, but I still don't have a count. Carl Crawford gets my vote for AL MVP. In the National League I would lean towards not picking just yet... Kemp and Ethier both stand out to me, but then again Joey Votto, Martin Prado and even David Wright look damn good right now. Who knows... Who would YOU vote for as your MVPs? Go Rays! troll out.