When I first started out blogging and getting back into collecting baseball cards (something I hadn't done since I was in middle school), I mentioned it to very few people. Heck, I waited a long time to even mention it to my wife. Part of this was because I wasn't sure how "serious" I was about baseball cards (I know that "serious" seems like a weird word choice, but "committed" sounded even worse). The other part was because, well, lots of people seem to think that collecting baseball cards is kinda nerdy.
Anyways, when I told my wife about why I started the blog, one of the reasons was because "I have random people who read the blog and send me Padres cards." She seemed confused as to why people would do this. The best answers I could offer were 1) People are nice, and 2) Nobody wants Padre cards.
Anyways, this is a post of a slew of awesome cards sent to me by Mark aka "Harry", who has sent me multiple packages full of Padre cards, all in return for a small handful of Red Sox cards (which were actually all the Red Sox cards I have in the trade box). I have another small stack that will be sent out in a few days, but it will not be able to compare to the goodness that has been sent my way.
Here we have my first Jay Johnstone card in the Miscellaneous Padres binder. I feel weird for not knowing who he is, his wikipedia page makes him seem pretty cool, even though he was a Dodger at one point. I already had the Mickey Lolich card, but those yellow uniforms look too good to not be shown side by side.
At the inception of this blog, I remember falling in love with vintage cards, sets that I hadn't seen very much of - I was a 90's overproduction era kid. There were two vintage sets that I wasn't really high on. One of 'em was the 1975 set. Something about the weird colored borders didn't sit right with me. While I wouldn't call it a "favorite" now, it's grown on me a lot, and sharp looking cards like this are the reason why. Maybe it's just because of the brown and yellow that were able to be worked in on each card, or maybe it's the cool sideline shots. Regardless, glad to have these cards of Inaugural Padre Fred Kendall and BBQ Master Randy Jones.
The other vintage set that I wasn't really big on a year and a half ago was the 1972 set. I guess my feelings are evolving, since I can't get enough of this quartet of cards here. The orange and blue really pop, and I love those gold and brown uniforms. I have a hat like the one that Dick Kelley has, but you don't see a lot of the ones like Enzo Hernandez and Ed Acosta are sporting. All of them look great.
It wasn't all vintage 70's goodness, however. There were also some additions from the 90's for my player collections. Can't believe that I didn't already have these. Fleer Ultra was one of my favorite sets when I was a kid, but I preferred the glossiness of the '92-'93 sets to these boring, gray, half bordered ones. Still, the shots of Gwynn's followthrough and Benes' high leg kick make for some great photos.
It was when I saw these cards that I realized why I liked 'em despite the less-than-stellar design. They're PADRE cards! Show me a Yankees card from the '91 Leaf set and I'll be bored to tears. Even a vintage design like the '72 or '76 set is of little interest to me if it's from one of the however many teams there were back then. But if there's a Padre on the front? I'm interested.
They weren't all Padres, however. Almost. Here is a future Padre in Jim Lewis, during this Las Vegas Stars days. The Padres AAA affiliate is now in El Paso. You can't even get a direct flight from El Paso to San Diego, and it's over a 700 mile drive. Contrast that to Las Vegas, with direct flights leaving almost hourly and less than half the driving distance. Anyways, there were also some cool Cal Ripken Jr. cards, but this sticker was my favorite of the bunch.
This, however, is by far one of the most unique things I've received in a bubble mailer. A soda can from the 70s? Man, that is pretty cool. I'll admit that when it comes to collecting stuff, I'm pretty much a strictly baseball card kinda guy. Easy to store, easy to look at. But I can definitely make room for this in the collection for now. Randy Jones is the man.
So is Mark, for that matter. Thanks a lot man! And happy Super Bowl Sunday to everybody who cares about that sort of thing. I'm not big into football, but I'd be watching it if we had cable. As it stands, I'll probably be folding laundry tonight while watching something on Hulu with my wife. I'll be checking into twitter for game updates. I have no idea who's going to win. It's hard to root for the Broncos or Richard Sherman, but easy to root for Peyton Manning and Russell Wilson.