There are times when I think to myself, "Self, I think we're running out of things to post about on this blog we've got going. What are we gonna do?"
Then there are times when I think, "Aaugh! The drafts are piling up! I have features and trade posts and randoms stuff that I want to post and not enough time to do it!"
This is one of those times.
In an attempt to chip away at the mounting pile of trade posts, here is a six-in-one - more than enough Padre-packed cardboard goodness to keep you satiated for the rest of the month (and longer, presumably, for those who care little about my precious Friars).
We'll start off with my first ever trade package from Ryan at the "O" No!!! Another Orioles Blog.
If there is a better card showing the need for the Padres to go back to their brown uniform roots, I haven't seen it yet. Even the card companies are forgetting what team is wearing those boring blue duds. Still, I guess the Brewers logo in the middle makes an already cool looking card a little more interesting. You'd be surprised how many Brewers cards I've gotten in trade packages because they basically have the same uniforms as the current Padres.
I need to come to grips with the fact that I will never own all of the Tony Gwynn cards in existence. There's just too many. As of my most recent count, the number is past 450. You'd think I already have these. But I didn't. Until now (well, a few weeks ago, if we're getting specific). Easy favorite goes to the Bowman card on the far right, touting Gwynn's status as a minor league MVP.
The Wally Whitehurst card is an "Electric Diamond" parallel, which I happen to like a lot. Nice shot of the Jack Murphy "orange line" in the background as well. Rickey Henderson is always an easy induction into the Miscellaneous Padres binder, based on him being the greatest base stealer of all time, while Dennis Tankersley can credit his admission into the binder to his socks, worn properly.
Now that Adrian is a Dodger, cards really need to stand out to me for them to make the binder cut. These two fit the bill, as I'm a sucker for the '09 O-Pee-Chee set, and any card commemorating a Padres win is good in my book.
Here are some other parallels, Mike Cameron in gold, Austin Hedges in purple. Don't have much to say about Cameron, other than that I prefer cards of him that show him on defense, since he was such a high quality center fielder. Hedges has had mixed success in Spring Training so far. On one hand, he's shown off a rocket arm and has had some timely hits for the team, but he's also made a throwing error and hasn't hit consistently. I'll be interested to see when he comes up to the big team, because he's got the skills to pay the bills.
I'll go out on a limb and say that easily, the best part of the stack Ryan sent is the inclusion of the (what is probably a) Padres team set. Matt Stites was traded to Arizona in the Joe Thatcher deal, but Max Fried and Yeison Asencio were invited to Spring Training camp. Fried hurt his arm early on, but sounds like he'll recover quickly.
Alright, I guess the main highlight of the package was another Austin Hedges card that I didn't already have. All Padres fans love Austin Hedges. Or they don't know about him. To know him is to love him.
O! Almost forgot, here's a Kyle Blanks refractor from 2012 Topps. Great card.
Up next, a few cards from Greg aka Night Owl, the man who needs no introduction.
I really didn't think it would've taken me this long to finally land this Tony Gwynn card from last year's Allen & Ginter set. Glad to finally have it. I'm guessing N.O. landed this one in one of his attempts to find some A&G minis that he needed. Hope he found 'em.
Here's the back. The "Across The Years" isn't terribly original, as there are lots of "Born On Today's Date" type things in newspapers (well, at least the one's I've read), but I guess there probably aren't many baseball cards that do the same thing. I can't believe that I didn't know that Gwynn and Chase Headley had the same birthdays. I also love that Billy Joel is categorized as a "Piano Man" instead of a musician.
While the Gwynn was the best card of the bunch, there were some other very useful cards he included as well. I mean, if you are the type of person who considers cards to be "useful". Like me.
This Trevor Hoffman card was one that I needed to complete my Trevor Hoffman Topps Timeline Project. I never announced it, and I picked up the rest of the cards I needed, so that will be a post for… some future time. The Tom Lampkin will be put into the Rad binder like it is shown, back facing the front. Gotta take the Padres catchers in gear wherever I can get 'em, even if it's above a few lines of stats.
This trio of cards just makes me smile. Between the orange borders from '90 Score, the gray border from '84 Fleer, and the use of brown as a primary color, there are a lot of people who would say that these are ugly cards. I don't totally disagree, but I think they're awesome.
Something about the Score cards really struck me - I miss cards like this. Cards where it's not so closely cropped and you see more of the player and what they are doing. Maybe you don't see every last detail of their face, but it's not a bad look.
If it's only gonna be one card, you can't do much better than Mr. Padre himself. This is from this year's Topps set, a "Before They Were Great" insert. While I'm convinced that the overwhelming majority of inserts in the flagship were designed to bore me to death, this one bucks the trend. Maybe a little more foil than is necessary around the border, but in hand, these look sharp. The background behind the photo has a cool quality to it that makes it look almost 3D, but not quite. I guess I'm doing a lousy job of describing it, so check it out for yourself.
On the back we are reminded (or learn for the first time) that Tony was actually more of a basketball star at San Diego State than a baseball player - he didn't try out for the team until his sophomore year, and even then he had to be "convinced" to do so.
Speaking of getting Tony Gwynn cards from Cubs bloggers for the first time…
This came to me via PWE a week or two ago from Tom over at Waiting 'Til Next Year. I am not sure that I have seen a Gwynn card with a bigger smile. Go ahead and scroll up, the ones that have already been featured in this post show a tight-lipped, serious Gwynn. Can't say I'm used to seeing a smiling Tony card. Good to see.
In breaking with the theme of this post (a bunch of trades and a crapload of Padres), Tom also sent me this guy who played for… the blue team in Chicago…? Just kidding, I know that even though there are no logos on this photoshopped card, that the awesomely named Rock Shoulders is in the Cubs organization. I'm pretty strict on the non-Padres cards that enter my binders. Rock Shoulders makes the cut. BAMF.
Next up, this batch of cardboard comes from Jeff over at Fan-Attic Sports Cards.
I already had a copy of this Gwynn card, but it is autographed, so it's in the Rad binder. Good to have another copy for the Gwynn binder. Since joining the blogosphere, I've become a big supporter of the "Bring Back The Brown" movement for the Padres uniforms, but the more I look at 'em, I really like how they used yellow. The amount of yellow on this card is awesome.
This Gary Sheffield card reminded me that I need to finish my post on this year's Donruss set, which features the return of the Diamond Kings. Kind of. Love me some Sheff cardboard. The card of Frank Seminara is also a great use of the full body photography, showing Seminara's unique arm slot. A lot to love about this one, from the black borders, the "orange line" in the background, and the released ball heading toward the plate. Great stuff.
Not all of these were Padres, as Jeff took the time to dig up a Rube Foster card for my Foster collection. I've been trying to find on of Rube for a while now, glad to finally have this one.
You could tell that he had been looking at my want list, as he also sent me these two cards to go towards my Astros team set. Castro and Altuve are probably the two biggest names on the current roster, although the 'Stros have got some great players that are going to be working their way up the minor league ladder to the bigs pretty quickly. Since getting back into collecting in 2011, I've chosen a set each year to put together a team set for a Texas team. I now have the '11 Topps Rangers, '12 Heritage Rangers, '13 Heritage Astros, and have a good lead on the '14 Topps Astros.
Last but certainly not least is a package I got from Jimmy over at a great new blog called S. Mack Talk. He's a big Shane Mack fan. I took a photo of all the cards at once, because he batted a perfect 9 for 9 as far as cards that made it into binders.
The Gwynn and Hitchcock in the middle are "Hobby Reserve" parallels, as evidenced by the large gold stamp/foil thing in the bottom right corner. The Joyner at the bottom is a die-cut card that looks a lot better than most Pacific cards have any right to be. The Ben Davis card makes yet another Davis entry into the Padres catchers in gear section of the Rad binder. There are three stickers, featuring great late 80's Padres Benito Santiago, Marvell Wynne, and Ed Whitson, and while I'm not always big on stickers pretending to be cards, these are all good in my book, so they're in. The best card of the bunch though, in my opinion, is the "Picture Perfect" card of Greg Vaughn. Another great full body action shot.
Six trades, eleven Tony Gwynn cards? Sounds pretty good to me!
Thanks so much to all these great bloggers and trade partners. You're all awesome. I normally try to make an individual post for each trade, but with the week that I've had, it had to be done. I still need to find a way to shoehorn a few more trade posts for trades from Mark, Wes, and Ethan, along with some other posts that aren't trade-related.
Anyways, if you're waiting for any mail from me, I've been unable to get to the mail this week, but I think that this coming week I'll be able to make it happen. Sincerest apologies, like I said, it couldn't be helped.
Anyways, hope everybody has a great Sunday! Take care.