Over the summer, I really hit a lull in trade packages. You know, during the time of year when a teacher has the most… uh, time. Then, all of a sudden, school is in full swing, and I have three packages from brand new trading partners all in the same week! Crazy!
The first of this trio is from Ryan over at the Card Stacks blog. He's been writing for a few months now and has some cool stuff to say about 90s cards, which is right up my alley. I sent him as many Braves and Orioles as I could scrounge up, and here's what he sent in return.
Being a Braves fan, he had a surplus of Ryan Klesko cards. I've said it before, I'm not a big Klesko fan, and I already have more cards of him than I feel like I really want, but I can't pass up a good Padre card when I see one, and Ryno has graced many a good Padre card.
I know that bloggers have mentioned "pitcher face", when an pitcher is straining awkwardly mid-pitch. Not sure I've seen many who have discussed "sliding face". Even though it's a profile shot, Klesko definitely looks interesting here. This will be filed along with the rest of my Jack Murphy Stadium palm tree collection.
I love Heritage, and if there's one thing that my Padre collection is lacking (in terms of recent cards), it'd be Heritage cards. As far as I know, Marcus Giles is the only Padre who has had the same first name as me, so he's a guy that I like to see, and even though the idea of Heritage mixing with chrome seems weird, I like this Clay Hensley card.
Ok, seriously? Ryan Klesko is a gnarly camouflage hat hitting balls off a tee? Yeah, no way I'm letting that one go. It's been a while since I got a new-to-me Khalil Greene card, and this card was probably my favorite of the package. If you type "Craig Breslow" into google.com, the second suggestion is "Craig Breslow smart". I guess graduating from Yale with a degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry will do that.
At first, I thought that these cards were the same, but had different colored borders. But, for whatever reason, there are two different Tim Stauffer cards in the 2004 Bazooka set. For Padres fans who like painful news, this Padres long relief guy has the most career WAR of any Padres 1st round pick (4.1, chosen in 2003) since Khalil Greene (8.4 career WAR, chosen in 2002). While I'm excited about the potential of the current crop of Padres prospects, history prevents me from getting too excited.
Plucked from the same set as the Khalil Greene card above, here's a new-to-me Darin Erstad card. While not the most photogenic athlete, I can always appreciate a new Erstad. I need to check my lists and see who has more cards, Erstad or Steve Finley. It was pretty close, last time I checked. The Tony Gwynn collection still trumps it, though, and it's not really close.
We'll close it out with three non-Padre cards, all from different Heritage sets. I only have two cards of Steve Finley's post-San Diego days. Even though it was a while ago, it still hurts that he left and signed with the Diamondbacks of all teams. But man, these Heritage cards look killer. I especially dig the 2005 World Series Champion patch on Paul Konerko. Paulie! Oh, and My Man Chris Denorfia, who is wearing what I hope is a photoshopped had, because that brim looks… interesting.
Speaking of Deno, guess who's made it onto the checklist for 2014 Topps Update? I was actually hoping for one more Padres card, just for old times' sake. But, I guess they call it Update for a reason, right? Hopefully that's his only card as a Mariner and the next time we see him on a card, he'll be a Padre.
Hey! A guy can hope, right?
Thanks a lot again for the cards, Ryan! Go check out his blog if you haven't already!