A blog about baseball cards... and the Padres

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Throwback Madness

Man, I didn't realize that my last post was post number 600!  I've been posting so infrequently this year (compared to the rest of the short history of this blog) that I guess I've been glossing over stuff that I used to notice.

Anyways, I'll celebrate breaking the 600 barrier with some good old fashioned throwback uniform cards.

A few posts ago (last week), I wrote about the Padres using the 1984 throwback uniforms in a series agains the Cubs.  It got me thinking about the influx of throwback uniforms that we've seen on baseball cards.  More specifically, the Padre variations.

So, without further ado, here are a bunch of recent Padre cards featuring throwback uniforms.

Alright, maybe I started off with the best card of the bunch. No other set is more suited for a throwback uniform than Heritage.  That the orange and brown match the orange lettering above Maybin's head is pretty slick in my book.  Wish they would've done all of the Padres cards like this one, looks soooo awesome.

Here's a bunch of cards from last year's flagship set.  Not one, not two, but three different throwback uniforms in play here. Chase Headley and Cam Maybin start us off with some 70's uniforms, while Yonder Alonso and Carlos Quentin give us some more brown goodness with some 80's vibes.  Andrew Cashner rocks the blue and orange of the 90's.  Very impressive, to go along with the great design and cool parallels of 2013.

There were no throwback uniforms in the 2012 Topps flagship set.  Lame.  Had some camo and the other "regular" jerseys, but nothing awesome.

On to 2011.

Ahh, the set that got me back into collecting.  Only one throwback uniform here, but it's a good one.  Great shots of all the players as well.  The Denorfia card is one of my all time favorites, and was the first "rainbow" that I ever attempted (and have somewhat completed).

There may be more cards of Padres in throwbacks, and I might even have some hidden away in my binders.  Still, I don't think that cards have gone quite as throwback-crazy as they have the last couple of years.

I'm diggin' it.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Mini Bowmans? Mini Bowmen?

Wow, it's been a crazy week!  This is the second to last week of school for me (or penultimate, for you five-dollar-word people), and my grandparents drove all the way from San Diego to come visit their Texan grandchildren.

Today I'm taking a half day at school.  Need to do some end-of-the-year paperwork and what not, and will then be heading down to San Antonio with said grandparents and family.  Not quite sure what we'll be doing down there, but it'll be fun.

Personally (and I know it might be a long shot), I'd love to be able to go to a San Antonio Missions game.  If I go, I might be able to see some of the players featured in this post.

Here is the "complete team set" for the 2014 Bowman Prospect mini's.  I'm a sucker for these things, after they were inserted into the set last year.  They're here in order from highest to lowest prospect, though the rankings may have changed since the cards were printed.  Rymer Liriano is currently raking in AA San Antonio, and Austin Hedges has thrown out more than 20 would-be base-stealers for the Missions.  Has hit a few homers as well.  Max Fried is still recovering from some arm issues that sidelined him before Spring Training began.  Jace Peterson skipped from AA right to the big club, where he got his first hit on the first pitch he saw from a guy named Strasburg.  He's back in AAA, right now, along with Matt Wisler, who pretty much annihilated everybody he faced in AA, though hasn't seen the same success as an El Paso Chihuahua.

Sorry for the huge rundown of prospects that many of you probably don't care about.  The Padres lost their last game 12-6, so I'm looking forward to the future… hopefully.  I think Peterson and Wisler will be on the roster by the end of the year, with Liriano and Hedges having an outside chance, but will most likely be on the team next year.

Here's the team set from 2013 Bowman, a little "Where are they Now?" if you will.

Well, it looks like three-fifths of the guys are still on "prospect" level.  Jedd Gyorko had a above average rookie campaign, hitting .249 with 23 homers.  The 123 strikeouts versus just 33 walks foreshadowed some plate discipline issues, and this year he is hitting a paltry .173, though he does have 5 homers and leads the team with 24 RBI (more of an indictment to a horrible offense than a compliment to Jedd).  Casey Kelly is rehabbing his Tommy John surgery and will likely be joining the San Diego rotation since Robbie Erlin and my man crush, Andrew Cashner have hit the DL as of late.

Hmm, I hadn't meant for this post to be so wordy, but when it's Bowman and they're mostly prospects, I guess you have to find a way to explain why we/I should get excited about them.

Overall, I'm not a huge fan of Bowman, or of mini cards, but for some reason, when they're put together, I really like 'em.  I guess I'm also just a sucker for Padre cards that I don't already have in general, since it seems like they keep getting cut out of more and more checklists these days (ahem, Archives).

Hope everybody has a great start to their weekend!  Go Padres!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

1984, cont.

So, for whatever reason, the camera on my iPhone (which I've been using to take photos for the blog ever since I got it) is crappin' out on me.  Fortunately, we just bought a printer off Craigslist, which (unbeknownst to us) also doubles as a scanner.  I guess I'm one of those "fancy" bloggers now!

Anyways, this week was a long one for me, which included a bad alternator which stranded my wife at the mall and a classroom full of first graders who are ready for summer, among other things.  That, coupled with the Padres recent struggles against such juggernauts as the Twins and Cubs left me in a less than great mood.

However, with a 11-1 drubbing of the Cubbies last night, which was preceeded by a fun night at church with some families playing volleyball, my mood was greatly lifted.  If you were fortunate enough to watch the game, you would've noticed the stellar looking '84 throwback uniforms that the Padres were rocking.

They were brown.  They were glorious.  And apparently full of offense.

Yonder Alonso hit his second home run in eight days, after going almost a full calendar year without one.  He's now within a few hits of leaping past the Mendoza line as well.

Well, after showing a few cards from the '84 Topps and '84 Mother's Cookies sets yesterday, here are cards from 1984 that I don't have complete sets of.

Here are the only four '84 O-Pee-Chee cards I have.  Basically the same as the '84 Topps set, but the backs are in French.  Man, just look at that pink.  Who said brown and pink and orange don't go together?

Well, I guess my wife would.  We had a longer-than-I-thought-it-would've-lasted conversation about the pros and cons of the use of brown in Padres uniforms.  I'm a member of the "Bring Back The Brown" movement, while she's strongly against it.

Here's hoping our marriage survives.

 The rest of the cards from '84 are either from the Fleer (9 cards total) or Donruss (7) sets.  I've divided them here by the uniforms that the players are wearing on the cards.  On the left, we have a quartet of Padres rocking the white home jerseys.  Even if you're not a fan of the brown, I think these still have a look that could translate well to a 2015 design.  On the right, we have a group of brown quadruplets.  Garry Templeton doubling up on the brown in the Fleer and Donruss sets.  Nice.

The last eight are all shown in the yellow warmup/batting practice jerseys.  A little anti-climactic, since these are ones that you aren't likely to see in any sort of "throwback" game.  Still like them, and an important reminder that yellow needs to go along with the brown, though not necessarily like these.  I like 'em, don't get me wrong, but not as much as the game uniforms.

Well, there you have it.  The Padres don't have the tradition of the Yankees or Cardinals, but we've got a large wardrobe of old uniforms that we can bring back a few times a year to get us excited about something different.

Here's hoping the Padres can keep it rolling with the brownout tonight.  If you're going to the game, you might run into my father in law, Dave, who will be in attendance.  I know this, because he called me and told me that he'd be grabbing a replica jersey for me.  Here's a picture of the backs of them.  I imagine the Gwynn jerseys will be a hot ticket item, but Steve Garvey, Graig Nettles, Kevin McReynolds, and Ed Whitson will also be ones that they're passing out.

Personally, I think they dropped the ball a little bit by not having them for Garry Templeton or Goose Gossage.  Nettles and McReynolds had slightly better years than Tempy in '84, but he also played for the team for a decade and is more of a "Padres name" than Nettles or McReynolds.  And Goose is… well, Goose Freaking Gossage.

Either way, I'll be happy to get some brown in my wardrobe.  Most of my Padres gear is stuff I get when scouring thrift stores whenever I visit San Diego, and most of the recent giveaways have been blue.  And having a jersey of Kevin McReynolds could be kind of cool in a obscure, die hard Padre fan kind of way.  Dude got some MVP votes in '84.

Friday, May 23, 2014

30 Years Later...

My wife and I were both born in 1984, the same year that the Padres went to their first World Series.  A lot has happened in those last 30 years.  I could come up with a list of pop culture happenings or major world events, but I'll stick to the normal theme of this blog and say that in the last 30 years, I've graduated, gotten married, had kids, and the Padres have only won the pennant one other time and gone through at least a half a dozen uniform changes.

For the 30 year anniversary of that first NL Pennant, the Padres have brought back the 1984 uniforms for a weekend - the same one they happen to be playing against the Cubs, the team they had to beat to get to the World Series.

For the first game of the four game set, they went with the white uniforms, modeled here by Dave Dravecky.  For the second and third games, they will be rocking the brown tops, as featured here by Mr. Padre, Tony Gwynn.  For what it's worth, most of the players in the '84 Topps set are wearing the brown jerseys.  On the last day of the series, they'll be wearing the (now) traditional military camo jerseys, since it's Sunday.

I love the '84 Topps set, since it's from the year I was born.  As a kid, it just seemed so old to me.  Cardboard from before I was born?  Unreal!  To this day, that Gwynn card is probably my favorite from his Topps flagship run.  This was one of my first sets that I completed when I first started this blog.

Unfortunately, 2014 isn't going quite as smoothly for the Padres and Cubs, as they both are in the bottom 4 of the National League in winning percentage.  The Padres dropped game 1 by a 5-1 score, their lone run coming on a Seth Smith home run in the 1st inning.

The Topps set isn't the only team set I have from 1984.  I also have the Mother's Cookies set, given away at the stadium.  Here is Goose Gossage, the closer for that '84 team.  I didn't say it earlier, but I've mentioned it before: I love the brown and gold in the Padres uniforms.  The current blue is so boring and bland.

Here's hoping that the Padres can even the series tomorrow against the Cubbies.  Or at the very least, that they incorporate some brown somewhere into their next half dozen uniform changes.

Until then, go Padres!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Palm Tree Tuesday: Front & Back

One of the features that I loved about the old Jack Murphy Stadium, where the Padres played in the 90's, is the palm trees that they had behind the fence.  Every once in a while, I'll show a card that shows those great trees.  This is one of those times.

This is the second installment of the "Palm Tree Posts", and we're showcasing a pretty good one, if I do say so myself.  This one comes from 1998 Upper Deck, and is none other than Padres shortstop Chris Gomez.  

SO much going on here.  First of all, the most obvious thing is that… there's palm trees on the front AND back of this card.  How awesome is that?

It is pretty awesome.

More than that, it's also a pretty sweet looking double play sequence, as both shots picture Gomez turning two with Jose Guillen of the Pirates sliding into second.  Interestingly enough, it looks like the photo on the back was taken just a split second before the photo on the front.  I've seen a few cards that show pictures from the same sequence on the front as on the back, but usually the pic on the front came first.

Between the orange line of the home run fence, the palm trees, the double play being turned, and that it's of one of my families' favorite players, this is a pretty good one.

Have a great Palm Tree Tuesday, everyone!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Lone Star Pride

I was not born in the place I grew up.  I do not currently live in the place I grew up.

I was born in Oregon.  I was raised in California.  I was a missionary in Illinois.  I was a college graduate in Idaho.  I became a father and teacher in Texas.  While I might not have the roadmap resume of a military brat, I have lived in a few different places, and as such, have ties to different cities and states.

I love all of those places (with the possible exception being Idaho, though I still had some good memories there).  I still consider myself a San Diegan, but I feel like the longer I'm away, and the more roots I put down in the Lone Star State, the more Texan I'm becoming.

Maybe it's the choice we made (after praying about it) to move to Texas and start our family here.  Maybe it's because my kids were born in Texas.  Maybe it's starting my career as a teacher in Texas.  Maybe its because I pledge allegiance to the Texas flag every morning after the American flag.  Maybe it's because the majority of the baseball games I attend are in Texas (I've been to three or four Round Rock Express games and a San Antonio Missions game since my last Padres game).  Maybe it's something else, or a combination of all of these things.

Whatever the reason, I feel like I'm becoming more of a Texan.

Here is a card of a guy I've never heard of: Logan Vick.  Not really a big fan of Bowman, or the Indians, but dang if I don't like the cards with a backdrop of the Texas Flag.  I picked up a few cheap Padre cards on eBay from a seller, and added this to the order for a buck.  Normally, I'm not a big fan of the "State Flag" parallels that I've seen, but it's usually because I don't know what most of the state flags look like.  The Texas flag is a very recognizable one, at least for me.

Here's the back of Vick's card.  Turns out that he was born (and even though it doesn't say it here, went to high school) in Kerrville, TX.  Haven't made it out to Kerrville, but considered applying for a job there a few summers ago.  Not a huge town, almost an hour west of San Antonio.  Hometown of new Browns backup quarterback Jonathan Manziel.

Anyways, I feel like it's been hard to find Padre cards that want that are in my price range, so I'm going to see how many of the "Hometown" parallels I can track down with the Texas flag in the background. At first, I didn't think it'd be much of a list.  This is Football Country, right?

Well, turns out the list is a little longer than I thought.  Some pretty big names as well:

5 - Jay Bruce
8 - Joe Nathan
13 - Evan Gattis
18 - Austin Jackson
37 - Will Middlebrooks
74 - David Freese
81 - Jarred Cosart
82 - Hunter Pence
96 - Anthony Rendon
100 - Clayton Kershaw
133 - Homer Bailey
135 - Michael Wacha
140 - Chris Davis
169 - Shelby Miller
174 - Michael Choice
182 - Andrew Cashner
206 - Jonathan Lucroy
BP1 - Jason Hursch (Braves)
BP5 - Mark Appel (Astros)
BP21 - Billy McKinney (A's)
BP40 - Logan Vick (Indians)
BP51 - Hunter Dozier (Royals)
BP89 - Michael Ratterree (Brewers)
BP100 - Brian Ragira (Giants)

One down, 23 to go.

By the way, I guess I haven't said it yet, but Texas is a pretty great state to live in.  I mean, you can't really choose where to be born or where to be raised, but you can choose where to live.  So far, so good.

EDIT: Picked up my first (and probably last) rack pack of Bowman and was able to knock the Jay Bruce off the list.  Nice.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Diversity Day?

I got a PWE the other day from Johnny's Trading Spot.  Always a welcome occurrence.  He has sent me plenty of great Padres since we started exchanging cards.  However, in this particular offering, there was nothing in terms of Padres to be had.

In fact, most of the cards weren't even of the baseball variety!  What in the name of all that is good and decent is this?

Well, it turns out that after receiving a few "Foster" cards that were of the hockey variety, I have now expanded into football as well.  This Arian Foster card was the sharpest looking of the bunch.  Living in Texas, I've been toying with the idea of getting my son Foster a Texans jersey of Arian Foster's.  Might be kinda cool, even though we're not really football fans.

 Here are the rest of the "football" cards.  I guess people like this sport, for whatever reason.  DeShaun Foster is another running back, and all of his cards are from his days with the Carolina Panthers (I have no idea if he played for any other teams, or if he is still with the team.  This is a stat I'm not going to look up).

Like I said, even though I'm not a football fan, I guess it's kinda cool to have the Foster Collection get a little diversity.  Now to see if there are any Foster's in basketball, I guess.

Not to fear, John also included a few Foster cards from our nation's pastime.

I really like the Steve Foster card.  A night card of a "Rated Rookie" signing a ball for a fan.  I'm sure there's a few bloggers that have mini collection that could appreciate this one.  Man, I remember as a kid, I had stacks and stacks of '92 Donruss.  Didn't really like it that much, I just think it was cheap, so it's what I could afford.  I also already have the mini version of the '75 Topps Leo Foster, but now I have the big brother to go along with it.  Nice.  Digging those Braves uniforms.

We'll close it out with my favorite card of the bunch.  Here's the back of Kevin Foster's, um… well, I liked the back so much that I forgot what the front looked like, and therefore what brand of card this is. It's from 1996, so I'll let you cardboard experts figure it out.  I love the backs of the 90's cards that cared little about the stats, and more about how they could cram three pictures of the same guy in a tiny rectangle.  Props to whatever company this is for including a picture of a pitcher at the plate.

Thanks again, John, for adding a little diversity to my collection!  Have a great Friday!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Best Wishes

The phrase "absence makes the heart grow fonder" is usually used to describe the affections between a couple who is working on a long distance relationship.

The only long distance relationship I ever had was w/my wife, when we first started dating.  She was living at home and going to school in San Diego, while I was attending Cal State Fullerton in Orange County.  Didn't have a car for most of it, but was able to take the train down every other weekend or so.

But I'd use it to describe my love for the Padres.  The longer I'm away from San Diego, it seems the more I cling to that relationship that started when I was in elementary school.  If I was still in SD, I wonder if I'd be the fanatic that I feel I am now.

Hard to tell.  Still, I'd be able to do a lot more "Padre fan" type stuff if I was physically closer to the team (going to games, talking w/other fans, etc.).  One thing that I definitely would've gone to would be Padres FanFest.

Of course, the commute to San Diego just for a weekend event wouldn't make sense.  It's a long way from Texas.  However, my brother and my dad went, and along with shagging fly balls in the outfield and throwing a few pitches in the bullpen (awesome, right?) they were able to get a few Friars to sign a ball for me.

On the left, there is Everth Cabrera and Casey Kelly.  I'm not a huge Cabrera fan, due to some off the field stuff, but he has to be a big part of the Padres if they're going to have any success.  I got Casey Kelly's auto at Spring Training a few years ago, when he lied and told me that his elbow was feeling better a few days before he had Tommy John surgery.  Don't hold it against him though.

On the right, there is Rene Rivera and Eric Stults.  Some of the lesser known names on a team full of lesser known names.  I thought Stults had a few pretty gutty performances for the Padres last year, when a bunch of their starters got injured.  This year has not been kind to him, however, and I'd be surprised if he was a starter by the end of the year.  Rivera is one of three catchers on the team, which is as unnecessary as it seems.  He's the best defensively, and seems to be the personal catcher of Andrew Cashner.  Not sure what his future holds in San Diego, but he's here for now.

Easily the highlight of the ball.  Eric Owens is one of those gritty guys that you couldn't help but love from the "letdown" years after the Padres second ever World Series appearance (1999-2000).  Tons of hustle and heart, and put up some decent numbers (.282 avg., 62 steals, 142 runs in two seasons).  I think he was the only "Padre alumni" there, which seemed pretty weak in my opinion, but if there was a guy that I would've stood in line to sign a ball (and even better, take a picture with), it would've been Owens.  Plus, I love how he signed it:

To: Marcus
"Best Wishes"
Eric Owens

Thanks Ammon.  I'm glad I raised my brother to be a baseball fan, and that you haven't been totally corrupted by Sam, thinking that lacrosse is better.

Take care.  Go Padres.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Rally Cashner

Even though I'm a baseball fan, I'm more specifically a Padres fan.  As such, most of my "baseball memorabilia" is Padre related.  And because baseball cards are so easy to store (and I just love 'em), I rarely stray into other types of baseball stuff.

However, one thing that I've always been meaning to pick up is a bobble head.

For one thing, it seems like (and I could totally be wrong) bobble heads have roots in baseball.  There's enough giveaways that you'd think that at some point, I'd have gotten my hands on one.  However, as a Padre fan, it seems like it's either Tony Gwynn (which raises the price considerably), or it's somebody that I'm less than enthusiastic about (Clayton Richard).

However, I saw this one that started out with a $9.99 price tag (shipped), and I was the first and only bidder, so now it's mine:

Andrew Cashner!  I'm pretty sure that the majority of my posts now revolve around my favorite Padre pitcher.  I guess that's how it is.  As I type this, he's pitching against the Reds.  Already down 1-0 in the 2nd, but I think he's settling in.  Anyways, this is a Wrigley Field giveaway from Cashner's days with the Cubbies.  He's shown here in a Boise Hawks uniform, the Cub's Short Season A League team.  Not sure why they went with the Hawks uniform, since he was with all the other Cubs affiliates as well, but I guess it's a cool enough uniform, and the obscurity of the team makes it a little cooler.

Anyways, it arrived last Friday, and the Padres haven't lost since then.  Not only have they not lost, but they went from being a team that averaged less than three runs a game (pre-bobble head), to a team that averaged eight runs a game (post-bobble head).

Small sample size, just three games against the Marlins.  Still, I'll take what I can get.

Rally Cashner, bring the Padres a win tonight!  Go Padres!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mini Update

I have yet to buy any packs of Gypsy Queen (trying to make it two years in a row), but I have been tempted to splurge on some of the new Bowman stuff.  Not a whole lot in terms of Padres, but I haven't really busted any packs since Heritage came out.

But, I'm trying to fight the urge and save money, so the most I've done in the card accumulation category has been sniping some cheap Padres off eBay.  To go along with my mini-budget, here are the mini cards I've picked up.

Here are three of the Gypsy Queen mini parallels.  Still don't have the mini base version, but I'm not too worried about tracking that one down… eventually.  Of course, being minis, storing them is always a problem, but together, these look pretty sharp.  Especially love the sepia tone, I'm a sucker for that.

Here are the backs of the cards above.  The serial numbers are printed in the top right hand corner, and you see that the sepia is #/50, the red is #/99, and the black is #/199.  The black back is definitely cool looking, and that it's #003 in the set is neat as well.

Next up, a pair of the aforementioned Bowman cards.  Not a whole lot that I'm interested in when it comes to the Bowman set, but I do really like the Prospect Minis.

Not a great photo here, but that's what you get when they're so shiny.  Rymer Liriano and Matt Wisler seem like a pair of pretty legit prospects.  Both started off the season at AA San Antonio, and both have been dominating the whole season (small sample size notwithstanding).  Wisler was recently bumped up to AAA El Paso, but hasn't had the same kind of success, but he's still young, and talk is that he'll most likely get a late season call up this year.

I already have the other 3/5ths of the Padres Prospect Minis on the way from eBay.  Was able to get all of them for an average of $1.20 each, shipped.

Alright, enough of this "mini" crap.  Next post will be about bigger stuff.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Good Day For Pink

If you are watching any baseball games on this Mother's Day, chances are you'll be seeing a lot of pink.  Pink bats, pink cleats, pink wristbands.  Even the stitching on the baseballs will be pink.

At first, I thought that the pink explosion might be going a little bit overboard.  Maybe it is.

But it's probably hard to over do it when you're celebrating motherhood.

As far as I can tell, I have only two baseball cards that have any amount of pink on them, which works out, since I have two great mothers in my life: the one that raised me, and the one that I'm married to.

Andrew Cashner is awesome.  So is my mom.  Both have a lot of natural gifts that make them great, and both have a lot of fun at what they do.  My mom is always really upbeat and positive, even when there are plenty of reasons to be negative (like being on the Padres).  Plus, my mom has always gave me pretty free reign to pursue my interests, and had no problem letting me grow out a mullet in elementary school.  I thought I was so cool, but it was nowhere near as awesome as Cashner's.

Not even close.

As much as I love Cashner (and believe me, the love is strong), I think I still have to give the #1 spot in my "favorite Padre" list to Chris Denorfia.  Like Deno, my wife is awesome.  Day in, day out, she does what it takes to get stuff done.  With Deno, lots of times it's stuff that can go unnoticed by the casual fan, but as a diehard who rarely misses a game, I know how important he is to our team.  Without my wife, our team would be bad.  Even worse than the Padres.  Deno is a good baserunner, fielder, and hitter.  I would need another post (or ten) to list all the things that my wife is great at.

Above all of that, however, she is a great mom.  Our kids are so blessed.

Yesterday, we went to the splash pad in the next town over.  Foster didn't want to get in the water, but Harper had a blast.  A pretty good way to spend Mother's Day Eve, if you ask me.

Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there, but especially the ones that I love so much.  I love you more than words could possibly describe.  And definitely more than Andrew Cashner and Chris Denorfia.

The Denorfia card is serial numbered 29/50, which I guess is cool, since my wife is 29 (for a few more weeks).  The Cashner is numbered 48/50, but I can't think of any significance that would have to my mom.

Monday, May 5, 2014


In case you haven't noticed, I'm making a conscious effort to shorten my posts, and by doing so, hopefully increase the number I'm able to write.  I had my first Summer School meeting this weekend, so I'm already thinking ahead to the next few months, and hopefully once schools out, I'll have some more time to write and dig into my baseball cards.

You know, the important stuff.

Anyways, I got a pretty sweet PWE from TJ at The Junior Junkie blog this weekend.  Five or six new Gwynn's to add to the binder, along with a few other cards for the Misc. Padres binder.  This was my favorite of the bunch.

While I'm not an OCD collector who has to have every Padres card (not that there's anything at all wrong with that kind of collecting, I just know that I'd get burned out by it), I hang on to every Otsuka card I get.  The reasons for this are varied, but suffice it to say that he was a definite fan favorite during his time in San Diego.

By the time he left the Japan, he was already in his 30's, so he only spent four years in MLB - two with San Diego and two with Texas.  He had a career ERA of 2.44 in 232 innings.  All very solid, but he is probably most known in San Diego for this…

Anyways, Aki's card was the 1,222nd card in the Miscellaneous Padres binders (Vol. J-Y).  Kind of a fun looking number.  Both binders are reaching critical mass, so a few more pages and I'll have to be looking for another binder.

Thanks TJ!

Friday, May 2, 2014

There Will Be Blood

When I first started this blog, I had good old Nolan Ryan as part of my Player Collection.  My grandpa was raised in Texas, and he was a big contributor to my baseball card collection as a kid.  He has an autographed Ryan baseball above his computer, and he even though he was getting up there in years when I was still a kid, he was still a big deal.

I have since removed him, since the focus has turned more (almost exclusively so) to the Padres and their players.  Too many Nolan's to chase, so little time.

Anyways, I've trimmed it down to a few of my favorites.  This is easily my favorite Nolan Ryan card.  I will probably never own his rookie card (though I'll never say never), and his '71 card is, of course, awesome as well, but I think that even if I did have those in the binders, this still might be the #1.

After taking a shot to the face of the bat of Bo Jackson, he wiped off the blood and kept pitching.

This is the bloodiest card that I have in my collection.  I don't really know of any other baseball cards that have a bleeding player on them (please let me know if there are any).

The reason I'm showing this card is the reason that there was no post yesterday: my son, Foster, had a couple of trips to Urgent Care to glue up his chin.  He was crawling around on some toys and took a spill onto the hardwood floor chin first.  Nice little gash.

He took it like a champ, and was even back to playing around with his sister before he got the glue.  He got put back together in the afternoon, but after getting him dressed for bed, we saw that it was starting to gape open again, so we took him back down to seal it up for good.

Fozzie is a pretty sensitive kid, and a stern look or voice can get him upset pretty easily.  But I think the little dude's got some of that Nolan Ryan physical toughness in him.

You know, as far as 17 month-olds go.