Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ervin's Back!!! Complete Game Shutout 8-11-2009

Just finished watching a complete game shutout performance by one of my favorite pitchers Ervin Santana of the Los Angeles Angel's of Anaheim. Ervin managed to shutout the Tampa Bay Ray's only delivering a total of 97 pitches to do so. I believe this is his 3rd complete game shutout of his career! What a night for me to decide to renew my MLB.tv account so I could tune in to see Ervin toss a gem against David Price and the Rays. Ervin has been struggling at home after returning from the DL this year and it finally looks like he might be returning to All-Star form.

The card pictured above is a 2008 Topps Updates & Highlights card of Ervin Santana featuring him as an American League All-Star in 2008. He sure looked the part tonight.

Here's a look at some of the stats from tonights game...
Ervin Santana - Complete game shutout over the Tampa Bay Rays 8/11/2009.
Ervin allowed 3 hits - 2 hits for Catcher Gregg Zaun and a hit for third baseman Evan Longoria.
Pitch count totaled at 97 pitches of which 65 were strikes.
Struck out 6 while walking 2 batters - 14 ground outs / 7 fly outs

After tonights game Ervin improves to 5-6 on the season with a 6.38 era. Hopefully this terrific performance is a start of things to come from Ervin as the Angel's are looking to maintain a solid lead in the AL West.

As always.... just another Halo Victory!

Mailday - Trade w/ Waxaholic!

I only received one package in the mail today and it was from Canada. Instantly I knew that these were the cards Waxaholic sent over for a trade we made in which I sent some O-Pee-Chee baseball cards his way to help him in his quest to complete his set. I'd like to review some of the highlights of the cards he sent my way and had no idea what to expect since I just told him to send any Angel's cards. Anyway on to the cards...

First a look at some of the Angel's singles he sent my way:

Here are three charcoal parallels not #'ed from 2008 Upper Deck Heroes Baseball... Very cool looking cards and I didn't have any of these so they are a great addition. The triple is cool cause I'm a fan of all three players on it... yeah, Manny's still a cool guy I guess. The cards are #84 Howie Kendrick, #103 Rod Carew, #186 Vladimir Guerrero, Ichiro, Manny Ramirez.

Now on to some of the other Angel's cards Waxaholic sent over.

Here's some 2009 O-Pee-Chee Baseball cards which are cool since I managed to get zero Halo's in my blaster box so this is a good start to collecting some Angel's from this set. It was cool that he sent over the black bordered since I like these a lot more then the base white borders. Anyway, my favorite off this bunch is the #FF1 - Vladimir Guerrero - Face of the Franchise insert card (Hit two home runs last night to help top the Ray's 8-7... props to Vlad). The other cards pictured are '09 OPC - #378 Brian Fuentes (the new closer in town), #566 - Kevin Jepsen (RC) (rookie mid-relief guy, nice), #910 - 20th Anniversary - Vladimir Guerrero (pictured as an expo, but hell I'll take it Vlad's the man), #252 - Brandon Wood black wal-mart (gets some playing time here and there hopefully will become a everyday guy soon).

Now here's the other singles I received that are not pictured in scans:
2009 UD OPC Baseball - #RM-13 Justin Morneau
1993 UD - #750 - Steve Frey
2003 Bowman Heritage - #195 Mike O'keefe [First Year Card]
2003 Bowman Heritage - #264 Sean Rodriguez [First Year Card]
1981 Fleer - #122 Don Baylor (some kind of peel card, sticker perhaps? anyway, pretty cool!)
1990 Donruss - #462 Richard (Rich) Monteleone

That wraps it up for the Angel's singles, but Brian a.k.a waxaholic/captain canuck sent me a few unopened basketball packs along with the cards so here's a look at some of the cards I got.

Here's a look at the cards/players I was familiar with out of my 1 pack of 1990 Fleer Basketball cards. Pictured here is current Portland Trailblazers Head Coach Nate McMillan, Best Damn Sports Show's John Salley, Reggie Miller, and former Blazer Buck Williams. Cool looking cards and glad I got a Nate McMillan must only be my 3rd or 4th McMillan card (maybe I'll start collecting some of his cards who knows).

I also received 1 pack of 1991 Fleer Basketball, 2 packs of series 1 1990 skybox basketball along with 2 packs of series 2. Here's a look at what the cards look like...

These cards reminded me of the day when I used to play NBA Jam on Super Nintendo w/ my brother. The card of Vernon Maxwell brought back a lot of memories because we used to tear up the court and bring down the backboards with the Hakeem Olajuwon / Vernon Maxwell Rockets combo. Olajuwon was my favorite player and of course the player I controlled in game while my brother took the role of 3pt bombing sidekick Maxwell.

Thanks to Waxaholic a.k.a. Brian for the cards and trade I hope you receive your cards soon I sent them out over a week ago! This was my first trade here in the blogging community and I'm looking forward to many more.

Monday, August 10, 2009

PC Mailday - 8/10/2009 [Weaver, Doerr, Roy]

New cards to add to my PC and an update on a current 2009 Topps Finest Angel's 'set' I'm working on. First, let's take a look at some of the cards I got in the mail today, just a few pieces to add to my growing collection.

Here's a look at a 2007 Upper Deck Premier - Jered Weaver Insignias Autographs IN-JW Serial #'ed 16/50!!!

Getting cards of this quality for $7 shipped is just an opportunity I can't pass on. Jered Weaver has a very unique signature, as you can tell he's a master of drawing multiple circles. It's alright though, at least he uses the majority of the space provided and he adds more then his initials (even if it's circles instead... whatever, I'm okay with it). The black border looks great on this card and there isn't to much chipping which is very common with dark colored borders.

Scan of the card:
Next is just a small pick up of a ballplayer I've recently started to learn about and thus sparked my interest in collecting his cards. Bobby Doerr is a Hall of Fame second basemen who played for the Boston Red Sox alongside the likes of Ted Williams and other legends. A little insight to his career from the back of the card reads, "After spending all 14 of his ML seasons with the Red Sox, earning nine trips to the All-Star Game and ranking among the AL leaders in RBI on eight occasions, Doerr was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1986 and had his number retired by Boston in 1988." Pretty damn impressive. I had the honor of meeting Bobby Doerr in my local card shop since he lives in Oregon and had the opportunity to take a photo with him which he later signed. Hopefully I'll be able to get this card signed along with others I have (I'll be sure to post them later if I manage to get them signed).

Scan of the card: 2006 Ultimate Collection Baseball - Bobby Doerr #195 Serial #'ed 448/799

And now... a 2008-09 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection Basketball - Brandon Roy #69 Serial #'ed 283/499. This is a cool card and I was able to add it to my collection for less then $1 not including shipping costs. Anyway, the only basketball cards I'm interested in are blazers so there's no point in busting any Ultimate Collection and going broke. It also makes no point when I can pick up these cool looking base cards for 1/100th of a box price that holds 4 cards. All-in-all this is a neat card that I'm happy I could pick up to add to my collection since Brandon Roy is just insane. I'm also happy knowing he will be around for another five years. Now I'll be looking to add some other Ultimate Collection cards to complement this base card, hopefully at a decent price.

Scan of the card:

This post is rather lengthy so I'll update you on the rainbow 09 Finest baseball Angel's set I'm working on and the cards I'm still looking for in my next post.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Hobby Shop & eBay - Angel's PC Additions

Here's a look at some of the cards I've picked up and added to my LA Angel's Collection. I obtained the first three cards through a local hobby shop located in the Beaverton, OR., while the last three were added to my collection through eBay. Now on to the cards I decided to pick up...

First card is of LA Angel's Pitcher Ervin Santana, one of my favorite pitcher's to watch. Ervin also has a pretty cool barb-wire tatoo that I find pretty interesting while he also sports an oversized chain with a cross that swings around his neck as he delivers toward the plate. This card here is a 2005 Leaf Certified Materials Autograh - Mirror Red Parallel Serial #'ed 218/250 - Card # in the set is 161. This is my first autographed rookie card of Ervin and I'm on the lookout for more to add to my collection. I found this one here for $5 at the local hobby shop and couldn't resist picking it up!

The second card I picked up from the same hobby shop for $5. I found this one here while filing through the endless 3000+ count boxes laid out filled with bargains. This card is cool because it has 4 jersey's of 4 Angel's, unlike those cards that may only contain 1-out-of-4 players you actually care about (I'm not a fan of those). The players here are Vladimir Guerrero, Howie Kendrick, Former Angel - Casey Kotchman, and Chone Figgins. Not much else to say besides the fact that this card is pretty awesome since it's all about them Angels. Not to bad of a pickup considering a pack of UD Ballpark was $20 at the same shop.

Card Details: 2008 Upper Deck Ballpark Collection - Quad Swatch Memorabilia - Guerrero/Kendrick/Kotchman/Figgins - #205 in set.

The third and final card I picked up at the shop is 2004 Topps Chrome First Year card of Ervin Santana. I picked this one up for $3 and figured why not it's a good place to start my Santana collection. All-in-all a great looking card and very pleased I picked this one up. Card # is 249 in the set.

Card Details: 2004 Topps Chrome - Ervin Santana First Year Card #249

Now on to some of my eBay pickup's:

First we have a 2009 Allen & Ginter's Ervin Santana that I purchased off the Bay for $1.25 + shipping. A pretty good deal considering I didn't even hit an auto in the $90 hobby box I purchased earlier. I like the fact that he added his #54 to his auto and looks like he actually puts some time and effort into signing the small space provided nicely. Another great card I'm pleased to add to my growing collection.

Card Details: 2009 Topps Allen & Ginter's - Ervin Santana Framed Mini Autograph #AGA-ES.

The next two cards are of Angel's second basemen Howie Kendrick. Although he spent some time earlier this year in the minor's Kendrick is still one of my favorite players on the Angel's.

Card Details: 2008 Upper Deck Masterpiece's - Howie Kendrick Stroke of Genius #SG-HK

Card Details: 2008 Upper Deck Premier Baseball - Howie Kendrick Premier Penmanship Autograph Serial #'ed 09/50. Card #PP-HK

That's a wrap on the lastest pickup's and there is surely more to be coming soon as I keep an eye out for cards I'd like to add to my collection. An update on a Angel's rainbow refractor set I'm working on from 2009 Topps Finest later.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

2007-08 Bowman Elevation Hobby Pack Pick Up!!!

Picked up this pack of 2007-08 Bowman Elevation Basketball from a local hobby shop called Hoopla Sports Cards located in the Portland area. Much of the hobby boxes and such were a bit to pricey for me to grab one so I decided I'd settle for a pack where I was guaranteed some sort of hit. This particular one was $10/pack (5 cards) and you will either receive and jersey or autographed card. Here's a look at the pack:

I brought my girlfriend along with me to check out some of the shops so when I decided on purchasing this pack I insisted she select a lucky one. I guess you could say it was a good decision as she brought me some luck. This pack could have turned out a lot worse then it did. Now let's take a look at the hit I received along with a parallel:

As you can see the hit I received is an autographed/jersey card of 2007-08 Rookie Rodney Stuckey. I'm pretty happy with this pull since he did a pretty good job filling in for Chauncey and A.I. throughout last season and put up some pretty decent numbers. I know it's probably not worth a whole bunch, lucky to even get my $10 back but I can't really complain about a auto/jersey card. On to the Magic Johnson, this is a parallel card #'ed 82/99. I'm not sure if #'ed cards also fall one per pack but even if they do this is one I wouldn't mind pulling. Nice card overall and I like the design on these cards. Now let's take a look at the base cards, the scans are below:

Pretty nice group of players I received for my base cards. The cards I received are #12 - Dwight Howard, #20 LeBron James, #48 John Stockton. Anyway this was a fun pack to break and my girlfriend was interested to see how the pack she selected turned out. I'm sure if it were up to me to select a pack I'd end up with some jersey of some nobody.

I also picked up a bunch of other cheap packs and singles from this shop and plan on going back to look at more singles when I have the time. I'll be adding those pack breaks throughout the night so check back!

1999 Skybox Thunder Baseball Pack Break!!!

I picked up this 1999 Skybox Thunder MLB pack today along with the 2009 Topps Football packs listed below. This pack just caught my eye and I decided to check it out.

1999 Skybox Thunder hobby pack consists of 8 Major League Baseball Cards. This set has a total of 300 cards and some numbered parallels such as 'rave' cards #'ed 150 and 'super rave' #'ed to 25 along with a bunch of others I didn't receive.

Now here's a look at the pack itself and a little fold out ad I received in my pack along with my 8 MLB cards. The ad is for the chance to win a 'All-Star Baseball 2000 N-64 video game from Acclaim Sports' cool! Anyway, the ad features a nice shot of Jeter and when folded in half it's the same size as your normal sports card. This would be a unique piece to add to your Derek Jeter or New York Yankee collection even though it's not a card. Anyway here is the scan.

Now on to the cards. This set is rather entertaining because on the back of each card, instead of attempting to describe a player through a particular event or moment in their career, Skybox decided to become rapper's, throwing down interesting rhymes and lines that I found quite entertaining to read. I'm even thinking about picking up a few more packs just to read the backs. I'll list all eight cards I received in my pack along with the little creativity Skybox threw onto the back of each describing the individual players. First, here are a scan of what these cards look like.

Cards I received in my pack accompained by the text from the back's:

#21 - Kevin Millwood: "Give it up, K.M.. we love the way you slay'em, mowin' 'em down one-by-one is what you do for fun."

#39 - Jaret Wright: "Your style on the diamond is tight, Jaret. And your game is solid gold --- 14 karat. Yeah, we want some of that." <--- this one... Jaret and 14 karat... good one skybox!

#97 - Reggie Sanders: "Reg-gie... Reg-gie... Reg-gie. We're callin' out your name 'cause you got game. and you know this. Keep it real, dawg." <--- Reminds me of a freestyle rapper that doesn't know how to start. Reggie... um... sh!t... Reggie... doh... still thinking... Reggie... yah uh you got game keep it real dog. anyway whatever.

#123 - Andy Benes: "When you're on the mound. Batters better bring their notebooks... cause they're gonna get schooled. Class is now in session." <--- This guy must have been one badass pitcher.

#132 - Rob Fick: "The way you play... from beginning to the endin'... we wonder how you ever lose, 'cause you aint pretendin'." <--- no clue what to say I guess this guy really hustled... like all the time.

#177 - Matt Morris: "Let's hear it for Matt Morris, the M&M boy. How appropriate, 'cause your tight game is sweeter than chocolate." <--- this is one player I was familiar with along w/ cone, millwood, and sanders. I'm not sure this silly description does him any justice though.

#206 - Mike Frank: "Terrorizin' pitchers is what you're all about, and it ain't in your plans to get struck out. So you start flexin' and show your clout." <--- clout = power, muscle and in baseball perhaps a long powerful hit (I just looked it up). I guess this guy didn't strike out much or maybe he was just a muscle head who never got to the plate much. I really don't know, nor do I really care... on to the next card!

#236 - David Cone: "The coneheads are goin' buck wild when it's your turn to start. Control that's second to none is what sets you apart. True That." <--- David Cone is one of the few players in this pack I'm familiar with. Not a huge fan of Cone, esp. since I used to enjoy being the Braves when I faced off with my brother (who used the Yankee's) on our good old school N-64 gaming console.

#297 - Matt Anderson: "With a heater toppin' out at 103 mph, your style is straight imposin'. You're the intimidatin' Tiger... tamin' the opposition." <--- Dang, atleast this guy could throw some heat. No clue as to how effective he was though.

Anyway that wraps up that eight card pack (although I noticed I received 9 cards, sweet! hotpack?). I enjoyed reading skybox's attempt to bust a rhyme and might even pick up a pack or two in the future just to have some kicks at what they were able to compose. Let me know what you think... perhap's just stats and some basic information is more of what your looking for when it comes to card backs.

2009 Topps Football - 2 pack break!

After roaming the streets and hitting up two hobby shops in the Portland area, I came home with two packs of 2009 Topps football, 3 packs of 1989 Fleer Baseball, 1 pack of 1999 Skybox Thunder Baseball, and a 2007 Bowman Heritage Hobby Box. I picked this all up from one shop since the other was out of business and the space was up for rent (wish I new this before wasting my time searching for the damn place). Anyway on to the cards I recieved in my 2009 Topps Football packs, I will list the others in upcoming posts.

Two packs of 2009 Topps Football @ $2.00/pack:

pack 2 scans:

Pack 1:
#37 - Leon Washington (Jets)
#76 - Devery Henderson (Saints)
#150 - Brady Quinn (Browns)
#204 - Keith Rivers - Gold - #'ed 0790/2009 (Bengals)
#209 - Todd Heap (Ravens)
#211 - Santana Moss (Redskins)
#335 - Hakeem Nicks (Giants) - Nice rookie to pull along with Knowshon turned out to be a decent pack in my opinion.
#343 - Brandon Tate - Rookie (Patriots)
#390 - Knowshon Moreno - Rookie (Broncos) - Interested to see Knowshon perform in the NFL after I watched him run all over the Hawaii Warriors in the 2007 Sugar Bowl... Brutal.
#TTT9 - Matt Ryan (Falcons) - Can't go wrong with a Matt Ryan card, even if it's one of those silly toppstown.com cards.

Pack 2 Scans:

pack 2:
#18 - Jason Campbell (Redskins) - Move aside and let Colt Brennan get some playing time!
#20 - LaDainian Tomlinson (Chargers)
#70 - Antonio Gates (Chargers)
#121 - Ted Ginn Jr. (Dolphins)
#125 - Thomas Jones (Jets)
#170 - Jon Beason (Panthers)
#403 - Rashad Jennings - Rookie (Jaguars)
#407 - Mike Goodson - Rookie (Panthers)
#TTT8 - Philip Rivers - Gold (Chargers)
#C5 - Kayla S. (Jacksonville Jaguars Cheerleader) - She was the 2008-09 Rookie Cheerleader of the year. What an interesting card to find... Cheerleader cards now? really... Atleast I'm 2 for 2 in getting 2008 Rookie of the year cards.

2 pack review: Overall, I'd say not to bad for 2 packs. I got two 2008 R.O.Y one being Matt Ryan of the Falcons and the other Cheerleader Kayla S. of the ROAR a.k.a. Jaguars Cheer Squad. Not sure how I feel about the cheerleader insert set and was rather suprised when I saw it. Pulled some decent rookies in Hakeem Nicks and Knowshon Moreno, let's see how they do this season. The card design is nice and simple and much better then the rather ridiculous 2008 design. Perhaps I'll be thinking about purchasing a box or two of this product when the prices drop (they always do).

** All are available if your interested in anything feel free to send me any offers at cardboardsingles@hotmail.com

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Jonathan Stewart Collection - A Work In Progress

An update to my Football personal collection:

Here's a short update on some of the cards I've picked up for my personal collection in the recent weeks. Some off of eBay and a few pulled from an assortment of packs. These are all players that played for the Oregon Ducks, Jonathan Stewart and Patrick Chung are the two I plan on focusing on when dealing with Football at this moment.

2008 Topps Football - Jonathan Stewart (RC) #348:

First card is one I pulled earlier this week from a hobby pack I got for $2. Not to bad, I was pleased since this was the first pack of 2008 Topps I opened and did not already own Jonathan Stewart's Topps base rookie card which I assume would be essential if I plan on putting a Jonathan Stewart collection together. The pack of Topps lived up to it's $2 price tag because I also got a Eddie Royal gold foil rookie, nothing great but certainly two decent rookies are better then none.

2008 Donruss Elite - Jonathan Stewart Elite Status Rookie Card #117 [serial #'ed 05/28]:

This one here is a die-cut rookie card from 2008 Donruss Elite. This is one of my personal favorite's, for some reason I really like the design of this card. Sometimes the die-cuts can be over done and cut into some pretty interesting curves (ex: 2009 UD Icon's) the 2008 elite die-cuts are very sharp and simple and not overdone. Another plus when it comes to Elite is the shiny foil card although they are very sensitive to finger prints I personally like the look. I'm currently on the look for the autographed version of this card or perhaps the gold version I hope I'll be able to pick one up sooner or later. I received this card via eBay yesterday. The white Oregon road jersey was one of my favorites and J. Stew was wearing white when he ran for over 250+ yards against Washington in the 2007 season.

2008 Upper Deck SP Rookie Threads - Jonathan Stewart SP Authentics Rookie Autograph #SP-JS [serial #'ed 11/50]:

This card here is from SP Rookie Threads, a product that can empty your wallet for a total of six packs. This is the reason why I choose to purchase the card itself instead of attempting to open a box in hopes of anything Stewart. Not really a huge fan of this card design but decided to pick it up on eBay since the price wasn't too high and someday I hope to get an rookie auto from every product of the 2008 season. As you can see this is a sticker auto would much rather have it on card but hey you can't always get your way I guess.

2009 Donruss Classics - Jonathan Stewart Membership VIP Jersey/Patch? card #14 [serial #'ed 11/50] :

I'm looking to pick up as many #'ed jersey cards and autographs as I can throughout the 2009 Football season and started off with this 2009 Donruss Classics Patch(supposedly)/1-Color Jersey card. I wish this were a multi-color patch but instead I'm left with the single colored baby blue swatch. All-in-all I guess it doesn't matter since mulit-color patches would have cost a little more.

2009 Donruss Classics - Jonathan Stewart Monday Night Heroes (insert) #26 [serial #'ed 128/150]:

I also managed to get my hands on two more cards out of the 2009 Classics. This one here is a serial #'ed insert card that comes in multiple variations although I'm not positive of this. If there are variations I'll do my best to get them all if I can find them.

2009 Donruss Classics - J. Stewart #15 & 2009 Donruss Elite - J. Stewart #16:

Here is the basic base 2009 Donruss Classics along with the 2009 Donruss Elite Jonathan Stewart card. One of my goals is to collect every base J. Stew card each year, this is a decent start to the '09 football products.

2009 Topps Magic - J. Stewart #217 (Base & Autographed versions):

These next two are the base and autographed version of Jonathan Stewart's 2009 Topps Magic Football set. Topps Magic features all NFL players current/retired in their college uniforms. Jonathan is pictured in my personal favorite Duck uniform. Green helmet, Green shoulders w/ steel mark pattern and the Belloti bold font named after then head coach Mike Belloti along with black pants also w/ the steel pattern. I believe the logo on his right shoulder is that of the Brut Sun Bowl since that was the bowl Oregon attended at the end of it's 2007-08 season defeating the University of South Florida Bulls. As much as I can remember, Jonathan spent the day running up and down the field (not sure how many yards he got though).

2009 Topps Magic - D. Dixon / J. Stew #AD-DS & 2009 Topps Magic - J. Stew Black Mini #217:

Along with the two cards above, I have also been able to get my hands on a black mini, regular mini and this 'Alumni' card which features Oregon's Jonathan Stewart and Dennis Dixon. I'm not a huge collector of Dennis Dixon but sure had a blast watching these two work their 'magic' throughout the 2007 season. Watching the game live from the stands I'll be honest I never knew who had the ball, you just hear cheers and see Stewart running all by himself towards the end zone while the defense is forming a dog pile on quarterback Dennis Dixon. This was one memorable season even though it choose to end with the Ducks without a shot at the BCS National Title game due to an injury to Dixon during a game down at the University of Arizona with only three weeks left and a path to the title game in sight.

That's a wrap on what I added to my Jonathan Stewart collection recently. Feel free to let me know what you think.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

You got 100 pitches or less... Make every pitch count!

I just got done reading the article posted by Tim Kurkjian on ESPN.com (check it out here Baseball's magic number: 100). Within this article Kurkjian covers the issue of pitch counts and it's current magic number of 100 pitches for pitchers in today current game. Pitch counts are in place to protect players arms, but maybe even more important to managers trying to protect their jobs. Managers that limit players to pitch counts can save themselves the blame if their players do end up getting injured. Managers ultimately are the one's who call the shots and in this case are held responsible for the period of time they leave their pitchers on the mound. As soon as a pitcher is fatigued or injured and misses time, the first question is whether or not the player was asked to throw to many pitches in his previous outings. Kurkjian made it clear that a pitch today is thrown with more stress and intensity due to the shrunken strike zone and increase of strength and speed of the batter's they are facing (perhaps due to steroids in some cases).

I noticed the increased amount of attention broadcasters pay towards a pitchers pitch count as the innings progress. This amount of attention by the media places a lot of attention towards players that end up going over 100 pitches. Broadcasters, fans, and analysts will all begin to break down and analyze a players pitch count in fine detail if they head on the DL. This puts pressure on managers to not encourage or allow high pitch counts. As starters are very aware of their limited pitch count, it encourages to them to throw each pitch with higher intensity and physical effort. I believe pitch counts are necessary to keep pitchers healthy and allow pitchers to go out there and make every pitch count.

How does pitch counts affect the game?
The game has evolved to require teams to carry multiple pitchers in their staff. The role of middle relief (set-up men) has become of increased importance. I think in some ways it makes the game very exciting and intriguing to watch. As the game play's itself out, I find myself wondering when the next pitching change will take place while constantly analyzing match up's. Since starting pitchers go anywhere from a couple of innings to six or seven on average, the strength and depth of a bullpen often determines how well a team does throughout the duration of the season. Personally, I find those innings of relief-work to be the most interesting to watch as managers determine their strategy and approach to get the opposing hitters out. Often times, many relief pitchers are only brought in to face one batter and to get one out (if they are successful). I think the stress of pitch count's has increased this aspect of the game since starters are beginning to leave games earlier then before. I enjoy trying to make my own decisions on when pitching moves are needed and if a manager should decide to make a move, I watch to see if it's a success or utter failure.

The amount of attention placed on a pitcher's count makes it tremendously hard to throw a complete game in today's game. This is why Roy Halladay's ability to finish so many games makes him one of my favorite pitchers. I'm tuned in as he is currently on the mound for perhaps the last time as a Blue Jay against the Seattle Mariners. As an Angel's fan let's see if Roy can shut down the Mariners!

How do you feel about the increased emphasis on pitch counts determining how long a pitcher stays on the mound? (Good/Bad/Undecided?)

Monday, July 27, 2009

2009 O-Pee-Chee Baseball - Target Blaster Break!!!

Today I stumbled into the local target looking to pick up some materials I would need later in the day and decided to take a look at the retail card section. Personally, I'm not a huge fan or purchaser of retail packs/blaster boxes since I enjoy that chance of pulling a good card. When making my decision I knew nothing great could possibly be pulled and decided to go with a product that would give me the most cards for my buck and decided on 2009 Upper Deck O-Pee-Chee instead of football or the other baseball blasters that guarantee a jersey piece ( ex: 2008 Upper Deck, Icons, etc. ). I just wanted to get a product that is fairly new and unknown to me and UD O-Pee-Chee Baseball stood out so I grabbed my blaster and headed for the checkout. Before breaking open the product I had no expectations simply because I know how difficult it is to get a 'hit' out of this stuff even when dealing with hobby. This product is aimed more towards set building and the appreciation of the simple base cards of players you've either grown to love or hate. Now on to the break! the cards I received in my blaster box are listed below.

Blaster Box Configuration: 6 cards per pack / 15 packs per box. ( total of 90 cards approx. $0.22/card )

Now on to the cards I received from my blaster box.

Black Border Cards ( inserted 1 per pack ):
#34 - Takashi Saito
#39 - Zack Greinke
#81 - Joel Peralta
#150 - Dustin Pedroia
#161 - Eric Stults
#163 - Alex Gonzalez
#210 - Alfonso Soriano
#274 - Scott Feldman
#294 - Tom Gorzelanny
#297 - Luis Castillo
#312 - David Purcey
#414 - Dontrelle Willis
#428 - Daniel Murphy
#522 - Cincinnati Reds 2009 Team Checklist ( picture of stadium )
#542 - 2008 National League Strikeout Leaders ( 1. Lincecum 2. Haren 3. Santana )

** Great looking cards, the black borders look sharp and not as much noticeable chipping on the edges as I experienced with '07 Topp's which is usually the downside to having black bordered cards. It would be pretty neat to put together a set of the black bordered parallels but I highly doubt I'll be doing so.

Rookie Cards:
#561 - Travis Snider
#568 - Jason Motte
#575 - Trevor Cahill
#583 - Elvis Andrus
#593 - Koji Uehara
#600 - Joe Martinez

** Elvis Andrus is a highly athletic and talented rookie short-stop. Good enough to move gold glover Michael Young over to third? I guess so, let's see how he performs in this second half.

Moments Cards:
#545 - Hanley Ramirez ( March 8, 2008 )
#552 - Derek Jeter ( July 15, 2008 )
#559 - Evan Longoria ( June 26, 2008 )

Insert Cards:
#HM12 - Kelly Shoppach (2008 Highlights & Milestones )
#FF24 - Jay Bruce ( Face of the Franchise )
#AR8 - Kosuke Fukudome ( All-Rookie Team )
#RM-2 - Alexander Ovechkin ( Hockey )

** Not quite sure what Alex O. is doing in this baseball product but I guess hockey is less random than the microwave card I found in my '09 Piece of History box. Jay Bruce is also a very talented young player along with Votto, Volquez, and Cueto that I enjoy to watch on the Cincinnati Reds.

Base Cards: #14 Jason Giambi, #45 Joey Votto, #48 Jason Bartlett, #56 Huston Street, #58 Jose Valverde, #60 Adam Dunn, #62 Jeff Francoeur, #85 Joba Chamberlain, #95 Denard Span, #100 Albert Pujols, #111 Shin-Soo Choo, #114 Gerald Laird, #120 Mariano Rivera, #131 Adam Wainwright, #134 Dustin McGowan, #168 Todd Wellemeyer, #174 Omar Vizquel, #176 Jarrod Saltalamacchia, #177 Yuniesky Betancourt, #193 Ryan Church, #196 Jeremy Hermida, #198 David Weathers, #211 Jeff Clement, #229 Jon Rauch, #235 Jed Lowrie, #238 Mike Hampton, #247 Johnny Cueto, #256 Brad Lidge, #257 Pedro Feliz, #260 Ian Kinsler, #280 Aramis Ramirez, #281 Jeff Keppinger, #287 Gregg Zaun, #296 Scott Hairston, #298 Gabe Kapler, #306 John Baker, #310 Billy Wagner, #318 Hideki Matsui, #320 Miguel Cabrera, #332 Kyle Kendrick, #360 Francisco Rodriguez, #369 Brendan Harris, #372 Jonathan Broxton, #393 Mike Cameron, #430 Nick Markakis, #433 Adam Lind, #434 Jody Gerut, #436 Duaner Sanchez, #438 Eddie Guardado, #444 Elijah Dukes, #447 Kelly Shoppach, #461 Matt Diaz, #486 Randy Winn, #492 Ian Snell, #503 Chicago White Sox - Team Checklist ( Stadium ), #504 Houston Astros - Team Checklist ( Stadium ), #510 Chicago Cubs - Team Checklist ( Stadium ), #517 New York Mets - Team Checklist ( Player Faces ), #524 Kansas City Royals - Team Checklist ( Stadium ), #538 - 2008 NL ERA Leaders - Johan Santana/Tim Lincecum/Jake Peavy

** I decided to list the base since this is a product that is focused on set building therefore the base cards are more significant within this product compared to others.

Personal Review & Feelings:

Overall, I'm not totally disgusted with the cards but it didn't really provide me with any sort of excitement either. I guess for a product that is targeted for set building you can't expect to much although I enjoyed looking at the different cards and think the design is simple and fitting for this type of product. This will most likely be the last blaster/hobby box of this product for me unless the future prices drop significantly. One thing that amazed me was my inability to pull a single Angel's player, what are the odd's ( I don't know for sure ) but hey come on I was hoping for atleast one! Oh well, these are all available so just let me know if you are interested in anything to complete your set or just want that player specific card to add to your collection. You can send all such e-mails to me at cardboardsingles@hotmail.com. Feel free to let me know what you think about this blaster box ( how do you think I did? good/bad/average? ). Or even your thoughts on this product in general, if your working on completing this set or perhaps your knowledge about the lawsuit from Topps ( or something along those lines... ).

Introduction & Life after eBay

First off, I'd like to welcome you all to my blog! Since this is my first post I should start off with a little introduction to who I am and what exactly I will be blogging about in the future. My name is Tom and I'm a collector of Baseball, Basketball, and Football Sports Cards. I'm currently enrolled as a college student and enjoy buying, trading, and selling Sports Cards as a hobby. After spending some time browsing through and reading other sports collectors blogs I've decided to begin one of my own (hopefully I can draw some readers). Within my future blog posts you can find material that will be related closely to sports (mainly baseball, basketball, and football) along with my experiences and thoughts about the sports card hobby!

Now, the topic of my first post, I'm curious to know where you other sports cards collectors have been selling your cards besides eBay (feel free to leave comments sharing your insights to any eBay alternatives). Recently, in the last week or so I've totally shut down and abandoned me store on eBay where I had a total of 2,200 active listings just after becoming a powerseller! The reasoning behind this action is due to the lack of profit from selling cards in the $1-$5 range with all the listing and final percentage fees. I know selling sports cards on eBay is only reasonable when you possess that rare autograph of a rookie standout or hall of fame autograph cards since you will be able to receive top dollar for such cards with the help of eBay's traffic. Personally, I only have a few such cards in my collection and more interested in selling/trading my base, inserts, serial #'ed, and average jersey/autograph cards. My personal feeling behind having a place to sell these types of cards is to make them available for people who collect these players at a reasonable price. In order to do so, I need to find a place where I can sell cards without having to pay listing and final value fees because as small as they may seem at first, they do add up! ($0.03 x 2,200 items = $66 just to list each month with the $16 eBay store fee!) TOO MUCH!

After some research surfing the web for a new place to begin selling sports cards I've finally decided to pay a site to host a web store where I can list items and sell them only having a pay a $10/month fee. This site provides me with the freedom to create my own web store without having to pay final value or listing fees, just the simple monthly payment. With the freedom to list freely and update and add features to my store front, I'm excited to make the cards I have in my collection available to collectors at very reasonable prices! My main goal is to list all my base, insert, serial #'ed, and autograph/jersey cards of players that I'm not personally collecting and make them available to you at what I feel to be fair prices. The majority of the cards I'm currently listing are available under $1 which is currently the lowest price any item can be with the fixed price listing option on eBay. The only major difference is the amount of traffic for my site compared to my previous eBay store. Traffic will become my sole responsibility and most likely my biggest challenge in the upcoming months while I try to get up and running. If your interested, head on over and check out my site Cardboard Singles at www.cardboardsingles.com. I'm currently working on adding more listings throughout the summer!!! I will do my best, but remember this does take time.

Please feel free to let me know what you think about my site by leaving a comment here or send me an e-mail at cardboardsingles@hotmail.com! Also, if you'd like to share your eBay alternatives or eBay selling experiences with me, please do so. I'm interested to hear about your success or perhaps even failures in your attempt to buy/sell/trade sports cards online.

Hope you decide to check out my site www.cardboardsingles.com! I'd enjoy to hear what you think!