Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Fly By

The generosity of this blogging community continues! Adam of Infield Fly Rule sent more than a hundred cards featuring Tigers and other players. I was a bit overwhelmed trying to find a way to show off such card diversity. After consulting with my friend The Ump, I decided to go with her suggestion to share a few different players.  I've been force-feeding Tigers to you for sometime now. 
Sleeping Tiger in the midst
Mike Piazza timed his NL ROY in 1993 quite conveniently to my blossoming need to collect his cards.  He and Tim Salmon (Angels AL ROY)  were the beginnings of my player collections. While I've kept most of Salmon's cards, I don't intend to add any new issues - unless of course, I come across a nice auto, or perhaps a sweet patch card. It's hard to see Piazza in an A's uniform. Yellow and green just don't look quite right on him...or anyone for that matter.

Michael Young is probably my favorite all-time Texas Ranger.  Frank Catalanotto, Rusty Greer and Ivan Rodriguez would be the others. Young left the team and took most of my Ranger interests with him. 

Jeff-the only paper here is cardboard-Bagwell

As 1991 NL ROY, Jeff was a couple of years into his career when I came along. Living in Texas, I had local tv access to Astros games two or three times a week.  His wide-open, crouched batting stance intrigued me.  He shrank the strike zone considerably and walked often.  He also suffered a broken left hand in 1993, 1994 and 1995.  A lifetime Astro with over 2300 hits and .297 average, Bagwell is yet to make the HOF but still making the ballot.  Only time will tell.

Ryno, my favorite Cub - Thanks to cable television I was able to enjoy the Braves and Cubs almost daily.  Ryne retired briefly in 1994, played again in 96 and 97 then hung up the cleats for good.  He had already played his best years by the time I became interested in the game. Ryne was the owner of a MLB record 123 consecutive games played at 2nd base without an error. (In 2007, Tiger Placido Polanco became the new record holder.)  Ryne was a ten time All-Star, nine time Gold Glover and won seven Silver Sluggers. 

I can't imagine my collection without Ripken's cards.  Cal was a class act when baseball truly needed one.  During the 1994 players strike, baseball lost a LOT of fans. His streak of consecutive games played would surpass those of Gehrig's in 1995. Dare I say this record will now never be broken?  Fans all over the country flocked to their hometown parks when the Orioles were in town.  We wanted a glimpse of the Iron Man.  Ripken expressed his gratitude to baseball fans everywhere; for the kindness shown to him over the years and for their love of the game. Of all the players I've had the pleasure to watch, he is by far my favorite...and he's not a Tiger!

Adam didn't forget the fun!  Jason Michaels won the Roberto Clemente award  for community service in 2006.  He was arrested in 2005 for assaulting a Philadelphia police officer.  Part of his sentencing required 100 hours of community service.  Somebody Puh-Lease tell me these hours weren't included when his name came up for consideration.

 My favorite card from 1994 Upper Deck.  The Tiger colors and emblem are a thing of beauty here!  Mike Moore is a fellow Okie who pitched for the Mariners, A's and Tigers. 

Ok, so I had to post a Tiger. One SINGLE Tiger.  Get over it...

or stick it! 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Catching Up!

Jared of Catching Up With Collecting, sent a great package full of cards I did not yet have.  How he was able to determine this, I'm not yet sure. I absolutely need to work on updating my list, now that cards are flowing in due to the generosity of so many of YOU!  Jared's blog is a good read if you haven't had the opportunity.

Jared sent cards from four decades including Topps, Upper Deck, TCMA, Panini, Boardwalk/Baseball and other fun oddities.
There were more than 60 cards in the package and a lot of ooohs and aaaaahs while opening. Yesterday I shared a well-loved 2nd year Kaline which really took me by surprise upon arrival.  Unless the postman drops it in the box, I'll not own an anywhere-near-mint rookie Kaline.  Love knows no age:
                         Mothers threw out thousands of cards back in the day -2010 Topps 
More Kalines! I find the design of 2011 Topps Lineage quite pleasing. I could be in trouble now. I think I may need a set.  Thanks a lot Jared.  2012 Topps Archives 3-D didn't scan well.  It's a groovy card though! Very Kellogg's. After investigating this insert set I also need Ruth, Mantle and Clemente.  More thanks...Jared.    2001 Upper Deck Decade 1970's.  Luckily, I own this set. These two cards can go into the player collection!  While the photography isn't the best in Decades, I was sold on the 70s theme.  I also like the incorporation of Topps designs by Upper Deck.  No doubt the fly on the wall heard a bit of blasphemy in Topps' executive offices when this set debuted.
 Ty Cobbs.  Good-looking Gypsy Queen!  Black borders are always a winner for me. But what's this 2007 UD Masterpiece?  I quit collecting around 2002 and missed out on too many great issues.  Out of my budget at the time but still a gorgeous card.  Thanks to COMC, I just stocked up on a few of my favorites!  Jared, seriously.
Time for a mini-moment.  Wow. Don't you feel better too? Don't let the MONO logo frighten you.  Just a crazy name for Turkish smokes. Rocky Colavito green and blue backs with a Hindu Cobb.  Also two Cobbs and a Greenberg from Topps.  Three classy little pieces of cardboard!
Domino's Pizza, cheesy cardboard goodness.  Pizza, not the card. The card is awesome! Issued in 1988 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the World Series Champions.  I hope to see the Tigers win a WS in my lifetime.  They'd better hurry it up a bit.   1979 TCMA 1950s Fred Hutchinson. Nice-looking card. I will not look into this set.  Just won't do it. Nice try Jared.  1987 Boardwalk and Baseball. Dang it, I looked. The 33 card set was produced by Topps for the B/W Theme Park in Florida. Apparently the set came in a blue collector box. No pitchers in this set - only Top Run Makers.
                                   Sapphire gem! 343/499    313/325 Shimmering beauty!
                                                              Cooperstown Lumberjacks
I have a very real weakness for old-timers. While Panini isn't for many, I do enjoy some of their issues.  2013 Cooperstown  is one of these. I know it's coming.  This one will go on my want list. I've already begun building the 2012 set.  Thank you Jared, for including these cards!  Love them!
I hope Jared will forgive the time it took to get these posted. I've a bit of catching up to do. Looking forward to more trading with Catching up with Collecting! These cards definitely do work with my collection!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Lost and Found

Hellooooooooo!  I've missed you!  All of you!  Life is slowly returning to whatever normal is for me. I've been working far too much, leaving zero time for us.  You and me.  Forgive me.  I allowed my job to take priority over writing and sharing cards with you. Honestly, I could read your blogs, write and sort baseball cards 8-10 hours a day and never be bored!  Those of you who manage to blog daily make me jealous.  I envy you.

I know some of you may feel this way too.  For me, it's therapeutic. Before my position became ridiculously mismanaged, I had time for lunch breaks - a relaxing hour spent reading or writing.  I've taken to hiding in a conference room when I do attempt lunch.  Usually within 10 minutes I'm found out and lunch is over.  I expect this pattern to continue through February or March.  In March, it comes to an end.  Big changes coming at the office! It will be a share-worthy occasion.

Since my last post,  I've received several emails awaiting a response. Thank you for your patience!  I'll reply within the next couple of days. I've also received fabulous packages from Adam, Jared, Nick, Kevin, and Robert.   Their generosity is mind-blowing!  (But truthfully, a light breeze is enough to send mine a-flutter...) I'll be posting these packages over the next week. This cracked edition features three flashy cards from Robert beginning with:

2004 Topps  0089/2004
Joel Zumaya had a very short MLB career as a reliever.  He debuted in 2006 with the Tigers.  Over the next four years he managed a 13-12 W/L record with an ERA of 3.05 and 210 Ks.  Joel once set a fastball record of 104.8 mph.  He got through the first year injury free, although sidelined during the playoffs. Seems he played a bit too much Guitar Hero. Several injuries later, his career was over. He retired in February 2014.

Max Scherzer, looking pretty in pink! Sweet card numbered 33/50.  2013 Topps AL Wins leaders: Scherzer 21, Colon 18 and Moore 17.  I hope the Tigers find a way to keep this guy!  I can't bear the thought of Max in Yankee pinstripes!

This second year Kaline is rapidly approaching its 50th birthday.  Topps was five years old with this 1955 issue.  While the card has worn corners, the four borders are still very clear and the color is bright!  The front shows no major creasing and is pretty well centered.  Great piece of cardboard history!  Thanks Robert, for this gem and the other nice cards you were so generous to send!

On Friday, I managed to get a package off to France. Kevin - it's on the way!  The Royals will go out tomorrow. Phil, I'm not always this slow!  I'm hoping to begin other trades soon.  I'm far behind on a specific want/need list.  I can safely say for non-Tigers on my list, all cards from 2003-2009 are needed. 

Here's an early Happy Halloween to you!  This little T206 treat brings Hannibal Lecter to mind every time I see it!  Wearing an apron, ready for a meal:

He's coming for you!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Tigers - threads unravelled.  I hope the off-season is spent shoring up the bullpen and finding a way to keep Scherzer! There's always next year...right?  Win or lose, I expect at the very least to catch more games in person! 

I'm a bit behind on posting after spending the weekend in Oklahoma City. It's most fortunate having so many new trading partners to cheer me up in this bluest of times.  Please forgive me the time between posts.  I promise to do better!

A couple of days ago, I received some very cool booty from our Pirate Matey, Matthew.  

2001 Private Stock
Juan Gonzalez was a favorite for me when I began following the game in 93.  He was an RBI King in his glory days of the 90s.  I was a big Rangers fan when he was traded to Detroit. By then, he'd lost much of his charm.  I felt bad for Tigers fans who thought they were getting a star player.  I recall he was having trouble with a big toe. He played in only 115 games that year.  Juan was quoted as saying the Tigers would have to bring in the fences if they wanted to sign him as a free agent. He spent the next year as an Indian. Then as Texas is wont to do, they brought the old fan favorite back to the team for two years. He was hurt half of this time, unable to play. Juan will probably always be tainted, thanks to tattletale Jose.

2005 Donruss Champions

Magglio Ordonez: Maggs - fans affectionately called him. I wasn't paying close attention to him when he came up with the White Sox.  He managed to play with only two teams: White Sox 97-04 and Tigers 05-11.  He put up great career numbers: .309 avg., 2156 hits, 294 homers and 1236 rbi.  In 2007, Maggs won the AL Batting Title with a .363 average - the first Tiger to do so since Norm Cash won in 1961.  He retired at the end of the 2011 season.  From what I've read he was elected a municipality mayor in Venezuela.  Ordonez ran on the ticket of Hugo Chavez's United Socialist Party of Venezuela.  I wonder if he's divided his fortune to share among the people...

2006 Topps Co-Signers
 Mickey, a fellow Okie named after The Mick. I could never get past the wad of chew. So gross! I will try tho.  He began as an A in 1984, played for the Orioles 88-90, Tigers 91-94 and finally as I knew him - a Ranger 95-97.   A switch-hitter with a career BA of .241 and little pop in his bat for 245 homers (which he credits to Froot Loops.)  ??? Ok. Sure.  He was good behind the plate, retiring with a .991 fielding percentage.   

Frank began his career with the Angels in 73 and pitched for six teams. He was a Tiger from 85-92.  In his best years, he owned a fastball which regularly clocked at 100 plus mph.  This pitch wore out his arm so he added a couple of slow off-speed pitches to the mix, earning him the nickname the great tantalizer.  Frank would throw an 88mph fastball along with breaking balls which frustrated batters quite effectively.  ESPN often referred to Tanana as the guy who threw 90 in the 70s and 70 in the 90s.

Mickey Tettleton and Frank Tanana - I didn't know them as Tigers but am sure they don't know me at all so we're even-steven.  Matthew, thanks for these more than fantastic cards!

If you've read this far then behold, another round of Triple Thread offerings: base and numbered.



GOLD /99                    EMERALD/250


My Tigers' season is over, unravelled.  Threads yanked out by the beaks of those pretty Orioles. These Triple Threads are sharp, new cards which can be had with a comment below or email to: a cracked bat  at  gmail dot commmmm.  Thank you for reading and welcoming me into this fantastic community!