Friday, October 31, 2008

The Halloween Set

Happy Halloween! I will now subject you to every single 1988 Donruss Baseball's Best card I could find in my collection. The Secret Weapon is a great way to start things off if you ask me.

It's my birthday and I'll post what I want to...

Of course, orange and black is the theme here and the reason why some have dubbed this underappreciated set the Halloween Set. It pretty much kicks the sorry old Blue Donruss base set design in the teeth and sprinkles glossy coating on top for good measure.

Here is a mustache that is very nearly heartbreaking.

Ken Dayley says, "Seriously? You're taking another picture of me, Donruss? I thought we already took care of that with that crappy blue set."

Todd Worrell can't really wrap his head around the idea of a glossy retail set that somewhat parallels the design of the regular base set.

Enough with the head shots. John Tudor is almost ready for an action pose. Almost.

Well. I like the Cardinals baseball hats. There, I said something positive. Am I a bad Cardinals fan for not knowing what the patch is for? Upon further examination of Greg's card, it appears to commemorate 50 years in St. Petersburg, their spring training home.

Hey, an action shot. Magrane is now a Bay Ray Announcer Man in case you didn't know.

I wasn't kidding when I said I'd show you every card I own from this set. This is one of the few I owned until I bought a gargantuan oddball Cardinals lot from eBay several weeks ago.

Fake action shot.

RSC? What does that stand for, Pirates fans?

Keith Atherton, truly one of "Baseball's Bestsses."

I finally had to dig into my extensive Ozzie Smith collection folder thing to find a truly "Baseball's Best" player from this set.

As you can see, these sets distance themselves from the regular Donruss base by going with the standard vertical stats-on-the-back instead of the classic Donruss horizontal design. Sadly, there's no facts-on-the-back with these cards.

Congrats, Phils

Breaking News! The Phillies have won the 2008 World Series! Okay, well, you likely don't come to Cards on Cards to get all the latest news, so I don't feel like I'm slighting anyone by not posting this until more than 30 hours after the final out. Truth be told, I felt the end of the series was rather lousy and not because it wasn't the Rays who won. I wanted to see more baseball, and furthermore, I wanted to see an entire baseball game. I'm sure it was cookie cutter perfect for those who don't have the attention span for a full baseball game, but it had the opposite effect on me. I was hoping for either a ton of extra innings or for the series to be extended so that, whatever the outcome, the series could end with a normal game.

The Vet makes me think of the Eagles, their punishing defense, and descriptions of the turf, which by all accounts was like concrete and shards of broken glass with a little bit of green fuzz on top. Oh, yeah, and the fans... the same Philly fans that saw fit to boo every single Rays player that came to bat. I think I'm only on board with the rampant booing and unruly behavior when the Cowboys are in town.

I was hoping to find a Charlie Manuel card to show with this post, but it looks like my first Portland Beavers team set was from 1988 and not 1987 like I had previously thought. The Beavers were actually the Phillies AAA affiliate in the mid-80s (if you perform a vertical flip on the sticker logo above you basically get the Beavers Phils-era logo) but had just signed on with the Twins during their championship year in '87 and designated Manuel as their new manager. His players included current Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, Billy "Moneyball" Beane, and Pat Casey, the Oregon State Beavers coach who has recently won back to back NCAA titles. You can read more about that team here and here.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


I've been tricked! Today's post comes to you courtesy of TribeCards and the awesome Halloween-themed giveaway going on over there. One look at this frightening box told me that I might be in for more than I had bargained for before I even opened the box. Let's see what's inside...

Ahh! AHH! Football cards? Kyle Boller? NFL "Legend"? That seems rather questionable. This is most definitely the result of some trickery.

Okay, I can calm down now. Here's an Eagle. It continues the bird theme, right? And my favorite football team is the the Eagles. But wait a second... who is that... Ahh! AHH! Terrell Owens! This is a huge trick! There were several other Owens cards in here, just in case I forgot what he looked like.

Finally, here's a Cardinal. Ahh! AHH!! Trickery! This is the football Cardinals. And it's not even the Neil Lomax-era St. Louis Cardinals. Plummer was supposed to be so the best but he so was not.

Hey, this is pretty cool. I don't know who Travis Taylor is, but he sure has a shiny card with a funky shape. We're still deep into football card territory here, but Taylor is on a bird team so it works.

Seahawks are not even real birds. Ahh! AHH! I know what this is! Trickery!

(Incidentally, one time I saw these ridiculously priced packs of football cards at a hobby shop in Austin and they were called Topps TX Exclusive. I thought that, Texas being how Texas is, that they had some sort of exclusive set that was only released in Texas and nowhere else. There are certain kinds of beer that are like this, so I didn't think much of it. Looking back now, I bet "TX" stands for something completely different and I'm way off base. If anyone cares to clue me in, feel free.)

Harold Carmichael, while before my time as an Eagles fan, was a pretty great player and it's nice to get a card of his. This definitely goes down as a treat.

Ahh! AHH! Not the Trojans! Serious trickery is afoot here. His name... haha... this is a bit of a stretch, though.

Ahh, I can relax now. Here is a nice shiny Ron Gant holotastic card thing from 1996. Actual St. Louis Baseball Cardinal Cards... I had forgotten what that was like. There were also a couple of Dennis Eckersley cards from his Cards days in here, plus a Rex Hudler for good measurement.

What... who... is this? He played QB in actual games in 1991, for the Eagles? Is this another trick? I don't remember this guy at all. I remember injuries to Randall Cunningham and desperate turns to backup guys like Jim McMahon, Rodney Peete and Bubby Brister. But Jeff Kemp? I think someone made this up. Ahh! AHH! Pacific Trading Cards? The horror!

Whew. Back to baseball. Here is a 1994 Sportflics Pat Hentgen. I actually had no idea until really recently that someone continued to make Sportflics cards beyond 1992. They were supposed to be super-premium at the time, but I didn't know anyone that took them seriously.

Hey, it's Chris Carpenter. Not a bad way to end things here. And here, while pitching for the wrong birds, he doesn't even look injured. Maybe things will work out well for Cardboard Carp.

Ahh! AHH! I just woke up from my daydream. Carp is still injured and the Cardinals are still trying to figure out what to do with him. Hopefully this trick will turn out to be a treat in the end, but right now the state of his pitching career is certainly very spooky.

All in all, this was a very entertaining box of cards to open, sent from a very generous card blogger. Make sure you stay tuned to Indians Baseball Cards. Always. as it is a very worthwhile (and dangerous) read.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Opening Night

It's opening night in the NBA. Baseball is just going to have to step aside. Oh, that's right, it already is.

This beauty up above is a Damon Stoudamire Starting Lineup, unopened, still in its case! Remember when all the toy stores would have these hanging on the racks, with endless amounts of Mark Langstons and Chris Mullins because all the good players were already picked through? This Stoudamire figure was actually a gift purchased for me at a state fair of all places. And the Huskies jersey? Apparently it's a nod to the Toronto Huskies, though I'm not sure if the Raptors ever wore these or if it was all Kenner's idea.

Don't worry, I won't have a basketball post every day the Blazers play. That is, of course, unless they go 82-0.

Trading with Night Owl Cards

Night Owl Cards and Cards on Cards did an inter-blog swap recently, and here are the highlights of the Cardinals side of the spectrum. Not only did I rid myself of a number of those pesky Dodgers, but I gained many Cardinals cards that I didn't already own. This is what we call a win-win situation. Night Owl Cards already did a nice write-up of the stuff I sent out, even though I sent my package last. I'm just not very timely, am I?

2006 Upper Deck All-Time Legends - Lou Brock (These were apparently the requisite inserts in the Series 2 Fat Packs this year. I also got a Rogers Hornsby from this set.)

2007 Fleer Ultra - Chris Carpenter (Who would win in a battle, Feel The Game or Own The Game? These seem to be a pretty abysmal "tribute" to the 1987 Fleer design, but on the other hand, the Own The Game inserts are always incredibly gaudy.)

2005 Topps All-Star Stitches - David Eckstein (Wow, I never would expect to get relic cards in one of these blind trade team swaps. This speaks to the generosity and general awesomeness that some of the fellow card bloggers possess, and I think it's great. Okay, sure... few people are going to get much cash in their pockets for an Eckstein jersey card, but I still am awed by tiny pieces of possibly touched-by-player jerseys. Even when they're orange...)

2006 Topps Opening Day / 2006 Bazooka Max Action Jim Edmonds - (Two Edmonds cards I needed for the collection. Nice.)

1975 Topps - Rich Folkers & Alan Foster (The 1975 set seems to be a favorite of the Night Owl Cards blog. I believe the only '75 Cardinals card I owned previously was Bob Forsch's rookie card in mini version.)

1982 Donruss - Julio Gonzales (This appears to be an uncorrected error card. Donruss ran out of Z's for Julio's last name.)

2006 Upper Deck - Josh Hancock (I didn't really know if there were any Josh Hancock Cardinals baseball cards. Being the long reliever "mop-up guy" is really a thankless job without much prospect for future advancement. His death wasn't emotionally as striking to me as Darryl Kile's, but seeing him on a baseball card was really eerie and sad to me.)

2007 Topps - Adam Kennedy (Photoshopped cards are beginning to bother me a lot more than old airbrushed cards. At least the airbrushed cards were funny. Kennedy never wore #2 with the Cardinals, for one, and all the logos and lettering look off anyway. When you put out sets in several series, there is absolutely no reason to fake a player's new team photo. Just leave the guy out of the current series and wait until you get a real picture to put him in. Good god, nobody is clamoring for another Adam Kennedy card that can't wait a few months.)

2006 Upper Deck - Aaron Miles, Series 1 and 2 (I prefer the way Upper Deck handles, or handled team changes over Photoshopped stuff. I don't see what's so wrong with keeping the player with their old team until new photos are available or just excluding them altogether, though.)

(Ha! Something is amiss here. It seems that Mr. Miles gained an inch but dropped 5 pounds in the transition from the Rockies to the Cardinals. It must be that mountain air...)

2006 Ultra & Ultra Gold Medallion - Mark Mulder (Mulder wants to pitch for San Diego now. As bad as it makes me feel to say, if Mulder is able to figure out how to pitch like a normal major leaguer for the Padres, it really does not make me feel great about him, the Cardinals medical staff or the Cardinals coaches.

2006 Topps MLB 2K6 - Albert Pujols (I received quite a few nice Pujols cards. This one represents my favorite video game series. I'm a loyal 2K Sports guy, ever since being wowed by the 2K games that came out for the Sega Dreamcast.)

1983 Fleer - Gene Roof (Roof looks wistful and seems to be yellowing like an old newspaper.)

1994 Triple Play - Ozzie Smith (Here's an Ozzie card that I didn't own. I bought a lot of Triple Play packs in 1992 and 1993 because of their budget price, but by 1994 I was more interested in hanging out in record stores, talking to girls and skipping classes that I still owe many thousands of dollars for. I should have just stuck to collecting cheap cards.)

1974 Topps - Scipio Spinks (Spinks joins Stubby Clapp and Basil Shabazz on the all-time Cardinals names list.)

2004 Bowman Heritage - Brad Thompson (Poor Thompson is doomed to spend his entire life inside an old television set, his face frozen in youth, wondering when he'll ever be a permanent fixture in the Cardinals rotation.)

2006 Topps - Postseason Highlights (The only thing that makes me able to endure endless replays of Endy Chavez's catch robbing Scott Rolen is what is represented on the bottom half of this card. Yadi, the HERO. The 2006 NLCS was incredible.)

Thanks, again, go out to Night Owl Cards and the rest of the generous trading bloggers out there. I'm always up for trades (and blind team trades) - I should be able to work something out with just about anyone, save for a couple of teams that I'm running low on.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Repack Madness

Don't worry, I have nothing but baseball here tonight. I just got done watching game 4 of the Series and I'm fairly bummed about the result. Hopefully the Rays can get their collective acts together and put up a good fight against Cole Hamels tomorrow night. I'll be watching the game on tape due to my work schedule, though there's an increased likelihood that someone will ruin the outcome for me if the Phillies end up being the winners and taking the series.

Here are two packs from a repack box I bought last weekend in a moment of weakness. I suddenly felt the urge to have something to open up during the playoff game I was planning to watch. I think I might have finally bought the last of these boxes, which are $9.99 and offer 10 packs which all were most likely from blasters originally. I was pleased (and also somewhat underwelmed) to see that 6 of the packs were from 2006 Topps Updates & Highlights because that set contains highlight cards from the postseason (in which, of course, the Cardinals won.) Two of the packs were from some Fleer set that I can't recall at the moment and the last two were 2006 Upper Deck Series 1, which is a far more interest set than the others.

Pack 1:

428 - Mark Grudzielanek (Grudz is shown at spring training with the Cards, pondering what it would be like to play for Missouri's other team.)
143 - Coco Crisp (Crisp is saying "so long, suckers" on his way out of Cleveland and onto better things in Boston... where he'll be outshined by some Ellsbury fellow.)

28 - Luis Gonzalez (Really nice action shot of Gonzo. Too bad about the Comcast sign, though.)
237 - Brad Penny (His cards keep turning up like a... oh, nevermind. Sorry.)

UD-MP - Mike Piazza UD Game Materials (Jersey) (Hey, this is cool... and confusing. Is Piazza pictured with the Mets because this is a Mets jersey swatch and that's all they had available. If that's so, why does it say Padres right underneath the jersey piece? Some consistency would be nice. I can't complain about a relic card in a pack that effectively cost me a dollar, though.)
342 - Danny Sandoval (RC) (I've never heard of him. He's a 29 year old AAAA shortstop. Hmm.)

288 - Cliff Floyd (Floyd is now out of the World Series due to injury, replaced by Eric Hinske who hit a pinch-hit HR tonight. Unfortunately, the HR ended up being pretty meaningless. Incidentally, I had no idea that you could make injury replacement roster changes in the middle of a series. That doesn't seem right.)

Pack 2:

310 - Jason Giambi (Giambi looks like he's about to slide into the waiting mouth of an alligator.)
25 - Craig Counsell

346 - Jimmy Rollins (Jimmy Rollins is just so cool that he even keeps his shades on in the dugout. I still can't believe he was voted NL MVP last year.)
61 - Jay Gibbons
394 - Matt Cain (Cain probably has to constantly remind people: "Hey, I'm pretty good, too!")

109 - Frank Thomas (Thomas appears to be holding the 2005 World Series trophy he won with the White Sox, having already defected to Oakland.)
410 - Joel Piñeiro (I don't feel that I complain about him nearly as much as some Cardinals fans, but he definitely can be frustrating to watch. And he looked so impressive during his early Mariners days...)

122 - Adam Dunn (Dunn just hit a walkoff home run and is about to be mobbed. Either that, or his teammates are planning on beating him up because they know he won't be in Cincinnati forever.)