Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cards (from) the Cheap Seats

One glorious Saturday afternoon in recent weeks, fortune smiled up the Cards on Cards household. The Cardinals clinched their playoff spot, the Ducks walloped the #6 team in the nation and I received 4 packages of cards in the mail at the same time, including a surprise package from Saints of the Cheap Seats. As many of us have been doing these days, it seems that Dan was doing some end of summer cleaning and had sent out some unwanted Cardinals cards, which are greatly appreciated here. While the Cards may have met their untimely demise this season, the Ducks continue to roll and more packages have continued to trickle in.

Adam Wainwright, shown here on a smooth 2006 Bowman Heritage "rookie card", may end up with the Cy Young award in hand by this time next month. I definitely wouldn't place a bet on any of the candidates that are up for the award, since the race is so close and compelling cases can be made for Wainwright, Chris Carpenter and Tim Lincecum. Awards aside, what I do want to see is the Cardinals top workhorse take a good long rest this offseason so he can be prepared to throw a ton of quality innings next season. If it weren't for Carpenter's return this season, he'd probably be my favorite player.

I like the Topps gold cards. I don't know what has made me such a sucker for these, as normally I am not a huge fan of gold in card designs. I've accumulated quite a number of these lately, but I would love to get more. As for Joe Mather, he was given the opportunity to win time at 3rd base with the major league club this season, but he ended up being one of a number of Cards players to suffer what is commonly being referred to as the dreaded "lost season." Let's hope he can recapture the power he showed at AAA in 2008 and be productive next year.

Rick Ankiel also had an extremely tough season, but it's fairly forgivable considering he nearly killed himself crashing into an outfield wall early on. He never seemed to get on track at all after that, and eventually lost a sizeable share of his playing time to Colby Rasmus. The second half acquisition of Matt Holliday didn't help, either. Ankiel is ill-suited to a bench role and provides decent defense in CF when his head is screwed on straight. Seeing as how he's a free agent represented by Scott Boras, I would be shocked to see him back in a Cardinals uniform next year even with all of the amazing history between Ankiel and the organization.

Albert Pujols... what else can you say? Actually, there's two things I'd like to say. Number one, Albert, maybe it's time to get the elbow surgery. Maybe it's time to do it now. Provided that everything went okay, he might be back to 100% by mid-spring if he were to do it soon. I don't think the league is quite ready for a 100% Pujols, though. Secondly - and I'm looking at you, Cardinals organization - open up your books and get ready to pay this man lots and lots of money for a long time. Please do it soon. His contract may be up by 2011. I don't care if it constricts the budget for the next decade. He is worth it. (It's easy for me to say, of course. It's not my money.)

There were also some nice cards of former players, including Bud Smith. I'll spare you my Bud Smith story, but suffice it to say that he was the starting pitcher the first time I saw the Cardinals in person and he didn't exactly give a no-hit performance like he did his rookie season. Actually, this card states that he pitched 3 no hitters in 2 seasons (2 were in the Texas League.)

Wow, a metal card! I mean, seriously, this card is made out of metal. There was an Eli Marrero metal card, too. And by metal, I don't mean "Metal Universe". I mean that this card is actually made out of actual metal. As in, if I threw this card at you, it would hurt!

Finally, I couldn't resist posting a Jimmy Edmonds card. Background Jim seems to be rather disgusted with Just-Swung-Through-And-Probably-Lined-Out Jim.

Thanks again to Saints of the Cheap Seats. I'm working on putting a package together to send back which should be ready in a few days. Also, please check out his group break if you're into that sort of thing. I won't be participating myself as I can't really afford it at the moment and prefer to get to pick my own teams, but I'll always be willing to trade for any unwanted Cardinals that you guys get.

1 comment:

Jeff Mazdra said...

I wonder where Rick Ankiel will be playing next year? Talk around town is that he's GONE!