Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Gimme a Break
Group Breaks are fun. My participation in these activities has increased as my disinterest in the latest products has decreased, which if you know me at all shouldn't be much of a surprise. Most of the time these breaks are a nice opportunity to get some cards for a team you care for. I usually don't sign up for the breaks that either involve teams chosen completely at random or have any structure that doesn't include being able to select by team. Of course, if the Cardinals are chosen before I get a chance to sign up, I lose all interest as well.
Joe Average Collector has been running a bit of a "variety pack" style break for the past number of months. At my count, there's still nine slots (eighteen teams total) available for his April break, so if you've got a blaster's amount of cash to spare, you should go ahead and sign up. And as you probably suspected already, all of the cards I'm featuring here are ones I received in JACC's past breaks - some from February and some from March.
I took the Blue Jays as one of my secondary teams in hopes that I'd pull at least one Chris Carpenter Blue Jays card, and was rewarded with a couple. I don't have many of his cards from the old days, so that was nice. Carp caught one of the two (?) ceremonial first pitchers thrown out at the Cardinals home opener, which was also nice. (I have chosen to forget anything else that may have happened during that game.)
I know I had the White Sox as a secondary team in one of these breaks as well, which means I now have extra White Sox cards to give out that I had lost track of. I added a couple of inserts and some oddballs to my White Sox stash. As far as this card goes, it reminds me that if I had more time on my hands I'd probably be a junk wax era error card collector. I was mildly obsessed with error cards back when those cards were new and there was no internet to speak of, so I can only imagine how fun it would be to collect all of these weird (and usually insignificant) variation cards these days. As it is, I know that this is a double error card - both the front and back of the card have errors that were later corrected. I believe there's at least three versions of this card, and this is the most screwed up of all of them. Maybe someday I will set up a special variation Trade Bait page for others that are interested in these things, but I've never been shy about trading away this stuff as it is.
This one goes out to all the people who instantly change the channel... er... close the browser tab when they run into a basketball card. Ha! JACC likes to throw in certain extras to all of his breaks, and occasionally hits up some player collections. And yes, I actually do collect non-Blazers Clyde Drexler cards, not that anyone was asking.
Erin's Figgy collection is getting fatter by the day. Figgins was cut in the spring by the Marlins and is currently without a job. I wonder if he'd still have a job today if he never signed the contract with Seattle, as the atmosphere (and his play on the field, of course) just seemed toxic.
Pete Kozma is every Cardinals "expert"'s favorite topic right now, with every mistake being heavily scrutinized and every success being scoffed at. Is it possible that he will be a competent, even decent starting shortstop? Well, it's early April, and he has just 33 big league starts on the books.
I just had to scan an Ozzie card.
The interesting thing about this Albert Pujols Bazooka parallel is that is has his full rookie contract signature ("Jose A Pujols") on it rather than the usually shortened "A Pujols" that we are used to seeing.
Jaime Garcia had a great spring and has put together two pretty nice starts in the games that count. I'm optimistic!
Finally, here's the centerpiece of both group break packages. This early Pujols Diamond Kings card is numbered to 2500. Serial numbered cards before 2006 (roughly when I started buying packs again) seem to be pretty tough to find in comparison to more recent stuff. I need more stuff like this.