Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Time to Let It Go

The season is over for the Cardinals, whether I like it or not. 

As a totally biased observer, sometimes it's hard for me to understand why there's little love for the Cardinals franchise these days from outside of the fanbase. But I do get it. People get sick of teams after they have a period of sustained success. While not yet mathematically eliminated from the NL Wild Card race, this will be the second straight year that St. Louis has missed the playoffs, reminiscent of the two seasons following their unlikely 2006 championship. Except, of course, that these last two seasons are not coming on the heels of a World Series ring, but a bitter defeat and early playoff exit at the hands of the Chicago Cubs. This is year six of the Mike Matheny regime, and it wasn't a good one.

Fortunately, I have some fantastic cards from... you guessed it... a Cubs fan to cheer me up. This is part two of the feast of cards set upon me by Jon of Community Gum. Let's look at a few things from the other side of the rivalry.

Here I am rediscovering 1987 Topps. I totally forgot about this set! It's been, what, five long years since Topps put miniature tributes to this set in with their flagship product? This is actually my first bronze foil version of the Rediscover Topps line, which I am told is actually their most common variant. (Hopefully I have the right color here. Sometimes it's hard to tell with foil stamping.)

Jon included a note with this one stating that it was a repack pull. I feel like J.D. Drew is in the upper echelon of what one can expect to pull from a repack. My guaranteed hit or whatever you want to call it is usually some swatch of WBC or Futures Game jersey from a guy who never made it to AAA. I've got nothing against those guys, of course, but when you don't even get a card of a guy wearing any MLB team's uniform, it's hard to get too excited about it.

You know what always cheers me up? Ozzie Smith! Or, more specifically, cards of his that I didn't yet own. I don't often get a chance to buy Topps Finest stuff, so this insert is extra nice. Most of my Finest purchases are base cards out of quarter boxes at card shows.

I really irrationally love Topps Tek (Hi Tek?) and all of its various incarnations. I think this might be only my second card from its recent revival. I think I am just a huge sucker for anything printed on clear acetate. I am the guy that I used to make fun of, folks.

2008 SPx is like the baseball card version of a fidget spinner. Or maybe disc golf? Has anyone tried tossing these cards around an open space? Do they have a boomerang effect?

I'm taking a brief detour here, but Erin's player collections often get a disproportionate amount of attention here at Cards on Cards. This is a fun shiny parallel of Tulo from the waning moments of his Rockies glory days.

I'm probably coming across as a lot more negative than I should considering that I'm poring over all of these terrific Cardinals cards, but I do want to reiterate that I still think Allen & Ginter's shift to full sized relics are a bit of a cop out. This is a nice design, clearly, but the framed relics were always one of my favorite things to look forward to about this set each year.

This card was printed seven years before I was born, but foil stamped just a couple of years ago. It's strange to think about. I need to track down an unstamped version of this card, actually.

There were a lot of Finest cards in this package. This is probably the centerpiece right here. Wong still hasn't put things together for a full season, but he's shown enough in streaks that I still remain hopeful about his career.

This is just a plain old refractor parallel of the same card. No big deal. I probably couldn't find this in the quarter boxes, to be honest.

Another helpful note was included with this Yadier Molina card, noting that it came from the All-Star team set. I only scanned the front to show how little there is to distinguish this from his regular flagship base card. They used to actually put NL or AL logos on these, but the only way to tell now by looking at the front is noticing that the Topps logo is not actually printed in foil. Still, I am super happy to get this card so I am no longer tempted to buy the whole stupid set just for Yadi.

Well, we'll see how much the world loves the Cubbies after they win their second straight ring next month.


  1. You're right, I think it is a sustained success thing for many people. I really can't stand the Patriots right now. The Yankees from the mid 90's on are another good example. But, I'm excited to see THIS version of the Yankees, because it's been a few years and there are a ton of new faces. I'm not sure I'll be able to say that about the Patriots though as long as Bellicheck is involved... too many times with him at the helm they've been at the center of a rules based scandal: spying on other's practices, Deflate Gate, and others.

  2. I've got no lack of love for the Cardinals. But you're right. Success does play a role in how fans view teams. I can't stand the Yankees. And since both of my teams will be missing the playoffs AGAIN... I'll be cheering for the Astros because of Altuve and the fact that they've never won a title. In the NL, I'll be rooting for the Nationals for the exact same reason. Although... if the Cubs ended up winning it all again, I wouldn't complain. Their loyal fans deserve it.

  3. As a Cubs fan, I have to say that I respect the heck out of the Cardinals organization. They just know how to do it right. Even in a down year this year, they still managed to be in it until the final week. Cardinals fans are some of the most knowledgeable fans I know of. That said, I really can't stand watching my team's rivals turn up the heat in September and burn through October as the Cardinals always seem wont to do. It's so frustrating! I can't imagine too many scenarios when I would cheer for the Cardinals, but it's not for a lack of respect.


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