Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Frozen Heads. Is my season over already?

Hey!  I just finished my work's Fantasy Baseball Keeper League draft.  My team name is the Frozen Heads in honor of Ted Williams and his cryogenic hopes.  How did I do??

It's a 3 keeper league, 5x5 standard categories and head to head.  Here were my picks:

Keeper 1 - Stephen Strasburg -  no more innings cap, hopefully he's a beast!
Keeper 2 - Giancarlo Stanton - I hate his 'supporting cast', but the massive power is really cool and in a keeper league, I had to hold on to this guy
Keeper 3 - Evan Longoria - 3B is a key position and lots of the decent ones are injured.  I have high hopes for him.
I could have kept Buster Posey, my best player from last year, but catchers are hard to rely on.  He sure has a nice contract though!

4.     (34)     Yoenis Cespedes (Oak - OF) -  I definitely wanted Yoenis as my first non-keeper pick since he has HUGE upside and is young and a potential keeper for years to come.  I passed over Dustin Pedroia here, the only other player I was considering after the keepers were off the board.
5.     (47)     Adrian Gonzalez (LAD - 1B,OF) - many have given up on him, but I think he will have a bounce back year.  And even if he has last year again, he was basically worth it here.
6.     (54)     Jacoby Ellsbury (Bos - OF) - Scary!  He will never be what he was a couple of years ago, but decent average lots of runs and a decent amount of SB made him hard to pass up at pick 54
7.     (67)     Johnny Cueto (Cin - SP) - I was getting behind on pitching, so I grabbed the next best on the board.  He had a great year last year, I hope he can keep it up.
8.     (74)     Martin Prado (Ari - 2B,3B,SS,OF) - I like him in AZ, plus look at all those positions he's eligible for!  Super-utility man.
9.     (87)     Carlos Gomez (Mil - OF) - This was the gamble I was planning on from the start of the draft.  He was truly great the last couple of months last year.  If he can even sniff how good he was, I'll have struck gold in the 9th round.
10.     (94)     Jake Peavy (CWS - SP) - Ouch.  Still in need of pitching and this was the best I could do?  Please have one more good year!
11.     (107)     Mariano Rivera (NYY - RP) - Please have one more good year!  Actually, this pick and the next were auto-drafted since my computer crashed.  It's OK, I needed relievers.
12.     (114)     Sergio Romo (SF - RP)
13.     (127)     Salvador Perez (KC - C)- It was between Perez and Montero for my catcher at this point and I went for the trendy pick.  Turns out I could have grabbed Montero 6 rounds later, so this was a bad pick!  I do like Perez though...
14.     (134)     Todd Frazier (Cin - 1B,3B,OF) - Between him and Prado, I have the whole diamond covered!!
15.     (147)     Homer Bailey (Cin - SP) - My 3rd Cincinnati Red?  OK.  He has always had the talent and last year in the second half, he put it together.  Do it again Homer!
16.     (154)     Grant Balfour (Oak - RP) - Can he repeat last year?  I doubt it, but he was cheap and I needed more saves.
17.     (167)     Andrelton Simmons (Atl - SS) - Another calculated risk.  I passed on SS until round 17 and picked up Atlanta's star SS of the future.  And the future starts now!
18.     (174)     Ike Davis (NYM - 1B) - I had planned on grabbing another Braves future star here, Julio Teheran, but the goober before me grabbed him, leaving me to take the highest ranked player left, Ike Davis.  He could be a steal this late though.
19.     (187)     Bobby Parnell (NYM - RP) - My last reliever.  My relievers are underwhelming, but I have 4, so I only need 3 to really perform.
20.     (194)     Jeremy Hellickson (TB - SP) - Best SP left.  Good upside too.
21.     (207)     Adam Eaton (Ari - OF) - a shot in the dark.  Might not be on my roster long.
22.     (214)     Carlos Marmol (ChC - RP)- Autodrafted.  Let's see who's on the waiver wire...

So, how did I do?  Who do you see as my best picks and my worst?  Go ahead, I can take it!

Friday, March 29, 2013

SCAM Project page for Mark McGwire

This is the SCAM Project page for Mark McGwire
Main SCAM Project Page
Current Earliest Card 
1987 Topps
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 14/17
1985
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002

Relics and Autos
None

Numbered:1
Refractor:2
Inserts:12
Parallel:3
Subset:1
Small sets:1
Base cards from cool sets:11
Total towards the 100: 31


Cool card from the 100
2000 UD Ionix BIORythm insert

SCAM Project page for Jose Canseco

This is the SCAM Project page for Jose Canseco
Main SCAM Project Page
Current Earliest Card
1986 Topps Traded
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 8/16
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002

Relics and Autos
None

Numbered:0
Refractor:0
Inserts:1
Parallel:0
Subset or small set: 2
Base cards from cool sets:2
Total towards the 100:5


Cool card from the 100
 1987 Fleer Star Stickers

SCAM Project page for Jason Giambi

This is the SCAM Project page for Jason Giambi
Main SCAM Project Page

Current Earliest Card 
1995 Score #163 (parallel?  I dunno, anyone?)
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 7/18
RC? 
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013

Relics and Autos: 3!  Here is one...
2003 Fleer Ultra Back 2 Back base relic #d /500

Numbered:0
Refractor:0
Inserts:1
Parallel:0
Subset: 0
Base cards from cool sets:2
Total towards the 100: 10


Cool card from the 100


2003 Fleer Ultra Double Up insert (Barry Bonds on other side, perfect for this project!)

SCAM Project page for Sammy Sosa

This is the SCAM Project page for Sammy Sosa
Main SCAM Project Page 

Current Earliest Card 
1991 Topps
Rookie Cards - 90 Fleer, 90 Donruss, 90 Topps

Topps base run (Red means I have it) 8/19
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008

Relics and Autos
1!

Numbered:1
Refractor:0
Inserts:4
Parallel:1
Subset:0
SP: 1
Cool Base cards:1
Total towards the 100:7


Cool card from the 100
2005 Donruss Elite Passing the Torch insert #d /500 (looks way better in person!)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

SCAM Project page for Alex Rodriguez

This is the SCAM Project page for Alex Rodriguez
Main SCAM Project Page
Current Earliest Card
1995 Fleer Major League Prospects insert
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 4/16
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013

Relics and Autos
1!

Numbered:0
Refractor:0
Inserts:11
Parallel:0
Subset: 1
Promo cards: 2
Base cards from cool sets:1
Total towards the 100: 10


Cool card from the 100
 1999 Metal Universe Boyz with the Wood insert

SCAM Project page for Barry Bonds

 This is the SCAM Project page for Barry Bonds
Main SCAM Project Page 

Current Earliest Card 
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 16/22
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008

Relics and Autos
None

Numbered:
Refractor:0
Inserts:11
Parallel:2
Subset or mini/off brand set: 1
Base cards from cool sets:1
Total towards the 100: 15


Cool card from the 100

SCAM Project page for Raphael Palmeiro

This is the SCAM Project page for Raphael Palmiero
Main SCAM Project Page 

Current Earliest Card 
Topps base run (Red means I have it) 12/20
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006

Relics and Autos
2!

Numbered:1
Refractor:0
Inserts:4
Parallel:1
Subset: 1
Base cards from cool sets:0
Total towards the 100: 7


Cool card from the 100

SCAM Project page for Roger Clemens

This is the SCAM Project page for Roger Clemens
Main SCAM Project Page 

Current Earliest Card 
Topps Base Run (Red means I have it) 17/24
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008

Relics and Autos - 1 so far!
Numbered:
Refractor:0
Inserts:4
Parallel:1
Subset: 4
Base cards from cool sets:1
Total towards the 100: 10


Cool card from the 100

SCAM Project Main Page

The SCAM Project
Baseball's Super Cheating American Men Project

Commemorating the major players of the Steroids Era with baseball cards!  This page will allow you to track my progress and see where you can help.  Any offers of trades welcome!!  If you want to know more about the SCAM Project, here is the original post.


In addition to the Base needs (most important!) and the relic/auto needs below, I can still use high end inserts, refractors, rare parallels etc for all of these players, especially Giambi.  I have reduced the number I am going to use for each player to 40-45 (5 nine-pocket sheets), but would like the 45 to be as cool as possible.


Needs by Player:
Alex Rodriguez
Topps Base Needs:
1998
1999
2000
2002
2004
2005
2006
2008
2009
2012
2013  
Need Relic or Auto - Nope, I have 1 so far!
Barry Bonds
Topps Base Needs:
2001
2003
2004
2005
Need Relic or Auto - Yes
Raphael Palmiero
Topps base Needs:
1991
1995
2000
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
Need Relic or Auto - Nope, I have 2 so far!
Roger Clemens
Topps Base Needs:
1985
1998
2001
2004
2007
2008
Need Relic or Auto - Nope, I have 1 so far!
Sammy Sosa
Topps Base Needs:
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
2001
2002
2004
2005
2007
2008
Need Relic or Auto -   Nope, I have 1!
Jason Giambi
Topps Base Needs:
2002
2003
2004
2005
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
Need Relic or Auto -No!  I have 3 relics.
Mark McGwire
Topps Base Needs:
1996
2002
Need Relic or Auto -Yes
Jose Canseco
Topps Base Needs:
1996
1997
1998
2000
2001
2002
Need Relic or Auto -Yes

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Enhancing My Performance

This year's new project - the SCAM Project!!

Last year my big project was collecting 1000 refractors.  I accomplished the goal, and it was a blast doing it!  I know it's almost April now, but it's time to unveil this years 'big project'!

I teased it a couple of posts ago with this horrible, puke invoking picture.  Take a minute to look if you are prepared and haven't eaten recently.  Are you back?  Good.  The obvious conclusion from that hint would be something about steroids.  Right?  But why would anyone celebrate the steroids era?
 
Well personally, I think that the steroid era was, like the picture, horrible and puke invoking.  The congress hearings and lying, the inflated stats and, most of all, just the plain cheating made for a reprehensible time for the sport.  Even the start of the 'clean-up' was completely self serving with Jose Canseco using his insider knowledge to keep himself relevant and make a few bucks.
But there were positives.  Bringing baseball back from the damage caused by the last players strike would have taken far longer without the drama from the record chases.  Another positive, at least in my mind, is that performance enhancement was not limited to the late 90's.  It's been a constant battle ever since players started making money for playing a game that rewards the best.  So the roids era, while tragic, at least forced people to take notice and forced baseball to take action.  We can debate baseball's 'action' another time, but at least the issue, a systemic, long historied issue is being attacked.

Blah blah blah.  Debate on the Steroids Era isn't really the point.  My new project is!!

This year I will create a collection commemorating the Steroid Era! It will be known as the Baseball's Super Cheating American Men Project or the SCAM Project.  Now a project like this has to have parameters.  There are many, many players who have been subject to the roids whispers.  I've decided to limit my collection to a few of the most prominent.  Not all of these players have admitted Steroid use.  Not all have been caught. Some have.  Not everyone who has admitted or been caught makes the list either.  No Andy Pettite.  No Melky Cabrera.  No Manny Ramirez.  I'm 'mostly' keeping it in the late 90's/early 2000's.  Pretty arbitrary, but that's how I'm doing it.

The 8 players that will be collected:

Alex Rodriguez - admitted
Barry Bonds - admitted, but not his fault
Mark McGwire - admitted
Jose Canseco - admitted
Raphael Palmiero - no admission, has a failed test
Jason Giambi - admitted
Roger Clemens - no admission, acquitted of perjury charges
Sammy Sosa - no admission

For each player, I'd like to have by the end of the year:

1. A complete Topps base run for their playing career.
2. At least one GU and/or Auto of each (hopefully more than 1)
3. And at least 100 40-45 of the below for each player.(this is 5 nine-pocket pages with room for any GU or Auto's.
     a. Refractors - any
     b. Numbered - any
     c. Parallels - Rarer and pretty only
     d. Inserts - Rarer and pretty only

If I get over 100 for any player, my favorite 100 for that player will be used.  At the end of the year, these mini-player collections will be closed and kept 'forever' as my personal reminder of and tribute to the steroids era.

I'm hoping that the steroids taint drives down the asking price on these players/cards so that I can turn this collection into a reality despite my meager budget.

Please don't go sending anything at this point, though if you have stuff you want to trade, let me know! I'll be making another post that is a little more specific on what cards I want/need.  Thanks for reading!!!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Desperate to be Cool

If you don't want to read my drivel, shoot to the bottom for a couple of scans of what the kids call Baseball Cards.  They have nothing to do with the post, but then, this is a card blog and the rest of the post only slightly relates to cards, so hopefully these scans get you through!

When I was a kid, my friends and I were always coming up with what we thought were cool and original phrases.  Once we had used them for a while, we would hear them get picked up by others and become part of the national and even international culture.  Happened multiple times, I swear!  A couple examples, we thought we had invented 'Dudette' and '24-7'.

Yeah, right!  Looking back, it's pretty obvious that we either heard these things somewhere and adopted them as our own, or made connections that thousands of other people living in the same pop-culture influenced world also made.

What does this have to do with cards?????

Well, I think I actually did it this time.  Maybe.  Am I cool now?

Those of you that have been around the card blogging community for a while remember 'Bipping', also expressed as 'I got Bipped'.  I have no idea who started it or who named it, but it took off and people in the community still know what it means.  A phrase like that that has been making the rounds lately is 'PWE Bombs' as popularized by the actions of one man, Wes from JayBarkerFan's Junk.

And here's the thing.  I think I coined that phrase!  Here is my first use of the term, closely followed by Wes using it in this post later the same day.

So what do you think?  Am I finally as cool and trendy as I always thought I was?  Do you love me, do you really love me?????

Either way, I will soon be joining the PWE sending phenomenon.  If I already have your address, you might get something soon, if I don't have your address, send it to me with what you collect and you never know! 

Anyway, here are the scans of a few baseball cards as promised at the top of this post.  I got them in a nickel box a while back and sooner or later, they will go out in somebody's PWE !!  Any interest?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Anyone still out there?

Yup, I'm posting!!  Does anyone still read this blog??????????????????????????????????????

I hope so.  I don't deserve it, but I hope so.

If you still have me in your reader, or see this on a blogroll, let me know.  I like to know who my loyal readers are, and I'm hoping to start up on the PWE craze that is going on, so you might just get something out of it.

I haven't posted in nearly 2 months.  I haven't been dead.  In fact, some of you may have seen comments from me on your blogs.  I've been trying to comment more, but I still mostly lurk.  No, I'm not dead, but I haven't been great.  I've been depressed, busy and broke.  Depression is no joke.  Really no joke.  Being busy is what keeps my depression from getting too out of control.  Being broke is my main reason for not posting.

Why should being broke keep me from posting?  Because my main joy out of blogging comes, not from expressing myself or showing off cards, but from creating trades and sending out cards.  And believe it or not, I've been too broke to send out cards.  Pathetic huh?  I am getting to the point where I might be able to start mailing again, albeit just PWE's.  I really want to.

I also have finally found my next project to follow up last year's Great Refractor Project!  It's cheesy and weird, but I'm excited.  One of the next posts will detail that, so come on back.  Here is a tease for that project!!!