Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Halloween Costumes - Doug Jones Dresses Up!

This is my entry into Round 1 of Nachos Grande's Blogger Bracket Contest!  Voting will be up soon and I will put a link to the voting page right here!

Upper Deck!  If you were around in the late 80's and early 90's, Upper Deck was a game changer.  The stock was different and felt 'new' somehow.  They had holograms to protect us from those pesky card counterfeiters and most importantly, the photography!  It was one of the things UD was best known for, and for good reason.  No more 'standing in front of the spring training dugout' shots.  Nope, we got three main new categories of beautiful photography.  Now we were treated to in game action shots, iconic close ups and best of all, quirky, behind the scenes candids!

Here are some examples.

In game action shot, iconic close up and quirky, behind the scenes candid

For this round, if you haven't guessed, I will be writing about an Upper Deck card!  And yes, it fit's one of the 3 new photography categories.

Is it an in game action shot???????


An iconic close up???????


So it must be quirky, a behind the scenes candid?

Yes!!  Here is the card:

Hi, my name is Doug Jones and I'm a videographer!

She's a beaut, eh?  Hairy, man-thing holds early 90's video camera behind rope fence.  Reminds me of those caveman car insurance commercials.  This card is crazy!  Like Halloween costume crazy.  So crazy that it made me wonder how this 'awesome photography' would fare in a costume.

Who says baseball cards can't wear a costume for Halloween??  And exactly what does a beautiful photograph on a baseball card wear for its costume??????  Why it wears other year's and brands of baseball cards!!  So, for your viewing pleasure, I give you the 1993 Upper Deck Doug Jones photo in various costume's!  Enjoy!

Let's start it off with Doug sporting this classy and classic 1987 Topps design!
Perhaps filming Jose Canseco's first steroids injection?

Here we have Doug dressed up as a 1972 Topps card!

The 'Stros colors on Doug's arm really pop with this design

Doug puts on the vintage in this 1955 Bowman outfit!
The video camera seems out of place in this costume...

Doug goes all out with this one!  It's a 1998 Topps Gallery of Heroes insert suit!
The mullet really clicks on this one

Doug goes old school in a 1975 Topps theme.
Nice signature Dougie!

A brutal effort with this 1982 Diamond King outfit.  Doug was going for classic, but couldn't pull it off.
Terrible paint job Doug!

Doug brings a little class to the Halloween party in this 1983 Topps costume.
Two Doug's on one card?  Now that's class! Even if they're on different teams!

Doug is an All-Star!   Great costume from the 1970 Topps set.
How did Doug even fit into that costume???

I'm partial to the 70 Topps All-Star and the 98 Gallery of Heroes, but what do you think?  Which costume should Doug wear tonight to the party??  Leave me some comments and when voting opens, head on over to Nachos Grande and give me some support!!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

My name isn't Pedro, but vote for me anyway!

What is this pic all about???????

Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.

Just a quick plug to vote for my entry in Nacho Grande's bracket contest!  Even if you don't like mine, there are a ton of other cool posts in the contest.  Go now!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Big, Strong, Angry Men - In The Mail!

In response to my plea for steroid users, Spiegel of Nomo's Sushi Platter fame shot me over some cards recently.  My absolute favorite was this Roger Clemens from the V.J. Lovero showcase insert set.
Now this card is from 1996, which as far as anyone has supposed, was before Roger started hitting the juice and getting shots in his behind.  But as you can see, he already has the rage!  Or is that facial expression pain from over splitting on that split finger grip?

Either way, thanks Spiegel!

Another package came in from reader Ethan with a bunch of McGwires!!  My four favorites from the package are below.
The top 2 scanned horribly, they look very nice when not on my scanner bed.  This kind of McGwire inserts are hard to come by.  Everyone seems to keep their harder to find Big Mac's in a safe in their basement or something.  I can't complain, I hoard them myself with over 700 different McGwires in my collection.

Thanks Ethan!

And let me know if you have cool inserts of McGwire, Canseco, Palmeiro or Jason Giambi or ANY of the Topps base cards that I still need for all the steroid users.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Tragedy of Alfonso

This is my entry in Round 0 of Nachos Grande's Blogger Bracket Contest!

Hey kids!!

Come one in and gather round, and I'll tell you a baseball story.  The story is the story of Alfonso Soriano, and of this card:

Much like the movie Princess Bride, it has "Fencing (actually, no), Fighting (sort of?), Torture (definitely!), Revenge (not yet), Giants (sort of, but no San Fransisco Giants), Monsters (sure, if you count Chicago Cubs) Chases (nope) Escapes (nope) True love (depends on your philosophical bent) and Miracles (yes!)"

In reality, it is a story of sorrow and woe, pretty danged near a Greek tragedy.  So here we go...

Once upon a time, Alfonso Soriano was a promising young ballplayer, maybe even Hall of Fame bound!  He had a rare combination of power and speed.  He joined the 40/40 club in 2006.  But the baseball gods were jealous of young Alfonso.  He had too much, too soon.  The gods felt the need to take Alfonso down a peg or two.  Or three.  And so the gods conspired with that great and powerful entity, Topps, in order to rob the young star of all that made him great.  This is how they did it...

They conceived of a baseball card set which they named Topps Attax.  The idea was simple, but the execution would be devilish.  They sold the idea to young Soriano.  In order to make the graphics as realistic as possible, they took him to a desolate place where the sky was low and dim and the horizon seemed too close.  They dressed him in a generic uniform and handed him his favorite bat, Bomber.  Then they started up the flame thrower!  "For graphical effect", they said with forked tongues.  "Now swing", they commanded "as hard as you can!"

For what seemed like days, they did take after take, tiring Alfonso's arms more with each violent swing.  The flame thrower never stopped.  The temperature always rose.  Smoke billowed.

The Topps executives watched with narrowed eyes.  They had plenty of wonderful shots for the card, but Soriano was not yet destroyed.  "Turn up the heat" muttered one junior exec.  "Move the flames closer", whispered another.  All eyes turned to the VP of Player Destruction.  His eyes focused on the distance and his head was cocked to the side as if listening to something that the rest couldn't hear.  Finally, he turned his back so nobody could claim to have seen him speak.  The words "Put him in a Cubs uniform" floated on the air, apparently from no earthly mouth.

The junior execs recoiled visibly!  Murmured phrases like "too far", "so mean" and "cruel and unusual punishment" were heard.  The VP of Player Destruction turned around and the mumbling stopped.  An ambitious associate, not even to the level of a junior executive, stepped forward.  All others hushed.  "I swear, it will be done", he stated flatly.

And so it was done, Soriano was dressed in Cubs garb and placed back into the fiery batters box.  The executives surrounded him chanting "Swing, swing, swing, SWING, swing, swing, swing, SWING".

Alfonso bowed his head, gathering his strength, and said softly, "As you wish".

He tensed his body in a perfect batting stance prepared for one last effort...

Since the invention of the swing, there have only been five swings that were rated the most smooth, the most pure.  This one left them all behind.

Alfonso gave all, and the gods (and Topps folks) got their way.  Alfonso's mighty swing took a double toll.  His right forearm ripped as though lightning tore through it.

And almost as bad, his favorite bat, Bomber, cracked and split.

His career, his hall of fame future, went up in the smoke from the flame thrower.  In his next 4 years for the Cubs, he never hit over .262 and was considered a bust.

But as in many great stories, Alfonso got a curtain call.  Traded to the Yankees mid season, he hit 17 HR and drove in 50 in only 58 games down the stretch.  A miracle?  Perhaps.  Perhaps not in time to save his legacy, but when you look a the career of Alfonso Soriano, consider the role that the gods and Topps had in his downfall.

Coulda, woulda, shoulda.

You can vote for me here!!!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Return to the Nickel Box

I recently went to my first card show in several months.  My first, and basically only, stop was at Bill's nickel boxes.  Sometimes they are junk, but other times I find gold.  I'll let you decide how I did this time.  Here are some of my finds!
I found a ton of serial numbered stuff, maybe 30 or more!  All of these are serial numbered except the Braves 4 Star Staff card in the lower right.  But that one has 3 future HOFers!

A little basketball!  The Laettner and Anderson are refractors.  I love finding old refractors.  The Robinson is an Electric Gold parallel and has a 20x multiplier in everyone's favorite magazine.  I had never seen the Electric Gold before.

And my last and probably favorite, this hammered Bo Belinsky / Jim Bouton RC.  I'll pick up 50 year old hammered cardboard for a nickel any day, but when I got home with this one, I found out it is a tough to find high numbered card.  At the risk of referencing Beckett twice in one post, this one carries an $80 price tag!

There was a lot more, but three scans is my limit today.  How'd I do?

Friday, October 18, 2013

Catching Up

Many moons ago, there was a day devoted to Fathers, appropriately, if a little obviously, called Fathers Day.  Since I haven't blogged since then until recently, I thought I'd share what I got that day!

First up are these two HEAVY books:

These guys have pictures of every Topps card from every set for the decade.  Nice color, glossy pages, the whole shebang.  A foreword by Willie Mays in both.  It's the same foreword in both, and I doubt Willie really wrote it, but still cool.

The 50's book has Bowman sets in it too, even though Topps didn't own them way back then.  The wife found them at a garage sale for cheap.

Sappy alert!!!!!  Read below only if you are a sappy dad or like chick flicks.

But as cool as the books are, they aren't any better than the other literary works I received that day.

One from each of my three kids.  Thanks kids!  I love you!!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Gettin back on Steroids

I got good feedback on my 'Do I Owe You' post, but not from many people who I actually owed something.  I know there are at least a few of you that I owe.  Let me know at your convenience!

OK, So I updated the Steroids Project main page.  Now instead of each player having their own page, all players are on one page, hopefully making it easier to search for things that you want to send me!!

My biggest needs right now are the Topps Base for each year for each player.  The ones I need are all current on the main Steroids Project page.  After that, I need cool inserts, refractors etc. for Jason Giambi, Raphael Palmiero and surprisingly, even a few Jose Canseco's.  I can still use really cool inserts, refractors and rare parallels of the rest, but not as many.  Most of the other players have tons of awesome stuff in every set, but Giambi and Palmiero, less so.  Bonds, McGwire and Canseco, I still need relics or Auto's.

I hope to put this project to bed by the end of the year, so if you have anything you'd like to trade me, please let me know!!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Do I owe you??

Well, I am back once again, this time with a question:  Do I owe you?
When I say, 'do I owe you', I mean cards!!

Do I owe you in return for a trade you sent me?  Did I say I'd send you cards, but never did?  Have I wronged you in this or a previous life and you need cards to make things right?????  Pleas let me know, because I know there are at least a few of you.  You won't hurt my feelings!

I ask because I've been gone.  From blogging and trading, and from most of my life's activities.  I've had health issues that took a lot away from me for a long time.  That's all I have to say about that.  Because I'm mostly better!!  And I'd like to get back to the hobby, at least baby steps.  And the first step I'd like to take is to send packages to those of you who have been generous to me, but to whom I have not returned the favor.

So if you are one of those I owe, PLEASE contact me.  Comment, email, whatever.

I hope to find the energy to post from time to time as well.  I need to finish this years project, the SCAM Project.  I have a decent stash that I have built up all year for end of the year contests in about 2 months.  I'm sure there are other things I will post about.

But for now, do I owe you?