Monday, January 27, 2014

Latin Project Update

I've been giving the Latin Project some thought and have come to at least one conclusion.  I want to include players who are heavily involved in the Latin cultures.  What I mean by that, is that I want the players highlighted in this project to not just have Latin ancestry, but Latin involvement. 

Some examples:

-Vladimir Guererro spent most of his life prior to his MLB career in the Dominican Republic.  I like that and want that kind of player in the project.

-Rafael Palmiero spent his early life in Cuba, but did at least High School in America.  I don't know how I feel about including this kind of player in the project.

-Jose Canseco was born in Cuba but left for America when he was still an infant.  That makes him and other players like him very borderline to make it into the project.

Does anyone have any input on that?  Am I doing it right or wrong in your opinion?  Does anyone know where I could find easily accessible information on when Latin players came to America?

Also, I have put a new link to the Latin Project Status Page in the 'Sticky Stuff' section on the upper right of the blog.  It's not anywhere near complete yet, or even ready to be used at all, but it's a start and I hope to get a decent list of players I need for the project up soon.

Anyway, I would appreciate any and all feedback on any aspect of this project!  And a big thank you to Jeff and Dhoff for their input so far.  I really appreciate it!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

This year...

OK, almost 3 weeks into the new year, its time to unveil my yearly project.  This is the third year I have had a yearly project.  In 2012 it was the Refractor project where I attempted to accumulate 1000 refractors.  I made it too!  In 2013, it was the Steroids project where I built a baseball card tribute to the steroids era.  I fell a little short on the base card component of that one, but I will keep plugging away until it is finished.

So 2014...

I liked the feel of the Steroids project.  It documented history.  Maybe a not so nice part of history, but it was important and I'm happy to have the (almost) completed project.  It might be repetitive, but this year I want to document history again, this time an undertold and very important story.  I want to document the impact of Latin players on Major League Baseball.

Last year, I knew what cards I wanted from the start.  This year, a large part of the project will be determining which players should be included and then accumulating their cards.

Last year, I knew how I wanted to organize and display the project.  This year, I am not so sure, but I will be asking for your help on ideas.

So the project will consist of the following steps:

1. Determine what countries to document.  I want this to include all of the Latin American countries that have contributed significant numbers of players.  What is a 'significant number'?  I don't know yet, but I think it will boil down to whether the country has enough players with cards to use in the project.

2. Determine who to gather cards of from each country.  For countries like Peurto Rico, this should be mostly stars.  For a country that has only sent 25 players to MLB, it might just be a few of the more significant.  Players will be picked for baseball skills and cultural contributions.

3. Determine how to organize and display the project.  Right now the only ideas are 1. in a binder and 2. like a science project with a large board.  The board would have pictures of countries and then I'd put the cards of the players around the country they came from.

Maybe there will be more steps, I don't know!

I do know that I want this to document the baseball contributions of Latin players as well as history.  I will want cards of vintage players probably more than current guys.  Yoenis Cespedes and Aroldis Chapman are great players, but probably won't make the short list from Cuba.  But we will see.

Either way, I hope to learn something and have fun along the way.  Look for a post asking for your help in the next couple of days.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

PWE results

First off, a contest update.  The wife and I got supersick this week, so the contest winnings only went out yesterday.  Start watching the mailboxes early next week!

Now to today's post!

Last year, before I had some major health issues that basically brought my blogging to a halt, I had a goal to send out as many PWE's as I could.  Before I got derailed, I sent out 49 PWE's.  I kept careful track of who I sent them to and if I got a response back.  Here are the stats!

Total sent: 49
Total responses: 41
Total responses via email: 22
Total responses on blogs: 26
Number with no response: 8

From the numbers, I conclude that bloggers are pretty good at communication.  Only 16% of the PWE's had no response of any kind. And I think at least a few of those were to guys without a blog.  That's not much of a surprise though, our little blogging community is pretty cool.  Even more, if you add the responses via email and responses on blogs, you get 48 total, which is more than the 41 total responses in the stats.  That's because 7 people responded with an email as well as a blog post.  Pretty nice.

Though the point of sending PWE's wasn't to track stats, it was fun and only confirmed what I thought in the first place.  That bloggers are the best!

How do my numbers compare with your experiences?

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Post results

I apologize for the delay!!!!!  I have been trying to reach one of the entrants for a while, but they must be too busy, so whatever I had to ask them will no longer have any bearing on the contest.  So...

Here they are, the moments you've been waiting for!  If you are a winner, shoot me your mailing address.  I might already have it, but send it anyway, if you would be so kind.

Frankly, this part of a contest is always the worst for me.  It's nice rewarding the winners, but I hate to send the rest of you away with nothing.  Ah, well, nothing I can do about that now.

We had 38 different people enter and a total of 125 entries including bonuses.

And now..

Day 1 - Masterpieces and Vintage

This one had 26 total entries counting bonus entries, the most of any prize.

Congrats Play at the Plate!

Day 2 - 70's Vintage

This one had 16 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats Play at the Plate again?!?!?!?!?!  Well, I guess I never said anything about not winning two prizes, so yes, PATP wins the first two prizes!  Maybe he should go buy a lottery ticket.

**Since this happened, I have taken everyone who didn't win in Day 2 and done a second randomization for an extra prize.  It isn't as good as the regular Day 2 prize, but at least it is something.  No bonus entries on this one, and winners of other prizes will also be removed.  That randomization is at the bottom of the post...

Day 3 - Serial Numbered

This one had 11 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats arpsmith!

Day 4 - Modern retired players

This one had 16 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats Hackenbush!

Day 5 - Sharpie edges

This one had 16 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats Greg Zakwin!  Winning with the bonus entry is nice, but you finished 2nd too!

Day 6 - Game Used and Autos

This one had 18 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats Brad's Blog!

Day 7 - Vintage/Mantle

This one had 22 total entries counting bonus entries.

Congrats Red Cardboard!

**And now for the Day 2 extra prize randomization...
Congrats Dhoff!

Everyone send me your mailing address.

We will do it all again next year!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Bumbry Bat Around

Chuckneo over at Lifetime Topps Project has thrown out an idea for a Blogger Bat Around.  I decided to take part!  Here's the idea:  What’s the card or card(s) that weren’t produced that you wish had been made?

Now there are a lot of ways you could take that.   From the original Bat Around challenge, "Was there a rookie card that came out later than others?  Was there a player who played just one year for a team but didn’t get a card in a certain set?  Was there a subset of cards – or even an entire set – that you wish had never been discontinued?"

I decided to go in a different direction.  I was thinking about players missing time for military service.  Most of those guys were in World War 2, years when baseball cards were not being produced anyway.  So I couldn't just grab the 1944 Topps design and put a photo on it.  But I figured there must be players who missed time for more recent wars.  Turns out, not so much.  But there were several players who had their careers delayed by war.

One such player is Al Bumbry, the subject of my favorite Earl Weaver quote:
"Raleighs have gone from six fifty to nine dollars a carton, but there's a three-quarter cent coupon on the back.  You can get all kinds of things with them - blenders, everything.  I saved up enough one time and got Al Bumbry."
— Earl Weaver

Bumbry started his professional career in the Orioles minor league system in 1969, only to see it interrupted by military duty. Of all the major leaguers to serve during the Vietnam War, Bumbry had one of the most distinguished tenures. As a platoon leader and lieutenant, he earned the Bronze Star for heroism before receiving an honorable discharge in June of 1969. None of Bumbry’s men lost their lives while under his leadership.

His rookie card is from the 1973 set after 9 games and a total of 11 plate appearances in 1972.  Here's the card.

I figure that if he hadn't spent the 2 years in Vietnam, he might have made his major league debut 2 years earlier, in 1970, making his RC from the 1971 set.  Here is my re-imagining of it:

Several other Major Leaguers also served in Vietnam including Jim Bibby and Garry Maddox.  Here is a link to an interesting article in a newspaper about Bubmry's service.,251505

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Post at the end

Let's finish this off.  Yes, this is the last of the seven prizes.  Comments will be accepted until 3PM Pacific Time on Wednesday, January 8th.  Any after that will not be entered for the randomization.  I hope to do the randomization Thursday, but it may not be until Friday evening.

As usual, if you don't know what I'm talking about, or don't know the rules, you really need to go to this post and read the rules so you don't get disqualified.

Today, we have a smattering of decent vintage cards.  As usual, condition can be an issue for these cards.  None are mint, but a few are pretty OK.  One hard to see thing is that the Yazstremski has a light crease.

The big card here is the 1965 Topps Embossed Mickey Mantle.  Lots of people want a Mantle from his playing days.  This could be your shot!

Comment away!

Here are links to precious days if you need them
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6

Monday, January 6, 2014


A few of the cards in today's pack, I received from fellow bloggers in the past.  So this might seem like re-gifting.  I can't really argue against that, but I apologize if you recognize any of these cards as having come from your own collections.  I usually only keep one relic card per player, so when an 'upgrade' comes along, the old one goes in the yearly contest pile.  That's how most of these got here.

As usual, if you don't know what I'm talking about, or don't know the rules, you really need to go to this post and read the rules so you don't get disqualified.

17 relic cards.

And 2 Autos

Comment away!

Here are links to precious days if you need them
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Post Post Post

I know several bloggers out there who collect non-mint, well loved, and even completely hammered cards.  Sometimes it is the only way most of us can ever hope to own some of the awesome vintage out there.  With that in mind...

Yesterday's prize was a mammoth stack of cards.  Today's will be much, much smaller.  Two cards to be exact.  The two cards below may look, at first glance, to be in decent condition.  However, they both have the same problem.

71 Topps cards have always had a problem with the black edges flaking and chipping, leaving really obvious light colored marks on their edges.  A somewhat common remedy has been taking a sharpie to the light colored blemishes and presto, they are all black again.

I bet there are people who can do this process well, probably even almost undetectable.  The cards below were not done by such a person.  Not that they look bad, but if you look, the marker marks are obvious.

However, these are two of the iconic cards from the 1971 set, and I imagine there are some of you out there who would like them, sharpie and all.

So without further ado, here are the cards for day 5!

Comment away!

Here are links to the other day's if you need them:

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4

Saturday, January 4, 2014

A Post for Today

I grew up reading a ton about players from the 20's to the 60's.  It seemed like the golden age of baseball according to the biographers of players like Willie Mays, Babe Ruth, Roberto Clemente and Ted Williams.  And I always wanted cards of these great players, but that was just a pipe dream.  Wasn't going to happen!  Fast forward to now...

Cards of my old heroes are now widely available. Reprints and throwback sets are everywhere.  It's great in one sense, as I can now get nice looking cards of all the old guys.  But I may have accumulated too many...

So today's prize is a big ol stack of 'modern cards of vintage players'.

As usual, if you don't know what I'm talking about, or don't know the rules, you really need to go to this post and read the rules so you don't get disqualified.
Here is the stack!
I quickly went through and grabbed nine cards I felt like were some of the better ones.  You may disagree, depending on your tastes or team affiliation!

And below are pics of the rest.  My camera wouldn't take a decent pic, so they are all blurry.  I hope it gives you an idea though...

Comment away!

Here are links to the other day's if you need them:

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4 (today)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Still Another Post

Today's offering.  This is one that I'm not sure if it will get many entries.  I guess we'll see!

As usual, if you don't know what I'm talking about, or don't know the rules, you really need to go to this post and read the rules so you don't get disqualified.

Here it is!

First, 25 serial numbered cards, each numbered to 100 or less.  Some are /100, some are /75 or /62 or /98...

And 5 more serial numbered cards.  These have higher serial numbers.  The Howard is a Chrome and the Kemp is a refractor.

And lastly, a couple of vintage, since everyone seems to like vintage.

Comment away!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Another Post

So here are the cards for day two of this shindig.  If you don't know what I'm talking about, or don't know the rules, you really need to go to this post and read them so you don't get disqualified.

Day 1 has got a LOT of entries already.  That's great.  I hope to have some days with a lot of entries and others with fewer.  That will allow people to either shoot for the prize they want the most or try for the ones that they will have a better chance on due to fewer entries.

I'll be interested to see which day's get more entries and which get less.

Anyway, today we have 20 cards from the 1970's.  Most of these cards have condition issues, but if you don't already own them, they sure are a nice addition to a collection.

Molitor RC?  Trammel RC?  Your call I guess.

Guess which of these guys are not in the Hall of Fame???
They look so young!

Comment if you want to use one of your entries.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

A Post

OK, here we go!  This will be a bit of reading, but it may be worth it.

I am pleased to announce my yearly contest.  I know there are people who read my blog when I post, however irregularly that may be.  Those regular readers are the ones that I would most like to win in this contest.   So no publicity please!!  And if you are not a regular reader, you can still enter.  Here is how it will work:

There will be 7 prizes available.  Starting with this post and continuing for the next 6 days I will post one prize per day.  It's pretty simple, if you want to entered for that day's prize, leave a comment on that day's post.  Everyone who wants in can have a maximum of three entries.  That means you can enter on only 3 prize posts (*with a few exceptions below).  If you enter on more prize posts than you are allowed, you will be removed from all prizes. will be used 3 times per prize to determine who wins each.

The first 3 comments on any prize post will get double entry for that prize.  That's an incentive to jump in on prizes early rather than waiting until all 7 are posted.

*The exceptions!  A few weeks ago, I made some extra entries available for commenting on earlier posts.  Below are the people who earned extra entries and the number of extras they have.  These entries can be used on a fourth (or fifth) prize post or as a second entry on any one prize post.

Play at the Plate - 1
madding - 2
comatoad - 1
Josh D. - 1
Nick - 2
Brian Conrad - 1
The Lost Collector - 1
Fuji - 2
irondequoit36 - 2
Greg Zakwin - 1
Brad's Blog - 1
The Junior Junkie - 1
Spiegel83 - 1
So let's get to it!  Here is today's prize:

A 2007 UD Masterpieces base set (not scanned, these are already packed, I lifted this image from Ebay)  It's a beautiful set!

And 28 assorted cards from the 60's including a 1969 Pete Rose and a 1966 Brooks Robinson.  All of the vintage cards have condition issues, you can see for yourself in the scans.

Comment below if you wish to use one of your entries on this prize!