Wednesday 29 February 2012

2010 Topps: Ryan Spilborghs aka The Spilly Slam + Bonus Custom

Inspired by the Dimebox post yesterday, here is one of my favorite Rockies base cards ever. Ryan Spilborghs rounding the bases after hitting a walk off grand slam against the Giants during the Rockies 2009 playoff run. A really amazing game I remember watching, tied 1-1 until the top of the 14th when Adam Eaton gave up 3 runs, then in the bottom of the 14th Justin Miller walks Eaton with the bases loaded, followed by Spilborghs hitting a walk off grand slam off of Merkin Valdez. Spilborghs is now with Cleveland but will always be remembered by Rockies fans for his sense of humor (look up Spill the Beans on youtube, it's great), his ever changing facial hair and the Spilly Slam. I really like when you can recognize what game the photo on a card is from and wish Topps would make use of this more often on base cards.

Tuesday 28 February 2012

1971 Topps Variations: Mickey Lolich #133

Eyes down

Similar to the Ron Cook variation, but not as creepy looking, card number 133 featuring Mickey Lolich has the eyes up / eyes down variants. The eyes down version has Lolich looking straight ahead and his left eye is slightly more open than the version where he is looking up at his cap. A small difference, neither is noted on any graded versions and both are readily available. This card is notoriously hard to find centered and considered one of the toughest cards to find in a high grade. All the O-Pee-Chee's I have seen are the eyes down version.

Friday 24 February 2012

Custom Card: 2012 Topps Jamie Moyer

Another spring training themed custom, 49 year old Jamie Moyer in his new Rockies uniform. I feel the same about Moyer as I do about 2012 Topps, interesting and new, but not particularly excited about either one. I give Moyer very little chance of making the Rockies roster, but like base Topps, he's a novelty until something better comes along. This is not my best custom attempt, but I don't think I will ever use this design again and it's Friday so I kind of half assed this one.

Thursday 23 February 2012

Contest at Cards Beyond Oceans

Been busy and not much to clutter the internet about so here is just some pimping of a contest over at Cards Beyond Oceans. A couple of baseball card collectors I think are from the U.K. Here I thought getting stuff shipped to Canada was a pain, I feel for these guys.

 Just to fill in space and further clutter the internet, here is a card of Pinch Hitter extraordinaire Lance Painter because he is the only MLB player I can think of off the top of my head to be born in the U.K.

Tuesday 21 February 2012

Custom Cards: Javy Lopez 2007 Topps & Fleer

Now that pitchers & catchers have reported for most teams we have a spring training themed custom card. Javy Lopez spent 2007 spring training with the Rockies, but didn't make the team as Chris Iannetta made his first opening day roster along with returning starter Yorvit Torrealba, and retired shortly after. Lopez never got a card with the Rockies even though both Topps and Upper Deck gave cards to Brian Lawrence, another player to not make the team.

Saturday 18 February 2012

Mailday: 2012 Topps Drew Pomeranz Printing Plate

Just a single card mail day but a few collecting firsts for me, my first 1 of 1 card, my first printing plate, my first 2012 and my first Drew Pomeranz card. One of my collecting goals for 2012 is to load up on Pomeranz cards, and hoping that the fact they are for my personal collection and not as an investment that I won't jinx his career in the process. This is a pretty good start to 2012 and building a Pomeranz PC, its a sharp looking card even though I always thought printing plates would be thicker for some reason.

Friday 17 February 2012

Cardboard Tribute to Gary Carter

Not much really to say, 11x All-Star, 3x Gold Glove and Hall of Famer, just wanted to share some of my favorite Gary Carter cards.
1975 Topps Rookie Card
1976 Topps First solo card w/ Rookie Cup

1978 Topps

1985 Donrus

Wednesday 15 February 2012

1978 Topps #553 Terry Puhl

I recently got this 1978 Terry Puhl rookie card in a trade and added it my collection of Saskatchewan major leaguers. Terry Puhl was signed as a 17 year old amateur free agent in 1973 after leading his hometown Meville teams to Provincial and National championships. Puhl played in 1,531 games over 15 seasons in the majors, 14 of them with the Astros. He retired after the 1991 season and is the most recent Saskatchewan born player appear in the major leagues. When he retired he was the Canadian all-time leader in games played and stolen bases, but has since been passed in games by Larry Walker and Matt Stairs, and in steals by Walker. He was named to his only All-Star team in his second season, 1978, not playing in the game, but becoming the first and only Saskatchewan born player to make the All-Star team. His career .994 fielding percentage as a right fielder is still the MLB record. He is a member of the Saskatchewan, Canadian and Texas Baseball Halls of Fame, and received one vote for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997.

Monday 13 February 2012

1971 Topps Variations: 6th Series Checklist #619

Another checklist, this time it's the 6th Series checklist with three variations, all fairly easy to spot and noted by most grading companies. We have the following:

619a: No copyright on back.
619b: Copyright on back, no wavy line on helmet
619c Copyright on back: wavy line

Friday 10 February 2012

Baseball Cards Come in the Mail!

A trade package just came in from Bo from Baseball Cards Come to Life! who I found though Night Owl's brilliant One Card Challenge post, filling some random needs. My highlight is the 1996 Collector's Choice "Bichette Happens" card from the mulleted Blake Street Bombers era, I still can't believe it took me this long to get this card.

Thursday 9 February 2012

1971 Topps #216 Reggie Cleveland / Luis Melendez

This card is part of my collection as part of the 1971 set, and part of my Saskatchewan ball players collection. The Saskatchewan collection is much smaller. This is Reggie Cleveland's second year card after sharing a 1970 Rookie Stars card with Cardinal pitchers Sal Campisi and Santiago Guzman. Shared rookie cards are the one thing I really dislike about vintage.

Reggie Cleveland is one of six players from this province to play in the majors. He was discovered in his home town of Swift Current by a carnival operator who told his friend, Cardinals manager Red Schoendienst, to to sign him. Cleveland was signed as a 17 year old in 1965 and pitched in the minors for 4 season before making his MLB debut in 1969. In 1971 he went 12-12 for the Cards and was named the Sporting News National League Rookie of the Year. Traded to the Red Sox after the 1973 season, he would become the first Canadian pitcher to start a World Series game, taking the loss in game five of the 1975 series. He finish his career with a 105-106 record over 428 games, including 203 starts from 1969-1981. Cleveland would go on the be inducted into Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986.

Monday 6 February 2012

Custom Card: 1962 Topps Football Carlos Gonzalez

Football season is now over, which means Baseball is just around the corner. Here is a custom based one of my top three vintage football designs, 1962 Topps. The original set featured rookie cards of Mike Ditka, Fran Tarkenton and Roman Gabriel, a tough set similar to 1971 Topps baseball with the condition sensitive black borders. A nice simple design, two photos, one usually a head-shot with an black and white action photo to the left. The larger photo is from a road game against the Dodgers, while the black and white is just after hitting a walk off home run to complete the cycle against the Cubs.

Friday 3 February 2012

1971 Topps Variations: Coins Checklist #161

This might be the most boring baseball card post ever, but the completist in me forces me to do such things. Another 1971 checklist variation, nothing as exciting as vaguely different helmet colors (or colours for the OPC crowd). Here we just have the number being placed in a different spot, and nothing as exciting as bottom right corner compared to bottom center, one is just slightly higher than the other. One version features the top of the number 161 even with Mickey Lolich and the other the top of the number is even with Tim McCarver. Both are readily available, and the difference is not noted by any grading service I know of. Nothing groundbreaking, but if I am going to document all the variations, I have to do the boring ones. This card was so boring that OPC excluded it and just put a second card of Ron Hunt in it's place. The Oh My O-Pee-Chee blog does a good job of explaining the actual reason here, linky.

Thursday 2 February 2012

1971 Topps Variations: 2nd Series Checklist #123

Now we get into the confusing part of the 1971 Topps variations, the checklists. From what I can find the series 2 checklist comes in three varieties.We will call them 123A, 123B and 123C.

123A - Has the number on the back of the card centered, and the helmet on the front of the card has the black accents.
123B - Has the number on the back of the card in the bottom right, and has an orange helmet on the front. 
123C - Has the number on the back of the card in the bottom right, and has an red helmet on the front.

I am finding it very hard to tell what is an orange helmet and what is a red from scans. As far as I can tell the black accents only appear on 123A. What makes things worse in that I have seen "number centered" cards with a orange helmet notation.

The O-Pee-Chee versions have the same number placement variation, but I can not find anything on the helmet colours for OPC. The OPC checklist also differs in card #161, Topps has the coin checklist, while the OPC has Ron Hunt. This is because coins were not found in OPC packs. The back of the Topps also lists card 202 as "Reds Celebrate" and the OPC set has Claude Raymond. Topps added some extra Expos in the OPC set to add Canadian interest.

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Mailday: Memorabilia Edition

 In the mail today is the new coolest thing in my baseball collection. A Chris Iannetta game used bat. recently had a 25% off sale, and with my former favorite Rockie on his way the the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in California, or whatever they are called now, I jumped on the chance to pick this up. I usually don't go for memorabilia stuff, but getting it directly from, I feel pretty good about it being legit, it's even still got pine tar on it. It's cracked in the handle, so I don't want to swing it, but it will look cool on display once I figure out where to put it. According to the "MLB Authentication Program" hologram, this bat was used by Chris Iannetta on August 23, 2011 against the Astros.  I know for a fact I watched that game because that was Alex White's Rockies debut and I skipped out on all my other responsibilities to watch that game.