Monday, August 31, 2020

Monday Assortment

I am almost done with my trade recaps for a bit.  I have a large package from Kerry to highlight, along with a handful of small packages that should arrive this week.  After that I need to take a few days to file cards away and regroup.  Today's cards are from TCDB member 2822ams.

I have a couple of these 1984 Topps Rub Downs already in my collection besides these 2.  I should have traded for an extra to see how well these work after 35 years.

Who doesn't love stickers?  All of these are from 1984.  Check out the Cardinals baby blue uniforms and all the sideburns and mustaches going on.

The last Beckett price guide I bought was in January of 2012.  At the time this 1999 McGwire booked for $20.  I doubt that is the case now.

 Here are couple of cool inserts from 2019.  Ponce was sent down to the spring training site after not getting through the first inning of his start Saturday.  This black parallel numbered to 299 is still nice.  The O'Neill is a purple refractor. 

Finishing up with a couple of Series 2 Turkey red inserts.  I love the sunset backdrop on the Fernandez card. 

Friday, August 28, 2020

Catching Fire

I used some of the Paypal funds I gained from the sale of my Luis Robert card from 2020 Archives to buy into an EBAY 2 box break of 2020 Topps Fire.  My closest Target is about 1.5 hours away.  With the lack of retail product this year, I figured it was best to get the Cardinals set through a break.

I prefer last year's Fire design a little better.  2020 is not bad, but the background is a little too busy for me. 

I was lucky enough to get all 6 Cardinals in the base set along with doubles of DeJong and Flaherty.  Those will be headed to Kerry in my next package shortly unless he does not need them.  Out of the 3 designs, I like the one on the Fernandez card the best.

My only insert was this Smoke & Mirrors Andrew Miller.  He just landed on the DL with should fatigue.  He is nowhere close to the same reliever he was with Cleveland.  He still has some good days, but it seems like most of his outings include walks with multiple base runners.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Sportlots Order

It has been a while since I placed my last Sportlots order.  Almost 2 years to be exact.  I would buy from there more often if there was an option to search a seller's inventory by team.  I always make sure to buy from one seller in order to keep the shipping costs down.  It can be very time consuming going through hundreds of pages trying to find Cardinals I need.  Luckily I have a few sellers who I that I have purchased from in the past who open about every product made.  One of my favorites is cogrinch.  I had a little bit of store credit from the previous time I bought from him along with some Paypal money, so I placed a 40 card order earlier this month. 

Most of these cards were the minimum price of $0.18, with the last few being $0.25.  Shipping was $3.50 for up to 40 cards.

Second straight post with a sweet Pinnacle Museum card.  Bonus points on this one for the Ozzie Smith cameo.

Love the 2000 Invincible Tatis base card.  I really miss some of the Pacific designs. 

I am not a fan of the die cut 2000 Ultra Gold Medallion cards.  Some were vertical, other horizontal.  It makes sorting them a pain.  The photo is top notch though.

Some various base cards from the early 2000s.  The 01 Fusion Edmonds is my favorite.

I love the 2002 Super Teams set.  Wish Topps would come up with something similar to this instead of all the online exclusive cards.

Upper Deck's answer to Topps Total was 40 Man.  There were 44 Cardinals in this set.  I need 10 more after crossing these 7 off the list.

Not sure why I scanned this Edmonds alone.  It is a nice photo that I am guessing is from a home run trot. 

These 2 numbered cards were a quarter each, but that is a bargain in my book. 

I have lots of hole in Pro Debut and Heritage Minors sets.  I don't think a lot of people busted boxes of these in the early days.

Lackey completed my 2015 Bowman Chrome set, while Holliday leaves me 1 short for 2014.

2 of these 2015 refractors were a quarter, the rest $0.18.  Another steal in my book.

I will even buy minis for a quarter.  Still not my favorite though.

I like patriotic sets, so it was easy to snag these 2 2019 Donruss Independence Day parallels.

The final 2 cards were also a quarter each.  The Hicks is numbered to 299.  The Reyes is a refractor.  All total I spent $10.69 on these 40 cards for an average of $0.27 each once you figure in shipping.  That might be a little high for base cards, but some of the brands like 40 man I cannot find anymore. 

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

A Major Minors Trade

It is nice to see the Cardinals almost back to full strength after the virus outbreak.  I believe the last 2 or 3 players have been cleared to go to the training site and might be back in a few days.  Hopefully no other teams have to go through missing so many games.  I have been able to watch the last few games since I switched from Dish Network to Youtube TV.  It has been almost a year since Dish dropped Fox Sports Midwest from their programming.  That is a long time without watching a Cardinals game if you do not count the occasional game on ESPN or Fox. 

While I have enjoyed watching the Cardinals, I really do miss watching the minor league games in person.  Ever since we attended our first game in 2007, my family has made it a summer tradition to hit up multiple Cardinals minor league teams.  I hope they will return to playing in 2021.  It may look a little different if the MLB teams gain more control, but anything is better than nothing. 

A recent trade with TCDB member 5marchx reminded me how much I miss the minor leagues.  He sent a huge stack of Memphis Redbirds cards ranging from 2002-2019 from various prospect and all star sets.  I have seen these for sale at the stadium gift shops, but never wanted to buy the set just for a handful of cards I wanted.  It was fun looking back at all the players and seeing who made it to St. Louis.

Both of these pitchers had a short time in St. Louis.  The Cardinals farm system in the early 2000s did not really produce any big stars or even marginal players.

Fast forward to 2007 and we find a player in Brendan Ryan who had a decent career as an all glove, no hit shortstop.  Once again both of the pitchers had very short careers in the Majors.

2008 finally brought some players who had an impact for the Cardinals.  Rasmus was the reason we attended our first minor league game at Springfield in 2007.  He was a very hyped prospect at the time who was suppose to be an all star for many years.  It did not pan out that way, but his trade in 2011 brought over some much needed bullpen help that contributed to the World Series team.  Boggs was also a member of that bullpen.  Perez had a few good years as the Indians closer before having drug problems.

I have told the story before, but Anderson was my first ever in person autograph at that 2007 Springfield game.  He never got much of a chance in St. Louis with Molina catching.  He bounced around the minors for a few years without ever making an impact.  Todd was actually traded with Chris Perez to Cleveland for Mark DeRosa. 

Neither of the 2 all-star players had much of a career, but the bottom top prosects were productive players.  Lynn and Descalso both contributed to multiple playoff teams.  Lynn has found new life in Texas and is being talked about as a Cy Young candidate this year. 

Lynn was not in Memphis long in 2011 before helping out in the bullpen during the playoffs.  Chambers also was called up for the last half of the year.  He served mostly as a pinch runner and defensive replacement in the outfield.  He lasted part of 3 seasons before bouncing around the minors the rest of his career.

I do like the coaches being included in the all star sets.  It is nice to give them some recognition for their hard work.  Dickson was a repeat all star in 2012.  Barring injury, it is usually not good for a pitcher to spend 3 years in Triple A.  That was the case for Dickson as he only appeared in 8 MLB games before heading oversees to play.

We watched Wacha pitch a game for Memphis in 2013 before he was called up.  You could tell then he some talent.  I am guessing he has never fully recovered from a shoulder injury in 2018.  Still hurts to see cards of Taveras.  Would have been special to watch him in an outfield with Dylan Carlson.

These 3 were tabbed as the outfield of the future for the Cardinals.  6 years later none of them are in St. Louis. 

Tui has stuck around as a reliever for the Cardinals and Mariners.  He has not been able to stay healthy the since he was traded.  Cooney started 6 games in 2015 due to half the Cardinals starting rotation being injured.  He then got injured himself and has not pitched in the majors since.

Current Cardinals manager Mike Shildt managed 3 different minor league teams before heading to St. Louis.  I remember watching Wilson and Tilson play a lot of games for Peoria in 2013.  I always thought Wilson would make it, but he seemed to be a AAAA player.  Very nice guy who always had time to sign an autograph for my kids.  Tilson was traded to the White Sox and tore his hamstring in his debut.  Speed was a big part of his game that has not returned since the injury.  I believe he was playing in the minors before this year.

Finally we have a player still with the Cardinals, although Bader has seen his playing time go down since Carlson was promoted.  Weaver and Kelly were both part of the Goldschmidt trade with Arizona.  Kelly was another guy who was a friendly as the come.  My son still has an autographed bat of his that he received at spring training in 2016.

As we get closer to present day, you see more current players.  Here are 3/5 of the Cardinals starting rotation right now and the starting left fielder in O'Neill.  Wisdom just signed this week with the Cubs.  He is hands down the nicest ball player you will ever meet. 

Rounding out the minor league portion of the trade are a few cards from last year featuring 2 of the Cardinals Covid sqaud and 2 guys that benefited from it.  Ravelo and Thomas are both in Springfield at the training site.  Knizner played a few game while Yadi was out, but now will most likely sit for a long time.  Woodford had done well so far, but I am not sure he will have a spot once all the relievers come back.

 Beside all the minor league goodies, I also score these 1978 TCMA cards.  Not sure why you would use a brick wall for a card background.

The last 3 cards were from this year's 2020 Finest Flashback set.  Great looking cards that take me back to my high school days.  Hard to believe it has been almost 30 years since the original 1993 Finest set was released.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

3 More Small Trades

I am back today with 3 more trade recaps, all of the pwe variety.  First up is a handful of 2020 Chrome from TCDB member nathanfrancy.

I need 2 more base cards for my team set.  Despite a strong urge to join a group break, I will most likely finish this set with trades.  It can be hard to resist the lure of pulling a colored refractor. 

The Bench member RBIais sent me a couple of 2020 Donruss Rapture Silver cards.  I will gladly take any Carlson cards I can get my hands on.  Despite his low batting average, he has been hitting the ball hard.  I hope he can hit a breaking ball better than Harrison Bader and become a regular starter in the outfielder.  Goldy has been by far the best Cardinals hitter this year.  Great to see him back to his Dbacks form.

TCDB member La Loosh sent me the largest package that contained 7 Cardinals.  I don't think I have ever heard a collector say something bad about Pinnacle Museum  parallels.  It is one of the brands that I really miss, of course with logos included.

I am making good progress on my 2020 Topps Gold set.  I am almost half way done.  Most years I cannot say that until 2 or 3 years after the cards were released.

It is not very often Fowler gets his own scan.  The Cardinals WAY overpaid for him in 2016.  5 years for $16.5 million per year with a no trade clause is too much for a league average player.  Nothing personal against him because that is what Fowler has been most of his career.  He just happened to have 2 good years with the Cubs leading into free agency.  Maybe the Cardinals will eat most of his salary for 2021 and cut him loose over the winter.   

Monday, August 24, 2020

2020 Archives Blaster and Fat Pack

My son had his last little league game on Thursday night.  His team was 8-2 and played the second place team that was 7-3.  Whoever won would be the league champion.  His team won 7-1.  He was 3 for 3 with 2 doubles and pitched 2 scoreless innings.  A game like that called for a reward.  Friday night we had some shopping to do at Walmart, so we hit up the card isle.  To my surprise it was stocked with 2020 Archives blaster and fat packs along with some Topps Chrome fat packs with the pink refractors.  I let him choose what he wanted up to $25.  I was shocked he did not go with the Chrome, instead a blaster and fat pack of Archives.  He said he wanted something different so Archives it was.

Each blaster contains 1 oversized card.  Ryan was ours.  Not a bad start.  I forgot to keep the contents of the pack and blaster apart, so you get everything at once.

One each of the 3 different designs.  We received a pretty good selection of players.  Most of the better cards were retired greats.

We did not receive a single Cardinal out of the 75 total cards, but at least my son scored an Altuve base card and a nice Combo insert.

I am not a fan of the 1955 Bowman insert.  I never like the TV look.  The Alonso is a shortprint.

We received 2 more shortprints.  My son is getting in a bad habit of pulling Baez cards.

I do remember the Tatis coming from the fat pack.  I believe there were 2 inserts in it.  Maybe 1 of the shortprints came from it also.

Unlike our Chrome blaster, we did pull a Robert base.  I had to teach my son a quick card lesson about selling cards while they are new.  I posted this on a message board a few minutes after we broke the box, and 20 minutes later is sold for $15. My son wants to use that money to get into an EBAY box break.  Maybe later this week we can make that happen.