Saturday, September 5, 2009

Bring on Football!

Today had a decidedly different feel about it...

The first thing that happened was it poured rain, all night, and most of the morning. Poured. We had mid 80's all week and then suddenly it was pouring. It also did not get above 65 degrees all day today. What does that all equal? College football is back baby, yeah.

The first thing Stacy and I did today was take little Jacoby to his 9 month photo shoot at the mall. Jacoby was very well behaved, but this photo shoot took a bit more effort than the other because he is a bit than he was at his six-month shoot. As much as the photographer tried to keep Jacoby on the red dot, away he would crawl. We got some great shots of him and a football though (2.99 mini ball at Target...more on that in a minute) and even got a couple of him with me wearing my Seahawk blue.

The came the Oregon State football game. After taking absolute joy in watching the Duck debacle the other day, it was great to see the Rodgers boys (James and Jacquizz) dismantle Portland State. You may not hear a ton about Oregon State if you live East of the the Rockies. You probably hear mostly about Oregon (especially after Thursday night). Truth be told, WE never really hear about Oregon State either in this area. Which is why after six weeks (I am not kidding you) of people hyping up that Oregon game, it was very nice to see everybody get deflated like a popped balloon the next day. That was one UGLY game. Keep your ears peeled for the Rodgers boys this season.

But back to Target for a second. My wife and I needed to go to Target to pick up a football "prop" for Jacoby's photo shoot today. Of course I took advantage of this to check out the card selection at Target. I was all set to pick up a few packs of Goudey...which of course meant that they did not HAVE any Goudey. I was just about to give up the hunt when I found the $1.59 bin, and pulled out a few of these...

2 packs of 2008 Donruss Threads Rookie Class and one pack of 2008 Donruss Classic. Note that both of these feature Adrian Peterson on the foil, whoever the heck he is....(kidding). Well for a buck fiddy, why not give these a go, eh?

First the packs of Rookie Class...

I like the look of these cards and was actually pretty impressed despite the fact that they have a suspiciously UD "Cut and Paste" look about them. The names are all top-notch, but I am a little disappointed with the backs, as they only carry stats for the previous season, and don't really give an insight into the players themselves.

Shawn McDonald - Detroit Lions wideout.....nowhere to go but up, literally.

Thomas Jones- RB, New York Jets. Most definitely over the best years of his career, which was basically one season with the Bears.

Matt Leinart - Arizona Cards...Swami Mike says that Warner takes a tumble this year, and Leinart will be forced into action, and will finally make a name for himself in the NFL.

Josh Reed - I honestly don't even know if he is still a Bill or not, but especially with TO and Evans on the field. If he is still on the team, probably won't hear his name too much.

S-Jack - Oregon State alum that has been injury plagued and offensive line plagued. This year will probably be no different, but I would still take him on my fantasy team any day

Braylon Edwards - AWOL last year with hands of stone, but I sense a comeback year is at hand.

Ted Ginn Jr - Something about the Dolphin run last year seemed a bit too good to believe, and my guess is that this season will prove that to be true.

Bernard Berrian - Minnesota is just some weird vortex where I just don't follow their teams. Its not that the Twins and Vikings don't put a good product on the fields, they just don't cross my radar for some odd reason.

Chris Cooley - I REALLY don't follow the Skins.

Antonio Gates - I do love me some Super Chargers though! Gates is top-notch and due for a comeback season as well.

Hey wait, two packs of Rookie Threads and no rookies? Rip-off!

These are the Classics: These backs are a bit nicer on these, but still only include last years stats...

Joey Gallaway? Is he still playing?

Matt Leinart - See above, this is going to be a good year for Matt

Ronnie Brown - 1/3 of the Wild Cat madness that swept the league this year. I highly doubt Miami tries that little trick again, but Ronnie is the real deal and will get his this year.

Carson Palmer....Next

Laurence Maroney - AHA. How did I know that the Bane of my last two fantasy teams would show up? Maybe this year is the year, but with about 12 running backs working for Coach Bill, I doubt it.

No hits, but what do you expect for 1.59 a pack? I actually like the look of these cards though, especially the classics, and am curious to check out blowout cards to see what they have available.

Back to baseball tomorrow, as I also made some Target baseball purchases to share from the bargain bin!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Mail Call: Troll!

Came home yesterday from a long day at the office and found a nice yellow envelope waiting for me from a Troll in the ol' mailbox. Let's head to the highlight reel...

Two 2009 Topps Heritage Short Prints, floating heads addition! I actually have some news around the short prints. I have gotten more aggressive on the market and yesterday found a way to take care of about 25 of the remaining 49 shortprints. In doing so, I will be having some duplicates heading this way in a couple of days and will be happy to post them up for you if you need them. I am hoping you might have some duplicates and we can do the ol' switcheroo.

In following the theme of my top pitching phenoms yesterday, I received a nice Hernandez chrome in the package. These cards are just fantastic additions for player sets and this was a nice little addition to the trade.

Also included was a Dustin Pedroia Chrome. Okay, so while I Love Pedroia and the Sox, this card is pretty painful to look at. What is UP with the squinty eyes, dopey smile, and clean shaven face? I did a little research thinking that this is on of the "parallel" cards that match the same number and pose of it's 1960 counterpart, but here is that card...
Same card# 15 - CHECK
Same Team - CHECK
Same Position - CHECKAROONIE
Same Squint - ....Not so much....hmm. Well, nice shot Dustin!

In keeping with the Hernandez/Pedroia theme, here a a couple green-backed Goudey, including the mini Fernandez. I like the detail in these a whole lot, and wish I had jumped on this bandwagon earlier in the year. Maybe this will be a set for me to chase next year when prices drop on these. I hear the SP's are just as difficult to gather if not tougher, but the hits we pretty fun from the few retail packs of these I picked up.

This is an excellent little surprise added to the package. 1997 Bowman Heritage. I bought a few packs of these and was pretty blown away with the artwork. Its kinda hard to put a description on these cards, but its almost as if there is a little TOO much shadow detail. Not a bad thing, but these are definitely have a very distinctive look to them. This particular is a chrome refractor variety, which will go great next to the regular version that I was lucky enough to pull!
Also included in the package were several Becketts, Pedroia's, and a little love for Mikey Lowell.

Okay, now this card deserves a little extra attention. THIS Red Sox team is the one that the wheels absolutely fell off of in August of 2006. Let me run down the injuries that plagued my beloved Sox... (courtesy of sports)
On the roster but ailing:

LF Manny Ramirez -- Couldn't play yesterday because of contin-
ing right knee soreness

C Doug Mirabelli -- Jammed his left ankle during batting practice on Saturday

LHP Jon Lester -- Hurt back in recent fender-bender; won't make his start tonight (later, was diagnosed with Lymphoma).

RHP Keith Foulke -- Back woes kept him out of Saturday night's game

1B Kevin Youkilis -- Missed two games with stomach flu; back in lineup yesterday in left

RHP Josh Beckett -- Cut finger in last start but will try to take mound tomorrow night

OF Wily Mo Pena -- Injured his left wrist at the plate Friday night and has missed two games
2B Mark Loretta -- Was in lineup yesterday but dealing with sore right quadriceps

On the disabled list:
SS Alex Gonzalez -- Right oblique strain

RHP Tim Wakefield -- Stress fracture in rib cage

OF Trot Nixon -- Strained right biceps

RHP Matt Clement -- Right shoulder strain (If not mistaken, this was also the year that Clement took one to the head in Tampa).

LHP Lenny DiNardo -- Neck strain

C Jason Varitek -- Surgery on left knee

That last one is a biggie. Varitek is a huge part of this team and his ability to call a game and block pitches was never as evident as during the end of that season when Varitek was out, Mirabelli was hurt, and Javy Lopez came in and stunk it up. Most nights were unwatchable, and very rarely did I even recognize the players on the field. It was that bad.
A great card nonetheless though. I will put it right next to my Julian Tavarez and Willy Mo Pena!
Thanks Troll!

Hey folks, sorry that I have not thrown up anything today (wait a tic, that does not sound right, does it)? To be quite honest, the cards have slowed down for the last few days. I am between products waiting for Goodwin Champions, I am pretty much stuck between a rock and hard place with 2009 Heritage short prints, nothing has really come in the mail, and now that JD has become rather mobile, most of my evenings are spent keeping an eagle-eye on his doings!

BUT, I do expect some packages coming soon. Several of you have been very generous and are helping me out with a couple SP's, some Topps Chrome, and an outlet to jettison Yankee puke autos, so thank you very much for that. In the meanwhile I am passing time alphabetizing my prospects and rookie cards. Pretty exciting stuff eh? Ya know what? At first glance the only notable name in the prospect cards that has even sniffed notoriety is Neftali Feliz, the rest are either still cranking it out in the minors, or working at Bobs Big Boy (Two Austin Powers references, one post).

Maybe this is a good opportunity to catch you all up on some of my favorite phenoms! I love collecting young pitchers because it makes watching random teams that much more exciting, and it is like watching your stock rise and fall with each pitch. So I give you my top five phenom pitchers!

1. Tommy Hanson! Hanson! He's so hot right now!

I love watching Tommy take the mound and just mow them down. Nothing shakes the guy up and he seems amazingly focused considering the spotlight he is under. He got the short end of the stick last outing when a rain delay washed out him and Petey after only two innings. I will have to check, but I am pretty sure Hanson took the loss on the game. Bum deal. For those of you looking for a good game with the means, I recommend Hanson vs Nolasco tonight.

2. Yovani Gallardo

Has been on my fantasy team each year since exploding onto the scene a couple years back. He is only 12-10, but a lot of that is due to lack of run support during his starts. He has an impressive 186 strikeouts to this point and a decent 3.56 ERA. Just not the year for the Brew Crew though and he kinda gets lost in the fold sometimes.

Speaking of lost in the fold...

3. Felix Hernadez (I would not really call him my 3rd favorite, but it was a nice segway)...

King Felix is mired in yet another horrible Mariner team this season, but his stats are amazing. 2.65 ERA, 185 K's, 14-5 record, and Cy Young written all over him. I doubt he'll get it, in fact I doubt that many of you even knew that he was doing so well this year. Felix is yet another case of a guy that, if placed square in the National League, would absolutely baffle everybody. Heck, he is already doing it in the American League, but NOBODY NOTICES. He is like the Eeyore of the American League :)

4. Tim Lincecum
Timmy! Has amassed an amazing 222 K's and 2.33 ERA to go with his 13-4 record. Helping to lead an inspired charge for his Giants down the stretch. Griffey Jr has the sweetest swing in baseball, Lincecum has the sweetest delivery in baseball. It's tough to watch Giants baseball, but I try to catch Timmy when I can.

5. Jon Lester

I have said it a million times. How can you NOT cheer for Lester? He kicked cancer to the curb and is back out there throwing no-hitters and shutouts in the toughest division in baseball (actually I don't know if that is still true, but it looks good on paper). Bar-none, He and Jacoby are my favorite Sox, and I love watching Lester take the bump every chance I get.

Honorable mention...Clay Buccholtz (kid is coming around), Johnny Cueto (Best name in the game, but still has control issues), and Zach Grienke (I hear he is good, but again, like Felix, you never really here about him EVER.

In closing, so far nary a single vote for a green, crisp banana? Can I lobby for a green(ish) banana by saying that when you pack a lunch, all of your food does not end up smelling and tasting like banana if it is not super-ripe yet? I'm just sayin.....

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Number Swapping!

For some reason or another, Topps has caught fire recently and has been naming off several redemption cards over the past week. It almost seems like the entire Topps staff has come back from summer vacation and has discovered that baseball season is slowely coming to an end (not for my team though!)

So as it stands, I have registered redemptions for #7,#9, and #10 of the Red Hot Rookies. Below is the entire list of 10 redemption cards...

#1 Fernando Martinez
#2 Gordon Beckham (1 in 10 will be autographed)
#3 Andrew McCutchen
#4 Tommy Hanson
#5 Nolan Reimond
#6 Neftali Feliz
#7 Mat Latos
#8 Julio Borbon
#9 Jhoulys Chacin
#10 Chris Coghlan

(courtesy of JayBee)

I am seeking to do a little card swapping for anybody who might be willing to help me out. Of course it does not take a rocket scientist to know that I would like to have the #4 Tommy Hanson card, but I also am interested in the #3 Andrew McCutchen card as well. Is anybody out there willing to trade either of these for either Mat Latos, Jhoulys Chacin, or Chris Coghlan?

On another note...for those of you that have registered redemptions for Allen and Ginter Framed-Auto Redemptions, has there been any movement there?

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

And the Winner is.....

Curses! I desperately searched for how to turn a screen print into a picture that I can upload into my blog, like you all have when you use Of course I could not figure it out (I told you that I am still a greenhorn)! So I did the next best thing and cut-and-pasted into this screen.

So without further ado....the winner of the 10,000 hits contest is......DayF! I am pretty certain that I know who his favorite team is, of course this means that he will have to come out of hiatus and blog about baseball cards again! As I mentioned before, I will update my Chrome Availables tonight. Please shoot me an email to get the ball rolling!

Congrats! And thank you to all for reading my blog!

List Randomizer
There were 26 items in your list. Here they are in random order:
White Sox Cards
Dinged Corners
Joe S
Captain Canuck
Chris OK
Grand Cards
Matt R
McCann Can Triple
Roof God
Sixty Feet Six Inches
Anthony K
Mrs Tooth
Night Owl
The Gooch
Collective Troll
Fan of Reds
Timestamp: 2009-09-01 19:07:25 UTC

Quick Random Thoughts...

Hi Folks, lots going on this morning and then I have a volunteer activity all afternoon, so I have a small window of opportunity to pass along some quick thoughts and notes for today!

  • The 10,000 hits drawing is still on! You have until noon today to comment on my 10,000 hits post to be entered in the drawing for the prize! A quick note. I did not get a chance to update my Chrome Availables list last night. Rest assured, there are plenty, as only 5 of the 96 cards helped me towards my base set in that last box! I will have to update this evening and then the winner can pick out the 25 that they would like! Enter the contest no later than 11:59 AM today!

  • SP's are a pain in the butt. This really should be it's own posting, but I am just thinking about how absolutely difficult it is to finish off some of these sets like Heritage and Legendary Cuts etc. I understand the point of "the chases" and stoking trading, but folks on Ebay and hobby shops are CLEARLY taking advantage of this....Did I see that Collective Troll indicated that his hobby shop is charging 5 bucks APIECE for Heritage SP's? Yikes. My hobby shop does not even display them. They keep wanting me to go to their Beckett Store to purchase you think they will be any cheaper their? I highly doubt it. And eBayers are not playing nice either. How does anybody complete these sets?

  • Red Sox. Heating up! Nice pitcher performances from Clay and Byrd over the weekend. Its no secret that the key to the playoffs is the arms race and the Red Sox appear to be stablizing, minus Dice-K light, and Beckett's Home Run tendencies Ala 2005. Things are looking up though and the Sox are starting to distance themselves from the Wild Card pack. That could all change though with a series beginning tonight with the Rays. Of course I would have to say that most of the pressure rests squarely on Tampa at this point (what were they thinking trading Kazmir)?

  • Brett Favre and his mysterious self-diagnosed cracked rib....Is he going to have it checked out by a REAL doctor? No. I betcha a buffalo nickle though that everytime he has a bad game or throws a patented untimely interception, those ribs are gunna be acting up.

  • Have I mentioned my frustrations with SP's yet? :)

  • I had a dream that Topps called me last night about the Ginter Prize. Then I woke up. Topps had not really called me.

Have a great day!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Mail Day! Phenoms and Sox!

I received a package in the mail today from blog reader Brian for Texas. I first met Brian during the world famous "Crack the Gellner Code" contest a couple months back. Brian was quick on the draw and deciphered Andrew McCutchen as the secret card and won himself a nice little prize!

Recently Brian saw my posting for Chrome Refractors and contacted me regarding the Blue Nelson Cruz WBC Refractor. Rumor also got around for regarding my confusion for mini-card mania, and he was more than happy to take a stack of Ginter Mini's off of my hands for me. No problem! Even better I found out that his son is starting to collect cards. I love helping new collectors and was more than happy to send some Topps base sprinkled with Rangers. I figure the more Ranger cards I drop, the more mojo I created for the wild card race! Before you know it we had ourselves a nice little trade. Here are a few of the cards I received...

BREAKING NEWS: As I type this at 9:15 Pacific, watching the MLB Network, The LA Dodgers have just Acquired Jim Thome from the Chicago White Sox! We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog...

So the first couple of nuggets in this sweet package were a VERY NICE Tim Lincecum Phenom Piece Of History swatch. While plain colored swatches can grow wearisome, a great design makes the card, and this card has a phenomenal shot of Pac-Bell Park. This card is a beauty and I am very grateful to have it added to my collection

Big Papi! I officially have a Ginter relic back in my collection. I traded away my Kershaw auto the other day and I had missed the crazy Jimmy Buffet framed shots. Papi is heating up and the Sox are starting to round into form again. Love this relic.
Mini Nomah! This is actually a pretty sweet design and really makes me want to buy a pack or 20 of the T206 Topps when it comes out in a couple months. I am not exactly sure where this mini came from, but it is Polar Bear backed from 2002. Even nailed the crooked gotee!

Ah, five more mini-cards for my 2009 Heritage project! The end still seems so far away, but I am now officially five closer thanks to Brian. If anybody has even one SP that they can help knock off my list, please let me know and lets work out a deal!

I threw in an image of this Rocco XFractor because I love how horrible scanners are with chrome cards, especially refractors. As if there is not enough going on in this card, the shot also contains a batting cage pattern to Fractorate! Nice card.


Brian also threw in a JD Drew refractor, and several other Red Sox cards for my collection. Thanks Brian, please let me know when you get your package, and thanks for helping me clear out some Rangers!

10,000 Contest!

Woo-Hoo! I woke up this morning and checked in on the ol' blog and was excited to see that the odometer has rolled over another notch and JD's Wildcardz has officially served it's 10,000th customer!
It's amazing how far this blog has come in the last few months, and it has been an absolute blast! I originally started this blog to give myself the opportunity to soak in the vast knowledge from the talented blogosphere. I came in to the hobby very much a greenhorn, and have learned many valuable lessons regarding the different products available, the addiction of ripping packs, and the black hole that can become your savings account if not careful. I have definitely taken my lumps and have formed a better strategy for the 2010 products.
But the positives have far outweighed the negatives...I have met some great friends through trading and collecting chatter. I have enjoyed creative writing and have tried to make the blog as enjoyable as possible, but throw in an occasional dud just to keep you on your toes! For the most part though, I try to use my site to help cards find their way to the right homes where they will be appreciated. I am always open to trade offers, so keep checking in for the latest additions to the trade block!
But back to the title. Contest? What's that you say? In celebrating the odometer rollover, I would like to do a giveaway for you. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment (a clean comment) so I can enter you into the drawing. No need to follow my blog (though the little pictures are pretty neat), or tell others (if you did, wouldn't that decrease your chances of winning anyways)? If you are here, then you are obviously a reader of my blog and YOU are the ones that I want to win!
I will accept entries through noon tomorrow and do the drawing during my lunch. Please make sure your comment links to an email address so I can contact you if you win!
The prize?
A hodgepodge mailer that will include...
1)U-pick 25 Topps 2009 Chrome (I will update my list tonight with what I have available)
2) A random, mystery relic card
3) A selection of your favorite team's cards. You name the team and I will see what I have!
Good Luck!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sweet Redemption!

Yesterday afternoon I had the fortune of playing some decent poker with some buddies, and today, after feeling a little let down about my final box break of Chrome last night, decided to head down to cranky man's and pick up a few supplies as well as lay down some money for a couple guaranteed hits thats right, we are talking about the Sweet Spot.

As I write this, I am catching the finall innings of the Minn-Texas game, and am happy with what I am seeing (no offense to my new Ranger fans friends, but I have to keep my team's interests in mind)! Bases now loaded in the top of the 9th with only one out....oh Mr. Nathan.

So I indicated to the cranky man that I would like two boxes of Sweet Spot. I mentioned the other day that it is a sealed pack inside a shrink-wrapped box, so security is tight. As he held out the box I had a sudden flashback to Joe's blog about which packs to grab. I had a brand new box of 6 boxes looking me square in the eye. I knew the odds of an auto were 1:3, thus the relics 2:3. I hesitated, then grabbed the first two in the case.

Whoa! One felt clearly heavier than the other. Uh-oh? Either there is a cut baseball in one box or it is some elaborate security device of a 1/4 inch thick piece of cardboard. Cranky asked if I wanted to switch when I noticed how light the other one was. I thought about it a second, and decided that this would make a fun little experiment, and decided to keep the light box and the heavy box.

I started with the heavy box first. Just for giggles, I weighed each box and found that the heavy box was a full 2 ounces heavier than box #1. Very suspicious indeed. As I cracked open the box I noticed something that I did not expect...
This is a Sweet Spot Tin! INTERESTING...yet ANOTHER security device to throw off pack searchers. For a fleeting moment I thought "what if this time is here to protect the most valuable of valuable Sweet Spot hits?
More on that in a moment, but first here are the base hits from the Tin (minus a yankee stadium moment yada yada...

and here are the base for the second, lighter pack. Each of these cards are up for trade (minus the Jason Bay card, of course).

So how 'bout them hits? So did the heavy tin contain a long-long Babe Ruth Relic Auto? Nope, here is what is did contain...
A Jeremy Bonderman Sweet Swatch. I do have to say that the swatch is pretty nice looking, although I get less and less enchanted with the plain colored swatches.
So how about that light "uh-oh" pack that I was so worried about...
A VERY NICE Alexei Ramirez auto...and I do mean nice. He has a great signature, PLUS this is a rookie card to boot. Apparently this card is runner up only to Evan Longoria in the Sweet Spot set, so I feel very fortunate to make it an addition to my collection. Needless to say I will be cheering for Alexei and a very successful career!
Oh, and I have already traded one of those Damn Yankee autos as well, plus Minnesota just closed the book on Texas and the Red Sox pitching looked great this weekend, can things get any better? :)