Saturday, May 15, 2010

Bowman Swaree!

On the way home from work yesterday I decided to drop into ol' cranky's hobby shop for a couple of reasons. One is that I was doing some recon on junk wax for Joe's man cave, and secondly I have been having a little luck with some single-pack pulls lately and thought that I would see what packs were floating around. Cranky was unusually un-cranky, and I suspect that had a lot to do with the massive profit he was making off of Bowman that week. 189 bucks for a Jumbo! I am crazy enough to buy something like that, but I am still stinging a bit from the Triple-Threads birthday debacle and though better of it...

I did however decide to jump into the Bowman Swaree and grab a few (6 packs or 1 column to be exact) Bowman packs from a freshly opened hobby box. One auto per box. Which column did I grab? That's a secret. Turns out that the luck continues...I did indeed pull the autograph from the box, Daniel Hudson chrome 1st Year auto.

Not super huge, but I love pulling auto's from single pack purchases, it makes you feel like you beat the system.

A couple packs later came Strasburg.

Yeah yeah, its just the base card, but this is about as close to the hype as I am probably going to get, and it DOES have is autograph, plus I love the ink color this year and he has a nice auto, so this is a very nice card even though it will not fetch me mega-millions on eBay!

I also got my 9 chrome cards out of the pack, so another binder page is complete!

In other news:

Dumb and Dumber - I typically don't question a lot of the decision-making that goes on in baseball, but last night I witnessed one of the most egregious (copywrite Colin Cowherd) decisions in recent memory. With Minnesota holding a slight 4-3 lead in the 7th innings, Minnesota chose to intentionally walk Mark Texeira to GET TO Alex Rodriguez....DUMB.
"This is Gardenhire...send in the gas can".

Okay, so Minnesota was struggling with Teix, so let's hedge our bets against A-Rod instead. Okay. But hey, let's put in a pitcher who is A-Rod is a career 5-8 with 4 HR's! DUMBER "The Gas Can, AKA Matt Guerrier"

The result? A AAAAAAAAA-Bomb, from AAAAAAAAAA-Rod. A grand slam A-Bomb as well. Smoooooooth. Ron Gardenhire, this Bud's for you.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Baseball Blotter for 5/14/10

Well, it's Friday in the city, and a few precious work hours remain before the weekend begins. It's going to be sunny and warm out here in the an excellent opportunity to sit on the sofa and watch some baseball and play some "Show"! Since the mailbox continues to be lacking anything mysterious and package-shaped, here are a few things happening around baseball...

Lincecum Log. Timmy takes to the mound tomorrow against the Houston Astros. This is going to be a rematch of the season opener against Roy Oswalt, where Lincecum was near perfect, with 0 runs allowed and 7 K's. It's been a long couple of weeks for Big-Time Timmy Jim watching helplessly as his bullpen throws gasoline all over the field...especially the DEEP parts of the field. Hopefully a little home cookin' is what is needed to get over the bump and get his 5th win of the season. Unfortunately, Saturday means Fox baseball day, which means the Triple Play gets blacked out until the afternoon games. Normally Fox would probably show this game, except that the Sub-Mariners play the Tampa Bay Gods of Baseball at the same time. Regional takes precidence, I am afraid. We'll see though.
Who wants to fight Mike Sweeney? One of the joys of baseball is the goofy and irrelevant stories that seem to pop up each season. It's a long season and occasionally reporters stretch to have something for deadline. Enter Tickle-Me Ken Griffey and his clubhouse nap time antics. Do I think it happened. Sure, what benefit would the reporter get from such a ridiculous fabrication. Do I think that the information was leaked from a couple Mariners? Yep! We are talking about guys that light each others shoes on fire and do shaving cream pies like four year you honestly believe that they are going to be able to hold their tongues when the old man falls asleep in the barc-o-lounger. NO. It was probably hilarious to them and they treated it as such, and a reporter took it and ran with it. Big deal. Griffey is a non-factor, Seattle is rapidly becoming a non-factor, so it is just another story.

Enter Mike Sweeney...

Photo of Mike Sweeney shortly after the players-only meeting this week

Who? Batting .189. Used to play for Kansas City. No? Okay, how about this. Oh, THAT Mike Sweeney.

So Sweeney goes into the all-team meeting and dared any player that said something to the press to step forward and meet him at the bike racks. Hmm, nobody stepped forward. By Sweeney math, that calculation looks something like this...

No teammate admit ratting out Ken = Never happened = Press is lying=BOYCOTT PRESS!

New teammate Cliff Lee, actually believing that Sweeney has some significant pull with his teammates, actually went along with the ban by not contuing a press conference until the perpetrator of the "false" story left the room. Silly Cliff.

Field of Dreams for sale!

The Field of Dreams in Dyersville, Iowa is up for sale a reported $5.4 million. That's a whole lotta Strasburg rookie cards!

What's Ray Kinsella up to these days, anyways? Why he is saving the Gulf Coast from impending disaster, of course!

Enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

New look to site, same crummy content!

You will notice that the ol' wildcardz blog has a different look and feel to it today...sleeker, faster, more efficient, able to leap tall bounds....actually it is just a new logo, color and font, but I thought I would hype it up a bit!

The new logo was an idea that I bumped across by accident. I loved the mosaic look, and I was looking for something new to coincide with my new collecting MO. Thanks to Joe at Priceless Pursuit this mosaic vision became a reality. I am still fiddling with some of the colors and fonts, but am really happy with the new design.

So I have not written much in the last several days. I have mostly been making single-card purchases to fill up some binder sleeves, but the sellers are a bit slow sending the cards, so not a whole lot to scan and show you all. I am in a bit of a funding crisis at the moment, and may end up cancelling plans for Series 2 and Ginter (GASP) until a later date. Although if I had to choose between the two, I would rather aim for Ginter at this point and pick up a Jumbo of Series 2 later on down the road to complete my set.

So collecting aside, I thought that I would spend this post giving my thoughts on a couple sporting issues...

First up, the demise of the Red Sox...or so many radio and television sources would have you believing.

Yep, that's right, they're done.



Part of the problem with being a fan of a team that is always a top-four in payroll spending, is that the expectations are enormous every year for "the best pitching staff in baseball" or the "most feared defensive alignment in the league". You get off to a slow start, and 35 games in the pundits are ready to write you off.

"I fear that the Red Sox have just dug themselves too big of a hole to climb out of" spoke one radio reporter. Really? I have to agree, that six games out with only 127 left to play is just asking too much of these guys, because clearly the Rays and Yankees are going to be able to keep up their pace for 120-130 victories EASILY. Might as well mail it all in. I deal with these ridiculous statements every year, comes with the territory of being part of Red Sox Nation.

Let's just pull the finger back from that panic button though for just a second. Think back to another team that started off slowly and....won the World Series that year. Hmm, who was that again. Same thing, everybody wrote off the Yankees and said they were finished.

The problem is that because so much of our sports media is located on the East Coast, the focus tends to be the NL East and the AL East and then the other guys. It's unfortunate, but the East-Coast bias does exist.

Let's look at what is really happening in Boston. Slow start? Yes. The pitching staff has been inconsistent. Run scoring down? Yep. Boston has been without its lead-off hitting and stealing threat Jacoby Ellsbury since April 15th, and a somewhat speedster and power-hitter in Mike Cameron for about the same length of time. Big Papi is pretty much done, and while it is a sad thing to see, he is not the only DH in the league that is struggling these days. However, Mike Lowell, in an awkward situation, has stepped up and filled that gap considerably.

The Red Sox are also pretty streaky at the moment. Sweep one series, get swept the next. Run production has been streaky as well, but really, there have been some nights where BIG numbers are put up.

So it really comes down to this once again. The fate of the season will be decided on the arms. If you truly believe that a rotation of Beckett, Lester, Lackey, Buchholz, Dice-K, and the occasional crusty old Wakefield is going to continually struggle all season and not come into form, then so be it. But writing a team of in early May is just insanity and newspaper filler.

I am Mike, and I approve this message.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Hi folks, Mike back here. Looks like I am lagging a bit in the round of 32 for the worst auto ever contest. Here are your contestants, and remember to vote in the side column and that you are voting for the WORST auto of the two. Without further ado...
Tim Lincecum vs Ubaldo Jimenez

Delwyn Young vs Fernando Martinez

Joaquin Arias vs Erick Aybar

Carlos Rivera vs Geronimo Gil

Voters take your mark!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Books are closed, bullpen foiled again!

Well, I am sitting here and have just witnessed the San Francisco Giants bullpen ONCE AGAIN foil a potential solid victory by Tim Lincecum. This whole roller coaster of blown wins began two weeks ago in a home extra innings loss, courtesy of a blown save by closer Brian Wilson. Then earlier this week 13k's were wasted in an up-and-down affair with the Marlins. Today, a stiff breeze, and a lack of hits (but PLENTY of walks) did Timmy in the 6th inning. Lincecum looked stellar through five, but then was a little suspect in the 6th and gave up a couple of runs to assure his early exit, granted at that point he was already at 115 pitches, so it was pretty going to depend on the bullpen no matter what. Maybe next start, Big-Time Timmy-Jim, maybe next time. Final line: 7 hits, 2 ER, 2, BB, 8 K's , ERA 1.86

Athlete Impersonations