Thursday, April 30, 2009

Hey!!! Why Can't I Find These Blogs on Your Blogroll??!

I received an e-mail this afternoon wondering why a couple of prominent blogs weren't on the Sports Card Blogroll. The two sites mentioned (Sports Cards Uncensored and I am Joe Collector) are on the roll under the Multi-Sports Card Blogroll. Let me explain why...

When I first started adding blogs to the roll, both sites focused on more than one sport. I could not just add them to the Baseball roll or the Football roll exclusively because both sites focus on both sports. So I added the Multi-Sports section to alleviate that problem.

Other sites on the Multi-Sports section include:

If your blog is missing from the blogroll, or you find that it's not in the right section, please send me an e-mail and let me know. I'd be more than happy to place it where you think it should be.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

P.S. One blog was added today that I'm pretty sure I can't really put on here. Look for it in the Hobby/Media Blogroll and take a guess what was added today. If you want a hint, look at the names of the blogs on the roll, and think of which of them wouldn't belong on this blog, just based on the name of my blog alone. jba

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Top Ten 2006-2009 Topps Team Sets Cards

To satisfy the promise I made to bring in more baseball card related posts...

I finally finished going through all 30 team sets for 2009. I can't wait to put them in sheets and into a binder. The cards look terrific, even the ones of the players who changed teams and now have the uniforms of said new teams photoshopped onto them (although the Matt Holliday Athletics card shows a bit too much green...) With that in mind, today on this humble little blog, I present to you my top ten (or Topps Ten...get it...) cards that could only be found in the 14-card team sets. Now they're not necessarily the best cards because of aesthetics, or because of the picture used. They are on the list for various reasons, and I will explain why on each.

So without further ado...

"From the home office in Chicago, IL. The category is the Top Ten Cards from the 2006 to 2009 14-Card Sets. Here we go:

10. 2006 Topps Devil Rays Team Card #TDR9


Now the D-Rays of 2005 (the team depicted here) finished 67-95 and finished 5th in the AL East. If the team was this bad, why include it in the set. Wasn't there another player good enough to make the cut? Were there only 13 good players and the rest not? Well, the only reason why Topps put this card in the set is because they were not able to put a card of their original choice, Bossman Junior, aka B. J. Upton, in the set.

9. 2009 Topps Yankees Mickey Mantle #NYY15


Dear Mr. Anama:

You said that the Mickey Mantle #7 card in 2009 Topps was NOT A SHORTPRINT OR AN ERROR CARD...then What Card is This???

Anonymous

Well, it does have Mantle's position as an outfielder. But alas, this card is from the Yankees' Team set. The bonus card no less. I'm pretty sure that this card was printed in lesser quantities than the card in the eponymous Topps set. And boy does the Mick look really happy to sign whatever is being literally in his face. I just hope that the three guys didn't fall into the dugout.

8. 2007 Topps Yankees Derek Jeter #NYY1


When this came out, people on eBay started hawking it as the "corrected" version of Jeter's infamous #40 card (the one with Mantle in the dugout and Bush waving in the crowd). Uh, no. Although Topps did include the card without the photoshop work in their factory sets, this was not, or should never be, considered the corrected card. Funny thing is that Topps used the same photo on this card for their 55-card Yankees gift set.

7. 2009 Topps Rays Evan Longoria #TBR1


Looks just like the original card in series 1. It looks like he is trying to make it to third (my guess anyway) by trying to beat the tag by extending his arms in front. I don't know if he made it in safely or not. The defending AL Rookie of the Year, he was named to the 2008 Topps All-Star Rookie Team. But you probably wouldn't know that if you saw this card. You see, all the other nine guys who made the team (Votto, Ramirez, Aviles, Bruce, Span, Murphy, Soto, Ziegler, and Lannan) are all on their respective teams 14-card set and each of them have the Rookie Cup trophy printed on them. This is the only card that doesn't have it. And it's a glaring error. (WHAT??!)

6. 2009 Topps Red Mr. Redlegs (with Rosie Red) #CIN15


A nice touch this year was including the mascots of some of the teams into the sets as the bonus card. And unfortunately for the girls at Dinged Corners, Topps didn't include the Mets baseball-headed superstar as the bonus card for the Mets set (opting to go with Citi Field instead). So that leaves Mr. Redlegs (and the pictured yet unmentioned Rosie Red) as the only mascots with baseballs for heads to have a card in the products. Where did the Gapper go???

5. 2007 Topps Mariners Jose Guillen #SEA10


A previous "What Card is This?" subject, this the only card with the 2007 Topps design that actually depicts Guillen. All other cards are of Yuniesky Betancourt.

4. 2008 Topps Mets Johan Santana #NYM1


Forget card #661, and although he was included as card #330 in the U & H set, this was truly Santana's first Topps card as a New York Met.

3. 2009 Topps Dodgers Joe Torre #LAD14


Another issue of "didn't the Dodgers have a player good enough that he couldn't have been included here???" Joe Torre just left the Bronx for Hollywood and he was somehow added to the Dodgers Team checklist. He had to have bumped out somebody...only problem is there was never an announcement. He is the only manager to appear in the 2008 sets.

In 2009, Torre and a few other managers (Cox, Gaston, Scioscia) are added as the bonuses. Ozzie Guillen, the manager of the White Sox, was added to the "14 man roster." I guess that's all right, especially since the bonus card in all White Sox packaging is of the President of the United States.

2. 2009 Topps Mariners Ken Griffey, Jr. #SEA8


Previously discussed here. Again, it just looks like all is right in the world now that Junior is now back with the M's. He recently hit his 400th HR as a Mariner.

And the number one card from the 2006 to 2009 14-card team sets:

1. 2006 Topps Mariners Kenji Johjima #SEA14


Previously discussed here. He is the reason why the insanity started.

These are really nice sets to own, and if you are a team collector, they are must haves. If you're a set collector however, and want all 30 sets to add to your collections, I suggest therapy. Then go for it.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

There Comes a Time...When We Heed a Certain Call...Bloggers Unite for Hunger and Hope!


(To those of you who've been reading blog after blog about Uniting for Hunger and Hope, blogcatalog.com's effort to unite bloggers from all walks of life to "share your thoughts and be part of the global solution to a global problem," and happened to stumble upon my little essay, I welcome you to my humble little blog. Feel free to read more about what I really write about when you get a chance. Thank you very much. jba)

Growing up in Manila, my family and I were very fortunate. We were not ├╝ber-rich, but very well-to-do. And because my family worked in the food industry, there was always food on our table. But across the street and behind our neighbors house, there were many people, many families, who did not have the same luxury. Whole families living in rooms and shelters that were smaller than my bedroom. Fathers and mothers who worked so hard, but earned so little. Other than a bowl of rice, there were many nights were they and their children may not have had much to eat. In many instances, even the children went out to beg for money to buy food for their family. You see those late night infomercials where Sally Struthers or some old guy talks to the camera about the plight of these children...guess what...they're not kidding.

All over the world, many people go hungry. The numbers are staggering. It doesn't really matter where you get your information, know that at least one-third of the world's population is underfed, and another third is starving. Of these, some 170 million, MILLION, are children. And if you think the problems are outside of this country, guess again.

In 2006, a study done by the USDA Economic Research Service reported that "35.5 million people—including 12.6 million children—live in households that experience hunger or the risk of hunger. This represents more than one in ten households in the United States (10.9 percent)." With the economy the way it is currently, that number may have increased.

So what can be done?

Well, twenty-five years ago, it was simple. Get a bunch of singers together, from all genres of music, and get them to record a song to sell worldwide. The trend started in Europe, where an all-star super group of English and Irish bands and singers came together to perform what has now become a Christmas staple, Feed the World:



Then the following year, USA for Africa, an all-star lineup of American performers, sang this timeless classic, We are the World:



Not to be outdone, a third group, known as Northern Lights, brought together many of Canada's best voices for their own song, Tears are Not Enough:



Okay, 80's flashback over.

Where am I going with this? Because while all three singles raised millions of dollars in the efforts to fight world hunger, the war still rages...worldwide.

We all want to help right? Of course we do. If you can donate money to the many (legitamate) charities that work with many in need like UNICEF, or WorldVision, do it. If you'd prefer just to donate food or money to your local food pantries or churches, do it. Every little bit helps.

For more information, please click onto the links below. There you will find more information about, and the organizations involved in fighting, world hunger.
And with that, the next time I go grocery shopping, so help me, I am buying a few extra items and throw them into the buckets that they have at the exits marked for the food pantry nearby. It may not look like much, but it's a start. Besides, I should be spending more on food, whether it goes to me or the people down the street. Anyway, it's easier to explain why I spent $20.00 on non-perishable foods for the food pantry than it is to rationalize buying 10 packs of baseball cards I already have.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Sunday, April 26, 2009

It All Started With Kenji Johjima...Why I Buy ALL 30 Team Sets.

It was 2006, and Topps Series I had already been out for a month or two. The big story then was the Alex Gordon #297 card and prices had just shot through the roof, thanks in part to the spending habits of a certain MSNBC News pundit and baseball card aficionado.

It was also the year that the Mariners introduced the world to Kenji Johjima. He was the impact rookie that all of Japan, and quite frankly, all of MLB, wanted to keep an eye on in spring training. It didn't matter if he had already played eleven seasons in Japan. Because Johjima was to be the first Japanese catcher to play in the majors, it was more about how well he could handle a pitching staff from the US that kept everyone watching. The thing was that there were no Topps cards at that point for the latest Japanese sensation.

Or were there?

It was on either the Topps Message Boards or the Beckett Message Boards that somebody discovered a 2006 Topps Kenji Johjima card on eBay. I thought that can't be right. He wasn't on the checklist for Series I, and Series II wouldn't be out for another four months. What was this guy talking about? Well, I went on eBay, clicked on the auction linked, and sure enough, there was an auction for this card:

2006 Topps Seattle Mariners Kenji Johjima #SEA14.

Wow. That looks like the genuine article. Then I read the item description. It said that this would only be found in packages of Seattle Mariners Team Sets.

Team Sets???

So, I looked for these on eBay.


Sure enough, there it was. A 14-card team set of Seattle Mariners. There was Ichiro on the front. And, thinking it would be my only chance at getting this unique Johjima card, I bid and subsequently won the auction. I then thought that if there was this exclusively for the Mariners, could it be possible that there would be similar products for other teams? I mean, I'm not a team collector, and certainly not of the Mariners. If there was a product for one, there certainly had to be similar sets for the other 29.

Sure enough, Topps made sets for all 30 teams. And I HAD to have them ALL!!! That's what I get for being a set collector. But where would I be able to purchase all 30 sets without having to go through eBay (and the prospect of writing multiple checks to multiple dealers)? Certainly I wouldn't be able to find team sets of the Padres, Dodgers, Angels, Marlins, et. al in Chicago? Then I found the BC Sports website (they are no longer in business, otherwise I would have added the link). They had all 30 sets for sale, and each at $3.99, which was at least $2.00 less than what the stores would sell them for. I contacted them, and struck a deal for free shipping if I bought all 30 sets. By the end of next week, I had all 30 sets arrive at my home.

Each 14-card set featured players that had already appeared in series 1 (and in many cases, the cards were identical), but also showed cards of players that would eventually appear in series 2. The backs of each of the packages had a checklist that showed all the players within the set. I wanted these checklists cut out properly so I could include them with the team sets (30 pages for 30 teams, 14 cards plus the checklist...no problem). So I would carefully separate the plastic bubble from the cardboard without ripping the paper on the cardboard. To do this, I would slide the edge of the plastic along the underside of my fingernail, slowly breaking the seal that kept the plastic and cardboard glued. The plastic was sharp, and I did get cuts on my fingers (ouch...really), but I managed to pull it off for all 30 packages. The next step was to carefully center the checklist so I could cut a 2½ x 3½ card for the checklist. Borrowing my wife's cutting tools (she loves to scrapbook), I managed to cut 30 checklist cards from the backs of each of the packages, and add them to the plastic sheets.

All together, these cards look really nice, especially when placed in a binder. Each team has its own sheet, and 2006 was the year with the large two-colored borders, so to see each teams colors compared to the others was very cool.

In 2007, Topps created and distributed another round of 14-card team sets. Again, I had to have them all, only because I acquired all from the year before. I discovered thecardkid.com had all 30 team sets for under $3.00 each. Naturally, I bought them all there, with a deal on shipping. The Yankees set includes the unique Derek Jeter card that didn't have Mickey Mantle or George Bush on the card. In fact, instead of the Jeter card we're all used to seeing (one of him in his swing), the card pictured Jeter fielding. And as with the previous year, I carefully separated the plastic from the cardboard so I could cut my checklists from the backs of the cardboard.

In 2008, I went back to thecardkid.com for they were selling all 30 team sets again for under $3.00 each. The 2008 design included the letters of each team name within a team colored circle. Having all 30 teams in a binder is a site to behold. The checklist surgery continued here. My fingers still hurt from doing it.

I would have done the same for 2009, but the site didn't have a couple of the teams. Fortunately, an eBayer named italiantom had all available, and for $115.00, they were all mine.

So, now I'm going through all the cards for 2009. This year, Topps included a bonus 15th card, which consists of either a birds-eye view of the team's stadium, the team's mascot, the manager, or even a couple of Presidents (the Indians' bonus card is of newly acquired closer Kerry Wood). Again, all will look great, especially because of this year's Topps design's focus on the pictures. Also, the plastic is a lot easier to separate from the cardboard (less stress on my fingers). The checklist cutting will be easy to do this year.

But as I continue to go over the cards for this year's set, I think back to the one card that caused the insanity of collecting these cards in the first place.

Domo arrigato Johjima-san.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

P.S. I promised that I would do a top ten list of my favorite cards from these blister packs. That will be coming soon after I open all 30 sets from 2009. jba

Friday, April 24, 2009

Another Round of Goodbyes at the Sports Card Blogroll.

Seems that as I am adding more and more bloggers to the wildly popular Sports Card Blogroll, others have fallen into obscurity. Again, links to the blogs being removed will be included here for those who want to see what the blogs were about. If these are your blogs, and you decide to come back and post again, please drop me a line at bdj610@hotmail.com and I will be more than happy to add them back to the roll.

Giving them a fitting send off, here are the blogs that are being removed from the roll:
As we say goodbye to these blogs, we welcome a lot more new ones to the roll. I would like to thank the Cardboard Junkie for finding many of the new blogs being added into the roll this evening. And again, if you have a Hobby blog that you would like added to the big Blogroll, please feel free to e-mail me at bdj610@hotmail.com.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Live From Palatine, It's Topps Attax!!!

It's Thursday night, and as usual, my family and I are having dinner with my parents in Palatine, IL. The good news is that before coming to dinner, I went to the local Target, and lo and behold, starter boxes and blister packs of Topps Attax. Needless to say, I bought a box and a couple of blaster packs and when I get a free moment, my daughter and I will demonstrate to her cousins how to play this baseball card game.

Results of the first game ever coming soon.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

UPDATE: 9:29 PM CST.

The game is mercifully over, and unfortunately, we couldn't get break the 4-4 tie in extra innings.

jba

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It Must Be a Slow Week...

For those who've noticed, I'm sorry that I have not posted a thing all week. Why is that?

  • No breaking news to report on new products that I find interesting.
  • No earth shattering news about Hobby happenings.
  • Nothing in the mail lately (still searching for the Obama, Ott, and Munson SP cards...may cave and just buy on the Bay).
  • I've been busy at work, and should be back on schedule at work by the end of this week.
  • I'm still going through all 30 of the team sets that I bought last week.
  • Getting ready for my daughter's 9th birthday (Yikes!!! she's growing up too fast).
  • Waiting for Topps Series 2 to come out so I have something new to write about.
Those are the excuses anyway. Back to the point.

This is exactly what I feared. The season is only three weeks old, and I can't think of anything decent to write about. It isn't writer's block...but the muse must have taken a holiday because I haven't been inspired to write anything as of late.

But that doesn't mean I have not done anything, or prepared anything, for the blog. I've been doing a lot of research (with whatever time I can spare), and am slowly piecing together topics for this blog. Nothing specific yet, but what I do know is that I plan on the following features in the next few weeks ahead:
  • My Top 10 2006-2009 Topps 14 (or 15) team set cards. This will include my rationale as to why I buy all 30 of the team sets, and where I've gotten them. (I am insane).
  • Back to the 2011 Topps Archives Project. I've scanned a number of cards to use for the set, I just need to do the write-ups for each of them. And what players am I going to write about? You'll just have to wait and see.
  • More "What Card is This?" segments, especially now that I have more variations to use.
  • With the MLB All-Star Game just a few months away (ballots were released today), I am getting my notes from the last 20 years and will (finally) get around to posting those All-Star Teams from my younger days. The only question is should I start from the beginning (1988), go backwards (I did 2009 at the end of the 2008 season, meaning I'd start with 2008 team...it sounds confusing, go here for a more detailed explanation), or should I just pick any random year?
So hopefully that explains why the lack of posts. It's not because I've decided to pack it in. I see that the numbers of people who subscribe or follow this humble blog has gone up in the last few weeks, so I'm not about to quit now. Consider this the calm before the posting storm.

This weekend just can't come fast enough...

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Saturday, April 18, 2009

2009 Topps Factory Set Information is Out!

If this is what the 2009 Topps Factory Set boxes are going to look like in 2009, I'm going to want to buy a few (notice that I said "want to" not "will") of them.

Thanks go out to the number one source in the hobby (although there is a new blogger who will disagree with that statement, and I mean really disagree...the folks at SCU and VOTC have nothing on this guy when it comes to how much he really dislikes them...yeesh) for the announcement.

Feast your eyes on this beauty:

Yes ladies and gentlemen, hobby shops everywhere will be selling these beauty's after the All-Star break. That's a nice looking box, at least the image looks nice on the computer. And yes, the factory set exclusive cards are back. Ten rookies (subject to change) will be included in the Hobby Factory sets:
  • 1 David Price, Rays
  • 2 Rick Porcello, Tigers
  • 3 Ryan Perry, Tigers
  • 4 Brett Anderson, Athletics
  • 5 David Freese, Cardinals
  • 6 Koji Uehara, Orioles
  • 7 Elvis Andrus, Rangers
  • 8 Trevor Cahill, Athletics
  • 9 Andrew Bailey, Athletics
  • 10 Jordan Schafer, Braves
And to top it off, team exclusive factory sets are returning for 2009. There will be four team-specific sets for 2009, each with their own five-card bonus sets. The teams for 2009, and their bonus cards (subject to change) are:
  • Yankees - Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Mark Texieria, Phil Coke, Alfredo Aceves
  • Red Sox - Jacoby Ellsbury, Kevin Youkilis, George Kottaras, John Smoltz, David Ortiz
  • Mets - David Wright, Johan Santana, Francisco Rodriguez, Daniel Murphy, Jose Reyes
  • Cubs - Derrek Lee, Alfonso Soriano, Geovany Soto, Aramis Ramirez, Kosuke Fukudome
All come out after the All-Star break. Can't wait until then.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

2009 Topps Seattle Mariners 15 Card Team Set...with Griffey???

I recently purchased all 30 Topps 15 Card Team sets for 2009 (thanks to eBayer italiantom for this fantastic deal), and received them yesterday afternoon. After making sure that I had all 30 team sets, I noticed something unusual about the Seattle Mariners set.

You see, the checklist that is on the back of the package has the following fifteen cards in it:

  • SEA1 Ichiro
  • SEA2 Felix Hernandez
  • SEA3 Jose Lopez
  • SEA4 Brandon Morrow
  • SEA5 Adrian Beltre
  • SEA6 Matt Tuiasosopo
  • SEA7 Kenji Johjima
  • SEA8 Jarrod Washburn
  • SEA9 Yuniesky Betancourt
  • SEA10 Erik Bedard
  • SEA11 Wladimir Balentien
  • SEA12 Franklin Gutierrez
  • SEA13 Carlos Silva
  • SEA14 Jeff Clement
  • SEA15 Safeco Field
All members of the Mariners, and if you are a big Mariners fan, no complaints. All the cards look good. But I've got a problem. I don't have a Jarrod Washburn card. In fact, there is no Jarrod Washburn card in the set. But you know what, I'm not going to call Topps and complain.

(Of course he's not going to complain...this guy loves Topps...right?)

Well, yeah, but that's not why. Instead of a Jarrod Washburn card, this is what came in as card #SEA8:


This was a pleasant surprise. In fact, this card was on top as the display card.

I know that the people at the UD company planned on having their first KGJ Mariner card out with A Piece of...Something, I can't think of the name. But I like this card better. Was it even photoshopped or did Topps use an archived picture of Griffey in the 90's?

It just seems right, Junior in a Mariners uniform. There is something natural about him playing for the Mariners again. I can't quite figure out why that is. But for all intents and purposes, if this does not give you greater incentive as a Mariners fan, or as a Ken Griffey, Jr. collector to run out and buy this year's version of the Mariners 14...ahem...15-card team set, then I don't know what's wrong with you.

Unless, of course, you really wanted that Jarrod Washburn card. Nothing wrong with that, of course. And I apologize to the Washburn collectors out there whose favorite player has now been snubbed by the Topps Company.

But come on, it's Junior Griffey in a Mariners uniform. I'm sure you'll survive.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

2009 Topps Series I Legends of the Game Timeline

I received the final three Target cards I needed (Ruth, Sisler, Munson) last night. That means I now have 45 of these Legends of the Game insert cards (25 cards from the regular set, 10 from the Walmart set, and 10 Target from the Target set). Going through them all, I have enough to present the timeline used for the 2009 Topps Series I Legends of the Game cards.

Here is the timeline, and where appropriate, the card number the information was gathered. Any card numbered LG# is from the regular insert set, LLP# is from the Walmart set, LLG# is from the Target set):

1871 - 1st Professional Baseball Game
1876 - National League Created
1890 - Cy Young MLB Debut (LG1)
1897 - Honus Wagner .338 in Rookie Year (LG2)
1901 - Cy Young Pitching Triple Crown
1901 - Christy Mathewson Wins 20 G as a Rookie
1905 - Christy Mathewson Pitching Triple Crown
1905 - Ty Cobb Doubles in First AB (LG4)
1907 - Walter Johnson 8/2 First Start (LG5)
1907 - Tris Speaker MLB Debut
1909 - Honus Wagner Wins 7th Batting Title (LLG4)
1910 - Cy Young 500th Win (LLP6)
1911 - Ty Cobb 1st MLB MVP (LLP5)
1912 - Tris Speaker Leads Boston to World Series Win (LG6)
1913 - Walter Johnson Pitching Triple Crown
1914 - Babe Ruth Wins MLB Debut (LG7)
1915 - George Sisler 4 Wins as LHP (LLG10)
1915 - Rogers Hornsby 1st Full Season
1920 - George Sisler Record 257 Hits (LG8)
1920 - Rogers Hornsby 1st Batting Title
1920 - Tris Speaker Manages Indians to World Series Win
1922 - George Sisler 41 Game Hitting Streak
1923 - Babe Ruth AL MVP (LLG3)
1924 - Rogers Hornsby Batted .424 (LG9)
1925 - Jimmie Foxx MLB Debut (LG10)
1925 - Lou Gehrig Becomes Full-Time Player (LLG5)
1926 - Mel Ott MLB Debut (LG12)
1926 - Walter Johnson 400th Win (LLP8)
1932 - Jimmie Foxx 58 HR
1934 - Lou Gehrig Wins Triple Crown (LG11)
1936 - Christy Mathewson 1st HOF Class (LG3)
1936 - Ty Cobb 1st HOF Class
1937 - Johnny Mize Bats Career High .364 (LG14)
1939 - Lou Gehrig Luckiest Man Speech
1939 - Ted Williams 31 HR 145 RBI (LG17)
1940 - Johnny Mize 425-Foot HR into Pacific
1941 - Pee Wee Reese 1st Full Season (LG15)
1941 - Ted Williams Batted .406 (LLP1)
1942 - Mel Ott 42 HR 151 RBI
1945 - Jimmy Foxx Retires (LLP10)
1947 - Jackie Robinson Breaks Color Barrier (LG13)
1947 - Mel Ott Retires
1948 - Babe Ruth Yankees Retire #3 (LLP3)
1949 - Jackie Robinson NL MVP (LLG2)
1949 - Pee Wee Reese Leads NL in Runs
1949 - Roy Campanella 1st-Time All-Star (LG16)
1951 - Mickey Mantle MLB Debut (LG20)
1953 - Roy Campanella Wins Second MVP (LLP4)
1955 - Pee Wee Reese Beats Yankees in World Series
1955 - Roberto Clemente Rookie Season (LG21)
1957 - Roger Maris First Game
1959 - Bob Gibson CG SHO as Rookie
1960 - Ted Williams Final Season (LLG1)
1961 - Carl Yastrzemski 21-Yeaer Old Rookie
1961 - Mickey Mantle 54 HR (LLG7)
1961 - Roger Maris Breaks HR Record (LG18)
1966 - Nolan Ryan 2nd Youngest Player in NL (LLG6 & LG24*)
1966 - Roberto Clemente NL MVP
1967 - Carl Yastrzemski AL MVP (LG23)
1968 - Bob Gibson NL MVP & Cy Young Winner (LG19)
1968 - Roger Maris Retires
1969 - Mickey Mantle Yankees Retire #7 (LLP7)
1970 - Thurman Munson AL Rookie of the Year (LG22)
1972 - Roy Campanella Dodgers Retire #39
1973 - Nolan Ryan K's 383 Batters
1973 - Roberto Clemente Inducted into HOF (LLP9)
1975 - Bob Gibson Retires (LLP2)
1976 - Thurman Munson Leads NYY to World Series (LLG8)
1979 - Thurman Munson NYY Captain Passes Away
1981 - Cal Ripken Jr. MLB Debut (LG25)
1983 - Carl Yastrzemski Last Game at Fenway
1993 - Nolan Ryan Retires
1995 - Cal Ripken Jr. Breaks Consecutive Games Streak (LLG9)
1997 - Jackie Robinson MLB Retires #42
2001 - Cal Ripken Jr. Retires

*Nolan Ryan's two cards both highlight the same event. Also, in the timelines on the cards, Maris card (LG18) has the entries of Clemente and Yastrzemski's MVPs, but no Ryan entry that was to go between them. On Yaz's card (LG23), Ryan's entry comes before Clemente's MVP win. On both of Ryan's cards (LLG6 & LG24), his entry is between Clemente and Yaz.

That's 75 historic events within 45 cards. Now I can only imagine that the inserts found in the Cereal sets (the gold and platinum refractors) as well as the numbered LotG cards (I think #'d to 599 for the "platinum" and #'d to 999 for the "gold") probably has the other highlights not featured within the cards I have on them. But other than the Ryan entries, I was impressed that Topps stuck to the timeline that they presented.

Now I can't wait for Series 2. And for the record, Series 2 of this insert set features fifteen more retired legends as well as ten active players who are deemed "Legends in the Making." Barring a change in checklists (as it is always subject to change), the 25 subjects to be featured in series 2 include:
  • Juan Marichal
  • Steve Carlton
  • Tony Gwynn
  • Reggie Jackson
  • Brooks Robinson
  • Frank Robinson
  • Tom Glavine
  • Mike Schmidt
  • Greg Maddux
  • Wade Boggs
  • John Smoltz
  • Ryne Sandberg
  • Jim Palmer
  • Robin Yount
  • Paul Molitor
  • Alex Rodriguez
  • Mariano Rivera
  • Albert Pujols
  • Trevor Hoffman
  • Vladimir Guerrero
  • Chipper Jones
  • Frank Thomas
  • Randy Johnson
  • Manny Ramirez
  • Ichiro

Now I'm looking forward to Series 2. When I get all the cards from this set, I'll do the timeline again.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Jackie Robinson Day!!!

In honor of Jackie Robinson's MLB debut (April 15, 1947), all of MLB's players and coaches will be wearing the number 42.

So here on this humble little blog, I thought it'd be nice if we did the same thing.

Robinson's 1952-1956 Topps cards. No, I don't own any of them.


His 1997 Topps Card #42, honoring the 50th Anniversary of his MLB Debut.


His 2009 Topps Shortprint card #30.

Here's to you Mr. Robinson. Thank you.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I Knew It. It Had to Happen Sooner or Later...

Thanks to both the Night Owl and A Cardboard Problem for posting about it first...

It was inevitable. I don't know what the outcome is going to be or how far Topps can get with this, but here is the article straight from MSNBC:

Topps sues Upper Deck over design of cards.

I can see where Topps wouldn't have a case regarding UD's use of the 1975 design:


But take a look at what they had coming up for their series 2 product:


And then, the straw that eventually broke the camel's back:


Yeah, they're not using the 1971 Topps design...not at all. At least they're not using the UD Vintage design from a few years back.

So what do you think??? I know many of you left comments about this before, but has your stance changed since? Do you think Topps has something here? Or will they be laughed out of the courtroom?

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Updating the 2009 Topps 14...Make That 15-Card Team Sets with Full Checklists

I am in the process of acquiring all 30 team sets from either an eBay vendor or a website that has them for dirt cheap (I'm not linking either one as I don't want to give out my sources until the cards are acquired). But thanks to some research (plus the help of commenter Mariner1) here are the bonus cards for the teams I was not sure of last time:
  • Angels - Mike Scioscia
  • Blue Jays - Cito Gaston
  • Braves - Bobby Cox (wasn't sure, but it is him)
  • Indians - Kerry Wood
Also, I have the checklists for each of the thirty team sets (this is going to be a long one...bear with me...):


Arizona Diamondbacks
ARI1 Brandon Webb
ARI2 Justin Upton
ARI3 Dan Haren
ARI4 Felipe Lopez
ARI5 Stephen Drew
ARI6 Miguel Montero
ARI7 Chris Young
ARI8 Eric Byrnes
ARI9 Max Scherzer
ARI10 Chad Snyder
ARI11 Conor Jackson
ARI12 Mark Reynolds
ARI13 Chris Snyder
ARI14 Doug Davis
ARI15 D. Baxter the Bobcat

Atlanta Braves
ATL1 Chipper Jones
ATL2 Tim Hudson
ATL3 Casey Kotchman
ATL4 Derek Lowe
ATL5 Brian McCann
ATL6 Jo-Jo Reyes
ATL7 Yunel Escobar
ATL8 Jair Jurrjens
ATL9 Josh Anderson
ATL10 Jorge Campillo
ATL11 Javier Vazquez
ATL12 Jeff Francoeur
ATL13 Gregor Blanco
ATL14 Kelly Johnson
ATL15 Bobby Cox

Baltimore Orioles
BAL1 Nick Markakis
BAL2 Adam Jones
BAL3 Radhames Liz
BAL4 Aubrey Huff
BAL5 Cesar Izturis
BAL6 Brian Roberts
BAL7 Lou Montanez
BAL8 Ryan Freel
BAL9 Melvin Mora
BAL10 Luke Scott
BAL11 George Sherrill
BAL12 Jeremy Guthrie
BAL13 Chris Ray
BAL14 Felix Pie
BAL15 Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Boston Red Sox
BOS1 Jacoby Ellsbury
BOS2 Josh Beckett
BOS3 Dustin Pedroia
BOS4 Jon Lester
BOS5 David Ortiz
BOS6 Kevin Youkillis
BOS7 Daisuke Matsuzaka
BOS8 J.D. Drew
BOS9 Jonathan Papelbon
BOS10 Jed Lowrie
BOS11 John Smoltz
BOS12 Brad Penny
BOS13 Rocco Baldelli
BOS14 Jason Bay
BOS15 Wally The Green Monster

Chicago Cubs
CHC1 Alfonso Soriano
CHC2 Carlos Zambrano
CHC3 Geovany Soto
CHC4 Rich Harden
CHC5 Kosuke Fukudome
CHC6 Milton Bradley
CHC7 Mike Fontenot
CHC8 Ted Lilly
CHC9 Aramis Ramirez
CHC10 Reed Johnson
CHC11 Derrek Lee
CHC12 Jeff Samardzija
CHC13 Ryan Dempster
CHC14 Ryan Theriot
CHC15 Wrigley Field

Chicago White Sox
CWS1 Carlos Quentin
CWS2 John Danks
CWS3 Brian Anderson
CWS4 Gavin Floyd
CWS5 Paul Konerko
CWS6 Mark Buehrle
CWS7 Orlando Cabrera
CWS8 Brent Lillibridge
CWS9 Jermaine Dye
CWS10 Bobby Jenks
CWS11 Jim Thome
CWS12 Jose Contreras
CWS13 A.J. Pierzynski
CWS14 Ozzie Guillen
CWS15 Barack Obama


Cincinnati Reds
CIN1 Jay Bruce
CIN2 Edinson Volquez
CIN3 Joey Votto
CIN4 Bronson Arroyo
CIN5 Brandon Phillips
CIN6 Aaron Harang
CIN7 Edwin Encarnacion
CIN8 Johnny Cueto
CIN9 Chris Dickerson
CIN10 Francisco Cordero
CIN11 Willy Taveras
CIN12 Ramon Hernandez
CIN13 Jeff Keppinger
CIN14 Micah Owings
CIN15 Mr. Redlegs

Cleveland Indians
CLE1 Grady Sizemore
CLE2 Cliff Lee
CLE3 Victor Martinez
CLE4 Fausto Carmona
CLE5 Jhonny Peralta
CLE6 David Dellucci
CLE7 Travis Hafner
CLE8 Kelly Shoppach
CLE9 Jake Westbrook
CLE10 Ben Francisco
CLE11 Mark DeRosa
CLE12 Asdrubal Cabrera
CLE13 Ryan Garko
CLE14 Shin-Soo Choo
CLE15 Kerry Wood

Colorado Rockies
COL1 Troy Tulowitzki
COL2 Ubaldo Jimenez
COL3 Garrett Atkins
COL4 Jeff Francis
COL5 Clint Barmes
COL6 Ryan Spilborghs
COL7 Brad Hawpe
COL8 Huston Street
COL9 Todd Helton
COL10 Dexter Fowler
COL11 Chris Iannetta
COL12 Aaron Cook
COL13 Ian Stewart
COL14 Jeff Baker
COL15 Coors Field

Detroit Tigers
DET1 Miguel Cabrera
DET2 Armando Galarraga
DET3 Curtis Granderson
DET4 Justin Verlander
DET5 Magglio Ordonez
DET6 Jeremy Bonderman
DET7 Marcus Thames
DET8 Dontrelle Willis
DET9 Placido Polanco
DET10 Fernando Rodney
DET11 Gary Sheffield
DET12 Gerald Laird
DET13 Carlos Guillen
DET14 Brandon Inge
DET15 Paws

Florida Marlins
FLA1 Hanley Ramirez
FLA2 Josh Johnson
FLA3 Dan Uggla
FLA4 Ricky Nolasco
FLA5 Jorge Cantu
FLA6 Matt Lindstrom
FLA7 Chris Volstad
FLA8 Alfredo Amezaga
FLA9 Gaby Sanchez
FLA10 Jeremy Hermida
FLA11 Andrew Miller
FLA12 Cody Ross
FLA13 Cameron Maybin
FLA14 John Baker
FLA15 Billy The Marlin

Houston Astros
HOU1 Lance Berkman
HOU2 Roy Oswalt
HOU3 Carlos Lee
HOU4 Brandon Backe
HOU5 Hunter Pence
HOU6 J. R. Towles
HOU7 Miguel Tejada
HOU8 Jose Valverde
HOU9 Kazuo Matsui
HOU10 Wandy Rodriguez
HOU11 Mike Hampton
HOU12 Darin Erstad
HOU13 Geoff Blum
HOU14 Michael Bourn
HOU15 Minute Maid Park


Kansas City Royals
KCR1 Alex Gordon
KCR2 Zack Greinke
KCR3 David DeJesus
KCR4 Gil Meche
KCR5 Mark Teahen
KCR6 Brian Bannister
KCR7 Billy Butler
KCR8 Luke Hochevar
KCR9 Coco Crisp
KCR10 Kyle Davies
KCR11 Miguel Olivo
KCR12 Joakim Soria
KCR13 Mike Jacobs
KRC14 Mike Aviles
KCR15 Kauffman Stadium

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
LAA1 Torii Hunter
LAA2 Chone Figgins
LAA3 Jered Weaver
LAA4 Mike Napoli
LAA5 Brian Fuentes
LAA6 Joe Saunders
LAA7 Juan Rivera
LAA8 Ervin Santana
LAA9 Gary Matthews
LAA10 John Lackey
LAA11 Vladimir Guerrero
LAA12 Erick Aybar
LAA13 Howie Kendrick
LAA14 Brandon Wood
LAA15 Mike Scioscia

Los Angeles Dodgers
LAD1 Russell Martin
LAD2 Clayton Kershaw
LAD3 Jonathan Broxton
LAD4 Rafael Furcal
LAD5 Andre Ethier
LAD6 Chad Billingsley
LAD7 Matt Kemp
LAD8 Juan Pierre
LAD9 James Loney
LAD10 Hiroki Kuroda
LAD11 Blake DeWitt
LAD12 Casey Blake
LAD13 Mark Loretta
LAD14 Hong-Chih Kuo
LAD15 Joe Torre

Milwaukee Brewers
MIL1 Ryan Braun
MIL2 Mat Gamel
MIL3 Prince Fielder
MIL4 Mike Cameron
MIL5 Corey Hart
MIL6 Dave Bush
MIL7 Trevor Hoffman
MIL8 Manny Parra
MIL9 Rickie Weeks
MIL10 Jason Kendall
MIL11 J. J. Hardy
MIL12 Jeff Suppan
MIL13 Bill Hall
MIL14 Yovani Gallardo
MIL15 Bernie Brewer

Minnesota Twins
MIN1 Joe Mauer
MIN2 Francisco Liriano
MIN3 Justin Morneau
MIN4 Glen Perkins
MIN5 Delmon Young
MIN6 Alexi Casilla
MIN7 Kevin Slowey
MIN8 Michael Cuddyer
MIN9 Joe Nathan
MIN10 Jason Kubel
MIN11 Nick Blackburn
MIN12 Carlos Gomez
MIN13 Scot Baker
MIN14 Denard Span
MIN15 HHH Metrodome

New York Mets
NYM1 David Wright
NYM2 Johan Santana
NYM3 Carlos Beltran
NYM4 Fernando Tatis
NYM5 Jose Reyes
NYM6 John Maine
NYM7 Ryan Church
NYM8 Mike Pelfrey
NYM9 Brian Schneider
NYM10 J. J. Putz
NYM11 Carlos Delgado
NYM12 Daniel Murphy
NYM13 Francisco Rodriguez
NYM14 Luis Castillo
NYM15 Citi Field


New York Yankees
NYY1 CC Sabathia
NYY2 Mariano Rivera
NYY3 Derek Jeter
NYY4 Chien-Ming Wang
NYY5 Hideki Matsui
NYY6 Joba Chamberlain
NYY7 Jorge Posada
NYY8 A. J. Burnett
NYY9 Robinson Cano
NYY10 Xavier Nady
NYY11 Johnny Damon
NYY12 Mark Teixeira
NYY13 Alex Rodriguez
NYY14 Nick Swisher
NYY15 Mickey Mantle

Oakland Athletics
OAK1 Matt Holliday
OAK2 Cliff Pennington
OAK3 Kurt Suzuki
OAK4 Justin Duchscherer
OAK5 Jason Giambi
OAK6 Gio Gonzalez
OAK7 Travis Buck
OAK8 Eric Chavez
OAK9 Brad Ziegler
OAK10 Dana Eveland
OAK11 Bobby Crosby
OAK12 Sean Gallagher
OAK13 Mark Ellis
OAK14 Jack Cust
OAK15 Stomper the Elephant

Philadelphia Phillies
PHI1 Cole Hamels
PHI2 Ryan Howard
PHI3 Chase Utley
PHI4 Brett Myers
PHI5 Jimmy Rollins
PHI6 Jamie Moyer
PHI7 Raul Ibanez
PHI8 Brad Lidge
PHI9 Jayson Werth
PHI10 Joe Blanton
PHI11 Shane Victorino
PHI12 Pedro Feliz
PHI13 Ryan Madson
PHI14 Carlos Ruiz
PHI15 Phillie Phanatic

Pittsburgh Pirates
PIT1 Nate McLouth
PIT2 Tom Gorzelanny
PIT3 Ryan Doumit
PIT4 Paul Maholm
PIT5 Freddy Sanchez
PIT6 Zach Duke
PIT7 Adam LaRoche
PIT8 Matt Capps
PIT9 Jack Wilson
PIT10 Ian Snell
PIT11 Jeff Karstens
PIT12 Nyjer Morgan
PIT13 Steven Pearce
PIT14 Andy LaRoche
PIT15 PNC Park

St Louis Cardinals
STL1 Albert Pujols
STL2 Chris Carpenter
STL3 Ryan Ludwick
STL4 Adam Wainwright
STL5 Yadier Molina
STL6 Chris Duncan
STL7 Rick Ankiel
STL8 Joel Pineiro
STL9 Troy Glaus
STL10 Chris Perez
STL11 Brendan Ryan
STL12 Todd Wellemeyer
STL13 Skip Shumaker
STL14 Khalil Greene
STL15 Fredbird

San Diego Padres
SDP1 Adrian Gonzalez
SDP2 Jake Peavy
SDP3 Kevin Kouzmanoff
SDP4 Chris Young
SDP5 Chase Headley
SDP6 Matt Antonelli
SDP7 Jody Gerut
SDP8 Josh Banks
SDP9 Brian Giles
SDP10 Cha-Seung Baek
SDP11 Will Venable
SDP12 Edgar Gonzalez
SDP13 Wade LeBlanc
SDP14 Scott Hairston
SDP15 Swinging Friar


San Francisco Giants
SFG1 Tim Lincecum
SFG2 Aaron Rowand
SFG3 Matt Cain
SFG4 Bengie Molina
SFG5 Barry Zito
SFG6 Fred Lewis
SFG7 Jonathan Sanchez
SFG8 Pablo Sandoval
SFG9 Randy Johnson
SFG10 Edgar Renteria
SFG11 Brian Wilson
SFG12 Nate Schierholtz
SFG13 Randy Winn
SFG14 John Bowker
SFG15 AT&T Park

Seattle Mariners
SEA1 Ichiro Suzuki
SEA2 Felix Hernandez
SEA3 Jose Lopez
SEA4 Brandon Morrow
SEA5 Adrian Beltre
SEA6 Matt Tuiasosopo
SEA7 Kenji Johjima
SEA8 Jarrod Washburn
SEA9 Yuniesky Betancort
SEA10 Erik Bedard
SEA11 Waldimir Balentien
SEA12 Franklin Gutierrez
SEA13 Carlos Silva
SEA14 Jeff Clement
SEA15 Safeco Field

Tampa Bay Rays
TBR1 Evan Longoria
TBR2 Scott Kazmir
TBR3 Carl Crawford
TBR4 Matt Garza
TBR5 Gabe Gross
TBR6 James Shields
TBR7 B. J. Upton
TBR8 Pat Burrell
TBR9 Carlos Pena
TBR10 David Price
TBR11 Willy Aybar
TBR12 Akinori Iwamura
TBR13 Jason Bartlett
TBR14 Dioner Navarro
TBR15 Raymond

Texas Rangers
TEX1 Josh Hamilton
TEX2 Kevin Millwood
TEX3 Michael Young
TEX4 David Murphy
TEX5 Nelson Cruz
TEX6 Vicente Padilla
TEX7 Ian Kisler
TEX8 Matt Harrison
TEX9 Jarrod Saltalamacchia
TEX10 Hank Blalock
TEX11 Taylor Teagarden
TEX12 Frank Francisco
TEX13 Chris Davis
TEX14 Marlon Byrd
TEX15 Rangers Captain

Toronto Blue Jays
TOR1 Roy Halladay
TOR2 Alex Rios
TOR3 Vernon Wells
TOR4 Rod Barajas
TOR5 Lyle Overbay
TOR6 Shaun Marcum
TOR7 Travis Snider
TOR8 Dustin McGowan
TOR9 B. J. Ryan
TOR10 Aaron Hill
TOR11 Adam Lind
TOR12 Scott Rolen
TOR13 David Purcey
TOR14 Marco Scutaro
TOR15 Cito Gaston

Washington Nationals
WAS1 Ryan Zimmerman
WAS2 Collin Balester
WAS3 Cristian Guzman
WAS4 Daniel Cabrera
WAS5 Lastings Milledge
WAS6 Josh Willingham
WAS7 Elijah Dukes
WAS8 John Lannan
WAS9 Ronnie Belliard
WAS10 Scott Olsen
WAS11 Austin Kearns
WAS12 Joel Hanrahan
WAS13 Jesus Flores
WAS14 Nick Johnson
WAS15 Teddy Roosevelt

Whew...don't expect me to do this kind of thing often, but I thought it would be nice for those who haven't seen the products yet to see which players made each 14 man roster.

Happy Hunting!!!

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

In the Name of Baseball!!!

The title of this post came to me in a dream a few minutes ago, and I felt compelled to use it.

In what was to be a great day for baseball, it was also a sad one as well. For while we celebrate near no hitters, back to back memberships into the 300 HR Club, Opening Day for the Citi Field, and so on, we are also reminded that life is but a precious gift and is not realized until someone else's is taken away, especially at such a young age.

They say that deaths come in three's. I guess fate has finished it's job. As a young Angel was lost last week, today the voice that many Philadelphians, and quite frankly, the nation, heard either on the radio or on NFL Films, along with a "Big Bird" out of the Motor City, joined him. The world of baseball is in mourning as both Harry Kalas and Mark Fidrych died today.

I have never really heard Mr. Kalas announce a game on the radio, but I do know his voice as the narrator of many NFL Films segments and on the radio doing voice over work. His baritone voice was recognizable instantly for it's low baritone and strong diction. He passed away today before the game in Washington, DC.


Mark Fidrych was a legend in Detroit sports. His 1976 season was one of legend only because he was not able to repeat his success afterwards. He was eccentric to say the least, but for that one year, nobody was better. He was on his farm, one he bought with the money after his first year in baseball, underneath a truck he appeared to be fixing.

To the Kalas and Fidrych families, to the organizations of the Philadelphia Philles and Detroit Tigers, to NFL Films, and to all who had the opportunity to watch, listen, or work with either men, my prayers go out to you. May both rest in peace.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Friday, April 10, 2009

From One Big Daddy to Another, Thank You

I received an e-mail from friend of the blog and commenter Big Daddy saying that he found the 2008 Topps U&H Lance Berkman Dick Perez card that I've been searching for. He said he was getting it in a trade, and when it arrives that he is sending it to me, as long as I shot him my address. I replied in kind, telling him that I would thank him profusely when the card arrived.

Well, the card arrived today...


To Chris Kocan, thanks for thinking of me, and thank you for the card. I can finally put my 2008 Topps set to rest now. I am going to go through your want lists and see if I can find anything to send to you as a thank you.

If you would like to help Big Daddy cut down his want lists, please go to his want list website. He has all his trade and needs lists here. I just wish I was this organized.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I don't think a catchy title is important right now.

http://your4state.com/content/fulltext/?cid=60432

Prayers go out to his family, the Angels Organization, and Major League Baseball. I don't think anything else needs to be said.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Coming Soon...A Detailed Timeline...

I caved. I found it much easier to buy the remaining Target and Walmart Legends cards I need from the Bay than it would be to trade for them. So, I did just that. Last week, I spent a grand total of $21.79 ($0.99+$4.80+$11.00 plus shipping) for the six remaining cards I needed to complete both the Target and Walmart sets. The Walmart cards arrived today:



The Target cards will come soon. When they all come together, I am going to go through each of the 45 cards I will have and see if I can build the timeline that is on the back of each of the cards.

I am very sure that the serial numbered parallels will have pieces of the timeline as well, but I don't plan on getting them, so the 45 cards will have to do.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Answering Your Questions and Collecting SP Cards. Ahhh!!! The Easy Life.

A new commenter to the blog, austin, asked, "What is an SP?"

Well austin, SP in the current Hobby world stands for Short Print, or to be more grammatically accurate, a short-printed card. These cards were not printed in the same quantities as other cards in a particular set. For example, in this year's 2009 Topps Heritage set, there are 75 cards that are short-printed, meaning that there are less of these cards than of the other 425 cards in the set. These cards are primarily seeded one SP card per pack, meaning that after finding all the regular cards, you might be a number of SP cards short of a full set. This is where the thrill-of-the-hunt mentality comes in, and many collectors eagerly search high and low for these SP cards to complete their set.

Now in a set like Heritage or Allen & Ginter, SP's are great. Both are tailor-made for the set collector as the short prints are relatively easy to find (after a lot of searching, of course). In a set like Topps Attax, short printed cards of the more powerful players can make or break how well a person does playing the game (if your opponent has a Barack Obama Topps Attax card, you might as well pack it in and concede).

For a basic set like Topps or Topps Traded/Traded & Rookies/Updates and Highlights...eh, not so much. In 2002, the people in charge at the Topps Company had this brilliant idea to short print the Rookie Cards that were to be included in the set. This would, in effect, raise the value of those players cards by making them more scarce and making people go crazy looking for them. It was a good idea, until it was time to execute it. Instead of printing less of the rookie cards, they printed and distributed less of the veterans and managers cards. The first 110 cards (enough for one sheet) were printed in less quantites than the other 165 cards in the set. And in every ten-card pack, there were nine rookies, and one veteran card. Imagine the frustration of opening a box of 36 cards, only to find that you were 74 cards short of a complete set, and the cards you had to look for would be found, in normal situations, in the common card bins at every card show.

Now the reason why I decided to answer this comment now instead of waiting until the Monthly Comment Mailbag was because of another comment I received from Steve Brown, writer of The Easy Life. Now he bought a box of 2009 Topps back in February, and posted the results here. Included was a Pee Wee Reese SP card. Now according to the comment that he left for me,

"I had dreams of collecting the sp's from that set - but since I broke the box I haven't even bothered to look for any of them - shoot me an email with your address - it's yours."

Was he serious? He was just going to GIVE ME THE CARD??? Well, I did respond to his comment with an e-mail and today comes:

Pee Wee Reese #2.

To Steve of The Easy Life, thank you very much for the card. I am going to go through your want lists and send you as much as I can in return as a thank you. I really appreciate it.

So now, we are down to the final three cards...Barack Obama...Mel Ott...Thurman Munson.

Who's next???

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Cards That Will Never See the Light of Day...EVER!!! 2003 Topps Draft Picks Bonus Cards

In a feeble attempt to get back to the roots of this humble little blog (plus the fact that Opening Day along with the lack of any worthwhile news has really killed my readership in the last couple of weeks), I am going to once again promise the readers who have stuck with me that I am going to put up more card related posts. It's been busy lately at work, so I haven't had a chance to come up anything new. So it's back to bringing up topics that haven't been discussed in a while...like the "Light of Day" series.

This time, we're continuing the discussion about bonus cards that Topps included in 2003 Topps Retail (that would be Target/Walmart, etc) and Holiday factory sets. As you recall, Topps included 10 "First Year Player" cards as bonuses in their Hobby and JC Penney/Sears exclusive factory sets. In the retail and holiday sets, they included ten 2003 Topps Draft Picks cards, featuring ten players selected in the 2003 MLB Draft. The ten players selected for this set are:



  • Brandon Wood, SS, Anaheim Angels (1st Round, Horizon High School)
  • Ryan Wagner, P, Cincinnati Reds (1st Round, University of Houston)
  • Sean Rodriguez, SS, Anaheim Angels (3rd Round, Braddock High School)
  • Chris Lubanski, OF, Kansas City Royals (1st Round, Kennedy-Kendrick Catholic Hich School)
  • Chad Billingsley, P, Los Angeles Dodgers (1st Round, Defiance High School)
The first five cards were included in the retail set. Now, there have been instances where the cards of both Wagner and Lubanski have their names switched on their cards. I think there may have been errors between Wood and Billingsley as well, but I'm not too sure. I actually have the Wagner and Lubanski errors, but for accuracy's sake, I switched their names around to show what the actual cards look like. If it wasn't for the fact that there are corrected versions of all the errors, I wouldn't have even bothered. The holiday sets, sold at your local HTA dealer, included:


  • Javi Herrera, C, Cleveland Indians (2nd Round, University of Tennessee)
  • Brian McFall, 1B, Kansas City Royals (3rd Round, Chandler Gilbert Community College)
  • Nick Markakis, OF, Baltimore Orioles (1st Round, Young Harris College)
  • Adam Miller, P, Cleveland Indians (1st Round Supplemental, McKinney High School)
  • Daric Barton, C, St. Louis Cardinals (1st Round, Marina High School)
It's been six years now since these ten were drafted, let's play...

WHERE ARE THEY NOW???

Brandon Wood made his MLB debut with the Angels on April 26, 2007, and has been shuttling back and forth between Anaheim and the AAA team in Salt Lake. In 68 games with the LAAOA, he has hit 6 home runs, driven in 16, and is hitting a less than stellar .191. He is starting the 2009 season in the minors.

Ryan Wagner became the first player in the 2003 draft to make it to the majors for the Reds. He made his MLB debut on July 19, 2003, finding a spot on the much maligned Cincinnati bullpen. He was sent along with Austin Kearns and Felipe Lopez to the Nationals in a seven player trade. In five seasons as a Red and a National, Wagner is 11-9, finished 23 games (no saves yet), and an ERA of 4.70. Injured for most of 2008, he is also starting the 2009 season in the minor leagues.

Sean Rodriguez made his MLB debut with the Angels on April 19, 2008, getting into 59 games with the Halos last year. In his rookie year, he hit 3 homers, 10 RBI's, stole 3 bases, and hit .204. He is starting the 2009 campaign in the minor leagues.

Chris Lubanski has not yet appeared in the majors for Kansas City. While he has been productive in the minors, the Royals have not found room for him yet on the big league roster. He begins his 2009 season in the minors.

Chad Billingsley has been a mainstay in the Dodger's starting rotation since his debut in 2006. In three years with the Dodgers, he sports a 35-19 record, struck out 401 batters, and has an ERA of 3.33. He made my 2008 MLB End of the Year All-Star team (which is another thing I'm working on...I swear).

Javi Herrera has not yet appeared in the majors. After spending five seasons in the Indians minor league system, he was traded to the Washington Nationals. He is starting the 2009 campaign in the minors.

Brian McFall has not arrived in the majors as well. In six years, he has yet to advance beyond the AA level. His case is another where the Royals have no room currently for him. He starts the year in the minors.

Nick Markakis is an All-Star in the making for the Baltimore Orioles. Playing RF for the O's, he finished tenth in the batting race last year with a .306 clip. In three seasons, he has hit 59 home runs, driven in 261 runs, and is batting a decent .299. At just 26 years old, he future is bright as the Orioles begin to build around him and their other young stars. He also made my 2008 MLB End of the Year All-Star team.

Adam Miller has not yet made his MLB debut, but that's the least of his worries. Although he carries a 32-25 record heading into the 2009 season, he also faces career-threatening surgery after being shut down in spring trainging twice so far. If he can get past it, he plays for the Tribe's AAA team. If not, he goes under the knife.

Daric Barton was traded to the Oakland Athletics in the deal that brought Mark Mulder to St. Louis in 2004. He made his MLB with the A's on September 10, 2007, and played both first base and catcher for them in 2008. He is starting the 2009 campaign in the minors to give him some playing time, as the A's have Jason Giambi at first and Kurt Suzuki calling the pitches right now. He will be back with the team soon.

So all ten players are still living the dream. There are at least two players who have All-Star potential in this bunch, but all are still young enough to make an impact in the majors some day. As the years go by, the number of factory sets these cards are found in will be hard to find. But more and more people are giving these cards a chance to belong in their collections. Which is great. Otherwise, these cards would never see the light of day...EVER!!!

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

This is a Test of the bdj610's Topps Baseball Card Blog E-mail System...


There was this great article I found in Google Magazine that I read last week where it said I could send posts via e-mail. Now I know this is nothing new, and I know it's possible to do, but I never thought I'd need to do it. That was until certain protocols were added so that I could no longer type a post on this humble little blog at work.

Yes, I know I should be working at work, but most of the good stuff happens during the day and I'd like to be able to share my thoughts immediately instead of having to wait until I get home late at night. To that end, I'm going to take a stab at "e-mailing it in" and see if this works.

I can make any necessary changes later, including formatting my pictures. I just hope this works...

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

P.S. Hey, how about that...it worked!!! jba

Monday, April 6, 2009

When Last We Saw Our Favorite Team...

they got swept out of the playoffs by the Dodgers in three games. Ouch.

Which is just as well. If the Cubs did win the World Series, they'd have to host the first game of the season. And what happened on Sunday night in Chicago??? That's right...it snowed!!!

It's Opening Day 2009!!! Baseball is back and it's about time.

So what did we learn on Opening Day???
And to think, this is just the beginning...

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Sunday, April 5, 2009

2011 Topps Archives: Fred McGriff

If you're the guy who set the record for hitting at least one home run in the most stadiums, you deserve to be added to the 2011 Topps Archives set.

If you hit 493 home runs (good for 26th all-time) and drove in 1550 more in a 19-year career, you deserve to be added to the 2011 Topps Archives set.

If you were a five-time all-star, and won the MVP award in one of those games (1994), you deserve to be added to the 2011 Topps Archives set.

If you've achieved all of the above, and your name is Fred McGriff, then you most definitely deserve to be added to the 2011 Topps Archives set.

The Crime Dog played for 20 years for the Toronto Blue Jays, San Diego Padres, Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, and the Los Angeles Dodgers. In every stop, he brought a powerful bat, a decent glove, and an All-Star reputation as one of the games' feared sluggers in the late 80's-mid 90's.

After establishing himself as a star-in-the-making with the Blue Jays, he was part of the big blockbuster trade that sent him and Tony Fernandez to the Padres in exchange for Roberto Alomar and Joe Carter. This transaction made the biggest splash at the 1990 winter meetings.

He was a member of the "Padres' Four Tops" along with Fernandez, Tony Gwynn, and Gary Sheffield in 1992 (McGriff batted fourth, with these three in front of him). He led the league that year with 35 home runs, his second home run title (winning his first in 1989 with 36 in Toronto).

He was a member of the 1995 Braves that beat the Yankees in the World Series, the Braves only WS title in their era of dominance in the 1990's.

His desire to play closer to home made him one of the first key acquisitions in the history of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Although the record of the D-Rays were not much to cheer about, McGriff hit 99 home runs and 359 RBI's for his hometown team.

A need for a first baseman for the playoff push by the Chicago Cubs sent McGriff to the northside, providing another powerful bat in a lineup that included Sammy Sosa. After Chicago, he spent one season with the Dodgers, before coming back home to Tampa for good in 2004.

He was only seven home runs shy of the fabled 500, but that does not make him any less of a great player. He will be up for consideration for Baseball's Hall of Fame when the BBWAA make their votes before the end of the year.

So today we add Fred McGriff as the tenth player to the 2011 Topps Archives Project.

First card: 1987 Topps Traded #74T. Last card: 2004 Topps #28.

This should take a bite out of our checklist!

(sound of groans by the audience after realizing the bad reference used in the last sentence)

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Return of Topps 206.

Even though the Topps Company has been racking up sales this year, a tough economy has forced them to drop high end products like Co-Signers and even the lowest end product Topps Opening Day from the seventeen-product roster (Topps Attax doesn't count due to the fact that it is a card game the likes of Hot Button...I could be wrong). So far, we've seen sell sheets for Topps (both 1 & 2), Bowman, Heritage, Finest, and Allen & Ginter. That leaves twelve more products to unleash on the masses at the end of the four-year agreement.

So with that in mind, it looks like the Topps Company is going to bring back the set that started the tobacco/retro trend we've seen for most of this decade. That's right. To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the cards distribution, Topps is bringing back Topps 206.

Not seen since the 2002-2003 baseball card season, the return of Topps 206 was announced on many other blogs today (I got my information from Trader Crack's site). In fact, it was announced today that at the big Hawaii Trade Convention (being held this year in Florida), 100 lucky conventioneers will receive a packet containing the six mini cards below:


From left to right, you have cards of Wagner, Gehrig, Ruth, Hornsby, Robinson, and Cobb. Now Wagner appeared in the 2002 version of this set, the other five, are making their debut on Topps 206.

Now this news reminds me of the 2006 Topps Allen & Ginter promo cards that Topps gave to attendees of the Hawaii show a few years back. I was lucky to find a set on the Bay, and still have the cards along with the little envelope that held them.


Care to bet that these new Topps 206 promo cards will be hitting the bay soon???

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

2011 Topps Archives: Harold Reynolds

He has spent the last 14 years as an analyst on ESPN and mlb.com. Before all of this, he was an All-Star second baseman for the Seattle Mariners and was the brightest star. This next subject is now known for the insight he brings to the new MLB Network. It is appropriate with the upcoming baseball season fast approaching, that we add Harold Reynolds to the checklist for the 2011 Topps Archives project.

Here is another player who was cut off the 2001 Topps Archives set because his first Topps card appeared in 1986 (last year used for the first cards was 1985 if you recall). In 1987, I didn't even know where Seattle was, but I knew that they had a baseball team. It was during the 1987 All-Star game that I first heard the name Harold Reynolds. He was introduced as a reserve for the American League All-Star team. In 1989, he was one of three American League second basemen to appear on the backs of the 1989 Topps stickers. At this time, (I was only 13, still learning about the game), I thought that the 66 players in this set were the best players in the world. And sure enough, Harold Reynolds was among them.

And rightfully so. During his decade in Seattle, he provided the Mariners with a steady glove at second base, along with a good eye at the plate (391 walks vs. 352 strikeouts), and decent speed on the basepaths (228 stolen bases). And in the 80's, he was the only player to take the stolen base title from speed demon Rickey Henderson, leading the AL with 60 in 1987 compared to Rickey's 41. He didn't have the power numbers, but then again, it wasn't a necessity for second basemen to hit for power. The Mariners, during his playing days, were not a great team. Up to this point, they never finished with a winning record. But Harold gave the Mariners' faithful someone to cheer for. And he was the face of the franchise, until a 19 year old wonder kid named Ken Griffey, Jr. arrived in 1989.

After the 1992 season, Reynolds was granted free agency, and signed with the Baltimore Orioles. As an Oriole, he became the double play partner of Hall of Famer Cal Ripken. In his one season with the O's, he provided that same steady glove, and decent bat that carried the O's to an 85-77 record in 1993. He signed with the San Diego Padres for the 1994 season, but was traded to the California Angels before the season started. He got into 74 games with the Halos before calling it a career at the end of the season.

Since then, Reynolds became the lead baseball analyst for ESPN. He worked for many years on their baseball flagship show Baseball Tonight, and would work as a commentator for the College and Little League World Series for the network. In 2007, he joined MLB.com as their baseball analyst, and with the launch of the MLB Network, is now the most recognized personality on the fledgling network.

First card: 1986 Topps #769. Last card: 1995 Topps #69.

So here's to Harold. The ninth player to be added to the 2011 Topps Archives Project. I really have to get a move on here. There are 191 players to go.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

That's It...I Quit!!!

After 22 years of being in this Hobby, after spending an incredible amount of money, and after a number of years of frustration, I have decided to pack it in. I've given up. This Hobby is too stressful. I need to get my priorities in order, and I've come to the realization that collecting 2½ x 3½ pictures of athletes, many of whom are now YOUNGER than I am, is too much.

I've also come to the conclusion that creating this blog was a big mistake. I've developed writer's block. I can't think anymore about what to put on here. And it seems that every waking hour, my mind is thinking of ideas of what to write about here. It has taken a toll on me, and has complicated matters at home, and at work.

This is why I've decided to sell all my cards and quit the blog. That's right. I'm going to close the blog down, delete all the posts, and sell all 42,633 cards to Mr. Mint. I could really use the money, and I know he pays in cash. I realize that he only buys cards up to the 1960's, but when he sees what I have to offer, I'm sure that he'll be willing to pony up the cash...


Yeah right...Happy April Fools' Day everybody!!!

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Today...I Consider Myself...The Luckiest Collector on the Face of the Earth!!!

I received an e-mail last week from one Kevin Clark, aka dadofandrew from the Topps Message Boards, stating that he had one of the 2009 Topps SP cards I'm still looking for and was wondering if I'd like to have it. "No," would have been the wrong answer. Of course I'd want it. So I respond in kind as to what he's looking for. He is currently working on 1978 and 1979 Topps, and he's a huge...HUGE...Ozzie Smith collector.

"Is there anything else that you need?" I responded that I don't have any extra 78's or 79's, but I'd really like the card. If you'd like, give me your wantlist, and I'll go to a store that has singles for both sets available and get what I can for you.

His response? "...I will send out the card to you once I pick up some more stamps or if I can get my wife to the PO. Your address hasn't changed has it?"

So on Tuesday night, I come home to see an envelope in the mail...and in it was this:

Lou Gehrig #290.

You know, even in the times that we all are currently living, it is such a wonderful feeling to know that there are people out there in the world like Kevin. He didn't even have to send the card, knowing that I had nothing to offer him in kind. But his generosity seems to have no limits. So for this, I truly feel like I am the luckiest collector on the face of the Earth.

I'll be honest, I don't think I'd be this far along on the hunt for these SP cards if it weren't for this blog. I would have had to bite my tongue as card after card gets snatched up on eBay, knowing that whatever money I'd normally send that way was going to more important things. But since starting this humble little blog, I have seen the kindness of many collectors who share the same interests and have the same passion I have, if not more so, for this Hobby. A number of people whom I have traded with for these SP cards, and those who've just sent them without asking for an immediate return, are some of the nicest people that one could ever come across, even if I've never met them in person.

To Kevin, thank you very much for the card. You need to send me those want lists so I can get you something in return.

And we're down to the final four:
  • #2 Pee Wee Reese
  • #44 Barack Obama
  • #240 Mel Ott
  • #305 Thurman Munson
Let the hunt continue...

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

2008 Topps Red Hot Rookie #19 Has Arrived...

After months of waiting, my 2008 Topps Red Hot Rookie Collin Balester #19 card finally arrived. The card, contrary to what the scan looks like below, really does look cool. After initially thinking about trading it, I think I'll hold on to it for now...that is unless someone has one of the SP cards I still need.

So in any event, redeeming one of these...


got me this:


Forgive the picture, the card is a refractor after all. Nice shade of red (which you can't tell by the scan), and even though it's of a Nationals' pitcher, supposedly, he's one to keep an eye out for in 2009. Here's hoping, especially since Opening Day is in less than FIVE DAYS!!!

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama