Select The Player Who Should Be Added onto the 2014 All-Star Teams below as the HBC AL Final-Man

Select The Player Who Should Be Added onto the 2014 All-Star Teams below as the HBC NL Final-Man

Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Years Eve Thoughts...

It's nice that Christmas and New Years Day are just a week apart. It gives us time to reflect on what we did this past year, while giving us hope while we look forward to the next. And it's especially significant because this new year begins a new decade.

What do you remember doing 10 years ago? Twenty? Thirty??? Forty???

I remember 10 years ago, my wife and I were looking forward to a new baby and preparing to raise our child the best we could as we watched the snow fall outside our apartment on our second New Year's eve as husband and wife, thinking that Y2K was going to shut everything down.

I remember 20 years ago, my brother and I, and a bunch of our friends, jumped up and down in a huddle as we welcomed in the 90's at the stroke of 12.

Thirty years ago, fireworks rang in the streets of San Juan, Metro Manila to celebrate the arrival of 1980, and my family was getting ready to welcome another child into the family. All this while preparing the house to welcome the neighborhood kids in what was my grandmother's annual New Year's Day celebration.

For me, the dawn of a new decade comes with a lot of emotions. This decade, I get to look forward to both my children going into junior high AND high school, possibly college. Both of them getting their drivers licenses, and all the bells and whistles that come with being...teenagers. I get to see the 90's become popular again (did the decade ever really go away???). I get to look forward to another decade of getting older as I turn the big 4-0 (and I had a hard time adjusting to 30).

Ten years ago, I joined my first hobby forum (the Topps forum on the old Prospero boards). Before the end of the year, I registered with eBay. Blogging, Facebook, and other websites soon followed. Who knows what we get to see in the next ten years that we won't be able to live without?

Well, time to stop rambling, and time to start getting into more important matters. Because in the world of baseball cards, there will be a lot of changes coming into the 2010's.



Goodbye 2009!!!






Hello 2010!!!





Goodbye Rookie Card Logo from 2006-2009!!!





Hello Rookie Card Logo for 2010 and beyond!!!





Goodbye Gold Topps All-Star Rookie Cup!!!





Hello Silver Topps All-Star Rookie Cup!!!




May all your collections grow to new heights. Let's hope Topps makes it a bit easier on us insane set collectors. Thank you for letting me into your computers this past year. I hope to be able to share more of my collection with you in 2010!!!

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Random Topps Card of the Day: 1988 Topps #245 Rich Gedman

Thanks to the Topps Card Randomizer, introducing the Random Topps Card of the Day for Thursday, December 31, 2009:

  • Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 1988 Topps #245.
  • Player Name, position, team: Rich Gedman, catcher, Boston Red Sox.
  • Major League Debut: September 7, 1980.
  • Last Line of Statistics: 1987 stats (Red Sox): 52 G, 151 AB, 11 R, 31 H, 8 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 13 RBI, 0 SB, .278 SLG, 10 BB, 24 SO, .205 AVG.
  • Any special information about player: Signed by Red Sox as a Free Agent 08/05/1977. Bats: left, Throws: right. By 1987, he was a two-time All-Star (1985, 1986).
  • Any special information about this specific card: O'Brien's eighth regular Topps card (total includes both Topps and Topps Traded cards). The backs of 1988 Topps featured, if room permitted, a segment called "This Way to the Clubhouse." Gedman was signed as an undrafted free agent with the Red Sox by Scout Bill Enos on 08/05/1977.
  • Lo-Hi Beckett value: $0.01-$0.05.
Tomorrow's card will be: 1982 Topps Traded #23T. Join us at 1:00 PM CST for the unveiling won't you?

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

bdj610's End of Year MLB All-Star Teams: 1997 Edition

As we look forward to 2010, today's All-Star Teams were chosen after the 1997 season. The Florida Marlins shock the world by beating the heavily favored Cleveland Indians in the World Series. Fans were starting to come back. And I graduated college, and was now on my one year off for self exploration. I'm still working at the online shopping service, having the time of my life. And still taking time to come up with All-Star Teams.

I did follow baseball a lot during the summer, and Sports Weekly still displayed full stats, so using that, plus giving sway to those who actually played in the 1997 ASG, I was confident enough to pick players for these teams based on merit. As in previous years, there are 10 pitchers on each team (six starters, four closers), and because the 1998 ASG would be in Denver (at Coors Field), there was no DH needed. So the rosters contracted to 34 players per team.

So without further ado, for the first time online, I am proud to introduce my 1997 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):

(Start the New Year's Countdown...10...)










American League

First Basemen

  • Tino Martinez, Yankees*
  • Frank Thomas, White Sox
  • Mo Vaughn, Red Sox

Second Basemen

  • Roberto Alomar, Orioles
  • Damion Easely, Tigers*
  • Chuck Knoblauch, Twins

Third Basemen

  • Jeff Cirillo, Brewers
  • Jeff King, Royals*
  • Cal Ripken, Orioles

Shortstops

  • Nomar Garciaparra, Red Sox*
  • Derek Jeter, Yankees
  • Omar Vizquel, Indians

Outfielders

  • Albert Belle, White Sox
  • Jeromy Burnitz, Brewers*
  • Juan Gonzalez, Rangers
  • Rusty Greer, Rangers*
  • Ken Griffey, Jr., Mariners
  • Paul O'Neill, Yankees
  • Manny Ramirez, Indians
  • Tim Salmon, Angels
  • Matt Stairs, Athletics*

Catchers

  • Sandy Alomar, Indians
  • Ivan Rodriguez, Rangers
  • Dan Wilson, Mariners

Pitchers

  • Roger Clemens, Blue Jays
  • Pat Hentgen, Blue Jays
  • Randy Johnson, Mariners
  • Doug Jones, Brewers
  • Jamie Moyer, Mariners*
  • Randy Myers, Orioles
  • Andy Pettitte, Yankees
  • Brad Radke, Twins*
  • Mariano Rivera, Yankees*
  • John Wetteland, Rangers

Manager:

  • Terry Collins, Angels

The Starters:

  • 1B: Thomas
  • 2B: Alomar
  • 3B: Ripken
  • SS: Jeter
  • OF: Belle
  • OF: Griffey, Jr.
  • OF: Ramirez
  • C: Rodriguez
  • P: Clemens

*First-Time All-Star


National League

First Basemen

  • Jeff Bagwell, Astros
  • Andres Galarraga, Rockies
  • Mark Grace, Cubs

Second Basemen

  • Craig Biggio, Astros
  • Jeff Kent, Giants*
  • Tony Womack, Pirates*

Third Basemen

  • Ken Caminiti, Padres
  • Vinny Castilla, Rockies
  • Chipper Jones, Braves

Shortstops

  • Royce Clayton, Cardinals*
  • Mark Grudzielanek, Expos
  • Barry Larkin, Reds

Outfielders

  • Moises Alou, Marlins
  • Dante Bichette, Rockies
  • Barry Bonds, Giants
  • Tony Gwynn, Padres
  • Kenny Lofton, Braves
  • Raul Mondesi, Dodgers
  • Gary Sheffield, Marlins
  • Sammy Sosa, Cubs
  • Larry Walker, Rockies

Catchers

  • Todd Hundley, Mets
  • Javy Lopez, Braves*
  • Mike Piazza, Dodgers

Pitchers

  • Rod Beck, Giants
  • Shawn Estes, Giants*
  • Trevor Hoffman, Padres
  • Darryl Kile, Astros*
  • Greg Maddux, Braves
  • Pedro Martinez, Expos*
  • Denny Neagle, Braves*
  • Robb Nen, Marlins*
  • Curt Schilling, Phillies*
  • Jeff Shaw, Reds*

Manager:

  • Larry Dierker, Astros

The Starters:

  • 1B: Bagwell
  • 2B: Kent
  • 3B: Jones
  • SS: Larkin
  • OF: Bonds
  • OF: Gwynn
  • OF: Sosa
  • C: Piazza
  • P: Maddux


Twenty-one players are first-time all-stars (10 for the American League, 11 for the Nationals). One-person teams on my 1997 rosters include the Angels (Salmon), Athletics (Stairs), Royals (King), Tigers (Easely), Cardinals (Clayton), Mets (Hundley), Phillies (Schilling), and Pirates (Womack). The Yankees and Braves send five representatives to the AL and NL rosters, leading their respective leagues. The Mariners, Rangers, Giants, and Rockies each send four players to the teams.

As always, seven regular games (10,000 simulations each, six with the same starting pitchers, one where lineups and starting pitchers change), and one All-Star Game will be simulated during the course of the week. I hope to have the results of all the games by the end of the week.

Now it's time for me to create the .DAT files before getting the games set. Results to come on Monday (unless we party too late).

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

bdj610's 1996 End of Year All-Star Teams Simulated Games Results

I have finally finished simulating the All-Star Games using my 1996 End of Year All-Star Teams. A couple of streaks were snapped this time around as the 1996 National League All-Stars took the seven game series 4-3 over their American League counterparts. Will this mean a win for the NL in the one-game ASG? Stay tuned.

As previously stated, I simulated seven games (six series between starters, and one series where the lineups, starting rotations changed on a daily basis), by playing each one 10,000 times.

The first six games I simulated used each starting pitcher on both sides at least once, and all position players started a minimum of two games each. Here are the results:

  • Game 1: NL vs. AL, John Smoltz vs. Andy Pettitte. The NL wins 5,489 games out of 10,000 simulations (using a DH).
  • Game 2: NL vs. AL, Andy Benes vs. Pat Hentgen. The AL wins 6,718 games (usina a DH).
  • Game 3: AL vs. NL, Mike Mussina vs. Kevin Brown. The NL wins 7,062 games. Maybe it was the fact that all five Colorado Rockies players on the NL side (Galarraga, Young, Castilla, Bichette, and Burks) were the first five guys in the lineup.
  • Game 4: AL vs, NL, Charles Nagy vs. Tom Glavine. The NL wins 5,116 games.
  • Game 5: AL vs. NL, Alex Fernandez vs. Shane Reynolds. The NL wins 5,212 games.
  • Game 6: NL vs. AL, Al Leiter vs. Ken Hill. The AL wins 5,421 games (using a DH).
  • Game 7: AL vs. NL, anything goes. The AL wins 5,216 games (using a DH).
The NL wins a series for the first time since 1990. But the AL wins the ever important "anything goes" series. This seventh series seems to be a good indicator as to who wins the big one.

For the official All-Star Game, I decided to just simulate one game and one game only. The starting pitchers were Smoltz and Pettitte and I let them pitch two innings (unless they struggled badly). The rest of the pitchers would get one inning each (unless they struggled badly). The position players were replaced every three innings. No pinch hitters here, (as in previous tries, the pinch hitter is taken out of the game). The DH's (Mark Grace of the NL and Paul Molitor of the AL) were never replaced.

The starting lineups, first for the National League (I'm using 1997 Topps cards because these are the cards I used to represent the players on my All-Star teams):


Now the American League starting lineup:


Here is the result:


The 1996 AL All-Stars beat the 1996 NL All-Stars by a final score of 6-4 in what turned out to be a home run showcase,

The box score is below (Just click on the picture to take a closer look.


The scoring plays were as follows:

Top 1: Andy Pettitte pitching. Lance Johnson triples. Tony Gwynn grounds out to Cal Ripken (6-3), Johnson scoring.

Top 2: Pettitte pitching. Mike Piazza hits a home run.

Bottom 2: John Smoltz pitching. Cal Ripken doubles. Paul Molitor flies out to Tony Gwynn (9). Ivan Rodriguez grounds out to Craig Biggio (4-3), Ripken advances to third. Roberto Alomar hits a home run, Ripken scoring.

Bottom 3: Kevin Brown pitching. Wade Boggs strikes out. Mark McGwire hits a home run.

Top 4: Charles Nagy pitching. Fred McGriff walks. Barry Bonds walks, McGriff advances to second. Mike Piazza walks, McGriff advances to third, Bonds advances to second. Mark Grace reaches first on an error by Nagy (E1), McGriff, scoring, Bonds advances to third, Piazza advances to second. Chipper Jones reaches first on a fielders choice, Bonds scoring, Grace out at second base on the FC (1-6).

Bottom 4: Tom Glavine pitching. Chuck Knoblauch grounds to Mickey Morandini (4-3). Brady Anderson strikes out. Travis Fryman hits a home run.

Bottom 5: Andy Benes pitching. Juan Gonzalez walks. Joe Carter hits a home run, Gonzalez scoring.

Your starters, John Smoltz and Andy Pettitte. Joe Carter is the MVP.

So on the strength of four home runs (McGwire, Alomar, Fryman, and Carter), the AL powers their way to victory. If this game actually existed, the MVP award would have gone to Joe Carter (1-1, 1 hr, 2 rbi). Ken Hill takes the win, Andy Benes gets the loss, hometown hero Jose Mesa gets the save, and the only players who didn't get in the game were pitchers Jeff Brantley, Trevor Hoffman, & Shane Reynolds from the NL and Mike Mussina & John Wetteland from the AL.

If you want to see the .DAT files that I used (I still don't know how to download these onto the blog , so please just take a look at the screen caps below). If anyone can e-mail me instructions, please do so at bdj610@hotmail.com. Below is the NL .DAT file, then the AL .DAT file:




Now that the 1996 All-Star Games are officially over, at noon on Thursday, I will introduce the 1997 End of Year All-Star teams. Simulations for games with those rosters to come hopefully by Sunday night.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Random Topps Card of the Day: 1995 Topps #379 Charlie O'Brien

Thanks to the Topps Card Randomizer, introducing the Random Topps Card of the Day for Wednesday, December 30, 2009:

  • Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 1995 Topps #379.
  • Player Name, position, team: Charlie O'Brien, catcher, Atlanta Braves.
  • Major League Debut: June 2, 1985.
  • Last Line of Statistics: 1994 stats (Braves): 51 G, 152 AB, 24 R, 37 H, 11 2B, 0 3B, 8 HR, 28 RBI, 0 SB, .474 SLG, 15 BB, 24 SO, .243 AVG.
  • Any special information about player: Drafted by Athletics #5th, June 1982. Signed as a free agent with the Braves 11/27/1993. Bats: right, Throws: right.
  • Any special information about this specific card: O'Brien's ninth regular Topps card (total includes both Topps and Topps Traded cards). 1995 was the year that Topps included two color pictures of the player on the back of the cards. One was an action shot, the other was a framed headshot that was made to look like it came from a scoreboard. In fact, at the bottom of every player's picture was the Mitsubishi symbol (three diamonds brought together in the shape of a triangle) and the words "Diamond Vision." The card was also clearly marked as licensed by both the MLB Properties and MLB Player's Association.
  • Lo-Hi Beckett value: $0.05-$0.15.
Tomorrow's card will be: 1988 Topps #245. Post will arrive at 1:00 PM CST. See you then.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Random Topps Card of the Day: 1993 Topps #63 Al Osuna

(Tonight's introduction is in honor of George Michael, the man who gave us national sports coverage before SportsCenter ever became relevant, who passed away on December 24, 2009.)

Now, through the use of the Topps Card Randomizer, the Random Topps Card of the Day for Tuesday, December 29, 2009:

  • Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 1993 Topps #63.
  • Player Name, position, team: Al Osuna, pitcher, Houston Astros.
  • Major League Debut: September 2, 1990.
  • Last Line of Statistics: 1992 stats (Astros): 66 G, 6-3, 61.2 IP, 29 R, 29 ER, 37 SO, 38 BB, 0 GS, 0 CG, 0 SHO, 4.23 ERA.
  • Any special information about player: Drafted by Astros #16th, June 1987. Bats: right, Throws: left.
  • Any special information about this specific card: Osuna's third regular Topps card. 1993 saw the return of vertical-oriented backs to the player cards (something not really seen on players' cards since 1975). The design focuses more on the photo, as the only semblance of a design are the two diagonal ribbons that hold the player's name and team affiliation.
  • Lo-Hi Beckett value: $0.02-$0.10.
Tomorrow's card will be: 1995 Topps #379. Hope you'll join us tomorrow at 1:00 PM CST for that one.

On a totally unrelated note, growing up, I waited past the NBC 5 news at ten and the Sunday Sports show at 10:30, just so I can watch George Michael's Sports Machine. This was before our family had cable. And just hearing the sound effects and theme music to Michael's show got me read to watch an hour of non stop sports coverage. Of course, I didn't understand it all in the beginning, but to see highlights from games played in other cities (this is the late 80's people...) was a thrill. George Michael made watching highlights of even the most boring games interesting, and he somehow managed to give every game the same focus and energy, whether or not the games had playoff ramifications, or if they were just schedule fillers. I especially looked forward to the last Sunday of the month, because it meant that he would go through the world of sports (everything from baseball to WWF wrestling...yes, I know it's now WWE) for the "Plays of the Month!"

(cue Star Wars Theme)

The show ended in 2007 due to budget cuts. And what really impressed me was the fact that George Michael would rather cut himself than anybody from his staff. To me, that was a classy act. When it was announced that Michael was pulling the plug on his show, even the announcers on ESPN gave credit to him, noting that if it was not for him and the Sports Machine, there probably wouldn't be a SportsCenter the way it is seen today. His show was on nationally at a time when cable was still a brand new concept. And ESPN's franchise show definitely would not have any legs to stand on if it didn't take notes from the Sports Machine. Rest In Peace Mr. Michael. Watching sports highlights will never be the same again.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Monday, December 28, 2009

Random Topps Card of the Day: 2005 Topps Updates & Highlights #UH301 Chuck James

(Today begins what is hopefully a year long segment called the Topps Card of the Day. Look for this segment to run every day at 1:00 PM CST. Let's hope it works...)

The Topps Card Randomizer (the TCR) was plugged in on Sunday night. And after 30 seconds of pressing the F9 key, came up with this card as the first subject for our new Random Topps Card of the Day installment. Ladies and Gentlemen, this is what the TCR chose as the first ever Random Topps Card of the Day (repetitive first couple of sentences...no?) for Monday, December 28, 2009:


Okay, so after the card of the day is revealed, the following information will be included:
  • Official Card Set Name and Card Number: 2005 Topps Updates and Highlights #UH301.
  • Player Name (with a link to his Baseball Reference page), position, team: Chuck James, pitcher, Atlanta Braves.
  • Major League Debut (courtesy of Baseball Reference): September 28, 2005.
  • Career Statistics (totals in last line of yearly stats at that point in time): 1995 stats (minors): 29 G, 13-7, 161.1 IP, 103 H, 44 R, 38 ER, 36 BB, 193 SO, 0 CG, 0 SHO, 0.86 WHIP, 2.12 ERA.
  • Any special information about player (how acquired at that time, Bats/Throws), Drafted #20th, June 2002, Bats: left, Throws: left.
  • Any special information about this specific card: First regular Topps card (by regular, I mean either base or traded card). All cards from 2005 Topps Updates and Highlights include stats from 2005 season, which is the first time Topps was able to include same year stats onto their cards (normally, stats are from the previous year, even on the Traded/U&H cards).
  • Lo-Hi Beckett value in (per the 2009 Beckett Annual Baseball Card Price Guide): $0.50-$1.25.
This is just the start. A new box will be added to the sidebar giving a preview of the upcoming cards of the week, which will be randomly selected every Saturday night. Write ups will begin in earnest. The last tidbit of information (in case readers MISS the sidebar) will be the next card of the day (remember, the randomizer picks seven cards, one for each day of the week). Tomorrow's card will be: 1993 Topps #63. Feel free to dig out the card, go to a website that has checklist information, or use your favorite search engine if you'd like. Otherwise, stay tuned.

In the mean time, please let me know if the format for these posts are all right or if I should try and add more information to it. I'm trying not to copy Hobby Blog Hall of Famer 88 Topps Cards. I don't want to write verbatim everything on the back of the card (plagerism). And I can pretend to know all about every player and their impact in the game and the hobby, but I would be lying. While it is easy to say that this player was great or had a great career, I will never say that this player stunk, or was bad, or had a lousy career. That player's numbers can speak for themselves without me making comments about it. Because let's face it, if I was better than the guys on the cards, don't you think I'd be playing the game for a living instead of writing about their cards???

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Friday, December 25, 2009

Sneaking Away to Show Off My Presents

On Christmas Eve, an envelope came from friend of the blog Larry Littman. It was something unexpected, especially since the package that was long overdue was mailed awhile back. What was inside the package was completely unexpected, and for this, I am truly grateful.

2009 Topps U&H Babe Ruth SP #UH330c.

Totally unexpected, greatly appreciated. One less card to hunt down, and this would have been one that I would have had to cave in and buy if I ever saw it at a show. So Larry, again, thank you. Let me know when that package finally arrives. I am sorry that it didn't get to you sooner. But it will get there I'm sure.

Santa was also kind to this humble blogger this year, as his stocking was filled with two packs each of 2009 Topps Updates and Highlights (the 36-card retail fat packs) and 2009 Topps 206 (the 12-pack double packs). Highlights include a Babe Ruth Turkey Red #TR150, two Piedmont mini cards (Chris Dickerson #110, and Ryan Perry #87), one Tim Lincecum SP card, and two Topps 206 gold parallels (Luke Scott #152, and Andre Ethier #34). One thing about these parallel cards is that these look like two cards glued together. Looks tacky to be honest. I guess when I buy my full set (whenever that may be), I'll stick to the base set. Although, even with the older Topps 206 sets, they probably do look better in mini form than they do in the regular base card size.

But beggars can't be choosers, and I thank Santa for the wonderful gifts.

It's on to spend the rest of the day with family. Tonight, we'll be with my side of the family, celebrating. Tomorrow, we make the trip to Indiana to spend time with my wife's family. Wherever this day takes you, have a safe and Merry Christmas. Talk to you soon.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Coming Soon...to a Topps Baseball Card Blog Near You...

(Warning: If you, or someone you know, is familiar with Phineas and Ferb, this next imagined monologue is going to sound awfully familiar).

Dr. Doofenshmirtz: Ah Perry the Platypus. So nice of you to walk into my trap. Now take a look at my newest evil creation that will help me take over the entire Tri-State area...



Behold:


The Topps Baseball Card Randomizer-inator!!!

(cue sound fx: record player scratching as it's being turned off suddenly)

Okay, so I didn't invent this (I think the guy at Wrigley Wax has one for his Random Cubs cards segments). But now I have one.

What does it do? And what does it mean?

Well, the goal of this blog was to share my cards with the rest of the world, and I feel that I haven't done that great of a job. So starting next year, as long as I can stand it, and along with all the other things I have in store for this humble, little blog, I will do a featured Topps baseball card of the day.

Yes, I know that some other blogs already do this sort of thing. The difference is that I'm not focusing on one set, nor am I focusing on one team. I'm going to attempt to focus on one Topps card from 1951-2009 every day in 2010 (actually, this will start on Monday, December 28). As you can see, this MS Excel spreadsheet, with the help of the Random function and VLOOKUP formulas, is designed to pick seven cards (six cards from 1976-2009, one card from 1951-1975). And whatever comes up will be the card I pull from my binders (or online) and will write a brief summary about the subject on the card (even if it winds up being a checklist). Think of this concept like Sam Beckett's Quantum Leap experiment, traveling through more amost 60 years of Topps cards...


...without having to jump into the bodies and lives of other people.

For example, if I were to use the spreadsheet above as an example, I would focus on the following seven cards, one day at a time, next week:

  • Monday, 2005 Topps U & H #244 Craig Tatum
  • Tuesday, 1993 Topps #500 Jose Canseco
  • Wednesday, 2000 Topps #358 Kevin Young
  • Thursday, 1981 Topps #177 Rick Peters
  • Friday, 1987 Topps #50 Dave Smith
  • Saturday, 2005 Topps #202 Kyle Lohse
  • Sunday (called Retro Sunday), 1958 Topps #308 Norm Siebern
I should have the cards from Monday to Saturday in my collection somewhere (if you haven't figured it out by now, I have EVERY basic Topps baseball card from 1976 to 2009). The Sunday card will be a bit tricky, but I'm sure I can find an image of it somewhere online. Why the retro cutoff at 1975? I was born in 1976, so every card highlighted in the Retro Sunday feature would be older than me (well technically, so would the 1976 cards, but...just play along will you???).

So hang on tight as my journey through the Hobby kicks into overdrive. This should be interesting.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

P.S. And if this doesn't work, I will blame a certain semi-aquatic mammal for foiling my plans. Him, and that paperclip guy that's in the middle of my spreadsheet. jba

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

So This Is Christmas...What Have We Done???

I started typing this at 11:53 PM CST on Wednesday, December 23. By the time I finish writing this post tonight, it will be Christmas Eve. This has been a very rough year financially, emotionally, mentally for a lot of people. In fact, I know that many people are cutting back on the usual extravegances, opting for simple get-togethers with family and friends. Many adults have agreed to skip the exchange of Christmas presents, opting to focus their gift giving towards their children, who, regardless of the state of the world right now, deserve a good holiday.

So while most of the presents have been purchased, and many still need to be wrapped, I find myself having to shop tomorrow for last minute presents for the nine kids that I care for the most (that would be two kids of my own plus the seven nephews and nieces that they enjoy being with). It wouldn't be the first time I went last-minute shopping, and I'm sure it won't be the last. I might not be able to buy them the most expensive presents on their want list. Heck, I don't think I can buy many of the things on their want lists. But I will find something for them that they can definitely use (no, I don't plan on buying nine rounds of socks and underwear...although...).

I think I'm trying to say that as our priorities shift, I think it's more important that we think about what Christmas is all about. Yes, we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. And that is why my family and I celebrate. But there is so much more to it than that. This is the time of year that we show our friends and family how much they mean to us. How much they matter to us. How much we care about them and believe that the feelings are mutual. This is the time that we put any hostilities we have aside and celebrate life. It's the time of year that we think about those who are less fortunate, and find ways to help, no matter how much or how little, and count our blessings.

And while I ramble on...

Regardless of where you are these next two days, on behalf of my family, I wish you and yours a happy, a safe, a joyous, and most imporantly, a very Merry Christmas. May packs of Topps cards fill your stocking on Christmas morning.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

P.S. To set the mood for the next two days, please feel free to enjoy a song that for some reason, only gets airtime during the holidays. Regardless, this is one of my favorite songs...EVER. jba


Linus and Lucy - The best free videos are right here

bdj610's End of Year MLB All-Star Teams: 1996 Edition

In 1996, I started a new job with a company that was just starting to use this newfangled concept called the Internet and allow its customers to buy groceries online and have them delivered too. Let me first say that this was probably one of the best periods of my life. I got to hang out at a grocery store without actually working FOR the grocery store, and get paid for it. And the people I worked with were great. I was still in college, but my focus had changed a bit, with good reason. Even with everything that was happening in my life, I was still knee deep in the hobby. And thanks to Baseball Weekly (although at this time, I think they started the change to Sports Weekly to coincide with the addition of football coverage), I still had time to name my End of the Year All-Star Teams. Baseball still took a backseat with everything else going on at this time, I mean, both the Cubs and the White Sox weren't going anywhere in 1996. And although I chose most of the players for these two teams on my own, a majority of them participated in the midsummer classic in Philadelphia in July.

This year's teams include 10 pitchers on each team (six starters, four closers), and the usual 3 players per position (1b, 2b, 3b, ss, c, 9 of), and because the 1997 ASG would be in Cleveland (at the two-year-old Jacobs Field), each team included a DH. So the rosters were expanded back to 35 players per team.

Let's cut to the chase. Without further ado, for the first time online, I am proud to introduce my 1996 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):

(Too much space...)











American League
First Basemen
  • Mark McGwire, Athletics
  • Frank Thomas, White Sox
  • Mo Vaughn, Red Sox
Second Basemen
  • Roberto Alomar, Orioles
  • Chuck Knoblauch, Twins
  • Mark McLemore, Rangers*
Third Basemen
  • Wade Boggs, Yankees
  • Jeff Cirillo, Brewers*
  • Travis Fryman, Tigers
Shortstops
  • Kevin Elster, Rangers*
  • Derek Jeter, Yankees*
  • Cal Ripken, Orioles
Outfielders
  • Brady Anderson, Orioles
  • Albert Belle, Indians
  • Jay Buhner, Mariners
  • Joe Carter, Blue Jays
  • Juan Gonzalez, Rangers
  • Tom Goodwin, Royals*
  • Ken Griffey, Jr., Mariners
  • Kenny Lofton, Indians
  • Tim Salmon, Angels
Catchers
  • Ivan Rodriguez, Rangers
  • Terry Steinbach, Athletics
  • Dan Wilson, Mariners*
Designated Hitter:
  • Paul Molitor, Twins
Pitchers
  • Alex Fernandez, White Sox*
  • Pat Hentgen, Blue Jays
  • Roberto Hernandez, White Sox*
  • Ken Hill, Rangers
  • Jose Mesa, Indians
  • Mike Mussina, Orioles
  • Charles Nagy, Indians
  • Troy Percival, Angels*
  • Andy Pettitte, Yankees*
  • John Wetteland, Yankees
Manager:
  • Joe Torre, Yankees
The Starters:
  • 1B: McGwire
  • 2B: Alomar
  • 3B: Boggs
  • SS: Ripken
  • OF: Belle
  • OF: Griffey, Jr.
  • OF: Lofton
  • C: Rodriguez
  • DH: Molitor
  • P: Pettitte
*First-Time All-Star


National League
First Basemen
  • Jeff Bagwell, Astros
  • Andres Galarraga, Rockies
  • Fred McGriff, Braves
Second Basemen
  • Craig Biggio, Astros
  • Mickey Morandini, Phillies
  • Eric Young, Rockies*
Third Basemen
  • Ken Caminiti, Padres
  • Vinny Castilla, Rockies
  • Chipper Jones, Braves
Shortstops
  • Jay Bell, Pirates
  • Mark Grudzielanek, Expos*
  • Barry Larkin, Reds
Outfielders
  • Dante Bichette, Rockies
  • Barry Bonds, Giants
  • Ellis Burks, Rockies
  • Marquis Grissom, Braves
  • Tony Gwynn, Padres
  • Lance Johnson, Mets*
  • Henry Rodriguez, Expos*
  • Gary Sheffield, Marlins
  • Sammy Sosa, Cubs
Catchers
  • Todd Hundley, Mets
  • Jason Kendall, Pirates*
  • Mike Piazza, Dodgers
Designated Hitter:
  • Mark Grace, Cubs
Pitchers
  • Andy Benes, Cardinals
  • Jeff Brantley, Reds
  • Kevin Brown, Marlins
  • Tom Glavine, Braves
  • Trevor Hoffman, Padres*
  • Al Leiter, Marlins*
  • Shane Reynolds, Astros*
  • John Smoltz, Braves
  • Mark Wohlers, Braves*
  • Todd Worrell, Dodgers
Manager:
  • Bruce Bochy, Padres
The Starters:
  • 1B: McGriff
  • 2B: Biggio
  • 3B: Jones
  • SS: Larkin
  • OF: Bonds
  • OF: Johnson
  • OF: Gwynn
  • C: Piazza
  • DH: Grace
  • P: Glavine



Nineteen players are first-time all-stars (10 for the American League, 9 for the Nationals). One-person teams on my 1994 rosters include the Brewers (Cirillo), Red Sox (Vaughn), Royals (Goodwin), Tigers (Fryman), Cardinals (Benes), Giants (Bonds), and Phillies (Morandini). The Braves send six representatives to the NL roster, leading both leagues (no Chicago bias this year). The Rangers and Rockies each send five players to their respective squads.

As always, seven regular games (10,000 simulations each, six with the same starting pitchers, one where lineups and starting pitchers change), and one All-Star Game will be simulated during the course of the week. I hope to have the results of all the games by the end of the week.

Now it's time for me to create the .DAT files before getting the games set. Game results coming next week.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

bdj610's 1995 End of Year All-Star Teams Simulated Games Results

I have finally finished simulating the All-Star Games using my 1995 End of Year All-Star Teams. And for the fifth straight season, the 1995 American League All-Stars wins the seven game series 4-3 over the 1995 National League All-Stars. But somehow, in the one game where it matters most, the National League pulls out the victory. This is the third year in four that the NL loses the series but wins the All-Star Game.

As previously stated, I simulated seven games (six series between starters, and one series where the lineups, starting rotations changed on a daily basis), by playing each one 10,000 times.

The first six games I simulated used each starting pitcher on both sides at least once, and all position players started a minimum of two games each. Here are the results:

  • Game 1: AL vs. NL, Randy Johnson vs. Greg Maddux. The NL wins 5,892 games out of 10,000 simulations.
  • Game 2: AL vs. NL, Mike Mussina vs. Pete Schourek. The AL wins 5,718 games.
  • Game 3: NL vs. AL, Ramon Martinez vs. Kenny Rogers. The AL wins 5,859 games (using a DH).
  • Game 4: NL vs, AL, Tom Glavine vs. David Cone. The AL wins 5,517 games (using a DH).
  • Game 5: NL vs. AL, Hideo Nomo vs. Orel Hershiser. The NL wins 5,207 games (using a DH).
  • Game 6: AL vs. NL, Tim Wakefield vs. Jaime Navarro. The AL wins 5,207 games.
  • Game 7: AL vs. NL, anything goes. The NL wins 5,020 games. This was the first time I can say that the lead went back and forth between the two teams until the NL pulled away after the 5000th game.
So once again, the AL wins the seven game series 4-3. But the NL wins the ever important "anything goes" series. This seventh series seems to be a good indicator as to who wins the big one.

For the official All-Star Game, I decided to just simulate one game and one game only. The starting pitchers were Johnson and Maddux and I let them pitch two innings (unless they struggled badly). The rest of the pitchers would get one inning each (unless they struggled badly). The position players were replaced every three innings. No pinch hitters here, (as in previous tries, the pinch hitter is taken out of the game), and there was only one double switch.

The starting lineups, first for the American League (I'm using 1996 Topps cards because these are the cards I used to imagine my All-Star teams):


Now the National League starting lineup:


Here is the result:


The 1995 NL All-Stars beat the 1995 AL All-Stars by a final score of 3-1.

The box score is below (Just click on the picture to take a closer look.


The scoring plays were like this:

Bottom 2: Randy Johnson pitching. Mike Piazza strikes out. Fred McGriff hits a home run.

Top 5: Ramon Martinez pitching. Paul O'Neill doubles. Manny Ramirez walks, Gary DiSarcina singles, O'Neill advancing to third, Ramirez advancing to second. Terry Steinbach hits into a double play (6-4-3), Paul O'Neill scores, Ramirez advancing to third, DiSarcina out on the force (6-4).

Bottom 6: Jeff Montgomery pitching. Pete Schourek grounds out to Roberto Alomar (4-3). Bret Boone singles. Sammy Sosa hits a home run, Boone scoring.

The MVP for the 1995 All-Star Game is Sammy Sosa.

If this game actually existed, the MVP would have been Sammy Sosa (1-2, HR, 2 RBI's). At this time, Sosa was more the 30-30 speed demon than the "Slammin' Sammy" we all knew in the late 90's - early 2000's. Pete Schourek gets the win, Jeff Montgomery takes the loss, Randy Myers earns the well deserved save, and the only players who didn't get in the game were pitchers Jose Mesa, Lee Smith, and Tim Wakefield from the AL and Tom Henke and Jaime Navarro from the NL.

If you want to see the .DAT files that I used (I still don't know how to download these onto the blog , so please just take a look at the screen caps below). If anyone can e-mail me instructions, please do so at bdj610@hotmail.com. Below is the AL .DAT file, then the NL .DAT file:




Now that the 1995 All-Star Games are officially over, on Wednesday, I will introduce the 1996 End of Year All-Star teams. Simulations for games with those rosters to come by Sunday night for a Monday morning recap.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Sport Card Blogroll's Winter of Discontent (or More Blogroll Goodbyes).

It's been six months or so since the blogs listed below had anything new to post, and sadly that means that it will now be removed from the Sports Card Blogroll. I must say that I've been adding a number of blogs recently (thanks to Mark at ephemera, and others who have recommended sites to add), but that number of blogs I have to remove due to inactivity this month far outnumbers the blogs I have added.

So, for posterity, here are the blogs that will be removed from the Sports Card Blogroll:

Starting next year, there will be changes coming to the Sports Card Blogroll. Some of the new features will include:
  • A section for blogs making their debut, or being added to the blogroll, in 2010.
  • An index of all the blogs on the roll in the sidebar (in alphabetical order), so you don't have to search for your favorite sites if it is in the middle or at the bottom of the blogroll
  • An up-to-the-minute blog post section for recent posts (the twenty-five most recent blog updates will be featured here)
  • With an index on the sidebar, I will change the default on each of the blogroll sections from "display all" to "display 25"
  • The list of accounts being removed from the blogroll will be added on the sidebar, and will be updated monthly.
This will take some work as there are now 262 blogs on the Sports Card Blogroll. While there are 119 baseball card blogs, there is only 1 basketball card blog, and I don't know if the writer plans on continuing it as it's been a month since the last post.

So keep on posting, and let me know of new blogs to add to the Sports Card Blogroll. If your blog was removed, and you want it added back, send me an e-mail.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Writer's Journey Presents Redfest 2010!!!

I'm not planning on getting a lot of Christmas presents this year. I don't mean that I'm not buying presents (with two kids plus seven nephews and nieces, if I said this, I'd be in deep trouble), I mean that I don't expect to be getting ANY presents for Christmas this year. And quite frankly, I'm okay with that. Tight times financially for everyone means really having to think about who to shop for Xmas. I have my health, a house, food on the table, and other things that make me grateful for what I have, (but in the event that I do get something, I'll of course be grateful and kindly accept).

With that said, on Friday, mixed in with the usual bills, junk mail, and coupons, was an envelope from friend of the blog, and the Writer's Journey's own, Jason Carter. As you recall, he went to the Redsfest a few weeks ago, and was able to snag a few extra cards from the Topps Redsfest set. In said envelope were the following four cards:

Hey, aren't these supposed to be from 2010???

After looking at scan after scan, it's nice to get an up close look regarding how the 2010 design looks in real life. This does give me something to look forward to come January when the real stuff goes live.

Thanks Jason, I appreciate the gift. To anyone else who went to Redsfest was able to get extra cards of the other four players (Brandon Phillips, Ryan Hanigan, Joey Votto, Drew Stubbs), if you're interested in helping me complete this eight-card set, please drop me a line.

On an unrelated note, I know that the Pirates, Twins, Cardinals, Braves, and Orioles are going to have their own FanFests soon too. If anybody who reads this blog plans on going to any of these and other fan conventions, and there are Topps cards being given away, please let me know so we can get them spotlighted on the blog. Bonus and gratuitous recognition if you'd be willing to send these cards to me. Thanks in advance.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

2010 Topps Attax Sell Sheets are Live!!!

Sell sheets for 2010 Topps Attax, the card game that swept the nation last year, are now live!!!




As a game, it's really easy to play. As a set, it's a challenge to complete. But my kids and I had fun playing the game last year, and can't wait to get our hands on this product next year. Who knows, we might take a shot at completing the set. And who knows if there will be a surprise card included in next year's edition of Topps Attax.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

bdj610's End of Year MLB All-Star Teams: 1995 Edition

In 1995, baseball was not a popular sport. Last year's strike, the cancellation of the World Series, the use of replacement players for 29 of the teams (the Baltimore Orioles abstained)...it was not a fun time for baseball. But, the strike ended, the players got back to business, Cal Ripken broke the consecutive games streak record, and the Braves, FINALLY, won their World Series. It's been eight seasons since I started this little, private tradition, and thanks to Baseball Weekly, even with all of the distractions, college life, plus work life, and the beginning of a social life, just like every season since I started following baseball, I named All-Star teams.

Baseball Weekly, how I miss thee. Every week, I'd make a trip to the local gas station or 7-Eleven to get my hands on the latest copy of the magazine. And I brought it everywhere I'd go. EVERYWHERE!!! And if they still put it out now the way they did in 1995, I'd still be buying the magazine today. Too bad that isn't the case. But anyway, I read the stats, followed along with the season, and by the end of the season, was confident enough to pick players for these teams based on merit. Of course, those players who actually made that summer's teams still had sway over others, sticking to the "every team has a rep" requirement, but adding the extra position holes was where using statistics came in very handy. As in previous years, there are 10 pitchers on each team (six starters, four closers), and because the 1996 ASG would be in Philadelphia (at Veterans Stadium), there was no DH needed. So the rosters contracted to 34 players per team.

So without further ado, for the first time online, I am proud to introduce my 1995 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):

(Space, the final frontier...)









American League

First Basemen

  • Rafael Palmeiro, Orioles
  • Frank Thomas, White Sox
  • Mo Vaughn, Red Sox

Second Basemen

  • Roberto Alomar, Blue Jays
  • Carlos Baerga, Indians
  • Chuck Knoblauch, Twins

Third Basemen

  • Wade Boggs, Yankees
  • Edgar Martinez, Mariners
  • Kevin Seitzer, Brewers

Shortstops

  • Gary DiSarcina, Angels*
  • Cal Ripken, Orioles
  • John Valentin, Red Sox*

Outfielders

  • Albert Belle, Indians
  • Jay Buhner, Mariners*
  • Chad Curtis, Tigers*
  • Jim Edmonds, Angels*
  • Kenny Lofton, Indians
  • Paul O'Neill, Yankees
  • Kirby Puckett, Twins
  • Manny Ramirez, Indians*
  • Tim Salmon, Angels

Catchers

  • Ivan Rodriguez, Rangers
  • Mike Stanley, Yankees*
  • Terry Steinbach, Athletics

Pitchers

  • Rick Aguilera, Red Sox
  • David Cone, Yankees
  • Orel Hershiser, Indians
  • Randy Johnson, Mariners
  • Jose Mesa, Indians*
  • Jeff Montgomery, Royals
  • Mike Mussina, Orioles
  • Kenny Rogers, Rangers*
  • Lee Smith, Angels
  • Tim Wakefield, Red Sox*

Manager:

  • Lou Pinella, Mariners

The Starters:

  • 1B: Thomas
  • 2B: Baerga
  • 3B: Boggs
  • SS: Ripken
  • OF: Belle
  • OF: Lofton
  • OF: Puckett
  • C: Rodriguez
  • P: Johnson

*First-Time All-Star


National League

First Basemen

  • Mark Grace, Cubs
  • Eric Karros, Dodgers*
  • Fred McGriff, Braves

Second Basemen

  • Craig Biggio, Astros
  • Bret Boone, Reds*
  • Mickey Morandini, Phillies*

Third Basemen

  • Vinny Castilla, Rockies*
  • Chipper Jones, Braves*
  • Terry Pendleton, Marlins

Shortstops

  • Jay Bell, Pirates
  • Shawon Dunston, Cubs
  • Barry Larkin, Reds

Outfielders

  • Dante Bichette, Rockies
  • Barry Bonds, Giants
  • Jeff Conine, Marlins
  • Ron Gant, Reds
  • Tony Gwynn, Padres
  • Raul Mondesi, Dodgers*
  • Reggie Sanders, Reds
  • Sammy Sosa, Cubs
  • Larry Walker, Rockies

Catchers

  • Darrin Fletcher, Expos
  • Todd Hundley, Mets*
  • Mike Piazza, Dodgers

Pitchers

  • Tom Glavine, Braves
  • Tom Henke, Cardinals
  • Greg Maddux, Braves
  • Ramon Martinez, Dodgers
  • Randy Myers, Cubs
  • Jaime Navarro, Cubs*
  • Hideo Nomo, Dodgers*
  • Pete Schourek, Reds*
  • Heathcliff Slocumb, Phillies*
  • Todd Worrell, Dodgers*

Manager:

  • Don Baylor, Rockies

The Starters:

  • 1B: McGriff
  • 2B: Biggio
  • 3B: Castilla
  • SS: Larkin
  • OF: Bichette
  • OF: Bonds
  • OF: Gwynn
  • C: Piazza
  • P: Maddux


Twenty-two players are first-time all-stars (10 for the American League, 12 for the Nationals). One-person teams on my 1995 rosters include the Athletics (Steinbach), Blue Jays (Alomar), Brewers (Seitzer), Royals (Montgomery), Tigers (Curtis), White Sox (Thomas), Astros (Biggio), Cardinals (Henke), Expos (Fletcher), Giants (Bonds), Mets (Hundley), Padres (Gwynn), and Pirates (Bell). The Indians and Dodgers send six representatives to the AL and NL rosters, leading their respective leagues. The Cubs (Chicago bias rules!!!) and Reds each send five players to the NL squad.

As always, seven regular games (10,000 simulations each, six with the same starting pitchers, one where lineups and starting pitchers change), and one All-Star Game will be simulated during the course of the week. I hope to have the results of all the games by the end of the week.

Now it's time for me to create the .DAT files before getting the games set. Results to come on Monday.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

2010 Topps Pro Debut Series 1 Sell Sheets are Live!!!

The sell sheets for Topps first foray into licensed minor league baseball cards are live!!! Take a look and see what they have in store for the first series of 2010 Topps Pro Debut:





Perusing the checklist, (which of course is subject to change), I see that many of the players who will appear on this set are in the the low minors (Class A, Rookie Leagues). Not too many players in AA or AAA leagues, which I think defeats the purpose of getting the MiLB license. But then again, who's to say that Topps won't come up with a product for the teams in both of the high levels later in the year. Many GCL and Arizona teams represented, as well as a handful of players from the five A leagues (Carolina, California, Florida, Midwest, SAL). All 30 MLB teams have players among the first 200 cards. The team with the most? The Yankees of course.

Now I know what many of you are thinking. "Why the sudden interest in minor league cards?" Well, because the set utilizes the 2010 Topps design, I thought it would make a nice complementary set to add to the 2010 collection. And while I'm not planning on looking for relics and autos, the base inserts (which does by the way have AA and AAA players) are worth getting. And thanks to the CMG agreement, we will also get ten HOF players in their minor league unis (Babe Ruth, Rickey Henderson, and eight others).

It looks to be a fun set. Can't wait to see what full master sets will run on the Bay in March.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Monday, December 14, 2009

bdj610's 1994 End of Year All-Star Teams Simulated Games Results

I have finally finished simulating the All-Star Games using my 1994 End of Year All-Star Teams. And if you follow me on Twitter, or came onto this blog only to find nothing new in terms of posts, you may have noticed that I put the seven series results on Twitter (and the feed on the side bar would have shown the same exact thing).

As always, I simulated seven games (six series between starters, and one series where the lineups, starting rotations changed on a daily basis), by playing each one 10,000 times.

The first six games I simulated used each starting pitcher on both sides at least once, and all position players started a minimum of two games each. Here are the results:

  • Game 1: NL vs. AL, Greg Maddux vs. Jimmy Key. The NL wins 6,837 games out of 10,000 simulations (using a DH).
  • Game 2: NL vs. AL, Ken Hill vs. David Cone. The AL wins 6,582 games (using a DH).
  • Game 3: AL vs. NL, Mike Mussina vs. Bret Saberhagen. The NL wins 5,575 games.
  • Game 4: AL vs, NL, Randy Johnson vs. Tom Glavine. The AL wins 6,235 games. To show how dominant Johnson was against the NL in this series, not only did he pitch 14 no-hitters, but he had one game in which he struck out 20 batters and another game striking out 21.
  • Game 5: AL vs. NL, Pat Hentgen vs. Danny Jackson. The AL wins 5,139 games. Bobby Ayala struck out 21 batters in a game during this series as well. Must be something in the air in Seattle.
  • Game 6: NL vs. AL, Doug Drabek vs. Ricky Bones. The NL wins 5,339 games (using a DH).
  • Game 7: NL vs. AL, anything goes. The AL wins 5,406 games (using a DH) in a very close series.
So the AL wins the regular series 4 games to 3, and now has a four series winning streak. Can the break a two game losing streak in the one-game All-Star Game???

For the official All-Star Game, I decided to just simulate one game and one game only. The starting pitchers were Maddux and Key and I let them pitch two innings (unless they struggled badly). The rest of the pitchers would get one inning each (unless they struggled badly). The position players were replaced every three innings. No pinch hitters here, (as in previous tries, the pinch hitter is taken out of the game). The DH's (Kevin Mitchell of the NL and Paul Molitor of the AL) were never replaced.

The starting lineups, first for the National League (I'm using 1995 Topps cards because these are the cards I used to represent the players on my All-Star teams):


Now the American League starting lineup:


Here is the result:


The 1994 AL All-Stars mount a comeback in the late innings to beat the 1994 NL All-Stars by a final score of 8-7.

The box score is below (Just click on the picture to take a closer look.


The scoring plays were as follows:

Top 3: Randy Johnson pitching. Ozzie Smith flies out to Joe Carter (9). Craig Biggio singles. Tony Gwynn strikes out. Barry Bonds hits a home run, Biggio scoring. Kevin Mitchell hits a home run.

Bottom 4: Ken Hill pitching. Travis Fryman hits a home run.

Top 6: Mike Mussina pitching. Kevin Mitchell walks. Ken Caminiti strikes out. Joe Girardi flies out to Albert Belle (7). Sammy Sosa hits a home run, Mitchell scoring.

Bottom 6: Danny Jackson pitching. Carlos Baerga reaches first on an error by Barry Larkin (E6). Travis Fryman singles, Baerga advances to second. Albert Belle walks, Baerga advances to third, Fryman advances to second. Will Clark singles, Baerga scoring, Fryman advances to third, Belle advances to second. Kenny Lofton walks, Fryman scoring, Belle advances to third, Clark advances to second. Paul O'Neill strikes out. Paul Molitor singles, Belle scoring, Clark advances to third, Lofton advances to second. Randy Myers pitching. Felix Fermin reaches first on a fielders choice to Bip Roberts (FC), Clark scoring, Lofton advances to third, Molitor out at second (4-6).

Top 7: Bobby Ayala pitching. Barry Larkin walks. Bip Roberts is hit by a pitch, goes to first, Larkin advances to second. Marquis Grissom strikes out. Moises Alou reaches first on an error by Bobby Ayala, Larkin advances to third, Roberts advances to second. Kevin Mitchell reaches first on a throwing error by Omar Vizquel, Larkin scoring, Roberts scoring, Alou advances to third.

Bottom 8: John Wetteland pitching. Mo Vaughn strikes out. Tim Salmon singles. Ruben Sierra singles, Salmon advances to second. Paul Molitor grounds out to Wil Cordero (6-3), Salmon advances to third, Sierra advances to second. Omar Vizquel singles, Salmon scoring, Sierra advances to third. Doug Jones pitching. Mickey Tettleton singles, Sierra scoring, Vizquel advances to second.

Bottom 9: Rod Beck pitching. Scott Cooper singles. On passed ball by Darrin Fletcher, Cooper advances to second. Chili Davis singles, Cooper advances to third. Mo Vaughn strikes out. Tim Salmon strikes out. Ruben Sierra doubles, Scott Cooper scoring.

Your starters, Greg Maddux and Jimmy Key. Travis Fryman is the MVP.

So the American League snaps their two game losing streak to the National League. The National League brought the power (thanks to two-run homers by Bonds and Sosa), but the AL takes the win on a double. And although Sierra does get the game winning hit, if this game actually existed, the MVP award would have gone to Travis Fryman (2-2, 1 hr, 1 rbi). Lee Smith takes the win, Rod Beck gets the loss, and the only players who didn't get in the game were pitchers Doug Drabek from the NL and Ricky Bones & Jeff Montgomery from the AL.

If you want to see the .DAT files that I used (I still don't know how to download these onto the blog , so please just take a look at the screen caps below). If anyone can e-mail me instructions, please do so at bdj610@hotmail.com. Below is the NL .DAT file, then the AL .DAT file:




Now that the 1994 All-Star Games are officially over, at noon on Tuesday, I will introduce the 1995 End of Year All-Star teams. Simulations for games with those rosters to come hopefully by Sunday night.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Friday, December 11, 2009

My Nominations for Stale Gum's 2009 Gummie Awards!!!

Chris Harris has opened up the floor for nominations for the 2009 Gummie Awards. As President of the BBCWAA (Baseball Card Writers Association of America), he has hosted these awards for a few years now. Even though I was new to the Hobby blogosphere, I went ahead and sent my nominations to him for last year's awards, and thought it would be a good idea to do so again now.

Not only is he going to honor the best (and the worst) of 2009, he's also going to honor the best (and the worst) of the past decade (that's 2000-2009 for those counting). Below is the e-mail sent to Mr. Harris:

Chris:

Here is my list of nominees for your Annual Gummies Awards:

Categories for the 2009 Gummies:

Product of the Year
2009 Topps Baseball

Card of the Year
2009 Topps Mickey Mantle #7 (because many people, and some still do, believe that this card was short-printed because he was listed as a SS).

Rookie Card of the Year
2009 Topps Rick Porcello #658

Best Base Set
2009 Topps Baseball

Best Insert Set
2009 Topps Legends of the Game

Best Autographed/Game Used Set
2009 Topps Allen & Ginter autos and relics.

Best Retro Themed Product
2009 Topps Allen & Ginter (have not seen 2009 Topps 206 yet to judge, although this would be a good alternative)

Best Designed Product
2009 Topps Baseball

Best "High-End" Product
2009 Topps Unique (short of the large relic swatches, what they put out was amazing).

Best Set for Prospects
Bowman Chrome Prospects set

Best Unlicensed Product
n/a

Best Hobby Idea/Innovation
2009 Topps Short Print Variation cards

Worst Overall Product
2009 UD O-Pee-Chee

Worst Base Set
2009 UD O-Pee-Chee

Most Meaningless Product
2009 Upper Deck Icons/Spectrum/X/A Piece of History (any product without a point other than to take a spot on the 17 card product list)

Most Disappointing Product
See above.

Worst Insert Set
2009 UD OPC "1975 Reprints"

Worst Designed Product
2009 UD O-Pee-Chee

Worst Gimmick
Exclusive parallel blaster boxes for 2009 Topps (black and throwback). Bad execution and inconsistent distribution between series 1 and 2 turned what would have been an interesting chase into a PR disaster.

Best Cardblog (You can't vote for your own!)
Cardboard Junkie

Best New Cardblog
JD's Wild Cardz

Best Hobby News Source (Again, you can't vote for own.)
Beckett

Best Video Box Breaker/YouTuber
n/a

Hobby MVP
Albert Pujols

Hobby ROY
Tommy Hanson

Hobby Top Prospect
Buster Posey

Jefferson Burdick Award for Contributions to The Hobby (this goes to a person)
Marvin Miller (I don't know if he's already won this award or not)

Categories for the Gummie Awards of the Decade:

Product of the Decade
2006 Topps Allen & Ginter

Card of the Decade
2001 Bowman Chrome Auto Albert Pujols

Rookie Card of the Decade
2001 Topps Chrome Traded Ichiro Suzuki #T266

Best Base Set
2001 Topps (the closest they ever came to bringing back the 792 card set)

Best Insert Set
2001 Topps Through the Years (what got me hooked on insert sets in the first place)
or
2004 Topps American Treasures Presidential Signatures

Best Autographed/Game Used Set
2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites autograph set, including 21 subjects that were not included in the base set.

Best Retro Themed Product
2005-2006 Topps Turkey Red

Best Hobby Idea/Innovation
Retro sets. Honoring sets from the past from T206, T205, Cracker Jack, Allen & Ginter, Turkey Red, Goudey, Play Ball, and Goodwin was a great way of introducing, or re-introducing, these sets to the average collector.

Worst Overall Product
2002 Donruss Originals

Worst Base Set
2002 Topps Baseball

Most Meaningless Product
Any Fleer set from early in the decade without a point other than to take a spot on the product list

Most Disappointing Product
2002 Donruss Originals (Donruss' "Heritage" set). Because they didn't continue it into next year, so we're only left with retro cards of 1982, 84, 86, 88, a "what if?" of 1980, and wondering what a 1979 Donruss card would have looked like.

Worst Insert Set
2007 Topps Generation Now (did we really need to highlight every double Jose Reyes had in 2006???)

Worst Gimmick
2006 Topps Alex Gordon

That does it for me. Can't wait to see what the final list of nominees will look like.

I highly doubt that all my picks will make the final cut. But rest assured, I'll be voting when the time comes.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Monthly...Scratch That...Whenever Comment Mailbag: Before The End of the Year Edition!!!

New Year's Resolution #415: Actually stick to a routine on this humble little blog!!!

I haven't done this in a long time, and there are so many to go through, but I promise next year, I'll actually do these comment mailbag response things once a month (probably on the same day I remove blogs from the blogroll...just like the fire department recommends to change the batteries in your smoke detectors when daylight savings time comes). The last time I did one of these things was back in July, so I have a lot of comments to catch up to. Now, I may have responded to some comments already, so thanks to the Google Reader, I can catch and figure out what I want to respond to.

Anyway, on with the comments!!!

To Dan, it's not the "div" thing that's causing the problems with the large amount of space when I format tables on a blog post. I could set it up so that there is just one line of space between the table code and the last bit of text and there would still be that huge gap. I've given up on trying to figure it out, and now it's become a running joke (as you'll see later on when I keep on going with my all-star rosters).

To Ken, if the blogroll not updating is the cause of bloggers quitting, then there would be no more blogs left. It's a glitch that the people in charge of this site have to fix (not mine, but Blogger). I don't know if I should be copying the feed site of the blog, or the actual web address of the blog, but either way, new posts on any of the blogs will show up eventually.

To friend of the blog and frequent commenter TDLindgren, I wouldn't be surprised if all 30 teams will eventually have a giveaway day promotion with Topps cards in some way shape or form now that they have the exclusive license. Many already do so now. However, it seems that most teams will use the cards found in the team-retail packs (online, I've seen auctions for Yankees giveaway days that have packs carrying a few of the same cards that are found in the team sets). Others (like the Giants and the Athletics as I've found on eBay), have their own giveaway days with Topps cards, featuring full team sets, and they include players who didn't appear in the base set. I'm still looking for the 2008 and 2009 Topps Emerald San Francisco Giants sets by the way, so if anybody has a spare set, please let me know.

To both of the ladies from A Cardboard Problem, thank you.

An anonymous poster (I don't mind the anonymous posts so much, but I'd like to know who reads this stuff), after reading my post about this year's All-Star Rookie team, brought up the insert set from 2000 that featured active (at the time) players for an All-Time All-Star Rookie Team. Included on the team were: Mark McGwire, Chuck Knoblauch, Chipper Jones, Cal Ripken, Jose Canseco, Manny Ramirez, Ken Griffey, Jr., Mike Piazza, Billy Wagner, and Dwight Gooden.

He's hoping that with 2010 Topps Series 2, there will be another one of these insert sets, which would include (his picks): Albert Pujols, Dustin Pedroia, Chipper Jones (again), Derek Jeter, Manny Ramirez (again), Ichiro Suzuki, Ken Griffey, Jr (again), Joe Mauer, CC Sabathia, and Roy Oswalt.

While I won't disagree with many of the picks, I think that for 2010, we could find other players for a 2010 version of this set. And I also see a problem with the first baseman choice. Here's why. While Pujols is now the Cardinals' first baseman, he actually was named on to the 2001 team as a third baseman (Craig Wilson of the Pirates was the teams 1b). So you can either put Pujols at third (replacing Chipper), or use players like Ryan Braun or Ryan Zimmerman at third. At first, instead of Pujols, guys like Prince Fielder or even Mark Teixeira would be more appropriate. In the outfield, instead of Manny or Griffey, you have a wide talent pool to choose from, including guys like Magglio OrdoƱez, Carlos Beltran, Adam Dunn, Jason Bay, Matt Holliday, etc.

To the writer of Paul's Random Stuff, it's only a theory, and until Topps releases either the actual voting results or what their ballot looked like, we will never know if Wieters was even included. Regardless, congrats to Omir Santos.

To motherscratcher, unfortunately, that auction for all 25 short print cards from 2009 Topps U & H did not sell for $399.00 BIN. In fact, nobody bit on it at all. I have not seen if the seller has broken the set, has kept the set, or maybe even sold it off line. But it goes to show that in this economy, people are using a bit more common sense (because if not for the economy, I would have bit for $399.00, and then my wife would have me sleeping on the couch for a few months...)

Thanks to all who commented on my 500th post (that's how bad I've been at this mailbag thing!!!)

Unfortunately, if I go back any further, responding to any comments from September back would be moot now, especially since we're almost at the end of the year, so I'm going to stop for now.

So ends the monthly comment mailbag for now. Starting next year, I'll try and do better with this. Please keep those comments coming. If just to show that people are still reading this blog. There will be some changes coming next year with both this blog and the Sports Card Blogroll. All of which should make both of these blogs relevant going into the first year of Topps being the exclusive home of baseball cards, both major and minor league (I hope). Thank you very much.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

bdj610's End of Year MLB All-Star Teams: 1994 Edition

It's been fun looking back at the All-Star Teams I made up when I was younger. But now the years start flying by. I was only in sixth grade when I made my first pair of teams. By the time I named my 1994 End of the Year All-Star Teams, I was in college. I was learning how to enjoy this new found independence. I was going to class, then going to work, then going to class again. It was a very busy time in my life because I was on my own...a LOT! Somehow, even with all the chaos going on around me during my freshman year of college, I still made time for the Hobby. And because I was working, I didn't have to rely on mom and dad for cash. I was a regular at the local 7-Eleven, buying my Wall Street Journal (for business management class) and on Wednesdays, my Baseball Weekly magazine. Baseball took a backseat at this time of my life, which was just as well because the World Series was cancelled. So my 1994 All-Star teams once again are made up of many of the players who participated in the midsummer classic in Pittsburgh in July plus others that filled the rest of the positions.

This year's teams include 10 pitchers on each team (six starters, four closers), and the usual 3 players per position (1b, 2b, 3b, ss, c, 9 of), and because the 1995 ASG would be in Texas (at the year-old The Ballpark in Arlington), each team included a DH. So the rosters were expanded back to 35 players per team.

Let's cut to the chase. Without further ado, for the first time online, I am proud to introduce my 1994 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):

(No more mentioning about the blank space at the end...deal with it!)
















American League

First Basemen

  • Will Clark, Rangers
  • Frank Thomas, White Sox
  • Mo Vaughn, Red Sox*

Second Basemen

  • Roberto Alomar, Blue Jays
  • Carlos Baerga, Indians
  • Chuck Knoblauch, Twins

Third Basemen

  • Wade Boggs, Yankees
  • Scott Cooper, Red Sox
  • Travis Fryman, Tigers

Shortstops

  • Felix Fermin, Mariners
  • Cal Ripken, Orioles
  • Omar Vizquel, Indians

Outfielders

  • Albert Belle, Indians
  • Joe Carter, Blue Jays
  • Chili Davis, Angels*
  • Ken Griffey, Jr., Mariners
  • Kenny Lofton, Indians*
  • Paul O'Neill, Yankees
  • Kirby Puckett, Twins
  • Tim Salmon, Angels
  • Ruben Sierra, Athletics

Catchers

  • Chris Hoiles, Orioles
  • Ivan Rodriguez, Rangers
  • Mickey Tettleton, Tigers

Designated Hitter:

  • Paul Molitor, Blue Jays

Pitchers

  • Bobby Ayala, Mariners*
  • Ricky Bones, Brewers*
  • David Cone, Royals
  • Dennis Eckersley, Athletics
  • Pat Hentgen, Blue Jays
  • Randy Johnson, Mariners
  • Jimmy Key, Yankees
  • Jeff Montgomery, Royals
  • Mike Mussina, Orioles
  • Lee Smith, Orioles

Manager:

  • Buck Showalter, Yankees

The Starters:

  • 1B: Thomas
  • 2B: Alomar
  • 3B: Boggs
  • SS: Ripken
  • OF: Carter
  • OF: Griffey, Jr.
  • OF: Puckett
  • C: Rodriguez
  • DH: Molitor
  • P: Key

*First-Time All-Star


National League

First Basemen

  • Jeff Bagwell, Astros*
  • Gregg Jefferies, Cardinals
  • Fred McGriff, Braves

Second Basemen

  • Craig Biggio, Astros
  • Carlos Garcia, Pirates*
  • Bip Roberts, Padres

Third Basemen

  • Ken Caminiti, Astros*
  • Charlie Hayes, Rockies*
  • Matt Williams, Giants

Shortstops

  • Wil Cordero, Expos*
  • Barry Larkin, Reds
  • Ozzie Smith, Cardinals

Outfielders

  • Moises Alou, Expos*
  • Dante Bichette, Rockies*
  • Barry Bonds, Giants
  • Brett Butler, Dodgers
  • Jeff Conine, Marlins*
  • Marquis Grissom, Expos
  • Tony Gwynn, Padres
  • David Justice, Braves
  • Sammy Sosa, Cubs

Catchers

  • Darrin Fletcher, Expos*
  • Joe Girardi, Rockies*
  • Mike Piazza, Dodgers

Designated Hitter:

  • Kevin Mitchell, Reds

Pitchers

  • Rod Beck, Giants
  • Doug Drabek, Astros*
  • Tom Glavine, Braves
  • Ken Hill, Expos*
  • Danny Jackson, Phillies
  • Doug Jones, Phillies
  • Greg Maddux, Braves
  • Randy Myers, Cubs
  • Bret Saberhagen, Mets
  • John Wetteland, Expos

Manager:

  • Davey Johnson, Reds

The Starters:

  • 1B: Bagwell
  • 2B: Biggio
  • 3B: Williams
  • SS: Smith
  • OF: Bonds
  • OF: Gwynn
  • OF: Justice
  • C: Piazza
  • DH: Mitchell
  • P: Maddux







Seventeen players are first-time all-stars (5 for the American League, 12 for the Nationals). One-person teams on my 1994 rosters include the Brewers (Bones), White Sox (Thomas), Marlins (Conine), Mets (Saberhagen), and Pirates (Garcia). The Expos send six representatives to the NL roster, leading both leagues (So much for Chicago bias this year). The Blue Jays, Indians, Mariners, Orioles, Astros, and Braves each send four players to their respective squads.
As always, seven regular games (10,000 simulations each, six with the same starting pitchers, one where lineups and starting pitchers change), and one All-Star Game will be simulated during the course of the week. I hope to have the results of all the games by the end of the week.

Now it's time for me to create the .DAT files before getting the games set. Game results coming next week.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama

Monday, December 7, 2009

bdj610's 1993 End of Year All-Star Teams Simulated Games Results

I have finally finished simulating the All-Star Games using my 1993 End of Year All-Star Teams. Of the seven years worth of seasons that I have been doing this, if there ever were a pair of teams so evenly matched, the two teams that comprise my 1993 AL and NL teams would be it.

As previously stated, I simulated seven games (six series between starters, and one series where the lineups, starting rotations changed on a daily basis), by playing each one 10,000 times.

The first six games I simulated used each starting pitcher on both sides at least once, and all position players started a minimum of two games each. Here are the results:

  • Game 1: AL vs. NL, Jack McDowell vs. John Burkett. The NL wins 5,687 games out of 10,000 simulations.
  • Game 2: AL vs. NL, Randy Johnson vs. Tom Glavine. The AL wins 5,426 games.
  • Game 3: NL vs. AL, Bill Swift vs. Kevin Appier. The AL wins 5,305 games (using a DH).
  • Game 4: NL vs, AL, Mark Portugal vs. Jimmy Key. The AL wins 5,018 games (using a DH). In this series, the NL had a 100 game lead, and eventually lost it. By the 9,000th game, each team had won 4,500 and it was back and forth until all games were counted.
  • Game 5: NL vs. AL, Bob Tewksbury vs. Pat Hentgen. The NL wins 6,248 games (using a DH).
  • Game 6: AL vs. NL, Mark Langston vs. Andy Benes. The AL wins 5,317 games.
  • Game 7: AL vs. NL, anything goes. The NL wins 5,155 games.
Yes, the AL wins the seven game series 4-3. But the NL wins the ever important "anything goes" series. Will this hold up for the one game ASG?

For the official All-Star Game, I decided to just simulate one game and one game only. The starting pitchers were McDowell and Burkett and I let them pitch two innings (unless they struggled badly). The rest of the pitchers would get one inning each (unless they struggled badly). The position players were replaced every three innings. No pinch hitters here, (as in previous tries, the pinch hitter is taken out of the game), and there was only one double switch.

The starting lineups, first for the American League (I'm using 1994 Topps cards because these are the cards I used to imagine my All-Star teams):


Now the National League starting lineup:


Here is the result:


The 1993 NL All-Stars beat the 1993 AL All-Stars by a final score of 6-2.

The box score is below (Just click on the picture to take a closer look.


The scoring plays were like this:

Bottom 2: Jack McDowell pitching. Darren Daulton grounds out to Cal Ripken (6-3). Gary Sheffield flies out to Kirby Puckett. Barry Larkin doubles. John Burkett singles, Larkin advancing to third. Marquis Grissom hits a home run, Larkin scoring, Burkett scoring.

Top 3: Tom Glavine pitching. Ivan Rodriguez doubles. Jack McDowell doubles, Rodriguez scoring.

Bottom 3: Randy Johnson pitching. John Kruk hits a home run. David Justice triples. Darren Daulton strikes out. Gary Sheffield hits a home run, Justice scoring.

Top 7: Bryan Harvey pitching. Ruben Sierra triples. Travis Fryman grounds out to Jeff Blauser (6-3), Sierra scoring.

Starting pitcher John Burkett gets the MVP award not only because he pitched two scoreless innings but for his 1-1 performance at the plate.

If this game actually existed, the MVP would have been John Burkett (1-1, run scored, 2 inning pitched, no hits, no runs, one strikeout). He becomes the first pitcher to win the All-Star Game MVP award. He technically should have gotten the win too, but the fact that he didn't pitch five innings made the simulation award the win to Tom Glavine. McDowell takes the loss, and the only players who didn't get in the game were pitchers Mark Langston, Jeff Montgomery, and Duane Ward from the AL and Andy Benes & John Wetteland .

If you want to see the .DAT files that I used (I still don't know how to download these onto the blog , so please just take a look at the screen caps below). If anyone can e-mail me instructions, please do so at bdj610@hotmail.com. Below is the AL .DAT file, then the NL .DAT file:




Now that the 1993 All-Star Games are officially over, on Tuesday, I will introduce the 1994 End of Year All-Star teams. Simulations for games with those rosters to come by Sunday night for a Monday morning recap.

Sincerely,

JayBee Anama