Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Billy Buck Was A Hairy Dude

I remember that Bill Buckner had a unibrow and a bushy mustache.

But check out this Donruss card from 1981.

Billy Buck has some major neck hair, too.

He also found an easy way to hide that pesky problem.

Neck hair.....what neck hair?

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Cards That Accurately Portray the Player: Dave Kingman

A big cut and probably a miss.  When he connected, the ball went far; very far.  But he missed a whole lot more often that he connected.  And he surly and not very likeable.

This card captures most of that.

Monday, September 18, 2017

What a Difference a Week Makes

A week ago Sunday the Brewers finished off a three game sweep of the Cubs.  Both Milwaukee and St. Louis moved to within two games of the first place Cubs.  I wasn't in full blown panic mode, but it would be safe to say that I was very concerned.

A week later the Cubs have rattled off six straight wins.  They swept the Cardinals over the weekend, moving the Redbirds into near Deadbird status, six games out.  The Brewers have also dropped back two games further, four out.

The Cubs chance of reaching the playoffs is now at 97.7%.  I'll relax when it gets to 100%, but I'm feeling much better now than I was last Sunday.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 15,071 Cubs cards from 122 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1971 Topps #280 Fergie Jenkins  Always finding something new... I never noticed that Fergie is wearing a second shirt under his uniform.  The long-sleeved blue shirt is obvious.  But the second, short-sleeved rubber shirt escaped me.

1980s: 1989 Score #604 Gary Varsho  Did he check his swing or did he go around?  Varsho led the Cubs with 36 pinch hit appearances but had just five hits. That comes to an average of .139. I wonder why Zim kept sending him up there?

1990s: 1992 Score #98 Dave Smith  The 1992 season was Smith's final in the majors and it was a short one.  He pitched in just 11 games, the last one being June 8.  Injuries ended the season for him, and his career/

2000s: 2007 USA Baseball #8 Darwin Barney  He was a member of Team USA in 2006, a team that won the World University Baseball Championship.  One of his teammates was a pitcher from TCU named...

...Jake Arrieta.

2010s: 2017 Topps #270 Jake Arrieta League Leader  I swear that I did not fix this... the RNG really did select this card!  It does give us a chance to see how the form of college Jake is different from what he uses today.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

And I Thought I Was Finished

A few days ago I thought I was finished.  I thought that I had made a card of the last man on the Cubs 2017 roster.  But they surprised me and a lot of other people when they brought up Jen-Ho Tseng and had him start the game on Thursday.

Tseng was in town to receive the team's minor league pitcher of the year award.  The winner usually gets a plaque.  Tseng got a start.

It didn't go very well as he gave up five runs in three innings.  The boys in blue were hitting, though, and won the game, keeping Tseng from getting the loss.

Here's the card...

...and the 47-man roster.

Friday, September 15, 2017

I Got Billy'd!

An unexpected package from Hackenbush arrived a couple days ago.

I got Billy'd!

I have one of these in my Billy Williams player collection and another with the Cubs team sets.  This is the Glossy All Star insert set from 1988.  Billy was the NL All Star team captain the year he was elected into the Hall of Fame.  Two of these cards is nice.

Now I've got another 56!

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Fleer Home and On the Road

The initial release of Fleer in 1981 wasn't a very good set and the cards were full of errors, but to this Cub fan it had one huge positive - Wrigley Field.  There are 25 Cubs in the set and 22 of them are Wrigley Field shots.

Look at all of the pinstripes, bricks and ivy!

A year later I anxiously awaited the arrival of the next Fleer set and more pictures from the friendly confines of beautiful Wrigley Field.

Talk about a huge disappointment.  The 1982 set was 0 for 27!  There wasn't a single shot from Wrigley.  Making matters worse, even the spring training shots showed the away uniforms.