Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Bye-Bye Barney

It was a sad day at the Wrigley Wax World Headquarters yesterday when the news came that the Cubs designated Darwin Barney for assignment, ending his tenure as a Chicago Cub.

Anyone interested in buying 190 cards?

I started my Barney collection back in April, 2011.  After a late season call-up in 2010, a hot spring landed him not just a spot on the roster, but a spot in the starting line-up.  I was interested in starting a player collection, I liked the way he played, and he was a kinda under the radar guy.  My Barney collection was born.

He was NL Rookie of the Month in April, 2011---I looked like a genius.  He tailed off a bit towards the end of the year, but had a decent season---I still was looking pretty good.  Though his bat starting sinking, his glove in 2012 was red hot...golden actually, as he tied the ML record for errorless games and won the Gold Glove---I had attached myself to a star for years to come.

And 2013 his bat turned into a wet noodle.  His glove wasn't enough to keep him in the lineup and the Cubs started looking at other options.  This season, though his average was up, well, .230 isn't going to cut it.  He went on a paternity leave and the Cubs called up Arismendy Alcantara.  Alcantara got off to a great start, and Barney was out.  I don't know what they named the new baby, but they should consider renaming it Wally, as in Wally Pipp.

With all the highly touted infield prospects in the Cubs system, I knew that Darwin's time with the Cubs was numbered.  I just didn't think it would happen this quickly and that he would just be DFA'ed.

My Barney collection now stands at 190 cards.  I don't think that he'll be included in any of the other sets to be released this year, so I guess that means that I'm done.  I'm not really interested in getting cards of him with another team if he does get picked up by someone.

It's been fun chasing all his cards, but it's also gotten a bit tiring.  There were just too many parallels with some of the sets.  I enjoyed the player collector experience but I really think that I'll just stick to being a team collector.

So here is what the 190 card Darwin Barney collection looks like.  I've got them in order by year, then brand name.  You may notice several fronts are identical---that's because the backs may be different.


  1. I'm so sorry man. This is the toughest part of collecting. What to do after a favorite player leaves?

  2. Is it necessarily a done deal that he's gone? Being DFA'ed often means a player days with a team is over, but not necessarily. I don't know whether he's got enough service time to decline a minor league assignment, and if no other team claims him on waivers, he could end up in AAA Iowa... not on the 40-man, of course, but he could stay within the Cubs organization.

    The Orioles DFA'ed Steve Pearce early in the season, he got sent to AAA Norfolk, he came back and is tearing it up as a utility guy.

  3. As a Brewer fan with a nascent Jean Segura collection, I fear I may end on that same path.

  4. I feel your pain. When Nelson Cruz left the Rangers< i was heart broken. Then, after seeing him in a different uniform, I lost all interest in even having any of his cards. Hope you decide to keep the cards, because the collection is pretty amazing.

  5. I was sorry to see him released. My favorite Cubs player right now. Hope he gets picked up by somebody.

  6. The dangers of player-collecting, particularly CUBS player-collecting.

    I was thinking of you:

    1. Thanks....I need to start following you on Twitter!

  7. Bummer but a great collection, hopefully he can still fight his way back into the team

  8. I have enjoyed watching you collect the Barney rainbows. Maybe next year Topps will give you a Baez or Bryant stretch to work on!

  9. I could store the 2014 barney rainbow in my throwbacks binder for you. :)

    Hey - who knows. He may be back in blue.

  10. That's why I don't do player collections. That and all the parallels would frustrate the hell out of me.

  11. I need some of the 2014 Rainbow, the 2014 Heritage grey,and some of the 2012 rainbow!

  12. These are the two main things I look for in a favorite player a well: "I liked the way he played, and he was a kinda under the radar guy."

    I figure if he's an under the radar guy then I might have a chance at chasing down most of the player's cards. But then I checked out Neil Ramirez the other day and was floored at how many cards he has... and the parallels! OMG.

    I don't know that I will ever do another player collection all out. I'm happy just to get a Fujikawa, Castro, Rizzo, Beef and etcetera and just throw them in my binder.

    Regardless, your Barney collection is pretty impressive. I love the rainbows!

  13. Since nobody else offered...$1 and a SASE sound good? :)

    Seriously though, there was something you were stockpiling that I needed but I can't remember. Maybe a Venezuela back?

    I felt the same way when the Cubs traded Campana. I liked the way he played and was under the radar. But I kept collecting his D'backs stuff, and will do so with the Angels if anything is made.

    I did hear somebody jokingly say that whoever picks up Barney will win the World Series (see Fontenot with the Giants and Theriot with the Cardinals when they left the Cubs).

  14. I thought of you when Barney pitched for the Blue Jays a few weeks ago!