Thursday, August 16, 2018

Vertical Ben

My preference for baseball cards is that they have a vertical alignment.  I love thumbing through a stack of cards and you can't do that easily with horizontal cards.

Ben Zobrist's 2018 card is horizontal, but I really don't know why.  There is so much dead space on either side of him.  Unless you're an ivy fanatic, the card should be vertical.

Allow me to make the change...

...and now I can thumb through a stack of cards with Ben's card, too.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Cub #44

The roster grew over the weekend as the Cubs picked up veteran pitcher Jorge de la Rosa.  He pitched on Saturday and struck out four in 1 1/3 innings - not a bad debut.

We're now at 44 different players to make an appearance for the 2018 Cubs.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018



David Bote's walk-off Grand Slam on Sunday was one of those Wow moments.  He turned what would have been a demoralizing loss into a win for all ages.

The autographed card at the top is the Bote's only Topps general release.  He was never in Pro Debut, Heritage Minors, or any Bowman Prospect release.  He wasn't thought of very highly by the Cubs until this spring, and by Topps, never.  Dillon Maples and Jen-Ho Tseng got all the rookie cards while Bote got major league service time and major league success.

He has turned some heads since spring.  Five times he's been called up by the Cubs and it wouldn't surprise me if he doesn't ever go back.

I'm glad I bought my autograph card a while back.  The prices for him on Ebay right now have risen dramatically.

While this Bowman autograph is his only general release, he was featured on a Topps card last year, though not by name.

That's Bote in the Mermen uniform, but he's not mentioned anywhere on the card from 2017 Pro Debut Promo Night insert set.

I suspect he will be showing up in future Topps products.

Monday, August 13, 2018

A Late Arriving Ginter Relic

Today I've got a late-arriving Ginter mini-framed relic.  It is really late, like a year later.

This is from the 2017 Ginter set, which means I've been chasing it for a year.  It was short-printed, so few were available and the cost was high. 

A few weeks ago one finally popped up for auction on Ebay after a long drought. I set my sniper and waited.  In fact I had to wait extra as it was a ten day auction.  In the end I lost out as my bid came up short.  Rats!

But just a few days later another on showed up, this time as a Buy-it-now / Best Offer.  The price was higher than the closing price of the auction card.  I wondered if the auction winner was trying to flip the card.  For the heck of it I submitted a Best Offer several dollars lower than what the auction card went for.

A day later my offer was accepted!  I got the card for less than the auction price. 

Patience pays... or more accurately, patience saves.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Five Random Cubs Cards

I've got 15,958 Cubs cards from 134 different brands listed on a spreadsheet. A random number generator picked five cards, one each from the past several decades.

1900s - 1970s: 1977 Burger Chef Bill Buckner  Burger Chef was on the ball with this, including Bill Buckner in his first year with the Cubs.  I'd guess that he's wearing a Dodger hat, but since all the logos were removed, it didn't really matter.

1980s: 1988 Starting Lineup Jody Davis  Jody was included in the first set of Starting Lineup cards even though his skills were in decline.  He hit just .230 in 1988 and was traded to the Braves at the tail end of the season.

1990s: 1994 Collectors Choice #241 Kevin Roberson  Roberson is making some fans happy by signing autographs.  Cubs management wasn't as happy with his .218 batting average.

2000s: 2009 Topps Update #99 Kevin Gregg  What a flop he was as the Cubs closer in 2009.  He was 4-5 with an ERA of 4.72.  Ouch!

2010s: 2018 Heritage Clubhouse Collection Anthony Rizzo  I like the Clubhouse Collection relics almost as much as the Ginter mini-framed.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

2018 Topps Chrome Cubs

The 2018 version of Topps Chrome came out last week and it included nine Cubs among the 200 players on the checklist.



Again Topps felt compelled to include Jen-Ho Tseng in a set.  Is there some sort of rookie quota that must be met?  If not, then what a waste of a checklist spot.  Maybe it could have gone to someone a little better, maybe like a guy named Javier Baez?

Friday, August 10, 2018

A Complete Look at All of the Cubs Ginter Mini-framed Relics

As I said yesterday, the Ginter mini-framed relics are among my all-time favorite cards.  I like them enough to take a look at the complete run of them since 2006.

I've got a count of 51 cards.  The year with the most was 2011, with 12 different Cubs relics. Coming in a close second with ten was 2012.  Imagine, 22 relics from just two year.

The fewest is a three-way tie between 2006, 2014, and 2015, when just one Cub was in the set.  The Cubs finished in last place all of those years.

The most popular Cub is Starlin Castro, with five cards.  Four Cubs have four cards, Aramis Ramirez, Carlos Marmol, Koskue Fukudome, and Anthony Rizzo.

Enjoy a peek at all 51!