Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Semi Retirement

This announcement will come as a surprise to no one.

I'm officially announcing my semi, sorta retirement from blogging. Actually it might be more accurate to say from not blogging, as the case has been recently. I just don't have the time. I can't blog from work. When I get home I have other stuff I have to do and other stuff I want to do.

I'll still be around checking out all of your blogs and leaving comments on occasion. I might stop back in here occasionally to make a post about my usual nonsense. I just don't want it hanging over my head. Believe it or not, I've been feeling guilty about not posting here. I'm hoping this announcement will kind of "free me up" from worrying about it, so to speak.

Well, that does 'er.

See you fellas (and ladies) around.

I'm sure I'll be back, just don't know when.

Now, I'm off to the park with the kid. Far out, man.

PS - No, I'm not giving up my spot in Joe Collector's breaks. Sorry. Too much cool stuff.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Grady Goes For Win #2

It's been almost a year since his first (and only) Indians game but today Grady will take another crack at it against the White Sox. The Tribe will be going for a 4 game win streak to get back to .500. If I wasn't such a lazy man I would look up how long it's been since they last were at .500 so late in the season.

However, since I doubt anyone else will bother to look it up either I'm going to just say it was 2007 and present that as factual. Hey, that was easy! I should do that more often! Maybe I can get a show on Fox News! There's even about a 43.2% chance that I'm right.

Here he is cheering the Tribe on last year. Look at him go.

Hopefully I'll have some pictures later. It looks like another beautiful sunny day in Cleveland! Should be a balmy 48 deg. And you know it will be nice and warm up by the lake.

Good Times!

Friday, April 16, 2010

I Am Joe Collector: Exquisite Edition

A Thorzul Bonus?

OK here's what I've got. There was a stack of cards with these 2 in protective hard covers. the stack is about 20 cards or so and it features a mishmosh of players, sets, and teams.

I have no idea where I got these.

I can guess. And I think I'm right, but I might not be. Who knows? I think they are from Thorzul in one of his breaks. I don't know if it's the same break as I posted earlier or another one, but I'm pretty sure that's where their from. I think that because the Dan Haren card I think is something that Thorzul threw in there for me from his own personal collection for reasons that seemed to make some sense at the time (although it was unnecessary).

Travis Lee 1999 Upper Deck Scouts Choice

This isn't a great card but it looks a lot better in real life than it does in that scan. It's got an Orwellian feel to it that's a little disturbing, but hey.

Dan Haren 2008 Topps Gold 1196/2008

I like these Gold variations and I think this is the one that Thorzul gave me from his own collection. Probably because he knows how super cool I am and wants me to like him. I'm used to stuff like that.

I hope that is, in fact, an accurate portrayal as to what actually has transpired in reference to these cards. I thank you again Thorzul.

You do, in fact, rule.

Baseball Dad Christmas Card

I almost forgot. Baseball Dad also sent me a Christmas card. With a baseball card. Here's what he sent:

The card is a 2007 Turkey Red Sizemore. If you've been here long you know about my mania for the Turkey Red. So you combine my favorite set with my favorite player and you get a card with a HUGE thumbs up from me.

And, to answer the comment there...yes I did already have it. And NO, I don't have nearly enough of them yet.

Thanks again Baseball Dad, and Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

I Am Joe Collector: Big League Choo Edition

I found another stack of cards that can only be from the Joe Collector group breaks. The when and what of these breaks is a mystery that shall remain unsolved despite the relative ease with which I could figure it out, if I was so inclined.

But it's easier to not be so inclined so you'll just have to trust me. These are from Stusigpi. They are awesome. Here is a little sampling of what was in my stack.

Chris Gimenez 2010 Topps Heritage

I just wanted to bring to everyones attention that last year with the Indians in 111 at bats, Gimenez had slash stats of .144/.256/.243. So yeah...nice call on the "2009 Rookie Star" list.

* Oh Crap! I forgot that I had to finish this post.

Oh well.

Night Owl: Candiotti edition

Here is another set of Indians cards from the Night Owl. Actually, it isn't so much a set of cards as it is just one card. I gave Grady, as I often do, a card to pick out. I've taught him the delicate art of preserving one's cards, but it has yet to take hold. There's a part of me that hopes it never does.

When Night Owl's package arrived I took out the ones I really didn't want damaged and let him pick a card out from the rest. I hope nobody get's offended by this but I get a lot more pleasure out of watching my kid pick out a card than the 3 cents it's actually worth. I usually sit down at the coffee table to open a new arrival and Grady always comes over to watch. I can tell he wants some of the cards. I spread out a few in front of them and he picks one or two. He then immediately tears off in some random direction while babbling some incomprehensible giberish. He's just like his dad.

So here is Grady's selection from the cornucopia of goodness provided by the Night Owl. As you can see, he picked a worthy player in Tom Candiotti. Growing up it always seemed like Candiotti was there. He was always on the Indians and he always would be...until he wasn't anymore.

I liked Candiotti and Indian's fans remember him fondly. But I worry that I didn't appreciate him like he deserved to be appreciated until it was too late. In fact I know I didn't. Maybe if I had read Ball Four when I was younger I would have known what we had. I hope the Red Sox fans appreciate Wakefield because a good knuckleballer only comes around every so often and you are lucky to have one on your team.

I'm willing to bet that everyone out there reading this post knows how they grip their own knuckleball. EVERYONE throws a knuckleball. My grip is a lot like Tom's on this card. I've convinced myself that our grips being similar probably had a lot to do with Tom's success.

I had a hell of a knuckler myself, you know. I really did.

So, I couldn't have been happier to see Grady choose a card of Tom Candiotti out of the considerable pile he had to choose from. I like to believe that Grady was intrigued by the unusual grip.

Night Owl I thank you, and Grady thanks you.

BTW - Here's a little known fact about the Candy Man. His middle name is Caesar.


Condition Poor - Grady Sizemore Goudey Edition

This is the result of a trade with Slangon over at Condition Poor. Condition Poor is one of those blogs that, as you know, is better, more interesting, and updated more often than my own. But, as is often the case, Slangon got swept up in Turkoff Fever last year. Despite the fact that Beardy owned me in the Turkoff, I still was able to make out. How?

I'm glad you asked. I was able to turn one of my relics into a sweep Grady Sizemore relic. You see, for some strange reason Slangon is a Mets fan. (Yeah I know, I don't get it either. But there it is.) He was willing to send over the Sizemore in exchange for some dude named Jose Reyes.

I know.

But, who was I to argue? And not only that, he sent extra cards too.

Here they are. Or here are some of them. It was so long ago that I can't remember if this was everything or just a sample. I suppose it doesn't matter too much, does it.

Kenny Lofton 2008 Topps Opening Day

You want to know shy this card is red? It's because Kenny is so fast, that when he runs he sets shit on fire. This set was originally supposed to be green, but the cards turned red as soon as they made the Lofton card.

True Story.

Andre Thornton 1986 Team Leaders

I still don't now what to make of this card design.

I played baseball against Andre's kid when I was in high school. If I'm not mistaken he played for West Geagua. I remember the rumor going down the bench that the big guy was Andre Thornton's kid. This isn't too long after Andre was considered an Indian's slugger of mammoth proportions.

I don't remember the kid being all that good, though. I'm not saying he was bad, just that he wasn't any better than any of the rest of us. Which was some how a little disappointing, even though he was on the other team.

Cory Snyder 1988 Topps

Says here that Cory was signed in 1984 by scout Edward Lee Bane. I'm not sure how long Edward Lee Bane was a scout, but he hit a home run with this one. One of my all time favorites. If I ever find Ed I'm going to shake his hand.

The first place I'll check is jail because Edward Lee Bane sounds a hell of a lot like a "lone nut assassin" to me. And if he isn't in jail I need to find out where he is so that I can avoid walking by any tall buildings in the vicinity.

Grady Sizemore Game Used Relic

This is the reason for the trade. Pretty sweet card here. I have big plans for Sizemore this season. He had a good spring and the word is he look healthy for the first time in a long time. Unlike the media, I have not given up on this team. I think we're going to surprise some people this year.

Well, that wraps 'er all up. Thanks Slangon. Nice cards. We'll have to do it again as soon as I get everything organized and up to date and will allow myself to start trading again.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Baseball Dad 4: Large Mammal Edition

It is almost certainly true that this is the last post of cards that I have scanned in from Baseball Dad. But like I said last time, I have trouble keeping track so long after I got them. Heck, I probably scanned these cards in and get them ready for the hilarious commentary 4 months ago. Maybe even 6. Who can know such a thing?

Larry Doby 2001 Topps Archives

It's hard to understand why the name Larry has fallen out of favor. You hardly ever hear of kids being named Larry anymore. I'll bet that Lawrence is also on the decline. Parents don't want to take the chance. Personally, Full Metal Jacket ruined the name Lawrence for me.

But Larry; Larry is a great name. I've met a few dudes named Larry in my life and to the best of my recollection they are all awesome. My wife would never go for it, though. So I guess that my only chance is to name the next dog Larry.

And, on this I will not budge.

Russell Branyan 2000 Fleer Who To Watch

There's Russ, the once, once again, once again (I think), and current Cleveland Indian. There's no denying that he can hit Home Runs, or he used to be able to hit home runs. He's so good at hitting home runs that the Indians signed him for $2mil this offseason despite the fact that one of the top prospects in the organization is our first baseman, and we are paying Hafner (whether we want to or not) $14 mil this year to DH. Because that makes a lot of sense for a team trying to rebuild.

Yes, let's spend money we are trying to save on a guy who's only option is to take away at bats from our top prospect.

The bummer is that he hasn't been able to hit all spring because of his back and is on the DL. But, how could have seen that coming? It's not like he's an old man with a history of back problems and couldn't finish lat season because of his bad back or anything. I mean, this back trouble really came out of nowhere.

CC Sabathia 2004 Bowman Heritage

I would comment more on this card if CC weren't dead to me.

I would like to say that he sure looked healthy on opening night, didn't he? Slim.

Eddie Murray 1996 Upper Deck Milestones

What's not to like about Murray? Right down to his subhelmet hat the guy rules. I loved his time in Cleveland. The guy will forever be an Oriole, but I feel fortunate to have seen him here. And to see him get his 3,000th hit here.

I remember the buildup to that hit. It was a big deal.

Sweet mustache too.

Steve Carlton adn Carlton Fisk 1982 Fleer

Steve Carlton and Carlton Fisk? On the same card because of the name "Carlton"? What a stupid card. Who came up with that lame idea. It's like some dude was watching Jeopardy and somehow got his idea made into a baseball card.

And, what's with Fisk's huge lapels? So many things here don't make sense.

Bad idea poorly executed.

John Kruk 1993 O-Pee-Chee

I've been staring at this card trying to think of something to say about it. The only thing I keep coming back to is that I'll bet that if Beardy photoshoped Costanza's face onto it we wouldn't doubt the result for a second.

George Williams 1998 Stadium Club

Man, I do love these Stadium Club cards. Look how thrilled George is to be getting onto the game. I have no idea who he is, though.

Moose Hass 1988 Topps

How does someone end up with the name "Moose"? How does that end up an option? Does it get narrowed down to Larry, Bill, and Moose?

I guess if your name is Moose you better grow a mustache.

Jody Gerut 2004 Donruss Elite Extra Edition

I remember when this guy was going to be our next superstar. I don't know what happened to him. I think he got hurt for a while. Then you never heard from him. them in 2008 he turned up in San Diego and had a pretty good year. Things where looking up.

Last year in 122 games he had an OBP of .279.

That's bad. Really bad.

Looks like he's still kicking around with Milwaukee or something. Good luck to him, but I don't hold out much hope.

It's a nice looking card, though. If you squint your eyes at it long enough it begins to look like it might be Grady Sizemore.

Well, that's it Baseball Dad. Thanks a bunch.

Joe Collector Breaks

I've been in so many I Am Joe Collector breaks that I don't know what is what anymore. This post is a few chosen from a stack of cards that I could only have gotten from Stusigpi. I don't know if they are from the regular monthly breaks or any of the seemingly countless extra breaks that I have been in. I'[m too lazy to go back and try to figure it out and I don't suppose anyone gives much of a crap which specific ones they came from anyway.

The cards are many and awesome. If some of the cards in this post don't inspire you to get in on one of his breaks I don't know what to tell you. You probably are here by mistake and could care less about baseball cards. You should look somewhere else for your pornography. There is none here

Wade Boggs Premier 02/10

I always used to love Boggs. In the late 80's batting average was the end all/be all of all statistics. Now...well I have to say that I can't think about Wade Boggs without thinking of this post at Cardboard Gods.

I remember thinking as I watched on TV that I thought it was weird for Boggs to be wearing that hat. I guess I wasn't the only one.

Steve Garvey Somthin er Other 301/550

It's not exactly Billy Ripken but that sure looks a little bit like someone drew a penis on the end of Steve's bat.

Manny Goodwin Champs Mini


Kevin Kouzmanoff Ultimate Collection Auto 050/299

That's sweet. I like Kouz. He was an Indian for a while. Hit a HR in his first AB I believe. I was sad to see him go.

But at least we got our secondbaseman of the future in Josh Barfield for him. And even if he didn't turn out to be exactly that he's still valuable. In fact, with the weather warming up he should be over pretty soon to mow the lawn and get started on mulching the beds.

Josh Hamilton Premier 46/99

I like this guy this year. I have to. He's on my fantasy team.

And I MUST beat Beardy. I just have to.

Jim Thome SP Game Bat


Grady Sizemore Goodwin Mini Gypsy Back

Grady Sizemore A&G Perez Sketch

I love Sizemore and I love A&G and I love Dick it wrong of me to say that I think this sketch is pretty bad?

Dontrelle Willis Ultimate Collection Materials

At first I was a little disappointed to get this. But Dontrelle seems to have bounced back a little this spring. I always liked the guy so I will be pulling for him to get back to his former dominant self.

Not when he pitches against the Indians, of course. And all bets are off if the division is close. And don't count that out, dudes.

Stop laughing.

I'm serious, there's nothing to laugh about. We're good.

Oh just shut it.

Chad Billingsly 2009 Topps Chrome Black Printing Plate 1/1

Far out. Printing plate. 1/1.

Can't complain about that. And I love Chrome. Billingsly is good too. An Ohio boy if Im' not mistaken.

Nephew of Peter I hear.

Babe Ruth Premier Stitchings 05/15

Sweet. A Babe Ruth card. This is my only Babe Ruth card actually. I just don't know why Jeff had to write "10" in huge black letters right on the front of the card. That seemed unnecessary. Don't you think?

That's a pretty good sample. I think I have another huge stack of Break Cards somewhere so there will probably be a few more posts.

Thorzul Break: From a long long time ago.

That Thorzul guy had a break. It was one of those $5 jobs if I remember correctly. There's a good chance that I don't, but that's how I remember it.

If you haven't noticed, there is no shortage of Indians fans and bloggers out there hanging around these parts of the interwebs. And, since most of us are unemployed, lazy, or both, we spend a lot of time on the internet. Consequently, the Indians are often one of the first teams to go in group breaks.

For example, in the monthly group break that I Am Joe Collector does, this will be my first shot at the Indians. I have been doing Joe's baseball breaks since the very first ones. In fact I was in on a few of the very first ones that never made it off the ground. But, when he opened up team breaks I always seemed to be a little too late to get the Tribe. Hey, thems the breaks.

I fell in to a habit of taking the Twins, A's, and Dodgers when the Indians were gone. Not sure why, just that they historically have had a lot of players that I like.

So there you go. the explanation behind why I have those teams in so many group breaks when I'm am Indians fan.

Here's a sample of what I got in Thorzul's break:

The A's Hologram sticker.

I have a giant shoebox of these kicking around somewhere

I just thought this was cool. It's part of the protective wrapping that the cards came in. It did the job. My cards were pristine. But, I've never seen an omelet maker before. I thought an omelet maker was just know...a frying pan.

Yeah, you heat it up, melt some butter in there, make an omelet.

Just weird, man.

Tim Hudson Power Up

Dude's head is enormous. The back of the card lists "fun facts" that are so damn boring, if I tried to type them out for you I might fall asleep on my computer.

AJ Hinch 1999 Upper Deck

This card is really strange. I'm not sure if it's because AJ looks like he's 12, that look on his face, or what, but it kind of gives me the creeps. Maybe Freud could give you a reason. I sure can't.

I just know that I don't care for it.

Terry Steinbach 1993 Triple Play

Read the back of that card. I'll wait.

I call Shenanigans on that. Are we supposed to believe that that's really how they remember Terry at New Ulm High? C'mon, man.

"Hey, did you know that Terry Steinbach went here?"

"Terry Steinbach? You mean the guy that scored a bunch of hockey goals in 1981?"

"Yeah, that's him. What ever happened to that guy?"

"I don't know. I haven't heard anything else about him."

Jose Canseco 1992 Score

I remember how astoundingly good this guy used to be. But he makes it harder and harder to remember, doesn't he?

Well, that's a little sample of the Thorzul break. Thanks dude.

Mr, Bam, I mean.