Wednesday, July 29, 2009

This Vexes Me

I'm Terribly Vexed.

I was a lot happier when the Clayton Kershaw rumors where swirling a few days ago. I hope someone can explain to me why I shouldn't be pissed.

Gac Take 2: Pretty Good Start

Here is the first pack out of my second box of Allen & Ginter for the Gint-A-Cuffs battle. It's not too shabby, I'm sure you'll agree.

Joe Mauer Relic - 40 pts Not a bad way to start. This looks an awful lot like the one I pulled out of my first box.

Grady Sizemore Relic - 80 pts Alright! Now we're talking. This box is shaping up to be pretty good.

Burke T. Kenny Auto - 17pts - I have a feeling Beardy might see this one in his mailbox somtime maybe November. It's nice to get an auto in the first pack.

Brian Roberts Relic 2008 - 80pts I have no idea why this 2008 version was in my 2009 box, but I'll take it. If I pulled the 2009 it would be worth 40pts, but I figured I'd multiply it by 2 because it's so unlikely to pull the 2008. Commish can email if there's a problem.

Homer Simpson Red Auto - 420pts - What are the chances of pulling this auto again out of my second box? That means that I now have BOTH 04/10 Horse Guy red autos. I multiplied by 10 due to the sheer improbablility. Man, what a pack, huh?

Ervin Santana Auto 2008 - 30pts Again I multiplied by 2 because of the 2008 version. I may need a ruling on this because it should probably be worth more. I don't know if someone screwed up or if I got the best box ever.

Grady Sizemore/ Nick Swisher Co-Signers dual auto - Let's see, thats [(15x10) + 15] x 2 +330pts. Wow that's a whole lot of points for a card that I have no idea how it got into this product. It must be a buyback or something.

Ryan Howard Relic - 8pts. OK, let's make it 9 for the stripe. I would usually be pumped for a card like this but 9 points is kind of a letdown at this point.

Jeff Clement base - -1pts. Can you believe it? Just my luck. I mean, of course I'M the guy who has to pull the Clement in my very first pack. Will things ever go my way. Bummer, man. This is a bummer.

So to recap, I pulled 1 red auto, 2 regular autos (1 2008 version), 4 relics (1 2008 version), and 1 dual auto buyback, and 1 base card. Now that I think about it, it's kind of strange that I got 9 cards in this pack. Weird.

Pack 1 Total points: 897 points

That total should put me in pretty good shape in the Gint-A-Cuffs.

I'm on pace for 21,528 points. To tell you the truth, I'd be happy with half of that.

A little disappointed I pulled that Clement at the end.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Pascual Perez - Gold Tooth Mafia

On August 19,1982, Pascual Perez got lost on I-285 in Atlanta. He was looking for Atlanta's Fulton County Stadium. It was his start. He never made it.
Perhaps Pascual was just following the white line on the side of the road. By all accounts Pascual was a big fan of white lines. He missed the beginning of the season in 1984 after getting arrested in the Dominican Republic for cocaine possession. I've never been arrested in the Dominican Republic, or anywhere else for that matter. But, I do have an idea that to get arrested in the DR for drug probably need to have an absolute shitload of drugs. I admit that I may be wrong about that.

Pascual was a decent pitcher in the Bigs for a few years. He finished after the the 1991 season with a career record that was almost exactly .500. It was a drug suspension that ended his career.

I don't know how a major league pitcher gets lost on the way to the stadium for one of his starts. I don't know if it was drugs. I don't know if he over slept. I don't know if he was legitimately lost. What I want to believe, what I choose to believe, is that Pascual, in a moment of spontaneity that I have never experienced, decided to pull over into some dentist's office and get a gold tooth on #7. Right then, right there. I've been waiting for Pascual to walk into my office my whole career.

If that's what actually happened on August 19, 1982 in Atlanta, I, for one, think that it was worth the lost start.

Welcome to the club Pascual, newest member of the Gold Tooth Mafia.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Krackelin' Pronky Get On Board

My Mother In Law was in town last week. She was watching the kid while we were at work for a few days while the regular help (my Dad) sits poolside in sunny Florida. As a thank you my wife stopped at Malley's Chocolate to get her something called Billy Bobs. Don't ask me, I don't know.

Much to my wife's chagrin, the Cashew Billy Bobs had been discontinued a few months before. Even more to her extreme chagrin (my wife was terribly chagrined here. We're talking pulling Sean Henn as your auto level chagrin) the inventory had been sold at half off. My wife, in addition to not being able to buy her mother her favorite treat (this is apparently my Mother In Law's Turkish Delight), she was unable to get what could have been a lifetime supply at half off. She settled for some other cashew/chocolate concoction with a similarly ridiculous name that, frankly, looked exactly the same to me anyway.

Personally, I'm of the opinion that chocolate and nuts should be taken separately, as God intended it. The best way to ruin chocolate is to dump a bunch of nuts in it. And Lord have mercy on your eternal soul if you are one of those people who puts peanuts in brownies. There's nothing worse than going to some function and finding a plate of brownies that look pristine ate first glance. Then you take a bite and find it chock full of nuts. And then you can't put the damn thing down. You have to eat it all. OK, there are probably worse things, but it does suck.

This isn't to say that nuts are bad. And there are worse things than peanut M&Ms if there are no plain ones left for some reason. I just wish that the M&M people would take all of their peanuts and put them in a separate jar and make ALL plain M&Ms. If you want to put out peanut M&Ms at your party, just put a bowl of plain and a bowl of peanuts next to each other. Then all of the weirdo's who like chocolate covered nuts better than plain chocolate can eat them at the same time. Everybody's happy.

And this brings me to the point, or as close to any kind of point as I'm likely to get. Sitting on the counter of Malley's was a box of Pronk Bars. I'd heard about them before, and living in Cleveland you would think that I'd have run across one before now. But I haven't. So I got one.

For those unfamiliar, former Tribe slugger Travis Hafner (he's not a former Indian, he's a former slugger) got the nickname Pronk in the minors. The story is that it's a combination of the words "project" and "donkey". There is never any elaboration on this story. I guess it's just supposed to make sense. OK then.

Here is the cover of the bar.

It's got a nice little picture of Hafner in a plain uni that vaguely looks like it might be an Indian's uniform had any kind of insignia anywhere. But, I get why it doesn't. At the bottom it explains the contents as "milk chocolate with crisped rice". So they went way out there in order to give the demanding public something truly unique.

The back has the nutritional info. It's pretty much exactly what you would expect from a candy bar. You should not eat them exclusively, in other words, lest you turn into Bartolo Colon.

And there it is. It tastes exactly like one of those Krackel bars that you can never find in a store but somehow 18 manage to make their way into your Halloween bag. And that's OK. I like those bars. It's no better or worse than your average crunch bar. I'm glad I had one.

Sorry it took so long for me to get there. I just feel very strongly about my chocolate. My nuts too.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Adam LaRoche A Sock (Sox?) - A Red One

Adam LaRoche has been traded (according to ESPN, and I don't know why they'd lie about such a thing) to the Red Sox. No word yet on who they got in return.

This may or may not make the Pirates better, but it will certainly make things easier to distinguish around Pittsburgh.

So there you go. Breaking news and what-not.

(How do you like my card with the mustard stain?)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Gint-A-Cuffs 21-24: The Moment Of Truth

Alright. It's the moment you've all been waiting for. Will I, or will I not beat the pants off the Bearded Wonder in this here Gint-A-Cuffs? You'll have to read this post to find out.

Or, I suppose you could just scroll down to see. That would be easy enough. It's probably what I do.

Pack 21:

#275 Vladimir Guerrero
#274 Josh Hamilton - Favorite Player List +2 - Hey, did you know that Josh used to do drugs but turned his life around? He's got a bunch of tattoos and he regrets every single one of them. Yup. Every one. Just ask Joe Buck. (This was in no way supposed to make fun of Josh or make light of his addiction. This was to make fun of Joe Buck and his annoying pontificating.)

#240 Hank Blalock
#124 Donald Veal
#AGR-HB Hank Blalock Relic +8 - Oh well, this sure as heck isn't going to get it done.

#149 Chipper Jones Mini - Favorite Player List +3

#NP4 Geovany Soto National Pride - Favorite Player List +4

Pack Total: +17
Box Total: 266pts
PBB: 81

Pack 22:

#129 Brian Giles
#183 Pedro Feliz
#11 Jacoby Ellsbury
#237 Walton Glenn Eller
# 316 Rick Porcello SP +5

#AGHS23 Brad Lidge - Sketch +3

#132 Anna Tunnicliffe Mini A&G Back +2

#NP5 Ryan Dempster National Pride

Pack Total: +10
Box Total: 276pts
PBB: 71

Pack 23:

#207 Jack Cust
#185 Dustin Pedroia - Favorite Player List +2

#290 Cat Osterman - No points here, but I figured it would be OK to scan and post this anyway. Here is the card of a 6'3" gold medal winner named Cat. That has to go up on this blog. Or, to put it another way: "Oh Ms. Osterman, you're a little monkey woman. Yeah, you're lean, mean, and I bet you're not too far in between are ya. How'd you like to wrap your spikes around my..."

#164 Erik Bedard
#139 Daisuke Matsuzaka
#350 Jimmy Rollins SP +5 - Opps. I did it again. Stop judging me.

#280 Shin Soo Choo Mini Black Border - Favorite Team 3+1= +4

#NP70 Carlos Pena National Pride
## Monopoly Guy Crack The Code

Pack Total: +11
Box Total: 287pts
PBB: 60

Pack 24:

#227 Nelson Cruz
#108 Alamo
#203 Scott Kazmir
#39 Hanley Ramirez - Favorite Player List +2

#291 Josh Beckett
#91 Alex gordon - Crack The Code +2

#63 Andrew Miller Mini A&G Back +2

#NP69 Ryan Rowland-Smith National Pride

Pack Total: +6
Box Total: 293pts
PBB: 54

Conclusions: Too bad. Not quite enough in the tank to pull this one out. Before Beardy pulled that incredible 347 this would have been a pretty tight race.

Then again, for all I know there are better scores out there. I'm going to start to record everyone's breaks for the prospectus.

This set really is fantastic. I'd considered doing the 2008 or 2007 A&G set because I thought the old wax might be better and more affordable, but I'm glad I got this. I may even pick up a few more of these, and that doesn't mean I can't open some of those others as well. Then again, Chrome should be out shortly (If it's not already. I'm terrible at keeping up with this stuff).

And, I have another box ready to go, unripped. I'll be perfectly honest with you. This unopened box. It's speaking to me. It's barely a whisper but I can here it.

It's saying.........388

Gint-A-Cuffs 17-20: Turning It Up...Or Not

Getting down to the nitty gritty now. Only 2 posts left. Can I pull it off?

Does the Pope shit in the woods?

Pack 17:

#121 Ryan Church
#113 Rafael Furcal
#195 Kevin Kouzmanoff
#32 Jeremy Bonderman
#119 Scott Lewis - Favorite Team +1 - That's former Buckeye Scott Lewis

#35 Geovany Soto - Favorite Player List +2 - What the heck is up with Soto's (hey, that's a whatchamacallit...a...uh...palindrome) face here? It's bizarre, strange, and a little disconcerting. He looks like he's flaunting knowledge of a secret that he consideres innocent enough, but is actually horrible and evil to any non-sociopath. Something like he knows the place where the girl is buried and when she'll run out of oxygen. Creepy.

#126 Trevor Crowe Mini - Favorite Team +1

#NP67 Adrian Gonzalez Natioanl Pride - Favorite Player List +4

Pack Total: +8
Box Total: 217pts

Pack 18:

#187 Brett Myers
#287 James Shields
#30 Ryan Howard
#80 Joe Martinez
#336 Ryan Ludwick SP +5

#AGHS21 David Price - Sketch +3 The hot rookie should have been worth something.

#178 Adam Laroche - Favorite Player List +3

#NP68 Ichiro

Pack Total: +11
Box Total: 228pts
PBB: 119

Pack 19:

#254 John Maine
#1 Jay Bruce - Favorite Player List +2 - If your name was "Jay Bruce" is there any way your nickname wouldn't be "Jaybert The Bruce"? I should be in charge of nicknames. If I was in charge he sure wouldn't end up as "J-Bru", I can tell you that much.

#18 Clyde Parris - Negro Leaguer +2

#232 Everth Cabrera
#269 Brian McCann - Favorite Player List +2 - Opps. Forgot to rotate this one apparently. And anyone who thinks I'm not too lazy to fix it hasn't been reading this blog very long.

#314 Chad Billingsley SP +5

#88 Brad Penny Mini
#NP7 Chipper Jones National Pride - Favorite Player List +4

## Monopoly Guy Crack The Code

Pack Total: +15
Box Total: 243pts
PBB: 104

Pack 20:

#204 Casey Blake
#182 Jose Reyes
#181 Aaron Rowand
#280 Shin Soo Choo - Favorite Team +1 Potential favorite player to take the place of Future Yankee Grady Sizemore when he eventually leaves. I love this guy.

#14 Troy Tulowitzki
#256 Jose Lopez - Crack The Code +2

#190 BJ Upton Mini Black Border +3

#NP6 Johnny Cueto National Pride

Pack Total: +6
Box Total: +249
PBB: 98

Conclusions: OK, I'm a little less than 100 behind with one (or is it 2?) more relic(s?) to go. Not easy, but certainly not impossible either. Beardy must be going out of his mind with anticipation.

So, do you think I have the juice?