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Friday, November 30, 2007

Bowman Heritage Background Fun - Part 2

Here's part two of the Bowman Heritage backgound gallery. These are all of the cards where Topps added a special background or slight tweak to the image for fun. Thanks again to Roger Nisly for assisting with scans of the cards I don't have.

23 Carlos Delgado - Ebbets Field background 36 Paul Lo Duca - Ebbets Field background 40 Adam Dunn - Cornfield in background 51 Tom Glavine - New Citi Field Construction in background 68 Andy Pettitte - Old Yankee Stadium background 70 Roger Clemens - Yankee Stadium Monument Park background 83 Greg Maddux – “4 CY” on glove 91 Ryan Garko – “Topps TV” on Microphone 120 Jorge Posada - Old Yankee Stadium background 140 Carlos Beltran - Polo Grounds background 155 Jimmy Rollins - Liberty Bell background 176 Johnny Damon - Old Yankee Stadium background 210 Joe Smith - Coney Island Ferris Wheel background 251 Joba Chamberlain – “Joba Rules” written on baseball

Ok, I've put off the 792 scanning long enough. More 80's cards for you this weekend...

2007 Target Mickey Mantle sets

Target is once again selling Topps factory sets with bonus Mickey Mantle relic cards this year. Beckett has a nice little write up on them with a picture of the '53 relic card. I saw a few at Target this morning and there is not only a 1953 and 1956 version of the relic cards, but a 1957 reprint relic card as well. The sets are retailing for $59.95 and contain one factory set, the Mantle relic (which is visible on the front so you can see what you're getting) and two 1951 style cards of Mantle and Ted Williams. The '51 reprints look really sweet, although you can't properly see the Ted Williams card from the box. The relics aren't game used jerseys or anything, they actually look like rejects from Goodwill from when someone cleaned out Mickey's closet. There was an assortment of pretty much all the colors listed in the article at the store I went to including a really loud lime green and some funky plaid. I was sorely tempted by last year's set with the '52 relic card, but I ultimately passed. I'm glad I did now, I'd want to get the complete set of them if I already had the '52 and I'm not shelling out 180 bucks for three more Topps sets that I already spent a long time building. That being said, if I stumble across a '53 version with that swingin' plaid I'll probably succumb to temptation.

Actually, nevermind the factory set. Don't outbid me you vultures! Bid on these instead!

The real Blues

Ya want powder blue jerseys? Well here's one for ya, or at least a little tiny shred of one. I'm not crazy about this card design from 2004 Donruss Throwback Threads, but the scrap from one of Hawk's Expos unis sure is throwback. This is where I would normally go on a five page rant about how each and every member of the Baseball Writers of America who refuse to vote Andre Dawson into the Hall of Fame are a bunch of drooling idiot troglodytes. But this isn't a post bashing Hall of Fame voters, it's a post celebrating throwback uniforms. So enjoy this three-quarter inch remnant of a formerly spectacular powder blue jersey and be thankful that unlike the backward members of the BWAA, you have sufficiently evolved enough to appreciate the beauty of such a fine uniform that was once worn by such a fine player.

Update: John Brattain is absolutely right about Dawson's teammate. It would be nice to see a pair of 'Spos going into the hall together.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

It's Here

It arrived today, I finally have this book in my hands. I plan to do a lot of reading tonight. Did you know that N48 and N508 are card sets of girl baseball players? I didn't until now. Actually there are a ridiculous amount of girls on cards according to this book. I'll return soon with some posts of newer cards, but I need to bone up on my Allen & Ginter right now...

Bowman Heritage Background Fun - Part 1

Since Upper Deck is swiping Topps' gimmicks right and left, it's only fair for Topps to do the same to them. UD mimics the Topps mirror set concept with their psychotically large 2008 Yankees insert set as well as the short printed 'error' card trick with the just released Ex-Rod variation. Topps can play that game too, and copies Goudey's motif of taking classic backgrounds from vintage Diamond Stars, Play Ball and Heads Up sets and using them on contemporary cards. 2007 Bowman Heritage features ten cards with backgrounds that are familiar to fans of the original 1952 set it is patterned after. Problem is, '52 Mantles aren't exactly a dime a dozen, and a lot of people who are buying cards nowadays have never seen one. Luckily reader Roger Nisly has stepped up to the plate and offered some scans so us collectors without a '52 set can compare the cards. Roger has apparently been helping out with some other galleries as well, so kudos to Roger!

Topps made some pretty solid choices for the pairing of their cards. Musial & Pujols, Mays & Bonds and Scooter & Jeter are obvious pairs. Big Papi shares a background with Red Sox favorite Johnny Pesky. Ryan Howard takes a mighty cut in front of the same ominous building on Phillies great Richie Ashburn's card. Players from teams that weren't around in 1952 get matched with Brooklyn Dodgers. A-Rod and Mantle? Well, we'll see how contract talks go before passing judgment on that match. Dice-K's card partner is a cool choice. Mickey McDermott had some crazy times in the majors and had a lot of interesting stories to tell. Roger notes in his e-mail that the Pujols and Reyes backgrounds are reversed. So is Barry's background, but it's really hard to catch without seeing the cards side by side. Enjoy the scans, I'll have a gallery of the other special background cards up later in the week.

#50 Albert Pujols and #196 Stan Musial #75 David Ortiz and #45 Johnny Pesky #90 David Wright and #80 Gil Hodges
#100 Ryan Howard and #53 Richie Ashburn #110 Jose Reyes and #8 Pee Wee Reese
#150 Derek Jeter and #52 Phil Rizzuto #181 Ichiro and #116 Duke Snider #190 Alex Rodriguez and #101 Mickey Mantle #200 Barry Bonds and #218 Willie Mays #250 Daisuke Matsuzaka #25 Maurice McDermott

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Allen Ginter Project: Hot Nineteenth Century Girlies Edition

I'm getting really behind in my Allen & Ginter posts, so I thought I may as well show off what came in the mail today. I'll do normal write ups on both of these cards, I've got serious writer's block on my N31 post and I'm frankly scared to write the one for N30, The World's Decorations. You'll see. I'm probably just subconsciously waiting for my American Tobacco Card book to finally arrive so I actually know what I'm talking about when I write about these cards for once. These girls are just too purdy to not share with the world though so here they are.

The first one is set N27 the Second Series of The World's Beauties. I bought both of these cards from eBay seller chandyg6p81 for the low, low price of five bucks each. The guy has fantastic feedback and these were shipped safely and fast. He also has a TON of old oddball sports items up right now if you're interested in that sort of thing. I'm having great luck right now getting these cards cheaply by finding auctions from sellers who don't necessarily specialize in old non-sports items. These two were mixed in among a bunch of other stuff and I ended up being the only bidder. One thing that helped with this card was that it had an unfortunate scan. See for yourself:

It looks like Pauline is some kind of zombie vampire there out to devour your soul with those white, lifeless eyes. Actually, Pauline just has a pair of very light baby blues and my scan doesn't really do them much justice either. I decided to to risk getting a card of the Beauty of the Damned when I was actually able to find who she was by Googling. I'll get to that in the official write up, you can search for yourselves in the meantime. I haven't seen a whole lot of these cards, but Pauline seems to have a bit more of the beauty than many of the others in the second series. There's a lot of stiff, Mary Poppins looking refugees from an Edith Wharton novel in that set. Card #14, Miss Thompson, is a hot little Victorian dish however, rawr! But I digress...

Here's the second card I got, this one's from the N7 Fans of the Period collection. No, not a fan as in she's a big fan of the Detroit Wolverines or Pittsburg Alleghenys, I mean that air circulating device she's holding in her right hand. Yes, they put out a set solely dedicated to girls holding fans. Hey, it was the 1880s, you gotta get your jollies where you can. I mean look at her, you can see some exposed wrist there. Hubba Hubba. Actually this woman doesn't look a heck of a lot different from some of the townie chicks that wandered downtown Athens when I went to UGA. They hung out in the air conditioned second hand clothes shop though and didn't really use fans. Enjoy my pretties, the next time I write about them I might actually know something about these sets.

Powder Blues

Awesome Brilliant Genius post from Home Run Derby via Baseball Musings on the return of Powder Blue uniforms to Major League Baseball. Click on that link now, you'll thank me for it. I'm going to be up all night scrounging through the common boxes looking for blue unis now...

In the meantime, here's a couple of Hall of Famers singing the blues to tide you over.

Sad Days

Bad news has come in a flood the past couple of days. First off, another player has been cuaght with his hand in the cookie jar, this time Rockies relief pitcher Dan Serafini. A former #1 pick for the Twins, Dan is a now a fringe player at best who had the bizarre record of one third of an inning pitched in three appearances for a 54.00 ERA last year. Wax Heaven is doing a really good job of calling out the major players in the steroid scandal, but Dan shows a different face on the issue. While the big names are getting the press, there are lots more cases like Dan, minor leaguers and former major league players who are looking for that slight edge to get them into the Show or a little boost in healing power to get them back on the field before their opportunity runs out. With the Mitchell Report still looming, this could be a really bleak offseason for a lot of players.

Indians prospect Juan Lara was involved in a terrible auto accident in the Dominican Republic when a motorcycle slammed into his SUV. Lara and his girlfriend were both injured in the accident and the people on the motorcycle were killed. Juan's condition is apparently improving, but he may still have brain damage and paralysis. This was a really weird random accident, and has got to hurt an Indians family that has had similar tragedies before. I'll be pulling for Juan to make a full recovery.

The saddest news comes from Miami when Redskins All-Pro Safety Sean Taylor was shot and killed by an intruder in his home. This story kind of blew my mind, I was pretty shocked when I first heard that he was shot, but I was completely unprepared to learn he had died from his injuries. Much like when I first heard about Derrick Thomas or Dale Earnhardt, it was just too strange for my mind to believe. Sean Taylor can't be dead... he's going to play in the league for years as one of the most fearsome defenders in the game. I'm still trying to comprehend it and reading completely inappropriate articles like the one Peter King posted yesterday that I refuse to acknowledge with a link aren't helping. I'm not a Redskins fan at all, but I loved Taylor's hard-hitting game. In the 2004 draft I really really wanted the Falcons to take Taylor, but there was no chance he would fall to their pick at number 8. Sean leaves behind a wife and 18 month old daughter. My heart goes out to his family, friends and teammates.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The 792: Gallery 145-162

Ok, time for a fresh batch of The 792. Ben should be updating his list soon, but here's a preview of the scans. Well, some of the scans, anyway. I need a new scanner that will go downstairs and scan the cards by itself. Does Epson make one of those? The rest of the cards will be up as soon as I scan them the old fashioned way tonight.

145. Dave Stewart, 1989
146. Don Sutton Super Veteran, 1983
147. Terry Puhl, 1980 *
148. Mickey Klutts, 1982
149. Doug Dascenzo, 1989 (RC)
150. Wade Boggs, 1987
151. Dave Stapleton, 1986
152. John Urrea, 1981
153. Jerry Koosman, 1983
154. Dave Henderson, 1984
155. Yogi Berra, 1985
156. A's Leaders, 1982
157. Tom Glavine, 1989
158. Fergie Jenkins, 1981
159. Ken Clay, 1980
160. Eddie Murray, 1980 *
161. Gregg Olson, 1989 (RC)
162. Home Run Leaders, 1982

* Thanks to reader Greg for providing the scans for these cards.

1-18 19-36 37-54 55-72 73-90 91-108 109-126 127-144 145-162
163-180 181-198 199-216 217-234 235-252 253-270 271-288 289-306
307-324 325-342 343-360 361-378 379-396 397-414 415-432 433-450
451-468 469-486 487-504 505-522 523-540 541-558 559-576 577-594
595-612 613-630 631-648 649-666 667-684 685-702 703-720 721-738
739-756 757-774 775-792