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Monday, November 10, 2008

Card Of the Week 11/10/08

This Card of the Week is going to cause some people to scratch their heads, so a little set up is in order. People who have been following the blog for a while know I'm a big Red Dwarf fan. I've gome to grips with the fact that there will never be a movie, Craig Charles became a DJ, Chris Barrie is probably now a Tory MP from Cholmondeley (ok, he isn't but I'd like to think he is), Danny John-Jules is now a ninja, Robert Llewellyn is the host for a nerdy reality show and that awful Series 8 is what we're going to be left with as the parting images from that genius show. Yeah, sure, there's supposed to be a Red Dwarf Special in production*, but the movie was supposed to be in production 6 or 7 years ago so I'll believe it when I see it. Anyway to understand this week's card you need to know about the Red Dwarf episode The Inquisitor.

Basically the plot of the episode revolves around this crazy immortal God-Robot thing that has decided he is the ultimate judge of humanity and everyone who has not lived a worthwhile life must be eliminated. So this robot travels through time visiting every single person who ever lived and insults them determines if they are worthy of living. If not, the Inquisitor zaps them out of existence and replaces them with someone else who would have been born had the sperm for this unfortunate slob not been quicker. So, knowing this, let's pretend that the Inquisitor had showed up at the Topps corporate headquarters looking for 2008 Updates & Highlights. He's all ready for a zappin' and is prepared to write '08 U&H right out of the fabric of space and time and replace it with 2008 Bowman Heritage. Since he is a fair insane megalomanaical bloodthirsty robot, he gives the set one chance to justify its existence. I have been appointed to be the advocate for this doomed set (after pointing to the 21 followers of my blog in order to keep myself from getting zorched) and I lay down one card that makes the Inquisitor turn around and walk out the door on his way to an urgent appointment with Nancy Grace. This is that card:

Ok, now everyone is COMPLETELY confused. We've somehow transitioned from an episode of Red Dwarf to an entry in Kevin's Orioles Card O the Day blog. I'm guessing the reaction to this choice is somewhere between bewilderment and angry incredulity. I don't even like Updates & Highlights**, I've been griping about it for over a year now and I just sacrificed Bowman freaking Heritage to save this garbage? For a card of Oscar Whatsisface? Who is this guy anyway? How can this card personally justify the existence of Topps Updates and Highlights? Well, let's look at the back of this wonderful card and you'll see why a card of Oscar Salazar is worth it.

Just look at those stats. No, I mean really look at them. FULL. CAREER. MINOR. LEAGUE. STATS. There are more minor league teams on the back of this card than major league games played. Let's look over this career, shall we?

1994 - Signed by A's as an amateur free agent.
1998 - 26 games with the Arizona League Athletics (Rookie League).
1998 - 28 games with the Southern Oregon Timberjacks (Low A).
1999 - 130 games with the Modesto A's (High A).
2000 - 111 games with the Midland Rockhounds (AA).
2000 - 4 games with the Sacramento River Cats (AAA).
2001 - 130 games with the Midland Rockhounds (AA).
2001 - 5 games with the Sacramento River Cats (AAA).
1/24/02 Waived by A's, Signed by Tigers.
2002 - 53 games with the Erie Seawolves (AA).
2002 - 8 games with the Toledo Mud Hens (AAA).
2002 - Eight Glorious, Blissful Games With The Detroit Tigers
7/31/02 Waived by Tigers, Signed by Mets.
2002 - 28 games with the Binghamton Mets (AA).
2/17/03 Signed by the Angels.
2003 - 39 games with the Arkansas Travelers (AA).
2003 - 7 games with the Salt Lake Stingers (AAA).
5/24/03 Cut by Angels.
5/31/03 Signed by Royals
2003 - 78 games with the Wichita Wranglers (AA).
1/26/04 Signed by Indians
2004 - 44 games with the Akron Aeros (AA).
6/18/04 Cut by Indians
2005 - Played in Mexico
2006 - Played in Venezuela
2007ish - Ended up in Baltimore's system somehow
2007 - 136 games with the Bowie Baysox (AA).
2008 - 112 games with the Norfolk Tides (AAA).
2008 - Thirty-Four Heavenly, Orgasmic Games With The Baltimore Orioles Where He Actually Produced This Time

After all that, he gets called up when Steve Trachsel flops utterly and makes the most of his opportunity. The 30 year old infielder popped five home runs, hit .284 and earned himself at least a look in spring training for a job off the bench. The guy scrapped and clawed his way through a decade of bouncing around the bush leagues to earn a spot in the 2008 Updates & Highlights set. As far as I can tell, the guy only has three other cards from non-minor league sets. The guy's earned a card. No Topps U&H, no card. The set has justified its existence, and Oscar's card is the Card of the Week.

* Jesus Christ, there's a TV channel in Britain with my name. I thought the radio station was bad enough. Now do you understand why I go by Dayf?

** I better learn to like it quickly though, as it won the runoff election*** for the next blaster to rip.

*** If I go to Target and there's a blaster of Stadium Club Baseball there, Topps U&H can go to hell and burn brightly, democracy be damned.


Anonymous said...

I went today looking for a Stadium Club Blaster, but no luck. Left instead with a U & H blaster. Perhaps a battle is in order?

dayf said...

If that is your challenge, I accept. All bets are off if I find a Stadium Club box. (assuming they exist)

Anonymous said...

See that gauntlet on the ground over there? It's been thrown down... by me!

deal said...

good post on justifying U&H. Although I wish it was more comprehensive and since the Phils won I wish it wasn't out till this month so I could get a hold of some post-season Highlights.

Just announced Phils and Braves Sunday Night Baseball MLB Opener April 5th 2009!!

Peavy v Hamels??