If you voted on the poll over to your right, the correct answer is 1) The nanosecond I could get to Wal-Mart. This was the answer least chosen by readers, although if you chose 2) When the Gypsy Queen runs out you were technically correct. The Wal-Mart near me has never had any Gypsy Queen at all. Anyone who chose option 4) was a fool. What kind of baseball card hipster would buy a case of the most mainstream card product ever in the history of anything? Seriously, true card hipsters would buy a case of 1990 Fleer and a case of PBR and drink and rip wax all night to whatever album he downloaded off of 4Chan /mu/ that day in an attempt to add to his variations collection. Nope, I snuck off to Wally World after a rough day in the salt mines and nabbed 6 packs and a 2 racks. Got meself two code cards out of the deal.
I haven't blogged much about the 2011 version of the mighty Transmogrifier. This is mainly for two reasons:
1) Topps and I are fighting. (They act like they don't know it but we are so totally fighting)
2) My codes have pulled bupkis this year.
Or, to be specific, up until this past week, I pulled bupkis. The only decent card I redeemed at all from Series one codes is a 1969 rookie card of the other Dave Campbell. No, the other other one. The sportscaster one. The rest was a bunch of junk commons and stuff like a Manny Ramirez card from 2001. So honestly, there hasn't been much to blog about so far.
This week I redeemed a few series 2 code cards. The first one redeemed was this:
After seeing every other blogger on the interwebs pull die cuts like I pull 1993 Topps I got pretty fed up with the whole thing. Every card I redeemed this year got screen capped for posterity too. 27 .pngs of garbage. I almost didn't bother redeeming the ones I got in Series 2 fearing more 1987 Topps. However, bored late night insomnia surfing got me to click on the Topps Diamond bookmark and try one more code. The result: Princess Fielder. Die Cut. Shiny Thing. I've loathed Cecil's kid ever since he got Bobby Cox and Johnny Venters suspended last year for sticking his fat ass out in front of the plate and whining about it. Of course, this year Venters could probably use four days off the way Fredi is abusing his arm, but I digress... What was I talking about? Oh yeah I hate Fielder and that's the die cut I finally pull. See, I told you Topps and I are fighting and Topps fights dirty.
Oh yeah I dug up a ring too. I don't really understand that game. I keep feeling that it should be more like minesweeper, where if you dig up the wrong patch of dirt you blow up and lose all your rings. Or worse, your rings turn into 1987 Topps Bip Roberts cards that you are legally required to pay to have shipped. Now that's a game! This thing they have now is just accumulating to accumulate. I know some of you are pushing 60 rings already, what exactly is the 45 ring prize? Is it really just a set of 2011 Topps? So let me get this straight... we rip packs like idiots to find code cards... fill up a monster box full of base cards... base cards we don't care about anymore because Topps rendered their base set irrelevant with inserts and gimmickry... and our ultimate reward for buying all these cards is... a factory set? Of the cards we just bought? Someone tell me what's really going on with this. It's keeping me up at night.
Ok, so I hate Prince Fielder and now I have a 'rare' virtual card of his. Which might be rare or really rare because there's also a numbered parallel of an online parallel of a retail insert. But there's no real indication of which one you have so you have to guess, I guess? I decided to see if I could flip the pile of bits and bytes I hated for one I liked. I clicked the trade button and searched for 2011 Braves. There's a bunch of Braves die-cuts in the set. Prado, Jurrjens, Freeman, Hanson, even a Billy Wagner. I settled on trying to trade for Heyward, Chipper and Aaron. The trading app shows both versions of the die-cut cards and when you could see the two variations side by side you noticed that the diamond in one of them was slightly darker than the other. And there were a lot fewer of the dark ones out there. So I guess there was no guessing after all, you just have to see them side by side. I now had a worthless common garden variety shiny die-cut thing. I put in two trade offers for Heyward (one diamond, one... black diamond?) then two for Chipper, then one for Aaron. When I tried to put in the second offer for Aaron, I noticed a trade had gone through:
YESS! The hated Princess Transmogriphied into the Mighty Chippah! That was easy! Remember, Topps hates me though and I learned an important trading tip.
Always put in offers for the Black Diamonds first, then the regular Diamonds.
So I get my beloved Chipper almost instantly, then I went back to my trade page and saw that my offer of Fielder for Aaron was also accepted. The Black Diamond Aaron. A Rare Black Diamond numbered to 60 Hank Aaron in exchange for crummy normal lab-created diamond with a lower-case d Prince Fielder. A Prince Fielder I didn't have any more. The trade just stuck on the page, mocking me. Ha! If you hadn't screwed up the order of trade offers you'd have a numbered Aaron instead of a normal Chipper! See? Topps can't even let me have a simple moment of victory in a Chipper well won. they gotta complicate it with what could have been. Well forget you Topps, I love my newfound Chipper and we're still fighting and YOU BETTER NOT RUN OUT OF THE THINGS AND TRY TO SEND ME A 1954 TOPPS COMMON INSTEAD. If you send me a '54 Tom Poholsky, Duryea will burn with my fury. Here's the card you're going to send me:
The exact appearance of the card may differ from the image shown, but it better dang well have Chipper Jones on it. I'm a mushroom cloud laying mickeyfickey, mickeyfickeys. I'm probably going to have it shipped pretty soon too. I have already gotten about nine hundred and thirty-two ridiculous offers for my Chipper and every time I click "Decline" on a trade I'm terrified the mouse will slip and I'll accidentally click "Accept" twice and end up with a 2005 Livan Hernandez card. Oh to have that bee-you-tee-full card in my grimy little hands.
But still, pretty good, eh? Not bad for a code out of a rack pack and a little bit of clicking. So yesterday I picked up a few more packs at Target and last night I redeemed another code. This is what happened:
Dammit, Topps. Just.... dammit.