While doing my annual delayed post-Christmas shopping yesterday (you will never find me in a store Dec. 26), I snagged a long-awaited ipod for meself. I don't know what took me so long.
I also grabbed a rack pack of random cards at the drug store. It was a toss-up between the jumbo pack of "100 Baseball Cards" that I wrote about previously, and a rack pack of 2010 Topps 206.
Hmmmm. Let's see. 12 cards for 5 bucks or 100 cards for 5 bucks.
Why are we buying current cards again?
I already knew what would be in the pack with the picture of Anonymous Baseball Man. Lots of junk wax. But there'd be a few random gems, too, which makes this pack much more interesting than a pack featuring Placido Polanco's round, bald skull.
I waited to open my 100 Baseball Cards in the hazy, buzzy first few hours of 2011. Skipping all of the junkiness, this is what was left:
I am hopelessly attracted to any Fleer product issued between 2000-04.
1985 Donruss is my second favorite base Donruss product ever. For some reason I have only 30-40 cards in the set.
A rough-draft sketch on a miscut card of George Sisler. It's ... um ... weird.
I think this conversation happened a lot at card companies -- especially Upper Deck -- during the early '90s:
Photographer: I'm back from the shoot at the (your team here) game.
Editor: Great! What do you have?
Photographer: I'm not sure. I've got to look. Pretty good stuff, I think.
Editor: Were there Hijinks?
Photographer: Um, I don't know ... maybe?
Editor: I need Hijinks!
Photographer: Well, there were a couple of players who wanted to do some wacky stuff.
Photographer: But I told them we couldn't put that on a card.
Editor: No Hijinks?
Photographer: But then a player grabbed some of my equipment and pretended to be me.
Photographer: So I humored him and took his picture.
Editor: Hijnks! Hijnks! Hijinks!
Photographer: But it's not a good photo.
Editor: Hijinks IS a good photo! We're using it! Hijnks! Hijinks! Hijinks! (parades around his desk using a stapler as a baton).
Photographer: (returns to photo room, fills out job application to shoot children's birthday parties)
A Pinnacle Certified card of H-Rod! That is cool. That makes me happier than almost anything I could find out of 206.
Also, according to the wrapper, one in four of these packs contains a hit. I believe it's a relic card only, but I've chucked the wrapper, so I'm not completely certain.
But I did get a hit.
Observe ... or, more appropriately, prepare to cover your face in horror:
Yes, you are not seeing things. That indeed is a jersey relic of Jeremy Giambi, traded to Phillies on 5/22/2002.
That is awesome in an embarrassing sort of way. That might be the worst hit I have pulled of all-time. The Angel Berroa bat card would challenge it, but at least he was a Dodger at the time.
This Leaf Certified card is actually the first card of Jeremy Giambi I have ever owned. His playing career, from 1998-2003, occurred right when I didn't care a drop for collecting. No offense, Jeremy. But you weren't missed.
My entire knowledge of Giambi consists of him being the younger brother of Jason, getting busted for both pot and steroids, and helping to enhance the legend of Derek Jeter by failing to slide and barely getting tagged out by Jorge Posada on the dreaded flip play.
Jeremy, it is barely 15 hours into 2011, and I think you might have the honor of being the worst hit pulled by me the entire year.