I rearranged my work schedule so I could watch the Dodgers' first game of the season tonight.
It was no easy task because, aside from all-consuming work, I had to keep a couple of appointments unrelated to work, and I had to prepare for an upcoming trip.
So, I didn't end up turning on the TV until the bottom of the fourth inning. I noted the score. Dodgers up 2-0. That's good. And then I heard Vin Scully discussing Dodgers reliever Josh Lindblom. I thought that odd. Why a discussion about a guy who will rarely see the first five innings of any game this year?
And then I noticed that Lindblom was actually ON THE MOUND ... IN THE FOURTH INNING ... INSTEAD OF THE OPENING DAY STARTER AND DEFENDING CY YOUNG AWARD WINNER CLAYTON KERSHAW!!!!!!
It's OK. Calm down. It's all right. There has to be a logical explanation for this. Collect yourself. Vin is sounding calm. So you should be calm, too. Get a grip. I'm sure a simple answer is coming soon.
And I waited for the answer. And I waited. Now I'm starting to freak out a little. It's the top of the fifth inning. ... the bottom of the fifth inning.
And then Vin says the words that I've been wanting for the last two innings ... "If you joined us a little late in the broadcast ..."
Kershaw had contracted the flu, as you all know already. The Dodgers tried to talk him out of starting. But he took the mound anyway. For three innings. And that's all he could muster.
Phew! The flu. That was all. I think the least the broadcast could have done is run a crawl along the bottom of the screen that read "Don't Panic! Clayton Kershaw's arm did not fall off! He just has the flu!" Is that too much to ask?
The rest of the game was more enjoyable. Matt Kemp hit a bomb. The Dodgers won 5-3 and they're 1-0 for the season.
And now I get to show my 199th different Kershaw card in relatively complete contentment.
It's only a matter of time before I hit Kershaw card No. 200. It'd be cool to pick out something special at an upcoming card show. But if one arrives before then, I won't complain.
The 199th card came from Tom. Another Cubs fan. You Cubs fans. I'm just about ready to send some cards, finally. Took me long enough to respond to the demand.
Tom sent a variety of other Dodgers, which I didn't expect at all. Let's take a peek:
Surprise! It's a Blue Jay. Who's really a Dodger. How many of you Dodgers team collectors didn't know that this was a card you needed to complete the 2000 Fleer Tradition set? I bet there are a couple.
By the way, this is one of the glossy versions of the Fleer Tradition set. Tom sent me a whole heap of glossy parallels. I never knew they existed until turning over the card. Read your card backs, people.
Aren't you embarrassed when you receive an insert card from a set that you think you know inside and out but you've never seen the card before?
This is from 2009 Upper Deck. I thought I had my finger on the pulse of 2009 cards. Turns out I knew squat. Per usual.
These fake 1952 Topps Jackies are going to have to do, because I just don't have the coin that this guy does. This is where a reprint really works wonders.
Ack! These cards give me horrible flashbacks! The blinding lights! The pain! The thousands and thousands of cards it takes to complete this set! I can't SEE!
But it might be my first Dodger card from this set. I know there are several others. I don't know if I want to go through the flashbacks again though.
A very nice card. Bittersweet, of course, now that Martin considers himself a Yankee. I spent all that time defending him when he was a Dodger and he goes and pulls something like that. Nope, I'm still not over it. Cool card, though.
I don't know what these are. They're super tiny. They're as flimsy as the dog-ate-my-homework excuse. They're blank on the back. And I'm pretty sure I could produce items like this in a couple hours time. I don't even know what to call them. Playing cards? Baseball cards? Xeroxed copies on white paper?
Anyway, if I had my Great Big Book of Everything Cards with me right now, I'd find out what they're called. But today I'll have to rely on you guys.
A 1971 Scratch Off card! Awesome. This is my first one of these things.
Now let's see if the previous owner obeyed instructions and did what it says to do on the front:
He/She did! Excellent!
Proud to display this ABS (Already-Been-Scratched) card in my collection.
As you can see, I'm in a lighthearted mood after the Dodgers' victory.
All I needed was Vin to call myself down.