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Showing posts from March, 2013

The cap makes the ballplayer

We can dance if we want to
We can leave your friends behind
Cause your friends don't dance
And if they don't dance
Well they're no friends of mine


I say, we can go where we want to
A place where they'll never find
And we can act like we come from out of this world
Leave the real one far behind


We can go where we want to
The night is young and so am I
And we can dress real neat
From our hands to our feet
And surprise 'em with a victory cry


I say, we can act if we want to
If we don't, nobody will
And you can act real rude
And totally removed
And I can act like an imbecile


I say, we can dance, we can dance
Everything is out of control
We can dance, we can dance
We're doing it from wall to wall
We can dance, we can dance
Everybody look at your hands
We can dance, we can dance
Everybody's taking the chance


Safety dance
We'll safety dance
Yes, the safety dance

-- "Safety Dance," Men Without Hats

(Someone with a complete or nearly complete 2013 …

Not gonna fight it no more

It's official. I'm a Mike Piazza collector.

I never thought of myself as a Piazza collector. I don't really player-collect, per se. And Mike always had so many enthusiastic card fans that there was no way I could consider myself one of them. Not that it's a competition, of course.

Even as my Piazza collection grew and grew and grew, I resisted saying that "I collect Piazza." The phrase sounds weird anyway, like I'm going to pull up to his home with a dump truck, lower the dumper thing, roll Mike into the back and haul him off to the collection. (I'd never do that, Mike. Please don't sweat it).

If I collected anything player-wise, it was Cey or Kershaw or Koufax or Hershiser or Nomo. Yup, definitely, Nomo, because that's the player that appeared on the most cards in my collection.

However, as I lamented before, the number of Nomos isn't that far off from the number of Piazzas I have. They're dangerously, dangerously close, for someone …

The new Fritsch catalog is here! The new Fritsch catalog is here!

(Disclaimer: This is not an endorsement of Larry Fritsch Cards. This is merely another tired nostalgia piece from night owl).

The Larry Fritsch Cards catalog arrived in the mail the other day.

It shows up maybe a couple of times a year. But this time it filled me with such joy and nostalgia that I had to announce it on Twitter.

What I received back in return were a couple of nods from doddering folk like me, a couple of "huh?"s, and mostly silence. Twitter isn't the right place for something like this.

So, I'll do it here.

The Larry Fritsch Cards catalog, for the entire 1980s and into the early 1990s, WAS my internet for cards. This is how I obtained cards that were not the latest and greatest at the local store. Not that Fritsch Cards didn't have the latest and greatest, too. It's just that it had everything, at least to my way of thinking then.

Before online shopping, before Amazon and ebay, poor ancient folks like me would run to mail-order catalogs for ca…

Pre-emptive bloggage

I have a list of bloggers that deserve card packages from me sitting on my card desk. It is 15 names long. It is 15 names long because I can't fit 20 on there.

This list also doesn't include any "I trade with this person all the time so I guess it's time to send him some cards" packages. I can't wait for the day when I get to that point. Nope, all of the folks on the list have sent me something days, weeks, months ago and in my current "I can get 4 packages out a week" frame of mind, I am way behind.

Meanwhile, March is still tossing lit firecrackers at me as I juggle card packages while peddling a unicycle.

Evil, evil month.

I have no way of stopping March. And I have no way of stopping cards from coming to my house (we all have our problems, don't we?)

But I do have a way of preventing the "INCOMING" stack from spilling over and forming a giant pile of cardboard in the living room, the combustible materials intermingling too close t…

Green vs. blue throwdown

OK, I finally got my hand on some of those blue parallels in Opening Day that everyone and their dentist is endorsing as the parallels of the year.

I wanted to compare them to the emerald parallels in the base set that I love so much and see if they really are inferior like everyone is saying.

Yes, everyone.

Here, look:

I think they might have the emerald Flagship parallels beat.

And here:

i like these better than the emerald parallels from series one.

And here:

The blue parallels are just like the Emerald parallels, only they are blue.  Therefore, they are miles better than the green ones. 

And here:

The Blue looks Waaaaaaaaay better than the Greens.


And now look at the people who prefer the emerald parallels:


Right.

But press on, I must, because I just don't think the blue parallels are as terrific as everyone is saying. They're very nice. That's true. Still better than those gold sparkle things last year, without a doubt. But I love my emerald sparklies.


Why here is one no…

It was time to go a long time ago

During my budget spiel at work today, when I recount the top sports events of the day, I mentioned that Tim McCarver announced that he was retiring from broadcasting at the end of this season.

My boss, who isn't a baseball fan but likes sports, said immediately, "I can't stand that guy."

It took me off guard. It shouldn't have. But it did. This is how thoroughly McCarver has rubbed people the wrong way. That someone who wasn't even a baseball fan could recognize how annoying McCarver is on the air.

Then I read the story on the wire. McCarver said that it was time to go, that he wanted to leave while he could still do the job and was happy with his work.

OK. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Especially when you're critiquing your own work.

But I know that I speak for countless people when I say that, good gosh, Tim, it was time to go a long time ago. Even my boss could see it.

And this is coming from a person who actually liked McCarver once upon…

C.A.: 1977 Topps Oakland A's

(Today is "National Joe Day." Once again, I did not make this up, but someone did. And it's an excellent excuse for all you "Joe Collectors" out there to celebrate your love for cards. Which is what I try to do every week with Cardboard Appreciation. This is the 177th in a series):

The Oakland A's team cards of the 1970s have always fascinated me.

They're difficult to obtain, which never seemed right. A team card? With a checklist on the back? Why are people holding onto those?

But sure enough, when I was looking at a dwindling list of wants for 1976 Topps and 1974 Topps and 1978 Topps, the A's checklist was one of the last ones standing in all three cases.

Make that four cases.

This A's checklist from Steve of The Card Chop was one of the final five cards I needed in my bid to complete the 1977 Topps set. I'm telling ya, that pesky A's checklist is always so gosh-durn elusive.

I think the reason for that is because the A's teams of …