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Showing posts from September, 2019


The Dodgers just completed a 106-victory regular season, winning more games in a single season in franchise history, going all the way back to 1890. The Dodgers have won 100 games in a season only eight times in their history. That sits them tied with the Braves and just behind the Cardinals, who have nine. The A's are in second with 10 and the Yankees are far-and-obnoxiously-away-the-leader with 20 seasons of 100 wins or more. Some teams have never won 100 games in their history and that includes notables like the Brewers, Royals, Blue Jays and Nationals/Expos, as well as the usual suspects like the Padres and Marlins. But even with that background, the Dodgers' achievement means little to the online judges, the trolls, the jealous fans and the "yes-but" crowd. As soon as the Dodgers won their 106th game, with a shutout victory against their biggest rival, some keyboard moron could barely wait to bring up the team's losses in the last World Series. Tha

Meeting another collector

For the second time in the life of this blog, I enjoyed a nice meal over cards with a fellow collector. I've chatted over Buffalo wings with Angus of Dawg Day Cards several times after card shows as we relived the glory of our cardboard conquests. Yesterday was a little less heroic. Just a pleasant meal at a local Irish restaurant with another guy named Greg, who wrote a couple of card blogs years ago -- Lake Effect Baseball Cards and Nearly Mint -- but I've also known for a long time on Twitter. Greg was accompanied by his wife, Megan, who I was also familiar with from Twitter. It's always cool to see people in the flesh who you've communicated with so many times only online. You know their interests and hopes, aggravations and joys, yet you've never talked face-to-face. I finally got to do that with Greg. Back in the old days, he would write about his pursuit of the 2008 Topps framed silk cards and it was interesting to hear that he's still at

Team MVPs: 1981 Topps

It's been nearly a year-and-a-half since I wrote one of these posts in this series. I'm not tired of it or anything, I just plain forgot. When I last covered the Team MVPs, I promised that I'd finally get to the 1981 Topps set next and that I would do so "soon," as in by the summer of 2018. Well, I screwed up that promise. Also, technically, I should be doing a Team MVPs post on a more current set because I've completed that since I've passed that year in this exercise. I usually go back to handle those completed-set stragglers. But I won't do that to you. I've already broken one promise to '81 Topps. So here we are in 1981. This set is one of the last from my "childhood" collecting days. I was a teenager by this point, but I still consider it part of my collecting golden age, which includes all of the sets I collected as a kid. I still had some the same wild-eyed enthusiasm for cards at this point as I did in my younger da

The one-that-got-away team

I was watching some of ESPN's Sunday Night baseball game between the Indians and Phillies the other day. As often is the case when the Indians' Carlos Santana pops up on the screen and I view his statistics, I quietly lament the Dodgers trading him away back in 2008. Then, sometime during Alex Rodriguez's pointless ramblings and awkward bantering, I started to fantasize about Santana's contributions for the Dodgers if he had stayed with the team. Perhaps he would have solidified the catching position back in 2011-13 or maybe helped out at first base. This "what could have been" thought process often happens during my fan reflections and I have a feeling it's a common part of being a fan. We always want the best for our team and we just hate it when a talented player gets away. The Dodgers have their fair share of "big fish" stories, some of the biggest, and I thought it would be interesting to put together a "One That Got Away&qu

Weird sets

Just before I started to return to collecting modern cards in 2006, card companies seemed to be going wild with sets that were difficult to define or track or both. Really, this had been a pattern since the mid-1990s but I tend to pin the blame for that period of craziness on Pacific and Pinnacle and other very '90s sets that had burned themselves out by the first couple years of the new century. With just Topps and Donruss, Fleer and Upper Deck remaining, for the most part, I thought maybe things would have relaxed just a little. But they didn't. Sets grew stranger and more confusing. I was reminded of this by a package I received recently from Greg at The Collective Mind . During his multiple-state travels where he went a-gathering for trading cards and is now inundated with them, he found a few bits of weirdness for my collection. The card above doesn't seem all that weird per se. I like it's shininess. It seems straightforward: it says right there on th