Card #32 in my set has had a lot of changes made to it. Originally, I had planned to do a 1986 Topps Traded Greg Maddux. The 1986 is kind of blah and easy to do, so I decided to put off doing that card, and substitute it for a card that was towards the end of my set that I really looked forward to making.
Growing up in Lakeland, Florida, I remember in 1993 when the San Francisco Giants appeared to be heading to Tampa Bay, Florida. But Bill White decided that other potential owners from California could bid on the team even after the Florida group signed the contract, and the Giants ended up staying in San Francisco. I longed for a Major League team in Florida that was near me, and finally, in 1996, it was announced that Tampa Bay was awarded a franchise. I looked forward to it, and was excited to pull cards of the new Devil Rays players out of packs of (mostly) 1998 Topps. If I were a little older then and Check out my Cards were around, I would've spent a lot of money chasing those early Rays cards.
The idea popped into my head to give 1998 Topps cards for every player the Rays drafted in the 1997 Expansion Draft, as well as some of the Free Agents that didn't get '98 Topps cards. In one of the later series (12), I planned on starting to make those cards. I started off the series with a card of Larry Rothschild, the first manager of the Rays. After deciding to pull the 1986 Traded Maddux, I thought the '98 Topps Rothschild would be a great card to substitute. Then, last night, I toyed with the idea of doing a 1998 Topps Buck Showalter instead. He is more well-known, and I decided if his Baltimore Orioles beat my Detroit Tigers, that I would do the '98 Showalter. Well, Nelson Bleeping Cruz killed Detroit again, hitting another crushing Homer. I would like to think that when he had his 3-HR game in the 2011 ALCS that he didn't use steroids. I would like to think that he isn't on them now. It would be a shame that the 1 hitter who almost single-handedly crushed my favorite team's post-season hopes TWICE was juiced up when he did it. I do hope that Buck Showalter can get a ring finally. I think he really deserves his due. Plus, I would love to see my former high-school classmate Steve Pearce get one too. I think the Orioles can beat the Royals (although it would be sweet to see the Royals make it all the way), and they have a shot against some of the NL teams. I would hate to see the Giants or Cardinals win another title, don't really care for LA, but would love to see Washington win a title. We will all know who wins in a few weeks. For now, here is a 1998 Topps Buck Showalter card as promised. Congratulations on beating my team!