Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Missing Topps Cards Part 5: Vladimir Guerrero (1995 and 2012)

Vladimir Guerrero played in the Majors from 1996-2011. He spent 1996-2003 with the Montreal Expos, 2004-2009 with the Anaheim Angels, 2010 with the Texas Rangers, and 2011 with the Baltimore Orioles. He finished his career with 449 Home Runs, and I think has a good case for the Hall of Fame. He could hit any pitch, had great power, a cannon arm, and I believe that he could've played for someone in the 2012 season, perhaps more, and that the owners colluded to keep players such as Jermaine Dye and Guerrero out of MLB for some reason. They were productive hitters, and I think they could've hit 15-20 Home Runs with a team, but never got a solid opportunity. 

Vlad got his first Topps card on a 4-player prospect card with Andruw Jones in the 1996 Topps set. He appeared in every Topps set through the 2011 set. He is in the 2012 Topps set, but it is a highlight card, and not a true sunset card. I chose to give Vlad the sunset card, as well as a 1995 Topps prospect card with Orlando Palmeiro, Alex Ochoa, and Mike Darr, Jr. to finish his career Topps run.

Work has been zapping my energy as well as life, so I haven't made a ton of customs lately, but I still am working on the 1994 set, and am finished through card 1004 now. I'm hoping to get a chance to work on more customs for a good while on Thursday night. Maybe I'll sleep too. Thanks for checking out my latest customs.

Friday, April 14, 2017

1996 Topps #534 Eric Dinyar/Bucky Buckles/Todd Revenig//Ryan Dempster

Today's card features 4 players, 3 of which put up great stats in the minors, and 1 who put up great stats in the Majors, and who could be seen pitching just a few weeks ago for team Canada in the 2017 World Baseball Classic.

Eric Dinyar appeared in the last post featuring a single card, and as mentioned there, in 1996 set a Lakeland Tigers record with 27 Saves. I got a few autographs of Eric on baseballs while seeing him pitch in Lakeland in '96.
Bucky Buckles has one of the greatest names ever, and had some decent seasons in the Minors for the Rangers organization. He had 18 and 16 Saves during his first 2 years in pro ball, The next 2 years, he didn't close, but did make it as far as AAA before getting hurt. He started back in rookie ball, and made it to AA before being released. I was fortunate enough to get an autographed cards of his online a few months ago. If anyone is interested, he does have a Twitter page.
Revenig made it to the Majors in 1992 with Oakland, and had some mind blowing stats in the minors. In 1990, he had a 0.81 ERA in 44.2 Innings, and in 1991 he had a 0.96 ERA in 47 Innings. In 1992 his ERA skyrocketed to 1.70 in 63.2 Innings, but he did have 33 Saves. He was injured in 1993, but came back and tried to make it back to the Majors 2 seperate times, but never did. He signed a card for me through the mail, and added an extra one for me in 2007.
Dempster pitched in the Majors from 1998-2013 with the Marlins, Reds, Cubs, Rangers, and Red Sox. He won the 2013 World Series with the Red Sox, and had career single-season highs of 17 Wins and 33 Saves. I got an autograph of him through the mail sometime between 2004 and 2011.
Topps could've made this card for us collectors in 1996 and give us a look at 4 guys who put up some great seasons, and who if not for injury, could've had a good shot at reaching the Majors.

I haven't really did much with customs lately, just because of commitments and work. Work has been hell the last 3 days, but I just got to get through tomorrow, and get everything baked as quick as I can, and then I get a nice day off and it won't be crazy for at least a week or two before the Mothers Day sale starts. I'll probably work on a few more 1994 customs tonight and maybe try to work a little more on the 1999 checklist. I'm also going to a Daytona Tortugas game in a week and hope to try to get a few autographs. If Brody Koerner is able to make the trip in a month or so (he's currently on the 7-day disabled list, don't know what for), then I'll probably try to see him play in Daytona as well.
Thanks for checking out my latest card.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Topps Bipped me!

So a few days ago my wife was nice enough to buy me a 72-card hanger of Series 1 from Target. I was at work, and was looking forward to opening it when I got home. I got home and ripped it open, and the first 6 cards in the pack were Matt Joyce, Chris Sale, Jared Eickhoff, Drew Pomeranz, Tyler Clippard, and JaCoby Jones, Not too bad, I got a guy from my Favorite Player Collection (Sale), a former Ray (Joyce), and a current Tiger (Jones). I could've done a lot worse than that. I sorted through the next dozen or so cards, and then I saw something familiar. It was another Joyce!  The next card was Chris Sale.  The next card was Jared Eickhoff. The next one was Drew Pomeranz. You know where this is going....It didn't stop until I had got past JaCoby Jones (again). Topps had Bipped me 6 times in a row!  This kind of pissed me off. I really don't remember too much about the rest of the pack, other than the fact that I got another PC guy (Jacob deGrom), and a few more Tigers. I realize that this happens from time to time, but is it too much to ask for the collation to be better? Surely they can get some kind of machine to 'shuffle' the cards or something. You can get 2 different packs from Walmart or wherever out of the same hangable pack dispenser and you could get the same 8 cards because the collation is so horrible. I'd be willing to compromise and settling with that happening in loose packs and chalk it up to luck of the draw, but for it to happen in a 72-card hanger where the cards are put into a single plastic wrapper that is sealed, I think it is unacceptable.

I was a little pissed off when I decided to try to contact Topps and voice my displeasure. I took this picture in hopes of finding an e-mail address. I didn't find anything except for a contact box to contact their customer service, and sent them a long message telling them how I thought it was unacceptable to get collation like that in a hanger box, as well as my displeasure of Steve Pearce (another PC guy) getting 2 cards picturing him as an Oriole in 2016 Update. I sent the message on Friday, and still haven't received a response. Has anyone else had an issue like this or had to contact Topps about an issue?  Is there an e-mail address I can actually use and send a picture to, or do I have to call the 800 number?   If Donruss/Panini could put out a 600+ card set, have better collation, and somehow get MLB logos on them at a comparable price rang to Topps, you better believe I would convert. Something needs to be done, and it's things like this that lead me to believe that sometime in the next 10-20 years that there will be a entry-level basic set made by a group of custom card makers that will actually be produced and sell to customers who are sick of not getting what they want from Topps and whoever else is around by then. There would probably be legal things to deal with after it happens and they may need to be backed and funded by sponsors or corporations in order to produce cards at massive level, pay off MLB to use logos and to fend off the witch hunters/lawyers by Topps For now though, we will have to deal with a ton of doubles and be happy with it. If anyone wants any of the 6 cards that Topps Bipped me with, let me know.
Thanks for checking out my latest post.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

1994 Topps #851-900

While working on the 1994 Topps checklist, I realized that I was pretty close to having cards 851-900 done, and I figured that since I had 793-850 done, that I should finish all of the cards up to 900. Here are the next 50 cards in the 1994 Topps set with ones done by other people noted.

 Goose Gossage by Richard

 Tom Lasorda by GCRL
 John Oates by GCRL
 Dusty Baker by GCRL

 Bob Brenly by Richard

 Ned Yost by Richard
Bobby Cox by Richard

I have to be honest, the stadium cards are a little tricky to me. I know most of the names of the ballparks, but not all of them.  I also don't quite know the years that certain teams switched ballparks, so some of those might be off. Lastly, while I have seen games at  a few ballparks over the years (Tropicana Field, Turner Field, Fenway Park, Shea Stadium, Comiskey Park 2, Kauffman Stadium, and Miller Park), and have been outside a few others (Wrigley Field and Globe Life Park), I'm not totally sure if I am getting accurate photos of parks, since changes and upgrades have been made to many of them over the years. If you see any errors, whatever they are, please feel free to let me know. 

Every checklist from 1989 through 1996 are complete with draft picks, stadium cards, and team photo cards all added. I'll research the 2000 MLB draft and add some names to the 2001 Topps set, and that one will be complete as well. Next up will be finishing the 1999, 1998, 1997, and 2000 sets. While it is gratifying to finish a checklist for a set, I think it is even more fulfilling to see a good chunk of customs from a set that have been completed, so I will continue to press on and make customs in numerical order and post them as I get them done in groups of 50. A big shout out goes to some of the guys who have helped me by making customs (Richard and Michael from the Facebook Custom Card Group), Bloggers who have made customs that I have posted on here (GCRL, Condition Sensitive, White Sox Cards, and Jays Cards and Stuff, which is no longer online), people who have helped out with checklists (Paul), and anyone whom I may have forgotten. It is a difficult process to try to finish one set, let along multiples, and all the help I have gotten is appreciated. Thanks for checking out my latest post.