July 31, 2011

This Week in the Mail

Happy Day! The Braves picked up Michael Bourne from the Astros today which filled a gaping hole in the line-up.

I didn't get any Bourne cards but here are some of the cards I got in the mail this past week to fill some of the holes in my Braves PC.  Thanks go out to Pyropunk on SCF and Rossmaute on Beckett for the cards.

First here is a sample of the base cards I received:

Tommy Hanson sure does look really depressed on that Heritage card.  Smile Tommy, we got a leadoff hitter!

Now for some insert/parallel action:

2010 Bowman Platinum Refractors #90
Chipper Jones

2009 Bowman Gold #79
Jeff Francoeur

Mad Dog
2011 Topps 60 #90
Greg Maddux
2011 Topps Kimball Champions #KC61
Greg Maddux


2011 Topps Opening Day Spot the Error #2
Jason Heyward
2011 Topps Opening Day Blue #176
Jason Heyward

2011 Topps Diamond Duos #HH
Ryan Howard/Jason Heyward

2011 Topps Gold #81
Omar Infante
2011 Topps Heritage Chrome #C12

2011 Topps 60 Years of Topps #96
Dale Murphy

July 30, 2011

The WAR Set: Card #2


2007 Topps #2 Nick Swisher
3.8 Wins Above Replacement

I assure you that the WAR Set is not a direct copy of 2007 Topps, it just worked out that way and sorry for the dusty scanner.

2007 was not Nick Swisher's best statistical season of his career but it was good enough to earn card #2 honors in the WAR Set.  Swisher hit .266 with 22 homers and 78 rbi in 2007.  He also walked an impressive 100 times which ranked 11th best in the Majors.

Loves to hit against Jeremy Guthrie: 13 for 27 with 2 home runs (1.479 OPS)
Loathes to face Nate Robertson: 3 for 26 with 9 strikeouts (.412 OPS)

July 29, 2011

Reap the Heap #1: Back to Business

Now that I have finished breaking open my Gint-A-Cuffs III box, its time to get back to business as usual and add card #12 to the trade heap.  I have an overabundance of 2006 Ovation cards and here is an outlet for me to move some to other collectors.  I'll try not to over do it though. 

Card 12
2006 Upper Deck Ovation #23 Mark Prior

Card 11
2010 Topps Allen and Ginter This Day in History #TDH62 Kevin Youkilis

Card 10
1988 Pacific Legends #104 Al Kaline

Card 9
2008 Upper Deck X #71 Robinson Cano

Card 8
2007 Fleer Rookie Sensations #RN Ricky Nolasco

Card 7
2010 Bowman Platinum Prospects #PP34 Jason Esposito

Card 6
2007 Topps Distinguished Service #DS30 Richard Bong

Card 5
2007 Fleer #136 Carlos Beltran

Card 4
1992 Upper Deck #556 Bernie Williams 

Card 3
2011 Topps Heritage #244 Lars Anderson (RC)

Card 2:
2007 Artifacts #82 Jeff Baker (RC)

Card 1:
2006 Upper Deck Ovation #11 Roy Halladay

How "Reap the Heap" Works

Occasionally I will add a card to the heap.  In order to "Reap the Heap" all you have to do is leave a comment that you want the heap of cards and that you have one (or more) of the cards on my wantlists to send to me.  That's it, just one card (or more) from my wantlists for the entire heap of cards.  First come, first serve of course on claiming the cards.

July 28, 2011

The WAR Set

Last night I was staring at a 3000-count box of baseball cards I own and I was wondering if there was anything I could do with the multitudes of base cards I have that are not part of my personal collections.  I could try to sell or trade them all, but the demand for most base cards just isn't there unless they are rookie or short printed cards.  Then I remember reading this post over at Night Owl Cards and I thought, "Why not create my own little baseball set with all of these cards?"

So, I introduce to you the "WAR Set".

WAR stands for Wins Above Replacement and was a stat developed for sabermetrics to use a numerical value to summarize how well a player performed over the average "replacement player".  The formulas that these statisticians use boggle my mind but if you are interested you can read more about the WAR stat here

Here are the guidelines I've set for the WAR Set:

1.  I am aiming for this set to be as large as I can make it
2.  Only one card per card number
3.  Base cards only.  No parallels or inserts
4.  Cards will be chosen based on the WAR rating of the depicted player for the season in which the set was printed.
5.  All WAR stats will com from Baseball-Reference.com
6.  No card is set in stone.  Cards can be replaced after each season
7.  I will do a blog post each time I add a card to the set.
8.  No Braves cards unless I have a duplicate
9.  No cards with multiple players featured

The purpose is to create a set highlighting the best individual seasons by card number.

Without further ado, lets start out with card #1:

2007 Topps #1 John Lackey
6.3 Wins Above Replacement

With the struggles that John Lackey has faced this season with the Red Sox, it's a wonder how he ever put together a good enough season to get a card in the WAR set.  I'm sure the Red Sox were hoping for Lackey to put up 2007-like numbers when they signed him to a 5-year/$82.5 million contract in 2010.

Playing for the Anaheim Angels in 2007, John Lackey finished with 19-9 record and an AL best 3.01 ERA.  He was the first pitcher in MLB to win 10 games in 2007 and was voted to his first and only All-Star game.  Lackey finished the season 3rd in Cy Young voting and 17th in the AL MVP race.

John Lackey may not be #1 in the hearts of Red Sox nation but he is #1 in the WAR Set. (by card number of course)

Loves to pitch against Jim Thome: 0 for 18 with 7 strikeouts (.182 OPS)
Loathes to face Josh Hamilton: 11 for 23 with 3 home runs (1.469 OPS)

This year's cards still in the running for this spot:
2011 Topps #1 Ryan Braun (current WAR = 4.7)

July 26, 2011

Gint-A-Cuffs III: Round 7 (Packs 19-24) The Last Gasp

Total Score From 18 Packs so far:  144 points
Current Leading Score: 232
Points per Pack needed to take lead: 14.66

I decided I am going to open all of the remaining packs in this post.  I am pretty much out of the running for the lead in points unless I pull a rare book card or cut auto for my last hit card.  Let's see if this box finishes strong and reaches at least 200 total points.

Pack #19

#103 Andres Torres (0 points)
#178 Ben Revere (0 points)
#179 Shane Victorino (0 points)
#181 Mark Buehrle (0 points)
#281 Adam Lind (0 points)
#298 Peter Gammons (0 points)

#HH85 Michael Young (+1 point, Hometown Heroes)

#159 Shawn Michaels (+2 points, A&G back mini)

Pack 19 Total: 3 points - Not gonna do it

Running Tally: 147 points

Pack #20

#78 Luke Scott (0 points)
#169 Dan Haren (0 points)
#175 Jose Bautista (0 points)
#274 Stan Lee (0 points) - How is Stan Lee worth nothing?

#310 Matt Kemp (+2 points, SP, +2 points, Greg Z's fave player)

#HH48 Evan Longoria (+1 point, Hometown Heroes)

#AOM11 Amphibians (+1 point, Ascent of Man) - Is that a gigantic wave or are they really small?

#???  Rickie Weeks (+15 points, No number mini) - First time I have ever seen one of these cards.  How many parallels of minis does one set need?

Pack 20 Total: 21 points - Wow, the highest scoring pack from the box thanks to the highest scoring card so far

Running Tally: 168 points

Pack #21

#193 Jorge De La Rosa (0 points)
#240 Matt Holliday (0 points)
#223 Chuck Woolery mini (0 points)

#3 Lou Holtz (-1 point, Former Notre Dame Coach that talks funny)

#HH63 Cody Ross (+1 point, Hometown Heroes)

#BHS-5 Albert Pujols (+3 points, Baseball Highlight Sketches)

#AGR-CG Carlos Gomez Jersey (+10 points, Hit Card) - Well its not a cut auto.  It's not a great player either.

Pack 21 Total: 13 points - Nice pack, not a very good relic.

Running Tally: 181 points

Pack #22

#161 Casey McGehee (0 points)
#268 Dallas Braden (0 points)
#293 Royal Wedding (0 points)

#42 Heath Bell (+2 points, Rod's fave player)

#256 Hunter Pence (+2 points, The Dimwit's fave player)

#306 Josh Willingham (+2 points, SP)

#HH91 Madison Bumgarner (+1 point, Hometown Heroes)

#52 Francisco Cordero (+2 points, A&G back mini)

Pack 22 Total: 8 points

Running Tally: 189 points

Pack #23

#11 Marc Forgione (0 points)
#186 Yunel Escobar (0 points)
#229 Juan Pierre (0 points)
#234 Chrissie Wellington (0 points)
#250 Ichiro (0 points)

#HH77 Mark Buehrle (+1 point, Hometown Heroes)

#324 Domonic Brown (+2 points, SP)

#SRU9 Knife Throwing (+3 points, Step Right Up)

Pack 23 Total: 6 points - Creeping towards that 200 mark

Running Tally: 195 points

Pack #24 - Last Pack!!!

#134 Matt Cain (0 points)
#145 Victor Martinez (0 points)
#164 Heather Mitts (0 points) 

#195 Tommy Hanson (+1 point, My favorite team) - Word

#332 Luke Hochevar (+2 points, SP)

#AOM22 Homo Habilis (+1 point, Ascent of Man)

#MMF27 Louis Pasteur (+3 points, Minds that Made the Future) - Amazing mind

#AP9 Bonobo (+3 points, Animals in Peril) - Looks like an uncle of mine

Pack 24 Total: 10 points - Great finish!

FINAL TALLY: 205 points - Awesome! I broke the 200 point threshold.

So that closes out my 2011 Gint-A-Guffs.  That was really fun as it really builds the suspense of opening each pack.  I wish something like this was done with more products.

Can't wait until Gint-A-Cuffs IV next year.