Friday, May 31, 2013

A Trade with Another Brad

I recently made a trade with Brad, who runs Brad's Blog.  My name is also Brad.  I just thought I would throw that out there.  Anyway, he showed off some cards he got in packs and I jumped at a couple of them.

The results of the trade are below:
1.  2012 Topps Allen & Ginter Andrew Bailey.  This was a throw-in card, but it was big for me.  It was on my want list and was the last one I needed from last year's A&G set.

2.  2012 Topps Chrome Dynamic Die Cuts Dustin Pedroia.  I have been going nuts over these die-cut cards that have appeared frequently in Topps brands the last couple of years or so.  This is another very nice one.

3.  2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Emerald Mike Lowell.  This is the card that started the whole thing.

4.  2013 Bowman Chrome Prospects William Cuevas.

5.  2012 Topps Archives Gold Clay Buchholz.  The next four cards were all on my want list, so they were all very important.  I need just a few more of these gold cards to have the team set.

6.  2012 Topps Archives Gold Andrew Bailey.

7.  2012 Topps Archvies Gold Adrian Gonzalez.

8.  2012 Topps Archives Gold Jon Lester.

9.  2012 Topps Chrome Sepia Refractor Mike Aviles.  Brad compiled the set of these and had some duplicates.  I really like the action shot on the Aviles so I am very happy to add this as my first Sepia refractor from last year.

Thanks Brad!  You should get your cards very soon.

A couple of Mailday Packages

I actually received three packages today, but the other one was a trade with another blogger, and those deserve their own post.

Up first is a trade for a few Pirates inserts from this year.
1.  2000 Skybox Dominion John Valentin.  I am always a little surprised when I find cards from the late 1990's/early 2000's that I do not have.  That time period represented one of my heaviest collecting periods.  It is even stranger when it is a base card of a player like Valentin who I collected pretty hardcore.

2.  1993 Donruss Diamond Kings Roger Clemens.  I have mentioned before that I love the Diamond Kings, whether they were subsets in the main set, inserts, or the main set themselves.  This is one of the few I still needed and is the highlight from this package.

3.  2000 Pacific Ruby Trot Nixon.  Ah the ubiquitous Pacific parallels.  This trader did not even know this was a parallel because he never mentioned it.  It is not a rare parallel, I think these were pretty common.

4.  2000 Victory John Valentin.  Another one, really?

Next is a trade that I made for some random Topps inserts.
5.  2013 Topps The Greats Ted Williams.  I wonder how rare these were.  I never pulled one from a pack.  But Ted Williams is definitely a favorite.

6.  2012 Topps Chrome Purple Refractor Carl Crawford.  I love this action shot.  It's too bad Red Sox fans never got to see the true Carl Crawford in his time with Boston.  One of my big disappointments as a fan.

Milestones Trade Package

I received one package in the mail yesterday encompassing a trade that I made for a large lot of 2013 Gypsy Queen base, some minis, and a Harmon Killebrew card from 2003 Flair Greats.  
1.  2007 Topps Moments and Milestones Curt Schilling.  It seems like I have been a getting a number of Moments and Milestones cards lately.  That was the major thing I got in this package.

2.  2007 Topps Moments and Milestones Black Roger Clemens.

3.  2007 Topps Moments and Milestones Roger Clemens.

4.  2007 Topps Moments and Milestones Roger Clemens.  I had no idea there were multiple different Clemens cards in this set, on top of all the variations with the strikeout numbers.  This set is a nightmare for player collectors.

5.  2007 Topps Moments and Milestones Roger Clemens.

6.  2008 Upper Deck X Materials Craig Hansen.  Hansen was a big bust after being drafted in the first round of the 2006 draft.  He was traded to Pittsburgh as part of the Jason Bay-Manny Ramirez trade later in 2008.  This is my second relic card of him.

7.  2008 UD Ballpark Collection Dual Materials Manny Ramirez/Johnny Damon.  This card bothers me a bit.  I was a little angry when I saw it, thinking that both players would be with the Red Sox on the card, but realized that I knew it was a 2008 card when I made the deal so any problem is my fault.  This is a 2008 card, Damon's third season with the Yankees.  Upper Deck couldn't find a picture of him with the Yankees? I am annoyed because he is pictured in a Red Sox uniform, but the card has a Yankees logo.  I have one with Josh Beckett pictured in a Marlins uniform too and the same issue applies.  2008 was his third year with Boston.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Splitting With the Phillies

The Red Sox played their first interleague series of the year against their MLB-designated NL rival Philadelphia Phillies.  I guess I sort of understand this one.  Boston and Philadelphia are both very important cities from the Revolutionary War.  They did once meet in the World Series, back in 1915.  And neither team has a natural rival.  So I guess I can see it.  It is better than Colorado-Houston at least.

Both teams won two games and both teams went 1-1 at each city.

05/27:  Red Sox 9 (32-20) Phillies 3
Alfredo Aceves returned to Boston to make a spot start and pitched very well, giving up only one run in seven innings.  Dustin Pedroia and Mike Napoli each homered for Boston.

MIKE NAPOLI:  2 for 4, home run, double, 2 RBIs, 2 runs

05/28:  Phillies 3 Red Sox 1 (32-21)
Boston only had four hits all night , none of which were for extra bases.  Boston could not solve Cliff Lee all night.

RYAN DEMPSTER:  7 innings, 6 hits, 2 earned runs, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts, Loss

05/29:  Phillies 4 Red Sox 3 (32-22)
John Lackey did not pitch badly, but he did give up three home runs and Boston could not catch back up despite having the potential winning runs in scoring position in the ninth inning.  Daniel Nava homered for the Red Sox continuing his great season.

JACOBY ELLSBURY:  2 for 5, double, triple, RBI

05/30:  Red Sox 9 (33-22) Phillies 2
Franklin Morales made his season debut for the Red Sox and got the spot start so that Boston's pitching could be lined up for the Yankees series starting on Friday.  He pitched okay for it being his first action all year.  Craig Breslow and the rest of the pen was far more impressive.  David Ortiz and Jonny Gomes each homered and Jarrod Saltalamacchia drove in three runs on a pair of doubles.  But Jacoby Ellsbury was the big story as he stole five bases, a team record.

JACOBY ELLSBURY:  3 for 4, hit by pitch, 5 stolen bases

Red Sox in Cooperstown Pt. 5: Tris Speaker

Years with Boston:  1907-1915 (.337/.414/.482, 39 home runs, 542 RBIs, 267 stolen bases)
Best Year in Boston:  1912 MVP (.383/.464/.567, 10 home runs, 90 RBIs, 53 doubles, 52 stolen base)
Tris Speaker was one of the greatest players who ever played for the Boston Red Sox.  He made his Major League debut in 1907 with 20 plate appearances.  The next year he played in a few more games but had yet to make much of an impact.  It was not until his first full season that Speaker really started to display the talent that would lead to him becoming such a force in the Red Sox lineup.  He hit .309/.362/.443 that year with seven home runs.  Of course this was during the Dead Ball Era, so seven home runs was quite a bit at the time.  He would get even better from there.

Speaker was a part of two World Series Champion clubs in 1912 and 1915.  1912 was his best season with the Red Sox and he was named the MVP that year, given the Chalmers Award, which was the name of the award at the time.  Speaker lead the league in doubles and home runs that season.  His success that season carried over into the World Series.  In 1915, Speaker was not able to hit a single home run, nevertheless he hit .322/.416/.411 and still had a terrific year.

Speaker was a phenomenal hitter for Boston, but his defense also drew some attention.  Speaker played very shallow in center field and was able to cut down base hits and throw out runners.  He was almost an extra infielder.

Unfortunately, due to a contract dispute, Boston ended up trading Speaker before the 1916 season for Sad Sam Jones and Fred Thomas.  He continued to play very well, possibly even better for Cleveland.  Speaker's time in Boston was very important to his Hall of Fame case and likely would not have been in the Hall without it, but he was even more successful in Cleveland.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Mailday Explosion 05/28

The holiday weekend pushed a bunch of packages together yesterday.  I had a number of items in the mail, including the new Hypocrisy CD, but that is a topic for my other blog.

Up first is an item I randomly bid on on Ebay because the price was low:
1.  2013 Topps Museum Collection Autographs Will Middlebrooks.  Middlebrooks is on the DL right now with some back issues.  Hopefully he comes back strong.  He has shown a lot of power and very little patience so far this year.

2.  2010 Bowman Platinum Autographs Refractor Alex Wilson.  Another random Ebay win.  Wilson had been doing quite well in the Red Sox bullpen so far this year.  Of course I get this card and he gets sent down to Pawtucket to make room for the return of Jackie Bradley, Jr.  

The next two scans are some cards I received in a forum trade for all of my Royals tradebait. 

3.  2013 Topps Gypsy Queen David Ortiz.

4.  2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Dustin Pedroia.

5.  2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Bill Buckner.  I am not quite sure why Buckner was included in this set.  There are a number of retired players in this set for the Red Sox, but the others are Ted Williams, Bobby Doerr, Jim Rice, Wade Boggs, and Carlton Fisk, all Hall of Famers.  Buckner did not come close.  I am not complaining, I like getting cards of Buckner, just do not understand it.

6.  2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Clay Buchholz.

7.  2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Jacoby Ellsbury.

8.  2012 Bowman Prospects Purple Brandon Jacobs.  He is struggling a bit in the minors.  I do not think he will make it to the Majors unless he improves big time.

9.  2010 Topps 206 Chrome Jacoby Ellsbury.

10.  2010 Topps National Chicle Chrome Jacoby Ellsbury.

11.  2010 Topps National Chicle Chrome Daisuke Matsuzaka.

12.  2008 Topps Moments & Milestones Black Manny Ramirez.  

13.  2008 Topps Moments & Milestones Black Daisuke Matsuzaka.  If I was more patient I may pick a player some day to complete one of these M&M sets for.  I am leaning towards Mike Lowell because of the relatively low price.  The Generation Now Papelbon set is another one.

Finally these two came in exchange for some random Bowman singles. 
14.  2013 Bowman Gold Dustin Pedroia

15.  2013 Bowman Homestate/International Will Middlebrooks.  Middlebrooks is taking off in my collection.  I already have nearly 30 cards of him.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Does Anyone Have this Card?

Somehow, I do not have this one and need it.  The picture is fantastic.  Please comment if you have it and are willing to let it go.

Pack Breaks With Some Tradebait

I am probably not going to be buying many packs again until Topps Series 2 comes out in a couple of weeks.  I have most of the base Red Sox from products out now and will be working on singles from Archives, specifically the autograph set.

I went out with another three pack bundle of Bowman and a rack pack of Gypsy Queen.  The results were less than impressive from a Red Sox standpoint.  I only managed this:
Still, it is Dustin Pedroia, so no huge arguments.

Here is the tradebait, comment if you need anything:

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend Additions

 Lots of new stuff over the weekend.  I bought some packs and I got a few forum trade packages in the mail.

Up first is a pack break of another of those three pack bundles of 2013 Bowman.  I am still waiting on an elusive purple prospect Red Sox card but I did get the following:
1.  2013 Bowman Gold David Ortiz.  The facial expression on Ortiz in this one is a little weird.  I suspect he is trying to run as fast as he possibly can.  He did steal third base twice last week, so  there you go.

Next up is the first of several forum trades.  I gave up a whole bunch of 2013 Bowman singles for these:
2.  2012 Triple Threads Bronze (?) David Ortiz.  I did not do much with Triple Threads last year, or any other year for that matter, preferring just to pick up singles.

3.  2011 Topps Museum Blue Cy Young.  Museum has been another set I do not do much with.  The high-end stuff usually is.  Although I had to have this one because of the awesome old uniform and the fact that is THE Cy Young.

4.  2008 Topps Co-Signers Silver/Red Josh Beckett/Curt Schilling.  I like these Co-Signers cards with the two players.  I need to go back and pick up at least one for each combo.  I already have this one, Kevin Youkilis/Jason Varitek, and Mike Lowell/J.D. Drew.  There are a bunch more I need.

I typically only trade on the forums, but occasionally something will catch my eye for sale.  Something like this:
5.  2004 Topps Total Printing Plate Magenta Mike Timlin.  I spent only $6.00 on this.  Printing plates are becoming cheaper.  Timlin was of course on both the 2004 and 2007 World Championship Red Sox teams.

Next up is one of my favorite trades I have made in a long time and it will take up multiple scans.  It did however pretty much completely deplete my Yankees trade bait.  That is not a big problem though when I get the following in return:
6.  2010 Topps Opening Day Toppstown David Ortiz.

7.  1970 Topps Billy Conigliaro/Luis Alvarado.  Billy is the younger brother of the great Tony Conigliaro who had his potential Hall of Fame career cut short when he was hit in the eye with a pitch.  Billy hit 18 home runs himself in 1970, his brother hit 36 that same year with the Red Sox.  Alvarado jumped around for several seasons.

8.  1976 Topps Bill Lee.  I love this shot of Lee.  He was definitely a free spirit.

9.  1978 Topps Tommy Helms.  This is a fairly worn-out card, but that's not a problem.

10.  1981 Donruss Jerry Remy.  Donruss's early designs were kind of boring.  Remy had a great first season with the Red Sox in 1978 when he stole 30 bases and was an All Star but never came close to that afterwards.  He is well-known as an announcer for Boston now.

11.  1982 Donruss Bob Stanley. 

12.  1982 Donruss Ralph Houk.  I had no idea Donruss ever did manager cards.  I wish they did it more often.

13.  1982 Donruss Bill Campbell.  Like Remy, Campbell was great his first year in Boston, and never did much afterwards.

14.  1982 Fleer Stamps Carney Lansford.  Lansford won a batting title for Boston in 1981 then was supplanted by Wade Boggs at third base by the end of the next season. 

15.  1983 Donruss Glenn Hoffman.  Glenn is actually the older brother of Padres great Trevor Hoffman.  Much older.

16.  1983 Donruss Mike Torrez.

17.  1985 Donruss Mike Easler.  He hit 27 home runs in 1984 and lasted for two seasons for the Red Sox, yet I have fewer than ten cards of Easler in my Red Sox collection.

18.  1989 Score Superstars Dwight Evans.  I think Evans belongs in Cooperstown.

19.  1998 Skybox EX2001 Mo Vaughn.  Cool-looking card here.

20.  2002 Topps Chrome Tim Wakefield.  I wish he could have held on long enough to supplant Cy Young and Roger Clemens for career victories with the Red Sox.  He came close (186 to 192).

21.  2005 Fleer Authentix Manny Ramirez.

22.  2005 Upper Deck Pros and Prospects Curt Schilling.

23.  2006 Ultra RBI Kings David Ortiz.

24.  2007 Fleer Year in Review David Ortiz.  This commemorates Ortiz's 51st home run of the 2006 season which was a new team record.  He finished with 54.  The previous mark was held by Jimmie Foxx in 1938.

25.  2007 Topps Update and Highlights Gold David Ortiz.

26.  2007 Upper Deck Craig Hansen.  What a bust.  Hansen was a first round draft pick, then was rushed to the Majors and never came close to meeting his potential.

27.  2007 Upper Deck Triple Play Performers David Ortiz.

28.  2007 Upper Deck First Edition Curt Schilling.

29.  2007 Upper Deck First Edition Jonathan Papelbon.

30.  2009 Upper Deck Goudey Green Back Mini Jason Bay.  I am trying to get a bunch of cards of Bay and Victor Martinez from their Red Sox stints.  Two of the better midseason trades Boston ever made and both stayed for another year in which they were All Stars.  Their time coincides with a time that I did not do a lot of collecting.

31.  2010 Bowman Chrome Kevin Youkilis.

32.  2012 Topps Golden Moments Jon Lester.

33.  2007 Bowman Chrome Refractor Manny Ramirez.

34.  2007 Bowman Chrome Refractor Curt Schilling.

35.  2009 Topps 206 Josh Reddick RC.  I never had a lot of Reddick cards.  Kind of a shame.  This completed the non-SP team set for this set for me.

36.  2009 Topps 206 Babe Ruth.  I love getting Ruth cards in my Red Sox collection.

37.  2010 Topps Tales of the Game David Ortiz.  I am torn on whether to include this in my Red Sox collection.  It has more to do with the Yankees and we are just looking at a replica jersey here.

38.  2010 Topps Tools of the Trade Lars Anderson.  Another big bust.  Anderson was supposed to be the first baseman of the future.

39.  2010 Topps Allen & Ginter Adrian Beltre.  I wish Boston would have kept him.

40.  1986 Donruss Highlights Roger Clemens.  Commemorating the 20 K game against the Mariners.

41.  1987 Fleer Roger Clemens.  I was shocked I did not have this.

42.  1987 Fleer League Leaders Roger Clemens.

43.  1989 Kmart Dream Team Roger Clemens.  I miss these oddball store-exclusive sets as much as I miss food issues.  Bring them back.

44.  1989 Score Superstars Roger Clemens.

45.  1995 SP Silver Jose Canseco.  If you missed it, Canseco was recently arrested on sexual assault charges.  Oh boy.

46.  1996 Pinnacle Jose Canseco.

47.  1997 New Pinnacle Mo Vaughn.  A terrific action shot.  Vaughn was not really known for his defense.

48.  1998 Donruss Mo Vaughn.  Shocked I did not have this one too.

49.  2009 Upper Deck Goudey 4-in-1 Daisuke Matsuzaka/Josh Beckett/Jonathan Papelbon/Justin Masterson.  These were the best things about the Goudey set.  I also have a reprint of the original set 4-in-1 Red Sox card that has Joe Cronin, Carl Reynolds, Max Bishop, and Bill Cissell.

50.  2009 Upper Deck Goudey 4-in-1 Dustin Pedroia/David Ortiz/Josh Beckett/Carlton Fisk.  Postseason heroes maybe?  This gives me three 4-in-1 cards from this set that are all Red Sox.

51.  2011 Topps Triple Threads Relics Jon Lester.  One thing I am missing is nice relics cards of Red Sox pitchers since Pedro Martinez.  I just do not have that many, so this Lester was very much appreciated.

52.  2008 Sweet Spot Sweet Swatch Dual Memorabilia Josh Beckett/Daisuke Matsuzaka.  As was this nice dual card of Beckett and Dice-K.

Finally, here is the trade bait from the Bowman break.  As usual, if you see anything you want, feel free to comment.

Red Sox Win 3 out of 4 Against Old Manager's Team

The Red Sox had a four game set against the Cleveland Indians in Terry Francona's return to Fenway Park.  The Indians had been playing very well of late so this was a pretty good matchup.

05/23:  Indians 12 Red Sox 3 (28-20)
Ryan Dempster only lasted three innings, giving up four runs and Clayton Mortenson and Alex Wilson did not fare much better.  By the time Boston handed the ball to the reliable Craig Breslow, Junichi Tazawa, and Andrew Miller, the damage was done.  David Ortiz hit a three run home run to provide all of the offense.

DAVID ORTIZ:  1 for 3, three run home run

05/24:  Red Sox 8 (29-20) Indians 1
John Lackey was very strong and Mike Carp hit a three-run home run to put Boston ahead in the second inning and they never relinquished.

JOHN LACKEY:  Win, 7 innings, 2 hits, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts, unearned run

05/25:  Red Sox 7 (30-20) Indians 4
Jon Lester has been slumping a bit of late.  He gave up four runs and Boston was down 4-3 going into the bottom of the eighth when they plated four runs.  Mike Carp drove in the tying run then scored the go-ahead run on Dustin Pedroia's double.

PEDRO CIRIACO:  3 for 4, run, RBI, double

05/26:  Red Sox 6 (31-20) Indians 5
Felix Doubront struggled through the first two innings and Boston was down 5-2 going into the bottom of the ninth inning when Indians closer Chris Perez imploded, allowing Boston to come to within one run and have the bases loaded.  Perez then got hurt and was taken out for Joe Smith who gave up a two-run walkoff double to Jacoby Ellsbury on the first pitch.

JACOBY ELLSBURY:  2 for 5, 2 run game-winning double, stolen base

Happy Memorial Day

I want to first of all thank all of the veterans who have served this country.

Now on to an appropriate card from my collection:
2007 Topps Distinguished Service Bobby Doerr

This was a set in which Topps paid tribute to players who served in the military as well as several presidents and other notable people.  Bobby Doerr, the Hall of Fame second baseman for the Red Sox, served in the Army in World War II.  Of course he is not the only player to do so, and far from the most notable.  Ted Williams was a fighter pilot and he does have a card in the set.  But this is the only one I have so today is a good day to show it.  There was also an autograph partial parallel to the set.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Unknown Heroes Before My Time Pt 5: Oil Can Boyd

You know that anyone with the nickname "Oil Can" is likely to be a fan favorite and Boyd certainly was.  The skinny pitcher had a big delivery and showed a lot of emotion on the mound, celebrating after strikeouts and innings.  Unfortunately when I started watching baseball, Boyd had already moved on to the Montreal Expos, so I never really got to see him in his prime.

Boyd came up with the Red Sox in 1982.  He arrived in Boston to stay in August of 1983, at a time in which Boston was developing a number of good, young pitchers.  Boyd was another in a line of homegrown Red Sox pitchers that included Bob Ojeda, John Tudor, Bruce Hurst, Steve Crawford, Al Nipper, and Roger Clemens, a run that the team has not come close to matching since.  Boyd was probably the most entertaining to watch of the bunch.

Boyd made a big impact fairly quickly as he tied for the team lead in victories with 12 in 1984.  1985 was his  best season with the Red Sox as he went 15-13 with a 3.70 ERA and 154 strikeouts.  He was very good again in 1986, going 16-10 with a 3.78 ERA and 129 strikeouts.  Unfortunately injuries would start to take their toll after that and he did not pitch another full season with the Red Sox.

After three injury plagued seasons, Boyd moved on to Montreal in 1990 and had a very good season.  In 1991, he split the season between Montreal and Texas.  It was his final season in the Majors.  He attempted a couple of comebacks, but never made.  Boyd was just recently pitching in the independent leagues.

Boyd's status as a fan favorite has begun to get more notice in the last few years as he has started showing up in sets.  He appeared in 2009 in Sweet Spot, along with having autograph cards and he is slated to appear in this year's Archives set with an autograph.  I will have to try to pick it up.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Mid 90's Mailday

I picked up some random mid to late 1990's stuff in a trade recently.  Below are the goodies:
1.  1996 Bowman Foil Shawn Senior.  I never had any of these foil inserts.  I was not even aware of them.  I picked up two in this trade.  Senior never made the Majors.

2.  1996 Bowman Foil Rafael Orellano.  Neither did Orellano.

3.  1997 Collector's Choice Premier Power Mo Vaughn.  Vaughn was one of my favorite players, quite possibly my favorite at this time.  He was always fun to watch, the rare slugger who struck out a ton, yet still got lots of hits and a high batting average.

4.  1998 Upper Deck Star Attractions Mo Vaughn.  This is a very interesting insert of the Hit Dog.  I like die cut cards quite a bit.

5.  1998 Pinnacle Yardwork Mo Vaughn.  I previously had the Nomar Garciaparra version of this, now I have both of the big Red Sox sluggers of the time.

6.  1998 Studio Hit Parade Mo Vaughn.  Rapping things up for the Mo Vaughn additions is this cool-looking insert from Studio.

7.  1998 Studio Silver Proof Michael Coleman.  Coleman actually made the Major Leagues a couple of times, but perceived attitude issues and injuries kept him from sticking around.  Coleman gave himself the nickname "Prime Time", which did not sit well with the veterans.  He had a couple of short stops in the Majors, despite some impressive minor league numbers.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Prospect Pack Breaks and Some Tradebait

I bought one of those packages with three packs and three purple cards yesterday.  These were the Red Sox:
Both of these are prospects.  People buy Bowman for the prospects and of course that is what I do too.  This is not too bad because I think both of these players stand a reasonable shot at making it to the Majors some day.  Jamie Callahan was a second round draft pick last year out of high school.  He has been in extended Spring Training so far this year.  Travis Shaw, the son of former closer Jeff Shaw, was a draft pick in 2011 and has been rising quickly after a breakout season last year.  He is already in Double A Portland.

And now for the tradebait.  If anyone want anythings and has Red Sox to trade, please comment.  Thanks.

Red Sox Avoid Being Swept by White Sox

05/20/13  White Sox 6 Red Sox 4 (27-18)
Jon Lester took the loss for the first time this season as he was hammered for six runs over six innings.  A rally fell short.  Shane Victorino once again had to leave the game with an injury, this time to his hamstring.

JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA:  2 for 3, home run, 2 RBIs

05/21/13:  White Sox 3 Red Sox 1 (27-19)
White Sox starter Jose Quintana had a no-hitter into the seventh before running into trouble, but Boston could not capitalize on a bases loaded situation and dropped the second game.

FELIX DOUBRONT:  6 innings, 5 hits, 2 earned runs, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts, Loss

05/22/13:  Red Sox 6 (28-19) White Sox 2
Clay Buchholz was sharp and finally won his seventh game of the season.  The offense got a boost in the later innings and Boston was able to pull away and put this in the win column.

DAVID ORTIZ:  2 for 5, run, 2 RBIs, stolen base

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Unknown Heroes Pt. 30: Tom Bolton

Am I running out of players to write about?  No.  I really did like Tom Bolton.  Part of it had to do with the fact that he was one of my first Red Sox cards.  He was actually probably my very first favorite player.  Back when I only had two cards, my 1991 Topps Tom Bolton card was my favorite, mostly due to the fact that the picture of Bolton was better than the picture of Dennis Lamp, which is my official first Red Sox card.

Bolton was a player who made several attempts at sticking in the Majors in the late 1980's.  He was a left-hander who spent the first two seasons of his Major League career in the bullpen.  Then in 1989 he was converted to a starter.  But that was not until August of that year as he spent most of the season back in the minors.  His numbers were not impressive in 1989 as he went 0-4 with an 8.31 ERA in four starts.

Somehow Bolton got another chance in 1990 and he made the most of it.  Bolton became an impressive fourth starter for the Red Sox, finishing with a record of 10-5 to with a 3.38 ERA and 65 strikeouts in 119.2 innings.  He started 16 out of his 21 games that season.  It was easily the best season of his career.

1991 was a bit of a down season as Bolton only went 8-9 with a 5.24 ERA.  Then he went back to the bullpen in 1992 and was in the midst of a good season when he was traded to the Reds.  He had a 3.41 ERA in 21 games with only one start.  Boston acquired Billy Hatcher in the trade.  Bolton bounced around a bit after that, never able to match the promise of his 1990 season.  He was out of baseball after 1994, he was 32.

A Ripping Good Mailday 05/20

What a horrible title to this one.  Anyway the reason this got the title is the following:
That is a 2010 Topps Allen & Ginter Rip Card of Mike Cameron.  Unfortunately the previous owner already ripped it open, otherwise I would have had to give up a LOT more for it.  This is the first Rip Card I have ever had.  I definitely like the player selection too as I do not have a lot of cards of Mike Cameron with the Red Sox.
And one more quick trade as well.  I am getting a little tired of the same picture of Bobby Doerr on almost every single card.  I have about 75 cards of Doerr and probably half of them have that picture.  I think the Silver Ice Bowman parallels are a lot more common this year than last year.  I never pulled a single one last year and it took months before I had my first Red Sox.  I have pulled three this year and I just got this Jon Lester in a trade.

My Favorite Retro Set: 2003 Topps 205

There have not been a lot of sets that I have picked up more than one hobby box for, but 2003 Topps 205 was one.  Maybe that is not fair because I picked up one for each series of this one.  I have always preferred this set to the Topps 206 sets that they have done a couple of times.  I do not really know why.  There is more of a design to this one.  It is not just a simple picture of the player, there is more to it.
Of course the major reason to love the set is the minis.  This is one set that I worked hard on adding a bunch of minis.  I always like minis anyway, but this is one that I really focused my energy on finding the minis.
Just like the 206 sets, 205 had a variety of backs.  The above picture is the Cycle Purple back.  There were several others as well.  One thing I spent a lot of time on was tracking down as many of the variations of the Hanley Ramirez rookie card as I could find.  I ended up with all but the two Bazooka backs.
Of course there was an impressive relic set as well.  The Red Sox had several notable players in this set, including Nomar Garciaparra, Manny Ramirez, Jeremy Giambi, and a Derek Lowe hat card that I am still trying to find.
Series 2 was released late enough that they were able to include Curt Schilling as a Red Sox despite the fact that he was acquired in a trade in November, 2003.
2003 Topps 205 has always been a favorite set of mine.  It is definitely my favorite retro set.  I wish Topps would give it another shot.  But then there are a lot of sets I want Topps to bring back.

Monday, May 20, 2013

A Trade with a Nocturnal Raptor

I recently completed a trade with Greg, aka Night Owl.  As we are both team collectors, I figured we had something in common and could mutually help each other.  So I sent him a bunch of mid to late 90's cards, including a bunch of Pacific and he sent me these which I surprisingly did not have:
1.  2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Manny Ramirez.  I am still discovering cards I did not realize I did not have.  I had a bunch of these cards and did not realize I did not have the team set.

2.  2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Daisuke Matsuzaka.  See above.  Surely this is it for the base set.

3.  1994 Collector's Choice Otis Nixon.  The speedster only spent one year in Boston, and it was the strike-shortened 1994 season.  He still stole 42 bases.  I like guys who can steal because Boston has had so few of them over the years.

4.  2008 Upper Deck Icons David Ortiz.  I never had much of this set before.  I might be close to the base team set.  Still need the elusive George Kottaras RC though.

5.  2008 Upper Deck Icons Kevin Youkilis.  A nice closeup of Youk's batting stance.  I would describe it as "unorthodox".

6.  2008 Upper Deck X Jonathan Papelbon.  Here is another one I had no idea I did not have.

7.  2008 Upper Deck Documentary Mike Lowell.  This is the set that keeps going and going and going and...

8.  2008 Upper Deck Documentary Jacoby Ellsbury.  ...going and going and going.

9.  2010 Topps National Chicle Kevin Youkilis.  I had the Bazooka version.  This is the base.

10.  2008 Upper Deck Timelines Josh Beckett (1994 All Time Heroes).  Timelines is a set I had very little of.

11.  2008 Upper Deck Timelines Jason Bay.  I will have to check into this set and see what I still need.  I recall some interesting looking cards that I still need.

12.  2008 Upper Deck Documentary Jon Lester.  And more from this set.

13.  2012 Panini Prizm Will Middlebrooks.  I commented on Night Owl's post about this card.  He did not seem to care much for them.  I think they are ugly too, but I have to have everything and trading is better than buying in my eyes.

14.  2010 Topps Chrome Xfractor Jason Bay.  This is the card that set the trade in motion.  Jason Bay is one of those players I just love getting cards of.

15.  1978 Topps Rick Wise.  No trade would be complete without some vintage.  Well, that's not true but it's definitely nice.

16.  2013 Bowman Gold Will Middlebrooks.  Another card that I commented on.  Middlebrooks is starting to come around offensively this year.  He could just be a very streaky hitter.

Thanks for the trade, Greg!