Friday saw two new packages and a Bowman Platinum blaster arrive. A lot of stuff from my wantlist came off as well, plus a bunch of totally random stuff. Good times.
2. Darren Lewis. This wasn't on my wantlist, I just decided I wanted a Darren Lewis card. Lewis was a terrific defensive outfielder and baserunner, who was just past his prime when he arrived in Boston. He still had a decent 1998 season, leading the team with 29 stolen bases and hit eight home runs.
3. John Valentin. Neither of the Valentin cards were on my wantlist either, I just wanted to pick up a couple of Valentin cards.
4. Frank Rodriguez. Once one of Boston's top prospects, Rodriguez struggled with Boston and was eventually traded to the Twins for Rick Aguilera, who later returned to the Twins. Boston didn't have anything to show for it long-term, but Aguilera helped them to the postseason and Rodriguez never met his potential.
5. Steve Rodriguez. One of four players with the surname Rodriguez to play for Boston in the mid 1990's, Steve made it into just six games in 1995 and didn't hit much. He was placed on waivers and claimed by the Tigers.
The next three cards are why I placed this particular order, all three are from the hard-to-find 1990 Score/Pepsi Red Sox set.
6. Rob Murphy. Murphy was a shutdown, lefty reliever in 1989 for the Red Sox, and the opposite of good in 1990. He did pick up 16 saves in his two seasons.
7. Wes Gardner. Gardner and Calvin Schiraldi were acquired by the Mets for Bob Ojeda, not one of Boston's better trades. Gardner had a lot of talent, but never really put it together other than some minor success in 1987 and 1988.
8. Mike Boddicker. I was reading a book recently talking about Boston's lack of pitching in 1990, but Boddicker was their #2 starter, won 17 games, and the Gold Glove, Boston's only pitcher to do so. He was pretty good.
And next, a trade package:
2. Mo Vaughn. If he hadn't left Boston, what would his career numbers have been? He was just 31 and already had 230 home runs and 752 RBIs. He also had 1,165 hits and a .304 batting average. He was a terrific hitter that already had an MVP and a Silver Slugger under his belt.
3. Carlton Fisk. This has to be the single-most celebrated moment in Red Sox history depicted on cardboard.
4. Roger Clemens. This card celebrates Clemens's MVP award in 1986. He also won the Cy Young Award.
5. Reggie Jefferson. Jefferson is one of the more obscure players to have a .300 career batting average for as long as he played. He is one of the few to do so, yet never make an All Star team. His numbers with Boston were even more impressive, hitting .316/.363/.505.
6. Mo Vaughn.
8. Pedro Martinez. One of the top pitchers in Red Sox history, Martinez had a crazy stretch of years during an era of high offensive output. His ERA of 1.74 in 2000 is particularly staggering.
9. Nomar Garciaparra. Like Vaughn, Garciaparra could be looking at a Hall of Fame career had injuries not gotten in the way. He also declined significantly after leaving Boston.
10. Carl Yastrzemski. Yaz's 3,308 games played in Boston is a record that will likely never be broken. Nor will his 3,419 hits.
11. Nomar Garciaparra.
12. Matt Barnes. This is the only card from my wantlist in this package. Barnes had a terrific game last night, holding the Rays down in the late innings.
And now, the Bowman Platinum blaster. I was actually looking for Topps Heritage High Numbers box, due to the incredible player selection for the Red Sox, but alas, it was not out yet. I wanted something though, so here it was:
2. Andrew Benintendi. Benintendi looks like the real deal. He is hitting well in Boston after just being drafted last year. He is a rising star.