Sunday, June 25, 2017

Dodger-centric Stack from the Night Owl

After Greg, aka the 'Night Owl' lost his want list (tragic) and worked on recreating it starting with 2017, I figured this was an opportunity to send out a handful of recent cards that might make it there before others beat me to it. A few days ago I found a package in my mailbox with the note below.

By the way, a handwritten note is appreciated in any circumstance. And yes, these cards put a dent in several areas of my want list.

While a good number of the cards in this stack were Dodgers, I'm going to start by sharing the non-Dodgers. A trio of Braves Heritage cards means I'm about halfway through collecting the team set for 2017. Vizcaino is having a strong season in relief so far. Jace Peterson went down to AAA for a little while but is back with the big-league club after straightening some things out. Wisler's spent most of his season in AAA but has appeared in seven games for Atlanta.

A program is a neat idea for an insert, and I appreciate Teheran appearing in an insert set, regardless of design. I couldn't have imagined Kemp playing as well as he has since coming over from the Padres. He's become one of my favorite Braves.

So much Green on this Freeman from Opening Day. Even one of few doubles for me was still a need, as one goes towards the team set while the other goes in the Freeman player collection.

And the last of the Braves cards I'll share... You'd think a Braves fan and collector would have cards from the early 90s of stars like Glavine already in my collection. But I wasn't collecting baseball cards at this time. Until I started this blog, basketball cards were my main collecting interest. I'm playing some major catch-up and I'm glad to add this Glavine to my binder.

Now we move into the Dodger part of the package. Three Kershaws, all from 2011 Topps products. Opening Day, Series 1, and Update series are all represented. They also instantly become the oldest Kershaws in my collection, a product of getting into baseball card collecting in 2014. Kershaw may be the best pitcher in the game, but his teammate, former Brave Alex Wood, surprisingly has a lower ERA so far this season. I'm sure the Night Owl is pleased with that development.

Sharp design on this 2013 Bowman Kershaw. I prefer this one to designs of the last several years. The Topps 72 mini is from 2013 as well and is the second mini Kershaw in my collection. Would be a fun set to put together.

I was so excited to see Cesar Izturis as the most represented player in this stack. I have around 20 or so cards of Izturis, a key player on Dodger teams from 2003-2005. He won a gold glove in 2004 and made the only All-Star game of his career in 2005. Unfortunately that season was cut short by injuries in the second half.

One of my favorite memories is from going to a game at Dodger Stadium with my Dad in 2003 as part of a family trip out West. The Dodgers beat the Cardinals, with Rickey Henderson hitting a home run. When that happened the place just exploded. Really neat moment. Pujols, Jim Edmonds and Edgar Renteria all homered off Kaz Ishii, but the Dodgers prevailed 8-5. For several years after that I followed that group of Dodgers pretty closely, but the only one that's remained in my list of player collections is Izturis.

What happened to the Bowman Heritage brand? Did they run out of old sets to copy the design of? If so, who would oppose picking that up again starting with '89?

I'll wrap this up with the 7th Betts card added to my collection featuring this design. The one is the Holiday edition. Looks like there's a metallic snowflake parallel as well, because of course. 

Thanks Greg- really enjoyed going through the package. I'm glad to be a landing spot for duplicate Kershaw and Izturis cards!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Nashville Predators Starter Pack from Sports Cards from the Dollar Store

For the first time ever I had a rooting interest in the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Nashville Predators went to the Cup Finals for the first time in team history. I'm not going to say much more at this point other than I had a blast following this team and I can't wait to follow a full season starting in the Fall.

Sports Cards from the Dollar Store saw my initial posts on hockey cards and sent a large package of Predators my way. He seemed excited to have a landing spot for his Predators cards. Well let me tell you all I am happy to be that landing spot.

Glad to have a reason to pick up the O-Pee-Chee brand. Wish this existed for current baseball sets. Pekka Rinne 'shut the door' repeatedly on playoff competition and the defense picked up from the regular season as well. Roman Josi is a big part of that. Weber was traded last June for my personal favorite P.K. Subban after serving as the Nashville captain for many years.

With O-Pee-Chee comes the Platinum brand as a separate release. And unlike other Chrome brands these scan pretty well, I think. It was nice watching you the last few months, James Neal. Good luck in Vegas!

Even though the consensus was that Rinne had a sub-par regular season based on his past performance, he stepped it up in the playoffs, helping get the Predators farther in the playoffs than they've ever been. Excited to be collecting new cards from the Fleer Showcase brand once again. It's been awhile.

The first card from 2015-16 Tim Hortons Collector's Series is a beauty. The Panini Select card on the right is a sharp looking card, too.

Three cards of the current captain. Particularly like the Contenders card referencing Bridgestone Arena.

Forsberg is probably my other favorite player at this point along with P.K. Subban. Was shocked when I learned he is only 22 years old and is as good as he is. Colin Wilson seems to step up his game in the playoffs. Glad to add a rookie card of his to my collection. Would Johansen have turned the finals in favor of the Preds? He sure would have helped.

Now we're getting to the gems of the starter park. This Forsberg is a silver parallel /25 from 2015-16 Champs. Nice, clean set design here.

I didn't fully appreciate this card until I saw Rinne dominate for stretches of games in the playoffs. What a card this one is! So glad for it to be the first hockey autograph to go into my collection.

This was just a small part of an amazing starter pack. Focused on current players in this post because those are the guys I'm familiar with based on the last few months or so of watching. Already can't wait for next season to start!