Monday, April 06, 2020

1992 Pinnacle Series 2 Jumbo

I don't usually post packs of this volume, because... wow, that's a lot of cards and a lot of things to say about people I don't know much about. But I set myself up for this when I posted the Series One version around seven years ago. Here's the long awaited sequel.

These jumbos again promise three Team 2000 inserts, plus an additional new insert called Slugfest. They also for some reason slapped a Pinnacle sticker over the pre-printed price tag, perhaps to hopefully suggest that their product might be rising in value and shouldn't be subjected to suggested retail prices?

543 - Mike Groppuso - First up, and it's already a bunch of question marks for me. This is back when card companies could toss draft picks into their base set with reckless abandon. Groppuso never made the bigs, topping out at AAA briefly.

558 - Anthony Young - We know who this guy is, mostly for his disastrous 1992 season, unfortunately.

573 - Hector Fajardo - Prospect rankings probably weren't so numerous or studied as they are today in 1992, but I wonder if Pinnacle took a look at Baseball America before slapping these logos onto cards or if they just gave these out randomly to anyone who might still be considered rookie-ish.

588 - Dave Justice / Willie Stargell - Here's a fondly remembered subset. It was a bold move to make the picture of the idol much larger than the current player.

603 - Jose Lind - This, however, is straight cheese.

618 - Nolan Ryan - This was sort of an interesting idea, where they would break down each pitcher mechanically.

544 - Jarvis Brown - The speedy Brown was a favorite of mine when I was a teenager during his days with the Portland Beavers.

10 - Ruben Sierra Slugfest - This is the new insert for series 2. It might have been a jumbo pack exclusive? I'm not sure if all of these were horizontal, but I like it.

42 - Jim Abbott Team 2000 - The first of three Team 2000 inserts features the famous Jim Abbott.

53 - Tommy Greene Team 2000 - There are 80 of these in all. I think the first 40 were in Series 1 and the last 40 were in this series.

64 - Dean Palmer Team 2000 - Palmer rounds out the trio.

425 - Jesse Barfield - Barfield was a celebrated player of the '80s with Toronto, but it seems like almost everyone does their tour with the Yankees at some point.

440 - Reggie Sanders - I kind of botched the scanning of Reggie's card, but with 27 cards in the pack, I wasn't about to go back and fix it.

445 - Roger McDowell - McDowell was known as a prankster in his day, which makes me wonder if that's really a thing anymore. Does every team still have a prankster? Do people still light teammates' shoes on fire? Everyone seems so serious now.

460 - Billy Hatcher - Hatcher is most memorable (to me, anyway) for that surprising 1990 World Series.

465 - Lonnie Smith - I mostly think of Smith's early days with the Cardinals, but he was still getting it done in the '90s.

480 - Scott Scudder - What a great name for a pitcher.

485 - Mike Huff - It's funny to remember how much the attention the White Sox got for switching up their jerseys back then, because teams seem to do it all the time these days.

500 - Barry Bonds - Normal head Barry.

348 - Rob Deer - Deer was a three true outcomes kind of guy. He was coming off of a rough season, even by his standards, but 1992 would prove to be his best.

352 - Trevor Wilson - This is one where the players busting out of the frame really pops.

368 - Brian Downing - What happened to his bat?

372 - Luis Salazar - You can always tell it's Wrigley on these cards.

388 - Rich DeLucia - Rich was apparently born in a place called Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, which sounds made up.

392 - Pedro Guerrero - This wasn't quite the end of Guerrero's career, but it was close. He logged a bit more time in 1992 before hanging it up.

408 - Darren Lewis - Lewis would go on to have a 13 year MLB career including a Gold Glove award.

412 - Brian Hunter - There were a couple of Brian Hunters in the '90s. This guy was more of a journeyman, although was perhaps better known because he was on those Atlanta teams that made it to the World Series in the early '90s.

Sunday, April 05, 2020

2020 Donruss Baseball - Dollar Tree pack

Last month cynicalbuddah posted about the 2020 Donruss Baseball Hobby Packs.  This is the same product, slightly different packaging.  I picked this up at the local Dollar Tree.  I love going in there and shouting, "Price Check, register two."  I've been banned from at least four different locations.

Different packaging?  Yep.  Just 5 cards per pack.  And on the back there's a DT by the Panini label.  My guess is Dollar Tree.

Since these cards have mostly been featured on the previous post, I won't show each of the five cards.  Well, maybe.  Sure.  Why not?

Lorenzo Cain watching the ball slice to the first base side.  Standard Donruss front.  Standard Donruss back.

Ah, a Rated Rookie.  I don't think this is a subset, just a designation.  Maybe a range of numbers.

 Andres Munoz Rookie Card.  He's not rated.  But he does have a different back.

 Ooh.  A yellow card.  Rumor is that this is a Dollar Tree exclusive.  Standard back.

 And wrapping up with Jonathan Villar.  Without MLB logos, and before I looked at the Missing In Action designation, I thought that Mr. Villar played for Baltimore.  Oh, he did.  I guess Donruss didn't want to explain to collectors that he's now playing for MIA.  Well, not actually playing.  He's on the team.

Interesting fact from the stats of Mr. Villar?  He played in every game of the 2019 season.  A healthy young man.

If you'd like to see the complete checklist, head on over to The Cardboard Connection.

Saturday, April 04, 2020

1999 UD Choice Rookie Class Cans

I am probably breaking a bit of a rule here, but I am posting the complete set of 1999 UD Choice Rookie Class cans. That's right. These are metal cans!* I am not actually posting the packs from the cans, as the cans themselves are still sealed/unopened. 

The set consists of 6 sealed cans of cards. The late 90's were something of a wild west for what manufacturers were doing with the hobby. In a lot of ways, I miss those days. I digress, often. 

Each can features the "Upper Deck Company" text along with the card (er, can) number "X of 6" at the top rim. Text describing the contents of each can, the "UD CHOICE" logo, the "Rookie Class" insignia, a picture of the player, the player's name and position are also featured. If that weren't enough, the player's jersey number, team logo, and a badge indicating that the can has "1 Rookie Class Card Inside" adorn the can.

There is a barcode and a slew of copyrights and various odds for the sets of cardboard contained inside.

Inside, each can has a pack of 5 cards. There are 4 regular issue UD Choice cards plus the aforementioned Rookie Class card.

The bottom edge of the can features Upper Deck, MLBPA, and MLB logos plus the text indicating that there is "1 pack per can, 5 cards per pack."

 *If you're wondering how I got the pictures of the cans, I experimented with my flatbed scanner. Turns out, with practice, one can time rolling the can in sync with the scan bar moving along. It's a fun party trick! The biggest issue (and you can see it in the scans) is that the cans would skid because the platen is glass. But, hey, I managed to scan cans, right?

Friday, April 03, 2020

2016 PunkRockPaint Galactic Greats (custom)

I'm not sure why I had never posted this set here, so I am making up for it by bringing it to you four years after its release! This is the 2016 PunkRockPaint Galactic Greats custom card set.  The "wrapper" (above) is actually a card stock hanger modeled after the 1977 Kenner Star Wars action figure hangers. I am telling you, this is one freaking amazing set!

The back of the hanger shows off some of the cards plus has a few fun facts and easter eggs. Pictures do not do this thing justice. It is heavy stock, high gloss, and is everything I remember the action figure hangers to be from my childhood. Yes, I saw Episode IV in the theaters when it came out in 1977. I saw it at least 7 times that I cam remember. And, yes, I had the now priceless Jawa. But, I was a kid, so... it was promptly blown to smithereens by a Black Cat firecracker or something.

There are 30 cards plus a few extra bonus in each set. The fronts feature MLB teams as imagined as Star Wars teams. And, they are fantastic! The "stickers" you find in the set are not really stickers, but they can be cut out and taped to resemble stickers, should one be foolish enough to engage is such endeavors.

The backs show off more of PRP's amazing talent and have fun tidbits.

The fun part of the set is guessing which Star Wars logo lines up with which MLB team. Some are pretty obvious. Others might take a second or two. Either way, this set is truly one-of-a-kind!

Well, technically, I suppose, it is 66 of a kind. There were 66 sets made. Star Wars fans will immediately understand why 66. Others can just google it.

I actually bought three sets, if memory serves. I have one that I put in a binder, my son got a set, and the third I display in my home office.

I hope you've enjoyed peeking through this amazing set of custom cards by one of our hobby's great artistic talents!

Thursday, April 02, 2020

1999-00 NBA Hoops SkyBox Retail

Here's a pack commemorating the ten year anniversary of the NBA Hoops brand, which had changed hands a couple (?) of times at this point. At the time, it was under the direction of Fleer. But before we get into the cards, I want to talk about the wrapper. What is going on with the unnamed Nets player here? I assume this is after his follow-through on a shot or something, but it could seriously be all sorts of other things. Is he calling desperately for the ball? Does he have sudden tremendous back pain? I also am not proud to say I don't know who this is. Kerry Kittles and Stephon Marbury were probably the Nets biggest names this particular season, but I am not positive that it's either of them.

146 - Tyrone Nesby - The card design is obviously a straight-forward copy of the first Hoops set, although the fonts are a little off here as is typical with these things.

37 - Michael Doleac - A big Magic dude.

157 - Tim James - Here's a look at the back. Again, they more or less reproduce the original, adding a "Ten Years" slogan at the bottom.

6 - Glenn Robinson - Big Dog!

59 - William Avery - For some reason the Wolves were one of my favorite teams to play as in the inaugural NBA2K game, which came out this season. My only memories of Avery were as a video game sprite.

5 - Michael Olowokandi Hoopla - This parallel has a bit of a foil sheen to it. Olowokandi was notoriously a #1 overall pick and while he wasn't necessarily a bad player, his offense always held him back from any chance he had at being a big impact center. That, and, well... Clippers.

44 - Cal Bowdler - This is the first time I've ever heard this name before.

34 - Vladimir Stepania - Stepania was mostly a backup in the league, and ended his career rather early after an age 28 season with the stumbling Blazers.

173 - Mario Elie - When I think of Mario Elie, the words "crafty dude" come to mind. Also, he won 3 titles. I wish he had been able to play with the Blazers for longer.

97 - Paul Pierce - Well, this pack was kind of a dud, wasn't it? At least Paul Pierce is here to give it a bit of legitmacy.