Monday, April 11, 2016

Welcome to Baseball Every Night

Taking its title off of ESPN's Baseball Tonight, Baseball Every Night will be a place were I sound off on things baseball: from the games I watch and attend, to baseball cards, and maybe book reviews.

Like many other American boys, in my childhood I breathed baseball just about 24/7: collecting baseball cards, buying Slurpee's for the coins, played baseball (not very well), etc. In college my focus left baseball, so from about 1992-2000 I have really no idea what was going on in the sport. Then I moved to Boston which rekindled my love for the game.

On a visit to my childhood home I rummaged through some old boxes and found a box set of 1986 Fleer Updated Trading cards, a slew of 7-11 coins, other coins, and a complete Superman II set. This kind of set in motion a "stroll down amnesia lane", to quote Robin Williams' character Mr. Keating from the wonderful movie Dead Poets Society.



In the summer of 2015, I bought about five or six boxes of 1987 Topps baseball cards. I think it was five unopened boxes of wax packs and one box of rack packs, the kind with three sections of cards with a glossy all-star insert on top. The attempt was to remember what it was like as a kid to open the packs. I did not chew the gum though I was tempted. I was able to make two complete sets from those boxes with about 2000 dupes. I'm sure the world doesn't have much desire for duplicate 1987 Topps baseball cards, but I plan to put a list of them on this blog and if anyone wants them, they can buy, trade, etc. and I'll happily package them up for you.





To be honest, I loved opening the cards and seeing the cardboard likenesses of my youth. Some of the memories came back to me. Many have not. I remember trading cards, but I can't really remember how I did this. I am sure I made sacrifices to obtain better conditioned cards than the ones I had. I also remember playing fantasy baseball such as it was in the mid-80's. But again, I don't remember how we did it? I vaguely remember writing everything down on paper, checking stats in the Washington Post daily, lamenting the late west coast games...

My favorite players growing up were Darryl Strawberry, Johnny Ray, and as a joke Bo Diaz. The joke was because a friend called him Bo "Days" rather than Dee-azz. Maybe he was dyslexic and I'm a jerk for poking fun at him?? I also loved Ryne Sandberg, John Kruk, and Barry Larkin. Kruk was a beautiful specimen, especially once he grew the mullet and seemed permanently dirty and stained from dirt and tobacco...




Seeing these cards come out of the packs that I was opening was nice. When I started looking around the internet for baseball cards and blogs and the like I found Tony L's Off Hiatus. This led me to a number of other blogs and Twitter accounts and the like and so on to this blog, now. Which is quite a departure from my other interest.

I feel very far behind in the baseball card world as so much has changed since I stopped collecting in roughly 1991 or 1992. I am collecting the 2016 Topps Series One set and am impressed, naturally, with the advances in photography, quality, etc. But there is a lot I think I loathe about it too. Other than that, I don't think at the moment I have a collecting focus. I did get some complete sets for Christmas (Topps 1983, 1984, 1985, and 1986) last year. I enjoyed very much going through them and reading the backs of cards, seeing the trivia and long forgotten names.

So I'm not sure what this blog will be all about or how regularly it will be updated. I don't presently have a scanner so cell phone camera photographs of anything will be the norm for now.  But, if you find this page and check back: thank you. Hope you enjoy reading it.

5 comments:

  1. Interesting that your other interest is Sylvia Plath. That gives me memories of my freshman year in college and taking "Introduction to Poetry" not knowing it was an English Major weed-out class/requirement. One of the first poems we had to read was "Sleep in the Mojave Desert." From that day on, I knew what a firedog was even if I had no idea as to Ms. Plath's backstory.

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  2. Hi Tony, I too didn't know what a firedog was either. I thought it was some kind of flaming hot dog! (I'm still this stupid, too.) Plath has been such a serious interest for so long that I've decided to go back to my first love which was baseball cards. It's a good way to unwind, as I'm sure you well know.

    ~pks

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  3. I built the 1987 set about two years ago through trades with bloggers. I didn't buy one pack! It was a fun challenge and one the cardsphere was more than happy to help out with.
    Hit me up at http://tilnextyear-tom.blogspot.com/ if you ever want to make a trade. I'm a Sandberg super collector and might have some dupes to pass along.
    Welcome to the blog world!

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  4. Welcome to the community! I'm fairly new and like other newcomers (and long-timers), I'm thoroughly enjoying the time spent reading the blogs, and am currently working my way through yours. Glad to have ya!

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