Tuesday, March 21, 2017

I Like John Kruk and I Cannot Lie

The estimable Mike from Not Another Baseball Card Blog recently sent me a slew of John Kruk's with a Darryl Strawberry on top. So I decided to make lyrics about the trade and Kruk to the tune of Sir Mix-a-Lot's "Baby Got Back", only this is called "Peter Got Kruk"...

Peter Got Kruk

Oh, my, word. Mikey, look at that Kruk.
He is so big.
He looks like one of those hot dog vendors.
But, you know, I could totes down a dog now.
I only eat them at the park in the the summer time.
However, that Kruk, is just so suave.
I can't believe he was a Padre, and, like a White Sox— gross. Riiiight!
He's just so… hick!

I like John Kruk and I cannot lie
You card collector's can't deny
That when Kruk struts up with a 86 inch waist
And a baseball bat in your face
You think Hmm, he is such a beast
And on pitching he used to feast
Deep in the gap he'd hit them
Spit on the base path all of his phlegm
Oh wowsers, I wanna eat with him
In anyone's kitchen
Some homefries and some mustard
Wash it down with some custard
Or, a burger made of lentil
You wanna watch some Yentl?
Well, 'scuse me, 'scuse me
You are the beast and the beauty
You're an above average Phillie
To hell with Curt Schilling
No etiquette
Tweetin' like he's got Tourettes
I'm sad that ESPN
Said John Kruk ain't the thing
And they cut him out of BBTN
I hope he finds himself some Zen
Hey, Guys (What?) Guys! (What?)
Have you got yourself some Kruk (Heck yea!)
Why don't you trade! (Trade it!) Trade it!
(Trade it!)
Trade me that baseball card!
Peter got Kruk!

(WV Face with Louisville Slugger)
Peter got Kruk!
(WV Face with Louisville Slugger)
(WV Face with Louisville Slugger)

I like Kruk cards, a lot
You can believe it or not
I much prefer him with a beard and a mullet
Shoving food in his gullet
I hope to collect them all
And no, duplicates, no, no
Let us talk about stats
Cause stats are where the party's at
He hit a hundred homers
And twice as many doubles
While blowing pink gum bubbles
With gaseous farts like rubbles
And he could be real gnarly
Getting mocked by Chris Farley
You can have Chris Farley
I want my comics like Peanuts
We must thank the S.D. Padres, Chris James of the Phillies
And Randy Ready
But I gotta be straight when I say The White Sox?
What a big mistake
Their he couldn't rake
He only played in forty-five games
Some of them with Tim Raines
I wish he was still playing
Cause he's awe- and -some
I'd be better off drinking rum
So, ladies! (Yeah!) Ladies (Yeah!)
You wanna send me to Hades (Yeah!)
That's too bad. I am rad!
And maybe even a little mad
Peter got Kruk!

Peter got Kruk!
Yeah, traders…when it comes to cardboard
BCW ain't got nothing to do with my selection.
3200 count box? Ha ha, only if it's 3.5 x 2.5.

And on and on…. Peter got Kruk!

Ok, so let's look at the cards (Finally!) These are the Kruk cards that Mike sent...

1988 Leaf, Card #176
1988 Score Traded, Card # 70T
1990 Bowman, Card # 154
1990 OPC, Card # 469
1990 Topps, Card # 469
1992 Fleer, Card #537
1992 Pinnacle, Card # 147
1992 Ultra, Card #246
1993 Upper Deck, Card #38 Team Checklist
1994 Ultra Phillies Finest, Card #9
2016 Topps Archives, Card #240

This is Kruk in transition. 1990! So long ago. This is right before he was ruined by Philadelphia. Ruined in the good way. As you can see in the Fleer below, his hair is growing out wonderfully.

Pretty sure this Fleer photo and the Pinnacle below and the Ultra below that are from the same game or the same series? What do you think?

This is my third card in the Phillies Finest set. Very excited by this. On the card back, Kruk really looks like he's having none of it. Or indigestion.

With the exception of the 2016 Topps Archives it's like watching age-progression software going from baby-faced to quasi-Geico Caveman. The Topps Archives car is really nice. I hope they do something really special for their 69th.

The Strawberry:

1990 Bowman, Card # 154

He looks bored.  But look at the stats breakdown on the card back. So awesome. My favorite.

Well, maybe my next song will be a little easier because "Baby Got Back" was hard to write over.

MIKE! Thank you so so so very much for these cards. Awesome-sauce.

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Beer Walk the Plank

Matt at the awesome Bob Walk the Plank and I decided to trade beer as well as baseball cards. This is certainly a more expensive habit than cardboard, but in involves cardboard still in the boxing & shipping process so I do not feel as though I am cheating on the hobby! My part of the trade was to visit a local brewery called Trillium which Matt confessed was a bucket list brewery. So, from that perspective how could I not but help to fulfill the dream?

In return for the twelve cans in four varieties, Mr. BWTP sent me twelve cans and bottles. The game was on. First, a picture of the starting line-up:

Let's treat this like a high school yearbook group photograph:

Back row, left to right
1. Founders Lizard of Koz
2. Foothills Sexual Chocolate
3. Founders KBS
4. Great Lakes Chillwave Double IPA
5. Lagunitas High West-ified Imperial Coffee Stout
6. Founders Frootwood
7. Fat Heads Hop Juju Imperial IPA
8. Stone Xocoveza

Front row, left to right
1. Greenbriar Valley Devil Anse IPA
2. Sixpoint Brewery 5 Beans
3. Champion Brewery Santa's Cookies
4. Bell's Hopslam IPA

Matt also thoughtfully sent me beer related stuff. Coasters and a stopper.

When I took the photo it wasn't oriented like that. What the hell?

I'm an IPA person and I was most excited to have a selection sent that included that delicious style, but also introduced me to new flavors. I was surprised by a couple of them because they aren't beers I ever would have tried on my own (Frootwood and the Lizard of Koz, a blueberry/chocolate bourbon barrel stout known as a dessert beer). The Sexual Chocolate too was very tasty. The coffee stouts were different, too and over all I like coffee and I like stout, but I'm not certain I like them together. I won't rule the genre of beer out, but it's good to try new things.

One thing I can say is that I couldn't drink the Lizard of Koz all in one sitting/evening. This was the beer that I was most nervous about but my oh my oh my: it was shockingly good. I have a sweet tooth that won't quit, but found myself stopping up the bottle for another day (today, to be exact!).

I still have a number of beers still to try (the 5Beans and all the IPA's) and I am looking forward to working my way through them in the coming weeks

I can't not mention Darryl Strawberry, so, Darryl Strawberry.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Baseball Cards Binder #9

This is the last post of the cards from the Biner and features more or less or hodge-podge of baseball cards of many really good baseball players from the 1980s and wicked early 1990s. As well as some Hall of Famers! Woot-woot.

Page 49

1-3: Roberto Alomar, San Diego Padres, 1988 Donruss Card #34 NOT for Trade
4: Roberto Alomar, San Diego Padres,1989 Topps Card #206
5: Juan Gonzalez, Texas Rangers, 1990 Bowman Card #492
6-7: Juan Gonzalez, Texas Rangers, 1990 Topps Card #331
8-9: Steve Avery, Atlanta Braves, 1990 Donruss, Card #39

Page 50
1: Mark Grace, Chicago Cubs, 1990 Donruss, Card #577 TRADED
2: Dave Justice, Atlanta Braves, 1990 Donruss, Card #704
3-6: Frank Thomas, Chicago White Sox, 1990 Topps, Card #414  NOT for Trade
7-8: Nolan Ryan, Texas Rangers, 1990 Topps, Card #1 TRADED 1
9: Nolan Ryan, Texas Rangers, 1990 Donruss, Card #166

Page 51
1: Steve Carlton, Philadelphia Phillies, 1985 Fleer, Card #246
2: John Smoltz, Atlanta Braves, 1990 Donruss, Card #642
3: John Smoltz, Atlanta Braves, 1989 Upper Deck, Card #17 NOT for Trade
4: John Smoltz, Atlanta Braves, 1990 Donruss, Card #BC-12 TRADED
5-8: Tom Glavine, Atlanta Braves, 1988 Topps, Card #779 NOT for Trade
9: Tom Glavine, Atlanta Braves, 1988 Donruss, Card #644 NOT for Trade

Page 52

1: Dennis Eckersley, Boston Red Sox, 1983 Topps, Card #270
2: Jeff Reardon, Montreal Expos, 1983 Topps, Card #290 TRADED
3: Jack Morris, Detroit Tigers, 1983 Topps, Card #65
4-6: Cecil Fielder, Toronto Blue Jays, 1986 Topps, Card #386
7: Terry Pendleton, St. Louis Cardinals, 1986 Topps, Card #528
8-9: Chuck Knoblauch, Minnesota Twins, 1990 Bowman, Card #415

That's it! That's the end of the binder! Did'ya see anything ya wanted, matey? Something happened there -- not sure what, really.

Thanks for taking my cards! And...

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Happy Birthday Darryl Strawberry

I wasn't going to blog today until I realized today is Darryl Strawberry's birthday. Happy 55th! It's hard to believe he's just 12 years older than me.

To celebrate I'll to a hybrid post to showcase a recent purchase and a recent trade!  I spoil you, I'm sure.

The trade is different than normal. It's not baseball cards: it's beer. Many of you may also read Bob Walk the Plank, and if you don't...then walk the plank!  I sent Matt some beer, and in return, he sent me a varied selection which I am working my way through. It seems only fitting in some way that today I've tried North Carolina's own Foothills Sexual Chocolate.

This is better than I expected. I'm a chocoholic so was nervous about the merging of this sacred bean with a stout but it works, for me, because I'm not overpowered by aroma or chocolate essence. I get more true stout flavor than anything else. Others might have a better palate for distinguishing whatever the heck they put in these things now, but I'm relatively, blissfully ignorant about such things. Plus, it's a rather strong beer for my frame and after about half I am floating three inches above the earth surrounded by unicorns, rainbows, and pretty effervescent bubbles that tickle as the pop. Hence, this post would be considered B.U.I (Blogging Under the Influence).

The card I'd like to show off is one from a recent Sportlots purchase. I'm not sure I knew about Sportlots until Tom from Eamus Catuli! told me about them. So I came them a look and found myself by 16 cards. Shipping costs more than evened out the cheapness of the prices, but over all it was a good transaction and put a DENT in some of my Strawberry needs.

Sober was I at the time, I think, but two of the cards I bought was the 1984 Topps Tiffany Darryl Strawberry and the counterpart 1984 Topps Super. At $10 for the Tiffany card it was pretty expensive but it's really a lovely baseball card and fits in nicely with the other issues (Nestle, O-Pee-Chee, Topps, and Topps Super). The Topps Super was far cheaper. It's so big! (If I could have a dollar for every time I've heard that... I'd be in debt).

Tiffany on top; Super on bottom.

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Baseball Card Binder #8

These 1990 Donruss cards have me wanting veggie hotdogs and french fries. So Ketchup-y. But, maybe you want one or some of these guys?  If so, let me know.

So, like, was it common to be a rated rookie two years in a row? Alex Sanchez of the Toronto Blue Jays was in 1989 and in 1990. He was a rookie for a long-ass time!

Page 45
1-2: Kevin Mitchell, All-Star, Card #715 TRADED 1
3: Ken Griffey Jr. Seattle Mariners, Card #365
4-5: Jerome Walton, Chicago Cubs, Card #285
6-7: Greg Vaughn, Milwaukee Brewers, Card #37 TRADED 1
8-9: Bart Giamatti, Commissioner, Card #716

Page 46
1: Eric Anthony, Houston Astros, Card #34 TRADED
2: Ruben Sierra, Texas Rangers, Diamond King, Card #3a Error card - No Black Notch on Back TRADED
3: John Olerud, Toronto Blue Jays, Card #711 TRADED
4: Brian Downing, California Angels, Diamond King, Card #10a Error Card, Reversed TRADED
5: Checklist 640-BC26, Card #700 TRADED
6: Howard Johnson, All-Star, Card #654 TRADED

Page 47 (The Strawberry's are all dupes and are therefore, open to trade: shocking!)
1: Don Mattingly, New York Yankees, Card #190
2-3: Don Mattingly, New York Yankees, 1990 Topps Card #200
4-5: Darryl Strawberry, 1990 Bowman, Card #11
6-8: Darryl Strawberry, 1990 Donruss, Card #235
2359: Darryl Strawberry, 1990 Topps, Card #600

Page 48
1-3: Darryl Strawberry, 1990 Score, Card #200
4: Darryl Strawberry, 1988 Fleer Star Stickers, Card #106 TRADED
5: Darryl Strawberry, 1990 Upper Deck, Card #182
6: Darryl Strawberry, 1988 Topps Sticker Backs, Card #21
6a: Darryl Strawberry, 1989 Topps Sticker Backs, Card #53 (not pictured: stickers are on Mike A. Marshall #67 and Jim Pressley #223) -- not for trade

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Baseball Card Binder #7

Let's see... what comes after 1988 Donruss? Oh, 1989 Donruss. Like the last post, many "Rated Rookies". I wouldn't take advice from anyone in the prospecting business, especially when it comes to labeling baseball cards. It feels like the baseball equivalent of the Madden Curse or being featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated.  Being a "Rated Rookie" or "Future Stars" feels like the kiss of mediocrity. Mind you, they do get it right sometimes, but that seems like the exception. But perhaps my idea of a "Star" is different than theirs or yours? I think it's a Hall of Fame player or, someone on the very cusp of consideration for the Hall.

This set is a prime example. Ken Griffey Jr. got a "Rated Rookie" card, so did Randy Johnson. Ok. Good job. That's two out of twenty: you're batting .100. Gary Sheffield, to be fair, is a cusp player. But, oh, several other players had Rookie cards that year: John Smoltz and Craig Biggio being two, who are also in the Hall of Fame. Though I think Biggio is more of an inductee into the Hall of Really Good & You Gave a Great Effort.

Page 39
1-5: Sandy Alomar, Jr., San Diego Padres, Card #28
6-9: Steve Searcy, Detroit Tigers, Card #29

Page 40
1-4: Carlos Quintana, Boston Red Sox, Card #37
5-6: Ramon Martinez, Los Angeles Dodgers, Card #464
7-9: Greg Harris, San Diego Padres, Card #34

Page 41
1-3: John Smoltz, Atlanta Braves, Card #642 NOT for Trade
4: Walt Weiss, Oakland Athletics, Card #446
5: Erik Hanson, Seattle Mariners, Card #32
6-7: Craig Biggio, Houston Astros, Card #561 NOT for Trade
8-9: Gregg Olson, Baltimore Orioles, Card #46

Page 42
1-2: Gregg Olson, Baltimore Orioles, Card #46
3: Gary Sheffield, Milwaukee Brewers, Card #31 NOT for Trade
4-7: Alex Sanchez, Toronto Blue Jays, Card #47
8: Mark Grace, Chicago Cubs, Card #255
9: Mark Grace, Chicago Cubs, Diamond King, Card #17

Page 43
1-2: Dave Gallagher, Chicago White Sox, Card #384
3: Cameron Drew, Houston Astros, Card #30
4-5: Chris Sabo, Cincinnati Reds, Diamond Kings, Card #4
6: Chris Sabo, Cincinnati Reds, Card #317
7-9: Mike Harkey, Chicago Cubs, Card #43

Page 44
1-3: Pete Harnisch, Baltimore Orioles, Card #44
4-5: Traded
6-7: Ron Jones, Philadelphia Phillies, Card #40
8-9: Dave West, New York Mets, Card #41

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Early March Baseball

On Friday and Saturday I went with some of my family to see two spring training baseball games in Florida. This was the second year in a row I've attended spring training, last year I saw three games later in the month.

The two games were Cardinals at Nationals (ss) at the brand new Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach and then Nationals at Cardinals at Roger Dean Stadium, Jupiter.

The Nationals lost the first game 2-1 in ten innings in a match that featured starting pitchers Michael Wacha and Stephen Strasburg (Box Score). We got there during Cardinals batting practice and walked around the park checking out the views, the concessions and the like. This was the second Nationals home game in this new ballpark and it was very lovely and well designed. Fan and particularly kid friendly with plenty of concourse space to walk around and berm to lounge on. The game wasn't sold out so the uncrowded-ness allowed my nephews to wander around and I saw many kids playing catch. Great beer, too. I had Due South 3 IPA on draft which was new to me. And then I followed that with an old standby, Goose Island IPA, also on draft. The pretzel was good and the peanuts superior. As a vegetarian I didn't see too many more options for sustenance. This was a split squad and featured A-team players like Turner, Murphy, Harper, Werth, Rendon, Zimmerman, Yalor, and Strasburg. The B-squad won their game against the Marlins at Roger Dean Stadium.

Strasburg's first pitch to Tommy Pham

Bryce Harper swinging way over this pitch.
Now for some photos from around the Ballpark at the Palm Beaches:

Saturday 4 March 2017:

Speaking of Roger Dean Stadium... that's where we were Saturday. The Nationals and Cardinals tied the second game 1-1 which was started by Gio Gonzalez versus Lance Lynn (Box Score). Roger Dean is a little older and therefore not as open as the Ballpark at Palm Beaches, but for whatever reason, the experience was far superior. We got to watch Nationals batting practice and my nephews got 11 and 12 autographs on a baseball. Some of the signatures I think they got were Dusty Baker, Chris Heisey, Michael A. Taylor, Clint Robinson, Austin Adams, and Brandon Snyder. There were others but I don't recall who. One of my nephews had Chris Heisey sign one of the tickets, which I kept. After the top of one inning, centerfielder Michael A. Taylor threw my nephew the last-out ball. It bounced off his glove and me, being the cool uncle I am, caught it off the ricochet. Not a lot of "starters" at this game but that's ok. It was baseball. Had another pretzel and enjoyed a can of Victory's Summer Love Ale.

Michael A Taylor

Michael A. Taylor signing my sister's game-worn Taylor jersey

Our seats right behind the Nats dugout
Now for some beer pictures! Here are the brews I enjoyed at the two games:

Due South 3 IPA in a souvenir cup, West Palm

Goose Island IPA in a throw away cup
with the Racing Presidents, West Palm

The Goose tap! West Palm

Victory's Summer Love Ale, Jupiter
I had also, at the hotel, a beer from Sam Adams called Hopscape. I had mostly sworn off Sam Adams because I just don't care for them much but this at least was a drinkable beer. And it helped me unwind.

Spring Training is so wonderful and relaxed. You can hear a lot of the action like the coaches instructions. It's very cool and the players are also more approachable because, of course, the games mean nothing. At Spring Training you can stick your balls in a guys face and have him happily smile and accept them into his hands.

Thanks for stopping by!