Friday, May 24, 2019


HOYLE MARK sent me the 2019 Topps Utz SCHERZER MAX card and it's a sweet.

Or should I say salty?

Thanks MARK!

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Tuesday, May 21, 2019

A Kruking Awesome Mail Day from Mike


A signed John Kruk baseball card! A 1995 Fleer hockey card! Sometimes you have to go through hell to get to heaven. That's what Mike did by including that Fleer card! The Three Kruk's are awesome, though. Especially that signed one. My third signed Kruk card!!!! All of them, as well, gifts from friendly baseball card collectors. This hobby is the best hobby.

Thanks Mike!

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Monday, May 13, 2019

A Gaggle of John Kruk's

Everybody's favorite Twins collector and Twitterer and Twitter-seller Jenny Miller sent me a ludicrous number of John Kruk's the other day, as well as some Nationals cards for my nephews. I'm hoping to get them back interested in baseball cards but they seem resistant.

Here are the cards kind of just spread out.

The Michael Taylor 1976 Topps card from the 2015 Archives set, sneaking in there on the left hand side, is beautiful. Also got some Ryan Zimmerman's, Strasburg's, Scherzer's, a Harper, and some of the more common guys, too. Though, Harper's play of late is more like that of a common player than a superstar.

And here are eight of them that were brand new for my Kruk collection.  That Tombstone Pizza one I had never heard of; and Jenny 1995 Fleer'd me. Not out of spite the way some collector's taunt me with that set, but I think out of kindness. See, 1995 Fleer Kruk has been a missing card for a while and getting it kind of puts me out of my misery.

Thank you Jenny!

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Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Second of two mail Days!

Matthew (Twitter) sent me a surprise mail day the other week which arrived on the same day at AJ's. And like AJ's they had both John Kruk's and Darryl Strawberry's. But he stepped it up too and included two Dwight Gooden's! A positive potpourri of cards.

I'd like to point out the second row, first card: The "Stars of '88" (it's wrongly position on the card backs, sorry). It's one of those unlicensed cards that was rampant in the late 1980s and it a great new one for my collection. That Topps Big Kruk, too, was new.

Generally 1989 Bowman was ridiculed for being over-sized and reverted to normal, standard size in its sophomore issue. Does Topps Big suffer the same criticism? How do you feel about them? I remember having to buy the 8 pocket pages.

Thanks Matthew! You're awesome.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2019

First of two mail days!

This is the first of two awesome mail day's I recently got in the mail. They came the same day, a Monday, so that was even sweeter! It features both my PC's: Darryl Strawberry and John Kruk and is an array of 1980s and 1990s cards. One from 2012 for good measure. These were sent by The Lost Collector (Twitter | Blog).

Of particular note: The Donruss Pop-Up All-Stars is "popped" and it was neat to see it in 3-D... I'm sure I popped it up when I had it as a kid but the copies of the card I have were unpopped. The 1990 Upper Deck is the Error card with no copyright on the back and joins its corrected sibling!

The Kruk's include roughly 17,984 copies (I lost count) of 1993 Donruss. Which is what I get for sending AJ a Sonny Gray card.

AJ Thank you so much!!!

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Thursday, April 18, 2019

Darryl Strawberry Degrees of Separation

Darryl Strawberry made his first Major League Baseball start on May 6, 1983 against the Cincinnati Reds. It was a 13 inning game which the Mets won. He faced Mario Soto, which seems to be bad timing as Soto was on fire: he pitched 9 inning, struck out 12, and walked 1.

Strawberry had six plate appearances going 0-4 with three strikeouts, a foul pop fly, and two walks. In his second walk, in the bottom of the 13th inning, he stole second base and later scored the actual game winning, go-ahead run after George Foster's home run. Veteran Tom Seaver was the starter for the Mets.

I thought it would be interesting to play a little game to see how I could connect Strawberry to other players. And it goes like this:

Who was the oldest player in the Mets starting lineup when Strawberry debuted? Then I went to that player's debut to see who was the oldest player on his MLB debut, and so on. And then looking forward, I went to Strawberry's last game and found the youngest player in the starting lineup that day. Looking at regular season games only.

In Darryl Strawberry's MLB debut, the oldest player in the starting lineup was was Rusty Staub, who was born on April 1, 1944 (Tom Seaver was second oldest, born November 17, 1944).

Staub debuted in MLB for the Houston Colt .45's on April 9, 1963 against the San Francisco Giants. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Pete Runnels, who was born on January 28, 1928.

Runnels debuted in MLB for the Washington Senators on July 1, 1951 against the Philadelphia Athletics, which was the first game of a double-header at Shibe Park. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Clyde Klutzz, who was born on December 12, 1917.

Klutzz debuted in MLB for the Boston Braves on April 20, 1942 against the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was a defensive substitution at catcher, replacing Ernie Lombardi. He went 1 for 2. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Tony Cuccinello, who was born on November 8, 1907.

Cuccinello debuted in MLB for the Cincinnati Reds on April 15, 1930 against the Pittsburgh Pirates. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Harry Heilmann, who was born on August 3, 1894. Harry is in the Hall of Fame.

Heilmann debuted in MLB for the Detroit Tigers on May 16, 1914 against the Boston Red Sox. He was a pinch-hitter and substitution for Hugh High in left field and went 0-1. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Sam Crawford, who was born on April 18, 1880. Crawford is in the Hall of Fame.

Crawford debuted in MLB for the Cincinnati Reds in 1899, but Baseball Reference records don't go that far back. The first game on the site that Crawford played in was on April 14, 1908 against the Chicago White Sox. The oldest person in the starting lineup that day was Ed Siever, who was born on April 2, 1875.

Siever debuted in 1901 for the Detroit Tigers; but like Crawford his first game isn't listed on Baseball Reference until 1908. At this point I'm running in circles. So the game is ruled over going backwards.

So let's move forward! Let's look at Strawberry's last game but then find the youngest player in the starting lineup and do that going forward.

Darryl Strawberry played his last regular season baseball game for the New York Yankees on October 3, 1999 against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. He went 0-1 with a walk. Strawberry's last regular season hit in the Major's was two days earlier on October 1st, a home run, his 335th. Strawberry did play in the postseason that year, but this game is only looking at regular season. The youngest player in the starting lineup for the Yankees on October 3, 1999 was D'Angelo Jimenez who was born on December 21, 1977.

Jimenez played in his last MLB for the Washington Nationals on September 29, 2007 against the Philadelphia Phillies. He pinch-hit. Well, he got a pinch strikeout. The youngest person in the starting lineup that day was Ryan Zimmerman, who was born on September 28, 1984. He's an active player so I guess I'm done.

So in this game the line of players connected to Darryl Strawberry are:

Ed Siver -- Sam Crawford -- Harry Heilmann -- Tony Cuccinello -- Clyde Klutzz -- Pete Runnels -- Rusty Staub -- Darryl Strawberry -- D'Angelo Jimenez -- Ryan Zimmerman

This list features 2 Hall of Fame ball players. If you play, how did you fare?

Since this is a baseball card blog, primarily, here are the cards of players I have in my collection!

Rusty Staub's 1983 Topps, Darryl Strawberry's 1983 Topps Traded, and 2018 Stadium Club Ryan Zimmerman.


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Friday, April 12, 2019

Topps & Hall of Fame Project 2000

These guys retired a while ago... Tim Raines and Wade Boggs.

First,Wade Boggs after the 1999 season. While a Devil Ray for just two years, they were so desperate for attention they retired his number in 2000.

Tim Raines kind of fizzled towards the end. His last base card for Topps was in 2000 which show his impressive stats up to 1999. Raines did play some ball in 2001 and 2002 and was issued an Update card but my project is mostly focused on base cards. Though his update I think has full stats. Dammit. I might have to really reconsider some aspects of my Hall of Fame collection!

Raines was elected to the Hall of Fame after what could be considered a peer-pressure and bullying campaign on social media. He should have been elected earlier and I wouldn't be surprised if he felt both honored and insulted to be enshrined in Cooperstown.

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