Saturday, September 15, 2007

Featured Breaks

Due to logistics out of my control I couldn't quite make it out to a bi-weekly cardshow - I had wanted to see what the 2007 Upper Deck SP Rookie Edition looked like in-hand. I've seen the cards on Ebay and I like seeing 2007 rookies like Tim Lincecum, Ryan Braun, Hunter Pence, Phil Hughes, Alex Gordon, Troy Tulowitzki, Brandon Wood, Hideki Okajima, Dice-K, Akinori Iwamura, et al pictured on cards [true rookie cards or not] that were printed to look like they were from 1993, 1995 and 1996 SP products.

Two packs of 2007 Goudey retail [$2.99 each] - I wanted to get a feel for how these cards looked and I pulled about eight green backs, seven red backs and one Brooks Robinson Heads Up subset card. I like the rendering of the cards, the 'oddball' size that apparently mimics the originals - but for myself, it comes to the same old story of being as a collector who likes to randomly get stuff [mostly cards] in-person at the stadium. You have to really pick and choose which cards you want signed and extra cards of the same veteran MLB players only add to the confusion, particularly if the players don't even sign all that often: Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran, Magglio Ordonez, Gary Sheffield, Craig Biggio, Joe Crede, ICHIRO, Kenji Joh-mama, Greg Maddux and Gary Matthews Jr. [Angels].

Speaking as Angels' fan, Matthews Jr. has made occasional highlight reel grabs and has stabilized centerfield for the Angels [for the most part]. At the plate, he has shown he can hit for power, run, drive in runs, leadoff and also be capable of hitting in the middle of the order.

While his numbers have dragged along through the second half of the year, he seems to be a player [when healthy] that is capable of doing something good in any given at-bat.

Unfortunately the Angels are still $10 million for a guy who can't crack 20 home runs and .260? Who does Matthews Jr. think he is, Andruw Jones? There have also been HGH allegations during the spring that he is apparently being made even more accountable for [since Troy Glaus and Rick Ankiel's names have come out for alleged steroid/HGH usage].

My philosophical take - I think the buybacks are the most 'attractive' common pulls out there besides the [most likely 'hard to pull'] autograph cards from sporting icons like Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan. The buybacks seemed to be seeded in a realistic manner, making them relatively more common and easier to find [right now]. I think I'll go to Ebay to see if I can pick at least one card up for a price of a blaster box of Goudey.

Two packs of 2007 Bowman Chrome retail [$2.99 each] - I don't like these packs because they come with only three cards in them. If you are grabbing two packs from a retail store like Target, then you probably a long way from a hit, as far as an autograph is concerned. Cards pulled include: Brett Myers, Paul LoDuca, John Smoltz, Mitch Maier [rookie logo card, which means 95 percent of the time, he has probably had a rookie card release from a previous year], Whitt Robbins [first-year prospect card] and Jeff Locke [first-year prospect card].

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