Monday, December 31, 2012

Dime box finds for the end of 2012

I picked up about 65 cards for $6 at a card show trip - the random 2011 Playoff Contenders cards intrigued me the most, even though I'll still have to look up most of the players pictured on the cards, to see if they are legitimate MLB prospects or fillers used in a non-MLB licensed baseball product.

I tried to fill out my pile with a few cards of star players - I have my share of cards of guys who played five, 10, 15 and 20 years ago, but it's hard not to be nostaglic and impulsively flip through cards I may not have had an opportunity to pick up during my collecting adolescence.

1992 Bowman Frank Thomas #114 - the action shot of Thomas swinging away at a familiar looking [if somewhat obscured] Anaheim Stadium caught my eye.
1994 Fleer Ultra Ken Griffey Jr. 6 of 25 - Award Winners insert

1997 Bowman's Best Previews Ken Griffey Jr. #BBP 2
1998 Fleer Tradition Mike Piazza #391
1998 Sports Illustrated Ken Griffey Jr. #51
2000 Upper Deck Ken Griffey Jr. #EP-4
- Epic Performances insert
2000 Upper Deck Ionix Lance Berkman #81

2002 Donruss Diamond Kings C.C. Sabathia #040 - stamped sample

2003 Fleer Tradition Nomar Garciaparra #22 of 25 - Milestones insert
2005 Bowman Draft AFLAC Cameron Maybin AFL 11 - I lost a similar card to a TTM request years ago that is still MIA.
2005 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites Rick Monday #110
2009 Upper Deck Tommy Mendonca #USAB-TB
- USA insert
2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Tyler Goeddel #5 - Elite Series insert
2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Zeke DeVoss #11 - Elite Series insert
2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Logan Verrett / Phillip Evans #6 - Building Blocks Duo insert
2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Jeff Ames / Steven Ames #11 - Building Blocks Duo insert
2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Larry Greene / Mitch Walding / Roman Quinn #10 - Building Blocks Trio insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Travis Harrison #DT 1
2011 Playoff Contenders Lenny Linsky #DT 3
2011 Playoff Contenders Burch Smith #DT 4
2011 Playoff Contenders Ronald Guzman #DT 6
2011 Playoff Contenders Anthony Meo #DT 10
2011 Playoff Contenders Alex Hassan #DT 14
2011 Playoff Contenders Nick Fleece #DT 19
2011 Playoff Contenders Andrew Susac #DT 20
2011 Playoff Contenders Tony Zych #DT 21
2011 Playoff Contenders B.A. Vollmuth #DT 22
2011 Playoff Contenders Blake Snell #DT 26
2011 Playoff Contenders Kylin Turnbull #DT 28
2011 Playoff Contenders Evan Marshall #DT 30
- x2
2011 Playoff Contenders Jordan Cote #DT 31
2011 Playoff Contenders Aaron Westlake #DT 32
2011 Playoff Contenders Tommy La Stella #DT 42
2011 Playoff Contenders Cole Green #DT 45
2011 Playoff Contenders Matt Szczur #DT 46
2011 Playoff Contenders Cristhian Adames #DT 55
2011 Playoff Contenders Forrest Snow #DT 56
2011 Playoff Contenders Tyler Gibson #DT 57
2011 Playoff Contenders Josh Osich #DT 60
2011 Playoff Contenders Zach Good #DT 64
2011 Playoff Contenders Madison Boer #DT 71
2011 Playoff Contenders Kevin Comer #DT 73
2011 Playoff Contenders Jason Esposito #DT 74
2011 Playoff Contenders Dan Vogelbach #DT 75
2011 Playoff Contenders Cameron Gallagher #DT 77
- x2
2011 Playoff Contenders Jordan Swaggerty #DT 87
2011 Playoff Contenders Brian Dupra #DT 88
2011 Playoff Contenders Taylor Featherston #DT 97
2011 Playoff Contenders Matt Skole #DT 98
2011 Playoff Contenders Joseph Musgrove #DT 99
2011 Playoff Contenders Carson Smith #DT 100
- x2
2011 Playoff Contenders Kevin Matthews #4 - Future Stars insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Tyler Gibson #11 - Future Stars insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Logan Verrett #13 - Future Stars insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Jake Lowery #3 - Johnny Bench Award Winners insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Andrew Susac / Josh Osich #2 - Winning Combos insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Dan Vogelbach / Hudson Boyd #5 - Winning Combos insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Chad Comer / Jason Krizan #7 - Winning Combos insert
2011 Playoff Contenders Brian Flynn / Tyler Grimes #11 - Winning Combos insert
2011 Playoff Contenders 18 Chris Reed / Scott Sondgress #18 - Winning Combos insert
2011 Topps Allen and Ginter Josh Hamilton #HH 50 - Hometown Heroes insert

2012 Topps Yoshinori Tateyama #437

Cardboard curiosity - Mike Piazza

I found a 1998 Fleer Tradition [#391] card of the former All-Star catcher in a dime box along with other 'goodies' that I'll highlight at some point soon - maybe the interesting but ultimately trivial fact about this card is Piazza is shown as a Florida Marlin, which he ended up playing five games with before getting traded to the New York Mets back in 1998.

I came of age as a baseball during the 1990's and Piazza was one of big name superstar players back in that Era - there is no doubt that he is a first ballot Hall of Famer for what he has done as power hitting catcher and someone who became the face of the New York Mets post 9/11.

However, there has been PED innuendos tacked onto his career and it might derail his Hall of Fame chances in upcoming years - still, if there was any blemish to his MLB at any point, it might have been this wrinkle, where he was called out by a veteran Brett Butler for not being a true leader and caring more about his individual stats.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

My 2012 baseball card collecting goals reviewed

My goals usually get derailed because it's a made up list of random things that sounds good at the beginning of the year - but ends up being a tedious to do list that doesn't hold up, becoming esoteric, redundant and maybe impractical.

This post is basically a review of the one I had at the beginning of this year - to see whether or not I was satisfied with what I did.

I realized I'd misnumbered my first list and skipped a goal - I added #5 about graded cards that was on the original draft I'd written up for myself.

1.) Doing something with my favorite players collection - basically count up and listing all the cards I have for particular players in a database and for this year picking up five to 15 'interesting' cards for my Top 10 favorites as well as 10 other players I'm interested in on a 'rotating' basis.

I don't think working on my favorite players lists have been a priority when it comes to actually picking up player specific singles or accounting for anything I may have already - updated 12/30/12

2.) Personal collection cards - I'd like to be able to count out a Top 30 list, tally up another 25-30 'alternative' PC cards and create a binder of PC cards for more sentimental purposes.

I got kind of started working on my PC at the beginning of the year but have to figure out a way to put my cards together in one physical place as opposed to a couple or more assorted boxes - updated 12/30/12

3.) Regional focus - establishing a Top 30 personal collection of cards, building an 'A-Z' singles collection [interesting cards of various players] and maintaining an Angels 'shoebox collection' under team boxes [featuring more rank-and-file cards / inserts].

I'm still kind of out of focus with these goals and it's killing me I may have no clue to organize my Angels cards - updated 12/30/12

4.) A-Z singles stored in top loaders - I want to store various singles in top loaders in a box, list in a database and file away by player in 'ABC' order and maybe by card type i.e. basic rookie cards, parallels and certified autograph cards.

I'm still kind of out of focus with these goals and it's killing me that my collection of A-Z singles is completely jumbled up - updated 12/30/12

5.) Organize my graded cards - it's harder to weed out any cards that are 'dated,' when the cards make up a chunk of my graded is what it is...make note of any PC type cards but don't want to physically separate any slabs.

I'm still kind of out of focus with this goal because all I have are low quality graded cards I don't want to go through - updated 12/30/12

6.) Collecting topics cards - add about 500 different ones with 250 either old-school [pre-1980] and/or vintage [pre-1973] cards.

I may have about 150-200 total cards for 2012 with some 'old school' or 'vintage' pick-ups, but nothing close to 500 cards overall and nowhere close to 250 'old school' or 'vintage' cards - updated 12/30/12

7.) Pick up 15-20 first-year autograph cards and 10-15 first-year Angel autograph cards.

Doesn't seem realistic to go after prospect cards that are already signed when I'm going for many of the players in-person - updated 12/30/12

8.) Pick up a 'PC' rookie card or two - something like a PSA graded 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson RC or a PSA graded 1983 Topps Tony Gwynn RC and so forth.

Not happening anytime soon just because I feel like I don't have to pick up any particular cards at the moment just to store away in a box - updated 12/30/12

9.) Bust about three to five 'full' boxes every three months - I want to bust boxes on a somewhat regular basis, but the cards I will need are probably base cards, more common parallels. I'll try to see if I can bust mostly current-year product with a mix of some 'oddball' stuff that maybe fun if now relatively worthless.

I made the card shop I go to happy [though not quite rich] by busting the following:

1.) 2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition $120
2.) 2012 Bowman jumbo $140
3.) 2012 Topps Heritage Minors $70
4.) 2012 Bowman Draft $70
5.) 2012 Bowman Draft $70
6.) 2012 Bowman Draft $70

Still, I was no prolific box buster where I'm ripping up three or four boxes of a product or a case many times during a year, so I couldn't get into busting something on a somewhat regular basis - updated 12/30/2012

10.) Finish my Topps team runs [except for any expansion teams that may apply, a 1978-current year card for each of the 30 MLB teams] and my Topps sampler runs [a card from 1978-current year] - I'd like to get these out of the way sooner than never as sort of 'side projects' I work on when I stumble upon appropriate year Topps cards.

I'm working on my 'runs' at a snail's pace when I don't have access to cards that I need and don't want to dig for particular cards during a card shop or card show trip - updated 12/30/12

11.) Pick up 10-15 blasters and/or various retail offerings and maybe 20-25 assorted retail / hobby packs - I don't really pull anything of significance but the hunger to bust something never ceases.

I feel like I don't want to pay $20 for a retail blaster all too often [no real chance at nice hits and too little cards per box] and after the novelty of a new release wears off, I can live without a Target or Walmart trip ending without cards - updated 12/30/12

12.) Do 10-15 impulsive card related things - point being is to have some fun.

1.) Build up a pack surplus to bust at different times of the year - MY PLANNED PACK ATTACKS NEVER QUITE HAPPENED BECAUSE WHAT IS OUT THERE THAT IS UNIQUE - updated 12/30/12.
2.) Bust my COMC cherry - DONE though I have one more card left to be shipped and I never bothered to pick up anymore cards - updated 12/30/12.
3.) Add one or two graded Angels rookie cards - franchise legends, doesn't have to be a Hall of Famer, but more of the vintage pre 1973 variety - NOTHING IS HAPPENING WITH THIS AT THE MOMENT - updated 12/30/12.
4.) Add three vintage Angels Topps graded cards [1961-1980] - a sampler run of sorts - NOTHING IS HAPPENING WITH THIS AT THE MOMENT - updated 12/30/12.
5.) Bust an assorted number of random packs from the 1980s from BB Card Exchange - NOTHING IS HAPPENING WITH THIS AT THE MOMENT - updated 12/30/12.
6.) Pick up two or three minor league sets - I ACTUALLY PICKED UP SEVEN OR EIGHT SETS FOR A ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE TRIP - updated 12/30/12.
7.) Bust some 'oddball,' 'forgotten' wax such as 1986 Donruss box, 1986 Fleer, 1989 Upper Deck - MAYBE TIED TO #1 and #5, I DON'T FEEL THE SAME WAY UNLESS I KNEW THERE WERE BETTER CARDS TO UNEARTH OTHER THAN WHAT IS OUT THERE ALREADY - updated 12/30/12.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Rebooting my core interests in cardboard

Thinking about the baseball cards I collect, my interest lingers but my lair is in ruins, my collection is in decay - life isn't linear, years go by, stuff happens or doesn't happen and and it's just a matter of when things get blown up, when I thought I had a system in place for five or six years.

Maybe cardboard is useless anyway but I feel like stuff I've coveted at various points are literally collecting dust, loose in places where I don't want to deal with them - have I gone too far in literally not doing anything with cards I once collected?

While the part of my collecting life as in-person / through the mail autograph collector has been pretty much spelled out - I'm kind of 'lost' at times as far as other aspects of collecting baseball cards for themselves.

I feel like I've got to reboot my collection in a radical way because I've sort of lost the way I organize my cards - the way I physically put them together isn't quite how I want things to be and it bothers me.

I keep in mind lists list of all the countless, various places [representing various interests] where I funnel cards into - but that is mostly sorting cards to be autographed and separating them in a nuts-and-bolts way as opposed to having a definite way to collect certain cards [that are not really meant to be scrap cards to be autographed or shoved away as part of my collecting topics collections].

I don't know where cards I've blogged about end up - I hoard and look for stuff that ends up being clutter.

What about the personal collection cards - is there a core set of cards I can showcase or is it all just jumbled up?

What about the various cards in my 'A-Z' singles collection that are now scattered all over - various certified autograph cards of prospects who are supposed to be great but end up being busts?

I cling to the idea I've got to play with all the cards I've hoarded instead of looking for the next cardboard fix - this is my cardboard collecting life and I make my own fun and try not to worry about anything else, everyone else is doing.

However, as much as I wouldn't care to admit it, I'm more hoarder than collector and its come to a head - I have gotten older and as much as I want to collect, maybe it's time I stop pretending to be a mad scientist.

Cardboard curiosity - Russell Wilson

I didn't know much about this guy - I might have pulled one or two 2010 Bowman Draft cards picturing the one-time minor leaguer and put them away in my 'two-sports star' collection, since he apparently played college football too.

It's not too hard to label him a baseball bust since he isn't playing professional baseball anymore - but apparently he has enjoyed a breakout season as a rookie NFL quarterback [not named Luck or RGIII] and his one-time baseball playing career is in the rearview mirror.

Drafted by the Seattle Seahawks, he ended up outplaying the team's key free agent signing at quarterback - he threw up a controversial Hail Mary 'non-touchdown, TD pass' that sealed the replacement officials' fate and then has managed to throw 25 touchdowns and lead his team to a playoff berth in 2012.

Josh Hamilton Baseball America 1999 Draft Preview issue

One of the last things I'd expect to find while digging around my house was an issue of Baseball America with Josh Hamilton on the cover from 1999 - I skimmed through the inside of the magazine and the main story is about the three prospective players [Hamilton, Josh Beckett or Eric Munson] the Tampa Bay [Devil] Rays were going to take with the No. 1 pick [Hamilton would be their choice].

The magazine was probably a part of a two or three issue 'trial subscription' I signed up for back in the day - as an autograph collector who likes to collect my share of prospect autographs, I wouldn't pick up a BA issue since it's printed on newsprint and I feel like it's a less durable item to be autographed.

The magazine is oversized, so it's a hassle to carry around in a bag - the magazine feels flimsy for autographing and it seems like it's going to get worn down faster compared to an 8x10 photo or a magazine.

With Hamilton being an Angel - I'll probably make an exception and see if I could get it signed some time in 2013.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

2012 Topps Opening Day blaster recap

Pack one
#123 Ryan Roberts
#120 Matt Garza
#FS-3 Adrian Gonzalez
- Fantasy Squad insert

#ODS-13 Justin Upton - Opening Day Stars insert; I like the 3D effect, though it's something Topps has revived from the dead and played with in other insert sets.
#172 Dustin Pedroia
#64 Dan Haren
#62 Ervin Santana

Pack two
#179 Zack Greinke
#161 Hunter Pence
#98 Ben Zobrist
#ES-7 Justin Verlander
- Elite Skills Player insert
#84 Dan Uggla
#80 Joe Mauer
#69 Tim Lincecum

Pack three
#104 Alexei Ogando
#146 Ian Desmond
#135 Josh Reddick
#SC-17 Adam Jones
- Superstar Celebrations insert
#70 Madison Bumgarner
#60 Adam Wainwright
#NNO Carlos Lee
- kind of weird, but after Googling info about the card, I find it's a common misprint.

Pack four
#176 Geovany Soto
#110 Scott Rolen
#164 Nyjer Morgan

#M-2 Baltimore Orioles - Mascot insert
#85 Mike Trout
#169 Ian Kinsler
#31 Evan Longoria
2012 Sticker Collection info card

Pack five
#139 Trevor Cahill
#43 Angel Pagan
#49 Melky Cabrera
#FS-4 Robinson Cano
- Fantasy Squad insert
#66 Adam Jones
#91 Jayson Werth
#212 Daniel Hudson

Pack six
#180 Ted Lilly
#182 Seth Smith
#42 Mark Reynolds
#SC-15 Miguel Cabrera
- Superstar Celebrations insert
#50 Ichiro
#47 Nick Swisher
#215 Colby Lewis

Pack seven
#140 Erick Aybar
#22 Aroldis Chapman
#177 Jhonny Peralta

#M-25 Junction Jack - mascot insert
#128 Lance Berkman
#201 Jose Reyes
#77 Jimmy Rollins

Pack eight
#208 James Loney
#187 David Wright
#29 Mike Napoli
#FS-2 Miguel Cabrera
- Fantasy Squad insert
#126 Danny Valencia
#87 Ryan Howard
#76 Gio Gonzalez

Pack nine
#56 Vance Worley
#8 Jordan Zimmermann
#160 Carlos Ruiz
#ES-6 Andrew McCutchen
- Elite Skills Player insert
#192 James Shields
#144 Andrew McCutchen
#16 Torii Hunter
2012 Sticker Collection info card

Pack 10
#112 Dee Gordon
#40 Domonic Brown
#138 Russell Martin
#SC-16 Nelson Cruz
- Superstar Celebrations insert
#44 Jay Bruce
#54 Asdrubal Cabrera
#145 C.C. Sabathia

Pack 11
#105 Curtis Granderson
#59 Alcides Escobar
#55 Miguel Cabrera
#179 Zack Greinke
- blue parallel serial #'d 1920/2012

#M-1 Bernie Brewer - mascot insert
#165 Yovani Gallardo
#39 Michael Cuddyer

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

2012 Topps Series II 72-card Walmart recap

This was one of two Christmas gifts from my brother - the other was a 2012 Topps Opening Day blaster box.

#488 Nick Swisher
#398 Buster Posey
#415 Rafael Furcal
#519 Gio Gonzalez
#476 Ramon Hernandez
#557 Zack Cozart
#452 Robert Andino
#624 Gerardo Parra
#588 Mark Ellis
#413 Frank Francisco
#396 Yoenis Cespedes
#616 Tyler Pastornicky
#657 Dave Sappelt
#423 Colby Rasmus
#427 Rafael Dolis
Topps Pennant Florida Marlins info card
#561 Freddy Sanchez
#377 Brandon Inge
#454 Michael Cuddyer
#498 Joey Votto
#524 Martin Prado
#381 David DeJesus
#493 Ryan Madson
#428 Jordan Schafer
#438 Juan Uribe
#572 Hiroki Kuroda
#394 Bryan LaHair
#516 Charlie Morton
#591 Aubrey Huff
#347 Craig Gentry
#397 Hector Noesi
#656 Carlos Santana
#546 Matt Thornton
#625 Tommy Hunter
#515 Willie Bloomquist
#373 Carlos Gonzalez
#425 Carlos Zambrano
#349 Tim Lincecum
#417 Carlos Pena
#509 Travis Snider
#348 Alfonso Soriano
#405 Nathan Eovaldi
#353 John Mayberry
#660 Yu Darvish
#379 Sergio Romo
#391 Rod Barajas
#584 Daric Barton
#445 Ramon Santiago
#646 Francisco Cervelli
#459 Eric Surkamp
#602 Alejandro De Aza
- Golden Moments parallel
#ACA-14 Willie Mays - A Cut Above insert
#GM-19 Craig Kimbrel - Golden Moments insert
#CD-24 Troy Tulowitzki - Career Day insert
#TM-59 Cliff Lee - 1987 Topps Mini insert
#GGC-19 Derek Jeter - Golden Giveaway code card; unlocked a random coin and another free code, which unlocked another useless coin.
#511 Ervin Santana
#483 Alex Gordon
#339 Clayton Richard
#617 Jimmy Rollins
#633 Chris Narverson
#526 Casper Wells
#632 Joe Nathan
#593 Marco Scutaro
#520 Ryan Adams
#430 Felix Hernandez
#410 Jeff Locke

#460 Thomas Field

#390 Taylor Green
#338 Jose Constanza
#604 Juan Abreu
#396 Yoenis Cespedes
- blue parallel
#657 Dave Sappelt - blue parallel

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Hiroyuki Nakajima - new Oakland A's shortstop

I think a couple of guys my friend knows makes cameos around the 0:36 mark - I'm sure they are going to appreciate watching this since they like to follow the progress of their fellow Japanese jumping from the Japanese pro baseball league to play Major League Baseball.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Featured autograph - Jason Vargas

I got new Angel acquisition Jason Vargas to sign two or three cards at the end of the 2012 season when the Seattle Mariners were in Anaheim - while I would have liked to see what Kendrys Morales might have done in his second full season after coming back from his horrific injury in 2010, I guess there was some flexibility to make a move for a No. 4 or No. 5 starter like Vargas.

Vargas isn't great, doesn't throw particularly hard, but hopefully he can throw around 200 innings and in the process - nail down enough quality starts for the Angels without getting banged around [served up 35 home runs this past year] too much.

For the Angels, Mark Trumbo probably starts the 2013 season as primary designated hitter - with Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton and maybe Vernon Wells on the short list of Angels players who can also DH if needed.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Featured autographs - Josh Hamilton and David Murphy

The sneaky signing of Josh Hamilton by the Angels might represent the feast or famine acquisition that defines Jerry DiPoto's legacy as a general manager in Anaheim - more than signing Albert Pujols or C.J. Wilson last off-season.

I have some reservations about Hamilton's focus during different points in a Major League Baseball season, but it's hard to argue that when he's on his best behavior - he is a superstar talent who adds meat and complements Albert Pujols in the middle of the Angels' lineup.

Hopefully it just doesn't become one of those situations where Hamilton forgets to play baseball and becomes an enigma and/or an outright free agent bust - since the Angels are going to be paying the man $25 million through the next five seasons to be a superstar.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Featured autograph - Joe Rudi

I found this card in a quarter box and decided to grab in just in case the autograph is real - not worth much, but it's nice to find an old-school autograph card of a former Angels player.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Featured autograph - Joe Blanton

With the Angels apparent addition of Joe Blanton - the Angels look to have some arms to build around after losing Dan Haren, Ervin Santana and most likely, Zack Greinke.

Blanton is a decent pitcher you can plug into a starting rotation and expect OK [if decidedly underwhelming] results - a good season for the burly righty would be pitching close to 200 innings while recording double digit wins.

A bargain basement signing - the money Blanton is getting to pitch the next two seasons for the Angels doesn't even pay for what current free-agent Greinke is likely to be paid per season.

I don't remember where I got this 2004 Bowman Draft card signed in-person - it might have been during the 2005 season or 2006 spring training, when I remember getting my picture with him at A's camp.

Featured autograph - Sean Burnett

The Angels signing of reliever Sean Burnett adds another good lefty to complement Scott Downs in their bullpen - I assume Burnett is going to be a flexible piece, with the ability to come into any late inning situations and maybe even close out a game if needed.

I probably got this 2004 Bowman Draft card signed in-person four or five years ago - when Burnett was still with the Pittsburgh Pirates and I couldn't tell the difference between him and then teammate Tom Gorzelanny.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Featured autographs - Brandon McCarthy and Anibal Sanchez

I bought this card for $10 back at the 2006 National in Anaheim thinking it was going to valuable - since Anibal Sanchez threw a no-hitter that year with the Florida Marlins and McCarthy was a young, unproven pitcher with some potential as a then 22 year old with the Chicago White Sox.

Today, the card is maybe worth half of what I paid - though Sanchez has been relatively healthy [though not quite a star] and while McCarthy bounced around a little bit, he's enjoyed some success in Oakland the past two seasons.

Both are free agents this off-season with Sanchez wanting to paid like a No. 1 or No. 2 starter - McCarthy seems tabbed to be a good 'under the radar' guy to grab since he is looking to bounce back after a getting hit in the head with a line drive off Angels Erick Aybar's bat in 2012.

My 2013 USA World Baseball Classic squad

I put together a roster of players I think have a good chance of making Team USA's 2013 World Baseball Classic team - while it may not be a potential dream team [no Bryce Harper, no Mike Trout, no David Price, no Stephen Strasburg or Buster Posey for example], I'm going for realistic, competent roster that can still can compete with the other WBC teams.
Starting pitchers (4) - I'm going on the idea that Major League Baseball teams are going to try and protect any premium pitching talents, particularly starting pitchers

Kevin Millwood
Jason Vargas
Aaron Cook
Jamie Moyer - I assume he still wants to pitch, what else is he going to be doing at 50?
Relievers (9) - besides Perez, Wilhelmsen and Bundy, maybe guys off the scrap heap and/or guys who have bounced around in recent years.

Chris Perez
Tom Wilhelmsen
Scott Atchison
Jeremy Accardo
Aaron Heilman
Dylan Bundy - my 'luxury item' as far as the pitching staff, he is the top pitching prospect in professional baseball.
Andrew Miller
Joe Beimel
Neal Cotts
Lineup (8) - I tried to build a balanced lineup with guys that can run, make some contact and hit for power.
CF - Will Venable - not a star but can do a little bit of everything.
SS - Danny Espinosa - has pop for a middle infielder.
LF - David Murphy - an underrated talent from the Texas Rangers.
RF - Giancarlo Stanton - my 'luxury item' as far as position players go.
1B - Billy Butler - for the WBC, he'll be my starter at first base.
C - A.J. Pierzynski - adds some swagger and general douchiness.
3B - Chris Nelson - while not a star, he became a decent regular in 2012.
2B - Kyle Seager - an emerging everyday player for the Seattle Mariners.
Bench (7) - some old guys for veteran presence and leadership off the pine.

Utility - Pete Kozma
Utility - Adam Kennedy
3B - Josh Bell
OF - Scott Podsesnik
OF - Mark Kotsay
C - Michael McKenry
1B - Mitch Moreland