2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,500 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 58 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Jonesing The New Manager

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving Day! In the interim between the announcing of a new Twins manager and the arrival of my annual big COMC Black Friday raid, I thought I’d show the latest pickup in celebration of Mollie’s new job:

2005 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Signature Memorabilia #53 Paul Molitor [14/15] (auto/jersey)

A HOF’er deserves a quality card in the collection. And the jonesing? That’d be Jacque Jonesing, along with a couple cards of partner in crime Cristian Guzman.

auto-relic 77
clockwise, from top left: 2005 Donruss Playoff Absolute Memorabilia Absolute Ink #AI-118 Jacque Jones [027/100] (auto); 2004 Donruss Leaf Limited Monikers Material #46 Jacque Jones [22/25] (auto/jersey); 2004 Donruss Leaf Certified Materials Mirror White Fabric #79 Jacque Jones [012/200] (jersey); 2004 Donruss Diamond Kings DK Materials #142 Jacque Jones [050/100] (jersey/bat); 2003 Topps Pristine Pristine Borders #PB-CG Cristian Guzman (bat); 2002 Donruss Playoff Piece of the Game Silver #POG-17 Cristian Guzman [099/100] (jersey); 2004 Donruss World Series #WS-104 Jacque Jones [066/250] (jersey); 2005 Donruss Prime Patches Portraits #P-47 Jacque Jones [24/55] (dual jersey)

Plethora Of Postseason Pickups

The blog updates are fewer and farther between, so time to remedy that with an update of recent Twins cards pickups lately, including these beauties:

clockwise, from top left: 1998 Donruss Significant Signatures Harmon Killebrew [1845/2000] (auto); 2014 Topps Mini printing plate cyan #107 Joe Mauer [1/1] (plate); 2005 Upper Deck Classics Post Season Performers #PP-JM Jack Morris (jersey); 2005 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Emerald #54 Paul Molitor [27/99] (jersey); 2014 Bowman Platinum Prospects #AP-MS Miguel Sano (auto); 2005 Upper Deck Classics Post Season Performers #PP-JM Jack Morris (auto)

More after the break…
Continue reading

NCIS Doubleheader: Duryea, PA [2014 Topps Update]

The new Topps 2014 Update set just came out, and of the dozen Twins cards in the set two are nice NCIS-worthy horizontal action shots. Let’s see if we can use the clues in the photos to nail down the exact plays they captured…

2014 Topps Update #US-230 Kurt Suzuki

So, what do we have here? Well:

  • Looks like a day game
  • Runner looks safe
  • That’s obviously not Tom Nieto scoring; looks like Adrián Nieto of the White Sox

The usual gang at WGOM made the observation that all the players pictured are wearing long sleeves, indicating a good chance that the game was played early in the season; this also makes sense given Topps’ timeframe for the set release. Knowing that, there really is only one game he has a sniff of home plate against the Twins before the end of July.

On April 2nd in the second game of the season, in the 9th inning while Glen Perkins is in the process of blowing a save, Nieto comes in as a PR for pinch hitter Paul Konerko. He takes second on a single, and then scores on a single to left fielder Jason Kubel. Sox go on to win 7-6 on a 11th inning walkoff BB/WP. Easy peasy.

2014 Topps Update #US-125 Jason Bartlett

What can we tell about this photo?

  • Another day game
  • Bartlett scores on the play

I’m afraid this one’s going to also be an easy one — Jason Bartlett played in three games during the 2014 season (why Topps has to include him in the set, I don’t know). Based on the catcher’s uniform, it’s got to be Yan Gomes of the Indians waiting on the ball. Well, Bartlett only played in one game against the Indians this season.

On April 6th, in the top of the 6th in his third AB in the game, he is HBP to load the bases. Chris Colabello, the next batter, hits a deep fly to the LF gap to clear the bases, Bartlett scoring all the way from first. The Twins would go on to win the game 10-7, and that at bat would be the last of Jason Bartlett’s career.

Ocean City Redux

Apparently we behaved ourselves last year when we were invited to stay with Mo’s brother’s family at their beachfront rental in Ocean City, NJ, because they invited us back again this year. Who are we to say no?

Atlantic sunrise

This year K got to go as well, taking vacation from her new job to do so. It was nice that she could see her NJ cousins’ extended family after so many years.

We played it cool this year, relaxing on the beach and/or in the house, with wonderful ocean breezes drifting through the windows. We took advantage of a budding bartender in our midst to sample a few different drinks while we were there. My Almond Joey favorite didn’t go over all the well with others, but Mo found a new favorite in the Jolly Rancher.

afternoon drinks
the bar is open

The weather was cool and beautiful, with the wind picking up the last day and a half we were there. Fewer windsurfers were visible than last time; we instead saw more dolphins in the distance passing by.

afternoon waves
afternoon surf, with Atlantic City in the background

Yep, this bit of vacation was much needed and well spent — a good time was had by all.


It’s Not Easy Being Green

In the process of picking up other cards off eBay, I (barely) snagged a beautiful Harmon Killebrew AU card — my second. As it was a bit more than I normally spend, I thanked my wife for the early birthday present ;). Here it is in all its splendor:

2005 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Emerald #34 Harmon Killebrew [11/99] (auto)

Also, with the release of this year’s Finest and Bowman Platinum, I’ve increased the number of unique Twins players AU certified cards to 178 by picking up Josmil Pinto, Lewis Thorpe, Sean Gilmartin, and an older Jack Morris card:
Continue reading

Right Good Luck

Some more eBay wins to show (and very few trades — really people, there’s a lot of good stuff here that I’d be happy to trade!), including a Sano AU that I won by a penny! Finally snagged my first Adam Walker II AU and at a reasonable price, and another Mauer AU as well:

right good luck1
clockwise, from top left: 2014 Bowman Inception Prospects #PA-AW Adam Walker II (auto); 2014 Bowman Inception Prospects #PA-MS Miguel Sano (auto); 2004 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Sweet Threads #ST-JM Joe Mauer (jersey); 2013 Topps Heritage Minors Real One #ROA-MK Max Kepler (auto); 2013 Topps Making the Mark #MMA-AH Aaron Hicks (auto); 2014 Topps Trajectory Relic #TR-AH Aaron Hicks (jersey); 2013 Bowman Platinum Prospects Blue #BPAP-TM Trevor May [165/199] (auto); 2004 Upper Deck Etchings Etched in Time Blue #ET-MA Joe Mauer [213/250] (auto)

In addition, my 55th unique Glen Perkins AU was s#/10, my 39th and 40th unique Lew Ford AU card, and if you’re looking for someone continuing to try pick up moderately priced manu-patch letter cards, “I AM IT“:
Continue reading