Since I do the majority of my trading The Bench I am not good at checking up on any of the neighborhood gang of card collecting bloggers, but just like over a year ago I rang the doorbell over at Tomahawk Chop. The Trumpet Man had three nice Twins cards that I needed in exchange for some of my Braves trade bait.
clockwise, from top left: 2016 Topps Chrome #RA-JOS Jose Berrios (auto); 2016 Topps Triple Threads Gold #ARC-JBE Jose Berrios [67/99] (auto); 2016 Topps Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects Red Ice #BDPP85 Derrick Penilla [03/25]
Interestingly enough, the Derrick Penilla red ice was the only one I already had from that set! It’s nice having go-to people that collect Braves cards that I can strike up a trade with now and then. Thanks again!
In other baseball collecting news, I found an eBay seller that had several By The Letter cards that I needed (all within my price point), which allowed me to complete my first set — the By The Letters Rookie Signature autographed set of Alexi Casilla, numbered 1-of-50 or 1-of-75:
2007 Upper Deck SP Authentic By The Letter Rookie Signatures #188 Alexi Casilla (auto)
Not long ago I was able to snag one of Joe Mauer’s rookie autograph cards; with a little luck I was able to do it again, and this time in a lot that contained eight other rookie autograph and relic cards from 2002 Bowman’s Best.
2002 Topps Bowman’s Best #110 Joe Mauer (auto)
I’ve already turned three of the extra eight cards into five additional Twins relic cards that I needed. That’s the kind of transaction that a card trader likes to have!
Some more acquisitions below the break…
It’s been a while for one of these mystery plays; here’s one from a while back in honor of David Ortiz’s retirement:
2003 Upper Deck #114 David Ortiz
Is he out? Safe?? Well, hopefully we can find out by nailing down exactly when this play occurred — what can we tell from the photo?
1) Day game with away uniform — it’s not the Metrodome
2) they’re wearing their long sleeves, so cool weather
3) being it’s a 2003 card, it should be a 2002 ballgame
I originally put this together for the good Citizens at WGOM for pledge week, and (like always) they were very up to the task:
– there was some debate about the visiting team uniform. Initial thoughts were Milwaukee and then Seattle, but with the very short (non-existent?) sleeves, it was suggested it was Cleveland’s pixie vests
– the backdrop (what little is showing, out of focus) is not a bad match for Jacob’s Field
– The first inning of the April 8th game ended with Ortiz trying (and failing) to score from second on a line drive to center of the bat of Dustan Mohr. Einar Diaz applied the tag.
Despite the Twins scoring two in the first, the Indians respond with three in the bottom of the inning, and went on to win 9-5 putting the Twins a game back in the AL Central race. The game was played in front of a full stadium in less than three hours, which was good as the 55° temperature at game time was no doubt falling.
The best part? We even found an image of the play from a different angle. You can see part of Cristian Guzman in the background, who scored just ahead of Ortiz.
Whenever I see your smiling face
I have to smile myself
Because I love you
“Your Smiling Face” – James Taylor
2002 Bowman Heritage #BHA-JM Joe Mauer (auto)
I luckily managed to find one of Joe’s rookie year autograph cards on The Bay at a price well below the normal going price there. Even though it was poorly categorized and hidden among all the other cards listed on eBay, when I stumbled upon it I recognized it for the card that it is. Welcome home, Rookie Joe!
Some more acquisitions below the break…
This post is way late due to photos lost from my phone, but I had a few that survived, so here goes…
On our yearly trip to Florida, Mo and I stayed again in Ft. Myers at the same Cornerstone Resort condo we were at last year. Thanks to construction along the main drag, Ft. Myers Beach traffic was even more traffic-er than before. Still…no snow, though. And this year, we were joined for a couple days by my (retired) co-worker Ted and his wife Dixie.
Apparently attending a spring training game had been on Ted’s bucket list, so I was looking forward to treating him to the March 8th Cardinals vs. Twins game. Unfortunately, it was a Twins split squad game, plus the first day of their minor league camp, so the practice fields normally bustling with the veterans and promising prospects were empty. Still, it was a beautiful day for a game, and we both had our teams on the field.
Joe scores in the fourth
We had seats in the same location I’ve sat in the past trips to Hammond Stadium, which provided a great view of the field. The Cards went on to eventually win 5-3. We saw a little of everything, but we didn’t see Sano and Park homer, like in the other split squad game against Toronto in Dunedin.
One other disappointment with split squad games is the limited autograph opportunities. I did manage to catch one:
backup catcher Juan Centeno’s autograph
When it all comes down to it, though, you can’t beat the beach.
the view from our lanai
I’ve been doing trades on The Bench almost exclusively for the past few months, so it’d been a while since I’ve traded with any of the neighborhood gang of card collecting bloggers. After finishing a trade with my Good Trading Buddy™ at Peggy’s, I had quite a few Braves cards left on my Tradebait webpage, so I contacted The Trumpet Man at Tomahawk Chop. Not only did he find some cards he could use, but he had some nice Twins cards I needed, cards like:
clockwise, from top left: 2008 Upper Deck SPx Winning Materials Position #WM-JN Joe Nathan [27/75] (jersey); 2014 Topps Chrome Refractor Gold #144 Joe Mauer [14/50]; 2015 Bowman Chrome Refractor Purple #4 Byron Buxton [218/250]; 2014 Topps Finest Refractor Green #60 Joe Mauer [028/199]
I need to frequent the websites of the old gang again. Thanks once more for a great trade — trombone 7th position salute to you, sir!
A few others I’ve picked up:
clockwise, from top left: 2015 Topps Update All-Star Stitches #STIT-GP Glen Perkins (jersey); 2004 Fleer Hot Prospects #83 Trevor Plouffe [139/299] (auto); 2004 Fleer Hot Prospects #99 Matt Fox [120/299] (auto); 2009 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions Memorabilia Series #GCM-MO Justin Morneau (jersey); 2015 Bowman Chrome Prospects #BCAP-AM Amaurys Minier (auto); 2009 Upper Deck UD X #UDXJ-JM Joe Mauer (jersey); 2005 Donruss Prime Patches #45 Justin Morneau [148/150] (bat); 2004 Fleer Hot Prospects #89 Kyle Waldrop [159/299] (auto)
With yesterday’s mail, my collection of unique Twins players cards with certified autographs is now up to 198. Who was card #198? Delmon “swing at the first pitch” Young, who only has a Twins autographed card in two different 2008 sets: Upper Deck’s UD Premier and Topps’ Triple Threads. Does the gang at WGOM miss posting “Uno!” in the game logs after each of his at bats? Not one bit.
A few updated stats regarding my AU Twins collection —
Most Different Cards: Glen Perkins (65), Lew Ford (45), Jason Kubel (25), Boof Bonser (21), Jacques Jones (21)
HOFers: Bert Blyleven (3), Rod Carew (1), Harmon Killebrew (3), Paul Molitor (2)
Non-players: Mark Wilson (scout – 1)
Certified AU Twins card players (that I know of) that I don’t have: Earl Battey, Reno Bertoia, Billy Beane, Brian Dozier, Stephen Gonsalves, Nick Gordon, John Goryl, B.J. Hermsen, Tom Kelly (manager), Ralph Lumenti, Hal Naragon, Bill Pleis, Kirby Puckett, Terry Ryan (general manager), Roy Smalley, Frank Sullivan, TC Bear (mascot), Jesse Ventura (fan), Dave Winfield
Several of the cards I need are Heritage Real Ones or All-Time Fan Favorites, and most all of these players are only in one set of cards — the main exception being Puckett ($$$). These pop up on eBay periodically, but not quite in my price range. Still, makes for a fun scavenger hunt!
clockwise, from top left: 2008 Upper Deck UD Premier Stitchings Signatures #PSTI-DY Delmon Young [03/25] (manu-patch/auto); 2007 Upper Deck UD Premier Premier Stitchings #PS-71 Johan Santana [04/50] (manu-patch); 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Light Blue #101 Joe Mauer [100/200] (jersey); 2007 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection Ultimate Star Materials #SM-JU2 Justin Morneau (jersey); 2008 Upper Deck SPx Winning Materials Limited SPX #WM-JM Joe Mauer [04/99] (jersey); 2004 Bowman Heritage Threads of Greatness Gold #TG-JM Joe Mauer [49/55] (bat); 2015 Topps Career High #CHR-JM Joe Mauer (jersey); 2005 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes Memorabilia Bronze #34 Harmon Killebrew [03/50] (jersey)