Monday, December 8, 2014

The Trading Post #10: A Cracked Bat

Julie from A Cracked Bat has become quite the prolific trader in recent months. In fact, she's inspired me to reach out to several bloggers to offer a trade. I ran to the post office this morning to ship out five packages, so some of you will be seeing goodies hit your mailboxes this week!

She mentioned that she'd be including some cards from recently-released 2014 Stadium Club, and I must admit, I haven't been this eager for the release of a new set of cards in longer than I can remember. My third trade package from her did not disappoint.

2014 Stadium Club #17 Michael Cuddyer
This was my first look at the product, and I like what I see. They've done a nice job color-coding, and though it's on the small end at just 200 cards, great photography and full-bleed printing have been lacking in this hobby since the demise of Upper Deck.

Three of these base cards weren't the only ones from 2014 Stadium Club, but more on that later.

Allow me to be blunt. I don't particularly care for Bowman. Between Bowman, Bowman Chrome, Bowman Draft, numerous Chrome cards that may or may not actually be part of the Chrome set, the prospects subset that may or may not be considered part of the base set, and a whole rainbow of colors, the product is so far beyond convoluted that it just isn't that much fun. I have to look it up on Beckett every time I run across one.

However, every so often you find a card that works really, really well. With so many colored parallels and coatings to choose from, the law of large numbers pretty much guarantees this. And a great trading partner found it for me.

2013 Bowman Platinum Chrome Prospects Purple Refractors #BPCP20 David Dahl
Not only was I given this Purple Refractor parallel, but she threw in the standard card from Bowman Platinum as well, which has a silver refractor finish.

Through trades, I've started to develop a small collection of Carlos Gonzalez die-cut cards, each one crazier than the last. I like these way more than my scanner does.

2014 Topps Chrome Chrome Connections Die Cuts #CC-CG Carlos Gonzalez
This card in silhouette would look much like a medieval banner; perhaps with a Game of Thrones-esque dragon.

I wonder if there are any die-cut cards out there that have a space cut out of the center, rather than just an intricate border. These are such a novelty in my collection that I don't have much knowledge about the various shapes I can expect to find.

2014 Bowman Chrome Dualing Die-Cut Refractors #DDC-AG Jonathan Gray / Mark Appel
This is a shape, right?

The theme of this card led me to believe that it could have been part of a paired set that fits together side-by-side. Topps floated this idea last year in 2013 Archives, resurrecting their "Triumvirates" insert brand, where two other matched cards fit together to form a rectangle.

2013 Topps Archives Triumvirate #T-4A Edgar Martinez
On that same theme, there was also one card from a two-card "puzzle" from a late-90's Pinnacle release.

1998 Pinnacle Inside Stand-Up Guys #10-C/D Larry Walker / Ellis Burks / Dante Bichette / Neifi Perez
Pinnacle printed a sister card for each of these "Stand Up Guys" inserts that has a slot on the bottom instead of the top. The two cards interlock to form a cross and are able to stand vertically. Walker makes my third card from this innovate insert set, but I haven't found a match for any of them.

By the way, has the hobby settled on a name for these yet? Paired cards? Sister cards? Interlocking cards? If Stadium Club sticks around this time, we'll have to decide on something.

There were several cards that were a bit less flashy. 1965 was the design for this year's Topps Heritage, so that means big pennants galore!

2014 Topps Heritage #122 Tyler Chatwood
Nothing quite like a fierce pitching stare against a happy Windows XP backdrop.

Also included were about a dozen cards from 2012 Topps Mini. This is a separately-sold parallel set to the regular-sized 2012 flagship release, and according to BaseballCardPedia, one of my favorite sites for research, there are less than 3,000 out there.
2012 Topps Mini #68 Jason Hammel
These are the same size as the much-loved 1975 Topps MIINNIIIISS! Yes, I'm channeling Night Owl, who loves this card size so much that he talked Ultra-Pro into manufacturing pages specifically for them. They do fit in a standard 9-pocket page pretty well, and are easy to handle, unlike the tall postage-stamp sized Allen & Ginter minis.

Julie sent two team bags in this mailer, and the very last card of the second stack was a welcome surprise.

2014 Stadium Club Autographs #SCA-CBL Charlie Blackmon (AU)
Talk about saving the best for last! Charlie Blackmon had an all-star year in 2014, and his 6-for-6 performance at the home opener really opened some eyes. I'm pleased to add his card to my rapidly growing collection of Rockies autographs.

Thanks are in order once again to Julie for keeping me in a steady supply of Rockies cards. I'll have another box of Tigers ready for her before too long.

1 comment:

  1. Glad you liked the Stadium Club! Have a good holiday!