Monday, February 23, 2015

The Trading Post #25: The Home Run Apple

My latest trade package comes from Keith at The Home Run Apple, obviously a New York Mets blog. Keith's blog title refers to the giant red apple that makes its appearance behind center field after each Mets home run at Citi Field (and previously Shea Stadium). Along with Coors Field's fountain, it's among the more tasteful home run displays in baseball, unlike the monstrosity they have at Marlins Park.

Keith included a few cards from one of my all-time favorite brands, Topps Stadium Club, including this tribute to longtime Rockie Todd Helton.

2014 Stadium Club #31 Todd Helton
Of all the Rockies, I believe this Helton was the last one I needed from the 2014 base set. This is from Todd's final game on September 25th, 2013, when an appreciative crowd bid Helton farewell. Todd even hit a home run in a 15-5 loss to the Boston Red Sox.

15-5? Yes, slugfests still happen even with the humidor around.

Dante Bichette was one of the Blake Street Bombers that participated in plenty of Rockies slugfests throughout his career, though regardless of whether there's been a humidor at Coors Field, the Rockies haven't had much success on the road.

1995 Stadium Club #326 Dante Bichette
Despite that, Bichette is still prepping his bat in the on-deck circle at an away stadium, likely during the strike-shortened year of 1994. The 1994-1996 Stadium Club releases are among my favorites, partially because of that circular TSC logo, although the card back of this 1995 card takes a page from Fleer's psychedelic designs of that same year.

1995 Stadium Club #326 Dante Bichette (Reverse)
Though LSD-inspired baseball cards don't really exist outside the crazed mid- to late-'90s (although one wonders about 1972 Topps), shiny cards are clearly here to stay.

2012 Panini Prizm #199 Wilin Rosario (RC)
Though Panini Prizm doesn't get much love in the blogosphere, the only real criticism I have of this set is that they use the same photo of "Baby Bull" on the back of the card. Photos are a challenge when you can't use MLB logos, or even the MLB Rookie Card logo, apparently. This is one of three Prizm cards I got from Keith, in addition to a nice assortment of other shiny cards, as you'll see later.

Though he and Rockies pitcher Jorge De La Rosa don't always get along, you have to appreciate that Rosario has an actual nickname, rather than just a shortened version of his real name, e.g. Tulo, Cuddy, CarGo, Miggy, Cutch, Maggs, etc....

On that note, I ran across a post on Reddit today that points out that quite a few players don't go by their given first names. With B.J. Upton deciding to now go by his given name of Melvin, that subject has been in the baseball news cycle.

2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Autographs #GQA-DL DJ LeMahieu (AU)
DJ LeMahieu is on that list, whose given first name is David. "David" is easy enough, but he might have one of the most challenging last names around. Nice to have an autographed card of his, considering he's been a fixture in the Rockies infield for a few years now.

2014 Topps Chrome Blue Refractors #112 Troy Tulowitzki /199
As has Troy Tulowitzki, when healthy, of course. In fact, DJ's appeared in more games over the last three seasons than Tulowitzki has. But Troy gets the fancy blue Chrome parallel card, my second of this particular parallel set, which is numbered to 199.

In honor of his 26th birthday, I'll conclude with another card of "Baby Bull".

2013 Topps Gypsy Queen Framed Mini Relics #GQMR-WR Wilin Rosario (MEM)
And it's a relic, with that prized pinstripe right in the visible area of the swatch! These Gypsy Queen minis are packaged the same as Allen & Ginter mini relics, sealed in a standard-sized frame.

For a professional ballplayer, it must be nice to celebrate your birthday just as training camp gets underway. I have one coming up in about two weeks, though I am not participating in any club's spring training activities.

Thanks again to Keith, and I hope you're all enjoying the early days of spring training!

1 comment:

  1. Glad you like the cards. I need to take time an sort my favorites from what you sent