Friday, August 14, 2015

1998 Southern League Top Prospects

A few weeks ago I was at Smokies Ballpark. In the gift shop they have a large tub of older card sets for a buck a piece.  I've got all the Knoxville teams that they offer.  While double checking that I came across this set.  For a dollar, I figured I'd pick it up.

It is always nice to reminisce about players you've seen come up through the minors.  I'm fortunate.  I live about 14 miles from Smokies Park.  I've seen a number of the Cubs' players go through Kodak, Tennessee.

But back in 1998 the Smokies were still playing at Bill Meyer Stadium in Knoxville.  I did catch a game or two there.  It wasn't much of a stadium at the end.

These design of these cards don't do much for me.  I haven't compared them to other cards of that era, but I'm just not digging it.  They'll go back in the team bag and in a few years I'll pull them out again and critique them just as harshly.
Carlos Lee (card # 14)

Bronson Arroyo (card # 25)

And the checklist.  Three guys named Jason.  And two guys named Mike.
Top Prospect Checklist (card # 31)

I think that this is Pringles Park, now known as The Ballpark At Jackson, which opened in 1998.
Heery Ballpark Design (card # 32)

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

2005 Upper Deck Flyball

Yesterday, after a visit to the dentist, I stopped by a local thrift store. I usually look for books, CDs, something that might catch my eye. This did. It was an unopened, but far from mint, starter box of Upper Deck's Flyball. Some sort of interactive baseball card game.

I guess one would use the Fly Pentop Computer (sold separately) to play the game.  It isn't clear to me looking at a card how one would do that. Here's what one of the cards looks like, courtesy of

2005 Upper Deck Flyball #40 - Mark Prior - Courtesy of
2005 Upper Deck Flyball #40 - Mark Prior

2005 Upper Deck Flyball #40 - Mark Prior - Courtesy of

Included in the starter box are 28 Interactive Upper Deck Player Cards.  There are 210 cards in the set.  My digital edition of the Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards (ca. 2009) doesn't have a listing for them.

The box was $3.99.  I walked around with it for a few minutes and put it back on the shelf.  Not that it isn't a good deal.  I'm sure it is.  I just don't need more cards in my house that don't fit in with my collecting scheme.  Maybe I'll go back, buy it, and donate the cards to the Pack-A-Daily-Circus fiasco.

By the way, I didn't have any cavities.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Bip Roberts - then & now

Sports Illustrated has recreated some memorable sports trading cards.  I swiped the images of Bip Roberts, everyone's favorite ballplayer (wearing a sombrero).

Go to the SI story for some other card updates and a bit of cool technology.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Young Jim Fregosi

I picked this up on Listia last week.  I'm not really a Fregosi fan.  Not a hater, but not really a fan.  The key selling point is the accordion, of course.
1972 Topps
Jim Fregosi (card # 346)

When seeing or hearing an accordion, some might think of Weird Al Yankovic or Myron Floren.

I think of Don White.  For many decades Don was one of the top accordion players in Chicago.  I am proud to have known him for some 30 years.  When I first moved to Chicago I boarded with he and his wife, JoAnne.  Don was gifted musically and was one of the funniest people I knew.  Don passed away a few years back.  One of the other funniest people I know is his son, Doug.

Here's Don playing and singing "Glue On My Saddle" with Doug accompanying on guitar.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Barry Larkin oddball

My folks picked up a few baseball books from a Cincinnati area library book sale. Inside one of them was this card, probably used as a bookmark.

It standard size and the text on the back refers to events that happened in 1999, so I assume that it is from no earlier than 2000.

On the front is a scratch off area.  It appears that this card is not a winner.  Could it have been a regional game giveaway at the park? 

I guess I'll never know.

Monday, May 18, 2015

What if...? - All Washed Up

Over a year ago I asked the question "What if...?"

What if I took 20 sports cards and treated them like I might have when I was in elementary school for the summer?

I gave an answer in November of last year. 

Every day for over a year I carried the cards in my pants pocket.  The experiment has now ended.  This weekend I realized that I didn't have the cards in my pocket.  I was out of town and they weren't there.  After getting back to the hotel I discovered that they were in my jeans, not in my shorts.  The day was saved.  Then thinking back I realized that I hadn't worn my jeans in a few days.  The run was over.  I can live with that.  Most every player sits out a game or two.

Then, after the trip, I did laundry. 

This is why the experiment has ended.  Cards don't like a washing machine.  Or the dryer.

I'd kept John Marzano at the top of the stack of cards for many months.  He didn't do to badly in the wash warm, rinse cold cycle.

It appears that the cardboard is laminated in some form.  And it appears that printed surfaces like to stick to each other. 

Tim Federowicz was at the bottom of the stack. He took a beating.  Below him are the other cards, fused together in a newly formed brick by Kenmore.

More of the clump.

So, John Marzano will move from pocket cards to a true wallet card.

And now you know.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

T59 Flags of All Nations - Danish West Indies

Another Listia win.  This card, presumably cut from an album, is part of the four series set, Flags of All Nations, otherwise known as T59.  It set me back 2,132 credits.  I'll take that.  Oh, I did.

T59 Flags of All Nations
Danish West Indies

The Danish West Indies were sold to the US in 1917 and are now recognized as the US Virgin Islands.  The USVI has produced 11 MLB players.

From what I've seen on the web, the typical back for this card is the Recruit brand of cigars.  Unfortunately, I don't know exactly what's behind the paper.

A gentle tug at the album paper lets me know that it isn't wise to keep tugging.  So, how does one remove the paper?  I seem to remember something about soaking it off.  It would also probably clean the card a bit.  Note: I did read a few threads on  I think I'll give soaking a try.

Has anyone tried to remove glued paper from cards?  Suggestions?