Monday, September 26, 2016

The Frankenset Bracket: The terrific 32 (Pt. 3)


Let's see how last week's voting played out.

#1 (Page 51) -- 1991 Topps #455 Walt Weiss (17 votes)

def.

#8 (Page 4) -- 1973 Topps #35 Willie Davis (12 votes)




#4 (Page 34) -- 1973 Topps #302 Terry Crowley (20 votes)

def.

#5 (Page 39) -- 1991 Ultra #351 Geno Petralli (10 votes)




#3 (Page 48) -- 1998 Fleer Tradition #424 Jermaine Allensworth (18 votes)

def.

#6 (Page 64) -- 1991 Score #568 Bob Welch (11 votes)




#2 (Page 63) -- 1976 Topps #564 Kurt Bevacqua (19 votes)

def.

#7 (Page 23) -- 1993 Upper Deck #204 Mike Perez (11 votes)

This region is really sticking to the script. Seeds 1-8 all won in the first round, and Seeds 1-4 all advanced here, with none of the matchups being particularly close. I personally went 4-for-for with the choices, and didn't have to think too hard about any of them.

Although I have a feeling this region's Sweet 16 voting won't be quite as easy.

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It's time to take a look at this week's collection of Sweet 16 hopefuls.

Let's run down the matchups.





#1 (Page 70) -- 1973 Topps #627 Luis Alvarado

vs.

#9 (Page 42) -- 1973 Topps #376 Frank Duffy





#13 (Page 17) -- 1981 Fleer #148 Ellis Valentine

vs.

#12 (Page 73) -- 1969 Topps #653 Aurelio Rodriguez Bat-Boy UER





#3 (Page 11) -- 1995 Upper Deck Minors #191 Roger Bailey

vs.

#6 (Page 65) -- 1988 Fleer #582 Tim Flannery





#7 (Page 29) -- 1993 Stadium Club #257 Oscar Azocar

vs.

#2 (Page 53) -- 1971 Topps #476 Dal Maxvill

The polls are now on the sidebar.

Happy voting!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Repack wars, for old times' sake


There was once a time when repacks were all the rage on this blog.

I seemed to buy one every week for sheerly the cheap five-dollar thrill of it all. While those repacks may well have been affordable, even the best 100-card ones left me with about 90 cards collecting dust. Despite what my parents might think, I have been trying to clear some space in my room/man cave as of late, and repacks don't exactly help with that.

But the old repack bug came back to bite be a couple Saturdays ago when I inexplicably found myself in two different Walgreen's on opposite sides of town on the same day. Both had these 100-card "Jumbo Boxes" for sale, and both managed to separate a five-dollar bill from my wallet in exchange for my first taste of repacks in probably close to a year.

So, for old times' sake, I figured it'd be fun for a brief Repack Wars revival on the blog today, pitting those two Walgreen's Jumbo Boxes against another in a (hyperbolic) fight to the death.




These 2016 Bowman Prospect Yellow parallels (enough adjectives for you?) were the window cards in each of the two repacks.

I have absolutely no idea who Carlos Asuaje or Jordan (no relation to Mookie) Betts are. I only bought these because I trade with quite a few Red Sox collectors who'd be able to give these a better home than I ever could, because I'm indifferent to both.

Guess I have no choice but to kiss my sister and call it a push.

Repack #1 -- 0.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 0.5 pts.




I didn't notice anything strange about that Tony Armas until I took a closer look at the cropping.

The poor guy's entire lower half is sliced off in order to get the full view of the Louisville Slugger in his hands.

While I'm rather fond of that discovery, I have to give Stadium Club -- the perennial king when it comes to action shots -- the nod with that bang-bang play at first.

Repack #1 -- 1.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 0.5 pts.




Whether by coincidence or not, Mike Piazza was represented in both of these repacks.

The first contained an over-the-hill Piazza, caught in the confusion of wearing a Mets uniform but being labeled as a Padre on his 2006 Fleer card. The second held a much more aesthetically pleasing issue of Piazza in the prime of his Dodger days, complete with one of the many sensory-overloaded subset designs of the mid '90s.

Repack #2 wins here by a landslide.

Repack #1 -- 1.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 1.5 pts.




My scanner isn't the problem with that "Knuckle Brothers" card: that's actually the condition of the one I pulled out of Repack #2.

It's not a huge deal, but you'd think repack companies would make sure the cards they put in their products aren't riddled with numerous scuffs and scratches. Poor condition or not, however, I needed the Brothers Niekro for my Yankee binder, and I'm happy for that.

But it's still not enough to take down Shooter.

Repack #1 -- 2.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 1.5 pts.




Here's a tough one.

Postgame handshakes are a pretty rare occurrence on cardboard, and the Guthrie fits into the high-quality photography Leaf provided us in the early '90s.

The McDowell is a Short Term Stops nominee -- he spent just a single season in the Bronx -- and features the #7 memorial patch/black armband the Yankees wore in honor of the late Mickey Mantle in 1995.

I'll give the nod to Black Jack.

Repack #1 -- 3.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 1.5 pts.





I did manage to pull a "hit" from the second of the two repacks.

It's actually not a bad one for me, as Gerald Laird is one of the more obscure members of my player collection ranks thanks to fond memories of my MLB Showdown days.

But I'm truly a low-end guy, and I can honestly say that I felt more excitement pulling a new overproduction-era card for my Rickey collection than a swatch of Gerald Laird's USA jersey.

Point Rickey.

Repack #1 -- 4.5 pts.
Repack #2 -- 1.5 pts.




Finally, both of these repacks contained an unopened mystery pack.

Repack #1 offered up a pack of 1991 Score, while Repack #2 held a pack of 2012 Panini Triple Play. I enjoy each set, but I've taken care of most of my wants from both checklists. I didn't get a single card I needed from the '91 Score pack (not much of a surprise), but Triple Play had a nice surprise in store with the new Derek Jeter I pulled from the "When I Was A Kid" subset.

Repack #2 gets the tally here, but it's too little too late.

FINAL TOTALS:

Repack #1 -- 4.5 pts.

def.

Repack #2 -- 2.5 pts.




Repack #1 takes the crown, and, for kicks, here's a bonus of a sleepy Steady Eddie from that first 100-card brick.

I still rather enjoy repacks, and I'm sure I'll still be picking one up every now and again in the future. It's just that I'm getting to a point in my life where I need to be more and more conscious of space -- notably, ways and means of making more of it -- and I really don't need more stacks of '88 Donruss and '89 Fleer cluttering up my closet and collecting dust.

But that's still no reason anyone should go a year between repack experiences, as I just did. They will forever be a prime source of cheap cardboard fun and inspiration, which is ideal for a budget-minded collector such as myself. These kinds of posts pretty much write themselves.

Hard to beat that for five bucks.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Frankenset Bracket: The terrific 32 (Pt. 2)


We had some shockers last week.

#9 (Page 20) -- 2012 Topps #172 Reed Johnson (16 votes)

def.

#1 (Page 61) -- 1973 Topps #542 Pat Corrales (15 votes)




#13 (Page 5) -- 1996 Score #38 Bip Roberts (16 votes)

def.

#5 (Page 74) -- 1991 Topps #659 Oscar Azocar (13 votes)




#3 (Page 3) -- 1972 Topps #19 Billy Cowan (25 votes)

def.

#11 (Page 30) -- 1992 Upper Deck #268 Mike Benjamin (4 votes)




#7 (Page 21) -- 1984 Fleer #182 Glenn Hubbard (17 votes)

def.

#2 (Page 18) -- 1984 Fleer #158 Roy Lee Jackson (12 votes)

This was, on a selfish level, a very disappointing week for me. Corrales and Jackson might well be my two favorite cards in my frankenset, and, sadly, both were eliminated in this round. 

Corrales received more votes (27) than any other card in any of the 74 frankenset pages and was my personal pick to win it all, which made his early exit at the hands of Reed Johnson all the more shocking. And, in other news, Sombrero Bip -- a #13 seed -- continued his Cinderella run into the Sweet 16 with a narrow win over Mr. Azocar.

Just goes to show the complete and utter unpredictability of brackets.

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It's time to dive into the second region of the Terrific 32 bracket with our next batch of first-round victors.

Let's see who we'll be voting on this week.





#1 (Page 51) -- 1991 Topps #455 Walt Weiss

vs.

#8 (Page 4) -- 1973 Topps #35 Willie Davis





#4 (Page 34) -- 1973 Topps #302 Terry Crowley

vs.

#5 (Page 39) -- 1991 Ultra #351 Geno Petralli





#3 (Page 48) -- 1998 Fleer Tradition #424 Jermaine Allensworth

vs.

#6 (Page 64) -- 1991 Score #568 Bob Welch





#7 (Page 23) -- 1993 Upper Deck #204 Mike Perez

vs.

#2 (Page 63) -- 1976 Topps #564 Kurt Bevacqua

The polls are now on the sidebar.

Happy voting!

Monday, September 12, 2016

The Frankenset Bracket: The terrific 32 (Pt. 1)


This was a round for the ages.

#1 (Page 56) -- 1985 Topps #497 Gary Pettis UER (20 votes)

def.

#16 (Page 13) -- 1995 Topps #110 Walt Weiss (12 votes)




#9 (Page 47) -- 1973 Topps #420 Tommie Agee (16 votes + tie-breaking vote)

def.

#8 (Page 10) -- 1995 Pinnacle #83 Milt Thompson (16 votes)




#4 (Page 62) -- 1975 Topps #550 Ralph Garr (17 votes)

def.

#13 (Page 31) -- 1999 Topps #274 Brian Hunter (15 votes)




#12 (Page 1) -- 1960 Topps #5 Wally Moon (19 votes)

def.

#5 (Page 52) -- 1990 Upper Deck #461 Rob Murphy (13 votes)




#3 (Page 15) -- 1973 Topps #133 Dave Roberts (18 votes)

def.

#14 (Page 26) -- 1992 Stadium Club #232 Andy Van Slyke (14 votes)




#6 (Page 71) -- 1986 Topps #639 Bo Diaz (19 votes)

def.

#11 (Page 50) -- 1992 Stadium Club #446 Mike Greenwell (13 votes)




#10 (Page 24) -- 1991 Studio #216 Steve Lake (16 votes)

def. 

#7 (Page 37) -- 2008 Upper Deck #326 Justin Maxwell (15 votes)




#15 (Page 28) -- 1970 Topps #252 Lowell Palmer (19 votes)

def.

#2 (Page 60) -- 1999 Fleer Tradition #533 Terry Steinbach (13 votes)

The Field of 64 closed with easily the best round of voting we've seen so far in this bracket. Comebacks, down-to-the-wire finishes, and even a couple upsets -- including a major one with #15 seed Lowell Palmer handily taking down #2 seed Terry Steinbach.

And also, a tie. Milt Thompson and Tommie Agee ended the week knotted up at 16 votes a piece. So, as per the usual tiebreaker rules, I ask the first three people who care to comment on this post to leave their choice between Thompson and Agee. The card that receives two of those three tie-breaking votes will move on to the next round.

(Edit: Agee wins!)

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In the meantime, let's take a look at our opening matchups from the Terrific 32, complete with the eight victors from the first region of this bracket.

I have a feeling the choices will only get tougher from here on out.





#1 (Page 61) -- 1973 Topps #542 Pat Corrales

vs.

#9 (Page 20) -- 2012 Topps #172 Reed Johnson





#13 (Page 5) -- 1996 Score #38 Bip Roberts

vs.

#5 (Page 74) -- 1991 Topps #659 Oscar Azocar





#3 (Page 3) -- 1972 Topps #19 Billy Cowan

vs.

#11 (Page 30) -- 1992 Upper Deck #268 Mike Benjamin





#7 (Page 21) -- 1984 Fleer #182 Glenn Hubbard

vs.

#2 (Page 18) -- 1984 Fleer #158 Roy Lee Jackson

The polls are now on the sidebar, and let's break the tie from last week's round.

Happy voting!