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2013 Baseball Standing Prediction

March 31, 2013 Leave a comment

Well Opening Day 2013 is upon us and I thought I contribute something to my oft-ignored blog, like writing a blog post. What a neat idea. Anyway, not to torture you with my verbosity, I will keep things short and sweet and write about my predictions for who will finish where come October.

AL EAST: Probably the flattest division in baseball.

  1. Toronto Blue Jays: on paper they look stacked in both hitting and pitching
  2. Tampa Bay Rays: have you seen their starting pitchers?
  3. New York Yankees: I know about the injuries, but have the talent in the end
  4. Boston Red Sox: Much improved, will do better, but need more
  5. Baltimore Orioles: Pretty much intact, but starting pitching is a question

AL CENTRAL:

  1. Detroit Tigers: Excellent pitching, better offense. What’s not to like?
  2. Cleveland Indians: Quantum leap in offense. Pitching is a bit iffy
  3. Kansas City Royals: Like Indians, improved greatly. A wild card in the division
  4. Chicago White Sox: Add little. Just hoping Sale, Peavy and Danks can deliver
  5. Minnesota Twins: A work in progress. That’s all I got to say

AL WEST:

  1. Los Angeles Angels: Trout, Pujols, and Hamilton. Need I say more?
  2. Oakland Athletics: Great young pitchers will only get better.
  3. Texas Rangers: Pitching will need to get better for offensive deficiencies.
  4. Seattle Mariners: King Felix, added some pieces, but need to do more
  5. Houston Astros: Hapless in NL, will be hapless here.

NL EAST:

  1. Washington Nationals: This team only got better all around. No contest
  2. Philadelphia Phillies: The band is back together offensively. Halladay is a concern
  3. Atlanta Braves: Best outfield in baseball? Young pitching staff. Solid closer
  4. New York Mets: Loss of Santana is a blow. Have Wright. Lack of offense
  5. Miami Marlins: Name one player beside Giancarlo Stanton? Enough said

NL CENTRAL:

  1. Cincinnati Reds: Healthy Joey Votto. Dominant closer. Should repeat
  2. Pittsburgh Pirates: This may be the year for McCutchen and company
  3. St. Louis Cardinals: Loaded with young talent, but needs seasoning
  4. Milwaukee Brewers: Nice to have Braun, but where’s the pitching?
  5. Chicago Cubs: Early phases of rebuilding. Not their year

NL WEST:

  • Los Angeles Dodgers: Healthy Kemp. Clayton Kershaw and Greinke. Team to beat
  • San Francisco Giants: Close second. Lincecum comes back strong? Watch out
  • Arizona Diamondbacks: Marginal improvement. Okay pitching. Might have a chance
  • Colorado Rockies: Troy, Gonzalez are always good, but is the pitching good enough.
  • San Diego Padres: Great young talent, but still need some maturing.
Categories: baseball

You Tube – Panini Cooperstown Ballparks Insert Set

January 20, 2013 Leave a comment

Have put together a ten-card Ballparks insert set from Panini Cooperstown. Check out what I got:

The only problem is there are no team logos or their names listed anywhere on the cards since Panini does not have a license from MLB. So unless you know your baseball history, you will have a hard time figuring which team played where. Quite maddening, I know.

2013 TOPPS SERIES 1 – RED SOX CARDS

January 19, 2013 Leave a comment

With the checklist officially released for 2013 Topps Series 1 baseball cards, it’s a good time to look at what Topps’ flagship series has in store for Red Sox fans. The base set will consist of ten cards:

15 – Dustin Pedroia
32 – Craig Breslow
64 – Will Middlebrooks
66 – Daniel Nava
91 – Alfredo Aceves
118 – Daisuke Matsuzaka
241 – Jacoby Ellsbury
279 – Vicente Padilla
291 – Ryan Sweeney
301- Jarrod Saltalamacchia

2012 was a lousy season for the Red Sox. Star players like Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Adrian Gonzalez were traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers last year and their roles were primarily filled by Triple-A players, many of whom will start the season back in the minors. All Red Sox free agent signings and trades made in the offseason should be reflected in Series 2.

Nevertheless, the list contains players that will not be on the roster come Opening Day. I’m surprised Daisuke Matsuzaka will have a card even though Red Sox had no interest in re-signing him well before 2012 season ended. Vicente Padilla just signed with a Japanese team. Ryan Sweeney is a free agent and I have no idea if he’ll be back. And there are some doubts Alfredo Aceves will be back even though he did file for arbitration. Jarrod Saltalamacchia just avoided arbitration but may be traded before Opening Day. Pedroia, Middlebrooks and Ellsbury are the only players worth getting excited about.

Each base card will have parallels: Emerald, Camo, Pink, Black, Platinum and Printing Plates.

Listed below are the insert cards:

CHASING HISTORY

CH-33                    Ted Williams

CHASING THE DREAM

CD-3                      Will Middlebrooks

CUT TO THE CHASE

CTC-9                    Ted Williams
CTC-15                  Dustin Pedroia

THE GREATS

TG-5                      Ted Williams
TG-6                      Jimmie Foxx

CALLING CARDS

CC-4                       David Ortiz

1972 TOPPS MINIS

TM-11                   Dustin Pedroia
TM-46                  Jim Rice
TM-50                  Ted Williams

PENNET CHASE CODE CARDS

PC-4                       Boston Red Sox

Listed below are the relic cards:

CHASING HISTORY RELICS

CHR-DO                David Ortiz

CHASING THE DREAMS RELICS

CDR-WM             Will Middlebrooks

CUT TO THE CHASE RELICS

CTCR-9                 Ted Williams
CTCR-15               Dustin Pedroia

THE GREAT RELICS

TGR-JF                 Jamie Foxx
TGR-PM               Pedro Martinez
TGR-TW               Ted Williams

CALLING CARD RELICS

CCR-DO                David Ortiz
CCR-NG                Nomar Garciaparra
CCR-WB               Wade Boggs

IN THE NAME RELICS

ITN-DO                 David Ortiz

Listed below are the autograph cards:

CHASING HISTORY CUT SIGNATURES

CHCS-BO              Bobby Doer
CHCS-TS               Tris Speaker
CHCS-TW             Ted Williams
CHCS-TW2           Ted Williams

CHASING THE DREAM AUTOGRAPHS

CDA-FD                                Felix Doubront

THE GREATS AUTOGRAPHS

TGA-PM               Pedro Martinez

CALLING CARD AUTOGRAPHS

CCA-NG               Nomar Garciaparra
CCA-WB               Wade Boggs

1972 TOPPS MINIS AUTOGRAPHS

TMA-DP               Dustin Pedroia

THE GREATS AUTOGRAPH RELICS

TGAR-PM            Pedro Martinez

CALLING CARD AUTOGRAPH RELICS

CCAR-DO             David Ortiz
CCAR-NG             Nomar Garciaparra

THE ULTIMATE CHASE

TUC-14                  Pedro Martinez
TUC-30                 Pedro Martinez

Listed below are the silk cards:

SILK COLLECTION

SC-31                     Dustin Pedroia
SC-46                     Jacoby Ellsbury
SC-67                     Will Middlebrooks
SC-98                     Jarrod Saltalamacchia

Listed below can only be found in HTA-HOBBY:

MVP AWARD WINNER TROPHY

MVP-DP               Dustin Pedroia

CY YOUNG AWARD WINNER TROPHY

CY-RM2                Pedro Martinez

SILVER SLUGGERS AWARD WINNER TROPHY

SS-DO                   David Ortiz
SS-JR                     Jim Rice
SS-MR                   Manny Ramirez
SS-WB                   Wade Boggs

Listed below can only be found in retail:

MANUFACTURED COMMEMORATIVE PATCH CARDS

CP-2                       Dustin Pedroia

MANUFACTURED ROOKIE CARD PATCH CARDS

RCP-15                  Wade Boggs

Both Carton Fisk and Carl Yastrazemski were well-represented in last year’s set. This year Ted Williams, Pedro Martinez, Nomar Garciaparra, and Wade Boggs make multiple appearances.

Hope you found this list helpful. If there are any comments, questions, or corrections, please leave it below or tweet me @callstrike.

2013 Card Collecting Resolutions

January 3, 2013 Leave a comment

In a previous post, I discussed some of my experiences as a “born-again” card collector; and what numerous mistakes I made in the process, including buying way too many cards that I could either handle or afford.

So listed below is a brief list of my resolutions, and goals, for card collecting in 2013:

  • No set building, just collect Red Sox team sets
  • Not spending too much money: no hobby boxes and cutting back on retail
  • Complete several sets I started in 2012
  • Collect 2008 Topps Heritage Chrome & Chrome Refractor set
  • For football, only collect Tom Brady cards
  • Occasional purchases in basketball and hockey
  • Sell off some cards to help finance other card purchases

That’s about it. Hope to keep to this list. Let’s see if I accomplish any of my goals.

Categories: Uncategorized

2012 in Review: Confessions of a Newbie Card Collector

December 27, 2012 Leave a comment

Apologies for the lack of posts, but this is an ongoing problem for me and I doubt it will improve anytime soon (even though I have a new year’s resolution to blog more). Anyway, I thought I use this blog post to review my year in card collecting and reflect on what I did wrong, right, and provide an eye into the future.

The year 2012 saw my enthusiastic return to card collecting. I haven’t really collected anything since the junk card days of the 1990s. I stopped when it was no longer about the hobby but about the money. I blame Upper Deck for this, but eventually all card companies bought into it: the high-end of card collecting. But for some reason2012 was the year I wanted to dive back in. So I bought my first pack of 2012 Topps Series I pack and I was off. The thrill of opening a wax pack after so many years was electric. I felt alive. I felt a connection to long gone youth. So I bought another pack, and another, and another, etc…

In fact, I bought too many wax packs. I was planning to be a set builder, but in doing so I was spending a lot of money I had no reason to spend. I went overboard. I bought tons of hobby wax boxes, retail packs, singles, sets, etc. I had no plan, no discipline and no common sense. It got to the point that I got sick of them. I didn’t realize the landscape has changed so much. There is a lot of product out there, in varying price ranges, quality, that I was overwhelmed. I wanted it all, but I soon realized that was next to impossible. I realized I had to stop.

The whole point of card collecting is that it’s a hobby to be enjoyed, not to cripple you financially or emotionally. So I vastly reduced my card purchases and will reduce it further in 2013. I will come up with a plan for 2013, which I will hopefully post it here, soon after the new year.

Hope everyone has a great 2013 and to keep on collecting…

Categories: Uncategorized

Nothing going on

September 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Damn I need to write more here, but I’m damn lazy, man. What’s a guy to do. Let’s hope I can get my shit together and post something in the coming days (weeks, more likely)!

Categories: Uncategorized

My Latest You Tube Video – Carl Crawford Mojo!!!

April 23, 2012 Leave a comment

Sorry for the lack of posts. Busy with work and life and me being lazy in general. But here is my latest YouTube video:

 

You can subscribe to my YouTube channel here: http://www.youtube.com/user/CallStrikeYT

Categories: Uncategorized
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