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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Fun(?) with Junk Wax -- Quien Es Mas Macho?

I was itching to open a couple packs of cards and this idea just popped in my head.  I'm afraid it's not going to turn out well but I'm going with it.  Anyone remember the Bill Murray SNL game show sketch "Quien es Mas Macho" from 1979?  It featured Gilda Radner and Ricky Nelson and is famous for the line. "Quien es mas macho, Fernando Llamas o Ricardo Montalban?"  (Insert crickets chirping.)
Here's my take using two packs from 1990:

Quien es mas macho, los jugadors de beisbol de Score o de Topps?  

I don't think a scrappy bunter is as macho as a 23-6 stud pitcher who led the AL in innings pitched and won the AL Cy Young award hands down.  And Bret Saberhagen sounds like a Viking or something and they were very macho.
1-0 Topps

This is a tough one.  My first impulse is that anyone named "Rock" wins this.  But then I read about Pasqua's mammoth home runs.  So let's get personal.  I'm a die hard North Side Cubs fan who doesn't much care for the Sox.  And I never liked those uniforms.  I think Tim Raines should be in the Hall of Fame.  And I do like the old Expos uniforms.  Raines rocks the win.
2-0 Topps
OK Lee, you had me with the awesome sneer.  Then Score said you were "a gentle man with a twinkle in his eye."  But you're also "6'8" tall and an imposing figure on the mound."  On the other side we have journeyman Jeff who seems to be admiring his lazy fly ball to short center.  And he named his daughter Lynzie.  Not Lindsay, Lynzie.  Uh, uh, no.  Gentle badass Lee gets Score on the board.
Topps 2-Score 1
I remember not liking George Bell much when he was a Cub and then he was traded for Sammy Sosa who I don't care to remember.  But Kevin Seitzer looks like Casper the Friendly Ghost bunting.  George Bell is definitely mas macho.  Tie game!
Score 2- Topps 2
I don't know.  I think this one is a push.  
Score 2- Topps 2
Gene Nelson seems to be doing his best Dennis Eckersley impression.  I knew Dennis Eckersley.  You sir are no Dennis Eckersley.  Omar Visquel on the other hand won 9 straight Gold Gloves and played for 24 seasons.  That's macho enough for me.  Topps regains the lead.
Topps 3 - Score 2

Fuhgeddaboudit!  Hall of Famer Eddie Murrray es muy macho.
Topps 4 - Score 2
 
It's like kissing your sister.  Nothing to see here.
Topps-4 - Score 2
Another easy one.  Gaetti is in the Hall of Very Good.  He's also pretty macho.
Topps 4 - Score 3
George Brett gave new meaning to the phrase "roid rage".  He's an all-time great and got muy, muy macho one night:
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We have ourselves a game here.  All tied again.  Score 4 - Topps 4
Sorry Steve, Nolan macho'd his was to the Hall of Fame.  Throwing heaters like he did for nearly three decades makes him macho indeed.
Score is scrappy but can't seem to break through.
Topps 5 - Score 4
Mets fans may be saying this is rigged but I'm calling this one a tie.  Both good players who won championships.  Ward was stopped by injuries in his prime.
Topps 5 - Score 4
This one's tough.  Can't just go by home runs.  Herbie (not a macho nickname) is a hunter and fisherman.  Jeltz was a bounty hunter for a time.  I can't pickem.
Topps 5 - Score 4

Perhaps I'm missing something but these are two boring guys.  Tie.
Topps 5 - Score 4
I don't really think Ryno is macho (I knew this concept was sketchy) but he's a Cub and he's in the HOF so he gets Topps another win.
Topps 6 - Score 4

I do think of Speier as feisty and hard-nosed.  That is a gum stain on the back of his card.  The gum was still in one piece.  No I didn't even consider trying to chew it.
Topps 7 - Score 4  Topps Wins! Topps Wins!

 

   Consolation prize goes to Score for the MVP insert.
Also, the award for best card backs to Score.  The print is small but they have everything you could want with the possible exception of a cartoon.  Where would you put it?

I'm sorry I was right.  This concept fell short.  Oh well.  I had fun looking at the cards and doing a little research on the players along the way.  Hope it was worth your time too.  Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Vintage Rookie Stars-- Best?

The other day Joe Shlabotnik posted a couple of multi-player vintage rookie cards.  It made me ponder what might be the best duo on such a card.  I've seen some suggestions online and I think of the cards I have this one might be the best (and might be best overall as well).  What are your thoughts?  Best?  Favorite?


Monday, November 14, 2016

A Loss in the Music World

Leonard Cohen (1934-2016)
Image result for leonard cohen wikipedia

Friday, November 4, 2016

I Didn't Win the World Series

   As I was trying to get to sleep after Game 7 I was thinking about how I felt.  As an older Cubs fan I've had my share of highs and lows.  I've shared that I was at the game on Opening Day in 1969 and sang along with "Hey Hey Holy Mackerel" and watched Ron Santo click his heels after wins that summer.  I cheered when Rick Sutcliff hit his home run in the 1984 playoffs.  I was counting  the outs remaining in Game 6 in 2003.  Then as everyone knows came the disappointments in those seasons and others.  As a young teen I spent a few summers with my friends taking the El down from West Rogers Park and (unbelievably now) buying tickets at the gate and sitting in the front row of the left field bleachers.  Along the way I followed the team through a lot of mediocre seasons.
    At some point rooting for a team is like love.  You give your heart and you're sometimes rewarded with joy.  Sometimes your heart gets broken.  There are people, optimistic types, who never give up on love, who deal with the heartbreak and always remain open to the joy.  Then there are others who maybe become more guarded.  Afraid of getting hurt, they close their own hearts to some degree and to that degree lose their ability to feel the joy of the good moments.  I, being more of a pessimist, unfortunately fall into the second category.  You can guess where I'm going with this.  I'm happy that the Cubs won but maybe I don't feel it as much as most do.  That's a bit sad but that's life.
    All I've said is really a preamble (pre-ramble?) to what I ended up thinking about as I lay in the dark.  Maybe they're totally sincere when they say that what they do is for the fans and maybe we do inspire them but the people who really won the World Series are the players and those who built the team.  I'm truly happy for them.  Guys like Anthony Rizzo who overcame cancer and who spends time off the field inspiring others to do the same.  Rizzo and Travis Wood who spent three long years waiting for the success that was hoped for but not guaranteed.  Kris Byant who's had two magical years, who won the ROY but worked to improve himself and had an even better year two.  Jon Lester who brought his winning experience to the Cubs under a ton of pressure.  John Lackey, a competitor, another winner who famously said, “We’re trying to win a World Series. I didn’t come here for a haircut, you know what I mean? We’re trying to get it on. I came here for jewelry.”  I'm really happy for David Ross, Grandpa Rossy, in his last year, who the guys rallied around all season.  How about Miguel Montero who at some point in the season worried he was going to be cut and ended up with the game winning hit in Game 7.  That makes me happy.  What can I say about the manager, Joe Maddon.  Through it all he gave me faith.  The guy is cool!  I'm happy for him and his under the radar coaching staff.  I'm happy and a bit relieved for Jason Heyward who never could get it going with the bat but seemed always positive nonetheless and showed his heart and leadership during the rain delay the other night.  I'm happy for Javier Baez who overcame early troubles and is now damn fun to watch.  The quiet Addison Russell.  You could see his confidence growing as the year went on.  Ben Zobrist, Zorilla, who had a monster start and a monster ending.  Another winner for sure.  I'm happy for the intense 2015 Cy Young winner, Jake Arrieta.  You gotta be happy for The Professor, Kyle Hendricks who began the year as the Cub's fifth starter and is in the mix for the Cy Young this year.  I'm happy for Kyle Schwarber who apparently worked his butt off to come back and not only gave a lift to the team emotionally but hit .412 in the Series.  Unbelievable!  OK, thanks if you're still reading.  I'm happy for Theo Epstein, who at only 42 years old was instrumental in breaking the two longest championship droughts in baseball history.  What's left Theo?  Lastly, I'm happy for those former Cub players like Billy Williams, Ryne Sandberg, etc. who will always be part of the Cubs family.

    The team I've watched for almost half a century is finally on top and as the hours go by and it sinks in I do think I'm getting more emotional.  Maybe after all these years it's just too hard to believe.  You know?  Well, there are probably more words on this page than I've written in seven years of this blog.  Thanks for reading.

Here's to all the Cubs fans no longer with us, including Steve Goodman:
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