Saturday, May 12, 2012

Bowman: The good, the bad, and the ugly

Let May 12, 2012, be the day I was first introduced to Edwin Maysonet.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my mom and I made a trip to Milwaukee to catch this afternoon's Cubs-Brewers game.

The ratio of Cubs fans to Brewers fans was about equal. I've always maintained that the Cubs have both the best and the worst fans in baseball. On the one hand, some of the most passionate, loyal, and loving fans root for the North Siders, even with the famous 104-year World Series drought.

On the other hand, there are the "Bleacher Bum"-type fans. The ones who are drunk by the second inning (if not before the game). Not your real baseball fans. Of course, there were a pack of them a few rows behind where we were sitting. They wore themselves out by the fifth inning or so, thankfully. (Or passed out.)

If pitchers were allowed to remove one inning of their choice from their starts, Chris Volstad would be one of the better pitchers in baseball. Unfortunately, that's not allowed. He always seems to have one awful inning, a trend which continued today with a five-run Brewer sixth (capped off by the Maysonet grand slam).

The Brewers won, 8-2.

Oh well. At least I got to sample some amazingly delicious Wisconsin cheese curds at an A&W on the way home.

I found a large package of 2012 Bowman singles in the mailbox once I got home, the result of a trade on the online forum I'm on. (I promise this will be my only Bowman post, as I'm sure most of you are sick of the set already.)

Trading forums are great, especially for the purpose of picking up cards from newer sets. As I've already speculated, people that bust five boxes of Bowman aren't looking for base cards of Torii Hunter or Clay Buchholz, which makes Bowman an especially easy set to trade for.

I can't even remember the last time I purchased a pack of this set. (2007, perhaps?)

Surprisingly, I've seen a couple ads for 2012 Bowman on the MLB Network this week. There was even a Topps ad during the Brewers game today as well. Perhaps Topps is trying to step up their game in the marketing department.

The main draw of Bowman is the possibility of striking "prospect gold". (I'm not sure if any of these types of collectors exist in the blogosphere, though.)

I could care less about 95 percent of the "prospects" featured in Bowman. However, I am excited about having acquired my first-ever Yoenis Cespedes card, shown at the top of the post.

I've got a good feeling about Mr. Cespedes in the coming years.

Whether I love or hate a set, I still go after the guys I collect.

I wouldn't say I hate Bowman (or any set, for that matter), but I sure don't love it.

However, one thing I've always enjoyed about it is the fact that they usually have guys in their new uniforms, which is always a plus for me. In the past, Bowman was usually the first set to snap an actual picture of a guy in their new jersey, without resorting to "photoshopping".

They've reversed their ways, though, as you can clearly see with the Pujols.

I'm not certain whether Prince Fielder's Tigers uniform is airbrushed or not on his card. I'm not even sure where they snapped that picture of him.

A golf course?


I have to believe that Topps owns more than one picture of Mike Napoli. If that is indeed correct, then that would make Topps just plain lazy.

When is Topps going to learn that they can't slip anything by the eagle-eyed collectors? (Even in the most frightening of cases.)

The design isn't anything to write home about, although I am a fan of the white borders.

I've always had a distaste for black-bordered cards for some reason.

Like almost everyone else in the blogosphere, I would like to see Topps phase out the foil lettering. Not only do they not come up in scans, but they don't look all that great in person, either.

One more reason to like Opening Day, I guess. (Which is incidentally about a third of the price of a pack of Bowman.)

But I have to give credit where credit is due.

Topps has done a fantastic job with Mr. Valverde's cards thus far in 2012, his Bowman issue being no exception.

And it's only May.

I'm actually excited to see what else Topps has in store for the collector in the continuing saga of Jose Valverde craziness.

Foe me, the biggest plus of 2012 Bowman was Topps' inclusion of Casey Kotchman.

He's the subject of one of my most extensive player collections. Kudos to Topps on rewarding him for his comeback 2011 season.

Not only is it a Casey Kotchman card, but it's his first as an Indian. I could care less if it's photoshopped or not. It's a landmark card in my ever-growing collection of his.

All thanks to Bowman.


Hackenbush said...

I think Randy Wells has the same problem as Volstad, consistently one bad inning. My wife and I went to a game a Wrigley a few years ago and a bunch of idiots were drinking and throwing peanuts at each other across the aisle. I doubt they even knew what was going on in the game but it ruined our experience.

night owl said...

Actually, what you meant to say is "black-bordered cards are AMAZING."

Nick said...

Haha, perhaps I did. :)

It's just one of those things that I can't quite explain. I don't hate black-bordered cards by any means, they just look off to me for some reason. I never could find out why. (1971 Topps is the only exception to this. But I just can't bring myself to love sets like '07 Topps.)