Thursday, June 14, 2012

Cardboard Masterpieces, Pt. 12

2011 Topps Update #US252 Derek Jeter SH

So, what were you doing around midnight central time last night?

I was watching a perfect game. 

I saw Melky Cabrera's catch at the wall in the 6th. I witnessed Gregor Blanco make one of the best catches I've ever seen in the 7th. And I finally got to see the magical final out of a perfect game, tossed by none other than Mr. Matt Cain.

And I owe it all to the MLB Network.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. If you've got the money, the MLB Network is a must-have for any baseball fan. It's on about 90 percent of the time in our house.

ESPN's Baseball Tonight was always an enjoyable watch for me, but there's no reason to have it on anymore. Why watch an hour-long baseball TV show when you've got a 24-hour, around the clock channel devoted to the National Pastime?

It certainly beats waiting for those baseball highlights after the half-hour of basketball and football highlights every night on SportsCenter. (Even when it's the middle of summer and neither of those sports are even being played.)

The "live look-ins" are perhaps the biggest plus of the MLB Network.

If there's a close game happening that night, they'll take you to the drama-filled ninth inning. If there's a comeback in the making, they'll keep you updated.

Most importantly, if baseball history is happening, you'll get to see it.

As was the case with the Mariners' combined no-hitter last week. And was the case with Matt Cain's perfecto last night, which Harold Reynolds pretty much predicted during the 5th inning. (I had a feeling something special was going to happen after Blanco's catch.)

But I have to say, the most amazing event I've ever seen live was Derek Jeter's 3,000th hit against the Rays last season. 

As usual, MLB Network was in the ballpark that afternoon. I'd never seen a 3,000th hit before.

Never in my life did I think Jeter would hit a homer for that historic hit. But he did. And thus history was made. Something only one other player (Wade Boggs) had done before.

While I love how he plays the game, I don't collect Derek Jeter. (His cards are just too good of tradebait.)

But I kept his 2011 Topps Update highlights card, and it's going to stay with me for a long time. On the surface, it's simply a great shot of Jeter seconds after his 3,000th hit left that park. 

More than that, though, it's a great image of a moment in time that I'll never forget. The day a future Hall of Famer reached one of the hallowed milestones of the game in truly jaw-dropping fashion.

All thanks to the MLB Network.

No comments: