2009 Upper Deck #461 Carlos Zambrano SH
You may have noticed that cards from various "Season Highlights" subsets are frequent features in these theme posts.
This is already the fourth of its kind in the "Cardboard Masterpieces" gallery.
I can't help it. Card companies have always knocked these out of the park, something for which I give them a lot of credit.
This one is no exception.
As a huge Cubs fan, I'm a little ashamed to admit that I missed Zambrano's no-hitter in '08 against the Astros. I'm not exactly sure where I was.
If I could go back in time, I'd catch the no-no. Not only would I get to witness history, but I could see a Cubs team that was actually good. They made the playoffs that year (although they were knocked out in the first round), but they've been absolutely awful ever since.
What made Zambrano's no-hitter especially interesting was that it was done at a neutral site. From what I can remember, there was a hurricane watch near Houston at the time, so they moved the Astros-Cubs series to Miller Park in Milwaukee.
I would say that we probably won't see another no-no of the neutral stadium variety, but you just never know in baseball.
I'd never seen this particular card before yesterday, as it was a generous throw-in by Clark, author of the blog "Fantastic Catch". I happened to mention that I was a Cubs fan after we had worked out a trade, and he was nice enough to add in some extra cards of the North Siders, free of charge. (Thanks for the bonus cards, Clark!)
After I admired this card for a bit, I couldn't help but think if any others capture a pair of players in mid-high five.
I couldn't find any.
While the story is debated, it's possible that baseball is responsible for the invention of the high-five. One of the first reported sightings of the celebration took place during an Astros-Dodgers contest in 1977 between Dodgers Glenn Burke and Dusty Baker (who had just homered).
I'm not sure if I should thank or blame baseball for that.
Clark had originally agreed to send me some 2012 Bowman cards I needed in exchange for some Cardinals cards I had for him.
Personally, I didn't quite get the praise for Bowman this year. I'll admit it was a little better than in years past, but it still didn't excite me very much.
I can still say I haven't bought a pack of Bowman in about four or five years. While I enjoyed seeing a little marketing of the product on Topps' part (I still see commercials for it on the MLB Network), it's just not my kind of set. Not to mention that the foil lettering is even worse than flagship.
You'd never know that's a Nyjer Morgan card.
I'll still take Zambrano's no-hitter over a pack of Bowman all the time.