Monday, August 13, 2012

Mondays with Hoyt, Episode 13

2003 MLB Showdown Pennant Run #118 Hoyt Wilhelm CC

It's been a "perfect storm" of sorts around here lately.

Unfortunately, that "perfect storm" has cut into my enthusiasm for baseball cards and blogging for the last few days. It's odd, because I was just back to "full power" a few days ago.

For one thing, I talked my mom into getting us the Netflix plan that allows you to stream TV shows and movies online. I haven't been able to stop watching episode after episode of The Wonder Years these last few days. It's definitely one of my favorite shows.

Any other bloggers who are able to stream Netflix online can probably testify as to just how addicting it can be. (It's the same reason I stopped playing video games a few years ago. Once I started, I'd play non-stop for weeks on end.)

I guess another part of my current dwindling interest in the hobby is the fact that this is the last full week of my summer vacation. I've been trying to make these last couple weeks count by simply getting out of the house and hanging out with my friends, which has left less time for baseball cards.

After all, I don't have too many of these summer vacations left.

But perhaps the biggest factor in my recent lack of collecting and blogging is something that I've loved for as long as I can remember.

After a lengthy hiatus from the game, I recently developed an urge to play MLB Showdown again for no specific reason. My dad had been holding onto my cards for me lately, but I got them back a few days ago.

I'm not sure a whole lot of bloggers know how MLB Showdown is played, although it's actually pretty simple. It's easily the most realistic baseball game I've ever played, although I've never experienced a game of Strat-O-Matic or anything.

Ever since I got my cards back, I'll admit I've channelled a bit of my "inner geek". I've sat around playing solo MLB Showdown games lately. I've found that it can take the pressure off and help me relax.

But most of all, it's a whole lot of fun.

The game has been a part of me since my grammar school days. I used to play it every chance I got.

I'm a college student now, but I've found that MLB Showdown is still every bit as fun as it once was. I still find myself getting excited over a game played with little rectangular pieces of cardboard, some of which are shinier than others. (I guess they're not so different from my regular baseball cards.)

Some of you might remember my post about what exactly defines the term "baseball card".

As much as I might try, I just can't force myself to place MLB Showdown cards into that category, although I assume I'm one of the few. 

I don't consider this Hoyt Wilhelm an "official" part of my collection of his. I just see one of the most dominant relief pitchers in MLB Showdown history. (Anyone who's played the game should know just how good this card is.)

Ironically, I just finished a game where this Hoyt Wilhelm got the win, and Hoyt's other MLB Showdown card picked up the loss. (I "own" all the National League players, while my dad has all the AL guys.)

As is the case with my regular baseball cards, I don't foresee a day where MLB Showdown could ever fully leave my life. It might go through peaks and valleys, but they'll always be there in some way, shape, or form.

Right now, MLB Showdown is at a peak, while my regular collection is at a valley.

But I promise you, I'll be back to blog and collect with full force very soon. Writing this post has already helped me get back into the "collecting game" a bit.

Until then, I'll be partaking in one of my simple pleasures in life.

A game of MLB Showdown.

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