Sunday, July 21, 2013

The dime box frankenset, Page 5: Numbers 37-45

For the first time since I started this mini-series, I didn't write a frankenset post last week.

As I've found, these write-ups are great for the weekends. Which is nice, considering I don't usually have much else to post about on Saturdays and Sundays.

Our little series kicks back up with my second completed page thus far. In fact, this may well be one of the greatest pages I'll ever assemble for this frankenset. I doubt I could "upgrade" many of these beauties.

Let's take a look at the nominees.

Completion status: 9/9...completed page!

Numbers needed: None.

The card: 1995 Upper Deck #37 Pat Hentgen

Why it made the cut...

It's a "pitcher at the plate", of course!

Adding to this card's beauty is the fact that Hentgen was with the Blue Jays at the time, an American League club. And, since 1995 was one of the last pre-interleague seasons, the chances of snapping a shot of an AL hurler hitting were almost nil.

As I always try to do whenever I feature a "pitcher at the plate" card, let's take a look at Hentgen's career offensive stats.

In 14 big league seasons, he racked up 84 official at-bats, most of which came during his lone season in the National League with the Cardinals in 2000. He compiled a .107 career average without ever posting a single RBI.

Not exactly your next Babe Ruth.

The card: 1973 Topps #38 Mike Epstein

Why it made the cut...

As one of many cards from '73 Topps in my frankenset binder, including Mr. Epstein was an absolute no-brainer.

Without looking at the name, I'd guess that the featured player on this particular piece was the Angels baserunner scampering back to first on a pickoff attempt. (No, I haven't a clue who that runner is.)

But, because '73 Topps is so crazy, the partially-obscured Mike Epstein is actually the subject of this particular piece.

How can you not love this set?

The card: 1996 Collector's Choice #39 Robert Person

Why it made the cut...

Last week, I used a lazy weeknight to go frankenset hunting through my extras.

In the past, I merely tossed aside cards who didn't feature any of my many "binder guys". No matter how cool they might've been. While I love my "binder guys", everyone else deserves their time in the spotlight as well.

That's one the best parts about my frankenset, I think. It's exclusive to my non-"binder guys". I've already dug up a nice stack of frankenset nominees, cards that I'd simply tossed a side during my pre-blogger days.

This nice "autograph" shot of Robert Person is actually the one that completed the very page we're discussing today.

I doubt it'll be the last frankenset gem I'll uncover from my extras, though.

The card: 1994 Collector's Choice #40 Jack Armstrong

Why it made the cut...

I'm partial to any card that features one of those sunflower seed buckets, as we have with Mr. Armstrong here.

Besides, the back even includes a shot of the former hurler at the plate.

The card: 1994 Topps #41 Kevin Wickander

Why it made the cut...

Simply a beautiful dugout shot here.

While it doesn't technically feature a "pitcher at the plate", you could certainly argue for its inclusion in such a category. After all, Wickander is posing next to quite an array of hitting equipment.

And it's all brought to you by 1994 Topps.

I still think it's one of the more underrated sets Topps ever produced.

The card: 1973 Topps #42 Mike Andrews

Why it made the cut...

It seems like just yesterday I was raving about this awesome "double dip" shot.

Oh, wait.

The card: 2012 Topps Chrome #43 Desmond Jennings

Why it made the cut...

Now's a good time to bring up a little rule I've added to this whole frankenset business.

Only one incarnation of each specific card is allowed in my set. To be more specific, let's talk about Mr. Jennings here.

This nifty "play at the plate" shot was featured on Jennings's base Flagship, Opening Day, and Topps Chrome cards. And, since all of them held different numbers in their respective checklists, they'd all ideally be eligible for my frankenset binder.

However, to keep things fair, only one would be allowed in my set. Jennings's base Flagship issue (card #5) was already beaten out by an awesome throwback/"double dip" combo, anyways.

Still, he was far and away the best nominee for slot #43.

The card: 1997 Collector's Choice #44 Rick Krivda

Why it made the cut...

I think you can pretty much see why this one made the binder.

I've personally only seen one or two other cards that feature a ballplayer physically chomping down on a piece of lumber. (Yeah, that didn't sound right to me, either.)

And, hey! Krivda was a pitcher, so that has to count for something, too!


The card: 1986 Fleer #45 Darrell Porter

Why it made the cut...

We close out this frankenset page with a card that has been growing on me since the start.

At first, I included this one as merely a placeholder. I was sure that the next card #45 to come along would knock Porter out of his slot.

But, although he's faced some stiff competition from other fellow #45s, I just couldn't bring myself to take this one out of the running.

Darrell Porter may well have sported the best specs in baseball history. And the pair he's wearing here are actually color-coordinated to his Cardinals gear.

I think it'll be a long, long time before we see this one knocked out of the frankenset binder.

If ever.


beefman said...


I love your frankenset posts - primarily for the way you write about the cards, but the fact that any card from any era could make an appearance is exciting in itself!

Love that Wickander photo...

Nick J

Chris said...

A frankenset is a really good idea for making use of all of the extra cards you wind up with that feature cool pictures or designs, but don't otherwise fit into your collection.

I may steal this idea for my own collection, but with a special twist to personalize it a little.