Thursday, July 17, 2014

St. Louis bound

This blog will be going dark for the next couple days.

My mom and I are heading down to St. Louis to take in a Cardinals-Dodgers game tomorrow night. I'm quite excited, as you might guess.

I went to St. Louis about ten years ago to see a Cards-Cubs matchup at the old Busch Stadium. This will be my first look at the new ballpark, and the first big league game I've ever attended that doesn't involve either Chicago club.

I love the Windy City, but I'm looking forward to taking in as much of St. Louis as I can these next couple days.

I guess it's a happy coincidence that I recently received a surprise package from my buddy Weston, a big Cardinals fan and author of the terrific blog "Fantastic Catch". Weston is an expert at finding great pieces that fit perfectly into my weird, wacky collection.

Some of the craziest cards you'll ever find come from minor league sets.

Take a look at the raw strength of Brian Hunter if you don't believe me.

Weston threw quite a few minor league cards into this terrific package.

I'm probably the last person in the world with a Carlos Febles player collection.

A few minis even found their way into this batch.

The universe needs more Willie Stargell cards.

My Josh Donaldson collection was only a few days old when Weston dropped this package on me.

Donaldson, who received the starting AL nod at third base in this year's All-Star Game, actually came up as a catcher. A lot of his rookie cards feature him wearing the tools of ignorance.

I certainly don't fault guys for ditching the catching profession. I couldn't last a day doing that gig in Little League.

I can only imagine how tough it is on big leaguers.

Weston has proven to be a mini-collection All-Star in the packages he's sent me.

I've seen this nifty "throwback" shot of Andrew Cashner pop up on a few different blogs, and I'm glad to finally have a copy of my own.

Maybe Bowman does have some redeeming qualities after all.

This is a spectacular pair of mini-collection hits.

The DeShields "double dip" shot earns a ton of bonus points for the Kenny Lofton cameo. And, though it comes from the hilariously overdone Yankee Stadium Legacy insert set, the DiMaggio is a terrific "autograph" shot of one of the game's greats.

Speaking of Yankees...

Weston gave these a good home.

I know I may sound a little hipster-ish by referencing obscure guys like Carlos Febles a lot, but a large chunk of my collection is devoted to chasing big names like Babe Ruth.

"The Great Bambino" is arguably the greatest personality baseball has ever seen, and I've done my best to honor him through my cards.

That goes for all the greats the game has seen over the years.

One could argue that UD Masterpieces was perhaps the most well-made set ever released. These beauties Weston sent actually come from Yankees "fan packs" that were sold at retail outlets in 2008.

The big difference is the fact that these have glossy finishes, a grand departure from the canvas finish that the standard Masterpieces cards have.

I personally feel the canvas fits in way better with the overall theme of UD Masterpieces, but I'm ecstatic to have these glossy ones in my collection as well.

I can't thank Weston enough for sending such beautiful works of art my way.

Tonight will probably be a self-proclaimed "card night" before my big trip to St. Louis. Sorting, organizing, filing, you know the deal.

This time tomorrow, I'll be nestled comfortably in a Busch Stadium seat, ready to take in some baseball with my mom.

I'll be sure to take some pictures.


Mark Kaz said...

Awesome! Enjoy the game and the experience!

Mark said...

Have a great time, Nick. We almost took in an Indians game while in Cleveland last weekend, but the weather had other plans.

Mike said...

Have a great time!....hope you and mom can find a card shop down there!

petethan said...

Have a great time, Nick. GO DODGERS!

Matthew Scott said...

Have a good time! Let us know if the Cardinal fans are the best baseball fans like so many claim.

Alex Markle said...

I agree with Ethan, Go Dodgers!

Mark Hoyle said...

Have a great time.