10 years ago…

Time moves quickly, too quickly and the older you get the faster it goes.  I’ve had this blog live for almost 5 years, but haven’t exploited it nearly as much as i should have.  Like most things i start, i don’t always finish them  well.  I get distracted and i get excited about something else in the moment…but i always have a desire to write and share my own stories along with whatever new items i’ve picked up for my favorite hobby and of my favorite team.

As some of you may know, today November 27, 2017 marks the 10 year anniversary of the very sad passing of Sean Taylor.  Now, as many have noted time and time again, he was not saint…but he was a young man that was beginning to reach his greatest potential, not just as a football player, but as a man and a father.  Something that i’ve struggled with at times.  Sean’s greatness on the field was unmatched.  His willingness to lay out a receiver that came across the middle was a clear warning that he would always approach the game with a physical mentality…I loved it and was more than excited to have him as a Redskin.

Through his very brief career, i was able to see him live and in person at three different times.  Once in Dallas and twice in Seattle.

The Dallas game was a significant one for multiple reasons, it was the Monday Night game when Santana Moss hauled in two 4th quarter bombs from Mark Brunell to win the game 14-13!  The Redskins has zero hope of winning that game and then those two bombs…holy shit…holy fucking shit!!!  The game started on September 19th 2005 and by the time Moss had caught the two passes, the clock flipped over to the next day and i had turned 30…Moss caught both of those passes for me on my 30th birthday…yup.  This was also the game that i got to see Sean Taylor live and in Person…he was everywhere, i did my best t follow him on defense, but man…he was all over the place dominating and it was only his second season in the NFL.

The next game i saw Sean play was later that season in October against Seattle in Seattle.  Just a short drive up from Portland…well, at least much shorter than a flight back home to Texas.  I “won” the tickets at an office raffle…truth is, everybody knows i’m a Redskins fan so i had a ticket procured and three other people won.  Aside from spending the game with three co-workers that couldn’t care less about football, much less the Redskins, i had an amazing time and got to see Sean Taylor in action again…less than a month later.

The final time i saw him play live was the 2006 playoff game against Seattle, again in Seattle.  This matchup was completely unexpected during the season…the Redskins were 5-6 and going nowhere in Joe Gibbs’ second year of his second stint with the Redskins…but somehow they managed to win out and finish the season10-6 to make the playoffs, along with the series of Clinton Portis’ characters…my favorite of which was Coach Janky Spanky…and Sheriff Gonna Getcha.  They won the last game in Philly with Sean picking up a fumble and crossing the end zone to make it 31-20…sealing the victory.  The following week, they played a talented Tampa Bay team in Tampa and Sean had another huge fumble recovery for a touchdown to get things going…unfortunately, this was the game he also spit in Michael Pittman’s face…again, he wasn’t a saint, but damn if could play football.  The Redskins ended up losing the Seattle playoff game, but Sean’s impact was enormous on that 2005 season and playoff run…and i was incredibly lucky to see him three times that season.

I also attended the Seattle playoff game in the 2007 season after his death.  The season again seemed lost until the Redskins went on another unexpected playoff run to win the wild card, but Seattle was Super Bowl bound that season and my team wasn’t going to win…the hard part was seeing the 21’s all over a stadium that prides itself on the 12th man.  Sadly ironic, the Redskins ended up losing 35-14…they lost by 21.

Even though these cards are tons of fun and incredibly exciting to collect and write about, life is short.  Enjoy your time with your family and every moment you can…time moves quickly.

*****oh yeah, check out that new Evidence song…it’s dope!*****

Humble Redskins

Hello out there.  I haven’t picked up too many cards lately…been super busy at work.  This part of my job is a little tough, the deadlines.  They tend to linger on for a while and when you’re on a project like this there are multiple versions of deadlines.  At this job, i have to deal with the city as well as clients and consultants.  Luckily for me, i’m fairy new to this project type so i don’t have to deal with city people too much.  Portland is known in the region to have one of the slower forms of public government and gettin’ shit done…but then again, it is the city where young people go to retire.  So, speaking of deadlines…

Kirk is on a deadline of sorts…or maybe it’s the Redskins that are on the deadline.  I’m on record as a Cousins supporter and a guy that would love to see him be a Redskin for a long long time.  Not sure how the team ownership and pseudo GM feel about that though.  I really do hope they get a long term contract done with Kurt Kirk soon.  I don’t think he will excel at another place, like oh…maybe San Francisco as much as he does in DC Hyattsville.

16 DE Kirk Cousins squares 41:99

Now, i say it’s deadline, but it’s really a soft deadline.  One that will probably come and go without much notice.  From what i’ve read, both sides are more than content in doing a year to year franchise tag contract.  Not sure if that puts the team in the best situation as he will make a ton of cash and potentially bind the team and keep them from paying other players…and young stars on the team.

Don’t get me wrong, i’m not against anyone getting their cash and if anybody deserves to milk their team for all the cash they can, it’s Cousins.  He’s always been tied to RGIII for good or bad and i think he’s made a great name for himself, but you always feel like he’s being compared to the electric rookie year Griffin had…even though Cousins has far exceeded Robert’s career trajectory since then.

16 PS Kirk Cousins dots 37:60

I’m meandering here…so i’m just gonna post some cards and a music video at the end like i do.  Here’s a Jordan Reed card that has serial numbers on it.

16 AF Jordan Reed 87:100

Gonna miss this guys, DJacc.  Sure hope he does well in Tampa though…so glad he didn’t go back to Philly or Dallas or New York…would of loved to see him go home and play for the Rams along with McVay and Garcon.  I might just had to follow the Rams if that was the case.

16 PS DeSean Jackson

Last card is a Kerrigan card.  It’s a basic card.  No serial numbers, No fractators, No autos and No fake jersey.  Just a picture of a guy going to work and doing work every. single. game.  You know he hasn’t missed a game in his 6 year career!  96 games and no misses…and he’s had some tough, nagging injuries along the way.  Solid guy that isn’t represented nearly enough on this blog…i gotta fix that.

16 SCF Ryan Kerrigan

That’s all i got.

for today’s music, i’m just gonna go ahead and post this week old Kendrick Lamar video…Humble.  Like Kerrigan and all those guys that go to work every day and do their work with out the fan fare or self promotion…Like Captain Kirk.

Opening Day…a couple of days late

The last few years i’ve taken the…sort of MLB opening day of Monday off.  I already get Sundays off, so it’s not really necessary to take that day off.  It’s Monday’s that i like to not be at work.  Plus, who likes working on Monday’s.  They tend to suck don’t they?  Take ’em off i say.  The only problem though was that i am drowning in a mess of a deadline at work…so that time could have been better spent working than watching baseball…but life goes on.

Normally, i take this time off to be with my kid, but he’s in school until 3pm and i saw that as a time in the day to open up some packs of cards from my local Target.  Why Target and not my LCS…well, Brian was apparently out that day…he must have taken opening day off too.

I’m not typically a pack buyer or box buyer unless i plan on putting the set together, but i do like to pick up a pack or two of new releases.  A couple reasons, it helps me replenish my team card lots as well as adds star cards to my personal collection…which unfortunately ends up living in a white box in my basement.  Let’s take a look at what i picked up.

Just a couple of battery mates from the city by the bay.  MadBum and Posey.  Both of these cards are fantastic examples of how Panini should make cards with none…or at least very minimal photoshopping in order to get a proper non logo’d image.  Plus some cool action photos

Next up is a couple of Longo cards that just so happened to be back to back in the fat pack of Donruss.  Longoria was one of those guys that I had added to my PC a few years ago…but never really followed up on him.  I kinda feel bad for the guy.  He’s a great player on a mediocre team…they’re not bad, but playing in the AL East is tough…plus, not too much fan support in Tampa for their baseball team.

17 DO Andrew McCutchen

Cutch is a player that i’ve waffled on adding as a “guy i collect” but never seem to actually getting it done.  Instead, i think i’ll just add this card to my non official collection of him…again, in the white basement box.

17 DO Gary Sanchez

Ok, this guy.  Mr. Sanchez will most likely be a “guy i collect”.  I’m already building up a little stack of his cards so far…would like to get an autograph of his at some point this year.  I’ve never been overly fond of catchers though…cept for Posada of course!

17 DES Madison Bumgarner 96:249

Last card from the Donruss pack was this shimmery bit of sexiness.  A Madison Bumgarner ‘The Elite Series’ serial numbered card of 96/249.  It was the only hit of the day for me…very nice though.

Next up was a few packs of Gypsy Queen.  GQ is something that i get excited about each year, but never really seem to get that much in to the set.  I saw a few samples on the other blogs and was quite impressed with the cards this year though.  My trip to Target yielded single packs only.  I had high hopes of getting a blaster, but that wasn’t in the cards for me…so i had marginal expectations for the packs i picked up and was definitely not let down…or lifted up?  Pretty cool to get a couple Bronx Baby Bombers though.

Rizzo, because he’s a champion of the world with the Cubbies.  Also, JaCoby Jones…not the receiver from Super Bowl fame, but JaCoby Jones that appears to be doing something that should not be done on a baseball card, but maybe i’m just a perv…

17 GQ Trea Turner

Trea Turner.  I watched the Nets game Monday morning and couldn’t get over how smooth Trea seemed out at short.  He’s quite the talent at such a young age and he rocks the 7 like he owns it.  Can’t wait to see what kind of player he becomes.

17-tod-evan-longoria.jpeg

When i first saw this card, i thought it was some kind of error card.  NO WORDS!  I’m rich!!  Well actually it’s an introduction card from last season of a clean shaven Evan.  Maybe he’s working to get back in my PC box.

17 TOD Adrian Beltre

Adrian Beltre and Elvis Andrus are buddies and should totally make a buddy cop movie.

17 TOD Elvis Andrus

A former Nat in a Sox Jersey.  Not sure Adam Eaton was worth giving up on Giolito…but Rizzo is a better baseball GM than i am and so maybe i should just trust the process and see what Eaton can do this season.

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Now, Topps Opening Day is not something i buy much of if at all.  Just not really in to the cards.  I wish they would do something different with the cards rather than just copy the base design…but, it’s a cool and inexpensive little set each year that i like to get a few packs from.

17 TOD Trea Turner

Last card of note is Turner again.  A nice kitchen mitten action photo.  That’s how i look chasing my kid when he takes the spatula from the kitchen when i’m making fried eggs on sundays.

So that wraps it up for me tonight.  Deadline wraps up next week…not sure i’ma make it but there’s always another deadline…Oh yeah.  One odd story.  At the end of last year, i received an email which i initially though was just some spam email.  Turns out it was legit.  Someone from a book publisher had reached out to me as they came across an image from my blog a few years ago (2013 no less!).  They wanted a copy of an image i did not produce, but scanned and wrote about…as we all do.  The image they wanted was the one shown below.  Adam Dunn’s 2013 Topps Series 2 card #647.

Baseball Meat Market

I was slightly confused because…it’s not an original image of mine, just a scanned one.  I was concerned about sharing the image, but figured it wasn’t in my court…it was their book.  Nevertheless, the book is out and i read through a couple pages and it’s quite a fascinating take on some of the biggest, recent trades and how each team benefited or not from the deals.  Kind of excited to read a little more soon…plus an “image of mine” has been published…not really, but you know what i mean…

Today’s music video is brought to you by Evidence from Dilated Peoples.  It’s a great one!!!

young’ns

Although the past Redskins season didn’t unfold as i had expected, there were a couple of bright spots…or at least areas that may appear to be bright if things unfold how i hope they will.  The rookie class from last years draft had minimal impact this season, starting of course with the much written about here, Josh Doctson.  Most of the kids drafted in April of 2016 didn’t see much playing time due to injuries or roster depth.

Take a quick peek:

  1. WR – Josh Doctson from TCU
  2. LB – Su’A Cravens from USC
  3. DB – Kendall Fuller from Virginia Tech
  4. DT – Matthew Ioannidis from Temple
  5. QB – Nate Sudfeld from Indiana
  6. LB – Steve Daniels from Boston College
  7. RB – Keith Marshall from Georgia

If you look closer at the draft though, the team managed to keep everyone in the organization and didn’t cut them.  What that means of course is that the organization felt they did a good job of drafting.  Now, who really knows who drafted these guys.  Could have been Scott McCloughan or Bruce Allen…or maybe it was Chris Cooley…who knows…!  I’m going to keep my hopes up and hope these guys have great futures with the team.

Besides Doctson, i’m really hoping for something great from Su’A Cravens.  He’s making the shift from LB to Safety next season.  Something that should have been done last year…but who has time to look backwards these days.

16 PS Su'a Cravens auto 39:49

Cravens likens himself to a Sean Taylor kind of player…most of the defensive backs that play for the Redskins or wear 21 do, so it’s cool that he gets to fulfill that wish i guess.  Taylor was a freak of nature and a complete beast on the field.  He also loved football and always went all out when he played…not saying Cravens can’t do that…but…i’m just sayin it’s a lot to live up to.

Not to mention, Cravens likes his social media which i really couldn’t imagine Sean Taylor posting photos of him posing near a waterfall during his vacation…but maybe…who knows.  I have hope that Su’A will become a dominant player, only time will tell.

16 IN Su'a Cravens auto 91:488

The only other player that really saw much time on the field last year was Kendall Fuller, although it was somewhat short lived.  He was coming off an ACL surgery from the prior season, so no telling how healthy he was last season.  His impact last year didn’t amount to much, but he seems like the kind of player that will be solid and have some great games.  Maybe not an All-Pro, but his blood line is that of an NFL’er…plus the new secondary coach for the Redskins was his DB coach at VTech.  So there’s that.

Nate Sudfeld is a bit of a curiosity for me.  Is the Cousin’s replacement next season?  Is he just a guy that will be a 2nd and 3rd string quarterback?  Who is he and what can he do!  Only time will tell for him.

16 LTC Nate Sudfeld auto

Since he’s a QB, i’ve been working to stock up on his autographs like i did with Cousins during RGIII’s rookie year.  That was some seriously major foresight on my part.  If things don’t work out for Cousins and the Redskins in the future, i’ll have my Sudfelds ready to go and fully invested in!

16 SC Nate Sudfeld

The other players i don’t have cards for yet are Steven Daniels and Matthew Ioannidis.  Daniels was injured during training camp and was placed on IR but had a decent start to his camp last year.  Seems like one of those small cannon ball kind of line backers that is everywhere and becomes a field leader…like London Fletcher was for so many seasons.  Keith Marshall was another player that was injured and didn’t have an impact on last season.

Looking back on t the draft, you really have to hope that these kids can get and stay healthy or this draft could turn out to be a huge bust.  But if they can get and stay healthy, who knows what their future holds for them.  Lots of potential and talent for them young’ns.

The music today is brought to you by a couple of enigmatic dual personality MC’s from New York.  Kool Keith and MF Doom.  A couple old guys that the young’ns love…especially Doom.  He has quite a cult following for those true hip hop fans.

Keepin’ it 1 hunid

Today on Twitter, Josh Doctson posted this vague tweet that was left up for interpretation…or maybe it was quite clear.

Yup, 100%.

There’s a lot of things that can be 100%…one of them is not this laptop i’m typing on, that’s at 42%…apparently in honor of Jackie Robinson.

100% could be how he’s “keeping’ it!” that’s what the kids say.

100% could be how much effort he gives each time out, although some like to give 110% or 120%.

100% could be the score on his driving test, that’s a good grade.

100% could also be how his health is rated in relation to his aching achilles, which is most likely the reason for the very general tweet.  If that’s the case, this is great news for the Redskins and the guy that drafted him…the guy that was fired a couple weeks ago.  This, of course is assuming he continues to stay healthy and is at 100%.

I find it hard to believe that a football player every really gets to 100% healthy.  With all the hitting and overzealous physical contact from large, fast moving objects from opposing directions…how can you ever be at a full 100%.  100 percent is technically perfect, can’t really do better.  Even the foolish coaches that tell you to give 110% or 120%.  If you give your all, isn’t that a full 100?  Maybe i’m just a slacker or too cynical for wordplay with number…but…nevermind.

So, today marks the 17th anniversary of one of my all time favorite albums.  Hands down favorite album by one of my favorite artists, Common (Sense as he was named when i first heard him).  Like Water for Chocolate was a phenomenal album that came out at a time when hip-hop was getting back to more positive rhymes and storytelling…not to mention the music produced by the late great J-Dilla.  Here’s my favorite track from that album…if you like this one, the rest of the album will be a great listen for you if you haven’t yet heard.  Common definitely gave it a 120% effort on this one.

A Generous trader goes Boom!

About a week ago, i received an email out of the blue from a guy wanting to send me some Redskin cards…and i was like “HAIL YEAH MAN!”  So i gave the random guy my home address and waited…not really sure what to expect.  This is the first time, somebody out of the blue has been so extremely generous to just offer up some cards, Redskins cards no less.  I had to quickly update my lists, which as it turned out was a great step for me to…update my want lists.

Here’s the breakdown of the cards sent by Mark Zentkovich, which i received tonight.

A couple of…umm…Swell cards of some old old old school Redskins.  Mr. Battles in some shiny, silky pants…or maybe they are some original Zubaz!  The other sepia snap shot is of Turk Edwards on the prowl about to tackle someone while wearing a QB’s number…Jason Campbell.

90 SW Sammy Baugh

The next Swell card is of Slingin’ Sammy Baugh, who would have turned 103 a couple weeks ago.  Not sure what’s going on with my scanner, but this card is in great shape…not cut and jagged like the upper right shows.

79 FL Redskins Drawing a Crowd

The next series of cards are various team cards from Fleer.  I don’t believe Fleer ever made individual player cards during their early 80’s run, just team issues.  Luckily though, unlike a couple of the early 80’s Topps sets, the logos on the helmets weren’t airbrushed off.

88 FL Redskins Defense88 FL Redskins NFC Playoff

These beauties are from the 1988 Fleer set, which if i remember correctly was the last year Fleer made team only sets…bringing back their sets in 1990.  The game against Chicago was notable for me for a couple of reasons.  It was the game that Darrell Green returned the punt while hurdling a defender and pulling a muscle in his rib cage.  He was visible holding his side with one arm and holding the football with the other as he brought it back all the way for a touchdown, putting the Redskins up for good.  The other notable memory of this game was that it was Walter Payton’s last NFL game…although i was a huge Redskins fan. My favorite non Redskins was hands down Walter Payton.  His greatness was something special that i thoroughly enjoyed watching in my younger years…man i miss the 80’s.

Next run of cards are not cards, but stickers…unfortunately, they are the then defending Super Bowl champs over my ‘Skins.  Also, got some foil action below.

84 TSF Bostic

Badass Jeff Bostic, a former Hog and a former-er Clemson Tiger.  No idea who the Bill is though…sorry.

89 PS Clark Green89 PS Bryant Rypien

Now some Panini stickers from the year 1989.  You know, back when the Redskins weren’t a dumpster fire led by the leaderless.  This was quite a grouping of studs too Gary Clark, Darrell Green, Kelvin Bryant and Mark Rypien…man, i really miss the 80’s.

Not bad for something so unexpected, thank you Mark!  Really appreciate the cards.  I will put something together and send it off to you in a week or so.  Much appreciated!

Now, for something fun.  One of my favorite groups out right now is Run the Jewels, i’ve talked about them a few times here and made it out to the concert last month at the Crystal Ballroom…with the bouncy floor and all.  Here are a couple photos from that show.

IMG_3994IMG_3991

A new Run The Jewels video!!  So many punch lines in this one too, gotta say El-P really brought it with the innuendos here, plus that poor ass bunny went boom!

Big time baseball

I’m writing while watching the WBC Championship Game between Los Estados Unidos y Puerto Rico…and i must say…i’ve thoroughly enjoyed the Spring “classic” tournament this go round.  I know it’s not a super popular thing to like the WBC, but maybe that’s a thing of the past?  For the past week and a half, i’ve checked in to just about every game and have been captivated by the intensity of professional baseball players in early…now mid March.  Honestly, i’ve enjoyed the baseball tourney significantly more than the basketball tourney that’s going on these days.  Mostly due to the fact that i’m not a huge basketball fan, and i’m a big baseball fan, but more than that.  It’s the level of competition and intensity each nation has laid out for each game.  Plus you get to see some major talent that are teammates during the season compete against each other in these games…looking at you Manny and Adam…I don’t know, i think it’s a beautiful thing and I hope you do too…This is very entertaining baseball, maybe not baseball at it’s highest most intense level, but great to watch.  And Marcus Stroman…man, what a night for the Blue Jay kid.

I haven’t picked up any new cards in a while, but had a few Bowman cards sitting around from a box of 2015 i bought a few months ago.  In hopes of not wasting your time, here are the hits.

15-bc-daniel-carbonell-230250-auto

First up to bat is a Giants prospect Daniel Carbonell with an autograph that looks like he may have passed out before he wrapped up the ‘n’ in his name.  Maybe he had to grab a snack and refuel, i get it…you’re working, you get distracted and forget to eat…it happens.  Daniel learned how to write his ‘D’s just like i did when i was in grade school…and for that, i say ‘atta boy!

15-bc-juan-herrera-auto

Mr. Juan Herrera, a Cardinals prospect a the time has basically signed his card like i sign one of those electronic signature devices these days.  A big ‘K’ followed by scribble and then a big ‘R’ followed by more scribbles…in this case, we see a big ‘J’ and a ‘H’.

15-bc-raisel-iglesias-220499-auto

Raisel Iglesias.  This guy seems like he could be on target for the Reds closer job…assuming the all too important ‘good health’ caveat.  I must admit, this autograph made me smile quite a bit.  Just write the last name and your number please…first names aren’t important here.

15-bc-rndrys-briceno-auto

Endrys Briceno signs his card ‘Ends’ as in the ends of this WBC is about to happen after Stanton bounced that ball of the right centerfield wall.  Detroit Tigers.

15-bc-rowdy-tellez-auto

Rowdy Tellez.  So this is one guy i did a little research on prior to posting his card and was surprised to find out that he is only 22.  I kind of thought he had been around for a few years and was in his mid to late 20’s.  Also, i think his autograph looks like what i would imagine Ron Jeremy’s autograph would look like.

15-bc-stephen-gonsalves-auto

It figures that a left would sign his card justified to the left…and keep all the ink to the left…lefties man…Also, the name Gonsalves is very unique, maybe even odd.  He’s another one of those 22 year old people.

I got Adam Jones as my WBC tourney MVP.  That catch was everything.  Amazing play in a big play moment.  Plus he’s really a great guy…can’t help but imagine what kind of career he would have had if he wasn’t traded from Seattle for Erik freakin’ Bedard!

So, a year ago i was working late at work…really late.  I was on a ridiculous deadline and working until midnight 3-4 times a week for 4+ months.  Although it was a brutal time, i managed to listen to a lot of spring training baseball and a ton of new music.  In between breaks of music and working (and whiskey drinking) I jumped on to twitter and was deeply saddened when i saw that Phife Dawg had died.  I believe it was around 11pm when i found out and it just stopped me and my thought process…i couldn’t do anything the rest of the night.  A Tribe Called Quest was one of those groups that i fell in love with immediately as a teenager and continued to love through my twenties, thirties and now forties.  Losing Phife was devastating…but as it’s an unfortunate part of life, you try to focus on what they did while they were here and not focus on the fact that they are gone…so, tonights video is  one of my favorite Tribe songs…and maybe another one of Phife, just for fun.

thanks for reading tonight.