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.

Well…damn…!!??!?!!?

We have a champion in the very first ever Cardboard Hogs contest…and it was a non-contested contest.  The Winner…wait for it…GAVIN!! from my current hometown of Portland, Oregon and writer/blogger of the very entertaining Baseball Card Breakdown blog.  I don’t believe i have your address, so it you wouldn’t mind passing me an email i’ll get something over to you that i hope you enjoy!  Not sure i’m going to make it to the show the weekend…

In case you were wondering, here are the results…along with some other stuff.

DOOR #1 – $20

Rypien Monk Mann

Ok, brief story on this lot.  This is the old guy, the new…old guy that had the vintage football.  Seemed nice, very chatty…but there was something odd about him.  He was a little more pushy than the other guys and was really doing a sell job on me.  Normally i don’t like that and tend to wander off when i get that kind of vibe.  I should have listened to my gut!  When i pulled this lot of cards, i handed him the stack and said my usual “what’s my damage…?”  his response was “…make me an offer!”  I offered $10 thinking that was more than enough.  $2 per card.  In fact, i thought it was a little too high…Bill probably has all of these cards in his 7 for $5 boxes.  Anyways, he LOL’d out loud and said “…the 24K gold card is $20 by itself!”.  That’s the Charles Mann card.  He could quite possibly be right, but card shows aren’t about getting top dollar for your cards. It’s about selling cards to collectors at negotiable prices that work for both parties.  I was taken back by his counter and shockingly stared at the cards for what seemed like 2 minutes before sheepishly taking out a $20 and handing it to him.  Retelling this story and reliving the moment, i’m quite upset with myself.  I tend to be a fairly generous person and don’t mind getting the lesser end of the deal if i can make someone happy…but this was just a case of me getting taken advantage of…and it pissed me off…i’m still upset that i let myself accept that offer.  I should have given him the cards back and walked off.  I will certainly skip his table next time…if he’s there again.  I can’t imagine he did much business in finding too many suckers last time.

DOOR #2 – $15

This is just some good ole’ Tom hooking me up.  His table was my third stop and more than made up for the previous door…Now, Tom has a habit of overpricing his cards and then giving you a great deal on them.  I think he does that so he an engage in conversation with the guys at the show.  When he handed me that Jamison Crowder card with a $40 sticker, i was like nah SON!  But, he smiled and said, “you know i’ll make a good deal for you.”

DOOR #3 – $25

These are a few gems from Kim.  All relics or autos, most with serial numbers…and $5 more than door #1.  This is why i enjoy hitting up Kim’s table.  He has stuff set aside for me and i get great deals on them.

DOOR #4 – $10

Reed Seastrunk Jeffcoat

So, the last door was from the military vet.  This is another guy that over prices his cards with the label, but is more than happy to negotiate a deal quickly and easily.  He’s the autograph guy that is more interested in moving things than keeping them.  I had offered him $15 for the lot and was scrambling around for a $5 to go with my $10 and he said “…$10 is fine…”  That’s how you treat a customer at a mall show i say!!

So there you have it kids.  Don’t let people take advantage of you and do not hesitate to negotiate…don’t be a sucker like me!

Today is the first day of spring and my mid year birthday…tomorrow is my son’s…kinda cool that we basically share birthdays.  So, in honor of none of that…here’s a video from a TEDx conference in Wisconsin by Michael Ford…very cool connection of Hip Hop and Architecture.  Check it out.

Cabin fever cards

About a month ago, my family took a weekend trip to Mt. Hood, with me, i went too.  We’re lucky enough to have good friends that own a small cabin in the woods and are more than happy and willing to share the tiny abode from time to time.  It’s near Rhododendron, which is close to Zig Zag, which is close to Welches, which is close to Government Camp, which is close to Mt. Hood…it’s on Mt. Hood actually.  The cabin is a small, one bed timber framed cabin with a kitchenette, it’s…umm… cozy…(read small)…but it is nicely nestled in the forest off a small unpaved road.  Normally the roads are covered in snow, but we were able to visit just after a heavy rain storm that washed away most of the snow, leaving some ice.

cabin road

I believe these cabins were once used to house park rangers that would work during the year.  It allowed them to retreat to a nice home after a long day at work rather than travel to and from their own homes each day.  For one person, these cabins are crazy comfortable, for two people, it’s perfect…for two people and a toddler…you need more space.  A LOT MORE SPACE!  But, hey it’s free…and i got some cards to open while i was there too!

That blurry flash is my child doing his best to run around in a small building while my wife makes snacks and i build a manly fire.  So, cards.

One of my goals with the renewed interest in blogging was to open packs or do something card oriented each time i travel.  We were kind of in that weird time of year where the 2016s didn’t interest me anymore and the new 2017’s weren’t out yet…other than the flagship Topps…which i already had a box of.  So i picked up one of those dreaded repack jobs that deliver very little in return.  Spoiler alert, my low expectations were met with a couple of mild surprises.  Let’s take a look.

As the box mentioned, 4 packs and a total of 50 cards and a BONUS!  Before we open everything, let’s do a little inventory.  The 4 packs were of 2015 Topps (2), 2016 Leaf Babe Ruth Collection (1), and 2016 Gypsy Queen (1).  The white box of surprises had a little mini Twins baseball guy which was quickly jacked by the toddler.  There were 53 cards in the white box, so i’m already ahead no matter what happens.  Here are some Topps highlights.

Justin Upton and Clayton Kershaw were the only names of significant note for me.  Hey, notice the vintage table pattern, apparently the table has been in the same location for over 50 years…i imagine it’s been moved a time or two to sweep though.

A couple insert cards.  High leg kicking Carlton and top 40 Free Agent Robbie Cano.  One of these guys is going in to my collection and the other one is going in to the Phillies box i got in my basement.  Let’s take a look at the Gypsy Queen cards!

A couple of real DBacks.

BB GQ McCovey

A power alley McCovey.

BB GQ mini Drury

And a mini Brandon Drury…a Diamondbacks hot pack i guess.  Now lets take a look at the Ruth cards.

Two odd photos of Babe Ruth, kids and bats.

Two odd photos of Babe Ruth swinging things that aren’t baseball bats.

BB LR Ruth 1

One photo of Babe Ruth doing baseball warm ups, his Career Achievements card…but what about that white box?  Mostly junk wax stuff, but kind of fun to look through.  There were three cards of note that made me want to take a photograph of them, and here they are…in order of how much i like them, from least to most.

BB box Jackson Winfield

Some Yankee stuff

BB box Posey

A Posey Bowman.

BB box Jeter

A Jeter Diamond King!  Yay!  This was by far the best card in the bunch, pretty nice card.  I think i may have a copy or two of this one, but it’s still a nice little piece to pull in a cabin in the woods.

the end…

Something that’s hopefully appropriate for this post…family member, Paul Riddle on the drum kit here.

 

Mail Day! Unexpectedly…

My wife has been working a lot lately.  Early mornings and late nights at times too…lots of time away from the family.  One of the few benefits of this is that i get some one on one time with my boy.  At times, he’s an amazing kid and at times…he’s a toddler.  I’ve been slowly showing him my card collection and McFarlane figures…or dolls as he calls them.

THEY’RE NOT DOLLS!!!  THEY ARE COLLECTIBLE ACTION FIGURES!!!

Anyways, another benefit of the spouses extra work time is that i get to drop off my kid to school in the morning.  Tuesdays and Thursdays he has a later class, it starts at 10am…which is kinda cool since i get to stroll in to work around 10:30.  I also, apparently get to be home to receive FedEx packages from Topps…which is what happened this morning.  Thankfully our overprotective dog alerted us to the scary FedEx guy or i would have completely missed out on this!

Topps Mail day

A nice little package from Topps…but what the hell is it?  I’ve been a little negligent in tracking my outstanding redmemptions…so which one is it?  Oh yeah!

17 TO Andy Pettite auto jersey

17 TO Andy Pettite auto jersey back

It’s Andy Pettitte!  From my box of 2017 Topps Series 1.  That was crazy fast…especially considering i’ve got other cards that have been out for over a year.  This one took just over 2 months.

As Topps has been doing with some of their redemptions, i also received another card from the fine folks at Topps.

16 TM Josh Donalsdson

16 TM Josh Donaldson back

My favorite part of this card is that it’s a Meaningful Material Prime Relic Card…very meaningful i would imagine, maybe a Sunday game?  Not complaining, just thought it was kind of funny.

I also received this thoughtful thank you card from Topps…that everyone else has received…not i’m part of the gang guys!

Topps thank you

My patronage will definitely continue.

Now, here’s some music that you may or may not like…you should all love Brother Ali though…