Saturday, February 20, 2016

#SuperTrader Jaybarkerfan

After last year's war between Hazel Green and Atlanta -- a war that consumed a lot of time, cards, and energy -- in good ways -- on both sides, Jaybarkerfan made mention that he probably would not engage in such craziness again. That's a good thing for me in a lot of respects, because after getting a copy of the movie "Gigli" in one of those packages I'm not sure I could have survived any more!

JBF a/k/a Wes came up with a great idea this year, though, for those of us who don't mind getting and giving big envelopes/priority mail packages of cards that might or might not be duplicates. He called it the "Super Traders." To open up the Super Traders, Wes sent out boatloads of packages all over the country and cracked open a 2013 Museum Collection box to celebrate.

For my part, I'm planning on cracking open a box or two in the next month -- probably closer to the end of Spring Training. It's a matter of picking out and buying the box or boxes. Then, I'll augment those with a few other cards.

That's the plan, at least.

But, back to the present. On the same day, two different packages arrived in the mail from Wes:

I can't believe that Wes sacrifices a Redus to the cause of bombing me. The other card accompanied the #SuperTraders package. Since they arrived on the same day, I pretty much just scanned them all together and lost track of which cards came in which package. Oops.

As always, Wes's generosity was and is incredible. I received a stack of cards that is about 4 inches tall.  Out of necessity, I'm only showing some of the highlights here.

Spanning the decades of Brewers baseball! Starting at the top:

Cristian Guerrero was basically a more recent version of Henry Mathewson. Cristian's older, much much better baseball playing brother Vladimir far outshone Cristian. In fact, saying Cristian is Henry Mathewson isn't fair to Henry (Christy Mathewson's brother) since at least Henry played in the major leagues. Cristian played a grand total of 10 games in Triple-A and slashed .243/.294/.397 in 6 seasons in Double-A. 

Pedro Garcia -- from 1976 Topps -- hit in the big leagues like Cristian Guerrero hit in Double-A: .220/.267/.348 in 1967 plate appearances. In a strange statistical quirk, he led the American League in doubles in 1973 with 32 as a 23-year-old rookie. But his rookie year -- with its .296 OBP -- was his high water mark in the majors.

Pete Ladd. Man, that's a blast from the past. Bigfoot, as he was nicknamed, played college baseball at Ole Miss despite being from Portland, Maine -- or, maybe, because he was from Portland, Maine. Ladd got his nickname because he sported a size fifteen shoe at 6'3" tall and about 240 pounds. Dude also had a massive cranium -- a size seven-and-seven-eighths hat (which works out to a head circumference of over two feet!). I met Ladd several times after games in the early 1980s, and he was always great with kids and signed as many autographs as he was asked.

Kennard Bibbs was another non-prospect Brewers prospect. He got 67 games in Triple-A in 2006 at the age of 26, hitting .218/.307/.269 and getting released after that.

Tim McIntosh was going to be the next big catching superstar -- or, perhaps, the first big catching superstar -- in Milwaukee. Everyone got fooled by his minor league numbers with the Denver Zephyrs. The man could not stay healthy, and he wasn't as good a hitter as expected. In 124 major league plate appearances over five seasons, he "hit" .179/.211/.274. Awful.

Finally, Jon Steitz. Yup, another non-prospect. Steitz was drafted in 2001 in the third round of the draft out of Yale. Two rounds later the Phillies drafted Ryan Howard. 

Steitz's New York Times wedding announcement notes that Steitz had to quit baseball in 2003 due to his shoulder hurting way too much to pitch. He's done okay for himself though -- even as of 2007 when he got married to Dr. Katherine Van Loon (a Georgian he met at Yale, where Steitz majored in molecular biophysics and biochemistry and where his parents were/are both professors in those field...oh, and Dad won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2009), he had already gotten his law degree from Yale and was working for McKinsey & Company -- where he is now a partner in San Francisco.

I feel entirely inadequate in life after typing all that.

Okay, how about some player collection cards?

Those 2013 Topps are Miniiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiis!!!(TM: Night Owl, Inc.; all rights reserved, void where prohibited).  The Braun 2010 is a graphite parallel (as opposed to the Wal-Mart black parallel) and, so, it is serial numbered to just 59.

That Robin Yount Credentials card pretty much sums up Panini to me. Do I really count this as a Robin Yount card? It's just a bunch of words! Will next year's set just be player names on the front with career stats on the back? Maybe it can be printed on 3x5 notecards. It really is like Panini just said, "aw, the hell with it. Screw photos. That way, we don't need to pay for more Photoshopping."


Okay, back to the happy -- like that Braun manurelic with the old-school Brewers logo. Frankly, I know a lot of Brewers fans agree that that logo should never be replaced. I mean, do the Yankees change their logo significantly? So, if a logo works -- and, let's be clear, the M-B glove works -- why screw with it?

And finally....the hits.

Or, at least, the parallels, the autographs, and the relics that weren't player collections:

That's everything from the run-of-the-mill emerald shininess of Martin Maldonado from 2013 to a K-Rod Bowman Chrome parallel from 2015 (thankfully he's gone, what with his domestic abuse and all) to a Jean Segura insert to a Daryl Clark encased Finest autograph, a Mat Gamel "In the Name" Finest card, and autographs from Carlos Villanueva and Tyler Thornburg.

Wes, once again, thank you for your awesome generosity in sending a great couple of packages my way. I'll be putting together something for you -- and for other #SuperTraders -- soon!


  1. Cristian Guerrero would be the third unknown Mathewson brother, as Wilton would have a better case of being Henry.. lol

  2. Haven't actually ripped into the numerous team bags that Wes sent... but I noticed a Redus in one of mine too. Hoping mine is signed :)