Thursday, June 22, 2017

Finding Lots on an eBay Kick

I have not been going to card shows lately, so I've spent a little time here and there on eBay looking for potential bargains. I've been lucky enough to find a few, so here's the result of my shopping binges.

I'm in the mood for some new music, so let's take a look at what's on the Billboard Heatseekers Albums chart. Let's start with what I envision might be the very essence of a Heatseeker album: an album by an under-30 millennial guy with a man-bun.

I'm guessing that Avriel & The Sequoias are so high on the chart because Avriel is the soon-to-be-former member of the a cappella band Pentatonix. The song "Sweet Adeline" is the most upbeat song on the EP called Sage And Stone. It's not a bad song. It is a folksy sound -- very much along the whole "Americana" sound championed (ironically) by Mumford & Sons, among others. 

Apropos of nothing, here's four Ryan Braun cards I picked up. The Silver 2016 Archives parallel is serial numbered 13 of 199 and the 2017 Topps Gypsy Queen Green Fortune Teller Parallel Insert is numbered 40 of 99. 

I started talking last time I posted about how I created rules for my player collections that have been a bit difficult to live up to. It's okay that they are, to be fair -- I mean, what's the fun in making the chase simple? But I'm not in any hurry to come up with a new player to collect of this current bunch of new talent. 

Part of me really likes Brett Phillips because he's just a cool, laid-back kid. The downside there is that he is just as likely to end up traded as he is on the Brewers. I've considered Orlando Arcia as well. He might have a career based around his glove alone if recent evidence is anything to rely on. 

But the real point here is that everyone on the current team other than Braun and Jimmy Nelson have barely spent much time on the Brewers. To wit: of position players, the most appearances after Braun's 1384 games over 11 seasons belongs to Hernán Pérez, who has appeared in 280 games in his Milwaukee Career. The pitcher with the most appearances on the team is Wily Peralta with 130, followed by Corey Knebel with 120, and the starter with the most appearances is Nelson with 94. 

So, again, I'm in no hurry for that very reason -- there are the cautionary tales of both Jean Segura and Wily Peralta -- and, frankly, I kind of like being able to cross a set off my list after getting a single team set.

The Number 2 album on the Heatseekers chart is from a Canadian band that's hardly a new artist. The band is called The Birthday Massacre, and they have been around since 1999. They were formed in London, Ontario, and are now based in Toronto. According to their Wikipedia page, they have "utilized the internet throughout their career and are an example of a musical group that has evolved alongside file sharing, and advancements in audio streaming capabilities."

Their whole story is pretty interesting. They even refer to themselves as the "black sheep" of the Canadian music scene. Their music is pretty cool. It's got a goth feel to it. I get a lot of a feel from the music that is similar to New Order or Depeche Mode, but only if they had a female singer and added more of an industrial feel to the music. 

I like it.


The Braun 2016 Bowman's Best above came in a four-card lot of 2016 Bowman's Best that included these three cards: Josh Hader a/k/a Haderade, Corey Ray, and Orlando Arcia. These are all guys I could see becoming possible PCs down the road. Ray made the Southern League (High-A) All-Star team as a Carolina Mudcat, along with Isan Diaz, Jake Gatewood, Nate Griep, Freddy Peralta, and Cody Ponce. Of that group, only Diaz (trade with the D-backs) and Peralta (trade with Seattle for Adam Lind) came over in trades. 

Number 3 on the Heatseekers chart comes from a pair of sisters from Muscle Shoals, Alabama called The Secret Sisters. While some sources compare them to the Everly Brothers, their sound to me -- the way they harmonize in particular and especially in this song -- reminds me more of old school sound like The Andrews Sisters rather than anything more recent. 

Other songs on this album, such as "Mississippi," sound much more like a demo tape for Miranda Lambert. By this, I mean there is an earthier sound than on "Tennessee River," but it never reaches that overproduced sound common in Nashville these days. I prefer this sound to the first song. Definitely.

These two cards are enough for tonight. On the left, I was able to find a really good price on the short-print photo variation of Jonathan Lucroy's 2016 Topps card, so I snapped it up for my team collection. On the right, we have Robin Yount in his Dodgers' softball uniform in the 1983 Donruss-style cards. At least Panini got the size of the "D" right this year. I still can't stand how discolored they have to make the cards to avoid getting sued, though.

Thanks for stopping by to read this, and let me know what you think of these three heatseekers!


  1. Secret Sisters to Andrews Sisters, you nailed it. I hear that as well.
    I like them.

  2. I had never heard of The Birthday Massacre before, but I like their sound.
    I remember trying to choose a new player collection when I jumped back into the hobby in 2009. The Cubs were just starting their run of five straight 5th place finishes. The roster was turned over many times in such a short window.
    What about Haderade? (BTW, love the nickname.) He's a guy I've had my eye on for over a year now. His numbers kind of remind me of a young Randy Johnson. If he continues to improve his command I could see him sticking around in the land of beer and cheese for a good spell.

  3. I love what the Brewers are doing with their rebuild. Just pickup any interesting guys they can and see what sticks. I was impressed with Hader when he pitched against the Pirates. He just pumped fastballs in the strike zone and the Bucs couldn't hit him. I looked at his minor league stats and the only issue seems to be command.

  4. Haders gonna hade. One thing I really like is all the variety of music... never heard of most of the stuff you post, so thank you for that! Great cards too, though the Panini one is jarring as you point out.