Bittersweet

I wasn't supposed to be home today. I was supposed to be in Cooperstown. I had rooms booked for myself, my Dad and my brother. We had plans to drive up. We had plans to enjoy the pre-induction festivities. We had plans to watch as Bobby Cox, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine were inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Then, work happenned. Our entire consulting practice was ordered to Chicago for a few days this week and I've been put on-call at a client for the weekend. Were these things actually important? No. The meeting in Chicago was a pointless "get to know us" affair that only served to re-inforce that my personal goals do not align with those of the multi-national corporation that employs me. That's fine of course. I'm a professional malcontent, but I work hard at my job, even if I don't love it.

As for being on-call, if something were to go wrong with the application that I support this weekend, it would have no impact on the client's business operations. None. We have a two hour SLA for an application that is essentially unimportant. Not only could any problem wait until Monday, it could probably wait until the following Monday. Logic and sense have no place in I.T.

So, I'm sitting at home waiting to watch on television. That's OK too. When I asked on Twitter if anyone had any recommendations about visiting Cooperstown for the induction, Scott Crawford gave me a lot of great information. He also told me the best way to see the ceremony is on TV. So be it.

I wish I were there, but it's still a great day to be a Braves fan. A great one indeed.

My (Sincere?) Apologies

Aparently, when collectors like me insult a set, we also insult everyone who likes it. I guess we are trying to rob their enjoyment of the hobby or something.

So, I'd like to offer an apology.

I apologize if any comments about a baseball card set or company, from me or others, robbed you of some of your self worth.

I do not apologize for anything I've said about stale products from lazy-ass card companies with near monopolies and our slowly dying hobby.

Three Years Later

Almost three years after I sent in the redemption, it's been filled. Considering the number of jersey relics from both guys that have been made over the years, it is absurd that it took three years to send me this card.

I still have one three year old redemption waiting. I see no reason to rant about the redemptions, because everyone else has covered it well. I'm done buying new products unopened so redemptions won't be a problem for me any longer.

Still, it amuses me when people blame the players for slow redemptions. Bullshit. If a card manufacturer puts a redemption into a product, it is THEIR job to deliver. Period.

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Help!!!! I Need This Card!

2005 Topps Total (along with 2005 Bowman Heritage) is the set that got me back into the hobby. Of course, Topps would cancel Total the very next year. Bastards. None the less, I'm but a single card away from completing the set. I need card #349, which is Scott Spiezio.

Unfortunately, I still haven't updated my trade bait page, but I have thousands of cards to comb through. If you've got this card, I guarantee I'll be able to find something you need to send your way.

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Instead of 2014 Topps Series 1, I bought ...

I'm just not impressed with 2014 Topps Series 1. The more I learn about the endless variations and SPs and SSPs and sparkles and parallels, the more depressed I get. Well, since I won't be opening any 2014 Topps Series 1, I felt the need to get a few cards to cheer me up.

I think it is safe to say that there's not a single baseball card that will be released this year that will compare with any of these. All four great, even though they don't have purple, or pink versions. All four great without little star sparkles on them.

I should also say, that although I'm not a fan of Series 1, the Jason Heyward card is all kinds of awesome. Topps still knows how to make a baseball card, they just don't have any faith in the best cards in their product.

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Boring ... Not Boring

2014 Topps Series 1 has hit the retail stores. For the first time I can ever remember, I saw the product on the shelf and didn't even bye a single pack. I will admit to ordering a set from a well known case breaker. I'd love to be one of the guys who's willing to cut that cord, but I'm not there yet. I am close though. Looking at the checklist and the sell sheet, it's clear that Topps is happy to just phone it in right now. This is what happens with monopolies ... especially in a creative enterprise.

You are welcome to still like Topps products. You are welcome to think quality hasn't declined since MLB granted them their defacto monopoly. You cannot make a credible argument that the monopoly is good for the hobby, good for collectors or, for that matter, good for Topps. This becomes more obvious with each passing season.

I still love this hobby though. For Christmas, my In-Laws got me one of the most amazing gifts any vintage loving Braves collector could possibly get. What was it you ask? A 1955 Bowman Milwaukee Braves team set. Needless to say, baseball cards don't get any better than this. (For you young kids, this is proof that Bowman didn't always mean Suck.)