The Quest

The Baltimore Orioles have been in town since '54 and have had over 900 men don their uniform. My goal is to obtain a signed card of each player. If you have something I need, or see something you want, don't be shy, we can make a deal.

Collection Statistics

Total Players 877/977 = 89.25%
1991 Orioles Crown Set
Total Players 309/465 = 66.45%
Alive Players 274/369 = 74.25

Friday, August 30, 2013

Time To Make A Run

No more waiting.  No more series wins.  The Orioles have to make a run and a big one, or they will be left watching the Playoffs this year. 

It has all been said already, but hell, you haven't heard it from me. 

They control their destiny.

19 of their final 29 games are against teams in the Playoff race.  6 against the Yankees and 3 versus the Indians can create separation with the pack, but that still leaves the front runners.

6 more with the Red Sox and 6 with the Rays can create an interesting race.  Or put a lot of distance between the wild card contenders.

The lineup has been able to produce and score runs all year.  That has continued in recent weeks but our once stellar bullpen has been awful.  Get the lead early and blow it late has been the way of the Birds.

So what do they do right before September call-ups?

Get another bat of course.

We could use a pitcher to sure up the pen, someone like this guy:
Francisco Rodriguez 2000 Topps Traded Autograph #TTA38

Arms like his may be the difference, instead we get Mike Morse and his .227 batting average and poor defense.  Perfect fit.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Feeling Lucky: 1982 Edition

The last time I had busted a vintage pack of cards, it wasn't vintage at all.  It was new, fresh exciting and it was probably 1987.My brother has been a little more adventurous in his pack ripping.

Recently he picked up a bunch of older packs from somewhere and had some good luck.  He has been working on the 1978 Topps set and was hoping to pull an Eddie Murray RC in good condition. He did.

 He snagged a 1982 Topps rack pack for my birthday, hoping I could do the same with a Ripken RC.

It was my birthday, I was feeling lucky and I though it could happen.  It did not.

I don't know if these are the best cards from the bunch, but I thought they were cool.

The Fisk is pretty damn sweet.  I got  thrill from opening up some old school, even if it didn't pan out.

Friday, August 9, 2013

A Perfect Angle

Matt Angle 2009 Frederick Keys Team Set #2
Angle is a former 7th round pick of the Birds that found his way into the lineup during the 2011 campaign.  He appeared in 31 games patrolling each of the outfield positions but with little pop at the plate.  He hit under .200 for the year and was relegated to the minors for the majority of the season. 
Following 2011 he was claimed off waivers by the Los Angeles Dodgers and has been in AAA the last two years.  He has hit around .300 for the Isotopes the last two years and has shown the most power of his career.  If the Dodgers are contending come September, he should get another shot to bolster a lineup and add some depth to their outfield.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Ugh! A Red Sox Autograph

Anyone who has ever looked to add a Luis Exposito autograph to their collection has run into this card.  And it is so damn ugly.  A hat logo, emblazoned jersey and dirty sweat sox add up to a trifecta of stink. 
So why do I have it? 
This card once again completes the letter E in my collection.  At last, I can breath E-zier (lame I know).
Luis Exposito 2010 Bowman Prospects #BP21
I do like the autograph on this particular card.  It covers up the silver facsimile signature printed on the front of the card quite well.
Because of nine games during the 2012 baseball season.  He had one hit, one passed ball, one wild pitch, one caught stealing, one stolen base against, and I have another name off the list.
Exposito is still in Norfolk looking for an opportunity to come back up.  If Taylor Teagarden continues to be the statistically worst catcher in the Majors, Exposito may just get that chance.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Life of a Journeyman

Nine years and seven teams is definitely a journeyman career.  But a journey millions of us men would gladly have gone on.  From Cleveland to Chicago to Baltimore to California to New York to Atlanta to Philadelphia and back to California was Dave Gallagher's journey.  Gallagher made his way to the Orioles after three years in the Major Leagues in August and September of 1990. 

For his efforts, he was given an Orioles card in every major release of 1991 and a cameo at the end of the 1991 Orioles Crown set.  So of course he never appeared in a game as a Bird in the 1991 season.  He was dealt to the California Angels for two minor league players that never made their way to the big club. 

My 1991 Dave Gallagher.
Dave Gallagher 1991 Upper Deck #508
Dave has parlayed his playing career into a very successful post baseball career at nearly every level of competition.  He has penned a book entitled "The Little League Hitters Journal" geared to youngsters and fundamentals. He had been the hitting instructor for the Trenton Thunder before becoming a General Manager in the Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League.  Now he works with teenagers in his baseball training academy, having three players drafted in the 2013 amateur draft. 
Pretty nice journey.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Starting a Trend

Of more frequent posts, hopefully.  I have snagged a bunch of new names recently and hopefully a card by card recap will get me into the swing of things again.

First up:
Mike Cook 1991 South Carolina Collegiate Collection #84
Cook was drafted by the California Angels in the first round of the 1985 Draft.  He shot through the minors and made his debut less than a year later.  He was not received well, even though his ERA declined with each major league season.  Mike made his hay in the minor leagues.
After a stint with the Minnesota Twins in 1989, Cook was exclusively a minor leaguer for more than 150 appearances over four seasons.  Then he got a shot with the Orioles in 1993.  For two games.  Three innings.  Zero earned runs.
In 1993, those stats earn you a spot in the 1994 U.S. Playing Cards Orioles deck of cards.  The two of clubs.  Really?  Two games and he gets his own card as an Oriole.  I am tracking down this set and will be working to get an Oriole upgrade into the collection. 
He hasn't had a TTM success that I can find, but I am not sure how many guys out there are looking to add a Mike Cook minor league auto to their collection.  Maybe just maybe this blurry black and white auto from his college newspaper will be able to find a new home. 
Time to hunt him down, in a nice way of course.

Monday, August 5, 2013

I've Been a Bad Blogger

Again , I have been consumed by life.  I spent nearly a full week moving our home across town, with very little help.  Wifey was consumed with the Kid and cleaning the new place and I was charged with getting everything moved.

My old man spent an afternoon hauling some big furniture with me, but about 80% fell on these shoulders.  These broad, yet sore shoulders.

With all that was happening in life, I forgot that Google Reader no longer exists.  I went to catch up on my favorite blogs and nothing.  I was lost.  I have had limited success with Bloggers Dashboard that I find clunky and slow. 

So I am asking for help.  What do you use?  I am looking to get back in touch and keep up with the best baseball card bloggers out there.  Help me be a better blogger.