Saturday, January 31, 2009


The Rangers have avoided arbitration with Marlon Byrd yesterday. They reached a settlement with him worth a little over $3 million for 2009. This means that they have not had an arbitration hearing since 2000.

Byrd, shown here on card number 219 of the 2008 Upper Deck set, is one of four outfielders that Texas plans on carrying into the 2009 season. He is also the most versatile, able to play all three outfield positions with success in 2008. He hit .298 in 2008.

It looks like the Rangers have the outfield nailed down now. As usual the biggest question mark for the team is pitching.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Blocked at the plate.

Don Werner played in just 24 games for Texas in 1981 and 1982. He signed and returned this 1983 Topps card in just six days.

Don lasted seven seasons in the bigs with the Reds and Rangers. Three of those years he appeared in less than ten games. His highest number of games was 50 in 1978 for the Reds.

Werner's biggest problem was that he played behind two of the best catchers ever, Johnny Bench and Jim Sundberg. Obviously Bench was the better of the two but Sunny was just about unbelievable on defense. Gotta feel a little sympathy for Don. Traded from the Reds and thinking that he was now away from Bench only to find Sundberg in the way.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Two down...

Joaquin Benoit, seen here on card number 837 of the the 2006 Upper Deck set, is the second Rangers pitcher to undergo rotator cuff surgery this off-season. Like Eric Hurley, he is likely gone for the season. There is a slight chance that he will be back before the end of the year but the odds are not good.

So, the pitching frustrations have begun already. Benoit was one of the relievers who had to have a good year in order for the Rangers to be competitive. The question becomes now, who will replace him? There seems to still be a lot of competition for the four starting rotation slots but there might be room left over in the bullpen.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Second chance.

Still not a whole lot going on in baseball. Still a lot of free agents out there looking for jobs. Could make the last few weeks before Spring Training very interesting.

Recently I have been sending out cards to retired players and asking them to sign them. What better way to fill the off-season? I have not subscribed to any of the pay-for-addresses sites but have managed to acquire quite a few anyway.

That brings us to today's card, number 17 in the 1989 Sports Card Digest set. Looks like Ruben Sierra is having a pretty good time here. He should be. When this picture was taken he was at the height of his career.

Sierra is retired now and his is one of the former Rangers addresses I managed to pick up. I mulled over whether or not to send to him for awhile and then decided to give it a shot. Some of you may have read my previous post about my experience when asking Ruben for an autograph. I have heard though that he underwent an attitude adjustment since that time. With that in mind I decided to give him a second chance. I'll keep you posted as to how it comes out.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

1972 Topps - Jeff Burroughs.

The Rangers are closing on a deal with Marlon Byrd to avoid arbitration and appear to be a wee bit closer on a possible deal with Ben Sheets. Signing Sheets looks more likely since the Yankees re-signed Andy Pettitte. Aside from that, not much is happening on the baseball front.

Due to the lack of action, I am taking this opportunity to continue our march through the 1972 Topps team set. Today we see Jeff Burroughs on card number 191.

After a normal picture on Pete Broberg's card, Topps heads back to the odd angle of previous cards with this one. Jeff was the first pick of the 1969 draft. He debuted with the Senators in 1970 and moved with the team to Texas. After the move he stayed with the Rangers until 1976 when he was traded to the Braves following the season. Texas got five players and $250,000 for Burroughs. Jeff played nine more seasons in the majors after that and appeared for four more teams.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Book 1, Page 26.

Only nineteen days until pitchers and catchers report and still no Pudge signing. I am beginning to get worried that he will have ended his career as a Yankee. Surely that won't mean that the Hall of Fame will put a Yankees cap on his plaque. That would be a disaster.

Oh well, on to happier times. Let's see what today's page holds for us.
1995 Pacific Prisms #137
1995 Panini Stickers #28
1995 Pinnacle #122
Empty pocket
1995 Pinnacle FanFest #10
1995 Pinnacle Museum Collection #122
Empty pocket
Empty pocket
1995 Score #367

The empty pockets are being held for the 1995 Pinnacle Artist's Proofs #122, 1995 Pinnacle Samples #122, and 1995 Rangers Crayola #28.

So, Texas is still talking to Ben Sheets but is "cautious" due to his injury history. Apparently they think that if he remains healthy he could make an impact. Any Brewers fans care to chime in with your thoughts?

I recently added a link to This is a pretty cool website that has scans of various Rangers cards as well as stats for players from their Rangers' years. It is linked, by a drop down menu, to sister sites for the other MLB teams. You owe it to yourself to check out the site of your favorite team.

I am also adding a link for I Heart Halos. RWH loves the Angels and his family. He is currently working on getting his two year old daughter addicted to cards and the Angels. He has a lot of interesting Angels commentary. Along with Tastelikedirt, that now gives my links list the whole A.L. West with the exception of the Mariners. Anyone know of a good blog for them?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

1972 Topps - Pete Broberg.

Not much to report on the Rangers front today. The club is still playing footsie with Ben Sheets. Ryan and Daniels had dinner with him and seemed to get along swimmingly. Of course, the team hasn't made him an offer yet and he hasn't passed a physical so it may all come to naught.

Thought we would go back to 1972 and take a look at another in the Rangers' first team set. Today's card features pitcher Pete Broberg and is number 64 in the 1972 Topps set. There are a couple of things that are interesting about this card.

First, we can't see up Pete's nose. That is significant after seeing the odd angle of the pictures from the previous four cards in this set. I don't know how Pete, a rookie of all things, managed to avoid the awkward fate of his teammates. Perhaps his photo was taken early enough that the team move had not yet been finalized and so the photographer didn't know to avoid the Washington logo. More likely it was the sideburns. Gotta get those bad boys in the picture.

The second thing that catches my eye is the red. Note Pete's red hat and red undershirt. Note also the Senator's consistent cellar dweller status. That is the true red uniform legacy folks! The Washington Senators wore red, the Texas Rangers switched to blue and should have stayed with it. Sorry, still not over the red is back announcement.

Friday, January 23, 2009


The Rangers unveiled their 2009 uniforms today. They are bringing back the red. Some fans will shriek with delight at this development. I feel more like Todd Zeile on his 2000 MLB Showdown card. Todd looks like he is trying to shrink right out of card number 446. Who can blame him really?

Let's face it, the man played for the Cardinals at one point in his career. Now there is a team meant to wear red. St. Louis does their red uniforms and does them well. The Angels don't look too shabby in red. Of course the Red Sox can pull it off. Occasionally other teams try it and they end up looking like the Rangers do when they get too much red, strange and out of place. (White Sox anyone?)

I know, I know, there are some out there who will loudly declare their nostalgia for the red uniforms. They claim that red will bring back the days of winning the division. The only time the Rangers have won their division they were wearing red. Of course, pitching might have had a little to do with that success as well. As for me, if I wanted to root for a team wearing red I would take a look at the Nationals.

What are your thoughts? Good move? Bad move? Do you even care?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

New arrivals.

Got this 1980 Topps Jim Kern back in the mail today. I had sent it and a 1981 Topps card to him on January 13th and asked him to sign them. He obliged and I must say that I am pleased. Kern was easily one of the best relievers in Rangers' history. I am honored that he took the time to sign my cards.

Texas signed Omar Vizquel yesterday as a utility infielder. I have to wonder why they did this after having Michael Young move to third base. Vizquel has been a very good shortstop in the past. However, he has played only one MLB game at second and none at third during his career. Seems to me that Texas might have been better off trying to re-sign Ramon Vazquez since he had some experience as a true utility infielder.

After signing Vizquel, the Rangers then inked catcher Adam Melhuse to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training. This move makes sense to me for several reasons. Melhuse can play several positions and is a switch hitter. He wasn't just tearing things up last season for Texas but he was doing ok for a backup catcher before he broke his hand. Following that he was released. It looks as though this signing is just an insurance move to give the organization some catching depth.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

One down...

The Ranger's starting rotation candidate field is already thinning out some. 2004 first round draft pick Eric Hurley had rotator cuff surgery today. He will miss all of the 2009 season as a result but should be ready for 2010. Such a start to the year gives me the shakes, knowing as I do Texas' history with pitching.

Got this 2008 Dr. Pepper card of Hurley from my in-laws for my birthday. It was paper clipped to a signed wall hanging that they had won at a raffle. Since I have his autograph already, it would be nice to see Eric get back in form and live up to his potential. It would also help the team substantially.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Position closed?

The Rangers have managed to avoid arbitration with both C.J. Wilson and Frank Francisco. This leaves Marlon Byrd as the only Texas player left who is arbitration eligible.

It may also set up an interesting Spring Training showdown. Francisco, shown here on 2004 Topps Traded card number T111, was the Rangers closer at the end of last season and is well positioned to stay there. C.J. Wilson started off last season as the closer before an injury shut him down. He is interested in getting back into the role.

From what I have seen thus far, I prefer that Frank repeat. My reasoning is simple really. Francisco had far fewer problems closing games than Wilson did, even when healthy. Also, Wilson is a lefty and could be more versatile as a middle reliever who could be brought in to choke off a rally and set up for Francisco.

Interestingly enough, someone foresaw Francisco as the closer. On the back of this card he is referred to as being "pegged as a future closer by Texas." C.J. may have his work cut out for him to regain his closer title.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Book 1, Page 25.

Monday again. It's been one of those days for me so I can say that I am glad to be hitting the books. The Pudge books that is. Much better turn out this week than last. Here is what we have in today's page:

1995 Fleer All-Stars #1
Empty pocket
1995 King-B Discs #19
1995 Kraft #13
1995 Leaf #107
1995 Leaf Great Gloves #16
1995 Leaf Limited #131
1995 Pacific #433
1995 Pacific Latinos Destacados #31

The empty pocket is reserved for the 1995 Fleer Update Smooth Leather #9. Hard to say which of these eight cards I like the best. Perhaps the Kraft one. It actually folds, kind of like a pop-up book and out comes Ivan at the bat. The rest of the card forms a base to hold him up. I guess that was so you could display your collection on your desk at school. Got to give Kraft marks for creativity.

Here in a couple of minutes I will be adding a few blogs to my links list. These are blogs I have been watching and feel that they are updated regularly and are content appropriate.

First off is Tastelikedirt. Jim is an A's fan and avid A's collector. Those who bleed green and yellow have a hard lot in life. I feel some sympathy for them though, since a close family member is afflicted with the same illness. Please show Jim a little compassion and read his excellent and entertaining blog. The taste it will leave in your mouth will be nothing like dirt.

Next is Thoughts and Sox. I used to believe that Red Sox fans were not crazy, just sad. After two World Series wins in the last few years, Adam appears neither crazy nor sad. Being stuck in Missouri doesn't seem to dampen his spirits either. One thing about teams like the BoSox, their fans have an excuse to pick up some really neat vintage cards. Adam does just that, among other things. Check out his thoughtful take on the Sox.

Last, but certainly not least, is Wrigley Wax. This is a fairly new blog that is dedicated to the Cubs. Not sure if that constitutes madness or sadness, but the posts are very informative. I have had a ball reading them and learning stuff about the Cubbies I never even imagined. Failure to give this blog a gander would be like refusing to let a goat in to see the ball game.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

What a surprise!

Had a very good mail day today. When I checked the mail this morning there were two boxes waiting for me. The first was a trade from The Bench that I had been expecting. It was, as usual, a nice box. The second box blew me away though.

First some background. I have several blogs that I watch with the idea of possibly adding them to my links list. One such blog is Padrographs. It is a neat blog dedicated to San Diego Padres autographs. Fun read. Well, I was reading away a couple of days ago and noticed a post talking about mailing out packages. To my surprise my name was on the list of mailed out boxes. A little strange considering that I had never even communicated with Rod, the writer of the blog. I posted a quick reply of pre-arrival thanks and made a mental note to look for Padres stuff to send in return.

Today the box came in and I can safely say that I will most likely be unable to return the favor. In addition to this 1992 Studio Rafael Palmeiro which completed my team set from that year; the box contained several other awesome treasures. A certified Rangers auto I didn't have, quite a few base cards I needed, a Stadium Club Nolan Ryan medallion, commemorative Ryan tickets, and an odd-ball Kevin Brown I had no idea existed. Needless to say, I am overwhelmed at Rod's generosity. If you get a chance, check out his excellent blog. Thanks again Rod, I'll make a feeble attempt to repay you at some point.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Another victory for Ryan!

Nolan Ryan delivered another winning pitch yesterday. Ryan, seen here on card number 544 of the 1990 Upper Deck set, was apparently instrumental in helping Michael Young and the Rangers patch things up and avoid a trade.

In his capacity as Rangers' president Nolan met with Young and convinced him that Texas had meant no disrespect in asking him to switch to third. Young listened and mulled it over before contacting Ryan yesterday to say that he would make the move. Whew!

I am glad that Nollie was able to get this mess worked out. The prospect of losing Young was not a pleasant one for the team and I am not sure that a trade would have done him much good either. In fact, I think there would have been no winners from the deal had it occurred. The club would have lost a hard-working vet who cares about his teammates. Young would have lost his respect and admiration from the fans. The fans would have lost Mike and had to watch the Rangers stagger from the blow.

Ryan has reason to smile and so do Rangers fans. Thanks Mr. Ryan, for coming through in the clutch.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

2004 Topps #HBL.

Not much to report today so I thought I would present my newest Rangers game-used card. This is a Hank Blalock Topps card from 2004 and it features a piece of his jersey.

I managed to pick this up for just $2 delivered and it arrived today. While it's not the most elaborate game-used card I have ever seen, it's ok by me. What makes it a little nicer is that I already had the Chan Ho Park from this set. Anytime I can get two autos or game-used from the same set I consider it an accomplishment.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Kapler signs.

Former Rangers' outfielder Gabe Kapler, seen here on card number 143 of the 2002 Fleer set, has signed with the Tampa Bay Rays. According to, Kapler inked a $1 million dollar one-year deal with the team formerly known as the Devil Rays. The contract contains no incentives. This seems to validate Kapler's comeback last season.

Texas has officially invited shortstop Elvis Andrus and first baseman Justin Smoak to Spring Training. Neither is guaranteed a roster spot and it is likely that Smoak won't make the team. Andrus is supposed to make the cut and that is why the tiff with Michael Young moving to third came up.

The Rangers have checked Ben Sheets' medical reports. As the only team interested in Sheets so far there seems to be at least a decent chance that Texas might sign him. If he can come back from his late season injury then he could be a good pickup and significantly upgrade the pitching staff.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mail surprise!

Got a nice surprise in the mail this morning in the form of a package from John at The Pursuit of 80's(ness). John is a great guy and will occasionally send cards for no other reason than he wants to give them to someone who would appreciate them. Well, I sure appreciate this group.

John sent 38 cards and I needed eleven of them. Not bad at all for what he just happened to have laying around. Included in the lot was this 2006 Bowman Hank Blalock, number 74 in the set. This card is particularly appreciated since it completes my team set from that year and brand. Now I just need to try and come up with something to send John in return. Thanks for the cards and completing my team set John, you are truly a class act.

Jon Daniels is now saying that he thinks Michael Young will be with the team at the start of the 2009 season. I sure hope he is right. Losing Young now would be like taking a torpedo in the boiler room of the SS Playoff Hopes. Not a good situation. Elvis Andrus may be ready to play shortstop at the major league level (though I have my doubts) but he can't provide the leadership and mentoring that Young can.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Book 1, Page 24.

Here we are back on I-Rod Monday again. Trying to get caught up from a long weekend at work here, hope that everyone else is doing well. Ok, Let's see what we have in this rather scant page today.
Empty pocket
Empty pocket
1995 Donruss Top of the Order #165
1995 Emotion #88
1995 Finest #109
Empty pocket
1995 Flair #92
Empty pocket
1995 Fleer #295

Wow! A lot of empty plastic there. Here's what's missing: 1995 Donruss Dominators #2, 1995 Donruss Press Proofs #423, 1995 Finest Refractors #109, 1995 Flair Hot Gloves #10.

Of the cards in the page, I probably like the Emotion one best. Nice photo of Pudge playing hard and getting ready to snag a pop foul. I must admit though that the "wired" across the bottom of the card is a bit strange.

Well, it was looking like the Rangers were well into the process of building a long-term team that had a decent chance at succeeding. Then they manage to go and alienate Michael Young by telling him that he is moving to third. This has resulted in Young asking for a trade. That will be bad for Texas, real bad. While Young is probably overreacting, it seems that the Rangers should have taken a different route on this. Young has already switched positions once for the team and probably would have been willing to do so again if approached correctly. Hank Blalock was asked to move from third to first, why could Michael Young not have been asked rather than told?

Most likely everyone saw the writing on the wall for Young to move to third at some point, I know I did. Sooner or later it was bound to happen. Mike is too big an asset at the plate and in the clubhouse to just shove off but he would eventually be slowing down and need to be moved. It seems that the problem here is more the way the move was proposed rather than the move itself. I sure hope that things can get patched up, it would be a shame to lose Michael at this point.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


Due to a double shift at work today I will be unable to post. I should be back on Monday. Thanks.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Must read.

This is a scan of my copy of Josh Hamilton's book. You know I didn't rip it off from anywhere because the scan is so crooked. Blasted scanner. Sometimes it and I don't get along very well.

Anyway, on to the book. This was a gift from my in-laws for Christmas. If that wasn't nice enough, my father-in-law bought the book at one of Josh's appearances in the Fort Worth area and got it signed. When I opened it up there was Josh's signature on the title page in blue sharpie. Very nice.

In addition to being a nice addition to the Rangers collection, the book is an interesting and easy read. I knew that Josh had hit rock bottom before he came back, I just didn't realize how hard the rocks were. In my line of work I have seen folks in similar conditions and so I could visualize the damage he was doing to his body and marriage with the drugs. Pretty scary.

The most important part of the book though was the recovery. Most notably, the admittal that he needed a higher power to help him beat the demons. That applies to us all. Left to our own devices we get into trouble quick and stay there. Just because we don't get in as deep as Josh doesn't mean that we are in any more control on our own than he was.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Looks like things are in the final countdown frenzy with free agents. Lots of players moving from one team to another. Trevor Hoffman is going to Milwaukee, Rocco Baldelli to Boston, and Jason Ellison is leaving the Rangers' organization for a Spring Training invite with the Phillies. John Smoltz is set to sign with the Red Sox while Milton Bradley is waiting on some preliminaries to ink a deal with the Cubs.

This autographed 1989 Donruss card of Ray Hayward was recently involved in a move as well. On January third I sent a 1988 Topps Traded card to Mr. Hayward and asked for his autograph. I got this card back today. I must say that the turn around was super fast. Was it so fast that it morphed the card? Does Ray get so many requests that he mixed up mine and another? Does he buy his own cards, pre-sign them, and then switch them out for a faster turn around? Inquiring minds want to know

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


No, I'm not talking about how irritating it is to have to read about Manny Ramirez's contract drama. I am talking about what Bowman and other card brands have become over the years. While most brands are guilty, Bowman seems to have led the charge. Today's card is a prime example.

Today we see pitcher Eric McCray on card number 281 of the 1991 Bowman set. Eric is listed on the card as a Texas Ranger and appears in their uniform. So far so good.

Where things break down though is that McCray never appeared in a Rangers' game. In fact, he never made it past AA ball. His last game was in 1992 with the Gulf Coast League Rangers on the rookie ball level. So, while he appears on a "major league baseball card" he never made it to the majors.

I really don't mind getting cards of career minor league players, I have quite a few. I would rather get them on minor league cards though. In it's rush to become "The home of the Rookie Card" Bowman has issued hundreds of these types of cards. I understand, to some extent, the rookie sensation who can't miss, but McCray was drafted in 1988 and made his professional start the same year. By the time this card was issued he had been throwing for two years and I don't ever remember hearing about him. Hardly a hot prospect. This is one reason I don't buy many Bowman packs.

If a company wants to issue cards of minor league players then issue a minor league set. Please don't take up space in a pack with major league players.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Number one!

On his blog, T.R. Sullivan lists the top 25 pitchers in Rangers' history. He lists Hough, seen here on card number 371 of the 1981 Topps set, as number one on the list. Jon Matlack is number 25. In between are a wide variety of guys, included several Hall-0f-Famers.

T.R. is right when he says that from 1984 to 1988 Charlie was about all the Rangers had. I remember him being as big a name as Nolan Ryan before Nollie came to Texas. Charlie was always a great signer too. It seemed that he always signed and returned any cards that I sent him. That kind of fan interaction is hard to underrate.

I have managed to nail down the 1981 Topps base set but am still missing some of the Traded set. Here is what I am still hunting:
1981 Topps Traded
749 Larry Cox
772 Rick Honeycutt
801 Mario Mendoza
825 Leon Roberts
836 Bill Stein
852 Mark Wagner

Monday, January 5, 2009

Book 1, Page 23.

Wow! Derek Lowe turns down the Mets and it looks like Milton Bradley may soon be a Cub. With only about 40 days left until pitchers and catchers report it looks like things might finally be moving a little. Ok, let's take a look at what we have today for one of the still unsigned catchers out there.

1995 Classic $10 Phone Cards #55
1995 Collector's Choice #391
Empty pocket
1995 Collector's Choice SE #188
Empty pocket
1995 Collector's Choice SE Silver Signature #188
1995 Collector's Choice Silver Signature #391
1995 Donruss #423
Empty pocket

Three empty pockets today. They are waiting for the 1995 Collector's Choice Gold Signature #391, 1995 Collector's Choice SE Gold Signature #188, and 1995 Donruss All-Stars #AL2.

Had a dentist appointment today and stopped by Wal-Mart afterwords. Picked up a blaster of 2008 Upper Deck Documentary just to check them out. While I have my gripes with the set I am intrigued by the idea and have decided to try to nail the Rangers set. Should be kind of fun. Almost all the rest that I got are for trade.

Got home from the dentist and opened the mail. There was a nice box of Rangers from Cliff over at Capewood's Collections. Awhile back he and I had agreed on a team lot trade and the 300 card box of Rangers was in exchange for a similar box of Phillies and Astros. Haven't had time yet to really look through the box but it looks like I will be able to fill several holes in the collection. Thanks Cliff! Let me know if you ever want to repeat.

The second package I received was the result of winning a year-end give away on The Bench. Bench member MrMopar is a great guy who loves his odd-ball stuff. He had to thin things out a bit though and thus the giveaway. I got a bubble mailer full of odd-ball Rangers. Minis, stamps, over-size cards, even a few cards written almost completely in French! Way cool. If you haven't gotten on The Bench yet, you really need to get there. Tell 'em Spiff sent ya.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

1972 Topps - Dick Bosman.

Seeing as it has been a slow day on the baseball front and a couple of weeks since we have seen anything from the Rangers' first set, I decided to revisit 1972. Today we see Topps card number 365, featuring Dick Bosman.

After six seasons with the Senators, Bosman would last only a season and a half with the Rangers. He would return later though as a pitching coach for the team.

1972 Topps is a team set that I would really like to complete. Since it is the inaugural set I have been placing special emphasis on it lately. Here is my current want list from 1972 Topps:
510 Ted Williams
529 Dave Nelson
577 Mike Paul
598 Hal King
654 Horacio Pina
668 Rangers Team
737 Lenny Randle
767 Tom McCraw
If you have any of these and think we might be able to work a trade please let me know.

Friday, January 2, 2009


Decided to post card number 257 of the 1991 Score set today to welcome Steve Buechele back into baseball full-time in his position as A ball manager. I like this card of Boo. It shows him doing what he did best, fielding.

My Grandfather always used to say that Boo had the softest hands in the Majors. The back of this card seems to agree, calling him "one of the league's better defensive third basemen." When my family visited and got to see the Rangers on TV it was a real joy to watch Boo man the hot corner.

1991 Score is one of those sets that I would like to put to bed. I am just two cards from completing it and would be interested in working a trade with anyone who might have them. Here is what I have left from this rather large team set:
1991 Score
900 Nolan Ryan COOP
1991 Score Rookies & Traded
82T Ivan Rodriguez RC
If you have either or both of these cards and are willing to let them go please contact me and let's see if we can swing a deal.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Catching up...

Well, I made it back all in one piece from visiting family this past week. I trust that everyone enjoyed the holidays and is having a great start to the new year. As always, I have to catch up on things after getting back from a trip.

First off is this 2008 Topps Trading Card History #TCH71 of Michael Young. I received this card on December 24th from Matt over at Heartbreaking Cards. Matt and I had agreed to a trade earlier in the month and in exchange for some 2004 Bowman Heritage cards he needed, I got this card and 15 others. The assortment was great and it looks like I will be filling holes in my collection with most of them.

Looks like the Giants nailed down Randy Johnson. I had doubted that the Rangers had much of a chance but it was nice to do a little daydreaming. It does make sense though, that an aging N.L. pitcher would want to avoid the A.L. if possible.

Big news that Steve Buechele is back! Texas hired him as their single A manager. It is great to see "Boo" back in the game and I wish him all the best. Still think he had about the softest hands ever.

Ivan Rodriguez still hasn't signed with anyone. Not sure that anyone is even talking to him. What are his chances of finding a home? Will he be able to or is this the end of the trail?