Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Wantlist - 2005 Donruss.

Today we come to the last base set issued by Donruss. Hard to believe they've been gone that long. I really have no memory of Brian Jordan with Texas. That hasn't stopped me from using his card, number 355, as an example of what the cards looked like. Here is what I need from this set:

2005 Donruss
23 Alfonso Soriano DK
56 Frankie Francisco RR
68 Nick Regilio RR
399 Alfonso Soriano TC

Four cards left and this set is done. If you have any of the four and are interested in trading them please let me know. I would love to work out a trade.

***So far this week there have been no entries in the Strat-O-Matic contest. Don't forget to get yours in soon. At present there are only three contestants. I would like to do a second chance drawing but will need more participation for something like that.***

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

1973 Topps - Jim Mason.

Jim Mason spent the 1973 season as the backup shortstop to starter Toby Harrah.

Jim showed up 74 times at shortstop, 19 times at second, and once at third base. He played 562 innings at short and saw 337 chances. He committed 18 errors on the season which left him with a .947 fielding percentage, well below the league average .964 percentage. Interestingly, Jim put in more time in the field than some of the regular players.

At the plate Mason barely topped the Mendoza Line with a .206 batting average. He managed a .273 on base percentage in his 266 plate appearances. Jim definitely did not hit for power, he managed only three home runs all season.

1973 cemented Jim Mason as stuck behind Toby Harrah at short. That wasn't to say that he didn't have an upside. At least the Yankees thought he did. In December of 1973 they purchased Jim's contract from Texas.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Minor League Monday - Dave Meier, 1987 ProCards.

Dave Meier shows up on the second card that we see from the 1987 ProCards set, number 138. Dave improves on the standard pose by adding his cap. Most of the players in the rest of the set follow his example.

Dave played for the Minnesota Twins in 1984 and '85. They released him in December of 1985. Almost a year later, in December of 1986 the Rangers signed him. Meier spent most of the 1987 season at Triple A but did make an appearance or two with the big club. He appeared in 129 games for the Eighty-Niners and 13 for the Rangers.

In his 129 games for Oklahoma City Meier showed up in the outfield 112 times and at third base 10 times. He committed 6 errors in the outfield and none at third while handling a combined total of 214 chances.

On offense Dave would post a .320 batting average in 516 plate appearances. His on base percentage was .392. He knocked 18 home runs, four triples, and 36 doubles. He would score 72 runs and bump in 86 RBI on the season. He did strike out ten times more that he walked (67-57).

Overall Dave's 1987 numbers really weren't that bad for someone who had been away from pro ball for a whole year. They were good enough to earn him a look in Texas. Unfortunately he couldn't get them to translate in the Majors. There was enough potential though for the Cubs to be interested in him. In March of 1988 Texas sent him and Greg Tabor to Chicago for Ray Hayward.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Senators Saturday - Paul Casanova, 1970.

Today we get to what is currently the fourth and final card in my 1970 Senators team set. Catcher Paul Casanova appears on card number 84 of the 1970 Topps set. As you can see, this is a well-loved card.

Besides the creases there are a few other things about this card that catch my attention. One is Paul's glove. Looks like he hasn't signed on with Johnny Bench and the hinged mitt yet. The second thing is actually on the back of the card. The comic on the back states that in 1961 Paul played for the Indianapolis Clowns. This would be the same team of Negro Leagues fame. Interesting tidbit. The last point of interest is the name. Casanova has to be one of the most interesting names in Senators history.

In 1970 Paul was the starting catcher for Washington. He appeared in 104 games for the team and spent 774.1 innings behind the plate. In that time he committed six errors in 521 chances for a .988 fielding percentage. That was exactly the league average. Casanova also caught 24 would-be base thieves, 51% of attempts against him. It was a career high percentage. He also posted a career best in passed balls, allowing just two all season. 1970 may well have been Paul's best year behind the plate.

On the offense he was also enjoying one of the top two or three years of his career but the numbers were a bit more of a mixed bag. In 343 plate appearances he posted a .251 on base percentage, down three points from the previous year. His batting average (.229) and slugging percentage (.354) were both up though. He scored one less run (25) than in 1969 and had seven less RBI (30). His doubles were up though, by eight, to 17. He also managed one more triple (3) and two more homers (6) than the previous season.

All in all Paul Casanova was no All-Star. He was solid though and was the best option the Senators had behind the plate in 1970. None of the three other catchers the team used that season seemed to be poised to challenge him for the starting job in the immediate future.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Contest - week five.

In the fourth inning of the Strat-O-Matic game this week Taylor Teagarden hit a groundball to the Astros' shortstop. As he tried to beat the throw to first he tweaked his ankle. He was replaced in the bottom of the inning by Jarrod Saltalamacchia. Taylor will be out for two games. The injury proved fortunate for Texas though as Salty hammered a walk-off homer in the ninth inning to give the Rangers a 3-2 win. One point if you predicted the Strat Rangers to win.

The Showdown game started well for Texas as they touched Houston started Nolan Ryan for four runs in the first four innings. An explosive Astros' sixth though would doom the Rangers to an 8-6 loss. One point of you predicted the MLB Showdown Rangers to lose.

The MLB Showdown Rangers team may have lost their game but they won the scoring contest 6-3. One point if you predicted the Showdown team to score the most runs.

Got the Strat-O-Matic storage problem solved. Mrs. Spiff thoughtfully gave me a couple of 3x5 picture storage boxes for Father's Day. They work like a charm. The Strat cards lay neatly on their sides and 3x5's can be used as dividers. Much better than being stacked up or rubber-banded.

This week will see the Rangers travel to San Diego to take on the Padres. Be sure to get your predictions in early. How will each Rangers team do? Which will score the most runs? Getting down to crunch time in the points race so be sure to enter.

For details on how this contest works please see this post.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sometimes it takes a little time.

It's been quite awhile since I got one of my through the mail autograph requests in. At least a month and a half. I still have a bunch of recent ones out that I am thinking should be coming back in any day. Sometimes though it just takes a long time for the requests to come back.

This 1991 Bowman Dan Peltier wasn't one of the ones I was thinking should be coming in. In fact I had given up on ever seeing this card again. I had sent it out to Dan in early January of last year, 2009. It came back today. About a year and a half. Wow! Who would have thought that Peltier was that much in demand? Perhaps he receives more requests than I imagined. Maybe there is another answer. Could be that my request fell behind the bill desk and didn't get discovered until recently. Could be that Dan is a procrastinator. Maybe he suffered a tragic finger crushing accident and has just now completed rehab. Who knows. All I know for sure is that I am glad to get the card back and be able to add the autograph to my Rangers collection. Thanks Mr. Peltier, I do appreciate you taking the time to sign.

As a reminder, this is the final day to enter your guess in this week's Strat-O-Matic contest. The results of this week's games will be posted tomorrow. Get your guesses in now.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wantlist - 2004 Donruss.

Terribly sorry for the short post but it has been a rather hectic day and I am up against the clock to get this post in on Wednesday. Decided to stick with the backstop theme for the wantlist sample card. Today we see Einar Diaz on card number 199 of the 2004 Donruss set. I still need quite a few cards to complete this team set. Here is what I need:

2004 Donruss
5 Alex Rodriguez DK
196 Alex Rodriguez
200 Hank Blalock
201 Ismael Valdes
205 Rafael Palmeiro
383 Alex Rodriguez TC

If you have any of these cards, or any from wantlists past, please let me know. I would love to work out a trade with you.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Getting away.

So today I had a reminder of one of the reasons I am a baseball fan. That reason appears here on card number 204 of the 2010 Topps set.

After a cruddy day at work (like today) it is great to be able to turn on the Rangers' game and listen to Elvis and Ian do their thing. A great escape of sorts. I can relax while listening to Texas. None of the work nonsense allowed. Thanks guys.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Minor League Monday - Ron Meridith, 1987 ProCards.

Along with the 1986 ProCards set that we have already looked at, my Dad also bought me a 1987 ProCards Eighty-Niners set when I was younger. These two sets were my introduction to minor league cards and I was hooked.

Today we see pitcher Ron Meridith on card number 145 of the set. Unlike the previous year, in 1987 ProCards numbered their cards. Ron has a similar pose to the rest of the team set, the photo lineup look.

Meridith joined the Rangers organization in 1986 in a trade involving Rick Surhoff going to the Cubs. He had appeared in 35 games with the Cubs in 1984 and '85. He started the 1986 season at Triple A Iowa though before moving to Oklahoma City.

With the Eighty-Niners Ron would appear in 34 games, starting 17 of them. He pitched 118 innings and posted a 4.42 ERA. He allowed just six home runs and posted a win/loss record of 7-7. His WHIP was 1.5.

That was apparently good enough to get Ron a cup of coffee with the Rangers. He appeared in five games for the team and went a total of three innings. He responded favorably to the look and dropped his ERA to 3.00 and his WHIP to 1.00. Only two of the ten batters he faced got hits off him. For Texas pitching at the time those were some decent numbers.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Senators Saturday - Hank Allen, 1970.

Today we have Hank Allen on card number 14 of the 1970 Topps set. There are a couple of things that I want to mention before we get to Hank's on field performance in 1970.

First, I am not sure what is going on with the batting glove. Hank did bat right so the photo is correct. If you're only going to wear one glove though I'm not sure why you would wear it on the upper hand.

Second, Hank is Dick Allen's older but less well known brother. From what I can tell the two brothers did both play for the White Sox in 1972 and 1973.

1970 was a long season for Hank though. He appeared in 22 games for Washington, mostly as a backup outfielder. In that time he made 44 trips to the plate and posted a .295 on base percentage. Not very impressive. Of course, neither was his .211 batting average and the fact that he had no triples and no home runs. He walked just five times and struck out nine.

In the field Hank played just 95.2 innings. He handled 19 chances without an error. Not much time and not many chances. Perhaps a better bat could have helped him get more fielding time.

1970 was the worst offensive season of Allen's career to that point. The year didn't get much better as the Senators traded him on May 11th to Milwaukee. Hank and Ron Theobald went to the Brewers in exchange for Wayne Comer. In December the Brewers sent him to Atlanta. At some point in between he also spent time in Triple A with the Orioles' affiliate but I can't figure out how he got there. All in all 1970 was a long year for Hank. At least he would get to play on the same team as his brother in 1972, the next time he would see Major League action.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Contest - week four.

Fueled by plenty of run support, starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy picked up the win for the Strat-O-Matic Rangers this week as they hosted the Phillies. McCarthy allowed only one run in five innings as Texas topped Philadelphia 6-2. One point if you predicted the Rangers to win in Strat-O-Matic.

The MLB Showdown game was much uglier. John Thomson allowed six runs in the same number of innings McCarthy pitched. The bullpen didn't get the bleeding stopped fast either as the Phils trounced the Rangers 9-5. One point if you predicted a Texas defeat in MLB Showdown.

For the first time in the contest the Strat-O-Matic Rangers won the scoring contest 6-5. One point if you predicted the Strat Rangers to outscore the Showdown team.

The more I play Strat-O-Matic the more I enjoy it. I like being able to score the games just as if I was watching them. The errors continue to be a realistic aspect. I am looking forward to stepping up to the advanced version sometime relatively soon.

Ok, the upcoming matchup. This week we see the Houston Astros coming into Arlington to take on the Rangers. Make sure to get your predictions in. How will the Showdown team do? The Strat team? Which will score the most runs? The contest is now half over but it is still possible to get in now and win a free Strat-O-Matic computer game. In fact, this week's scoring saw some major tightening in the points race. Just make sure to enter, you can't win if you don't.

For details on how this contest works please see this post.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Professional hitter.

So I wanted to post a nice card of Michael Young to mark him becoming the Rangers all time hits leader. Decided to go with a card from a set that somehow has really got me stuck on it. Here he is on card number P-21 of the 2005 Prime Patches set. This particular card is the quad game used version and is numbered 71/150.

Last night Michael passed Ivan Rodriguez as the player with the most hits in a Rangers uniform. Michael's 1,748th hit scored two runs and helped Texas down the Marlins last night. Notably, Young managed to pass Pudge with just about 15 or so more at-bats. Not too bad.

This makes Young one of just four players to hold the all-time hits record with their current teams. The others are Derek Jeter, Carl Crawford, and Todd Helton. Not bad company.

Congratulations Michael! Hope to see you with the team for quite some time. Good luck adding to the record.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wantlist - 2003 Donruss.

Decided to use Ivan Rodriguez on card number 209 of the 2003 Donruss set for the wantlist today for several reasons. In fact, I have more reasons than cards I need from this set.

First is Matt Treanor's ninth inning heroics with his pinch-hit two RBI triple last night. That hit allowed the Rangers to go on to win the game in Florida. Matt wasn't with the Rangers in 2003 though so I thought about using Frank Catalanotto's card since Cat was a professional pinch-hitter. I found that I had already used Frank's card though. That left me with Pudge and the catcher connection.

Second reason is that Michael Young passed Pudge tonight as the all-time Rangers hit leader. I thought about using Michael's card from this set but found that I had already posted it as well. I'll post a nice Michael Young card tomorrow to mark to achievement but for now it's back to Ivan.

Hope you can handle Pudge two wantlists in a row. Here is the last card I need to complete this team set:

2003 Donruss
8 Alex Rodriguez DK

Just one card and I can put this set to bed. Please let me know if you have it. My tradelist is here and I am sure we can work some kind of trade. Thanks!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

1973 Topps - Elliott Maddox.

In 1973 Elliott Maddox, shown here on card number 658 of the 1973 Topps set, was primarily a backup outfielder for the Rangers. He appeared in 100 games, all but eight in the outfield.

While on patrol Elliot logged 523.2 innings. He handled 166 chances in that time while committing three errors. That gave him a .982 fielding percentage, a couple of points above the league average. Interestingly, Maddox took part in two double plays during the season.

Maddox made 210 trips to the plate in 1973 and managed a .238 batting average. He walked 29 times and struck out 28 times. His on base percentage was .356. While getting on base he bumped in 17 RBI and scored 24 times himself. Elliott was not a slugger. He managed just one home run and one double all season and no triples.

Elliott had a problem going into 1974. Fellow backup outfielder Tom Grieve. Tom's numbers were much better at the plate than Elliott's. If Maddox wanted to hold on to his spot he would need to work on the offense.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Minor League Monday - Colby Lewis.

Today we sort of see Colby Lewis on this 2000 Royal Rookies High Yield card. There is no number on this card. Due to the shadowing it is hard to tell if there are any facial features on this card either. Due to the airbrush job it is difficult to determine which minor league team's uniform Lewis is wearing here. The back of the card states, "Scouts say Lewis' raw stuff is incredible..."

Last night Colby was pretty close to incredible as he pitched in Milwaukee. He managed to give up just two runs in eight innings while striking out ten. He allowed just one walk. With the exception of two mistakes that the Brewers sent out of the park Colby was pretty much untouchable. Beside the two long balls there was just one other hit from the Brew Crew.

Not a bad pitching performance. Since this was a National League game there was also another side to Colby's night. At the plate he went 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBI of his own. Not bad at all. There's a lot of position players that would like that line.

Overall a good night for Lewis and the Rangers. The 7-2 win kept them ahead of the surging Angels.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Senators Saturday - Lee Maye, 1970.

Lee Maye, shown here on card number 439 of the 1970 Topps set, came to the Senators in a trade in June of 1969. Washington sent Bill Denehy to Cleveland in return.

Maye would appear in 96 games for Washington in 1970. 63 of those games were in right field. Lee would play 493.2 innings on defense and handle 79 chances without an error. His 1.000 fielding percentage was well above the league average.

At bat the veteran began to show his age as his batting average slipped from .290 the previous season to .263 in 1970. His on base percentage dropped 24 points to .321. In 277 plate appearances he walked 21 times while striking out 32 times. Lee scored 28 times and managed 30 RBI. He also had seven home runs and 12 doubles.

1970 was Maye's last year with Washington. On September 11, 1970 the White Sox took him off waivers from the Senators. The ChiSox would release him in July of 1971 and that would end his MLB career.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Contest - week three.

Alex Rodriguez, shown here on card number 19 of the 2002 MLB Showdown All-Star set, was the big bopper for Texas this week as the MLB Showdown team defeated the Mets 5-6. Alex went 2-for-5 with both hits being home runs. One point if you predicted the Showdown Rangers team to win.

The Strat-O-Matic game was once again a basic level game and was more of a pitcher's duel than the Showdown game. Tommy Hunter managed to out pitch Johan Santana as Texas pulled out a 2-0 win. Julio Borbon hit a pinch hit home run in the 8th inning to put the game on ice for the Rangers. One point if you predicted the Strat-O-Matic Rangers to win.

The MLB Showdown Rangers once again won the scoring battle. This time 5-2. One point if you predicted the Showdown Rangers to score more runs.

I am finding it interesting that the more I play Strat-O-Matic the simpler MLB Showdown seems. Not that Strat is complicated, I am still playing the basic level. More that Showdown lacks the detail that Strat has. For example, Frank Francisco closed out this week's win. He did commit an error though that allowed a base runner. That would never have happened in Showdown. I would rather have the possibility as it is more realistic and true to the actual game.

Ok, on to the next game. This week the Rangers will host the Phillies in Texas. Remember to get your guesses in early as to how you think the MLB Showdown and Strat-O-Matic Rangers will fare and which will score the most runs. This week will mark the midway point in the contest. Four more games to play after that. If you haven't been entering the contest now is the time to start.

For details on how this contest works please see this post.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Like father like son.

Feeling a little older today. When I was younger I remember that one of my favorite Rangers was Steve Buechele. I loved to hear the crowd shouting "Boooo!" when he came to bat. I even did it at the radio. In the early 1990's I sent this 1988 Fleer card to him and he signed and returned it. It was a sad day when he left Texas.

Yesterday the Rangers drafted Garrett Buechele, Steve's son. Seems like just yesterday that Steve was on the hot corner for the Rangers. Where did the time go? Like his dad Garrett is a third baseman. This is the first time that the same team has drafted both father and son. Hopefully Boo Two will work out as well for Texas as the original.

Quick reminder to seize this last chance to get your entries in for this week's Strat-O-Matic contest.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wantlist - 2002 Donruss.

So the Rangers pulled off a win last night to scratch their way back into first place by half a game. Time to get to building on the lead guys. Could be a good stretch to do just that going through June. Most of the teams Texas faces this month are struggling.

Realized that I hadn't posted a Pudge card in awhile so I decided to do so today to give an example of what the 2002 Donruss set looks like. Today we see Ivan on card number 144 of the set. Still need four cards to be able to put this set to bed:

2002 Donruss
1 Alex Rodriguez
179 Mark Teixeira RR
188 Andy Pratt RR
211 Rafael Palmeiro FC

If you have any of these cards, or any from wantlists past, please let me know. I would love to work out a trade with you. If you would rather not trade then at least consider entering the Strat-O-Matic contest and winning a free game.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

1973 Topps - Joe Lovitto.

Looking back at the 1973 season again. Today we have Joe Lovitto on card number 276 in the 1973 Topps set. The cartoon on the back informs us that Joe's first hit as a pro was a home run. In spite of Joe's position being listed as an outfielder the back of the card also states that he had the "natural ability to play almost any position..."

Joe split the 1973 season between the Rangers and Triple A. He played in 74 games for Spokane and 26 for the Rangers. While he played in the outfield for Texas he primarily split the backup third baseman duties with Bill Madlock.

In 112 innings in the field Joe committed five errors in route to posting a .898 fielding percentage. That dismal number was 55 points below the league average. That was probably part of the reason that Lovitto spent part of the year at Triple A.

The other part of the reason for the Triple A sojourn is likely related to Joe's .136 batting average. In 49 trips to the plate he managed just a .224 on base percentage. That coupled with his 7 strikeouts and only one extra base hit would make it hard to secure a spot on any MLB roster.

1973 was probably a season that Joe Lovitto wanted to forget. He needed some drastic improvement in the field and at the plate if he wanted to stick with the Rangers in 1974.

***Reminder to sign up for the Strat-O-Matic contest. You can still be competitive if you get in now. Last week saw a newcomer overtake Night Owl in the points race.***

Monday, June 7, 2010

Minor League Monday - Staff, 1986 ProCards.

Ok, so here we are at the end of the 1986 ProCards team set. Just three cards left: the manager, a coach, and a trainer. Going to hit all three in one post.

Dave Oliver was the manager for the Oklahoma City Eighty-Niners for the 1985 and 1986 seasons. They were his fourth and fifth seasons in the minors as a manager. In 2001 he managed in, of all places, Mudville. No word on if he was fired for not pinch-hitting for Casey. Prior to his minor league managerial career he played eight seasons in the minors from 1973 to 1980. In 1977 Dave played in seven games for the Cleveland Indians - his only major league experience.

Up next us coach Rusty Gerhardt. Not sure if Rusty is the hitting coach, pitching coach, bench coach, bullpen coach, third base coach, first base coach, or all of those rolled into one.

What I was able to find out about Gerhardt is that he managed the Eighty-Niners in 1984 before the advent of Dave Oliver. He also pitched for nine seasons in the San Diego Padres farm system from 1972 t0 1981 with a break for the 1980 season. Not sure if the break was caused by an arm injury or what. In 1974 he appeared in 23 games for the Padres. That was the extent of his major league experience. I have no idea where Rusty went when he left OKC.

Last in the set is trainer Greg Campbell. Not sure why Greg got a card in this set when Rusty Gerhardt was the only coach to do so. Perhaps he and Rusty were the only two staff members to show up for the photo shoot.

I wasn't able to find out much on Greg. The fact that all three of these cards have the same date of birth, height, weight, residence and such doesn't make things any easier. I believe that Greg may have played one season of Rookie League ball for the San Francisco Giants in 1982. Beyond that I have no idea where Greg was before he came to the Eighty-Niners or where he went when he left.

Well, that wraps up the 1986 ProCards Eighty-Niners team set. On to 1987 next time.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Senators Saturday - Tim Cullen, 1970.

Ok, so after our quick look at 1969 we head to 1970. This season will also not last all that long either since I only have about four cards from this team set. To start off with we have Tim Cullen on card number 49 of the 1970 Topps set. Cullen looks like he might be practicing his bunting with a fungo bat. That with guys in suits standing around in the background looking at something else. Kind of makes the windbreaker under the jersey look ok.

Tim was the starting second baseman for the Senators in 1970. Of the 732.1 innings he played in the field 721.2 were at second base, the other 10.2 were at short. At second Tim handled 476 chances during the season while committing only three errors. His .994 fielding percentage was well above the league average .979.

Tim was the prototypical light hitting middle infielder though. His average in 301 plate appearances was .214 and his on base percentage was .301. He walked 31 times while striking out 38 times. He scored 22 runs and bumped in 18 RBI. Tim had only one home run on the season while managing 10 doubles and two triples. He had only two sacrifice bunts all season, even with the practice.

Cullen's 1970 season could be summed up as all glove and no bat. He seemed to sparkle in the field but his offensive numbers were at the bottom of the starting lineup. Maybe he should have practiced more than just bunting.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Contest - week two.

So this past week in the Strat-O-Matic contest it was the Astros hosting the Rangers in Houston.

In the MLB Showdown game the Rangers managed to outlast the Astros 5-4 to get the win for Ismael Valdes. Jim Kern picked up a two inning save. One point if you predicted the Showdown Rangers to win.

In just my second Strat-O-Matic game the Rangers beat the Astros 4-1. In the first inning Nelson Cruz, as shown here on his 2010 Strat card, came up with an injury after grounding out to the shortstop. He will be out for eight games. This effectively removes him from the rest of the contest. One point if you predicted the Strat-O-Matic Rangers to win.

For the second time the MLB Showdown Rangers won the scoring contest. This time it was close, 5-4. One point if you predicted that the Showdown Rangers would score the most runs.

A couple of more thoughts on Strat-O-Matic versus MLB Showdown.

When I first started looking at Strat-O-Matic I was convinced that it would not be as simple as Showdown. After just a couple of basic games I am changing my mind. The game is not as complicated as it looks at first. Granted, I am playing Showdown at the highest level of play and Strat at the lowest but the time it takes to play a game is about the same after just a short time. Nice to be able to grasp the game that quickly. Advantage even.

Injuries. They don't really exist in Showdown. At least not any that will take a player out of action for any length of time. I have always thought that this was a failing that I would like to see addressed. After all, the really good teams in baseball always have a good bench to give the starting lineup a break and to fill in in case of an injury. In spite of the fact that the Rangers got bit by the injury rules with Nellie Cruz I like the idea. Strat seems to be much more accurate in this area than Showdown. Advantage to Strat-O-Matic.

On to this week's match. Next the Rangers play the Mets in New York. Make sure to get your predictions in as the contest is still wide open. Remember to include if you think the Showdown Rangers will win, if you think the Strat 2009 Rangers will win, and which Rangers team you think will score the most runs.

For details on how this contest works please see this post.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Back to winning.

So the Rangers won their second straight last night to knock the A's out of first place. Matt Treanor was the big gun of the night as he went 2-for-4 with a home run and 4 RBI. Unfortunately for Matt, I have no cards of him in a Rangers' uniform.

That leaves one of the other two bombers for Texas last night. Decided to go with Michael Young on this 2005 Prime Patches card, number P-21 in the set (numbered 86/150). Michael went 3-for-5 last night in the designated hitter's spot with 3 RBI. I must admit that part of the reason that Michael gets today's card is the card itself. For some reason I fell in love with the Prime Patches set. The packs were totally out of my price range but I have managed to pick up quite a few singles on Ebay. The numbering system drives me crazy but I still like them.

Nice to see Texas back to winning. Hopefully they can get back into that habit.

Ok, the second week's results on the Strat-O-Matic contest come out tomorrow. This is your last chance to get your predictions in for this week. Need some folks to jump in and make this thing interesting.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Wantlist - 2001 Donruss.

Continuing the Rusty Greer example series here. Today Rusty appears on card number 97 of the 2001 Donruss set to provide an example of what the set looks like. Still need quite a few of these cards:

2001 Donruss
1 Alex Rodriguez
171 Mike Young SP
185 Carlos Pena SP
201 Alex Rodriguez FC
209 Ivan Rodriguez FC

If you have any of these please let me know so we can work out a trade. Thanks!

***Don't forget to get in on the Strat-O-Matic contest this week. Night Owl hasn't yet so you stand a great chance of catching him in the point totals.***

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

1973 Topps - Dalton Jones.

Well, my Mom always used to say that if you can't say anything nice then don't say anything. That pretty much precludes talking about Derek Holland's injury, Rich Harden's meltdowns, the Rangers' losing streaks, etc. Mostly everything about the team right now.

Time to take a look back at 1973 and see if we can find anything positive. Today we come to card number 512 in the 1973 Topps set, Dalton Jones.

It can be positively said that Dalton Jones was no longer with the Rangers in 1973. After one season with the team he was released by Texas on January 25, 1973. That was the end of his major league career. He spent 1973 at Triple A for the Expos before hanging it up

Just a quick reminder to get your entry in for the Strat-O-Matic contest second round. In keeping with my Mom's advice I will only say that participation has not been what I was hoping for. It would be nice to see a few more folks in the mix. Jump in now, there's a Strat computer game on the line.