Thursday, June 30, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Monday, June 27, 2011

Random Pack of Gypsy Queen

Probably my last pack of Gypsy Queen. Not a fan of this design.

The kids wanted root beer floats so I ran over to Target for ice cream and A&W. On the way to the cashier I stopped at the card aisle. I didn't see anything I liked. Since the Gypsy Queen was at the front of the shelf I grabbed a random pack. I purchased one pack and one pack only. I think it worked out well.

Lets tear in, top card on down.

First card out of the pack #34 Johan Santana.

Then #76 Felix Hernandez.

Followed by #117 Dallas Braden.

Fourth card was this #294 Garrett Jones.

Then came the goodies.

Mini #208 Mike Stanton...

and a second mini, #156 Brennan Boesch. These are Gypsy Queen backs inserted 1:6.

And much to my surprise:

Bad boy, Black Framed Mini Relic FMRC-CU Chase Utley.

The pack ended with this Prince Fielder HH8 Home Run Heroes card.

So for my first, and probably only, pack of Gypsy Queen I ended up with 8 cards from a 6 card pack, two minis, an insert, and a relic.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Stack-O-Mail: Brady, Rose, Downs, Cantu

Brian Brady has been a tough autograph to get, but third times a charm. Brian played in 2 games for the Angels in 1989. His first Major League at bat was a run-scoring double.

Brian also signed the index card and added,
"The Big Leagues are everything you dream about as a kid. I enjoyed every second I was there!"

Bobby Rose appeared in 73 games for the Halos from 1989 thru 1992. He was purchased by the Yokohama Bay Stars in October 1992 and had a very successful career in the Japanese League.

Bobby ballpoint-penned these cards from his home in Arizona in 35 days.

Current Angels pitcher Scott Downs signed these for me 94 days after I sent them to the Angels Spring Training.

Another return from Spring Training is this card from Jorge Cantu, which I sent to the Peoria Stadium about 108 days ago.

Friday, June 24, 2011

1991 UD Brian Downing Error

Can you spot the error?

Brian Downing made it to the Majors in 1973 when he was 22 years old. He was used primarily as a catcher. When the Angels purchased his contract in 1978 he started out as a catcher but slowly converted to playing more in the outfield, and filling in as DH. By 1988 he was 37 and was now exclusivly used as a DH.

But when Upper Deck issued their 1991 set, they seemed to forget about that.

This is the 1991 Upper Deck card 231a Brian Downing (no position on front). See the white octagon? Inside should be a little black DH.

Like this corrected #231b Brian Downing (DH on front).

Here's the full corrected card.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Angels Farm Hand Dan Grunhard

1988 Grand Slam Card Company #16 Midland Angels

Dan Grunhard went to Northwestern University as a pre-med biology major, but found that "...athletics was a great outlet during my college career to get away from the books."

Grunhard, who was Joe Girardi’s roommate at Northwestern University, was named All Big Ten in 1985 and Academic All Big Ten in 1984 and 1985. He set the university’s second highest career batting average. He also had the second highest single season average in school history at .451.

After being drafted by the California Angels in 1985, he started his career in 1986 in Single-A with the Quad Cities Angels. The following year saw him with the Palm Springs Angels, again in A-ball. The Double-A Midland Angels had him for the season1988 and 1989 seasons, then he earned a spot on the AAA Edmonton Trappers roster for 1990 and 1991. Dan was signed into the Oakland organization where he finished out his career in 1992. Grunhard played seven seasons total with the Angels and Oakland A’s, spending three full seasons in Triple-A.

In the Angels system Grunhard played in 602 games and hit .285, with 113 doubles and 275 RBI. Nice numbers.

1991 Line Drive AAA #165 Edmonton Trappers

I asked Dan a couple of simple questions such as what was his first/favorite glove and how did you treat it?
"1st base glove my Uncle gave to me."

And would he describe his first hit or first win?
"Pitched No Hitter, Little League, Age 7"

He's funny, that Dan Grunhard.

Dan now serves as the hitting coach for the Joliet Slammers of the Frontier League.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

2008 UD Timeline Want List

What I need:

Not too concerned with any numbers higher than that or with any parallels, unless they are Angels.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Completed Team Set 1991 Donruss

I completed this junk wax set with a lot of help from traders. I had tons of these Donruss cards in the past but got rid of them before I started concentrating on team sets.

This set is in my top ten of least favorite, but I gotta have it for my Angels collection.

From the 2010 Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards:
Donruss used a two-series format in 1991. The first series was released in 1990, and the second in February 1991. The 1991 design is somewhat reminiscent of the 1986 set, with blue borders on Series I cards; green on Series II. Limited edition cards included an autographed Ryne Sandberg card (5,000) were randomly inserted in wax packs. Other features of the set include 40 Rated Rookies, Legends and Elite insert series, and another Diamond King subset. Cards were distributed in packs with Willie Stargell puzzle pieces.

I dislike the set so much that I haven't used any for autographs.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Debut #101 Tom Egan

Thomas Patrick Egan
Position: Catcher
Bats: Right, Throws: Right
Height: 6' 4", Weight: 218 lb.
Born: June 9, 1946 in Los Angeles, CA
MLB Debut: May 27, 1965 Los Angeles Angels
Final Game: June 15, 1975 California Angels
Years with the Angels: 1965-1970, 1974-1975

Before 1964 Season: Signed by the Los Angeles Angels as an amateur free agent.
November 30, 1970: Traded by the California Angels with Tom Bradley and Jay Johnstone to the Chicago White Sox for Ken Berry, Syd O'Brien and Billy Wynne.
December 3, 1973: Drafted by the California Angels from the Chicago White Sox in the 1973 rule 5 draft.
June 30, 1975: Released by the California Angels.

Entered the game in the 7th as a defensive replacement for catcher Bob Rodgers. In his first plate appearance he struck out against former Angel Ron Kline to end the game, losing 9-6 to the Washington Senators on Thursday, May 27, 1965 (N) at D.C. Stadium.

1965-1970, 1974-1975
Played in 230 games at catcher, batting .186 with 10 HR and 48 RBI.

Best Angels Performance:
Went 4 for 5 with 2 doubles and a run scored in a 9-2 win against the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday, September 29, 1970 (N) at Anaheim Stadium.

- Caught Nolan Ryans 3rd No-Hitter on September 28, 1974 (My Dad was there, see below)
- Couldn't hit Mickey Lolich - 4 for 33, .121, 14 K, no extra base hits.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Sedalia Bombers Baseball

I frequently have to travel for business up to Whiteman AFB in Knob Noster, Missouri. Knob Noster is about an hour East of Kansas City. Once in a while we'll make the drive back into KC to see a Royals game, but for the last several years I've been trying to get over to nearby Sedalia to see the Sedalia Bombers play in old Liberty Park Stadium.

The Sedalia Bombers are part of the MINK Baseball League (Missouri/Iowa/Nebraska/Kansas) Summer Collegiate wood-bat league. They're named after the Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit bomber which is based at nearby Whiteman AFB.

Finally it worked out that I was in town the same time the Bombers were.

Appropriately enough, on my way to Sedalia, driving past Whiteman AFB, two B-2s were doing touch-and-go's so I pulled off the side of the road and snapped a couple shots on my cheapo digital camera. It's always an awesome sight to see these bad-boys fly.

Liberty Park Stadium sits in Liberty Park, along with a high school football stadium, little league fields, water park, and small fishing lake. The stadium was built in 1936-1937 as a WPA project.

Today the Bombers were playing a double-header against the Clarinda, Iowa A's.

After paying the nice lady at the folding table 5 bucks to get in, and an additional 2 for the program above, I got to choose my seat. I suppose that I could have sat in box seats right on field level, but I chose seats a little higher up where I thought it might be a bit cooler. And I chose to sit on the Clarinda side since there was ample seating available.

Eventually I moved around and ended up directly behind home plate. This seat offered a nice full view of the field and grandstand.

Decent Bomber crowd for the first game which started at 5 pm. It was a pretty warm day, and there was no air circulation in the stands which were completely caged in all the way around. I suppose to keep vandals out. If you look closely you can see a large fan in the background meant to keep the fans cool. Not so much.

The crowd that came down from Clarinda wasn't quite as large. Clarinda won the first game handily 7-1, but got bombed by the Bombers 13-1 in the nightcap.

If you've never taken in a minor league, or collegiate baseball game in an old WPA stadium, I highly recommend it. It takes baseball back to its roots.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

My Haul From Smeds Spring Clean

I was blown away. Look at what Smed sent me in the mail:

Jam packed full of Angels goodies. Most of which will fill various team sets that I needed. Below is just a sampling.

Can't wait till next years!