Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Custom Card of the Day: Happy 100th Wrigley Edition

I have nothing really against the Cubs. Sure, we all like to poke fun at them sometimes when they have bad seasons, but I can respect them, and I can respect their achievements. Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Ron Santo, Andre Dawson, and Fergie Jenkins have all established Hall of Fame careers as Cubs. And now, Wrigley Field is 100 years old.

Which is why it's kind of sad that their current squad is really nothing worthy of mention.

Jeff Samardzija, on any other team, would be the fifth starter. He would be the Kyle Kendrick of any other squad, just there to sift between the heavy hitters. This year, Samardzija is the #1 starter, thanks to last season. Think about this- a guy whose first full season as a starter was last season is now the most trusted starter on the Cubs. I mean, he can pitch well some games, but if anyone had to pick between him and Felix Hernandez, or him and Clayton Kershaw, they'd pick the other one.

I still respect him, because he's on my fantasy team and I need him to do well.

The rest of the team is mostly depleted, save for a surprisingly-surging Emilio Bonifacio, and slowly-sliding-out-of-relevance Starlin Castro. There really isn't much going on. And that's kind of sad.

Think of the last 100 years of Chicago Cubs fans, and how many times they've said 'wait until next year'. And what do they get in the most recent 'next year'? A bunch of prospect that never panned out, pitchers whose contracts aren't up yet, leftovers from other rosters, and no real credibility. I thought Theo Epstein was better than this. I'm assuming the farm system is surging, or at least I hope so.

I mean...the fans are showing up, because it's the 100th season. At least give them a team that keeps them in the seats! At this point, Cubs fans go because of the heritage, because of the past Cubs teams that MADE THEM Cubs fans. Not for the current roster. And that, for the umpteenth time, is sad.

The only thing you can do at this point is hope that it gets better, which is already a routine in Chicago.

Coming Tomorrow- the speedy infielder for the team atop the NL East.

Welcome to the Club

(The actual design had the actual 'highlight' on the back, so I squeezed it in)

Congratulations, Albert. You deserve it, especially after the career you've had this far. Here's to 100 more. Or, if possible, 263 more. No pressure, though. You're already a Hall of Famer, pretty much.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Custom Card of the Day: Abreu Edition

When really putting things into perspective, in the last ten or so years, the White Sox, I think, have the saddest story of any of the recent World Series winners. Their story is that they were never really contenders, except for one or two blips on the radar. Then they have the 2005 season, they win the World Series, pandemonium ensues.

With the exception of a Tampa-halted run in 2008, the White Sox haven't made a significant postseason move since. Keep in mind here, teams like the Rays and Astros can get there and never come back, but they'll be good for some years before becoming terrible again. They'll get close. The White Sox...haven't really gotten close in a while, since the WS win.

And that is exactly why they NEEDED someone like Jose Abreu.

I mean, as far as Cuban defectors go, Jose Abreu is not #1. He's not gonna be someone like Yoenis Cespedes and Yasiel Puig, who just hit home runs and conquer the media frenzy. I imagine Abreu is gonna lay low, and sloooowwwlly become a really nice player. He's hit some nice stuff in the last few weeks, and he's given the Sox a spark that, honestly, they haven't had since Frank Thomas' prime.

Hopefully Abreu will do something nice for the White Sox down the line, because they really deserve it.

Coming Tomorrow- Bad timing? Who cares. He's giving the Brewers some nice hits.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Custom Card of the Day: Pedroia Edition

I don't really hate Dustin Pedroia

I mean, I used to, a little bit, but now I can totally respect his leadership, and the fact that since Cano's slumping he'll probably be the starting 2nd baseman for the AL All Star team. I don't hate Ortiz either, because...I mean, come on, it's Big Papi for crying out loud.

So, this begs the question...which Red Sox do I hate?

  • Xander Bogaerts? Not yet. He hasn't done enough awful things against my teams yet. It may turn out to be him in a little while though, like...
  • Will Middlebrooks. Yeah, him I definitely hate. Just pops up as a rookie, and people just start talking about him solely because he's from Boston. Hasn't really done anything.
  • Jonny Gomes? Yeah, Mr. Pointy Beard's near the top of my list.
  • A.J. Pierzynski? Sorta hated him with Chicago. Now, he's generally despisable. He's not all the way there yet.
  • Shane Victorino? Hell, no. Of course I love Shane, he's an ex-Phillie!
  • Jon Lester? Definitely hate him.
  • Clay Buchholz? He's probably my go-to goat these days.
  • Grady Sizemore? Never. A good friend of mine's a Cleveland fan. I would never do that to him.
  • Edward Mujica? Cardinal + Boston= never a good combination.
  • Koji Uehara? Not really, though this could vary as the year goes on.
Coming Tomorrow: The newest hip rookie from Chicago. Not that side, the other side.

Custom Card of the Morning: Pineda Edition

I'm not too religious, but I at least know something about Easter, other than the whole 'jelly beans and chocolate bunnies' part. Therefore, I hope it's not too tasteless to be posting a custom of Michael Pineda today. He's the closest thing the MLB has to a resurrection.

(BOO! HISS! GO BACK TO STADIUM CLUB BREAKS!)

Look, pretty much every Yankee fan thought his career was dead in the water back in 2013. He pitched a pretty nice 2011 season, came to us the next year, got injured and didn't show results until late last year.

Now, after a few very nice starts, Michael Pineda is becoming one of the stronger pitchers in the Bronx. How about that?

Only problem is I don't know if he's for real. I don't know if this is gonna last until the end of the season, or if he'll get hurt again or anything. I'm just glad that he's pitching well NOW, and that he's finally giving the Yankees some of the stuff we signed up for when we gave up Jesus Montero for him.

(Speaking of which, remember when we all thought losing Jesus Montero would be detrimental to our chances? Man, those were some strange days)

Coming Tonight: Speaking of eggs, a bald second baseman for the Sox.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Custom Card of the Day: Choo Edition

Always count on Shin-Soo Choo to somehow make an appearance within the first month of customs without really doing anything noteworthy. It just happens that way.

Unfortunately, the Rangers got to him this year. For those of you unacquainted, the Rangers are like the Yankees, to Yankee fans. They do all the Yankee-ish things: swallow up young players at the trade deadline/offseason, make numerous postseason trips, house infuriating players and history, and live near an equally infuriating football team (Giants, Cowboys...what's the difference?)

This year, the Rangers threw some actual likeable players into the mix, like Choo and Prince Fielder. Choo had a nice season in Cincinnati last year, so maybe he'll at least do well enough while keeping Texas from doing well again. I dunno.

Coming Tomorrow: Easter. Also, I'll post a few more customs.

Rookie Debut of the Week: George Springer

Prospect History: Drafted by the Twins in 2008, chose to go to college, redrafted by Astros in 2011, at 11th. Looking like that decision sorta paid off, as he could be a big player for Houston.

Debut: Struck out twice, had one hit. To the Astros, this is gold.

Impact he could have on league: If he makes it big, he could be a huge star for Astros, and either will bring them back from obscurity or be traded to Arlington in three years' time. If he doesn't make it big, the Astros won't know until five years too late.

Will his rookie cards sell?: I think they will eventually, but I don't think they'll sell at Harper levels. At least not yet.