Sunday, January 31, 2016

2007 Topps '52, Neal Musser

#132 Neal Musser

Here is the final card of Neal Musser that I have to show on here. This one is the first signature from him that I got. I got is signed after an Albuquerque Isotopes game in 2008 while Neal was playing for the Omaha Royals. The other two cards that he signed for me were his '07 Bowman and his '07 Omaha Royals team card.

That summer, my best friend and I took an epic ballpark trip to the West Coast. Over the course of the trip, we stopped and saw games for the Albuquerque Isotopes, Arizona Diamondbacks, Anaheim Angels, Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, San Diego Padres, Tijuana Potros, Los Angeles Dodgers, Lancaster JetHawks, Salt Lake Bees, and Colorado Rockies. I 'graphed all of the minor league games and it is what got me back into collecting autographed cards. The Isotopes game was the first ballgame that I ever got a card signed.

Since this is the last card I had to show that was signed at Isotopes Park, it is now time to show off some pics of the ballpark. Isotopes Park is a great place to catch a game. It is beautiful from the outside and on the inside.

Centerfield features a hill reminiscent of Tal's Hill in Houston. At the game we attended, we saw Omaha's Mitch Maier make an over the shoulder diving catch up this hill that was one for the ages.

The 'Topes even had a bullpen cart. Unfortunately, it was only used for between innings promotions.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

2007 Topps '52, Matt Chico

#115 Matt Chico

Here is the second card that I got signed by Matt Chico at a Wingnuts game in 2012. For a few seasons, the Can-Am League and the American Association both had an odd number of teams in the league. To combat that problem, the leagues did year-long interleague play so there wasn't a team in each league with a three to four day long off stretch. Because of that, I got to see the New Jersey Jackals play a couple of times and that is who Matt was with when he signed for me.

The first card I posted of Matt was his '07 Bowman Heritage card and it can be seen here.

In that last post, I talked about Matt's rookie season in 2007, where he went 7-9 with a 4.63 ERA. In his second season, things took a turn for the worse. He started the season in the rotation. After getting a no decision in his first start, he went on to lose five straight starts. He had one quality start over that span and failed make it into the fifth inning in the two last starts. He made one more start, where he got a no decision over 4.1 innings, before being demoted to the bullpen.

Things got a little better in the bullpen. He made three appearances out of the pen and pitched 6.1 innings and only gave up one run. His efforts got him a second chance in the rotation and he gave up four runs over five innings of work. After that, he was shut down for the season for the Nationals. He made one AAA start and that was it for his season. He ended up having elbow reconstruction surgery and would be out until mid-season 2009.

He finished his 2008 season 0-6 with a 6.19 ERA.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

2007 Topps '52, Joakim Soria

#98 Joakim Soria

Here is the second card of Joakim Soria that I have posted on here. I posted the first one, a gold '07 Topps, two weeks ago and that one can be seen here.

The first one I posted was signed at Royals Fanfest and it has a beautiful signature on it. This one, on the other hand, was signed by the Royals parking lot in 2010 and it features Soria's rushed ballpark signature. For me, this is the more common version of his signature in my collection. It is basically an "S" followed by a line and his number. In his nice signature, you can actually make out some other letters in his last name. I still find it strange that he only signs his last name, though. Maybe he is the Mexican Ichiro.

Joakim is going to be at Royals Fanfest this weekend, so it will be interesting to see if his signature has changed at all since I got him last in 2011.

Speaking of Fanfest, I will be heading up there Saturday. I took a year off last year, but I got back on board this time around. I wanted to head up there Friday, to try to beat some of the weekend crowd, but a job interview is interfering with that. So, Saturday it is. I am sure it is going to be a madhouse that day since we are World Champs and all. But, hopefully everything will go smoothly.

So far, this list of Royals attending the event is a little lacking. While the normal guys that are there consistently are still going to be there (Gordon, Hosmer, Moose, and Perez), some of the newer guys that I still need 'graphs from are not (Morales, Infante, and Paulo Orlando). Even our one "big" free agent pick-up, Ian Kennedy, is not on the list yet. I keep waiting for the list to expand a bit, but with only two days before the event, it is not looking like much is going to happen. I will just have to wait to see how it goes.

On a related note, it appears the Royals disbanded their caravan for the first time ever. The sad part about it was that there was no announcement of it ceasing operations this season. They just did not talk about it. I've seen many people asking about it on Twitter and those questions are completely ignored. I hope this World Champs euphoria does not last too long because this is not going to be the same team after 2017. When that time comes, the team is going to need its loyal fans that stuck by them through all the bad years. And cancelling the caravan is not a way to appease the fans that cannot make it to Fanfest.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

2007 Topps '52, Jamie Vermilyea

#69 Jamie Vermilyea

Here is the second card of Jamie Vermilyea that I got signed at a Wingnuts game this past season. Jamie is the pitching coach for the Winnipeg Goldeyes. The first card I posted of him can be seen here.

I really like the idea of the Topps '52 concept. It is an entire set of guys that made their debut during the previous season and, in many cases, is the only rookie card that player will ever get. Add in the fact that the set is printed on non-glossy Heritage card stock and you have definitely built a winner, especially for the autograph collectors.

The one problem with this set is that they put out the same set two years in a row. The 2006 and 2007 Topps '52 sets are completely identical except for the tiny copyright date on the back. I've recently been getting my collection a little better organized and, when it comes to these two sets, I just throw them all together. When I get a little more time, I will go back and strain my eyes to divide them up by year.

So, while I really like the idea of rookie sets printed on Heritage card stock, Topps overdid it by putting out the same set in consecutive years. Thank goodness they did not do it again in 2008. While I like the idea of a rookie set, something has to be done to differentiate them from year to year.

Monday, January 25, 2016

2007 Topps '52. Jailen Peguero

#66 Jailen Peguero

Here is a card that I got signed by the former Diamondback, Jailen Peguero, this past summer. Jailen was playing for the Winnipeg Goldeyes and I was able to get him to sign this card during pregame at a Wingnuts game early in the season.

Jailen played for the D-Backs for parts of two seasons, 2007 and 2008. That was his only time in the Majors and he did not do too great. In 2007, he got into 18 games and pitched 14.2 innings. Over that time, he gave up 15 runs (9.21 ERA) on 17 hits with 13 walks to 9 strikeouts. That is a WHIP of 2.04. Yikes! It is going to be hard to limit runs with a WHIP like that. He did better, though, the following year. He only made 7 appearances, but he lasted 9.1 innings while only surrendering 5 earned runs. Plus, he struck out 5 and only walked 4. That performance was good for a 4.82 ERA. For his career, Jailen was 1-0 with a 7.50 ERA.

On a positive note, Jailen only faced one batter more than three times in the Majors. That batter was Matt Holliday and he was owned by Jailen. Holliday was 0-4 with two strikeouts. He was the only batter to strikeout more than once against Jailen.

After the 2008 season, Jailen bounced around the AAA circuit for a few years before ending up in Mexico in 2011. He played there until joining Winnipeg last year. With Winnipeg, he was 5-4 with 16 saves and a 3.76 ERA.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

2007 Topps '52, Chase Headley

#27 Chase Headley

Here is a card that I got signed at a Salt Lake Bees game in 2008 while Chase was playing for the Portland Beavers. My buddy and I were on our way back from ballparking the left coast and Salt Lake City was one of the stops on the way home to break up the drive. Chase was nice enough to sign my lone card of him before the game.

Even though this is the only card he signed for me, it is not the first Chase Headley card I have posted on here. In 2011, I posted a card of Chase that was sent to me by Rod, from Padrographs. I think I gave that card away in a contest that was won by Night Owl and he eventually traded it to Backstop Cards.

When I posted the last Headley card, he was just starting his third full season as a Major Leaguer. That was about five years ago and he has done a lot since then. The biggest thing that happened to him was getting traded to the Yankees prior to the deadline in 2014. As a result of that, he got to play in his first playoff game this last season, a Wild Card loss to the Astros. He also had a monster year in 2012 when he went off with his bat. That season, he hit .286 with 31 home runs and 115 RBI. Those power numbers are so outside the norm for him that it isn't even funny. The most home runs he has had in a season, before or after that, is 13. And the most RBI was 64. I am not sure what was going on in 2012 for Chase.

One of the things that I like to do on here when I post the last card I got at a ballpark is to show some photos of that ballpark. So, here are some pics of lovely Smith's Ballpark, which was Franklin Covey Field when I was there. If you ever get a chance to take in a game there, do it! It has the most beautiful backdrop that I have ever seen at a game. Unfortunately, these pics do not do it justice.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

2007 Topps Chrome, Joaquin Arias

#346 Joaquin Arias

Here is a card that I obtained in a trade with Night Owl about eight years ago. Night Owl posted this card on his blog after he pulled it from a pack. He had no interest in it and offered it up to anyone that wanted it. Since it had a signature on it, I thought I needed to have it. So, we worked out a trade and I sent him a Rafael Furcal jersey card for this one.

This is the second card of Joaquin Arias that I have posted on here. The first was posted in 2011 and it can be seen here.

When I posted that last card of Arias, he had just completed a season with the Omaha Storm Chasers. It was the first time in four years that he did not play in a Major League game. That all changed the next season when he got called up by the Giants. He was a member of the team through this past season. After his year in Omaha, I just figured that he was a AAAA type player, but he proved me wrong.

Since he went on to play for the Giants for so long, I am sure that Night Owl was quite happy that he got this card out of his collection.

Friday, January 22, 2016

2007 Topps Chrome, Angel Sanchez

#288 Angel Sanchez

Remember back in the day when there where far fewer card blogs and a lot more contests? Honestly, I have no idea if either of those statements is true, but it seems like it was really like that back in 2009. Or it could just be that there are so many cards blogs out there that it is impossible to keep track of everything that is going on. Whatever the case may be, I rarely see contests myself and enter only a fraction that I do see. Until the last couple of weeks, I never had the time to update this blog the way I wanted to, let alone check out what is going on with everyone else's blog.

What is the point of my rambling opening paragraph? No, I am not having a contest. That will have to wait until the end of May when the college baseball tournament starts. The point is that I think I won this particular card in a contest back in the day. I stress think because do not remember exactly how or when I got the card. All I know is that it is from Team Phungo out in Philly. I thought I may have won it in the best contest ever held, Spot the Sig, but I never won STS. So, like I said, I have no idea why deal sent me this card, but he did and my collection is better off because of it.

When I got this card, I was a little surprised because I did not realize Angel Sanchez even had a card made of him. Being a Royals fan, I knew of him in the minor leagues. But, I never realized he ever got called up to the Majors to warrant a rookie card. Guess I wasn't that good of a Royals fan at that time. He did only play in eight games as a Royal, though.

It appears that Angel's career may be over, but he did get into 185 Major League games. Most of those, 175 to be exact, came with the Astros in 2010 and '11. He also played one game with each of the Sox teams. For his career, Angel hit a respectable .254 with 1 home run and 54 RBI.

On a side note, I accidentally posted a card from 2008 yesterday. For some reason, that Molina card, and another card, ended up with my '07s and I posted a card out of order. You guys are supposed to catch that stuff for me.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

2008 Topps, Jose Molina

#HA-JM Jose Molina

Here is a card of Jose Molina that I bought from COMC for $2.49. Every time I make a purchase from the site, I always try to throw in an autograph or two just to obtain an autograph. This is one of those. I bought it for no other reason than because of that and that it was cheap.

Jose, the middle brother in the Molina trio, played in the Major Leagues for fifteen seasons with the Cubs, Angels, Yankees, Blue Jays, and Rays. He was mainly a back-up catcher throughout his career, playing in 100+ games only twice. He even spent the first part of his career backing up his older brother, Bengie.

For his career, Jose hit .233 with 39 home runs and 223 RBI. Some of his better seasons came later in his career when he started more games withe the Blue Jays and Rays. In 2011, with Toronto, he hit a career high .281. The following season, with Tampa Bay, he had career highs in home runs(8) and RBI(32).

This is the second Molina brother I have shown on here. I posted a card of Bengie last February. Now, if I could just get my hands on an autograph from Yadier, I would be set.

The three Molina brothers are the only three brothers in MLB history to all win World Series rings. All of them have won two except for Bengie.

Another fun Jose Molina fact is that he hit the last home run at old Yankee Stadium.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

2007 Topps, Kei Igawa

#WM28 Kei Igawa

I absolutely love this card. It comes out of a Wal-Mart exclusive insert set that basically puts a player on an older card like Topps Heritage or Archives does. Most of the cards are really uninspiring because of that, though some of the cards are not based on Topps cards. This one uses a non-Topps, old-looking Japanese card. On the back of the cards in the insert set, it lists which card set the card is imitating. It is usually specific for the old Topps sets, but not for the non-Topps brands. This one simply states that it is "based on a Japanese baseball card design". I have no clue what set it is based off of, but it came out looking really nice. Kei signing the card in Japanese script only helped to enhance the look of it.

This is the second card of Kei that I have posted on here. I posted the first one this past July and it may be seen here. This one, like the first one, was obtained at a Scanton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees game in 2009 while Kei was charting pitches in the stands.

Kei spent eleven seasons pitching in Japan. Most of that was before he came to the States, but he did go back in 2012 to finish off his career there. Over those eleven seasons, Kei was 93-72 with 1 save and a 3.21 ERA. He struck out 1279 batters.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

2007 Topps, Kyle Davies.

#UH307 Kyle Davies

It has taken me since the end of September, but, with this card, I have finally made it through the 2007 Topps base set. I still have a couple of signed inserts from the set to post, but this is the last black border card without chrome on it that will be posted for some time. I can't believe it took me three and a half months to post thirty-one cards. Thank goodness I had this baby and went on FMLA or it would have taken me another month and a half to get there.

Anyway, here is a card of Kyle Davies that I got signed by the Royals parking lot in 2008. And, it is obviously unprepped. This is the third card of Davies that I have posted on here and it is the first one that shows him as a Royal. It is a photoshopped version of him as a Royal since the photo is a Braves Spring Training shot, but a Royal nonetheless. I posted the last card of him back in 2012 when it appeared that he was out of baseball. Those were the days when, if you could not make it with the Royals, you probably were not good enough to be a Major Leaguer. Luckily for us Royals fans, the times have certainly changed.

Kyle did come back to baseball, though, in 2013. He pitched in the minors for the Twins, Indians, and Yankees. Then, last April, he did something he hadn't done in four years. He pitched in a Major League game. He pitched 2.1 innings of scoreless baseball to wrap up a 14-4 whooping over the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. He allowed just three hits while striking out two and walking none. That was the only appearance he made in the big leagues for the season, but it was a good one.

It appears that Kyle is heading for Japan this season to pitch for Yakult. I hope it works out for him over there.

Monday, January 18, 2016

2007 Topps, Scott Feldman

#UH303 Scott Feldman

This is a card of Scott Feldman that I got signed at a Rangers game in 2008. I was on my way home from visiting my grandparents in southern Texas, and I, of course, had to make some stops on the way back to get some baseball in (not to mention a stop at Round Rock on the way there). This is the fourth card from this set that I got signed on that trip. The others were Josh Hamilton, Eulogio de la Cruz, and Ryan Rowland-Smith.

At the time, I only had two cards of Scott Feldman to get signed. Unfortunately, he only signed this one and it came out looking bad. The other card I had of him, his 2006 Fleer, would have came out looking so much better than this one since it did not have any gloss on it. Oh well, that's the life of a 'grapher.

Five years later, I got Scott to sign outside of Kauffman Stadium. He actually signed three that day, which surprised me after my initial interaction with him in 2008. One of the three cards he signed was his '06 Fleer card. I posted it last summer and it can be seen here. If he had just signed that card in 2008, I would have a better looking signature of him than this Topps card in my collection. But, that is OK as these bad looking Topps Update and Highlights cards helped me learn about prepping cards.

Scott pitched for Houston this past year and he spent a good chunk of time on the disabled list with them. He made only 18 starts and he went 5-5 with a 3.90 ERA.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

2007 Topps, Jamie Vermilyea

#UH203 Jamie Vermilyea

Here is the first of three cards that I got signed by former Blue Jay, Jamie Vermilyea. Jamie is the pitching coach for the Winnipeg Goldeyes and I got the cards signed at a Wingnuts game last season.

Out of the three cards that Jamie signed for me, this is the only one that I had in my collection to start with. The other two cards were purchased from COMC. Had I realized that Jamie only pitched in two Major League games, I may not have bought the other two cards. Yeah right, all three look great in my collection. It is just hard to come up with three posts for one guy with such little Major League playing time.

Like I said, Jamie pitched in two games with the Blue Jays in 2007. In those two relief outings, he logged six innings of work without allowing any runs. He gave up just five hits without walking anyone and striking out two. Even though it was a limited workload, those are some decent numbers to hang your hat on.

For as much crap as I gave the Update and Highlights set, this is how great the signatures can come out looking if the card is properly prepped. To see how bad they can look when unprepped, see my previous post or just wait for the next two.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

2007 Topps, Eulogio de la Cruz

#UH190 Eulogio de la Cruz

Here is a card that I got signed a couple of days before the previous one of Ryan Rowland-Smith. This was signed at a Round Rock Express game while he was playing for the Albuquerque Isotopes. He signed this lone card for me before making his way onto the field. And since this was me getting this card signed in 2008, it was unprepped and came out looking like total crap.

Eulogio, who also goes by Frankie, played in parts of four Major League seasons with the Tigers, Marlins, Padres, and Brewers. He saw the most big league action with Milwaukee in 2011 when he got into 11 games and logged 13 innings while posting a 2.77 ERA. For his career, Frankie has no record and a 8.16 ERA. He walked 26 while only striking out 20.

Frankie last pitched in Mexico in 2014.

Friday, January 15, 2016

2007 Topps, Ryan Rowland-Smith

#UH188 Ryan Rowland-Smith

Here is a card that I got signed at a Texas Rangers game in 2008 while Ryan was playing for the Mariners. I got him to sign this lone card for me after batting practice. At the time, it was the only card I had of him. Six years later, I would get two more cards signed by him.

In some of the first posts I did on this Update and Highlights set, I talked about how I had a lot more problems with unprepped cards from the Update set than I did for the first two series. This card is the one exception to that argument. This card is totally unprepped and it came out looking good. I wish I could say the same about tomorrow's card.

Ryan is an Australian that was signed my the Mariners at the age of seventeen. You always hear about the Latin American kids being signed at a young age, but I had no idea they did that in Australia, too. Granted, Ryan was eighteen when he made his pro debut. But, it has got to be an entirely different mindset for a young Australian coming over to play baseball than it is for a Latin American kid. Luckily it worked out for Ryan as he played in the big leagues for parts of four seasons.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

2007 Topps, Travis Metcalf

#UH183 Travis Metcalf

This is a card that I got signed by the former Ranger, and fellow Kansan, Travis Metcalf. I got the card signed at a Wingnuts game in 2011 while Travis was a member of the Ft. Worth Cats. I could only find one card of Travis before the game, so this was the lone card he signed for me. I, of course, found another card of him in my collection later on that I totally missed. I really need to get my cards more organized.

Travis played for the Rangers for parts of two seasons in 2007-08. He only got into 80 games and he hit .249 with 11 home runs and 35 RBI. He played in 57 games in 2007 and hit .255 with 12 doubles, 5 home runs, and 21 RBI. He played in fewer games in 2008 and most of his numbers decreased from 2007 from the 105 less at-bats that he had. But, one number did rise and that was his home run total. Though he did have ten less doubles in '08, he managed to squeak out one more home run than he had the previous season. He even had one more home run that year in the Majors than he did at AAA, even though he had over 220 more at-bats at the minor league level. He must have just been swinging for the fences when he was called up by the Rangers in '08.

After 2008, Travis played two more seasons of AAA ball before heading to the American Association in 2011. He hit .275 with 4 home runs and 20 RBI before calling it a career that season.

For those of you keeping score at home, this card is a red back.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

2007 Topps, Joakim Soria

#UH180 Joakim Soria

I can't believe that this is the first card of Joakim Soria that I have posted on here. Joakim was a mainstay at the Royals closer position for four and a half years before requiring a second Tommy John surgery early in 2012. Rather than pay him $8 million to finish his recovery and pitch in the second half of 2013, the Royals declined his option and Soria became a free agent. He moved on and has played with three other teams before rejoining the Royals last month. And it took him coming around full circle before I would finally post a card of him.

The Royals selected Soria in the Rule V draft from the Padres prior to the 2007 season. It seemed like a long shot for him to make the club out of Spring Training, considering that he had only pitched in 16.2 innings of affiliated minor league ball. Plus, those innings were over two seasons that were separated by four years and his initial Tommy John surgery.

But, Soria overcame the odds and made the club and lasted with the team all season. He pitched 69 innings that season and went 2-3 with 17 saves, a 2.48 ERA, and 75 strikeouts. Add in the fact that he went on to save 160 games for the Royals in his initial go-around and I think it is safe to say that he is the club's best Rule V pick ever. He might just be the best reliever ever selected in that draft.

I got this card signed at Royals Fanfest in 2011. I think I have nine cards signed by Soria, but this is the best looking signature in the bunch. All of the signatures I have from him are an "S" followed by a straight line. This is the only one that has some actual squiggles after the "S".

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

2007 Topps, Tony Abreu

#UH151 Tony Abreu

Here is a card that my now wife got signed for me at an Oklahoma Redhawks game in 2012. We went down there on a Sunday just for something to do and to see the Royals AAA team play. My wife had never helped me 'graph up to that point, but that all changed that day. Like it or not, she was going to help me out that afternoon.

She had no idea what she was doing, but I was with her to help her along. We settled in next to the Storm Chasers dugout and waited for them to exit the clubhouse. I called a couple of guys over to show her how it was done. Then the starting catcher, Adam Moore, made his way to the dugout. She hollered for him was he was gearing up. He said he would sign in a bit and she felt completely rejected. Next, Tony Abreu appeared and she yelled for him. He, too, said he would sign later. At that point, she was zero for two and had had enough. She threw a little tantrum and told me how dumb this was and that she didn't ever want to do this again. I just laughed at her and told her to chill out because this is how it is. Once guys started coming out of the dugout to warm up, they started to sign a bunch and she eventually got back in on the action.

It was a rough start for her, but she still continues to help me out whenever she can to add autographs for my collection. It must be hard to be married to a person with such an eccentric hobby, but she puts up with it and does what she can to contribute. I am so lucky to have her and I love her so much!

Monday, January 11, 2016

2007 Topps, Victor Diaz

#UH133 Victor Diaz

Here is a card that I got signed at a Wichita Wingnuts game in 2014. Victor had just joined the Nuts late in the season after the Mexican League had finished. He was brought on to add a bat down the stretch. While he did not do too well in Wichita, the team still managed to win their first American Association title while he was there.

Victor saw time in the Major Leagues for parts of four seasons with the Mets and Rangers. Three of those seasons were in New York and he hit .260 for them with 15 home runs and 48 RBI. He then spent one season with Texas and he hit .240 with 9 home runs and 25 RBI. His best season was with the Mets in 2005 when he batted .257 with 12 dingers and 38 RBI.

2007 was the last time Victor played in the Majors. After that, he bounced around to about every league imaginable, including stints in Japan and Korea. He played last year with the Grand Prairie AirHogs of the Am-Ass and had a subpar season, hitting just .236. Being only 33 last year, I would not be surprised to see him back in the league next season.

Victor does have some cards out from his days with the Mets. But, this was the only one that I had laying around when he joined the Nuts that year. I usually get pretty excited when a former Major Leaguer comes to Wichita and I try to find at least three cards of that player. Since Victor was only here for twelve games, I was stuck with this lone card.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

2007 Topps, Jason Phillips

#UH120 Jason Phillips

If it was not for a brief baby post, this would have been back-to-back Blue Jays and back-to-back-to-back cards of guys named Jason. It is unlikely that the back-to-back-to-back names will ever happen again. There will probably be some back-to-back Jays coming whenever I roll back to '81 Donruss, though.

This is the fourth and final card of Jason Phillips that I have to post. I got this card signed at a Royals game in 2012 while Jason was the bullpen catcher for the Mariners. He was heading back to the dugout after working a bullpen session with Jason Vargas. I just yelled out "Jason!" hoping to get either's attention. Phillips was the one that acknowledged and he came over and sign my two cards for me. The other one he signed was a Dodgers card that I posted last year. The first two cards were Mets cards that he signed for me the year before. Here is one of those cards.

Jason spent his final two Major League seasons with Toronto. He only saw limited action and spent some time playing AAA in the Jays organization as well. He played in 80 games with the Blue Jays and he hit .219 with 1 home run and 18 RBI.

For his career, Jason played seven seasons with the Mets, Dodgers, and Jays and he hit .249 with 30 home runs and 168 RBI. His best season was with the Mets in 2003. That season, he hit .298 with 11 dingers and 58 runs driven in.

With the new manager in Seattle, it appears that Jason's tenure as their bullpen catcher may be over. He is currently not listed on the M's website as a member of the coaching staff. Mike Hampton, though, is listed as their new bullpen coach. I did not know that.

Monday, January 4, 2016

No Card Today, Just A Baby

Our baby wasn't scheduled to enter the world for another ten days, but he had other plans. As my first kid, it was such a joyous day for me. I could not have asked for anything better. Rather than bore you with the usual baby pics, here is the nameplate I made to hang above his crib.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

2007 Topps, Jason Frasor

#UH116 Jason Frasor

I know I gave this Update and Highlights sets a lot of grief over the last two posts, but the cards really do come out looking fine if they are prepped. I have about ten more cards from this set to show off and only three of them look like crap. The rest look as good, or better, than this one. The only reason why this one does not look so hot is because it was misting the day that Jason signed for me. It was at a Royals game in 2011 while he was with the White Sox. The signature started out fine, but he then hit a bit of moisture towards the end of the sig and the Sharpie looks like it started to die. That is what can happen when you try to 'graph in the rain.

Jason pitched for the Blue Jays for parts of nine seasons. He pitched entirely out of the bullpen and, over that time, he was 25-29 with 36 saves and a 3.73 ERA. He had a strikeout per inning in four of those nine seasons and recorded a career high 17 saves in his 2004 rookie season. 2009 might have been his best season in Toronto when he went 7-3 with 11 saves and a 2.50 ERA.

In 2011, he was traded to the Sox just prior to the trade deadline. Over the last two months of the season, he went 1-3 with a 5.09 ERA. After the season, the Sox traded him back to Toronto.