I'll be honest, I know very little about the current state of professional baseball. I know the rules of the game and I could name the majority of the teams in the MLB but when it comes to current players; I know maybe a handful, tops.
But this hankering I get - it's not just about buying baseball cards, it's about wanting to know more about the game, about the teams, about the players and ultimately the who's who in the league and follow the game just as I do with hockey.
I went out and picked up a blaster of 2018 Topps Series 1 - I figure I could start somewhere, learn a few things, do a little research on the players pulled from the purchase. I really like the Topps set, the photography is great from what I've seen on the blogs. And when there are mascot cards, I'm instantly intrigued.
I know Mike Trout. I mean, who doesn't know who Mike Trout is right? Is it fair to compare his notoriety in the sport to that of Sidney Crosby in hockey?
Eric Hosmer on the other hand - I have not heard of. I did a little research and apparently he is one of the most consistent hitters in the game and signed as a free agent with the San Diego Padres just last month.
I've heard the name Clayton Kershaw go around a lot in the past so I'm going to go out on a limb and say he is an important player in the league. A snippet from his Wiki entry reads, "He has been described as the best pitcher in baseball." - good enough for me!
I have also heard the name Buster Posey make its rounds in baseball talk as well; I'm not sure on where he falls among the ladder of significant players in MLB but give the guy some brownie points for the name. Buster Posey sounds like you would meet him at high noon for a beer and a show down.
I thought the photography used on the team cards were pretty cool - they all offered a unique shot of baseball. Well, in my opinion they're unique shots - the avid baseball card collector may be sick and tired of seeing another photo used from during the signing of the National Anthem or of a guy running over home plate.
These 'Opening Day' insert cards were distributed in my blaster quite liberally. They're pretty crazy looking, I'm not sure what Topps were attempting to do here. I wasn't familiar with any of the players that I pulled so I'm going to go with Noah Syndergaard because of that hair - it looks almost like a lion's mane.
I received three of these Kris Bryant 'Highlights' cards in my blaster - I believe they are an exclusive. I don't know of him and I can bet he is one of the greatest in the game at the moment. This is a definite indication that I have a lot left to learn. God, this is embarrassing.
Eh a name I'm kind of familiar with - Chris Sale! A first-rate pitcher for the Boston Red Sox.
I received three of these 1983 Topps parallel cards; the design reminds me of the 1984 O-Pee-Chee Hockey set due to the similarities in regards to having the players face inside a circle towards the bottom corner of the card. 1984 O-Pee-Chee is one of my all-time favorite hockey card designs so I can totally understand why baseball card collectors have been really into these parallels.
No idea who Justin Turner is but he has a nice beard.
You can't really distinguish by the scan but I believe this is a rainbow parallel. Good to know that the saturation of parallels don't only dwell amongst the hockey cards.
I did receive a serial numbered card out of the blaster /299. From what I've gathered, I think it's a black parallel but don't take my word for that.
Miguel Andujar is apparently a top prospect as well (again, don't take my word for that) - so that's a win!
So how was my blaster? Value-wise, I have no idea but going into this purchase I wasn't looking for value - I thought it would be something new and fun to open and that maybe I'll gain further interest in pursuing the game of baseball.
That didn't really happen - although I have fond memories of myself and every other kid that I knew having Blue Jays fever during their back-to-back World Series Championships when I was 8 years old, after this break I feel appeased and furthermore reluctant to care anymore than I do for baseball. Nearly 24 hours later and I have no desire to take it on right now. I just wish it didn't take $30 to pacify these fleeting feelings!
That's it I suppose - you live, you learn.