Canadian Cardboard

Canadian sports cards.

Card: 1992 Nabisco #15

Obtained: July, 2012

From: Tour du Chapeau Card Show, Rooby Foo’s Hotel, Montréal

Comments: The back of this card says it all. 31 years ago today Nos Amours won the east.

Card: Brett Lawrie 2012 Topps Allen & Ginter A&G Back #122

Comments: I’m not a fan of card back variations. If it were just regular backs vs. A&G backs I could handle it, but Ginter insists on adding things like no-name backs and hand-numbered backs and red backs. The problem is that when I collect these cards and display them in my Brett Lawrie binder, it looks like I just have four of the same card. At least with parallels there is some noticeable distinction between the cards (albeit sometimes a very slight one).

But in honour of Brett being back from the DL and playing his third post-stint game tonight, I’m going to try and look on the positive side of things. The card back variations, at the very least, force people to look at the backs of their cards—even if it is just for an extra three seconds before filing them away in a box.

Card: Joey Votto 2012 Topps Allen & Ginter #WIN87

Comments: Before he went down with a torn meniscus Joey Votto was on pace for a record breaking season. He could have legitimately taken a run at Earl Webb’s 81 year-old doubles record. Even with the two missed months he’s got 36.

But the most “Votto-Matic” (thank you A&G for making the world aware of one of the greatest nicknames in sport) part of his game is not the double. It’s the BB. He walked three more times last night, and leads the league in .OBP for a third straight year. 

He’s easily the best Canadian ballplayer in the game right now. The only question is whether or not that sentence remains true if we remove the adjective from in front of ‘ballplayer’. He’s certainly in the discussion.

Card: Brett Lawrie 2012 Bowman Platinum Cutting Edge Stars #CES-BL

Comments: I’m not a huge fan of die-cut cards. It’s not that I believe that all cards must be 3.5” x 2.5” and made of cardboard — I actually happen to like some of the newer innovations like minis and wood and printing plates and bordered cards. But I have never liked weirdly shaped cards. I think that somehow in my mind a trading card is not defined by material or size or frame but instead by shape. Plus, die-cuts are hard to scan.

And while I’m ranting about new innovations, do we really need to photoshop every single card to death? It looks great on Allen & Ginter and retro/arty sets, but it seems like just about every product that releases nowadays is desperately trying to one-up the last when it comes to who can apply the “burn” tool more liberally to each photo. Look at those jersey-wrinkles pop! More burn!

Card: Erik Bedard 2009 Topps Allen & Ginter #NP19

Comments: The Pirates released Erik Bedard last week. Granted, he has been terrible for much of the season, but he strikes out about 9 batters per 9 innings with his left hand. Guys who strike out 9 batters per 9 innings with their left hands will always find work in baseball. Personally, I’d love to see the Jays take a shot at him and let him show off some of that National Pride.

Card: Fergie Jenkins 2004 Donruss Classics Membership #10 2123/2499

Comments: As the back of the card states Fergie was the 7th member of the 3000k club, which has since admitted 9 members. Fergie is now 12th overall.

After the flurry of admittance in the ’80s and ’90s we have likely entered a drought period as, much like with 300 wins, the next closest guys with a shot are probably C.C. and Roy, both of whom are still 5+ years away in a best-case scenario. After that? It could be a while, but my money would be on Verlander.

Card: Raghib Ismail 2012 Upper Deck Football #38

Comments: My 2012 college football predictions, brought to you by 1991 Grey Cup champion Rocket Ismail. The first team listed is who I want to win, the second team listed is who will win.

SEC: Mississippi (Alabama)

BIG10: Wisconsin (Michigan)

Pac12: Stanford (USC)

ACC: Clemson (Florida State)

Big12: West Virginia (West Virginia)

National Champs: Notre Dame (USC)

It’s not that I’m a huge N.D. fan, although the Irish and Michigan were the only games I got to see as a young lad growing up in southern Ontario. I’d just like to see them—and the mid-west in general—return to relevance. But, sorry Rocket, it’s not gonna happen, that schedule looks way too tough.

Card: Brett Lawrie 2012 Topps Archives Gold Foil #97

Comments: This is a scheduled post as I’m currently at the family cottage enjoying a beer on the deck. But do me a favor; if by the time this card is posted Brett Lawrie has still not returned from the disabled list, please freak out a bit on my behalf.

I’d do it myself, but these loon calls are way too soothing. 

Card: Justin Morneau 2009 Topps Allen & Ginter #NP13

From: Trade with Nachos Grande

Comments: I sent Nacho’s Grande a couple of cards and in turn he sent me a pair of Fergies that will be featured in forthcoming posts. He was also able to help me chip away at my National Pride insert set.

The last couple of years have been tough for Morneau, but he has had a bit of a bounce back 2012. The most impressive stat he has put up this year is in the Games Played column, where he has reached 100 for the first time in 3 years. 

His 201 career dingers put him in a not-very-heated battle with Jason Bay (209) for 3rd on the all-time Canadian home run list. Perhaps both of them are showing that famous Northern politeness by reducing their pace in an attempt to let the other one in.

Card: John Axford 2012 Topps Allen & Ginter #187

Comments: We talked about the all-time Canadian saves leader yesterday. Today ‘12 Allen & Ginter brings us a (by his standards) clean-shaven John Axford, who sits third on that list:

  • Eric Gagne, 187
  • John Hiller, 125
  • John Axford, 91
  • Ryan Dempster, 87
  • Claude Raymond, 83

The Ax Man will get a chance to move up the list, now that he’s got his job back.