Wednesday, December 24, 2008

My first Christmas away from my family...

I will be visiting my girlfriend's family in Rhode Island from December 25th - 31st. This will be my first Christmas without my parents. They are digging themselves out of the snow in Seattle. Hopefully they can make it to my sister and brother-in-law's house for Christmas goose. (I believe they are planning on having duck or roast pork... I was always fond of the pizza we had each year on Christmas eve, but duck or pork sure beats the bag of peanuts I'll be eatin' on the plane.)

Here's to starting new traditions, but not forgetting the old ones.

Yes, my dad's dog licks his bald head (while my nephew looks on in amazement.) Little Hansen has taken to waggling his finger and saying, "Bad Dog" whenever Scout is around... and he's almost always right.

My Gift to You...

Aside from not posting for a week, my gift to you is the gift of cards...

For anyone new to this blog: I make cards. It is not a profession, merely a hobby. Some people have gone so far as to say:

"You're killin' me!"

"This one looks really good!"

"Aww yeah... That's the stuff right there."

"Great card. Watched a Charlie Brown Christmas with my daughter last night."

"We watched Charlie Brown the other night too. Wonderful card, thanks for posting it."

"Nicely done."

"i like your blog......" (possibly sent by robot, but appreciated nonetheless.)

"That is a very cool card. Keep up the great work."

"that is awesome."

And who could forget...

"This post has been removed by a blog administrator."

You folks have said such nice things, I would love the opportunity to return the favor (via cardboard.)

If you email me a picture, I will make a card of YOU!!! Send your picture (bigger the better) along with your name, any applicable statistics, favorite team, favorite card set, etc. to punkrockpaint @ gmail dot com.

If you drop me your mailing address, I will even send you a hard copy.

I wish the happiest of holidays to you and yours...

PS- if you send me an event used item in the mail, I will be happy to embed it into your card like these "fine" examples:
Please don't send anything "dirty" in the mail. If I don't want to touch it... I won't put it in your card.

If you need my address, email me...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 6)...

The 1975 season was a milestone in the career of Tony Gwwwhat???

I just realized that if Tony Gwynn was born in 1960 and made his Padres debut in 1969... He won his third batting title at the age of 15!!! That HAS to be a record!

I love his card from the 1976 set. It really shows his playful side. Tony attempting to mimic the batting stance of, new second baseman, Tito Fuentes really cracks me up. I love that he continued the theme with his own name taped to his hat (ala Tito.)

1976 Topps - Tony Gwynn #350

This card was the first of many Gwynn cards that show his quirky side. I am especially fond of the 1993 SP card with Tony in Scott Sanders jersey. I went to several spring training games that year... I may have been there! (Wondering who the new guy, Sanders, with the sweet swing was.)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 5)...

Tony Gwynn continued his hot hitting into the 1974 season. After an .875 September, Tony led all major leaguers with a .454 batting average through June. You have probably seen the Sports Illustrated cover story from July of '74. Unfortunately, we had to wait until 1979 for Tony to hit .400 for an entire season.

Tony ended the '74 season on the disabled list. A "wild pitch" by the Cy Young award winner, Mike Marshall, of the Los Angeles Dodgers hit Tony in the left eye... WHILE TONY WAS IN THE ON DECK CIRCLE!!!

To this day, Marshall claims that the "pitch just got away" from him. Tony was 3 for 4 with three home runs and eight RBI against Marshall on the season.

To this day, Padres fans will squint their left eye and spit on the ground every time the name Mike Marshall is mentioned.

1975 Topps - Tony Gwynn #350

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Shoulda been Sundays (No Card)...

I have to apologize for not having a card ready for today's post. I am feeling a little distraught. Not winning Dayf's contest took a lot out of me. I spent the entire day in bed yesterday. I appreciate everyone that voted for me, and tip my cap to the winner.

Next time someone has a Make a Fake Tony Gwynn Card contest I won't take my competition so lightly.
Well played, sir. Well played.

Friday, December 19, 2008


Vote for me!

Blatant pandering...

I need your help. Cardboard Junkie threw together a little contest, and I need your votes!

While, I admit, some of the other entries are pretty cool...


I gotta win. I need your votes to do it. I am 4 points back after the preliminary judging.

Here is my entry:

Note the details:

Nine Chipper Jones cards (playing to Cardboard Junkie's love of Larry Jones.)

A package for Dayf under the tree.

Chipper as "Elf of the Month"

A completely redesigned "Pro Set" logo

... and if I do say so myself - AWESOMENESS!!!

So vote early, vote often. Tell your friends.

Make me proud to be an American (that also loves Canada.)

Feel free to copy this into your comments on the contest:

Wow! That one by PunkRockPaint is awesome!


Not PunkRockPaint

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 4)...

The 1973 season ended in turmoil for the San Diego Padres. The team was on the verge of being sold... and moved to Washington D.C. Were it not for Ray Kroc and his Big Mac-millions, the team would have moved away.

Tony didn't let the situation with the team effect his season. In September of '73, Tony set a major league record by batting .875 in 94 official at bats!

1974 Topps - Tony Gwynn (WASH) #150

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 3)...

The 1973 card holds a special place in my heart. I was born in '73, and this card was given to me as my first Christmas gift. It was taped to the headboard of my crib, so the back of the card is damaged beyond repair. Nonetheless, it is my favorite card in my entire collection.

The 1972 season represented on this card, was one of Tony's finest years in the power department. Tony belted a career best 32 home runs. The power outburst, along with his 130 RBI and .316 batting average, brought him his first National League MVP award. Tony edged Johnny Bench in the voting largely due to his speed on the base paths. For the second year in a row, Gwynn finished only two stolen bases behind Lou Brock for the league lead (63).

1973 Topps - Tony Gwynn #250

I find it somewhat spooky how much his face looks the same in this shot as it does in the card from the previous year. The two photos show the same steady glare; same focus and intensity; same shadows. If it were not for his hair, you could certainly claim that these were the same doctored photo. Since Photoshop wasn't around back then (and Topps' art department wielded a heavy airbrush back in the '70s) you have to assume it is just an eerie coincidence.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 2)...

Tony Gwynn won his first batting title in 1971, edging Joe Torre .365 to .363. The 1971 season also marked the first year that Tony led the league in doubles (46) and triples (15). He began to show the other aspects of his game as well. Tony fell two stolen bases short of leading the league (62), and won his first Gold Glove award.

1972 Topps - Tony Gwynn #450

Shoulda been Sundays - Card #5

This one's for Dayf at Cardboard Junkie.

1936 Diamond Stars - Babe Ruth

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Tony Gwynn - a History (Part 1)...

When it is cold and rainy here in San Diego, I like to let my imagination run wild. In other words, three times a year I let my imagination run wild. On this gloomy day, rather than clean the house, I have convinced myself that Tony Gwynn has always been on the San Diego Padres.

Sure, you may say, he played his entire career with the Padres, but he didn't get his start in the big leagues until 1982. In my rainy-day state of mind, I would kindly remind you that Tony began his career with the expansion-year 1969 Padres. Originally drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the third round of the 1968 draft out of San Diego State College. As we all know, San Diego State wasn't called a University until the early 70's, well in to Tony's historic career. Snatched from the Dodgers in the expansion draft, Tony has led the Padres to six world titles. Tony's career has had many ups and downs. The highlights include:

- 32 National League batting titles

- 36 All-Star game appearances

- 4 Most Valuable Player awards

- 23 Gold Gloves

- .338 career batting average

- 7,020 career hits

- 1,385 doubles

- 2,642 runs batted in

The only lowlight has been his four year retirement from 1983-86. As point guard for San Diego and Los Angeles Clippers, Tony led the league in assists only once (82-83 season- 11.4 assists per game.)

As Tony prepares to enter his 40th season in Major League Baseball, I will spend the next few weeks recapping some of Tony's greatest moments and milestones.

First up, Tony's rookie card:

1970 Topps - Tony Gwynn #513

I have several of Tony's rookie card in my collection, but my most prized possesion is THE BIG ONE!!! I am the proud owner of a 2nd year Gwynn! Back in '94 I sold my car and bought this bad-boy. Even though for the next two years I had to take the bus to and from college (a two-day trip,) it was worth it.

Tony's second year card is even more coveted by collectors than his rookie card. The condition sensitive black borders make finding cards in excellent or better condition next to impossible.

1971 Topps - Tony Gwynn #280

High condition Gwynn second year cards fetch upwards of $5,000 when seen at auction. Despite the rumors of magic markered edges, the famous McNall/Gretzky (PSA 8) sold at Sotheby's last June for $27,750.

Counterfeit examples, so common in the late '80s and early '90s, helped coin the term "real Mr. Padre" to describe anything that was authentic. The Upper Deck corporation still uses "real Mr. Padre" to describe autographs signed in the presence of their authenticators.

The market for the counterfeits is still high, as older collectors look to fill the holes in their 1971 sets without endangering their childrens' dreams of a college education. The "cut-T" counterfeit is the most impressive and most famous example of the fake Gwynn cards. The FBI estimated that in 2005, 50% of all professionally graded, 2nd year Tony Gwynn cards were in fact "cut-T" counterfeits.

Mine is the real Mr. Padre... is yours?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I exaggerate less than anyone in the ENTIRE WORLD!!!

This is going to be the greatest blog posting in the history of the entire universe!!!

Not this post... THIS post!

I can not wait!!!

EDIT- THIS post! It was worth the wait. Perfect. Simply, perfect.

This Date in History...

On December 10, 1948, the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris. What some have called the "Modern-Day Magna Carta," the declaration outlines the human rights standards the UN believes should be enforced by all nations—among them "the right to life, liberty and nationality, to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, to work, to be educated, [and] to take part in government."

That day in 1948 could arguably be called the birth of the modern human rights movement. With widely agreed-upon universal standards in place, "atrocities" could be more concretely labeled "violations" and could be more readily acted against. States that have embraced these standards have, since 1948, observed December 10 as Human Rights Day.

I stole the text from Wikipedia on this post... Lazy? Yes. Sorry, no quality time for posting today.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

This Date in History...

Today's card was a tough call. There are three contenders:

In 1990 Lech Walesa was elected president of Poland. From electrician, to activist, to prisoner, to president is an amazing story. Solidarity was the first word I learned in Polish... Okay, it is the only word I know in Polish.

December 9th, 1958 the John Birch Society was founded. I was a history major and I have to admit, I had never heard of the John Birch Society until Eric Show passed away. Show was one of my favorite Padres when I was growing up. I at UC Davis when he died. I did not hear about it until several months later. Reading his obituary, I was saddened when I learned of the rough times he went through. He was an interesting and troubled man. I also learned that he was a member of the John Birch Society. He was, indeed, an interesting and troubled man.

Today's choice was actually rather easy after the previous two days:

Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!!! A Charlie Brown Christmas premiered on this date in 1965.

Monday, December 8, 2008

This Date in History...

December 8th is yet another sad date in history. John Lennon was shot and killed in the entrance hallway of the Dakota in 1980.

The 73-track, four disc Lennon box set were the first CDs I owned. I bought the set exactly ten years after his death. It is had to believe that it has been 18 years since I bought them. Actuallly, seeing the boxes upon boxes of compact discs that are still packed from my most recent move, I am not surprised that I have nearly 20 years worth of music on, yet another, dying format.

The move from vinyl and cassettes seemed daunting. I had built a substantial collection of records and tapes. To this day, I refuse to store music on my computer. I do not own an iPod. I think it is the collector in me that needs the "permanence" of a hard copy.

Oddly enough, I have hundreds of baseball cards that I have "created" stored on my computer. I suppose that if necessary I could recreate them. Here's hoping I never have to do -----------


Sunday, December 7, 2008

This Date in History...

December 7th, 1941 is a date that will live in infamy. The attack on Pearl Harbor brought the United States into World War II. Thousands died that day. Millions more died in the war.

Is a baseball card a fitting tribute? No, but it is what I do.

Shoulda been Sundays - Card #4

This one-post-a-week thing is pretty weak. I know I get pissed when bloggers don't post anything for an entire week. I will try to do better.

For my first post (of many) this week, I give you another card that should have been:

1988 Topps Steve Garvey

Ten time all-stars deserve to have a card for their final year. Garvey played 27 games for my Padres in '87. News of a couple of paternity suits filed against him also led to one of my favorite bumper stickers: Steve Garvey is not my Padre. The Sons of Steve Garvey Blog came up with the name based on the same lawsuits.

Anyone who helps bring my favorite team from perennial losers to the World Series deserves a card for their final year.

FYI- Though Garvey won game 4, it was my man, Tony Gwynn, that had the go-ahead RBIs in game 5 that sent the Padres to the 1984 World Series.