Saturday, September 14, 2013

Why 'Wait Unitl Next Year" when you can have it now....

This weekend got off to a great start after I received a package of great cards from Tom of "Waiting Until Next Year" (that could almost pass as a Padres title). A long-suffering Cubbie fan, I sent him some cards, as well as some Iowa Cubs programs.

Speaking of minor leagues, I've always enjoyed watching player make their way up the Friars' farm system, so let's start out with these three - Matt Clark, Ben Davis and Juan Melo. A 12th round pick in the 2008 draft, Clark, got as far as Tucson during his six years as a Padre minor leaguer. Of course, it didn't help playing  behind Yonder Alonso. After exposing him to the Rule 5 draft with no takers, the Padres sold him to the Chunichi Dragons of Japan's Baseball League. For Clark, here seen in his 2010 Topps Pro Debut Blue card, it was an upgrade, as he'll make $450,000 in Japan versus $10,750 AAA scale in Tucson. C Davis' (1998 Best) claim to fame was laying down a drag bunt against Arizona's Curt Schilling in 2001, ruining Schilling's opportunity for a perfect game in the eighth ining. A professional Padres minor leaguer since 1993, Melo made his MLB debut with the Giants in 2000, getting one hit and a RBI in 13 at bats. Melo's seen here in his 1999 Just card.

And then there were the old school Padres, such as Goose and Benito. I was always impressed with the tenacity and determination of Gossage as a Padre, ably represented here on his 1986 Fleer Pitchers/Sluggers card. Santiago was argueably one of the best catchers the team ever fielded. I was  happy to get these two oddballs, his 1988 Topps UK Mini and 1988 Fleer Exciting Stars.
While I'm not a big Headley fan (again, I'm curious to see what the Pads will do with him over the off-season - hopefully washing their hands of him....), I do like the variety of the Topps Archives cards. The 1994 Triple Play cards feature some really nice photos and this Cianfrocco photo is really nice and clear; I wish more cards were shot this way. And, who doesn't want a serial-numbered gold Andrew Cashner card? In his last 10 games, Cashner sports a .278 ERA and a 4-4 record, despite the lack of run support provided by the Friars when he takes the mound. By the way, since LF Kyung-Min Na, who the Padres got with Cashner from the Cubs for Zach Cates and Anthony Rizzo was released earlier this year, who do you feel got the better end of the trade?
Tomorrow, meanwhile, should be a hoot, as it's the September card show at the Urbandale American Legion. I hope I can sleep tonight.

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad those Padres cards found a good home.

    As far as the trade, the secondary players are pretty much a wash as Cates played in A-ball last year and didn't really stand out in a pitcher's league. I really like Cashner, especially if he can stay healthy, and I'm hoping Rizzo is a middle of the lineup bat for the next 7-10 years. Hopefully, this will be a good trade for both squads!