Baseball Cards: 2009

March 29, 2009 | Comments (0) | by T.R.

In what has become a personal rite of Spring, I purchased my first and only pack of baseball cards this weekend. I picked them up at Target, the great black hole for suburban pocketbooks. The only available 2009 cards were Upper Deck, as they were still desperately pawning off packs of 2008 Topps. Remember when baseball cards were the only ones you could buy as a kid? Then they started putting out NFL cards, which felt out of place for the first year or two. With their success came the NBA and NHL. Now baseball cards are sorely outnumbered by other sporting and non-sporting cards. I almost picked up a set of Bass Pro Shop Tour 2009 cards, but held off. Oh, and how much were my Upper Deck cards? $2.99, naturally. They used to be .45 cents! Fucking economy!

And now for the unveiling, with live commentary:

1:48 - Derek Jeter is featured on the wrapper. Upper Deck also notifies you on the front that there are autographed 1989 Ken Griffey Jr. rookie cards randomly dispersed. Ten years ago that might have been big news. Now? Now Griffey is just another player from the steroid era.

1:51 - First card out of the gate? Curt Schilling. We're off to a stellar start. I wonder if I can mail this card to Upper Deck and have them send me a new card of an active player. I didn't know Schilling was born in Anchorage. I guess that helps explain his staunch conservatism.

1:54 - The second card is Alex Romero of the Diamondbacks. Who? Looks like he played in 78 games for the D'Bags in 2008. I'll go out on a limb and say that he will not be drafted in your fantasy league.

1:55 - Former Angel, current Brave Casey Kotchman is up next. Kotchman wouldn't be so bad if he could hit .300. He was born in 1983. Sometimes I get depressed when I realize that I'm so much older than a lot of the players now. Damn youngsters.

1:57 - Carlos Fucking Lee. An Astro. This one goes straight in the garbage.

1:59 - Willy Taveras, former Rockie, now player for Dusty Baker's Communists. He has the speed for a leadoff hitter, but not the OBP. A typical one dimensional player, which is one dimension less than his baseball card.

2:01 - Francisco Rodriguez. Another player wearing an outdated uniform. OK, I'd be all for the cards coming out midseason if it meant getting pictures of these guys wearing the right uniform. It's hard to see Upper Deck as a baseball authority when they're dishing out dated information. I was at the game where K-Rod broke the saves record. I left early though. It was a boring game.

2: 04 - My next card is Mark Saccomanno? Ugh, this guy had even less playing time than Alex Romero. Saccomanno had 10 at-bats last year. Queer. Perhaps I will mail this card to Saccomanno's mother as a keepsake.

2: 07 - Holy hell, next is a gimmick card. "Team Leaders", profiling Ryan Ludwick, Albert Poopholes, and former Cub Todd Wellemeyer. Fucking Cardinals. I feel a War Criminal: Missouri stirring in my soul.

2:08 - Daisuke Matsuzaka and his permanent frown greet me next. I can't really say anything bad about him, aside from the fact that he is a self-loathing Red Stocking. Matsuzaka gets his job done, and for that I would shake his hand. And then I'd punch him in the mouth for Pearl Harbor.

2:10 - And I just vomited in my mouth. Another gimmick card. It is a "Historic Firsts" card. Can you guess the player? Hint, hint, historic first. Figure it out yet? Give yourself another minute... Give up? Sarah Palin of course. Much as Topps had cards last year of the 2008 presidential candidates, Upper Deck is hopping on the bandwagon. Normally I would cry bias and claim that Upper Deck is in the pockets of the GOP. However, I'm sure they've sprinkled in a few Obama cards. Probably not where I live in Orange County though. They probably just put Obama cards in the Targets that are adjacent to ghettos.

2:14 - Another "Team Leaders" card, this time the Giants. Tim Lincecum, Randy Winn, and Bengie Molina. If only these cards were softer so that I could wipe my ass with them.

2:15 - Ah, the young stud Hanley Ramirez. I love that he got so upset this spring when the Marlins made him take off the jewelry and get a haircut. It's also nice to make fun of the Red Sox for giving Ramirez away. Think of how much more we would hate Boston if the had him as well.

2:18 - I must admit, the cards keep coming. I'm getting my $2.99 worth. Next is Ryan Church. The back of his card summarizes a game in which he hit a homer, a double, and a sacrifice fly. Can't they come up with anything more interesting for these cards? I'd settle for his favorite color and movie over his meaningless performance from a game last summer.

2:20 - Michael Cuddyer of the Twins. He's so damn vanilla. So is the entire Twins roster. Bland as hell. Hopefully that changes when they get out of the Metrodome.

2:21 - My next card is C.C. Sabathia, in his Brewers uniform mind you. Props to him for being a workhorse. Have fun with the Yankees and all the pressures involved. At least he's not in the Cubs' division any longer.

2:23 - I'm getting tired of this. Next up is Jack Wilson, the face of the Pittsburgh Pirates. What's that? Can't picture Wilson's face? Just know that there is a goatee involved, and that no one really cares about the Pirates.

2:26 - My final card is Aaron Rowand. The back of his card tells me that Rowand plays "all out". Who gives a shit.

Final Tally
Number of players who have changed teams since the printing of their card: 4 that I am aware of
Number of retired players: 1
Number of cards featuring someone with a vagina: 1
Number of goatees pictured: 10(!)