Saturday, October 19, 2019

A little Yankee pride

The Yankees sure looked dead after game 4. It was impressive that they came alive for one inning, and the pitching made it stick for eight more. The season probably ends tonight but Aaron Hicks ensured the Yankees would have at least one more memorable moment this season.

Friday, October 18, 2019

Almost out of their misery

Pitching, hitting, defense, the Yankees are breaking down everywhere. They scored seven runs in the first game and probably won't score 7 combined in the last four. Aaron Boone has got to go but he's Brian Cashman's buddy so he gets two more years at least. Ugh.

Hard to find a highlight from this game. Gary Sanchez hit a home run in garbage time. Even so, Austin Romine should still be playing (and Maybin instead of Encarnacion).

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Quick street trade

I traded five Andy Pettitte cards to Al the other day. All Yankee cards today, not Astros! I went through the A-J box and kept finding Astros - Bagwell, Biggio, Berkman, Caminiti, Clemens, Gonzalez, etc. I don't actually hate the Astros but I didn't want to pick those guys right now. Or there were guys who had bad Yankee stints like Kevin Brown. I did find five cards I was happy with though.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Not quite good enough

Yesterday's game really showed how the Astros are a little better than the Yankees in all phases of the game. Better starting pitching, better bullpen, better hitting, better managing. The Yankees are a good team, a fun team, but the Astros are a great team. It's always frustrating losing in the playoffs, especially close games, but you can't get too mad when the other team is clearly better.

It would help if the vaunted Yankees offense wasn't just DJ LeMahieu and Gleyber Torres at this point. All the swing-from-the-heels sluggers are being neutralized by Houston's elite staff.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

1981 Topps Gene Richards

The front: Simple spring training shot. The photographer couldn’t get Richards to smile.

The back: Richards’s rookie stolen base record would be shattered by Vince Coleman in 1985. In 2016, Brandon Crawford became the first National Leaguer to get seven hits in an extra-inning game.

The player: Gene Richards was a dynamic leadoff hitter and left-fielder for the Padres from 1977 to 1983. He was one of the last major leagues to regularly hit choked up on the bat, with several inches of handle below his hands. In 1,026 games he hit .290 with 26 HR, 255 RBI and 247 SB. He led the National League in triples in 1981. He signed as a free agent with the Giants in 1984 but due to a knee injury, only played in 87 games for them, hitting .252 with 0 HR, 4 RBI and 5 SB, ending his career.

The man: Richards was a scout and minor league coach for many years. He now owns Gene’s Road to the Big Leagues in Reno, NV.

My collection: I have 20 of his cards, from 1977 to 1985. I would be interested in trading for 1984 Fleer Update #98.

Two part street trade

As mentioned in an earlier post I pulled off another street trade on Friday. This one had two parts. One was a big box of Mets for about 30 random cards. Most of the Mets were from the free junk wax I had picked up recently.

Some of the cards were set fillers from recent Topps sets. I took the time to sit down and go through the Topps base cards with my wantlist.
 I picked up a few random goodies as well. Paxton didn't bring good luck as he had his second straight poor start in the postseason. That USA-themed 2019 parallel is numbered to /76. Some kind of Spirit of '76 parallel? I have no idea.
 The other part was a '69 Koosman and two Kranepools for these. The '74 Kranepool brings me down to 24 cards left to complete that set. Still need about 200 for the '69 set including almost all of the big stars and high numbers.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Missed opportunity

If only Boone hadn't taken out Chad Green when he was pitching great . . . if only the third base coach hadn't waved LeMahieu home when he obviously had no chance . . . a few other "if only"s as well. To beat a team like the Astros you have to be perfect. The Yankees were close but now Houston is right back in it. Hopefully coming back to Yankee Stadium will revive the Yankees' bats. Other than Torres, Judge and LeMahieu, it's been a lineup of quick and easy outs. And this bullpen is going to start showing signs of fatigue real soon.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

One perfect night

Everything went right for the Yankees tonight - great pitching, great hitting (especially Gleyber) and great defense. Of course the Yankees had their best (Tanaka) going against the Astros #3 guy (Greinke).  Duplicating the feat with a Paxton-Verlaner matchup or a Severino-Cole matchup is going to be much harder. I'll just enjoy this win and worry about tomorrow, tomorrow.

Friday, October 11, 2019

ALCS Preview

Well, the Yankees got by the Twins pretty easily. Certainly an easier time than the Astros had with the Rays. These two series showed that pitching still is the most important thing in the playoffs, especially if there is a different, deader ball. The Yankees' starting pitching is significantly inferior to Houston's, so they are going to have to hope for a battle-of-the-bullpens, and that their own pen doesn't tire out. Houston has been a house of horrors for the Yankees, so their best best will be to sweep the Yankee Stadium games and hope to pull one out in Houston.

Just got back from a big street trade with Al, so I'll leave off with this teaser of that haul with the presumed Game One starter. Go Yankees!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Wallet Card and Mailbox History - Part I

Did you know that mailboxes and postal relay boxes have their date of manufacture stamped on the side?

Postal relay boxes are often seen in large cities, but occasionally can be found elsewhere. They are places for the post office to drop off mail for a carrier to pick up without having to go all the way back to the post office. Unlike standard mailboxes, these are green and do not have an opening for people to insert mail.

Here is an example of a row of relay boxes in Manhattan.

You can see the date stamp on the bottom of the broad side of a box, whether blue or green, on the bottom of the right side of the box.

All New York City blue boxes have been replaced in the past year to the new tamper-proof boxes that are being rolled out nationwide. Even on Long Island I haven't seen any that date back to earlier than the 1990s. However the green box photographed above is a lot older!