Saturday, September 23, 2017


I collect Andrew McCutchen
And I am a collectaholic

Oh, I thought this badge with a $0.60 Donruss card gave me access to this room.  It doesn't?

Ok.  I'll just leave....

But (turns head and whispers "I am a collectaholic")

My latest Cutch addition falls in the way of a Panini Corporate Sponsor badge I purchased off eBay.  The seller had 2 listed and offered to ship me both.  I said one is fine.  In hindsight I should have taken the other and given it to Matt.  Sorry buddy, wasn't thinking.

Packages went out today to 85338, 08566, 90230.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Money and WAR, what is it good for?

This 2017 Immaculate card features 4 guys who are on the verge of having Hall of Fame careers.  All four players were signed to contract extensions within 2 years of one another and all player for smaller market teams.  There's no New York, Chicago, or LA players here.  

An article for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette was recently written about how frugal the Pirates have to be in terms of their market and valuing.

I will take a look at all four players contract extensions and calculate their WAR as provided by Baseball-Reference.  It's understand that 1 WAR is currently valued at roughly $8 million.

Let's begin with the top right corner and work our way around clockwise.

The Tigers extended Miggy in 2014 after restructuring his current contract and extending him an extra 8 years for a 10 year $292 million deal.  So far Miggy has posted WAR totals of 5.0, 5.2, 4.9, and -0.6 giving him 14.9 WAR over the first 4 years of the 10 year deal.  At $8mil per WAR that values his performance at $119.2 mill.  His AYV salary is $29.2 mill which is $116.8 million for the first 4 years.  The Tigers have gotten value, but Miggy's performance is heading in the wrong direction and could lead to tough times ahead for Tigers fans.

Votto was awarded a 12 year contract worth $251 million with a club option for his age 41 season at the start of the 2012 season.  It's not that Votto has been unproductive.  In fact he continues to put up MVP caliber numbers year after year by slashing .300/.400/.500 lines almost every year since signing the contract.  Since signing the contract in 2012 Votto has posted WAR ratings of 5.9, 6.6, 1.9, 7.6, 4.0, and 6.4 equal to 32.4 WAR with 7 seasons remaining on the contract.  32.4 WAR at $8mill per WAR is equal to $259Million.  So far the Reds have gotten their value from the Votto contract.

The absolute steal of the bunch has to be Jose Altuve.  He was given a $12.5 million contract extension with a $750,000 signing bonus.  There are two club options for the 2018 and 2019 seasons at $6 million and $6.5 million respectively.  Over his 4 year contract he has produced 26.5 WAR which when extended by $8mill per WAR would equal $212 million ($200 million over his actual salary).

Cutch signed a contract extension just before the 2012 season for 6 years and $51.5 million.  The Pirates reaped the benefits very early on the contract as Cutch posted monster WAR numbers 7.0, 8.1, and 6.3 for the 2012 to 2014 seasons.  Post dreadlocks era Cutch began with good WAR (4.9 in 2015) but has become more average in the past two years -0.7 and 2.1 (this year).  Depending on if the Pirates pick up the team option for the 2018 season could linger on how he finishes this September.  His 6 year contract has amassed 27.7 WAR which equals $221.6 million in value.

So to recap since signing the contract extensions the teams all received positive returns on their investments so far.

The Tigers seem to be in severe jeopardy of recouping value on Miggy if his numbers continue to decline.

Votto continues to put up outstanding numbers and won't be a free agent until 2023.  His numbers could begin to decline as the contract wears towards the end.

Both Cutch and Altuve contracts have provided the most benefits to the teams this far and both teams have club options to pick up the contracts of the players at season's end.  Altuve is a lock for having his contract picked up and I suspect Cutch will get his option picked up as well since there will be no asset returned to the team if it's not exercised.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

New Era cards return

I didn't hear anything about this from my Lids store, but apparently Topps has partnered up with New Era to make a 32 card set with the 2017 design in addition to about 20 players using the 1987 design.

Details on the card set along with the hat relics the company produced can be found here.

Once I found out about the promotion I had to add this Cutch to the collection.

It features an image of Cutch we haven't seen on a Topps card yet (see how much more fun that is for us collectors Topps?)

On the back it has the same basic information as the regular release, but with the New Era logo on bottom corner and a different number.

It has Cutch's career stats on the card.  In only 8 years, Cutch has produced 40.6 WAR.  Hall of Famer Jim Rice had a career 47.4 WAR.  Even if Cutch only produces 2-3WAR over the rest of his career he should no doubt be in HOF discussions.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Immaculate Winnings

I entered a player 8 case break for Cutch and unfortunately I didn't hit anything super big (autos, bat barrels, etc) or even any base cards.  I did however manage to score two of these 5 jersey relics.

Why am I showing off only 1?

Because the other is already in the hands of Matt at BobWalkthePlank.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

This Day In Cutchstory: September 19, 2012

As part of my HBP Moments 1/1 search for Cutch's Career Homerun totals, I added another card to show on This Day in Cutchstory

How did the boxscore look that day?

The Pirates fell to the Brewers 3-1.  Kyle MacPherson made the start for the Bucs and pitched himself out of a lot of trouble early on.  The Pirates offense couldn't get any traction against Marco Estrada as he pitched 7 scoreless innings while surrendering only 4 hits. The Pirates only run came on a solo shot by Andrew McCutchen off John Axford in the 9th inning.

Cutch went 2 for 4 that day, raising his average to .340 for the season.  He also stole his 19th stolen base of the year in that game.  Cutch was winning the batting title when the game was over as Buster Posey was batting .334 at close of day.

Monday, September 18, 2017

The First On Card Autograph since 2012

It has been years since fans were given ON CARD autographs by Cutch.  5 years in fact.

If you remember I recently showed all my certified autographs (125 at the time).  This is the 4th autograph I have added since that post.

2017 Immaculate delivered a handful of on card autographs with jersey patches.  Literally a handful.

Numbered to only 5 copies these on card, logo patch cards feature a throwback uniform wearing McCutchen.

The back of the card highlights how clutch Cutch is late in games.

There are several other Cutch autos in 2017 Immaculate and I will be looking to add them.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Congratulations and nothing else...

Tier 1 tends to put out a bunch of lousy jersey swatch single relic cards in their product year after year.  For being a high end set, I would be extremely aggrevated if I got a single small jersey relic in a pack.  Each pack contains only 3 cards (1 relic and 2 autographs).

Here's how I have always viewed Tier 1.
It's an autograph chase set with a few relics as basecards.   I have a few Cutch autos from Tier, one of which was recently acquired from BobWalkThePlank.

There are some extremely nice looking autographs in the set year after year.  Many are on card and have some of the hottest young players in the game in addition to Hall of Famers.

I don't want to hate on the set as a whole though because there are some nice relic cards that can come out of the set.

Such is the case for the Prodigious Patches I recently purchased, which you can see below.

You might look at the pinstripe and Pirates patch uniform thinking, when did they wear uniforms like that?

The answer is the late 90s and early 2000s when the team was lead by Jason Kendall, Aramis Ramirez, and Brian Giles.
As you may recall I showed off this Super Short Print (SSP) Heritage Throwback card back in June.  The card commands hundreds of dollars because of it's rarity and master set collectors.  The patch on the Tier 1 card I recently got is from Cutch's jersey number "2".

Video highlights from the game can be found here.

The back of the card wants to CONGRATULATE you on receiving this card along with some fine print legal information.  No stats.  No write-ups.  Just congratulations.

Speaking of Congratulations...
I want to thank everyone who participated in the Cutch hits #200 contest.  Greg and SCC will be receiving the big prizes (Hall of Fame Autographs), but for everyone who predicted a date I am going to offer up a consolation prize.  If any of you play Fantasy Football you know the joy (and frustrations) of watching a game that your team isn't playing in, but you want 1 or 2 players to do good in those games.  There's probably not a lot of Titans fans here, but if you got Demarco Murray, you're paying attention to how the Titans are doing.

I am offering up this fun rooting exercise for the blogosphere and those that predicted dates.  If Cutch hits a HR on a day that you thought he would go yard for #200 you will receive a prize.  I will try to make the package focused on your team and collecting ways.

The first person to get a prize will be Daniel from It's Like Having my Own Card Shop.  Daniel predicted Cutch would hit #200 on September 16th, but in fact hit career HR #201.

Thanks as always for reading the blog.
God Bless!