Monday, July 31, 2017

What did I tell you about the bat on your shoulder????!!!!!!

First of all, in a completely unrelated post, Congratulations to Adrian Beltre on his 3,000 career hit yesterday.  He continues to get better as he gets older.

Speaking of older...

My old blog showed a 2005 Bowman Heritage photo variant where Cutch had a bat resting on his shoulder.  We were all taught as young athletes to keep the bat off your shoulder.

Many times players will pose with a bat on their shoulder for a photoshoot, such was the case for that 2005 Bowman Heritage.

Rarely do you see unposed game action photos by Topps with a bat on their shoulder.

2017 Topps offered a photo variant of Cutch.

This time, it has him walking in the dugout with 3 bats on his shoulder.  This card would be perfect for Daniel's multiple bat collection.  It is also perfect to show off today as Andrew hit 3 homeruns in a game for the 3rd time in his career.

These SP parallels are strange entities.  They go as cheap as $35 and as high as $90.  I was fortunate to grab mine for just over $40.

Hopefully Cutch will get a Topps Now card to celebrate his Home Run victory.

To close out today's post here is the original 2005 Bowman Heritage photo variant I referenced above.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Scripture Sunday

Andrew Mccutchen is one of the most vocal Christian baseball players in the game today.

There is a website Athletes 4 Christ that does scripture cards of your favorite Christian Athletes.  Each card has an image of the athlete on the front and a random scripture on the back.
They also have bracelets and other items available for purchase.  Check out their website if you follow any Christian Athletes.

Have a blessed day.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Stadium Club Variants

2017 Stadium Club just came out recently, but I am still trying to track down more of the 2016 parallels.

What I have so far are the following

Gold Foil, Orange (B&W), and Black Foil

With all the zany things Cutch does in the dugout and on the field, I am certain they could have picked a better picture for the 2016 card.  I like the angle and throwback uniform, but a pic of him doing a celebratory dance, handshake, hat tipping to his wife, etc would have been better for a Stadium Club release.

So far I have only committed to the black and white/orange foil parallel from the 2017 release.  I need all the others.  Keep me in mind if you come across any.

Friday, July 28, 2017

On The Move? Jay Bruce Dual Auto

Long time Pirates killer, Jay Bruce was traded from division rivals Cincinnati Reds last year to the New York Mets.  Many New York fans quickly disliked Bruce because he didn't immediately impact the club.  As the season progresses Bruce went on a hot streak at the end, but ultimately Bruce and the Mets were shut out by Madison Bumgarner and the San Francisco Giants in the one game Wild Card.

This year saw Bruce return to his standard career numbers.  As of now he is batting .262 with 26 Home runs and 70 RBIs.  Those are good numbers to put in the 4-6 spots in the lineup.

Could Bruce be on the move again this trade deadline?

An interesting idea I have is the Pirates could potentially go after Bruce.  We already know he thrives in PNC Park with the short right field having beat up Pirates pitching many times in his career while a member of the Reds.  We also know that if the Pirates do make it to the post season, they will be without Starling Marte.   An outfield of Polanco, Cutch, and Bruce still looks really good.  The Pirates and Mets have made trades several times in the past few years so there is history there.

Could we see Bruce in Pittsburgh?

I wouldn't be opposed to the idea.  That's for sure.

The card you see above is a card I coveted for about 2 years before I finally was able to land one.  It features dual on card autographs of the division rivals Andrew McCutchen and Jay Bruce.  Both players were selected in the 2005 draft class.  Cutch was selected 11th overall and Bruce was 12th overall.  Both were selected out of high school as outfielders.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Heritage Comparisons pt3: Clemente v Cutch

Over the years, Topps has used Heritage to bring the current stars of the game on designs from the past.

Cutch has appeared using the same numbering as Pirates Legend Roberto Clemente a handful of times.

I want to preface these segments and state that I do not believe that a single season of Cutch can take away from the greatness of Roberto Clemente's life or his baseball career.

Each of these Heritage comparisons will take a look at a card of Cutch and compare it to the design's original numbered card.

The 2016 Heritage card release is based on the 1967 design.

Cutch's 2016 Heritage card is numbered 400 the same as Pirates Legend and Hall of Famer, Roberto Clemente.

The back of Cutch's card even mentions The Great One, Roberto Clemente.

As will be customary for these Heritage Comparisons I will take a look at the standard counting stats typically found on the back of a baseball card for the players previous year.

Slash Lines
Clemente in 1966 went .317/.360/.536 for an .896 OPS
Cutch in 2015 went .292/.401/.488 for an .889OPS
slight Advantage Clemente

Plate Discipline
Clemente had His worse K:BB rate 2.37 (109:46) during his MVP season in 1966
Cutch's fourth consecutive top 5 MVP finish season showed some regressionwhen he had 1.35 K:BB (133:98)
Advantage Cutch

Extra Base Hits (XBH)
Clemente had 31 doubles, 11 triples, and 29 HR in 1966
Cutch had 36 doubles, 3 triples, and 23 round trippers
71 v 62
Advantage Clemente

Runs Scored and Runs Batted In
Runs scored and RBI are based on who hits in front of you and who hits behind you.
Clemente scored 105 runs and drove in 119 in 1966.
Cutch scored 91 runs and knocked in 96
Advantage Clemente

Hardware and awards
Clemente won his only MVP, 6th straight Gold Glove, and was elected an All-Star
Cutch was a top 5 MVP, his 4th straight Silver Slugger, and was elected an All-Star
Advantage Clemente

I hope you enjoyed the comparisons made based on the Heritage card and original design numbering.  I will continue to do these segments if there is enough interest in them.

As I have done in my previous Heritage Comparisons I will show off all the other parallels I have of Cutch's Heritage card I am spotlighting.

Up first are the red back and gum stain back

Now for the chromes

I need the Superfractor 1/1, Gold /5, and Refractor

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Black is Back!!!

Prior to this year I hadn't owned Andrew McCutchen's best rookie card, 2009 Bowman Sterling. The reason was because the price point was just way too high ($35+ for the base and over $200 for color parallels).

After his down year last year and rough start this year, Cutch cardboard dropped in prices.

I had no issues with that in my pursuit of Collecting Cutch.  I finally grabbed not only the base refractor but also the gold version for $35 combined.  That was a huge accomplishment to add those two cards after being so stubborn about them for years.

Then this rarity hit the market.
I was the only bidder on it and it wasn't cheap, but I could finally cross it off the list.

These Black Bowman Sterling never hit the market anymore.  When they do, they go for big time dollars because only 25 copies exist.  David Price and Rick Porcello both have graded copies over $100 listed now.  Nick Perez recently sold for $40. Nick Perez?  Michael Pineda over $45?

I knew if I didn't win this auction, I may not see another pop up again soon.  So I had to pounce on it.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

David Vs. Goliath

I showed off a sketch print card of famed artist Edward Vela when I first launched Collecting Cutch last year..  Edward has been producing these cards for years.  He currently has made 6 (if I remember correctly) versions of Cutch.  I currently have 3 of them.

A new artist, David Lee, has started to do similiar sketch print cards but numbered to much smaller numbers.

I grabbed my first one from him recently and am very pleased with it.

Hopefully David can build up enough of a following to keep up with all Edward's sketch cards and make some more Cutch cards.

In the meantime, I will seek out the other Cutch cards that Edward did.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Recent Pickups

I missed two days of posts on Friday and Saturday.  Life got in the way so I didn't have time to make a post and scan.  Yesterday's post was a short one and I had that saved as a draft for emergency purposes.  I decided to post it just so I wouldn't miss too many days without a post.

I should be back on track and I have a bunch of cards to show off.  During the 3 day hiatus of the blog, I missed out on a bunch of incredible auctions I would have loved to add to the PC.  3 1/1s ended during that time along with some parallels I needed.  When I saw the ending prices, I felt a bit disgusted that I didn't enter higher bids before picking up 30 hours of work in a 48 hour window.  Oh well. That's life.

Here's a few of my fairly recent pickups that I hadn't shown off yet.

Up first is this pink parallel from 2013 Topps Update.  This card may look familiar as I have posted about the ultra rare Gold version (numbered to 2013) that had nearly 2,000 copies destroyed by Topps.  The pink version is printed in similar quantity, but much much cheaper.

Continuing with the 2013 theme is this 2013 Mini Gold numbered to 62 copies.

My favorite of the group is this 2011 Bowman Chrome Orange numbered to 25 copies.  I am actively seeking out some of Cutch's older parallels and have been able to get some pretty good deals on them.

Save the best for last?

Maybe.  It's a Sapphire parallel from 2016 Triple Threads.  These parallels are exclusive to Asia so getting them is often pricy.  This ran me $12 for the /25 piece of cardboard.

I should be back on track for daily posts goimg forward.  There is some more 1/1s coming too.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Striking Gold: A Short Poem

I like to collect The Cutch
I don't like to spend too much.
I've bought from him before
That's why he didn't charge me more.
My latest card is a mini gold
The chrome looks really bold.
It's numbered to only fifty
This T206 Piedmont is way nifty.

I'm glad I was able to add this  2009 Topps T206 Chrome Gold Mini to my collection.  This is the first one that became available on the market in the past 4 years.  Super excited to get it in hand and add it to the PC.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Just A Lil Hope

It it is sometimes said all you need is hope...

I hope to see the Pirates make a serious run for the division.  They are playing very good baseball right now.

Above you can see a card I picked up a few weeks back.  It's a 2011 Hope Parallel.  Because it's from the Mike Trout RC flagship series, finding these are actually very difficult to find despite the high numbering of 60 copies.  There were some set builders trying to complete the Hope parallel sets.  Did I memtion that this card is from the 2011 Update Series which has Mike Trout RC?

I don't know what inspired this short lived parallel, but these pop in person.  If you have a favorite player from 2011, you should try and find a Hope parallel.  They're gorgeous in person.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Remembering the Biogenesis Scandal

As is customary for me every day on my lunch break, I was browsing eBay for more McCutchen cards to add to the PC.  I stumbled across a seller who had a bunch of Just Minors cards with Cutch's auto for under $20.  I tried to convince myself that I didn't need them.

I don't think I tried hard enough as I added 6 cards to my cart for checkout.

I'll show off some of the others in future posts, but these two were a reminder that no prospect is a guaranteed thing.  The MLB draft signing period is over and the trade deadline is just around the corner.  Many teams will begin selling off veteran established players in hopes of adding future cornerstone of a franchise.

The New York Mets thought they had two top outfielders in Carlos Gomez (stay tuned for a future featured hate rant on him in the next few weeks) and Fernando Martinez.

What they actually had was a guy who would be out of baseball by 2013, finishing his career as a .206 hitter.  Fernando Martinez was recognized in the 2013 Biogenesis Scandal and served his suspension.

I snagged both of these autos for $30 combined shipping.  It helped knock off a few more Cutch needs while giving me some great material for a blog post.
The Pirates are currently in the middle of a 4 game series with division leaders, Brewers.  Both teams will likely look to make small upgrades at the trade deadline.  Could we see some future PED prospects get moved that were once highly touted?

Clearly both the Pirates and Brewers are forgiving when it comes to PED tests.  Starling Marte made his return after serving his 80 game suspension and got a standing ovation from the fans.

Francisco Cervelli who was a key piece of the Pirates winning last night's game was also involved in the Biogenesis scandal.  Pittsburgh loves him.

Oh and let's not forget Ryan Braun.  He was involved in the Biogenesis scandal also and publically shamed a UPS driver to try and cover up another of his failed drug tests.  Milwaukee still loves Brauny tho.

Are guys who take PEDs forgiven too quickly by fans?

What about the wrongfully accused?
Gio Gonzalez was mentioned in the Biogenesis scandal but was later acquitted of the charges.  Yet he will forever have that blemish on his resume.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


No, the chickens aren't getting restless in the henhouse.  That's all I paid for two of my latest Cutch parallels.

3 bucks delivered

The first is a nice green parallel of the maze design from 2016 Topps Tek /99.

The next is a blue paper parallel from 2017 Bowman
Nice new additions of the hottest hitter in the NL since Memorial Day.

Monday, July 17, 2017

It's no Honus Wagner, but I got a super rare T206

In my endless pursuit to add more McCutchen cards to the PC, I finally added a 2010 Red Chrome T206 to the collection.  I tried in two previous attempts in the past two years to add this card to my collection.

It's numbered 10/25 making it a rare early years Cutch card for the collection.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

A Class Act

I was picking up a pair of minor league releases of Cutch via eBay and got the most welcomed surprise when the cards arrived.

Inside was a not saying "Brian-We had a mistake in listing. 2008 International Top Prospecting listing showed a picture of 2008 International All Star (a common Ebay malfunction).  To avoid a problem, I included both cards."

Upon scanning the cards and getting ready to file them, I realized I actually needed both.  My minor league release cards now appear closer to being complete.  I was amazed at the generosity and will always support JS Sports Cards for any minor league releases I may need in the future.  If you are in search of some cardboard check out JS Sports Cards

Here's my Cutch minor league releases (excluding all the Just Minors cards as I am saving them for a future post).

Starting off with the Low A affiliate, Williamsport Crosscutters

Then High A, Hickory Crawdads

AA Altoona Curve

And a Top Prospect for AAA, Indianapolis Indians

I will show off my Tristar and Just Minors cards in a future post, but I believe my Minor League card collection to be almost complete.
There is a 2006 Hickory Crawdad card available at Stadiums for a team set release that I am still looking to add.  There is currently one listed on eBay for $75, but I am determined to find one under $20.  That card is Cutch's first team issued card.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Topps you cheated me of a back!!!!

The title might make you believe I just got "ho hum, another 1/1" Blank Back Vault card.  Unfortunately, thats not the case.

Instead I got in a bunch of color parallels from Topps Museum.

These cards look great as a set.

And the lot included this Canvas Collection sketch reproduction card.  Sweet!!!  The artist for this year's chosen Cutch card is Carlos Cabaleiro who I did an email interview with back in March.

But wait, the back says the same thing as the base Museum cards?
Not only is Topps recycling images.  Now they are recycling the text on the back too?

C'mon Topps!  Mix it up a little especially if it's a high end release like Museum.  The inserts are meant to draw attention.  Tell us about the artist of this reproduction sketch card and why this one was chosen over other sketch artists.

I didn't want to make this post so negative.  How can I change it?

Oh look.

Ho hum, it's another 1/1
The Emerald