Friday, September 26, 2014

Gint-A-Cuffs VI: FINISH HIM!

*insert Mortal Kombat music and sound effects*

Alright, 6 packs left. Lets DO THIS!

Pack 19:

Giancarlo Stanton
George Brett
Marashino "Cherry" Tanaka : -1
Matt Harvey
Michelle Kang
Ken Griffey Jr SP : +2
PPs Miguel Cabrera : +2
Mini SP Ian Kinsler : +3

Pack Total: +6
Running Total: +140

Analysis: Got my first SP mini! Yay!

Pack 20:

Ryne Sandberg
Felix Doubront
Shin-Shoo "Choo Choo!" Choo
Carlton Fisk
Ozzie Smith
Tim Raines
Natural Wonders Sailing Stones of Racetrack Playa : +2
A&G Flag Back Mini of Salvador Perez : +10

Pack Total: +12
Running Total: +152

Analysis: Flag back mini. 'Nuff said.

Pack 21:

Craig Kimbrel
Cal Ripken Jr.
Anthony Robles
James Shield
Andre Dawson
Sony Gray SP : +2
PPs Anthony Rizzo : +2
Mini SP of Paul Konerko : +3

Pack Total: +7
Running Total: +159

Analysis: Yeah, I'm getting tired... these posts need to be spread out over days, not crammed into a single night. Ouch!

Pack 22:

Felix Hernandez
Chuck Todd
David Wright : +2
Nick Castellanos
Jordan Burroughs
Darryl Strawberry
PPs Chris Sale : +4 (PP, FP)
Mini Matt Moore

Pack Total: +6
Running Total: +165

Analysis: Heeyyyy, check it out! Two FP's! That's like... more than the rest of the box! Or at least tied to it. Weak sauce...

Pack 23:

Willie Stargell
Eddie Matthews
Aramis Ramirez
Polar "I'ma Survivor!" Vortex SP : +2
PPs Starlin Castro : +2
*Bonus Hit!!!* Cyan Printing Plate of Giancarlo Stanton : +14
Mini A&G Back Jim Calhoun : +2

Pack Total: +20
Running Total: +185

Analysis: Hey! Can't complain about a bonus hit! I guess those jacked up boxes can sometimes go in your favor, or something? If I can some out squeeze 15 points out of this last pack... yeah, that's not happening.

Pack 24:

Vladimir Guerrero
Didi Gregorius
Brian McCann
Yu Darvish : +2
Jorge Posada : -1
Mike Mussina SP : +1 (SP, Yankee)
PPs David Ortiz : +2
Mini Larger Than Life - Davy Crockett : +3

Pack Total: +7
Funning Total: +192

So there you have it kiddos. Another failure of a year, minus some cool hits. Next year... there is a special surprise. Lets just say I already know who my favorite player is going to be. Mark my words!

Analysis: So, picking Felicia Day probably wasn't the BEST pick in the world, I could have done better with a different pick I suppose. Ugh. Like, Jim Rice as my favorite player would have given me 60 points vice 20. That would have been nice, right? I'll just dream on.

Obligatory Picture:

Also, I found proof of my terrible relic... and other missing cards. Enjoy?

Selfie (With previously unpictured box topper...):

I'm enthused. I promise.

FINAL SCORE: 197 (Adjusted for Selfie)

That's all for this year. Until next time, keep it in the family.


Gint-A-Cuffs VI: Round 4!

OK... some more fun times to be had! I think I'll condense this into 2 posts to meet the time limit. So... 6 packs of fun!

Pack 13:

Jedd Gyorko
Mike "Glub Glub" Trout
Adam Schefter
Carl Crawford
Worlds Capitals Buenos Aires, Argentina : +2
Full-Sized Relic of Austin "I'm also not a real champion" Weinerschke : +8 (I think)
Mini A&G Back Maria Gabriela Isler : +2

Pack Total: +12
Running Total: +89

Analysis: I believe I get full points for the Weinerschke relic. Since the rules specify BASE cards and MINIS are at a -1 disadvantage, and he is not a Yankee (though he really ought to be...) I believe I get full points. Correct me if I am wrong, Commish!

Pack 14:

Wade Boggs
Willin Rosario
Brett "I Hate Yankees" Gardner : -1
Craig Biggio : +2
Bob Gibson
Chuck Klosterman : +1
Worlds Capitals Taipei, Taiwan : +2
Mini of Judah Friederlanderlichihatethisguy

Pack Total: +4
Running Total: +93

Analysis: Ugh, that Judah guy showed up again. I hate that guy. Also, weak pack. Not going to break 200 at this rate anymore. Be lucky to break 150!

Pack 15:

Andrew McCutchen
Fergie Jenkins
Patrick Corbin
George Kell
Fairs and Festivals Dia De Los Muertos : +2
Framed Mini-Relic of Jim Rice : +20
Mini Where Nature Ends - Sandro Botticelli : +3

Pack Total: +25
Running Total: +118

Analysis: Boom! Nice little pickup there. Those framed mini relics are about two per case, so yeah. Would have been nice to have gotten a FP or something out of it, but we'll take Mr. Rice!

Pack 16:

Snoop "Snoop-A-Loop!" Lion : -1
Derek "I'm Glad You're Retiring... YANKEE" Jeter : -1
Paul Molitor : +2
Justin Upton
Bert Kriescher
Rickey Henderson
Natural Wonders Moeraki Boulders : +2
BB Mini Gio Gonzalez : +4 (BB, FT)

Pack Total: +6
Running Total: +124

Analysis: Wow, that was a volatile pack. More scoring cards than non-scoring cards. Naturally there are two negative cards in there. Yay.

Pack 17:

Wil Myers
Alex "Roid"riguez : -1
Rodger "Roid" Clemens
Justin Verlander
Chris Archer
Chris Carpenter
Fairs and Festivals Pingxi Lantern Festival : +2
BB Mini Lou Brock : +3

Pack Total: +4
Running Total: +128

Analysis: I hate Alex Roidriguez. That is all.

Pack 18:

John "THE MAN" Sullivan : +1
Johnathan Schoop
Jordan Zimmerman : +1 FT
Dwight "Doc" Gooden
Jay Bruce
Salvador Perez
Air Supremacy V-22 Osprey : +2
Mini Trevor Rosenthal

Pack Total : +4
Running Total: +132

Analysis: At least I got a plane!

So that brings us to the 2/3rds point and into the home stretch... a LOT of scoring cards this round, so I might break it up into 2 pics. I guess I have a little hope left... 6 packs? Sure, we got this...

Obligatory Picture(s):

Also... it would appear as though my crap-relic didn't make it in the picture. You'll have to believe me... because... why would I lie and say I pulled that pile of junk if I didn't? ANYONE would be better than him... anyone...

Keep it in the family.


Gint-A-Cuffs VI: Round 3!

Aaaand we're back! Lets get to it! Spoiler: I get a hit.

Pack 9:

Tom Seaver
Josh Hamilton
Duke Snider
Mann Rameriz
World Capitals Athens, Greece : +2
Full-Sized Relic of Judah "... I got Nothin'" Friedlander: +8
Mini A&G Back Felicia Day : +7

Pack Total: +17
Running Total: +61

Analysis: Yeah, I'd like to point out that the lovely Queen of the Nerds is worth almost as much as that weird relic guy. Seriously, why is he in this product? I'm sure someone has heard of him and/or likes him... just not me.

Pack 10:

Wilmer Flores
Desmond "I have no number!" Jennings
Bryce "Atta Boy!" Harper : +1 FT
Al Kaline
Kevin Clancy
Willy Peralta SP : +2
PPs Joey Votto : +4 (PP, FP)
Mini Jose "Heck Freakin' Yeah!" Abreu

Pack Total: +7
Running Total: +68

Analysis: Yeah, now we're rolling. Plus, I really enjoy the Abreu mini. That's one expensive mini to have to buy...

Pack 11:

Laura Phelps Sweatt
Glen Waggoner
Clayton Kershaw
Eric Hosmer
Ryan "I'ma Cheater!" Braun
Allen Craig SP : +2
PPs Justin Masterson : +2
Mini A&G Back Jay Bruce : +2

Pack Total: +6
Running Total: +74

Analysis: Wooo, on the way to over 100 points! We might make it kids!

Pack 12:

Steve Delabar
Greg Maddux
Iron Sheik : +1
Warren Spahn
Jason "Not Fidel" Castro
Justin Masterson
Fields of Yore Shea Stadium : +2
Ginter Code Card

Pack Total: +3
Running Total: +77

Analysis: Well, I guess we know where that extra mini came from in that previous pack! Hah! Stupid packing errors...

Well, not bad for half way through the box. I have hope yet... or not. We still have 12 packs to go... a lot could happen! Or a lot could not happen. Who knows. You tell me! Or stick around and find out... something like that.

Obligatory Picture:

Check back tomorrow for the continuation!

Keep it in the family.


Gint-A-Cuffs VI: Round 2!

Ahhh hahahaha! This is what I should have done before...

WELCOME BACK Gint-A-Cuffs readers, because lets face it -- I don't actually have any readers. I figured out how to schedule these to post in the future, so I can just do them all at once. Woohoo! Time to just knock this all out and get the misery over with... We'll just get straight to it!

Pack 5:

Fred "Scruff" McGriff (OK, that's a bit of a stretch...)
Mike "I met this guy!" Zunino
Buster "Bust A" Pose-y
Andrelton Simmons
Dominic Brown
Stephen Strausburg SP : +3 (SP + Fav. Team)
PPs Carlos Gonzalez : +2
Mini Prince Fielder

Pack Total: +5
Running Total: +26

Analysis: Got my first Nationals player! I believe last year I waited until Pack 17 or something for my first Favorite Team... hence my change in favorite teams. Jerks. A solid showing, lets keep it up. Not enough to break 200, but hey...

Pack 6:

Shelby Miller
Juan Segura
Dale Murphy
Alfonso "UGH" Soriano : -1
Jose "BOOYAH!" Abreu : Nothing, but it's actually worth something, so you know...
Enny Romero
Festivals and Fairs Holi Festival : +2
Mini Where Nature Ends - Diego Velaquez : +3
Ginter Code Card

Pack Total: +4
Running Total: +30

Analysis: Yeah, still averaging that stunning 5 points per pack. Not going to cut it... this is going to be ugly, isn't it?

Pack 7:

Mark "When did I get traded?" Trumbo
Sandy "I was in the Navy!" Koufax
Evan Gattis
Roberto Clemente
Deion Sanders
Jason Grilli SP : +2
PPs Jason Kipnis : +2
Mini Little Lions - Sphynx : +3

Pack Total: +7
Running Total: +37

Analysis: Yeeeehaw! Breaking away from the trend of the 5/pack average! Also, I always feel like I'm missing someone's FP... because there are 14 of them. Jeeze laweeze. Also, where is Miss Felicia Day? She's a geek, like me. Queen of the Nerds!

Pack 8:

Edwin Encarnacion
Dr. James Andrews
Jhoulys Chacin
David Price
Maria Gabriela Isler
Cliff Lee SP : +2
PPs Prince Fielder : +2
Mini Outlaws, Bandits, All-Around Ne'er Do Wells - Robin "Could the name of this insert set get any longer I don't think so!" Hood : +3

Pack Total: +7
Running Total: +44

Analysis: Excellent, breaking away! Now we're only on par to average what, 132 points or something? Go me go!

Obligatory Picture:

Ugh. Here we go! More posts to make!

Keep it in the family.


Gint-A-Cuffs VI: Round 1!

Hello Ginter Mafia!

You may be going, "GG, where the eff have you been?" Never fear, I have been quitting my job, moving a few hundred miles away, starting a PhD program and a few other things. You know, nothing big yo.

But yeah, seriously, it has been a little crazy and I've barely had time to actually move let alone trade and unfortunately not do my Gint-A-Cuffs post yet. Well, a timely reminder phone call from my lovely wife ended with, "DO YOU GINT-A-CUFFS POST!" to which I replied, "Just eyeballing it I'm pretty sure I lost." And she said she didn't care. So here goes nothing.


Box Topper: The U.S. Capitol (+5)

Running Total: 5

Analysis: So... yeah. That's about as lousy of a box topper as one can get. Yeehaw. You can see my enthusiasm for this box of Ginter growing by the minute. The only redeeming factor is that my favorite team, the Washington Nationals, reside more or less at the U.S. Capitol. That should be worth bonus points, right?

Pack 1:

Jackie Robinson
Reggie Jackson
Anthony Rizzo
Pedro Martinez
Julio Tehran
Adam Wainwright SP : +2
PPs Troy Tulowitzki : +2
Mini Hal Newhouser

Pack Total: +4
Running Total: +9

Analysis: Er, yeah. Fantastic start! I have avoided Yankees though, so I can say I'm 100% clean... for now. Yankees are the STDs of Ginter. The more packs you open, the more likely it is you're going to contract one. Yuck. There are no antibiotics for them, either!

Pack 2:

Michael Cuddyer
Andrew Lambo
Carlos "I suck so bad the Yankees had to sign me" Beltran : -1
Todd Frazier
Mike Napoli
Kyle Seager
World Capitals Jerusalem : +2
Mini Laura Phelps Sweatt

Pack Total : +1
Running Total : +10

Analysis: So, with this average of 2.5 points per pack, that will land us solidly in last place with a grand total of... less than 100. I am too ashamed to do math right now. Also, Yankees. Eww, what did I just say about Yankees?

Pack 3:

David "BIG PAPI" Ortiz
Jason "Not the Say Hey Kid" Heyward
Franciso Liriano
Mike Schmidt
Dan Straily
Barbed "WTF is this?" Wire SP : +2
PPs Justin Verlander : +2
Mini A&G Back Jered Weaver : +2
BB Mini Queen Victoria : +3

Pack Total: +9
Running Total: +19

Analysis: Ahhh, so its going to be one of THOSE boxes... where you get packs with multiple minis, then packs with no minis. I hate these boxes. I had a bunch of boxes like this last year! GRRRR! Feel the rage.... at least they were point-worthy minis.

Pack 4:

Matt Adams
Mariano "Didn't I Retire?" Rivera : -1
Brett Oberholtzer
Willie McCovey
Matt Besser
Tanner Foust : +1
Natural Wonders Giant's Causeway : +2
Mini Desmond Jennings

Pack Total: +2
Running Total: +21

Analysis: Right... so either it is going to be feast or famine. Lovely! BRING IT ON!

Obligatory Picture of Point Cards:

There we go, first post is up. The journey of 24 packs and a box toppers begins with a single post... THAT is some Gint-A-Cuffs wisdom you can take to the bank!

Keep it in the family.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Pre-Gint-a-Cuffs Bout Thoughts

Greetings Mafia,

I hope you've all recovered from your pack ripping hangovers. I know I haven't, but I like to be drunk on the smell of fresh Ginter wax about 360 days out of the year. Those other 5 days are the ones leading up to the following year's release to detox from the aging Ginter. While Topps Allen and Ginter is like a fine wine and gets better with age, in order to properly enjoy the new vintage one must cleanse the palate and mind.

Unless there are discounted blasters on sale for $12 a pop at Target. In which case all bets are off.

I figured I'd come to you with an update for Gint-A-Cuffs VI and a few thoughts I've been having.

1) Favorite Player and Teams have been opened for declaration. Some of the contestants' declarations are obviously no surprise. I mentioned an earth-shattering announcement. Announcing the Ginter Godfather's Favorite Player for Gint-A-Cuffs VI... Buffy the Yankeevampire Slayer's very own...


You're probably going "Big whoop, whatever, GiGo, you suck at math, you're going to lose for sure." Maybe. BUT HOW CAN YOU NOT GET EXCITED OVER THAT FACE!? Besides, I'll pull a Felicia Day auto, a Felicia Day relic, a Felicia Day base card, a Felicia Day glossy 1/1, a Felicia Day mini, a Felicia Day A&G back mini, a Felicia Day black bordered mini, a Felicia Day A&G flag back mini, and a Felicia Day wood 1/1 mini, and who will be laughing then? Myself and my army of Felicia Day cards as we set up an epic campaign of Dungeons and Dragons, thats who.

OK, so I realize the unliklihood of ACTUALLY pulling a full sized Felicia Day out of my box of Ginter, but if they miniaturized her, then hey, anything is possible, right?

Also, my declared Favorite Team is the Washington Nationals.

2) Production is down, hits will be up. Big, big hits are bound to result in some of the highest Gint-A-Cuff scores ever seen.

I'm not talking about necessarily having people pull DNA relics or cut autos (though I wouldn't put it out of the question...) but with roughly 1:6 boxes having a RIP card, and in general the hits and rarer cards being more plentiful due to fewer boxes for them to hide in, people are going to be hitting some GREAT stuff in their boxes. I can't recall how many RIP cards we saw pulled last year, but I'd say at least double that. I pity the people like myself whom are doomed to have a below-average box... I mean, that other Ginter Godfather guy who is going to continue to have below-average boxes. Not this one, no siree, nothing but blue skies, RIP cards and 1/1's abound for this guy!

3) I've already seen what was pulled out of most of the case my allocated Gint-A-Cuffs box was from. Derek Jeter RIP Card 1/25 (not pulled by me, of course), red ink auto of Danielle Kang, red bordered minis box topper pack, Urban Fauna, and possibly either another RIP card or a Double RIP card. At any rate, it is NOT looking too good for the GiGo this year. Ah well, never say never!

As always, keep it in the family.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Happy 2014 Ginter Hangover Day

Well, I got so drunk on ripping Ginter that this post has to come a day late...

Greetings Mafia,

2014 Ginter is upon us, and of course that means Gint-A-Cuffs. I have a unique and possibly never-before-done move that will simply STUN the Gint-A-Cuffs universe, assuming the Commisioner OK's it. The $5 he's going to find in his lunch sack says he'll be fine with it.

Now, don't worry. This isn't going to give me any sort of unfair advantage. In fact, I am purposefully tying a hand behind my back (so to speak). However, desperate times call for desperate measures. There is almost no upside and I'm dumb for doing it, but who has several people's thumbs and doesn't care? This guy.

This year's set is great. Production is down about 40%. Things are easier to hit all around, there are some interesting new additions (some good, some bad), and all around it is a great product once again. I love the design, I love what they've done with the inserts and minis, the Pastime's Pastimes are fantastic looking in black... needless to say, resisting the urge to open this sealed box designated for Gint-A-Cuffs is going to be... taxing. Possibly on my wallet. Because I want to open it and every other box of Ginter within a 12,000 mile radius. I'll leave you with a quick list of loves and hates for this year's Ginter. As always, keep it in the family.

-Ginter Godfather

2014 Ginter LOVES:

-Felicia Day. Duh.
-Plentiful RIP cards (never pulled one myself, REALLY hoping to. This year is the year, I think... c'mon double RIP card!)
-Framed mini relics fall roughly 2 per case. They are SCARCE. Will help their value tremendously.
-Snoop Lion/Dogg. Fo' shizzle.
-Metal minis. I haven't seen one in person, and probably won't. But, it's a mini and therefore I must love it.
-Box toppers. They're smaller, so they are easier to store/display. They look AWESOME. I love the cabinet cards and the cabinet-sized cards. Nothing like having a GIANT CARD OF YASIEL PUIG.
-Gold retail minis. They're baaaack!
-Distribution of hits. The way they fall, ROUGHLY 5:6 boxes will have only 2 relics. Odds are very good to get an autograph, printing plate, or RIP card. GOOD JOB TOPPS!

2014 Ginter HATES:

-Urban Fauna #2. It's a cockroach. I hate cockroaches. They give me nightmares. For real.
-Gold retail minis. Doing the math, ONE set requires over $1000 of retail to be bought. That's with perfect collation. It's crazy... like a fox! With parasites.
-Full-sized Relics. 2 per box! Not even sure it is possible to NOT get 2 relics. Last year I saw a box opened that had a relic, an auto, and a RIP card. I want a box like that.
-Carlos Gomez card #231. You open 4 boxes, you'd expect to complete the main set 1-300. Yeah, Carlos decided to steal 2nd, 3rd, and home in one go and made it out of all of my boxes. He better be hiding in the Gint-A-Cuffs box or there might be a hit squad out on him.
-"SP" Minis. Yeah, no secret here. They aren't SP'd. Think about it. Odds are 1:10. So at least 2 per box, sometimes 3. At 12 boxes per case, you're looking at about 2 cases with perfect collation to complete the set. We'll call it 3 for good measure and you really should have most of them. After you factor out the insert minis (falling 1:5, so about 4 or 5 per box), and the A&G and Black Bordered minis, you end up with, on average, 12 base minis per box. 12 boxes per case, 144 base minis per case. At 300 of them, you're going to need at LEAST 3 boxes with amazing collation to put together one set, with it being more likely to need 5 or 6 based on the sheer number and impossibility of amazing collation. Just a little food for thought!
-"SP" base. I'd like to see these go from 1:2 to at least 1:6, maybe as rare as 1:12. Let's make "Short-Print" *really* mean something. Or, split it. 301-325 inserted 1:6, 326-350 are SSP at 1:24. Something like that. Just a thought!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

2014 is almost here...

Greetings Ginter Mafia,

Once again we are faced with the second most exciting time of the year -- the annual release of the single greatest baseball card product to be produced ever. 2014 Topps Allen and Ginter is primed for release early in July, and we're right around six weeks out from release. Exciting.

You may ask what the single most exciting time of the year is. That's a dumb question. I know there are "no dumb questions" but come on, if Ginter Release is the second greatest day of the year, Gint-A-Cuffs is the single most exciting time of the year. And that's more of a season than a single day. So there you have it.

As for this year, you can be dang sure I'll be throwing down and cuffing it up with the rest of the folks to make up for my last-place finish from last year. Yeah. We'll shoot for something better than last place. Hah!

It's a mad scramble around here as I try and put together all of my sets and organize my collection for a move, document needs and try and get a few trades done, as well as pare down the collection to free up space and a small amount of capital for... yep, 2014 Ginter. I'm pulling out most of the stops and tapping my usual funding sources for my Ginter addiction this year, as well as adding a few extra. Can you say metal detecting? So far I'm up $0.09 from the playground I scoured. It would be a full dime, but there was a small child who pestered me endlessly and I let her keep the penny she found. I'm not THAT cold and heartless.

Happy hunting and stay tuned. And as always, keep it in the family.


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Happy New Years! 2014 Goals

Happy New Years Ginter Mafia!

I figured it was worth making a few goals, and the only real way to do that is to put them down on paper. Er, electronic paper. I'll try and keep updating to see how things are progressing, maybe once every few months.

Goal 1) Win 6 contests.

Those that know me, know that I love free stuff. The one free thing that I love most is free cards. I did pretty well last year, winning several contests from Panini and even one from Beckett. This year, we're shooting for six total contest wins. That's one per two months. Not a lot of control over this, per se, other than entering as many as I can. It'll be fun. Oh, and it helps that I've already got the first one under my belt -- nabbed a #PaniniWildCard win during the Chargers/Bengals game on Twitter this afternoon!

Goal 2) Win Gint-A-Cuffs

Yeah, after last year's embarrassing (albeit 'successful'?) showing, this year we're going to shoot for the best showing ever. Oh, and I have to beat my wife. At Gint-A-Cuffs, you naughty people!

Goal 3) Complete my base, inserts, and mini sets of 2011, 2012, and 2013 Ginter.

Ambitious, so say the least. I have a lot of progress to go, but I think we can get her done, and if not make some serious progress.

Goal 4) Pull my first non-printing plate 1/1

Yeah, this is entirely luck based, but it is inevitable!

Goal 5) Complete 120 trades

That's 10 a month. Easy day.

Goal 6) Pay it forward at least 3 times.

Exactly what it says.

Goal 7) Trade up/buy/whatever to an unripped RIP card via the Ginter Project

I think 7 goals is a good start. I'll probably add to it later, but wanted to get something started.

As always, keep it in the family.