Tonight's reader pack comes from Nick via email...
(My notes are in italics)
Josh Barfield. First card in the pack has him on the Indians but
shows him wearing a Padres jersey. I hate when this happens...it
feels like the card it broken. We can't fix this with Photoshop yet?
Ryan Sweeney. Rookie card. Back of the card says "Sweeney finished
his MLB debut on a positive note..." which, translated into baseball
card language means "he sucks."
Chad Paronto. Apparently Upper Deck now just skips over years where
guys were in the minors and prefers lots of blank space over minor
league stats. This Paronto card jumps from 03 to 06 with no
explanation, leaving me to deduce that his 9.45 era probably meant a
demotion. This sucks. I love minor league stats on the back of a
card, mostly because I get to see what backwoods hickhole they came
from but also because, like in the case of the Fleer Roger Clemens
rookie, you can see how a major leaguer put up ridiculous stats before
getting called up.
Jaret Wright. The photos on these cards are beautiful...even if this
is the second card that shows the guy playing for his old team.
David Weathers. Shows him signing autographs while wearing his glove
on his head. Hilarious!
Magglio Ordonez. Good call by Upper Deck planting photographers at
the playoffs. This isn't a very good shot - Magglio is running like a
moron toward a celebration-pile - but it's still a hell of a lot
cooler than David Weathers standing in his warmups.
Joel Zumaya. Awesome card, and a famous photograph, of Zumaya
celebrating the ALCS. Someone's got champagne. Someone's taking a
cameraphone pictures. People are screaming and grabbing his head.
Just awesome. One question, though, did Upper Deck take this picture
or did they buy it from the AP?
Jeff Weaver. Pumping his fist after doing something good in the World
Series. Very cool. Shitty hair.
Hanley Ramirez. Bad photo on the front is made worse (to a Red Sox
fan) by all the talk about how good his ROY season was.
Nick Swisher. Cool use of the card's space with a shot of Swisher
flapping his arms for some reason.
Jeremy Bonderman. Yet another Tigers celebration card, this time of
Bonderman tipping his cap to the crowd. Classy.
Orlando Hudson. Good move changing the uniforms for the Diamondbacks.
Mike Mussina. Classy shot of the man in action...but there are 4 Nike
logos in this picture.
Overall: The photos are real pretty and the design is simple. I'm
not a huge fan of the team-colored streaks coming in on the team and
position sections, but I've seen a lot worse. As for the players...I
guess this is pretty good out of 500 to choose from.
Nick's assessment of the set is fairly positive, while I found this set bordering on the boring. That's not to say that he didn't get a decent pack. The Success Rate is 53.3% (8/15), with Mussina, Bonderman, Swisher, Ordonez, Ramirez, Weaver, O-Dog and the clearly stoked Zumaya.
And Another Thing... Here's a fun fact about the Upper Deck set: like its Fleer imprint, Upper Deck is printing out the full team name 'Colorado Rockies' on the front of base cards for players of that team, rather than just the team nickname. I find this interesting, especially because it can't just be an Upper Deck thing; I'd have to think that Topps is also tied into this somehow, but because Topps prints all the full team names on the fronts of their base cards you don't notice the 'Colorado' in 'Colorado Rockies'.
This is especially interesting when you consider the 2007 Heritage set, since for some reason the Angels are listed only as 'Angels' (every other time has some form of place name or place abbreviation). It seems that faced with the prospect of having to find a way to squeeze 'Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim' onto the front of its cards, Topps didn't bother to even make an effort.
Email me with your pack and I might post it on the blog!