28 August 2008

Pack Break: 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes (Hobby)

Or, "The Poor Man's Moments & Milestones" as I like to call it. Eight cards per pack including one parallel. Scans accompanied by text directly from the back of the card.

Here we go...

162 Stan Musial
1948 - Wins third NL MVP Award
One of the most affable and accomplished players ever to suit up in the Major Leagues, Musial was a three-time NL Most Valuable Player for the Cardinals. After claiming MVP honors in 1943 and 1946, the lefty led the Senior Circuit in batting average (.376), runs (135) and RBI (131) in 1948 to add a third trophy.

53 C.C. Sabathia
2007 - Wins AL Cy Young Award
One of the game's most consistent hurlers through his first six seasons, Sabathia won at least 11 games, threw over 180 innings and fanned more than 135 batters each year from 2001-06. In 2007, the lefty won the AL Cy Young Award as he eclipsed his career highs by posting 19 wins, 241 innings and 209 K's.

166 Scott Kazmir
2007 - Leads American League in K's
After winning 10 games and topping 160 K's in each of his first two full seasons with Tampa Bay, Kazmir made a significant leap in 2007 by leading the American League with 239 punchouts. The left-hander finished the year on a roll by notching double-digit strikeouts in four of his final seven contests.

Three lefties in a row...

68 Hanley Ramirez (Green Parallel, #418/499)
2006 - Wins NL Rookie of the Year Award
Few Major League rookies have ever hit the ground running like Ramirez did in 2006. On his way to NL ROY honors, the Marlins shortstop became the first NL newcomer to score over 110 runs and steal over 50 bases. He was also the fifth ML player since 1900 with over 45 doubles and 50 steals.

88 Brad Penny
2006 - Named MLB All-Star Game Starter
With a 10-2 record during the opening half of the 2006 season, it was easy to understand why Penny was selected as the National League starting hurler for the MLB All-Star Game. After pitching in the Midsummer Classic, the righty finished the season tied for the NL lead with 16 triumphs.

155 Erik Bedard
2007 - Leads AL in K's Per Nine Innings
It was a year of strikeouts for Bedard in 2007, and that was just fine with the left-hander and the Orioles. He fanned 10.93 batters every nine innings last year, which was the best mark in the AL. Bedard had at least 10 K's on seven occasions with a season-high 15 taking place on 7/7 against Texas

191 Chase Utley - 2B, Ryan Howard - 1B, Jimmy Rollins - SS
2007 - Philadelphia Wins the NL East Division
In 2007, the Phillies celebrated their first NL East Division title since 1993 thanks in large part to the tremendous play of Utley, Howard and Rollins. Philadelphia ended the year on a 13-4 run as its trio of superstars combined for 21 homers, 59 RBI and 63 runs during the final month of the season.

127 Joe DiMaggio
1941 - Hits Safely in 56 Straight Games
Named the AL Most Valuable Player in 1941, DiMaggio embarked on a batting binge the likes of which have never been seen in the Majors. The Yankees superstar went 1-for-4 on 5/15 against Chicago to start an MLB record 56-game hitting streak that finally came to an end on 7/17 at Cleveland.

Whatcha think? This is no doubt a fun set and I'll continue to pick up a pack or two whenever I'm in the shop. The highlights are the cards of the retired ballers and how their heroic moments or feats completely dominate those of the newer guys in most cases. DiMaggio and Penny are not even worthy of a comparison, but each team is covered with at least one representative in the series. I have four more packs to break and will share those with you whenever I'm feeling the itch to type.

- J.C.F.

No comments: