Friday, December 16, 2016

A Bump and Run Christmas Gift

'Tis the gift-giving season and I have never been very good at bestowing gifts upon those I care about.  It's not selecting the surprise that is the problem; my issue in exchanging comes with keeping things a secret.  On multiple occasions, I've walked into the same room as my better half, gift in hand, before the big day.  Furthermore, in a momentary lapse of judgement, I've also asked her opinion on the gift itself before I've even given it to her.  In short, secret-keeping is not a skill that I can list on my resume.

Thank goodness Santa Claus isn't as ham-fisted and loose-lipped as I am.

One person who is clearly much better at this than I am is fellow Cubs fan Trevor, of Bump and Run Football Cards fame.  Yesterday, after a long day of dealing with spirited junior high kids, I came home to find an unexpected PWE in my mailbox.  That's a sight that's sure to brighten the day of any card collector, an exceptionally pleasant surprise.

Trevor even went the extra mile and included this lovely note of Christmas prose and tidings.  I'm starting to feel pretty festive myself too, after this surprise "bump and run."  Now, if this was me trying to surprise a fellow blogger, I would have asked them if they had gotten the specific cards I sent them before I'd even placed the envelope in a mailbox.

Of course, there was more than just a note included within the plain, white envelope - Trevor gave me the gift of Cubbie cardboard for Christmas and I couldn't be happier:

Ah - Starlin Castro, how I wish the longtime Cub and perennial hope for the franchise could have been around for when the club ultimately ascended the mountain.  But, without him, the Cubs don't get Ben Zobrist and who knows what happens then?

Bowman isn't generally a product I often dabble in, so any base cards from those checklists are almost guaranteed to be new to me.  This is no exception.

Retail oddballs rock and, as I mentioned in my "final countdown" of the best cards of 2016 , I truly hope that the Lids and Marketside promotions from earlier this year reopen those floodgates.  Meanwhile, this 1990 Kmart Super Stars Ryne Sandberg, showing of his powerful cut, will more than suffice.

Coincidentally, a lot of our household's Christmas shopping has been done at Kmart in recent years.  Thus, whenever I see that retail chain's name, I immediately associate it with the holidays.  How appropriate!

Here we have a good, old fashioned showdown - as in, 2002 Wizards of the Coast MLB Showdown.  To be completely honest, I've never actually played the card game as Wizards intended (Pokemon, though, that's another story), but that certainly hasn't stopped me from adding the game cards to my collection, strategy cards and all.

I love the mound-conference shot, an event which is not often documented on cardboard.  Here we have Todd Hundley, Ricky Gutierrez, Julio Zuleta and an unidentified pitcher and second baseman having an in-depth conversation, which I can't help but imagine went something like this:

Off topic - the more I think about it, I've come to realize that Bull Durham may very well be my favorite of all baseball movies.  The flick still makes me laugh out loud today and I find myself quoting it on an almost daily basis.  Although, 61* does give it a run for it's money.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Trevor closed his glad Christmas tidings with one more shiny card; however, it's technically not a Cubs card.  I think I'm okay with it's inclusion though:

A minor league Addison Russell, from 2012 Elite Extra Edition?  Yes, please!

It's almost to the point where I forget that this young star ever spent time in the Oakland organization, like Rizzo with the Padres or Hendricks with the Rangers - they all just seem like Cubs, blue through and through, now.

I bet winning that World Series together had something to do with it.

 Equally bizarre sights.

Thank you, Trevor for the generous Christmas surprise.  As a fellow Cubs collector, I know it must have been difficult to part with a few of your coveted Cubs and I greatly appreciate it.  I'm especially fond of that Oakland Addy.  I'll be sure to return the favor with some Cubs and Packers (blech!), as soon as possible.

Of course, it won't be much of  a surprise, now that I've told you.  But, then, that's just how I roll.


  1. Hey, it's a gift. No return is necessary/expected. Enjoy it, and Merry Christmas!

  2. Bull Durham is my favorite baseball movie and some day I will upgrade from VHS.
    I'm about 99.9% sure that is Felix Heredia on the mound in the middle of the conference.
    Christmas cardboard is the best!