Friday, May 18, 2018

North Side by Northwestern

One of the over-arching themes that's connected most of my recent posts on Wrigley Roster Jenga is my having difficulty keeping up with the constant flurry of roster moves that the Cubs have made since mid-April.  Bouts with sickness, injury, and overwork have caused the North Siders to cycle through more minor leaguers than they normally would have to by this point in the season; as a result, many of the waiver claims and minor league signings that were made during the winter months have ended up donning blue pinstripes.  For this, I have been wholly unprepared, as a lot of these sorts of players never even sniff the MLB roster.

Continuing this theme, last night, Theo and crew called upon lefty reliever, Randy Rosario.  After a series of short starts left the Chicago bullpen in tatters, some literal relief was needed from AAA Iowa.  The LOOGY prospect was claimed from the Twins last November and impressed the brass in Spring Training.  Of course, his only giving up one earned run in 17.1 innings so far in 2018 is probably much more impressive than any Cactus League performance.

But, this post isn't about the alliterative Randy Rosario... like I said, I'm way far behind.  Today's spotlight is focused on Luke Farrell:

Farrell was one of the first reinforcements brought up from the bushes in 2018 and I'm only just now getting around to tracking down a card for my CATRC.  Called up in mid-April, Farrell was another off-season waiver claim who's services ended up being needed in the Show.  The son of John bounced from the Kansas City chain to the Cincinatti org to the Cubs bullpen, before earning a ticket back to Des Moines for allowing back-to-back walk-off homers to the hated Red Birds.  That certainly won't endear you to those that bleed blue.

Never a major prospect, Farrell doesn't have much of a cardboard presence, making it difficult to track him down for my tome. Complicating the search was the fact that his few mainstream checklist appearances have come in unlicensed, pre-rookie Panini products, like the Prizm Perennial Draft Picks single that you see above.  These overly-shiny, failed Bowman Chrome competitors are generally not recalled in the best of lights. 

However, though I would much prefer a card with logos, at least Farrell is wearing his purple Northwestern Wildcats uniform on this one.  Northwestern University is "Chicago's Big Ten team," after all.

Farrell's baseball career has taken him from Northwestern to the North Side.

My wife is away on a business trip for the next couple of days; so, rather than sit alone at home, I decided to take a trip to one of my LCS options.  With no other obligations yesterday evening, I took my sweet time perusing the shelves of quarter boxes that sit, unwanted and rarely touched, in the corner of the store.  I had a feeling that I remembered seeing some Prizm stuff in there the last time that I browsed through these 3200-count boxes, but I wasn't so sure about that.  However, it's not like I had anything better to do.

Lo and behold, I found half a row of the most reflective card set of all-time.  Thankfully, Luke Farrell was hiding somewhere in that foil brick.  I don't anyone has ever been as happy to burn their retinas as I was at that moment!

Of course, I couldn't find any of my other modern commons needs (2012 Heritage #169 or 2017 Update #US208, anyone?) in the mass of boxes, so I sheepishly approached the counter with a single card and a quarter ready to go.  Is it just me, or does anyone else feel slightly embarrassed when making such a small purchase?  The shop-keep must have felt that way before too, as he waved me away and told me it was on the house.  Either he's a really nice dude, didn't want to bother ringing up a single (relatively worthless) card, or he just believes that no self-respecting human being should ever lay down their hard-earned money on Panini Prizm.  At any rate, that gesture made me one happy camper!

 I think these are the only other cards from Panini's Prizm Perennial Draft Picks in my collection.

I can now officially welcome Luke Farrell to my Cubs All-Time Roster Collection as I continue to make a little headway in keeping up with the roster moves of 2018.  First, I was able to track down Cory Mazzoni, now Farrell, and hopefully soon I'll be able to locate an Efren Navarro, David Bote, Justin Hancock, and a Randy Rosario.  If you have a lead on any of these guys, I'd be more than happy to talk trade.

Meanwhile, if the Cubbies could call upon a prospect of which I have a baseball card next time they need a supplement, I would selfishly be okay with that - maybe Adbert Alzolay, Oscar de la Cruz, Stephen Bruno, Duane Underwood, Corey Black, etc.  I just need a little bit more time to finish catching up!

(But, seriously, I hope they do what's best for the club; I'm not that self-centered and/or crazy!)

1 comment:

  1. There was a nice article a while back in the Northwestern alumni magazine about Luke Ferrell. Nice to see him make it to the show.