Saturday, March 23, 2019

Ichiro's Retirement

Image result for ichiro final game 
So this week marked the end of a remarkable career. Despite the late start (he spent 9 years playing in Japan before coming over to the Mariners in 2001), Ichiro still easily carved out a Hall of Fame career, starting by winning League MVP and ROY in the same year and breaking the all time single season hits record with 262. He had 10 straight 200+ hit seasons (which in unbelievable), was a 10 time All Star and has numerous accolades on his resume. Ichiro's influence on other Japanese born players cannot be mearsured, to put simply, Ichiro is a legend. He went out in front of him home country this past week, as part of the 2 game opening day stand against the A's, and it was  site to see. To able to play his final MLB games in front his countrymen had to be such a surreal moment for him. It was also emotional, as evidenced by new Mariners pitcher Yusei Kikuchi being so overwhelming he starting to cry as he was embracing Ichiro. The amount of respect everyone has for Ichiro shows not only what kind of player he was, but also what kind of man he was. It's definitely the end of a remarkable era. For me personally, although I never PC'd Ichiro (his stuff was always so expensive!) I do have two things of Ichiro that stand out in my collection. In honor of his retirement, I'm reshowing them in tribute. They are definitely huge parts of my collection.

From the loaded Topps Tier Case I opened last year. I had already absolutely killed this break with a Jeter Auto numbered to 15, a Giancarlo Stanton Platinum Patch #1/1, an Ozzie Smith/Paul DeJong Dual Auto, and a Big Mac Auto. But to put a cherry on top of this was in the very last pack of the break. Not only was it an Ichiro Triple Patch/Auto but a #1/1 to boot! It was such an unbelievable pull and I was so thrilled to pull such a big card. It's definitely a favorite in my collection, even more special that I pulled it myself.

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And of course one of the biggest prized possessions in my entire collection. A game used autographed Ichiro jersey from the 2015 season. MLB Authenticated, this is just a jaw dropping piece of memorabilia and it's so awesome to own such an amazing piece. Doesn't get any better than a jersey that Ichiro actually wore in an MLB game.

Thanks for the memories Ichiro, can't wait until you get inducted into the Hall of Fame as a no doubt (hopefully unanimous) 1st ballot selection

Monday, March 18, 2019

Box Breaks: 4 Boxes of 2018-19 Optic Choice Basketball

Originally an Asia exclusive like it's Prizm counterpart, Panini ended up releasing some of this through their website. The format is pretty straightforward. You only get 6 cards per box. You get a Silver Holo, then 2 Choice Exclusive Rated Rookies, 1Autograph, 1 Choice 1 Red and 1 additional parallel which could be an additional Red, or a really hard to find Dragon, a Numbered to 8 Black Gold or a #1/1 Nebula. There are zero base cards so it's a pretty quick rip. It's basically a feast or famine product. People though bought a ton of this and it sold out before the end of the day. I decided to take a shot at 4 boxes. Originally $110 a box, I luckily was able to use a 20% promo code to lessen the sting. Here's what I got.

Silver Holo Allonzo Trier RC
Khyri Thomas RC
Damian Lillard
Stanley Johnson
Al Horford

Base Rated Rookies Choice
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander RC
Josh Okogie RC
Jarred Vanderbilt RC
Gary Trent Jr. RC
Allonzo Trier RC
Anfernee Simons RC
Devonte Graham RC
Melvin Frazier Jr. RC

Prizm Choice Red
Jalen Brunson RC (#79/88)
Hamidou Diallo RC (#56/88)
Elie Okobo RC (#2/88(
Marshon Brooks (#24/88)
Eric Gordon (#11/88)
JJ Redick (#27/88)

Dragon Parallel
Jeff Teague


JJ Redick (#1/1)

Rated Rookie Signatures Red
Anfernee Simons
Elie Okobo

Rated Rookies Signatures Black Gold
De'Anthony Melton

Signature Series Choice
Landry Shamet Redemption (like the 4th redemption I've pulled of his)

Of course it sucked. I pulled a #1/1, rare Dragon parallel and Black Gold Rookie Auto and none of them are worth a shit. Cards are nice, but I got destroyed as usual. Pics of cards



Top 5 Pulls of 2019
#1 2018-19 Optic Basketball Lebron James Purple Stars FOTL Exclusive Parallel (#5/13)
#2 2018-19 Optic Basketball Signature Series Gold Trae Young (#1/10)
#3 2018-19 Prizm Basketball Robert Williams III Black Gold Prizm RC (#3/5)
#4 2018 Select Sam Darnold FOTL Neon Orange Pulsar Prizm RC (#2/9)
#5 2018 Contenders Football Nick Chubb FOTL Red Zone Auto Parallel