Saturday, March 22, 2014

#329 Matt Holliday

#329 Matt Holliday
First impression of what’s going on: Looks like Matt Holliday has the beat on a fly ball hit his way. I don’t know much about photography, but I can only imagine the lens needed to get an image that clear from the distance this had to be taken from. Probably one of those that are the size of Prince Fielder’s thigh. Holliday is listed as an outfielder but I believe he plays left field more often than not. So the photographer was probably in/near the first base dugout. Crazy.

ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 1: Matt Holliday #7 of the St. Louis Cardinals catches a fly ball against the San Francisco Giants in the seventh inning during game one of a doubleheader at Busch Stadium on June 1, 2013 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Cardinals beat the Giants 8-0. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

The Reality of the Photo: The caption gives us just about every piece of information we’d need about the play. The only thing missing is the batter, but hopefully narrowing it down to the 7th inning is enough help. Let’s go to the BOXSCORE.

Always nice to shutout the defending World Champions. And for the record, the Cardinals swept the double header by beating the Giants in Game 2, 7-1.

Luckily, there was only one flyball to left field in the 7th inning and the batter was Nick Noonan.

In addition to being a good photo, the card fits into a couple of niches.

First up, Holliday is another one wearing sunglasses as an accessory instead of eye protection.

We get a sneak peak at a Nike logo on his shoe for some Free Advertising.

The Cardinals wore alternate jerseys for both games in the double header.

And lastly, I don’t actually collect cards of guys named Matt (my name), but I know some people collect cards of people with their names. Holliday is the second player to join the Players Named Matt niche.

I see Bob Gibson peaking but he doesn’t get a cameo appearance.

On to the back:

Rookie Fact: Matt was the third Colorado Rockies rookie ever to hit a grand slam, 6/12/2004.

I did a quick search but aside from searching every rookie from every season to see if they hit  grand slam, I couldn't find the other two. I did find a game recap where Nolan Arenado hit one as a rookie last season. There was no mention in the article that he was the first Rockies rookie to do it since…so and so did it. Oh well.

Before I forget, tying this card to A-Rod’s card from yesterday is the red text designating a league leader.

Information I’ll be tracking:

Card Number: #329
Player Name: Matt Holliday
Team: St. Louis Cardinals
Position: Outfield
Game Date: June 1, 2013
Opponent: San Francisco Giants
Stadium: Busch Stadium
Division: National League Central
Home/Away: Home
Outcome of the game: 8-0, Cardinals over the Giants, Win for the player depicted
Alternate/Throwback Jersey: Yes, alternate
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Birthdate: 1/15/1980
Birthplace: Oklahoma
Cameos by: N/A
Photographer: Dilip Vishnawat
Niche collections this card could fit into: League Leader in Italics, Alternate Jersey, Sunglasses, Free Advertising, Players Named Matt, Unnecessary Censorship

My Grade: I don’t really hate the Cardinals, but I toe the company line when it comes to the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry. Holliday, however, has been on my s-list since this incident a couple years back.

That said, this is pretty nice card. Despite the miscrop by Topps, it hit several niches. I can’t justify giving it any lower than an A aside from my bias.


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