2008 Tristar Prospects Plus Hobby Box
20 packs, 6 cards per packEvery Box contains (4) Autograph Cards, (1) Game-Used Memorabilia Card, and (4) Parallel Cards
Cost: $24.95 (Blowout Cards - Black Friday deal)
These cards are of surprisingly nice quality. The stock is sufficient. The design is fairly unique; an industrial look with a splash of color.
As is the case with these type of prospect boxes, there are a lot of names I didn't recognize. But there are enough well-known prospects that it keeps it enjoyable. Look at Gordon Beckham's neck. Friggin' huge.
I was glad to get two of my favorite young Orioles: Matusz and Arrieta. The New Baby Birds.
Here is the first of the nine hits. Bryan Shaw (s/n: #36/50, green version). As you can see it appears Shaw is pitching in the dark. There are some issues with lighting in this set but it isn't a major distraction, and in fact it looks pretty cool in this case. Shaw was in Advanced A ball in '09. At age 21 his era was 4.70 in 107.1 ip.
Brad Hand (s/n: #19/25, yellow version). Hand struggled mightily in Greensboro (A ball) in 2009 (4.86 era, 127.2 ip), but he was just 19 years old so he has plenty of time. This is one of the first cards I've ever seen in which the player was born in 1990 or later. I recall being shocked when the back of cards reported birth dates of 1980. I'm getting old.
Lance Lynn (s/n: #08/50, PROminent die cut green). This 22 year old Cardinals prospect was very effective in AA last season (2.92 era, 11-4, 126.1 innings pitched). He was promoted to AAA and was strong in his one start before the season ended. He is 6'5" and 250 pounds. Not a bad pull.
Madison Bumgarner (s/n: #16/25, PROminent die cut yellow). This is the pull of the box. Bumgarner has been brilliant in two professional seasons. His minor league lifetime record stands at 27-5 with a combined 1.65 era in 273.1 innings (A and AA ball). He was just as impressive in his cup of coffee with the big club (1.80, 10 inning, 10 strikeouts). He will be just 20 years old in 2010.
Ryan Flaherty (s/n: #009/199) is now age 23. He has not played above A ball yet. He did hit 20 home runs but at his age, at that low level of minor league ball, it's nothing to get excited about yet. This game used jersey card is a good example of how terrible a white jersey looks when combined with white cardboard all around it.
Josh Lindblom seems to be a solid prospect as well. He got beat up in AA (4.71 era, 57.1 ip), but was strong in AAA (3-0, 2.54 era, 39 ip). He is in the Dodgers' system and is just 22 years old.
Brian Price was in the Red Sox system in 2009. He does not appear to be a very good prospect at this point.
Ike is the son of former major league pitcher Ron Davis. Ike Davis was drafted by the Mets. He does not have any professional at-bats listed.
Edgar Olmos (s/n: 19/25, auto) is a 19 year old Marlins' minor league pitcher who has very little experience in pro ball so far.
That's pretty much all the cards worth scanning.
There's a chance at some nice autos with some low s/n inserts as well, so I feel this box is a worthwhile buy at $25. However I see it priced $50 often as well. Somewhere in-between the two prices is about the ceiling I'd pay.
Thanks for reading!