Wednesday, January 31, 2018

36 Pack Wax Match: Pack 5

The Stage has been set. The Match is underway. Who will come out on top? There’s only one way to find out.

Keep going, and open that fifth pack!

As we dive into this pack, the 1990 set has reclaimed the lead thanks to its pack four victory. Let's go!

Hall of Famer +1
The 1988 pack gets off to a fast start with this card of Hall of Famer Cal Ripken. That's in interesting face on Billy Ripken. Maybe he's upset that the graphic on the bottom of the card is covering the knob of his bat? He'll have to better next time.

Unfortunately for the 1988 pack, that was the only scoring card. So, it has to hope that 1990 doesn't get any points in its pack.

Red Sox +1
Well, so much for that. The 1990 pack grabs two points with this great Marty Barrett card. Once again, the composition of this card is fantastic. The red border nicely frames the Red Sox home whites uniform. Barrett's head sticking into the border really adds some depth to the card. I love it.

Believe it, or not, that ends the scoring! Each pack had one card give it any points. Thankfully for the 1990 pack, its card was twice as good to let it take the pack.

It also allows it to build on its lead. It now stands at two!

Box Bottom: 1988 +1 (1-0)
Pack 1: 1990 +6 (1-1)
Pack 2: 1990 +4 (2-1)
Pack 3: 1988 +3 (2-2)
Pack 4: 1990 +1 (3-2)
Pack 5: 1990 +1 (4-2)

What will happen next time?

Monday, January 29, 2018

Revised List of 36: Best Players I’ve Seen Play In Person

With the Hall of Fame results released last week, it’s time to once again update my list. The Hall of Fame elections are usually less disruptive to this list since if you’re in the Hall of Fame, chances are you’re already on this list. But, let’s see!

As I’ve said, I make this list based mostly on awards. After all, my grandkids are more likely to ask me if I’ve seen a former MVP than some player who played well for a while (except for David Ortiz, I suppose). 

The Easy one is the election of Trevor Hoffman. I’ve never seen him play live, so he’s an easy elimination. Vladimir Guerrero is already on my list, and rightly so. Not only did he have an MVP to his credit, but he hit what might have been the longest home run I’ve ever seen in person. Chipper Jones is also already on my list, thanks to his previous MVP award. The leaves Jim Thome. He never won a major award, so he was never on my list. Until now. I need to find a slot for him.

Also, as an edit, I noticed that my last list had too many players on it. So, I need to trim one back. So, I need to find two players to eliminate. 

Looking at the previous list, everyone on it has at least one MVP award, so this won’t be easy. There are a few one-time MVPs though, that don’t really have stellar resumes otherwise. They’re also past their primes…or even retired…so the prospects of them adding enough to make it back on the list are slim. I think my easiest removal is Justin Morneau. There’s just not enough there. For the second, in a tight race I’m eliminating Jason Giambi because he was a Yankees player.

So, here’s the new list.

1. Roberto Alomar (HOF)
2. Wade Boggs (HOF)
3. Barry Bonds (MVP)
4. Ryan Braun (ROY, MVP)
5. Miguel Cabrera (MVP, triple crown)
6. Jose Canseco (ROY, MVP)
7. Roger Clemens (MVP, CYA)
8. Josh Donaldson (MVP)
9. Dennis Eckersley (HOF)
10. Tom Glavine (HOF)
11. Juan Gonzalez (MVP)
12. Ken Griffey Jr (All-Century Team)
13. Vladimir Guerrero (HOF)
14. Josh Hamilton (MVP)
15. Bryce Harper (ROY, MVP)
16. Rickey Henderson (HOF)
17. Matt Holliday (MVP)
18. Randy Johnson (HOF)
19. Chipper Jones (HOF)
20. Greg Maddux (HOF)
21. Pedro Martinez (HOF)
22. Andrew McCutchen (MVP)
23. Dustin Pedroia (ROY, MVP)
24. Mike Piazza (HOF)
25. Kirby Puckett (HOF)
26. Albert Pujols (MVP)
27. Jim Rice (HOF)
28. Cal Ripken (HOF)
29. Alex Rodriguez (MVP)
30. Ivan Rodriguez (HOF)
31. John Smoltz (HOF)
32. Ichiro Suzuki (ROY, MVP)
33. Frank Thomas (HOF)
34. Jim Thome (HOF)
35. Mike Trout (MVP)
36. Mo Vaughn (MVP)

Who’s on your list?

Friday, January 26, 2018

Hannah Trepanier Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Hannah Trepanier is a fantastic dancer, a Red Sox fan, and the current Miss Rockingham County. I
was hoping she'd be willing to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more. I was ecstatic when she agreed. I’m sure you’ll be glad she did too.

So, let’s see what happens when Hannah Trepanier visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Rockingham County crown? 
We had quite the celebration! I was escorted to one of my sponsors, The Colosseum restaurant, in a Rolls Royce with my directors and many members of the Miss Rockingham County family including my family, judges, friends, and fellow Miss NH 2018 class members. It was a truly a memorable night! 

Do you have a specific goal you'd like to accomplish during your time as Miss Rockingham County?
I have many goals for this year! I’m very excited to accomplish each of them. My main goal is to be the best version of myself and to be as prepared as I can be for this years competition. 

You seem excited about staying fit. What's your favorite thing to do at the gym?
Fitness is one of my biggest passions! I have many favorite exercises, as I love to switch it up and never stick to one workout! Variation is key! I never let myself get bored with my workouts. Combining HIIT cardio and weight training is my favorite way to train. 

As an accomplished dancer, what is your favorite part about performing your lyrical dance on stage at a competition?
My favorite part about performing is showing everyone my passion! Dance has been my passion since the age of two and when I’m on stage, the feeling is unexplainable. Definitely one of the best feelings in the world. My soul is happy when I’m dancing and I think it shows through my movements. 

What aspect of the upcoming Miss New Hampshire competition are you most nervous about?

The goal is to not be nervous! But I think every contestant gets butterflies before at least one portion of competition. I think that would be on stage question for me. It’s also one of my favorite parts of competition as it challenges me to collect my thoughts quickly and and present them gracefully and has also helped me with public speaking. 

What’s the best part about being at Fenway to watch the Red Sox?
My favorite part is the Fenway Franks! Honestly,  there’s nothing like one. 

Who is your favorite Red Sox player? Why?
All of the players are extremely talented but I would say Mookie Betts because I personally think he’s the best one on the team! 

What most excites you about the upcoming 2018 Red Sox season?

Red Sox season is the best! I can’t wait to be back at Fenway, there’s nothing like the smell of those Fenway Franks and baseball in the air!


Well, I certainly agree with that!

As always, I want to thank Hannah for doing this interview. I also want to thank her for providing the pictures to accompany the interview, especially the great Red Sox themed one. They always make the posts much better.

As Hannah continues her time as Miss Rockingham County, I encourage you to follow her on the official Facebook page

And, of course, I want to wish Hannah luck this summer when she competes for the Miss New Hampshire crown. There will be quite a few prior visitors there with her. How awesome would it be for a Section 36 visitor to come out on top?

Thanks again Hannah, and good luck!

Thursday, January 25, 2018

It's the First Sale of the Year!

That's right! This week the Section 36 store is having a sale!

Right now, we are in the middle of limited time sale prices at the Section 36 store! Today through this weekend, you'll have the chance to buy the items you love at discount prices!

I know you've been looking at all the great items offered in the Section 36 store, and thought that you really should have something yourself. Well, get something now during the limited time sale!

So, head over right now and select something that you like. But, don't delay. Remember, the sale only runs through Sunday! That's right only a couple days before prices go back to their regular levels.

And, as always, when you do get an item, send me a picture wearing it for me to share with the world! The blogFacebook, and even Instagram!

Like Kylee did to show off her amazing new tank top.

This tank is 27% off!

Or Holly did with her cozy new hoodie.

This hoodie is 21% off!

Or Nicolette did with her great t-shirt!

This t-shirt is 30% off!

But, first you need to buy something you like. There's a lot to choose from.

What will you get?

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

36 Pack Wax Match: Pack 4

The Stage has been set. The Match is underway. Who will come out on top? There’s only one way to find out.

Keep going, and open that fourth pack!

As we dive into this pack, the 1988 set has tied the match thanks to its pack three victory. Let's go!

Hall of Famer +1

A strong start, with two Hall of Famers on one card! But, as I've decided, that only counts as one point. I always liked the SuperStar Specials cards that Fleer did. I'm not sure why I enjoyed them more than I do the current versions in Topps. Maybe they were newer to me back then?

Another Trammell tries to sneak into the scoring column. But, I've again decided, no points. After all, it's my match so I get to make up the rules as we go along. 

Yankees -2
Unfortunately for 1988 that Trammell didn't count. Now this Yankees card dips the set into negative values for the pack with a total of -1. Can the 1990 set take advantage?

Yankees -2
 Well, geez. Not like that it can't. 1990 drops immediately into negative numbers with this Geren. Interesting picture on this card, since it looks posed but clearly isn't. 

Hall of Famer +1
That's more like it! A SuperStar Specials card gives the pack a much needed point. I'd have to agree, too, that these players are definitely "Human Dynamos". 

Hall of Famer +1
And there is it! This Player of the Decade card brings 1990 back to zero!

Amazing enough (or, pathetically enough?) That's enough for 1990 to take the pack!

It also gives 1990 a one-pack lead in the match! 

Box Bottom: 1988 +1 (1-0)
Pack 1: 1990 +6 (1-1)
Pack 2: 1990 +4 (2-1)
Pack 3: 1988 +3 (2-2)
Pack 4: 1990 +1 (3-2)

What will happen next time?

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

I Forgot My 10th Anniversary!

I know that I hardly ever remember to post on my blog's Anniversary. I don't know what it is, but with all the excitement of the new year, it always slips my mind. But this year, I really should have remembered. After all, this marks ten years of doing this here blog!

It all started with this very first post!

It's always so amazing to look back at that and think about how it all started. What was I getting myself into?

It's nice to see that I've stayed pretty true to those first ideas. I don't do true game recaps. I leave those to others. I only brings my thoughts and views on various topics whenever I get the chance.

It also always amazes me that I asked you to send in pictures! Who was I to ask you to do that? But, people have. Lots and lots of them. 

It's also amazing to think how much the blog has grown since then. It's added a Twitter account. And Facebook. Instagram. Even Snapchat.

But, that's not all.

It has expanded (ever so slightly) to other sports as well, with separate blogs about the Bruins, Celtics, and Patriots. There's even a blog, Twitter, and Facebook that groups all those together.

Of course, anyone who's paying attention knows that the biggest expansion lately has been into the Miss America organization. I have had the privilege of conducting interviews with more than 30 titleholders, covering seven (so far) states. I never dreamed that would happen, and couldn't be more excited about it. (It's only fitting that one reason I missed my actual anniversary on Sunday is because Sundays lately have had a visitor interview featured on the blog.) Those visitors have also expanded to have a blog, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook account of their own.

The blog has discussed Red Sox cards as well. Which is why there's a whole "cardboard" section on the blogroll showing off all the wonderful card bloggers out there. I have really enjoyed all the blogger interaction with all the other card collectors.

But the focus has always (hopefully) remained on the Red Sox. I can't wait to see where their 2018 season leads me. And I can't wait to see how many of you follow me along the way.

For all of you who have played a part in the first ten years of this blog, I thank you. I couldn't have done it without you.

Here's to the next ten!

Friday, January 19, 2018

Diana Marie Russo Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Diana Marie Russo is a flautist, an editor, the current Miss Finger Lakes, and (as you may have
noticed) a Yankees fan. As a way of "keeping your friends close, and your enemies closer" I thought it would be fun to have her visit with us to discuss those topics, the Red Sox, and a few more. Thankfully she agreed. I’m sure you’ll be glad she did.

So, let’s see what happens when Diana Marie Russo visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate being crowned Miss Finger Lakes?
I immediately celebrated with my family and closest friends because without their support, my dream of representing the Miss America Organization would have never been possible. Although
my family surprised me with a party after my crowning, I will celebrate the entire year by serving my community. I find joy in being the light in someones life and as Miss Finger Lakes, that is the best way to celebrate this accomplishment. 

Is there a specific goal you’d like to accomplish during your time as Miss Finger Lakes?
My goal as Miss Finger Lakes 2018 is to bring the title of Miss New York back to the region and then bring the title of Miss America back to New York! Besides that, my main goal as Miss Finger Lakes 2018 is to grow my platform, Memories Through Music, Alzheimer’s Awareness. Not only do I watch elders come to life when I share the gift of music with them, but I partner with radio stations to donate radios to Alzheimer’s patients. I want to
spread these programs throughout the Finger Lakes but also New York. I will continue to work with the Alzheimer’s Association and a local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital to carry out events that are currently being planned. As I work with both of these organizations, I hope to inspire hundreds of people and leave a lasting impact. 

What aspect of the upcoming Miss New York competition are you most nervous about?
I don’t know if I can say that I am nervous about Miss New York! I am excited and I like to pride myself on being very confident. I’ve grown up with a competition mindset as a gymnast and a flautist, so I am ready for the challenge! I also dreamed of Miss New York and Miss America for quite some time now, so I am ready. 

How did you select your platform, "Memories Through Music, Alzheimer’s Awareness"?
My grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and she inspired
Photo by
East Way Photography
me to create my platform, Memories Through Music, Alzheimer’s Awareness. Although I was young and didn’t understand my grandmother’s disease, I regret not cherishing the time I had with my grandmother prior to her diagnosis. If I can create a moment of normalcy and joy for a family experiencing Alzheimer’s then I feel at peace. 

As a talented flautist, what do you like most about playing on stage?
I like performing on stage because I feel like I am carrying on a family tradition. My grandfather and his siblings were musicians, my mother is a musician and I am a musician. I feel pride as I represent my family and my platform. My flute has the power to change lives because music connects the mind to the soul and when I perform, I know that is exactly what I am doing.

You’re the editor-in-chief of the Cardinal Courier. What do you find most challenging about that role?
Photo by East Way Photography
This is a very challenging role because I am responsible for almost everything. Producing a magazine, creating online content, organizing meetings, teaching students and overseeing the entire group is a lot of work. Balancing that responsibility with other obligations takes passion, dedication and leadership skills, which has taught me how to be a disciplined titleholder. Although it can be difficult, the most rewarding part is watching a young journalist succeed. 

As a Yankees fan, who is your favorite Red Sox player?
I always liked David Ortiz because he is a great player with a lot of class. He respects the game of baseball and he is known to be a clutch hitter. 

What was your favorite Aaron Judge memory?
Besides witnessing a Judge home run at Rogers Centre, my favorite Aaron Judge memory was watching him hit the longest home run in the season by any baseball player. This hit was recorded at over 500 feet at Yankee Stadium. 

What are you most looking forward to about the 2018 baseball season?
I am excited to watch Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge in the same batting line up. They are two of the most powerful hitters in the league and I can’t wait to see what they do for the Yankees. 


I'm very interested to see how that turns out myself!

As always, I want to give huge thanks to Diana for doing this interview. She did a fantastic job. It was a lot of fun to have my first visit from a New York titleholder. I also want to thank her for providing all of the amazing pictures to accompany the interview. Even the ones with the interlocking N-Y in them really spruced up the post!

As Diana continues her time as Miss Finger Lakes, I encourage you to follow her on the official "Miss Finger Lakes and Upstate NY" Facebook page and Instagram account. 

There are also some wonderful websites you need to see. Definitely check out Diana's personal website to catch up on all the great information posted there. Also, be sure to visit the official websites for both Miss Finger Lakes and Miss New York. If you do all that, you'll be sure not to miss a thing Diana does!

I also want to wish Diana luck when she competes for the Miss New York Crown! It would be so much fun to have a Section 36 visitor bring home that crown!

Thanks again Diana, and good luck!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

36 Pack Wax Match: Pack 3

The Stage has been set. The Match is underway. Who will come out on top? There’s only one way to find out.

Keep going, and open that third pack!

As we dive into this pack, the 1990 set has taken the lead thanks to its pack two victory. Let's go!

Red Sox +2
1988 starts things off much better this time! Not only did it make it past the sticker, but it gets positive points! A great card too. If you're not going to have a collision picture, this is about as good as a catcher card gets. Full gear, trying to make a play. With the head extending into the border, it makes Gedman larger than life.

Yankees -2
And just like that, 1988 falls flat again. Back to even.

Hall of Famer +1
Look at this great card. I was tempted to give it two points for having two Hall of Famers. But, for one thing, Trammell isn't officially inducted yet. For another, the rules clearly say "Hall of Famer card" not "Hall of Famer on card" so, it's just one point even if Fernandez were in the Hall too.

Red Sox +2
One more big score for 1988. Another great catcher card. This would have been a pretty sweet pull for a Red Sox fan back in 1988, and it brings the 1988 pack total to +3. Can 1990 catch them?

Hall of Famer +1
It certainly jumps right out of the gate with another catcher. This one's a Red Sox Hall of Famer, but he's wearing the wrong color Sox on the card, so it's just the one point.

Yankees -2
It's one step forward, and two steps back. The Yankees card drops the pack into negative points.

Hall of Famer +1
And, back to even as the pack closes out with a Hall of Famer. Unfortunately, for 1990, this is where the scoring ends up.

The 1988 pack holds with its total of +3 to take the third pack match.

It also ties the  overall score two to one in this back and forth battle.

Box Bottom: 1988 +1 (1-0)
Pack 1: 1990 +6 (1-1)
Pack 2: 1990 +4 (2-1)
Pack 3: 1988 +3 (2-2)

What will happen next time?

Monday, January 15, 2018

What Style Hat Do You Wear?

Today, on National Hat Day, I wanted to talk know...hats.

Specifically, what hats do you like to wear? Obviously the most correct answer to that question is "A Red Sox Hat, duh." But that answer isn't really specific enough.What kind of Red Sox hat?

Because I'm sure you've noticed that there are about 36 million
different styles of Red Sox hats. There's the classic game hat. Throwback hats. Special game hats. Graphic hats. Hats with stripes, and camouflage, and polka-dots. Hats in all colors. All allowing you to profess your love for baseballs greatest team. So, with so many to choose from, which direction do you go?

I tend to lean towards "official" when I buy my Red Sox gear. My home jersey can't have a name on the back of it, and my hat needs to be navy with the red B on the front. But, I will also branch out every once in a while to different versions of official hat. For a long while, I wore the 2004 World Series version. The classic hat with the World Series patch. If I want more variety than that? I like throwback styles, to retain that authenticity. I especially like the 1975 throwback, because it allows a complete departure from blue with red. Red with blue feels so wrong it's right. I sometime think of going for something with a 40's style to it. But, I fear that most people won't realize that the fatter B on the front is a throwback, and instead think it's just a poorly made classic blue.

The only time I've really diverged from the official is when I wore the Pedro Martinez retired number hat. I had that one on my head until it wore out, and I wish I could get another one. 

Other styles of official hat? Like the locker room hats from championships? My gosh do I think those are hideous. I can't imagine wearing something like that out to the store. Same goes for the holiday hats. Rarely do I find one with a color scheme I enjoy.

What about you? Are you classic blue? Zebra stripes?

Something in-between?

Friday, January 12, 2018

Lauren Fohlin Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Lauren Fohlin is a singer, a choreographer, the current Miss Lake Sunapee Region, and (of
course) a Red Sox fan. After winning her crown just over a month ago, I hoped she'd be willing to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more. Luckily she agreed. I’m sure you’ll be glad she did.

So, let’s see what happens when Lauren Fohlin visits Section 36!

Why did you decide to compete for the Miss Lake Sunapee Region crown? 
I have been competing for a local title for the past two years. I have never won a crown until Miss Lake Sunapee Region and I don't think I could have received a title more fitting.

Is there a specific goal you'd like to accomplish during your time as Miss Sunapee Region? 
During my time as Miss Lake Sunapee Region I would like to continue pursuing my platform, "Keeping The Arts Alive: One Beat at a time".

What did you learn at previous pageants that will help you at the Miss New Hampshire competition? 
This is a tough one! Every pageant is a learning experience. You meet so many different people and each time each judge gets to know you and your story. The biggest thing that I can walk away with to prepare myself for Miss New Hampshire is to always stay true to myself. If it wasn't for that I wouldn't have my title today.

As a singer, which types of songs do you enjoy singing the most? 
I have been performing since I can remember. I started doing musical theatre in fifth grade, so I would have to say I love singing those show stopping numbers! 

Why did you choose your platform, “Keeping the Arts Alive: one beat at a time”? 
I chose my platform because I volunteered my time to choreograph Manchester Central High School's performance of "Godspell". All went well there and I came back for another year to choreograph "Fame". After Fame one of my students, Dustin Blake, passed away from a rare heart condition. He was one of a kind and extremely talented in his own ways. It's not about the affect us teachers have on students, it's about how the student affects us. So for him I will continue to keep the arts alive.

As a choreographer, how does it feel to see something you planned performed perfectly on stage? 
There is no word to describe it. The process of choreographing a single piece starts with myself in my living room creating a whole number for 30+ students. Not everyone comes in with dance experience. Some of my students have none, but by the end of it all they are all dancers in my eyes. It's truly rewarding to see the outcome. 

If you can’t be in Section 36, where do you (or would you) like to sit to watch the Red Sox? 
Any section would do for me! Even my TV screen is a win.

Who was your favorite Red Sox player growing up? Why? 
Although I have love for all of my Red Sox, David Ortiz is definitely my favorite. He's a three time World Series Champion with the most contagious smile. What's not to love?

What was your favorite memory from the 2017 Red Sox season? 
One of the most exciting aspects of the 2017 season was watching Chris Sale's pursuit of the single-season franchise record of 313 strikeouts. Impressive. 


I'm sure we all enjoyed watching that unfold!

As always, I want to give a huge thank you to Lauren for finding the time to visit with us. It's always so much fun, and it wouldn’t have happened without her! Another thank you to her for providing the  picture to go along with the interview. It really spruces up the post, don’t you think?

As Lauren continues her time as Miss Lake Sunapee Region, be sure to keep track of her on the official Miss Lake Sunapee Region Facebook and Instagram accounts! That way you won't miss a thing.

I also want to wish Lauren luck at the upcoming Miss New Hampshire competition. There will be quite a few members of the Section 36 family on stage with her this year. It would be so fantastic to have one of them bring home that crown!

Thanks again for the visit Lauren!

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