I will have to keep this latest installment of autographed Topps 52 Rookies cards brief- not because I have fallen out of favor with these cards, but due to the fact that I haven’t had the good fortune to get many more of them signed in person since we last chatted.
Robert Andino (2006 – no. 133)
After breaking spring training with the Florida Marlins, Robert hit only .182 in 22 plate appearances over 21 games. Robert was recently reassigned to the Albuquerque Isotopes where he not only has been given the opportunity to play every day, but curiously was also named team captain. Over 38 at bats in 10 games, Andino has a batting average of .237 with one homer and 4 runs driven in. Although he has three stolen bases, Robert has also been caught stealing three times. Andino has yet to be charged with an error this season.
Brian Barden (2007 – no. 21)
Barden is a classy player, and a great signer. He was also one of the players featured on an awesome program on the MOJO Channel a couple of years ago when he was a member of the Tucson Sidewinders (Arizona Diamondbacks). Now with the Memphis Redbirds (St. Louis Cardinals), Barden is hitting at a clip of .310 with 4 homers, 22 RBI, and 3 stolen bases over 210 at bats. However, it is difficult to overlook the nine errors Brian has committed at short. But like I said, he’s a great guy!
Ron Flores (2006 – no. 219)
Have I mentioned how much I enjoy cards of Oakland Athletics players that show Papago Butte in the background? Yes, I have. Well, here’s another one. Now a member of the St. Louis Cardinals organization, Flores will sign two cards per person every day. That said, I recommend that you do your best to avoid handing him two of the same card, or trying to get him to sign twice in the same day. With just under 30 innings pitched for the Memphis Redbirds this season, this 5’10” southpaw has a record of 1-2 with a couple of saves and an ERA of 3.34. Flores has racked up 36 strikeouts while allowing only 10 walks.
Tony Gwynn Jr. (2006 – no. 53)
I really appreciate the Milwaukee Brewers brass for sending Tony Jr. back to the Nashville Sounds just before they returned to the Duke City for the second (and final) time this season. Never a guaranteed signer, it was excellent to have Tony autograph this card for my collection. Gwynn is hitting .354 at the Triple A level through 48 at bats.
Ross Wolf (2007 – no. 172)
Fear not… this is not the card that is being offered to the winner of an ongoing contest at Wax Heaven. This one has a permanent home in my personal collection. Wolf began the 2008 season on the Albuquerque Isotopes disabled list. Since recently being activated, Ross has picked up two wins and has been charged with a loss while pitching 5 innings in relief. He has yet to yield an earned run at Isotopes Park through 4 innings this season. Although Wolf has yet to earn a win at the Major League level, it is difficult to imagine that he won’t take care of that at some point this season.
Given that I do not anticipate getting the opportunity to get any “new” cards from these two series autographed in person before the Iowa Cubs roll into town at the end of the month, this would be a swell opportunity for anyone who is working on getting these cards autographed to check out my TRADE list and make me a TRADE OFFER.