Showing posts from 2018

Kris Bryant and Bryce Harper

Kris Bryant and Bryce Harper. Do the Cubs need both, either, or neither to get to another World Series? How much are either player really worth? First lets look at their stats: Kris Bryant Year Age Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO SO% BA OBP SLG 2015 23 CHC 151 650 559 87 154 31 5 26 99 13 4 77 199 36% .275 .369 .488 2016 24 CHC 155 699 603 121 176 35 3 39 102 8 5 75 154 25% .292 .385 .554 2017 25 CHC 151 665 549 111 162 38 4 29 73 7 5 95 128 23% .295 .409 .537 2018 26 CHC 102 457 389 59 106 28 3 13 52 2 4 48 107 28% .272 .374 .460 Bryce Harper Year Age Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO SO% BA OBP SLG 2012 19 WSN 139 597 533 98 144 26 9 22 59 18 6 56 120 22% .270 .340 .477 2013 20 WSN 118 497 424 71 116 24 3 20 58 11 4 61 94 22% .274 .368

New tires for the Crosstrek

I can Cross one item off the to do list for my Crosstrek. I purchased four new Milestar All-Season Radial P225/55R17 101V XL all weather tires for only $410.80 (with tax). Yep, traded my Japanese tires for Korean. That price included Installation and balance from Jesse's Tire Clinic replacing my original Yokohama Geolandar P225/55R17 95H. I specked these tires every place I could think of and Jesse's beat everyone for the price. They ordered the tires for me and let me come over with no appointment and done in a little over a half-hour. So I saved money and time and have better weight, speed, and mile rated tires. That makes me happy. The Geolandar tires are notorious for their short life.

Cubs Topps 65 [updated]

I'm excited about two new adds for my 1965 Topps cars I acquired another Larry Jackson card And a place holder Ernie Banks

Decline of Cars

GM, Ford, Mitsubishi, Subaru are all companies that publicly say car sales continue to plummet while trucks, SUVs, and crossovers rise. In Oct of 2018, Subaru release this chart.  Overall sales are up, but sports cars BRZ and WRX are down.  Sedans/hatchback Impreza and Legacy are down. Carline Oct-18 Oct-17 % Chg Oct-18 Oct-17 % Chg MTD MTD MTD YTD YTD YTD Forester 15,981 13,430 19.0% 137,905 145,460 -5.2% Impreza 5,499 6,733 -18.3% 65,039 71,322 -8.8% WRX/STI 2,277 2,416 -5.8% 24,234 26,572 -8.8% Ascent 6,008 0 0.0% 22,588 0 0.0% Legacy 2,752 4,538 -39.4% 33,832 41,999 -19.5% Outback 11,574 15,786 -26.7% 149,566 156,277 -4.3% BRZ 254 271 -6.3% 3,184 3,578 -11.0% Crosstrek 11,049 10,871 1.6% 122,464 87,685 39.7% TOTAL 55,394 54,045 2.5% 558,812 532,893 4.9% Ford's passenger car segment sales are down 14.5% throug

Ford says

What can we expect from Ford concerning the future of the Mustang? March 2018 Ford published [edited/shortened]: All-in push on hybrid-electrics to bring new capability and features to customers on high-volume, profitable vehicles the Mustang; battery electric vehicle rollout starts in 2020 with performance utility and six BEVs by 2022. The Mustang Hybrid will be all about delivering V8-like performance with more low-end torque. Does V8-like performance translate to 350 plus horse power? Hybrid cars don't come across and impressive or cool. How will Ford market this aspect? Ford announces Ford Co-Pilot360™, a package that includes standard automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning and other driver assist features. I was expecting to see this on future Mustangs, but I wonder, why is Ford so behind on this package compared to several other car companies?

Crosstrek todo?

I have made myself a part necessity and part dream list for my `15 Subaru Crosstrek. Crosstrek todo: In order of importance for me: Rust repair This is a must and short term goal. I just posted about this a few day ago. At 22K on the odometer, there should be no rust, but there is. New tires Another must. Still have factory tires on from my Feb 2015 purchase. Only rotated once (I know, I'm a horrible car owner) so the rear tires are more heavily worn than my current front tires. The car came with P225/55R17 95H. So many choices and still comparing. Seat detailing Something I need to do for having the car as an every day beater . New Infotainment system I have one of the blah-est Infotainment systems ever put out by Subaru, or anybody else for that matter. I would love to upgrade this. A couple of photos from my current system. Inside door handle replacement I have significant wear on this door handle. This is the

Rust issue to fix

I have what appears to be a rare factory defect on my paint job. I say rare, because my previous daily Subaru car has zero rust on it still and no other Subie owners out there I know has this issue. The rust is in the driver's door jam and still easily fixable, right under the trim. Pulling up the trim and it looks to be surface rust. I have purchased the following items. for the removal, 80 grit sanding paper. All based on other's work and experience on similar tasks. to be continued.....

Rumors of new Ford Mustangs.

I would love Ford Motor Company to address any of these Mustang rumors: o There is an AWD version of the Mustang in the works o There is a four door version of the Mustang in the works o 2019 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 will be 700HP and better performance than the Camaro ZL1 and Challenger Hellcat. o There is a performance version of the Mustang in development that outperforms the Dodge Demon in multiple aspects.

My Subaru XV Crosstrek

Below are my first two Subaru vehicles I wrote about in my last posts. On the left is Premium Impreza and on the right, 2015 Premium XV Crosstrek. So similar at first glace, and yet truly from the same platform, but could not be much more different vehicles. [see previous blog ] After having the Crosstrek through several winters, I can tell you this car is a beast in snow. Even in serious snow storms. I actually like the looks of the back-ends of '13 thru '17 better than the '18+ The center console was never top end, but not low end. Newer Subaru's, like my '19 Accent, have much better systems.

Subaru owner - topic snow...

When driving in snow, what matters? Experience has taught me there are 5 primary factors for a vehicle that matter. I had assumed 4WD or AWD is what mostly mattered. I was very wrong. Hopeful, I can explain clearly in this post. So, I'll start at the beginning, where I learned this valuable knowledge with my first disappointment with my first Subaru car. In February 2013, I sold my last Jeep, a trail Jeep Commander. I loved the vehicle. Great storage, power, and mud and snow handling. Better than my Jeep Grand Cherokee. What I didn't like was that I lived 12 miles out of town and gas was at a all time high. Additionally, the windshield was constantly being repaired or replaced because it was so vertical (I drove behind a lot of big trucks). Like always, I did a ton of research and in the end purchased my first new Subaru. I wanted something more sporty, better gas mileage, and would handle snow like my Jeeps had always done. I was told all Subaru's were awesome

The case for MVP

The case for Javier Baez 176 H , 40 2B , 9 3B , 34 HR , 83 XBH , 111 RBI , 21 SB , .290 AVG, .326 OBP, .881 OPS The case for Christian Yelich 187 H , 34 2B , 7 3B , 36 HR , 77 XBH , 110 RBI , 22 SB , .326 AVG, .402 OBP, 1.000OPS

Big BTRFS announcements

The big BTRFS announcements this week.  First, if you don't know what BTRFS is, then here is the definition: BTRFS (pronounced as "butter fuss") is a file system based on the copy-on-write (COW) principle, initially designed at Oracle Corporation for use in Linux. It is a fairly new file stystem. The development of BTRFS began in 2007.  As of August 2014 the file system's on-disk format has been marked as stable, but coding and development continues. Btrfs is intended to address the lack of pooling, snapshots, check-sums, and integral multi-device spanning in OS file systems. The August 15th, 2018 BTRFS news can be summed up by this sentence: Red Hat and Microsoft shun BTRFS, while ReactOS and SUSE Linux embrace this file system. As of this week ReactOS ( has announced that they support BTRFS and released developer issues of the OS with working BTRFS.  They have also released a YouTube video demonstrating BTRFS on ReactOS:

Cubs snap shot

Oops never published on the 29th of July. Doing so now, although these numbers have shifted a lot. Every year at this time (since 2013) I do a snap shot of the Cubs at the end of July. The obvious Stars are Baez, Almora, and Rizzo. Bryant has been injured much of the season. The power hitters are Baez, Rizzo, and Schwarber. Schwarber happens to have the most walks and a .364 OBP, 3rd highest RBIs - so really should probably be ranked higher. RK Player G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG OPS 1 Baez 103 383 65 113 27 6 21 79 14 100 .295 .326 .561 .887 2 Almora Jr. 98 310 50 96 21 1 4 30 18 55 .310 .346 .423 .769 3 Rizzo 95 361 44 95 17 1 15 69 44 53 .263 .360 .440 .800 4 Contreras 91 324 36 90 19 5 8 37 37 80 .278 .367 .441 .809 5 Heyward 89 314 54 87 16 3 7 44 32 39 .277 .344 .414 .758 6 Russell 94 326 4

GEDXchange XML 1.2

I have updated/expanded  GEDXchange XML to the newest level of 1.2. Changes are updated Military and Baptism Elements. Documentation can be found at:

Day 10 of yard work

The lights have been installed into the wall and the pergola has been mostly built. Click on the images to enlarge.

Day 9 of backyard work

New lumber arrived today and the wall is getting close to done. Click on the images to enlarge:

Day 8 of backyard work

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Day 7 of yard work

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day 6 of yard work

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day 5 of yard work

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Day 4 of yard work

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Day 1-3 yard revamp

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How to watch the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) list of movies/shows in chronilogical order: Phase One  - Movie: Captain America: The First Avenger  - TV   : Agent Carter (seasons one and two)  - DVD  : Agent Carter (one-shot — Iron Man 3 DVD)  - Movie: Iron Man  - Movie: Iron Man 2  - Movie: The Incredible Hulk  - DVD  : The Consultant (one-shot — Thor DVD)  - DVD  : A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Thor’s Hammer (one-shot Captain America: First Avenger DVD)  - Movie: Thor  - Movie: Avengers  - DVD  : Item 47 (one-shot — Avengers DVD) Phase Two  - Movie: Iron Man 3  - DVD  : All Hail the King (one-shot – Thor: The Dark World)  - TV   : Agents of Shield (season one: episodes 1 — 7)    (ABC)  - Movie: Thor: The Dark World  - TV   : Agents of Shield (season one: episodes 8 — 16)   (ABC)  - Movie: Captain America: The Winter Soldier  - TV   : Agents of Shield (season one: episodes 17 — 22)  (ABC)  - Movie: Guardians of the Galaxy  - Movie: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2  - TV   

5k training

I'm going to start tracking my running via this blog My short term goal is to run a 5 K in 35 minutes. that is a 11:15 mile: Friday April 13th - trail - el gain 8 feet   46:02 min - 2.88 mile(s)   Avg 15:58 min - 1 mile   365 Cal Sunday April 15th - treadmill - incline 0   13:15 min - 1.000 mile   20:00 min - 1.427 mile(s)   205 Cal Monday April 16th  - treadmill - incline 0   12:33 min - 1.000 mile   20:00 min - 1.500 mile(s)   27.40 min - 2.000 mile(s)   29.58 min - 2.143 mile(s)   292 Cal

Cubs have struck out NL-record 58 times through 1st 5 games

Here is my first whinny post of the season. The Cubs have struck out a NL-record 58 times through 1st 5 games. Who are the strike-out problem players? Heyward. nope. Schwarber. Wrong. Happ for 8 strike-outs, Contreras for 8, and Rizzo for 6. Rest of the hitters for 5 SOs each. Worse, the Cubs have been blanked twice in those five games by sub-par teams. You can't win games if the lead off hitter (Happ) can't get on base, even by a walk.

10 facts as a collector

Seven Facts about me as a collector - Fact 1 . As a kid, I Started Collecting baseball cards in 1977. In 1982, I was making a habit of collecting cards. In 1989, I started purchasing cards in bulk. In the mid 90s I stopped for a while and picked it backup up in 2007. I'm not the usual collector. - Fact 2 . I buy locally, don't do much anymore with eBay.   Why?   I have two nice card shops where I live.   Plus there are many private sellers around.   Normally I see better prices, no shipping, I see the product. I just enjoy it more going in person to shows and shops.   So like most collectors today, I don't have "mail day" - Fact 3. I only have 15 K cards.  Most collectors who have been collecting as long as I have, well have many more.   In fact, I'm looking at getting rid of many of my excess cards so that I can stay in that range. - Fact 4. I don't use binders.   Why?   I don't trust them.  When I was a teenager, I used th

Revisiting my baseball card room

Another short post on my card room. I do have my new card cabinet in full use now. Still wish I had a better one, but for the money it is much better than many of the other options. 99% of everything on display is still Cubs based. I made this new video on YouTube for the blog to show what the room looks like as of today:

Cubs and Cardinals autographed

I made a video today re-highlighting my Cubs and Cardinals autographed photos and baseball cards. Here is a photo I did not put into my video: Bill Buckner signing group Cubs photo.

took all 36 packs

I had to open all 36 packs of Topps 1988 Big Series 1 cards to obtain every card in the series. Have a ton of extra cards I don't need now. And even though I have not cataloged 100% of the cards of Series 1 (all 252 of them), I have started on Series 2. I have made another video blog here: My cataloging effort of this set can be found here: here Despite all my complaining, if I get the full set for $5, I will be pleased. I will be up for trading my excess cards from this set for other holes in my collection.

Still working on 88 Big cards

Yes, I'm still opening and cataloging Topps 1988 Big cards. I have a long way to go. How is the set so far? Probably the worst distribution of cards that I have ever seen. For example, I opened an entire case of Series 1. Some players kept coming up, over, and over, and over. Some players did not show in the entire case. Of the whole case, I only opened one Ryne Sandberg. If I had not at least got that card, I was going to be horribly upset. The worst part is that after opening all these cards, not a single #2 Milt Thompson card. But I need 8 Cal Ripkens?

New bulk packs purchased

Made another bulk purchase for $5 again. Although I did not get as many cards for $5....(for example, more than 2400 cards), I did get 756 Topps 1988 "Big" unopened cards for $5. Still a good deal in my humble opinion. I also did something different, I made a video of me opening some of this cards.  Watch video at Once again, not a very good video, but I'm going to give this a shot with video blogs. Hopefully my video will get better. :) As for the 1988 Topps Big cards, I love them.  I never knew these cards existed in 1988.  I did know of the 1989 Topps Big cards though.  I purchased many packs of them because I loved them.  That said, I think I like the 88`s more than the 89`s.  So I'm glad I made this purchase. I have given dealing shout-outs before when I have like purchases, so I'm giving Busted Wax a shout-out for the good deal. <a style="color:#0000ff;" href="https://www.faceb

Nights of sorting cards for new cabinet

I have not much to blog about other than I have spent days sorting through 15 thousand baseball cards. With the purchase of my new cabinet, came a lot of work. I now have a way of sorting cards more effectively. I took tonight off so I'm blogging about it and having TV night with the wife. The Hello Kitty with the Cubs shirt in the photo is an addition from the kids. Not sure how I feel about having that in my card room. lol I have been going through the contents of every box. Slowing down the process is the fact I have less than 9 thousand card cataloged. What I did have cataloged was not cataloged in any means other than random. I did finalize the contents of the drawers as the following (basically most of my favorite small collections):

Cubs and Cardinals Rankings

MLBN’s Top 100 Players and Sports Illustrated Top 100 lists are out. Currently Cubs only have 5 Cubs players in both of the lists. A total of 8 Cubs players make a list. Cardinals only have 4 players to make top 100 for either list. Even worse for the Cardinals; the poor Cardinals don't even have any top #25 players. This is why the "experts" are claiming the Cubs will trample the Cardinals this year. I have some opinions and the season will say if I'm right or wrong, but I believe that Willson Contreras should be a little better in the rankings for both lists. I'm guessing the gap between Kris and Anthony is due to projections based on age. Here are the Cubs and Cardinals rankings: Rankings AVG SI MLB Player Team #6 #3 #8 Kris Bryant Cubs #23 #23 #23 Anthony Rizzo Cubs -top 26-50 #38 #45 #32 Marcell Ozuna Cardinals -top 51-100 #60 #53 #67 Yu Darvish Cubs #55 #51 #59 Tommy Phram

Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame players

Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame players At least 1 item Name Years in collection Pete Alexander 1918-1926 Cap Anson 1876-1897 Yes Richie Ashburn 1960-1961 Ernie Banks 1953-1971 Yes Roger Bresnahan 1900, 1913-1915 Lou Brock 1961-1964 Yes Mordecai Brown 1904-1912, 1916 Yes Frank Chance 1898-1912 John Clarkson 1884-1887 Kiki Cuyler 1928-1935 Andre Dawson 1987-1992 Yes Dizzy Dean 1938-1941 Hugh Duffy 1888-1889 Dennis Eckersley 1984-1986 Yes Johnny Evers 1902-1913 Jimmie Foxx 1942, 1944 Goose Gossage 1988 Yes Clark Griffith 1893-1900 Burleigh Grimes 1932-1933 Gabby Hartnett 1922-1940 Yes Billy Herman 1931-1941 Yes Rogers Hornsby 1929-1932 Monte Irvin 1956 Fergie Jenkins 1966-1973,19