Saturday Mailday From a Cubs Fantasy Camp Umpire

Last week, Brian in Chandler, Arizona reached out saying he had some Cubs to send me. In return I’ll be sending out Brewers and Diamondbacks.

His package arrived Saturday, and instantly I had to send him a message as he had included some Club 400 stickers.

My love for Club 400 is well known here, as I’ve made a couple trips to the ultimate Cubs pad. Stu, the owner of Club 400 is an awesome person and I’ve been privileged to get to know him at Cubs Conventions, and his events at Club 400.

So I had to ask Brian if he was a member of Club 400. His response was even better. Brian served as an umpire at Randy Hundley’s Cubs Fantasy Camp this past spring. Stu and his brother Eric both played in the Fantasy Camp this year and brought a bunch of stickers with them. Brian said he picked up a few at the end of Camp party. These are the types of connections that make the journey to collect one million Cubs cards worth it. I am enjoying interacting with fellow collectors and others involved in baseball just as much as opening my mailbox and finding packages filled with Cubs cards.

Now to the cards! A nice stack of Starlin Castro’s were here, including a 2011 Topps Chrome I’ve never seen.

And some Bryzzo.

My favorite! Javy Baez!!!

Allen & Ginter is one of my favorite products. Some of the Insert sets turn me off, but this Derrek Lee This Day In History Insert is a beauty.

Another insert from a Cubs player from long ago. This Hack Wilson is from 2002 Topps. Love the photo and the Cubs logo in the background with the shatter look.

A serial numbered Kyle Smit from 2011 Bowman Chrome. This is 374/799. Smit reached Triple A with the Iowa Cubs in 2011, but never made it to the big leagues.

I love the cards of players like Smit and Mike Amrhein. Amrhein was drafted by the Cubs in the 10th round of the 1997 MLB Draft. He worked all the way up to Triple A Iowa in 2002, his last year in professional baseball.

Chris Carpenter did make it to the show, debuting with the Cubs on June 14, 2011. Eight months later he was traded to the Boston Red Sox for….Theo Epstein. Carpenter was sent to Boston as compensation for the Cubs hiring Epstein. No offense to Chris, but I really like this “trade.” But I also like this 2011 Bowman Chrome Green X-Fractor of Carpenter. Just a bit less than seeing Epstein in a box at Wrigley Field!

More shiny cards in the form of Jeff Samardzija. A 2011 Topps Diamond Anniversary and a 2012 Topps Gold Sparkle.

In 2016, Topps included a 100 Years of Wrigley subset. I absolutely love this Insert set. I’m a bit bias.

James Russell will always be a household name in my home. That’s because I have a pair of his game worn throwback pants in a shadow box hanging on my basement wall. My wife wouldn’t allow me to outfit a mannequin in Cubs game worn memorabilia, so this was a compromise. This Russell card is a 2010 Topps copper Parallel numbered 196/399.

Thanks for the trade, and a great story Brian!

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