Whoever said time flies sure wasn't kidding. Unbelievably, today is the 162nd and last regular season game for every MLB team.
Going into the last full day of baseball seems so surreal to me. It doesn't seem like Opening Day was all that long ago as I remember the first game of the season all too well. The blowing of a 4-0 lead by the Red Sox in Tampa Bay despite a memorable inside-the-park home run by Eduardo Nunez.
Additionally, the last game of the season will be made all the more exciting by the division races that will hopefully be settled today. The Cubs and Brewers are tied atop the NL Central while the Dodgers and Rockies are tied for first in the NL West. If one or both of these divisions are tied after today, a one-game playoff will be needed to determine the champion, and that's something that would be incredibly exciting to see.
I'm leaving in a couple hours to go to the final regular season Red Sox game of the year. They take on the Yankees at 3:00 with Rick Porcello facing a Yankees pitcher TBD (they pulled Severino out of the start today as he is likely to start the Wild Card game for New York on Wednesday.
In the meantime, I have the next page of my frankenset ready to show off. It's the 22nd page of the set, including cards 190-198.
#190 2016 Topps Opening Day Billy Hamilton
For defensive juggernauts like Billy Hamilton, Jackie Bradley Jr., and Kevin Kiermaier, there's no reason why their Flagship and Opening Day base cards shouldn't include images like this. For all the great catches these guys have made, there's really no shortage of available images to use.
#191 2003 Topps Heritage Cliff Lee
Although I don't have too many cards from the set in my collection, 2003 Topps Heritage was one of the better Heritage sets just in terms of how well they recreated the intricate 1954 Topps design. It ranks near 2005 Heritage (1956) and 2009 (1960) as one of the more difficult sets to recreate, and Topps did a superb job.
#192 2008 Topps Allen & Ginter Yunel Escobar
I'm not a big fan of how his arms and sleeves appear to be dissolving in this image, but I do like the simplicity of the early years of Allen & Ginter, 2006-2008. Even if it was hard to differentiate the sets, they helped A&G become the popular set is it today by setting the brand up for success in future years.
#193 2001 Fleer Platinum Royce Clayton
We may not see a lot of these nowadays, but mid-swing shots of hitters are actually quite common in the 2001 Fleer Platinum set. Additionally, the 2001 Fleer Platinum set is also relatively present in my frankenset, easily occupying 3-5 spaces already in the set thus far. This one stands out to me especially because of the black and white theme across the entire card.
#194 2006 Topps Heritage Randy Winn
Topps Heritage has made its 2nd appearance on this page of the frankenset. Only this time, it's the 2006 Topps Heritage set representing the 1957 Topps design that's being represented. With such a simple set like 1957 Topps, the only thing Topps really had to do was choose photos that would work well as full-bleed images, and they did exactly that in what turned out to be a very polished Heritage set.
#195 1991 Leaf Karl Rhodes
The Wrigley Field ivy background was more than enough for me to select this card to make it into the frankenset. I didn't need to know anything else about the card or see any other contenders for the #195 spot. The ivy was more than enough to secure the spot for Karl Rhodes' 1991 Leaf card.
#196 1990 Topps Gerald Young
I don't usually say this, but I'm not a huge fan of card #196 in the set, which is unfortunate because I selected each and every card of the 666 cards in my frankenset out of many other available options. My only guess is that I didn't have very strong options for spot #196, because Gerald Young's card is kind of meh to me.
#197 2006 Fleer Tradition Gary Sheffield Black and White Parallel
I don't think black and white could've worked any better on a card than it did for Gary Sheffield here. The black and white image does the classic Yankee pinstripes justice while the yellow and light blue works surprisingly well with the black and white majority of the card, and so does the Yankees cap in the bottom left corner.
#198 2017 Topps Gypsy Queen Noah Syndergaard
If a Noah Syndergaard card doesn't show Thor's long hair blowing in the wind, is it really a Noah Syndergaard card? It really seems like every single card of his is focused on his long hair, or at least makes a point of getting us to notice it, and the 2017 Topps Gypsy Queen card is no exception.