It's pretty much a known and given fact that the #1 baseball-card-collecting blog in existence belongs to the legendary Night Owl. Despite his Dodgers fandom, his popularity continues to grow, even after having been around for four and a half years.
From post series' like "Cardboard Appreciation", that's now at 170 posts; to "Brush with Greatness", a recounting of athletes he has interviewed, there's really nothing about Night Owl Cards that's not to like (other than the whole Dodgers-obsession, ya know). Of course, I have to throw in a mention for his Awesome Night Card series, which is in the triple-digits as well.
For all of you card & autograph collectors, following his blog is a must! If you don't fall under either of those categories, I recommend his site to you anyway. It's very well-written and he dedicates a lot of time to it, and it shows. Check out his answers to my questions below!
Q: Have the Dodgers always been “your team”?
Yes. With the exception of one day. I started rooting for the Dodgers the moment I pulled a 1974 Topps Tommy John card out of a cello pack of cards my mom bought for me at the grocery store. It was the first card I ever saw. I changed my favorite team to the Mets two years later because I received a glove for my birthday that was signed by Tom Seaver. But I changed it back to the Dodgers the next day.
Q: How did you get started collecting baseball cards?
My mom got me started with those cello packs she bought me and my brother (she'd be kind of disgusted if she realized that). The following year, I bought my first packs with my allowance. The 1975 Topps set is a classic, and I like to think that set was what me kept collecting year after year.
Q: If you were given control over the Topps Company, what would be the first thing you would change or fix?
I would change what appears to be a prevailing philosophy there, which is "do anything you want to the set collector because they're faithful collectors who will always be there." I think Topps will find out in 2013 that not as many of them are going to be there, and their apparent philosophy is the reason for that.
Q: As one of the premier card bloggers, give me your take on what can and should be done to improve the hobby for collectors.
Heavy stuff! Geez, I don't know. I'm a big believer that you have to find what you love in the hobby and chase that. And I think whatever that is, it's ALWAYS out there, you just have to find it. People complain too much about how the hobby is crap today and that it should be improved -- and it's true there are things that should be fixed -- but it's not like you have to give up the hobby because parts of it are broken. There's always fun to find in collecting.
Q: If you had to hand out awards to the 2012 Dodgers squad, who would be handed the MVP, Cy Young, and Rookie of the Year trophies?
There was a 2012 season?
MVP is tough because nobody really stood out. But I'd go with Matt Kemp because when he wasn't injured, he was fantastic.
Cy Young, Clayton Kershaw. He'll be the Dodgers Cy Young for at least the next 5 years.
Rookie of the Year: The only rookie I can think of who made any kind of impact was Elian Herrerra. He was a godsend. Played a bunch of different positions when Dodgers had injuries and did well.
Q: The Dodgers made made a huge splash on the trade market last season, bringing in Hanley Ramirez; Adrian Gonzalez; Josh Beckett; and Carl Crawford. In your opinion, which new acquisition will have the biggest impact next season and long-term?
It better be Adrian Gonzalez. If he doesn't hit like he did in
, the trade is pretty close to a bust. San Diego