Assorted Customs For December 17th

It’s that time of year when I don’t have energy for a lot of things, including catchy post titles and customs which take more than a half-hour or so… so no photoshopped images of relocating Major Leaguers this week. I think part of this is because the obvious candidate for such a card is Giancarlo Stanton, and I’m already tired of hearing about him.

So anyway, today I’ve got four assorted customs, all baseball-related.

I made this custom of Delino DeShields Jr. at the end of October, but didn’t use it at the time. Now I can’t remember why I made it… but it turned out nice enough that I’m sharing it anyway.

He did get largely overlooked by Topps in 2017, that may have had something to do with it. He played in 120 games but only appeared in Heritage High #’s and Topps Now. Something I just learned: He and his former-MLBer father have different middle names, so he’s technically not a “Jr.”

I do remember why I made this custom of Ronald Acuna… He’s a five-tool prospect, he’s Baseball America’s Minor League Player of the Year, he’s the MVP of the Arizona Fall League, he moved from A-ball to AA to AAA in 2017, he’s up near the top of any prospect list you may find and… this is sheer coincidence, BTW… he turns 20 tomorrow.

He also has a shot of being “The rookie you tire of pulling” in 2018.

The Winter Meetings were held this past week, and as always it concludes with the Rule 5 draft. The Orioles went a bit nuts, drafting two pitchers from the Yankees and one from the Cubs. There’s almost no way all three will stick, but the O’s have had decent luck with the Rule 5 in recent history, so fingers crossed.

I was a bit indecisive with this one in terms of how far I should go with the photos. How much time should I take with guys who may just be memories by Opening Day? I decided that, for a 1971 custom, having the Minor League cap logos removed would be most true to the originals… not to mention easiest (Hello, “clone brush”!)

As for the three players drafted… Nestor Cortes is a lefty who impressed at three levels in the Yankees system and is probably the most likely to stick. Pedro Araujo has only 2 innings in AA, but had a 1.74 ERA and 0.677 WHIP in the Arizona Fall League this year. Jose Mesa Jr. also has minimal experience in the higher levels, but is (surprise!) the son of former MLB reliever Jose Mesa.

Phillies fans must be excited this winter, because they have a number of well-regarded prospects and they’ve made a few moves which have made this Mets fan say “Uh-oh”.

Ditching Pete Mackanin for Gabe Kapler seemed odd earlier this offseason, but it certainly seems that they’ve decided to accelerate the rebuilding process.

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