Friday, October 18, 2013

Baseball Cards (In Motion!)

I came across a news story talking about a new site that posts animated gif's of baseball cards in motion sequences. Any time cards make the mainstream media it's at least worth a read.  Cool concept, though it seems pretty clear the author may be a little overly impressed.  You can check the site out at, which promises a new gif each day.  It's not the first time I've seen it done, and when I read the initial story I was expecting something unique - perhaps sequences of the same player, or cards from the same set. 

Not so much.  Instead they seem to just take a pile of junk wax in similar poses, and gif them together.  Still interesting, but surely anything with a decent sized stack of cards could replicate, right?

Well, I put that theory to the test.

I pulled out a box of commons that has slowly been migrating to binders.  The box had cards from 1996-2006, but had mostly been pillaged of everything except for doubles.  Flipping through the cards, I quickly decided I would try to do one of poses: either a player running, or a right handed batter being photographed from the left side of the plate.

This was actually a lot easier than I had suspected.  By the time I hit my 2001 cards, I had put together enough cards to roughly make both poses work.  If I expanded my search to include more years, I'm sure I could have made the transitions a little smoother.

Scan, crop, and put together with a free online gif maker, and the entire process took about 10 minutes.  Given the number of Jason Kendall cards in this sequence, I could probably make an entire gif just of Kendall.

It's a fun novelty trick, and something that I think anyone in the blogosphere could easily replicate.  If I get really motivated, I may try to fine tune this one a bit - I know there are some early 90's cards that are in similar poses, as well as some early 80's Topps sets that seem to photograph every batter from the exact same angle.  

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