Create your own custom baseball cards with Rookies App

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If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably a baseball fan. And if you’re a baseball fan of a certain age, you probably at one point in your life collected baseball cards. Yeah, those things decaying in your parents’ basement, accruing value only in your imagination.

It’s time to reignite the flame in this digital world.

Matt Sebek — of Joe Sports Fan and Cardinals Twitter fame — has developed the Rookies App, a simply-designed program for your phone that allows for the creation of customized baseball cards.

We’ll let Sebek and his cohorts further explain:

Over the past two years, our team has been creating an iPhone application that allows users to create their own baseball cards. The front and back are fully personalized with custom photos, text and color. Once created, users can share them socially on Facebook and Twitter.

Then, the real fun begins.

Users can purchase a pack of cards that are printed on premium recycled stock and come wrapped in a custom wax pack. There are 20 cards per pack and you can purchase the same card or mix and match from your collection. Then they’re shared as birth announcements, business cards, wedding gifts, birthday presents or conversation pieces. Our team tinkered with every possible inch of this product, all the way down to the gum – which FDA policies restrict these days. Sorry, you’ll need to find stale gum somewhere else.

Use of the app is totally free. If you want a custom, handcrafted pack it costs $12.99 (plus shipping).

There are numerous card templates and the possibilities within those card templates are endless:

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Download the Rookies App now for the iPhone or iPad. A version for Android users is coming soon.

The Yankees and Red Sox will play on artificial turf in London

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Major League Baseball wants to give the United Kingdom a taste of America’s pastime when the Yankees and Red Sox visit next month. Based on the playing surface they’re going to use, however, they may as well have sent the Blue Jays and the Rays:

Major League Baseball has access to Olympic Stadium for 21 days before the games on June 29 and 30, the sport’s first regular-season contests in Europe, and just five days after to clear out. The league concluded that there was not enough time to install real grass.

Starting June 6, gravel will be placed over the covering protecting West Ham’s grass soccer pitch and the running track that is a legacy from the 2012 Olympics. The artificial turf baseball field, similar to modern surfaces used by a few big league clubs, will be installed atop that.

At least they will not use the old-style sliding pits/turf infield that you used to always see. That’ll all be dirt. There are comments in the article about how it’s a cost savings too since they’re going back next year and won’t have to bulldoze and re-grow grass. Aaron Boone and Xander Bogaerts were asked and they don’t seem to care since it’s similar to the surface they play on in Toronto or down in Florida against the Rays.

Still, this whole deal is not aimed at doing whatever is minimally necessary to pull off a ballgame. It’s supposed to be a showcase on a global stage in a world capital. I have no idea how anyone thinks that doing that on a surface everyone has decided is obsolete for baseball playing purposes unless the ballpark is either outdated or in an arid environment is a good idea.

It’s certainly not baseball putting its best foot forward. Major League Baseball could’ve avoided this by choosing a different venue or even building a temporary one like MLB has done on a few occasions in the past. That, I suppose, would limit the revenue-generation capacity of these games, however, that’s off the table in the Rob Manfred Era.

Yankees and Red Sox on turf. What a decision.