Earlier this year, I threw my hat in the ring for Thorzul's group break, claiming any Orioles that he might pull from a big random mess o' cards purchased from eBay. All it cost me was $5, and I got a few nifty O's cards that I probably wouldn't have sniffed out on my own. The above card, featuring minor leaguer Zach Britton in an Aberdeen IronBirds uniform, is a nice example. (By the by, Zach's currently sporting a mighty fine 2.40 ERA with the Frederick Keys.)
Of course, I haven't had nearly as much luck when it comes to pulling Orioles from the few 2009 card sets that I've been collecting. I already talked about my trials and travails with 2009 Topps; I had thumbed through over 120 of them before finding my first hometown player. As it stands, I've got 204 of the 330 Series 1 cards and I pulled two whole O's (and received two others via trade). I fared a bit better with my first two jumbo packs of Series 2, receiving three Birds out of 72 cards. Still nothing to write home about, especially when one of the guys in orange and black was the long-gone Alex Cintron. Nice call, Topps.
More recently, Upper Deck's inaugural set under the O-Pee-Chee umbrella has grabbed my attention. Most of the other bloggers that I read have taken a shine to the simple, old-school design and gloriously thick and dull cardboard stock, so I grabbed a couple 24-card packs from Wal-mart yesterday evening to judge for myself. I too liked what I saw, particularly the inclusion of just two inserts total. This is a set that might actually be feasible to collect, perish the thought! But something was still amiss. You guessed it: no O's. I had to look at the ugly mugs of Mark Teixeira and Captain Cheeseburger Sabathia, but not a single one of my guys. Of course I didn't get any Rangers, Cubs, Cardinals, or Padres either, but who cares about those goofy teams?
It's a good thing that I've found trading partners all over the blogosphere, because I sure as heck don't have a nose for Orioles when I'm grabbing packs from the store.