Monday, September 7, 2009

The Power of Cropping - Kenny Lofton

I was searching eBay for some oddball Tribe stuff and came across an auction for a "35mm Slide with full rights" of Kenny Lofton. I haven't decided if I am going to bid or not, but the photo itself caused me to pause a moment...

Look at this picture:

Nothing out of the ordinary, right? Lofton has taken a swing at the ball. Where did it go? Is it heading out to the outfield or down the line? Let's see if a wider view gives us better indication:

No, not really. I mean, here we have the catcher in the view but does it reveal anything? Well, the catcher has his hand still in the position to receive the ball. So, this shot was either taken at just the right moment, or Lofton is WAAAAY ahead of the pitch. The guy in the background isn't even paying attention to what's happening at the plate, so he is no help.

Let's view the whole picture that is being offered in the auction:

Ah, there it is... The ball is fouled off and hovering just above Lofton's head in the photo.

If the first, cropped image had been selected for a baseball card, we would have no idea as to the outcome or the situation of the photo. The second image would make a cool card, too, with the catcher in view. I see why the whole image was not put on a card, though...

Finding just the right moment in time is not the only thing that comes into play when selecting images for cards. The markup/assembly folks have to also look at what works when everything else is cropped out - or if ANYTHING can be cropped out. Of course, in this day and age of easy-to-do photo editing, I'm not sure it really matters all THAT much...


  1. Wow, that's crazy. Such a great swing. With it cropped like that I was have bet money that he gave that ball a real ride.

  2. Does Kenny's attitude rights come with that picture?

  3. I was fooled when I saw the cropped versions. I thought his eyes were following a ball hit in front of him not a foul. It might make a really cool piece for your collection though.

  4. That is really cool! You should buy it.

  5. Call me a nerd, but that is what I wonder with all the 'in-action' hitting images on baseball cards - what is exactly happening?

    If a batter is captured on his follow through and it looks like he hit a home run, was it really a home run or a pop-out to the shortstop.

    Where can we look at baseball cards to know what is exactly happening or has happened on the image shown.

  6. Thank you for your outstanding post . I really like base ball. 35mm slide scanning service