Sunday, December 30, 2007
This was a great pack to open up. There were only 5 cards, but I got 5 stars. On top of that, these cards are really great looking. They are the nicest cards I've gotten so far in this Christmas wax pack box. As you can see, I pulled out an Ichiro, Vernon Wells, Shawn Green, Curt Shilling and recently fingered Steroid user Eric Gagne.
Friday, December 28, 2007
During spring training, Conte met with Giants general manager Brian Sabean to express his concerns about the presence of Anderson and Shields in the clubhouse, weight room, and other restricted areas. Conte felt strongly that personal trainers should not have such access, particularly where, as here, he viewed the trainers to be unqualified.
Sabean told Conte that if Conte objected to Anderson and Shields being in the clubhouse, Conte should order them out himself. Conte said he would do this if Sabean would support him when Bonds complained, which Conte believed would be the result of his actions. Sabean did not respond to this request for support, leading Conte to believe that Sabean would not do so if Bonds protested. Conte therefore decided to take no action to deny Anderson or Shields access to restricted areas.
Conte recalls that during this series (in August 2002 against Atlanta) a Giants player asked Conte about anabolic steroids. Conte refused to identify the player to us, citing athletic trainer privilege. According to Conte, the player told him that he was considering obtaining steroids from Greg Anderson and wanted to know the health issues associated with the use of steroids. In response, Conte explained at some length the health hazards of steroid use and lectured the player about the unfairness to other players posed by the illicit use of steroids. Conte believed that it was “a good lecture” and that he put considerable doubt in the player’s mind.
Conte stated that he reported the incident to general manager Brian Sabean within an hour of its occurrence. He told Sabean he was concerned that Anderson might be distributing steroids to Giants players. While he refused to identify the player who had approached him, Conte otherwise described the conversation to Sabean in detail. Sabean suggested Conte confront Anderson and Bonds about the matter, which Conte refused to do. In Conte’s view, it was not the responsibility of the athletic trainer to address such an issue.
A culture of corruption within the Giants management? As Mark with LA Dodger Talk says there appears to be no doubt why Conte left the team.
Pic Link: pbats.com:
From my story I wrote in September 2006:
Trade Cards are one of the more interesting hobbies to crop up in American history. It originally started in the late 1870's and thrived throughout the rest of the century. It became one of America's early fads and collecting crazes. They started out as business/ advertising cards given away to customers. The name of the establishment would be printed on the front with a simple design around the edges. Soon the designs became more ornate and customers started collecting them to put into scrapbooks. This started the age of Victorian scrapbooking in America.Baseball themed cards represent an infinitesimally small amount of total trade cards in existence.
The set I'm highlighting from my collection is called H804-1A Baby Talk Black Borders. This is one of three different sets that exist under the Baby Talk genre. It was produced in 1880's and is complete with a total of 10 cards. As the name of the set suggest the cards have titles on the bottom left of the cards that represent the spoken word of children. There are phrases like "Tum on, ets' p'ay ball!" and "No, I Didn' stike at dot!" Most collectors consider it complete at 9, but there is one card, that has no writing on it, (on the bottom right below) that I'm convinced belongs to this set.
Since the '52 set is one of my favorites I knew I would immediately like the look of this modern set. Within my pack I received a refractor of future Hall of Famer Tom Glavine (below left), but didn't get much of anyone else. Not even a Dodger. The other cards I got include Willie Eyre, Anthony Lerew, Ramon Ramirez, Josh Kinney, Josh Johnson.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
"At 3 minor league stops (in 2002), Alfredo posted a stunning 1.89 ERA in 76 relief innings."Arm problems while in the minors slowed his rapid ascent. He recently signed as a free agent with the Texas Rangers.
Other cards in the pack include Eric Bruntlett, journeyman Al Martin, hurler Mark Redman, Chipper Jones/ Hank Blalock Interleague Play card, Horacio Ramirez, Ryan Franklin and one of my favorites Dmitri Young.
Stu Nahan was once a professional hockey player in the Maple Leafs organization, having played for their minor league affiliate Los Angeles Monarchs until 1952.
"The real reason I quit was because I had a terrific sunburn on the back of my neck, which I got because the red light was on most of the time I was in the net," he would quip about the signal for a goal scored in hockey.He was one of my favorite sports personalities. Who can forget his recurring roles in the "Rocky" films and his appearance in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High."
YouTube Link: ribbed4her:
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
So this past weekend, while completing my Christmas shopping list I decided to stop at the card aisle to take a look. I reached around and checked out every different box and pack they had. I hadn't heard of half of the brands. Nevertheless, I figured, "why not!" It had easily been half a decade since I'd opened a pack of cards. So, I reached down and decided to buy a combo box of various different packs to wet my whistle. Unfortunately, the box had mostly older packs, so finding one of the Dodgers burgeoning stars would not be in the cards.
What I did find in my box, though, was a card set I had never seen before. It's called The Baseball Enquirer- Fun Stuff cards produced by CONFEX in 1992. I was an active card dealer back then so I'm amazed that I had never come across this in the past. It features comedic/ unflattering painted pictures of various Baseball stars, as well as, insulting interview style questions and answers on the back. Below is Lasorda's fake interview.
Man-O-Live, they don't pull their punches. Anyway, below are 2 of my other favorites.
Over the next several days I'll highlight cards from the other packs I opened from this box during the between-holiday lull.
Monday, December 24, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
They will open the year with a Rose Parade float featuring Dodger past and present greats. Furthermore, it includes 15 very dedicated Dodger employees. They represent a combined 225 year of Dodger service.
In honor of those unsung Dodger employees please be sure to cheer loudly for them if your in Pasadena for the parade. Heck, cheer loudly if your watching on the tube. They are:
- Ray Alvarado of Arcadia , usher captain, 11 years of service
- Cheryl Collins of , guest relations, 7 years of service
- Diana Darr of Phillips Ranch, usher captain, 16 years of service
- Earl Davidson of Canyon Country, usher captain, 15 years of service
- Eddie Gonzalez of El Monte , assistant manager, 44 years of service
- Raul Gutierrez of , security and assistant manager, 9 years of service
- Sara Guzman of , usher captain, 13 years of service
- Anthony Lopez of Whittier, usher captain, 29 years of service
- Richard Montano of Pico Rivera , security lead, 26 years of service
- Raul Rodriguez of , assistant manager, 19 years of service
- Jim Terminal of , usher captain, 19 years of service
- Al Garcia of , security, 2 years of service
- John Northcott of , security, 2 years of service
- Danny Telford of Glendale , electrician with 10 years of service
- Kevin Waters of Northridge, stadium utility with 25 years of service
Hat Tip: Dodger.com:
A team source confirmed yesterday that the Orioles have been in serious negotiations with Indian River County about the Dodgertown facility, though a binding agreement hasn't been reached.
Story Link: Baltimore Sun:
Friday, December 21, 2007
Lelands Auction Link: Babe and Lou:
Thursday, December 20, 2007
“It’s great to return to Long Beach and Blair Field. The city and fans are first class and it’s a fine ballpark. I had a wonderful experience the last go around and I’m looking forward to building a team that we can all be proud of,” said Yeager. “I am excited to have the opportunity to continue to work with young players, help them develop and succeed in professional baseball, and to help them attract the attention of major league organizations.”In one way I'm happy that he'll be managing just a hop, skip and a jump away, but I think this ruins my hope that he would one day be the Dodger skipper.
Story Link: GoldenBaseball.com:
Pic Link: CBSSportstore:
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
This morning on eBay a rare uniform from the 1918-1920 Baseball team was sold. It originally came from the estate of player Oscar Sussman and is probably one of the few old uniforms left that exist from the team. It sold for $4,550.00.
Hat Tip: VBCF:
eBay Auction Link: HOD Uniform:
Story Link: PGA.com:
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Playing for the first time since hobbling off the field in Colorado three months ago with back and ankle problems, Furcal had four hits, two runs and stole a base in a Dominican winter league game in nearby San Francisco de Macoris.
"I feel like I'm getting back to my game. Steal a base, bunting, running," he says. "It's tough when you've got a bad injury and you can't even stand up at home plate. I felt so disappointed with myself."
Image Link: Gottohaveit:
Story Link: LA Times:
Indian River County Administrator Joe Baird isn’t happy with the schedule. He said he will look into the Dodgers’ plans more closely in the next few days to assure they are living up to their contract. The team will play the 10 home games required by the county, but Baird is concerned by the fact it won’t be a full team for four of those games.The Dodgers last game at Dodgertown is schedule for March 17th and pretty much assures that I'll be passing on going to Florida this coming Spring. This sucks.
Vero Beach Mayor Tom White said he’s disappointed, but not surprised by the spring training schedule. He would like to see the Dodgers leave as friends and family and not have a bad breakup with the community, but yet Baird should make sure the team is living lives up to their obligations to local fans.
UPDATE: LA Dodger Talk finds within the LA Daily News a story indicating that this may not be the Dodgers last year at Vero Beach.
Story Link: TCPalm.com:
People will come, Ray.
The one constant through all the years,
Ray, has been baseball.
America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers.
It's been erased like a blackboard,
rebuilt, and erased again.
But baseball has marked the time.
This field, this game.
It's a part of our past, Ray.
It reminds us of all that once was good...
...and it could be again.
People will come, Ray.
People will most definitely come.
YouTube Link: DrvnMovies:
Field Of Dreams Script: Script-O-Rama:
Monday, December 17, 2007
Hat Tip: Twins Nation:
Baseball Illustrated Pitches Link:
“Gary provides us with a veteran catcher who can spell Russell from time to time,” said Colletti. “ He has been a member of some very good teams and the fact that he has spent his entire Major League career in the National League is also something we found to be beneficial.”Not that I expect him to play very much, here is what the Dodger PR department sent me about his stats.
Last year, Bennett hit .314 following the All-Star break, including .400 (8-for-20) in the month of September and closed the season on a 7-for-11 tear (.636). The veteran also batted .313 with runners on base, .333 with runners in scoring position and two out and .383 from the seventh inning on.Those are some pretty good numbers.
Photo Link: dksbaseballcards:
Sunday, December 16, 2007
No one American athlete, in any sport, has ever summed up the values of his era more than the pitcher Christy Mathewson. This "Greek God in flannels," as the publicists liked to call him, appeared on the major-league diamond, during the first years of the 20th century, as if in answer to the national yearning for a gentleman-hero. Baseball gloried in its rough-necked, hard-drinking, roustabout spirit when Mathewson first stepped upon its muddy fields. "He handed the game," wrote dean of sportswriters Grantland Rice, "a certain...indefinable lift in culture, brains, personality."In our tumultuous times filled with steroids, gambling and drugs where is our gentleman-hero? Where is our Christy Mathewson?
This museum quality artifact came from the collection of Barry Halper and sold for an astounding $63,000.00Memory Lane Auction Link: Mathewson Contract:
This rarefied artifact combines the genesis of the National Pastime with the rise of the internecine war that nearly sliced our country in half. It was the War Between the States, after all, that dispersed and popularized baseball, transforming it from a regional, little-known game to a bona fide national phenomenon. The new-fangled sport was enjoyed at encampments, on battlefields, and in prisons. It was a shining light of brotherhood and spirited competition for men whose lives were otherwise filled with bloodshed, rot and death.This is one of only three swords known to exist.
It was formally presented to Union soldier Robert H. Ellis from the Eagle Base Ball Club of New York.
The Eagles had formed as a "town ball" team back in 1840—preceding even the origin of the now-hallowed Knickerbockers—and by 1852 had converted to playing the more formalized "base ball" with other organized clubs. In 1857, the Eagles met the Gothams in a formative championship at Hoboken's fabled Elysian Fields. Their great match was depicted in the publication Porter's Spirit of the Times as one of the first-ever woodcut engravings with a baseball theme.It sold for $8,860.00.
Mastro Auction Link: Baseball Sword:
Below is a Puerto Rican Winter League trophy presented to the great Roy Campanella for leading the league in home runs in the 1939-40 season. This originally came from the Campy Estate and stands 13 1/2 inches tall. It sold for $3,616.00.
Mastro Auction Link: Campanella Homerun Trophy:
Baseball cabinet photos are very hard to come by. Especially in this condition. What makes these extra special is that all 3, 1902-1911 W600 Sporting Life Cabinet Photos, are of members of the Brooklyn Superbas (who would later become the Dodgers) - Charles Farrell, Frank Kitson, James Sheckard. They sold for $2,716.00.
Mastro Auction Link: Brooklyn Cabinets:
This comes from one of my favorite Baseball movies, A League of Their Own. Below is a Geena Davis 1992 Rockford Peaches uniform from the movie. It originally came
from the family of AAGPBL player Helen Filarski, who in all likelihood had visited the film set and received one of Davis' uniforms.It sold for $7,985.00.
Mastro Auction Link: Peaches Uniform:
Saturday, December 15, 2007
The Dodgers won the bidding war for Japanese right-handed starter Hiroki Kuroda, reaching an agreement Saturday on a three-year, $35.3 million contract.Check out the video below of Kuroda facing Matsui in 2002 in a 9 1/2 minute at-bat.
Story Link: MLB.com:
Photo Link: Frank's Field Of Dreams:
Friday, December 14, 2007
"I'm simply overwhelmed," said Martin in a release. "I'd trade this and my other individual awards for a few more wins and a trip to the postseason, but I do play hard and I play with passion, and obviously people appreciate that."It is an award given out by the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame. BTW, Tip O'Neil was a 19th century Canadian ballplayer.
Story Link: MLB.com:
Thursday, December 13, 2007
BTW, He is said to feature a mid-90s fastball, slider, forkball, and shuuto (also called a “reverse slider”, it’s a pitch similar to a screwball, but with less break).Nice.
YouTube Link: acekuroda:
“As the steward of the , I am steadfast in the belief that performance-enhancing drugs have no place in baseball. The Dodgers have supported and fully cooperated with this investigation, initiated by the commissioner and conducted by Senator Mitchell. We wholeheartedly support Commissioner Selig’s efforts to rid the game of these substances and we commend Senator Mitchell on a thorough investigation. Our commitment to our fans during our stewardship has been and always will be to do everything in our power to maintain the game’s integrity.
“With that said, I have not had the chance to read the report in its entirety and once I am able to do so, I’ll be willing to share any further thoughts.”
- True Blue LA: A must read!
- Pedro For Delino: A brief synopsis of Dodger related Mitchell Report news.
- LA Dodger Talk worries about the implications this report will have on Baseball.
- MSTI live blogs the event.
- LAist calls them cheaters.
- Ms. Milano looks for the silver lining.
- SOSG fills an All Mitchell Report Dodger Lineup.
- Dodger Thoughts reflects and then looks for redemption.
The current buzz is about a baseball card that doesn't even picture a player and was issued after the season had ended. You grab a swatch of cowhide and a magic marker. Draw an asterisk on it. Turn it into a baseball card and suddenly you have a controversial and expensive conversation piece.
So far only 3 cards have surfaced. The first card sold on eBay for $955.00. A second card was sold as a "Buy It Now" at $1,200.00. The third card is currently available along with another rare insert card at a current price of $1,076.00. Bidding ends in 2 days.
Hat Tip: Sports Collectors Daily:
eBay Link: Purchased for $1200.00:
Plainly, Baseball needs to do more to address this problem. I have never met or talked to Jeff Kent of the Los Angeles Dodgers, but he appears to have understood this when he said in September, as reported in several newspapers: "Major League Baseball is trying to investigate the past so they can fix the future."I think that sums up the purpose of this report nicely. This should be a stepping stone to making Baseball better.
I've briefly gone through some of the report and came across a section I found very interesting. If you don't know already Paul LoDuca is named in the report. (page 257-258)
According to notes of an internal discussion among the Los Angeles Dodgers officials in October 2003 ... it was reportedly said of Paul LoDuca during the meetings:As you all remember, Pauly was traded less than a year later to the Florida Marlins. As Paul Harvey would say, "and now you know…the rest of the story."
Steroids aren't being used anymore on him. Big part of this. Might have some value to trade... Florida might have an interest... Got off the steroids... Took away a lot of hard line drives... Can get comparable value back would consider trading... If you do trade him, will get back on the stuff and try to show you he can have a good year. That's his makeup. Comes to play. Last year of contract, playing for '05.
Check out the list here.