Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Below is a great vintage National League Baseball that celebrates the leagues 50th anniversary. Unfortunately, this offering only includes one of two Baseballs that were given away as presentation gifts to VIP's. The ball below has photos of 4 of the 8 previous National League Presidents which is displayed on a mahogany plaque. The league was founded on February 2, 1876. This ball comes from the estate of former NL President Charles Feeney.
It's 1957 and you are a 10 year old kid. You stroll down the aisle with your fingers rubbing against boxes of gum, toys and comic books. Then, you catch a glimpse of the object of your desire. Hanging on a rack are Baseball cards safely displayed in a Mylar pack. Mom looks lovingly as she watches the exuberance of her young child pointing to the cards. It's the perfect stocking stuffer.
Below is a unopened 1957 Topps Christmas rack pack with Dodger fire-baller Don Drysdale, should-be Hall of Famer Gil Hodges and the Brooklyn Dodgers team card on front. These rack packs were not manufactured by Topps, but by an outside company. No doubt to take advantage of the holidays. How this pack survived unopened after all of these years, I will never know? All I do know is that if I were to win this I could not help from opening it up.
Below is a fairly simple Dodger memorabilia item. It is a circa 1960's LA Dodgers silk handkerchief.
Any child would be proud to wear this. Below is c.1950's souvenir Brooklyn Dodgers children's t-shirt. Possibly sold at the stadium or near Ebbetts Field, it still has its' original tags.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
1. If I didn't collect Baseball cards, I'd collect _________.
- My first inclination was to say memorabilia or autographs, but those items are really in the same class as Baseball cards. So, my answer would probably have to be coins or, maybe, toys. I'm a collecting pack rat at heart.
- Robin Yount. He ranks as one of my all-time favorite players. In fact, as a kid I had my collection of Dodger stuff, but Yount was the only individual player I collected. It all started in little league as the Brewers became the first team I played for. As a result, I naturally wanted to find out everything about the Milwaukee Brewers, and back in the early to mid 80's they were a colorful bunch. The team was filled with characters like Cecil Cooper, Ben Oglivie, Moose Haas, Gorman Thomas and future Hall of Famer Paul Molitor. The leader of this motley crew was Robin Yount. He was a scrappy blue-collar type of player with big hair and a mustache. He exuded hard work and leadership- all qualities I gravitated towards.
- Every year I tell myself that I will organize and then sell/trade off things I no longer want. Somehow, I never find the time.
- If I had my choice to spend some time with one person from Baseball history it would be Branch Rickey. He was the former Dodger GM who signed Jackie Robinson that ushered in a new beginning for Baseball. Mr. Rickey bucked society by doing what he knew was right. On top of that, his past experiences show this consistent view towards his fellow men. Check out this previous post to see what I mean. An iconoclast like that is a man I can learn a lot from.
1. What is your favorite kind of dog?
- My favorite dog is a Shepard/ Chow mix. In fact, her name is Miko and she has been with me for over 10 years now.
2. Who is your favorite baseball player?
- In terms of a current ballplayer I would have to say Andre Ethier.
3. What is your favorite team?
- This answer took no thought at all- The Dodgers!
4. What is your favorite baseball movie?
- Bull Durham.
5. What is your favorite baseball book?
- The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn.
6. What is your favorite card?
- My favorite card is my reprinted 1950 Toleteros Cuban card of Negro League star and Hall of Famer Josh Gibson. Why, you ask? Well, one of these days I will have a real one in my collection.
Monday, December 29, 2008
The Dodgers contacted Dunn's agent, Greg Genske, over the holidays, according to an executive of a team interested in Dunn... The Dodgers, meanwhile, need to infuse power into a lineup that finished 14th in the National League in home runs last season. And with no certainty that they can re-sign Ramirez, they seem to have decided that Dunn represents their best alternative... Dunn also would require no draft-pick compensation because his former team, Arizona, didn't offer him arbitration.
I also found a website that is running their 2nd Annual Douchie Awards and Brad Penny is in the running for a prize. Penny had emptied out his locker at Dodger Stadium and disappeared without telling a soul before the playoffs started this past October. What a Douche! Go here to check it out and vote.
In some additional free agency news, Bobby Abreu appears to be in our sights as well and the Mets are thinking trade for Andruw Jones.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
- Josh Rawitch of the Inside the Dodgers blog shares an early sneek peek photo of the new Dodger Spring Training stadium in Arizona.
- I would love to get this card. Topps is producing a 1 of 1 dual autograph card featuring both Jackie Robinson and Barack Obama in its upcoming American Heritage set. (Hat Tip: The Beckett Blog)
- Your right Passan, it is embarrassing.
- Speaking of embarrassing, Andruw Jones is playing in the Dominican Winter Leagues and he still can't hit. On the positive side he looks more fit. (Hat Tip: 6-4-2)
Jones is hitting .188 through five games with three singles and eight strikeouts in 16 at-bats. Jones has twice struck out three times in a game and has yet to collect more hits than strikeouts in the same game.
- Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times really dislikes Garvey. So much so, he titles his story "Hitler. Stalin. Garvey." Now that's harsh. (Hat Tip: MSTI)
- Wow. Erin at Robots Took My Medicine had a spectacular day at Dodger Stadium recently. She stepped on the mound, slid into second base, got photos with Tommy (Lasorda) Claus and got some autographs. On top of that, there were bobbleheads and other stuff available at discount prices. I'm envious.
- The 1983 Fleer Project gets another autographed Dodger card for their collection.
- REA is offering a $1 Million reward if all 9 T206 Joe Doyle, N.Y. Nat'l, error cards (the non-error only says "Doyle, N.Y." on the bottom) graded by PSA are found. They seem pretty confident that PSA's population report is wrong and that this card is much rarer than the hobby thinks.
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Below is a group of 1885-1886 Brooklyn Grays scorecards with player portraits. They feature 4 different players of one of the Dodgers earliest teams. Incredibly, they are all scored.
May 2nd 1885 - vs. New York Metropolitans (VG/EX; Brooklyn lost, 2-8; Valentine is penciled in as the Umpire; catcher Will F. Krieg is pictured on the cover; blank backed), September 9th 1885 - vs. Louisville Colonels (VG; lost 3-7; Eddie West is penciled in as the Umpire; third baseman W. H. McClellan is pictured on the cover; ad back), September 25th 1885 - vs. St. Louis Browns (EX; lost 3-6; Kelly is penciled in as the umpire; pitcher Jno. J. Harkins is pictured on the cover; ad back), and June 5th 1886 - at Philadelphia Athletics (VG/EX; Brooklyn won, 14-10; Kelly is again penciled in as the Umpire; left fielder G. E. Swartwood is pictured on the cover; blank backed).They sold for an healthy $4,500.00.
Here is a great vintage game-used Dodger uniform of Fred Singleton from the year of the Baseball Centennial in 1939. It comes with the commemorative patch on its left sleeve and is in incredible condition.
In 6 Major League seasons Fred Singleton played sparingly, but he isn't known for his Baseball prowess. He was a great college football player. In 1955 he was elected into the College Football Hall of Fame as an All-American tackle for the University of Alabama. This uniform sold for $3,250.00.
Below is a very large grouping of some of the rarest Baseball pins in existence. They are from 1898 and were produced for Cameo Pepsin Gum. The two below are of Hall of Famers Kid Nichols and Buck Ewing. This collection of 64 pins sold for an astounding $72,500.00.
The Whitehead & Hoag Company of Newark, NJ produced these early 1-1/4" celluloid baseball pins as premiums for their neighboring firm, the American Pepsin Co. These pins were distributed with that latter firm's Cameo Pepsin Gum product and carried back paper advertisements for the confection...This impressive grouping of 64 different pins displays a total of 45 Pepsin back papers and 11 others that have 11 Whitehead & Hoag inserts in their stead. The remaining eight have no paper at all. This is an unusually high percentage of surviving coverings for any cello pin collection of any vintage, and remarkable for a 19th century set.
Actually there are a number of amazing characteristics about this collection, beyond its high percentage of surviving back papers. There are visible cracks on only one example (Hutchinson), and that is a single crack that blends in with the image! Most of the pins grade EX or better, with many Near Mint or better examples in their midst. These pins are seldom found with such a uniform high grade appearance, where all of the images are clearly visible with highly legible captions. Only a few of these demonstrate any stains, and on those few examples the staining is unobtrusive, providing no distraction from the pin's attractively preserved subject. This is easily one of the finest holdings in our hobby, containing many examples that were once part of the fabled Copeland collection.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Edes writes that although an offer has not yet been made, Lowe is the Mets’ prime target.
It appears that the Teixeira signing may cause a snowball effect.
- To Andruw Jones- This Dodger fan can no longer stand it when you strike out and smile. It's killing me and is the root cause for our vocal consternation at games. So don't do it, dammit!
- To the McCourt's- Why is it that I cringe every time either of you speak? I just don't know. All I do know is that I got my eye on you for the "Feats of Strength."
- To Ned Colletti- Your incompetence in the Jason Schmidt matter makes me want to scream. I should have known better than to ever trust a former Giants GM. You have disappointed more than you'll ever know.
- To Troy from West Virginia- I know you love Joe Beimel, but he will not make or break the team. It's time to find a new man-crush.
- To Russell Martin- When you sported that porn-stache I laughed, but now I realize it was just bad. How can you go from being Alyssa Milano's crush to a Jeff Kent wannabe? It's just disappointing.
- To Manny Ramirez- Dodger fans are ready to give you their loyalty, hearts and soul. You could be the new King of LA. Why can't you return the favor? Just sign, already!
Is it me, or is it looking like the Dodgers are the last man standing for his services?
Monday, December 22, 2008
The York Times has a rare recording featuring Hall of Fame broadcaster Red Barber calling the last half inning of Cincinnati Reds hurler Johnny Vander Meer's 2nd consecutive no hitter 41 years after the fact. Check out the story and listen to his call here.
...Barber came to the annual meeting of the Florida Association of Broadcasters. They presented him with their Gold Medal. He recalled a prayer about the “changes and chances of time,” then offered his listeners the gift of time passed.Now it belongs to all of us. Enjoy.
“Something no one has,” he said. He later added, “It’s going to be yours.”
Sunday, December 21, 2008
- I just came across a blog called Free Andy LaRoche. It's a Dodger-centric card blog. He shares Manny's 2008 Stadium Club card that shows some obvious signs of photoshopping. Check it out here.
- Are you in the market to purchase the most sought after Baseball card of all time? If you have $2.5Mil this Wagner T206 can be yours from eBay.
- Padres for sale.
- Is trouble brewing at the Negro League Museum in Kansas City?
A couple of weeks ago, the museum board decided by one vote to name a board member, Greg Baker, as the new executive director ... Baker won by one vote over longtime marketing director Bob Kendrick. I have nothing whatsoever against Greg Baker — I don’t even know the man — but I believe this is a grave injustice, and I believe it’s a slap at Buck O’Neil, it’s a slap at what the Museum has always stood for, it’s a slap at loyalty and fair play, and finally I believe it’s a slap at all of us who who in our own small way have dedicated parts of our lives and money to making the Museum unique and triumphant.
- Speaking of museums, all Dodger fans need to check out the Sports Museum of Los Angeles. The Dodger memorabilia is incredible. I visited the museum the day it opened, but, unfortunately, they would not allow photographs. You'll just have to go and see it for yourself.
- Is love of sports genetically ingrained in the modern man?
“While I don’t want to excuse men from feeling this way, part of this is in their evolutionary programming.Hat Tip: Lion in Oil:
“Throughout history men have fought in groups and football is just a modern-day version of that. It’s part of their survival programming and it’s in the genes.”
- Check out some pics of the new Yankees Stadium, including the gigantic team clubhouse. Wow! Hat Tip:Baseball Musings:
- This can't be real. Burger King has a scented body spray available for the holidays that smells like the sweet aroma of a freshly broiled Whooper. It's called FLAME and you can check it out at their website here and purchase it online here for $3.99. Hat Tip: Wonkette:
Friday, December 19, 2008
"The Dodgers have not made an offer," Wolf said in an e-mail. "If the Dodgers want to come forward, I would be open to the possibility."Looks like Randy is doing some campaigning.
Considering he was an "innings eater" last season he just might do.
Wolf, 32, went 12-12 with a 4.30 ERA in 190 1/3 innings for the Padres and Astros after the Dodgers declined his $9 million option for 2008 when shoulder surgery derailed his previous season.He may be the perfect bridge until something more exciting develops.
LA Dodger Talk thinks about the numbers.
I'll be glued to the TV watching the NHL Winter Classic outdoor hockey game at Wrigley Field. Check out the photo as they build the rink. Go here to see more pictures.
According to the NHL, more than 400 workers will take part in transforming the second-oldest ball park in the major leagues into a hockey venue for just the second regular-season outdoor game ever played in the United States.
They will use 52,000 feet of plywood and 32,000 feet of decking in the project, along with 20,000 gallons of water to create ice and 350 gallons of paint. Scaffolding being put up in front of the famed brick outfield walls at Wrigley Field will be used to recreate the ivy that is green in the summer and also used for advertising.
The goals will be along the first and third base lines with the penalty box just on the second base side of the pitcher’s mound.
Story Link: Yahoo Sports: AP:
Here's a preview as the excitement begins.
Check out the time-lapse video of the rinks construction so far.
Wow! Check this out. Below is a live webcam stream at Wrigley Field as they continue building the rink.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Dodger left-hander Scot Shields (7.5 percent).
today was named the 2008 Set-Up Man of the Year, as voted on by fans on MLB.com. The award is part of the website’s . The Taiwan native received 30.3 percent of the vote, ahead of Tampa Bay ’s (19.2 percent), the Cubs’ (17.6 percent), and the Angels’ Kuo’s 1.69 ERA (13 ER/69.1 IP) as a reliever in 2008 led the
and ranked seventh in the Majors (min. 50.0 innings). The 27-year-old bounced back from left rotator cuff and left elbow injuries in 2007 to pitch a career-high 80.0 innings over a career-best 42 games (three starts). Kuo went 5-3 with 12 holds, one save, and a 2.14 ERA overall. He finished tied for second on the Dodgers in holds with , behind only Jonathan Broxton’s 13.One of five Taiwan-born players in
, Kuo struck out 96 batters in his 80.0 innings for an average of 10.80 strikeouts per 9.0 innings. He limited the opposition to a .204 average, including a .202 mark (19-for-94) by left-handed hitters. Beginning July 27, left-handed hitters went just 3-for-23 (.130) against him.Kuo earned his first big league save on August 14 vs. Philadelphia , closing out a 3-1 win with a two scoreless innings.
With the Dodgers officially moving to Arizona what is to be done with all that Dodger stuff in Florida?
Los Angeles Dodgers logos and emblems are disappearing from the walls and outsides of the property (Dodgertown), as the team begins to move signs and other pieces into their new facility in Glendale, Ariz., and to Dodger Stadium in California.
County employees and officials have been taking inventory for a while now and would like to keep certain pieces of memorabilia and historical tokens, Baird said, but the two parties are working together to decide the value and best place for individual items, such as photos and the famous street signs named after Dodger legends such as Jackie Robinson.
I would not be surprised to find Indian River County auctioning off some of the treasures. Stay tuned I'll be sure to keep an eye out.
Hat Tip: Sports Collectors Daily:
UPDATE: Below is a photo of a Dodgertown street sign I took a couple of years ago during Spring Training.
Rafael will be staying with the Dodgers. His new contract is for $30Mil over 3 years plus a 4th year option that vest based on plate appearance in year 3.
Furcal will be paid $6.5 million next season, $8.5 million in 2010 and $12 million in 2011, according to sources with knowledge of the situation who were granted anonymity because the deal was still being finalized. The contract includes a $12-million option for 2012 that vests if Furcal makes 600 plate appearances in 2011.It doesn't sound like too bad of a deal.
The 31-year-old shortstop will receive a deferred signing bonus of $3 million when the contract expires.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Rafael Furcal's agent, Paul Kinzer, told reporters in New York today that Furcal was leaning toward picking the Dodgers over the Braves.Buster Olney of ESPN has the best analogy regarding the Furcal sweepstakes.
"First, Furcal was dating the A's," the official said. "Then, on Monday night, he got engaged to the Braves. And now, the ex-husband -- the Dodgers -- has come back into the picture."UPDATE:
Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is now reporting that Fucal has chosen his suitor and it's the Dodgers. Considering he was the guy who initially reported Furcal's imminent signing with Atlanta I would take what he says with a grain of salt.
It initially started several weeks back with the inaugural edition asking about our collecting focus. Go here for a recap. The second edition has just begun as Gellman at Sports Cards Uncensored gets the ball rolling by asking about a treasured experience and centerpiece to match.
What immediately came to mind is an autographed photo of a Dodger great.
I don't remember the exact year, probably the Summer of 1992 or 1993, but I do remember the event. It was a card show near LAX and it featured some of the greatest athletes in sports. I'm talking about stars like Koufax, Ali and Namath, just to name a few. Furthermore, with each paid admission you got one random autograph. On that afternoon I paid for 4 admissions at $40.00 a pop (and I would have paid for more) just so I can get the autograph of Dodgers legend Roy Campanella. My other autos that day were Koufax, Namath and Luc Robitaille.As I waited for the autograph session to begin I walked around the show looking for something to have him sign when I stumbled upon a table featuring some incredible black & white large prints. The proprietor explained that they were originally taken by his father who was a professional photographer. He claimed it was limited to a print size to 50 copies and promised to print no more. He may have been pulling my leg, but I have yet to see another.
As you can see, it captures a youthful Campanella showing an even younger child how to catch. The innocence of the moment was perfectly captured. I couldn't take my eyes off the picture. It was perfect and I had to have it.
With the photo in my arms I waited in line to meet the Hall of Fame catcher. At this time in his life Campy had great difficulty in signing. He had experienced a debilitating accident some 30 years before and was in failing health.
As I came up to the table Campy looked down at the photo and gave me a great big smile. I could tell he liked the photograph as much as I did. I was imagining that he recalled the event and even remembered the kids name. There was a glimmer in his eye and all I could say was "thank you." I was speechless. A man who I had read so much about and had come to respect was sitting across from me.
So now the photo rest nicely framed within my office. It is something I could never part with and is the centerpiece of my collection.
Tony Jackson reports:
Ned Colletti just informed me that "we have had many conversations today on the subject of Rafael Furcal'' and that "I can't tell you if it's dead or not. I can only tell you that his people continue to engage me in conversation as if it's not, and I have been assured by them that it's not.''Also, Andrew Kamenetzky reports that it ain't final yet. He links to a LA Times and ESPN story.
The ESPN story is right.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Below is a October 10, 1916 George Bain photo of the Brooklyn Robins (Dodger) dugout during the Dodgers first World Series against the Boston Red Sox. Skipper Wilbert Robinson, Hi Myers and the team mascot watch the game. It closed at $291.86.
Here is a team photograph of the 1916 National League Pennant winning Brooklyn Robins. It sold for $214.50.
Hall of Famers include Robinson, Zack Wheat, Rube Marquard and a young Casey Stengel. The Dodgers (called the Robins after their manager) would drop their World Series debut to Babe Ruth and the Boston Red Sox in 1916. They would return to the Series six more times and come up as losers every time, earning them their ‘bum’ moniker. In 1955, they would exercise their demons and capture their lone World Championship.
You can't go wrong with Jackie Robinson playing tennis. He is teamed with Indoor Tennis Champion Don McNeil during a benefit match for the American National Theater and Academy in February 1951.
In the clubhouse the boys will play. Below is Jackie with Sal Maglie and Al Walker as he faces playful congratulations for belting 2 homers against the Pirates on June 26, 1956. It sold for $72.00.
Here is a close up photo from October 7, 1920 of Hall of Famer Dodger Zach Wheat. It sold for $429.00.
Babe Ruth was probably one of the most photogenic characters during the 1920's to 1930's. Below he is dressed as a clown for a
"CS & SCA event (the “Circus Saints and Sinners Club of America”, a charitable organization that got it's start back in the late 1920's. which provided financial assistance to old and down trodden circus performers)."
I had no idea Los Angeles had their own Negro League team. Below is a photo of the Los Angeles Hawks. It comes from the collection of Sy Pollack- former owner of the Indianapolis Clowns.
Do you want to know why I love Hockey? This is why I love hockey. "We supply everything but guts!" Below is Paul Newman in the timeless movie "Slap Shot."
Thank you Raffy for 3 years of hard work. Unfortunately, we had a couple of injuries that hampered your production, but I never doubted your skills and desire to win. You will be missed by the Blue Crew.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
- When I surf now I see a vast sea of Blue. At the start there was only a few blogs, but now the voices are many. Here are a couple more to help you through the Winter malaise. Check out the Fiendish Observational Comedian and Reflections of Blue.
- Big League Stew show the other side of the Baseball Winter Meetings- the trade show. These puppets are both scary and cool at the same time.
- Billy Ripken finally speaks about his infamous Fleer obscenity card from 1989.
"After the season was over, in early January, I got a call from our PR guy Rick Vaughn. He said, 'Billy, we have a problem.' And he told me what was written on the bat and I couldn't believe it. I went to a store and saw the card and it all came back to me. We were in Fenway Park and I had just taken my first round of BP. I threw my bat to the third base side and strolled around the bases. When I was coming back, right before I got up to hit again, I remember a guy tapping me on the shoulder asking if he could take my picture. Never once did I think about it. I posed for the shot and he took it.Hat Tip: Wax Heaven:
- This McFarlane statue/figurine is bad ass! Nolan Ryan has blood all over his shirt!
- Cards in the Attic shares his Cey autographs he got at a minor league ballgame last year. He shows 6 different cards, unfortunately, only one has him in a Dodgers uniform What's up with that?
- A hearty congratulations to Kings radio broadcaster Nick Nickson for being voted into the Southern California Sports Broadcasters Hall of Fame. Hat Tip: Inside the Kings: Pic Link: Let's Go Kings: RinkRat:
Friday, December 12, 2008
I've seen this design on everything from stickers to mugs. Here is a circa 1950's wine glass/goblet celebrating the Brooklyn Dodgers. It closed at almost $34.
I don't even want to think about how this might taste. This is probably as hard as a rock. It's a perfectly petrified piece of gum.
Here is a nice vintage Brooklyn Dodgers beach hat. I can imagine sitting on the beach with this hat on at Coney Island sipping some lemonade and munching on a Nathan's hot dog.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
YouTube Link: labaseballtv:
Dodger veterans sign some autos and share some memories.
YouTube Link: markjdoddy:
Man-O-Live. When did they give this away? That is very cool.
YouTube Link: lasroc:
The Legend of Roger Owens. Check out his website here and his blog here.
YouTube Link: GreenTea200:
Watch Charlie Sheen hit a dinger at Dodger Stadium.
YouTube Link: rmg007:
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
The Dodgers knew Jason Schmidt had a rotator cuff injury when they signed him to a contract worth a guaranteed $47 million, the club acknowledged in a court filing this week.Are you kidding me? You knew he was damaged goods, but decided to take flyer on the guy anyway.
As you'll notice, I didn't provide a full description of everything that was said or asked. Basically, there wasn't anything awe inspiring or revelatory to speak off. We got the typically dog and pony show with well rehearsed answers any top flight PR firm would be proud of. Besides, I had a couple of beers in me and, if you know me at all then you know, that's all it takes for me to be buzzing.
Yhea, I'm a light weight!
Anyway, I do, even in my apparent stupor, distinctly recall Colletti commenting about the Jason Schmidt situation. He reasoned that it is illogical to believe that they would sign Schmidt to a long term commitment if they knew he could not pitch. In fact, you have to assume that he truly believed Jason would come back to form. It would be wrong to assume he would purposefully do something that would hurt his employment with the team.
On the other hand, considering what we know now, do we not have to questions his judgement?
If you decide to spend any amount of time surfing the net for interesting Dodger photos then you must go to Malingerings photo album on flickr. This photographer is a master and we are fortunate his/hers obsessions is the Dodgers.
Hall of famer Willie McCovey making the play at first base in a Sunday day game vs the Dodgers at the 'Stick. I shot this photo when I was fifteen and still have the negative.
Here is Willie Davis during Camera Day at Dodger Stadium in 1972. That ushers hat is awesome.
Here is a vintage pic of Ebbets Field in Brooklyn. Notice the original Trolley Dodgers hanging on to the back for dear life on the right.
Here is another pic from Olde New York featuring Carl Furillo crashing into the wall at Ebbets Field.