Thursday, April 15, 2010

NOOOOOOOO! An Overtime Loss for the Kings

It was a great Game 1 in the quarterfinal playoff game between the Kings and the Canucks. Unfortunately, it ended up in a loss for the Kings as Vancouver scored in overtime to win.

Yes, I am a little down, but I'm far from discouraged. The Kings came out roaring as tight and hard checking ruled day from the early going. They cycled well, scored 2 power play goals, and goaltender Jonathon Quick was sharp in his playoff debut. I know, given another time in space this game could easily have been a win for the LA team.

Fortunately, this is a 7 game series and one loss does not mean a thing. There will be another day and this fan is looking forward to that next match. One item of concern was defenseman Jack Johnson as he committed a delay of game- puck over the glass penalty that lead to a Canuck power play goal. That's a foul that should not be happening in the playoffs. Nevertheless, he played well enough the rest of the way to warrant my forgiveness.

This coming Saturday is Game 2 and I expect I'll be glued to the television waiting for the Kings to avenge this loss.

Check Out This Active Roster

The Dodgers go all out on this day. Everyone wears #42 today and the rosters online reflect it at Dodgers.com.

Hat Tip: LADodgersTwitter:

Red Barber on Jackie Robinson

Thanks to Alyssa Milano's Twitter I bring to you this video interview of former Dodger broadcaster Red Barber on Jackie Robinson.

YouYube Link:

Happy Jackie Robinson Day

Today is the day all of Baseball celebrates the official integration of Major League Baseball. It is Jackie Robinson Day. This is a kind of holiday to commemorate a great man and a great Dodger for his great accomplishments that many thought would never come. Jackie Robinson did the heroic. He battled in the field while battling fans and opposing players. For those first few years he turned the other cheek, and was rewarded with the respect he deserved by birth. Then, he spoke up and helped America understand why. Jackie was a trailblazer and a true leader.

On this day, many players will wear #42 throughout the day as stories and commentaries will be read from coast to coast. At this evenings Dodger game Tommy Davis, "Sweet" Lou Johnson, Tommy Lasorda, Frank Robinson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar will be introduced on the field. All players will be wearing #42 jerseys, and Don Newcombe, Jackie's former roommate, will throw out the first pitch to our center fielder Matt Kemp.

It will be a day of pomp and circumstance, but let's not forget the struggle that brought us here.
(Pics of card front and back from The Beckett Blog)

Let's Go Kings!

Today is the day.

Tonight, at 7:00 PM, the Kings face-off against the Vancouver Canucks for game 1 in their first playoff appearance in 8 years, and I couldn't be happier.

The suffering, the frustration and the hand wringing has been all worth it.

Can we shine? Will the boys on the ice come through like they have all year? Can we continue with the hard checking, the 2nd efforts, and productive cycles?

I just can't wait to find out. Bring on the second season.

For your reading pleasure check out this article in the Wall Street Journal (Hat Tip: LA Kings Insider) about this resurgent team and its loyal fans.
They've long attracted a curious breed of passionate and profoundly patient fans.
This year the team is drawing an average of 17,313 at each game, up from 16,489 the season prior. They haven't drawn below 16,000 fans, on average, in any season since moving to the Staples Center in 1999. In other words, much of the L.A. region is just arriving to a party that was already pretty crowded.
...
Kings fans tend to come largely from far-flung suburban communities like Thousand Oaks and Simi Valley and spend lots of time on the Internet (team research shows they spend more time on the team's official Web site than any other fan base in the NHL except Vancouver's). The fans seem to prefer the cheap seats to the expensive ones on the floor, which sometimes go empty. They also trend toward the dark: recent topics on a Kings fan forum range from Russian metal bands and horror films to fantasy videogames.

Yes, we are a bunch of rabid, long-suffering, maniacs.

YouTube Link:
Hat Tip: Life in Hockeywood:

eBay: Vintage Dodger Pics

Henry Yee is running his always great eBay auctions that include some great Dodger related vintage photos.

Here is the original 1910's Underwood & Underwood Press photo of Charles Ebbets, of Ebbets Field fame.

Now take a look at a original photo of the 1913 Dodgers posing at their brand new home, Ebbets Field.

Now this is a crazy photo. Take close look at the wire fence near the 297 ft. sign. There is a kid walking along the outfield billboards trying to get his hands on a PeeWee Reese homerun ball that got lodged in the wire fence. This was taken on October 1, 1950 in a game between the Dodger and the Philadelphia Phillies. It was the last game of the year with the Dodger only one game back. A Dodger win would bring them to a tie and a potential one game playoff for the pennant. Unfortunately, the Dodgers lost, and I can imagine Brooklyn fans blaming this kids for cursing the Blue Crew. You know, if this were the Cubs this crazy loon would be infamous.

Below, Jackie Robinson is waiting on the set during the filming of "The Jackie Robinson Story."

Blog Bat Around: The Shopping Spree

With the Baseball season in full swing, Gellman at Sports Cards Uncensored has dusted off what remains of a not-so-old tradition of the Blog Bat Around. Yes, a collectors chance to share a bit about ourselves and our twisted hobby driven minds is back. What little morsel of information shall I be asked to share with all of you? Will it be a look at my favorite card? How about my favorite sports moment?

Wait.... I think we answered some of those questions already. Didn't we?

What else could we all share this time around? Well, Gellman has come up with a doozy that had me pondering the possibilities. If I had $50,000.00 to burn on cards what would I buy on eBay. He prefaces it with the notion that I had only 15 minutes to decide, but with $50,000.00 there is just no way I could conceivable find the cards/ memorabilia items I want. There would just not be time to search. On top of that, not every card out there is available on eBay at any given time, and $50,000.00 is a lot of change to spend.

So, I'm gonna change the rules a bit and just leave it wide open. If I had a $50,000 shopping spree for cards on eBay what would I get? I will abide by no time limit and I'm going to take the liberty to assume that some of the rarities on my list would be attainable at any given time- even though some won't be.

Anyway, here we go. My dream list would include the below items.

First, I would find the 1922 American Caramel Babe Ruth "holding a bird" card. This is my all-time favorite card. Just look at it. It's the Babe holding a bird next to some guy nobody recognizes. How random is this. Heck, I don't think it's a stretch to say that there is no better oddball looking card in the hobby. Prices on this card would vary depending on condition, but let's say that this card in EX condition could probably be had for $5,000.00.

Next in line would be my first Dodger card. It would be the 1913 T200 Fatima Brooklyn Nationals (Dodgers) team card. This card ranks high on my "wish list if money where no object." Fortunately, this card could actually be attainable someday since a nice VG to EX condition example can probably be found for $600.00.
A Negro League legend would be my next purchase, and I would head straight to the best player to never play in the Major Leagues. Below is the 1950-51 Cuban Toleteros Josh Gibson card. This is the only vintage Baseball card known to exist of him and I would have to track one down. They are scarce and would not be cheap. If I'm not mistaken only a dozen or so are known to exist so I won't be picky about condition. I'll assume that $10,000 will snag me a card in VG condition. A few years back a NM-Mint version (cleaner than the one above) sold for over $80K, but prices have since come down to earth significantly.

How could it take me so long to add this gentleman to my list. I would hunt down the following Jackie Robinson cards: 1948 Leaf, 1949 Bowman, 1950 Bowman and 1952 Topps. Since I don't need gem mint cards and VG to EX would be just fine let's say $6,000.00 for the group.
How about a nice 1948 Leaf Satchel Paige. What could be better than a sharp looking rookie card of the games most dominant pitcher who never had a chance to prove it? $10,000.00 for a NrMint example.

Speaking of pitchers, how about this 1902-1911 Christy Mathewson W600 Sporting Life Cabinet for $7,000.00.
And now I take a quick pause and wonder how in the world will I spend the remaining $11,400.00. I'm scratching my head wondering if I've entered into some kind of "Twilight Zone"/"Brewster's Millions" episode.

Now, moving on to completing My Want List. There are several sets that I continue to try to complete. Most are vintage and can be difficult to track down. First, I need 19 cards to complete my 1947 Tip Top Bread set. Fortunately, they are all commons (so no key cards are needed), but they are all short prints. Since I am not picky about condition it could cost me about $1000.00. Below are examples from my set.Now, I will complete my 1948 R346 Blue Tint set. I need 9 cards (not including the B&W variations that are just impossible) to complete it. A handful are stars (like Ted Williams, Feller and Durocher), but since it is not a widely collected set they shouldn't cost a whole bunch. Let's say $500.00 for the lot. Below are examples from my set.My Callahan Hall of Fame set is also something I would also like to complete- although I doubt I ever will. I only need 7 cards, most are stars, and they are all short prints, so they would not come cheap. Let's say $2,000.00 for the remaining cards. Below is what they look like.
Time to finish off my 1910 T218 Boxing card set. I have 12 cards to go, including Jim Jeffries, but it should only cost $300.00, at the most, to finish. How about that 1951 Topps Blue Back set. I need 30 cards and in the Ex to NrMint condition that I would need to go with my current cards it would probably cost about $600.00. The 1954 NY Journal American set would be my next target and this one will be expensive. I still need the Mantle, Robinson, Snider and Mays. The 19 remaining cards will probably cost $3000.00. Now it's time to finish off my 1969 Topps set by tracking down about 300 cards for a total cost of about $600.00. Finally, I would get every T206 card of a Brooklyn Dodger. I need quite a few of them, 19, and figure it would cost about $1000.00.

That's leaves me with a little bit of change just in case my estimates are off. Overall, though, having $50,000.00 would be very dangerous indeed.
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