Thursday, May 24, 2012

Collection: Franquelis Osoria 2005 SPx Autograph

Check out my 2005 Upper Deck SPx autograph card of former Dodgers reliever Franquelis Osoria.

What ever happened to this guy?  I have a vague recollection of his stay in Blue, but can think of nothing noteworthy to discuss.  He signed with the Dodgers as a amateur free agent in late 1999 and rose through the rank slowly but surely.  In 2005 he finally made his Major League debut by pitching a scoreless inning of relief against the Tigers.  For the remainder of the year he became a mainstay in the bullpen until the bottom fell out the following season.  A respectable rookie campaign where his ERA was 3.94 ballooned to 7.13 after just 12 games in 2006.  Expectantly, he was sent back down to AAA.  Osorio would never again pitch for the Dodgers after that.  Soon, he was picked off the waiver wire by the Pirates, and stayed with them for just two season before disappearing into obscurity.  Does anybody know what he's doing now?  Is he still pitching somewhere in Latin America, or has he quietly left the game behind?

Blog Kiosk: 5/24/2012

The Dodgers twitter account shared a great photo yesterday featuring Shawn Green and his 10 year anniversary of his 4 homer game.  Above is a ticket from the event.  This would be so great to have in your collection.  Heck, it would be awesomer (is that a word?) to get it signed by him.
  • Apparently, the Dodgers are interested in hosting a NHL Winter Classic game at Dodgers Stadium, via LA Kings Insider.
It’s good to see Kasten — a former Atlanta Thrashers executive — and the Dodgers interested in hockey, but it’s probably a longshot. Gary Bettman has sneered (literally) at any suggestion that a Winter Classic could be played in a warm-weather environment. 
Don Drysdale conducted a savvy campaign of psychological warfare, parlaying a moderate record of actual deeds into the maximum effect on the minds of batters and pitchers.
  • Following through on their promise, the Dodger announced that they have currently, or are in the process of signing 20 Latin American prospects.  Unfortunately, they do not name names.  From the press release.  
The Los Angeles Dodgers today announced the signing of several players from Latin America, including both the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. Dodger General Manager Ned Colletti made the announcement.

The Dodgers have signed or are in the process of signing more than 20 players from Latin America, including at least 10 position players and 10 pitchers.

"Besides the recent signings, with the support from ownership, we are fully prepared to be strong participants in the upcoming signing period in Latin America,” said Colletti. “With our renewed resources in that area and the upcoming First-Year Player Draft next month, we look forward to adding many talented young players to the Dodger family. Our Assistant General Manager, Scouting, Logan White and his staff have begun a strong and vital effort in a very important process to the future of the player development portion of the Dodgers' organization.”
This is on the heals of the the 2012 Draft that starts on June 4th.
  • From the current SI, check out the cover story featuring Kemp and Magic.  "Only the Beginning."
"Kemp had a miserable year, yes. But he was also only 25. "What people don't appreciate is how raw Matt was as a ballplayer," says Mike Leuzinger, the scout who signed Kemp in 2003. When he first got called up [in '06] and was making base running mistakes, you'd listen to announcers say, 'This kid doesn't know how to run the bases?' I'm thinking, No, actually, he really doesn't.""

  • I hate this story, but it's pertinent.  From the Huffington Post:  Dodger Stadium Beating: Man Beaten in Parking Lot Describes the Terror.  Video is included.
“I was pleading for my life. To be left alone and it was scary," he said. “I was being held and choked for all of them to take their punches and kicks at me. I was just thinking I need to get up and stay alive.”
  • To lighten the mood.  Via Coed Magazine, the "60 Sexiest American Athletes to Look at the 2012 Olympics."

Huggins & Scott Auctions: Some Vintage Dodgers Memorabilia

Huggins & Scott is currently running their May auction and it includes several Dodgers related memorabilia items- most of which are brand new to me.  I always enjoys seeing collectibles of my favorite team that I have never seen before.

Check out this great Brooklyn Dodgers "Bum" ceramic ashtray.  For vintage Dodger collectors the "Bum" character should be recognizable.  It looks exactly like the late 1940's to early 1950's doll/toy sold by Rempel.  In fact, the auction description states that it was manufactured by Rempel.  See an example of one here.  In this case, the "Bum" is ceramic (instead of plastic) and a cigar wielding fan can find some real use for it.  I will note that I have never seen or heard of this item before.
(Auction Link: 1950's Rempel Bum Ashtray)

The next couple of auction items are, in one word, AWESOME. 

I'm sure you've seen cards and photographs of the great Jackie Robinson, but how about vintage memorabilia showcasing his stay with the Montreal Royals?  Well, that is exactly what we have here.  Below are two (of 6 being sold in the lot) late 1940's magazines of "The Standard," which is a Montreal, Canadian periodical featuring some future Dodgers on the cover.  Note that standing behind Jackie (in the photo on the left) is the second Negro League player signed by the Dodgers, John "Needle Nose" Wright.  I wrote about him previously in 2006, here.
(Auction Link: The Standard)

The next auction item doesn't include Jackie Robinson, but does feature several other future Brooklyn Dodgers.  Here is a 32 item lot of La Patrie Album Sportif Montreal Royals pictures.  I think they were either included as premiums (pull-outs) in local magazines or given out at games.  Soon to be Dodgers include Tommy Lasorda, Jim Gilliam, Johnny Podres and Sandy Amoros.
(Auction Link: La Patrie Sportif)

(Auction Link: La Patrie Sportif)

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Another Dodgers Weekend

Here are this weekends autograph opportunities throughout the Southland. As always, be sure to check the Blue Heaven Calendar for other events (a link can always be found on the tab at the top of this page, just left of center), and always confirm with the establishment. Everything is subject to change.  Click on any pic to embiggen.

There's a bunch of Dodgers related autograph events this weekend (primarily located at Frank & Son's in the City of Industry), but before I note those pay events I wanted to highlight a couple of Dodgers players slated to be in Autograph Alley at Dodger Stadium this weekend.  This information was initially provided via Roberto at Vin Scully is My Homeboy

Lee Lacy will be at Friday's game (May 25th) and "Sweet" Lou Johnson will be signing at Autograph Alley before Tuesday's game (May 29th).
Lee Lacy
Friday, May 25

"Sweet" Lou Johnson
Tuesday, May 29th
UPDATEFormer WBC Welterweight Champion “Vicious” Victor Ortiz will sign autographs for fans at Viva Los Dodgers from 11:30 a.m. to noon Sunday, May 27th. 

As I briefly mentioned above, there are a bunch of Dodgers coming out to the Frank & Sons show on Saturday.  Most are pay events, with the exception of one person.  Juan Bustabad, currently the manager for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (a Class A team for the Dodgers), will be signing free autographs at Frank & Sons.
Juan Bustabad
Saturday, May 26
10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Bustabad with Lasorda when he coached for the Loons, via Tommy Lasorda's World.
Here are flyers for several other current Dodgers coming out to Frank & Sons on Saturday. Click on any pic below to embiggen.  Also, go to this link for further information.

Please note that there has been a time change for Rubby De La Rosa.  He will be appearing from 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM.  Below are further details.

Javy Guerra
small items:  $29.
medium items:  $39.
 large items:  $49.
inscriptions:  $10.
stage time:  11:00am - 12:30pm

Kenley Jansen
small items:  $29.
medium items:  $39.
large items:  $49.
inscriptions:  $10.
stage time:  11:00am - 12:30pm
Rubby De La Rosa
small items:  $29.
medium items:  $39.
large items:  $49.
inscriptions:  $10.
stage time:  12:00noon - 1:30pm
Dodger Heat
Combo Ticket - small $69. - medium $79. - large $99.
Combo tickets are one of each Dodger Pitcher
Quantities are limited
 You must purchase combo tickets no later than May 24, 2012

A.J. Ellis
small:  $29.
medium:  $39.
large:  $49.
inscriptions:  $10.
stage time:  10:00am - 11:30am
Juan Rivera
small:  $39.
medium:  $49.
large:  $59.
inscriptions:  $15.
stage time:  10:00am - 11:30am 
 ******   Category Definition  ******
  small items:  balls, flats up to & including 11x14
medium items:  large flats, figurines, minis & equipment
large items:  helmets, bats & jerseys