Monday, January 14, 2013

Dodgers Blog Kiosk: 1/14/2013

Jaime Jarrin and Harrison Ford take a photo together at the Professional Baseball Scouts Foundation's dinner on Saturday Night, pic via twitter @JorgeJarrin1.
  • Via Dylan Hernandez at the LA Times, Vin Scully stole the show at the aforementioned Scout's dinner on Saturday.
  • Also, Dodgers photographer Jon SooHoo was at the Scout's dinner and shared a bunch of pics from the event here.
  • Bill Dwyre at the LA Times writes about Tommy Lasorda still being an active ambassador of the game.
  • David's Autographs Signings shares some pics from the Trinity Bat Company Home Run challenge on Saturday.
  • OMG!  Milton Bradley faces 13 years in prison on alleged domestic abuse charges, via AP on Yahoo.  I know I shouldn't be surprised, but I can't help it.  I always wished he would find the help he needed.
  • The SABR Analytics Conference will be held in Phoenix from March 7 to 9.  Go here for more information and to register.
  • Via Amy Nelson at ESPN, check out the story of former 1st round draft pick Matt Harrington.  He didn't sign a Major League contract and saw his chances at professional Baseball disappear.  He now works at Costco.
  • Sports Collectors Daily notes the top antique/collectible stories of 2012.
  • I found this video to be both funny and timely.  Watch Clark, the Canadian hockey goalie, playing baseball.

Video Link:

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

"A Beautiful Fall-Away" - Bridge and the Brooklyn Dodger in a Painting

If you've read this blog for some time, then you know I like to write about works of art featuring the Dodgers.  It has nothing to do with any sort of knowledge about that finer craft.  It's just that, to borrow and mangle a phrase from former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, "I like it when I see it, so I must post about it."

With that in mind, I bring to you a pop expressionist artwork called "A Beautiful Fall-Away" by Glen Shear.  See his website here.  He has a bunch of other sports related paintings there.

I first came upon this last week due to a video I stumbled upon on YouTube- see it here.

It told a brief story about the painting above.  It pays tribute to a world champion and pioneering bridge player named Charles Henry Goren, and the scene depicts the 1948 Brooklyn Dodger's locker room, where Charles Goren is said to have experienced what he called a "beautiful fall-away". 

After watching that, I wondered to myself, "what the heck does that mean?"  Since I've never played bridge, I naturally figured it had something to do with that, but I also wondered what the Dodgers have to do with this.  So, since my curiosity piqued, I decided to do a little bit of research to see if I could satisfy my thirst for knowledge.  Thankfully, a Sports Illustrated story by Jack Olsen was able to answer my questions.  Below is an excerpt explaining the whole thing.
Another time, Goren found himself in a hot game with members of the Brooklyn Dodgers. "We played on top of a trunk in the players' dressing room—the baseball man's accustomed card table," Goren wrote later. "In the course of three rubbers manager Walt Alston kept shuffling his lineup. I played with and against Pee Wee Reese, Gil Hodges, Gino Cimoli, Ed Roebuck, the manager himself and coach Billy Herman. Duke Snider, Charlie Neal, Don Zimmer, Jake Pitler and perhaps half a dozen other knowledgeable kibitzers left no doubt that bridge is this team's favorite card game."

Nor were the Dodgers any slouches, Goren learned to his dismay. On one hand he laid out a brilliant plan of strategy, only to have Billy Herman break it up with what Goren described as "a beautiful fallaway."
Wow!  Well that's something I didn't know.  Several Brooklyn Dodgers were active bridge palyers.  Still, I don't know what a fall-away really means, and since I don't plan on learning bridge any time soon, I am likely to not find its meaning anytime in the near future.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

My Afternoon at the Baseball Expo, a Paul LoDuca Autograph and Some Purchases

It was a great pleasure to have an opportunity to visit the SoCal Baseball and Sports Collectors Expo on Sunday.  I was fortunate to have won a free ticket to the show and a free autograph from Paul LoDuca on twitter.  So, I made sure to make the most of it.

I took a few photos inside, as well as, a handful of photos of some memorabilia.  Above are pics of a Baseball toss contraption, and a spread of some of the tables in the show.  (Click any pic to embiggen)  There were about 20 or so dealer tables filled with Baseball cards and memorabilia, and surprisingly there were a good amount of vintage goodness to look through.  I was worried that I would be inundated with modern shininess, but found myself pleasantly surprised.  In fact, Mile High Card Company had a table in order to display some items they will have on auction starting tomorrow, and they were kind enough to allow me to take some photos.  On the left is an autographed Roberto Clemente Baseball, and an autographed Babe Ruth Baseball is on the right.

Now, on to what I picked up at the show.  First, I briefly met with Paul Loduca and had him sign a Baseball.  Thanks again Paul for the autograph ticket!

I also picked up this Dodgers pin that commemorates the great Dodgers infield of Cey, Russel, Lopes and Garvey for $4.  I'm not entirely sure where the pin comes from, but I think it may have been a stadium giveaway.  If you happen to know please pass along that information.

I also picked up the below vintage c. 1910's comic postcard.  I just couldn't stop laughing at the image, so I struck a deal with the seller and walked away with it. 

The remaining items came from a dealer who, unquestionably, had the best stuff at the show- at least in my mind.  This seller had a small table with only older Dodgers collectibles, and I found myself hanging out over there for most of the afternoon.  All of the items below were purchased in two lots, and I paid a total of $45 for everything.

Directly below are some oddball Dodgers memorabilia.  I have no idea about the backgrounds of any of these items.  The Sandy Koufax item on the left appears to be from a photo that has been trimmed down, and the two items to the right are pages from an unidentified book.  Usually I would stay away from this kind of stuff, but it was so cheap I had to take them home. 

This next item is beyond cool.  It is a 1977 Dodgers Christmas card that appears to have a signature of Peter O'Malley on the bottom.  I was especially happy to have found this.

Above is the inside of the Christmas card, and below is the outside.

The next item is fairly scarce- at least it's not something you run into very often.  It is a 1958 Los Angeles Dodgers facsimile autographed fan sheet.  Back in the day, fans would write to their favorite team, and they would send the fan all kinds of promotional items.  Back in the 40's to 50's this would include a facsimile autographed sheet of the entire team.  Over the years, I've picked these up when they crop up, but this is the first Dodger auto sheet I've purchased.  BTW, this kind of item is not highly collected and can be purchased at prices ranging from $5 to $15.

The next two items were the cream of the crop.  I picked up these two vintage LA Dodgers ashtrays that date to the 60's and 70's.  I've watched these items for sale on eBay over the years, but always found the shipping cost to be far to great to justify the purchase.  So, being able to find them at a show was a big win for me.  Frankly, I couldn't believe my lucky stars.  The last thing I expected to find this weekend were these two beauties.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *