Monday, May 20, 2013

Matt Kemp's Hometown Hit With a Twister

Matt Kemp's hometown in Oklahoma got hit hard with a tornado this afternoon.  If you've been watching the news then it's likely you've seen the reports.  The town of Moore, a suburb of Oklahoma City, was devastated after experiencing a large twister that has already taken the lives of 51 people.  Hopefully that number stays there.

Kemp was born in Midwest City, Oklahoma which lies adjacent to Moore.  This is the second large tornado to hit this area in as many years.  Back in 1999 a large EF5 tornado hit the area.

After this evenings game, Matt Kemp went onto twitter to lend his support.  He promises to donate some funds to the current relief effort.  See his tweet below.
(twitter link)
UPDATE:  Ken Gurnick at follow up this story:
He said he was in junior high school when an E-5 tornado with 300-mph winds hit the same area in 1999 and killed 36 people. He remembered accompanying a cousin who was hit by a foul ball in a baseball game to the local hospital and not knowing the tornado hit until the mangled patients started to arrive.

He vividly described the carnage he saw 14 years ago.

"And this one hit a school," he said. "I know where the schools are. My mom lived in a house in Moore and we gave it to my aunt and uncle. They weren't home today, but they said two blocks away there's nothing left. I've never been through an earthquake, but I've seen what a tornado can do and you just can't even believe it."

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The Culver City Card Show: Now That's What I'm Talkin' About

As many of you know, there was a card show in Culver City this past Saturday.  Admission was free and it promised to be filled with plenty of vintage collectibles.  Thankfully, it absolutely delivered.  On top of that, I was finally able to meet some blogging cohorts who like to collect the Blue Crew.

Unfortunately, I failed to take any pictures, but have no fear folks.  Several of the other bloggers delivered on that.  First, I wanted to write that it was a pleasure to meet Greg from Plaschke, Thy Sweater is Argyle, Spiegel from Nomo's Sushi Platter, Jesse from LA Inspiration, and StealingHome from All Trade Bait, All The Time.  I hope we get a chance to hang out again.

As for some photos, check out StealingHome's post at All Trade Bait, All The Time.  He's got a bunch to look through and even got a group photo of us.  I'm the fellow with the Blue Hawaiian shirt on the left.  As you can see, there were about 50 tables there, and from what I hear business was brisk.  Spiegel at Nomo's Sushi Platter also has a rundown on that afternoon.  Also, the always great Net54 message board also talk about the show here.

As for what I decided to take home... Well, I think I did good.  No... I was ecstatic!

First off, the very first thing that caught my attention was a little booklet that featured Dodger Hall of Famer Don Sutton on the cover.  See it below.  I had seen this kind of collectible before, but knew nothing about it.  It was created in 1977 and was published by Follett Publishing Company.  Within its pages are a group of photos that can be flipped to make a movie.  As soon as I have the time, I'll video tape it for you all to see. 

My very next purchase was for a couple of 1960 Nu-Card Baseball "Scoops" Hi-Lites of Johnny Podres and Gil Hodges.  These cards are about the size of a postcard.

I'm really happy about the next card.  It is a 1943 M.P. & Co. strip card (designated as R302-1) of Pee Wee Reese.  You don't really see these very often.  On top of that, they may be the ugliest Baseball cards ever made.  And in my mind, they are so ugly, they are good.  Ya know what I mean?

I also picked up my very first 1958 Hires Root Beer card of a Dodger.  It is of Clem Labine, and even includes the advertising tab.  Unfortunately, it had been detached, but still looks cool.

And now for my big catch of the afternoon.

Usually when I go to a show, I'll cruise around the tables a couple of times before making any purchases.  Call it getting the lay of the land.  From time to time, I'll make a purchase on that first go around, but only if I fear it might not be there when I come around again.

Anyway, I saw a small stack of 1952 Parkhurst cards graded by PSA in a case that showed Tommy Lasorda on top.  I stopped and stared at it for what felt like ages.  The dealer was chatting it up with another collector and I decided I needed to think about this before making any moves.  So, I decided to leave and stroll around a bit more.  I hadn't planned on any big purchases this past weekend, and I knew if I asked to see the Lasorda I would not be able to stop myself.

A second time around, I again stopped at the Parkhurst cards and stared.  I had internal debates with myself.  How bad do I really want this card?  Do I want to go over budget?

I knew myself well enough to know that if I asked to see it I would be compelled to make an offer.  So, I walked away again.

Then, I ran into the other Dodger bloggers at the show.  We chatted for quite some time, but in the back of my mind all I could think of was the Lasorda.

Ya see, for those who don't know, the 1952 Parkhurst Lasorda card is considered by many to be his true rookie card.  It is a Canadian issue made for the Dodgers farm team, the Montreal Royals.  It also happens to have the very first card ever printed of future Hall of Famer Walter Alston.

So, I'm chatting it up with the boys.  Then, a brief lull happens in the conversation and I decide I needed to excuse myself.  The call of the Lasorda was too strong.  I strolled on over, and suddenly found myself standing next to the dealer.

He ask if there was anything I wanted to see, and I sheepishly said, "yeah, the Lasorda Parkhurst."  Then, under my breadth, I asked, "you wouldn't happen to have a Walter Alston under there, would ya?"

The dealer, with a big grin, says, "ya mean, Walt Alston?  This guy?"

As low and behold, right underneath the Lasorda card is the Walt Alston Parkhurst card, as well.

Be still, my beating heart!  I've always wanted these two beauties, and all of the sudden here they are.  Both of them.  In my hands!  And based on the asking prices, I knew a potential affordable deal could be had.  So, after a brief talk we made a deal and I walked home with them.  See the cards below.

As you can see, the Lasorda isn't in the best of shape, and arguably has been over-graded by PSA.  There's a crease along the middle.  The Alston, on the other hand, is just fine.

Here is the reverse of the card.  Check out the advertising for a toy cap gun.  How very un-PC!

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Should He Stay Or Should He Go

This isn't my best effort, but it's all I could muster.  The Dodgers situation has me all a fluster.  We lost another series this past weekend.  Does this mean we are should be weary for the season?

Below are my reworked lyrics focused on the current situation regarding Don Mattingly.  Sung along with the classic British punk song by the Clash "Should I Stay or Should I Go".  BTW, I removed the Spanish language backing vocals because (quite frankly) my Spanish sucks.
Darling you gotta let me know
Should Donnie stay or should he go?
If you say that he stays Blue
I'll still be rootin' for the crew
Still that leash is shorter, ya know
Should Donnie stay or should he go?

Dodgers tease tease tease
Free agents signed to record fees
One day play well, but mostly bad
The losing streak has me so mad
Well come on and let us know
Should Donnie stay or should he go?

Should Donnie stay or should he go now?
Should Donnie stay or should he go now?
If he goes it's signs of trouble
An if he stays we'll see a rumble
So come on and let us know

Your decisions do bug me
The bullpen sucks, what could it be?
Have you mismanaged our 'pen arms?
Or has bad luck kicked you to your knees?
Come on and let us know
Do you know what you should do?

Should Donnie stay or should he go now?
If he goes it's signs of trouble
An if he stays we'll see a rumble
So you gotta let us know
Should Donnie stay or should he go?
Play the video below and sing along!

Video Link:

Pic credit above: Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2013

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Blog Kiosk: 5/20/2013

Check out Hyun-Jin Ryu hanging out with some kids on Asian Heritage Day in Atlanta this past weekend.  Pic via twitter @Dodgers.
  • YOU ALL MUST READ THIS.  Jon Weisman at Dodger Thoughts rationally writes about the current state of the Dodgers.  Thank goodness he is still plugging away.
And the season might be over, except for this. For all their problems, Los Angeles is still somehow only seven games out of first place. The Giants, in case you haven’t noticed, have their own cauldron of concerns. And Arizona and Colorado … I just don’t know. I can’t see them not hitting their own skid. I can’t see it.
"I talked to Dee, and he said as soon as he peeled off, he felt he was in Carl's way," said Mattingly. "He knows he went too far. He was in no-man's land. It was kind of borderline. You want him to be aggressive, but you don't want bloopers dropping. It's a fine line. You want him to learn from it. You don't want to see it again. Part of it is knowing Carl plays shallow."
And therein lies the point of this departute. Of all the dubious moves Dodgers GM Ned Colletti has concocted, of all the ill-advised salary commitments he's taken on, his signing of League may be the worst of them all.
  • Sports Collectors Daily has a rundown on the final auction sale prices from REA.  A Babe Ruth Baltimore News rookie card sold for $450,300 in PSA 1 (poor) condition, and the Sandy Koufax 1963 game-worn jersey sold for $201,450.  Wow!
  • Ken Rosenthal at Fox Sports writes that Don Mattingly's days as the Dodgers coach may soon be coming to an end.
  • Bill Shaikin at the LA Times reports this morning that the Dodgers have no plans to fire Don Mattingly, via a club spokesman.
  • All I can say is wow!  Here is a short movie called "Cargo" that was a 2013 finalist at Tropfest.

Video Link:

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *