Wednesday, March 02, 2016

2016 Topps Heritage - The Dodgers Variation Cards

Topps Heritage brand is now in stores, and as you can see it borrows the design of the 1967 Topps Baseball card set.  I will have pics of all the base cards tomorrow, so I figured I'd take a look at the currently known Dodgers variations that can be found today.  This is not likely to be complete listing at this juncture, and I will update this post as needed.  Go here for a complete checklist.

I've paired each sport-printed variation with its normal base card for comparison.  On the left is the normal card and on its right is the variation.

Corey Seager has to share his Heritage card with former Dodger Jose Peraza.  Thankfully, a full-size Seager is available as a short print.  (Look Night Owl... Palm Trees!)

SP Rookie Variations

#168 Corey Seager 
Normal Base Cards                                   SP Rookie Variation

Dodgers Notes from Spring Training: Full-Squad Workout #7


Throughout Spring Training the Dodgers PR department sends out helpful daily notes from Camelback Ranch, and I am happy to pass them along.  See what they've written below.

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(Tommy Lasorda, pic via Camelback Ranch on twitter)

ONE DAY AWAY: The Dodgers held their seventh and final full-squad workout of Spring Training today with some team defense work, bunt plays and live batting practice. Los Angeles, in its eighth season training in Arizona, kicks off Cactus League play tomorrow against the Chicago White Sox.

WE GOT A SITUATION HERE: This morning, the Dodgers split into two teams and played a situational game, highlighting defensive strategy and baserunning. The teams weren’t exactly evenly divided as the starting lineup for the first team was Chase Utley, Howie Kendrick, Andre Ethier, Adrian Gonzalez, Yasiel Puig, Corey Seager, Carl Crawford, A.J. Ellis and Joc Pederson. The other starting squad consisted of Micah Johnson, Elian Herrera, Cody Bellinger, Trayce Thompson, Brandon Hicks, Alex Hassan, Corey Brown, Austin Barnes and Rico Noel. Field Coordinator Clayton McCullough actually did the pitching with a screen in front of him while Dodger hurlers simulated the start of the pitch.
  • Alex Wood, Brandon Beachy and Jamey Wright threw live batting practice to a group of hitters including Kik√© Hernandez and Justin Turner.
  • Beachy was signed by the Dodgers on Feb. 21, 2015 and worked his way back to the Major Leagues after undergoing a second Tommy John surgery on March 21, 2014. The right-hander made two starts for Los Angeles last year, was designated for assignment on July 30 and then signed to a minor league deal on Jan. 6, 2016.  
(Puig, pic via @MLB on twitter)

MANNY HAPPY RETURNS: Dodger Spanish Language broadcaster Manny Mota arrived at Camelback Ranch this morning and will help out as an instructor for a few weeks. Mota, who turned 78 on Feb. 18, enters his 48th season as a player, coach or broadcaster with the Dodgers. His Dodger playing career spanned parts of 13 seasons from 1969-1980 and 1982 and during his 20-year-career, Mota hit .304 with San Francisco (1962), Pittsburgh (1963-68), Montreal (1969) and the Dodgers. The native of the Dominican Republic became baseball’s all-time pinch-hit leader with 150, a mark since broken by former Dodgers Lenny Harris and Mark Sweeney.
  • Dodger Special Assistant, Player Personnel Aaron Sele also arrived in camp today. Sele is entering his eighth season in the Dodger front office following 15 seasons as a pitcher in the Major Leagues with the Red Sox (1993-97), Rangers (1998-99), Mariners (2000-01, ‘05), Angels (2002-04), Dodgers (2006) and Mets (2007). 
GET WELL SOON: Right-handed reliever Josh Ravin underwent surgery on his left arm yesterday and is expected to be out of action between eight and 12 weeks. Ravin broke his left radius after being involved in a car accident on Monday afternoon. 

WHAT AN HONOR: On this date in 2005, Dodger Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson was honored posthumously by receiving the Congressional Gold Medal during ceremonies in the rotunda of the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC.
(Seager's photoshoot with Majestic, pic via Majestic on twitter)
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Unlike the television channel AM570 will broadcast every Dodgers spring training Baseball game.  Below is the schedule:

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Johnny Hekker of the Rams

Here are this weekends autograph opportunities and events 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.  Please email me with any tips about upcoming events in Southern California.  As the rest of the week progresses I'll update this post with other events (if there are any) as I become aware of them.  Also, I don't always list every event below, so be sure to check my Calendar.  I always try to favor free signing events over paying events.  Click on any pic to embiggen.

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I suspect we'll be seeing a bunch of LA Rams signings throughout the Southland soon.  To start the oncoming cavalcade is current Rams punter Johnny Hekker at El Tepeyac Cafe & Tequila Sports Bar in the City of Industry Saturday.  Go here or here for information.
El Tepeyac Cafe & Tequila Sports Bar
13131 Crossroads Parkways S 
City of Industry, CA

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Blog Kiosk: 3/2/2016 - Dodgers Links - Holmes, Puig and Yaisel Sierra


Minor League coach Luis Matos, pitching prospect Jose De Leon and the great Fernando Valenzuela are featured in the above photograph originally taken by Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2016Go here to check out more pics taken by Jon from yesterday's spring workout.

Below are more links to check out:
  • Check this new, new to me that is, Dodgers fan blog I ran into yesterday called, "Behind Enemy Lines."  It's written by a fan who names herself "SoCal Sports Chick," and she is currently enjoying Spring Training with the Dodgers in Glendale.  Check out her wonderfully fan-biased reportsfrom Arizona here.
  • And here is Night Owl Cards awesomely-biased 2016 preseason team rankings.
  • TMZ provides more details about the John Ravin car accident, here.  They even have several photos of the broken left (non-pitching) arm.
  • David Hood at True Blue LA tell us all about Dodgers pitching prospect Grant Holmes.
Holmes’ 80-grade ceiling is built on the foundation of two plus to double-plus pitches, his curveball and fastball. Holmes has not grown into his eventual velocity, so while reports suggest he sat more comfortably 92-96 mph, he has reached 98 mph in the past and has the frame to hold velocity deep into games across a long season. Beyond velocity, Holmes might have the most electric movement on his fastball in the system. Holmes’ fastball has heavy sink at the lower ranges of his velocity, but keeps plus riding life at the top end as well. The pitch is extremely tough for hitters to square and helped suppress home runs in his first full season (just six in 103 innings).
  • Yaisel Sierra finally got to pitch in Glendale yesterday, and he is tickled pink.  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN, "'Beautiful feeling' as Yaisel Sierra throws in Dodgers camp."
"I’m ready for my job," Sierra said. "Whatever it is, that is up to the manager and the coaches on my team, but basically I’m ready for the task at hand here, whether it’s being there for my teammates in the dugout, or whatever role they decide to put me in. I’m here to help."
Apparently, the Dodgers want to eventually transform him into a starter, but will have him pitch relief to get him into the show faster.
  • Following on the heels of the Aroldis Chapam suspension we get word, via an ESPN story, that you shouldn't expect similar treatment to be handed out to Yasiel Puig.  He is not likely to be suspended for that little incident over the winter.
  • Rich Mueller at Sports Collectors Daily shares some preview pics from a brand new Topps card brand called "The Mint;" including pics of the Corey Seager autographed card on the right.  This set is slated to go live in August.
  • Tom Bartsch at Sports Collectos Digest tells us about a newly found treasure trove of Ty Cobb personnal effects; including family photos and letters.
  • Panini's 2016 Donruss Baseball card set officially comes out today, so here are a few Dodgers preview pics from the set; via Panini's blogGo here to check out more photos.  I hope to have pics of all the Dodgers cards next week.

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