Thursday, July 20, 2017

2017 Import Dragon Figurines -- Corey Seager Variant


Check this out figurine collectors.

As you know Import Dragon recently took over for McFarlane as the official maker of MLB figurines, and they just released their crop of 2017 statues. Both Corey Seager and Clayton Kershaw are available. Check those out in my previous post here.

I just discovered that there is a limited edition Corey Seager variant figurine available, as well. Check it out above and below. It is limited to 1,000 copies and features Seager in a Dodger road grey uniform. His base figurines shows him in home whites.

Blog Kiosk: 7/20/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


The Dodgers don't need no stinkin' rain delay!

With a 9-1 lead at the top of the eighth inning the game got delayed as a massive downpour suddenly overtook Chicago. It was as if someone turned on the shower as some unsuspecting drunk slept it off in the tub. Nevertheless, it was likely a welcome respite -- especially for ice cream loving rookie Cody Bellinger (as evidenced in the photo on the right). He decided to enjoy a cone and a cup-o'-noodles in the clubhouse before the game got called in the Dodgers favor.

The win extends their winning streak to 11 games. Per Ken Gurnick and Fabian Ardaya at MLB.com:
"The confidence we have in our group that we're going to win a game, is real," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. "The talent in the room, the confidence we have, is real. Now it's go out and do it. You can talk about it, but you have to go out and do it and, so, we're doing it."
Photo above via @Dodgers on twitter. Bellinger photo on right also via the @Dodgers on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1906 Brooklyn Superbas (Dodgers) pitcher Mal Eason no-hit the Cardinals in St. Louis, 2-0. In 1925 future Hall of Famer and Brooklyn Dodger pitcher Dazzy Vance struck out 17 Cubs to defeat Chicago 4-3 in 10 innings. In 1970 Dodger hurler Bill Singer no hit the Phillies at Dodger Stadium, 5-0. Singer struck out ten, walked none and committed two errors on the field.
  • Happy Birthday, Heinie ManushClaude CrockerCharles Johnson!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Braves Series Starts Thursday - Stadium Giveaways, Pregame Info and Other Stuff!


The next homestand starts on Thursday against the Atlanta Braves. Below are some odds and ends for this upcoming homestand. Here are some important links:
A new item has been added to the menu at Dodger Stadium. It is called the Think Blue Burrito and it includes pulled pork, black beans, Spanish rice, Pico de Gallo, and avocado crema wrapped in a flour tortilla. See it on the right. You can find it on the Reserve level, Section 32.

Also, for this homestand against the Braves only the Dodgers have made the Chicken Waffle Sammy that includes a Belgian waffle with spicy crispy chicken, candied bacon and maple syrup. See it on the left. It can be found on the Field Level, Section 8 and the Reserve Level, Section 14.

-------------------
Thursday, July 20th at 7:10 PM
RHP Mike Foltynewicz vs. RHP Brandon McCarthy
TV: SportsNet LA, SNLA Spanish
Radio: 570 LA Sports, KTNQ 1020

Thursday's game starts at 7:10 PM. Auto gates open at 4:40 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:10 PM.

The first 40,000 fans in attendance will receive Great Dodger Moments Coin #5 featuring the 1984 Olympics. See it on the right.

It is Olympics Night at Dodger Stadium.  Folks who ordered a special ticket package will get an exclusive Olympics Night cap.  See that on the left.  If not already sold out go here for information.

2017 Topps Now -- #369 -- 30 Wins In Last 34 Games, Best Since 1977


With Clayton Kershaw on the mound last night it's no surprise the club set a new mark. Over the past 34 games they have won 30 contest -- best since the 1977 Royals. In fact, they are the first National League team to do it since the 1936 Giants. Best yet, the Dodgers have won 14 straight games when Kershaw has started -- the best streak of his career.

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Chris Taylor, Fernando Valenzuela and some Angels

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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2017 Allen & Ginter - All the Dodgers Base Cards

Allen & Ginter is finally here. The ever popular vintage throwback set officially hits stores today, and it includes a design that is a bit different from past sets. While still using pastel colored backgrounds Topps decided to put a players portrait within an oval frame that is very reminiscent of both the early 20th-century Rose Company postcards and PM1 Ornate Frame pins.

Below are all of the Dodger base cards in the set. Go here to check out a complete checklist. As always, each base card has it's own parallel mini version available. There are also metal and cloth mini cards available of only a limited number of players in the set. A Dodgers' checklist and an example of those cards are seen at the very bottom of this post. BTW, there is unfortunately no Cody Bellinger base cards available, but there is an autographed card that can only be found as a redemption card.

Base

#5 Adrian Gonzalez               #62 Joc Pederson

Blog Kiosk: 7/19/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


It's amazing that Clayton Kershaw can struggle and still throw seven scoreless innings to win a game. Per Ken Gurnick at MLB.com:
"I was a little rusty tonight," said Kershaw, who hadn't pitched since a July 9 complete-game win over the Royals in the final game before the All-Star break. "The fastball command wasn't great, it got a little better as the game went. Nine days off definitely is not something I'm used to. I'm thankful to get out of that unscathed, and glad we won."
Kershaw now has 15 wins and the Dodgers are riding high with a ten game winning streak. Photo above via ESPN on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1977 Don Sutton took home All-Star Game MVP honors when the NL defeats the AL 7-5 at Yankee Stadium. As the starting pitcher, Sutton pitched three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit, one walk and striking out four. Fellow teammate Steve Garvey hit a third inning solo home run. In 1993 outfielder Raul Mondesi made his Major League debut and recorded a single in his very first at-bat. 
  • Happy Birthday, Bill HartErve BeckBen GeraghtyLuis Avilan & Rachel Robinson

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

2017 Topps Stadium Club - All the Dodgers Insert Cards

Now that you've seen the base cards, here are all of the Dodgers inserts available in packs of 2017 Topps Stadium Club. Go here to check out all of my past post on this set.

Unfortunately, several Dodger autographed cards are available only through a redemption; including Corey Seager, Julio Urias and Sandy Koufax. Strangely, the aforementioned signers do appear to have auto'd Base Chrome Autographed cards available in packs -- they are all sticker autographs. If I am not mistaken, all the normal base autographed card are signed on-card; whereas the Chrome autographs include sticker autographs.

Instavision

#I-CK Clayton Kershaw

Blog Kiosk: 7/18/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


Check out this fantastic Real Photo Postcard (RPPC) of the 1943 Monterrey Industriales of the Mexican League featuring future Dodger backstop and Hall of Famer Roy Campanella (on the far left). To the right is a closer look at the 21-year old catcher. It is currently on auction at RMY Auctions, and I suspect it will sell for a bunch. The auction listing states that this is the earliest known Campanella cardboard collectible.

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1939 the Dodgers receive shortstop Pee Wee Reese from the Red Sox in exchange for $35,000, three minor leaguers and a player to be named later. It is later discovered that a poor scouting report filled out by then current Boston shortstop Joe Cronin purposefully downplayed Reese's abilities for fear of losing his job. In 1949 Jackie Robinson testified in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities to express his disagreement with actor Paul Robeson's assertion that African-Americans would not fight a war against Russia due to America's history of racial animus. In 1957 Gil Hodges hit his 12th career grand slam to tie a National League record held by both Rogers Hornsby and Ralph Kiner.
  • Happy Birthday, Johnny Hopp!

Monday, July 17, 2017

2017 Topps Stadium Club - One Dodger SSP Variation - Kershaw's FB Grip

I spoke way too soon last week. There is a Dodgers 2017 Stadium Club base variation card in the set and it is of Clayton Kershaw. See it below on the right.

Although I don't believe we've seen this exact photo before, we have seen something similar in the past. In both the 2009 and 2013 Allen & Ginter sets we saw Clayton showing us his four-seam fastball grip. You can see both of those cards at the very bottom.

#230 Clayton Kershaw
Base Card                                                  Variation

2017 Topps Tier One - The Dodgers Tier One Relic Cards

Here is a final last look at the various Dodgers cards available in packs of Topps 2017 Tier One Baseball set. Go here to check out all of my past post on this set.

Featured below are the Tier One Relic, Legends Relics and Autographed Relic cards. With exception of the Dual Autograph Relics, all the inserts below also include a "1 of 1" triple relic card, but none of them have yet to be seen on eBay. I do show both the single and double relics for each player below. On a side note, I have yet to see any of the Duke Snider Legends Relic cards anywhere.

Tier One Relics

#T1R-CK Kershaw

#T1R-CSE Seager

Blog Kiosk: 7/17/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Weekend Odds and Ends


The Dodgers just keep on rollin'. Instead of boring you with details I thought I would point to the above action photograph taken by Dodgers photographer Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2017. As you can see, Jon decided to photograph the game in a different perspective, and in the process snapped one of my favorite subjects. Here, he captured Kike Hernandez with a broken bat swing -- complete with a piece of the barrel flying off the bat.

Go here to check out more pics by Jon from Sunday's game. You can also see pics from Saturday's game here, or Friday's game here. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1954 the Dodgers field the very first starting nine that consist of a majority of black ballplayers for the first time in Major League history. In 1974 Dodger starter Tommy John suffers an arm injury on the mound against the Expos that would eventually lead to a revolutionary new surgery that would be widely known as "Tommy John" surgery -- to repair a torn ligament in the elbow by replacing it with a ligament taken from another part of the body. The surgery is performed by Dr. Frank Jobe. In 1976 Walter Alson wins his 2,000th game as a manager. His Dodgers defeat the Cubs in Los Angeles, 5-4. Alston would then leave the Dodgers at the end of this season -- finishing with a 2,040-1,613 lifetime mark as skipper.
  • Happy Birthday, Eddie Brown!

2017 Topps Now -- #351, #355, #356 -- Puig's Homers, Bellinger's Cycle and Wood's Eleventh Win


I am late again with several Topps Now cards released over the weekend. On Friday evening Yasiel Puig carried the Dodgers to a 6-4 victory over Miami to open the second half of the season, and he did it in dramatic fashion.

Friday, July 14, 2017

2017 Topps Stadium Club - The Dodgers Base Cards

The always fun Topps Stadium Club set was released to collectors on Wednesday, and it doesn't disappoint. There are some fantastic photos in the set; including several I've never seen on cardboard. Go here to check out a complete checklist.

Eleven Dodgers are in the 300 card base set, and surprisingly there are no Dodger base variations available to speak of. (Update: One SSP base Dodger variation exist and you can see it here) There are chrome versions of the base cards available, but they are basically just parallels -- carbon copies of the base, but super shiny. A complete Dodger checklist of the Chrome cards is at the very bottom.

My favorite Dodger cards in the set are that of Corey Seager and Jackie Robinson. The photograph on the Seager card frames the entire batters box as he takes a big swing. Then, as if out of nowhere, an arm stretches out in an attempt to catch the pitched ball. I love the Jackie Robinson card mainly because I don't recall ever seeing that photo. Stay tuned for Dodgers inserts next week.

Base Cards

#46 Trayce Thompson        #115 Logan Forsythe

2017 Topps Tier One - The Dodgers Autograph Cards

Here's a look at many of the 2017 Topps Tier One Dodger autographed cards. Go here to check out all of my past post on this set.

Tier One Autographs

  • #T1A-SK Sandy Koufax -- not yet seen
#T1A-CK Clayton Kershaw

2017 Bowman Platinum - The Dodgers Insert Cards

Now that you've seen the base cards, here are the rest of the Dodgers' 2017 Bowman Platinum cards found in packs. There are a couple of Cody Bellinger autographed cards, but they are only available through a redemption card.

Top Prospects

#TP-AS Andrew Sopko          #TP-AV Alex Verdugo

#TP-GL Gavin Lux             #TP-WC Willie Calhoun

Blog Kiosk: 7/14/2017 - Dodgers Links - Vin Scully Narrated "Lincoln Portrait" Last Night


It is apparently Vin Scully Week in Las Angeles. After accepting the ICON Award at the ESPYs the other day, he ventured up to the Hollywood Bowl last night to narrate “Lincoln Portrait” by Aaron Copland, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel. He will reprise the performance this coming Tuesday, July 18th. Go here to watch Vin's narration from last night.

Photo above via the Hollywood Bowl on twitter. Below are more links to check out:

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Blog Kiosk: 7/13/2017 - Dodgers Links - Vin Scully Given ICON Award


Last night Vin Scully was honored at the annual ESPYs with the Nationwide ICON Award -- given to those whose careers have left a lasting impression on the sports world. Actor Bryan Cranston present the prize. If you haven't already seen Vin's acceptance speech you should go do that now. It's fantastic and a little reminder of how lucky we were to have him in our lives. Watch it here.

Pic above via ABC7 on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1954 Brooklyn rookie manager Walter Alston makes the first of a record nine appearances as National League manager in the annual All-Star Game. On this day the National League would lose to the American League, 11-9.
  • Happy Birthday, John O'BrienDaryl SpencerCody Bellinger!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Yunel Escobar and Dennis Rodman

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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2017 Dodgers Sports Crate - June Edition - Yasmani Grandal


It's finally here!

After a painstaking delay the second edition of the Dodgers 2017 Sports Crate has arrived. It got here about two to three weeks late. At this point I think it's fair to say that the folks over at #SportsCrate are having some fulfillment issues. That said, I can say that these mystery boxes are growing on me. After initially being a bit disappointed with some of the booty I've come to realize that the thrill of opening up the crates is too enticing. It's like experiencing a Baseball Christmas once a month during the season -- if only they could fix their shipping issues.

2017 All-Star Game FanFest Promos - Clayton Kershaw Wrapper Redemption Card

With All-Star festivities now in our rear-view mirror I thought it would be prudent to briefly pass along details on the only Dodger-related collectible available from retailers at the 2017 MLB FanFest.

Featured below is the Clayton Kershaw Topps MLB FanFest Wrapper Redemption card. It is part of a six card set that were given to fans who opened up three sealed packs of any 2017 Topps MLB product at their company booth. Other players in the set include Kris Bryant (who wasn't even there), Bryce Harper, Mike Trout (again, not there), Giancarlo Stanton and Buster Posey.

#ASG-2 Clayton Kershaw

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

Blog Kiosk: 7/12/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


Check out the boys during the pre All-Star Game ceremonies above. Who Clayton is gawking at I do not know.

As for the game, I've realized that low-scoring All-Star games are boring, and all I could think about was how I can't wait for the second half to begin.

(pic via @AquaX107 on twitter)
The only Dodger performance of note was by Kenley Jansen. In his single inning of work in the ninth he collected three consecutive strike outs and committed a balk. Heck, the balk was the best part of his outing. With a man on second he forgot to get himself set before delivering his pitch to Avisail Garcia. Almost immediately after throwing the errant pitch he realized his error and was seen visibly laughing about it on the mound -- and as he walked back to the dugout after his outing. No doubt his teammates had some fun at his expense.

Pic above via Jon SooSoo/LA Dodgers 2017. Go here to check out more pics by Jon from yesterdays All-Star Game. Below are more links to check out:

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Blog Kiosk: 7/11/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


Cody was fantastic. He escaped the first round of the derby by defeating Colorado's Charlie Blackmon with 15 homers. Then he faced the behemoth that is Aaron Judge, and I think it's fair to say he was overwhelmed. He knew Judge was going to beat him handily. Per Anthony DiComo at MLB.com:
"I knew I had no chance," Bellinger said. "At that point, I'm just glad I won the first round. It was pretty tiring. I was just trying to get out as many as I could."
No worries from him, though.
"I didn't know what to expect, but that was more than I expected," Bellinger said. "That was probably the best time I've had playing baseball."
Photo above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2017. Go here to check out a bunch of fantastic pics by Jon from yesterdays All-Star event. Below are more links to check out:

Monday, July 10, 2017

2017 Topps Now -- #342 -- Kershaw's Masterful 13-K Complete Game


Clayton Kershaw's herculean effort on Sunday to win his 14th and record his first complete game of the year is the subject of one of todays 2017 Topps Now cards. As you know, the Dodgers ended the first-half of the regular season by winning their 61st -- tops is the majors. What you may not have known is that Kershaw's Sunday outing was the first time in Baseball history that a starting pitcher struck out 13 batters in a complete game in under 100 pitches. Per Ken Gurnick at MLB.com:
"He was Claytonesque," said manager Dave Roberts, noting that Kershaw has "synched" up the loose ends in his last four starts (two earned runs in 29 innings).

2017 Topps Now -- #HRD-3 -- Cody Bellinger Home Run Derby Card


Over the weekend Topps issued a group of 2017 Topps Now cards to highlight all eight of the participants in tonight's Home Run Derby event. Featured here is Cody Bellinger's card. It is already sold out and sold 2,0222 copies -- second most behind 4,039 copies sold for the Aaron Judge card. Per Ken Gurnick at MLB.com:
"I've thought about it some nights, just let it soak in and realize it's actually happening, and it's hard to believe," Bellinger said. "like I've said before, I couldn't imagine doing this in my dreams. It's going to be awesome."

Blog Kiosk: 7/10/2017 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends


Here are five of the six Dodger All-Stars with their All-Star uniforms representing the team in Miami.

Photo above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers. Go here to check out more pics by Jon and Juan Ocampo from yesterdays game. Below are more links to check out:

Friday, July 07, 2017

Congrats, Alex Wood! You're an All-Star!


And now there are six!

One of the more glaring omissions from the upcoming All-Start Game in Miami has been the exclusion of Dodgers pitcher Alex Wood. He has arguably been one of the top starters in the league -- having recorded an 10-0 record this season with an 1.67 ERA, 2.04 FIP and 2.9 WAR. So, this morning's news that he is now on the team was certainly welcome. Per a Dodgers press release:
Wood, in his fifth Major League season, is also a first-time All-Star. The 26-year-old left-hander becomes the sixth Dodger All-Star selection, marking the most in the NL.  He joins Cody Bellinger, Kenley Jansen, Kershaw, Corey Seager and Justin Turner as an NL All-Star.  On Wednesday, Wood improved to 10-0 on the season with a 1.67 ERA and 97 strikeouts over 80.2 innings pitched.  With a win in each of his 10 decisions this season, Wood tied the Dodgers record for consecutive wins to start a season, joining Larry French (1942), Preacher Roe (1951), Don Newcombe (1955) and Ed Roebuck (1962).
His inclusion came at the expense of Clayton Kershaw's inability to throw during the game. Clayton is scheduled to pitch on Sunday, so he would be unable to pitch on Tuesday for the All-Star Game.

In celebration of Wood's good fortune I made the above two fantasy Baseball cards of him. Both cards use photos taken by either Jon SooHoo or Juan Ocampo from Wednesday's game. The card on the left uses a 1952 Topps design, and the card on the right uses the 1981 Fleer design.

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

2017 Bowman Platinum - The Dodgers Base Cards

A couple days ago a Walmart exclusive Topps brand hit store shelves. It is called 2017 Bowman Platinum and this is the second year of its release. Go here for a complete checklist.

Notably, this card set is being marketed as having the first pack-pulled Cody Bellinger rookie cards. Of course, we all know that's not entirely true. He's had cards stuffed into a handful of Topps products the past two years; including the 2016 version of Bowman Platinum. It's just that this time Bellinger can be found in the "Base" portion of the set instead of the prospect part of the brand.

Below are the five Dodger players found in the "Base" set. Next week I hope to have pics of most of the Dodger inserts. So, stay tuned for that.

Base

#50 Corey Seager                    #52 Julio Urias

2017 Topps Now -- #332 -- Chris Taylor's Walk-Off Hit Caps Four-Run 9th for Comeback Win


Why am I not surprised to find both Justin Turner and Kiké Hernandez exuberantly celebrating with Chris Taylor, hero of last nights walk-off victory, in the 2017 Topps Now card featured in this post? They've both been significant catalyst this season -- not only with their bats, but also their leadership. So, showing them doing what they do best -- rooting on their teammates -- is a nice surprise on this card.

As you can see, Kiké is covering Chris with what looks like rosin and Justin is in the midst of flipping Taylor in some sort-of choreographed wrestling move. Fortunately, reports indicate that nobody was hurt.