Friday, March 23, 2018

2018 Topps Gypsy Queen - All the Dodgers Variation/Error Base Cards

Yesterday I poked fun at Topps for a misguided error card they created for their Gypsy Queen set. Today I share with you a full slate of Dodger errors and variations found in the Gypsy Queen base set; including a card that almost makes up for the Seager snafu. Directly below is the second Dodgers "Team Swap Error" card and it features the great Mike Trout designated as a Dodger.

Team Swap Error Variations

#1 Mike Trout

Blog Kiosk: 3/23/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Just another vintage spring training pic to get you excited for the upcoming season. Per the descriptor on the reverse:
Dated Mar 6, 1949 - WHITMAN FLIES OUT IN INTRA-SQUAD GAME.  Dick Whitman, Dodger outfielder, flies put in first inning of the first intra-squad game for the Brooklyn club at their Vero Beach, Fla., training camp.  Catcher Lembo and umpire Andrews watch the ball sail to the outfield." (eBay link)
Below are more links to check out:

Thursday, March 22, 2018

This Might be the Worst Dodger Card Ever Made

Topps, you should be ashamed of yourself.

This is an monstrosity. Its grotesqueness is only matched by its hideousness. This is a freak card and I want to burn every last one of them.

Corey Seager... A Giant! .... No!

2018 Topps Gypsy Queen - All the Dodgers Insert Cards

Here is a look at all of the Dodgers' inserts available in packs of Topps 2018 Gypsy Queen Baseball card set. I hope to have pics of all the various base variations soon, so stay tuned for that.

Gypsy Queen Autographs

#GQA-AT Andrew Toles        #GQA-AV Alex Verdugo

Blog Kiosk: 3/22/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Considering the Dodgers current predicament I thought today would be a perfect time the point out the above March 7, 1949 Spring Training AP press photo I ran into on eBay (link here). Featured are a group of young farmhands working on learning the intricacies of playing third base. Via the descriptor on the reverse:
"HOW TO BAG A THIRD BASE POSITION.  Coach Milton Stock, Ed Stanky's Father-In-Law, who once played third base himself, teaches Brooklyn Dodgers third base candidates the fine points of covering the bag during a session at Vero Beach, Fla. left to right are: Johnny Jorgensen, Eddie Miskis, Buddy Hicks, Don Ramazotti, Billy Cox and Bob Morgan."
Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1962 a former Giant who still remains anonymous revealed that the Giants had help during the 1951 playoffs against the Dodgers (this is the series where Bobby Thompson hit that infamous homer). They had a sign-stealing clubhouse spy at their home field for three months of the season. In 1993 Indians pitchers Steven OlinBob Ojeda and Tim Crews (a former Dodger) are in a boating accident at Little Lake Nellie in Clermont, Florida that kills both Olin and Crews. Ojeda is seriously injured in the crash.
  • Happy Birthday, Bill McClellanOverton TremperRamon Martinez & Juan Uribe!

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

2018 Topps Gypsy Queen - All the Dodgers Base Cards

New in stores today is Topps 2018 Gypsy Queen Baseball card brand. Named after a late 19th century tobacco set, Gypsy Queen offers vintage looking designs and a guaranteed two autographs per hobby box. Below are all of the Dodgers' base cards in the set. Go here for a complete checklist.


#76 Chris Taylor               #112 Logan Forsythe

Blog Kiosk: 3/21/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

I missed out on the Dodgers' First Look event yesterday afternoon. This is an annual soiree put together to introduce the upcoming seasons stadium menu items and giveaways to the local media. They brought out all kinds of new items; including a carne asada torta that I will have to try out.

Sue Jo at Dodger Insider provided some details and plenty of photos from the event, here. David Young at True Blue LA put together his own write-up: New Food Items (here) and Giveaways (here).

Photo above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2018 at Dodger Insider. BTW, it's Chipper Jones Day in Georgia today. Below are more links to check out:

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Lelands has the Coolest Dodgers Pillow You Will Ever See

I want this so bad.

Unfortunately, my wallet is holding me back. At this point -- it's currently priced at $365 at the time of this posting with three days to go -- I am confident it'll close at a value well beyond what I am willing to pay.

Oh well... I guess I'll have to enjoy it from afar.

Featured is a real vintage Brooklyn Dodgers flannel jersey that has been sewed up into a pillow. According to the auction (link here) it was created by the wife of one-time Dodger and future Hall of Famer Paul "Big Poison" Waner. As you may know, Waner wore Dodger Blue intermittently over a four year period from 1941 to 1944 -- during the tail end of his illustrious career.

As for the pillow, it is not likely to be game-used by Waner. As a Dodger he only wore the numbers #1 and #24, so this isn't one of his. He also never coached for the Dodgers during his retirement. Although, he could have worn this as a guest during one of the numerous Old-Timers Games throughout the years, so that's a possibility.

BTW, the #43 was first worn in franchise history by pitcher Johnny Van Cuyk starting 1947 -- three years after Waner's last season in Brooklyn. So, how he and his wife came across the jersey is anybody's guess.

All I can really say about this pillow is that it is one of the greatest oddball memorabilia items I've ever seen.

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

2018 Topps Opening Day - The Base Variation, Short Prints and Auto'd Dodgers Cards

Here is one last look at Dodgers' cards found in packs of Topps Opening Day brand. Featured below is the one Kershaw base variation, several other base-looking short prints and autographed cards. Clearly, the best cards shown are the Stadium Signature cards featuring Kershaw, Maeda and Bellinger signing autographs for fans.

Base Variations

#1 Clayton Kershaw - Dugout
Base                               Variation

Blog Kiosk: 3/20/2018 - Dodgers Links - Noooooo!


Insert expletives above. Per Rowan Kavner at Dodger Insider:
Turner was hoping the X-rays would show something different, but he got the news after the game about the fracture and will talk to the doctors Tuesday to try to find out more. 
“It definitely wasn’t what I wanted to hear,” Turner said. “It started to feel better and better as I was in there doing X-rays, so I was pretty hopeful they would come back negative. You get the news, and it’s tough.”
Photo above via Nicholas Quay/Camelback Ranch at Dodger Insider. Below are more links to check out:

Monday, March 19, 2018

A Peek at Dodgers' Holiday & Special Event Uniforms

With the seasons start just around the corner we now get a look at several of the holiday and special event uniforms, caps and socks for the upcoming season. Go here for more information. Starting with Jackie Robinson Day, Sunday, April 15th, we see a jazzy new logo (seen above) and some cool socks (seen below).

2018 Panini Stars & Stripes USA - Dodgers Prospect Jeren Kendall

This is one of those sets that very likely will expand its Dodgers' checklist over the coming few years. After all, there are cards here for teenagers (under 15-years of age) and college athletes that are members of Team USA, and many of these kids may eventually find themselves within a minor league system somewhere.

Featured here is Panini's Stars & Stripes USA Baseball brand, and below is the only current Dodger within it -- Jeren Kendall. As you know, Kendall was the Dodgers 2017 first draft pick (23rd overall). Go here for a complete checklist.


#82 Jeren Kendall

Blog Kiosk: 3/19/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Thew Dodgers came out with green St. Patrick's Day caps for Saturday's festivities. Unfortunately, Ryu wasn't exactly stellar, but improving. Per Ken Gurnick at
"I thought Ryu was considerably better than the line," Roberts said after Ryu was charged with five runs on seven hits in three innings of the Dodgers' 5-2 loss to the White Sox. 
"There was a double play that wasn't turned. Pitch count got up because of that. I thought there were some pitches he was squeezed. I thought he threw the ball well. Velocity was good. The change, cutter/slider, continues to improve. Happy he finished the third with a double play.
Photo above of Hyun-Jin Ryu via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2018 on Dodger Insider. Below are more links to check out:

Thursday, March 15, 2018

2018 Topps Opening Day - The Dodgers Insert Cards

Featured here are the Opening Day Stars, National Anthem, Opening Day Checklist, Relics, Before Opening Day and MLB Sticker insert cards found in packs of Topps 2018 Opening Day set. I hope to have pics of the Dodgers variations and autographed cards soon.

Opening Day Stars

#ODS-AV Alex Verdugo       #ODS-CS Corey Seager

Blog Kiosk: 3/15/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

The passage of time sure can ease the grief.

Featured above is a vintage, circa June 1956, photograph that captures Dodger legends Duke Snider and Gil Hodges on the verge of "tomahawking" former Giants hero Bobby Thompson. As you know, in 1951 Thompson hit "The Shot Heard Round the World" that ended the Dodgers chances for a world title that season. This pic recently sold at an RMY Auction for a very affordable $34. On another note, I'm extremely angry at myself for missing this item, as well as several others, from this auction. It closed this past weekend and I just plain forgot about it.

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1945 the Dodgers opened their spring camp at Bear Mountain State Park in upstate New York due to wartime travel restrictions. There were real worries that German U-boats would attack the eastern coast of America During WWII. This is the third straight year the Dodgers would practice here. In 1975 the Dodgers signed 37 year-old former Giants Hall of Fame pitcher Juan Marichal to a free agent contract. He would retire from the game a little over a month later on April 17th. 
  • Happy Birthday, Doc CaseyRalph MillerRosy RyanLou FetteDick ScottMickey Hatcher & Trayce Thompson!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

2018 Topps Opening Day - All the Dodgers Base Cards

I was going to go on a mini-rant about this set, but as I looked closer I realized that Topps has made some changes - at least with regards to the Dodgers'. For the most part, the Topps' Opening Day brand is as boring as can be. They typically use not only the exact same design as their flagship, but also use the same pics. And the only difference would be a jazzy "Opening Day" logo on the front. This time around they mixed it up a bit.

Of the eleven Dodgers' in the base set only two use the exact photograph as its flagship counterpart -- Yasiel Puig and Cody Bellinger. The cards of Kershaw, Verdugo, Buehler and Wood use brand new pics. On top of that, we get a first look at 2018 Topps cards for Seager, Turner, Taylor, Jansen and Darvish (none of whom are in Series 1). This is quite a departure from years past.

Check out the Dodger base cards below. As of this posting, there are no known variations to chase after, but that could change as folks continue to open the product. Go here for a complete checklist.


#1 Clayton Kershaw               #57 Yasiel Puig

Blog Kiosk: 3/14/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

(Via Reddit u/TARS_CASE)
RIP, Stephen Hawking. Per BBC:
"At the time, I thought my life was over and that I would never realise the potential I felt I had. But now, 50 years later, I can be quietly satisfied with my life." 
Speaking to the BBC in 2002, his mother, Isobelle, described him as a "very normal young man". 
She said: "He liked parties. He liked pretty girls - only pretty ones. He liked adventure and he did, to some extent, like work."
Below are more links to check out:

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Bellinger is a Mystery Redemption for 2017 Topps Stadium Club

On the heals of yesterdays announcement we find out that Cody Bellinger isn't only a "mystery redemption" for last years Finest set, but also for Topps 2017 Stadium Club brand. Check out that Bellinger card above.

As you know, there were two "mystery redemption" cards randomly inserted into packs of Topps July release - 2017 Stadium Club. Below is a listing of those redemptions.
  • Mystery Redemption #1 – Cody Bellinger
  • Mystery Redemption #2 – Ian Happ

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

Plenty of Dodgers Memorabilia at SCP Auctions

SCP is currently running their annual Spring auction and it includes plenty of shiny Dodgers hardware to drool over. First, though, I wanted to point to a couple of fantastic game-used items that stuck out to me. First of all, check out the pristine catchers glove above. It is a Roy Campanella gamer and comes from the family of former Dodger Carl Furillo. (Auction Link)

This next item has an unusual background and provenance. The Brooklyn cap on the right is purported to be a gamer once worn by Jackie Robinson and it was attained by a fan sitting behind the Dodger dugout. (Auction Link) Per the auction description.
He acquired it decades ago from an old friend who had owned the treasured keepsake since he obtained it himself in the seats behind the Dodgers dugout at Ebbets Field upon Jackie Robinson removing it from his head and casting it into the crowd. The cap was later bestowed upon our consignor, with this verbal history, as a means to settle a debt incurred by his friend. As with many such stories, they must be taken with a grain of salt, however, when the cap arrived at our offices we were taken aback by its compelling physical traits.

Blog Kiosk: 3/13/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

It's all about family, ain't it?

Kenley spent plenty of time with his young son, Kaden, at Camelback Ranch yesterday. He wrote:
One day you'll be too big for my arms, but papa will always remember these times
Photo above via Kenley's twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1917 Dodger skipper Wilbert Robinson performed some spring antics on the field. After hearing that Gabby Street caught a Baseball thrown from the Washington Monument, Robinson bragged that he could catch a ball dropped from an airplane. So, the stunt was set up, but as legend has it young outfielder Casey Stengel had something else in mind. He substituted a grapefruit for the Baseball. Said fruit was then gloved by Robinson as it fell, but it exploded on his chest. Having seen the fruits red innards splashed all over himself Wilbert exclaimed, "Help me, Lads, I'm covered with my own blood!" Then, he tasted it. On a side note, it has since been revealed that Stengel was not the genius behind this prank. Ruth Law, the pilot, substituted part of her lunch when she realized she forgot to bring a baseball.
  • Happy BirthdayChappie McFarlandTom FloodMal EasonLew MaloneDon BessentDon Miles & Mariano Duncan!

Monday, March 12, 2018

New Autographed Cody Bellinger Rookie Card to Chase - 2017 Topps Finest

Better late than never, eh?

It has just been announced, via Topps blog, that one of the "Mystery Redemption Autograph" cards inserted into packs of Topps 2017 Finest Baseball card packs will be of Cody Bellinger. You can see that card above.

Originally released in early June of last year, three "Mystery Redemption Autograph" cards were inserted into packs. Below is a listing of who you will get once you turn them in:
  • Mystery Redemption #1 – Cody Bellinger
  • Mystery Redemption #2 – Ian Happ
  • Mystery Redemption #3 – Bradley Zimmer

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

Blog Kiosk: 3/12/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Born in Brooklyn in the early 40's, Sen. Bernie Sanders maintains his love for the club -- even as he moved to the northeast and became a Senator in Vermont. Yesterday, he visited the Dodgers at Camelback Ranch and spent plenty of time talking Baseball with Dave Roberts (as shown in the pic above) and hitting with Yasiel Puig (per pic on the right). Both photos are via Sanders' twitter here and here.

Below are more links to check out:

Friday, March 09, 2018

2018 Panini's Donruss - All the Dodgers Insert Cards

Now that you've seen the base cards, here is a look at all the Dodgers' inserts found in packs of Panini's 2018 Donruss. As always, when it comes to the public checklist provided by Panini, please ignore the actual card numbers for all the inserts. 

Retro 1984 Signatures

#18 Cody Bellinger

Blog Kiosk: 3/9/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Over the years I've posted up a bunch of vintage press photos from the golden era of the game. Today I thought I would pull something out that's a little more modern. Featured above is an 1983 AP photo showing a play at the plate that we are not likely to ever witness again. Hall of Famer Gary Carter -- himself a onetime Dodger -- masterfully blocks the plate to stop Dodger outfielder Ron Roenicke from scoring. (eBay Auction Link)

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1943 the Brooklyn Dodgers received soon-to-be Hall of Fame centerfielder Lloyd "Little Poison" Waner and Al Glossop from the Phillies in exchange for veteran infielder Babe Dahlgren. Although, Waner did not join the club for the 1943 Baseball season. Instead, he asked to be placed on the voluntary retirement list and took a wartime job at the Douglas Aircraft plant in Oklahoma City. Lloyd would eventually join Brooklyn for the 1944 season (playing briefly with his brother Paul -- a fellow Hall of Famer), but would eventually be released by mid-June -- He slashed .286/.412/.286/.697 in just 14 at-bats, primarily as a pinch hitter.
  • Happy Birthday, Rube YarrisonArky VaughanTerry MulhollandKoyie Hill & Willy Aybar!

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Tommy Lasorda in Arizona on Saturday

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.


This is for fans in Arizona. Tommy Lasorda is scheduled to make an autograph appearance at McFadden Restaurant in Glendale, Arizona on Saturday, March 10th from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Go here for more information. This is a pay per autograph event. Also, there are trip packages that include tickets to that days game.
McFadden Restaurant
9425 West Coyote Boulevard
Glendale, AZ, 85305
(408)286-2151 or (623)872-0022 

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

2018 Panini's Donruss - The Dodgers Base & Variation Cards

Panini America's flagship Baseball card brand, 2018 Donruss, is now in stores, and as you can see in the pic above Cody Bellinger is its spokes-model. He is prominently displayed on both boxes and packs. Go here for an complete checklist.

Below are all of the Dodgers' base & variation cards. I remain disappointed that the Diamond Kings subset no longer uses drawings/paintings like their vintage brethren from the 80's.

I do love the retro cards that use the 1984 Baseball set design - one of my all-time favorites. As a kid I remember riding around town in my poor excuse for a BMX bike searching for packs of these cards. Rarely did I see any, but that didn't stop me from spending hours searching for some. I so badly wanted that Don Mattingly rookie!

Complete Base Set

Diamond Kings
#14 Clayton Kershaw

Blok Kiosk: 3/8/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

It's all about practice.

Featured above are Dodger first baseman Gil Hodges and catcher Roy Campanella stretching out to make a play during a spring workout at Vero Beach, dated Feb 26, 1952. (eBay auction link) Per the descriptor on the reverse:
TWO-WAY STRETCH---Vero Beach, Fla........Catcher Roy Campanella of the Brooklyn Dodgers tries to match the stretch of Gil Hodges at first nbase as they reach for a wide throw in spring training workout at the Dodgers camp in Vero Beach. The Flatbushers who were as close to the pennant as one minute to twelve last season say this is the year.".
Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers History: In 1941 teammates Joe Medwick and Pee Wee Reese wear protective headgear during a spring exhibition game in Havana, Cuba. They placed plastic inserts -- dubbed an  “Brooklyn Safety Cap” -- inside their hats. Both players had missed significant time the previous season due to head injuries; including a scare that sent Medick to the hospital for fear of a cracked skull. You can see a patent design for the cap on the right, via Baseball Hall of Fame. Click pic to embiggen. In 2011 former Dodger Assistant General Manager Kim Ng is named by MLB as the Senior Vice-President of its baseball operations, making her the highest-ranking woman in the major leagues.
  • Happy Birthday, Ollie O'MaraCarl FurilloAl GionfriddoDick TeedMarv BreedingWillard Hunter,  Dick Allen & Juan Encarnacion!

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

2018 Topps MLB Sticker -- The Dodgers

Topps MLB stickers are now out. As you know, this is the most affordable set available to collectors. There are no weird variations, autographs or relics to chase after. All you get are stickers -- wonderful stickers. A full box of 50 packs (with 6 sticker cards in each pack) can be bought for under $40. BTW, the sticker album comes with six cards already, and one of them is the Bellinger card. That card can only be found within the album. Go here for a complete checklist.

Base Set

#166 Dodgers Team         #212 Kenta Maeda

Blog Kiosk: 3/7/2018 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

For several years during WWII the Dodgers spent their spring training in up-state New York -- Bear Mountain. Located just 20 minutes from West Point, it was not unusual for the team to train at the West Point Academy Field House; especially when the weather turned ugly. Above you can see the Dodgers play ball at the Field House as cadets check out the action. The photo is dated March 18, 1945, and was taken by famed sports photographer Barney Stein for the NY Post (eBay auction link). BTW, the photo originally comes from the personal collection of former Dodger Cookie Lavagetto.

Below are more links to check out:
  • Happy Birthday, Doc ScanlanDan GrinerMerwin JacobsonDick LoftusJoe Gallagher & Jeff Kent!
  • Today's Game: The Dodgers take on the Angels in their home field, and Japanese two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani is slated to bat 7th as a DH. Kershaw is scheduled to start, so it's likely they'll face each against each other for the first time. 

Tuesday, March 06, 2018

Team Card Sets and Kenley Jansen Stars Wars Bobblehead Just Announced

The Dodgers are going all out for their 60th anniversary in Los Angeles. Not only has an 11th bobble been added to their schedule (the Kirk Gibson bobble), but they are also adding a 12th this season.

Announced today, the team will be issuing a Star Wars themed bobble of Kenley Jansen as Lando Calrissian -- their first Star Wars bobble ever. Check out a mock-up of the bobblehead on the right. The first 40,000 fans in attendance for a game against the Giants on Friday, June 15th will get one. This day also corresponds with this years Star Wars Night themed event.

Additionally, for card collectors this next bit of news should warm your heart. The club has also announced that the “Collector’s items” indicated on their promotional schedule will be 60th Anniversary Collector’s Card Sets presented by our old friends at 76. These folks were responsible for those player portraits given away at their gas stations in the 60's and 80's.

There will be six different card sets to be given out on six different days, and each one will touch upon various generations of Dodger players. Furthermore, they will use the designs from Topps sets from their respective era's. This last bit makes me wonder if Topps will be producing these for the team. Below is a schedule:

  • 1950/60’s (April 10 vs. OAK), 
  • 1970’s (April 23 vs. MIA), 
  • 1980’s (May 8 vs. ARI), 
  • 1990’s (June 12 vs. TEX), 
  • 2000’s (Aug. 2 vs. MIL), and
  • 2010’s (Sept. 4 vs. NYM)

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

2018 Topps Heritage Baseball - The Dodgers Relic, Autograph & Box Topper Cards

Here are all the autograph, relic and box-topper Dodger cards found in packs of Topps' 2018 Heritage Baseball card brand. Clearly, the best item here is the large team poster fashion after it's 1969 counterpart. That thing is cool, colorful and a must have. I want to get one framed for my office wall.

Real One Autographs

#ROA-AV Alex Verdugo         #ROA-WB Walker Buehler