Monday, March 18, 2019

2019 Topps Opening Day - Dodger Insert Cards

Below is a look at most of the Dodger inserts found in packs of 2019 Opening Day. Go here to check out the base cards.

As you'll notice, several of the insert sets are basically photo variation cards that use the same base card design but puts in a unique photo. The one twist is that these cards are not short-printed. My favorite of which is they Clayton Kershaw 'Rally Time' card. As you'll see further down, that card not only featured Kershaw, but also includes Manny Machado, Matt Kemp and Chase Utley.

BTW, there are two Max Muncy autographed inserts available, but I have yet to see either.

Opening Day Relics

#ODR-CK Clayton Kershaw

Blog Kiosk: 3/18/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Happy belated St. Patrick's Day!

Photo above of Hyun-Jin Ryu via @Dodgers on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers History: In 1958 famed clown Emmett Kelly, signed by the Dodgers to play the teams mascot in Brooklyn, announced that his contract had not been renewed to join the team in LA. The veteran circus performer believes the size of the Coliseum, the club's new home on the West Coast, is just "too big for one clown".
  • Happy Birthday, Oscar WalkerJohnny CooneyGerĂ³nimo BerroaScott Podsednik!

Friday, March 15, 2019

2019 Topps Opening Day - The Dodger Base Cards

Topps answer to an entry-level card brand has now hit stores. It is their 2019 Opening Day set, and as you may know it uses the exact same design as their flagship brand released a couple of weeks ago. To distinguish itself from that set they add an Opening Day logo on all the cards. Furthermore, this brand is far cheaper than the flagship set. You can find a hobby box of Opening Day (with 36 packs) for $20-$25; whereas, a box of hobby Series 1 cards (with only 24 packs) will run you about $50-$60. Go here for a complete checklist.

Five Dodgers' can be found in the base set of 200 cards -- three of whom can be found in the Series 1 flagship set with the exact same photos (Seager, Jansen & Kershaw). Max Muncy and Matt Kemp are the other two Dodgers in this set, so we get an early peek at what their card will look like. Although, I wouldn't be surprised if this is the last time we see a Matt Kemp card as a Dodger on this flagship design.

BTW, Muncy also has a photo variation available and it happens to feature a pic from a recent walk-off homer. Check it out at the very bottom of this post.


#5 Corey Seager                #21 Kenley Jansen

Blog Kiosk: 3/15/19 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Yasiel Puig faced the Dodgers and Hyun-Jin Ryu for the first time yesterday afternoon. In his first at-bat he singled to right off Ryu. He then grounded out his next two at-bats.

Photo above via David Vassegh on twitter. 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 and future 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 BirthdayDoc CaseyRalph MillerRosy RyanLou FetteDick ScottMickey Hatcher & Trayce Thompson!

Thursday, March 14, 2019

The Relic that Lead to our only 2018 World Series Win

I know the last thing Dodger fans want to be reminded of is the 2018 World Series. After all, we were dealt a crushing and embarrassing blow that I think most fans would rather just forget. This, of course, tends to happen when you're only able to muster one victory in a series -- a win that we very easily could have and probably should have lost.

You know what game I mean.

It was during Game 3 that the Dodgers and Red Sox duked it out for 18 painstaking innings. A game where our premier closer couldn't finish. A game that saw 18 different pitchers take the mound. It was a game that only became winnable when an error committed by the eventually AL Gold Glove winner allowed us to tie the game.

2018 Leaf Valiant - All the Dodgers Cards

We're now in the middle of March 2019 and Leaf is still producing sets with 2018 dateline. What's up with that?

Officially hitting stores this week is Leaf's 2018 Valiant Baseball card brand that focuses on the leagues top prospects and recent MLB Draft picks. There are two Dodger youngsters available in this all autograph product. Check them both out below. Go here for a look at the checklist.

Base Autographs

#BA-DJP D.J. Peters

Blog Kiosk: 3/14/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Happy Birthday, Charlie!

Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Billy Cox and Bob Milliken surround skipper Charlie Dressen with enough cake to feed all of Brooklyn. This pic was taken following the clubs doubleheader against the Phillies, dated September 20, 1953.

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1932 the Dodgers sent 23-year old future Hall of Famer Ernie Lombardi, the still very effective Babe Herman and Wally Gilbert to the Reds for Joe Stripp, Tony Cuccinello and Clyde Sukeforth. In 2010 the Dodgers crush an All-Star team from the Chinese Professional Baseball League, 11 - 1, at Kaohsiung Stadium to complete their three-game tour in Taiwan.
  • Happy Birthday, Bill HolbertJud DaleyJohn MillerMike StrahlerKevin Brown Jose Nunez!

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Apparently, the Dodgers Tried to Trade for Warren Spahn

I usually refrain from writing about trade rumors. After all, we all know that a vast majority of the 'Hot Stove' is bunk. That said, this one vintage, circa 1950's, rumor has my imagination flowing, so I thought I'd share it here. According to a newspaper cutout attached to a letter written by Walter O'Malley -- that's currently available at REA (Auction Link) -- the Dodgers were charging hard to trade for future Hall of Famer Warren Spahn from the Braves prior to the start of the 1953 season.

Blog Kiosk: 3/13/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Here's another one of those photos that used to reside within the collection of famed sports broadcaster George Michael. Featured above is a live view of Pistol Pete Reiser stealing home (eBay auction link). Per the descriptor on the reverse:
Brooklyn, May 16, 1946... The Dodgers great Base stealer Pete Reiser shows his style in this sequence of photos ar Ebbets Field today. With Stan Rojak at bat, Reiser makes his dash for home. He leads the league in steals and stealing home has become his specialty.
In 1946 Reiser stole home seven times. 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!

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Dodgers 2017 NLC Ring on Auction

If you haven't had a chance to see the NL Championship ring the Dodgers created after the 2017 season, well here's you chance. Featured is the very first ring from this season that I've seen for sale. It's at Paragon Auctions and it has an opening bid of $1,000 (Auction Link).

As you can see, the top is a rather plain. There's a diamond encrusted LA logo with 'National League Champions 2017' circling its circumference. The sides are far more interesting. One end includes that season's motto, "This Team!" and their regular season record (104-58). The other side has an aerial view of Dodger Stadium and the name of who this ring once belonged to -- Rafael Ozuna.

Blog Kiosk: 3/12/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Tony Gonsolin has been turning heads at the Dodgers camp -- and not just because he fancies cat t-shirts. Rather, he's been lights out during his three appearances this spring, pitching six scoreless innings. Overall, the 25-year old has struck out five, walked none and batters are hitting a paltry .190 off him. Per Matt Borelli at Dodger Blue:
“Minor League Pitcher of the Year, he has a four-pitch mix, he can throw his secondaries for strikes when he needs to, he’s a tough competitor, he’s very intelligent, and the stuff is real,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts answered when asked for his evaluation of Gonsolin. 
“For me to be able to put eyes on him, our coaching staff, was good. The way he carries himself in the clubhouse is very mature.”
Photo above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2019 at Dodger Insider. Pic on the right via Gonsolin on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1989 the Dodgers traded outfielder Mike Devereaux to Baltimore for starting pitcher Mike Morgan. Morgan would stay in LA for three seasons -- compiling a 33-36 record with an 3.06 ERA, 3.38 FIP and a 1.162 WHIP. In 2003 Mets catcher Mike Piazza charged the mound to go after Dodgers reliever Guillermo Mota during a spring training game at Thomas J. White Stadium in Port St. Lucie, FL. Mota plunked Piazza on the shoulder, so Piazza stormed after him -- even going so far as to enter the Dodgers clubhouse following the game. Both players would be suspended five games. Per Mike DiGiovanna at the LA Times:
"Where's Mota?" Piazza screamed, checking the trainer's room. "Where's Mota?" he yelled, walking through the clubhouse. Once he realized Dodger reliever Guillermo Mota had left, Piazza walked out the back door, got into his car and sped off.

Monday, March 11, 2019

2019 Topps RBI 19 Baseball - The Justin Turner Card

The first retail exclusive "point of sale" Topps cards are now available, and it coincided with the March 5th release date of the ever-popular RBI Baseball 19 video game. It includes a one pack of 2019 Topps RBI 19 Baseball cards each specially marked game box at Walmart. I am unsure how many cards are in each pack. There are seven cards in the set, and the only Dodger available is Justin Turner. Go here for a complete checklist.

#Justin Turner RBI-6

Blog Kiosk: 3/11/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Baseball was played at Dodger Stadium this weekend as a part of the College Baseball Classic. In Sunday's prime match-up between the Bruins and Trojans, UCLA came out on top by rallying from a four run deficit to defeat the USC, 7-5.

Photo above via UCLA on twitter. Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1953 the Dodgers play their first Spring Training game at Holman Stadium at Dodgertown, Vero Beach, Florida -- defeating the A's, 4-2. In 1972 Dodger Hall of Famer Zack Wheat died at the age of 83. He slashed a lifetime .317/.367/.450/.817 with 2,884 hits and 1,248 RBI's, and still holds many Dodger records. He currently leads the franchise in hits (2,804), total bases (4,003), singles (2,038), doubles (464) and triples (171).
  • Happy Birthday, Bill Pounds, Joe DunnBobby AbreuRich HillPedro Baez.

Friday, March 08, 2019

2019 Donruss - All the Dodger Insert Cards

Now that you've seen the base cards, here are the Dodger inserts found in packs of 2019 Donruss.

Retro 1985 Signatures

#11 Cody Bellinger

Retro 1985 Materials

#16 Adrian Beltre           #17 Adrian Gonzalez

Blog Kiosk: 3/8/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Seaman Johnny Podres is seen above receiving the 1955 Babe Ruth Award for his exploits during the 1955 World Series. The above pic is currently on auction at Hunt Auctions (link here).

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers HistoryIn 1941 teammates Joe Medwick and Pee Wee Reese wear protective headgear during a spring exhibition game in Havana, Cuba. They placed plastic inserts -- dubbed a “Brooklyn Safety Cap” -- inside their hats. Both players had missed significant time the previous season due to head injuries; including a scare that sent Medwick 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 BirthdayOllie O'MaraCarl FurilloAl GionfriddoDick TeedMarv BreedingWillard Hunter,  Dick Allen & Juan Encarnacion!

Thursday, March 07, 2019

1860 CDV of the Brooklyn Atlantics at Heritage Auctions

It's not often that you see a Baseball card from the mid-19th century. Although, I guess you could argue that this isn't really a card -- at least, not the kind we are accustomed to. What this is, in actuality, is a CDV, or carte de visite -- which is just a fancy way of saying it's a vintage photograph mounted on cardboard.

The subject matter is certainly of interest to fans of the Dodgers (Heritage Auction link) and Baseball historians alike. Featured is an 1860 CDV of the famed Brooklyn Atlantics ball club. It is just one of only two known to exist, and it remains the only known pre-Civil War Baseball card in existence. The only other known copy sold in 2015 for an astounding $179,250.00, and I'd be surprised if this copy sold for less. In fact, it should sell for far more since it's clearly in better condition. To see what I mean check out that other card on the right.

2019 Donruss - All the Dodgers Base Cards

Panini's flagship baseball brand is now in stores and I've got pics of all the Dodger base cards below. Go here to check out a complete checklist.

As you can see below, Max Muncy is the Dodgers rep in the Diamond Kings subset. Pitching prospect Dennis Santana is our Rated Rookie. Furthermore, there are two variation cards to chase after -- Muncy and Buehler.

Diamond Kings

#26 Max Muncy

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Blog Kiosk: 3/6/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Just another fantastic spring baseball photo. This time it's of a pitcher who many regard as one of the most underrated hurlers of the 30's.
Dated March 27, 1943. Ex-Dodger -- The Brooklyn Bums were visited by Larry French, formerly a member of their mound corps, recently at their Bear Mountain spring training camp. French, who is now a lieutenant junior grade with the US Navy, is reported seeking permission to play weekend ball with the Dodgers so that he might reach the 200-win mark before hanging up his spikes. Shaking hands with French is Manager Leo Durocher.
Unfortunately, Larry French did not receive such permission. Instead, he began his second career. Larry French would remain in the Navy for 27 years as both in active duty and as a Navy Reservist -- retiring in 1969 as a Captain. BTW, he participated in the invasion of Normandy in June 1944. Below are more links to check out:

Tuesday, March 05, 2019

2019 Topps 150 Years of Baseball - Sandy's Perfect Game

Topps has just unveiled a brand new online exclusive card brand and it coincides with the 150th anniversary of game.

As you know, in 1869 the very first openly all-professional baseball club is formed and they would be called the Cincinnati Red Stockings. They would play a remarkable undefeated season -- going 60-0 against all-comers. They even defeating the highly regarded clubs from the northeast -- the Mutual's of New York, Atlantic's of Brooklyn, and Eckford of Brooklyn. BTW, this same season the Chicago Base-Ball Association is founded and they would come to be known as the Chicago Cubs.

In celebration of Baseball's 150 year milestone Topps will issue three cards every Tuesday in order to memorialize the greatest accomplishments in the sport. This first week features Sandy Koufax's perfect game on September 9, 1965. Check it out above. Go here to check it out and order. The other two available cards are of Babe Ruth and Mike Trout.

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Monday, March 04, 2019

2018 Topps 852 Montgomery Club Set - The Lone Dodger - Max Muncy

I had forgotten all about this set. Late last year Topps unveiled a collector membership club called '582 Montgomery' that includes several exclusive perks. Members would receive six different exclusive sets and an opportunity to purchase club-exclusive card brands. In December, Topps sold their first exclusive brand, called the Brooklyn Collection (see here), and soon thereafter they released the first membership set. This post takes a look at the lone Dodger found in that set. Go here for a complete checklist.

As you can see, Max Muncy is the lone representative in Topps first 582 Montgomery Club set. See both the base and autograph cards below.


#13 Max Muncy

2019 Topps Heritage - All the Dodgers Insert Cards

Here's a last look at Topps 2019 Heritage brand. Featured below are all of the Dodgers insert cards found in packs.

Real One Autographs

#ROA-MMU Max Muncy

Blog Kiosk: 3/4/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Clayton and son spent part of this weekend playing ball. Adorable!

Pic above via Dodgers on twitter. Below are more links to check out:

Friday, March 01, 2019

LA Kings Celebrated Dodgers Night Last Night

For the first time since its inception the LA Kings held a Dodgers Night at the Staples Center and I did not attend. Heck, you'd think I'd want to just check out those jazzy Dodger jersey's the team wears during the pregame warm-ups in person. But, no. Instead, I watched the game from the comfort of my couch. Thankfully, my laziness is not a barrier to blogging. So, despite my unwillingness to travel to downtown LA, I've still got plenty of pics -- found throughout social media -- to share here.

For instance, check out the Dodgers hockey jersey's I mentioned, above and on the right. This season the Kings wore Dodger Blue jerseys on the ice. Last year they wore home-whites on the ice (link here), and like always they auctioned them off to fans in benefit of the LA Kings Foundation.

Blog Kiosk: 3/1/2019 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Last night was Dodgers Night at the LA Kings game, and as you can see in the pic above (via LA Kings on twitter) our nightmare-inducing mascot was on-hand to celebrate the occasion with Bailey of the Kings. Stay tuned, I'll have more pics from last nights event shortly.

Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodgers History: In 1947 Father Vincent Powell of the Brooklyn Catholic Youth Organization released a public statement declaring that the group, "is withdrawing from the Dodgers' Knothole Club." He goes on to say that he cannot allow the kids to be associated with Leo Durocher -- a fellow deemed to have low moral character. Several weeks later (April 9th) the National League would levy a one-year suspension against Durocher. The reasons vary from the Catholic boycott, his close association to known gamblers and an off-field spat with Charlie Dressen. As you know, this was Jackie Robinson's first season in the Majors, so Durocher's absence caused quite a stir in the club's front office. Leo was seen as the perfect manager to handle the expected rancor that Jackie would experience. Jeffrey Marlett at SABR provides a fantastical write-up on Durocher's suspension, here.
  • Happy BirthdayPeter GuberTim ThompsonBert HamricOmar Daal & Blake Hawksworth!