Monday, May 10, 2010

Horsin' Around

It's Carl Furillo Night on August 28, 1957 as the entire family comes out to a bevy of gifts at Ebbets Field. His beaming wife stands at the rear with a bouquet of flowers while his two young boys show off a brand new bike and pony. Something tells me, though, that one kid likes his gift better than the other. Look closely (click the pic to enlarge it). Youngest sibling Jon looks mighty sad. He's probably thinking to himself, "why can't I have the bike?"

Furillo, on the other hand, had other things on his mind. He had a game against the Cubs to think about. Fortunately, the pre-game event didn't distract him at the plate. He had a good night. In the forth inning he tripled in Sandy Amoros to tie the game at 1, and singled in the 11th. A young and still not great Sandy Koufax was the starting pitcher, but would only go 5 innings while giving up 8 hits. Ed Roebuck came in and finished the game in grand fashion by going 9 innings for a 4 to 3 win in 14 innings. I couldn't imagine a pitching doing that in Major Leagues today.

T206 Brooklyn Dodgers: George Bell

George Bell, although his win-loss record doesn't suggest it, was one of Brooklyn's best starting pitchers. Unfortunately, Brooklyn couldn't hit a beachball if it was thrown underhanded from 10 feet away. In 5 Major League seasons, all with the Superbas, he recorded a 43-79 record while having an impressive 2.85 lifetime ERA. As you can surely guess, he just didn't receive the run support required to win games.

Bell, a 6 foot right-hander, was known to throw a good curve, sinker and an occasional spit ball (legal at the time). He was also a late bloomer. He played his first Major League game at the age of 32 and available records suggest he only started playing professionally at the age of 29. Likely, he played in amateur leagues until being discovered. In 1910, he led the Majors in losses with 27, but baffled hitters with a 2.64 ERA, 25 complete games and a WHIP average of 1.126 in 310 innings pitched. He was the ultimate tough-luck pitcher.

In 1911, George Bell split time between Brooklyn and the Newark Indians of the AA International League. He played only a few more years in the minors after that before officially retiring from Baseball in 1915 at the ripe age of 40.

Bell has the special distinction of having two T206 Baseball cards. One with his hands above his head and the other showing his follow-through. See them above and below.

Star Wars Geek Night

WooHoo! That's what I'm talking about. The Dodgers are hosting a Empire Strikes Back "My Town" night at Dodger Stadium on May 21st. They even go full nerd by calling the section "Dodgertown. A Galaxy Far Far Away." Awesome!

If you sit in the My Town section you will get the above t-shirt. On top of that, the first 20,000 fans through the turnstiles will receive a limited edition foil-stamped 30th anniversary poster. I'm unsure if it will be like the pics below.

Easily the best of any of the 6 Star Wars movies, "The Empire Strikes Back" night figures on being a fun affair. Star Wars characters will be in autograph alley to sign your stuff and pose for pictures. Chewbacca will throw out the first pitch.

“Dodgertown, A Galaxy Far Far Away” will be located in the Lower Reserve sections 56 - 60. All fans sitting in this section will receive the free “Dodgertown, A Galaxy Far Far Away” T-shirt with the iconic image of infamous bounty hunter Boba Fett. Fans in this section will also enjoy unlimited ballpark favorites such as Dodger dogs, nachos, peanuts, popcorn and soft drinks, as well as a special Star Wars-themed menu – such as Boba Burgers, Darth Tater Chips and Ice Sabers.

One lucky row in the My Town section will win Star Wars DVD prize packs and there will be additional Star Wars giveaways in this section throughout the game. Also, the My Town section will be visited by Star Wars characters for the duration of the game.