Thursday, May 20, 2010

Card of the Week: Etch-A-Sketch Nomo

I use to hate Etch-A-Sketch. For hours on end I would try to draw something nice, but it ended up just being ugly and indecipherable. An artist I was not.

So, to see a piece of work like this done by a 18 year old kid named George Vlosich made me both green with envy and mesmerized as I looked with wonder. I remember that he gained some notoriety in the 90's which eventually led to a group of Baseball cards that showed off some of his art. Above is a insert from the 1997 Topps set of Hideo Nomo.

Check out more of George's artwork here.

Autographed Balls

I recently made a new Blue Heaven Facebook page and discovered the wonders of its photo albums. I can put up as many pics as I want and anybody can view them without having to be a facebook member. Considering their recent privacy issues they have been having lately- real or imagined- I figured this would probably be the best venue to post some items from my collection.

Last night I had a chance to scan some of the autograph Baseballs I've collected over the years. A vast majority of them were gathered during my visits to Spring Training in Florida a few years back while others came from my days as a Baseball card seller in the late 80's to early 90's. See all of the balls I've scanned so far here.

This Duke Snider is an old one. Not only is the ball oxidizing into a ugly brown, but it is the very first autographed Dodger I've ever gotten. It was early on in my teenage career as a Baseball card entrepreneur and Duke Snider was to be a special guest at one of my earliest shows. As a child we never had the means to go to a lot of games and the thought of getting a players autograph was never planted in my mind. It was just something I never did as a youngster.

When I got older and became a hardcore Baseball hobbyist the means and ability to pursue autos became more of a reality. So, when Snider came into town to sign for fans I made sure to pay for a ticket and stand in line. To this day it reminds me of that afternoon as a 15 year old kid.
I got this Shawn Green in Florida one Spring afternoon at Dodgertown.
How many folks remember that Rick Dempsey was a Dodger on the 1988 World Series team? When I got his signature at Dodgertown he was a coach for Baltimore (I think that's right) and made a off-handed comment to some fans there reminding them that he too was a Dodger. I, of course, remembered since the memories of that season still resonate in my mind.

T206 Brooklyn Dodgers: Harry Pattee

Second baseman Harry Pattee was another one of those early Brooklyn Superbas players to spend only one season in Majors with the big club. In 1908 he played in 80 games and stole a team high 24 bases, but batted a dismal .216. Of course, the Brooklyn team only batted a collective .213, so he was slightly better than average.

After his short professional career he went on to coach the Brown University Baseball team from 1912 to 1921, and had a career managerial record there of 117-42-1 for a .736 winning percentage. In 1971 Pattee was elected into the Brown University Hall of Fame.

The Harry Pattee T206 card gets special recognition for being the only Dodger card in the set that is horizontal.

Dodgers Mother's Day Bats

Just like in past years, the pink Mother's Day bats used in the game have been signed and are available for auction through MLB. As always, proceeds benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure. So, if you can swing it bid early and often.

A whole bunch are available including a boatload of Dodgers. Check out Russell Martin, James Loney, Charlie Haeger, Casey Blake, Reed Johnson, Ronnie Belliard, George Sherrill, Garrett Anderson and Matt Kemp. I expect more will be listed soon. See the entire list here.

Of special note, doesn't the Matt Kemp bat below look strange. It's definitely his bat, but that isn't his autograph. In fact, I'm sure that auto is Andre Ethier's. Maybe Andre has been using Matt's bat this season and that's why Andre has been on fire. He's been using the power of the Bison.