Monday, October 31, 2011

Blog Kiosk: 10/31/2011 - HAPPY HALLOWEEN

The above pic is from twitter @DavePomeratz TwitPic.

Come-on Guys. Who's gonna enter the Tommy Lasorda Pumpkin Carving Contest. Complete rules here.
  • Check out Jim Mills great story about a Don Newcombe letter that has become a family heirloom, via MLB. It touches on race issues that existed during those early years of desegregation.
  • Sports Illustrated look back at 'The Day That Damned the Dodgers.'
  • Dodgers to name Sue Falsone as 1st female head athletic trainer in MLB history, via LA Times. It's nice, with all of the turmoil surrounding the team, that the Dodgers continue to be ground-breakers in the league.
  • For your viewing pleasure. Check out some NFL cheerleaders in their Halloween gear, via Guyism.
  • Randy Youngman of OC Register suggest some Halloween costumes.
    Frank and Jamie McCourt: Donkey costume. Yes, they have to get into the same costume: Frank wears the head and torso; Jamie wears the back end. And they can't take it off until Frank agrees to sell the Dodgers to somebody in L.A. who actually cares about the franchise.
  • Opinion of Kingman's Performance tells us why Duke Snider learned to hate Halloween.
  • interviews with NPR about his thoughts regarding the Dodgers situation.
  • Check out this autograph baseball collection.

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Friday, October 28, 2011

Collection: Kuo Finest Auto

With Kuo's surgery on the horizon I thought it appropriate to share this 2006 Topps Finest Refractor autograph card of Hong-Chih Kuo. I'm hopeful his 5th elbow surgery is successful and he remains with the Dodgers. I think his commitment to the game and the team is worthy of an opportunity to stay here.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Blog Kiosk: 10/27/2011

Nice Dodger pumkin! (Pic via YFrog CraigStem) Be sure to check out the Pumkin Contest hosted by Tommy Lasorda. Details are below.
  • The always sticky issue of contributory negligence enters into the Bryan Stow lawsuit, via ESPN.
    "You're saying to the jury, 'They (the Stow family) are saying we're 100 percent liable. But does that mean (Marvin) Norwood and (Louis) Sanchez, who beat this guy up, have no liability? And, does it mean Mr. Stow himself has no liability?' "
  • Kuo to have his 5th elbow surgery, via LA Times.
  • Those eTopps cards are very nice. Greg shows off his Russell Martin eTopps rookie card here.
  • Enter the Tommy Lasorda Pumpkin Carving Contest here. Here is a stencil of Tommy you can use. Heck, Tommy will even provide an autograph to the best Tommy pumkin. More stencils can be found here.
  • The awards keep coming for Kemp and Kershaw. They have both been named to the Sporting News National League All-Star teams. Matt Kemp was a unanimous selection. Story here.
  • 'Zombie In A Penguin Suit" Just watch the video. You won't regret it.

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Daily Conlon: 370 through 378

Here are todays Daily Conlon cards numbered 370 through 378, and it features former Dodger (Superbas) and Baseball umpire Mal Eason (center row, far right). Eason played in the Majors for 6 short years, two of which with the Brooklyn team in 1905 and 1906. By all accounts, he was lucky to have played that long. For Brooklyn he pitched a combined 15-38 with a 3.75 ERA, and lost twice the number of games he won in his entire career. You gotta feel bad for him, though. He played for some horrible teams.

To his credit, he did have one moment of brilliance. On July 20, 1906, against the St. Louis Cardinals, he pitched a no-hitter. He recorded 5 strike outs while allowing only 5 batted balls out of the infield.

After leaving the diamond he would umpire professionally for 13 years. Then, Mal became a cattle rancher in Arizona. A strange fact, he designed his own grave headstone in the shape of a mitt and ball. See it here.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hake's Auction

As I had previously written about (here), Hake's is running an auction and it includes a couple of really great Dodger memorabilia items. Check them out below.

This is a 1963 World Series Stadium Club badge/pin produced by Western Badge & Trophy Co. This is seldom seen.

I think this is my favorite Dodger item in Hake's auction. This is a large (3.5") circa 1960's pinback featuring slugger Frank Howard. This was originally sold in stadium kiosk. This is the first time I've encountered a pin like this for Howard, but am familiar with the style. A Maury Wills, Don Drysdale and Tommy Davis are known to exist. Strangely, a similar pin showed up in MHCC's auction a few weeks ago and sold for considerable less than Hake's starting price. I think I'll wait around for a better deal.

Blog Kiosk: 10/26/2011

Pic above from Left Field Pavilion, titled 'Praying Won't Help.'
  • Did you know McCourt tried to buy the Angels?From Bloomberg:
    (McCourt) wanted to bid for the Anaheim Angels in 2003, according to a person involved with the latter transaction, who asked not to be identified because of ongoing business relationships with MLB. This person says McCourt wanted to make a nothing-down offer for the Angels, eventually purchased by billboard magnate Arte Moreno for $180 million.
    (Hat Tip: Halos Heaven)
  • Via SCD, the FBI has charged 6 dealers for fraud related to game-used uniforms and jerseys. This part of the memorabilia market is rife with problems.
  • Dodgers BK trial has been delayed, via Steve Dilbeck of LA Times.
  • Dodger Thoughts remembers Hong-Chih Kuo.
  • Dodger Divorce analyzes the two BK plans.
  • An extremely rare Ty Cobb tobacco tin is found hidden in a closet, via Sports Collectors Digest.
  • Check out this story about David Kohler's Lakers collection from SCD.
  • Here are some vintage Brooklyn Dodger newsreels. Unfortunately, no sound, but stillg reat.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

Collection: Maury Wills Signature Decades Auto

Here is another card from my Dodger autograph collection. It is a 2005 Upper Deck Ultimate Signature Edition "Signature Decades" card of Maury Wills. The card is neither numbered or rare, but it's of Maury so you can't go wrong.

Dodger Creditors Endorse Sale

Probably the most important stakeholder in the entire Dodger bankruptcy imbroglio has just declared to the judge, "sell the team!" The beginning of the end is at hand. Via Steve Dilbeck at LA Times.
The official creditors' committee asked U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Gross to deny the Dodgers their proposed television rights auction, arguing that the prospect of a lawsuit from Fox Sports and opposition from Major League Baseball could jeopardize the money available to repay creditors.

"The committee cannot gamble the 100% recoveries of its constituents on such a risky proposition," lawyers for the committee wrote in a court filing.

Instead, the committee said, "A prompt sale of the team is the most prudent course of action."

(Hat Tip: 6-4-2)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Blog Kiosk: 10/22/2011

Fernando Valenzuela with Cardinals starter Jaime Garcia. (Pic Link: yfrog Dodgers)
  • Lasorda's Lair explains why the Dodgers are better off now after the McCourt divorce settlement.
  • MLB FanCave Dream Job is back again for another season in 2012. Find out more here.
  • Casey Blake mulling his Baseball future, vis Des Moines Register. (Hat Tip: VSIMH)
  • Jeff Kent, Best of the Graybeards, 40 and up. Via True Blue LA.
  • Check out William's incredible autographed Baseball from Carl Erskine at Foul Bunt.
  • The Kings are getting Gamified! Check it all out here.
  • Japanese pitching sensation, Yu Darvish, is still undecided about coming to America, via MLB Trade Rumors.
  • Wayne Gretzky turned down job offers from the Oilers and Kings, via NBC.
    “Edmonton and Los Angeles have been really great to me and I have a nice relationship with both Kevin [Lowe] and the Oilers and obviously Dean Lombardi and the Kings, and I’m really honest with them. Right now, it’s not the time for me to jump back into the game.”
  • There is a twitter account that narrates WWII in 1939 in real time- 72 years later. Check it out here.
  • Oh Yhea! Kings Ice Girls. Check out the photo shoot for their calendar below.

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Daily Conlon: 361 through 369

Okay, maybe this isn't quite coming to you the daily, but hey, cut me some slack. These are todays Daily Conlon cards that are numbered 361 through 369, and it features 9 more no-hitters. This time the Dodgers are featured on two cards, but not for the reason you would hope for. A Dodger pitcher didn't throw a no-no. Instead, we were the victims of a couple of no-hitters.

Click on any of the pics to embiggen.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Matt Kemp Getting Some Just Rewards

Since the closing weeks of the season the main topic of discussion has been whether Matt Kemp should be MVP. No doubt, he had the numbers to garner the attention, but was he really the most valuable? At this point it's hard to tell what the sports writers will do, but considering the awards he's collected so far, I think that reality is coming closer to fruition.

As you know, last week he was named by Baseball America as the 2011 Major League Baseball Player of the Year.
As measured by Baseball-Reference's adjusted OPS metric—which compares a player's OPS with the league average and then adjusts for home ballpark—Matt Kemp had the most productive offensive season by any center fielder in the last 30 years. Like Ken Griffey Jr. in 1997, Kemp led his league in homers, RBIs and runs scored.
Now we find out, through True Blue LA, that he is the winner of MLB's 2011 National League Hank Aaron Award. This award was voted on by fans and Baseball broadcast teams throughout the league. So, in typical classy style Kemp made sure to thank those who pulled for him.He's had a busy off-season, so far, and I'm sure it's about to get busier. Heck, how much do you want to bet a Silver Slugger and Gold Glove come his way, as well?

One thing is for sure. If Ellen DeGeneres had her way Matt Kemp would be MVP. Unfortunately, he'd didn't do much to show off his arm. (Hat Tip: Dodger Thoughts)
video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player
(Video Link)

(Above pic credit: Los Angeles Dodgers Jon SooHoo)

MHCC: Dodger War Bonds Honor Card

During WWII the Dodgers were more than happy to help out with the war effort. So, with a fans contribution the Dodgers would give out the below War Bonds Honor Card. They were given out during the Dodgers Spring Offensive War Bond Campaign in 1943 which helped secure $180,000,000 for America. This amount eclipsed the spring quota by double.

On a side note, the Department of the Treasury was so impressed with the Dodgers efforts that they conducted a special ceremony at Ebbets Field one Sunday afternoon in April. Branch Rickey, a strict churchgoing man, would always refuse to see a game on the Sabbath, but for this occasion he made an exception.

This is a very nice memorabilia piece that is rarely ever seen. It just sold during the recently closed Mile High Card Company Auction at $121.38.

Collection: Shane Victorino Dodger Rookie Auto

Yes, Shane Victorino was once a Dodger. And if I can add, I always believed he wasn't given a fair shot to stay with the team. I think he would've looked pretty good out there with Kemp and Eithier. Anyway, that's water under the bridge now.

Check my 2003 Donruss Champions autographed card of Victorino numbered 313 out of 480.

2011 Topps Finest Dodgers

Here is another recently released Baseball set that came on line while I was on a temporary break. Below are the Dodger base cards for the 2011 Topps Finest set. Check them out.

I have to agree with Night Owl Cards, this set is horrible for the Dodger collector. There really isn't much here for us. When it comes to inserts only Gordon and Sands are possibilities, and considering the price for a box it's probably not worth your time if that's all you are chasing. I think eBay is your best bet for this product.

21 Andre Ethier
32 Matt Kemp

70 Jerry Sands
82 Dee Gordon
Being primarily a prospect driven set, check out some of the Gordon and Sands autographs I came across. There are also autographed cards of Ivan DeJesus Jr.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Blog Kiosk: 10/20/2011

Tommy and Wes Parker visit with a young patient at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. (Pic Link: yfrog Dodgers)
  • Baseball Interactions hears from old-time former Dodger Mike Sandlock about Branch Rickey.
  • Former Dodger Assistant GM Kim Ng will interview with the Angels for the open GM spot, via ESPN. Good luck Kim!
  • Edgar met Ozzy Osbourne and writes all about it here.
  • I say, burn it. A collector may have unearthed Bobby Thomson's game-used jersey from the 'shot heard around the world,' via ESPN.
  • By deepest condolences to the family and friends of Cy Buker. He recently passed away at the age of 93 in Wisconsin. Nick Diunte has a great story about him here. Also, I had previously written about him back in 2009, here.
  • Check out this recording from StoryCorps as, then teenager, Harvey Sherman recalls Bobby Thomson's heartbreaking home run.
  • Great catch Fleer Sticker Project. I've got a bunch of these pins featuring Dodger players and have always wondered where they came from.
  • Could this be the oldest surviving hockey stick in the world, via SCD.
    The stick had been in the barbershop of George Ferneough for decades. He finally sold the stick to Mark Presley for $987 in 2008.
  • The Dodgers send their thanks.

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Just Further Affirmation- Kershaw Was Best Lefty

Clayton Kershaw has been named the 2011 winner of The Warren Spahn Award given to the best left handed pitcher of the year. From the press release:
The Spahn Award is presented annually to the best left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball and is based on a pitcher’s wins, strikeouts and earned run average. Kershaw led in all categories with 21 wins, 248 strikeouts and a 2.28 ERA.

“It is a genuine honor to have my named mentioned alongside one of the greatest lefties in the history of the game,” Kershaw said. “Mr. Spahn accomplished so much both in baseball and in his life off the field. I am truly humbled by this award. Thank you.”

Greg Spahn, son of the late Warren Spahn, said this is the first time an award winner has placed first in every category since Randy Johnson won in the late 1990s.

“Congratulations to Clayton Kershaw on an incredible season, leading all lefties with a 2.28 ERA,” Spahn said. “In fact, he led in each category of the Warren Spahn Award, with the Dodgers a third place club in the National League West. I look forward to handing him the award.”
The award ceremony will be in January in Oklahoma. Go to the following website for more information on this award- The Warren Spahn Award.

There's a New Gagne in Town

That's right boys and girls. Los Angeles is in the midst of enjoying the splendid play from another Canadian import named Gagne. This time, instead of hurling fast balls to decimate his opponents, he snipes and scores goals with a finishing ability that makes this Kings fan hopeful that this is the year to go far in the playoffs. Sure, most of the hockey world was enamored with the trade that brought Mike Richards to LA, but make no mistake, the free agent signing of Simon Gagne should prove to be the deal that puts us over the top.
(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images)

To prove that point, this past Tuesday was Opening Night at the Staples Center against the St. Louis Blues, and Simon Gagne was a principal player on the ice for the Kings blowout win. He recorded 2 goals, including the first and last goals of the game, and an assist as the Kings skated to a 5-0 win. Heck, Gagne came close to a Opening Night hat trick. Via Kings Insider:
“It was fun. It’s always fun when you’re able to chip in and score some goals. I had a couple of chances to get the hat trick at the end. I had two nice passes from my linemates, one by Willy [Justin Williams] and one by Kopi [Anze Kopitar].
It's amazing how one player can bring some stability to an offensive first line. So far the line of Kopitar, Williams and Gagne have scored a total of 9 goals and 14 assist in just 5 games, and they have yet to give up a goal while on the ice.

So, Los Angeles, sit back and enjoy the Canadian breeze as we can once again praise the glory of Gagne. "Game Over" may not be the apt slogan we use this time, but how about "Goal Scored!" I think that has a nice ring to it.

For your viewing pleasure, check out the below video of Simon Gagne's 2nd goal of the evening as Anze Kopitar lofted an alley-oop pass to set up the score.

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Collection: Gary Sheffield Omega 2000 Auto Die-Cut

Here is another card from Dodger autographed card collection. It is a 2000 Pacific Trading Cards Omega 2000 die-cut auto card of Gary Sheffield.

: Based on Greg's comment I had to make this.

Hake's: When Baseball and History Collide

Hake's just opened up their most recent auction and it includes this fantastic photograph of Babe Ruth, Connie Mack and 3 other gentleman. I show this photo not because of the obvious Hall of Fame connection, although you can't go wrong with these two baseball titans. I highlight this item because of the apparent connection to world history.

At the far left is Japanese publisher Matsutaro Shoriki who sponsored this Baseball tour in Japan. As the reverse of the press photo describes, Shoriko was eventually stabbed in the neck by Katsusuke Nagasaki who, as a member Of The War Like Gods Society, argued that the exhibition drained money from Japan during a depression. Dated from 1935 it is an obvious precursor to a war that eventually would embroil the entire world.

Hake's Auction has always had some great Baseball memorabilia so I'll point out some of my favorites; including some Dodger related stuff, over the next few days.

Daily Conlon: 352 through 360

Here are todays Daily Conlon cards numbered 352 through 360, and it features highlights of some early no-hitters. Unfortunately, not a Dodger in the bunch, but it does show Sad Sam Jones (at center) who, as a member of the New York Yankees, threw a no-no in 1923 without one strike out.

Now you are probably wondering why he was called "Sad" Sam Jones. Well here's the story, via Baseball Library.
Bill McGheehan of the New York Herald-Tribune dubbed him Sad Sam because, to him, Jones looked downcast on the field. Jones told Lawrence Ritter that the reason he looked downcast was because, "I would always wear my cap down real low over my eyes. And the sportswriters were more used to fellows like Waite Hoyt, who'd always wear their caps way up so they wouldn't miss any pretty girls."

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blue Monday

Check out Chris Jaffe's story focused on today's Dodger anniversary.
Exactly 30 years ago today, Rick Monday helped deliver the pennant to the Los Angeles Dodgers, thanks to a ninth inning home run. Rather appropriately, Monday’s blast came on Monday Oct. 19, 1981 – “Blue Monday,” as it became known. It sure was a blue day for fans of the Expos, whose team lost due to Rick Monday’s shot.
Read more here.
Rick Monday
(Pic Link: flickr Jason Spaceman)

A New Koufax

Check that out.

I disappear for a little bit, and a new Koufax shows up in the Hobby. Topps released their Update set to their flagship 2011 Baseball set a couple of weeks ago, and it includes the below short printed Sandy Koufax card. Very nice!

It's a great photo. Obviously, it is from a World Series game where Koufax closed it out with a win at Dodger Stadium, but I wonder what year? After some brief research I think I figured it out. It has to be from Game 4 of the 1963 World Series. This was the clinching game as the Dodgers sweep'd the Yankees in 4 straight. Sandy pitched a complete game at Dodger Stadium that day- the only time he has done that in a World Series game.
UPDATE: Go the to 8:00 mark in the below video featuring highlights from the 1963 World Series to see the above moment.

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2011 Triple Threads Dodgers Base Cards

I am little late with this post. After all, the always anticipated Topps Triple Threads set was released about 3 weeks ago. Nevertheless, as the old saying goes, better late than never.

Below are the Dodger base cards in the set. Of the 100 cards in this set 8 Dodger players, both past and present, are represented. That sure ain't a bad ratio. As always, various parallels exist to these cards, but I'll focus on just the more common version- numbered to 1500 copies. Check them out below.

I have to say that the design is underwhelming. Frankly, it looks horrible. Of course, collectors don't buy boxes for these cards. It's all about the inserts- both relics and autos. So, stay tuned as I will post up pics of some of my favorites over the next few days.

11 Duke Snider

18 Roy Campanella

19 Matt Kemp

28 Clayton Kershaw

38 Jackie Robinson

58 Pee Wee Reese

79 Andre Ethier

And last, but not least, 100 Sandy Koufax