Friday, June 01, 2012

Collection: Chad Billingsley Solo Shot

What could have been.

By the time this card was released (2009) Dodgers fans were getting a small taste of what Billingsley would eventual regress towards.  He had been a very bright spot in the Dodgers rotation until then.  Chad was young and had compelling strike out numbers that made you thing a potential #1 pitcher was in our midst.  If only he could refine his approach, stop nibbling on the corners, and trust his stuff.  Often, he was a little wild and appeared to get rattled at the wrong time.  This would cause batters to get on base at an alarming rate.  Still, those instances could easily be waved away as moments of youth and inexperience.  Heck, worse comes to worse he would at least be a solid #2 pitcher in the rotation. 

Unfortunately, that appears to have come to pass.  By 2009 Billinglsey recorded his first season with an ERA above 4.00.  He won only one more game than he lost, and continued to allow batters to get on base.  Although he made an All-Star appearance that season, his final end-of-season totals don't scream All-Star.  Still, he was young and worth the risk.

Today, he is starting to look like a bust.  The same issues that hampered him in 2009 still exist today.  Am I totally negative on his future with the Dodgers.  Not entirely.  After all, Chad is still only 27 years old and could potentially rise to the occasion and prove his naysayers wrong.  Day by day, though that is starting to look unlikely.

Featured here is a 2009 Toops Unique Solo Shot autographed card of Chad Billingsley in my collection.

Kings Cards: Silver Anniversary Sheet

Way back in the day (the early 90's) these 8.5" x 11" card sheets were all the rage.  Upper Deck produced a boatload of them and collectors gobbled them up like they were made of gold.  How could you go wrong, right?  Heck, this sheet was limited to only 20,000 copies.  Now that's RARE!

Man-O-Live.  Those heady days of collecting always make me smile.  How naive were we?

I don't exactly remember how this particular sheet was distributed- maybe at a game?  Anyway, it's cool because it celebrates the 25th Silver Season Anniversary of the Los Angeles Kings, and features several current and soon-to-be Hall of Famers (Gretzky, Kurri and Blake).  And since the Kings are making a run for the CUP I'm gonna over-burden you with Kings cards and collectibles over the next week or so.  Don't say I didn't warn you.

Vintage PostCard Collection: The Hits of the Game

Here's another vintage comic postcard.  I've got a bunch of these kind of postcards.  They date to the 1910's and are very inexpensive.  You should never pay more than 5 bucks, or so.  Furthermore, it's always better to go after a large grouping of them in an auction for an even bigger discount.

I love the flirty innuendos, and they always give me a little chuckle.  Heck, sometimes they can get a little risque.  So much so, I often think that maybe folks weren't so wound up back then as I had been led to believe.

Legendary Auctions: A Couple of Dodgers Goodies

Vintage Baseball auctions never seem to stop.  I've been a little behind when it comes to writing about some of the more exciting Dodgers related offerings, but I plan on getting caught up over the next week or so.  With that said, check out a couple of great Dodgers items that were available through Legendary Auctions. 

Below is a circa 1907 Brooklyn Superbas team photo cabinet card.  As noted on the bottom right, it was taken in Jacksonville, Florida- likely during the Spring.  I love the miss-mash of uniform styles, the wooden stadium in the background and the bored looking kid waiting eagerly for that afternoons game to start. 
(Auction Link: 1907 Brooklyn Superbas)

Here is a player endorsed store model Baseball glove of Pee Wee Reese.   It was produced in 1940, and is very scarce.  Per the auction description:
We commonly regard Brooklyn shortstop Pee Wee Reese as a star of the post-war era, which he most certainly was. Pee Wee however hit the circuit in full stride in 1940. And though his early career was interrupted by a three-year military commitment, the community of National League baseball was in awe of this sensation from the start. Shortly into his rookie season, an obscure sporting goods concern, calling itself "Olympic," prevailed upon the phenom Reese to endorse one of their ball gloves.
(Auction Link: Pee Wee Reese Glove)

Below is the top of the original glove box that features a photo of Pee Wee Reese.
(Auction Link: Pee Wee Reese Glove)