Monday, April 28, 2014

Alexander Guerrero Gets his 1st Baseball Card - More Urias Cards are Coming

As you probably know, 2014 Bowman Baseball cards officially go live this coming Wednesday, but that hasn't stopped local retail establishments from stocking their shelves a little early.  It has been reported through numerous circles that packs are being found, purchased and sold (with cards in-hand) as we speak.

With that in mind, I thought I would let everyone know that this years Bowman set, which is principally geared towards prospect/minor league collectors, will include the very first licensed Baseball card of Alexander Guerrero.  BTW, I'll have pics of all the Dodger cards in a few days, so stay tuned.  UPDATE:  I thought I would add for clarification that he does have an unlicensed card - a 2013 Leaf Memories card that you can see here.

There is a Base Prospect card (#BP106) and a Base Chrome Prospect card (#BCP106) available to chase - along with the numerous parallels that are so popular these days.  For those who do not know, the Base Prospect and Base Chrome Prospect cards are identical looking and only differ in the kind of cardboard stock that is used.   Below is a look at Guerrero's Base Chrome Prospect card.

Here is the reverse of the card.


Also, this years Bowman set also includes several new Julio Urias Baseball cards.  This isn't his first licensed card, but will likely constitute his first affordable offerings.  His rookie cards, a 2013 Bowman Sterling Prospect Autographed Card (#BSAP-JU), have been regularly selling for $20 to $30 a piece (Check out a past story about an initial run-up in values during Spring Training this year, here).  So, fans unwilling to spend much money before he has proven himself have been shut out on his cards.  Fortunately for those fans, this years Bowman set includes several different non-autographed Urias cards that all Dodger collectors will find affordable.

Like Alexander Guerrero above, Julio Urias has a Base Prospect (#BP6) and a Base Chrome Prospect cards (#BCP6) available to chase.  Below is a look at his Base Chrome Prospect card.

Here is a look at the reverse of that card.

There are also several other Urias cards available.  Below is a complete checklist.
  • Base Prospect Set - #BP6
  • Chrome Prospect - #BCP6
  • Top 100 Prospects Inserts - #BTP-44
  • Bowman Chrome Mini - #BM-LAD2
  • Bowman Chrome Mini Autograph - #CMA-JU
  • Bowman Black Autograph - #BBC-JU
  • Oversized 1989 Bowman Autograph - #89-JU
  • Oversized Ice Boxloaders - #OI-JU
  • Oversized Ice Autograph Boxloader - #OAI-JU
  • Ultimate Prospect Autograph Book Card - #Julio Urias
 The last 6 cards in the checklist above are likely to be very scarce and pricey.

Take a Look at some Jackie Robinson High School Yearbooks

Memory Lane is currently running an auction that features some Jackie Robinson memorabilia that are rarely seen.  In fact, this is the first time I've for me.  They have high school yearbooks covering all 4 years of Jackie Robinson's stay at John Muir Technical High School in Pasadena.  See the auction here.

As you may recall, I had featured several college yearbooks in my collection featuring Jackie Robinson in the past, so these items strike a chord with me.  Check out my past post on those yearbooks here:  1938 Pasadena Junior College, 1939 Pasadena Junior College, 1940 UCLA and a 1941 USC yearbook that happens to also have Jackie in it.

Below are some photos of Jackie in these high school yearbooks.

1935 Yearbook - Freshman year - Lightweight Track, the only sport he participated in that year. You can see Jackie on the 3rd row on the bottom - far left.

This is from 1936 as a member of the football team - 2nd row, far left.

Here's an early Jackie Robinson signature and a photo of him playing basketball.

Below, he is on the Baseball team.  I believe he is in the top photo, on the back row, second person on the left.

Jackie Robinson is shown below in the 1937 yearbook.  He is on the top row, far left.

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Blog Kiosk: 4/28/2014 - Dodger Links - Withrow, Kershaw and Perez

I can only imagine that Juan Uribe is ordering some new clothes to wow his Dodger teammates in the photo above.  Pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014.
"Obviously we like his stuff. It's funny, you kind of match up every day with the sheet. You match up caution areas and good areas. With With, his stuff is pretty much always good. You can match him up with anybody," Mattingly recalled. "Right there, at CarGo and Tulo, it just felt like if you were going to get through those two guys, you want a guy with that kind of stuff."
"I feel normal," he said. "That's the hard part, going to pitch another [Minor League] game when I feel healthy."
“I’m throwing a lot better than I did last year, that’s for sure,” Perez said during a recent interview. “I’m just going out there whenever they call my name for as long as they need me and be ready the next day.”

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Matt Kemp Responds to Sterling Brouhaha with Words and Song

As you likely know, Clippers owner Donald Sterling found himself facing a firestorm of criticism centered around leaked audio detailing his views on race.  Needless to say, what was found on that recording is indefensible.  If you haven't heard it (are you living under a rock?) check out TMZ's original report hereDeadspin also has more audio that you can listen to here.

I cannot imagine a scenario where this audio is not an indictment of this man's ethics - a view into the man's heart.  Even if it was spliced it still doesn't change the basic gist of his words.  And, given Sterling's past dalliance's with race issues, I think it's fair to say that he has some growing up to do.  At the very least, he needs to acknowledge his transgressions and accept that he is a flawed man. 

That being said, Sterling's words were not only pointed towards Dodger owner Magic Johnson.  He also had similar words for Matt Kemp.  Check out this TMZ report for the Magic and Kemp photos that had Sterling steaming. 

Well, before yesterday's game, Kemp spoke with reporters about being thrust into this nightmare.  Via Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times:
Asked if he would consider attending their games if Sterling is suspended by the NBA, Kemp replied, “Honestly, what is a suspension going to do for an owner? He still owns the team. He’s still making money. You fine him? He’s a billionaire. What’s fining him going to do? That’s not really going to do anything.

“This is bigger than the game. I’m shocked people still feel that way towards Latins, blacks, white people. We’re all the same. We all bleed the same. We’re all the same people. It really doesn’t make any sense.”

Kemp recalled taking a picture with Sterling’s female friend.

“I remember taking a picture but I didn’t think it would ever come to y’all talking about this. It’s crazy, man,” Kemp said. “One picture and I get linked to it. It’s crazy. I guess you have to be careful who you take pictures with now -– or just don’t take pictures. Tell everybody. If I don’t take a picture, don’t take it personal. I’ll give you an autograph, no more pictures.”
Please, Matt.  Don't do that.  Don't let that curmudgeon ruin it for all of us!

Following up on Matt's discussion with the press, he chose to change his at-bat walk-up music to express his views on the whole thing.  On Sunday afternoon, they played Michael Jackson's "Black or White."  Larry Brown Sports notes that he decided to use the song when a teammate played it in the clubhouse before the game.  Check out the video below.

Video Link:

I must say that this was a classy move by Matt.  Using MJ's song was a subtle way to let his true feelings known.

Photo at the very top featuring Kemp and Van Slyke was taken yesterday, via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014.  I wonder if that embrace is a modern day version of the Pee Wee and Jackie embrace of over 60 years ago.

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