Monday, October 13, 2014

Watch Andre Ethier Tonight in his Television Debut

Andre Ethier is going Hollywood.

Following up on his 'stunning' performance on the off-Broadway play Point Break as Johnny Bravo (check out my prior stories about that here and here) in May of this year, Andre joined the television cast of Disney XD's show 'Lab Rats' as a special guest.  It is his acting television debut, and it airs tonight at 6:15 PM on DisneyXD.  

The episode is called 'Alien Gladiators,' and here is the storyline.
Leo and Davenport attend fan convention and face off in an epic fire staff battle. Meanwhile, Adam, Bree, and Chase attend the convention dressed like their favorite “Alien Gladiators” characters in search of the movie’s star. However, things take a turn for the worst when the gang lands in a security holding area with a costumed fan boy.
From what I understand, Andre plays himself and is the movie's star.  Below is a preview clip.

Video Link:

Hat Tip: Amy Crooks at Dis411.
Photo pic above via CAA on twitter:

UPDATE:  Here's another video clip from the episode - with more Andre!

Video Link:

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Kings Hockey is Back - The Raising of the Banner

This is strange to consider.  The only winning franchise currently in Los Angeles is the LA Kings.

The LA Kings!

Who woulda thunk it?

Heck, that fact was the only saving grace (for me, that is) for the Dodger early exit in the NLDS. I could now focus all of my attention to their defense of the Stanley Cup, and it began last week with the raising of their second Stanley Cup banner in three years. 

As always, I was seated in my usual nosebleed seats at Staples Center to experience the moment.  Unfortunately, I'm not much of a photo-taker during games, so I'll steal Jacob Surly's pic on twitter since he happens to be my seat neighbor.  See that above.  As you can see, we had a good view of the banner.  You can watch a shortened version of the ceremony in the video below.

Video Link:

The rest of the evening did not go as planned.  The Kings looked very lackluster and out of synch, as they lost to their upstate rival San Jose Sharks in a shutout.  Who can blame them, though?  With the pomp and circumstance of the evening very fresh in their minds I can certainly forgive them for being distracted. 

BTW, one thing I've noticed recently about 'us fans' is how patient we all seem to be now.  It wasn't too long ago when a poor start to the season (they won their first game last night) would have lead to complaints from the peanut gallery about needing drastic changes to the club now.  It appears that a spate of recent championships has almost made us sanguine about direction of the club.  After decades of suffering we can actually say that we absolutely trust management.  I couldn't imagine ever saying this about the Dodgers.  Of course, if things look bleak closer to the playoffs that view may change.

Oh... And below is my photo with the most beautiful trophy in sports.  Don't you love that shine?  That luster?  That glow?  I almost reached out and gave it a big sloppy kiss.  Oh... Who am I kidding?  I did give it a smooch, a big hug and then I tried to grab it and run.  If it wasn't for Kings mascot Bailey giving me a Drew Doughty hip-check, I would have gotten away.  Damn you Bailey (with my hand clenched in a fist and waving it above my head)!

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2014 Panini Hall of Fame 75th Anniversary Baseball - The Crusade Dodger Insert Cards

I've really grown to like this brand from Panini.  Last week they released their 3rd annual Hall of Fame "Cooperstown" Baseball set; which happens to be the 75th Anniversary of the Hall of Fame.  The set focuses solely on members of the Hall of Fame and it features some great vintage photography.  The basic card designs are pleasing, and they did a good job of cropping most of the photos so that you hardly notice the lack of team emblems.  Go here for a complete checklist.

I would typically start a post on a new set by featuring the base cards, but this set is a bit complicated and varied.  There are 100 players in the base set, but each player has three different cards (although they are all card numbered the same).  So, there are in actuality 300 cards in the base set with each player having three cards.  Due to the number of different cards, the large number of Dodger players available, and the scarcity of available pics I've been able to find I will share these pics last.  I've got photos of a vast majority of the base set, but need more time before it is entirely complete.

In the meantime, I'll take a look at some of the inserts that are available.  Below are the Dodger cards in the HOF Crusades set.  As always, there are numerous parallels: Red #/75, Purple #/50, Orange Die-Cut #/25, Gold Die-Cut #/10, Green Die-Cut #/5, Black Die-Cut 1/1. 

HOF Crusades Set

#29 Zack Wheat

#31 Jackie Robinson                         #33 Burleigh Grimes

#36 Roy Campanella                                #52 Duke Snider

#57 Don Drysdale

#60 Pee Wee Reese                                 #75 Leo Durocher

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Blog Kiosk: 10/13/2014 - Dodger Links - Fans to Vote for Minor League Awards that Includes Several Dodger Farmhands

Both Dodger prospects Joc Pederson and Corey Seager are on the 2014 MiLBY's ballot for the top offensive player in the Minor Leagues.  Go here to vote on your favorites.  The MiLBY's recognize the best teams, players, plays, promotions and more from across Minor League Baseball.   The pic above via @Dodgers on twitter (Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014).

BTW, Dodger/Chattanooga Lookouts hurler Andres Santiago is also up for Best Performance of the Year for his near-perfect game no-hitter.  Joc Pederson is also up for Top Home Run of the Year for a monstrous dinger he hit in May against Salt Lake City, and Erisbel Arruebarrena has the unfortunately distinction of being a candidate for the Best Blooper - which I don't really consider a blooper.  Arruebarrena started a bench-clearing brawl against Reno that resulted in some emotional ejections.  My thought is that if that's considered a blooper then certainly the Alex Guerrero having his ear bit off is one too, but that incident is not being considered.

Below are some links to check out:
The difficult task of slowing the aging process – on the roster, not in the human body – was a major topic of discussion in the team’s first day of organizational meetings, said manager Don Mattingly.

“You see certain teams and, all of a sudden, you’re old,” Mattingly said. “In baseball, it’s tough to say that because you see 32, 33 in baseball and all of a sudden, that’s old again. It always has been besides one little 10-year or 12-year period when it didn’t seem to matter. Just as an organization, I think it’s something you pay attention to. It’s what ownership and [president] Stan Kasten talked about from the beginning. 
But Mattingly preached caution when asked if Pederson, who turns 23 in April, was ready for an every day position.

"That always remains to be seen. The one thing I don't like doing, because I've seen it backfire, is just anointing somebody. It's not fair. They don’t get to be a kid. They don’t get to be a rookie," Mattingly explained. "They walk in with this expectation and it’s just not fair because there’s going to be mistakes, there’s going to be struggles, for everyone. But I think he can play in the big leagues, that’s for sure."
“It was frustrating because I knew I could pitch better than I was. But I know every pitcher goes through some hardships in their career. I’m just glad the Dodgers saw enough of me to put me in the fall league.”
All of which is to say: Wow, what a mess. But that’s missing the point, somewhat, because this was a good mess. In fact, this was the best-hitting Dodger outfield in Los Angeles history. Really! In the 57 seasons since the team moved from Brooklyn, no outfield group has had a better wRC+ than this year’s 129.

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