Thursday, June 30, 2016

Rockies Series Starts on Friday - Stadium Giveaways, Pregame Info and Other Stuff!

The next homestand starts on Friday against the Colorado Rockies.   Below are some odds and ends for this upcoming homestand; including autograph information for Sunday's Viva Los Dodgers.

The Colorado Shishito Chile Dog will be available for this homestand only against the Nationals at the Extreme Loaded Dog concession areas located on the field, loge and reserve levels. It features a Brooklyn Dodger Dog topped with red chile Colorado sauce, shredded jack cheese, blistered Shishito peppers, salt and fresh lime.

The seventh 2016 issue of the new Dodger Insider magazine, featuring a salute to the Old-Timers Game on the cover, will be available at Dodger Stadium.  (see it on the left).  The Dodgers merged their previously separate Playbill and Dodger Insider magazines into one publication (at least 80 pages per issue) with a new edition available each homestand.  They are distributed at auto gates (one per vehicle) and via Fan Services for those who use alternate transportation.  
Friday, July 1st at 7:10 PM
SNLA / AM 570 (Eng.), KTNQ 1020 AM (Span.)

Welcome to the Blue, Dian Toscano!

In addition to adding a starting pitcher who can step right into the Dodgers rotation (Bud Norris), they also picked up a Cuban born prospect named Dian Toscano.  Per a Dodger press release:
The Los Angeles Dodgers today acquired right-handed pitcher Bud Norris, minor league outfielder Dian Toscano, a player to be named later and cash considerations from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for minor league pitchers Philip Pfeifer (LHP) and Caleb Dirks (RHP). To make room for Norris on the 40-man roster, Los Angeles designated left-hander Ian Thomas for assignment.
Toscano, 27, hit .226 with 10 RBI in 58 games with the Braves’ Double-A Mississippi this year following five seasons in Cuba’s Serie Nacional, where he batted .299 with 13 home runs and 101 RBI in 261 games with Villa Clara. The 5-foot-11, 200-pound, left-handed hitter was originally signed by Atlanta as an international free agent on Jan. 28, 2015.

Welcome to the Blue, Bud Norris!

The Dodgers have just made another trade with the Braves.  This time, they bring along starting pitcher Bud Norris and Cuban born prospect Dian Toscano (I'll have a post on him soon).  Per a Dodger press release:
The Los Angeles Dodgers today acquired right-handed pitcher Bud Norris, minor league outfielder Dian Toscano, a player to be named later and cash considerations from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for minor league pitchers Philip Pfeifer (LHP) and Caleb Dirks (RHP). To make room for Norris on the 40-man roster, Los Angeles designated left-hander Ian Thomas for assignment.

Norris has been one of the National League’s best pitchers this month, going 2-1 in six games (five starts) with Atlanta and ranking among the league’s best in ERA (2.08, 10th), opponents’ batting average (.194, 7th) and WHIP (0.96, 10th). Overall, the 31-year-old has posted a 3-7 record with a 4.22 ERA in 22 games (10 starts) this season, including a 2.08 ERA (11 ER/47.2 IP) in his last 17 games (five starts) since May 2.

2016 Panini Flawless - The Rest of the Dodgers Cards

Here is a last look at Panini's 2016 Flawless Baseball card set.  Go here to see my previous posts on this brand.  Featured below are some of the relic, autographs and rarities.  Unfortunately, there are numerous cards that have yet to surface.  Once they do I will update this post.

Flawless Cuts

  • #9 Jackie Robinson (#/1) (not yet seen)

Flawless Cuts Memorabilia

#9 Jackie Robinson (#/1)

Blog Kiosk: 6/30/2016 - Dodgers Links - Brock Stewart's Start, Kershaw to the DL and More

Dodger pitcher Brock Stewart has had quite a year.  He began the season in Single-A and immediately impressed.  Quickly, he was advanced up the ladder.  First to the Double-A Tulsa Drillers, then to Oklahoma City a few weeks back.  Yesterday, his quixotic journey put him on a Major League mound, and from what I understand his whole family was there.  Unfortunately, his day as the Dodgers starting pitcher didn't go as planned.

Stewart got shelled, but the shellacking was short lived.  In fact, if not for a flurry of six hits and a bit of bad luck that drove in five runs in the second inning we would be looking at his start as a rousing success.  As it were, Brock Stewart gave up eight hits, five earned runs and two walks in five innings of work.  He also struck out seven Brewers batters.  Per Doug Padilla at ESPN:
“I think once we decided to get him up here we wanted to see how he would handle himself,” manager Dave Roberts said. “It’s definitely worthy of discussion. I mean, really. Five innings, seven [strikeouts] and I thought he composed himself well. You look at a couple pitches -- it could have been a completely different outing. As I sit here right now, I think [another start] is a high possibility.”
Brock Stewart added:
“I think I’ve grown as a pitcher,” Stewart said. “I haven’t been pitching long but I definitely have come a long way since I started. I wanted to go out there for the sixth, honestly. I wanted to keep putting my team in a position to win. It didn’t happen tonight, but I definitely want to see how far I can go into a game and compete my butt off.”
Photo above via @Dodgers on twitter.  Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History:  In 1962 Sandy Koufax threw his first career no-hitter.  He defeated the Mets 5-0.  BTW, in the first inning he struck out the first three batters he faced with only nine pitches - an Immaculate Inning.  In 1985 Pedro Guerrero hit his 15th home run in the month of June to tie a Major League record.
  • Happy Birthday, Chan Ho Park and Mark Grudzielanek!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Vintage 1938 Newsletter "Brooklyn Dodger Doings" at Brockelman and Luckey Auctions

Here is something you don't see everyday.

Featured is a vintage 1938 Brooklyn Dodgers newsletter called, "Brooklyn Dodger Doings." Starting that season the Dodgers began sending fervent fans throughout the country a newsletter explaining the goings-on with the franchise.  The four-page periodical included biographies, news and rare photographs of the Dodgers.  Shown here is the July 30-31, 1938 issue, #7, and it is currently on auction at Brockelman and Luckey (auction link here).  Click on any pic to embiggen. 

2016 Topps Now - #190 - a Julio Urias Card

This marks his second 2016 Topps Now card of the season for Julio Urias.  In late May Topps issued a card to commemorate his Major League debut (see it here), and it sold a whopping 2,992 copies.  This time they celebrate his first Major League victory and hit.  I wonder if this card will sell as many copies as the first one.  Go here to check it and to order.

BTW, his win last night was on his seventh try as a starter and he happens to wear #7 on his uniform.  Additionally, his single to drive in the fifth run of the evening for the Dodgers was the first hit by a teenage pitcher since Dwight Gooden in 1984.

UPDATE:  The print run for this card is 872 copies.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Pedro Guerrero on Sunday

Here are this weekends autograph opportunities and events throughout the Southland. As always, be sure to check the Blue Heaven Calendar for other events (a link can always be found on the tab at the top of this page, just left of center), and always confirm with the establishment. Everything is subject to change.  Please email me with any tips about upcoming events in Southern California.  As the rest of the week progresses I'll update this post with other events (if there are any) as I become aware of them.  Also, I don't always list every event below, so be sure to check my Calendar.  I always try to favor free signing events over paying events.  Click on any pic to embiggen.


Pedro Guerrero just turned 60 years old, so why not come over and visit with him this coming Sunday, July 3, 2016 at Ultimate Pastime in Ontario for an autograph.  He'll be signing for fans from 1:00 PM - 2:00PM.  Go here for information.
Ultimate Pastime
1614 S. Carlos Ave., Ste. K, 
Ontario, CA 91761


I thought I would also add the event below.  Steve Garvey is hosting three Hall of Fame ballplayers at the Sycuan Casino in Chula Vista during All-Star Game weekend (or just prior).  Go here, here or here for more information.
Sycuan Casino – Live & Up Close
5485 Casino Way
El Cajon, CA 92019

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Blog Kiosk: 6/29/2016 - Dodgers Links - Kershaw, Pederson and Julio Urias

Wouldn't you know it.  On his seventh try as a starter, while wearing his favorite number seven on his uniform, Julio Urias earned his first Major League victory.  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN:
“It’s beautiful, incredible; it’s one of the best days of my life,” Urias said through an interpreter. “What more can I say?”
Not only that, he recorded his first Major League hit that happened to score Joc Pederson for the fifth run of the game.  As for what he did on the mound, I think it's best to characterize it as being effectively wild.  In six innings he gave up two hits, two earned runs, six strike outs, picked off one and walked a whopping six batters.
“You know what, he made pitches when he needed to,” Roberts said. “That’s one of the things with Julio is that as he continues to make major league starts and continues to try to be efficient; the walks tonight are something he needs to get better at, but when he needed to make pitches and throw strikes, he did that. The fastball had life, the breaking ball; he threw some really good changeups tonight.”

As relieved as he was afterward to be in possession of not one game ball for the victory but also a second one for his first career hit, Urias also knows he was fortunate.

“I struggled with some pitches, and obviously the walks were too many for any starter, but the good thing was that we could get the win and we could get the results we needed,” Urias said.
Watch Julio Urias speak about his evening with Alanna Rizzo here.

Pic above via SportsNet LA on twitter.  Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1990 Fernando Valenzuela no-hit the Cardinals, 6-0, at Dodger Stadium.  With 119 pitches he struck out seven and walked three.  Also, on this same night, former Dodgers starter Dave Stewart threw a no-hitter against the Blue Jays; thereby marking the first time in modern Baseball history that two no-hitters were thrown on the same day.  Via Tommy Lasorda, at the time
"And it couldn't have happened to a tougher, more competitive guy," Lasorda said. "You look at Fernando and he has done everything in his career except a no-hitter. And now . . . this."
In 1995 Hideo Nomo struck out thirteen Rockies to give him a then team record of 50 strike outs in four consecutive starts.  In 1996 Mike Piazza hit three home runs against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.  He is the fifth Dodger to hit three homers in a game.
  • Happy Birthday, Pedro Guerrero, Rick Honeycutt and Wilbert "Robbie" Robinson!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

2016 Panini Flawless - The Dodgers Rookie Autograph Cards

Here is a look at several rookie autographed Dodgers cards available in packs of 2016 Panini Flawless.  As you can see, Corey Seager is prominent, but so is former Dodger Jose Peraza.  As you may recall, Peraza was sent to Cincinnati over the winter as a part of the three team trade that netted the Dodgers Micah Johnson, Frankie Montas and Trayce Thompson.  Go here to check out pics of the Dodgers' gem base cards in the set.

Flawless Rookie Signatures

#2 Corey Seager                                  #15 Jose Peraza

Blog Kiosk: 6/28/2016 - Dodgers Links - Kershaw, McCarthy and Congrats Rogie Vachon!

Things looked bleak early on, but as the yesterdays game wore on the Dodgers continued to battle and eventually came away with a victory.  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN:
"It was good to see after we spotted them four in the first, Kaz goes out there and throws up four zeroes," manager Dave Roberts said. "We responded, put up a crooked number and figured out how to win a baseball game. It's something that we saw this series, and there were some good at-bats. I liked the way we didn't quit."
Scott Kazmir went five innings, gave up four hits, and four earned runs (all in the first inning).  At one point he recorded twelve straight outs.  Then the bullpen came in and was magnificent.  Via Adam Berry and Ken Gurnick at
"He just pitched better. He got downhill angle. He started throwing strikes. The changeup played. He was a completely different guy on the mound," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Kazmir. "Their bullpen has been one of their strengths. We got to see some of that this series. … The opportunities after the first, there weren't many."
Photo above via SportsNet LA on twitter.  Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History:  In 2008 the Dodgers are no-hit by the Angels at Dodgers Stadium, but won the game 1-0.  The only run in the game scored on a sacrifice fly by Blake DeWitt in the fifth inning.  He drove in Matt Kemp - who had gotten on base on an error and advanced to third on another error during a steal attempt.
  • Happy Birthday, Al Downing!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Welcome to the Dodgers, Brock Stewart!

Few players have risen up the ranks as fast as Brock Stewart.  He started the year with the Dodgers Single-A club in Rancho Cucamonga, was quickly promoted to Double-A Tulsa, and spent the past few weeks with the Triple-A Oklahoma City Dodgers.  Now, with a rotation spot open in Los Angeles on Wednesday, the Dodgers have decided to bring up the 24-year old prospect to make his Major League debut.  On his rise, via Michael Avallone at
"Honestly, it has been fast," Stewart said. "The other day our pitching coordinator, Rick Knapp, said to me, 'You know, I met you two years ago at [Rookie-level] Ogden.' It was really crazy to hear him say that. It seems like yesterday that I was drafted, but here I am. I'm blessed and fortunate to be where I am now, but I'm not all the way there yet."
The Illinois native said he's a bit surprised with what he's done so far in the Pacific Coast League.
"A little bit, to be honest," Stewart said. "But I'm confident in my stuff and I'm confident I'll get guys out. It should be the norm for me. I try to not focus on the numbers, but at the same time, it is a little surprising, especially because I just got to this level."

Questionnaires from 1945 Filled out by Walter Alston and Pee Wee Reese

A couple weeks back I highlighted a questionnaire filled out by Steve Garvey in 1970 (Link Here) for legendary Baseball biographer/statistician William J. Weiss.  Since the 1940's Weiss had been in contact with just about every professional ballplayer in the game, and used the information he gathered to put together sketchbooks filled with data on both minor and major league ballplayers.  Along with the Garvey I previously highlighted, Hunt Auction also has completed questionnaires from the Weiss collection of a couple other Dodgers players: Walter Alston and Pee Wee Reese.  Check those out in this post.
Featured on the right is the questionnaire filled out by Dodgers Hall of Fame manager Walter Alston in February 1945 (Auction Link Here).  Click on the pic to embiggen.

At the time, Alston had just become a player-manager the season prior for the Trenton Packers - a minor league affiliate of the Brooklyn Dodgers.  Although he would still play on the field for a few more years it would become obvious that his future role in the game would be as the skipper.  In the questionnaire above he recounts an interesting Baseball experience with Branch Rickey related to his second year of professional ball in 1936 and as a rookie player-manager four years later.  He writes: 

2016 Panini Flawless - All the Dodgers Base Gem Cards

Last week Panini America released their inaugural Baseball edition of Flawless, and below are pics of all the Dodgers Base Gem cards that are available. 

As you may know, this is a high-end card product that features ten cards per box; including six signature cards, two relics and two encased gem cards.  Each box is actually a metal briefcase, and it will cost you about $1,500 each.  The unusual packaging is meant to underscore how pricey and scarce these cards are suppose to be.  Check out an example of what a box looks like on the right.  Go here for a complete checklist.

It is notable that Clayton Kershaw, Jackie Robinson and Corey Seager each have two different encased gem cards available. 

Base Gems

#9 Clayton Kershaw                       #20 Jackie Robinson

Blog Kiosk: 6/27/2016 - Dodgers Links - Sborz, Seager and Adrián González

Today is a travel day for the Dodgers, and as is tradition ballplayers are tasked with looking their best when going from town to town.  This often means wearing a suit, but I think Adrián González's duds will work out just fine.  Check out the pic above, tweeted by AGone this morning, of himself wearing some special clothes in anticipation of traveling to Milwaukee later this afternoon.  As you know, he'll be riding the pine for this afternoons game (which starts at 9:35 AM PST).  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN:
“You look over the last couple weeks, he’s not swinging well, and sometimes, I think it’s good to get away,” Roberts said.
BTW, the Dodgers lost a tough one yesterday.  With Clayton Kershaw on the mound they continued their losing ways on the road by losing to Pittsburgh 4-3.  Unfortunately, Kershaw had an uncharacteristic start.  He went only six innings, throwing 98 pitches, striking out only four, walking two and giving up nine hits.  All four earned runs came across the plate in the second inning.  Via Ken Gurnick at
"It just really comes down to limit the damage," said Kershaw, who allowed nine hits in six innings. "Some of those hits, I missed some spots, but they didn't hit it too hard. Then the Freese hit killed me tonight. I missed my spot bad, he made me pay. He's a good hitter, he's had some success against me and always been a tough out. I've got to get the guy ahead of him out. That's pretty much the name of the game tonight."
Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1980 Jerry Reuss no-hit the Giants at Candlestick Park.  He misses a perfect game due to an error by Bill Russell in the first inning.  In 2011 the Dodgers file for bankruptcy under the McCourt's.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Blog Kiosk: 6/26/2016 - Dodgers Links - Some Odds and Ends

Yesterday was the third annual Dodgers RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) PlayerFest at Dodger Stadium, and as you can see it was packed with happy kids everywhere.  The photo above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2016Go here to check out more pics by Jon from the event.

 Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1944 the Dodgers, Giants and Yankees play an exhibit charity game in front of 50,000 fans for the war bond movement dubbed the Tri-Cornered Baseball Game.  The Dodgers won the contest: Dodgers 5, Yankees 1, Giants 0.  Check out what I wrote about it here.
  • Happy Birthday, Babe Herman!

Friday, June 24, 2016

A Vintage 1963 Dodgers World Series Pennant at ITPC

I love these old pennants with team photos attached to them.

Featured above is a vintage 1963 Dodgers World Series pennant that is currently for sale at Inside the Park Collectibles.  (Auction Link Here)  I imagine this was sold at Yankee Stadium during the Fall Classic for Dodgers fans coming to the game in New York.  As you can see, the pennant refers to Yankee Stadium on the front.

I've never been much of a pennant collector myself, but seeing something like this makes me wonder if I should change my mind.  This would look really great on my wall.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Welcome to the Blue, Nick Tepesch!

Word spread quickly yesterday that the Dodgers were going to call up minor league right-handed starter Nick Tepesch to pitch on Friday (tonight) against the Pittsburgh Pirates. As you'll recall, the Dodgers signed Tepesch to a minor league contract on June 6th after he opted out of his contract with the Rangers.  Since then he has started three games for Oklahoma City.  Per Jon Weisman at Dodger Insider:
The 27-year-old Tepesch, who was born the day of Orel Hershiser’s 1988 National League Championship Series Game 7 shutout, has a 2.00 ERA and 1.11 WHIP with 17 strikeouts in 18 innings (three starts) for Triple-A Oklahoma City. He had been cut loose by the Texas Rangers’ Round Rock affiliate, for whom he had a 4.11 ERA.

Blog Kiosk: 6/24/2016 - Dodgers Links - Jackie Robinson Memorial Highway

Check out who came by.

Former Dodgers starter Ismael "Rocket" Valdez was at Dodger Stadium to visit with old friends.  In the photo above (tweeted by Ismael) he is sandwiched by Fernando Valenzuela and Pepe Yniguez in the pressbox.

 Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1947 Jackie Robinson stole home for the first time in his career.  It was in a game against the Pirates and left-hander Fritz Ostermueller was the pitcher.
  • Via Eric Stephen at True Blue LA; "Dodgers sign Randy Choate to minor league contract."
  • Yesterday Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) introduced a bill that would name a portion of the I-210 freeway between State Route 2 and Orange Grove Boulevard the "Jackie Robinson Memorial Highway.”  It is along a commonly used route to Dodger Stadium for fans coming from the Eastern Los Angeles County.  Per a press release:

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Yulieski Gurriel Fantasy Dodgers Baseball Cards

I hope I'm not jinxing things here, but I couldn't stop myself from making a couple fantasy Baseball cards featuring Cuban superstar third baseman (who can play second base, BTW) Yulieski Gurriel.

As you know, he recently visited Dodger Stadium to give the Dodgers brass a private workout.  There's no word yet on how everything went or what the Dodgers thought.  What we do know is that Yulieski would look pretty good in Blue.  Check out his Instagram to see what I mean (@el_yuly10)

Since he was kind enough to share a couple photos of himself in Dodger Blue I, naturally, had to make a couple fantasy Baseball cards using his pics. Check them out above.

BTW, I'm a bit perplexed by the spelling of his name.  Is his last name spelled Gurriel or Gourriel?  Most online sources us the spelling of Gourriel.  His own Instagram page, on the other hand, spells his own last name as Gurriel.  So, that's what I decided to use on the above two cards.  I also figured I'd make the cards with the alternate spelling.  You can see those below.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

2016 Topps Series 2 - The Dodgers Double Play Rip Cards

Here is something different for a Topps flagship Baseball card set.  Although, the concept is far from new.  They've had similar cards available in packs of Allen & Ginter for years.

Featured here is a checklist of the Dodgers' Double Play Rip cards.  So far, I've only seen one Dodger Rip card online, and you can see it above (see auction listing here).  It is one of five Adrian Gonzalez Rip cards that are available.  BTW, each card is a "1 of 1", and as the name suggest there is a mini card hidden within the card.  That mini card is also a "1 of 1" rarity.  Per the Topps blog:
Double Play is a new game added to 2016 Topps Baseball Series 2 with baseball fans rooting for the player on the card to fulfill his predicted event. For example, if you rip the card and the mini card inside says Mike Trout hits a home run on September 18, 2016, - and he hits a home run on that date – you win the prize listed on the mini card.

The prizes range from a unique Topps card, an autograph card, memorabilia, MLB authentic items, a trip to the World Series, the All-Star Game, and much more.

2016 Topps Now - #175 - Yasiel Puig's Incredible Walk Off Last Night

You knew this coming.

Yasiel Puig now has a 2016 Topps Now card to call his own, and it highlights his remarkable Little League-styled, inside-the-park, error filled, walk-off home run to defeat the Washington Nationals last night.  That's a lot to say in one breath.

Go here to check out the card at Topps.  You have until tomorrow afternoon to place an order.

Oh!... If you want to see the at-bat go here.  It's worth your time to watch over and over again.  Via Jack Baer at
"We were all talking about it in the food room just right now, just trying to think about any ending like that we've seen," Ellis said. "To see something like that and to see Yasiel circle the bases, it's really exciting, especially for me being right there at home plate as he crossed. Just a really exciting moment to hear the crowd come alive as he circled."

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

Blog Kiosk: 6/23/2016 - Dodgers Links - Six Wins in a Row!

What's happening?!

All of the sudden the Dodgers are getting all the breaks.

It started innocently enough when in the first inning Chase Utley scored his 1,000th career run on a wild pitch to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.  Via Jack Baer at
"It's a cool accomplishment. I've been fortunate to be on a lot of good teams. They could swing the bat, constantly driving guys in. It's really more of a team accomplishment than an individual accomplishment."
Then, with the game tied at two in the top of the fifth inning, a game of pickle inside of a circus suddenly showed up on the field.  Nationals pitcher Joe Ross hit a high pop fly to the first base side that saw three Dodgers fielders converge towards the right field stands.  Utley got to the ball first, but was only able to haphazardly swipe at it with his glove.  Fortunately, he deflected it towards a charging Adrian Gonzalez.  It bounced off AGone's leg, barely missing the grasp of his left hand and fell towards the ground between his feet.  Then, with the reflexes of a jaguar, Adrian grabbed the ball with his glove just inches before bouncing on the dirt.  Wow!  Go here to watch a video of the catch.

Remarkable, eh?   Obviously the Baseball gods were not going to let the Dodgers lose this game.  With them down by a run in the ninth and the tying run on first base, Yasiel Puig hit a sharp ground ball through the middle that was misplayed by the centerfielder.  This crucial error resulted in a Little League-styled inside-the-park walk-off home run victory.  Watch it here.  You can listen to Puig talk about the bizarre ending here.  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN:
"I was ready for the hit, and nobody thought that the ball would go through," Puig said through an interpreter. "So when I did see the ball go through, I had to talk to my hamstring so I can figure out how far I could go on the bases."
All the photos above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2016Go here to check out more pics by Jon from yesterdays game.  Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1930 the Dodgers record twelve consecutive hits against the Pirates during the sixth and seventh innings.  This includes two home runs being hit by Babe Herman. In 1956 Don Zimmer is hit in the face with a pitch; breaking his cheekbone.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Welcome to the Blue, Layne Somsen!

The Dodgers just announced this afternoon that they have claimed right-handed relief pitcher Layne Somsen from the Yankees.  In late May he had been claimed off waivers by the Yankees from the Cincinnati Reds.  So, the Dodgers are his third team this season.  Via a Dodgers press release:
Somsen, 27, appeared in two games with Cincinnati this season (5 ER/2.1 IP) in his first big league action and has combined to go 1-0 with a 1.44 ERA, a .149 opponents’ batting average and a 1.00 WHIP in 14 minor league appearances this year at Triple-A with the Reds’ and Yankees’ affiliates.  The Dodgers will be his third organization of 2016, with Somsen opening the campaign with the Reds’ organization before being claimed by the Yankees on May 24.

The South Dakota native has gone 10-5 with a 2.42 ERA in 90 games (seven starts) in four minor league seasons in the Reds’ (2013-16) and Yankees’ (2016) organizations, limiting opposing hitters to a .208 batting average and striking out better than a batter per inning with 193 Ks in 189.2 innings. Somsen was originally selected by the Reds in the 22nd round of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft out of South Dakota State.

Welcome to the Blue, Chris Taylor!

Over this past weekend the Dodgers made a move to add more depth on their infield.  They traded former 2010 first round draft pick Zach Lee to the Seattle Mariners for infield prospect Chris Taylor.  Via a Dodger press release:
Taylor, 25, was hitting .312 with 41 runs, 19 doubles, four triples, three home runs, 29 RBI and 12 stolen bases in 63 games with Triple-A Tacoma, including a .414 mark with runners in scoring position (24-for-58). He played in two games with Seattle this year, going 1-for-3, and has appeared in 86 big league games in three seasons with the Mariners from 2014-16, batting .240 with 11 doubles, a triple and 10 RBI. In the Majors, Taylor appeared in 76 games (66 starts) at shortstop, four games (two starts) at second base and one game at third base.

2016 Topps Series 2 - Record Setters, Laser and Other Scarce Dodgers Cards

Below are more Dodgers insert cards found in packs of 2016 Topps Series Two.  Go here to check out all of my past post on this set. 

Cut Signatures (#/1)

  • #CS-DD Don Drysdale
  • #CS-DS Duke Snider
  • #CS-JR Jackie Robinson
  • #CS-PRE Pee Wee Reese

Own the Name (#/1)

  • #OTN-AGN Adrian Gonzalez
  • #OTN-CK Clayton Kershaw
  • #OTN-JP Joc Pederson 
From what I understand, every letter of their last name has an individual card available.
#OTN-AGN Adrian Gonzalez

Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Steve Garvey, Ferguson Jenkins and Emmitt Smith

Here are this weekends autograph opportunities and events throughout the Southland. As always, be sure to check the Blue Heaven Calendar for other events (a link can always be found on the tab at the top of this page, just left of center), and always confirm with the establishment. Everything is subject to change.  Please email me with any tips about upcoming events in Southern California.  As the rest of the week progresses I'll update this post with other events (if there are any) as I become aware of them.  Also, I don't always list every event below, so be sure to check my Calendar.  I always try to favor free signing events over paying events.  Click on any pic to embiggen.

Steve Garvey will be in Bakersfield on Saturday to sign for fans.  Go here for information.
Senor Pepe's Mexican Restaurant
8450 Granite Falls Drive
Bakersfield, CA 93312

Blog Kiosk: 6/22/2016 - Dodgers Links - Puig, Urias and Yasmani Grandal

In honor of breaking the Dodgers franchise record for career saves the Dodgers and former star closer Eric Gagne came out before the start of yesterdays game to present Kenley Jansen with various mementos celebrating the accomplishment.  Via Ken Gurnick at
"You guys have the greatest closer in Dodger history right here," Gagne said.
As for the evenings game, it was all about the resurgence of Yasmani Grandal.  He hit a thrilling eight inning three-run home run to help extend the Dodgers current winning streak to five games.  They defeated the Nationals, 3-2.  Per Jamal Collier and Ken Gurnick at
"It's a grind for Yazzy," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. "He's doing a great job behind the plate and that's priority No. 1. Offensively, he's been squaring a lot of balls up but maybe right at guys and he's getting frustrated. You know a few days ago he had that big at-bat, the walk-off walk, so to win it again today for us in fine fashion, that was fun."
Hopefully the past few days is a sign that he is ready to get out of his funk.  Via Doug Padilla at ESPN:
"I've been hitting the ball pretty hard the past couple of weeks," Grandal said. "I feel like this whole month I have been hitting the ball well, I just haven't been getting it in the air. This game is about inches or angles.

"When I look up and I hit a ball hard over 100 mph, for me that's what I'm trying to do. So far, I feel like I have been doing a pretty job of that and I look forward to keep doing that. Obviously, hits will start to fall at some point. I was just happy to get the ball in the air and put us ahead."
The photos above via Juan Ocampo & Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2016Go here to check out more pics by them from yesterdays game.  Below are more links to check out:
  • This Day in Dodger History: In 1959 Sandy Koufax struck out 16 Phillies batters to set a new record for strikeouts in a night game. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Some Dodgers Memorabilia at Hunt's All Star Game Auction - Koufax, Campy and Gwynn

Last week I featured a questionnaire filled out by Dodgers legend Steve Garvey when he was just a rookie in 1970 (link here).  Today, I take a look at several other Dodger collectibles available at Hunt's All-Star Game FanFest auction.

Featured above is a rarity.  It is a Sandy Koufax home jersey that dates to 1966.  (Auction Link Here)  Per the auction description:
The jersey was acquired by a former MLB executive in 1973 (who lived in the Los Angeles area at the time) and has remained within his collection until the current offering. Additionally, the executive was a good acquaintance with long time Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers General Manager Buzzie Bavasi. In 1975, Bavasi became aware of the offered Koufax jersey within the collection of the consignor and in jest sent the executive a charming and satirical official MLB typed communique. The note was hand signed by Buzzie and dated July 31, 1975 teasing him that he "owed" Buzzie a check for $56.00 payable to him for the "stolen" uniform.

2016 Topps Now - Kenley Jansen Becomes All Time Saves King for Dodgers

For the second day in a row a Dodger player is given a 2016 Topps Now card to call his own.  Featured here is Kenley Jansen's card that highlights his franchise leading career save #162.  Go here to check it out and order.

Jansen has been so great for the Dodgers I though I'd pass along some quotes from his teammates acknowledging his work.  Via Jack Baer and Jamal Collier at
"The consistency that he brings every year to the back end of our games, it's nice to have," (Justin) Turner said. "It's nice to know when you pass the ball to him with the lead, you got a really good chance of winning the ballgame."

2016 Topps Series 2 - Dodgers Glove Leather Auto's, Berger's Best and MLB Debut Cards

Below are pics of the Dodgers Glove Leather Autograph, Berger's Best and MLB Debut cards.  Go here to check out all of my past post on this set.

Glove Leather Autographs

#GLA-CK Clayton Kershaw                 #GLA-CS Corey Seager