30 November 2009

dodgers in the night, exchanging glances...

true story. i returned from the post office the other day, where i had mailed a box of cards to a certain night owl, and found a package from the very same nocturnal bird in my mailbox. karma. fate. good fortune. whatever it was, he sent some very nice cards. here's a sampling.

2004 donruss studio hideo nomo studio starsvery much like those old perma-graphic credit card issues.

2006 topps turkey red duke snidera classic pose from the duke of flatbush.

1994 bowman's best billy ashley billy may have been the best the dodgers ever had at the three true outcomes. in 1995, he homered, struck out, or walked in 50% of his plate appearances. in 1996, he increased that to 56%!

1996 starting lineup jackie robinsoni had no use for the actual starting lineup figures, but it's nice to have one of the cards that accompanied them.

2008 topps heritage high numbers mark sweeney one of my 'magnificent 7'. i'll have to update that list soon - there are a couple others i've been able to get my mitts on.

1995 skybox emotion raul mondesi. attentive. really? that's the emotion mondesi exudes? how about brooding? sulking? no matter, he was still my favorite dodger for a few years.

2001 upper deck legends don drysdalebig d. i am guessing that picture was taken after his third consecutive shutout in 1968 during his 58.2 scoreless inning streak, although he looks fairly young for that to be the case. it is absolutely crazy to think that he did that in his last full season.

2007 bowman andre ethier the blue parallel. this one is numbered 111/500. i am so happy that we are beyond the luis gonzalez/andruw jones experiments and can just let andre and matt kemp play.

2006 upper deck sweet spot update greg madduxmaddux during his first foray into los angeles. why upper deck updates these types of issues is beyond me. still, it's nice to have more cards of maddux in a dodgers uniform!

thanks greg! i hope you enjoy the package i sent as well!

29 November 2009

gene michael through the mail success!

11 days is all it took for former dodgers shortstop to sign and return his 1967 topps rookie cardand his 1987 topps managers card.michael was acquired by the dodgers from the pirates in the maury wills trade. he played one year for la (1967) in which he batted .202 with no home runs as part of a platoon with dick schofield. his contract was purchased by the yankees after the 1967 season, and he took over as their regular shortstop shortly thereafter. he would go on to manage the yankees in 1981 and 1982 and the cubs in 1986 and 1987.

thanks gene!

28 November 2009

let's turn two with kurt stillwell!

i don't know for sure, but i would guess that kurt stillwell has the highest ratio of double play turn photos to baseball cards of any player. this includes the unheard of dual double play turns in 1992 upper deck.

here's to you kurt!

27 November 2009

there are two sides to every story

take the 1941 world series, for example, as depicted by fleer in their 1970 issueand their 1971 release.in game 4, the dodgers were one out away from tying the series at two games apiece with hugh casey (who had lost game 3 the day before) on the mound. with a one-run lead and two strikes on tommy henrich, catcher mickey owen failed to catch the third strike, allowing henrich to reach first base. joe dimaggio followed with a single, and charlie keller (aka king kong) doubled them both home. after another run scored, the dodgers went quietly in the bottom of the ninth, and the yankees wrapped up the series the next day.

the 1970 card is all about the passed ball, while the 1971 card instead focuses on the overall batting heroics of keller who hit .389 with 5 rbi in the series.

either way you slice it, the yankees won and the dodgers were still 14 years away from tasting the sweet fruits of victory.

26 November 2009

giving thanks for through the mail successes! (part 2)

steve kemp signed his 1978 toppsand 1984 fleer cardskemp is channeling lou ferrigno in the 1978 card. i collected his cards because i expected big things from him.

al hrabosky signed his 1978 toppsand 2003 upper deck sweet spot classic cardsthe mad hungarian. nuff said.

jon olerud signed his 1994 upper deckand 1999 upper deck century legends cardstwo of my favorite upper deck sets. i was a big fan of olerud's when he played in toronto.

sean casey signed his 2003 donruss studioand 2006 bowman heritage cardsthe studio card was mine, but i sent another card that the mayor replaced with the bowman heritage card.

finally, craig breslow signed his 2008 upper deck timeline cardi pulled these cards like nothing. i must have had at least 6 or 7 (short print my arse) but by the time i got around to sending out the request, breslow was with the a's. still, he came through and that's what counts.

thanks to all these guys (and all the others) for keeping the through the mail dream alive!

giving thanks for through the mail successes!

it's kind of like mount everest. i sometimes send out ttm requests simply because the cards are there, and i know that the player will most likely return them signed. there's no dodger connection, although there's likely a 1978 topps card involved, or maybe it's someone i enjoyed watching in my youth.

in fact, i have a through the mail heirarchy for non-dodgers as far as cards go. 1978 topps is always the one to send. then 1976 or earlier vintage. 1979 topps, 1984 donruss, 1984 fleer, 1987 topps, 1989 upper deck and 1991 topps are next. regardless of the cards though, it's always cool to get a self-addressed stamped envelope in the mail. here then are a few of the players who have answered my requests, and for that, i am thankful (though there are many things for which i am more thankful).

roy howell on his 1976 topps

and 1978 topps cardi had successfully sent a request to howell a few months back. i enjoyed following his career since he was from the central coast, and even met him once at a hot stove dinner. he's living the dream in pismo...

sal bando on his 1976 toppsand 1978 topps cardsi followed the a's for a bit, although bando was gone by then. a very solid player on some very solid teams.

likewise, bert campaneris on his 1976 toppsand 1978 topps cardsthis took two tries, since campaneris only signs one at a time.

willie horton on his 1978 topps cardi should have sent the 1976 topps, too, since he is best known as, and still affiliated with, the detroit tigers.

1978 topps joe sambitoi had sent to sambito before because of the dodger stadium scene on his 1982 fleer card. then i found this 1978 card and off it went.

1978 topps bob watson

who also signed his business card. i don't think watson got enough credit for assembling the yankees' team that went on to win the world series in 1996. conversely, i think brian cashman gets too much credit. after paul depodesta was dismissed by frank (or was it jamie?) mccourt, i hoped that watson's name would come up as a possibility. i don't think it did.

kent tekulve on his 1978 toppsand 1979 topps cardshere's a guy i enjoyed watching. his delivery was so unique that it became a staple in my windup mimicry repertoire. he and luis tiant were the only non-dodgers included.

ed ott on his 1978 toppsand 1979 topps cardsi was hoping he would inscribe it with 'shortest name in major league history' or something like that, but he did not.

rick reuschel signed his 1978 toppsand 1979 topps cardsi remember seeing cards of him and his brother paul and thinking that anyone could be a ballplayer. reuschel pitched for a long time, and had some good success as a giant.

doug decinces signed his 1978 toppsand 1979 topps cardsi saw decinces play with the angels a few times. must have been tough in baltimore replacing brooks robinson. that mustache on the 1978 card could rival phil garner's. or lanny mcdonald's.

greg luzinski signed his 1978 toppsand 1984 donruss cardsthe bull included a flyer for his bbq sauce with the return.

25 November 2009

dancing to johngy's beat

i am sure you are all aware of johngy's beat (if not, check it out - he's got pictures of himself with buck rodgers and the riddler, for goodness sake). he recently put out a call for some 'mike squires cards that should have been' and i sent him a 1986 topps card that i put together. for that minimal amount of work, johngy hit my want list with a fervor. let's see what mike squires hath wrought:

1960 topps dodgers backstopsbrooklyn native joe pignatano and john roseboro. i wonder why topps didn't include a similar card in this year's heritage. ausmus - martin?

1960 topps clem labinea closer before there were closers.

1960 topps carl furillo world series game 3furillo's two-run single in the bottom of the 7th broke a 0-0 tie. yes, back in the 50's you could hit a single and it would be commemorated on a baseball card.

1960 topps johnny podresand 1966 topps johnny podres podres' last dodgers card. he appeared in just 1 game for the dodgers in 1966 before being sent to the tigers.

1968 topps wes parker
from 1967 to 1977, dodger first basemen (parker and garvey) won every gold glove, except for 1973 (mike jorgenson). in fact, parker won 6 straight to garvey's 4. one reason why parker is on the rawlings all-time gold glove team. not bad for a guy who also got to play greg brady's teacher's boyfriend.

1975 topps mini nlcs (steve garvey)
garvey doing a pigpen impression. in my opinion, a better dust cloud card than this one, simply because of the subject matter.

1976 topps bob watson
a hit from my 1976 topps want list! awesome!

johngy also included a bunch of o-pee-chee dodgers, which i will showcase at some point in the future.

thanks johngy (and mike squires)!