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I Would Really Like To Add A Don Mattingly Signed Baseball To My Collection!!!

I Would Really Like To Add A Don Mattingly Signed Baseball To My Collection!!!

If you’re a baseball fan from the 1980′s, you have to respect what Don Mattingly brought to the game.

And if you’re a collector from that era, it is very hard to not recognize the value that Mattingly brought to the hobby as well as the revival that his rookie cards helped spur.

For myself, I have a few of Mattingly’s cards in my collection, but not many.  I do, however, have the desire to add a signed baseball to my collection.

In time, I will go after it.

Until then, I will wait for my best opportunity to bring one home!!!

mattingly ball

Don Mattingly, #23

Don Mattingly, #23

In the offseason between the 1997 and 1998 baseball seasons, the New York Yankees made the decision to retire the jersey of #23.

Worn by Don Mattingly for fourteen seasons, Don Mattingly captained the team during their very long drought of the 1980′s.  He still took the field and played like a champion, eanring the name ‘Donnie Baseball’.

Mattingly was a fan favorite due to his dedication and determination to win.  His leadership while at the plate or from first base was the cornerstone of the Yankees offense and defense from 1984-1996.

At the end of his amazing career with the Yankees, Don Mattingly walked away from the sport as a 6-time All-Star, 3-time Silver Slugger winner, 9-time Gold Glove Award Winner, Batting Champion, and Most Valueable Player!!!

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Don Mattingly Has 9 Gold Glove Awards In His Trophy Case!!!

Don Mattingly Has 9 Gold Glove Awards In His Trophy Case!!!

There is no denying Don Mattingly’s incredible play at first base!!

Long before playing ‘D’ was cool, Don Mattingly was heads and shoulders above all others that played the hot corner. And proof of that fact is that he collected nine Gold Glove awards – in 9 out of 10 seasons!!

Yessir – from 1985-1994, ‘Donnie Baseball’ was the best fielding first baseman in the league for a full decade.

Yeah, but who interrupted him in 1990? Slugger Mark McGwire won the award in 1990. But something tells me that it had more to do with Mattingly missing 60 games that year.. Sorry ‘Big Mac’.

Don Mattingly Has 3 Silver Slugger Awards

Don Mattingly Has 3 Silver Slugger Awards

As if you needed further proof that Don Mattingly was the best hitting first baseman in the American League during the prime of his career….

Mattingly won the Silver Slugger award during three consecutive seasons, 1985-87. In ’85, he hit .324 with 211 hits. In ’86, he hit .352 with 238 hits. And in 1987, he hit .327 with 186 hits.

Solid stuff right there!!

So, who ended Mattingly’s three-year reign? In 1988 the AL Silver Slugger Award for first base went to a man by the name of George Brett. Brett hit .306 with 180 hits in ’87 while Mattingly hit .311 with 186 hits. Close, very close..

Don Mattingly Is A 6-Time All-Star!!

Don Mattingly Is A 6-Time All-Star!!

The first six full seasons of Don Mattingly’s major league baseball career are on part with those of many baseball legends.

In fact, in his first six full seasons, Mattingly made the All-Star team each time. From 1983-1989, Mattingly was a fixture at the mid-summer classic. ANd rightfully so!!

The best all-around player at first base in the American League, it can be easily argued that he was the best first baseman in either league. And to be honest, he was probably the best first baseman of the decade!!

So there.

Don Mattingly – The 1985 American League MVP

Don Mattingly – The 1985 American League MVP

After putting together a solid campaign in 1984 which culminated with 207 hits and a matting title, Don Mattingly followed the ’84 season up by being named the Most Valuable Player in 1985.

The ’85 AL MVP was on top of the baseball world, and his stats spoke for themselves. Tallying 211 hits, Mattingly amassed a .324 batting average while striking out just 41 times in 727 plate appearances. Mattingly’s power numbers were solid as well – 48 doubles, 35 home runs, 145 RBI, and 107 runs scored.

Very valuable indeed!

Don Mattingly & The 1984 American League Batting Title

Don Mattingly & The 1984 American League Batting Title

It’s not too often that a young player can enter the league and make the kind of impact at the plate that Don Mattingly did. Sure, one may come along and launch a bunch of home runs, but to lead the league in hitting at the age of just 23 and in your first full major league season is simply incredible.

And that is precisely what Don Mattingly did in 1984. Playing in 153 games for the New York Yankees, Mattingly led the American League with a .343 batting average. He topped teammate Dave Winfield, a 10-year veteran, by three points!

Dissecting The Horrible Product That Is 2014 Donruss

Dissecting The Horrible Product That Is 2014 Donruss

It took me some time to put it all together, but I have finally figured out the true origins of the 2014 Donruss Baseball product that was released a few months ago.

And while I, like many other collectors, was excited about the idea of a new Donruss product to collect in 2014, I have to say that this set fails, and it fails miserably.

But, I was really not sure why I did not like it as much as I actually did.

So, being the ‘numbers guy’ that I am, I took out my ‘thinking cap’ and dug in to truly analyze the set and it’s design.

And what I found is that many of the main attractions from the 2014 Donruss set are simply pieces of other card sets merged into one – a morph, if you will.

First, let me show you the card by itself.  Then, I will explain my findings further.

Here is the base card of my main-man, Giancarlo Stanton.

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Not a bad card when standing alone.  Sure, there are no team name or logos on the card, but it is what it is.  And to be honest, I don’t think a Marlins logo or banner would drastically affect my opinion of the finished product.

Now, on to the breakdown…

For comparisons’ sake, I have pulled a few cards from my collection to match up to the 2014 Donruss design.

First, the ‘New’ Donruss logo is the same as the ‘Old’ Donruss logo featured on their 1981 design – just enlarged with a slight splash of color.

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From there, Donruss gave us the same border design as they did in 1987 with their base set product.

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Almost identical!

And if that was not bad enough, Donruss also stole from their competitor, Topps.  Yep, right from the people they are competing with.  Donruss stole the team banner design from the 1978 Topps set.

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Pretty blatant if you ask me…

And friends, that is why this product fails.  A true stinker!  Nothing original.  Nothing new.  And nothing to look forward too.

 

30-YOC’s Opening Day Contest Winner Is…

30-YOC’s Opening Day Contest Winner Is…

YOUNG BLEED

On a night in which pitching ruled, and with a guess of 217 strikeouts, YOUNG BLEED was just 1 strikeout off the actual number of 218.   That’s some pretty solid guess work right there!!!

Congratulations to YOUNG BLEED!!!

Here is one more look at the prize:

2014 topps opening day

Thanks to everyone that played in my ’5th Annual Opening Day Contest’.

The next contest is right around the corner!!!

“Opening Day Contest” – The Players & Their Picks!!!

“Opening Day Contest” – The Players & Their Picks!!!

Thanks to everyone that played – Now, let’s get down to business and ‘PLAY BALL’!!!!!

Here are the players and their picks for my ‘predict the total number of strikeouts’ from Opening Day contest.

Player # OF K’s
Irondequoit36 84
TJ 99
Daniel W 104
defgav 111
Ron 137
Q 141
Adam 144
Al K 150
Charley8 151
Mgrlvr 156
Tony L 158
Cub Den 165
Eric 170
Stealing Home 177
PATP 182
Matt 187
Greydreamland 188
Fuji 192
Petethan 200
Jeff 208
connorhoopman (OUT) 208
Young Bleed 217
Vic D 221
AGL 230
Lost Collector 240
Hackenbush 250
Tom S 260

 

And once again, a peek at the prize:

2014 topps opening day

The player that correctly predicts the number of strikeouts thrown on ‘Opening Day’, without going over, wins this lot of three 214 Topps ‘Opening Day’ packs.

Enjoy the games everyone.  The winner will be announced tomorrow!!!