Tag Archives: MVP

Dustin Pedroia 2009 Topps Chrome

Dustin Pedroia 2009 Topps Chrome

Gotta love the shininess of the Chrome product put out by Topps.

But, if there is one player in the sport that could find a way to even make a Chrome baseball card dirty it would be Dustin Pedroia.  He has no regard for a clean uniform and something tells me that by the time he applied the tag to the baserunner on this play his uniform pants from the knees down were covered in clay…

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Great card!!

2014 Topps Series 1 “Topps All Rookie Cup Team” – Willie McCovey

2014 Topps Series 1 “Topps All Rookie Cup Team” – Willie McCovey

Topps’ All-Rookie Team means a lot of different things to a lot of different collectors.  But, one thing is for certain – If your card is tagged with the All-Rookie Team logo, you did something during your first season in the big leagues to make yourself stand out from the rest.

And for that reason alone, I can totally support a set of cards that picks ‘The Best Of The Best’ from these teams.

In 2014, Topps issued a subset in their Series 1 release that took one player at each position, naming them to the ‘Topps All Rookie Cup Team’.

Representing the catcher is Willie McCovey:

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Willie McCovey’s major league debut in 1959 was fantastic.  His numbers in 54 games played was enough to draw the attention of major league baseball as he was awarded with the Rookie Of The Year Award.

His numbers in 1959:  .354 batting average, .429 on-base percentage, 68 hits in 192 at-bats, 9 doubles, 5 triples, 13 home runs, 32 runs scored, 38 RBI, and just 35 strikeouts.

Not bad for a 21-year old kid.

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!!!

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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!

Happy Birthday Don Mattingly!!!

Happy Birthday Don Mattingly!!!

Don Mattingly turns 53 years old today.

So, we’re going to continue a ’30-YOC’ tradition by dedicating today’s full day of posts to the fabulous career of Don Mattingly, aka Donnie Baseball!!!

As time passes, my appreciation for Mattingly grows considerably. From an offensive standpoint, there was nothing Mattingly could not do. A blend of contact and power hitting were some of Mattingly’s greatest strengths. And defensively at first base there was no-one better during his playing days. 9 Gold Gloves, 3 Silver Slugger Awards, and an MVP Award later and you have an extremely solid career from one of baseball’s biggest stars during the 80′s.

When you talk about the most well-rounded players from his era, Don Mattingly has to be one of the first names mentioned. Due to his incredible talents, Mattingly was wildly popular. During his time with the Yankees, he was the team leader and captain. And now more than 20 years removed, he remains a favorite of collectors today.

Happy Birthday to Donnie Baseball!!