Tag Archives: world series hero

Andy Pettitte 2014 Topps Series 1 Subset – ‘Super Veterans’

Andy Pettitte 2014 Topps Series 1 Subset – ‘Super Veterans’

When I got back into the hobby of baseball card collecting in the summer of 2008, my goal was to pay homage to the players that helped build my love for the game and the hobby.

The first subset I put together that helped me with that cause was the ‘Super Veterans’ subset from the 1983 Topps baseball card set.  This set is a beauty and it highlights the true legends of the game as their careers were winding down.

For the last few years, I have actively been begging Topps to bring this subset back and pay honor to today’s ‘Super Veterans’.  And while I cannot confirm that they obliged my request, I was very excited to see that a 15-card ‘Super Veterans’ subset was part of the 2014 Topps Series 1 release.

I am building the set now.  Here is the card of Andy Pettitte:

img059

 

Andy Pettitte closed his career at the end of the 2013 baseball season.

His resume includes a 256-153 record, good for a win percentage of 62.6.  Pettitte worked 3,316 innings during his career while tallying 2,448 strikeouts and an ERA of 3.85.

Pettitte was selected as an All-Star three times and finished in the Top 6 for the Cy Young Award on five different occasions.  He made it to the postseason in 14 of his 18 years as a major league pitcher.  Pettitte played in 8 World Series match-ups and won 5 times.

Andy Pettitte Sets All-Time New York Yankees Strikeout Record Passing Hall Of Famer Whitey Ford

Andy Pettitte Sets All-Time New York Yankees Strikeout Record Passing Hall Of Famer Whitey Ford

From ESPN.com

MINNEAPOLIS — Andy Pettitte has broken Whitey Ford’s record for career strikeouts by a New York Yankees pitcher.

Pettitte struck out Justin Morneau in the fifth inning against Minnesota on Monday night to give him 1,958 for his career. Ford has held the mark since he retired in 1967.

Pettitte entered the game needing two strikeouts to break the record. He fanned Clete Thomas in the second inning to tie it, then got Morneau swinging in the fifth.

 

The three-time All-Star broke into the big leagues with the Yankees in 1995 and has spent all but three of his 18 seasons in pinstripes.

David Freese 2012 Topps Archives Deckle Edge

David Freese 2012 Topps Archives Deckle Edge

Man, I can almost feel it.  This is the second-to-last card that I need to complete this classic set!!!

While the casual collector and baseball fan may wonder how a player that they have never heard of made it into such a classic and elite set, look no further than the 2011 World Series.  There is no doubt that Freese’s stock rose as a result of his World Series MVP performance that led the Cardinals to clinching the championship.

Topps took note of it – and I am certain that collectors of Freese and the Cardinals are very happy about that.

He deserves to be in the ‘Deckle Edge’ set and it may not be long before he is again included in more exclusive sets.

DECKLE FREESE

Andy Pettitte Will Be Wearing Pinstripes Again In 2013!!!

Andy Pettitte Will Be Wearing Pinstripes Again In 2013!!!

From The New York Daily News:

The decision is in: Andy Pettitte isn’t set to retire just yet.

According to a source,  Pettitte has decided to pitch in 2013, ending his six-week deliberation about  his future.

“He has committed to playing next year,” the source  said.

Now it’s up to  Brian Cashman and Pettitte’s agent, Jim Murray, to hammer out a deal for the  lefthander. Sources said the Yankees  are expected to give Pettitte $10-11 million next season, a  substantial raise from the $2.5 million he earned in 2012 after coming out of  retirement.

Although Pettitte hadn’t made any official decision before  Tuesday, the fact that the 40-year-old recently began working out to see how his  body felt was an indication that he had received the blessing of his wife and  children to pitch next season.

The Yankees are also getting closer to a  deal with Mariano Rivera, who could be signed by the end of the week. The  Yankees have focused solely on their pitching staff this offseason, already  locking up Hiroki Kuroda with a one-year, $15 million deal.

It remains  to be seen how much money the Yankees guarantee the 43-year-old closer, who is  coming back after missing the final five months of the 2012 season with a torn  ACL in his right knee. Rivera, who just completed a two-year, $30 million deal,  could receive a lower guaranteed salary plus incentives that could increase the  deal to his previous level.

Once Pettitte and Rivera are signed, Cashman  will turn his attention to right field and catcher, the Yankees’ two positional  vacancies at next week’s Winter Meetings.

The Yankees would like to have  the Pettitte and Rivera deals done before the meetings kick off in Nashville  next Monday, giving them an idea of how much money they have left in the budget  to fill the other two positions and also build a bench.

Bringing back  Pettitte and Rivera would complete the first phase of the Yankees’ offseason  plan, completing their rotation and solidifying their bullpen for the upcoming  season.

Russell  Martin remains the team’s top choice behind the plate, though a  source said they have yet to make any offers to the free agent. Martin has met  with multiple teams interested in his services, though most believe he will wind  up back in the Bronx.

A report out of Japan Tuesday said Ichiro Suzuki  had agreed to a $5 million contract to remain with the Yankees, but a source  said the two sides haven’t even discussed potential contract terms. In fact, the  Yankees haven’t made an offer to any position player.

My First Time – Bernie Williams – July 7, 1991

My First Time – Bernie Williams – July 7, 1991

The Setting – Yankee Stadium.  Bronx, NY.

From Williams – ‘I drove in one run on a sac fly and another on an infield hit.  They gave me the ball right after the hit but right after that they got the final out and we lost’.

The Boxscore – Orioles 5, Yankees 3.  Williams goes 1-for-3 with 2 RBI.

 

Andy Pettitte To Start For Yankees Today Versus Seatlle Mariners

Andy Pettitte To Start For Yankees Today Versus Seatlle Mariners

By HOWIE RUMBERG | The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP)  Andy Pettitte will be back on the mound in the Bronx on Sunday, and the New York Yankees are hoping he can again be a reliable presence in their rotation.

Pettitte is set to start against the Seattle Mariners in his first major league outing since retiring after the 2010 postseason.

”I think it will be a great day at the Stadium,” manager Joe Girardi said.

The lefty, who turns 40 next month, returned to the team in spring training and has made four minor league starts. Even though Pettitte was shaky over five innings in a Triple-A start Sunday, general manager Brian Cashman says the time is right.

”I think everybody’s in agreement that he’s not going to really benefit from any more time down there,” Cashman said.

One thing the Yankees management does agree on is the rotation needs help. Expected to be a strong part of the team after the addition of Hiroki Kuroda and Michael Pineda in the offseason, the Yankees’ rotation has struggled this to a 5.54 ERA and a .292 opponents’ batting average – only Minnesota and Colorado have worse averages against.

Pineda is out for season following shoulder surgery and Freddy Garcia was demoted to the bullpen. Rookie David Phelps is scheduled to make his second start against Tampa Bay on Wednesday, then is a likely candidate to return to the bullpen. But Girardi would not say whose spot Pettitte will take.

Pettitte is 240-138 in 13 years with the Yankees and three with Houston. He was a steady force in the Yankees’ rotation for five World Series championships and is a fan favorite as one of the Core Four with Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada.

Cashman, though, is trying to be realistic in his expectations for Pettitte, who will be making his first big league start in 573 days, since Game 3 of the AL championship series against Texas on Oct. 18, 2010.

”There’s still the unknown,” Cashman said. ”There’s a gap between what the old Andy Pettitte is and what we’re going to get? I just don’t know yet. But we’re looking forward to adding another healthy arm to the mix here because depth has been challenged and some of our healthy starters inconsistent. It would be nice to obviously start pulling together a string of consistently strong starts by all of our starters one through five and, hopefully, that could include Andy.”

Pettitte already has completed his testimony at Roger Clemens’ trial in Washington, D.C. so that shouldn’t weigh in his mind. He will be facing one of only two AL teams he doesn’t have a winning record against: He’s 11-11 against Seattle and 8-8 versus Cleveland.

His locker – the same one he occupied in his last season with the Yankees – is filling with gear that includes 10 pairs of footwear and a full mail basket. Pettitte will be working out in Westchester, where he has a New York home, until he is added to the big league roster Sunday.

Tampa Bay rays manager Joe Maddon thinks Pettitte will have an immediate positive influence on the team regardless of his performance in his first few starts.

”You can’t underestimate what he’s going to do for the clubhouse being minus the other guy,” Maddon said, referring to closer Mariano Rivera, who is likely out for the season with a torn knee ligament.

Cashman said there had been a complication with Rivera’s medical exams Monday in New York but wouldn’t say what it was. Rivera saw team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad at New York Presbyterian Hospital and by Dr. Russell Warren, a knee specialist at the Hospital for Special Surgery.

Rivera’s agent, Fernando Cuza, said Dr. David Altchek, who performed surgery on the pitcher’s shoulder following the 2008 season, also looked at him.

”It’s something I think Mo will talk to you guys about,” Cashman said. ”It doesn’t affect anything for next year.”

He did say that the injury sustained while shagging fly balls last week in Kanasas City is fixable.

”It’s all about next year,” Cashman said.

Don Larsen 2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites

Don Larsen 2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites

This baseball card pays tribute to Don Larsen and his 1960 baseball season.  It also pays homage to the great 1960 Topps baseball card design – certainly one of my favorites from the decade of the 1960’s.

As for Larsen, 1960 was a rough one.  He is pictured in his Yankees uniform for this card, but he was actually a member of the Kansas City A’s in 1960.  During that first season with his new team, Larsen posted a 1-10 record, yes, 1-10.  He made 22 appearances during that campaign, and only worked in 83 innings.

The 1960 season started the downturn of Larsen’s major league career.  In the six seasons that followed, Larsen would pitch for six different clubs.

Andy Pettitte Is Coming Back To The Yankees!!

H

TAMPA, Fla. — Andy Pettitte is coming back to the Yankees. The 240-game winner signed a Minor League contract on Friday and will slip his old No. 46 back on in an attempt to restart his career.

The contract is worth $2.5 million, YES Network’s Jack Curry reported.

Pettitte, 39, did not pitch in 2011 and had already made two visits to the Yankees’ Spring Training camp this year as a guest instructor, throwing batting practice and saying that he was keeping his left arm in shape by tossing to his children.

Speaking at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Feb. 27, Pettitte said that he was content with his decision to retire but believed he could make a comeback if he so desired.

“I’m sure I could,” Pettitte said that day. “You start training, working out and getting yourself into shape, I’d imagine you could. I retired, I felt, after one of my better years. I felt like I was at the point where I just kind of knew what I was doing mechanically out there on the mound. I retired to go home and be with my family.”

A five-time World Series winner with the Yankees — in 1996, 1998-2000 and 2009 — Pettitte announced his retirement in a news conference at Yankee Stadium on Feb. 4, 2011, saying that he no longer felt the drive to put the uniform on for another season.

That apparently changed, as Pettitte tried his old uniform on for size at the team’s training complex, commenting at the time how odd it felt to be dressing in the coaches’ room instead of alongside teammates like Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and CC Sabathia.

Pettitte pitched 13 of his 16 big league seasons with the Yankees, spending 2004-06 in his native Houston, pitching for the Astros. The left-hander is the all-time leader in postseason wins (19), starts (42) and innings pitched (263). He is tied for second in postseason strikeouts (173) with Roger Clemens, 26 behind John Smoltz.

His 203 victories as a Yankee rank third in franchise history, behind Hall of Famers Whitey Ford (236) and Red Ruffing (231), and his 1,823 strikeouts are second, only 133 behind Ford’s 1,956. He was an All-Star in 2010, when he went 11-3 with a 3.28 ERA in 21 starts despite missing two months with a left groin injury.

Happy Anniversary Joe Carter!!!

Happy Anniversary Joe Carter!!!

On this day in 1993 Joe Carter hit one of the most recognizable home runs in World Series history.  On baseball’s biggest stage, he rose to the occasion and secured his spot as one of the game’s biggest heroes.

I remember watching this game and seeing the joy in Joe’s eyes, smile, and body language as he rounded the bases after blasting this huge World Series winning home run.  As kids, we all dream of this exact spot that Joe Carter was in on that night in October.  His boyhood dream became reality right in front of our eyes and it was an amazing sight to witness.

Happy Anniversary Mr. Carter!!

Voting For 1: Trevor Hoffman OR Andy Pettitte

Voting For 1:  Trevor Hoffman OR Andy Pettitte

OK, so I realize that nobody is holding a gun to your head.  And I also realize that if you had a vote as a member of the Baseball Writer’s of America that you can make your own decisions and either vote for both, one, or neither of these two recently retired pitchers.

But this is blog-land, and here we force issues, make up stories, and love our sport.

So, my question for you tonight is simple – If you had to pick one, and only one of these guys, would you vote for Trevor Hoffman or Andy Pettitte to be enshrined at Cooperstown??

Within the last few weeks, I have debated the issue for each player and their potential candidacy for Hall of Fame election in five years.  If you want to recap those great posts, you can read the one I did on Trevor Hoffman by clicking here, and then follow that up with my Andy Pettitte story here.

But now, putting their careers on paper and side-by-side I would love to see which way the pendulum swings when you are forced to cast just one vote.

Here are their respective numbers:

  Hoffman Pettitte
Wins 61 240
Losses 75 138
Saves 601 0
K’s 1133 2251
K’s/9 IP 9.4 6.6
ERA 2.87 3.88
All-Star 7 3
Cy Young (2)2nd Place (1)2nd Place
Seasons 18 16
Playoffs 4 13
WS Titles 0 5

And while I fully understand that it is not easy to compare a starting pitcher to a closer for multiple reasons, I think that you can easily match these guys up to the current crop of recently retired pitchers to compare numbers and make a decision.

So that is what I will ask you to do now – Make a decision.  And once you have, please leave a comment on this post so I can get your thoughts and tally up the votes.

And since I was the one who started this debate, I will cast my vote now…

Keeping you scrolling…

Andy Pettitte.  Of the two, I find him to be the more accomplished pitcher when it comes to winning.  And while I absolutely value the role of the ‘closer’ more now than what I did five years ago, I still don’t have a single ‘Trevor Hoffman Moment’ that I hold in my memory.  His numbers may be better, but to me Hoffman is second-fiddle to Eckersley, Rivera, Gossage, Fingers, and Lee Smith.  And while Pettitte cannot touch Palmer, Seaver, Ryan, or Gibson, he has won more than all of them – and that says a lot.

Pettitte 1, Hoffman 0.

Cast your vote now!!!