Monthly Archives: November 2008

1988 Donruss Andre Dawson

1988 Donruss Andre Dawson

How sweet is this 3-card set from the 1988 Donruss issue?  I am a big fan of the ‘bonus’ cards that card companies issued of the major stars in the 1980’s.  This is no exception.  I like the base card, but the Diamond King and MVP card make this trio a ‘must-have’ for any Andre Dawson collector!!

Incredible Gifts From ‘The Man Of Steal’

When I made the decision to come back to a hobby that I left 15 years prior, I was determined to be a better collector.  I was going to collect with a purpose and on a budget too!!  After careful review of the hobby’s landscape and all of the changes from the last decade and a half, I decided to solely collect players from my childhood that still remain my favorites.

When I announced that Rickey Henderson was among my favorites, I got an e-mail from Brad at Rickey Henderson Collectibles and over the course of the next few months we exchanged some thoughts on Rickey and our personal goals in collecting his cards and for Brad his memorabilia too.

Brad has provided me with 2 incredible gifts:

1 – A revised checklist of all of Rickey’s cards issued by the main brands from his rookie year of 1980 through the 1989 issues.  This type of list is essential for a player collector, and although my list was pretty good, it is now much more accurate and should be considered final.  To see my current position with this player collection as well as my others, click here.

2 – And then there were these waiting for me in my mailbox last night…. 





25 Rickey Henderson cards that I needed to add to my player collection!!!  WoW!!!!  I know that I was slacking on this a little, but Brad very quickly got me closer to completing this mission.  And in the process, my tally of Henderson cards has jumped from 19 to 44.  At one time I felt as if my Rickey collection had been forgotten as my focus was primarily on Dawson and Winfield.  But now, I have a renewed energy to go after this with fire and energy. 

So, how do you go about repaying someone for such a generous offer?  I have nothing to trade in return.  The only non-sports card item I have of Rickey’s is something that Brad obviously had too.  Still, even though he has repeatedly stated that he is just happy to give his doubles to a home that appreciates Rickey Henderson, I still feel the desire to compensate him somehow.  Money is impersonal, linking his blog to this post is a natural thing to do…  I will find some way to repay him for his kindness!!!!  TRUST ME!!!!

Fergie Jenkins May Be The Most Underrated Pitcher Of All Time!!!

I am going to try to be as objective as possible with this post.  But by now, you should certainly know that I have a huge amount of respect and admiration for Fergie Jenkins.

I am almost done reading his autobiography, and the more I read and learn I am feeling more and more confident that he belongs in conversation about the game’s best pitchers from the last 50 years.  Unfortunately the media during his career and after, do not see him in the same light. 

When you hear Fergie’s name mentioned one of the first stats mentioned is 6 consecutive 20 win seasons.  This is certainly impressive, but it is not the only impressive feat he has accomplished.

So, what I am going to try to do is compare Fergie’s numbers to some of baseball’s other great pitchers from the last 50 years and see how he stacks up.  And, as always I would like to hear from you, the reader, as to where you place Fergie among this elite grouping.

Player Wins Losses Win % 20-Win Seasons Shut-outs Career ERA K’s Walks K:Walk Ratio Cy Young Awards
Fergie Jenkins 284 226 56% 7 49 3.34 3192 997 3.2 1
Tom Seaver 311 205 60% 5 61 2.86 3640 1390 2.6 3
Nolan Ryan 324 292 53% 2 61 3.19 5714 2795 2.0 0
Bob Gibson 251 174 59% 5 56 2.91 3117 1336 2.3 2
Jim Palmer 268 152 64% 8 53 2.86 2212 1311 1.7 3
Gaylord Perry 314 265 54% 5 53 3.11 3534 1379 2.6 2
Sandy Koufax 165 87 65% 3 40 2.76 2396 817 2.9 3
Steve Carlton 329 244 57% 6 55 3.22 4136 1833 2.3 4


It would be fair to say that these guys all have similar stats.  While no one can match Ryan’s strikeout levels, the same can be said for Carlton’s Cy Young awards and Fergie’s K:walk ratio.  But, they all played over the same period of years and each had what can be considered as a very respectable and superior career as a starting pitcher.

So, can anyone tell me why it took the Baseball Writers of America 3 years to vote Fergie Jenkins into the Hall of Fame???  Gibson, Ryan, Koufax, Carlton, Palmer, and Seaver all got in on their 1st ballot.  I just don’t get it.  What would make the writers treat Fergie Jenkins this way?  His numbers compare and in some cases are better than these guys.  All of these guys were voted into the Hall, with the exception of Koufax, within the same 6-7 year period…  I am truly puzzled by this.

I hear the words ‘sure-fire Hall of Famer’ thrown around so often.  You even get ‘He’s a 1st Ballot Guy’ every once in a while.  But, with number like Fergie’s, why would it take the writers so long to admit him into Cooperstown????

Please help me understand this.


George Brett Made Me Cry This Morning…

I am guilty.  I have the sense of humor of an 11-year boy.  This is something I am not ashamed of, so I embrace it, although my wife would like to see me act a little closer to my age…

This morning I received an email from a buddy of mine with this below link attached.  Check it out and now you’ll know what George Brett made me cry this morning.


I don’t care for Will Ferrell or Vince Vaughn all that much.  Today’s ‘comedians’ do very little that makes me laugh out loud.  But this, this was priceless…  Thankfully my boss was not in the office yet when I watched it!!!


Thanks Mr. Brett!!!



Focusing On My Player Collections Has Paid Off…

About a month ago, I decided to re-focus on getting my player collections back in order.

Well, that dedication is starting to pay off as am I getting closer and closer to completing a few of these collections.

Check out the progress…

Player Started With As Of 10/16 Today Need To Get
Billy Williams 8 21 22 19
Fergie Jenkins 0 15 26 17
Andre Dawson 0 15 41 8
Rickey Henderson 2 16 19 36
Dave Winfield 1 26 45 8


For a full breakdown of these player collections and to view my current needs, click this link to visit my Player Collection Page.

What Ever Happened To Lou Whitaker???

‘Sweet Lou’ Whitaker is best known as part of one of the most successful double play combinations in baseball’s history.  With the Detroit Tigers, and alongside Alan Trammel, Whitaker excelled as a second baseman. 

In his rookie year of 1978, Whitaker walked away with the Rookie of the Year award.  In that 1978 season, “Sweet Lou’ managed to hit .285 while connecting for 138 hits and driving in 58 runs.  Although Whitaker’s offensive stats cannot compare to the power numbers put up by today’s 2nd basemen, Whitaker’s career totals are very impressive.  A career .276 hitter, Lou managed to belt out 244 home runs and drive in 1084 RBI.  In addition to this, Whitaker has also accumulated 143 stolen bases.

A 5-time All-star, and a 4-time Silver Slugger winner, Whitaker really cemented his greatness on defense.  For 19 season, he patrolled 2nd base for the Tigers and ended his career with a .984 fielding percentage.  Lou has also been part of 1,527 double plays.

Today, Whiatker offers help to the Detroit Tigers during their Spring Training.  He seems to be the perfect fit for a defensive infield coach as there is not much that got by this very talented player. 


Dave Winfield 1988 Topps

Dave Winfield 1988 Topps

Here is a nice 2-card set from the 1988 Topps issue.  These 2 cards look good next to each other.  The similar colors and fonts being used unite the cards and they display very nicely as a 2 piece set.


Ticket Stub #14 – Marlins vs. Reds – 04/04/1997

Ticket Stub #14 – Marlins vs. Reds – 04/04/1997

Pro Player Stadium – Miami, FL

Reds 9 – Marlins 7

This was game 4 for the Marlins’ 1997 season, and is the closest I have ever gotten to see a game on Opening Day.  Who would have thought that just a few months later the Marlins would be celebrating a World Series championship???

What stood out most in this game was the amazingly talented offensive line-ups each of these teams had.  The Reds were stacked with players like Deion Sanders, Ruben Sierra, Reggie Sanders, Barry Larkin, and Hal Morris.  The Marlins didn’t have a soft line-up either.  The roster contained Gary Sheffield, Moises Alou, Bobby Bonilla, Devon White, and Jeff Conine.  This was also the first game I ever saw Edgar Renteria play in live and he quickly became and still is one of my favorite Florida Marlins of all-time.

The biggest impression left on me after seeing this game was the obviuos talent of Reggie Sanders.  Sanders had a hell of a night going 3-for-4 with 1 home run and 6 RBI.  This is easily one of the best offensive performances I have witnessed during a live baseball game.

Cincinnati Reds AB R H RBI BB SO BA NOTES
Sanders 4 1 2 1 1 0 0.529  
Greene 2 1 1 1 2 0 0.286  
Larkin 3 2 0 0 2 0 0.100  
Sanders 4 1 3 6 1 1 0.471 HR
Morris 4 1 0 0 1 0 0.333  
Sierra 4 1 1 0 1 0 0.313  
Shaw 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Boone 5 0 0 0 0 0 0.111  
Tabuensee 3 1 1 0 2 0 0.400  
Bones 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Branson 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Jarvis 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Timmons 1 0 1 0 0 0 0.500  
Mercker 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Harris 0 0 0 1 0 0 0.000  
Service 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Owens 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Florida Marlins AB R H RBI BB SO BA NOTES
Castillo 5 0 1 0 0 0 0.421  
Renteria 5 1 2 2 0 0 0.235 SB
Sheffield 1 0 0 0 3 0 0.167  
Bonilla 5 0 2 1 0 0 0.333  
Eisenreich 3 0 0 0 1 0 0.000  
Hutton 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Helling 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
Cangelosi 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.000  
White 5 1 2 0 0 1 0.357  
Conine 4 1 3 1 1 0 0.600  
Johnson 5 3 2 1 0 1 0.286  
Rapp 2 1 1 1 0 1 0.500  
Heredia 1 0 0 0 0 1 0.000  
Alou 1 0 1 1 0 0 0.462  


Hall of Famers in this game – Barry Larkin(???) & Gary Sheffield(???)

3 Modern Billy Williams Cards Added To The Collection!!

3 Modern Billy Williams Cards Added To The Collection!!

WoW!!!  How sweet is this?  I was able to grab up all 3 of these bad boys for less than 40 cents a piece.  I’ve still got my eye on the cards I need to complete my Billy Williams collection that were issued during his playing days, but I couldn’t resist these.  I love the old-school photo on the modern cards. 

I was able to add 9 new Billy Williams cards to my growing ‘modern-day’ collection and will highlight them for you over the next few weeks.


Mike Mussina Calls It Quits

Finally the rumors have become fact. After 18 seasons in the major leagues, Mike Mussina has retired from the game of professional baseball.

Although Mussina has rarely been mentioned as one of the greatest pitcher’s from his era, his numbers are quite impressive.  Having played his entire career for just 2 teams – the Orioles and Yankees – Mussina has compiled some pretty solid stats.

In his 17 years as a full time starting pitcher,  Mussina recorded double-digit wins in each season.  The most impressive part of this is that accomplished this while playing for a Baltimore Orioles team that was terrible for most of Mussina’s early years with the team.  With a lifetime win/loss record of 270 & 153, ‘The Moose’ finishes his career with a very solid 63% winning percentage.

Mike Mussina was only selected as an All-Star 5 times during his playing days; but he did finish in the Top 6 for the Cy Young Award a very respectable 9 times.  Again, this is very impressive for a player that was never known as a dominant pitcher.  Clearly, his reputation as a solid pitcher that was going to give you good innings helped his cause.

So, where does Mike Mussina rank amongst the pitchers from this era??  Is he Hall of Fame worthy??

When I think about the bestpitchers in the game over the last 20 years, Mike Mussina’s name does not enter the picture.  But, when you look at his entire body of work, there are pitchers in the Hall of Fame that are very comparable.  So, YES, I do think that Mike Mussina will get into Cooperstown.  I don’t believe that he is a 1st ballot electee, but give him 3 or 4 attempts and I see him in there.  Then the big question will be what hat does he wear…

Your thoughts???