Monthly Archives: March 2009

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #3

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #3

Greg Maddux – 1987 Donruss

No drama.  No frills.  Greg Maddux was the epitome of a hard-working pitcher.  His talent was immense and he often came across as a calm and relaxed guy.  But once Maddux took the mound, he was all about business and he excelled at a record pace.

After 23 seasons in the big leagues, Greg Madduxretired with 355 wins and 277 loses.  He has pitched over 5,000 innings during the course of his career while starting 740 games.  In his 23 seasons, Maddux threw 35 shutouts and pitched 109 complete games.

For his career, Maddux won 15 or more games in 18 of his 23 seasons; 17 of them being consecutive.  Maddux won 20 or more in 2 seasons.  He also eclipsed the 3,000 strikeout plateau with 3,371 career K’s.  His ERA at the end of his career was 3.16.

As a pitcher in the National League for the course of his career, Maddux had a career batting average of .171.  While considered to be a pretty good hitting-pitcher, Maddux hit 5 home runs and drove in 84 runs.  He has 272 hits, 103 runs scored, and 11 stolen bases to his credit.

Greg Maddux won 4 consecutive Cy Young Awards.  And in 9 straight seasons from 1992-1990, he placed in the Top 3 for the award 8 times.  Greg Maddux is an 8-time All-star and has won 18 Gold Gloves for his dominance as a defensive pitcher.

In his best season of 1995, Maddux went 19-2 while throwing 10 complete games and 3 shutouts.  In that season, his ERA was an amazing 1.63 and he struck out 181 batters while walking just 23.  In that year Maddux won his 4th and final Cy Young award, a Gold Glove, and was an All-star.

Greg Maddux was played in 3 World Series contests while winning 1 championship title.  In 1995 his Atlanta Braves were victorious.  Maddux started 2 games in that match-up as he won 1 game and lost 1 game.  In 16 innings of work, he struck out 8 batters and allowed 4 runs. 

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Great Commercial Featuring Red Sox MVP Dustin Pedroia!!!

This commercial has been getting quite a bit of air-time on television over the last few weeks.  It still makes me laugh every time…  enjoy!!

1989 Score Highlights Rickey Henderson

1989 Score Highlights Rickey Henderson

‘Rickey Rocks Em’

I love cards that commemorate baseball history.  This card of Rickey celebrates his 35th career lead-off home run in which he became the player with the most lead-off home runs in baseball history passing Bobby Bonds.  This is a record that appears to be safe for a very long time to come….

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‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #4

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #4

Roger Clemens – 1984 Fleer Update

Undoubtedly the fiercest competitor to debut during the 1980’s, Roger Clemens brought an intensity to the game each and every time he stepped onto the pitching mound.

In 24 years, Roger Clemens showed little signs of slowing down and regressing as a pitcher.  His power pitching was on display during his 24th season in the big leagues just as it had been during his rookie season.  Sure, the innings were decreased intentionally to save his legs for a playoff push, but that is a natural occurrence with older players.

With 24 years of pitching to his credit, Roger Clemens won 354 games while losing 184.  He has 118 complete games and 46 shutouts on is resume as well as a career ERA of 3.12.  ‘Rocket’ has pitched over 4900 innings and started 707 total regular season games.  He has struck out 4,672 batters which is good for 3rd all time in baseball history. 

Roger Clemens has won 18 or more games 10 times during his career.  In 6 seasons he has reached the 20-win plateau with the highest single season victory count being 24 in 1986.  Rocket has struck out 200 or more batters in 12 of his 24 seasons as a professional baseball player. 

Roger Clemens has won the Cy Young Award 7 times.  He has finished in the Top 3 three more times.  Roger Clemens also won the leagues MVP award in ’86.  In what could be considered his finest season, 1986, Clemens went 24-4 while striking out 238 batters and finishing the year with a 2.48 ERA.  Rocket was also an 11-time All-star.

Rocket has appeared in 6 World Series contests and has won 2 championships.  In 1999 as a member of the New York Yankees, Roger helped the Yankees as he won 1 game for the team while pitching through the first 7 innings and only allowing 1 run.  Then in the following year, 2000, he won a second title with the Yankees.  In that World Series match-up, Clemens won another game for the team as he pitched 8 strong innings while striking out 9 batters and allowing no runs.clemens

Introducing ‘The Maybin-Meter’

I am proud to introduce a new feature to you – ‘The Maybin-Meter’. 

What is the ‘Maybin-Meter’??  Well, back during my days of living in Chicago there was a player that was loved by the fans.  He was a hard working player that played each and every game like it was his last.  That player?  Shawon Dunston.  The fans created the ‘Shawon-O-Meter’ and brought it to each and every game at Wrigley Field.  They took Shawon in as their player and honored each at bat as they tracked his progress as the plate.

I will do that now for Cameron Maybin, even if it is through this virtual world.  This new page will keep track of some very important stats that the Fllorida Marlins need Maybin to excel at.  I will track these stats on a daily basis and hope to build as strong of a following on the site as those fans built in the stands for their beloved player.

I wish Cameron all of the success in the world for the upcoming season.  I’ll be right there alongside him as we travel through the 2009 season together!!

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Do you have a local player that doesn’t get national spotlight that you want the share with the rest of us??  If so, I encourage you to follow suit and teach us a little about a player that normally would not get this kind of attention.

The Marlins first game is April 6, so check back often to see how Cameron Maybin is performing courtesy of ‘The Maybin-Meter’.

Play Ball!!!

Flipping A TTM Autograph Success Over To Ron Cey…

If you visited the blog yesterday you saw that I received 3 autographed Steve Trout cards in the mail.  Amongst them was a 1987 team leaders cards with Cubs third baseman Ron Cey. 

This is the first multi-player card that I have gotten signed so I thought it would be cool to see if Ron Cey would do me the honor one more time of signing a few cards for me.  I found another card, his ’85 Topps one, in my collection so I am going to throw that into the envelope as well.

If this works, it could open up a new realm of possibilities in the TTM game.  I have never thought about sending multi-player cards out for autographs but this looks like it could be an interesting subset to my autograph collection.

Wish me luck… 

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‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #5

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #5

Rickey Henderson – 1980 Topps

Rickey Henderson is easily the flashiest player to debut during the 1980’s.  With a smile and charisma that was unmatched, everyone stayed tuned when Rickey was at the plate.  And for very good reason…

Rickey Henderson is a heart-breaker.  81 times in his career, he has started the game with a lead-off home run.  He has delivered the ultimate heart-breaking experience for an opposing team and it’s fans 81 times. 

As a hitter, Rickey had an excellent eye and a calm, but intense approach at the plate.  With 3,055 career hits and a lifetime batting average of .279, Henderson was able to disrupt opposing pitchers as he found his way on base at a clip of 40%.  Ranking 2nd all-time with 2,190 career walks, Rickey took advantage of each opportunity when he was on base.  The greatest base stealer in baseball history, Henderson has tallied 1,406 total swipes which is almost 500 more than the man in 2nd place.  In addtion to that, Rickey has stolen 100 or more bases 3 times in a single season. 

With his amazing speed, Henderson offered quite a bit of power for a lead-off hitter.  With 297 career home runs, Rickey is 3 dingers shy of reaching the infamous 300/300 club which is occupied by just 6 players in baseball history.  Over the course of his career, Rickey Henderson has tallied 1,115 RBI while also scoring 2,295 runs which is also a baseball record.

Defensively, Rickey Henderson has been recognized as a Gold Glove outfielder one time.  Never considered to be stellar, Rickey was a showman and often turned a routine play into a theatrical move as he swiped fly balls out of mid-air.  Rickey entertained like no other…

Rickey Henderson’s best season came in 1990 as a member of the Oakland Athletics.  He won the MVP award with his amazing numbers of .325/25/61.  Added to his impressive numbers were 65 steals, 159 hits, 119 runs scored, and an on-base percentage of 44%.  Rickey Henderson is also a 3-time winner of the Silver Slugger award as well as a 10-time All-star.

Henderson has played in 3 World Series match-ups and was the winner of 2 championship titles.  In 1989 with the Oakland A’s, Rickey hit an amzing .474 while also collecting 3 stolen bases, 9 hits, 3 RBI, and 1 home run in the 4-game series.  In 1993 with the Toronto Blue Jays, Henderson was less effective as he hit .227 with 5 hits, 1 stolen base, and 2 RBI in the 6-game series. 

 

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Finally, My Andre Dawson Player Collection Is COMPLETE!!!!

With this card, the 1987 Fleer Update, I have completed my original goal of collecting EVERY card from the major brands that were issued during Andre Dawson’s career from 1977-89.  I am thrilled that this is finally complete, and it took just a little more than 8 months to go from NO cards to ALL.

Am I done now??  Not by a long shot, especially not with Dawson.  I broke away from my rules a few times during this adventure, but I am happy that I always went back and worked on this set.  Dawson is my favorite player from my youth and I am proud that I have been able to gather up a very nice collection of his cards in a relatively short time period.

What’s next?  More Dawsons of course.  I mean come on, I cannot stop now.  What I can do is drift a little more so that is my intention.  I’ve seen some incredible game used and certified autograph cards of ‘The Hawk’ that I would love to obtain.  Plus there are all of the cards issued after the 1989 releases out there too.

But, my main goal was accomplished and I am very excited about that.  Stay tuned as I will start featuring my ‘Fab 5 Andre Dawson Cards’ next week!!!! 

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Steve Trout Autograph TTM Success!!!

In just 26 days Steve Trout returned all 3 of these cards signed.  The 1984 Toppd and Fleer cards look great, and Trout’s signature has a classic-script fell to it…

Steve Trout played for the Chicago Cubs from 1983 into the 1987 season.  As a Cub he was 43-38 which is his best record amongst the 4 major league teams he played for during his 12-season career.

Thanks for the great autographs Steve!!! 

trout

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #6

‘The 40/40 Club’ – 1980’s – Card #6

Ken Griffey, Jr. – 1989 Upper Deck

I have never seen a player enter the league with the fanfare that Ken Griffey Jr. had.  A hobby legend before he even took a swing in the major leagues, Junior was destined for greatness.  He may not reach each and every lofty goal that fans and experts pegged him for at the young age of 18, but ‘The Kid’ has had a brilliant career.

Where do you start?  With a swing that is comparable to the most skilled hitters of all-time or the brilliance of a defensive genius?  Let’s change it up a little and go defense first this time.

At a young age, Griffey was found on highlight reels for his remarkable play in the field.  Never tagged as one of the fastest guys in the game, Griffey had a nose for the ball and was able to make unbelievable catches look common.  His arm strength was good but it was his ability to get to the ball and create outs, which would have been hits or home runs otherwise, is what made Griffey stand alone.  A winner of 10 consecutive Gold Glove awards, beginning with his second year in the league, Griffey dominated center field for a decade with the Seattle Mariners.  Making impossible catch after impossible catch, Griffey played defense superbly and made it his mission to make outs of of possible hits.

Offensively, Griffey is dynamic.  Through the 2008 season, Griffey had already eclipsed the baseball milestone of 600 home runs.  Today he stands at 611 and if he can remain healthy and has a desire to play for another 4 years, 700 is not improbable.  In addition to his power hitting, Griffey is a very good contact hitter.  With a career batting averge of .288, with 2,680 total hits, Griffey has hit .300 or better in 8 seasons.  And along with the hits, the RBI pour in.  Junior has 1,772 RBI and has also scored 1,612 runs.  He was also a base stealing threat during the first 10 years of his career.  To date, he has 184 stolen bases on his resume.

Ken Griffey, Jr. won 1 MVP award while placing in the Top 10 6 other times.  In his MVP season of 1997, Griffey hit .304 while smacking 56 home runs and collecting 147 RBI.  In that season, he also stole 15 bases and scored 125 runs.

As  mentioned prior, ‘The Kid’ has won 10 Gold Gloves.    He is also the winner of 7 Silver Slugger awards and is a 13-time All-star.

Ken Griffey, Jr. has never played in a World Series.  In his limited post-season experience, just 18 games in 20 years, ‘The Kid’ has been phenomenal.  With a .290 average, Griffey has crushed 6 home runs while collecting 11 RBI and scoring 12 runs. 

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