Category Archives: Chicago Cubs

1976 Headline: Williams Released By The Oakland A’s, Opts For Retirement

1976 Headline: Williams Released By The Oakland A’s, Opts For Retirement

On this day in 1976, Billy Williams was released by the Oakland Athletics, ending his 18-season major league career.

During his 18 years in the big leagues, Williams spent 16 with the Cubs, and his final two with the A’s.  Most known for his incredible left-handed swing, Williams collected 2,711 hits, alongside 434 doubles and 426 home runs.  He was a catalyst to the Cubs’ offense, and finished in 2nd place for the MVP award on two occasions.

Williams was a 6-time All-Star, Rookie of the Year winner, batting champion, and member of the 1987 Hall of Fame class.

Congratulations to Billy Williams on a fantastic career!!!

1989 HEADLINE: Jerome Walton Captures NL Rookie Of The Year Award!

1989 HEADLINE: Jerome Walton Captures NL Rookie Of The Year Award!

What a year 1989 was for Jerome Walton.

Not only did he make his major league debut in 1989 with the Chicago Cubs, but he also won the NL Rookie of the Year award that year while also helping the team capture their division crown!

At 23 years old, Walton had the presence of a veteran at the plate.  And his skills shined brightest in that rookie campaign.  Led by a batting average of .293, Walton collected 139 for the Cubs.  He also stole 24 bases, scored 64 runs, and drove in 46 more.  And he did all of this while patrolling one of the toughest center-field positions in the majors!

Congratulations on a fabulous rookie season Jerome.  Today we celebrate you winning the NL Rookie of the Year award in 1989!!!

Billy Williams Has Been Traded?? – You’ve Got To Be Kidding Me!!!

Billy Williams Has Been Traded?? – You’ve Got To Be Kidding Me!!!

Sad but true.  On this day back in 1974 Billy Williams was traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Oakland Athletics for Darold Knowles, Bob Locker, and Manny Trillo.

It was a sad day in Chicago as one of the Cub’s all-time greatest players was shipped away during a rebuilding process.  The man that had occupied left field for the Cubs for the last 16 seasons was gone.  Billy Williams’ 16 year career as a Chicago Cubs player was over!!!

Williams played the final 2 years of his career with Oakland and still put up respectable numbers for the A’s.  He batted just .230 but was able to hit 34 home runs and drive in 122 runs.  It wasn’t until this trade to the A’s that Williams was able to make the post-season.  In 1975 the A’s lost to the Boston Red Sox in the ALCS while Billy Williams went 0-for-7 in the series.

Personally for me, it is very hard to see Williams wear anything other than ‘Cubbie Blue’.  Although I never got to see him play live, I have seen plenty of highlights and have read books and articles about his amazing career and it always feels strange to me that his career ended in Oakland and not in Chicago.

But, as we all know, baseball is a business and players are treated as assets and not humans.  So, although I am saddened by how his career ended I am happy that Billy Williams was able to finally make it to the playoffs.

But this does look a little strange to me still…

Andre Dawson 2013 Panini America’s Pastime ‘Career Numbers’ Game-Used Blue Relic Jersey Card

Andre Dawson 2013 Panini America’s Pastime ‘Career Numbers’ Game-Used Blue Relic Jersey Card

I’d been hunting down this bad-boy for a few weeks, and I finally scored.

Have a peek:

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I already owned the version with the White chunk of jersey.

And then I snagged the one that has a White chunk with a Cubby Blue stripe running through it.

And now, I have grabbed the All-Blue version!

This sweet card is serial numbered to just 125 copies.  Mine is stamped as #6/125.

I don’t now if other versions of the same card exist with varying pieces of jersey, but I am definitely on the watch for them.  And if one pops up, I will do my best to bring it home.

Do you know more about the other versions?  If you do, please share the info.  Thanks.

1990 HEADLINE: Dawson Joins Elite 2,000 Hits, 400 Home Runs, & 300 Stolen Base Club

1990 HEADLINE: Dawson Joins Elite 2,000 Hits, 400 Home Runs, & 300 Stolen Base Club

1990 HEADLINE: Dawson Joins Elite Hits, Home Runs, & Stolen Base Club

On this day in 1990, Andre Dawson became just the second player in major league baseball history to achieve 2,000 hits, 30o home runs, and 300 steals.

The feat that got him to this mark?  The 300th stolen base of his career.  The steal came in the bottom of the first inning against the New York Mets.  Dawson singled off of Mets pitcher Ron Darling and immediately stole second base putting himself in scoring position.  He would score the second run of the game for the Cubs on a single by outfielder Derrick May.  The Cubs went on to lose the game 11-5.

Congratulations on #300 ‘Hawk’!!!!

Dawson CC

1983 HEADLINE: Ferguson Jenkins Captures Final Win Of His Career, #284

1983 HEADLINE: Ferguson Jenkins Captures Final Win Of His Career, #284

On this day in 1983, Fergie Jenkins recorded the final win of his 19-year major league career.

The win, #284 of his career and #6 of the 1983 baseball season, came in a 7-6 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Wrigley Field.

Jenkins entered the game in a relief role and blew the save allowing two runs to the Pirates in the top of the seventh inning giving the Bucs the lead.  But, the Cubs scored two runs in the bottom half of the inning giving the Cubs the lead and putting Jenkins on track for the win.

On the night, Jenkins threw 1.2 innings allowing 2 hits and 2 runs while walking 2 batters and striking out 2 others.  He lasted long enough to secure the victory, with Lee Smith picking up the save.

Happy Anniversary Mr. Jenkins!!!

Jenkins 1983

1953 HEADLINE: Ernie Banks Hits First Home Run Of His Major League Career

1953 HEADLINE:  Ernie Banks Hits First Home Run Of His Major League Career

On this day in 1953, Ernie Banks hit the first home run of his career as a professional baseball player.

Nobody knew what was in store for Banks’ future, but ‘Mr. Cub’ certainly left a lasting impression on the city of Chicago and the sport of baseball.

Home Run #1 was just the start.  The start of 512 career home runs.  The start of 11 All-star appearances.  The start of 1 Gold Glove award.  And the start of 2 Most Valuable Player awards.  Home Run #1 started it all…

Congratulations and Happy Anniversary Mr. Ernie Banks!!!

Banks

Happy Birthday Ryne Sandberg!!!

Happy Birthday Ryne Sandberg!!!

Ryne Sandberg turns 55 years old today!!

One of the greatest offensive infielders to have played the game, Sandberg is a Hall of Famer and fan favorite.

And in the city of Chicago he is still as loved today as he was during his playing days with the team that started more than 25 years ago.

Sandberg is currently managing the Philadelphia Phillies as he took over for Charlie Manuel a few seasons ago.  I wish him well in his quest to return the Phillies back to the top of the NL East and into the playoffs.  I just hope that he does not do it at the expense of my Marlins…

Go Get ‘Em Ryno!!!  Happy Birthday!!!

Andre Dawson 2014 Topps Allen & Ginter – Mini Base

Andre Dawson 2014 Topps Allen & Ginter – Mini Base

Last week I showed off the Andre Dawson 2014 Topps Allen & Ginter base card that I scored for my collection.

And now this week, I will show you the Base Mini card from the set.

Have a peek:

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Ok, and now with that being over, I can try to move on to some of the tougher cards from the set like the mini parallels and Full-Size relic card.

Wish me luck.

Fergie Jenkins 2013 Topps ‘Million Dollar Chase’ Certified Autograph Baseball Card

Fergie Jenkins 2013 Topps ‘Million Dollar Chase’ Certified Autograph Baseball Card

When I tell that I have tracked this card for more than a year, I don’t believe that I am stretching my estimation of the time.  I know that when I first saw versions of this card hitting Ebay that I was going to end up bringing one into my collection of Fergie Jenkins autographs.  I have a good collection of Topps certified signed cards of Fergie, and this one is a great complement to the lot.

Way back, probably 9-10 months ago, I saw one sell for just $4.99.  And ever since that time I’ve been waiting.  Waiting for the next bargain to hit.  Waiting for the next ‘deal’ to cross my plate.

Well, that wait took us until August of 2014.

And while I did not pay as low as $4.99, I did nab this beauty for just $5.95.  Yes – $5.95!

And I am thrilled.   The card is serial numbered to just 300 total copies and mine is stamped as #143/300.

Have a look:

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I am so excited to finally bring this card into my ‘Ultimate Jenkins’ collection.

And now, I can turn my attention to the next hunt!  Fingers crossed that I can find another sweet deal like this one…

Wish me luck!