Tag Archives: dodgers

1981 HEADLINE: Fernando Valenzuela Becomes 1st Rookie To Capture Cy Young and ROY Awards!!!

1981 HEADLINE: Fernando Valenzuela Becomes 1st Rookie To Capture Cy Young and ROY Awards!!!

On this day in 1981, Fernando Valenzuela won the National League’s Cy Young Award.

The week prior, he was named as the Rookie Of The Year, becoming the first player in major league history to earn both the ROY and the Cy Young Award in the same season.

The numbers?  Let’s take a closer look, shall we??

13-7 record with 11 complete games and 8 shutouts.  180 strikeouts with just 61 walks and an ERA of 2.48.

Not too bad for a 20-year old hurler, huh??

Happy Anniversary Mr. Valenzuela!!!

1988 HEADLINE: Dodgers’ Orel Hershiser Wins Cy Young Award With Unanimous Vote

1988 HEADLINE: Dodgers’ Orel Hershiser Wins Cy Young Award With Unanimous Vote

On this date in 1988, Orel Hershiser captured the National League’s Cy Young award in a unanimous vote.

Taking all 24 first-place votes, this award capped an unbelievable season for the right-hander.

A close look at the numbers:

23-8 during the regular season with 15 complete games and 8 shutouts.  In 267 innings of work, Hershiser compiled a low ERA of just 2.25.  His dominant year led to another selection to the National League All-star team and his first Cy Young Award.  During the playoffs, Hershiser led the Dodgers to the World Series championship while winning both the NLCS and World Series MVP awards in the process!!

Happy Anniversary Mr. Hershiser!!!

1975 Topps Set Card 314/660 – #242 – Jay Johnstone, Phillies

1975 Topps Set Card 314/660 – #242 – Jay Johnstone, Phillies

Progress: 314/660

Card Number:  242

Player Name:  Jay Johnstone

Team:  Philadelphia Phillies

Position:  Outfield

Image Style:  Posed Portrait

Years In The Major Leagues: 20 seasons, 1966-85

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Jay Johnstone played in 122 games for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1975.  He connected for 115 hits in 350 at-bats en route to a .329 batting average.  Of his 115 hits, Johnstone connected for 19 doubles, 3 triples, 7 home runs, and 86 singles.  He also scored 50 runs for the team while driving in 54.

Notes From Career:  Jay Johnstone played for eight different major league clubs during his 20-season big league career.  He is a lifetime .267 hitter with 1,254 hits in 1,748 games played.  Johnstone has 215 doubles, 38 triples, and 102 home runs on his resume.  He is a member of two World Series championship squads – the 1978 New York Yankees and the 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers.

242

SIGNING RESULTS: 1962 NL MVP, Dodgers Great Mr. Maury Wills!!

SIGNING RESULTS: 1962 NL MVP, Dodgers Great Mr. Maury Wills!!

Wow, this former player has been on my ‘want list’ for years.

And after having a few shots to get him and missing out on the opportunity, I finally jumped in with both feet and registered myself and my blank baseball for a private signing event with the former NL MVP.

And the results are perfect.

Have a look:

Maury Wills Ball

He’s got a pretty neat looking signature, doesn’t he?!?!

I’m digging it, and the added #30 and MVP NL ’62 inscription as well.

Maury Wills is the man.  He is a former league MVP, stolen base champ, 5-time All-Star, 2-time Gold Glove Winner, and 3-time World Series Champion!

Before Rickey Henderson, there was Lou Brock.  And before there was Lou Brock, it was Maury Wills!  He was an offensive machine, a true spark-plug for the Dodgers franchise – a career .281 hitter with an on-base percentage of .330.  Wills has 2,134 career hits with 586 stolen bases and 1,067 runs scored in 1,942 games played.

This is an autograph that I am super excited to have in my collection.  And it will rest with some of my other Dodgers’ balls – Duke Snider, Kirk Gibson, and Orel Hershiser.

Yeah Baby!!

Happy Birthday Fernando Valenzuela!!!

Happy Birthday Fernando Valenzuela!!!

Today is Fernando Valenzuela’s 54th Birthday!!!

So here is a ‘Happy Birthday’ cheer for a man who captivated the sport of baseball and the city of Los Angeles when he debuted as a major league player in 1981.  I firmly believe that if it wasn’t for Fernando and the ‘Fernando-Mania’ that followed as he became a baseball star, there would be fewer Latin players in the sport today.  Of all of the Latin players that have been in the league since 1980, Valenzuela’s impact on the sport and in the Latin sports culture should be recognized as the greatest.

Fernando pitched in the big leagues for 17 seasons.  He has a career record of 173-153, with a career-high 21 wins coming in 1986.  He has a lifetime ERA of 3.54 and he struck out 2,074 batters in 2,930 innings of work.

Valenzuela is a 6-time All-Star, a Gold Glove winner, a Silver Slugger winner, a Cy Young Award winner, and a Rookie Of The Year Award winner.  He is also a member of the 1981 World Series Champion LA Dodgers.

Happy Birthday Fernando!!!  You are a true inspiration!!!

1975 Topps Set Card 304/660 – #137 – Terry Forster, White Sox

1975 Topps Set Card 304/660 – #137 – Terry Forster, White Sox

Progress: 304/660

Card Number:  137

Player Name:  Terry Forster

Team:  Chicago White Sox

Position:  Pitcher

Image Style:  Posed Pitching

Years In The Major Leagues: 16 seasons, 1971-86

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Terry Forster appeared in 17 games for the Chicago White Sox in 1975.  He went 3-3 in those games while also racking up 4 saves.  In 37 innings of work, Forster allowed 30 hits and 12 runs en route to a 2.19 ERA.  He struck out 32 batters in that time while walking 24.

Notes From Career:  Terry Forster pitched for five different clubs during his 16 season MLB career.  He put together a record of 54-65 over that time with 5 complete games and 127 saves.  Forster has a lifetime ERA of 3.23 and he struck out 791 batters in 1,105 innings of work.

137

1975 Topps Set Card 298/660 – #291 – Bill Sudakis, Yankees

1975 Topps Set Card 298/660 – #291 – Bill Sudakis, Yankees

Progress: 298/660

Card Number:  291

Player Name:  Bill Sudakis

Team:  New York Yankees

Position:  Designated Hitter, 1st Base

Image Style:  In-Game Action

Years In The Major Leagues: 8 seasons, 1968-75

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Bill Sudakis played in 50 games during the 1975 baseball season, splitting time between the Angels and Indians.  Combined, Sudakis had 16 hits in 104 at-bats en route to a .154 batting average.  He had 2 doubles and 2 home runs while scoring 8 runs and driving in 9.

Notes From Career:  Bill Sudakis played for six different teams during his 8-year big league career.  He is a lifetime .234 hitter with 362 hits to his credit.  Sudakis has 56 career RBI and 50 home runs to go along with 177 runs scored and 214 RBI.

291

1975 Topps Set Card 296/660 – #390 – Ron Cey, Dodgers

1975 Topps Set Card 296/660 – #390 – Ron Cey, Dodgers

Progress: 296/660

Card Number:  390

Player Name:  Ron Cey

Team:  Los Angeles Dodgers

Position:  3rd Base

Image Style: Posed Hitting

Years In The Major Leagues: 17 seasons, 1971-87

Notes From His 1975 Season:  Cey played in 158 games for the Dodgers in 1975.  He hit .283 with 160 hits for the team in 566 at-bats.  Of his 160 hits, Cey connected for 29 doubles and 25 home runs while scoring 72 times and driving in 101 runs.  Cey was selected as a National League All-Star in 1975.

Notes From Career:  Ron Cey is a career .261 hitter with 1,868 hits.  He has 328 doubles and 316 lifetime home runs.  He scored 977 runs during his 17 seasons in the majors, while also driving in 1,139.  Cey is a 6-time All-Star and was the MVP of the 1981 World Series.

390

1988 HEADLINE: Kirk Gibson’s Blast Gives The Dodgers A 1-0 Lead In World Series

1988 HEADLINE: Kirk Gibson’s Blast Gives The Dodgers A 1-0 Lead In World Series

On this day in 1988, Kirk Gibson made baseball history with a walk-off home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series.

In an improbable fashion, Gibson limped to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning to face off against the greatest closer in the game, Dennis Eckersley.  Hobbled by injury, Gibson was barely able to move his hips, but he did get wood on the ball.  And it sailed over the fence for a game-ending, legend-making home run.

Gibson’s blast is one of many World Series highlights that gets attention as the World Series begins.  It is one of the greatest moments in baseball history, and some of the men on the field that day have been considered the best of their era.

Amazingly, that would be Gibson’s lone at-bat in the 1988 World Series.

He sure did make the best of that one shot, huh?

Happy Anniversary Mr. Gibson!!!

Private Signings Results: Cincinnati Reds Legend, Eric ‘The Red’ Davis

Private Signings Results: Cincinnati Reds Legend, Eric ‘The Red’ Davis

If you know me, and you know about my collection, you know that I really try to honor the baseball heroes from my youth.  As much as I can, I really try to celebrate the careers of the players that helped shape my love for the sport as a kid that has carried me all of the way into adulthood.

As I continue to build my collection in this manner, I look for new ways to honor the guys that I cheered for as a kid.

So, when I had a chance to nab Eric Davis as a recent paid signing event, I jumped in with both feet.

And now, this beautifully signed baseball is in my collection!!

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I’ve wanted ‘ED’ in my collection for a very long time.  He was a huge star in the mid-to-late 1980’s and into the 1990’s.  I used to love watching him track down balls in center field and run the bases with power and speed.

I opted for the #44 inscription for my ball as that is how I referred to him for a pretty long time.  When talking baseball with my buddies or pulling cards from packs, it was almost always #44 that I spoke when Davis came up.

I’m very happy to have added him to my collection.  And I think I will set this ball right next to my signed ball of his best-bud, Straw.