Friday, December 31, 2010

Bobblehead Of The Day: World Famous Dodger Dog

Finally, the last day of the year. This will be my final post of 2010. I will show one more bobblehead . Today's bobblehead is another Christmas gift from my wife, the "World Famous" Dodger Dog bobblehead.

I'm not exactly sure of all the details on this bobblehead, so if someone has some info on it, I'd love to know more. From everything I've read, this little guy was sold at the Top of the Park gift shop at Dodger Stadium in 2002, and there were only 10,000 made. 

What we've got here is a Dodger Dog, dressed in a Dodgers' uniform. He's got a dabble of mustard down the middle, and he's also catching a ball. He's wearing pants, and bobbles from the waste. The base of the bobble has a patch of grass and underneath it reads, "World Famous Dodger Dogs Since 1958".

Here's a little info on the Dodger Dog, from LAWeekly:
The Dodger Dog is one of the most famous hot dogs in American sporting (and eating) history. It's iconic, storied and quintessentially Los Angeles.

The Morrell Meat Company was the first to make Dodger Dogs. The Dodger Dog was invented by Thomas Arthur, the very first concessions manager of Dodger Stadium back in 1962. He called it a "foot long dog," even though it was only ten inches. People complained about the name, so he came up with a new one, "Dodger Dog." It was probably a good decision.

In 1972, Farmer John (a big-time Dodgers sponsor) took over the hot dog making duties from the Morrell Meat Company. Then, in the mid 90's, they tried to switch from grilling the dogs to boiling them. The fans were irate, and this terrible new idea was quickly put to pasture.

Today, Dodger Dogs are still the big ticket item (they sell roughly 25,000 per game), but they aren't the only option to satisfy your love of protein cylinders. Your dogs can be offered up steamed or grilled, or in the form of Super Dogs (all beef), picante dogs (spicy) or kosher dogs, courtesy of Hebrew National.
Let's take a look at the Dodger Dog  bobble:

 I love Dodger Dogs and I love bobbleheads, which makes this item a favorite in my Dodger collection. This was also one of my "white whales", and I'm happy to have finally gotten my hands on it.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Sandy Koufax

I just wanted to say Happy Birthday to the greatest left-handed pitcher of all time and my favorite baseball player of all time.

Happy Birthday Sandy Koufax.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2006 Topps Finest Hong-Chih Kuo Rookie Autograph

On Christmas, my wife gave me a couple of items for my two Dodger collections, a new bobblehead and a new card. I'll show the bobble in a future post. As for the card, she got me a 2006 Topps Finest Hong-Chih Kuo Autograph rookie.

I've got many Kuo cards, but no autographs in the collection, so I was real happy when I got this. I'm a huge fan of Kuo's, and I think he's gonna have a great 2011. I love Kuo in the Closer role if Jonathan Broxton faulters again. It's just a matter of how careful the Dodgers and Don Mattingly will be with Kuo and that elbow of his.

Yesterday, while reading up on fellow Taiwanese player Chin Lung Hu, I found out Hong-Chih Kuo had the second most plate appearances amongst Taiwan-born players in Dodgers history. My favorite Hong-Chih Kuo plate appearance of all time is his famous "bat flip". Back in 2007, the Dodgers played the Mets, and Kuo became the first Taiwanese born player to hit a homerun in the majors. He hit the homerun off of John Maine, who had just given up back-to-back homeruns to Wilson Betemit and Matt Kemp. After Kuo connected with the ball he flipped the bat and watched it go out. It was classic. Here's the video:

Monday, December 27, 2010

Goodbye To Hu

The Dodgers shipped Chin-Lung Hu off to the New York Mets today for minor league left-handed pitcher Michael Antonini.

The middle infielder, who is all glove and no bat, is out of options. He actually wasn't that bad at the minors league level, batting .303 over four season in AAA. But he could never hit major league pitching, batting just .191 in 173 at bats over four seasons in Los Angeles.

 Dodger Thoughts' Jon Weisman has the scoop on Antonini:
Antonini has primarily been a starting pitcher in the minors and was exclusively so in 2010, posting a 4.32 ERA with 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings in 23 Double-A starts and a 5.11 ERA with 6.1 strikeouts per nine innings in six Triple-A starts. This does not compare favorably, for example, with the credentials John Ely had when he was acquired by the Dodgers a year ago, so I wouldn't count on Antonini being much of a factor in 2011. But you never know.

At least the Dodgers got something in return for Hu, who was out of options.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Bobblehead Of The Day: Shawn Green

Click here to purchase
Today's Bobblehead of the Day is Shawn Green. I think my favorite memory of Shawn Green was his four homerun game on May 23, 2002. Green hit four home runs in one game against the Brewers. He also set the record for most total bases in one game, 19,after going 6 for 6, with a single and double to go with his four home runs. I'll never forget that game. It was a day game,and I had to listen to it on the radio at work. The whole time I wished I was at home watching.

Green retired in 2008, finishing his career with 328 homeruns and 1070 rbi. You can see all of Green's stats here.

On Thursday, July 18, 2002, the Dodgers gave away Shawn Green bobbleheads to the first 50,000 fans in attendance. Presented by Albertsons Supermarket, this bobblehead was made by BD&A. This was the second of three bobbleheads given away that year. The other two were Paul LoDuca(5/31) and Hideo Nomo(8/24).

The Dodgers played the San Diego Padres that day and lost 4-1. Andy Ashby started for the Dodgers, Brett Tomko for the Padres. Brett Tomko got the win(yes, he did win games). Shawn Green went 0 for 3 with a walk on his bobblehead day.

Here's the nodder:

This is another one of those BD&A bobbles with the giant clown feet. I don't understand why they gave the bobble this feature. I do think they did a great job of making this look like Shawn though. The facial features are pretty similar to the real Green.

That's it for the 2002 bobbleheads. I'm almost done with displaying the entire SGA collection. I can't wait to start getting some of those 2011 bobbles.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

I want to wish everyone out there a Merry Christmas. I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful day.

Here are some Christmas Dodger links:

Kershaw and new wife head to Africa. Dodgers' Ace, Clayton Kershaw, and his new bride, Ellen, will be going to Zambia in January. The two will be a on a mission spreading the good word and spending time with orphans in this poor African nation, where two-thirds of the population lives below the national poverty line.

Casey Blake, philanthropist. Blake, who lives in the small town of Indianola, Iowa, donated $1 million to the Indianola school district back in February and challenged the community to match it. The Beard is active in fund-raisers to help the community match his $1-million donation.

Dodger Christmas trees. Vin Scully Is My Homeboy has been getting pics from some Dodger fans of their Christmas trees. It's some cool stuff check it out.

Seasons Greeting from the Dodgers. This greeting card is showing off the new Dodgers' rotation. Click the pic below.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Koufax Jersey Sells For $80,000

A game-worn, no. 28 Sandy Koufax Brooklyn Dodgers jersey, signed by greatest left-handed pitcher of all time, sold for $80,393 on Koufax's original no. 32 was removed from the jersey when it was sent down to the minors.

Here's the item's description from Lelands:
We can count the number of Brooklyn Dodger Koufax gamers that we know of on two fingers... This white home jersey has the all-original "Dodgers" across the front in blue felt. The Rawlings "Hall of Fame" size 44 tagging is on the front left tail, along with a chain stitched "Koufax 57" underneath the tag. Inside the front tail are the washing instructions and a "Set 1 1957" flag tag. The original number "32" was removed from the jersey when it was sent down to the minors. It has been replaced by the number "28" on the front and back. When held to the light, the outline of the original "32" still can be seen. The lefty pitcher Koufax signed his name on the front of the jersey in blue Sharpie. The signature is graded an 8/10. The jersey shows very nice use with no holes or tears from this living legend.
This is only one of two jerseys known to have been worn in a game by the Hall of Fame pitcher. You can check out Sandy's career stats here.

This is one beautiful jersey, and in my opinion, worth every penny.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Nick Adenhart's Killer Sentenced

Andrew Gallow, the man convicted of killing Anaheim Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart, was sentenced to 51 years to life.

Gallo was convicted in September of three counts of second-degree murder and single counts of drunk driving, hit-and-run driving and driving under the influence of alcohol and causing great bodily injury.The judge in the case sentenced Gallow to 15 years to life on each of the murder counts, with the additional six years added for the other crimes.

Prosecutors said Gallo’s blood-alcohol level was nearly three times the legal limit when he ran a red light in Orange County on April 9, 2009, and T-boned the car carrying Adenhart and his three friends, Courtney Stewart, Henry Pearson and Jon Wilhite. Wilhite was the only survivor. At the time of the accident, Gallo was on probation for felony drunken driving.

Dodgers DFA Leach, Sign Nestor

The Dodgers have DFA'd left-handed reliever Brent Leach in order to make room on the 40-man roster for Matt Guerrier.

Leach pitched 20 1/3 innings in 38 games for the Dodgers in 2009. He had a 5.75 era, but limited lefties to a .156 batting average. He never made it back to LA. In 2010, Leach split time between AA Chattanooga and AAA Albuquerque. At Chattanooga he went 7-3 with a 4.57 era. At Albuquerque, he went 3-2 with a 6.35 era in 26 appearances.

Leach will try his luck in Japan, as he's signed with the Yokohama BayStars.

In other crappy pitcher news, the Dodgers have signed local boy and former Giant Scott Nestor to a minor league deal. Between Single A San Jose and AAA Fresno, Nestor posted a 5.91 era in 43 appearances.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

LA Kings To Host Dodgers Pride Night

Back on July 8, the Dodgers hosted Los Angeles Kings Night at Dodger Stadium. Kings Captain Dustin Brown and Assistant Captain Matt Greene threw out the ceremonial first pitch. They were accompanied by the Kings Ice Crew and mascot Bailey. Kings alumni Daryl Evans, Ian Turnbull, Jamie Storr and Brad Norton signed autographs and took pictures with the fans in the My Town section. Those fans also received an LA Kings T-Shirt.

Now it's the Kings' turn to host the Dodgers. On Thursday, January 13, the Los Angeles Kings will celebrate Dodgers Pride Night at Staples Center.

Yesterday, I spoke with Bill Allison from the Los Angeles Kings, he gave me the details on this event. The Kings will be giving away special pucks commemorating Dodgers Pride Night. There will be special ticket pricing if you use the promo code DODGERS, $93 on the 100 level, $61 on the 200 level and $27 on the 300 level. There is also a VIP Package. For $150 you get a ticket on the 100 level, VIP access to a catered locker room suite next to the LA Kings locker room, and a chance to meet Dodger players, although Bill wasn't sure which players would be on hand. There are only 50 VIP spaces available.

It sounds like it's gonna be a fun night. I can't wait to go. Thanks to the Kings and Bill Allison for all the helpful information.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Dodgers News And Notes

Here's a couple of Dodgers notes on this Sunday night:

Buy a Dodgers' ticket Mini-Plan, receive a holiday gift pack. Tomorrow's the last day to take advantage of this deal. Here's the details: If you pay for any of the Dodgers' mini-plans in full by Monday, December 20, you'll receive a special holiday gift pack that features an Andre Ethier Fleece Blanket, a Matt Kemp bobblehead, and a 2011 Team Photo Calendar. The Dodgers are offering 25,21,14 and 10 game mini-plans.  Sounds like a good deal to me.

Dodgers and Cubbies to play in Vegas.  On Sunday, March 13, 2011, the Dodgers and the Chicago Cubs will play a split-squad Spring Training game at Cashman Field in Las Vegas. Vegas was home to the Dodgers AAA affiliate 51's from 2001-08.

Dodger memories of 1980. Jon Weisman of Dodger Thoughts remembers the last week of the 1980 season, as the Dodgers were attempting to rally from three games behind Houston with three games to play. This is a great read.

Introduction to 1988 World Series. Roberto of Vin Scully Is My Homeboy shows us the first 12 minutes of the introduction to Game 1 of the 1988 World Series. Vin Scully and Joe Garagiola broadcasted this game for NBC.

Dodgers 2011 payroll is nearing $110 million. Jon Weisman gives us a breakdown of the 2011 payroll, which includes players currently on the roster and deferred payments to guys who are no longer with the team. The payroll is approaching $110 million.

Joel Guzman signs with Chunichi. Guzman signed a one-year/$500,000 deal with the Dragons. Guzman is a one-time top Dodgers prospect, who signed with Los Angeles as a 16-year-old out of the Dominican Republic in 2001. At the time, his signing bonus of $2.25 million was a record for an international prospect. The Dodgers traded Guzman to Tampa Bay for Julio Lugo at the 2006 trade deadline.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Bobblehead Of The Day: Elton Brand Buffalo Braves

The Lakers played the Philadelphia 76ers tonight, and it gave me a chance to see one of my favorite players in the league, Elton Brand, who's been pretty hot for Philly this season. Watching him reminded me of one of my favorite bobbleheads in my collection, my Elton Brand Retro Buffalo Braves bobble.

Before the Clippers played crappy basketball in Los Angeles, they played it in San Diego. But what a lot of people forget is that the franchise actually started out in Buffalo, NY, and they were known as the Buffalo Braves. They were one of three franchises that joined the NBA in 1970-71 season along with the Portland Trail Blazers and Cleveland Cavaliers.

On  March 1, 2006, the Los Angeles Clippers paid tribute to the Braves and wore their throwback Buffalo Braves uniforms. The Clippers also gave away Elton Brand bobbleheads that night. The bobblehead depicts Elton in the orange & black Braves uniform. Presented by Arco gasoline, this bobblehead was given to all fans in attendance.

The Clippers played the New Orleans Hornets that night, and won 89-67. Elton Brand went 11 for 18 from the field and scored 25 points and had 7 rebounds and 5 assists.

Here's Elton:

This is one of my favorite bobbleheads. I love the retro uni. I like the stance. Plus, this looks like Elton. This is one of the few things the Clippers have ever done right.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Past Player Appearance: Andre Ethier And Clayton Kershaw - June 2009

I'm gonna revisit some past player appearances that I attended before I started writing this blog. Today I'm gonna talk about a Dodger appearance in 2009. 

On Friday, June 5, 2009, Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp were supposed to appear at the Macy's Men's Store in Northridge. The appearance was to take place from 12:00-1:00pm.  It was a promotion for Father's Day. The deal was you had to buy $75 worth of merchandise, show your receipt to an associate, then you were given a cheap Macy's baseball and sent to a line. There was also a line for people who didn't purchase the merchandise. Those people had to wait until everyone else got their autographs.

I had to work that day, but I wanted to go real bad. Northridge is 10 minutes from my home and I didn't want to miss the opportunity. Knowing how popular Ethier and Kemp are, I figured I would have to get there early. But I couldn't miss work. Luckily my wife went and held a place for me. She got there 3 hours early, and was still 200 people back. When she got to the line she found out Matt Kemp wasn't going to appear. Clayton Kershaw  was going to take his place. Kemp is my favorite player, so I was very disappointed. By I love Kershaw too, so I wasn't too upset.

At around 11:30, I got to Macy's. It was total chaos. It was like the president was showing up. There were hundreds of people there, mostly women who wanted to see Kemp and Ethier. I'm sure many of those women were disappointed when they found out Kemp wasn't going to be there. When 12:00 finally came, Ethier and Kershaw came down to the signing table. As soon as Ethier showed his face the women went nuts. It was like the Beatles on Ed Sullivan. Girls were going crazy. I have never heard anything like that.

Dre and Clay

We were told that we could only get that cheap Macy's ball signed and that no pictures would be allowed. The line moved very slowly, but when we finally got to the front, Andre and Clayton were very nice. Andre was talkative and Clayton was quiet, just as I expected. They signed the ball, my wife took some pictures from far, and we moved on.

Fading signatures.

Cheap ball

I was real happy to get their autographs, but I must admit, it was the most unorganized event I have ever been to. The signatures on that cheap ball are fading after a year and a half. I don't think it was worth the $75 I was forced to pay.