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Dodger Baseball

Baseball Cards Older Than You Think

Kids collecting baseball cards. It has been going on for over 100 years. But the origin of the cards was not originally baseball.

Before the Civil War, photography was in it’s infancy. As photography grew in popularity, cabinet cards became fashionable. Cabinet cards were 4X6 and were to be displayed in a family’s cabinet.

Cabinet cards became popular around 1840. Coincidentally, baseball was gaining popularity too. By the end of the Civil War in 1865 baseball teams were popping up almost everywhere.

One of the earliest known cabinet cards contains an image of the 1865 Brooklyn Atlantics. As such, these are not pure baseball cards. Mostly these were used as business cards. No one company was producing them. But they are a window to how the card business would eventually start.

1865 Brooklyn Atlantics

The first true baseball cards were produced by a company called Peck and Snyder, a sporting goods company which produced them between 1868-70.

The front of the card had a photo of the respective team and a cartoon image representing the store in New York. The 1869 set featured the first professional team, the Cincinnati Red Stockings and came in two different sizes.

Technically, there were trade cards since they were given away instead of sold. It would be 20 more years before that would happen. It should also be noted that only 6 of these have ever been authenticated by PSA. At a recent auction, it was sold for 50,000 dollars.

By the late 1800’s, baseball was becoming the national pastime. It was then that Tobacco cards started being distributed inside cigarette packs. This was done also to stiffen the package so the cigarettes would not be crushed.

And since they were in packs of cigarettes, they were not being marketed for kids. That would not happen for another 25 years.

Tobacco cards varied in design and format. They were usually small, 25/8X1 1/2. The first set was issued by the Goodwin Tobacco company. They owned Gypsy Queen and Old Judge  cigarette brands. It was the N167 set.

 

There were 12 cards in the set, all of them New York Giants. Not a stretch considering Goodwin was based in New York City. Between 1886-90, Goodwin was pumping out cards under it’s two brands. The N172 Old Judge is a massive set with over 500 players and 3000 variations known.

Those cards are fairly easy to find. The problem is finding one in good condition. Around the same time, Allen & Ginter, began issuing some of the most beautiful lithographic cards of the era. The first ones, N28, was one of the most popular issues of the 19th-century tobacco era.

Despite their age, over 140 years now, 4000 of these cards have been rated. But you can forget about a 10. None have made that mark.

A little side note for those who still collect, like me. You can get Allen & Ginter cards today with modern players on them. I have several Dodger cards from their set including Koufax, Snider, Kershaw and Seager.

 

Another popular tobacco set was Goodwin’s Champions N 162 set. It featured advanced commercial coloring of the day and was quite striking. Only 8 baseball players are in the set. One of the more popular is King Kelly. These cards can fetch as much as 500 dollars. Another popular card was that of Adrian “Cap” Anson.

 

King Kelly

Cap Anson – Allen & Ginter

In 1890 the major tobacco companies joined forces and became The American Tobacco Company. So in this period, there were few cards produced since ATC was basically a monopoly until it was broken up in 1909. Given the fact that there was no competition, there was no need for incentive to sell cigarettes.

 

 

 

The Golden Age 1909-15

Tobacco companies were at it again after the breakup of ATC. The landmark set of the era is the fabled T-206 set issued from 1909-11. This set features a white border. They were issued in packs of the 15 brands still owned by American Tobacco.

Each back had a different advertisement for each company. The checklist consists of 524 T-206 cards. But there are over 6000 front and back variations, one reason this set is called the monster of baseball card sets.

The Honus Wagner from this set is instantly recognizable to even novice collectors. It is considered the Mona Lisa of baseball cards. Its rarity is due to it being pulled from production early in its run.

The reasons for this are still being debated. Either Wagner not wanting to be associated with smoking, or the lack of adequate compensation. Whatever the reason, it is estimated that between 50-75 Wagner’s still exist. Only a handful are in excellent or better condition. The last one up for auction sold for over 6 million in 2021.

The cards also caused quite a commotion. When a new shipment of cigarettes would arrive, small boys would gather outside of the shops and pester the patrons into giving up their cards.

Despite the age of the set, over 180,000 have been graded. Of those, only 294 have received a 9 or a 10 grade. Commons can be found on Ebay for under 100 dollars.

Also popular were the cards issued by Cracker Jack, 1914-15. And the cards issued by American Caramel, 1909-11.

Also in this period there were cards issued by magazines, candy companies and bakeries. When WWI broke out, card production slowed down due to lack of materials.

After the roaring twenties were over, then came the crash, and owners were worried about attendance. It fell off 70 percent in 31-32. So the era of promotions began. Baseball on radio, night games. And it also helped when they started to sell packs of cards with gum in them for the kids.

It also helped to have the stars of the day right there promoting them. The first major set was made by Goudey. They made Big League chewing gum. The 1933 set featured 240 cards. All wonderfully colored portraits of the players. This would also be Goudey’s biggest set.

This is virtually a Hall of Famer set. Featuring Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx and Lajoie. Owing to his popularity at the time, the 33 Goudey set features four different Ruth cards.

Perhaps the rarest of the group is the Lajoie. He was not included in the original set, but due to an outcry from fans, they made one in 1934. But the only way to get one was to write to the company and request it.

Subsequently, there are less than 100 that have been submitted for grading. So if you have one lying around, it could be worth a lot. A high graded 9 Lajoie sold for 144,000 in 2017.

Goudey would produce cards until 1941. The 34 set featured only 94 cards, one being the rookie card for Hank Greenberg. The 38 set contains Joe DiMaggio’s rookie card.

Lou Gehrig – Goudey 1934

Play Ball cards 39-41, were issued by the Gim Company of Philadelphia. Their 1939 Ted Williams is considered his true rookie card.

Ted Williams Rookie Card – 1939

WWII put an end to baseball card production. It would be 1948 before it started up again. Gum began selling cards in 1948 under the Bowman brand.

The Bowman’s were black and white photos, not particularly attractive. Bowman was competing with Leaf at the time. But leaf did not begin until 1949, although they say 48 on the cards.

The 48 Bowman’s was a small set, 48 cards, but Musial, Berra and Spahn all were featured cards. The Leaf set included the rookie cards of Robinson and Paige. The Leaf set featured color pictures for the first time post WWII.

Stan Musial – Bowman 1948

The 51 Bowman is probably the most revered set from them. It features a Mays rookie. The 51 and 52 sets feature colored portraits. Bowman also features what would be considered Mantle’s rookie card, although that distinction is usually reserved for the 1952 Topps Mantle. Now one of the highest priced cards ever.

Mickey Mantle – Topps 1952

 

A company called Topps entered the scene in 1951. Their first foray into the business was their red and blue back cards in 1951. They were made to look like playing cards and featured a player’s photo and a baseball play on the front.

The Duke Snider card was a single. But they never really caught on, and the next year Topps would go in an entirely different direction, and the monopoly on cards was just beginning.

Duke Snider – Topps 1951 Red Back

Late in 1951, Topps employee, Sy Berger, designed the 1952 Topps card set on the kitchen table in his apartment in Brooklyn, using cardboard and scissors. Berger is now considered a legend in the collectors world. He worked for Topps for 50 years and is considered one of the most influential hobby Figures. He was even honored by the Hall of Fame in 1988, crediting him with the development of the baseball card.

 

On Topps of the World

 

The 52 Topps set broke the mold. These cards were bright, well designed and the fans loved them. The Mantle in this set has fetched record prices at baseball auctions. In August of 2022, one sold for 12.6 million dollars. In actuality it is a second year card since the 51 Bowman is considered his rookie card. Other rookies in the set, Eddie Mathews, Billy Martin, Hoyt Wilhelm, Gil McDougald, and Joe Nuxhall.

The 52 Bowman cards tried to keep up. They were also painted portraits of the players with a white border. Unlike the Topps which had the players autograph in a rectangular box and the teams logo in the upper left corner of the box, Bowman had the players autograph across his portrait. No team logo.

These cards were still a little larger than the cards made today are. It would be 1957 before the 2 1/2X 3 1/2 size would become standard.

The autograph was taken from the contract the player signed with Topps. The back featured the prior seasons stats and lifetime stats. It also featured a short bio of the players and his personal statistics such as height, weight and which way he hit and threw.

The set was also released in six series with the stars usually being in the final series. This created what would become a shortage of cards in series six being sold since it usually was not released until September, and would only be in stores a short time.

Berger confessed that unsold cards were loaded into onto a garbage scow and dumped into the Atlantic ocean. Maybe 300 to 500 cases.

Over the next several years, Topps and Bowman battled it out, and by that I mean in court. The haggle was over signing players to exclusive rights. Legal costs usually were over 100,000 a year. Up until 1954, no card company had ever sold over 1,000,000 dollars worth of cards.

Topps finally bought out Bowman in 1956 thus establishing their monopoly on baseball cards which has lasted until now.

The 1955 Bowman set was their last full set. And it was unique in design since the players were placed in what looked like a TV set.

Mickey Mantle – Bowman

Oh there were still other company’s making cards, but not in the volume Topps was. O’Pee Chee, Leaf, Fleer, all made cards. Food company’s would offer local teams cards.

But Topps was the big dog. Using the players actual photos in different formats became the norm in the mid-50’s. The 54 Topps sets also used a player posing either hitting or fielding next to the photo of the player. In a pitchers case it was throwing. 55-56 the cards were horizontal instead of vertical with the same two images of the player.

In 1957 they changed the size and once again it was a photo of the player on the field with his name, position and team in block letters below his photo. They had a white border. One of the more famous error cards is in this set. The Hank Aaron card negative was reversed and it shows him hitting left-handed.

Hank Aaron – 1957 Topps – Batting Left Handed

 

The 58 card was very plain with a players photo on a different colored back ground. Name and team below the photo with the teams logo on the front.

Since the Dodgers and Giants had moved west, the logo on their hats was airbrushed on and not entirely accurate. Also some players who had been traded were shown capless. A trend that continued for many years until Topps started making traded sets that were released in the middle of the season.

The 59 set is still my favorite, since LA won the Championship that season and I loved the style. Different colored borders around the players photo which was in a circle. Logo name and position on the front. Dark and lighter colored backs with his entire career stats for each season. Series 7 had lighter backs with darker ink used. That is where you find Wally Moon and a couple of other Dodgers. Duke Snider was #20 in series one.

In the 60’s, Fleer got the rights to make cards of Hall of Famers. They would make two sets, 60-61. They actually got away with making a card for a player who was not yet a Hall of Famer, Ted Williams, in 1960. 60 was Williams last season.

In 1975, Fleer asked Topps for permission to print stickers and other non-card items of active players. Topps refused. Fleer then sued them to break the monopoly. After years of litigation, in 1981, Fleer won the suit and the MLBPA and Topps were ordered to issue licenses to other company’s. Fleer and Donruss began making sets in 1981.

Topps and Donruss also had sets issued for Canadian fans. Some were made under the Leaf brand. O-Pee-Chee and Topps also.

Topps sued again over issuing cards with gum. They won that suit and Fleer continued issuing cards without gum. Donruss did the same. Fleer would issue stickers with their cards and Donruss came up with the Diamond king puzzles.

Over the years, other companies would also produce cards like Pacific trading company. Their cards were pretty plain with usually just player photos and bios and stats on the back. Some were in color and others in black and white.

Bell Brand potato chips made Dodger cards for a couple of years. Ted Williams had his own brand of cards. Cards are even sold digitally now. I am not into that.

Baseball will be ending it’s agreement with Topps after the 2025 season. The new agreement will be with a company being formed by Fanatics, a sports merchandise company. The new company has yet to be named. Topps will continue to make baseball cards through the 25 season.

Topps alters the design of each season in some minute way. Upper Deck is the other main producer of baseball cards. These cards are usually high end, high gloss photos and also feature uniform swatches and other pieces of memorabilia.

The way cards are collected now has also changed. Used to be that most transactions were done at card shows and small shops. Most collectors now use the internet. This also changed the way the cards have been marketed.

Cards are so popular that the MLB. Network has a show dedicated to collecting called Carded. There have been some very interesting shows about collecting there.

Since getting the originals can be extremely expensive. I have usually gotten some of the older cards through the purchase of the archives cards. These are the size of the cards made today and are easily found on Ebay.

I also expanded my collection to include many Negro League stars who I had never seen cards of before. One of my favorites is a card of Josh Gibson. I also have a couple of cards made of porcelain.

I know some of you still collect like I do. I hope this short history of cards has been informative.

 

 

 

    

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Oldbear48

It is being reported that Kike Hernandez is expected to sign a contract by Monday. Angels, Brewers and Dodgers listed as the likeliest destinations. Duke and Sandy 59 topps

59-Koufax
Snider-59-Topps
NortheastDodgerFan

I’ve got the same Koufax card. I don’t post often but this was one of your better articles, Bear. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Oldbear48

Thank you. I enjoyed the research and doing the article. I remember how I got the Koufax too. Back in the day, I used to go to Woolworth’s a lot. I was in El Cajon, visiting my mom. I was in foster care then, I went to the Woolworth’s and they had the cello-wrap Topps sets there. You got 36 cards for 50 cents. And you could see six of the cards you were getting. Koufax was on top. He wasn’t a star yet, so I grabbed that pack. Funny, the one I have now, I paid 25 dollars for.

Dionysus

If you believe reports, the Boras 4 line up as:

Snell: Yankees
Montgomery: Red Sox or Texas
Bellinger: Cubs
Chapman: Giants

Still think Angels, Mets & Mariners are hunting

Oldbear48

I don’t think Montgomery is going back to Texas. They have said they are through adding high dollar salaries.

Duke Not Snider

Where will JD Martinez go?
I think the Mets make a lot of sense.
Kike would be good for the Angels.
But what about the Dodgers? Any more moves to make?
I keep thinking that these Spring training games also serve as showcases for trade candidates.
Knack just raised his stock. So did Stone
Apart from Devin Williams, I can’t think of another impact player who may be on the market and could upgrade the Dodgers.
Hmm…Knack + ?? + ?? for Williams?

Oldbear48

I read this morning that JD was offered a contract by the Giants but turned them down. He did not want to play for San Francisco. Not sure about trading Knack. But if they make a move, I would almost bet the bank it won’t come until the deadline when they have a better idea where they stand.

Dionysus

I think we’re good

Duke Not Snider

I think we are excellent, and perhaps there is no significant move before the trade deadline.
Then again, the Orioles’ deal for Burnes caught a lot of people by surprise. Plus, injuries could occur at any time and alter the marketplace.
Part of me wants to hoard ML-ready talent like Knack, but I think he’s behind Sheehan and Stone now for the 5th spot, and also behind Buhler when he returns. After the all-star break, Kershaw and May are expected back too.
So if it’s possible to package Knack, your 8th or 9th SP, in a deal to secure a guy who is arguably the game’s No. 1 closer, why not do it? Knack is now 26. He’s paid his dues, and if he doesn’t reach the ML level soon his trade value will diminish. The play-me-or-trade-me moment is approaching.
Williams, in his prime at age 29, is under contract for two years, so he wouldn’t be cheap. He has a career ERA of 1.89, with 337 Ks in 214 innings. But Dodgers now have the game’s best at DH, 1B and 2B. I like hoarding the best too.

It was good to see Lux score from first today, but it would help to see his lateral movement at SS and his throws, of course…
I can’t help but root for a journeyman like Gage, who had a bit of tough luck on the blooper that was misplayed by Pages and Gauthier. (Good thing they avoided a collision.) I’m hoping that Prior and his staff do unto Gage what they did unto Brasier, Phillips, Tyler Anderson and others….
Gauthier had some bad luck too when an ump blew a call at 1B. The replay showed he was safe–but there are no challenges in ST…
On defense Sweeney has a funny habit of hopping when the pitch hits the catcher’s mitt. The centerfield camera showed this. I can’t recall another player doing it…
It occurs to me that, in some ways, Gauthier has essentially replaced Jorbit Vivas, one of the prospects the Dodgers dealt for Sweeney. Both Gauthier and Vivas are contact hitters who walk more than they K, but I think Gauthier is more versatile.

Badger

I started collecting in ‘56. Had a shoebox full of my favorites by the time I joined the Marines in ‘66. (Ten years doesn’t sound like very long now. Sure was then.) That box disappeared when I was in ‘nam. I do know where my crate of LP’s went. My ex sold them at a garage sale while I was out town. Lovely woman my ex. She really seemed to care. Can’t help but wonder what the content of those two boxes would be worth now.

Last edited 3 months ago by Badger
Oldbear48

My foster father made me toss all of mine in the trash. I hid the Dodgers though. Ended up giving them to his nieces son. Had close to 1 million cards.

Hodges54

Thanks Bear. You chose a good subject and wrote a great article. I probably had well over 1,000 cards. They were collected From ’56 to ’62. When I got married and left home my step-mother wanted all the “junk” out of the house. I gave all my cards to kids in the neighborhood and my DC comic book collection was given to a friend who was in the navy.

Last edited 3 months ago by Hodges54
Oldbear48

Jeff suggested the topic, since I still collect, it was an easy choice. Bet you had one of these.

14-gil-hodges
Duke Not Snider

I had one of those… Part of that collection I shared with my pal. The shoebox full of cards that his cousin gave him was glorious. Not pristine but glorious.
My younger son, who also plays soccer, collected “Match Attack” cards that included about eight various skill ratings. So Messi is up in the 90s on all offense, but lower on defense. Kids concoct games in which Messi is passing to Mbappe, and he’s shooting on a star keeper.
From about age 8 to age 10, my boy loved Match Attack. But when we came to US in the summer, we couldn’t find the cards anywhere. We caught a couple of LA Galaxy games, but our searches of Big 5 and Dick’s never turned up Match Attack. He was happy to get a cheap Ohtani jersey.
Last season, we were at the Big A when Ohtani hit his 493-foot blast that seemed to vanish in a tunnel.
Would that shot have exited Dodgers Stadium? I’m not sure. But he certainly has the power to make it happen.

Hodges54

Yeah, I had that card. It’s funny that you chose that card. I remember it because I thought that his pose was odd. Gil was a RH batter but he’s standing with the bat over his left shoulder as a LH batter would pose, yet his right hand is still on top. I’m guessing its a ’58 or ’59 card.

Oldbear48

Look again, he has actually just taken a swing.

Oldbear48

It is a 59 Topps. 58 looks like this and sells for over 100 dollars on Ebay

58-Hodges
Watford Dodger

Seems that you probably saved yourself a few bucks over the longer term.

Hope the back isn’t barking too much.

Jeff

Reminds me of my 45rpm record collection that I gave away to a friend when I left NYC in 1966. 750 discs, original pressings. Not sure how much it is worth now. A lot, I assume. When I asked her for it back in 1987, she laughed.

Oldbear48

I had 4500 LPs when I left Germany, some of them very rare like Elvis’s Moody Blue album in black vinyl. Most of the copies were blue vinyl. I have none of those now.

OhioDodger

Way to go Bear. One heck of an article. I enjoyed it very much and learned alot. Keep up the good work.

Oldbear48

Thank you, I am glad you liked it.

Oldbear48

Going to miss today’s game, playing music with some friends in our community room. I can watch it later.

Oldbear48

The new uni’s pants are the focus of many of the players dislike of the new uniforms. Apparently, the material is thin enough to see through. I looked closely at some photos of the pants, and I concur. You can see the difference in the players underwear and their legs.

Phil Jones

Nike reportedly work on the new fabric for 3 years making them lighter, stretchy, and transparent. I’m not sure I want to see Buehler in a tighter pant.
I heard lots of negativity including Freeman saying he wouldn’t wear them. Manfred reportedly said the “players would get used to them”. We’ll see.

Oldbear48

I doubt it, more complaints pouring in every day.

Duke Not Snider

Joe Nuxhall! Wasn’t he 16 when he first pitched in the majors?
When I was about 11 years old, my best pal and I merged our baseball card collection. I had quantity–a couple thousand cars–and in the early 1960s we had little appreciation for the quality my friend brought to our partnership.
My cards were all from the 1960s, collected in those Topps packs with a stick of gum. My friend had been give a shoebox full of older cards by a cousin. Real beauties from the “50s and ’40s, mostly. Not in great condition, but not that bad either. Nobody we knew kept them protected in plastic cases. We made up games with them, and they got thrashed.
We kept the cards at my house and gradually lost interest. The were stuffed in a large brown shopping bag in a closet. And one day when I was about 17 my sister decided to toss the bag in the trash.
I still haven’t forgiven her. Never will.

Great stuff, Bear. Even if it brings up painful memories.

Last edited 3 months ago by Duke Not Snider
Oldbear48

Joe Nuxhall was 15 when he appeared in one game for the Reds in 1944. He pitched 2/3rds of an inning, walked 5, gave up 2 hits and threw a wild pitch. His next appearance was in 1952 when he was 23 years old. Yeah, it was painful for me to throw all those cards away when my foster father told me to. I had a bunch of early 50’s Topps, including Mays rookie card.

Nuxhall
OhioDodger

I am having a hard time figuring out your foster fathers mindset for making you throw away your baseball cards. Seems very mean and petty.

Cassidy

Awesome write up Bear! Really enjoyed the history. Thank you. I remember flipping them in grade school. Topsies! And pinning them in my bicycle spokes. My collection got lost when we moved from Jersey to Ca when I was 15.

Oldbear48

I did the same thing, but not with my star cards or any of my Dodgers.

Oldbear48

He had issues believe me. One, he was not old enough to have a teenage son, He was 29 when I went to live there, I was 14. Two, he was not into sports at all, probably because he was not very good at them. Three, he bullied everyone. He liked to put you in your place. Getting rid of my cards was his way of controlling someone. But he would do stuff out of spite. When I was a junior, and on the baseball team, we had a game on Saturday and the coach told me I was starting. I took my uniform home with me so I could wear it on the bus. But he made up some story that he needed me with him, and he would drop me off at the field well before game time. Didn’t happen, he got me there in the second inning, and I had to walk from the parking lot to the bench in front of everybody. Most embarrassing moment of my life to that point. Needless to say, I did not even get into the game and never was considered for a starting spot after that. I was so embarrassed; I did not explain to the coach what had happened. He also pulled me off the freshman baseball team the day AFTER I was told I had made the team. His excuse? I could not sing in the choir and play ball at the same time. My junior year, I dropped out of choir just so I could play baseball. Yeah, I never forgave him for any of that stuff. Kharma is a bitch though, he died at 55 from a heart attack.

OhioDodger

Thanks for sharing. That is so sad.

Oldbear48

Looking back, I realize what a sad life he had. He alienated most of the people around him. I still consider his daughters as my sisters, but when we talk about him, it is not with the reverence some would have for their father. He did the same thing to his own kids.

Duke Not Snider

That’s rough….
Have you considered writing a memoir?

Oldbear48

If I did, it would be a very bad review of the foster care system in Los Angeles County in the 50’s and 60’s. If people I know knew I was the author, they would know who I was talking about. And being one to tell the truth, there are some things that are just better left unsaid, and I could not do that.

Duke Not Snider

Then you write the novel….

Oldbear48

A novel would probably not be very successful whereas tell all books usually sell very well.

Bumsrap

There were a million of them. Thats more than a couple of shoe boxes.

Oldbear48

They were not in shoeboxes; I had a very large box that they were all in.

Last edited 3 months ago by Oldbear48
Oldbear48

A very large cardboard box. Never used shoe boxes.

Duke Not Snider

Awesome. Thanks, Bear…
The WWII era created some strange opportunities. I did not know that Nuxhall needed another 7 or 8 years to get back to the majors–just that he was an answer to a trivia question.

Oldbear48

I actually saw him pitch a couple of times.

Oldbear48

Have to get ready for the jam, will check in later.

SandyAmoros

Thnx Bear very interesting read. My favorites were the 56 topps hands down.

Oldbear48

56 cards were very well done. I have some archives 56 cards, mostly the Dodgers.

Mark Timmons

Hey, good luck and Godspeed to everyone. I have moved back to LA Dodger Talk. Nothing personal. Good luck, and Go, Dodgers.

Dionysus

I thought Jeff was very gracious to host you.

Mark Timmons

OK

Dionysus

KO

Bumsrap

Drop by every once in a while so we know what you are thinking.

Mark Timmons

OK

Badger

That didn’t last long.

Bluto

LOL.

but some people need to be where they think they need to be.

Badger

You know, sometimes I find myself where I thought I needed to be but quickly realized I f’d up and need to find a way out.

Bluto

That’s my story at every party I go to.

Badger

I’ve been to a few of those. Especially back in the 80s, pouring Patron and keeping the powder dry.

Oldbear48

Best of luck Mark.

Duke Not Snider

Yes, best of luck Mark.
Hope you don’t mind if any of us drop back in from time to time.

Mark Timmons

No problem. This is the internet.

tedraymond

Fantastic article Bear! I had a complete set of 1959 and 1960 Topps along with a complete set of 1961 Fleer Hall of Fame. My Dad had built a beautiful wooden box to keep my collection in. It had four slots which each held an entire year of cards. I sold them about five years ago on a online auction. It was time for someone else to enjoy them. I had no family that was interested in collecting. I still have the box though.

A friend I grew up with had an 1959 unopened box (counter display) with unopened packs. It sold online for $43,000! I was shocked at that price. Turns out his brother had a case of those boxes all unopened.

Those cards and the collecting created lots of good memories.

Thanks again Bear.

Oldbear48

Quite a few years ago, an unopened case of 1952 Topps was found. It was sold at auction for one million dollars. The reason? It was a case of the last series that year, which meant Mantle cards. Not sure exactly what they were worth after they were opened, but if even two Mantles came out of that case, you would get your investment back at least tenfold.

Badger

Hey, a Willie Calhoun sighting. I remember when he first signed with the Dodgers Timmons said he would never be able to run fast enough to play baseball. Not with those thick legs. I mentioned Kirby Puckett and Tony Gwynn. He never recanted of course.

You know the stat FIP? Fielding Independent Pitching. I think they should have another stat for umpire bad calls. UIH. Umpire Independent Hitting. Every missed call that results in out the at bat won’t count.

Last edited 3 months ago by Badger
Mark Timmons

Actually, I called him “Willie Tree Trunks,” and there is nothing to recant. He is an AAAA player. I was right. You need to recant; you are a heretic! 😉

You can’t use Calhoun, Puckett, and Gwynn in the same sentence.

Last edited 3 months ago by Mark Timmons
Badger

“You can’t use Calhoun, Puckett, and Gwynn in the same sentence.”

You just did.

Mark Timmons

So, sue me! 😉

Dionysus

I thought you were leaving.

Bluto

He can checkout any time he wants, but he can never leave.

Badger

Well, we’ll never forget him…..

’til somebody new comes along.

Duke Not Snider

Why isn’t there a new kid in town?

Mark Timmons

Says the god of insanity and ritual madness. Peace out… which is better than “Peace Off!”

Badger

Sue Timmons?

If the Sue fits, maybe you should wear it.

Badger

😉

Forgot that last night.

Still think Sue Timmons is kinda funny this morning.

Oldbear48

It was.

Oldbear48

Dodgers are not listed as one of the four teams in on Kike Hernandez. But the Giants are. Hopefully he signs with the Angels instead.

OhioDodger

I would rather have Kike than Margot. I hope he likes LA better than SF and signs with the Angels.

Last edited 3 months ago by OhioDodger
Duke Not Snider

I second that emotion.

Oldbear48

This morning the teams were reported to be, Twins, Padres, Angels and Giants. Please go to one of the AL teams.

OhioDodger

Unfortunately, taking the Margot contract to get Glasnow doomed Kike’s return to the Dodgers. I would rather have Kike.

Oldbear48

Many would. But do you realize that Margot is 3 years younger than Kike? He has a higher career BA than Kike, less power, and a lot more speed. Kike’s value comes from his versatility. But they already have that in Taylor. Kike is redundant.

Duke Not Snider

Redundancy is not a bad thing. It would be a little better, however, if one hit lefty.
When Kike became a FA, McKinstry stepped in. He had a great start but got hurt and was eventually traded for Chris Martin. In some ways, Gauthier is an overachiever like McKinstry. Rooting for that guy.

Oldbear48

Jam today was a lot of fun; I watched the 9th inning of the game. My one concern, 36 strikeouts in three games. Unacceptable.

OhioDodger

That is a legitimate concern.

Feduccia is not looking very good so far. 4 ABs, 0 Hits, and 3 SO.

Last edited 3 months ago by OhioDodger
Badger

You are lucky to still be doing what you love Bear. I’d sure like to be able to play softball again.

Yes, lack of contact is a concern. Especially when there doesn’t seem to be power along with it. But it’s early.

Oldbear48

Yes I can still sing well, but the guitar playing is becoming increasingly difficult. Arthritis is a bitch. I wish I could still play ball too. I loved it. Three homers so far, Freeman, Padlo and Ramos.

OhioDodger

Cody Bellinger reportedly resigns with the Cubs. Reported as a 3yr/$80M deal with opt outs after 1st and 2nd years. Sounds like a good deal for both parties. Cubs should try and get Snell and Chapman on similar deals. They would instantly be the favorites in the NL Central.

Last edited 3 months ago by OhioDodger
Cassidy

No Boras magic there. Good for Cody. Though not the deal he wanted still life changing numbers.

Duke Not Snider

Happy for the Cubs, and I think Belli should be happy too.
He had a really nice bounce-back season, but he wasn’t back to MVP level.
Will he play CF or 1B?

dodger dad

i really thought cody was on track to be a 40 homer, 40 steals player for a long period of time. i don’t know if the shoulder injury was entirely his problem or just maybe a lot of us so called experts overrated him. but anyway im glad he didn’t end up in the NL west! guess michael bush is wondering if codys signing means he’s still looking for a position. closer every day to start of the season, can’t wait. i’m really intrigued by trey sweeney. might be the future 3rd baseman for the dodgers someday.

Oldbear48

Belli’s shoulder had a lot to do with it. So did his broken leg in 21. He altered his stance and it affected his swing path because the shoulder was not 100 percent.

Make mine Blue

Plus Belli didn’t get shot in Chicago. I have friends in Chicago and they confirm that Chicago is a very good place to go if you like the idea of getting murdered on the street.

Bumsrap

And yet, they are there.

Oldbear48

He gets 30 mil the first two years and the third year is a 20-mil option. If he has a monster season, he will opt out. He will probably stay in CF unless they want to give Armstrong-Crow the spot.

Eric

Did Mark start his Dodger Talk website yet?

Oldbear48

Yes, it has been back up and running for a couple of days. I will not be writing for his site. He wishes to pursue that alone.

Eric

I can’t find his website.

OhioDodger

Go to ControlFreak.Com.

Badger

Good one.

Bumsrap

You made me chuckle a little.

Eric

Lol  👍  But I like Mark.

Duke Not Snider

Mark is definitely an acquired taste… as all you dumbass morons probably know.

Badger

Morons are slow learners.

Duke Not Snider

It’s the same place. Never fully shut it down.

Oldbear48

Actually, it was gone for about a week and a half. I would click on my browser and this site for sale would come up. The one thing I regret, his site still has all of his stories going back years, but all of the stuff I wrote from when I started in March of 2020 is gone.

Eric

I found it now.

Bumsrap

Did you use the link OhioDodger provided?

Eric

lol no

Bumsrap

Rosenthal: Bellinger’s 2023 .307 batting average, 26 home runs and .881 OPS were built on an average exit velocity that exceeded only one out of five major leaguers. Teams were not convinced that Bellinger’s bounceback was sustainable, that he had fully overcome the struggles of his injury-marred 2021 and ‘22 seasons.

Duke Not Snider

Yes, the “internals” were not great.
This is like another “prove it” contract, in three installments. Frankly glad he didn’t get a monster contract.

Oldbear48

Former Dodger, Matt Kemp is going to be hired by the team in an advisory role. Second former player this year, Nelson Cruz was the first.

Fred Vogel

Chris Archer also was hired but I’m not sure in what capacity.

Duke Not Snider

And Ethier is in camp to coach Vargas…
I assume there are a lot arrangements tailored to the individual. Some might agree to short-term deals and some might be roving instructors and scouts, an “extra pair of eyes,” etc. Ethier lives near Camelback and said he is able to drop the kids off at school and then go coach a bit. Nice.
I hope Barnes gives us one more season, retires as a champion and goes one to a career as a coach….

Oldbear48

Muncy and Outman both homer off of LH pitchers. Outman also had a single against a lefty.

Bumsrap

So that settles it already–Outan can power hit lefties 😊

Jeff Dominique

Shohei Ohtani will make his LAD spring training debut on Tuesday. Per Freddie, that is the day that we will learn who bats 2 and 3.

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