Thursday, April 27, 2017

This Week's Sports Illustrated Cover 5/01/17

This week Sports Illustrated cover features young baseball phenom Hunter Greene of Notre Dame High School  in Sherman Oaks, California.

                                                Photo from S.I. Facebook page.

The young man is probably going to be the first player drafted in this year's big league draft...or the second, or the third, or fourth, or the other words, if he doesn't play college baseball at USC or UCLA, the young man will be playing professional baseball this summer.

Here's hoping the young man doesn't get all caught up in the hype...a phone call to former teenage phenom Bryce Harper, the 2015 National League MVP might be a good thing.

Good Luck Hunter!

Play Ball!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Happy Baseball Birthday... Virgil Trucks

Today we celebrate the 100th Happy Baseball Birthday! of former big league pitcher Virgil "Fire" Trucks, who was born on April 26, 1917.

I posted on his 95th Happy Baseball Birthday! in 2012.

As I was scrolling through my blog reading list today I came across William Regenthal's post on his blog Foul Bunt about Virgil Trucks 100th Birthday today, and the contest he is having on his Instagram account....go to the link, read about Virgil's HBB and how to enter.

Happy Baseball Birthday! Virgil Fire Trucks! 

Play Ball!

Monday, April 24, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 13

Day 13 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a baseball card that you like from the 1990s.

I debated about this for a while, because, well, I've tried not to make this about the Detroit Tigers, my favorite team, but it really came down to the fact that in the 1990s baseball card collecting for me was all about one guy.... Big Daddy!

Cecil Fielder  was the most feared hitter in baseball for three years... 1990-91-92... and yes, he did that wearing the Olde English D of my beloved Tigers.

                         ðŸŒŸðŸŒŸðŸŒŸ My Autographed 1992 Topps #599 Cecil Fielder 🌟🌟🌟

While I wasn't present when Big Daddy signed this card, it remains my favorite card of the Tigers slugging First Baseman.

Collecting as many Big Daddy cards as possible for the first half of the decade, I went to every baseball card store and card show that I could get to, and opened as many packs of cards that I could to afford to...and then some...all because of the best slugger the Tigers had since I was a kid.

Cecil Fielder remains one of my All-Time favorite Detroit Tigers baseball players, and I hope to add to my collection of his cards....I've seen some newer relic cards I didn't even know about.

Next up, a favorite baseball card from the 2000s...not a great decade for cards, but I have one in mind.

Play Ball!

Friday, April 21, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 12

Day 12 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is one of your favorite baseball cards from the 1980s.

For some reason, some 33 years later, if you ask me about 1980s baseball cards  I'm probably going to talk about the Rookie Card of Donnie Baseball, Don Mattingly.

🌟🌟🌟 Topps 1984 #8  Don Mattingly 🌟🌟🌟

What's not to like about this card...there he is, a future 9 Time Gold Glove winner  in position as the pitch is being delivered...wearing the Yankees Pinstripes at home, with his photo, name, and position all right there on the card.

In the mid 1980s this was the card to have, the card everyone tried to find, at least to those of us guys in the US Navy who collected baseball cards.

I was no Yankees fan, but I always like Mattingly...the way he carried himself, the way he played the game.

I've never had this card, but I'd love to own one.

● Up next, it's a favorite card from  the 1990s. ●

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

30 DAY Baseball Card Challenge... Day 11

Day 11 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is one of your favorite baseball cards from the 1970s.

Sorry that this has taken so long since my last post, I've been battling a terrible cold. ●

The San Diego Padres were not a good baseball team in 1974.

The Padres entered the big leagues as an expansion team in 1969, the 100th Anniversary of professional baseball.

The Padres lost 110 games that first year, and loss 100 games in '70 and '73.

The team was on the verge of being sold and moved to Washington, D.C. , and because of the uncertainty Topps didn't know what to do with Padres cards, causing this to happen.

I have moved so many times in my life, sold off  lots of cards, but somehow my

1977 Topps #32 John Grubb has survived  and it's a card I'll probably have forever.

        ðŸŒŸðŸŒŸðŸŒŸ My 1974 Topps #32 John  Grubb WASHINGTON "NAT'L LEA." baseball card. 🌟🌟🌟

Johnny Grubb  was drafted by the Padres out of Florida State in 1971, played with San Diego, the Texas Rangers, and then, in 1983, he arrived in Motown to play for my Detroit Tigers,  we're he played until 1987...including playing a big time role as a pinch hitter off the bench for the 1984 World Series Champion Tigers.

That role...I always loved when I saw Johnny Grubb in the lineup, or pinch why I love my '74 Grubb card more than the cards he has as a Tigers player... it's just one of those things.

Tomorrow's 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a card  I like from the 1980s... I hope I'm over my cold by then.

Play Ball!!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 10

Day 10 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is one of your favorite baseball cards from the 1960s.

The 1960s...the year that I was born, and the decade I learned about and fell in love with baseball....and baseball cards.

The 1960s were filled with great baseball cards...there are so many awesome cards that can be used in multiple categories of this fun challenge.

As I said, I was born in 1960, and this year I'm trying to start to collect the entire 1960s Topps Baseball Card Set.

I found a few '60s Topps cards at the show here in January, including a card I've loved from afar,  a.k.a. the Internet, for many years...

                              🌟🌟🌟 My 1960 Topps Card #214, Jimmy Dykes 🌟🌟🌟

This has quickly become one of my favorite cards, and, of course, now I want to try and collect a card of every manager to wear the Olde English D!

What makes the card so awesome?

Well, first, there's that cool Tigers banner and logo at the top of the card...

...second, Manager Jimmy Dykes is in that beautiful Home Detroit Tigers uniform and ballcap, ready to read out that awesome lineup of Kaline, Colovito, Cash, Maxwell, Yost...and maybe it's Jim Bunning to start the game...or maybe it's the Yankee Killer, Frank Lary...

...and third, I love the Red and Blue letters spelling out J I M M I E  D Y K E S.

...I'm not sure why Topps spelled his name like that, but that makes the card that much more me, anyway.

Jimmy Dykes  was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on November 10, 1896, played for the great Connie Mack, and managed for the Chicago White Sox, Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Cincinnatti Redlegs, Baltimore Orioles, and my Detroit Tigers.

Jimmy Dykes managed the Tigers to a 118-115 record, in parts of 1959 and 1960.

Today's 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge brings us through Day 10...a third of the way through...

... tomorrow its day 11...a baseball card that you like from the 1970s... I've got a few in mind for sure... PLAY BALL!

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 9

Day 9 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a baseball card that you like from the 1950s.

I've pretty much wanted my favorite 1950s baseball card for about 25 years, although, because of my financial situation, it's gonna be awfully difficult to get.

                                                🌟🌟🌟 1957 Topps #201 Al Kaline 🌟🌟🌟

Al Kaline 

outfielder  DETROIT TIGERS 🐯

This is simply one of the greatest cards ever....a very young Mr. Tiger, who after playing just 30 games in 1953, would become a mainstay in the Detroit lineup in '54, playing in 138 games, batting .276, with 4 HRs, 18 doubles, and 43 RBI, collecting 139 baseball hits in 504 at bats.

I have several Kaline cards, starting with his 1960 Topps card, but it would be nice to get his 1950s cards...especially 1954...hey, who has an extra one around and would like to trade?

Up tomorrow...a card that I like from the 1960s...

Play Ball! ⚾🐯

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 8

Day 8 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a baseball card that reminds you of a family member. 

This could be any card of former big league outfielder Bobby Murcer.

Growing up in the late 1960s we played baseball on the sandlots of West Michigan...I loved my Detroit Tigers, my brother Robert, well, he loved the New York Yankees.

When we got together with friends to play baseball as kids, I played catcher and was my hero, Bill Freehan, and my brother, he played centerfield as was Bobby Murcer.

Murcer was a gifted young ballplayer who came up to the Yankees to replace the legendary Mickey Mantle, who retired after the 1968 season.

Robert is still a Yankees fan...all of us have stayed with our brother Paul is a Chicago Cubs fan, and like me, my youngest brother Joe is a Tigers fan.

                                          🌟🌟🌟 1971 Topps #635 Bobby Murcer 🌟🌟🌟

I chose the '71 Topps Murcer because it's part of my favorite Topps Baseball Card Set of the 1970s.

What's great about the '71 Murcer card is that Bobby's wearing the famous Yankee Pinstripes as he's resting the bat on his shoulders...a great baseball card pose of the day...and you can see the old copper facade from the original Yankees Stadium roof.

Anytime I see anything about Bobby Murcer, be it a baseball card, a post on social media, or old highlights of games from the '70s, I always think about my brother Robert, who was a scrappy little 2nd Baseman in our Little League days in Portage.

The next card challenge will be a favorite card from the 1950s...that should be tremendous... PLAY BALL!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 7

Day 7 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a baseball card that you bought in person, and the reason why.

My Dad worked for a man named Boyd Alan Sutton, the owner of L.G. Haig Shoe Stores in the 1960s and 1970s.

Because of the respect that my Dad had for Mr. Haig, I was awarded his middle name of Boyd, which, because of my being named John after my two Grandfather's and Uncle, my family simply called me Boyd...and it's stuck with me my entire life.

Bob Boyd  played nine seasons in the big leagues for the Chicago White Sox, Baltimore Orioles, Kansas City Athletics, and Milwaukee Braves. 

                                              🌟🌟🌟 My 1954 Topps Bob Boyd 🌟🌟🌟

I wish I would've known about Mr. Boyd while he was alive...he passed away in 2004 at the age of 84.

I first came across his name a few years ago on , looking, as I do every day, for possible Happy Baseball Birthday! posts for the blog.

I found my 1954 Topps cards of Mr. Boyd at a card show here in Kalamazoo back in January,  accidentally,  going through some older cards and looking for 1960 Topps cards ( the year I was born).

I'm starting to acquire 1960 Topps cards to try and build an entire will take quite a long time.

I had to download the card back because of my failure at capturing the back using my tablet.

I plan on collecting every card of Mr. Boyd...I'll blog about every card I acquire.

Play Ball!

Friday, April 7, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 6

Day 6 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a baseball card you spent more than $10.00 on.

This one was pretty easy for me.

                                    🌟🌟🌟 2012 Topps #639 Justin Verlander SPORTS 🌟🌟🌟

It took me a few months to find this card...I'm not sure that I even knew about it until sometime in 2013...and it cost me $20...and although it might not be worth that much anymore,  it's still my favorite Justin Verlander baseball card... I've been waiting 6 years now for him to get that 3rd no-hitter! 

The list of Detroit Tigers pitchers to throw no-hitters is a short one that consists of just five (5) members, and the list of pitchers to toss TWO no-hitters wearing the Olde English D is much, much more exclusive.

⚾⚾ Virgil "Fire" Trucks , who tossed two no-nos in 1952, and current Tigers ACE Justin Verlander are the only two Tigers to accomplish the feat.

⚾⚾ Verlander's first no-no came against the Milwaukee Brewers on June 12, 2007... the only no-hitter in the 18 year history of Comerica Park.

No-hitter number 2 was tossed by Verlander at Rogers Centre in Toronto on May 7, 2011 against the Blue Jays.

Justin Verlander  made his 9th Opening Day start for the Tigers as he begins his 13th season in Detroit.

This 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge continues tomorrow with a card I bought in person...and why.

That's gonna take some thought, but I think I'll get it done.

Until then... PLAY BALL!

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 5

Day 5 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is...

... a Certified Autographed card of one of your FAVORITE baseball players.

Dale Murphy  belongs in the Baseball Hall of Fame... if you read this blog enough and/or follow me on social media you know that I've been a big fan of Murphy since the early 1980s, and over 30 years later the former Atlanta Braves 2-time National League MVP is still one of my favorite ballplayers of All-Time.

I have met Dale Murphy and couple of times, at Jacksonville Suns games, I have a signed baseball of the former N.L. All-Star centerfielder, but I don't own any autographed baseball cards of Murphy,  so I had to look on to find one I liked.

This card is absolutely beautiful!

                                       ðŸŒŸðŸŒŸðŸŒŸ 2012 Topps Tribute Dale Murphy 24/99 🌟🌟🌟

That signature is awesome, and like my baseball, it's signed N.L. MVP 82, 83.

I hope to own this card one day for sure.

I'm having a blast posting these baseball cards and reading the other blogs that are involved, as well as the posts on Twitter ( #30DBBC) ....there are so many great baseball card collectors out there, and it's awesome to see their choices and passion for baseball cards.

Can't wait for tomorrow's  challenge!

Play Ball!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

My 2017 Big League Baseball Predictions

I'm never good at this prediction thing, but I always give it a shot.

The Chicago Cubs finally won a World Series after 108 years, and now the baseball world is looking to the team the Cubbies beat in the Fall Classic, the Cleveland Indians, who haven't won the title since 1948.

Myself, I'm still looking for my Detroit Tigers to win a World Series... now 33 years and counting since that amazing 1984 baseball season.

So, here it is...remember, I'm just a baseball fan, not an expert...although I play one on Twitter.

⚾⚾⚾ American League East ⚾⚾⚾

1. Boston Red Sox 

2. Baltimore Orioles 

3. Toronto Blue Jays 

4. New York Yankees 

5. Tampa Bay Rays 

⚾⚾⚾ American League Central ⚾⚾⚾

1. Detroit Tigers 

2. Cleveland Indians 

3. Kansas City Royals 

4. Minnesota Twins 

5. Chicago White Sox 

⚾⚾⚾ American League West ⚾⚾⚾

1. Houston Astros 

2. Texas Rangers 

3. Seattle Mariners 

4. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 

5. Oakland Athletics 

🃏🃏 Wild Cards 🃏🃏

Cleveland Indians / Baltimore Orioles

🏅🏅 A.L. Champions... Boston Red Sox 🏅🏅

🌟 A.L. MVP🌟

Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers 

🌟 A. L. Cy Young Award 🌟

Chris Sale, Boston Red Sox 

⚾⚾⚾ National League East ⚾⚾⚾

1. New York Mets 

2. Washington Nationals 

3. Atlanta Braves 

4. Miami Marlins 

5. Philadelphia Phillies 

⚾⚾⚾ National League Central ⚾⚾⚾

1. Chicago Cubs 

2. St. Louis Cardinals 

3. Pittsburgh Pirates 

4. Milwaukee Brewers 

5. Cincinnati Reds 

⚾⚾⚾ National League West ⚾⚾⚾

1. Los Angeles Dodgers 

2. San Francisco Giants 

3. Arizona Diamondbacks 

4. Colorado Rockies 

5. San Diego Padres 

🃏🃏 Wild Cards 🃏🃏

Washington Nationals / San Francisco Giants

🏅🏅 N. L. Champions ... Los Angeles Dodgers  ðŸ…🏅

🌟 N.L. MVP 🌟

Anthony Rizzo, Chicago Cubs 

🌟 N.L. Cy Young Award  ðŸŒŸ

Noah Syndergaard, New York Mets 


                       Your 2017 Big League World Series Champions

🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅 Los Angeles Dodgers 🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅

Play Ball! ⚾

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 4

Today's 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge is a rookie card of one of your favorite baseball players.

In 2010 my Detroit Tigers called up a young power hitting outfielder named Brennan Boesch.

Boesch was an instant hit, winning back to back American League Rookie of the Month Awards in May and June 2010.

                                          My  2007 Bowman Chrome #BP13 Brennan Boesch 

I absolutely loved watching Brennan play baseball for the Tigers, and was truly sad the day the Tigers released him in 2013.

In three years in Motown, Brennan played in 380 games, collecting 353 base hits, batting .250, with 48 HR and 195 RBI.

Brennan will always be one of my favorite Tigers ballplayers.

I need to collect all of his cards for sure.

Play Ball! ⚾

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

2017 Detroit Tigers Game 1 of 162

Today my Detroit Tigers opened up the 2017 baseball season by beating the Chicago White Sox, 6-3, in Chicago.

Tigers ACE RHP  Justin Verlander tossed 6 1/3 innings, allowing 6 hits, 2 runs, walked two batters, while striking out 10 ChiSox hitters.

The win was the 174th career win for Verlander.

Box Score... Game 1, Tigers 6, White Sox 3.

Rookie OF JaCoby Jones went 1/4, collecting his first career HR, and 3-runs dinger off ChiSox starter Carlos Quintana in the2nd inning.

The game, the Home Opener for the White Sox,  was delayed a day by bad weather in Chicago on Monday.

The Tigers continue the Opening Series against the South Siders again tomorrow,  with RHP Jordan Zimmermann getting the start.

Play Ball! ⚾

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 3

Day 3 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge  is a card of the first baseball card set you tried to complete.

As a kid growing up I absolutely loved baseball cards, and between 1968 and 1980 I collected every single card and complete set of Topps Baseball Cards, always separating the Tigers cards and the doubles of the set.

After moving to Florida and having to get money, I reluctantly sold every one of them...except the Tigers cards.

My favorite baseball position is the catcher, and I'd love to collect more cards of baseball backstops.

This  1968 Topps #30, Joe Torre would be a great place to start.

The 1968 Topps set is one of my favorite, and this year Topps has brought the design baseball know for Topps Heritage. 

As a matter of fact, I'd like to collect all the catchers in 2017 Topps Heritage as well.

Play Ball!

Monday, April 3, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 2

Day 2 of the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge.

My Tigers were rained out today, so I decided to get my post up for today's challenge before I let the day get away from me.

Today's card challenge is...... a card with more than one player on it.

That card will be my 1972 Topps #94, American League Pitching Leaders card, just as its been since I pulled it out of a pack of 1972 Topps.

What a card!

Mickey Lolich of my Detroit Tigers, Vida Blue of the Athletics, and Wilbur Wood of the ChiSox!

Lolich won 25 games that year for the Tigers, but it was Blue who took home the 1971 A.L. Cy Young Award.

I'm trying to follow the other blogs that are doing this challenge...'s a couple of them...

Collectors Crack.

Nachos Grande

Hey, if you're reading this...thanks...and, give the challenge a's kinda fun to do.

Until next time... PLAY BALL! ⚾

Sunday, April 2, 2017

30 Day Baseball Card Challenge... Day 1

The Official Opening Day of the big league baseball season is today, so what a perfect day to join the 30 Day Baseball Card Challenge that I first saw on Off Hiatus Baseball.

This is going to be mighty interesting to try and finish, because Im going to try and use my own card collection, and, well, when it comes to autograph and relic cards, I don't have very many.

So  here we go... A card from the current year with a photo you like....

2017 Topps Heritage '68 Game HR 

I love the Topps Heritage cards, and this year the series celebrates the 1968 cards....I remember collecting those baseball game insert cards.

1968...a great year, as my Tigers beat the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series...I'll take that again this year for sure!

I pulled this card out of a pack my Princess brought me home one day...that stare on Kris Bryant's face tells you he's not just happy with breaking the Cubs 108 year World Series drought...he definitely wants more...that's what makes a great player.

Happy OpeningDay!

Play Ball!