Saturday, December 29, 2007
Demaree helped the Cubs win the National League pennant in 1932, 1935 and 1938. During his only season with the Cardinals he helped them to win the National League pennant in 1943. During his last season he helped the Browns win the American League pennant. He was named to the National League All-Star Team in 1936 and 1937.
He finished 7th in voting for the 1936 National League MVP for playing in 154 Games, having 605 At Bats, 93 Runs, 212 Hits, 34 Doubles, 3 Triples, 16 Home Runs, 96 RBI, 4 Stolen Bases, 49 Walks, .350 Batting Average, .400 On-base percentage, .496 Slugging Percentage, 300 Total Bases and 17 Sacrifice Hits.
He finished 15th in voting for the 1937 National League MVP for playing in 154 Games, having 615 At Bats, 104 Runs, 199 Hits, 36 Doubles, 6 Triples, 17 Home Runs, 115 RBI, 6 Stolen Bases, 57 Walks, .324 Batting Average, .382 On-base percentage, .485 Slugging Percentage, 298 Total Bases and 14 Sacrifice Hits.
He also led the National League in Grounding into Double Plays (23) in 1937.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
I had spent several days working for my grandfather in the hay fields that summer and I had earned a whopping total of $60.00. Wow, I was sixteen and I had $60.00 to spend! An older friend of mine that was my "mentor for collecting baseball cards" said, they were having a big collectors convention in Kansas City and he asked me if I would like to go along with him and his wife? Excitedly I replied, Yeah! as I had never been to anything like that before. So, I took my $60.00 and we headed towards Kansas City. I was excited! The card show was at a hotel located across from KC Royals Stadium on I-70. I remember as we walked into the convention room I said, "Wow! there were row after row and table after table full of Tobacco, Gum, & Candy Cards. You have to know that at this time before the show, the oldest cards I had seen was two 1952 Topps. I thought the 1952 Topps were ancient but they were nothing compared to what I was seeing here for the very first time. I was like a kid in a candy shop! So, anyway I was so out of my league I had no idea what to buy. I looked for cards that I was familiar with but there wasn't to much. I found two Topps that had been autographed, they were a 1973 Sal Bando and a 1974 Randy Jones. I then found a 50 card lot of 1973 Topps with a Pete Rose on top. I bought a 1975 and 1977 complete sets of Topps. I did not have one penny of my hard earned $60.00 left. Well, as I made my way back to the car and the couple I had rode up there with, I hadn't given any thought to keeping enough money back to eat on. The wife of my friend says, I am glad you had fun but man I am hungry. My friend said, I am sorry dear but I spent all my money in there. She turned aournd and looked at me in the backseat and said, Bart, do you have any money? I replied, "No! I spent it all on cards." She was so nice she bought us pizza anyway. When I returned home, my family could not believe I had spent the whole $60.00 on baseball cards. They all replied, you worked so hard for all that money in the hayfields. Anyway I guess my story is, that now when I go to card shows or card shops, it is still hard not to spend every penny I have. But I know that my wife wouldn't buy me pizza if I did. Never the less, in todays world, $60.00 wouldn't even break open most hobby boxes.
I would like to hear more stories like mine from other collectors about when they first started out. So if you have a story you want to share email me at mhtml:%7B38160ACE-BE85-48F2-8483-A2A063EFBF90%7Dmid://00000010/!x-usc:mailto:email@example.com
Friday, December 21, 2007
In 1972, he led the American League with 9 triples (tied with Joe Rudi of the Oakland Athletics). He is the last catcher to lead the league in this statistical category.
In Fisk's long career, he caught 2,226 games, more than any other catcher in history. He was an 11-time All-Star and hit 376 career home runs.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Since I now know that David is one looker who is reading my bloggs, I decided to write about one of his Indians. I have chosen Buddy Bell. I have always been a big fan of Buddy Bell. You know when you buy baseball cards there seems to be one player that you always pull out of a pack mine is Buddy Bell. Another reason I like Buddy bell is that I like to argue. Growing up in Missouri everybody around me seemed to love George Brett. So, I would always say Buddy bell is just as good of third baseman as George Brett! My female cousins would always say, "But George Brett is so good looking!" I would reply, yeah but if I wanted to look like man that would attract women I would want to look like Buddy Bell.
Later after he left the Indians and went to the Rangers, he did give George Brett a run for his money as the best third baseman. I was really happy when the Royals hired him as their manager a few years back even-though he is no longer their manager. Buddy is one of those managers that never wins a lot of games, but after he leaves you realize he built a good club!
Saturday, December 15, 2007
I love Error Cards and I got the Topps: Jeter, Mantle & Bush card yesterday at a card shop!
Topps employee puts all three together via digital manipulation
Clay Luraschi, Topps spokesman said
Somewhere in between the final proofing and its printing, someone at our company - and we won't name names - thought it would be funny to put in Bush and Mantle. ... It's in the set and it's funny. It's caused quite a stir.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Larry Fritsch, 71, prominent Stevens Point businessman, died Saturday, Dec. 8, 2007, at the Aspirus Wausau Hospital with his loving family at his side, following a brief illness.
Larry was born Oct. 15, 1936, in Spencer. He was the son of the late Larry and Cecelia (Kotecki) Fritsch. He graduated from Spencer High School in 1954. He then attended the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, graduating in 1963 with a Bachelor of Science degree in history and political science. Larry was a train baggage man for the Soo Line Railroad from 1955 to 1965. He then worked for the Legislative Fiscal Bureau in Madison for a year doing tax research. He also worked for the Whiting Plover Paper Co. from 1966 to 1967, and then worked for CAP Agency until 1970.
On May 1, 1970, he established Larry Fritsch Cards, a mail order company selling baseball, sports cards and other related products. He was the first person in the world to sell sports cards on a full-time basis. As a result of his business, he has been featured in hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. He also appeared on many radio and television programs, including PM magazine and The Tomorrow Show. Larry was considered an expert on baseball/sports cards, their history and value. In 1987, he ventured out to Cooperstown, N.Y., to open a Baseball Card Museum. Because of distance and travel time, the museum closed in 1992. Larry continued to be involved in his business until the time of his death.
In addition to his business, Larry also found time to be involved with the Stevens Point Youth Baseball Association from 1967 until 1983 as a manager, coach, league vice president and board member. He also was a coach and board member with the Stevens Point American Legion Program from 1978 to 1990. Larry also did service work outside of sports. He was the town of Hull assessor from 1969 to 1973, served as town supervisor from 1973 to 1981 in addition to serving on the town of Hull planning and zoning committees. He was a charter member of the Portage County Landfill Committee, and served on the Board of Adjustments and Portage County Smart Growth Committee.
Larry was married to Ardy (Molle) Hendrickson on Feb. 8, 1958. The couple divorced in 1985. Larry enjoyed spending time with his family, baseball cards, collecting and operating model trains, doing jigsaw puzzles and reading. Larry loved trees and was also an avid Packers fan (his Uncle Ted Fritsch played on the team from 1942 to 1950) and a Cubs fan. In lieu of flowers, memorials are being established in his name for Stevens Point Youth Baseball Association, Youth Area Football, and the American Cancer Society.
Survivors include one son, Jeff (Sue) Fritsch, Stevens Point; one daughter, Jane (Jeff) Gavin, Stevens Point; dear friend and love, Janet Wolle, Stevens Point; two brothers, Donald Fritsch, Spencer and Raymond (Elizabeth) Fritsch, Galesville; six grandchildren, Jeremy Fritsch (UW-La Crosse), Jaycie Fritsch (UW-Oshkosh), and Allison Fritsch of Stevens Point, and Jesse, Jadee and Jakob Gavin all of Stevens Point; and several nieces and nephews; along with Janet's children, Jim (Nancy) Wolle, Marc (Melinda) Wolle, and Susan (Duane) Vandre; and Janet's four grandchildren, Michael and Kristine Wolle and Tyler and Justin Vandre. He was preceded in death by one sister, Priscilla Keene.
The funeral Mass will be at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. Stephen's Catholic Church with the Rev. Dezaraj officiating. Burial will be at a later date. Family and friends may call from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Pisarski/Dzikoski Funeral home and from 9:30 a.m. until the time of Mass on Thursday at the church. A parish rosary will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday evening at the Funeral Home. Online condolences can be made at http://www.pisarskifuneralhome.com/
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
The card fronts feature a color lithograph of a player surrounded by a white border. A few cards were printed in a horizontal format, but almost all of the 523 cards in the set were oriented vertically. Card backs do not contain any statistics; instead, an advertisement appears for the cigarette brand the card was packaged with. The cards were printed on sheets by one factory, and each brand was allowed to place its ad on the backs. There are sixteen different brands that issued these cards, with Sweet Caporal and Piedmont the most common. Other brands are Sovereign, American Beaty, Broadleaf, Cycle, Drum, Carolina Brights, El Principe de Gales, Hindu, Lenox, Old Mill, Polar Bear, Tolstoi, Ty Cobb and Uzit. Additionally, some blank-backed cards have been found.
According to Bill Heitman's excellent hobby book "The Monster," there are over two thousand different front/back combinations within the T206 set. With variations of some companies' back designs, there are over 30 different backs possible. No card can be found with all the different backs. One brand -- Ty Cobb -- can only be found on a single card, Cobb's own "red background" card.
Since the T206 set was issued over a period of years, there are some particulars here that are not found in other sets. In addition to the big league players found in the set, minor leaguers--from Houston to Providence, and Minneapolis to Atlanta--appear as well. The minor league players are harder to find than major leaguers because they were only printed for one year (1909) and were mainly distributed around their leagues' geographical area. Several players in this set are pictured with different poses (Ty Cobb had four, and Hal Chase had five, for example). A few players have cards with two different teams, to reflect a trade. The different poses and teams are noted in the checklist below.
Some of the hobby's scarcest card can be found in this set. One of Sherry Magee's cards shows his name spelled as "Magie." While most collectors see it as the most valuable error card in the hobby, others have noted that the "i" may have been the result of a printing flaw (there are several players with misspelled names in the set, but none were subsequently corrected, so there be some truth to that theory). Joe Doyle's "NY Nat'l" variation with Doyle's hand shown above his head is scarce. Legend has it that a shortage of Eddie Plank cards was caused by a broken printing plate; whatever caused the scarcity, Plank's Hall of Fame status has only helped the value of the card to rise.
That brings us to the Wagner card. No other card in the hobby (not even the 1952 Topps Mantle card) has generated as much excitement. There is a great deal of disagreement about why Wagner's card was removed from circulation. The story that has been used most often is that Wagner was against tobacco products and did not want his image used to help sell cigarettes. While that sounds like a noble cause to some collectors, to others it sounds like a latter-day version of the old George Washington/cherry tree story. These collectors insist Wagner had his card pulled because the American Tobacco Company did not pay him enough. Whatever reason the card was pulled, it has created the most sought-after card in the hobby.
Sunday, December 9, 2007
I completed my first Internet trade with David at "Indians Baseball Cards. Always" I traded him 1975 Topps Frank Duffy, 1975 David Duncan, and a 1976 Frank Duffy. I received the Upper Deck Goudeys; Dan Uggla (Red back), Aaron Rowand (Red back), Ramon Hernandez (Green back)