Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Hall of Fame Golf Tournament Videos

A couple of days ago I posted photos from the Hall of Fame golf tournament, I have since cropped those photos, and updated the post, which I think makes them look a lot better than they did. If you checked them out before, I would definitely suggest revisiting the link, as know you can actually tell who the players are. I also figured out the computer issues that I had with the videos that I took, and I've included some of them below.

Lou Brock describes the "baserunning arrogance" that all runners must have, and also talks about his opinion of Rickey's now famous "I am the greatest" speech.

Ozzie Smith discusses his thoughts on Rickey's upcoming induction speech, as well as his impact on the game of baseball.

Gary Carter discusses Rickey as a basestealer, and how he was able to read pitchers the way that he did.

Dave Winfield talks about Rickey Henderson as a ballplayer.

Paul Molitor describes his views on Rickey before playing with him, and how they changed when he was a teammate on the 1993 World Champion Blue Jays.

Carlton Fisk describes how distracting Rickey was on the base paths, as well as how he felt once Rickey got on base.

Monday, July 27, 2009

"Legends of the Game" Event Photos

The "Legends of the Game" event was a question and answer session with Jim Rice and Rickey Henderson, with about half of the questions being asked by fans in attendance. It was the last official event of Hall of Fame Weekend, and I can't believe that it's over.

But, my coverage is just beginning, as I'll have plenty of more posts in the week to come, I just need to get them all put together. I think I took about 1,500 pictures during the entire time that I was here, so I've got my work cut out for me. This doesn't even include the videos that I took, many of which I've already posted.

The event is promoted above on a TV in the lobby of the Hall of Fame. Although I'm not sure exactly what happened, the event was originally supposed to be broadcast live on ESPN, but when they lost the ceremony to the MLB Network, I'm assuming they pulled the plug on their broadcast of this as well.

Rickey and Jim arrive at the event, with Rickey wearing signature monochromatic white.

Rickey acknowledges the fans as Rice looks on. It's been awhile since we've seen that pose from Rickey, which looks quite similar to his celebration after breaking Lou Brock's stolen base record.

Rice also greets the Red Sox faithful, who were out in force the entire weekend.

The newest inductees definitely seemed to be enjoying themselves, and were probably pretty relieved that the weekend was finally over. They'd been going non-stop since Friday, and I can imagine that they're looking forward to a break.

Rickey reacts to a remark from Rice in one of many entertaining moments in the program. I took video of most of the questions, which I'll put together and post at a later time.

At the end of the program, the Hall's official photographer had the two pose with their new Hall of Fame rings, which allowed me to get this shot, which is one of my favorites of the weekend.

Here's a close up of the rings, which say "Baseball Hall of Fame" in a ring around the top. There similar to World Series ring, but much less gaudy, and much more exclusive!

Lou Brock Asks, "Rickey Who?"

I was able to figure out the problems with the videos that I took at the golf tournament on Saturday, but still need to work on getting them updated. But, this short clip is definitely one of my favorites.

After answering a few questions about baseball in general, as he's about to pull away in the golf cart, a reporter asks Lou Brock a question about Rickey Henderson, and here's his response:

Brock was having fun with the reporters all day, and he really seemed to be enjoying himself.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Post-Induction Press Conference

Wow, what a day! I've been waiting for this for about 20 years now, and it's finally arrived. The induction ceremony was amazing, and I can't believe how perfectly everything worked out. While I sort through the over 600 pictures that I took of the ceremony, here's a bunch of video clips I was able to record at the post-induction press conference.

Rickey discusses how he's been handling his emotions leading up to induction.

During his Hall of Fame induction speech, Rickey told a story about Reggie Jackson not wanting to give him his autograph when Rickey was just a young fan. This is a follow-up question to that story.

Rickey discusses why he wore both #24 and #35.

Rickey Henderson compares the fans and playing in Oakland to playing in New York.

Rickey Henderson ended his Hall of Fame induction speech with a reference to his famous "I am the greatest" speech after breaking Lou Brock's stolen base record. Here he clarifies what he was trying to say in that moment.

Rickey discusses his disappointment in not being given one final shot to play Major League Baseball before retiring.

Rickey discusses playing for manager Billy Martin.

Rickey discusses playing for the A's on four separate occasions.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Hall of Fame Golf Tournament Pictures

On of the most interesting events of the weekend was the Hall of Fame golf tournament, held on Saturday morning at the Leathersocking Golf Course in Cooperstown. The event wasn't open to the public, but I was able to get in and take pictures.

Rickey doesn't golf, so he wasn't participating, but Jim Rice was there, as was everyone from Reggie Jackson to Ozzie Smith.

Reggie Jackson - He wasn't too talkative, and I'll just leave it at that.

Lou Brock - He was a lot of fun, really interacting with everyone. Someone asked him about what he thought of Rickey breaking his stolen base record, and he responded, "Rickey Who?"

Jim Rice - He was in a pretty good mood, as you would expect him to be.

Frank Robinson - Seems like a pretty fun guy.

Ozzie Smith - Very pleasant to everyone.

Gary Carter - Talked a lot about playing against Rice and Rickey.

I wonder if Boggs had this made, or if the Hall gave it to him as a gift?

Wade Boggs - Very energetic and outgoing. Stopped for quite a while to sign autographs for the few people that lived along the course.

Goose Gossage - Last year's lone inductee, who I somehow missed teeing off.

Dave Winfield's checking out one of the two cars that could be won with a hole-in-one.

Dave Winfield - Here's one of Winfield in action. He was also very friendly and outgoing.

Paul Molitor - A pretty quiet guy, but along with Boggs, he was one of the few to stop for autographs with the fans.

Mike Schmidt - I managed to catch him teeing off, but that was about it.

Here's another shot of Ozzie because I just like the picture.

Rollie Fingers - His mustache is an easy giveaway, but I figured I should label the picture anyway. Rollie didn't seem to be a big fan of Charlie Finley, and expressed some regret that his trade from the A's to the Red Sox was never finalized.

Hall of Fame Pre-Induction Press Conference

I was able to attend the pre-induction press conference today, and took a ton of pictures and videos. I've uploaded three of my favorite video clips to YouTube, and included them below. It's definitely not the best audio and video quality, but it gets the point across.

Rickey talks about retirement and his future in baseball

Rickey comments about referring to himself in the 3rd person.

Rickey discusses his favorite "Rickey stories," both those that are true, and those that are not.

Friday, July 24, 2009

HOF Weekend: The Rickey Merchandise

UPDATE: I've received quite a few questions on how to purchase some of this merchandise, so I thought I should add something here. I believe that most of the merchandise, as long as it's not a limited edition and already sold out, is going to be up on the Hall's website (shop.baseballhall.org) eventually. But, you can always call the Hall of Fame shop directly (1-888-425-5633), and they should be able to help you out.

After waiting many years for this time to come, I was finally able to obtain some Rickey Henderson Hall of Fame merchandise and collectibles today. I've included pictures and prices below of everything that I could find that was specific to this year's induction. There's plenty of Hall of Fame merchandise out there, but I was still somewhat surprised at the relatively few items available for this induction year.

I apologize in advance for the quality of some of the pictures, but the shop was pretty busy (as would be expected), and I didn't want to take forever. The items are listed in no particular order, just however I happened to run across them while browsing.

Induction Image Baseball: $9.95 - I definitely got one of these, which also feature Jim Rice on the other side.

Hall of Fame Roster T-Shirt: $20 - I passed on this gray T-shirt, which lists the Hall of Famers by induction year, to get a different one from below.

All Hall of Famers T-Shirt: $20.00 - This is the T-shirt that I did get. I like that it has the 2009 induction logo, as well as the facsimile signatures, which the other one did not have.

Official Induction Patch: $12.95 - I passed on this embroidered patch, as it was a bit pricey, and I really did not have a use for it.

Hall of Fame Yearbook: $12 - I picked up this year's yearbook, and like the fact that the design style has been changed from years past.

Induction Caps: $24.00 - I wasn't going to get a hat in Cooperstown, as I don't wear them as often as I used to, but since this one was specific to Rickey, I couldn't pass it up.

Cooperstown Collection Replica Jerseys: $110 - Ever since Rickey was inducted, I've been waiting for the Cooperstown Collection jerseys to be produced. But, I would have preferred a green or yellow jersey, as I'm not sure if I'd actually wear this one. So, as a result, I passed this one up.

Induction Logo Pin: $7.50 - Here's the basic induction logo pin, which is the first of three Rickey pins I added to the collection.

Henderson "Slider" Pin: $9 - This is a pretty cool pin (the 2nd of my three new ones) as Rickey actually slides back on forth on the pin.

Induction Logo Ball: $7.95 - I passed on this version of the induction logo ball, as I got a gold one instead.

Name and Number T-Shirt: $22 - Here's a basic version of a Rickey/A's T-shirt. I passed on this as well, as it didn't have any sort of Hall of Fame indication on it.

Hall of Fame Postcard: $0.50 - These cards aren't released until induction day, but Rickey's "spot" has already been created. At $0.50 each, I plan to pick up a handful of these once they are released.

Mini-Mega Ticket: $24.95 - This isn't a Hall of Fame item, they just carried it in the shop. I'd seen these pop up on eBay recently, but had never seen one in person.

Gold Induction Logo Baseball: $.95 - This is the golden version of the induction ball that I mentioned earlier. It's VERY gold, but that's okay.

Induction Roster Pin: $9 - The last of the three Rickey pins I picked up. I didn't see any of these for sale on the floor, but did see one in a display case. A nice employee pulled it out for me and said that he didn't think they would be getting any more in, so I got the very last one. I'm glad I asked about it!

Cooperstown Bat Company Mini Bat: $25.00 - I didn't get one of these on my first trip to Cooperstown (in 1996), and I've regretted it ever since. So, I made sure to get one this time!

Induction Catalog - This isn't really a Rickey item, but hardcore collectors (you know who you are) will enjoy it. The catalog does list a few items which have either not yet been released, or are already sold out in the store.

Induction Pennant: $10 - They didn't have any of these in the store, but I would have passed on it anyway. It definitely doesn't travel well, I don't have anywhere to put it at home, and I don't really like the look of it.

Induction Stamp Cachet: $24.95 - This postal cachet will not be available until induction day, but I think I'm going to try and pick one up if I can.

Hall of Fame Weekend DVD: $21.95 - The DVD is obviously not available now, but they were taking "orders" at the store. If anyone is interested, they've got a box where they are taking down names and phone numbers, and then they will contact you when the DVD is ready. I'll gladly submit anyone's info if they'd like me to.

Acrylic Hall of Fame Plaque: $35 - Last, but certainly not least, is another item that's not going to be released until after the induction ceremony, but one that I'd like to get. With all of Rickey's teams on his plaque, the font has got to be pretty small.

I'm not sure when my next post is going to be, as tomorrow is a pretty busy day here in Cooperstown. There's a celebrity golf tournament in the morning, a press conference in the afternoon, and the red carpet arrivals of the Hall of Famers at night. The red carpet arrivals don't start until around 8pm. Since I'm not sure how long they will last, I don't know if I'll be able to get a post up, but I'll at least try to get some pictures posted. I've got to sleep sometime!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Rickey Henderson Articles

As would be expected, there have been quite a few articles written on Rickey lately, and I've included links to some of the most interesting ones here. I'm putting this list together as I sit in the Sacramento airport, waiting for my plane to arrive to take me to New York (which is unfortunately almost an hour late).

Rickey Henderson is His Mother's Pride and Joy - Rickey Henderson's mother Bobbie had always wanted a girl, and even though she had Rickey, she couldn't be happier.

Baseball's Haul of Fame - Although Rickey's legacy had already been forged, there are quite a few less famous Hall of Famers (Goose Gossage, Gary Carter, Ryne Sandberg, etc.) who have benefited greatly (ie financially) as a result of their inductions into the Hall.

Rickey to be Rickey at Hall Induction - MLB.com recently interviewed Rickey about his induction speech, which is arguably the most anticipated induction speech ever.

Henderson's '#1 Fan' Hallbound - No, this article isn't about me, but a 25-year-old named Erin who was known to bring different signs to the Oakland Coliseum in the hopes of catching Rickey's attention, which she was very successful at doing.

I'll post more Rickey articles as I run across them. There's plenty of articles chronicling his career and his Hall of Fame induction, but I'll try and link to some of the ones that are more interesting and unique.

A New Blog Logo and Header

In honor of Rickey's imminent induction into the Hall of Fame, and my leaving for Cooperstown today, I thought it would be the perfect time to unveil the new header and logo that I recently had designed for the blog.

I've been wanting to have a logo designed for awhile now, as I was tiring of the collage that I had previously been using. Plus, more than one person has commented on the prominent placement of Cecil Fielders giant head right in the middle.

Along with the logo, I also wanted to have corresponding business cards designed, which I could use to promote the blog while at the Hall of Fame. I've completed trades from a couple of sites that had cards produced, and I always thought it was a nice touch.

In case anyone is curious, here's the 1992 Upper Deck card which was used for the silhouette in the logo. It was surprisingly hard to find a suitable photo, as most of the cards cropped out large portions of his feet and arms.

On a more general note, I plan on chronicling my entire trip to Cooperstown on the blog, with at least one post every night, and probably more. If anyone has any questions while I'm away, or would like me to take pictures of anything while in Cooperstown, please don't hesitate to send me an e-mail, or even comment on this post.

I hope everyone enjoys the new logo, and keeps checking back daily during the upcoming weekend. Now if only I could manage to give Rickey one of the new business cards personally, that would really be sweet!