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Showing posts from February, 2009

The Drama of Cesar Cedeno's Baseball Career

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Cesar Cedeno was born February 25th, 1951 in Santa Domingo. He played a 17 year career most notably with the Houston Astros (1970-1981). He was dubbed the "next Willie Mays" with his speed, defensive skills & power by then Astro skipper Leo Durocher. He batted .310 his rookie season, making a close bid for Rookie of the Year & then hit .320 the next two seasons. From 1972-1974 he hit 20 HRs & stole 50 bases each season. He would steal over 50 bases through 1976 and be in the top four of the league leaders in steals six straight years. He led the league in doubles twice (1971-1972) won 5 straight gold gloves in center field and played in 4 All Star Games. He spent 4 years with the Reds before closing out his career with the 1985 St. Louis Cards. But with all his glory early on in his carer he would never develop into the super star he was tagged to be. After 1973 he would only hit over .300 once more and only have one 100 RBI season. Cedeno's career would be o

The Passing of a Giants Legend : Brad Van Pelt (1951-2009)

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On Tuesday morning former Giant legend Brad Van Pelt passed away of an apparent heart attack. His body was found by his fiancee at his apartment in Owosso, Michigan. He was 57 years old. Brad Van Pelt was born April 5th, 1951 in Owosso, Michigan. He was a two time All American at Michigan State and voted “Player of the Year” in his 1972 senior year. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2001. The Giants drafted him in the second round of the 1973 draft. Second round because he was offered a baseball contract with the St. Louis Cardinals and many believed he was going to take it. He wore #10 in college and was suppose to take a higher number in the NFL due to league rules, but because he was also the teams back up kicker, he was allowed the low number. Unfortunately the Giants only had only one winning season in Van Pelts playing days. He still managed to go to five straight Pro Bowls (1976-1980) and was voted the Giants “Player of the Decade” for the seventies. In th

Last Goodbye to the Memory We Called Shea Stadium (1964-2009)

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After 45 years the final piece of Shea Stadium was leveled today. I passed by this morning at around 9:15 and saw the last ramp way section of Sections 5 & 7 still standing. As I passed again this afternoon by 2:00 PM it was gone. A small crowd gathered taking video & still photos. I often drive by on the Van Wyck Expressway and have been witnessing the dismantling all winter long. As much as I am excited about the new Stadium and feel it's time to move on, there is some nostalgia left behind. Through the years Shea had become very out dated and that became more noticeable with each new ball park I visited across the country. I strongly wanted a new Stadum for years, and feel we the fans desere it. But Shea was all I knew as my teams home ball park. I grew up there and as I look back and pay tribute to past Mets on the centerfield maz site, the back drop is always Shea Stadium. There were alot of great memories there in my life time. Now all that stands in the horizon

Remembering Bon Scott of AC/DC (2/19/80)

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Bon Scott was the original lead singer of the hard rock band AC/DC. Scott was born in Scotland & migrated to Australia. He was in various bands, mostly as a drummer, through out the sixties and joined AC/DC in 1974. The band released six great albums with Bon Scott as the lead singer: High Voltage (1975) - T.N.T (1976) Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap (1976) -Let There Be Rock (1977) Powerage (1978) -Highway to Hell (1979) They grew popular in Australia eventually making their big break through in America in 1979 with the release of "Highway to Hell" which broke the Top 20 album charts. Scott is considered one of the great frontman in Rock & Roll history and a pioneer in the Hard rock/ Heavy Metal genre. On February 19th, 1980 Scott was drinking heavily at a London Club called the Music Machine. He was taken home but could not be awoken as he passed out in his friend Alistair Kinnear's car. He was left overnight to sleep it off. The next afternoon he was found life

KISS First Album Released- 35 Years Ago This Week (Feb.1974)

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On February 18, 1974 Kiss released their first album simply called KISS. The songs were mostly Gene Simmons/ Paul Stanley songs from their former band Wicked Lester. The classic Kiss line up featuring Ace Freehley & Peter Criss had only been formed since 1972. The album took only three weeks to record during October/November 1973 at Bell Sound Studios. The album cover showed the bands faces against a black background, and was meant to imitate the Meet the Beatles album cover. Kiss were huge Beatles fans. Gene, Paul & Ace all did their own make up as usual but Peter Criss had a make up artist put his on and it was done in a different style than he was donning on stage. The album certainly wasn't an immediate classic, it only charted at #87 in the US but did sell 75,000 copies even though it didn't feature any hit singles. By the time Kiss hit their peak in 1977 the first Kiss album had gone gold. The album features some Kiss classics that became staples of their live

1973 Topps Baseball Cards- An Amusing Closer Look Into the Set

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As a huge baseball card fan I have always admired the whole scene living on a baseball card. To me they are like a true work of art, an image caught in time forever secured in a plastic case. All the details from the players expressions, the uniform colors, to the back drop, the stadium, the fans, team mates & what ever else might be visible in the photo. Lets take a closer look at some great ones from one of my all time favourite sets the 1973 Topps. Dont you just love the little icons for the players positions? Topps baseball cards didn't start using action shots until 1971. By 1972 they had those special Red "In Action" cards & in 1973 they again issued random action cards in the regular set. Many of the action shots in the set were landscaped photos, where you had to turn the card sideways to view the whole picture. 1973 Topps #360- Joe Rudi: This card is a classic case of mistaken identity. The player pictured is NOT Joe Rudi but of fellow moustached te

The Passing of Ronette- Estelle Bennett

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centerfield maz is a fan of Ronnie Spector & the Ronettes, and it is with sad regret to report the passing of Estelle Bennett. Estelle was Ronnie's sister and a back up singer in the group, along with cousin Nedra Talley. Estelle was born and raised in Washington Heights, New York city on July 21, 1941. Ronnie described her sister as 'prim and proper' and studious during their childhood, graduating as valedictorian of her high school class. The girls were encouraged to sing at a young age and eventually won a talent show at the Apollo Theater. They were discovered while they were the back up singer/dancers at New York's Peppermint Lounge. By 1963 they hit it big with "Be My Baby" starting the girl group explosion. They had a string of hits until 1966 including "Walking In The Rain" "Do I Love You" "I Can Hear Music' "Why Dont they Let Us Fall In Love" 'Best Part of Breaking Up" & the Christmas classics &

45 Year Anniversary of the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show

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In October of 1963 Ed Sullivan & his wife were at the London Airport with hundreds of teenage girls creaming for the Beatles. Sullivan asked "Who the hell are the Beatles. Shortly after this Sullivan's London contact got in touch with a Brian Epstein connection and went to see a Beatles show. As they got bigger & bigger in England word got to Sullivan. He agreed to meet Brian Epstein in NY at Delmonico's Hotel & Restaurant. A deal was made to have the Beatles appear on the Ed Sullivan show three time in February for $10,000. Epstein wanted more but realized how big the exposure in America would be & accepted, asking the Beatles be the headliners. On February 9th, 1964 rock & Roll history was made in 73 million households as the Beatles made their live TV debut. The press had jumped on the Beatles American arrival two days earlier after some great promoting by Epstein warning America "The Beatles Are Coming". By now everyone wanted to see who

The Beatles Conquer America - 45 Years Ago Today

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A man named Sid Bernstein kept hearing about a huge Rock & Roll band in England called the Beatles. He finally met a Brian Epstein (the Beatles manager) contact & booked the Beatles to play Carnegie Hall on Lincolns birthday 1964, almost a year away. As the legend goes the Beatles didn't want to come to America until they hit Number One. But Epstein jumped at the chance to get the Beatles to play in New York, especially since they hadn't even charted yet in America. All fell into place as Epstein got the Ed Sullivan show booked as well. "Introducing the Beatles" & "Meet the Beatles" LPs were released in January 1964 and with a great 'The Beatles Are Coming!! promotion, the hype began to build. As fate would have it " I Want To Hold Your Hand" hit number One by February 1964. On February 7th 1964 the Beatles left England not knowing what would happen when they arrived in America. As it worked out almost according to plan, they had

Fleetwood Mac Releases the Classic Album "Rumours" this Week in 1977

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By 1976 the classic line up of Fleetwood Mac were in a very strange situation. Stevie Nicks & Lindsey Buckingham had just broken up, as did bassist John McVie & his wife pianist/vocalist Christine McVie. On top of that Mick Fleetwood the leader & drummer of the band had just divorced his wife Jenny, who was the sister of Patti Boyd. (George Harrison & Eric Clapton's ex). They decided to stay together as a band and do their second album together. They recorded the album in California, around the San Francisco & Hollywood areas. There were alot of awkward times in the studio but from February to August 1976, they would put together a masterpiece album. The songs were mostly written about each other, which is why the album was called Rumours. The music they were making made everyone feel better about the personal situations they were in. Rumours opens with a Lindsey Buckingham song with a catchy sing a long beat, "Second Hand News" a term fitting for t