Friday, January 31, 2014
Note: upon comparing this signature to some rather shaky examples that other collectors have received from Mele over the last few years, and taking his age (92) into account, this looks far too smooth to me. My guess is that Mr. Mele is probably no longer able to sign his mail and has a family member handling it for him. It doesn't bother me personally for the purposes of this little project, but I thought I'd mention it for anyone else out there who has designs on writing to him.
He missed four games with injury, but led the team to an 8-4 record in the twelve games he played, helping the Vikings to a playoff berth.
But, for our purposes, we know him here as the Twins gung-ho first base coach from 1986 to 1994, helping the team to the 1987 and 1991 World Series titles.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Gardner played for ten years in the big leagues, including the first half of the 1961 season for the Twins. He was traded to the Yankees mid-season and went on to win his only World Series with them.
Monday, January 27, 2014
The 6'6" power hitting first baseman was a heckuva baseball player, too. He was such a gifted athlete that he played in the NBA (with the Los Angeles Lakers and San Francisco Warriors), ABA (Kentucky Colonels) and Major League Baseball (Twins and Chicago White Sox).
Saturday, January 25, 2014
Unfortunately, injuries forced him to miss the entire 1983 season. He attempted a comeback in 1984, catching 15 passes while playing in eight games, and then he was done. He had remained synonymous with Vikings football and Twin Cities sports over the next 25 years, though, thanks to a gig as a Vikings radio analyst and as proprietor of an eponymous local sports bar chain.
Sadly, his name took on a whole new meaning in late 2011 when his wife fatally hit-and-run a Minneapolis pedestrian and the ensuing investigation and trial became our own little O.J. drama. To Joe Senser's credit, he has profusely empathized with the victim and, while supporting his wife, has stated in high profile interviews that her sentence is deserved.
Friday, January 24, 2014
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Richard Coffey was the defensive backbone of those teams. To use a hockey term, he was their grinder. While Willie Burton, Kevin Lynch, Melvin Newbern, and Walter Bond were getting the buckets, Coffey was cleaning the glass and was arguably the team's true leader. I don't think he had anything close to an NBA game, but it was pretty awesome to see him get a cameo with the young Timberwolves during their second season in 1990-91.
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
In hindsight, I'm not even sure why I needed the second opinion. Everyone knows Kelly was the man who led us to the only two major pro sports titles in our state's history -- I'm not sure I would classify '50s era NBA as a "major" pro sport. The stogie shot says a thousand more words about the great Mr. Kelly.
Clyde Lovellette was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1988.
His 1987 season for the Twins was ugly statistically, but he came up big in the post-season -- the only time in his 15 year career he appeared in the playoffs. He had two scoreless appearances in the 1987 ALCS and was actually the winning pitcher in the pivotal Game 6 of the World Series against St. Louis.
Sunday, January 19, 2014
Mr. Goegan passed away on October 8, 2008 at the age of 74.
Of note: this is my first attempt ever at making a "cut signature" autographed card. I purchased an affordable signed Goegan index card on ebay and cut it to fit within this card. I may try to straighten/fix my cutting on the card at some point, but I'm pretty satisfied for a first try.
Thursday, January 16, 2014
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Consider his resume:
- His #8 is the only number to retired in the storied history of the University of Minnesota hockey program.
- Ranked #1 in the Star Tribune's list of the 100 Greatest High School Hockey Players in Minnesota History, ahead of the likes of Neal Broten, Phil Housley, and Henry Boucha.
- In four years at Eveleth High School, his team won four State Championships. Oh... they also never lost a single game during his time there. Four straight undefeated seasons.
- All-time leading scorer in Golden Gophers history.
- All-time leading scorer in Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament history.
- Gold medalist at the 1960 Olympics.
- Silver medalist at the 1956 Olympics.
- Many credit Mayasich with "inventing" the slapshot.
Monday, January 13, 2014