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Old 05-10-2016, 08:24 AM   #1201
Cusick
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Sorry for blowing those ID's. Was particularly surprised to see that Dransfeldt was a mistake, since he wore Rangers uniform #44 in 1999, 2000, and 2001. Apparently, David Elder was assigned #44 only during the spring of 2002.
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Old 05-11-2016, 02:01 AM   #1202
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Paul Womble

Such a personal bummer for me, today, to learn of the passing of Paul Womble on April 19.

Paul Womble was a Mets farmhand whose "emergence" coincided with my becoming heavily interested in the Mets minor league system. It was just a convergence of (my) age, the '69 World Series, and a new subscription to The Sporting News (my parents gave me a choice between SI and TSN and I chose the latter because of the minor league coverage).

Paul Womble was one of the first kids I attached myself to. He and George Theodore. The Stork had a captivating piece in TSN about how, when asked what he wanted as a signing bonus, said something like "bus fare and an autographed picture of Yogi Berra". How could you not love a guy like that? Womble simply tore up the Instructional League one year (as I recall) and, while he hadn't been considered a top prospect in an organization with the likes of Ken Singleton, they suddenly had to re-evaluate given the power he'd shown. And I just loved the name. Paul Womble just sounded to me like a great baseball name.

And Paul could hit--or, at least, had hit. With Kansas University, he hit .348 and set a then school record with 17 career home runs. At Visalia, he'd hit .333 with 22 home runs as the team's clean-up hitter. And, as I said, he tore up the Instructional League (between the '71 and '72 seasons).

Working against him were his age (when you're drafted out of college, you're expected to move up like Conforto has) and a very weak arm. He played left field at Visalia and discovered that hitting the ball was a lot easier than throwing it. He even joked, "I threw out two or three runners. I remember that because there were a lot of guys I didn't get." And, though he took it in stride, the fans were pretty rough on him. "Some of them asked what I was going to do for a living." Opposing players, too. "A lot of them asked me why I was throwing change-ups from the outfield." Oddly enough, Paul was ambidextrous. But he couldn't throw any harder with his left arm than his right.

Paul worked the weight room and tried to strengthen his arm. But, the more he worked on his arm, the more his bat suffered. After two sub-par seasons at Double-A Memphis (where he was tried in the infield as well as the outfield), he and the Mets parted ways.

He'd graduated KU with a degree in electrical engineering, and that's what he ended up doing after baseball. Kidney disease got him in the end. And there goes another piece of my childhood.

A while back, I'd mentioned in this forum that I was looking for a picture of Paul. Cusick came up with this one. I tend to go looking for images when ballplayers die. It's a thing. So I found the same image without the captioning in a KU Media Guide. And I came across the second in a piece from the Lawrence Journal-World (Sept. 22, 1971), which is also where the quotes above come from. Eventually, one way or another, I'll be colorizing and making a custom card of Paul for my All-Time Mets collection. But not tonight. (Hey Topps, if you ever happened to catch Paul with your cameras, how 'bout putting one of those out this week? I'll buy it, if no one else does. Promise. Never hurts to ask.)
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Old 05-11-2016, 02:38 AM   #1203
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Edit: OK. Wish I could say I was 100%. I'm not. But I'm going with Prentice Redman on #1.
I don't see much doubt here. Maybe I'm wrong though. But it looks absolutely like Prentice to me!

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Old 05-11-2016, 01:07 PM   #1204
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Robert Higgins

Robert Higgins pictured with the 1887 Syracuse Stars
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Old 05-11-2016, 04:23 PM   #1205
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Jim Ehrler

Jim Ehrler had the distinction of having pitched the first no-hitter in College World Series history. He did it in Omaha in 1950 while with the Texas Longhorns against Tufts University. He was fairly successful in his first couple of seasons of professional baseball, keeping his ERA low, and that earned him a non-roster invitation with the Boston Red Sox in the spring of 1954. He died in 2010 at age 80. The photo shows him with the University of Texas.

Jim Ehrler Minor Leagues Statistics & History | Baseball-Reference.com
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Old 05-12-2016, 12:13 PM   #1206
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Mountain Rivera

This is the best I've got of Hughes Stadium FWIW.
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Old 05-12-2016, 04:30 PM   #1207
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More from the BB Birthdays color files

Found Baseball-birthdays' new home for all of his image on Flickr, but he has three folders of playes he has not ID'd, including some of this spring training color from circa 1998-2002. I have ID's some for him, but there remain a handful yet to be pegged. I know these are tricky, but best guess needs to be referenced as such. Thanks to all, yet again, in advance.

Photo No. 1 (no, it's not Tracy Sanders)
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Photo No. 2
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Photo No. 3
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Photo No. 4
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Photo No. 5
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Assume that some, if not all, of these, could have some MLB time, but putting them here for less grief
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Old 05-12-2016, 10:59 PM   #1208
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Nate Frese

Player #4 above is Nate Frese, a shortstop who was on the Cubs' spring roster for four years --- 2001-2004. For a comparison photo of Nate, see the following link:

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Old 05-13-2016, 04:05 AM   #1209
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I think No. 3 is Dusty Allen and No. 5 is Jose Uribe, but could use confirmation.

Last edited by rico43; 05-13-2016 at 06:26 AM.
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Old 05-13-2016, 03:06 PM   #1210
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I think No. 3 is Dusty Allen and No. 5 is Jose Uribe, but could use confirmation.
I presume you mean Juan Uribe, as Jose never played for the Rockies. In any case, I don't think the individual resembles either of them. Eyebrows, nose and cheek structure bear no resemblance. And Juan was gap-toothed even as a pre-rookie.
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Old 05-13-2016, 06:03 PM   #1211
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1 is Wally Whitehurst

2 is Morgan Ensberg

3 is Bobby Higginson
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Old 05-15-2016, 02:23 AM   #1212
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Closes it out....

Image No. 5 is Jose Ortiz. Photo is a near-match for 2002 Fleer Platinum Franchise Futures.

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Old 05-15-2016, 07:10 AM   #1213
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Image No. 5 is Jose Ortiz. Photo is a near-match for 2002 Fleer Platinum Franchise Futures.

Attachment 453254
I'm skeptical that #5 is Jose Ortiz. Take a look at some of Jose Ortiz's baseball cards when he was with the Oakland A's. His ears stick out much farther in head-on shots than is the case with Player #5.
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:54 AM   #1214
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Elvis Pena

I think the card on the left shows the best approximation to Player #5 that we've seen so far. The Elvis Pena image on the right shows the same smile as our Player #5.
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Old 05-15-2016, 04:12 PM   #1215
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I'm sold that its Pena. The smile is dead on and he's the only one who has been mentioned who has the appropriate Groucho Marx eyebrows.

Well done, Cusick!
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Old 05-15-2016, 08:16 PM   #1216
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I'm sold that its Pena. The smile is dead on and he's the only one who has been mentioned who has the appropriate Groucho Marx eyebrows.

Well done, Cusick!
By extension, wouldn't you say that it's Pena on the Ortiz rookie card?

Either way, thanks for those of you who help us solve these great little mysteries.
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Old 05-15-2016, 08:26 PM   #1217
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Another Batch from Lexibell

Another color folder has some slightly older images. Needing to put this project to bed, so I am putting out a few more that have vexed me.

Photo No. 1
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Photo No, 2
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Photo No.3
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Photo No. 4
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Photo No. 5
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Views: 271
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Again, feel some of these are major leaguers, but not betting on it...
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:14 PM   #1218
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Photo 4 was a pretty good pitcher who could end up being a hall of famer some day...also pitched for the Yankees
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:23 PM   #1219
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Photo 4 was a pretty good pitcher who could end up being a hall of famer some day...also pitched for the Yankees
Argh. You're right, of course. I did not have it blown up this big in my computer. Seeing is believing, for sure. Reminds me that I must get new glasses.
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Old 05-16-2016, 12:07 AM   #1220
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By extension, wouldn't you say that it's Pena on the Ortiz rookie card?
Um, no. It's Ortiz on the Ortiz rookie card. I admit I'm not very good at this game, but the image of Ortiz doesn't look remotely like any of the Pena images to me. The eyes, the eyebrows, the ears, the mouth, the cheekbone structure are all different. The nose is similar and that's about it.
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