Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Retiring a Dodgers T-Shirt: The 2007 Blue Carpet Event (2007)

I have a lot of Dodgers t-shirts. It reflects a dangerous convergence of my insane degrees of Dodgers fandom, coupled with the fact that I have never met a free t-shirt that I didn't like (and have given fake names, addresses, and social security numbers to credit card companies hawking their wares at stadiums, in order to secure said free t-shirt).

When one of my Dodger t-shirts starts to get a little threadbare and worn, I end up having to retire them to the rags pile. With this post, however, I want to start trying to commemorate some of these shirts for years of service clothing me, or for the memories that they evoke, before they spend the rest of their useful lives dusting furniture or cleaning gunk from the recesses of my hubcaps.

This shirt in particular was distributed to a select group of people invited to the Fox lot for the "Blue Carpet Event" back in April 2007. Coming off of a 2006 post-season appearance that finally got the Dodgers a postseason victory (for the first time since 1988), hopes were high at the start of the 2007 season, our first full year blogging the Dodgers. And though none of the Sons could attend in person, we sent a stringer (back in the days when we could afford stringer reporters on our staff!) to cover the event for us.

I remember that when we were invited (by either Fox and/or Josh Rawitch, I believe), I was excited by the fact that our little blog had been recognized by the Dodgers in the first place. That was, and still is, one of the thrills of blogging. A free t-shirt can make a big impression.

Looking back on the event, the tentpoles of the evening seem a little quixotic. Luis Gonzalez ended up playing for the Dodgers only for that one season, and though his OPS+ of 104 was impressive for a 39-year-old, his 15 HR and 68 RBI that season were below expectations for a left fielder (little did we know what was coming in left the next season). Gonzalez lasted only one more year in baseball (with the Marlins), before retiring as a five-time All-Star with that incredible 2001 World Series title he earned over the Yankees.

Furcal's 2007 was setback by injuries which have plagued him off and on since his first season with us in 2006, though he remains our mainstay in the middle infield with flashes of brilliance if he could only stay healthy (which I still think will happen). Both players were in attendance that evening, which made the event even more special for the fans.

The t-shirt itself was never really a good fit; it was extra-large in size, too big for my frame; and the cotton itself wasn't of very good quality, being a little on the scratchy side. Still, for the past three and a half years, it served me well at nights, not to be seen in public by anyone except my wife and kids. Unlike a lot of other memories of that 2007 season, this shirt delivered value for years aferward.


Kyle Baker said...

Love the idea of memorializing the life and times of your most cherished Dodger tees. I'm also relieved in knowing that I'm not the only one who has far too many of them to be judged as sane.

Kyle Baker said...

Mark Reynolds to Charm City Middle of the Alphabeters. That takes away a lot of strikeouts for our pitchers but also take off some Dodger-killing HRs. Also, the Dbags add JJ Putz as closer, which will take away whatever strikeouts the Dbags had and give us a lot of HRs. I think it's a net gain for us.

Kyle Baker said...

Headed to LAX to catch a flight to the least coast (sorry FB, [redacted], et al). DC bound. I'll check to see whether they have any Jayson Werth jerseys yet and check the temperature of Nationals Nation.

Fred's Brim said...

DB, I prefer to call it "the yeast coast"


Fred's Brim said...

I inherited one of these Dodger shirt from a friend. It was an '88 World Series shirt with caricatures of the various meaningful players from that year. It is too worn for me to wear on a regular basis, but if the occasion is right, I may have to sport it.

I always loved those shirts. I think they were called Six Packs because they were originally made for NBA teams (I specifically remember them for the Piston and Laker title teams) and would feature the starting 5 and either a 6th man and/or the head coach

Kyle Baker said...

I can't imagine any occasion in the near future that mint cause you to have a reason to sport the shit, sadly.


Maybe you can donate old shirts to the Operation: Padilla Sweatbath fund. Help the team save on towel funds. You'd be doing everyone a favor plus you'd feel good about yourself for contributing.

Steve Sax said...

@FB 9:04a: I too have one of those shirts, that I inherited...from SoSG AC about a year ago. Thanks for reminding me that I should do that post as well.

I think we've got the makings of a continuing series here...

karina said...

that pic (and shirt) are awesome Fred's Brim!

Sax, I'd love a series about this topic :)

Kyle Baker said...

I like the nesting dolls bit. We can fit the entire team in Broxton now. Even Uribe.