Results tagged ‘ Andre Dawson ’

6/2 Hall of Fame update

The Hall of Fame now has on display some of Andre Dawson’s memorabilia, including a 1982 Montreal Expos cap and the glove he used in ’83 when he won the fourth of his eight career Gold Glove awards. Dawson’s 1987 MVP trophy, which he won while a member of the Cubs, also is there. Plus, Whitey Herzog’s scouting card on Dawson while he was playing for Montreal is included. The items will be on display in Cooperstown until May 2011.

Dawson will be inducted into the Hall on July 25.

— Carrie Muskat

1/17/10 Cubs Convention highlights

Some of the highlights of the weekend at the 25th annual fan fest:

* Watching the Ricketts family patiently and honestly answer questions on a variety of topics. They defended GM Jim Hendry, listened to someone offer his services as a mascot, and outlined plans to preserve Wrigley Field. They emphasized that they’re committed to the Cubs for the next 95 years, not five. Players who met the Ricketts for the first time came away impressed as well. “I hope next year everyone is as happy as they are today,” Laura Ricketts said.

* Seeing the rousing ovation new Hall of Famer Andre Dawson received at the opening ceremonies. No matter what cap Dawson wears into Cooperstown, he’ll always be linked to the Cubs.

* A fan asked Lou if the relievers needed something other than metal folding chairs to sit on in the bullpen. “We’ll get ’em some lounge chairs and some pina coladas,” Piniella quipped.

* Good to know no plans for selling naming rights to Wrigley.

* Marlon Byrd was asked if he’ll do better than Milton Bradley did. “That’s the plan,” Byrd said. “My goal is to stay here longer than he did.”

* Seeing a slim and trim Geovany Soto, now 40 pounds lighter and looking more like a “jockey,” according to Lou.

* Watching fans stop by the Mesa, Ariz., booth to show their support. Byrd and Ted Lilly, who have trained in both Arizona and Florida, picked Arizona as their preferred Spring Training site.

* Brett Jackson, the 2009 No. 1 Draft pick, was attending his first Convention and commented on how “insance” Cubs fans are. He said the weekend had him so pumped, he wanted to start Spring Training this week, not one month from now.

* During the “Kids Only” session, someone asked Sam Fuld what goes through his head when he dives into a wall while trying to make a catch. “Absolutely nothing,” Fuld said. His goal is to one day be able to dunk a basketball.

* Mark your calendar: The 26th annual convention will be Jan. 14-16, 2011.

— Carrie Muskat

1/15/10 Welcome to the club

Andre Dawson received the loudest and longest ovation during opening ceremonies at the Cubs Convention on Friday at the Chicago Hilton. Dawson was recently elected into the baseball Hall of Fame, and even though it hasn’t been determined which cap he’ll wear in Cooperstown, the Cubs fans saluted him. Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Fergie Jenkins and Ryne Sandberg also are attending the Cubs Convention.

Jenkins was asked if he taught Dawson the secret Hall of Fame handshake.

“No,” Jenkins said, laughing. “I just asked him, ‘What took you so long?'”

— Carrie Muskat

1/10/10 Cubs Convention attendees

New Hall of Famer Andre Dawson and new center fielder Marlon Byrd will be among the players participating in the 25th annual Cubs Convention, which kicks off next Friday at the Chicago Hilton.

The new owners, the Ricketts family, plus Lou Piniella and his coaching staff also will attend the three-day event.

Dawson, elected into Cooperstown on Wednesday, will be joined by Hall of Famers Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Fergie Jenkins and Ryne Sandberg.

Besides Byrd, the Cubs players currently on the roster scheduled to attend include Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster, Ted Lilly, Carlos Marmol, Derrek Lee, Ryan Theriot, Mike Fontenot, Jeff Baker, and Geovany Soto. Others expected to attend include John Grabow, Tom Gorzelanny, Justin Berg, Jim Adduci, Esmailin Caridad, Andrew Cashner, Welington Castillo, Tyler Colvin, Sam Fuld, Jeff Gray, Angel Guzman, Koyie Hill, Micah Hoffpauir, Brett Jackson, Sean Marshall, Jeff Samardzija, Carlos Silva, and Randy Wells.

Former Cubs Glenn Beckert, Jody Davis, Bob Dernier, Randy Hundley, Jay Johnstone, Gary Matthews, Keith Moreland, Andy Pafko, Milt Pappas, Scott Sanderson, Lee Smith, Tim Stoddard, Rick Sutcliffe, and Steve Trout also are scheduled to take part.

General manager Jim Hendry and his staff plus broadcasters Ron Santo, Pat Hughes, Len Kasper, and Bob Brenly also will be at the convention, which is sold out.

— Carrie Muskat

1/8/10 New HOF Dawson to sign

New Hall of Famer Andre Dawson will sign autographs and greet fans Saturday at the “Field of Dreams” store at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, Ill. Dawson, elected on Wednesday to Cooperstown, will appear from 2-4 p.m. CT Saturday. The appearance is limited to 200 fans who submit a reservation by calling the store in advance.

Dawson, who won the NL MVP in 1987, his first year with the Cubs, will attend the Cubs Convention next weekend at the Hilton Chicago.

— Carrie Muskat

1/7/10 Tip of the cap

Andre Dawson put on a cap at an introductory news conference today in New York, but it wasn’t a Cubs cap or Expos cap. It was a Hall of Fame cap. At the news conference to announce the Hall’s latest member, Dawson said he didn’t know which team he would represent. He has hinted he’d prefer the Cubs, where he won the NL MVP in 1987. Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson said Thursday they had not had a chance to talk about the cap selection.

— Carrie Muskat

1/6/10 The Hawk & Sammy

One of my favorite Andre Dawson stories involved him and Sammy Sosa. The Cubs were in Montreal, and Dawson told Sosa, then in his first season with the team, to go see a tailor he knew and pick out a couple suits. The Hawk would pick up the tab, a ritual that continues today on most Major League teams in which veteran players take care of rookies. I’ll let Dawson tell the story:

“I go there and I have a $2,000 bill,” Dawson said. “I asked Sammy, ‘What happened?’ And he said, “Well, I pick the suit but I pick the one I like.”

“I said, ‘For $2,000, you could get three or four suits.’ And he said, “No. Silk. Very, very nice. I like it.”

— Carrie Muskat

1/6/10 Cubs or Expos?

The Hall of Fame will meet with Andre Dawson to discuss the issue of which cap he will wear in Cooperstown. Dawson played 11 seasons with the Expos, six with the Cubs. The HOF decides, with the player’s input. When asked on Wednesday, Dawson said he was going to enjoy the moment and settle the issue of the cap later.

I covered Dawson in 1987 when he arrived in Chicago. He had his best days with the Cubs. During an interview before Christmas with me, Dawson was asked which cap he’d prefer to wear into Cooperstown.

“I think you know the answer to that,” he said, chuckling. “And for a lot of obvious and personal reasons.”

— Carrie Muskat

1/6/10 Dawson to attend Cubs Convention

New Hall of Famer Andre Dawson will attend the 25th Cubs Convention next week at the Hilton Chicago. Dawson, elected to Cooperstown today, is the 46th former member of the Cubs organization to earn baseball’s highest honor.

“The Chicago Cubs congratulate Andre Dawson on his long-deserved election to Baseball’s Hall of Fame,” said Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts.  “‘The Hawk registered six outstanding seasons on the North Side, none finer than his 1987 MVP season when he paced the league with 49 home runs and 137 RBI. 

“An eight-time All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner, Andre created countless memories for our fans and, along with fellow Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg, helped bring playoff baseball to Chicago in 1989.  We look forward to celebrating Andre’s election with him and our fans when he attends next week’s Cubs Convention.”

— Carrie Muskat

1/6/10 Congrats to the Hawk

Go ahead, Cubs fans, and bow for Andre Dawson just as you did when he patrolled right at Wrigley Field. He’s finally in the Hall of Fame.

Dawson made it on his ninth try, receiving 77.9 percent of the vote by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Last year, he missed the cut with 67 percent. The slender outfielder with the rifle arm known as “The Hawk” will be inducted July 25 in Cooperstown along with manager Whitey Herzog and umpire Doug Harvey.

Dawson was the only player selected by the BBWAA.

Mel Didier, who was the Expos scouting director and originally drafted Dawson, was giddy.

“This is one of the greatest moments of my life because he’s one of the best persons to ever walk,” Didier said Wednesday. “And the work he put in to be great — oh man!”

Dawson won eight Gold Gloves and four Silver Slugger Awards in a career spanning 21 seasons with the Montreal Expos, Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox and Florida Marlins. He won both Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player, finished second in the MVP race two other times, was a seven-time All-Star starter, won eight Gold Gloves and four Silver Sluggers. He finished with 438 home runs and 314 steals. Barry Bonds and Willie Mays are the only other players in the 400-300 club.

He totaled more hits than Ted Williams, more RBIs than Willie Stargell and Willie McCovey.
Of the 18 players eligible for the Hall of Fame who have 1,500 RBIs and 400 homers, all are in Cooperstown except Dawson.

A .279 career hitter with 438 home runs, 1,591 runs batted in and 314 stolen bases, Dawson was the Rookie of the Year with the Expos in 1977 and the MVP in 1987 with the Cubs. The eight-time All-Star underwent 12 knee surgeries during his career but ended up with more than 400 home runs and 300 stolen bases, a feat achieved by only two other players in history, Willie Mays and Barry Bonds.

What cap will Dawson wear? When I talked to him before Christmas, and asked Dawson that question, he laughed, and said, “You know which one.” I’d bet it’s a Cubs cap.

— Carrie Muskat