The Legend

The Legend

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Happy Rabbit

I believe I'm done traveling for the year which is fine by me. It is always nice to get to see new places, but I was ready to come home. See, when I go away I'm always travelling solo so it gets old eating all your meals alone and not getting to experience a new place with either friends or family.

On a programming note, boy did my mailbox take a pounding this week. I'm sitting on packages from Tony and Brad that will be posted this week and Julie added one to the mix while I was gone. They arrived safe and sound. The other packages were random eBay purchases I made over the Thanksgiving holiday. Being off work sometimes causes me to spend a little too much time shopping for cardboard.

Here is one of the cooler cards I picked up.

1949 Bowman Stan Rojek 

I must have been scouring eBay with a generic search in to come across this card. Obviously this card sticks out as it features Stan Rojek's nickname "Happy Rabbit" which is one of the main reasons I purchased the card. After a little research it seems he got the nickname because of his projecting front teeth. 

Turns out Stan is a pretty interesting guy. He debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1942 as a pinch runner, but then had to wait 3 years because of WWII. A shortstop by trade he thought he would have a chance to start with Brooklyn, but was blocked by Pee Wee Reese. During his career his only extended playing time came with the Pirates in 48 and 49.  His offense declined after being hit by a pitch which he said lead him to being a fraction of second slower with his swing. 

The other interesting tidbit was after retirement he went opened a bowling alley in his hometown and the first person to break in the new alley was hall of fame manager Joe Mccarthy. The idea for the bowling alley must likely came from Stan Musial who was a close friend and would visit Rojek often. 

It is always fun to research a guy like Rojek. One of the many pleasure our fun hobby can provide! You can get sucked in by pages like Baseball Reference and SABR. 

Thanks for reading.


16 comments:

  1. There are some great obscure Pirates from the Kiner years. And baseball had a good thing going with awesome nicknames.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it was really a dark time for Pirates baseball. It was so much fun to read about Rojek that it made me thirsty for more cardboard from this time period.

      Delete
  2. I'd definitely buy a card with 'happy rabbit" written on it. Even more if it's vintage !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm a sucker for nickname cards, new or old.

      Delete
  3. I have to say I've never heard of him. Cool
    card!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Very interesting guy who was friends with some legends. It was fun reading about him.

      Delete
  4. Tis the season for vintage Bowman.
    Yours is the latest blog to recently feature one. Hmmmm....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know right....I traded for one recently and now bought one.

      Delete
  5. I need me some vintage Bowman now! Sweet pickup, love old baseball stories

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can find pretty good deals as long as condition is not a big concern.

      Delete
    2. I'll probably check at the card show next weekend. Not as intimidated by vintage anymore, used to be scared to even look since I thought everything was so expensive.

      Delete
    3. You can find deals. Just look at completed auctions on eBay to get a range of what cards are going for. That will help when you are at the card show.

      Delete
  6. Very cool card. I had never heard of this guy. Thanks for posting

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was fun to read about him. By the way I received your package in the mail today!

      Delete
    2. That was quick. Small but with some substance

      Delete
    3. Can't wait to show it off! Great stuff as usual.

      Delete