More Goossen III: The Dodger career that just didn’t happen

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Greg Goossen was on the Dodgers’ roster long enough to get this write-up in the 1965 media guide.

The 18-year-old out of Notre Dame High, who signed with the Dodgers on June 1, ’64, made it to Vero Beach to spring training, catching Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax, before he was snatched off the roster, claimed on first-year waivers by the New York Mets on April 9, 1965.

Goossen was in Dodger camp long enough to have this photo taken of himself with Drysdale and Koufax:

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Last month, Dodgers team historian Mark Langill presented Goossen with a copy of the photo that had been lost in the Goossen family archives. Goossen shared a moment in the press box with Vin Scully, showing him the photo:

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More Goossen II: The highlight rap sheet

Thanks to the painstaking job by Retrosheet.com, we’re able to document with certainty when certain things happened in baseball history.

In Greg Goossen’s career, which we documented his time with the 1969 Seattle Pilots (linked here), that means not having to leave things to his memory.

Such as the box score to:

== His first game with the Seattle Pilots: (linked here)

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== His major league debut on Sept. 3, 1965 at St. Louis, as a 19 year old going 2-for-4 against Ray Sadecki in a 6-3 Mets’ win: (linked here).

== His second big-league game, going 2-for-4 against the Milwaukee Braves on Sept. 6 in Milwaukee: (linked here)

== His first home run off Bo Belinsky on Sept. 25, 1965 in Connie Mack Stadium: (linked here).

== His last of 13 big-league homers, off Kansas City left-hander Bill Butler, hit when he was with the Milwaukee Brewers: (linked here)

== A game on Sept. 2, 1969 at Yankee Stadium when he went 2-for-3 against the Yankees’ Al Downing with a double and his only big-league triple: (linked here)

== A two-homer game on Sept. 25, 1969 against the first-place Minnesota Twins in Seattle, going 3-for-4 (with a double) off Jim Kaat in a 5-1 Pilots’ win. (linked here).

== His last hit, a pinch single for the Senators in 1970 at Yankee Stadium: (linked here)

== His last at bat, Oct. 1, 1970, against Jim Palmer as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning for Washington in a 3-2 loss to Baltimore: (linked here)

More on Goossen’s baseball career stats (and beyond):

== At Baseball-Reference.com (linked here) as well as (linked here)
== At Baseball Prospectus.com (linked here)
== At ArmchairGM.com (linked here)
== A profile on the site Ultimate Mets.com (linked here)
== His film credits on InternetMovieDatabase.com (linked here)

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More Goossen I: The man, the character, according to Bouton

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Excerpts of the Jim Bouton classic book “Ball Four” with some references to Greg Goossen, who we took a look at his one season with the Seattle Pilots that started 40 years ago today (linked here):

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February 26
Tempe

I know a lot of guys on the club. Greg Goossen is one. He’s a catcher, a New York Met castoff, and is up out of Triple-A. Two years ago, I was playing against Goose in the International League. There was a bunt back toward the pitcher and Goose came running out from behind the plate yelling, “First base! First base!” at the top of his lungs. Everyone in the ballpark heard him. The pitcher picked up the ball and threw it to second. Everybody safe. And as Goose walked back behind the plate, looking disgusted, I shouted at him from the dugout, “Goose, he had to consider the source.”
I guess I got to him, because the first time he saw me — two years later — he said, “Consider the source, huh?”

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Coming Saturday: Greg Goossen, part of Seattle’s finest 40 years ago, adding to some strange baseball history

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The 1969 Seattle Pilots were baseball’s impractical joke, the quickest one-and-done team in modern history.

One year, the city has the Angels’ Triple-A affiliate. The next, a big-league team. And then, it skips town after filing for bankruptcy, when a used-car salesman from Milwaukee named Bud Selig buys ‘em up.

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The local connection: Greg Goossen, from the famed Goossen boxing family of the San Fernando Valley. The former Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks multi-sport athlete, a draft pick of the Dodgers in 1964, ended up on that ’69 Pilots roster (No. 34, fifth in from the left in the second row in the photo above). For better or worse, after a call-up from Triple-A Vancouver on July 25 — 40 years ago Saturday — Goossen was part of this crazy flock.

He went 3-for-4 with a homer in his debut. And the Pilots lost. In part, because manager Joe Schultz asked him to bunt in the bottom of the ninth and he popped it up into a double play.

“The first pitch was right between my eyes, and I got out of the way,” said Goossen. “Why did they want me to bunt again? I didn’t even know the bunt sign. They had to come and tell me. I honestly don’t even think I’d bunted before that. I hit a home run earlier in the game. Why?”

So what’s happened to Goossen since then? He’s lived several lifetimes. We caught up with him near his Sherman Oaks apartment to relive that time before the Pilots’ light was turned off.

For a little background on the famed Goossen family tree:

== Born on Dec. 14, 1945, Greg is the fourth oldest of 10 children born to Elliott “Al” (a former LAPD homicide detective) and Ann Goossen, and grew up living across the street from Notre Dame High’s baseball field in Sherman Oaks. All the children either went to Notre Dame High, Grant High or Van Nuys High.
You may have heard of some:

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== Dan and Joe Goossen: Of Greg’s seven brothers, these two became most famous for training world-class boxers after opening Ten Goose Boxing — the name, a reflection of the 10 Goossen siblings. The gym, once in Sherman Oaks but is now in Van Nuys, was home to top fighters that included Michael Nunn, Terry Norris and WBC super featherweight champ Gabriel Ruelas (and his brother, Rafael). Dan, (pictured at right), is now president of Goossen Tudor Promotions and in the California World Boxing Hall of Fame. In fact, Greg, who has worked in the Goossen boxing gym as a trainer and self-defense instructor, wears a championship ring given to him by the Ruelas’ brothers

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== Nick Goossen: The son of Greg’s brother, Joe (both are pictured at left), has produced Hollywood films in coordination with Adam Sandler.

== P.J. Goossen: The son of Greg’s oldest brother, Pat, was a former middleweight contender in the 1990s who had a 19-3 record that included losses to Hector Macho Camacho and Roberto Duran.

== Josh Goossen-Brown: The co-Mission League MVP last season at Notre Dame High is another one of Greg’s nephew — the son of his sister Sandra Goossen and brother-in-law Tom Brown, who also trains boxers. As a senior who guided his team to the Div. II title over Sunny Hills at Dodger Stadium by throwing six innings out of the bullpen, Goossen-Brown also hit .330 with two homers and 17 RBI in 29 games. He finished with a 10-3 record on the mound with 2.80 ERA and was first-team Daily News All-Area Baseball.

== Cody Howard: One of Greg’s four grandkids, he hit .338 with three homers and 22 RBI in 25 games and was also 2-1 on the mound with two saves last season as a freshman at West Ranch High in Santa Clarita. His mother is Greg’s middle daughter, Kim. Greg’s youngest daughter, Tracy, is also kind of fond of her daughter, Reese. So is grandpa Greg.

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The Media Learning Curve: July 17-24

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Boy, do we ever need to get a grip. Who can teach us the best way to keep our fastball working with all the lessons to be learned out there this week?

And we’re not only talking about Erin Andrews’ inability to put a piece of Duct tape over the peephole on her hotel room door. That should be standard proceedure, sadly.

Other than that, we were sure that you knew about:

== The newspaper business trying to reinvent itself, and the lack of coverage on the L.A. Kings — really? — is the best angle to this latest assessment (linked here).

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The Ramire$$$$ aftermath

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After Wednesday’s column on the Business of Manny Ramirez (linked here) leading into the bobblehead giveaway, some had asked to see just what a $1,650 portrait of the Dodgers’ left fielder must look like to sell for such a premium.

That’s it above, forwarded by those who represent Malibu-based artist Stephen Holland. There are 99 prints made of it, and Ramirez has so far signed 10 of them. Five of them have been sold. They’re available at The Art of The Game (company link here) booth behind the left-field seats — Mannywood, if you will — with owner Chris Harvill ready to arrange for shipping and handling of the piece that’s more like 3 feet wide and 2 feet high — something in that ballpark. The larger version allows for a better look at the detail that went into this. It’s really something cool.

But… where do you hang it?

And as for Manny bobblehead sales on eBay since Wednesday night? The L.A. Times reports today (linked here) that “bobblehead dolls in Ramirez’s image show up on EBay after a signature homer by the slugger.” Well, facts be known, they were on eBay.com days before that game (linked here). They’d been given out, some 1,500, at the Dodgers’ Single-A minor-league affiliate in Inland Empire on Friday, maybe to create a buzz and stir the marketplace. Then, people were listing them on eBay before the game, guaranteeing delivery. Some for just $50. Now, they’re going for twice that.

Too bad the Times couldn’t check a story already in circulation that could have been used borrowed scanned as a reference point for its pronounciation on the subject.

Oh, wait …

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Our Daily Dread: Your 2009 Dodger Hollywood Stars lineup (and no Pat Sajak, I must say)

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Saturday, 5 p.m., prior to the Dodgers’ 7:10 p.m. game against the Marlins, the 51st version of the event — which remains a softball game, without Tony Danza’s anticipated participation.

First problem: They don’t open the stadium parking gates until 4:40 p.m. Which means, maybe 20 cars will be able to high-tail it into the lot, thow it into park, run to the entrance, and be seated by first lob pitch.

Second problem: The usual annual list of participants (with proper ID in parenthesis if you have trouble figuring out their link to celebrityville):

Group I: Those you should know (but not be all that impressed by):

Larry King (yes, he’s decided to “play” … which may mean someone with CPR best be available nearby)
Rob Lowe
Mario Lopez

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Adam Carolla
Joel Madden (Lead Singer for Good Charlotte)
James Denton (“Desperate Housewives”)

Group II: A slow roller to third from appearing, together, on “I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Off This Island”:

James Van Der Beek (“Dawson’s Creek”)
Ian Ziering (“Beverly Hills, 90210″)
Tom Arnold
Tom Green
Meat Loaf
Melissa RIvers
David Charvet (“Baywatch,” and the recent “The Superstars” with Lisa Leslie)

Group III: You look familiar, but then … maybe not:

Dave Annable (Justin from “Brothers and Sisters”)
Jessica Lowndes (“90210″)
Brian Baumgartner (Kevin from “The Office”)
Kate Flannery (Meredith from “The Office”)
David Denman (Roy from “The Office”)
Scott Stapp (Lead Singer for Creed)
Neal McDonough (the creepy killer guy from “Desperate Housewives”)
Josh Henderson (“Desperate Housewives” somebody)
Adrian Pasdar (“Heroes”)

Group IV: Do you have a pass to get on the field? Can I see it?

Robert Hoffman (“She’s the Man,” “Aliens in the Attic”)
Daren Kagasoff (“Secret Life of the American Teenager”)
Aimee Teegarden (“Friday Night Lights”)
Jake T. Austin and Jennifer Stone (“Wizards of Waverly Place”)
Kate Linder (“The Young and the Restless”)
Michael Rosenbaum (“Smallville”)

Group V: Guys who aren’t actors and will hit the ball into the pavilion if given a chance:

Willie McGinest (free-agent outside linebacker out of USC, 13 years in the NFL with New England and Cleveland)
“Sugar” Shane Mosley (world-champion boxer)
Antonio Gates (San Diego Chargers All Pro tight end)
Robert Griffith (13-year NFL safety with Minnesota, Cleveland, Arizona, out of San Diego State)
Kirk Morrison (Oakland Raiders linebacker out of San Diego State)
Shaun Phillips (San Diego Chargers linebacker)

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Will Demps (listed as “NFL Star/Model”, at right … we have him pegged as a stunt double for “The Rock”)

Who we sort of expected but will not be upset to miss:

Jonathan Silverman
Patrick Warburton
Sean Astin
Corbin Bernsen
Kareem Abdul Jabbar
Carlos Mencia
Camryn Manheim
Antonio Villaraigosa

The one who’d have drawn a crowd by himself:

Sasha Baron Cohen (dressed as Bruno)

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The Media Learning Curve: There’s (probably) more to Erin Andrews than meets the peephole

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Credit: www.dwightgoodenposter.wordpress.com.

We’re already getting backlash from the take we took on this whole EA-gets-spied-on story and reaction (linked here) in today’s newsprint edition. Didn’t expect anything less.

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Again, nothing excuses someone else from perverted behavior, so we feel very badly for what Andrews must be exposed to right now. She could come back stronger; she could disappear; she could keep acting the same way.

Is she that naive?

Hey, one more story from Leslie Visser on the subject of females trying to do their job versus how they’re perceived, as she was the first women to cover the NFL with the Boston Globe in 1976 when she was a 20-year-old, single person and took a tact that more should think about.

She said via email:

“When the New England Patriots played the Baltimore Colts in pre-season in 1976, there were no provisions for equality, so I waited in the parking lot for quarterback Bert Jones. During the interview, he said, ‘Hey, have you ever been to Baltimore, would you like to come for a weekend?’

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“I went into my surely high-pitched pompous voice: ‘Absolutely not, this is my job!’ He finally looked at me, exasperated, and said, ‘Please, you’re not that great!’ I burst out laughing.”

We got other notes to dig through for the upcoming weekend:

== Stay tuned for the ESPNLosAngeles.com website that’s slated to launch in the first half of 2010. Last year, ESPNChicago.com as used as a test model of what ESPN could do with its resources to produce a city-friendly website aimed at the fans of that town — funnel in the local ESPN Radio affiliate, highlight local stories and columnists. It’s been enough of a success that, in addition to L.A., there will also be an ESPNDallas.com this fall, and an ESPNNewYork.com next year as well.

“Our commitment to expand ESPN’s network of localized sites is a testament to our dedication to serve sports fans and their passions,” said Marc Horine, vice president digital partnerships and sales development, ESPN Digital Media. “We understand that local sports interests ignite strong passions, and Dallas, New York and Los Angeles have some of the most storied franchises and fan bases in history. We’re excited by the early success we’ve had with ESPNChicago.com and the opportunities that lie ahead.”

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A chance to meet Andre Eithier, and feed your soul

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Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier really doesn’t need the team to push him into going to Skid Row to help serve the poor and homeless, but he’s got that publicity machine behind him Friday when he’ll be making a visit to the Union Rescue Mission for a Farmer John-sponsored event.

The hot-dog company will donate Dodger Dogs that Ethier will help cook and serve up to more than 600 clients, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The mission’s address: 545 S. San Pedro Street. It’s one of the biggest places in the U.S. to serve the needy.

The Dodgers were kind enough to also provide this fact: According to the city and county of Los Angeles, approximately 236,400 men, women and children are homeless yearly and 84,000 people are homeless each night in Los Angeles County.

If you’ve ever been brave enough to venture to that part of town, you’ll know it’s much more serious than just attaching numbers to it.

Please, check it out, if only to get a taste of how other citizens of L.A. try to get by day by day.

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Coming Friday: The way we see the Erin Andrews Affair

If my 18-year-old daughter, heading off to college this fall, told me today she’s going to college to start as a career as a sports TV journalist, my first reaction would be: Talk to those who are doing it, the ones you admire, and find out how they’re successful. Talk particularily to those who’ve been doing it more than 10 years. Beauty only goes so far in the visual media. You need context and content, not controversy. Remember Jill Arrington? (Try sidelinehotties.com).

That said, it’s disappointing that Erin Andrews hasn’t done more to stiffle the media that’s made her into a celebrity prop and done more to show her journalistic chops. Other female reporters can look at her as a perfect example of what not to do — on or off the field.

We’re not saying she’s at fault for having someone rig a video camera up to a hotel door and film her doing whatever she was doing inside — and then make it available on the Internet, despite all that ESPN has done over the last few weeks to stiffle it.

We’re in full agreement with the immediate response to this by USA Today’s Christine Brennan, who launched a Tweet the other day that, of course, was immediately misconstrued: “Women sports journalists need to be smart and not play the frat house. There are tons of nuts out there. Erin Andrews incident is bad, but to add perspective: there are 100s of women sports journalists who have never had this happen to them.”

It’s just that … you’ll see more when we try to get our heads around it for Friday’s media column….

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