Campy Stamp

This Sunday the U.S. Postal Service will unveil a very special commemorative stamp at Dodger Stadium.  This special stamp bares the image of a special man, Roy Campanella. 

Roy was a Dodger great, perhaps, the greatest of them all.  He was a three-time MVP, an eight-time all star, and a Hall of Famer on and off the field.  He was one of the greatest catchers to ever put on the shin guards and mask, and squat behind home plate, and when he was inducted into

Cooperstown in 1969, nobody was more deserving.

I was fortunate enough to play with Roy Campanella.  He had one of the best baseball minds ever.  His strategy was only bested by his hustle, and if it weren?t for his accident his accomplishments in our game would be unparalleled. 

However, let?s get one thing straight: Because he was paralyzed did not mean his mind shut down.  In fact, when I became the manager, I went to Roy and said, ?You can?t walk, but there is nothing wrong with your mind.  I want you to be on my coaching staff.?

His eyes became as big as saucers. 

When I introduced him to the team, I told them to listen to every word Roy said and to be like the wise old owl: The more he saw the less he spoke, the less he spoke the more he heard, and the more he heard the more he learned. 

Roy mentored Joe Ferguson, Steve Yeager and Mike Scioscia.  Look at how many years those guys played in the big leagues, look at their success. 

Campy_stamp Everybody talks about Jackie Robinson, and rightfully so.  But

Roy Campanella also had a tremendous affect on the Dodgers, the country.  He was a true role model, and never questioned why he was hurt. 

He never complained, never questioned himself, or his circumstance.  He persevered, and continued to devote himself to his country, his family and the Dodgers.  His late wife, Roxy, once said something to me that brought a tear to me eye.  She told me that when I asked Roy to be one of my coaches that it inspired him, and kept him going.

So as we pay homage to Roy, I want everyone to know what a great man he was, and how deserving he is of this stamp.  He was a great man, a great patriot and truly one of the Boys of Summer.

13 Comments

I can only say “Amen” to your post about Roy Campanella. I used to look for him when he sat in the O’Malleys’ box. He was always gracious and courteous to fans.

Right on Tommy. Loved his time as a player with the , loved his smile and still have a copy of his book, It’s Good To Be Alive. A great man, a great Dodger.

Tommy, thank you for your words about Roy. Roy Campanella is the reason why I’m a Dodger fan for life. Growing up I knew all about Jackie Robinson, my dad played against him in high school, along with my Jr College baseball coach. I wanted to be a catcher because of Roy, my Grandfather never missed a Dodger game on the radio, and I was always with him. I’m a “lefty” by birth, I love Roy so much and wanting to be a catcher too!
My grandpa, had one of his buddies convert me to a “righty” at 5years old.

I grew up watching Dodger baseball with my Dad and his twin brother, both of whom coached me and taught me to bleed blue. Some of their favorite memories (and consequently my favorite stories) took place in Vero Beach at Dodger Fantasy Camp, where Mr. Campanella was an instructor. As I write this, I am looking at a baseball that He, Don Drysdale, Willy Stargell, and a handfull of others signed at that camp.

A few years later, when Campy passed on, they were both overcome with sadness over baseball’s loss, and fondly recalled the memories that they had that Spring in Florida. The U.S. postal service could not have chosen a more deserving human being to commemorate.

I never saw Campy play a game, but I did meet him at Dodger Stadium when I was younger. What a special man and a gentle soul!

Hey Tommy!
I was pretty young then and didn’t pay as close attention as I could have. Did Campy have anything to do with John Roseboro’s development?

I did get to see Campy play on TV. He was the Man!!!!!

Tommy here’s a bit of trivia for you and maybe some fellow bloggers. Do you know where (stadium, town) Campy became the first African-American to coach a professional baseball team? Extra bonus points if you know the manager he replaced…

And while I’m at it…Campy and Newcombe actually broke the professionl baseball color barrier. Jackie (God love him) broke the Major League color barrier.

I saw yesterday’s blow out. OUch! But, ya know it takes games like that make ya realize how fickle this wonderful game can be. Also, when you go to Dodger Stadium, and the home team loses, you still enjoy going to the game. Because once you enter those parking entrances a whole world of blue heaven opens up. The question is did the home team try thier best? Yes, then that’s all you can ask.
Hey so, How bout them Superbas! When is the last time they got any recognition?

Well, it’s nice weekend when we can beat the giants 2 of 3 in Frisco.
Tommy, Saturday was classic. First we pound them 10-0 in the first two at bats on Kurt Reider night. I watched the Giant telecast on MLB Live. Which is a dream when watched on MLB Live Mosiac, by the way.

But, any way, Tommy when they put your recorded thing about how nice of a guy Kurt Reider is (at least that’s what we are assuming you said) the crowd booed so loud and long that nobody heard what you said…lol! It just cracked me up because here you are complimenting thier guy and they couldn’t hear it.

I’m just gonna say right now, I live in Boston and since the Red Sox have won thier latest title, the Yankee/Red Sox rivalry is basically dead compared to the Giants/Dodgers rivalry. After watching the earnst with which the Giant fans degrade the Dodgers this weekend, it’s clear that this is the number one rivalry of all sports.

Tommy, what is it with us playing the Padres? Every since you left(or is it since Steve Garvey joined them)the Dodgers have had a mental block about playing them! It’s embarassing. We don’t put the same effort towards beating them that we do towards beating the Giants!

boy your really lighting up the keyboard with commentary these days.
Gee Tommy, do you think you can put a few thoughts together about the current team? Do you notice the fans want to talk about CURRENT DODGERS BASEBALL.

c’mon what do you have to lose in your old age. What are they gonna do fire you for speaking your mind. Please give us some insight into what you think of this team and for God sakes be honest about it. Good or bad.

You might get more than eleven comments, and actually make this BLOG worthwhile. because right now this is barely a BlOG.

Did anyone see that travisty last night. It’s the second start for Penny that the home plate umpire has turned the strike zone into a carnival game. Penny must have said something to **** off all the umpires in the league. Because, the next pitcher comes up and there calling strikes at the Dodgers hitter’s ankles.
But, that being said. The concentration by the entire Dodger team has been to smug against the Padres, for the last 15 years!!!!!! Hendrickson is the only player, and Lugo, to have raised there games to meet the challenge against the Pads.

If they play with the same attitude against the Dimaondbacks, we will be in second place trying out for the wild card position.

It’s time to remind the new Dodgers players that many umpires and mangagers around the league maintain a deep seeded hatred for the LA Dodgers. Closet Yankee fans and disgruntled Brooklyn fans. You will have to do something spectacular to win, not just be good.

Tommy you saw it in 1978 when Reggie Jackson wasn’t called out after standing in the way of that throw…

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