How Does A Rookie Catcher Handle Knuckleballers Phil Niekro & Hoyt Wilhelm? Very Carefully, Says Bob Didier!

Didier: “He was out.”

As a Little Leaguer, I couldn’t have caught a knuckleball with a butterfly net.

That’s why I marvel at Bob Didier. He was named to the Topps All-Rookie team in 1969. That year, the Braves catcher broke in catcher two future Hall of Famers, knuckleballers Phil Niekro and Hoyt Wilhelm.

I wrote, asking Didier to describe those fluttering deliveries. He responded with a gem of a letter:

“Niekro was the starter and he threw his knuckelballs harder and it broker sharper. Wilhelm threw his knuckleball softer but would have 2 or 3 different breaks at different times.

I waited until the ball stopped roll and I picked them up.”

Didier’s 1973 Topps card is classic. The action shot is supreme. The 1972 Mets roster says #21 was Cleon Jones. Any details about the card?

“He was out.”

I asked about Didier’s father, super scout Mel Didier.

“He signed Ralph Garr, Cecil Upshaw, George Stone, Andre Dawson and Gary Carter, among others.

He taught me to respect the game.

My dad has (written) a book about his life in baseball, Podnuh, Let Me Tell You A Story — A Baseball Life.”

Didier shared a few tales with a Cape Cod League reporter in 2008. Read (and listen) here!

 

How Does A Rookie Catcher Handle Knuckleballers Phil Niekro & Hoyt Wilhelm? Very Carefully, Says Bob Didier!

Didier: “He was out.”

As a Little Leaguer, I couldn’t have caught a knuckleball with a butterfly net.

That’s why I marvel at Bob Didier. He was named to the Topps All-Rookie team in 1969. That year, the Braves catcher broke in catcher two future Hall of Famers, knuckleballers Phil Niekro and Hoyt Wilhelm.

I wrote, asking Didier to describe those fluttering deliveries. He responded with a gem of a letter:

“Niekro was the starter and he threw his knuckelballs harder and it broker sharper. Wilhelm threw his knuckleball softer but would have 2 or 3 different breaks at different times.

I waited until the ball stopped roll and I picked them up.”

Didier’s 1973 Topps card is classic. The action shot is supreme. The 1972 Mets roster says #21 was Cleon Jones. Any details about the card?

“He was out.”

I asked about Didier’s father, super scout Mel Didier.

“He signed Ralph Garr, Cecil Upshaw, George Stone, Andre Dawson and Gary Carter, among others.

He taught me to respect the game.

My dad has (written) a book about his life in baseball, Podnuh, Let Me Tell You A Story — A Baseball Life.”

Didier shared a few tales with a Cape Cod League reporter in 2008. Read (and listen) here!

 

WalMart Hawks "Hawk" Dawson

Posted October 9th, 2010 by Tom Owens and filed in Andre Dawson, Duke Snider

Collectors report that it takes a $20 donation to the Andre Dawson Foundation to get the new Hall of Famer’s signature. The foundation sends out a price list.

Sadly, fans who don’t know TTM collecting basics can get soaked $101.99 to buy an autographed HOF postcard from the WallyWorld website.

There’s an 8-by-10 signed photo from Duke Snider for “only” $174.99.

Okay, WalMart can feign innocence. A “Pro Sports” contractor provides the product and the shipping.

However, the WalMart name is attached. Soon, everyone assumes the signature is worth that much — and more! The HOFer decides to hike his signing fee. Or, why sign for any individuals, when corporate America is interested?

Halloween is coming. The hobby may be seeing more tricks than treats.