Go ahead and shake ’em…Just don’t break ’em
1/25/11 Rockies Bobbleheads are back.
I think baseball bobbleheads are a one of a kind collectable. There are a lot of different baseball bobbleheads out there but as far as the Rockies are concerned it’s quite possible to collect all of them.
Here’s a little bobblehead history for you.
Bobbleheads are thought to date back at least 150 years. The earliest known reference to anything “bobblehead like” is from the 1842 short story “The Overcoat” by Nikolai Gogol. There was a character in this story described as having a neck which was “like the neck of plaster cats which wag their heads”.
Several years later ceramic figures of animals, ranging in size from about 6 to 8 inches, were produced in Germany. The heads of these German toys were spring-connected heads and were referred to as “nodders” or “bobbers”.
In the 1920s, a New York Knicks basketball player bobblehead was created and this sparked a renewed interest in bobbleheads. However, by the 1930s interest had waned. From 1930- 1950s bobbleheads were only produced in very small numbers as novelty items.
Unfortunately the bobbleheads were all made with the same angel-like face. Player-specific dolls for Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, Roberto Clemente and Roger Maris were produced for the first time and sold to fans during the 1960 World Series.
Their uniforms were different but just as before the bobbleheads had identical faces. These bobbleheads were made from flimsy paper-mache construction not very many of them still exist in good shape. Most suffer from major chipping and cracking.
In the 1970’s they started using ceramic materials to make the bobble heads. The popularity of bobbleheads began to spread to other sports as well as musicians.
The original Beatles bobblehead set is one of the most famous and rare of all time and is quite a valuable collectible today.
Almost twenty years would pass before the bobblehead would make another comeback.In the 1990s manufacturing processes allowed bobbleheads to be made from plastic instead of ceramic. This material dramatically reducing the expense and difficulty of creating quality bobblehead products.
This giveaway and a decrease in manufacturing costs sparked the resurgence of the bobblehead.
There are even companies out there who offer customized bobbleheads.
Bobbleheads come in all shapes and sizes now. My favorites are the ones that get handed out as promotional items at the stadium.
Here are some examples of those.
Check out what the SFGiants did. In August 2010 they had a Grateful Dead Night..and gave away Jerry Garcia singing bobbleheads.
Mini Jerry sings “Suger Magnolia”
Santana threw out the first pitch of that game.
The Barry Bonds homerun tracking bobblehead.
Here are all of the Rockies bobbleheads that I have or have found pictures for..I know there are a couple I’m missing but I couldn’t find them.
I believe there was an Rockies announcer bobblehead that was handed out around 2000.
Here’s the Larry Walker bobblehead from 2002.
Here’s the Matt Holliday bobble head from 2008. Troy Tulowitzki’s bobblehead from 2008.
Heres another Troy Tulowitzki bobblehead . The Modesto Nuts gave this one away when Tulo did his rehab there on August 9, 2009.
The Todd Helton 2001 Golden Glove bobbleheads were given to Coors Field patrons in 2002. Dan gave me this one a few years back. It’s my favorite.
Here’s a Todd Helton bobblehead that wasn’t given away at Coors Field. This bobblehead was given away by the Salem Avalanche on May 3rd 2002.
Here’s Todd striking a pose for his bobblehead handed out in 2008.
I found two non-Rockies Huston Street bobbleheads. It appears that these two bobbleheads were issued within a month of each other.
This one on April 16, 2006.
This one on May 19, 2006.
Here’s a couple Jason Giambi bobbleheads. The first one was for his 400th homerun on May 21, 2009. It was given out on August 21, 2009.
This bobblehead was handed out by the Columbus Clippers on August 18, 2002.
Bobbleheads are fun from a collector’s point of view because the ones handed out at baseball stadiums are of limited number. Interesting because they are a unique piece of baseball art and just plain cool because kids and adults alike dig ’em.
You can bet I’ll be standing in at Coors Field onApril 17th, June 10th and August 20th.