Tag Archives: MLB

sports art David Justice large scale painting of him sliding into home plate. Painting is displayed at the Atlanta Braves SunTrust Park Stadium in the Delta Airlines area of thesatadium

Atlanta Braves Baseball Art

Atlanta Braves Sun Trust Stadium

The painting you see is of  David Justice a former outfielder and designated hitter in Major League Baseball who played for the Atlanta Braves (1989–1996).  The painting I created is Atlanta Braves art from their new SunTrust baseball stadium in Atlanta, Ga.  The painting of David Justice is 8 feet by 15sports art David Justice large scale painting of him sliding into home plate. Painting is displayed at the Atlanta Braves SunTrust Park Stadium in the Delta Airlines area of thesatadium

MLB baseball player  David Justice right field sliding into home plate with catcher and umpire

feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.  I created three pieces this size and will see other post of the other paintings on this blog.  Although I have created sports art for a number of other stadiums the three MLB baseball pieces I painted of Atlanta Braves players are the largest.   The other two pieces are of Chipper Jones and the other is of Dale Murphy.  All three of the pieces are on display in the Delta Sky Club area of the SunTrust Park stadium.

About David Justice

Three-time MLB All-Star who played right field and hit over 300 home runs in his 14-year career.  He was also on a winning World Series with the Atlanta Braves in 1995.  And here is a little bit of Trivia.  He was married to actress Halle Berry from 1992 to 1996.

I am always curious about some of the things athletes say.  Here is an odd one attributed to David Justice.  “I mulled over what he had told me as I savored the Scotch. Not bad, really — like a beer that’s been in a brawl.”   The real question about this quote is who was David Justice drinking Scotch with that  made that statement to him.  I have no idea.

It is always interesting to read odd things about athletes.  Here is another odd one from the movie “Moneyball”  about Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane’s attempt to put together a baseball club cheaply using a computer-generated analysis to draft his players.

David Justice (at the time) is on the Oakland Athletics and he is talking with Scott Hatteberg who has moved from catcher to a first baseman.

David Justice:   “Scotty H.”

Scott Hatteberg:  “Yo, what’s up, D.J.?”

David Justice:  “Pickin’ machine.”

[Scott laughs]

David Justice:  “How you likin’ first base, man?”

Scott Hatteberg:  “It’s, uh… it’s coming along. Picking it up. You know, tough transition, but I’m starting to feel better with it.”

David Justice:  “Yeah?”

Scott Hatteberg:  “Yeah.”

David Justice:  “What’s your biggest fear?”

Scott Hatteberg:  “A baseball being hit in my general direction”  [Hatteberg and Justice share a laugh]

David Justice:  “That’s funny. Seriously, what is it?”

Scott Hatteberg:  “No, seriously, that is.”

[uncomfortable pause; Hatteberg leaves]

David Justice:  “Well, hey, good luck with that.”

The Atlanta Braves MLB baseball team art painting of Dale Murphy making a catch against the outfield wall was created for the SunTrust Park stadium in Cobb County, Atlanta Georga

Atlanta Braves Baseball Art

ATLANTA BRAVES BASEBALL ART DALE MURPHY SUNTRUST PARK STADIUM PAINTING

The painting you see is Atlanta Braves art from their new SunTrust baseball stadium in Atlanta, Ga. The painting of Dale Murphy is 8 feet by 15 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas. I created three pieces this size and will see other post of the other paintings on this blog. The Atlanta Braves MLB baseball team art painting of Dale Murphy making a catch against the outfield wall was created for the SunTrust Park stadium in Cobb County, Atlanta GeorgaAlthough I have created sports

Painting art of Atlanta Brave outfielder Dale Murphy making a leaping catch againg the outfield wall
art for a number of other stadiums the three MLB baseball pieces I painted of Atlanta Braves players are the largest. The other two pieces are of Chipper Jones and the other is of David Justice. All three of the pieces are on display in the Delta Sky Club area of the SunTrust Park stadium.

About Dale Murphy

For all of the Atlanta Braves fans I am sure you know a lot about Dale Murphy as he is one of their best players ever. For a complete history of him the best thing to do is to visit his own Dale Murphy web site that has more facts than you will ever want to know.

For those of you that just want a little information here is a few basics (from his website) Dale Murphy was chosen by the Atlanta Braves in the first round of the 1974 Major League Draft. Over the next few years, he worked his way through the Braves minor league system and made his major league debut in 1976.

Although he began his career as a catcher, he spent a short time at first base and finally ended up in the outfield where he became the youngest player in history to win back-to-back MVP awards (1982 and 1983), was named to the National League All-Star team seven times, earned four Silver Slugger awards and five Gold Gloves.

Dale Murphy Quotes

What always interests me is what either the actual player has said or what others have said about him. In the case of Dale Murphy he Sid something very basic about being an athlete and nothing particularly profound but true: “I miss baseball.” Most people can relate to that after they retire. His wife certainly has as it has been reported that after he retired he became her full-time job. Yes, she “missed” baseball too. And one of my favorite quotes is when Dale Murphy said, “Whether I am hitting .100 or .300 I am resolved to, at least, enjoy every game.” That has meaning far beyond baseball. Try to find out what you like to do, then do it even if you have no real success at it. No matter how it may be measured, we need to enjoy what we do. Continue reading

Image of Clipper Jones swinging a bat with teh umpire and catcher behind him

Atlanta Braves art SunTrust Park Stadium Chipper Jones

Atlanta Braves Art 

The painting you see above is Atlanta Braves art from their new SunTrust baseball stadium in Atlanta, Ga.  The painting of Chipper Jones is 8 feet by 15 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.  I created three pieces this size and will post them as I gather the photos.  Although I have created SunTrust Park stadium.Image of Clipper Jones swinging a bat with teh umpire and catcher behind him

Painting art of MLB Atlanta Braves Chipper Jones at bat with the catcher and umpire standing behind him at home plate

sports art for a number of other stadiums the three MLB baseball pieces I painted of Atlanta Braves players are the largest.   The other two pieces are of Dale Murphy and the other is of David Justice.  All three of the pieces are on display in the Delta Sky Club area of the arena. 

How the Project Develops 

Like all the other stadium projects I have worked on it takes about a year from start to finish.  First there is the original call asking me if I am interested in creating paintings (in this case) for the Atlanta Braves new stadium.  Then the process begins with determining what is to be painted, what sizes and what medium to be used.  This is all determined by the consultants and the teams deciding where the paintings will eventually hang in the stadium.  Once that is decided then sketches are drawn and they go through a process of approval, from design aspects to color choices.  Images are chosen from their archives of photographs and at some point I will then create the paintings.  Again, they are evaluated and changes are invariably made.  I may have painted the wrong era of uniform on a player, or the stripes on the uniform or the lettering may be incorrect.  One of the biggest challenges is getting the life-size figure to look like it is in action.  An athlete has to look like they are athletic. 

Eventually all is settled and the paintings are shipped off to be framed and then delivered to the stadium for installation.  From my perspective the stadium does not take on a life until the art from all the artist’s is hung.  The art adds a personality an warmth and life to the bare stadium that makes it inviting to the patrons of the sport.

Yasiel Puig Portrait, art, painting of mega-talented right fielder of Los Angeles Dodgers holding a bat and painted from the back with his name showing on his baseball jersey

Yasiel Puig LA Dodgers

Destiny

Yasiel Puig – mega-talented right fielder of the Los Angeles Dodgers – and as of this writing and finishing of this painting may be destined to leave the Dodgers in s trade.   Here are a couple of links to other sites that write about the rumors more clearly than I ever could – as I am a sports Yasiel Puig Portrait, art, painting of mega-talented right fielder of Los Angeles Dodgers holding a bat and painted from the back with his name showing on his baseball jerseyartist and not a writer.  I only try to provide a little background to the paintings I paint.  So if you are interested in what may happen or want to see what people were guessing before whatever happen, did happen, then check out these two links:

https://theringer.com/los-angeles-dodgers-yasiel-puig-trade-rumors-bdd1183e1fb2#.2rzufiz0e

http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/dodgers-are-open-to-trading-struggling-yasiel-puig-071816

Yasiel Puig Migration to US

As most of you who are reading this know that Yasiel Puig left the island of Cuba and was smuggled into the United States with the help of people with special interests in Miami and Cancun.  Even with outside help, by anyone’s imagination, it must have been a trip and risk that few would be willing to take.  People make the trip for a variety of reasons – but most do so for economic or political motives.  And, apparently there is a lot of crazy stories surrounding Yasiel Puig’s migration to the United States.   If you are at all interested in what Yasiel Puig faced in his travels to the United States, you might wish to read the article attached to the following link.  http://espn.go.com/espn/feature/story/_/id/10781144/no-one-walks-island-los-angeles-dodgers-yasiel-puig-journey-cuba

Short Bio of Yasiel Puig

He grew up in Cienfuegos, and played for the Cuban national team in the 2008 World Junior Championship, where they won a bronze medal. He then played in the Cuban National Series, but a failed attempt at defecting to the United States had him out for a season as punishment. He then tried several more times to defect to Mexico (so as to get to the U.S. by land), finally succeeding in 2012. Puig signed with the Dodgers in 2012.

About the Painting

The painting by sports artist John Robertson is approximately  4 feet by 6 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas

Painting by Sports Artist John Robertson of Chicago Cubs Second Baseman Ryne Sandberg throwing a baseball

Ryne Sandberg MLB second baseman

Ryne Sandberg My Niece’s Favorite Player

The “Ryno” Ryne Sandberg played second baseman for the Chicago Cubs.  I painted this sports art for my niece as a wedding present.  My sister lived in Chicago for a number of years and, as IPainting by Sports Artist John Robertson of Chicago Cubs Second Baseman Ryne Sandberg throwing a baseball remember, she went to graduate school there also.  She is a big fan of the Chicago Cubs and when her first daughter was born she named her Ryne after Ryne Sandberg.  Although they eventually moved away from the Chicago area they continued to be fans of Chicago.  Knowing that I am a sports artist, my niece asked for a Chicago Cubs painting.  So I have surprised her with this baseball painting.

Ryne Sandberg Major Accomplishments

Ryne Sandberg was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in January 2005; he was formally inducted in ceremonies on July 31, 2005.  He was a perennial All-Star and Gold Glove candidate, making 10 consecutive All-Star appearances and winning nine consecutive Gold Gloves from 1983 to 1991. His career .989 fielding percentage is a major-league record at second base

Quotes from Ryne Sandberg

In his  July 31, 2005, Cooperstown, NY Baseball Hall of Fame speech he said, “The reason I am here, they tell me, is that I played the game a certain way, that I played the game the way it was supposed to be played. I don’t know about that, but I do know this: I had too much respect for the game to play it any other way, and if there was there is a single reason I am here today, it is because of one word, “respect.”¹ I love to play baseball. I’m a baseball player. I’ve always been a baseball player. I’m still a baseball player. That’s who I am.”

One of my favorite quotes from Ryne Sandberg is because it has more meaning in to life and not just baseball.  He said, “In baseball, there’s always the next day.”  There  is always the next day to move on with your life.  Don’t let the past haunt and weigh you down.  I like that thought.

The John Robertson Sports Art painting is 48″ by 63″ acrylic on unstretched canvas.

Image of Minnesota Twins first baseman and catcher Joe Mauer when he played catcher squatting in the catcher's stance behind home plate

Joe Mauer Painting

Sports Baseball painting of Minnesota Twins catch Joe Mauer

This painting of Joe Mauer first baseman and used to be catcher of the Minnesota Twins major league baseball team is approximately 8” x 10” on a 11” x 14” piece of drafting film. Ink and watercolor.Image of Minnesota Twins first baseman and catcher Joe Mauer when he played catcher squatting in the catcher's stance behind home plate

Joe Mauer’s main position when he started playing was catcher and sometimes first baseman.  When asked to paint him for a relative he wanted a painting of Joe as a catcher.  As a catcher Joe took a few hits to the head causing some concussions.  On November 11, 2014 the Twins announced that Mauer would permanently move to first base in order to protect their star player from further concussions and the day-to-day physical wear of being a major league catcher.  Since then, like in the past he has performed nicely.

Inspiration for the painting

This painting was created for a  gift to my nephew-in-law.  He is my wife’s sister’s son who absolutely loves the Minnesota Twins and goes to as many games as he possibly can.   My wife’s family is from Minnesota and her sister lives just about a hour north from the Twin Cities.  When my nephew left Minnesota to take a teaching job in Mexico he wanted something that would remind him of his home state.  His mother suggested a baseball player and we somehow found out his favorite player was Joe Mauer.

I did paint Joe as a surprise and it eventually the painting ended up in Mexico.  My nephew comes back to the states for all vacations and, of course back to Minnesota.  And one of the first things he does is go to a Twins game.  We get to see him every summer and a few times he has come to California to visit.   Also, he is moving on from Mexico after three years there he is not sure where his next job will be.  But he does like teaching in a foreign country except for missing the Twins

Nephew Second Passion: Minnesota Vikings

What is going to be fun this upcoming summer 2016 is the opening of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium.  Both my wife and I have painted large-scale sports artwork for the new stadium and will be able to take her nephew to the opening in July.  He is excited about the whole process as football and the Vikings is his next big passion.  Don’t tell him but I will probably get some prints of the images I painted for the Vikings and they will be a great gift for his return.

Baseball painting of Andre Ethier, outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers as he is sliding into home plate while the catcher protects the plate and tries to tag Ethier out

Andre Ethier Outfielder LA Dodgers Painting

LA Dodgers Andre Ethier Still Out

As we all know Andre Ethier  the MLB left-handed outfielder is still out with his broken leg mending.   He has  played his whole major league baseball with the Dodgers.  He did start in the Oakland farm system but he’s never did play in the Major League with Oakland and started with the Dodgers in 2006.  Andre does have an interesting ritual before every game—ever since he was in the minors—he eats a peanut butter and honey sandwich on wheat bread and two Baseball painting of Andre Ethier, outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers as he is sliding into home plate while the catcher protects the plate and tries to tag Ethier outspoonfuls of tuna.  One of the interesting things Ethier has said about himself is, “I wasn’t an all-American, and I wasn’t drafted until the second round. I wasn’t that guy everybody said to watch out for the next couple of years because I was going to make a big impact. I guess that lights a little fire under you and makes you want to show what you can do.”

Value of Playing for one Team

There is something valuable in a player that has only played for one team. They seem more real, not a rent-a-player, moving from one team to another.  They care more about their own team.  In his eight years with the Dodgers he has seen the good, the bad and the ugly – the success in October and the failures that can start in the July’s – and the seasons with the injuries.  He’s a he’s a 2-time All-Star with a Silver Slugger and a Gold Glove in his history.

Captain Cluch

Because he has been able to perform under pressure he was given the nickname “Cap’n Clutch”.  In one season he had six walk-off hits which included four walk-off home runs that tied the Major League record for most in a season.  When asked about it in a Sporting News interview he said, “It’s one of those funny things. People understand that I’m pretty intense when I go up there, pretty focused and locked in; I can have that tight, white knuckled- grip look to me. I wasn’t that good in those situations early in my career; I was awful in those big, game-changing at-bats. I think I established that you can learn to become good at that but it takes a certain easiness and calmness to do it. There’s nothing better than having a feeling going up there: I want to be in that situation; I can’t wait to get that at-bat. Then you hit the ball and you look as you run around the bases—you just ended a game like that with one swing. It’s a great feeling. You’ve got to want to be in that situation because a lot of times you’re going to fail. But it’s what you look for. If anything, I’ve shown that I’m able to handle that situation and come through.”  A couple of his accomplishments:  He broke the Dodger record for most consecutive at-bats with a hit. He’s the only Dodger to have more than 30 doubles in six consecutive seasons.

What others Say About  Andre Ethier

As Don Mattingly, manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers said, “It’s like you’d rather have Andre up with the game on the line in the ninth…”   Mattingly continued, “That’s kind of the thinking there. You save for the biggest at-bat in the ninth.”  This gives the Los Angeles Dodger fans those great “Captain Clutch” late-inning heroics.

There has been some question about Ethier batting against left-handers.  In a GQ article Andre addressed a the question asked by Nathaniel Penn :  “Against right-handed pitchers, your numbers are spectacular. Against left-handed pitchers, you’ve struggled throughout your career. That spring your manager, Don Mattingly, had to defend you and affirm that he’s not going to platoon you this season—i.e., bench you when the Dodgers are facing a left-handed starting pitcher. At this point in your career, how do you go about improving your ability to hit lefties?

[This area] is one where I think more than anything this spring we—I mean me and [Dodgers hitting coach]  at the time, Mark McGwire—have been working really hard. Nothing mechanical, just more the mental side: visualizing and making ourselves better and really figuring out a way to just be confident in all situations.

Sometimes as a baseball player or just an athlete in general you stick to the things you do well and you keep practicing those things. Those areas where you have issues you try to fix ’em but at the same time you try to limit your exposure to those. But in baseball you gotta go up there and face everyone in every situation. I think it’s a thing where now lefties are coming out of the bullpen earlier in the game to face left-handed hitters. There’s maybe two lefties in the bullpen that are there every day just to try to get you out when those big at-bats are coming. You gotta learn those guys; it’s just how the game’s really been evolving.”

Although he has not played this season he does have a good perspective on his future play.  Andre said,  When I get back … “I just want to take advantage of every day that I’m in the lineup.”

San Francisco Giants Baseball paintings Willie Mays Art Book

San Francisco Giants Willie Mays

Baseball images of San Francisco Giants Hall of Fame baseball player Willie Mays in a short book. There is a short narrative about Willie Mays that accompanies the 10 images in the book.  As most of you probably know Willie Mays is one of the greatest baseball players in history,

The “Say Hey Kid”

Willie Mays dad played semi-pro baseball and had the nickname of “Cat” and his mother was an athlete in high school running track as a sprinter.  The way Willie Mays got the nickname “Say Hey Kid” was that he played stickball with the local kids in Harlem and his his enthusiastic exuberance earning him the nickname, the “Say Hey Kid.”

Great Baseball Play

Willie May made one of the most famous defensive plays in baseball history – and it is among the paintings I did for a short Fox Sports interview.  I painted an image of Willie for an interview conducted by Derick Jeter and Ken Griffy Jr. during an all star game televised on Fox Sports.  The play was Willie running down a mammoth drive to deep center field in Game 1 of the World Series to help the Giants beat the favored Cleveland Indians for the championship.  The painting is also in this short booklet.  If you would like to see the 4 1/2 minute interview it is located on youtube here


Painting of San Francisco Giants Willie Mays swinging a baseball bat and the catcher squatting behind him with the text The Say Hey Kid st the top.

Baseball paintings Willie Mays “The Say Hey Kid” art

Willie Mays Painting

This is about the sixth time I have painted a large scale painting of the great center fielder, Willie Mays, nicknamed The Say Hey Kid”  who played for the old New York Giants and the San Francisco Giants.  He finished his baseball career with the NY Mets. Painting of San Francisco Giants Willie Mays swinging a baseball bat and the catcher squatting behind him with the text The Say Hey Kid st the top. The first I painted Willie was for Fox Sports, a number of years ago.  Willie Mays was interviewed by Derek Jeter and  Ken Griffey Jr. during the 2007 Major League Baseball All Star Game for Fox Sports. If you watch the Willie Mays video on YouTube  or see it below,  you will see three large-scale paintings behind the three great baseball players  in the interview  The two portraits in the
interview are 5 feet by 6 feet and the famous Willie Mays “Catch”  was approximately 3 1/2 feet by 8 feet.   Like the paintings you see above, they were all painted with acrylic and on unstretched canvas.

Willie Mays interview All Star Game

Wille Mays Famous Catch

The famous catch Willie Mays made refers to a great catch he made during game 1 of the 1954 World Series between the New York Giants and the Cleveland Indians at the Polo
Grounds in New York.  It was September 29, 1954.  score was tied 2–2 in the top of the 8th
inning. Vic Wertz was at bat.  The count  to two balls and one strike,  Wertz hits
a ball approximately 420 feet to deep center field. Willie Mays, who was
playing in shallow center field, made an on-the-run, over-the-shoulder catch on
the warning track to make the out. Having caught the ball, he immediately spun
and threw the ball to hold a runner, who was at second, from scoring.  If Willie had not made “The Catch”  the two base runners would have been able to score and the game would have been at 4 to 2 in favor of the Indians.  The play saved the game and the  New York Giants went on to win the game and eventually the World Series in four straight games.
Willie said of the catch, “People talk about that catch and, I’ve said this many times, that I’ve made better catches than that many times in regular season. But of course in my time, you didn’t have a lot of television during the regular season. A lot of people didn’t see me do a lot of
things.”

Some of the more interesting facts about Willie is Mays is that he won two MVP awards and shares the record of most All-Star Games played (24) with Hank Aaron & Stan Musial.   Ted Williams said, “They invented the All-Star Game for Willie Mays.” Mays ended his career with 660 home runs, third at the time of his retirement, and currently fourth all-time. He was a center fielder and won a record-tying 2 Gold Gloves starting the year the award was introduced six seasons into his career.  In 1979 Willie Mays was inducted into MLB Hall of Fame on the first vote

The Spitter Baseball Pitch Painting

“The Spitter” spitball sports art painting by artist John Robertson is 50″ x 70″ acrylic on unstretched canvas.

A spitball is an illegal pitch in which the ball has been altered by the application of saliva, petroleum jelly, or some other foreign substance. The pitch causes the ball to move atypically due to the altered wind-resistance and weight on one side of the ball. Alternative names for the spitball are spitter, mud ball, shine ball and emery ball, although technically, an emery ball is one where the ball has been abraded in much the same way that the original cut ball had been physically cut. The altering of the ball’s state by the use of artificial substances such as sun block, dirt or degradation by fingernails or other hard substances is illegal tampering.

(information came from Wikipedia)

Bob Feller Pitcher Cleveland Indians

Bob Feller Cleveland Indians

Baseball painting of Cleveland Indians pitcher Bob Feller .   The great Cleveland Indians pitcher was an eight time all star, considered the greatest pitcher of his time and one of the greatest of all time.    Bob Feller played from 1936 to 1956 with time off for the war.   As so many have said, ” baseball is a metaphor for life.”   One of Feller’s great quotes addresses that, “Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s success or put its failures behind and start over again. That’s the way life is, with a new game every day, and that’s the way baseball is.”  The baseball art is(approx 4 ½ feet by 6 feet),  acrylic on unstretched canvas,

Sports Art Derek Jeter Baseball Painting

Derek Jeter NY Yankees Baseball Painting

Derek Jeter Joins The 3,000-Hit Club On Saturday July 9th in the afternoon, Derek Jeter became just the second player in MLB history to homer for his 3,000th hit. And no all-star game for him as he says he has”emotional and physical exhaustion” from his pursuit of 3,000 hits.  A quote by him is ;like so many people who are successful.  Sometimes it sounds trite but is true, “There may be people who have more talent than you, but there’s no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do – and I believe that.

Baseball art – Painting of Derek Jeter  11” by 14” oil on Drafting Film

New York Yankees Baseball Player batter painting

New York Yankees batter

New York Yankees batter

The sports painting is that of baseball’s New York Yankee batter swinging  at the pitch.  The painting is ink and acrylic on New York maps and a map of the New York subway.   The painting is ink and acrylic on New York maps and a map of the New York subway  system.  There is also a map of the United States.  The baseball player painting is 50″ x 70″ on unstretched canvas.