Monday, December 28, 2009

Picture Update: Scanner is Up and Running!

As the year draws to an end, I finally have my new scanner working and I've updated the blog with pictures from some of my recent successes over the past few months.

Jim Leyland (50th card from the 2009 Topps Set!)

I came back home from the holidays to a RTS envelope from Edgar Renteria, as well as a 2009 Topps set card signed by Jim Leyland. I've always respected Leyland's old school, "don't take crap from anybody" approach to the game, and it was nice to add a longtime manager of the game to my collection. This brings my 2009 Topps set completion up to 50 cards. Sent 12/11 (14 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 60/151 (39.7%)
2009 Topps Set: 50/660 (7.6%)

Lee Smith

I sent out a 2000 Fleer Legends of the Game card to Lee Smith about 4 months ago and received it back signed on Saturday. Hopefully with some of the weaker Hall of Fame classes as of late, he has a shot to make it in sometime in the near future. Sent 8/14 (134 days)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Josh Hamilton

Arrived home in Maryland with 2 envelopes waiting for me today. The first was a RTS from Scott Lewis that I sent to the Columbus Clippers several months ago. I was only disappointed momentarily until I saw the next envelope postmarked from Fort Worth, Texas. After seeing return after return from Josh Hamilton, mine finally showed up. Josh signed a 2007 Upper Deck Masterpieces rookie card, as well as a 2009 Topps card for my set. Sent 8/28 (116 days)

2009 Topps set: 49/660 (7.4%)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Adam Kennedy

Another quick TTM return yesterday. Adam Kennedy signed his 09 Topps and 09 Upper Deck cards for me from home. Sent 12/11 (7 days)

2009 Topps Set: 48/660 (7.3%)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Five Returns in One Day!

It seems like the forwarding service for my new mailing address is finally starting to catch up with my older TTM sendouts. I received the following returns today:

  • Tony LaRussa- 1/2 Signed an '08 Topps but not the '09 I needed for my set! Sent 9/21 (78 days)
  • Jed Lowrie- 1/1 '08 Topps Rookie Card, Sent 4/9 (8 months! New Record!)
  • Aaron Laffey- 2/2 He doesn't have a regular card in the '09 Topps set, but he signed a combo card of him and Jeremy Sowers, as well as a '09 Heritage card as well. I'll send to Sowers during spring training. Sent 9/9 (90 days)
  • Jair Jurrjens- 1/1 '09 Topps, Also sent 9/9 (90 days)
  • Mark Teixeira- 0/1 Returned my '09 Topps card unsigned with a form letter on Yankee letterhead stating that he couldn't respond to fan mail due to overwhelming response, Sent 9/28 (72 days)
Overall TTM Success Rate: 56/149 (37.6%)
2009 Topps Set: 47/660 (7.1%)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Topps 2009: Paul Konerko

I sent Mr. Konerko several cards to sign last week, and he quickly returned copies of his 2007 and 2009 Topps cards signed in some type of thick brown sharpie. Although the signatures don't look that great, it was nice to get back some cards from a seasoned veteran c/o their home. Sent 11/25 (8 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 52/147 (35.4%)
Topps 2009 Set: 45/660 (6.8%)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Dick Groat

While going through some of my older cards the other day, I found a few from the 2001 Topps Archives set. The set is basically just reproductions of popular cards throughout the years, as well as final-year cards for some players like Dick Groat. Mr. Groat was the 1960 NL MVP and well-known for his double play tandem with Bill Mazeroski. Very quick return, and his signature is still just as nice as it was over 40 years ago. Sent 11/23 (8 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 51/147 (34.7%)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Duke Snider

I've heard of how great a signer Duke Snider can be through the mail, but for some reason I never had any cards of his. I picked up a UD Legends of New York card of his when I went to Cooperstown for the induction this year, but decided to save it for the offseason when TTM returns slow down. A great return from a great Hall-of-Famer. My 50th return of the year! Sent 11/17 (10 days)

In non-sports news, Best Buy had a great Black Friday deal on a scanner/copier/printer, so I should be updating some of my most recent autograph returns with pictures in the near future.

Overall TTM Success Rate: 50/147 (34%)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Topps 2009: Donald Veal

I took a chance and sent out Donald Veal's 09 Topps card to his team in the Arizona Fall League, and he quickly personalized it and returned it to me in less than three weeks. Sent 11/6 (18 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 49/146 (33.6%)
Topps 2009 Set: 44/660 (6.6%)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

In-Person Signings: John Krasinski and Jonathan Safran Foer

Last Saturday, I had the opportunity to meet John Krasinski (Jim from The Office) while he was in town promoting his directorial debut, an adaptation of David Foster Wallace's Brief Interviews with Hideous Men. John is a native of Newton, so it was fitting that he premiering the film in Boston. The event took place at the Brookline Booksmith.

Unfortunately, we were not allowed to have him sign anything other than a promotional postcard for the movie, and we couldn't take pictures with him. However, he is every bit as funny in real life as he is on t.v. and it was great to meet him.

John Krasinski- 1/1 Brief Interviews with Hideous Men promotional postcard

A few days later, the same bookstore was promoting a reading/discussion/signing with Jonathan Safran Foer, author of Everything is Illuminated. The book was adapted for film a few years ago with Elijah Wood as the lead actor.

Foer discussed his newest work on factory farming,
Eating Animals, at a synagogue down the street from the bookstore. Following the discussion, Foer went back to the bookstore to sign copies of all of his books.

Jonathan Safran Foer- 2/2 Personalized copies of Everything is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Monday, November 16, 2009

2009 Topps: Mike Cameron

For some reason, Mike Cameron had a base card in both Series 1 and Series 2 of the 2009 Topps set, despite playing exclusively with the Brewers all season. Mike signed both cards in a very nice silver sharpie, bringing my total count for the complete 2009 Topps set up to 43 cards. Very quick return! Sent 11/9 (7 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 48/142 (33.8%)
Topps 2009 Set: 43/660 (6.5%)

Friday, November 13, 2009

David Eckstein

Even though the TTM returns are becoming few and far between now that the season's over, there's still a few trickling in from time to time. David Eckstein signed a 1999 Bowman Rookie Card, as well as a 2009 Topps base card for my set. Sent 8/19 (73 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 47/142 (33%)
Topps 2009 Set: 41/660 (6.2%)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

First Return at My New Address

  • Edinson Volquez- Signed a 2009 Allen & Ginter card for me in black. Sent 8/24 (64 days)
Overall TTM Success: 46/139 (33.1%)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Change of Address

I just moved to Massachusetts and got the internet hooked up today, so hopefully I'll have some new TTM autographs to report once they're re-directed from my old address in Maryland.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Dave Roberts

I received two cards signed by Dave Roberts today, a 2009 Topps and 2009 Upper Deck. I sent to Dave last month c/o the NESN sports network in Boston, but the cards were postmarked from San Diego. For anyone that doesn't know about "The Steal", Dave Roberts helped turn around the 2004 ALCS for the Red Sox when they were about to be swept by the Yankees in Game 4. Roberts stole 2nd and scored on a Bill Mueller single, and the rest is history. Sent 9/24 (23 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 45/139 (32.4%)
Topps 2009 set: 40/660 (6.1%)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Brandon Phillips

I sent to Brandon Phillips back in July and decided to re-send at the end of the season since I hadn't heard back. He signed a 2009 Topps card for my set, as well as a 2009 Allen & Ginter. I tried something new with my final batch of sendouts so I'm hoping to get faster responses like this one. Sent 9/28 (17 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 44/139 (31.7%)
Topps 2009 set: 39/660 (5.9%)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Chris Volstad

One return today:
  • Chris Volstad- Chris signed a 2009 Topps Heritage card for me in a little over 5 months as the new longest return of the season. Sent 5/5 (158 days)
Overall TTM Success Rate: 43/139 (30.9 %)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

4 Returns from the Weekend

I came home from my trip to Albany and Boston to find 4 envelopes waiting for me:

2009 Topps cards:
  • Nate Schierholtz- Sent 8/24 (38 days)
  • Ian Snell- Fastest return I've received all season. Sent 9/28 (4 days)
  • Jason Marquis- Sent 9/18 (15 days)
One more:
  • Stan Musial- 0/1, 1/0; Returned my Diamond Kings card unsigned and sent a signed postcard back. While Ian Snell was my fastest return of the season, Stan Musial was my longest. Sent 7/29 (67 days)
Overall TTM Success Rate: 42/138 (30.4%)
Topps 2009 Set: 38/660 (5.7%)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Final Regular-Season Weekend

If there's anything this weekend taught me, it's to be prepared for anything. I actually didn't get any autographs this weekend, though I probably should have.

I went to Albany for a wedding on Friday and it turned out there was a new movie being shot around the corner that would involve Will Ferrell and Jerry Seinfeld in some capacity. Unfortunately, neither were actually there as they were only filming action shots with stunt doubles. I did, however, get to see a dummy of Ferrell in a bullet-riddled Prius.

On Friday night I walked to my car through the hotel lobby and noticed a big white bus pulling up. As I was walking outside, the entire New York Nets team got off the bus. I've never tried getting basketball players' autographs, and I'm not sure if there's anybody even worth getting on that team, but it was crazy to see just how tall the majority of these guys when you're standing next to them in an elevator.

On Sunday we headed to Boston to look for apartments and decided to go down to Fenway to watch the end of the regular season across the street at Cask & Flagon. After the game was over, we headed over to the players' parking lot to see Pedroia, Varitek, and Papi each drive off to a loud ovation.

I of course didn't come prepared with sharpies or cards, but I did get a picture with Michael Bowden. He had just won his first game of the season, and graciously took pictures and signed autographs for everyone that was willing to wait. Fortunately I already had his 09 Topps card signed on 2 different occasions so I settled with just getting a picture.

The lesson here is, always be prepared with a sharpie and something to sign because you never know who you're going to bump into.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Huge TTM Sendout- Last of the Season

The regular season is approaching its final week, so I decided to send out a bunch of cards at the last minute:

  • Ian Snell
  • Matt Holliday
  • Andy Pettite
  • Chone Figgins
  • Adam Wainwright
  • Brandon Phillips
  • Jay Bruce
  • Mark Teixeira
  • Joey Votto
  • Aaron Harang
  • Chris Carpenter
There are a few long shots, but it never hurts to try.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Topps 2009: Justin Masterson

I've always heard that Justin Masterson is a great TTM signer, but I didn't have any cards for him until I purchased the 2009 Topps set.  He has always been one of the friendliest Red Sox players and I was sad to see him go at the trade deadline.  On the day he was traded, I saw him in the dugout saying goodbye to everyone and giving hugs to the coaches.  While those kinds of moments aren't usually publicized, it adds a human element to the game that makes it a more overall enjoyable experience.  Sent 9/4 (21 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 38/127 (29.9%)
Topps 2009 set: 35/660 (5.3%)

Monday, September 21, 2009

3 Returns Today

Great day for mail today, 3 cards to add to the 2009 Topps set:

  • Jonathan Sanchez- Sent 9/9 (12 days)
  • Nate McLouth- Sent 8/31 (21 days)
  • Andrew Bailey- Sent 9/10 (11 days)
I also received a return from Pat Neshek on Friday (scan in the previous post).  Mr. Neshek signed a 2009 Topps card as well as 2 protective index cards with his great creative signature.

Overall TTM Success Rate: 37/124 (29.8%)
Topps 2009 set: 34/660 (5.2%)

Red Sox Weekend- BIG Update

This was the final weekend for me to get autographs and it turned out to be a great one.  I went for autographs inside and outside the stadium on Friday, outside the stadium Saturday, and inside the stadium Sunday.  

Sunday turned out to be an unsuccessful day.  I was able to get in at the same time as season ticket holders thanks to a special pass a friend gave me, but I staked out a spot in front of the dugout and batting practice was taken indoors.  We were asked to leave the seating area much earlier than usual due to a youth parade they were having.  Buchholz signed down the 3rd base line but I chose to stick near the dugout.

Sunday: No Autographs

I got to the stadium around 12 on Saturday, and arrived to a much larger crowd than there was on Friday.  However, it still turned out to be a great day as a managed to get the following:

  • Clay Buchholz (Sweet spot on a baseball)
  • Paul Byrd
  • Takashi Saito
  • Daisuke Matsuzaka (09 Topps)
  • Hideki Okajima (09 Topps)
  • Michael Bowden (09 Topps- already had one personalized TTM but the sig was fading)
  • Dennis Eckersley
Friday turned out to be the best autographing day I've ever had.  I arrived around 10:30 in hopes of getting Terry Francona on his morning walk, but he seemed grumpy and didn't want to sign.  After several hours of waiting with no cabs, I was worried the day might turn into a wash.  However, it turned very successful in a hurry as Kevin Youkilis and Jason Bay showed up and were nice enough to sign for everyone, and the captain Jason Varitek signed my #33 jersey.  It was already a great day, then it got even better inside...


Outside the stadium:
  • Jason Varitek (jersey)
  • John Farrell
  • Jason Bay (09 Topps)
  • Kevin Youkilis (09 Topps)
Inside the stadium:
  • Victor Martinez (09 Topps)
  • Jonathan Papelbon (09 Topps- didn't switch to sharpie but a sig's a sig)
  • DAVID ORTIZ (baseball)
I still can't believe I got Big Papi.  I was able to get into the stadium early, only to find that the section near the dugout where I usually stand was roped off.  Great, I figured I wouldn't have any luck at all.  Then I noticed Papi milling around down where I could normally stand, and then sat on the wall near the netting behind home plate.  It was like a tease.  In a brief moment of blind courage, I hopped the ropes and went down to Ortiz and asked him politely if he could sign my baseball for me.  I handed him the ball and a pen under the netting as the usher yelled at me, but I got Papi's signature to cap off the best day I've had.

Rays @ Orioles, 9/16

I had free tickets to the game, so I decided to go early and get some autographs inside the park.  I was going for Rays, but I was also prepared with some O's prospect cards as it was Minor League Appreciation night.  I missed Brandon Waring on the last day of the season at Bowie, but I spotted him behind homeplate in a suit as he was supposed to receive an award, so I got him to sign a card for me. 

  • Brandon Waring
  • Ben Zobrist (09 Upper Deck- for trade)
  • Carl Crawford (09 Topps)
  • Evan Longoria (09 Topps)
I was very exciting to get Longoria as I'm sure he's becoming increasingly more difficult to get as his young career progresses.  Overall, a very good night for only doing pre-game inside the park.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Rays @ Orioles, 9/14

Took the light rail down to Camden on Monday for some pre-game autographs.  I didn't have a ticket for the game so I just stood outside the stadium for a few hours.

  • Dan Wheeler
  • Andy Sonnanstine
  • Greg Zaun
  • Jeff Niemann
  • Ben Zobrist
  • Akinori Iwamura
Ben Zobrist was a signing machine.  After signing for the 15-20 people outside, he offered to sign bible cards for everyone as well as any extra things they might need sign.  

Fun fact:  At 6' 9", Jeff Niemann is the tallest player I've ever met, and will probably be the tallest I'll ever meet unless I bump into Randy Johnson somewhere.

I'm going to tonight's game so I'll try to go for autographs pre-game inside.

Topps 2009 Set: 22/660 (3.3%)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


With the season drawing to a close, here are some of the players I've sent cards to over the past week:
  • 9/8- Pat Neshek
  • 9/9- C.C. Sabathia, Chien-Ming Wang, Matt Stairs, Cliff Lee, Aaron Laffey, Jonathan Sanchez, Howie Kendrick, Jair Jurrjens
  • 9/10- Andrew Bailey, Elvis Andrus, Mariano Rivera, Aaron Rowand
  • 9/12- Grady Sizemore, Stephen Drew
  • 9/15- Dave Trembley, Jeremy Guthrie

2009 Topps: Andy LaRoche

Andy LaRoche, 1/1- Andy signed his 2009 Topps card in about 3 weeks.  Sent 8/24 (20 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 33/116 (28.4%)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

One Return Saturday

  • Andruw Jones- This is my longest return of the season thus far.  At 2 months and 2 days, it eclipses the previous record held by Rangers teammate Elvis Andrus at 2 months and 1 day. The signature smudged a little bit, but still a nice looking Topps Chrome insert.  Sent 7/10 (62 days) 

Overall TTM Success Rate: 32/114 (28.1%)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Rangers vs. Orioles 9/4

This was the best day I've had all season doing major league autographing in person. I arrived at Camden Yards around 12 and there was a steady stream of players all the way up until about 3:00.

Outside the stadium:

  • Ivan Rodriguez
  • Ty Wigginton
  • Luke Scott
  • Nelson Cruz
  • Frank Francisco
  • Kevin Millwood
  • Jarod Saltalamacchia
  • Marlon Byrd
  • Esteban German

Inside the stadium:

  • Omar Vizquel
  • Andruw Jones
  • Jarod Saltalamacchia
  • David Murphy

The main thing I learned today is that these Topps 2009 cards have nicer signatures when they're unprepped than when they're prepped with erasers. I plan on trying out the baby powder technique if I start to see bubbling, but it looks like the cards give pretty good signatures without any prepping.

Topps 2009 Set: 18/660 (2.7%)

My 100th Sendout

I sent out a 2009 Topps card to Pat Neshek today as my 100th TTM autograph request of the season.  Pat has an awesome signature and I haven't sent to him before, so I thought he would be a good person to have as the 100th sendout.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Topps 2009: Brad Ziegler

Brad signed his card in a quick turnaround time of less than two weeks. Sent 8/24 (11 days)

I will have scans up for all of the cards from the Rangers-O's series on Monday.

Overall TTM Success Rate: 31/99 (31.3%)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Topps 2009 Project

I received my complete, factory-sealed set of Topps 2009 Series 1 & 2 today for about 1/2 retail price on ebay.  Even though the season's almost over, I can get this set going in full swing as I try to get as many cards as I can signed from the 660 card set.  It also came with an extra pack of 5 Red Sox cards since it's a special "Red Sox Edition" of the set.  I'm going to Camden Yards tomorrow to try my luck at the Rangers in person, so hopefully I'll have chiseled away a small chunk of the set after tomorrow.

Topps 2009 Set: 4/660 (0.6%)

Friday, August 28, 2009

One Return Today

Very quick return back today:

  • Eugenio Velez- 2008 Topps Heritage and 2009 Topps.  It went from one side of the country to the other and back in a total of 9 days.  Great return! Sent 8/19 (9 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 30/93 (32.3%)
Topps 2009 Set: 4/660 (0.6%)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Going Out In the Morning

  • Ryan Zimmerman c/o Nationals
  • Nick Johnson c/o Marlins
  • Josh Hamilton c/o Rangers

RTS-Ryne Sandberg

Ryne Sandberg- 0/1 RTS, Refused- Unable to Forward

Monday, August 24, 2009

Red Sox Return

Today I received back a 2005 Topps Cracker Jack card signed by Bill Mueller, who helped the Red Sox turn things around in the '04 ALCS by hitting an RBI single off Mariano Rivera in Game 4 to take the game into extra innings.  Sent 8/14 (10 Days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 29/90 (32.22%)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My First Project

I've decided to take a stab at working on a complete set to get signed.  Someone over at has a blog documenting their TTM successes for the 2008 Topps set.  I'm going to try my luck with the 2009 Topps set since it is relatively inexpensive and the cards have nice big pictures with minimally distracting borders.  

As of right now, I'm working with some singles I've already purchased from packs, but eventually I'll buy the complete 600-something card set at Target for $50.  This should help keep my random pack-buying habits under control, as I'll have to spend a decent amount of cash on stamps instead.

  I already have the following cards signed from this set:

  • Jeff Bailey
  • Michael Bowden
  • John Buck
That means I already have 0.45% of the set completed! Woohoo!

Going out Monday morning:

  • Nate Schierholtz
  • Brad Ziegler
  • Scott Lewis
  • Andy LaRoche
  • Edinson Volquez (09 A&G)

Friday, August 21, 2009

One Semi-Success Today

  • Curtis Granderson- He was considered one of the most prolific TTM signers for a while, but unfortunately he now sends a signed postcard and no longer signs individual cards.  A technical success I suppose, and at least I got my card back.  Longest return of the year so far.  Sent 5/6  (105 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 28/85 (32.94%)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Going Out in the Morning

  • Josh Willingham c/o Nationals
  • Hank Blalock c/o Rangers
  • David Eckstein c/o Padres
  • Carlos Ruiz c/o Phillies
  • Nick Swisher c/o Yankees
  • Eugenio Velez c/o Giants

Overall TTM Success Rate: 27/85 (31.76%)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Portland Sea Dogs at Bowie Baysox 8/16

I started a team ball yesterday just so I could get back into the groove of getting autographs, and I ended up with 8 players:

  • Reid Engel
  • Chad Rhoades
  • Jon Still
  • Lars Anderson
  • Iggy Suarez
  • Jason Place
  • Matt Sheely
  • ???
I only went 15 minutes before game time so I wasn't trying to go all out, but it felt good to get some autographs.  Whether it's minor leaguers or pros, I still get excited every time I get an autograph, regardless of the caliber of player or talent.

Friday, August 14, 2009


It's been a rough several weeks with very few autographs to speak of.  I took a break from sending out cards for a few weeks in hopes of getting some returns, but I'm ready to keep sending since I'm not getting anything back.  Going out today:

  • Lee Smith
  • Bill Mueller
  • Alfonso Soriano
Hopefully I'll have something to report about in the next few days.

Monday, August 3, 2009

GCL Red Sox Prospect

  • Tyler Yockey- '09 Bowman & '09 Bowman Chrome.  According to the back of his card, he went to the same high school as Gil Meche, who I received in person last week. Sent 7/7 (26 Days)
Overall TTM Success Rate: 27/76 (35.5%)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Weekend Series- Red Sox at Orioles

I ended up going to each game of the Sox series at Camden (Sweep!), but it was a rough weekend for autographs.  I managed to get Mike Lowell and Nick Green on a ball outside the stadium on Friday, as well as a Boog Powell 2000 Fleer Greats of the Game card that I picked up in Cooperstown.  I didn't get a chance to go for autographs on Saturday unforunately, and on Sunday I was completely shut out.  Nick Green did sign inside, but I didn't have anything for him.  My luck with IP autographs the last few weeks have been about as good as TTM lately.

Total IP Autographs: 27
Total TTM Successes: 26

Overall TTM Success Rate: 26/76 (34.2%)

1 Return Saturday

  • Joe Nathan- Another great addition to my small collection of A&G cards. Sent 7/13 (19 Days)  '08 Allen & Ginter 

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Hall of Fame Wednesday

I'm shipping out cards to the following Hall of Famers today:

  • Stan Musial
  • Wade Boggs
  • Ryne Sandberg

2009 Success Statistics

Total IP Autographs: 24
Total TTM Autographs: 25
Total TTM Failures: 2

Spring Training: 4/10 (40%)
Minor Leaguers: 8/13 (61.5%)
Coaches: 2/3 (66.6%)
Retired Players: 5/17 (29.4%)
Major Leaguers: 6/33 (18%)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 25/76 (32.9%)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Went to Camden Yards Today

I took the light rail down to Camden today to get tickets for this weekend's series against the Red Sox and took some Kansas City Royals cards just in case.  I ended up sticking around for a few hours with some rain storms mixed in, but it was a pretty good haul for the day.  Here's what I got:

  • John Bale- '09 Upper Deck
  • Mark Teahen- '08 UD Documentary
  • Gil Meche- '09 Topps Heritage
  • Billy Butler- '07 UD Masterpieces
  • Alex Gordon- '07 UD Masterpieces
  • John Buck- '09 Topps
I also got to meet Tim Kurkjian from ESPN, and had him sign a blank card.  He was a really nice guy that apparently is there pretty often since he's from the Baltimore area.  For a day that I had no intention of getting autographs, it turned out pretty great.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Hall of Fame Weekend

I went to Cooperstown this weekend for the first time in 7 years for the Hall of Fame induction ceremony, and it was great to step back into childhood and return to a place that's remained relatively unchanged for so many years.  Both Jim Rice and Rickey Henderson gave quality speeches, but my favorite moment was the standing ovation for Yaz.  I was finally able to get my hands on some cards of former players that I didn't have before, so I'll be sending out more cards through the mail soon. (That's me with Luis Tiant in the picture.)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Perfect Game

After the incredible performance by Mark Buehrle today, I'll be sure to send out a card to him first thing tomorrow morning.

Shipping Out 2 Cards via Bear Mail

Sending out cards to two Cubbies today, one current and one former:

  • Ryan Theriot c/o Cubs
  • Billy Williams c/o home

1 Return Today

  • Jim Lonborg- I have been trying to learn more about Sox greats of the past and found that Mr. Lonborg is a great signer through the mail, but I only had a card of him in a Phillies uniform.  I asked him if he could exchange it for a Red Sox card, and he obliged.  Very quick return!  Sent 7/13 (10 days)
Overall TTM Success Rate: 25/70 (35.7%)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

So much for that Adam LaRoche card...

I just sent out an '08 A&G Adam LaRoche card this morning, and they just announced he's been traded to the Red Sox.  It's nice that the Red Sox picked him up, but I guess that's one card I won't be getting back.  

2 Returns Today

I got back two autographs today:

  • Joey Votto- Sent an '09 Upper Deck, received an '06 Bowman that wasn't prepped well.  Slight bubbling, but still a fantastic return in about a month! Sent 6/13 (39 days)

  • Garret Anderson- '02 Stadium Club Gold.  I've learned my lesson with this one, don't send thick stock cards through the mail!  The sorter had its way with it.  Tons of minor wrinkles, but a nice big signature on a horizontal card.  Sent 7/10 (12 days)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 24/70 (34.3%)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Going Out Tomorrow Morning

  • Mike Cameron c/o Milwaukee Brewers
  • Clete Thomas c/o Detroit Tigers
  • Paul Molitor c/o Minnesota Twins
  • Matt Cain c/o San Francisco Giants
  • Adam LaRoche c/o Pittsburgh Pirates

Monday, July 20, 2009

2009 Success Statistics

Total IP Autographs: 17
Total TTM Autographs: 22
Total TTM Failures: 2

Spring Training: 4/10 (40%)
Minor Leaguers: 8/13 (61.5%)
Coaches: 2/3 (66.6%)
Retired Players: 4/12 (33.3%)
Major Leaguers: 4/27 (14.8%)

Overall TTM Success Rate: 22/65 (33.8%)

My 2009 IP Successes Thus Far

  • Jason Varitek 7/1 '08 Allen & Ginter
  • Jacoby Ellsbury 7/1
  • Nick Green 7/1

  • George Kottaras 6/30
  • Justin Masterson 6/30
  • Jeff Bailey 6/30
  • Dennis Eckersley 6/30

  • Joba Chamberlain 5/9 '08 Allen & Ginter
  • Jake Arrieta 5/17
  • Kevin Millar 5/25

  • Brian Roberts 4/4 Orioles Fanfest '08 Allen & Ginter
  • Matt Albers 4/4 Orioles Fanfest
  • Ryan Freel 4/4 Orioles Fanfest
  • Rick Dempsey 4/4 Orioles Fanfest
  • James Shields 4/11
  • Luke Scott 4/11
  • Adam Jones 4/11 '09 Topps Heritage

My 2009 TTM Successes Thus Far

  • Elvis Andrus: Sent 5/5, Rcvd 7/6
  • J.R. Towles: Sent 6/8, Rcvd 7/3 '08 Allen & Ginter, '08 UD Goudey
  • Alex Buchholz: Sent 6/19, Rcvd 7/2
  • Akinori Iwamura: Sent 6/19, Rcvd 7/2 '07 UD Masterpieces RC
  • Mitch Dening: Sent 6/19, Rcvd 7/6
  • Justin Erasmus: Sent 7/7, Rcvd 7/18
  • Omar Vizquel: RTS Sent 7/10, Returned 7/20

  • Mike Mussina: Sent 4/28, Rcvd 6/24
  • Jamie Moyer: Sent 5/8, Rcvd 6/17 '06 Topps Turkey Red
  • Fu Te Ni: Sent 5/22, Rcvd 6/1

  • Carl Erskine: Sent 4/27, Rcvd 5/6
  • Nomar Garciaparra: Sent 4/27, Rcvd 5/29
  • Bobby Thomson: Sent 4/27, Rcvd 5/11 '07 UD Masterpieces
  • Matt Wieters: Sent 5/2, Rcvd 5/7
  • Larry Rothschild: Sent 5/6, Rcvd 5/14 '09 Topps Heritage
  • Michael Bowden: Sent 5/6, Rcvd 5/20 '09 Topps Heritage RC
  • Jonathan Van Every: Sent 5/8, Rcvd 5/21

  • Mark Kotsay: Sent 3/12, Rcvd 4/6
  • Hideki Okajima: Sent 3/12, Rcvd 4/6 '07 Topps Turkey Red RC
  • Brady Anderson: RTS Sent 3/12, Returned 3/19- Bad Address
  • Bobby Doerr: Sent 3/28, Rcvd 4/4 '07 UD Masterpieces
  • John Farrell: Sent 4/8, Rcvd 4/20

  • Jeff Bailey: Sent 3/12, Rcvd 3/20
  • Michael Bowden: Sent 3/12, Rcvd 3/20