# Sunday, 30 September 2012
At some point last year I took a bit of a break from collecting.  I would say that it last about 3 months.  To my horror, when I checked SCN for the first time after returning, I saw that I had JUST missed an Albert Belle private signing.  He was at the top of my wantlist, and I was very upset that I had missed it. 

Well, Dana (Er21 on SCN) held another private signing with Albert this month.  I made sure to take advantage this time!  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get everything signed that I had planned.  I had two 16x20s and an 11x14 shipped straight to Dana from Adorama.  For the third time in the last couple of years, Adorama completely screwed me.  When Dana opened the package, the cardboard that the photos were sandwiched between had a crease down the middle.  Sure enough, the 16x20s had a crease down the middle as well.  Luckily, the 11x14 survived.  There wasn't enough time to send replacement photos.  So the 16x20s, which were probably the items I most wanted signed, didn't get signed.

That being said, I did get some nice autographs.  I got a mini helmet, baseball, 11x14, 8x10, 3 jumbo cards, and 6 cards signed.  I asked Dana to hold on to the 11x14, as he said he may be able to get some more items signed, in which case I would send more 16x20s and have them all sent back together.  I also hope to get a bat and/or jersey to send.

Here are the 13 items that have been returned thus far.  I'm not sure why 1989 Fleer cards always scan like that... the card looks great!

  

  

     

     

  



posted on Sunday, 30 September 2012 19:47:24 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Saturday, 24 March 2012
Spent today at Nats minor league camp.  There were a LOT more people there today than have been there previously.  Bryce Harper getting sent down will do that.

I hung out with Ed, Kirk, Jesus, Nelson, Elsa, Cathy (Kathy?) and a few others.  Having people to talk to definitely makes the day go by faster.  Kirk also turned me on to the pizza place inside of the gas station down the street from the complex.  Glad to have somewhere to eat within walking distance!

Bryce didn't sign anything.  Not only that, but he now has a "shadow" that says no for him.  The shadow walks with him throughout the camp.  Whenever he needs to go to the clubhouse, he hops on a golf cart.

Totals:

Nationals
Colin Bates - 1/1
Bob Boone - 2/2
Brian Daubach - 3/3
Erik Davis - 4/4
Brian Dupra - 4/4
Brian Goodwin - 1/1, 1/1 (help)
Rick Hague - 4/4
Blake Kelso - 1/1
Kevin Keyes - 4/4
Jeff Kobernus - 4/4
Cole Leonida - 4/4
Jason Martinson - 4/4
Yunesky Maya - 4/4
Paul Menhart - 1/1
Tyler Moore - 4/4
Xavier Paul - 4/4
Eury Perez - 4/4, 4/4
J.P. Ramirez - 5/5
Anthony Rendon - 1/1, 1/2 (8x10)
Rick Schu - 3/3
Matthew Skole - 1/1
Steven Souza - 3/3
Ryan Tatusko - 2/2
Mark Teahen - 4/4, 2/2 (8x10s)
Kylin Turnbull - 2/2
Chien-Ming Wang - 4/4 (Major League parking lot)

Astros
Adam Bailey - 4/4
Mark Bailey - 4/4
Brandon Barnes - 1/1
Enos Cabell - 4/4
Joel Chimelis - 4/4
Collin DeLome - 1/1
Jon Gaston - 2/2
Jacob Goebbert - 2/2
Kyle Greenwalt - 1/1
Ben Heath - 4/4
Gary Ruby - 1/1
Jonathan Singleton - 2/4, 2/2 (help)
Jonathan Villar - 4/4 (should have brought more, he was signing everything)
Chris Wallace - 4/4

Today's total - 123 cards, 3 8x10s

Thirteen day total - 1209 cards, 2 16x20s, 2 10x20s, 2 11x14s, 5 tickets, 11 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 3 mini helmets





















posted on Saturday, 24 March 2012 18:23:42 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Sunday, 18 March 2012
Today I hit Marlins camp.  My main objective was Marlins major leaguers, but I also brought stuff for the AAA/AA Mets, as they were there playing the AAA/AA Marlins.

Today was both a great day and a horrible day.  The great news was that I got both Ozzie Guillen and Mark Buehrle for the first time this spring, not counting the season ticket holder event.

The bad news was that Ozzie completely annihilated the mini helmet he signed for me.  He had to toss it over the fence after signing it.  The first time he tossed it, it bounced off of the top of the fence and he caught it with his hand right on the signature, smearing it.  The second time he tossed it he airmailed it over two sections of the fence back into the players parking lot.  It bounced around for a while before Guillen picked it up.  So now, in addition to the smeared signature, the helmet itself is all scratched up.  The third time he was successful.  The helmet is trash.  This completely ruined my day.  What is it with my luck with mini helmets this spring?

Buehrle parked in the stadium to avoid the players parking lot.  He pulled out while the Major League game was still going on, and there were only 2 kids and 3 adults near the parking area getting autographs.  The two kids were waiting where Buehrle pulls out to try to get him to roll down his window.  Unbelievably, he did!  Derek, C.B., and I all ran over.  Buehrle did sign for us, though you could tell he wasn't happy about it.  He actually said to us "I park in here so I can avoid you guys!".  As I wasn't expecting Buehrle to sign, I didn't have any of the nice items I need him on ready, so I just got him on a card.

Andre Dawson and Tony Perez drove in together.  Only two of us approached them.  Tony Perez wasn't having it, but Dawson stopped.  The guy I was with, Jesus, asked Dawson to sign a HOF program.  Dawson refused.  He then went on a fairly long diatribe about how he doesn't sign in the morning.  Nonetheless, he did sign a card for each of us.

Giancarlo Stanton signed going in and coming out.  He is making a point of refusing to come over when people call him Mike.  But as soon as somebody called him Giancarlo, he came over, and was very friendly both times.

Today was my best quantity day so far this spring, and would be a good quality day as well if it weren't for the Guillen mini helmet fiasco.

Totals!

Marlins

Jose Alvarez - 2/2
Chase Austin - 2/2
Andy Barkett - 2/2
Heath Bell - 2/2
Emilio Bonifacio - 1/2
John Buck - 2/2
Mark Buehrle - 1/1
Mark Canha - 4/4
Steve Cishek - 4/4
Joe Coleman - 4/4
Jeff Conine - 1/2, 1/1
Joey Cora - 2/2
Scott Cousins - 4/4
Andre Dawson - 1/1
Matt Dominguez - 2/2
Michael Dunn - 4/4
Jose Fernandez - 4/4
Ryan Fisher - 2/2
Isaac Galloway - 3/3
Chad Gaudin - 4/4
Nick Green - 1/1
Ozzie Guillen - 1/1 mini helmet (smeared and scratched)
Brad Hand - 4/4
Ron Hassey - 4/4
Josh Hodges - 2/2
Mason Hope - 4/4
Chad James - 2/2
Jared Jefferies - 4/4
Kyle Jensen - 1/2
Austin Kearns - 1/1
Ben Lasater - 4/4
Tim Leiper - 2/2
James Leverton - 2/2
J.D. Martin - 2/2
Brian McConkey - 2/2
Blake McGinley - 4/4
Damon Minor - 4/4
Frank Moore - 2/2
Robert Morey - 2/2
Jobduan Morales - 4/4
Edward Mujica - 4/4
Jim Negrych - 2/2
Ricky Nolasco - 4/4
Edgar Olmos - 4/4
Eduardo Perez - 3/4
Bryan Petersen - 2/4
Dallas Poulk - 3/3
Omar Poveda - 3/3
J.T. Realmuto - 2/2
Jared Rogers - 4/4
Cookie Rojas - 1/1
Aaron Rowand - 1/1 11x14
Gaby Sanchez - 2/2
Jeff Schwarz - 4/4
Aaron Senne - 3/3
Jake Smolinski - 4/4
Giancarlo Stanton - 1/1 8x10, 1/2
Randy St. Claire - 2/2
Graham Taylor - 2/2
Rett Varner - 4/4
Sean West - 1/2
Christian Yelich - 4/8

Mets
Wally Backman - 2/3
Darrell Ceciliani - 4/4
Matt Den Dekker - 2/2 (he smeared 2 handing them back to me)
Wilmer Flores - 1/4, 1/1 (help)
Blake Forsythe - 4/4 (2 got smeared in the rain)
Sean Ratliff - 3/3
Cory Vaughn - 2/2

Today's total - 182 cards, 1 11x14, 1 mini helmet

Thirteen day total - 1081 cards (1086 autos), 2 16x20s, 2 10x20s, 2 11x14s, 5 tickets, 8 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 3 mini helmets




























posted on Sunday, 18 March 2012 18:15:07 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Saturday, 10 March 2012
Today I spent the morning at the Nats Major League parking lot, and then I headed over to the back fields to get the Nats Minor Leaguers. 

I've done the parking lot a couple of times recently.  The first time, I was the only person there.  Today, there was one other person.  I've been surprised at how many players refused to sign for just one person.  Rick Ankiel, Matt Purke, Cole Kimball, Yunesky Maya, John Lannan, Jordan Zimmerman, Anthony Rendon, & Eury Perez all refused to sign both times.  Surprisingly, Henry Rodriguez stopped and signed today. 

When I got Colin Bates on the back fields, he pointed to my hat and asked if I was a Sox fan.  It turns out he grew up in the Chicago area and is a big Sox fan as well.  He said his favorite player was Paul Konerko.  I keep forgetting that I'm 10+ years older than some of these minor leaguers, otherwise how could it be anyone other than the Big Hurt?

Cutter Dykstra skipped both of the Bowman Chrome cards that I had out.  It turns out he thought they were already signed.  He has to have signed a bunch of these before, right?  In any case, he was very friendly.

I had 4 Heritage cards for Robbie Ray to sign.  The first one turned out perfectly.  The other 3 look like they were signed in a sharpie that had been capless for about 2 weeks.  While signing, he said "Your pen is dying".  That didn't make any sense, as the first card looked perfect.  Once he handed my book back, I realized why: he had left puddles of sweat on the cards.  No wonder they didn't turn out!  To those who sent Ray cards for a 50/50, I won't charge you extra for the game used sweat!

Ryan Tatusko asked whether he should sign above or below the facsimile signature on his Bowman card.  Alex Meyer asked where I'd like the photos signed.  Both good guys.

The totals!

Marlon Anderson - 4/4
Paul Applebee - 4/4
Colin Bates - 4/4
Seth Bynum - 2/2
Brian Daubach - 4/4
Erik Davis - 4/4
Ross Detwiler - 4/4
Cutter Dykstra - 4/4
Danny Espinosa - 4/4
Gio Gonzalez - 2/2
Mark Grater - 2/2
Rick Hague - 4/4
J.R. Higley - 1/1
Destin Hood - 3/3
Trevor Holder - 2/2
Blake Kelso - 4/4
Kevin Keyes - 4/4
Stephen King - 2/2
Pat Lehman - 4/4
Cole Leonida - 4/4
Sandy Martinez - 4/4
Jack McGeary - 2/2
Alex Meyer - 2/2 8x10s
Adrian Nieto - 4/4
Luis Ordaz - 3/3
Ryan Perry - 2/2
Wilson Ramos - 4/4
Robbie Ray - 4/4
Henry Rodriguez - 2/2
Brian Rupp - 2/2
Rick Schu - 4/4
Matthew Skole - 4/4
Josh Smoker - 2/2
Ryan Tatusko - 4/4
Michael Tejera - 3/3
Dean Weaver - 1/1

Today's total - 111 cards, 2 8x10s

Ten day total - 748 cards (751 autos), 2 16x20s, 2 10x20s, 1 11x14, 5 tickets, 8 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 2 mini helmets




















posted on Saturday, 10 March 2012 15:03:42 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Sunday, 04 March 2012
I attended the Marlins season ticket holder autograph event today.  It is a great event, very similar to the White Sox Picnic in the Park.  The one big difference is that there are only 3 lines, rather than a line for each player.  Each line is for about 20 players.  Today, they had the big names split up as follows:

Ozzie Guillen, Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes

Hanley Ramirez, Mike Stanton, Carlos Zambrano, Heath Bell

Mark Buehrle...  umm... Gaby Sanchez?

For some reason Buehrle was the only big guy in his line.  This was no good for me, as I planned on hitting Buehrle's line at least twice, if not three times.  It would have been nice to knock out another big name each time through.

I had bought an extra ticket, and gave it to a guy I had been hanging out with a bit this spring.  In exchange for the ticket, he would get Buehrle on a mini helmet for me.  I'm not sure if he just didn't know how to handle a mini helmet, or just didn't make any effort to take care of my item, but the damn autograph ended up smeared.  It looks like the helmet was probably shoved in his bag, and something rubbed up against the autograph.  So the item I most wanted signed ended up being trash.  This really ruined the whole day for me.

It was a bad day for mini helmets.  I had a mini helmet in a bag attached to my 16x20 portfolio that I'd planned on getting Ozzie Guillen to sign.  When I pulled it out just before getting to Ozzie, it was completely scratched all over.  There was no way I could get it signed.

Other than the mini helmet fiascos, it wasn't a bad day.  I made it through Buehrle's line twice, and through Guillen's line 1.25 times.  The .25 worked out, as I was one of the last guys to get Guillen my second time through.  I didn't make it to Josh Johnson or Jose Reyes the second time though.

I didn't prepare well for the event either.  It didn't dawn on me that if I was going through Buehrle's line twice, I would be able to get the other people in his line twice as well.  So I had nothing for anybody else in his line the second time through, other than Gaby Sanchez who signed only 1/2 the first time through.

Ozzie Guillen really got a kick out of the 12x18 photo, and the guys next to Buehrle were into the 16x20 with Derrick Rose.

I'm really happy with the two Aaron Rowand cards that got done today.  They are both rookie refractors.

Prior to the event, I also hit the Marlins parking lot.  Here are both sets of totals:

Autograph event
Heath Bell - 1/1 help
Emilio Bonifacio 2/2
John Buck - 2/2, 1/1 (help)
Mark Buehrle - 1/1 16x20, 1/1 10x20, 1/1 mini helmet (help, smeared)
Randy Choate - 3/3
Joey Cora - 1/1, 1/1 help, 1/1 help
Matt Dominguez - 2/2
Greg Dobbs - 4/4
Gary Glover - 4/4, 1/1 (help)
Ozzie Guillen - 1/1 12x18, 1/1, 1/1 5x7 card (help)
Brett Hayes - 4/4
Omar Infante - 2/2, 1/1 (help)
Josh Johnson - 1/1 8x10
Wade LeBlanc - 2/2
Logan Morrison - 2/2, 1/1 (help)
Ricky Nolasco - 4/4, 1/1 (help, smeared)
Eduardo Perez - 2/2
Jose Reyes - 1/1
Aaron Rowand - 1/1, 1/1 help
Gaby Sanchez - 1/2, 1/1, 1/1 (help)
Randy St. Claire - 2/2
Carlos Zambrano - 1/1 (help)

Parking Lot
Jose Ceda - 4/4
Chris Coghlan - 1/2
Scott Cousins - 3/4
Matt Dominguez - 2/2 debut tickets
Michael Dunn - 4/4
Nick Green - 1/2 (smeared it by dropping pen right on autograph)
Gary Glover - 4/4
Brad Hand - 4/4
Kyle Jensen - 1/2, 1/1 (help)
Austin Kearns - 1/2
Tom Koehler - 2/4
Wade LeBlanc - 4/4
J.D. Martin - 1/1
Logan Morrison - 4/4
Edward Mujica - 2/4
Eduardo Perez - 4/4
Rob Rasmussen - 1/1
Evan Reed - 2/2
Sandy Rosario - 2/2 8x10s
Wayne Rosenthal - 2/2
Alex Sanabia - 2/2
Anibal Sanchez - 1/2 (only signed 2 total)
Kyle Skipworth - 4/4
Graham Taylor - 4/4
Gary Thurman - 3/3
Elih Villanueva - 2/4
Sean West - 2/2

Today's total - 116 cards, 1 mini helmet, 3 8x10s, 1 16x20, 1 10x20, 1 12x18, 3 tickets

Eight day total - 584 cards (384 autos), 2 16x20s, 2 10x20s, 5 tickets, 6 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 2 mini helmets




























posted on Sunday, 04 March 2012 18:16:39 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Sunday, 26 February 2012
I had originally planned on going to Jupiter today.  However, the weather forecast didn't look very good, and I really didn't want to drive all the way down there and have it rain.  So I decided to spend the morning at Nats camp, and the afternoon at the movies with the wife!

I was at Nats camp until 5pm yesterday.  I was only there until 10am today, and yet I had a MUCH better day.  No Strasburg or Harper of course, but I got all of the Sox guys, and for the very first time I got Ryan Zimmerman!  He came out to the cages by the parking lot at about 9:30, and after he hit he came over to the fence and signed 2 a piece for the 10-15 of us that were there.

Edwin Jackson also signed for everybody by the fence.  All of the players were coming back there to talk to the Rawlings reps, and get new gloves.  Most of them went back inside without signing, but Edwin came over and signed multiples for everybody. 

Right after Zimmerman signed, I got in my car and drove over to the practice fields.  As soon as I got out of my car, I saw Gio Gonzalez walking down the sidewalk.  I approached him, and he told me "After practice".  I told him I had to leave to take my wife to the movies... and it actually worked, lol.  He stopped and signed 2 cards for me.

There is a new setup at the practice fields.  When the players walk over, they go in an opening to the far left of the fence, rather than the one that fans enter through.  They have ropes set up so that you can't get right up to the players.  They still have to walk right by you, there is just a rope between you.  It seemed to me that more players signed taking the field with the ropes up than they usually do without the ropes.

Here are the totals for my abbreviated day:

Bob Boone - 2/2
Corey Brown - 1/1
Sean Burnett - 4/4
Brett Carroll - 2/2
Tyler Clippard - 1/2
Mark DeRosa - 2/2
Danny Espinosa - 1/1 8x10
Gio Gonzalez - 2/2
Jarrett Hoffpauir - 2/4
Edwin Jackson - 1/1 8x10, 1/1 ROMLB w/ No Hitter inscription
Davey Johnson - 1/1
Cole Kimball - 1/4 (ouch)
Steve Lombardozzi - 2/2
Ryan Mattheus - 4/4
Yunesky Maya - 4/4
Jason Michaels - 4/4
Tyler Moore - 4/4
Ryan Perry - 2/2
Wilson Ramos - 2/2
Anthony Rendon - 1/2, 1/1 (help)
Mark Teahen - 4/4
Jordan Zimmermann - 1/1
Ryan Zimmerman - 2/2

Today's total - 49 cards, 2 8x10s, 1 baseball

Five day total - 318 cards (321 autos), 1 16x20, 1 10x20, 3 tickets, 3 8x10s, 1 baseball











posted on Sunday, 26 February 2012 11:02:49 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Saturday, 26 February 2011
Well, today was my last day in Arizona.  I had a blast, but I think I am definitely ready to go home.  I think the White Sox players are ready for me to go home as well!

Today was a much better day than yesterday.  At least I am ending things a positive note.

Michael Waltrip and some other NASCAR drivers were there today.  They were all wearing Sox jerseys.  Lots of people were getting Waltrip's autograph, and taking pictures with him.  I have to admit, I didn't have the slightest interest in doing either.

The pitchers only worked out for a short while, then called it a day.  Unfortunately, John Danks rode in on a golf cart with Mark Buehrle, so neither one signed.

Here are my totals:

Gordon Beckham - 1/1
Daryl Boston - 4/4
Justin Cassel - 3/3
Jesse Crain - 4/4
Jordan Danks - 4/4
Richard Dotson - 4/4
Stefan Gartrell - 4/4
Kevin Hickey - 4/4
Edwin Jackson - 2/2
Josh Kinney - 2/2
Tim Laker - 3/3
Brent Lillibridge - 2/3
Donny Lucy - 4/4
Joe McEiwing - 2/2
Dallas McPherson - 4/4
Brent Morel - 1/2, 1/1 (8x10)
Will Ohman - 2/2
Jake Peavy - 1/2, 1/1 (help)
Josh Phegley - 4/4
Juan Pierre - 2/4
A.J. Pierzynski - 1/1
Charles Poe - 4/4
Carlos Quentin - 1/1
Alexei Ramirez - 1/1
Santos Rodriguez - 8/8
Chris Sale - 4/4, 1/1 (ball)
Sergio Santos - 4/4
Brandon Short - 4/4
Luis Sierra - 2/2
Matt Thornton - 1/1 (All-Star ball)
Dayan Viciedo - 2/2 (8x10s)
Devon White - 1/2

Today's total: 87 cards, 3 8x10s, 3 baseballs

2011 Spring Training 7 day total: 591 cards, 13 8x10s, 11 baseballs, 7 16x20s, 2 10x30s, 2 11x14s (4 autographs), 2 10x20s (9 autographs), 2 mini helmets, 1 magazine

posted on Saturday, 26 February 2011 18:48:07 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Friday, 25 February 2011
Well, I knew the bubble had to burst at some point.  Today was not nearly as good as the three previous days.  All of the big guys have cut down tremendously on the amount of autographs they sign.  Well, except for Jake Peavy of course!

Most of the pitchers finished on a small field next to the clubhouse, so there was no access to them when they were done working out.  This meant that I didn't even get John Danks!

When I asked Brian Bruney to sign, he replied "Really?  More?"  I assured him that I was just a big fan and not a dealer and he responded that he really didn't care either way, and he signed the four cards I put out.

When I asked Mike Gellinger to sign, he was VERY surprised that I knew who he was.  He actually said "Give me some" and fist bumped me!

Dunn, Konerko, Pierzynski, and Quentin all finished at the same time.  They all signed a few, but not nearly enough to get everybody.  Konerko must think I'm a dealer as well.  I had the first spot at the corner of the fence.  He walked right by me and started signing with the guy next to me.  I would have been the next person to get Dunn when he quit signing.

For the first time, I decided to wait by the White Sox parking lot.  I had heard from several people that nobody would sign.  They were very nearly right.  I was the ONLY person at their parking lot, yet just about everybody ignored me.  The only people that stopped were Mark Salas, Juan Nieves, and Alexei Ramirez.

Here are my totals:

Kyle Bellamy - 1/1
Daryl Boston - 4/4
Brian Bruney - 4/4
Nick Capra - 4/4
Kyle Cofield - 4/4
Don Cooper - 1/1 (8x10)
Jordan Danks - 2/2 (8x10s), 4/4
Gavin Floyd - 1/2
Mike Gellinger - 1/1 (8x10)
Curt Hasler - 4/4
Greg Infante - 4/4
Josh Kinney - 4/4
Shane Lindsay - 4/4
Jeff Manto - 4/4
Juan Nieves - 4/4
John Orton - 4/4
Jake Peavy - 2/2
Juan Pierre - 2/4
Charles Poe - 4/4
Carlos Quentin - 1/1
Alexei Ramirez - 1/1
Mark Salas - 3/3
Brandon Short - 4/4
Miguel Socolovich - 1/1
Dayan Viciedo - 1/1 (16x20), 2/4
Greg Walker - 2/2

I went to the Dodgers side after the Sox were done with practice.  Unfortunately, the Dodgers were done as well, and there were only a few players/coaches left.  Luckily, I got there just before Mattingly finished signing.  Once again, I was the next to last autograph that he signed.

Hector Gimenez - 3/3
Dee Gordon - 2/2
Trey Hillman - 1/1
Tommy Lasorda - 1/1 (magazine)
Don Mattingly - 1/1
Aaron Miles - 3/3
Tim Wallach - 1/1







Today's total: 83 cards, 4 8x10s, 1 16x20, 1 magazine

2011 Spring Training 6 day total: 504 cards, 10 8x10s, 8 baseballs, 7 16x20s, 2 10x30s, 2 11x14s (4 autographs), 2 10x20s (9 autographs), 2 mini helmets, 1 magazine

posted on Friday, 25 February 2011 19:32:47 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Wednesday, 23 February 2011
Another day, another White Sox rackfest!  Today was just about as good as yesterday.  I got more autographs today despite the fact that I didn't have any other generous graphers helping me out.

Last year at Twins camp, Jesse Crain would always stop his car on his way out of the parking lot to sign for everybody.  He had some fun with us, though.  At some random point, he would honk the horn of his giant truck, and scare the crap out of all of us.  I asked him if he was doing that this year, and he said he couldn't bring his truck with him because it is way too big for Chicago.

John Danks was great as usual.  He would have signed two more cards, but he got sweat all over them, and he didn't want the autograph ruined.  He told me that his mom would love a copy of each of the prints I've made or had made of him.  I'll bring those to him tomorrow.

Jake Peavy was very appreciative of the "South Side Aces" print that I gave him.  He was doing 1 per for everybody as he was in bit of a rush, but he made sure to knock out 3 for me.

I was surprised to see Darrin Jackson there today.  That makes two announcers in camp.  Luckily, DJ is no Steve Stone.  When he came out, he said he would sign on his way back in.  About an hour later, I turned around and DJ was heading right for me.  I didn't even have to remind him.

I haven't yet decided what I think of Will Ohman.  When he was taking the field in the morning, I asked if he had time to sign.  He looked at his wrist (no watch) and said "I checked my watch, I don't have time".  At the end of practice, he answered the same question with "I do have time now" and signed 2/4 cards.

When I asked Kirk Champion to sign, he replied "You must have dug deep if you've got cards for me".

Here is my Sox tally for day 2:

Harold Baines - 1/2
Gordon Beckham - 1/2
Kyle Bellamy - 4/4
Mark Buehrle - 1/2 (10x20)
Anthony Carter - 1/1
Kirk Champion - 3/3
Kyle Cofield - 4/4
Jesse Crain - 4/4
John Danks - 2/4, 4/4 (2 10x20s, 2 10x30s)
Jordan Danks - 2/2 (8x10s)
Alejandro De Aza - 4/4
Adam Dunn - 1/3
Tyler Flowers - 2/2
Gavin Floyd - 2/2
Darrin Jackson - 2/2
Nate Jones - 4/4
Paul Konerko - 1/2
Charlie Leesman - 4/4
Brent Lillibridge - 2/4
Ever Magallanes - 4/4
Jeff Marquez - 4/4
Joe McEwing - 2/2
Dallas McPherson - 4/4
Brent Morel - 1/4
Juan Nieves - 4/4
Will Ohman - 2/4
John Orton - 4/4
Jake Peavy - 3/4
Tony Pena - 4/4
Juan Pierre - 2/4, 2/2
A.J. Pierzynski - 1/2
Alex Rios - 1/2
Chris Sale - 1/1 (16x20)
Sergio Santos - 4/4
Brandon Short - 4/4
Mark Teahen - 2/2
Matt Thornton - 2/2
Dayan Viciedo - 1/1 (16x20)
Devon White - 2/2

When I was finally convinced that there was no point hanging around the empty Sox camp, I again headed to the Dodgers parking lot.  My main objective was still to get Jon Garland to complete my All-Star 16x20.  The only difference is, this time I completed it!  I was giddy for about 15 minutes afterwards.  This bad boy is getting framed!

John Kruk was doing a report from Camelback Ranch today.  He entered on the Sox side, but was in a big rush and couldn't stop to sign.  He exited on the Dodgers side, and couldn't have been nicer or more accommodating.  I just wish I had had some Sox stuff with me!

Here are my Dodgers totals:

Casey Blake - 1/1
John Ely - 4/4
Jon Garland - 1/1 (16x20)
Jay Gibbons - 4/4
Gabe Kapler - 1/2
John Kruk - 1/1 (baseball)
Hiroki Kuroda - 1/1
Mike MacDougal - 3/3
Dioner Navarro - 1/2
Trent Oeltjen - 1/1
Ramon Troncoso - 2/2
Maury Wills - 2/2


Today's total: 113 cards, 3 16x20s, 2 10x20s (3 autographs), 2 10x30s, 2 8x10s, 1 baseball, 1 11x14

2011 Spring Training 4 day total: 275 cards, 6 8x10s, 3 baseballs, 3 16x20s, 2 10x30s, 2 11x14s, 2 10x20s, 1 mini helmet



posted on Wednesday, 23 February 2011 07:12:44 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #   
# Tuesday, 22 February 2011
Finally!  I'm in Arizona and just finished my first day at White Sox camp.  This is something I have wanted to do for about 15 years.  I'm happy to say it was worth the wait!

First off, those who didn't sign.  Mark Buehrle, Ozzie Guillen, Edwin Jackson, & Alex Rios denied all autograph requests.  Several others didn't sign, but that was due more to the fact that 10 people were already signing, and nobody had a chance to call them over.  I believe this was the case with John Danks (can't believe I missed him!), Jordan Danks, Matt Thornton, and a few others.  Also, I missed Chris Sale, who did sign, because I was getting Jake Peavy.

When Jake Peavy saw the South Side Aces photo, he replied "You know what, I'd really like to have one of those".  I told him I would bring him one tomorrow.  Hopefully he hooks me up!  He is a class act, and signed for everybody.

When Vizquel saw the 2011 Topps Diamond card, he exclaimed "Ooooh, shiny!".

Now, on to Steve Stone.  If you've been reading my site from the beginning, you know my feelings about Steve Stone.  If not, let me lay it out for you.  He's a jerk!  I don't think you'll get much argument if you talk to other collectors that have tried getting his autograph.  Read my 2009 Soxfest recap for more details.

Anyway, back to today.  For some reason, Stone was at the White Sox workout.  Announcers don't usually show up until the games start, but he was there anyway.  He was about 5 feet from the 3 foot tall fence we were standing behind.  Somebody asked for an autograph, and to my surprise he agreed to sign.  However, he refused to walk the 5 feet to the fence.  He said "Toss it".  When the lady said she didn't hear him, he repeated "toss it".  So she tossed him his ball.  After he tossed it back, I asked if he would please sign a card for me.  He finally walked up to the fence, and took my book that had two of his cards.  I was completely surprised to be getting Steve Stone's autograph!

Well, I shouldn't have been.  After he returned my book, I looked at the card he "signed".  He printed his name on the card!  Instead of using his autograph, he wrote out his name like he was in kindergarten.  Not only that, but he did it write across his face!  I looked at the autograph he signed for the other person, and it was his normal autograph! 

Just so we're clear, let me repeat:  Steve Stone is a jerk!

Jeff Cox showed what a character he is after signed 4 cards for me.  I was the only fan left on the White Sox side of Camelback Ranch when Cox came in.  Everybody else had either left or gone over to the Dodgers side.  After signing my 4 cards, Cox yelled out "Go White Sox!"  What persuaded him to do that, I have no idea.

Well, it's about time I gave you what you came here to see.  My tally!  If it doesn't say what item was signed, then it's a card.

Gordon Beckham - 1/2, 1/1 (help)
Daryl Boston - 1/1
Brian Bruney - 2/2
Jeff Cox - 4/4
Freddy Dolsi - 2/2
Adam Dunn - 1/1 mini helmet
Eduardo Escobar - 4/4
Tyler Flowers - 2/2 8x10s
Gavin Floyd - 2/2 10x20s, 1/1 card (help)
Lucas Harrell - 3/4 (Lucas doesn't sign dupes, and he thought that the 2010 Bowman and 2010 Bowman Chrome Refractor were the same card)
Philip Humber - 4/4
Gregory Infante - 4/4
Paul Konerko - 1/2
Jeff Manto - 4/4
Lastings Milledge - 2/2
Jhonny Nunez - 4/4
Jake Peavy - 1/1, 1/1 (help), 2/2 10x20s
Tony Pena - 4/4
Josh Phegley - 2/2 8x10s, 4/4 (help)
Juan Pierre - 2/2
A.J. Pierzynski - 1/2
Carlos Quentin - 1/2
Alexei Ramirez - 1/2 11x14s
Mark Salas - 2/4
Steve Stone - 1/2 (I guess)
Dayan Viciedo - 2/2 11x14s
Omar Vizquel - 1/2
Devon White - 1/1 (97 World Series baseball)

A few minutes before I planned on leaving the Sox side, a guy that I had been hanging out with hollered at me from a ways away that Don Mattingly was signing on the Dodgers side.  It is a bit of a trek to the Dodgers side, but I felt Mattingly was worth.  Unfortunately, I had stuff scattered everywhere, so I was going to have to spend a couple of minutes gathering it all together.  Luckily, the nice security lady that I had been talking to said "Go!  I'll watch your stuff".  So I ran like the wind (ha!) over to the Dodgers side.  There was a line formed for Mattingly, so I got in line.  When I was the next person to get him, he said "I'm signing 3 more, then I'm done".  I had barely made it, all thanks to the nice security lady!

I returned to the Sox side with Mattingly ball in tow, and packed up my stuff and head to my car.  Apparently the Sox never sign at the parking lot, so I decided to drive over to the Dodgers lot to see if Jon Garland and Juan Uribe had left yet.

Unfortunately, Garland was already gone.  Uribe was still there, but didn't sign anything when he did leave.  However, I did get a few autographs, including another from Mattingly and a couple from Maury Wills.  Maury was in the best mood I had ever seen him in.  He was asking everybody that had a nice item if they wanted an inscription or personalization.  He ended up signing for a good 10-15 minutes.

James Loney was great.  Instead of getting in his car, and then rolling down his window to sign, he actually turned around and walked over to us graphers.  We had a long row of people gathered in what appeared to be a line, and I was the first person he got to.  Right as he was about to take my item, he said "What about those guys (pointing to the back of the line)... I think I'll start there!  So instead of being first, I got him last!  Still, he signed one a piece for everybody, and was very personable and friendly throughout.

When Mattingly was getting ready to pull out, the security guard suggested we form a line.  He thought that it would increase the chances of Mattingly stopping.  So we formed a line, again with me in the front.  When Mattingly pulled out, he said "Wow!  You guys formed such a nice line, now I have to sign!".  I'd never really met Mattingly before today, but now I'm definitely a fan.

Anyway, here is my Dodgers tally:

Rod Barajas - 2/2
Casey Blake - 2/2
Jamey Carroll - 2/2
John Ely - 2/2
Tony Gwynn Jr. - 1/1
Rick Honeycutt - 2/2
Kenley Jansen - 4/4
James Loney - 1/2
Don Mattingly - 1/1
Maury Wills - 2/2

All in all, it was a fantastic day!  I can't wait to do it again tomorrow!

I will post better pictures when I get home.

Today's total: 74 cards, 4 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 2 11x14s (3 autographs), 2 10x20s (4 autographs), 1 mini helmet

2011 Spring Training 3 day total: 162 cards, 4 8x10s, 2 baseballs, 2 11x14s, 2 10x20s, 1 mini helmet

posted on Tuesday, 22 February 2011 20:19:08 (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #