Saturday, December 8, 2012

Gronkowski, Hernandez, Spikes, Ridley, Mesko and Solder autograph appearance information.

The New England Patriots are easily the hottest team in Boston right now.  They're headed toward the playoffs and all of their players are becoming more and more popular.  If you're a Patriots fan, I have some great information for you.  If you need to find a great gift for even the casual Patriots fan, there will be some great opportunities for early gift giving.
Starting the week of December 17, six different Patriot players will be appearing in 3 different states over 3 different nights.  Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski, Stevan Ridley, Zoltan Mesko, Nate Solder and Brandon Spikes will all be making these autograph appearances.  To have this many appearances, by this many players in the course of 3 days is unheard of, except the weekends of trade shows.

The details are below:

December 17th, Aaron Hernandez, Zoltan Mesko & Nate Solder will be appearing from 7:00pm - 8:30pm at the Sports and More memorabilia store in Providence Place Mall.  Pricing is great, as you can purchase an autograph ticket for all 3 for only $69 for regular items and $89 for premium items. 

December 18th, Rob Gronkowski will be appearing from 7:00pm - 8:30pm at Arena Sportsbar in Nashua NH.  His pricing is still low with prices starting at $69 for regular items and $89 for premium items.

December 19th, Stevan Ridley and Brandon Spikes will be appearing from 6:30pm - 8:00pm at the Stadium Sports Bar and Grill in South Boston, Ma..  Pricing for each of them is excellent, as regular items are $29 each and premium $39 each. 

So, offer someone an early present to someone and bring them to meet a popular Patriot's player.

For more information please check the following websites:

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Make your own memorabilia.

Most sports autograph collectors know what they want signed by athletes.  The most commonly signed items are jerseys from the home team, maybe a piece of equipment (ie. bat, helmet, ball), and by far the cheapest item, a licensed photo.  However, it's rare,but fun when you you come across a home made or unique item.  It doesn't take much to create such items, just a bit of time and creative thinking. 

Items I've seen signed in the past few years include custom made tables with pieces of stadiums as legs or the top.  Custom clocks made from stadium signage.  I have a friend who produces miniature green monsters of Fenway Park.  There are lots of neat ideas out there.

One thing I recently had made was a canvas print of my published photo of Fenway's green monster.  I've had about 15 former Red Sox players autograph it and almost all of them asked where it came from and who took the photo.  It is a definite conversation piece among players and friends.  I am proud of this photo because it was taken about 12 years ago on a 35mm camera.  It also is a picture of the wall before all the current advertising was added.  I've made other canvasses of this photo to offer as gifts to people. 

My personal canvas autographed by many great Red Sox, including Jim Rice, Carlton Fisk and Pedro Martinez.

A great benefit of getting this autographed is that it is considered a flat item, therefore will always come in at the lowest price point to add an autograph.  Very much a win-win for me and my collection.

So look around your house, see what you have, and figure out how you can create the next unique conversation piece.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Jeff Green and Jared Sullinger Public Appearance

It's rare to be able to meet one Boston Celtic on a particular day, so when an opportunity to meet two simultaneously arises, Celtic fans should take advantage.  Thanks to New England Picture Company and Sure shot Promotions, fans can meet both Jeff Green and Jared Sullinger in late November.  Come see these future Celtic stars at a fantastic price.   Both of them combined, cost less than one Rajon Rondo autograph. I'm confident that as the season progresses, Green and Sullinger's stock will rise as well as their autograph price.  I remember when Rondo's price was $29 an autograph as a rookie and regretting not taking advantage of that price then.  Don't make the mistake I did and miss out on 2 players at $29 each now.

You can check the following websites for more information:

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sport collector trade show and Pedro Martinez appearance!!!

This is one of my favorite weeks of the year.  Other than this being my birthday week, I look forward to attending the Greater Boston Sports Collector's Club Card and Memorabilia Show.  It has happened the first weekend in November at the Shriner Auditorium in Wilmington Mass. for as long as I can remember.  This year's show is scheduled for Friday November 2nd - Sunday November 4th and is featuring Pedro Martinez. I have not missed attending this show since I first attended in 2002.  I have found hundreds of deals on anything including memorabilia, photos, cards, supplies and autographs. There will be over 80 dealers in attendance, both from the region and nationally.

Me and Pedro Martinez

One of the reasons this show is my favorite is that everyone is very friendly and helpful.   There are items out there for the bargain hunter or the high end collector and of course all of us in between.  I've seen autographs for sale that include almost every hall of famer for every sport.  I've seen rare items like Cy Young, Babe Ruth and Alan Shepard(First U.S. astronaut in space) signed items.  Since I've been attending I've learnt much about collecting, how to preserve autographs and what's out there on the market.  I always feel that when I walk and speak with dealers, I learn something new every November.

So here are some tips on how to make the most of one day or the weekend at the show.
1.  Walk the entire floor at least once before purchasing anything.  My experience is that you will find the same item in multiple locations.  The dealers are very competitive and will almost always come down in price to get the sale.
2.  Prepare to spend at least 2 hours browsing.  Be patient and ready to negotiate.
3.  Bring something to drink with you.  It is very dry in most facilities.
4.  Wear comfortable footwear.  The entire floor is concrete.
5.  If you are purchasing an autograph or game used piece of memorabilia make sure it is has authentication.  Ask the dealer where it came from and who authenticated it.  If the price is too good to be true, then don't purchase it. 
6.  Most dealers will come down in price on the last day of a show.  They honestly don't want to haul it back to their homes or businesses. 
7.  Have cash on hand.  Most dealers cannot accept credit cards and if they do, they might charge a service fee to pay for the connection at their table.
8.  Sign up for raffles and door prizes.  Almost every show has them and there are usually great prizes.
9.  If you are attending to meet players, be ready to wait in line, and in small spaces.  Also, if you have no idea what you want autographed the promoter's merchandise table will have the best items at reasonable prices.

This year's autograph guests include:
Pedro Martinez
Baseball Hall of Famers Ozzie Smith and Brooks Robinson
Cecil Cooper
Red Sox WS Champion, Doug Mientkiewicz
Boston Bruin and Stanley cup champion, Shawn Thornton
New England Patriot, Aaron Hernandez
Jake LaMotta
Fred Lynn
Will Middlebrooks
Ramiro Mendoza

For more information on autograph guest information please visit

Opportunity to meet New England Patriot, Stevan Ridley

New England Picture and Sure Shot Promotions have teamed up for another great autograph signing.  They will have running back Stevan Ridley available to sign autographs at outstanding prices on November 14th.  Stevan is having a great season to this point and as his stock and playing time rise, his autograph price will as well.    This could be a great cost effective gift for a child or the casual Patriot Fan or an outstanding chance to meet Stevan for the diehard fan.  So come and out, and take advantage of this now. 

Pricing is as follows:
$29 for small, regular items and photos.
$39 for premium items such as jerseys and helmets.
$15 for inscriptions.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Welcome back to Boston, John Farrell

The Red Sox announced today that John Farrell was hired as the next manager.  He will be the 3rd Sox manager in 3 years.  He pitched for the Cleveland Indians, Anaheim Angels and Detroit Tigers.  He was the pitching coach on the Sox when they won the World Series in 2007, then for the past 2 seasons was manager of the Toronto Blue Jays.  So enough of his history, what my readers want to know is what is his autograph worth?

The answer is not much.  In fact, I wouldn't value him at more than $35 - $40 on any item and that is only because he was the pitching coach for a world series winning team.  That doesn't mean his autograph won't appreciate in value, but until the Sox get back into the playoffs and even win a playoff series, any manager's autograph won't be of much value to any collector.

Meet Celtics Guard Rajon Rondo

Ever meet an NBA point guard before?  Now's your chance.  Boston Celtic's point guard is making a public autograph appearance in Portsmouth NH on Thursday October 25.  Rajon is one of the most dynamic point guards in the NBA as well as Celtics history.  He is one of the most valuable players for the Celtics, as is evident by their win-loss record when he doesn't play.

Pricing for Rondo's autograph is $69 for regular items and $99 for premium items with an additional charge for inscriptions.  This pricing is outstanding, because as his popularity increases prices will increase by another 30% - 40% in the next 4 years.  Take advantage of this now.

For more information please click on websites below:

Sunday, September 30, 2012

All Fenway Team Autograph Opportunity

At the last Red Sox home game of 2012 the organization announced the all Fenway Park Team as voted on by the fans.  I did participate in the voting process throughout the season and was proud that everyone I voted for except Bruce Hurst and Marty Barrett were honored.  I was also happy to note that even if you disagreed with the voting process and/or the final outcome, that this team will provide some great autograph opportunities for a Red Sox collector.

Members of the All Fenway who were in attendance on Sept. 26th.  Notable players missing:  Wade Boggs, Curt Schilling, George Scott, Dave Roberts, Terry Francona, Mo Vaughn and more.
First, is that autographs from all the living members of the announced team are very attainable.  In fact in the next 3-6 weeks many of the honorees will be participating in autograph signings around eastern Massachusetts.  Moreover, I would recommend purchasing a ball signed by Johnny Pesky and adding the living members to that item.  Most Pesky balls or other signed items will not be that expensive and a great way to start this unique item.
Boston Red Sox Fenway Park 100th Anniversary Commemorative Baseball Cubed - Shop
100 Year ball is a great item for the honorees to autograph.

Second, as the season ends, expect to see many Fenway 100 year items such as hats, photos, books, balls, shirts and bats get marked down.  These are great items to get signed by the All Fenway team. 

I recommend collecting the signatures on one item and build it up over time.  This will make the item more valuable instead of 35+ individual signed items.  The team is listed below.

Starting LineupC: Carlton Fisk*
1B: Jimmie Foxx**
2B: Dustin Pedroia*
3B: Wade Boggs
SS: Nomar Garciaparra*
LF: Ted Williams**
CF: Fred Lynn*
RF: Dwight Evans*
RHP: Pedro Martinez*
LHP: Lefty Grove**
Closer: Jonathan Papelbon
DH: David Ortiz*
Manager: Terry Francona
PR: Dave Roberts
PH: Bernie Carbo*
First reserves
C: Jason Varitek*
1B: Mo Vaughn
2B: Bobby Doerr
3B: Mike Lowell
SS: Johnny Pesky**
LF: Carl Yastrzemski*
CF: Dom DiMaggio**
RF: Trot Nixon*
Pitcher: Roger Clemens*
Pitcher: Luis Tiant*
Pitcher: Tim Wakefield*
Pitcher: Dennis Eckersley*
Pitcher: Dick Radatz**
Manager: Joe Cronin**
Second reserves
C: Rich Gedman*
1B: George Scott
2B: Jerry Remy*
3B: Frank Malzone*
SS: Rico Petrocelli*
LF: Jim Rice*
CF: Reggie Smith*
RF: Tony Conigliaro**
Pitcher: Babe Ruth**
Pitcher: Smoky Joe Wood**
Pitcher: Curt Schilling
Pitcher: Bill Lee*
Pitcher: Jim Lonborg*
Manager: Dick Williams **
*Indicates players in attendance at Wednesday’s ceremony
**Indicates players who are deceased

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Meet a Red Sox Pioneer

There are many, many individuals who have made Red Sox history.  You all know the popular names; Yaz, Pesky, Clemens, Evans, Rice, Fisk, Ruth, the 2004 team, etc...  However there is one person that most fans never mention, Elijah (Pumpsie) Green.  Any real fan and historian knows that he was the first african american player to play in a Red Sox uniform.  The Red Sox were the last major league team to sign an african american to play at the big league level.  He went through much an intense amount of ridicule and suffering in his short 4 seasons with the Sox.  He played in 327 games for the Sox and none of those games were easy. 

Sox fans have the unique opportunity of meeting this Red Sox and historic baseball legend.  On Saturday September 8, he is appearing in Burlington Mass. from 11:00am - 2:00pm.  His price is only $20 for any item.  I recommend that you take the time to meet him and have him sign an item from the Fenway 100th Anniversary selections (Ie. baseballs, hats, or bats).  Pumpsie will inscribe the date of his debut on any item if requested.  His autograph is one that is vital to own for any real Red Sox autograph collector or fan.

Fenway 100 - Official Baseball FN0068
A great item to have signed by Pumpsie Green under the 100 year logo.

Please click on this link below for more information.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Priceless Pesky

Earlier this week, the Red Sox organization and their fans lost a great man.   Johnny Pesky, passed away at age 92.  He was an active and loyal member of the Sox organization for over 60 years.  He had roles as a player, manager, coach, broadcaster, ambassador and many other titles, for the Red Sox since the early 1940's.  His loyalty, personality and consideration toward all fans was incredible.  There isn't a person I've met in sports that was more accessible and friendly toward their fan base. 

My personal photo of Johnny from spring training (2004).  He autographed this photo of mine and asked for a copy to which I mailed to his home.  He sent me back an autographed black and white photo as a thank you.

I've had the pleasure of meeting Johnny over 20 times in my life.  Some were at spring training, Fenway park, baseball dinners and autograph events.  Every encounter always started the same; he'd shake my hand, ask me my name, and ask how I was doing.  Yet, every interaction was different in it's own way, and I have a different story to share for each of the 20 encounters.  He never had anything bad to say about the Sox or anyone, for that matter.  His autograph was always the same and he would sign anything put in front of him. 

Johnny with me and my daughter in 2005.

If you are lucky to have a Johnny Pesky autograph, keep it and cherish it.  Make sure it stays preserved as there are only a couple of more people in sports that will have been with their organization for that long.  If you had an encounter with Johnny, make sure you remember what that was like and tell the story over and over.  If you don't have a Pesky autograph, purchase one (they are not expensive).  Having an item from the person for whom the Red Sox retired the number 6, will be a priceless keepsake to share with your family and friends forever.

Johnny Pesky autographed ball and card.  Ball is the American League 100th anniversary ball.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Ticket Stubs

As I was cleaning out a closet recently, I came across my ticket stub storage box.  I have stubs in this box dating back to events/movies I attended in the early 80's, through baseball games I attended this week.  Other than meandering down memory lane or recalling specific moments from these events, I started to think about what to do with these.

Sample of my different ticket stubs.

So I came up with the following:

1.  Place them in an album in plastic pages sorted by year.  It could become a great coffee table type of item and a great conversation piece when you have company over.
2.  Get the stubs autographed by someone who participated in the event.
3.  For significant or history making events, get them framed.
4.  Separate tickets by entertainment events (Ie, sport events, concerts, movies, theatre) and display in an album.
5.  Hang all ticket stubs randomly on a cork board in your work space.

Ticket stub from Jon Lester's no hitter framed with an autographed ball from Jon.

Ticket stubs from Hideo Nomo's no hitter with accompanying photo of last out.

I think ticket stubs are worth keeping and if possible autographed.  I also think they're value to having a ticket stub, instead of the current print yourself tickets you can access online.  They can become a great keepsake for younger people in your family to look at and understand what was happening in our lives.

Minor Leagues, Bring Major Opportunity

When friends and family ask me how my quantity of autographs has built up, I always respond by first speaking about my minor league team signed items.  Since 2003, I've been attending minor league baseball games in all the New England states.  We are fortunate to have many major league affiliated teams assigned to play in a concentrated geographic area that includes 3 levels of league play .  If you're a baseball fan and are willing to spend about $6 for a ticket, it's pretty easy to see a minor league game without traveling far. 

Sample of my own minor league team signed balls.  Most have at least 30 signatures on each ball.

In addition to a great 2+ hours of family entertainment, the minor leagues bring a great opportunity to acquire autographs from future stars in great quantity.  Most minor league parks have very easy access to the players, along baselines and next to the dugouts.  With a baseball and pen in hand, a little patience and a roster of player names and uniform numbers, you can build up a great collection in no time.  Just by being polite and prepared, acquiring at least 10 autographs before first pitch should be fairly easy.  In most cases the players will talk with the fans and engage in short conversations.  After 2-3 visits you should have an item with at least 25 autographs, and a positive interaction with the superstars of the future.

2012 Lowell Spinner players signing autographs for fans.

View into the lowell Spinner dugout, notice another player signings on the other side for fans.

So take advantage of this opportunity.  For the price of a ticket and food, it is still cheaper to attend a minor league game than a movie with a family.  And we all know, you won't be getting autographs at the movie theatre.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

New England Patriot Public Autograph Signings

Sure Shot Promotions and New England Picture company are still pleasing their customers.  They just hosted a signing with Will Middlebrooks & Jarrod Saltalamacchia last week.  Now they are planning signings with 2 of the most popular New England Patriots, Tom Brady not withstanding, Vince Wilfork and Rob Gronkowski.  Both players are not only popular in New England, but are 2 of the most valuable players to their teams and positions in the entire NFL.  Please see below for the details.

Rob Gronkowski

Pricing from Gronkowski is $69 for regular items and $89 for premium items.  Inscriptions are $25 each.

Vince Wilfork

Pricing for Wilfork is $49 for regular items and $69 for premium items.  Inscriptions are $25 each.

Hope to see you there.

All Star Worthy

 Major League Baseball announced 66 of it's 68 all stars today.  The other 2 players will be picked by fan votes over the next week.  There are certainly deserving receipients of this recognition and as usual there are snubs.  So my question is, does the recognition of being an all star make the player's autograph more valuable?

In short the answer is, NO.  Up until 1999 or 2000, the all star game had less players and 90% of players picked at that time were worthy of the selection and recognition.  Now, every team has to be represented, fans can vote for a player up to 25 times online with one email address for a player.  It seems that half the rosters are of players we just don't know about. However, most importantly the games are mostly boring.  The 2002 game was the last memorable all star game, because the game ended in a tie, and there were some fantastic plays made in that game (Torii Hunter's catch on Barry Bonds). 

2002 autographed all star ball.  Jimmy Rollins and Shea Hillenbrand are noted here.

So if you're going to collect player autographs based on all star appearances, seek out the players from pre-2001.  Pedro Martinez's performance in 1999 is an example of an all star ball worth having signed.  Or, collect autographs from all the all star game MVP's, including today's players. Another idea is to collect autographs on an all star ball from the players of your favorite team. 

Fred Lynn autographed 1983 all star ball.  Fred hit a grand slam in this game to earn him the MVP.

The reality is that an all star game appearance does not make the autograph more valuable.  An end of season award (MVP, Batting average champ, gold glove) is what makes an autograph more valuable.  I guarantee that by the next morning following the game you won't even remember who won the all star game MVP (JD Drew 2008). 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Autograph Bucket List

Recently, a friend of mine asked me, 'Paul, what is your favorite autograph?" & "Who do I really want that I don't have?"  It was the latter question that got me thinking.  There are certainly autographs from current players/celebrities that I need to complete a project or team signed item, especially with the recent Boston  championship success.   My type A attitude wants to complete these projects, and certainly will stir up excitement for me.  Yet, there are a separate list of people that I would love to meet and acquire an autograph from that would trump all my in-progress projects.
So who are these people on my list?  My rule is that they need to be alive and I need to be able to meet them.  Here it is:

1.  Any living former or current president.  That leaves Jimmy Carter, George Bush, George Bush II, and President Obama.  I have met Bill Clinton.  Presidents are so rare to meet and get an autograph from and the respect I have for these men is enormous.  It is such a treat to be around them.

2.  Bobby Orr and Wayne Gretzky.  I am not a huge hockey fan and if it wasn't for the Bruins Stanley Cup championship, I'd have hardly any hockey autographs.  Yet, in the history of the NHL, these 2 men really transformed how the game was played and were superstars at the their respective positions. 

3.  Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan.  I grew up watching these three men play the game of basketball. Being a diehard Celtic fan in the 80's Larry is a no brainer.  Watching him compete in championships against Magic was MUST SEE TV for any fan of sports.  Michael is another who transformed the game in the late 80's/early 90's.  At their peak, all 3 were unstoppable and it's no surprise that together they won a combined 14 NBA championships.  (Bill Russell was on this list until I met him almost 2 years ago).

4.  Sandy Koufax and Nolan Ryan.  Both men did so much for the game of baseball, especially on the pitching side. They were tough, hard nosed pitchers, who competed harder than anyone.  Most importantly, they weren't on any drugs or PED's that we are aware of. They still have such a positive impact on the game today.  Their autographs are also rare to get in person. (Pedro Martinez, my favorite pitcher of all time, was on this list until I met him 6 months ago.  That was such a treat.)

5.  Tom Brady, Joe Montana, Bart Starr, Bill Belichick.  Just like hockey, I'm not a big football fan.  However any collector cannot ignore the impact they have had on the sport of pro football.  Aside from their personal and team accomplishments, they continue to influence how the game is viewed and played today. 

6.  Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Arnold Palmer.  I place golf in the same category as football and hockey with regards to my personal interest.  However, Woods and Nicklaus are the top names in golf, even today.  They are the only reason I have any interest in watching golf or playing a round on my Wii gaming system.  Sports fan can argue that aside from Jackie Robinson, these 3 men have had more impact on a sport than any other athletes in history.

7.  Carl Lewis.  The best and truest athletes, even today are olympic athletes.  And no disrespect to Michael Phelps, but Carl Lewis still has a more cache and popularity for his olympic feats than anyone else in olympic history.  People today compete in track and field because of Lewis.  You rarely hear any other current names mentioned, unless drugs are involved.

8.  Harrison Ford and Gene Hackman.  These 2 actors have appeared in some of my favorite all time movies.  I will be so overjoyed if I was to meet both of these men.  To be able to meet or acquiring an autograph from them would add so much sentimental value to my collection.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Anniversary presents, that diamond in the rough.

As I was recently searching for autograph merchandise on different websites, I came across one site in which they were selling a number of different commemorative baseballs for 2012.  The 100 year Fenway ball was number listed first as was the 2012 All star game ball.  Then as I looked down the page I noticed balls that are being used in various other stadiums to commemorate other anniversaries. 

The list of anniversary balls are as follows:
1.  New York Mets - 50th Anniversary of Mets franchise
2.  LA Dodgers - 50th Anniversary of Dodger Stadium
3.  Baltimore Orioles - 20th Anniversary of Camden Yards
4.  Houston Astros - 50th Anniversary of Astros franchise

Official 2012 LA Dodger Stadium 50th Anniversary Rawlings Baseball
Dodger Stadium 50th anniversary ball.

Official 2012 Houston Astros 50th Anniversary Baseball
Houston Astro 50th Anniversary Ball

These items will provide great opportunities to add some unique collectible items to your collection.  For instance, having a famous Dodger such as Sandy Koufax (He will be the most challenging) or Tommy Lasorda autograph the Dodger Stadium ball will be extremely valuable, especially with a unique inscription such as years active with the team.

Other player ideas include, Nolan Ryan and Craig Biggio for the Houston Astros.  Cal Ripken or Eddie Murray for the Baltimore Orioles, and Tom Seaver or Mookie Wilson for the New York Mets.  Or for the die hard fan, an autograph of your favorite players, that might not be a hall of famer will add so much more to that sentimental collection.

To purchase these balls you can check the individual team websites, or  Prices on the creative sports website will come in at $20 a ball, and the more you order the cheaper they are.  Individual team websites will price these items at $30 and up per ball.  And as I look at it, this is truly a great diamond in the rough to give as an anniversary present.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Will Middlebrooks, Jarrod Saltalamacchia public Appearance

To date, 39 different people have appeared in a game for the Boston Red Sox this season.  Due to the host of injuries, a top Sox prospect (Will Middlebrooks) has had an opportunity to play and shine, quickly becoming a fan favorite.  Additionally, after a full year in a Sox uniform, Saltalamacchia has consistently raised his performance both offensively and behind the plate.  Both have become mainstays in the starting line up and are 2 bright spots in this early part of a frustrating season.

Will Middlebrooks at bat

As I consistenly preach, when you have the opportunity to meet a young rising star, take advantage of it.  The opportunity to meet these 2 budding stars will come upon us.  New England Picture Company and Sure Shot Promotions will be hosting a public appearance for Will Middlebrooks, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia on  June 23rd, 2012.

File:Jarrod Saltalamacchia 2011.jpg
Jarrod Saltalamacchia warming up.

Pricing for this event is fantastic.  You can purchase individual tickets at $39 for any item or purchase a super ticket which is only $59 for both players.  I guarantee by this time next year, a Will Middlebrooks autograph will cost $65 or more and if Jarrod continues his consistent good play, he will also be above $65 at this time next year.  So, take advantage now, of this great offer.

Information for this event is below:

Monday, April 30, 2012

Celebrating 100 Years at Fenway

Unless you're living under a rock in Boston, it's hard not to notice the Red Sox are aggressively and actively celebrating the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park.  It is the oldest active major sporting venue in the U.S. and no location or venue has seen more sports, concerts, and speeches combined in one venue over the past century. 

Thanks to this celebration, I have been regularly thinking of some ideas for collecting autographs from some Red Sox greats on 100 year items.  There are many, many ideas out there, all of which are good.  Some are elaborate and some very simple.  Here are some thoughts:

This year, MLB created a special ball to be used at Fenway for all home games.  This ball has a special 100 year logo on the side, that replaced the normal MLB logo ball.  This ball is perfect for autographs, and I would recommend having Red Sox hall of famers sign this ball under the logo with the years in a Red Sox uniform noted under their name.  The year inscription can be added for a minimal fee at public signings.  The balls are very expensive at Fenway ($40) each.  I would recommend purchasing them online for $20-$25 or purchase them in person at card/collector/autograph shows for about $20 each.  This will be a limited, one year item only, so purchase them now.

The 100 year ball used at Fenway this season.

Another idea is the 100 year mini truck.  Again these are very expensive at Fenway ($30), but you can find these at places like Modell's and Sports Authority for $16.99.  Perfect for about 8-10 autographs of your Red Sox favorites.  These trucks are also available in limited quantities.

Limited edition toy truck.

One neat idea I saw at Fenway, is the 100 year commemorative bat.  There are two sizes in a variety of colors.  The mini bat is $35 and the full size is $100.  What fun about these bats is that you can have a personal name, date or experience engraved onto the bat.  Then you can have them autographed by anyone you want.  I have done this for family and friends and it is truly a great keepsake.

100 year mini bat autographed by Mike Aviles, David Ortiz, Cody Ross and Franklin Morales

Lastly, next time you are at Fenway, take a photo of the field, green monster, maybe a part of the ballpark that is recognizable.  Make that photo into an 8x10 or 16x20 photo and have players autograph it.  This is a great personal keepsake that is your own, and it definitely will have more meaning with your own personal memory of it vs. a generic baseball or toy truck.
My personal photo of the green monster from 2001, not with 10 autographs.  Notice the years under the player names.

Have fun celebrating the 100th anniversary.  It is a great time to be a fan of Fenway.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Have you ever met a knuckleball pitcher????

Tim Wakefield Autographed baseball

New England Picture Company and Sure Shot Promtions are providing another great opportunity for New England Sports fans.  They are hosting a RARE public autograph signing with 2x World Series Champion and former Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield.

The pricing on this event is FANTASTIC.  They have rolled back the prices to the 2007 price point for Jason, as he is only $49 for basic/regular items such as small photos and baseballs.  The price is only $69 for the premium items such as bats, jerseys, game used merchandise and bobbleheads.  If you choose to add a personalization/inscription the charge is $25 extra.

The date is on the evening of Tuesday June 5th.  For more information please check or

Information on time and place is below.  Hope to you see you there.

The Captain is coming, The Captain is coming, Jason Varitek Appearance

Jason Varitek Autographed Baseball

New England Picture Company and Sure Shot Promtions are providing another great opportunity for New England Sports fans.  They are hosting a RARE public autograph signing with 2x World Series Champion and former Red Sox captain Jason Varitek.

The pricing on this event is FANTASTIC.  They have rolled back the prices to the 2007 price point for Jason, as he is only $69 for basic/regular items such as small photos and baseballs.  The price is only $89 for the premium items such as bats, jerseys, game used merchandise and bobbleheads.  If you choose to add a personalization/inscription the charge is $25 extra.

The date is on the evening of Tuesday May 22nd.  For more information please check

Information on location and time is below.  We hope to see you there.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Come and Meet Red Sox Prospect Jose Iglesias

New England Picture company and Sure shot promotions are offering Red Sox fans a great opportunity to meet the organization's top shortstop prospect.  The hype around Jose Iglesias is at a high as the baseball season is starting.  Fans are split as to whether he should've made the major league roster to start the 2012 season.  Nobody seems to question his glove, but this 22 year old needs a little more time to develop his hitting skills.  Regardless of his current status, Jose will become a star for the Sox. 

Jose Iglesias Autographed Ball

So if you are a follower of my blog, you know I can't preach enough to take advantage of meeting these young stars, while they are still young.  I guarantee you his price will increase and availability will diminish over the next few years.  He is worth taking a chance on now, in terms of getting a reasonably priced autograph.  His value will appreciate over time.

His pricing is great.  $29 for regular items, $39 for premium and equipment, $15 for inscriptions.
He will be appearing at the New England Picture South Shore plaza location on Saturday April 21.
For more information please check or

Friday, April 6, 2012

Keep it simple, collect in small groups

Every April the major league baseball season starts anew.  Fans are excited, it's the first sign of the warm weather season, and it's time to hope that your team will be playing in October.  Another fascinating aspect to the beginning of the season is to watch how all the new managers and players will perform in their respective cities.  About 20% of rosters have changed, and everyone both inside and outside an organization are anxious to see what will happen on the field. 

With such a high turnover, it's hard to collect team autographs, either on one item or individual items. While it's not impossible to collect all signatures on a team, it is a challenge.  So to counter this overwhelming task I suggest you collect in small groups or by position.  I have had far more success just collecting by positions, ie. the catcher's, or relief pitchers, position players, etc...  Follow the old saying called KISS, Keep it simple Stupid. 

Autographed baseballs from the 2012 5 Red Sox Starting pitchers.  Clay Buchholz, Josh Beckett, Daniel Bard, Jon Lester, Felix Doubront.