Letters to players

Jaybo374

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I'm fairly new to writing letters to players requesting autographs from former ballplayers. What do you say in the letter typically? I end up writing about how I've been a lifelong fan and try to make an interesting connection between my childhood and the player.

I'm running at under a 50% success rate and I'm looking for ways to improve this.

Thanks,

Jay
 

Camsue

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Usually I put what you had stated. Been a lifelong fan and include a memory you have of one of their greatest moments in their career. I understand I hit a low at about 25%coming back I even made contact with an ex oriole through email ask if we would sign a ball and photos spent the money to get the items included a copy of our email with my letter and it's been almost 18 months and nothing very aggravating at times. Maybe we can start a more up to date success list on the bench
 

mrmopar

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I have only sent a handful in my life, but I have tried to go after players I know to be easier successes. I guess your success rate depends on who you are chasing, what address source you use (how accurate is it?) and probably to a much smaller extent, your approach (letter). I would imagine the busier players hardly even read the letters. I would assume older players who might get a few requests each month may have more interest in reading the content. I would keep them relatively short either way (a couple sentences at most, addressed to Mr or Sir and a thank you at the end and always with a SASE), unless there is a good change you know the player will appreciate and read a longer letter.
 

KCLJ520

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Rule #1: Don't type your letter.

Rule #2: See Rule #1!!!

I have had success sending letters with my own return address label, looks more like personal correspondence.

Check interviews with various celebrities, or "where are they now" type articles to find where someone is working. A lot of times if someone gets a request at work or via venue, they are more likely to sign, and you will be more likely to get a real signature rather than sending via agency for movie stars or via team for active players.

Home addresses work ok too, some people will refuse stuff sent to their homes though.

My Dad always used to joke with me saying "Dear _____, you are my favorite ____...." and sending these out in volume, that is about what it gets to be like. I collected TTM from about 1992 on, and just got out of it in 2016. So in 24 years, I have had a lot come back. I have had a lot of people comment on my letter, "Thanks for your kind words" etc. and just as many come back signed with no comments, but I think a sincere, handwritten letter takes you far.

One note: Shirley Temple got a birthday card from us, and she signed a small photo I had enclosed, personalized to my wife and myself. HUGE success, my wife loves her movies (may she rest in peace). I wouldnt overuse the birthday card with photo and SASE, but thought it wouldnt hurt, especially since she was aging and signing less consistently at the time we sent it. Of course this was probably 2008 or thereabouts.

Hope that helps, its a lot of fun to get home and check the mailbox! It was even more fun for me to sell 99% of what I collected over time and go to Europe with my wife twice, so I would say the hobby has paid off!

God Bless,

Kevin
 

dragonslayer913

Legend
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My thing is don't bs them be honest tell them your an autograph collector and only send 1 card some people send 5 and they wonder why there autograph request won't come back I am straight and to the point

Dear Mr XX (HAND WRITTEN DO NOT TYPE IT)
I am an autograph collector and would like to add your personal autograph to my collection-Please take a few moments and sign the
card I have included your autograph will make a nice addition to my collection best of luck in the coming year (if there retired) or best
of luck in the coming season (if there active)

Best,
<<< My personal sig here
David Camp

Also hand write the envelope and SASE
*On the SASE were the return address goes put your address
 

Jaybo374

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456
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My thing is don't bs them be honest tell them your an autograph collector and only send 1 card some people send 5 and they wonder why there autograph request won't come back I am straight and to the point

Dear Mr XX (HAND WRITTEN DO NOT TYPE IT)
I am an autograph collector and would like to add your personal autograph to my collection-Please take a few moments and sign the
card I have included your autograph will make a nice addition to my collection best of luck in the coming year (if there retired) or best
of luck in the coming season (if there active)

Best,
<<< My personal sig here
David Camp

Also hand write the envelope and SASE
*On the SASE were the return address goes put your address
I agree with adding the personal touch of handwriting the letter.

Have you had much success in being direct with them? Since I write to players from my youth, I tend to write about how much I admired them when I was young.
 

dragonslayer913

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I agree with adding the personal touch of handwriting the letter.

Have you had much success in being direct with them? Since I write to players from my youth, I tend to write about how much I admired them when I was young.

When you write a player they pretty much know why your writing when you include a card of them and a SASE..and I've been direct with players for years and years and had great success...some players are quick and you get a turn around in a week my record is 3 days Tommy Herr (but he no longer signs) longest 7 years (Tim Salmon)
 

katester44

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Staff member
I agree with a lot of what is said here. Make the letter positive, been a fan, good luck upcoming, thought your autograph would make a nice addition to my collection, etc.

I have always sent typed notes, never done handwritten - my penmenship is horrible. But I always sign my name. And always handwrite the address you are sending to and your own address on the return envelope.

I try to send 3 at a time - with a line in my note to keep one for themselves or use to send to someone requesting that didn't have a card to send.

There are websites out there that have amazing lists of addresses and the success rate at each one.

Good luck.
 

Jaybo374

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456
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I agree with a lot of what is said here. Make the letter positive, been a fan, good luck upcoming, thought your autograph would make a nice addition to my collection, etc.

I have always sent typed notes, never done handwritten - my penmenship is horrible. But I always sign my name. And always handwrite the address you are sending to and your own address on the return envelope.

I try to send 3 at a time - with a line in my note to keep one for themselves or use to send to someone requesting that didn't have a card to send.


There are websites out there that have amazing lists of addresses and the success rate at each one.

Good luck.
I never thought of doing this. I'll definitely try it in the future. Thanks for the advice.
 

Benson

Pro
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I started typing my letters about 2 years ago and haven't noticed a difference in my success rate. I do however make each letter personalized, the only thing the same from letter to letter is my greeting.

The reason I switched was that I had reached a point where I dreaded writing each letter, it probably saves me 10 minutes per request to type rather than write it out. On a night where I put 4 to 6 requests together that time adds up.
 
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