My Hometown Collection - New Added 2/20

dlee6124

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In addition to my 89 Cubs collection, I've started a collection of players who were born in my hometown of Mobile, Alabama or have ties to this area in some way. Some live here now, some played for the University of South Alabama, or some played for our AA team the BayBears. There is a lot of baseball history here. In fact, there are more players in the Hall of Fame born in Mobile than in any other city. (Hank Aaron, Willie McCovey, Billy Williams, Ozzie Smith, Satchel Paige)

Hank Aaron is probably the most famous player from here. Our AA stadium bears his name and his childhood home has been moved next to the stadium as a museum. He attended the opening of the museum 2 years ago, but he did not sign anything for anybody. I got his signature when I was a kid at a book signing on the inside of his book. That was the only thing he would sign. I'm hoping to add a ball to my collection, but I think he has an exclusive deal with Steiner and their fees are outrageous.



Hank Aaron Stadium is loacted on Bolling Brothers Blvd. The Bolling brothers played in the 50's and 60's. They both still live here. I sent cards out to both Frank and Milt Bolling and got them back within a few days. I asked Frank if I could send hima ball to sign and he said that would be fine. He won the Gold Glove in 1958, so I sent a GG ball and he inscribed it as requested.




Ozzie Smith was born here, but didn't live here long. We still claim him though. He came to town a couple of years ago for the opening of the Hank Aaron Museum. I got his signature on a ROMLB. He's a very nice guy.


Bernie Carbo lives right outside Mobile in Thedore, Alabama. He lives about a mile away from my mother in law. He runs an organization called Diamond Club Ministry. I found an email address for him on the site and I emailed him and asked if I could send him a ball to sign. He said that would be fine. He signed a ROMLB for me as well as a card I sent.



Jon Lieber played at the University of South Alabama. He also makes his home here. A guy that I work with is good friends with him so a couple of months ago, I asked if he would take him a ball to sign for me. He signed the ROMLB and inscribed it with "20 wins 2001" since I am a Cubs fan and that was by far his best season. He also signed an 8X10 for me that I guess he just had lying around. It's not in the best of shape.



Lance Johnson also played at South Alabama and lives about 3 miles from me. I sent 2 cards to him on 1/26/12 and received both back signed on 3/1/12. both are inscribed with "1 Dog" The 89 Fleer in the bottom of the picture was signed IP at a South Alabama alumni game when I was a kid. Notice that it's signed with a "#1"


Dave Stapleton played at South Alabama and lives across the bay from Mobile in Fairhope, Alabama. His name comes up a lot in conversations about the 86 World Series. He was used as a late inning defensive replacement at 1st base a good bit in the postseason. That was not the case in Game 6 and we all know how that turned out. I obtained this signature on an 87 Topps at the same alumni game that I got the Lance Johnson signature.


Jim Mason was born in Mobile and attended the same high school that I went to. His daughter was in my graduating class. He played for several teams in the 70's. He hit a home run in his only postseason plate appearance in the 1976 World Series as a member of the Yankees. I sent him a card on 1/18/12 and I received it back signed on 1/24/12.


Terry Adams was born in Mobile and still lives right outside Mobile in Semmes, Alabama. He was the Alabama high school player of the year in 1991. He started out with the Cubs and played for several more teams before retiring in 2006. I sent 2 cards to him on 1/26/12 and received both back signed on 3/8/12.


Juan Pierre was born here nad played at South Alabama. He was a member of the 2003 Marlins team that beat my Cubs and went on to win the World Series. I sent him a 2010 Topps to the Phillies ST address on 2/21/12 and received it back signed on 3/1/12.


Turner Ward was not born here, but he played high school ball here and played at South Alabama. He is currently the manager for our AA team the BayBears. I obtained his signature IP at a game last season. I have since found more cards of him and plan to get them signed this season.


Adam Lind played at South Alabama. I got this certified auto out of a 2007 SP Authentics pack.


The rest of the players I'm listing are current or former BayBears:

Paul Goldschmidt had a monster year last year. He was named USA Today's minor league player of the year. He looked pretty good for the DBacks at the end of the year too. I sent this 2010 Topps to the Dbacks ST address on 2/22/12 and received it back signed on 3/3/12.


Jarrod Parker is a former 1st round pick and made 1 start for the Dbacks at the end of the year and then was added to the postseason roster. He was part of the Trevor Cahill trade and should be on Oakland's roster this year. I got this 2010 topps Pro Debut card signed IP at a game last season.


Colin Cowgill also played in Arizona last year and was traded to Oakland in the Cahill deal. I sent this 2010 Topps Pro Debut card to the A's ST address on 2/22/12 and received it back on 3/12/12.


A.J. Pollock is a solid prospect. I got this IP at a game last season.


Ryan Wheeler. IP at a game last season.


Alan Zinter was the BayBears hitting coach last season. I got this 90 Score signed IP at a game last year. The new hitting coach is former Pirate and Dback Jay Bell. I've got several cards I'd like to get him to sign for me.
 
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dlee6124

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Today I added 2 more to my collection.
David Freese played one year at South Alabama after junior college and then he got drafted. He was here a few weeks ago for a banquet at South Alabama. Tickets sold out quick and I didn't get one. A buddy of mine from work was at my house recently and saw my collection of autographs. He plays cards with a guy who played on the team with Freese and is still pretty good friends with him. He got him to get this ball for me. It's not an ROMLB. It's some kind of Wilson ball, but it is leather similar to the Rawlings, so hopefully it won't bleed. I guess you can't be picky when someone does a favor for you.


Pete Coachman is another South Alabama alum. I sent this to his home address on 2/22/12 and received it back today. Not the best looking signature. Must have used a fat marker.
 
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dlee6124

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I got this in the mail today. Got it off ebay for a decent price. Bob Feller served as Gun Captain on the U.S.S. Alabama during WWII. The ship now sits in Mobile Bay and is the centerpiece of Battleship Memorial Park. Apparently, Mr. Feller visited many times for reunions with the crew. I never knew this until after he passed. The last time he was here was a few months before he passed. He was here in April 2010 for the openeing of the Hank Aaron Museum. I didn't get a chance to get his signature there. He said he was going to the Battleship the next day. I had to work, but my wife had already planned to take my son there that day. I gave her a ball to put in her purse with the hopes she would see him there, but that didn't happen. So long story short, I ended up having to buy this ball on ebay to add to the collection. The ball has inscriptions "HOF 62" and "3 No Hitters."
 

montserratplay

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I love the pictures and I love that you care so much about players who have a connection with the area you care about. My only real "connection" is that Jason Grilli went to my high school a few years earlier than I did.
 

dlee6124

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Got this one last week. Hall of famer Willie McCovey who was born in Mobile. Obtained this through a private signing at the Bob Feller Museum.

Now all I need is Billy Williams and I'll have all the living Hall of Famers from Mobile. Hopefully I'll be able to add it soon.
 

dlee6124

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Got this back on Friday. Luis Gonzalez played here at South Alabama and Jay Bell is the new hitting coach for our AA team. I found this image online, saved it to my memory card and took it to Wal Mart to print it. It turned out pretty good. I got Jay Bell to sign it on opening night 4/10/12 and mailed it to Gonzo the next day. Received it back signed on Friday 4/27/12. I also sent Gonzo a card from when he played for the Cubs and he signed that too.

 

dlee6124

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Amos Otis is another player who was born in Mobile. I sent this out on 4/13/12 and received it back on 5/16/12. Sent to home address with $5 fee because I was told that's what he charged. I also asked if he would sign a ball if I sent it. I received the card back signed with my $5. Note said "no charge for hometown" He also told me I could send a ball. I'm going to send a Gold Glove ball since he was a 3 time winner. I'll post a pic when I get it back.
 

dlee6124

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Sent Gold Glove ball to Amos Otis on 5/24/12 and received it back signed on 5/31/12. I can't believe it came back that fast. He also inscribed it with "3X Gold Glove"



Got this one off ebay a few weeka ago. Pete Milne was born in Mobile in 1925 and played parts of 3 seasons for the Giants from 48-50. He had 1 career home run which was a stand up inside the park grand slam past a diving Duke Snider. He owned a car dealership here in Mobile after his playing days were over. He passed away in 1999.
 

dlee6124

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I haven't posted any of the BayBear signatures that I've gotten this year so here we go:

Got BayBears hitting coach Jay Bell on a Gold Glove ball and got three cards signed.



Got 4 cards signed by BayBears manager Turner Ward.


Matt Davidson


Marc Krauss


Alfredo Marte. He's having a great year and will be representing The D'Backs in the Futures game.


David Nick


Eric Smith


Rossmel Perez. A guy gave this card to my 7 year old son and told him he should get it signed. My son wanted to know what number the guy was so I told him. I gave him a sharpie and he watched for him like a hawk. He got it signed and told me " Dad, this is my card.. not yours" It is his first autographed card. He was excited. He also got Jay Bell to sign a ball that he got from a guy in the bullpen.


And even though he was only a BayBear for 2 games for a rehab assignment, I'm including Stephen Drew. He was pretty reluctant to sign. He said he was in a hurry and was only going to sign a couple. I had one card and gave another to my son. We got both of them signed. Then this evening, my wife is on Facebook and says " hey, your picture's on the BayBears Facebook page." So, there's me and my son both wearing blue shirts.

 

dlee6124

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Today I got back the ball I sent to Lance Johnson on 5/19. Thle only All Star game he played in was in 1996 when he played for the Mets. He went 3-4 with a SB and a R. I sent an ASG ball from 96 for him to sign.

 
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