30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Friday, April 1, 2016

This Ain't No Joke

Do you know what Paul Molitor, Goose Gossage, Dennis Eckersley, Andre Dawson, Jim Palmer, Orlando Cepeda, Rollie Fingers, Whitey Hertzog, Gaylord Perry, Bruce Sutter, Jim Rice, Tony Perez, and Tony La Russa all have in common?

They're all enshrined in Cooperstown and if you head over to COMC, you can pick up any of their autographs for $10 or less.  On the other hand, you can be like me and spend ten of your hard earned dollars on an autograph of a career .215 hitter:

Now before you start calling me the "April Fool", give me a chance to defend myself.  I've been a fan of baseball longer than just about everything else in my life.  In fact... off the top of my head... I can only think of three things (outside of people) that I've liked longer than baseball: foodmusic, and television.

With that fanfare comes my passion for collecting baseball cards.  I spend most of my "hobby" budget on my player and team collections, but every now and then I will focus on other things.  This time it was owning a piece of baseball history.

A few weeks ago, a caller on the radio mentioned the Mendoza Line, which made me wonder if Mario Mendoza has a certified autograph.  As luck would have it... he does.  In 2003, Topps included him in their Archives Fan Favorites autograph set and there happened to be a couple listed on eBay.  A few bids later, ten dollars poorer, and I was the proud owner of an on-card autograph of the Mendoza Line namesake.

And I have absolutely no regrets either.  Kinda makes you wonder why I'll spend so much money for the signature of a below average hitter... while refusing to pay less than a buck to complete a set (my 1984 Donruss Mickey Mantle puzzle) that I've been building for the past few years.  Honestly... sometimes I don't even understand myself.

Happy April Fools' Day and sayonara!


  1. A player of significance is worth ten bucks, I'd say. The man behind the Mendoza Line has carved out a unique place in baseball history and, after all, we all know his name. I'd say it's totally worth the dinero.

  2. The collector wants what the collector wants. Sometimes that's all there is to it.

  3. Man steals to be had. Molitor I thought would be more at least.

    1. Molitor was a really good in-person signer as a player. Maybe that helps drive his price down?

  4. Bloody sweet card, I would have loved to pull this card.

  5. I would much rather have a Mario Mendoza autograph than a Bruce Sutter autograph.

  6. I love how the back of the card lauds Mendoza for managing to stay above his own line during the 1980 season... Classic!

  7. tony b. - glad to know there's at least one other collector out there that understand me.

    section 36 - you're absolutely correct. might need to use your quote in a future post.

    sport card collectors - i was surprised by that as well. him and tony larussa.

    tony l. - i'm wondering if card companies in general has started to saturate the hobby and supply is starting to exceed demand.

    brady - thanks buddy. hope to see you at tristar this weekend

    nick - it's close for me... but then again sutter was one of my favorite closers in the 80's (reminded me of santa claus)

    anthony - gotta wonder if mendoza ever took to the time to read the back of his own card