Chuck Essegian Proves Good Letters Matter

Posted July 3rd, 2010 by Tom Owens and filed in Chuck Essegian

I may call former Dodger Chuck Essegian my hobby “professor.”

Months ago, I wrote to him with my three questions relating specifically to HIS career. Each question was answered in “Password” fashion (remember that cool TV game show?), done in less than one sentence.

However, he sent me a passing grade! Yes, Prof. Essegian proved I’m on the right track:

“Tom —

May you stay warm and young.

Chuck Essegian”


I had concluded my letter with:

“Thank you for your time. My ‘career’ ended in Little League, but those baseball memories keep me warm in the winter and young year-round.”


I DO NOT write to former players saying, “I’m a blogger who’ll publish your words. Want to be famous again? Send me your best quote!” I am sharing what one ordinary fan and collector can do with a heart-felt letter. No, you won’t connect every time. However, a batting average counts only successes. Focus on your hits, not your misses, for a great hobby career.

Readers: do you have examples of inscriptions or personalizations proving the autograph signer connected with your letter? Please, share!

7 Responses to “Chuck Essegian Proves Good Letters Matter”

  1. ND says:

    I got a similar response from Essegian when I wrote him about playing with Satchel Paige and Luke Easter when he was in AAA. All one sentence answers.

  2. Tom Owens says:

    Thanks, ND. It feels good to know it’s not just me. Chuck’s willingness to reply is nice. However, “Strange” seems a mystical “why bother?” reply to “What was it like playing – and hitting – in the LA Coliseum?”

  3. DMBfan says:

    My favorite “connection” of all-time was with Cal Ripken Sr. I grew up a great fan of Cal Jr. I wrote to Cal Sr. to get his autograph on a 1988 Topps card and included the 1988 Donruss card picturing Sr with Jr and Billy. I asked Sr. to keep the card as “I know you are very proud of your sons’ accomplishments as Major League players and young men.” He returned the 1988 Topps signed along with the 1988 Donruss signed and had Cal Jr and Billy sign it as well. It is my favorite piece in my collection that I have had for over 20 years.

  4. Tom Owens says:

    Thanks for sharing, DMBfan! A good player makes every swing count. You’ve made every WORD count. Baseball celebs are still people. There’s nothing more powerful than a personal appeal. Well done!

  5. Hey Tom, I just got a great and thorough response from Mr. Essegian today. I’ll be posting it soon. He definitely gave me more than one-sentence responses! Seems like a good guy.

  6. Glen Pierce says:

    I’m surprised that CE did not write more. I saw a Dodger video where he sat at a table and seemed talkative to the fans. I think he is terrific. I liked his career. He was always on my wiffle ball team. How About That!! I liked his 1959 red BBall card. Tell him we want to hear more. EG if it was a struggle to get noticed or what. I liked his all around ability. Glen Pierce

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