Mind-Melding With Future Seattle Mariners: Insights From An Appalachian League Clubhouse Manager

This is a baseball first for me.

My friend. On his own baseball card!

Lynn “Chipper” Cripps is the real thing. He deserves a real card.

The clubhouse manager told his Facebook universe about his Pulaski M’s, Seattle’s Rookie League affiliate. On Tuesday, he shared news that the Choice minor league team set had arrived.

Plus, he noted that he started getting autograph requests himself. “Gotta laugh,” he added.

I asked what he saw from the young players surrounding him. His response:

“The guys were super excited as l was to receive our first batch of ball cards. There were card collectors and autograph seekers at our stadium the first day the Appalachian League cards came out. It’s a blessing to to have a picture of yourself on a ball card, kind of an awestruck type moment. Most of the guys are first-year players, so they were super pumped. I have probably signed about a dozen ball cards so far for people who have came to our home games. Since the cards just came out the other day, lm sure the actual fan mail card/autograph hounds will be sending them via mail shortly. Yes plenty of Sharpie pens around here, pal. The biggest thing for fans to remember is be patient and respectful when seeking an autographed card from a player or staff member.”

Lynn reminds every one of his friends with mere-mortal occupations that he loves his job. However, he’s mentioned that his life as a “clubbie” can feature 17-hour days. That’s right. He’s logged hours of 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. during homestands. Therefore, getting fan mail to players might be just one umpteen daily duties he tackles.

Therefore, especially when writing to youngsters in the low minors, realize that teams will do the best they can getting letters to players. That’s the patience he hints at. And, when you’re deciding if you just want player autographs, realize that the clubhouse manager loves baseball just as much as anyone in that starting lineup. Unsung heroes are worth collecting, too.

Thank you, Chipper!


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