Jim Roland, Perfect Pitcher

Left-hander Jim Roland, a 10-year hurler for the Twins, Athletics, Yankees and Rangers, died at age 67 this month.

To most fans, Roland didn’t have Hall of Fame stats. Don’t tell that to autograph collectors.

According to www.sportscollectors.net, Roland was perfect.

Collectors log their through-the-mail attempts. The hobby scorecard read:

68 attempts
68 successes

Roland is just one of some two dozen baseball deaths in 2010. In the last four weeks, I’ve seen the loss of Frank Bertaina and Jim Bibby, two more hurlers from my childhood who were decent signers.

Baseball has no time clock. Baseball autograph collecting does. Whether you request a signature, ask a question, or say thanks for a memory, don’t wait. Time doesn’t.

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