Do Hand-Written Letters Get More Autographs?

Typed Letters Don’t
Make Him Smile!

Collectors know that “tastes great” or “less filling” isn’t the only debate these days.

After the Sunday post, I fielded a reader question:

Do you write or type your letters?

This is an on-going discussion on the forum. Speed for typing.

Sincerity for hand-written.

I’ve chosen typed for another reason. Legibility.

I’m asking specific questions. If a retiree can’t read my handwriting, then I’m doomed.

Only once did I alter my game plan. That’s when I contacted former Mets pitcher Larry Miller. Thanks to collector pal Rich Hanson, he tipped me off that Miller had replied how he appreciated a collector who took the time to write by hand.

I think some collectors worry that a player might suspect a form letter if its printed from a computer. I differ on that concern. I do address envelopes by hand. (Businesses TYPE envelopes. Bills or junk-mail solicitations come in typed envelopes.) Once I’ve convinced someone to open my letter, that’s a major victory. Then, I hope my personal appeal makes my case, even without my iffy penmanship.

I believe that content matters most. If you’ve researched someone’s career (or can tell about seeing him in a specific game) you’ll make your point. You’re being personal and easy on the eyes.

What do you say, readers? Do hand-written or typed letters work best for you? Ever field complaints from signers?

Tomorrow: a 1940s Brooklyn Dodger shares the nickname Leo Durocher gave him.

4 thoughts on “Do Hand-Written Letters Get More Autographs?”

  1. I always hand write my letters. I’ve heard debate for both sides. It’s just something I prefer to do. My typing skills are worse than my writing skills. I understand the part about poor penmanship, but for me it just seems a more personal touch by writing. To each their own.

  2. I always go hand-written and try to put in a tidbit about his career, a memory I have of him, or specific questions I have. A few years back, I wrote to Rizzuto (while he was charging a fee) and included a check for the signed card. I also wrote about how I watched games he annoucned with my grandma, and how she loved when he talked abotu Italian food. I also told him she makes the best ravioli. Well, Mr Rizzuto signed my card, send a small signed photo and wrotea nice note on it, saying he “would love some ravioli.” And he also returned my check and wrote, “No Charge. – Scooter #10”.


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