|I spotted this classic ad at
When you write to a player, current or retired, consider the guy’s whole career.
Quite often, I get reader questions. “What do I ask someone in a letter?”
My traditional answers are:
1. Make it personal
2. Make it specific
Here’s a #3. Consider being unique.
Even if someone had his “cup of coffee” with a pennant winner, I’m sure other fans and collectors have noted the novelty of this.
Have you looked at this person’s minor league stats?
A so-so major leaguer could have been a AAA star. One of those AAAA players, better than any of the competition.
It’s helped me to reference Iowa minor leaguers. I’ve seen my share of minor league games here. When the world was agog over Cubs rookie Mark Prior, I chose to write him about his two dazzling outings with the Iowa Cubs. I saw the latter, watching Chicago general manager Jim Hendry from his skybox. After each strikeout, the GM’s eyes grew bigger and his smile wider. I told him about seeing the visiting team lined up at the dugout railing, watching not as rivals, but as fans.
Yes, I got a great response in record time.
Sure, anyone would trade time in the majors for the minors. But knowing that one day in the bigs is only part of someone’s story. That’s the kind of letter I’d like receiving.