Thanking one special person who makes my baseball letters hobby happen

Happy birthday, dear Diana! By Steve Jurvetson [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
Happy birthday, dear Diana! Thanks for being you. Photo by Steve Jurvetson [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

My wife Diana has a birthday today.

No baseball letters today. Just a reminder to all of you.

There has to be a supportive person or more in your hobby lives, too. Let them know that you’re grateful. Whether those allies supply advice, encouragement or simply offer you time, these hobby teammates matter. Thank them often.



Chipper Jones faces autograph resentment

From 2009, in San Diego. By Djh57 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
From 2009, in San Diego. By Djh57 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

I’m still puzzling over the Twitter mud-wrestling that co-starred Chipper Jones.

I’m sorry someone got slighted for an autograph. Especially a kid.

However, I’m hoping more of us say thanks more often. Even if I don’t get my question answered and letter returned, I don’t want to stink up anyone else’s chances at success.

Bob Bailey and the spirit of Tug McGraw unite!

“Ya gotta believe”

— Tug McGraw

(and Brian Salgado?)

The latter is a collector who defied the odds and received (I should say EARNED) an impressive TTM response recently. Bob Bailey signed.

BaileyBob(Cue the standing ovation, please!)

If you can’t race to to see how many recorded autograph successes there are for Bailey in the last decade, know that I beat you.

The answer is less than one. That’s right. A zero signer.

Yep. Brian tried, despite the odds. 

Of course, he did something special. He researched Bailey’s career, noting that the former slugger was the last-ever manager of the Hawaii Islanders minor league team in 1987. Then, he asked what the job was like.

(Courtesy of Brian Salgado)
(Courtesy of Brian Salgado)

Brian has specialized in Hawaii baseball history. This wasn’t a new novelty attempt to get a tough autograph.

Speaking of Hawaii, know that the ship of opportunity has sailed regarding a letter asking Mr. Bailey about the Islanders team. The man hit 189 homers in 17 years. He’ll know the difference between one sincere collector and copycats.

However, find possibility in the Bob Bailey story Brian shared. Never say never for a tough signer. Of course, risking any card or collectible to get signed is a high-stakes gamble (just like sending cash in the mail for an autograph).

Asking a question about someone’s life and career is different. Aside from paper and postage, asking is free.

That’s the promise of Baseball By The Letters.


A fond farewell to Skeeter Kell

KellSkeeterEverett “Skeeter” Kell is gone at age 85. Another alum from the Philadelphia Athletics has departed.

Previously, Skeeter wrote this moving letter about his Hall of Fame brother:

Bobby Winkles shared this memory of the Kell brothers.

Judge not on stats alone. Great storytellers remain. Here for a limited time only.



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