Move over, Cal ‘Ironman’ Ripken! Cubs organist Gary Pressy mounts his own consecutive game streak

Posted August 4th, 2016 by Tom Owens and filed in Gary Pressy, Wrigley Field

Cubs organistGary Pressy is a musical all-star for the Cubs.

After all, who could sing and accompany himself for Take Me Out to the Ballgame?

He sent a kind response to my letter back in 2011.

I was thrilled to see Pressy get national attention for performing his 2,400 consecutive game at Wrigley Field. 

To the press, I’d say:

  1. Thank you.
  2. What took you so long?

Wrigley Field frowns on autograph collectors

Posted April 20th, 2015 by Tom Owens and filed in Atlanta Braves, Ron Santo, Wrigley Field
The new sign should read: "Don't Go Where Cubs Fans Have Gone Before." Michael Barera [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, CC BY-SA 3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

The new sign should read: “Don’t Go Where Cubs Fans Have Gone Before.” Michael Barera [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, CC BY-SA 3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

Everything is connected.

Wrigley Field’s remodel includes an anti-autograph shield keeping players segregated from signature-seeking fans outside the ballpark.

Re-read the Ron Santo biography A Perfect 10. His sons discussed how he’d sign everywhere, stopping the car along the route home.

The Atlanta Braves spring training address confounds collectors. Mail gets rejected, RTS, without rhyme nor reason.

Teams are redefining us. Not in a good way. Speak up for yourself, and your hobby, every chance you get. 



Former Chicago Cubs Pitcher Ed Mayer Reminds Us Why Autographs Matter

Posted August 4th, 2014 by Tom Owens and filed in 1958 Topps, Brian Salgado, Chicago Cubs, Ed Mayer, Noah Salgado, Wrigley Field
Photo courtesy Brian Salgado
Many thanks to collector Brian Salgado for this great update:
“I wrote to Mayer asking for a signature on his 1958 Topps card because he threw out the first pitch at my four-month-old son’s first game at Wrigley Field. Not only did he sign the card, but he sent the letter pictured in the attachment. 
It reads:
“Hi Brian:
“Thank you for the nice letter. I’m glad that your family enjoyed the game and Noah was a winner! 
“Say hi to Noah’s grandparents for me. Real fans like you make the game of baseball special and I am proud to have played ball for the Cubs. 
“I have a nice article on the internet. Google search Eddie Mayer/Cub and pop on the entry that says ‘Almanac.’
“I hope you enjoy it.
“Best Wishes,
Ed Mayer”
“This is unofficially my son’s first autograph through the mail and his first letter from a former player. He’s off to a good start, I’d say! “
When I wrote about Ed Mayer back in 2010, sharing his letter, I learned he was a former teacher, too.
I love the lesson the ex-hurler delivers, a lesson for all of us.
Brian’s example shows that a personal letter matters. You won’t always get such a class response as what Mr. Mayer sent. However, you’ll land the former player’s major league effort when you share of yourself.
Additionally, the Ed Mayer victory for Brian unlocks the secret of the hobby.
The thrill won’t come from a price guide. Sharing the stories behind the signatures: that truly matters.