Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I'm Celebrating, Just Like Craig Tatum

Craig Tatum got the news from Dave Trembley yesterday that he is going to make the first Opening Day roster of his young career. Congrats to him; I hope that he can develop into a viable Major League backup to Wiety and can work towards building confidence with the mostly young pitching staff.

And I'm happy because for the first time since I started my blog a year ago, I averaged one post a day for an entire month. As I mentioned when I was celebrating my blog-iversary last week, I normally average just over 5 posts a week, so posting 31 times in 31 days is an accomplishment for me. I'm not going to fool myself into thinking that I will continue to average a post a day in April, and I have no idea how some bloggers average 2 or more a day. You guys are dedicated! I know that hosting my first contest was the main reason that I posted so often.

With Tatum making the Orioles 25-man roster, it means that Chad Moeller will either have to accept another Minor League assignment and spend some more time with the Tides, or he will ask for his release. I guess that Andy MacPhail is trying to find a spot for him on another team's 25-man, but it seems unlikely at this point. Good luck with whatever your future may hold Chad! You were always a good signer, and that was important to me at least.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Spring Training Contest Updated- It's Almost Ovah!

I have once again updated my spring training contest standings. You can check it out here, or at the top of the blog.

The Rays continue have the best record (18-7) but the Indians, Giants, Braves, Cubs and Padres are still within 2 games and could easily overtake Tampa Bay.

At this point, I am ready to declare that the following teams are officially eliminated: the Pirates, Nationals, Rangers, Reds, White Sox, Mariners, Orioles, Angels, Yankees, A's, and Diamondbacks are all at least 6.5 games back of the Rays with only 6 games to go.

Good luck to all of you that picked a team that can still win it all!

Terry Clark & Mark Lee

I have always grouped these two guys together for multiple reasons, namely that they were both relatively obscure relievers who pitched for the O's during the 1995 season. Also, I have Orioles signed postcards from them, and non-Orioles signed cards. And that pretty much sums up why they've always been grouped together in my mind, so I will continue to group them together on this here blog.

Terry Clark was on the O's for a majority of the '95 season and appeared in 38 games as a reliever, finishing 12 games and compiling one whole save. He went 2-5 with a respectable 3.46 ERA. As you can see on his Orioles post card, he always sported a pretty serious 'stache.

I think that his signature looks like he signs his name "Ty Celail", but I like the way he has a fairly legible signature and the T-y combo in his first name looks pretty damn cool.

This is "one of those cards that list him playing for one team while showing him in another team's uniform" that I really don't care for; he pitched for both the Royals and Astros in 1996 so I guess he did switch teams mid-season at least.
Terry has been a pitching coach in the Indians and Rangers organizations more or less continuously since 2000 and is currently serving in that capacity for Texas' AAA team, the Oklahoma City Redhawks. His son, Matthew, was drafted by the Pirates in the 28th round of the 2007 Amateur Draft, so I guess he is a good coach, or at least a good dad. I had a good dad too, but was never athletic enough to play anywhere about Little League. I'm thinking something like "those who can't write, or at least attempt to".

Mark "Unibrow" Lee appeared in relief in 39 games for the '95 Birds, finishing 7 and also accumulating one save. Hey, there's another similarity between these two! Mark had a better record (2-0) than Terry did, but his ERA was nearly a run and a half higher (4.86). So I don't know exactly what to make of that, but I guess Mark just got lucky with that perfect record.

Also, his nickname isn't Unibrow, but I had to say something. C'mon Mark, take some pride in your appearance on photo day!

This is a great picture, truly amazing, of a pitcher holding a bat like he's never done it before. Now, one must remember that the Brewers were still a member of the American League in the early '90s and with Mark being a reliever and all, he never even had a single at-bat in his time in the Majors. I know that most baseball players are good athletes and I would assume that Mark batted at some point over his career, but it certainly looks like he had forgotten his batting stance. I like to think that the photographer didn't know if Mark was a pitcher or position player and Mark was in no mood to help him out, so WHAMMY, we have this awesome picture.

Mark's signature looks like her signs Mark L__, but I think it's pretty good for a Major Leaguer.

Monday, March 29, 2010

A Sad Month for the Orioles Family

Between February 18 and March 16, 2010 the Orioles lost three former members of the organization as pitchers Bob Chakales (2/18), Frank Bertaina (3/3) and Billy Hoeft (3/18) all passed away. I realize that this post is a little late but sometimes it takes me a little while to find out that any former Orioles have died and then some more time to scan their autographs.

I wrote about Chakales last July, but have never featured Bertaina or Hoeft on the blog. I am lucky to have autographs of Chakales and Hoeft that I obtained through a trade and the Bay, but I unfortunately do not have a Bertaina auto in my collection. I sent him a TTM request last December but I never got it back and am doubtful that he would have signed it.

Bob "the Golden Greek" Chakales was a member of the inaugural 1954 Birds, and was the team's de facto closer. He only has this one Orioles card, and I received it in a trade with a member of a Yahoo autograph group. He had a pretty awesome nickname and was 82 when he died.

Billy Hoeft pitched for the O's for three and a half years from 1959-1962 in the middle of his 15 season MLB career. He went 14-14 with a 3.58 ERA for the Birds, appearing in 127 games, mostly as a reliever. He pitched for 6 teams over his career, but is mostly remembered for his eight seasons with the Tigers at the start of his career. He died in Canadian Lakes, MI at the age of 77.

image from (if you didn't notice that on the picture)

Frank Bertaina had two stints with the Orioles, once at the beginning of his career from 1964-67 and briefly again towards the end of it in 1969. Frank went 4-6 with a 3.07 ERA in 32 games for the O's, and half of his appearances were as a starter. He died at the young age of 65 in Santa Rosa, CA of complications from a heart attack.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Another Spring Training Contest Update

In case you still haven't seen the banner under the name of my blog or haven't checked it lately, the current records of all the teams are here in blue (updated again at least through Saturday morning).


Atlanta Braves (33) Captain Canuck 24-9 16-9
Baltimore Orioles (32) Aaron 20-12, Jeremy 23-9 10-16
Boston Red Sox (33) AdamE 21-12 13-14
Detroit Tigers (35) Grand Cards 19-16 15-10
Florida Marlins (31) Paul W 23-8 13-13
Houston Astros (33) Steve E. 13-20 13-12
Minnesota Twins (31) SpastikMooss 23-8 14-11
New York Mets (34) Slangon 22-12 13-13
New York Yankees (33) Bo 22-11, Drew 25-8 11-14
Philadelphia Phillies (31) KmSals 26-5 12-11
Pittsburgh Pirates (32) Paul 24-7-1 7-17
St. Louis Cardinals (30) Kevin 22-8, madding 14-16 14-11
Tampa Bay Rays (32) RadicalEddie 19-13, BA Benny 22-10 18-7
Toronto Blue Jays (30) mmmrhubarb 21-8-1, The Gooch 23-7 10-11
Washington Nationals (33) Collective Troll 25-8, Mark's Ephemera 16-17 8-18


Arizona Diamondbacks (33) Sean Benton 20-13, TheBrooklynMet 21-12 11-12
Chicago Cubs (35) The Diamond King 23-12 16-9
Chicago White Sox (34) White Sox Cards 24-10 7-13
Cincinnati Reds (32) heavy hitter 19-13, Carl Crawford Cards 22-10 9-11
Cleveland Indians (32) night owl 20-12 16-7
Colorado Rockies (33) phaedrusX 21-12 15-12
Kansas City Royals (31) zman40 21-10 12-11
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (33) Wickedliquids 26-8 9-14
Los Angeles Dodgers (31) Roy 25-6 11-12
Milwaukee Brewers (33) Thorzul 20-13 13-13
Oakland Athletics (33) dan 23-10 11-14
San Diego Padres (32) Rod 20-12 17-10
San Francisco Giants (34) Joe K 22-12 20-10
Seattle Mariners (33) Play at the Plate 20-13, packaddict 19-14 10-16
Texas Rangers (31) Moe 21-10, Spiff 19-12 9-16

The Giants have overtaken the Rays for the best record thus far and are sitting at 19-7. The Rays and Indians aren't far behind, and a few other teams are sitting around 14-9.

The Nationals, Pirates and Rangers are getting close to being eliminated from the best record competition.

Good luck everyone! Almost anyone can still win at this point!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Not My Favorite Player but a HOFer Nonetheless

Reggie Jackson 1976

I will start with a disclaimer that I have never been a fan of Reggie. He always seemed to be too full of himself for my taste. I was just getting in to baseball as Reggie's career was winding down but, since he played for the Yankees, there is plenty of video evidence of him for me to form my opinion. I have also read a bit about him and it certainly sounds like he did not play the game the way that I feel like it should be played. Yes, he was an amazing, HOF caliber talent, but he also liked to remind people of that fact entirely too often.

That being said, Mr. October spent only the '76 season in Baltimore. This was between his years in Oakland and his time with the Yankees. He had a good season at the plate, leading the league in slugging and OPS and finished 16th in MVP voting. One of his seven Sports Illustrated covers features him in an Orioles uniform looking happy enough.

Picture taken from another blog

I know that there are some reasons that Reggie only spent one season in Baltimore. I'm not positive what they are, but I would guess that he didn't get along with the management or some other players. I have no idea why I would go out on a limb with that guess. Maybe because conflict followed Reggie throughout his career.

Even though I'm not a fan of his, I needed his autograph for my collection. There aren't many cards of Reggie in an Orioles uniform, so this 1988 Score card recapping his one season with the Birds is perfect. However, the back of this card only touches on his time with the O's, spending most of its' 5 or so paragraphs talking about Reggie's time with the Yankees. Gee, thanks Score.

It also helps that he is wearing the awesome orange uni in the picture on the card. I found it on the bay for a decent price and jumped at the opportunity. I think that Reggie was the last member of the HOF that I still needed for my O's collection.

If any readers have a reason that I shouldn't dislike Mr. October, please leave a comment and we can discuss from there.

Collective Troll Contest

You can check it out here. It might be the easiest contest ever to enter, all you need to do is follow Bacon's blog and comment on the post with your name. You can manage that, right? Good luck everyone! He's giving away some pretty awesome autographs including a few HOFers.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Unpossible Autograph: Roger Freed

Roger Freed 1970 (died 1996)

Roger played in only 4 games for the Orioles at the end of the 1970 season but was such a highly regarded prospect that the O's were able to trade him to the Phillies for Grant Jackson and two other players in the offseason. He never lived up to the lofty early expectations that were placed on him but did play parts of 8 seasons for 5 different clubs.

He unfortunately died at the young age of 49 due to heart problems in 1996. It's always sad to read about guys that die early. I guess that no one knows what the future has in store for them, but I hope to make it into my 70's at least.

I think that this card would look really good double-signed but Adamson is not a good TTM signer and there aren't any confirmed successes from him since 2008. I do have Adamson's autograph on this exact same card, so maybe I could splice them together. Scissors aren't one of my strong points though; I failed scissors class in elementary school.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wrapping Up the Spring Training Autos

And it only took me a week and a half. Not bad considering I always seem to get behind with things; 10 days isn't half bad for me. Without further delay, here are the final autographs that I got in Spring Training.

Palmer was at both of the O's games that I went to. He was there to throw out the first pitch on Tuesday and looked like he just wanted to shoot the breeze on Monday. Luckily for me, he was in a signing mood too and signed this Crown card and also a ball for me. He included "HOF 90" on the ball without even being prompted.

Pena was the only Ray who signed for me, but since I was camped on the Orioles side of the field, I would say that I got lucky even getting him. Anytime you happen to be in the right place at the right time to get the reigning AL HR champ's autograph seems like a good place to be at.

Luke kept telling people at the game that he would sign as he was leaving the parking lot. I figured that we had all heard that one before so wasn't expecting much. But as Luke was leaving the lot, he pulled over and graciously signed and talked to everyone who was outside the lot. Granted there weren't more than 10 of us at that point but he was with his family and considering the number of players that drove by without acknowledging our existence, it was a nice change. Luke has always seemed like a very cool and down to earth person. I really hope he can stay hot at the plate for a full season this year. LUUUUUKKKEEE.

If you have been reading the blog for a while, you probably already know this, but I like sidewinding pitchers. Which makes Cla a pretty obvious choice to be my favorite reliever. You can't really see his pitching motion on the card, which I don't like, but it's a great card for an autograph and Cla did a nice job signing this, even adding his number.

This is probably the most illegible Guthrie autograph that I have, but he still seems to be a good signer. Now if he started having some success on the mound this spring...that would be nice.

Chris signed another card for me. This orange jersey beauty will go with my orange jersey mini collection.

Michael has had a "lost" spring training with various minor injuries and ailments robbing him of playing time and at-bats. I got his autograph when he was leaving the parking lot and really like the way this card looks now that it's signed.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Training Autographs-Pirates-Twins Edition

Before heading south to watch the Orioles in Sarasota, I caught a Pirates-Twins game in Bradenton. McKechnie Field is one of my favorite Spring Training sites and is a very cool little ballpark. I highly suggest you check it out if you are ever heading to Florida in the Spring, or any other time for that matter. They just added lights to the park and were able to lure a Minor League team, the Bradenton Marauders, who start playing there at the beginning of April.

Leave it to an Orioles blogger to lead you to believe you will see Pirates and/or Twins autographs and then start it out with some signed Orioles cards.

Joe Kerrigan 1978, 1980

Joe has been the Pirates' pitching coach since the beginning of the 2009 season. I tried to get him to sign at a Pirates Spring Training game last season and I'm pretty sure he ignored me and I know he didn't sign for anyone. But this year, he was talking to another fan right near the fence so I held out my card, and he seemed slightly surprised that I had a card of his, but he quickly signed it. Suh-weet.

Joe pitched in 27 games for the O's over two seasons, 26 of them were in '78. He also managed the Red Sox for 43 games over the 2001 season.

Brian Burres 2006-08

Burres is in the Pirates' camp as an invitee and is trying to make the team. Brian Bass is also in the same position with the Bucs. That's a lot of B.B.'s who used to play for the O's. Ha! Now if only they were throwing BB's instead of beach balls! Now, I don't want to be too mean and I'm glad that Burres signed for me, but I don't have a lot of fond memories from his years in Birdland.

Andrew McCutchen didn't play in the game that I saw, which was disappointing, but since he didn't play, in his own words "he had nothing else to do" other than sign for us fans, so that was good. He was nice enough to also sign a ball for me.

He is one of my favorite, current non-Orioles players and I'm seriously thinking about collecting his cards. The Pirates are my National League team after all. And he seems like a decent guy.

Dmitri "Da Meat Hook" Young was in the stands at the game to watch his little bro, Delmon, play for the Twins. I normally don't like to bother guys off the field, but he was just standing along the walkway, so I got him to sign my game ticket and also got a picture with him. He seemed like a nice guy and is actually smiling in the picture.

Monday, March 22, 2010

My Blog Turns One! And I Forgot the Cake!

Technically, this blog has been going for a year as of last Thursday 3/18. It figures that I would forget to say something on the actual day but I felt like it was something that warranted a post, even if it was belated. Here is a link to my first ever post.

I can't believe that I have been doing this for a full year already. I've been collecting autographs for most of my life but had no clue that I would stick with this blogging thing as long as I have. I think that I thought 100 posts was a good goal at the beginning. And I know that some of my fellow bloggers write many more posts per week than I do, or are into the thousands of total posts. I commend them for their commitment and skill; I know that I am not on their level. But I am very happy to have posted an average of 5.2 blog posts per week for a whole year.

I can hope that I will continue to post for another year or two, but who knows what the future will bring. I can guarantee that I will always collect Orioles autographs, but don't know if I can blog indefinitely. Some major life changes are looming so we will see how things work out, but I promise to post approximately 5.2 times a week as long as I have the time and motivation.

To celebrate my Blog-day, if you will, here is an autograph that I really like and that I got on my spring training trip. It's the Dean of the Orioles, our long-time second baseman and leadoff hitter, Brian Roberts. He's wearing an orange uniform, which is a focus of the new offshoot of my Orioles auto collection, and I just like the card.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring Training Contest Update

In case you haven't seen the banner under the name of my blog or haven't checked it lately, the current records of all the teams are here in blue (updated at least through Friday afternoon).


Atlanta Braves (33) Captain Canuck 24-9 11-7
Baltimore Orioles (32) Aaron 20-12, Jeremy 23-9 8-12
Boston Red Sox (33) AdamE 21-12 9-11
Detroit Tigers (35) Grand Cards 19-16 11-8
Florida Marlins (31) Paul W 23-8 11-9
Houston Astros (33) Steve E. 13-20 11-8
Minnesota Twins (31) SpastikMooss 23-8 9-8
New York Mets (34) Slangon 22-12 11-9
New York Yankees (33) Bo 22-11, Drew 25-8 8-11
Philadelphia Phillies (31) KmSals 26-5 9-7
Pittsburgh Pirates (32) Paul 24-7-1 5-12
St. Louis Cardinals (30) Kevin 22-8, madding 14-16 8-10
Tampa Bay Rays (32) RadicalEddie 19-13, BA Benny 22-10 13-6
Toronto Blue Jays (30) mmmrhubarb 21-8-1, The Gooch 23-7 9-7
Washington Nationals (33) Collective Troll 25-8, Mark's Ephemera 16-17 5-13


Arizona Diamondbacks (33) Sean Benton 20-13, TheBrooklynMet 21-12 10-10
Chicago Cubs (35) The Diamond King 23-12 11-8
Chicago White Sox (34) White Sox Cards 24-10 6-10
Cincinnati Reds (32) heavy hitter 19-13, Carl Crawford Cards 22-10 8-9
Cleveland Indians (32) night owl 20-12 12-5
Colorado Rockies (33) phaedrusX 21-12 13-8
Kansas City Royals (31) zman40 21-10 8-8
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (33) Wickedliquids 26-8 5-11
Los Angeles Dodgers (31) Roy 25-6 7-10
Milwaukee Brewers (33) Thorzul 20-13 11-9
Oakland Athletics (33) dan 23-10 9-10
San Diego Padres (32) Rod 20-12 9-10
San Francisco Giants (34) Joe K 22-12 15-6
Seattle Mariners (33) Play at the Plate 20-13, packaddict 19-14 7-11
Texas Rangers (31) Moe 21-10, Spiff 19-12 6-12

The Rays are still leading all teams with a .733 winning percentage, while the Braves, Indians, Phillies and Giants aren't far behind.

The Nationals' .143 losing percentage is currently bringing up the rear.

Good luck everyone! Anyone can still win at this point!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Spring Training Successes: Minor League Members of the 40 Man Roster

Following up on the series of preview blogs I wrote about these players a few weeks back, here are all of the autographs I got from the Minor League guys on the O's 40 man.

Rhyne Hughes signed at both games I went to but I missed him on the first day. This is my first autograph from him, and I wanted to get at least 2 but I won't complain. I didn't immediately recognize him when we walked by on the first day and I think he looks quite different in person than he does on his cards.

These cards looks like they were designed to be signed. There's too much open space when they aren't autographed but once the signature is added it looks great. The Hughes card above is also from the Tristar Projections set but his wasn't cut off at the waist for some reason.

Brandon signed a trio of cards for me, but this is the most unique. As you can see, it's from the '07 Hawaii Winter Baseball set and that was the only year I bought one of these sets. It featured 5 or 6 other Orioles Minor Leaguers, including my boy, Matt Wieters, but I didn't buy the set for him or Snyder. I bought it because it includes the only card produced of Ryohei Tanaka, a RP who was on the Baysox in '09. I have not yet gotten Ryohei's autograph but this shows you how far I will go to obtain a card of a random Minor League player to get their autograph on a card.

This is a cool action shot for a Minor League team set. The Baysox did a nice job on their cards last season. The orange border is cool as well.

And why stop now? Here is the third Snyder card I got signed from the equally cool 2006 Ironbirds set.

Chorye kind of missed the card with his C when he was signing it. I think that he was trying to avoid the black jersey but I would've preferred that he kept his autograph totally on the card. Oh well. At least it's an Orioles card.

Since I seem to only have good things to say about the Minor League sets in today's post, I won't stop now. I like the rolling blue wave at the bottom of the Tides '09 set. The orange jersey and blue border clash a little bit but I like it anyway. Also, Troy has always seemed like a nice guy and a good signer to boot.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring Training Successes- Non Roster Invitee Autographs

Some of you particularly astute Orioles fans might note that a few of the autographs that I showcased yesterday are also non-roster invitees in the O's camp. But the difference between them and these guys is that I don't have Orioles cards of anyone in this post. Some of them have been featured in various Orioles Minor League releases but none of them yet have an Orioles card, outside of possibly Jake Arrieta.

And speaking of Jake, here is the card he signed. Kalina also got a card signed by him and he was definitely the first player she noticed shagging fly balls at the first game we went to. That's weird, since it's not like he is her favorite prospect or anything (he unequivocally is).

Armando Gabino was, by far, the most excited I have ever seen a player to see a card of his. I asked if he would sign and tossed this card to him, which he excitedly showed off to Alberto Castillo and Frank Mata. He was speaking in Spanish but seemed to be saying something like "See I told you that I actually have a baseball card!".
When the Orioles selected Gabino off of waivers from the Twins in the offseason, I searched online and found literally 2 cards of his for sale anywhere. They were both Twins Minor League cards and this one looked like it would look better signed. I know that he now has a card in the 2010 UD set, but I wasn't able to get it before my trip.

I don't know much about Chris, but I know that the combination of this card, his uni in the shot, and his autograph look pretty good together.

Caleb is now my mom's favorite player. In full disclosure, I'm not positive that she has had a favorite to replace, at least since Cal was around, but she was standing next to me when Caleb signed this card and he said something about it being the first card he had signed at Spring Training. She liked that, and thinks that he seems like a nice guy. I agree, Caleb seems pretty cool.

Frank is another player that I know little about, other than that he clearly spent time in the Twins organization. I guess it really doesn't Mata what I know about him. And you know I just had to go there, it was way too easy.

I saw Josh pitch at Bowie last season, and I believe he spent part of the season as the Baysox' closer. His last name is pronounced Per-oh, as opposed to how it looks, Per-alt.

Tuck is one of my favorite Minor Leaguers. He has always been a great signer, he hustles on every play, and I have seen him make a few outstanding catches. He also plays multiple positions, which is backed up by the card listing his position as INF/OF, and has spent most of his time in LF and at 3B. Scrappy is also a pretty small guy for a baseball player and is listed at 5'8'' which either means the he is actually 5'7'' or that he's one of the few honest players about his height. Either way, he is having a good Spring Training and I know that he has caught Trembley's eye once or twice.

On my trip to Norfolk last year, I incorrectly thought that Ross was Bob McCrory. While they do look a little bit alike, I'm normally good with faces, so I felt bad when I handed Ross the wrong card. I finally made up for it this spring when I boldly called out his name and he came over to sign. Again in full disclosure, McCrory is no longer with the O's so that boosted my confidence level.

Carl Crawford Cards Group Break

Check it out here! I'm already in on the Orioles, since it's a great way to pick up some more expensive cards that I normally wouldn't buy myself. There are still many teams available, so claim yours before someone else does!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Spring Training Successes- Orioles Card Edition

Here's the beginning of the autographs that I got in spring training. I normally try to avoid displaying so many cards in one post but stick with me on this. All of these are signed Orioles cards, and are either the first time I got that player to sign in person, or their first Orioles card that I have signed in my collection. I would say that this group of cards are my best auto-ccomplishment from Sarasota.

I have to start with two players that have been a thorn in my side for the past year. I recently obtained autographs of them both via trade and a gift but this was the first time that they signed for me in person.

I finally got the elusive "Koji 19" autograph that had evaded me for a complete season. He was also one of the last signatures that I got in my time at Ed Smith Stadium. As was the case on the other occasions that I saw him signing, he started signing far from where I was and I had to make a break for him, but this time, I finally got what I wanted.

I had few opportunities to get Alfredo's autograph since he was injured very early last season and was rarely with the team after his April surgery. I had to call out his name a few times before he reluctantly came over to sign, and he signed for only a few other people and me.

This next group of guys had their first Orioles cards produced after the 2009 season.

Including unlicensed 2010 UD cards of Chad Moeller and Justin Turner.

Whereas UD did a respectable job of hiding any glimpse of the O's logo on Moeller's card,

the Bird logo on Justin's helmet is clearly visible.

I bought the 2010 Topps Heritage team set in the week before I flew south which worked out well since it included Kevin Millwood's and Garrett Atkins's first O's cards.

Millwood is obviously wearing an Orioles uni but I have no idea where the picture may have been taken. Kevin was discussing golf with Scott Moore when he signed this and had just spoken to Dick Vitale, who was on the field during warm-ups.

I'm skeptical that this is actually an Orioles uniform since there is no way that Heritage had the time to take a picture and get it into a set that came out before Atkins had likely ever broken a sweat for the O's, but at least it's not obviously a Rockies uni on an "Orioles" card. This works for me!

Tillman had a few Orioles cards come out in late 2009 sets but this card is perfect for an autograph. He also signed the FanFest picture that Kalina had of the two of them, and said something about that when he signed it.

This is from the 2010 Topps When They Were Young insert set and is the only card to date that shows Berken in an Orioles uniform, even though it's focus is of him as a kid.

This is Kam's first Orioles card and it's from the Bowman Chrome set. I like it even more since he is wearing an orange uniform; the picture was probably taken during spring training last year. Although he doesn't have a great autograph, at least it's close to what is pictured on the card.

I mentioned that Scott had been talking with Millwood about golf. It sounded like both of them are pretty proficient at it and were talking about which other O's could hold their own against them. Scott has only spent a little time in Baltimore and was on the Tides' DL when I went to Norfolk last year, so this was one of my first chances to get his signature.

Somehow, I didn't have a Bordick in-person autograph in my collection. I really like this card of his because of the action shot and the textured laces that are visible in the top left and bottom right corners. Mike also nicely personalized a card for Kalina, who was always a big fan of his.

Sorry again for the long post, the next few Spring Training auto posts should be shorter, but I hope you enjoyed seeing some of my successes.