Rolling on with my 2010 O's Autograph Review
, today I'm going to cover the worst signers on the team. If I had it my way, no one would fall into this category, but unfortunately, these guys do.
Nick Markakis continues to be, in my opinion, the toughest autograph on the Orioles. The one and only autograph I got from him all season was way back at Fanfest, and I didn't see him signing any other time all season long. At one game, a fellow collector told me that he had signed the previous day, but since I didn't see it, I can't believe it. This dude NEVER signs at games, not even during Spring Training.
Not surprisingly, I also ranked Nick as a bad signer last season.
Falling in the c'mon man category of bad signers is backup catcher, Craig Tatum. I mean, it's not like he was busy more than one or two days a week. I once had him walk by me, while he was apparently doing nothing, with only a few other people nearby and asked if he could sign. His answer "no". That's all he said. Luckily, I got his autograph in a few trades and got a few cards signed at a private signing.
I picked up Kevin's autograph both at Fanfest and at Spring Training, so I was optimistic about getting his signature a few more times over the course of the year. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case, and I can't remember seeing him sign once at Oriole Park this season. I know he was the veteran "ace" of the staff, but most starting pitchers will sign occasionally between starts since they have some down time.
David Hernandez has always been a pretty tough signature, at least dating back to the '08 season when he was with the Baysox, and he continued down that path over this past season. I picked him up at a private signing, but can't remember seeing him sign around the park much, if at all. Sundays are the best day to get autographs from the Orioles relief pitchers, since there is no BP and they warm up on the field, but David would almost always just walk back into the clubhouse after warming up.
Last season, I ranked him as a hit or miss signer since he didn't sign often, but when he did, he signed for a number of fans.
Sometime closer, Alfredo Simon was another tough autograph to pick up. I was able to get his autograph during Spring Training, but only after persistently calling out his name as he was walking down the right field line. He could only ignore so many times, you know? I got his signature one other time this season, but again, it was at a private signing.
Last year, I listed him in the inconclusive/undetermined category since he only spent a few days with the O's before going down with a season-ending injury.
Unfortunately, I once again have to include my favorite Oriole on the list of bad signers. I got his autograph only once this season, and that was at a private signing at a local AT&T Store. He didn't sign in Spring Training, I didn't see him sign once at Oriole Park, and I missed him at Fanfest. All season long, I had my copy of his SI cover in my game backpack, hoping that I might luck out and get it signed, but it looks like that will be a project for next season.
Since Matt normally catches six days a week, I can kind of understand why he doesn't sign often. But I wish that I would occasionally see him sign at the Yard on one of his off days. As I mentioned, he also fell in the bad signer category last season.