Turn Off Ads?
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Writing to Ballplayers

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    91

    Writing to Ballplayers

    I had a question that some of you may be able to answer. Does anyone currently write any Reds players (through snail mail)? Have you had any luck getting a response?

    Back when I was about 12 of so, my parents had given me a subscription to Sports Illustrated for Kids. I flipped through it, usually just looking at pictures and tearing out the sheets of baseball-sports cards. But one issue really caught my eye. It was about a kid who used to send letters and baseball cards to a lot of ballplayers. He mentioned how he would include a self-addressed stamp envelope, and how he amassed a huge collection of autographs. They had a collage of all his cards in the magazine and it just amazed me.

    I really got into it myself. Up until then, I had gone to card shows a lot and my dad would be nice enough sometimes to wait outside the stadium with me to snags some autographs. But I just couldn't help but think I was holding them up and wasting their time. You could tell most of the guys were just signing to be nice - not because they really enjoyed it. I eventually phased out the cardshows and loitering all together and focused my energy on writing them. I figured they could read my letters and respond to any autograph requests when it was convenient for them, which made me feel like less of a stalker.

    I was simply amazed by the response, which began almost immediately. I used about half of my allowance during the summer on stamps, envelops and baseball cards and shipped out dozens and dozens of letters. It became a lot of fun. I learned a lot about the players because I'd always do a little studying up on them so I could make my letters seem sincere. Some guys were easy (Dear Tony Perez: I bet playing on the Big Red Machine was awesome. My dad always talks about it) and others were a stretch (Dear Tim Flannery: How are things? I sure bet it hurt getting hit by a pitch 9 times last year.)

    I hit up a lot of Reds players and many out of town. I'd get all kinds of responses - hand-written notes, autographed baseball cards with no letter, canned-response letters, fan club applications and even un-signed cards I sent, an empty can of Copenhagen, autographs from bat boys, a phone number with a lipsticked kiss attached (I still wonder what in the hell was going on in the Orioles clubhouse), someone's car-insurance bill, other fans' letters... I could really go on forever.

    One of my highlights came when I realized some guy named Jerry Narron had the same birthday I did, so I sent him a birthday card. A couple weeks later, I got a birthday card back from him with a really nice note written in it. That, probably more than anything, meant the most to me because I knew he had to really put some effort into it. Really, who just happens to have a belated-birthday card sitting around? He also mentioned a few things I had included in my letter in his card. I still have that letter framed and in a closet somewhere.

    Of course, gettings notes or autographs from some bigger names was also cool: Fernando Valenzeuela, Cal Ripken, Danny Tartabull, Jim Abbott, Chris Sabo, Andre Dawson, Steve Garvey, George Foster, Rickey Henderson, etc. I was always amazed by how many guys would write back.

    Anyway, sorry for all the background. I was just wondering if any of the younger people (or anyone's kids) have had any luck writing to current Reds. I really don't have much desire to get back into it (I feel a little too old), but I wonder if many people even try and if the current players put as much effort into it like the previous generations did.

  2. Turn Off Ads?
  3. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    209

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    So are you saying that some player sent a phone number with lipstick on it to a little kid?? I'm not sure if that's funny or scary.
    "Are you going to go with Black Beard's Delight?"

  4. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Naperville, IL
    Posts
    1,835

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    I did this as well when I was younger and found it to be very successful. There's a book out of player's home addresses that I always used for retired players and then I sent current players in care of the team's park.

    The former players, especially "no names" are usually thrilled to get fan mail. I got a bunch of 1950's-1960's cards from my uncle so I sent every one of them out to players that were still living. This was around the time of the Pete Rose incident in Atlanta so I usually threw something in about what they thought since many of them played with Pete. I remember Claude Osteen sent a note back that said he was "tired of our great comissioner not letting Pete into the Hall." I also accidently sent one to a player who had passed very recently and his widow sent me a note back explaining it along with his obituary and a card from his funeral service.

    Among the players I got in the mail were Jeff Bagwell, Mike Piazza, and Mark Grace. I would definately not recommend sending anything you would miss if it got lost. I did not hear back from several players and Jim O'Toole even sent me a note back that said "$2/card."

    Probably the nicest one I got back was from Joe Nuxhall. I sent it out to him on a Monday and received it back Friday of the same week! He not only autographed the two cards I sent him, he included 2 more cards autographed along with a post card of himself from his playing days autographed as well.

  5. #4
    HS Athletic Director alexad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Cleves, Ohio
    Posts
    1,215

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    Great Stories. This is a reason baseball is such a great sport to watch and love.
    Taylor High School
    Home of the "Yellowjackets"

  6. #5
    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Posts
    17,568

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    I've done this a lot over the years. I've gotten Dale Murphy, Manny Trillo (a personal favorite player of mine), Tom Browning, Jose Rijo, Wily Mo Pena, Joe Nuxhall, Carlos Delgado, Pat Burrell, Chipper Jones, Scott Williamson, Sean Casey, many others. The only person I've found who won't sign through the mail is Ken Griffey Jr. (I'm not knocking him, he's one of my favorite players of all time). Even Barry Bonds occassionally signs through the mail.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

  7. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    1,658

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    I did this a bunch as a kid. Not so much to reds, but to players from other teams. It's odd now to look at who I was impressed with as a kid as opposed to what I think of them now.

    Hank Aaron signed several cards for me, Jim Bunning. I sent to mostly NL players because I was always rooting against the AL in the series.

    Although I tried several times, neither Pete or JB signed through the mail. Concepcion, Perez and others did, but never those two.

  8. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Lubbock, Texas
    Posts
    1,362

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    Best signer for me was Brooks Robinson. I got a signed index card back within 2 weeks. Lasorda sent me (or at least his secretary did) an envelope full of stuff like a schedule, some stickers, and a Lasorda postcard. Bob Lemon sent me an autographed index card about 9-12 months after I mailed it. 15 years later I'm still waiting to hear from the Say-Pay Kid.

  9. #8
    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Posts
    17,568

    Re: Writing to Ballplayers

    Quote Originally Posted by Handofdeath
    Best signer for me was Brooks Robinson. I got a signed index card back within 2 weeks. Lasorda sent me (or at least his secretary did) an envelope full of stuff like a schedule, some stickers, and a Lasorda postcard. Bob Lemon sent me an autographed index card about 9-12 months after I mailed it. 15 years later I'm still waiting to hear from the Say-Pay Kid.
    Keep waiting. I wrote to Dale Murphy when he was traded to the Phillies, and I got my card back signed three years after he retired.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!


Turn Off Ads?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Board Moderators may, at their discretion and judgment, delete and/or edit any messages that violate any of the following guidelines: 1. Explicit references to alleged illegal or unlawful acts. 2. Graphic sexual descriptions. 3. Racial or ethnic slurs. 4. Use of edgy language (including masked profanity). 5. Direct personal attacks, flames, fights, trolling, baiting, name-calling, general nuisance, excessive player criticism or anything along those lines. 6. Posting spam. 7. Each person may have only one user account. It is fine to be critical here - that's what this board is for. But let's not beat a subject or a player to death, please.

Thank you, and most importantly, enjoy yourselves!


RedsZone.com is a privately owned website and is not affiliated with the Cincinnati Reds or Major League Baseball


Contact us: Boss | GIK | BCubb2003 | dabvu2498 | Gallen5862 | LexRedsFan | Plus Plus | RedlegJake | redsfan1995 | The Operator | Tommyjohn25