Monday, March 2, 2015

Super TTM Spring Day 16

Day 16 may be the best day yet for TTM autograph returns! Great players and one return that has me feeling very guilty. Read on...

Robbie Ray autographed my card and was kind enough to include one of his own with a bio on the back. I appreciated his story, but especially loved that his card was printed in half-tone dot grid style which we hardly ever see anymore. I blew it up so you could see what I mean.

Eugenio Suarez went to Cincy in the offseason where he'll be added depth behind Zack Cozart. If Cozart struggles we may see Eugenio break through sooner than expected.

The always reliable Michael Cuddyer autographed this from his new address with the Mets. Great signature and a great guy.

Stephen Vogt is coming off foot surgery and is expected to DH early in the season. Thankfully his hands are fine and he was able to autograph the above card in gold Sharpie. It really pops in person, something I wouldn't have expected.

You reached the guilt cards. If I have extra cards, I send them along and write in big letters "PLEASE KEEP EXTRA CARDS FOR YOURSELF OR YOUNGER FANS". Those words exactly, every time. For Spanish speaking players, I attempt to write it in Spanish. Gonzalez either didn't see that or decided to be the nicest guy ever and signed all SEVEN cards I sent his way!

Don't get me wrong, I really appreciate that he'd take the time to do that, but I just hope he didn't think I wanted him to sign every single card. There are TTMers who do this for profit (don't ask me how) and try to milk it for all it's worth. That's not me. If I send more than one card, I ask they sign two. That way I have one for my collection and one for trading purposes. If anyone needs a Gonzalez Germen autograph, please let me know. 

I used to go watch Conor when I was in college at Wichita State, so it's exciting to see him have success.

Brandon is a pitcher I'm intrigued by. He's yet to get a real chance at the MLB level, but has earned one if you look at his resume. 

Poor Josh looks like Wreck It Ralph with a beard in this photo. He busted out big time in 2014 and I hope he continues that going into 2015.

Edwin isn't the most popular guy in Chicago after last season, but he's too talented to continue struggling like he did. His advanced stats say he should be better than his ERA and record stated, but it'll be tough to crack a loaded Cubs rotation this spring.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Super TTM Spring Day 14

Five more returns made their way to Kansas today, starting with...

A formerly touted prospect, Jacob Turner has bounced from Detroit to Miami to Chicago, yet will still only be 23 on Opening Day. He's been pretty bad at the Major League level, but there's plenty of talent and time for him to figure it out.

When Chavez was a Royal back in 2010, I never would have expected him to still be in the league four years later, much less as an effective starter.

Maurer was sent to San Diego in the offseason for Seth Smith. Brandon supposedly has excellent stuff, but has struggled to put it together as a starter. 

Kole came of the shadows last season to put together a helluva year. He showed a lot of power, especially to the gaps. 

I really hope this is the year we get to see what AJ Griffin has to offer. He's had terrible luck with his health over the last few years, but maybe that will turn around this season.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Super TTM Spring Day 13

Day 13 saw six more quality pitcher returns. Without further ado...

Rarely do pitchers with an ERA barely above 2 have to fight for anything, but this spring Cody Allen is fighting for the closer role in Cleveland. It's #37's to lose.

I like how Danny Farquhar writes his D. It's like " | > ".

Nick has a busy signature and I like it. Try forging that one.

Matt Thornton spent half of 2014 with the Nationals and looks to slot in as a LOOGY behind a pretty good rotation.

Chances are you have a Pat Neshek autograph. If not, I encourage you to send a request to the Astros. Pat genuinely enjoys signing and opening mail and he rewards you with the coolest signature in baseball. 

Little was said about Alfredo Simon's move to Detroit in the offseason, but the Tigers made a pretty good pick up. He's no Max Scherzer, but he's good for 6+ solid innings every fifth day.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Super TTM Spring Day 12

Day 11 saw zero returns, making it a "calm before the storm" day. The storm hit hard on Day 12! NINE returns came in including the first non-catcher non-pitcher return. Here they be!

This is one I was very pumped about. Lost in the awful season that was for Arizona was the debut of an exciting young pitcher in Chase Anderson. I have a feeling he'll be around the league for many years to come.

Dunn pitched in 75 games last season with 10 wins and a 3.16 ERA. He also has a nice signature.

Koehler has been stuck in Jose Fernandez's shadow over the last couple seasons, but he's a player to watch. 

Few All-Stars will sign TTM, much less signing two cards. Tyson Ross is nicer than most All-Stars.

Butler saw just three starts last season, but many think he was called up too soon. He's got a ton of pressure on him going into 2015 and many expect him to break the rotation sooner than later.

Also fighting for a rotation spot with the Rockies is former Braves pitcher, David Hale. Hale can fill in out of the bullpen or as a starter, so there's some interest in seeing where he starts the year. Any player that takes the time to address the signature to me and write a message makes me an instant fan. David Hale rocks!

Yoervis Medina quietly put together one of the best relief pitching lines in the majors over the last two seasons. He doesn't sign for everyone, so my attempt at Spanish in the letter I wrote him paid off with this gorgeous signature. 

Chase Whitley may or may not start another game for the Yankees, but he sure shined against Kansas City last season. He provides solid rotation depth at AAA or out of the big league pen. 

Thanks to @VerdammtX, I was able to send out a few parallels this spring. Josh Rutledge kindly signed the red border above and the base card below.

Here's to hoping Day 13 is a fraction as good as Day 12!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Super TTM Spring Day 10

Every day is mail day when you send out 200+ autograph requests! At least for a while. Day 10 saw three great returns!

This David Carpenter now plays for the Yankees. The other David Carpenter now plays for the Braves. It's confusing, but thankfully I sent this card to the right team. I was rewarded with a very nice looking signature in black Sharpie.

This is the biggest name to return so far this spring and one of my favorite non-Royals. Arrieta is a ton of fun to watch pitch. His control is meh, but his pitches can do some wicked stuff. 

In 2013 Parker looked to be one of the next great relief pitchers in baseball. 2014 was quite a bit rougher, but he'll get a shot to redeem himself out of the pen in 2015. I'll be rooting for him! I love the blue Sharpie for blue-themed teams and the addition of the uniform number (#50 in this case) is always a nice touch.