The Cubs, Phillies and Cardinals. Three popular teams, all fun to collect.
Then, where were all the collectors when it came to Freddy Schmidt?
Schmidt died in November at age 96. The journeyman pitcher was part of two Cardinals World Series winners.
I expected to see a couple of hundred successes listed on www.sportscollectors.net.
Schmidt was 30 for 30, signing through February of 2012. Did his health begin to decline then, or didn't he get any more letters?
The mystery? His last year in the majors was 1947, also known as the pre-Topps era.
Collectors lucky enough to write found that Schmidt answered questions, wrote notes, sometimes added photos and loved signing "95 Years Young."
The moral? Set collecting is fine. But don't limit yourself to "what can I get signed?" Ask, too, "Who can I write to?"
By the way, don't miss the great interview with Schmidt (linked above) by Ed Attanasio!