Do you know who really signed it?
I wasn't dreaming when I mentioned last week that I seemed to recall a book from the 1980s detailed how Rose delegated his fan mail duties to an assistant.
"Dear Pete" by Helen Fabbri (the secretary) & Larry Names; published by the Laranmark Press in 1985.
This confirmation comes from noted baseball book dealer Bobby Plapinger:
"HERE's my "catalog blurb" about it: Pete Rose's story as told (mostly) through his fan mail w. connecting narrative supplied by Ms. Fabbri, his "personal fan mail secretary" for over 9 years. Fwd. by Rose who says he likes letters from kids because "their innocence and faith in me makes all the hard work worthwhile". He, of course, would go on to reward his young fans’ “innocence & faith” in him for the rest of his career in and out of the game. BW photos."
"Actually, I wrote the book for her. All she did was pick out the fan letters, and i let her have credit as author. Yes, she did sign Pete's fan mail for him. So anybody who has a response from Pete in those years she was his fanmail secretary might have a forgery. I had Pete's autograph on something. He signed something for me when we had breakfast together down in Tampa on the last Sunday of spring training 1985. He even picked up the check. Personally, I like Pete and think he's getting a raw deal from MLB. But that's another story. - Larry Names"
How's this for some juicy subplot for the Rose TLC show?