Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Let's Take A Minute To Talk Signatures

I received a card in the mail today that got me thinking about signatures. More specifically, I was thinking about the vast discrepancy between legible and non-legible signatures. I'm starting to get annoyed with crap. By crap, of course, I mean signatures that we can't read.

Then I was looking through today's post from View from the Skybox, and a card he showed had a beautiful signature:

Photo Credit: View from the Skybox
This signature, from Brian Bannister, is beautiful. It is obvious that he took his time signing, and though it isn't perfectly legible, it is highly believable that the signature reads the name. Now, let's take a look at the opposite end of the spectrum:

Will Myers, a.k.a. Mr. Squiggles. I have no idea how one is supposed to get Will Myers out of that. If I were to send it in, how could it be authenticated??? It's garbage!

Sadly, even a player from my own PC has a poor auto:

That's supposed to read "Luke Jackson," though all I see is "ZJ".

What's to blame for this epidemic? Could it be the card companies?

Each year, the players that have autograph clauses in their contracts are required to sign thousands upon thousands of cards (Don't believe me? How many different card products has Jose Abreu signed for this year), and they have a very finite amount of time. The faster they sign, the faster they get the cards out. God forbid we wait on redemptions - I've already read and heard how much people hate those.

Could card companies scale back autos? Well, probably not. Autos are one of the main reasons people purchase cards. If autos aren't as prevalent, the products probably don't sell as well.

So, what's the solution? I don't know. I do know that I am tired of receiving a shitty auto when I pay $100 for a box of cards.

And if you're wondering, here's the card that got me thinking about all of this:

Luis Ortiz Jr., the Rangers 2014 #1 draft pick. Clearly, Ortiz has taken his time in signing, and for a Ranger fan and card collector, it is much appreciated.


  1. I totally agree. I think the worst signer I've ever seen is Nyjer Morgan. It makes Wil Myers sig look presidential.

  2. I don't know when it started. The 1990s maybe? All my TTms from older players generally have nice, script, readable signatures. The from the 90s on, we have a lot of squiggles.

  3. Couldn't agree any more! Mike Trout is pretty bad too, although you can read it.

  4. Agreed and it just gets getting worse and worse.
    Look at Puig's through just 2 years. Very sloppy.
    Now Howie Kendricks is nice and long and legible.

  5. Old timers still seem to do it right. Actually hockey players seem as a group to put more effort into their signatures. One guy that disappoints me that doesn't seem to sign that many cards is Greg Maddux. I'd love an autographed card of his but I refuse to pay a pretty high price for his crabby signature. I find the whole squiggle thing to be an insult to the fans. It's a pet peeve of mine. Can you tell? Two of my all-time favorites, Ron Santo and Harmon Killebrew always signed great. I'm sure there are many others. Ken Griffey Jr. must have a lot of time constraints but he has a beautiful autograph.