Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Rick Dempsey, 1983 Topps #138

I've only sent two cards through the mail to be autographed by former players, but I've already learned that the results can be varied and unpredictable. I sent both cards, a Mike Boddicker and a Rick Dempsey, in March 2008. I received my signed Mike Boddicker card four weeks later, tucked neatly into the plastic toploader that I'd sent with it. I just received the Rick Dempsey card you see above, nearly a year after sending my request. It came back in the self-addressed stamped envelope I provided, but with no toploader. There's one more thing...

It's not the card I sent.

I mailed off a copy of the Dipper's 1981 Fleer card, a lovely one indeed. Fortunately, it wasn't my only copy, because there's no telling what has become of it. I'm happy to have gotten a response at all; after eleven months, I'd resigned myself to an ignored or lost autograph request. So where did this card come from?

It's most likely that Rick (or a family member) opened a pile of mail and there were other cards in the batch that got mixed together. Of course, I like my mother's explanation better; she suggested that he knocked over a soda, drenching my card and ruining it, and went scrambling for a replacement. If that's the case, I hope he realized that he might be able to make some money on eBay auctioning off a Rick Dempsey 1981 Fleer card with authentic Coke stains.

Thanks for the card, Rick, wherever you found it!


Commish said...

Kevin, I've seen that sort of thing before. Happened to me with one of my very rare mailed requests. Sent off a few cards and a tournament ticket to Fred Couples (he is our family's favorite) with a note regarding his graciousness when we spoke to him at a Houston tournament. A few months later I received four(!) autographed cards in my return envelope, none of which were the ones I sent. I blew off the ticket as a lost cause. Found out later that his secretary opens his mail, tosses the unsigned cards in one box and sends out cards from a box he has autographed. When he gets back to his office every so often he signs cards to be put in the 'out' box. So what you receive is done through pure chance.
A few months later the ticket came back personalized to my sons with postage he provided. Turns out his secretary puts stuff like that aside for him to sign when he can.

Could very well be that the Dipper does something similar. Toss your cards in one box and eventually pull out a signed card from another box. Cool card though, from a great Oriole!

Kevin said...

Bob - Thanks for sharing! That's a pretty likely explanation.

Rounding Thirty 3rd said...

Hey, a 100% response rate is pretty good, even if it takes a year. My wife met Rick and his wife at the Double-T Diner in Glen Burnie a few months ago during a trip back to MD. She was very excited and he was very nice, even posing for a couple pictures with her. Definitely a class act (and should I have expected anything less from a long time fan favorite - it's exactly why he is a fan favorite).