Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Hugh Quattlebaum on baseball cards

Infielder Hugh Quattlebaum played four seasons in the Tigers and Orioles organizations. His best season was 2000, when he hit .301 at Oneonta. Now a youth baseball coach in California, he kindly answered my questions about baseball cards.

- Do you have any stories about cards of yourself or of other players?  
To be honest, I'm not real sure how I even had a Topps rookie card made.  Seems to have been the result of some sort of fluke as I was NOT a top prospect with the Tigers.  I remember when they came to take pictures at our instructional league for cards, there were several first rounders they could have used instead of me.  Maybe they thought my last name was funny and wanted it on a card.  Or maybe my photos were the only ones that came out right.  Who knows?  I remember the day I first saw it, we were in Fort Wayne, Indiana and someone handed my card for me to sign and I signed it without realizing it was a Topps card.  There are all kinds of goofy cards out there for individual minor league teams, etc.  Sometimes fans will just put pictures of you on cards to make it look like a card, too.  So, at first, I was thinking that was the case, but then another one popped up a couple days later.  I told my teammates that I had a Topps rookie card out there and they laughed at me, wisely surmising that there wouldn't be a rookie/prospect card of me because I wasn't a prospect!  Nonetheless, it turned out to be a legit card and I'm just grateful that Edwin Encarnacion has picked up the statistical slack for the poor schlub on the other half of the card.

I met Edwin at a spring training game when he was with the Reds and introduced myself telling him that we shared that rookie card together.  He was very nice and it really is cool that he has gone on to such a productive career, but I'm pretty sure he left our conversation asking himself, "who the hell was that guy?"  I'm sure he still signs that card almost every day and he's gotta be wondering what the hell ever happened to that Quattleschmuck guy.  Quattlebaum doesn't exactly roll off the tongue in Spanish or English.
- Do you have a favorite card of yourself or of another player?
There's an obscure set of Frederick Keys cards from when I played there where a few players were accused of adding props to their undergarments to enhance their appearance in them.  I can neither confirm nor deny these accusations.
- Do you collect baseball cards?
I do not collect cards myself, no. 


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