Thursday, June 20, 2013

Jim Aylward on baseball cards

Infielder Jim Aylward played four seasons in the Angels organization. His best season was 1989, when he hit .293 with 11 HR and 77 RBI for Quad Cities. He later played professionally in Taiwan for the Wei Chuan Dragons. Now a Personal and Commercial Lines Account Executive at Palomino Insurance, he kindly answered my questions about baseball cards.

"I did play a couple of years in Taipei, Taiwan and an interesting story about baseball cards.  The league was just in its second year and professional baseball was a big hit there (no pun intended). I was fortunate to have made the all star team both years and while I was at a gigantic mall one day, I went up to the sporting goods section to check out some things, and there on the wall is a Christmas card with my name and photo on it.  Inside the card was wishing someone a Merry Christmas and also it had a mini card inside as well.  It was a pretty cool setup, but never saw any of that licensing monies!
I also am a collector of cards, memorabilia.  My favorite item is a signed Spalding bat of the original hall of fame class….the likes of Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, Tris Speaker, Cy Young, etc. There is one missing hall of famer obviously not signed was Christy Mathewson, who died in 1925, and the first hall ceremony was in 1939. 

The story behind the bat was that a longtime resident went to the hall of fame game and had gotten everyone’s signatures, plus Mel Ott, who was either a player or a coach of one of the playing teams that day.

It is a very cool bat and even looks “old”, and the signatures are obviously wearing away.  The signatures are also in green ink…….I found out that Ty Cobb did lots of his signing with green ink!"


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