February and March are not only the time when baseball players descend on the spring training complexes of Arizona and Florida but, it is also a popular time for autograph collectors to send out letters and cards to players in hopes of a signature. I try to send out through the mail(TTM) autograph requests year round with current players and coaches getting letters during spring training and retired players getting sent letters during the baseball season and off season.
Yesterday marks a highlight of the 2013 collecting season for me, I have received a return from an ex-Dodger. This is my first Dodger related return of the season. I am hoping for at least a few more signed cards to comeback my way, but you never know.
I know that getting former Dodger Randy Choate to autograph a card for me, may only be considered a highlight in my mind. Maybe a few other Dodger collectors would be happy with getting a card like this in the mail from a dude that pitched a whopping 13 1/3 innings for the Dodgers in 2012.
Choate was the "other guy" in the deal with the Miami Marlins that sent Hanley Ramirez to Los Angeles. The Dodgers needed a new shortstop and a new lefty in the pen last season due to Dee Gordon's injuries and ineffectiveness and Scott Elbert having his arm troubles persist like they have throughout his whole pro career.
I am surprised that Topps included a card of Choate in a Dodger uniform for their 2013 set. In last year's Topps Update set, he was still shown as a Marlin even though he was sent to the Dodgers before the trade deadline. Topps must have been making up for this mistake and I am happy to get a card of a random Dodger relief pitcher whose accomplishments as a Dodger may slip my mind a decade from now.
Choate is now a member of the St.Louis Cardinal's bullpen. He somehow tricked the Cardinals into giving him a three year deal worth 7.5 million dollars. That seems like a lot of scratch for a lefty specialist in the bullpen.
I will hire Choate's agent next time I have to haggle a job for some extra pay. His agent could probably get me a sweet deal that would make all my co-workers jealous and bewildered.