Daniel “Doc” Jacobs had a dream come true on Feb. 28 when he not only met baseball icon Tommy Lasorda, but got a major league tryout at Spring Training for Los Angeles. Doc is a double-amputee who lost his left leg, the toes on his right foot and two fingertips on his left hand after being injured during service in Iraq by an improvised explosive device. On April 20, Upper Deck reunited Jacobs and Lasorda to make another dream come true for this inspirational athlete by presenting Doc with his first-ever baseball card.
“When we heard about Doc’s story, we immediately said to ourselves, ‘Now that’s a baseball player we need to make a trading card for,’” said Chris Carlin, sports marketing manager for Upper Deck. “We worked in concert with our great partners at Operation Gratitude and the charity Doc co-founded, VETSports, to make it happen. We couldn’t be more excited to give patriotic Americans the opportunity to collect inspiration. This is the beginning of a larger program we will be unveiling soon working in unison with Operation Gratitude and VETSports to show the brave men and women in uniform how much Upper Deck appreciates their service.”
“Growing up you always dream of seeing yourself on a baseball card so I am very appreciative of this honor,” said Doc Jacobs, co-founder of VETSports. “What really excited me about this opportunity however was Upper Deck’s willingness to use this card to help bring awareness to VETSports and veterans as a whole. It is important to me to shine a light on all the positive things veterans are capable of doing when they return home, and I hope I am just a small example of that to others.”
“He’s a hero,” said Tommy Lasorda, baseball icon. ”A lot of youngsters have baseball players as their heroes. One of a man who’s given his leg and toes and hands and everything, deserves a card. And a lot of people would like to have his card.”
Doc will be signing 100 copies of his “Heroic Inspirations” cards that will be randomly inserted into Upper Deck’s 2013 Goodwin Champions set due out on July 9.