As a child chasing autographs during the All-Star Game weekend in 1963, there were plenty of opportunities in the players’ hotels. But one encounter with Casey Stengel left a lasting impression – and even some ink in a local newspaper.
Authenticators and sellers targeted by the FBI for forgeries and frauds are still finding their way onto online marketplace sites, including eBay. Check out the lists of who’s not allowed on eBay and other who should be on the list.
The line “If you build it, they will come” is from”‘Field of Dreams” but it also applies to corporate events and the legendary ballplayers they attract. And even while they are paid handsomely to be there, that doesn’t mean they will cater to the fans.
‘Operation Bullpen’ author Kevin Nelson pens the final installment in his series on the famous forgery ring: Of all the hundreds of thousands of counterfeits produced by the Operation Bullpen gang, none has ever invited so much comment or ridicule as the Mother Teresa baseball, arguably the most famous autograph forgery ever made.
Winners include Ron Keurajian, a contributor to SCD, for his work on the book Baseball Hall of Fame Autographs: A Reference Guide, released in 2012.
The signing habits of Mantle, Williams and DiMaggio on the show circuit and with memorabilia companies was all forgers needed to have a “story” as to why they would be in possession of hundreds of signed photos, for instance, of these superstar players – none of which were genuine.
The art of autograph forgery isn’t limited to simply placing a signatures on an item. As ‘Operation Bullpen’ author Kevin Nelson details, forgers were craftsman who did their homework to deceive collectors, playing on an appearance of vintage to sway buyers.
Kevin Nelson, author of “Operation Bullpen: The Biggest Forgery Scam in American History” debuts his exclusive series on baseball forgeries for SCD, using photos obtained from the FBI and stories he ran across in writing the book. Some of these photos have not previously been seen in public.
In a philly.com column, Mike Schmidt things today’s signatures are horrible, and for a variety of reasons. Since they are no longer legible, he asks aloud why players just don’t use a stamp since it seems they care little about the autograph experience.
The father of modern baseball, Alexander Cartwright, has a distinct signature that is not only hard to replicate but was also used in facsimile fashion.