Sunday, June 30, 2013

Robert Woods Signing Deluxe Signature Collection DSC at South Bay Baseball Cards 6-30-13

After getting Adrian Gonzalez's autograph at Dodger Stadium I headed out to the Robert Woods Signing at South Bay Baseball Cards in Lomita. My buddy Michael from Deluxe Signature Collection aka DSC invited me to the event. Robert was scheduled to sign from 1-3pm at South Bay Baseball Cards today.

I arrived at the store at around 2 and met up with Michael. This was my first time at South Bay Baseball Cards and it was a nice shop compared to other card shops i've been to in the past with a good selection of sports cards and memorabilia. Cards shops near my neighborhood all went extinct during the 90s after the advent of Frank and Sons so it was nice to go to a mom and pop card shop to check out what they had.

As soon as I arrived Robert Woods was being interviewed by Blue Chip Talk.

After finishing up the interview he signed my 11x14 photo for me and was nice enough to inscribe my photo for me as well.

Robert is a good character guy and was nice to the fans today. I hope Robert kicks ass next season for the Buffalo Bills. I wished him good luck next season and that I hope he wins the offensive ROY award next year.

As soon as I got my photo signed DSC was nice enough to do on site authentication for me absolutely free which was a nice touch. They entered the item into their database so I can look up my item on their website and also provided me with a credit card that matches the hologram sticker on my photo.

Deluxe Signature Collection was also holding a raffle at the store giving away signed photos, mini helmets and full size USC helmets. I ended up winning the grand prize which was a full size USC helmet signed by the entire 2012 USC football team which was also authenticated by DSC.

The irony is that I am a UCLA grad so it's funny that I own all these USC items now. I still love how the signatures came out and since I am an autograph collector it was still a nice addition to the collection. I never thought my first signed full sized football helmet would be a USC helmet though. Still I felt really lucky to win the raffle.

I want to thank my friend Michael from DSC for inviting me to the Robert Woods signing. The signing was  well organized and I encourage all of my readers to check out their upcoming signings.

Adrian Gonzalez Viva Los Dodgers 6-30-13

I decided to check out Viva Los Dodgers at Dodger Stadium today with my buddy Benson to get Adrian Gonzalez's autograph. We decided skipping the T-Mobile signing on Saturday since we found out from other graphers that people were camping out 14 hours in advance of scheduled signing at 10am. We are both too old for this since we both don't have the energy or the patience to camp out for autographs anymore. Thus we figured this was an easier route to getting Adrian's autograph.

As soon as we arrived at Dodger Stadium we met up with our friends Franz and Josh who are both regulars at Dodger Stadium. They were both at the Adrian Gonzalez signing at T-Mobile on Saturday and they still came out today to get some additional items signed by Adrian. That's what I call hardcore graphing and I admire their patience and overall will to get autographs. It was nice to chat it up with the guys before the stadium gates opened under 100 degrees heat. Boy was it hot today and the last thing I wanted to do on a nice Sunday was to stand out in the sun all day. However I still had my jerseys to get signed which is what made me go through with this today.

As soon as the gates opened we rushed into Lot 6 at Dodger Stadium where Viva Los Dodgers was taking place.

There was already a huge crowd waiting in line to get inside as bags were being checked. As soon as the event started Adrian began to sign. I'd estimate that I was about 20th in line. Franz ended up getting a black ROMLB signed.

Josh aka Dodgerbobble ended up getting a jersey signed as well.

As for me I was finally able to get one out of my two Adrian Gonzalez jerseys signed today.

I hopped back in line hoping that I could also get my Adrian Gonzalez Padres jersey signed as well. However Adrian signed for about another five minutes and left since the game was about to start. The signing literally took about 10 minutes. I wouldn't even consider this a signing due to the short duration. I'd consider this to be an appearance. In total i'd guess he signed about 30-40 autographs today max. A lot of folks left empty handed. I wish he would have signed longer. I felt extremely lucky to even get his autograph today. I hope next time they invite him as a guest for Viva Los Dodgers he signs more than 10 minutes.

Luckily the graphing family all got their items done today and nobody that I knew personally left home empty handed.

Afterwards Benson and I decided to go inside the stadium to see if we could catch anyone signing inside. Sunday is a terrible day to graph at the stadium since there is no BP but it was still worth a shot since we were already at the stadium today.

As soon as I entered Chris Capuano signed a photo for me near the bullpen. He was particularly fond of the picture since it was a rare photo of him batting. I told him it was a photo of his homerun swing.

Then we went over to the Phillies side to see if we could get some of the pitchers to sign for us. The Phillies are a notoriously bad signing team as noted when I tried graphing them in Florida last month. Today was no different as none of the Phillies would sign for us.

On a side note by buddy Josh got beaned by a pitch by Jonathan Papelbon during warmups. The ball flew right between me and Benson and hit Josh in the shoulder. The baseball bounced towards me and I picked it up. After realizing it hit Josh I ended up giving him the baseball. What makes this situation worse is that Jonathan never even apologized to Josh for hitting him. He ignored the entire situation and didn't even come by to check how Josh was doing. The ball hit Josh pretty hard. What a way to stay classy Jonathan. What made matters worse was that when Josh reported it to guest relations they were being sarcastic asking him if we needed to call the ambulance. How classy is that? The entire incident left a bad taste in our mouths in what was an otherwise great day of graphing at the stadium.

Afterwards I headed up to the Robert Woods signing in Lomita.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Gilbert Arenas: Drew League Game 6-23-13

I decided to check out the Drew League today to get a chance to see Gilbert Arenas play live in person. The Drew League is celebrating their 40th anniversary this year and is by far the best summer pro am league in LA. Lots of local legends play in the league along with NBA stars as well. I haven't seen Agent Zero since his playing days for the Washington Wizards so it was nice to see him play live in person again.

What's cool about the Drew is that you can sit anywhere you want since they don't sell tickets to watch the games. It's first come first served and admission is free including parking. I decided to sit behind the bench near Nick Young who was coaching Gilbert Arenas' team.

I noticed that Austin Daye was coaching the opposing team. During halftime I had him sign a photo for me.

He signed on the darkest part of the photo for some reason. I may need to reprint this photo and get it resigned in the future with a silver pen. I figured he would sign near the floor where it is lighter so the blue sharpie would pop. Oh well.

Nick Young ended up signing two photos for me after the game.

Afterwards Gilbert Arenas signed my jersey for me along with a 11x14 photo as well. Here he is chatting with Mychal Thompson.

I wish I brought stuff for Mychal Thompson but I didn't expect him to be there to watch. All in all it was a great day to watch some summer hoops. I can't wait for the NBA season to start again next year.

Andrew McCutchen: Angels vs Pirates Game 6-21-13

The Pirates were in town for a three game interleague series vs the Angels. I decided to attend the game on Friday after work with the goal of adding Andrew McCutchen's autograph to my personal collection. I met up with Benson at the stadium gates. There he presented me with two SGAs; a CJ Wilson Bobblehead and a Mariano Rivera Tribute card. Since I couldn't attend the game on Thursday for the bobblehead night he was kind enough to pick one up for me. Thanks again Benson.

Both items will look great as a display next to my signed Rivera and Wilson ROMLBs.

I also met up with Matt Crocker to complete a trade for a Felix Hernandez ball he recently acquired this past week when the Mariners were in town. I think this was his third or fourth Felix ball. Matt is a legend/hofer among graphers and is the only person I know who was able to acquire Kobe, Jordan, Gretzky, Phelps, Ozzie Smith, Ken Griffey Jr and Roger Clemens' autographs in a span of 1 month not to mention all of the other legendary autographs he owns in his collection. Thanks again for the trade Matt.

Today was Peter Bourjos poster night to commemorate the famous catch he made vs the Orioles a few weeks ago.

What I get annoyed about posters is that they always end up getting wrinkled by the end of the night especially if you are trying to graph at the same time. Plus I am too lazy to carry around a poster roll since it never fits my backpack. I wish they would make posters smaller. I had my buddy David A carry my poster in his backpack the entire night since I hate carrying these things around. Thanks again Dave. 
As soon as we entered the stadium I took a few pictures of the Pirates stretching over the dugout.

Starling Marte signed over the dugout for a few fans but we barely missed him.

The first Pirate to sign for me was Bryan Morris who signed over the dugout.

After warmups most of the Pirates were playing catch in the outfield so we headed over to the VIP seating area where both Andrew and Starling were playing catch.

As soon as Andrew finished playing catch he came over and signed for my buddy Kyle. Luckily the usher let me inside the VIP area as well since she promised me that if Cutch signed she would let me get his autograph. As soon as Cutch finished signing for Kyle, Andrew signed my ROMLB on the SS.

Soon afterwards chaos ensued as all the other graphers were chanting my name asking me to get Cutch's autograph for them. I handed Cutch Benson's baseball and got him to sign his baseball. Then I ended up getting Bruce's cards which Cutch signed as well. During the madness I wasn't able to take any photos but luckily my friend Kyle did. Here is a photo that Kyle took on his instagram page showing Cutch signing autographs for us.

Make sure to follow Kyle (addictiveartwork) and me (lowdownrow) on instagram.

Check out Kyle's photo of Cutch. It's simply amazing and I think Cutch ended up giving Kyle the cleanest signature today.

The first photo above shows Benson. He doesn't like to be photographed so he purposely turned his back on me when I took a photo of Kyle with his signed painting.

Cutch was friendly as can be and was signing away. I ended up getting two ROMLBs signed by Cutch on the SS.

Cutch pretty much made our day since all of the graphers were there to get his autograph and the series just barely started.

Andrew McCutchen was also interviewed near the dugout as well.

As soon as he finished the interview we all thanked him again for signing for us today.

Neil Walker was the next player to sign for us and he ended up signing a card for me.

Afterwards Gaby Sanchez threw me a brand new ROMLB while I was chilling near the dugout. I didn't even bring my glove today since I wasn't planning on ballhawking. I ended up getting a second baseball from one of the Pirates trainers as well over the dugout. You can notice how clean the Sanchez baseball is vs the one the trainer gave me which shows more BP use.

The last Pirate to sign for me was Charlie Morton who signed over the dugout.

Overall it was another fantastic day at the stadium. I want to give a shout out to all the graphers at Angel Stadium including Benson, Matt, Kyle, AlexRob, Kyle S, Ryan, and Scotty.