David Ortiz belted his 300th home run as a member of the Red Sox Saturday night at Fenway. In attendance, perched above the Green Monster was Massachusetts native John King, an anchor for CNN and the network’s chief national correspondent.
The ball came right at him.
King didn’t make a spectacular grab, apparently, but he did manage to corral the semi-historic homer.
A Red Sox representative was on the spot and a deal was made: a Big Papi autographed bat in exchange for the ball, which Ortiz says he’ll display at his home. Apparently, there was no personal meet and greet.
Bad autographs are an epidemic. Not phony ones…although that’s a story for another day. I’m talking bad as in penmanship fail.
It’s part of our link to the FSN story on Harmon Killebrew and Michael Cuddyer today. But that’s just part of a larger problem.
Try to find a legible signature in any autograph card pulled from a pack these days. If you didn’t see the picture on the front and read the text, you’d have no clue who signed it.
I could have picked out five or six others after Beckett published some of the photos from the autograph session. It’s always one or two big letters, then a bunch of wavy lines. Nothing even close to a cursive letter.
I do have a theory.
No one writes letters anymore. The number of people under 35 who write checks is getting smaller all the time. The bank teller rarely looks at your signature on the back of a check to make sure it’s you.
And when you do sign your name, it’s on one of those electronic gizmos at the grocery store after you swipe your credit card. It’s impossible to write legibly on that thing. And no one cares anyway. What those things are supposed to accomplish, I have no clue.
Maybe it’s a reflection of the signature having turned into an apparently meaningless waste of time. There’s an obvious lack of caring on the part of players about what their signature looks like. It doesn’t help that everyone is always in a rush these days.
I pity authenticators who have to decide whether plain old, non-sanctioned autos obtained in person or through the mail are real or not. The exemplar files have to be like deciphering ancient scrolls.