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Autograph Adventures – Pedro Martinez

December 3, 2011
Bedford, Massachusetts

It was a Black Friday scene all over again at HomeGoods in Bedford, Mass. Two hours before Pedro Martinez was set to kick off a scheduled toy drive, over 150 people lined the cold sidewalk outside the store. Lawn chairs marked the first dozen spots, their blanketed owners ensuring an early opportunity at the limited time offer.

Pedro Martinez signings autographs at a toy driveWhat a deal. In exchange for two unwrapped gifts, Pedro would sign an item of your choice. Collectors (and more than a few looking to profit off the event) stood with baseballs, bats, photos and jerseys—I even saw an end table adorned with the faces of Red Sox stars. As the sun dropped it took the temperature along with it. During a wait like this (which is quite common in this hobby), the people around you make all the difference. I lucked out and made friends with a few collectors eager to trade tips and share autograph adventures. It’s amazing how good company passes the time. Soon (or so it seemed) I was inside the store, and at 6:45 p.m.—over 3 hours after arriving—I was in front of Pedro.

He was an assembly line but cordial with fans, responding to questions and well wishes. I asked him if he remembered the first time he signed an autograph (no surprise to those familiar with my interviews). He didn’t recall, he said with a smirk. I thanked him for coming and he replied warmly.

Pedro Martinez autographed baseball“It’s a pleasure,” he said, handing me a baseball signed perfectly across the sweet spot. “Always happy to be with you guys.”

Numerous sources reported that Pedro stayed over an hour past the allotted time to ensure everyone received a signature. It was an incredibly well-organized event and a thrill to meet Pedro—a legend, a future Hall of Famer, and a true ace on and off the field.

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About the author: is the founder of Autograph University. He lives in the Boston area with his wife and 2-year-old son. Follow him on Twitter at @mattraymond or on Facebook.

7 comments… add one

  • Mike December 5, 2011, 10:22 am

    Matt-

    Congrats on getting Pedro. He has always been on my list of autos to get. I was actually thinking of coming up to that event in January to get his along with future Sox stars.

    I actually heard he stayed more like 2.5 hours longer signing autos than he had originally been expected. Although Pedro may have had a percieved rocky relationship with fans, he has for the most part always signed. I’m glad he helped the Toy Drive here.

  • Matt Raymond December 5, 2011, 6:22 pm

    Thanks for the comment Mike. Pedro was fantastic, can’t emphasize it enough.

  • Allon December 5, 2011, 4:04 pm

    I was 6th in line, and then jumped back in at the end. He signed until past 8:20 – when I got my second. He wanted to make sure that everyone in line got one signed. He was amazing! I guess there was some line cutting, but in the end that didn’t matter. All four items that I got (my fiance helped me out) look amazing. He was gracious to everyone, and seemed to be in a great mood. Certainly one of the more enjoyable autograph experiences I’ve had.

    I was probably the one you saw in the front with a blanket on. I didn’t think ahead that we’d be outside, so I didn’t bring a jacket — like an idiot.
    I

  • Matt Raymond December 5, 2011, 6:23 pm

    Thanks for sharing your experience Allon. I had a blast.

  • Gregory December 5, 2011, 6:40 pm

    Wow, sad I missed it, being a Mets fan and living in Mass! Congrats!

    Any info on a January event? I’ve heard rumors but no info.

  • Matt Raymond December 5, 2011, 7:40 pm

    Here are two Boston events Pedro will be at in January:

    Jimmy Fund Dinner – January 13, 2012

    New Stars for Young Stars – January 14, 2012

  • Gregory December 5, 2011, 7:54 pm

    Thanks!

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