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Autographs at the Red Sox Wives Cash & Can Drive

For twenty straight summers the better halves of the Red Sox roster have set up shop outside Fenway to accept donations for the Greater Boston Food Bank. In addition to supporting a good cause, it’s a great opportunity to snag a tough-to-get autograph from a Red Sox player. Pre-signed photos are available for a $10 donation or ten canned food items.

But it all requires a little luck. When I last attended all the photos were flipped over so it was like a big game of “Go Fish”. The woman in front of me pulled Dustin Pedroia, which I followed with a sterling hand of Mark Kotsay (who had been released the day before), Daniel Bard, Takashi Saito, Manny Delcarmen, and John Smoltz (the only thing that saved me from screaming).

Would my luck change this year? Watch the video to find out.

So, they switched up the format on me. Seeing that all the photos were face up, I was thrilled that I could have my choice of anyone I wanted…until I saw the selection:

  • Matt Albers
  • Alfredo Aceves
  • Daniel Bard
  • Carl Crawford
  • J.D. Drew
  • John Lackey
  • Darnell McDonald
  • Andrew Miller
  • Franklin Morales
  • Jarrod Saltalamacchia
  • Dan Wheeler
  • Randy Williams


Carl Crawford autographed 5x7

Love the black Sharpie corpse they used to sign all the photos.

Also, where were the wives this year? I should have known something wasn’t right.

The Critical Mistake I Made That You Can Learn From
I should have done a walk-by, chatted up the staff, and checked out the wares before committing to four autographs (the maximum donation). Instead, I was surprised by the format change and was forced to choose from photos I didn’t really want. That said, had I pulled those four from a random selection it would have been an improvement from my previous haul. And when it comes down to it, I had fun and it’s all to support a great cause.

If you were me, who would you have chosen?

About the author: is the founder of Autograph University. He lives in the Boston area with his wife and two sons. Connect with him on Twitter at @mattraymond.

12 comments… add one

  • Joe August 5, 2011, 9:09 pm

    I went 3 years ago and they were all face up. We ended up grabbing beckett, Papelbon, Pedroia and Ortiz. As for this year, I would say Crawford and Bard are pretty good and at least you helped out the food bank.

  • Matt Raymond August 5, 2011, 9:35 pm

    You had to be happy with those! Since I posted this a fellow collector told me there are multiple tables around the park (stocked with much better names). Tempted to go back tomorrow…

  • Brad August 5, 2011, 11:18 pm

    Personally I would be happy with the selection because I really enjoy adding new graphs to the collection, but at the same time I am kind of picky so when I saw the dead black marker I probably would have just ended up making the donation and left without an autograph no matter who I was able to choose.

  • Matt Raymond August 6, 2011, 6:52 am

    Great attitude Brad. I think some forget that what’s most important at an event like this is the charity getting donations that can help the people they serve. Beyond “boldness” of a graph, any other qualities/criteria that you’re picky about?

  • Matt S August 5, 2011, 11:53 pm

    I had a feeling they weren’t gonna be 8x10s. nice video.

  • Matt Raymond August 6, 2011, 6:46 am

    Thanks Matt!

  • Bostnfn August 6, 2011, 6:14 am

    You went late.

    I was able to snag: Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Daniel Bard, Clay Buchholz, Carl Crawford, and the guy at one of the tables was running a deal at the end, Jenks, Williams, Wheeler, & Hill for $5

  • Matt Raymond August 6, 2011, 6:49 am

    Awesome haul! I was there around 6pm (30 min after it started) and was surprised by absolutely no line. How was it when you got there?

  • Bostnfn August 6, 2011, 7:39 pm

    I was first today (Saturday) and was 20th in line on Friday. I had a great haul for the two days: 18 total photos for a total of $140

    3 Adrian Gonzalez, 2 Clay Buchholz, 2 Kevin Youkilis, 2 Bobby Jenks, 1 Jacoby Ellsbury, 1 Pedroia, 1 Crawford, 1 Lester (was a no hit photo as well), 1 Saltalamacchia, 1 Bard, 1 Randy Williams, 1 Dan Wheeler, 1 Rich Hill

  • Matt Raymond August 6, 2011, 11:20 pm

    Awesome! Thanks for the update.

  • Jordan August 25, 2011, 1:31 am

    The Brewers ran a similar drive this year. Was also ran by the Brewers wives, with the proceeds going to Brewers Charities. $40 for a signed baseball of a mystery player/coach. Didn’t end up purchasing a ball. Didn’t want to risk getting the first base coach or someone equally awful lol. Thanks for sharing.

  • Matt Raymond August 25, 2011, 1:51 pm

    Good info Jordan. I agree with you on taking the risk, $40 is a lot to lay down for a mystery ball. Thanks for reading!

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