After reading on a couple other blogs that the Cubs were pretty good about signing, I decided to head down to Petco Park today to try and see who I could get. Needless to say, I was a little bit skeptical after being shut out by the Mets back on Friday, but the truth of the matter is you just never know what will happen on any given day. My friend Lawrence and I went to our normal spot next to the Omni Hotel and we arrived a little earlier than usual this time, getting there at about 11:45. As usual, the first members of the Cubs organization to arrive were the coaches, who all took cabs. Dale Sveum, Dave McKay, and Jamie Quirk all signed for everyone who asked, which was only about three people for each. I had nothing for any of them so I passed. Pitching coach Chris Bosio went by unrecognized, and we never saw Pat Listach who I actually did bring a card for (it always helps to go through the list of broadcasters, coaches, and front office staff before trying to get signatures since there are often good players of the past that work for each team).
Over the course of the next 90 minutes, only about seven or eight players arrived at the ballpark. Recent callups like Josh Vitters and Brett Jackson signed, but I had nothing for them either. Anthony Rizzo arrived by cab and tried to sneak through a side door, but was recognized. He only signed for one kid and refused everyone else in the group. Various other players came through and either stiffed everyone or were not recognized in time to ask. This is one problem when it comes to teams with young players; the hardest thing to do is to realize who a certain player is, then find the item you want them to sign be it a picture, card, or baseball, etc.
At this point in time I was starting to have my doubts as to my luck being any good on the day. However, the mere fact that players were arriving by foot or cab was a huge improvement over the entire team riding the bus like what happened with the Mets, so Lawrence and I stuck it out. Besides, our three main targets were Starlin Castro, Alfonso Soriano, and Matt Garza, none of whom had been spotted yet. Soon after getting discouraged, I noticed that Chris Volstad was walking down the street, and he is a hard guy to miss at 6' 8''. I asked him to sign my 2012 Topps card and he obliged...
Finally, here is a nice tip. Jered Weaver of the Angels is signing for free on Thursday at Silk in Pechanga. The signing will take place between 7-9 PM, and I'd suggest getting there early enough to get in line as they usually only allow for a certain number of fans. Free public signings are rare especially for a player of Weaver's caliber. I am up in the air as to going or not....but if I do I will post in on here.
Thanks for reading (all four of you).