One card for any Cub player that has a certified autograph...
...issued in a year that the player played for the Cubs
...the card shows the player as a Cub.
I use the same rules for relics as well.
I thought that I had every Cub covered, with autographs from 125 players and relic cards for 84 Cubs. But I was wrong, very wrong.
Matt from Once A Cub recently left a comment about a player I may have missed. He was right. Pitcher Brooks Raley has a couple autograph cards from 2013, a season in which he pitched in nine games for the Cubs. I was able get the card for $2.75, including shipping.
How did I miss this?
It's pretty simple. His autograph cards are from unlicensed Panini products. When I was getting my collection together a couple years ago, the unlicensed stuff was not on my radar. I looked over checklists from various Topps products, but it never occured to me to check the Panini stuff.
I should have, and this past weekend, I did.
In addition to Raley, I found autographs and relics for five other players currently missing from my collection. All of the cards are from Panini products.
The missing five are:
- Chris Carpenter (not the good one) has an autograph from 2011 and pitched in ten games for the Cubs
- Thomas Neal has an autograph from 2013, when he made a brief two game appearance
- Josh Vitters, both an autograph and relic from 2012, his one and only Cubs season. I did buy an autograph of him from 2013, figuring that he would be with the team that season too. But he never made it back to Chicago, meaning the 2013 autograph doesn't follow the rule of being from a year the player played for the Cubs
- Tommy LaStella, an autograph from 2015, his first year with the Cubs
- Jeimer Candelario, a dual auto/relic card from 2017, when he played in eleven games before being traded to the Tigers.
I was able to get the missing cards and I'll post them once they've all arrived. I'm hopeful that I now have no holes left in the autograph and relic collection.