NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.
Two Jews are at the center of the freeze out between National Hockey League owners and players, as the two parties have failed to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement, again, leading to yet another a work stoppage for hockey.
Donald Fehr, executive director of the NHLPA. Photo by Chris Young/The Canadian Press, via Associated Press.
Dozens of Bettman photos, autographed and unsigned, are available on eBay. Autographed images bring $15-$65, depending on the image and authenticator associated with the listing.
Gary Bettman signed hockey puck.Photo courtesy of eBay.
There are also several pucks inked by the hocky commissioner available for bid, as well as a "Bettman Sucks" hockey puck decal protesting the lockout. These stickers will prove more popular with fans than with hockey's corner office, no doubt.
Bettman detractors can pair thier Bettman Sucks decal with an explicit MP3 download, F%*k Gary Bettman, available on Amazon.com.
The Instigator How Gary Bettman Remade the NHL and Changed the Game Forever. Photo courtesy of Amazon.com.
Less offensive Amazon offerings include Bettman signed photos and books.
Ferh appears in the 2007 edition on card 45, which he shares with former MLBPA executive director Marvin Miller, and in the 2010 issue, on card 44, with Miller and current MLBPA exec Michael Weiner.
A search of eBay turned up very little memorabilia for Fehr. At the time of this posting, only the JML card and a signed baseball were listed on the auction giant, which is also available for purchase on Amazon.
Certainly, patient collectors will, over time, find other Fehr collectibles for sale on eBay.
Donald Fehr signed letter. Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
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Bud Selig signed HeroDeck playing card. Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
Selig's cards, according to Beckett.com, These include cut signature and autograph cards from Fleer and Upper Deck. He's also got a Hero Deck playing card bearing his caricature, a Wisconsin Historical Museum issue (#63 in the series honoring the 1957 Braves), and Jewish Major Leaguers cards (2006, #43, 2010, #43).
The JML cards sell for $5-10. I've seen the Wisconsin Museum card listed on eBay for $3. The playing card is available for around $2. None of these cards are, unfortunately, listed in the Beckett Marketplace.
Selig has been a willing through the mail signer, in the past. He signed my Hero Deck card and enclosed a signed business card in response to my letter requesting his autograph.
Bud Selig Statue SGA. Photo courtesy of eBay.
Selig is also memorialized in bronze, with a statue in his likeness having recently been unveiled outside of Miller Park. The St. Paul Saints issued a "Best Bud" statuette to commemorate the occasion. The stadium give-away was limited to 2,500, and is selling for $10 and up on eBay.
A search of eBay this morning shows a variety of other Selig memorabilia available.
Bud Selig signed check. Photo courtesy of eBay.
This includes ten Brewers checks signed by Selig as team owner. I've got only one signed check in my collection (from Negro Leagues female player Toni Stone), but I find these fascinating collectibles. The signature is almost guaranteed to be authentic, and the payee/payor information offers a snapshot of a single moment in history.
Also available for bid on eBay are bats, baseball cards, balls, photos, magazines and programs, business cards, mini helmets and letters signed by the Commissioner. There's also a 2010 Brewers program available from the game at which the statue of Selig was dedicated in Milwaukee.
In The Best Interests of Baseball, by Andrew Zimbalist. Photo courtesy of Amazon.com.
Collectors can also find autographed baseballs, photos and business cards inked by Selig, along with a song titled, Bud Selig (Shake & Bake)
(warning, this song has explicit lyrics), on Amazon.
Selig's facsimile signature is, of course, on every official Major League Baseball. I'd love to add a signed Selig OML ball to my collection. Does anyone have one?
What other Bud Selig memorabilia do you have in your Jewish baseball collection? Have you had the chance to meet the Commish? Share your thoughts with other JewishSportsCollectibles.com readers by commenting below.
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I've received 14 responses back from players, as of September 7.
These include a signed 2009 Midwest League All Star card from Brett Lorin that came with a note, written on a scrap of what I presume to be my request letter. The note reads: "Lecheim! Haha. Thanks." Interesting.
What struck me as most impressive, though, were envelopes I received back on August 31 from three minor league mensches.
David Colvin of the Clintonville LumbuerKings, and Zach Kapstein and Jadd Schmeltzer of the Lowell Spinners each autographed the Signature Cards I'd included with my letters. Each of the players also included an autographed 2012 Grandstand team set baseball card with their response.
That's classy! Thanks, guys.
Have you had any success mailing to Jewish major or minor leaguers this season? What's your favorite "'graphing get"? Share your successes with JewishSportsCollectibles.com readers by commenting on this post below.
Collectors seeking Koufax cardboard have a wide variety of options.
Beckett.com lists 947 different Koufax cards in its online checklists. The Koufax card catalogue includes dozens of modern commemoratives that book for a few bucks, as well as vintage pasteboard and modern autograph inserts that can set you back thousands, even tens of thousands, of dollars.
The lefty's interesting cards include:
Koufax's Topps 1955 rookie and 1956 cards. Both feature beautiful designs and were among Topps' "All Time Fan Favorites" cards, as mentioned in a previous JSC.com posting.
The 2000 Upper Deck issued the Brooklyn Dodgers "Master Collection," a limited edition,15-card set numbered to 250 and 11 memorabilia chase cards.
The Koufax memorabilia card (LOF 11) includes an action shot of Koufax in full windup, over the exterior of Ebbett's Field. It includes an autograph and a swatch of one of the hall of famer's game-used jerseys. The card sells for $800-$1,800 on eBay.
Koufax also has a card in the 2003 debut Jewish Major Leaguers card set. His card is, in fact, the first in the set (JML 2003, #1). Like the lefty's other cardboard, the Koufax JML single commands a premium. The standard issue card sells for nearly $20 on eBay. Collectors should expect to pay as much as $65 for the gold limited edition card.
Despite the southpaw's notable public reclusiveness, there is no shortage of Koufax autographed baseballs on the market, for collectors wanting to put a signed orb on their mantle or in their display case.
Steiner Sports (fair warning: you'll inexcusably, in my opinion, be required to enter your email address in order to view the Steiner website!) offers five varieties of Koufax autographed balls, including signed balls with World Series, Perfect Game and Cy Young inscriptions, for $500-$1,000.
Amazon.com sellers offer more than 150 different Koufax autographed baseballs, including those offered by Steiner, Upper Deck and balls authenticated by James Spence and PSA/DNA. Cost varies widely by seller and inscription, but expect to pay at least $300.
Koufax signed jerseys -- both autographed and unsigned -- are also available on Amazon.com. Unsigned replica jerseys start at $75. Mounted Memories offers Koufax autographed jerseys -- including Mitchell & Ness home and away jerseys with a variety of inscriptions -- both on its site and Amazon. Prices range from $800-$1,000.
Vintage Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers team- and multi-signed jerseys, balls and bats occasionally come up for regularly bid at the marquee action houses. Given collector demand and the other Hall of Famers on the Dodgers squad, these always realize premium prices.
It's rare, however, to see a Koufax game-used jersey or glove on the auction market. And, when such items do go under gavel, they've commanded high-five- and even six-figure bids.
Koufax's signed 1966 World Series game-used leather -- which the pitcher autographed, inscribed and gifted to umpire Doug Harvey -- hammered for $107,550 during Heritage Auction Galleries' April 23-24, 2009 sale.
One of Koufax's signed, 1957 game-worn Brooklyn Dodgers road jersey gaveled for $77,675 during the September 11, 2004 sale by Heritage. A jersey like this would almost certainly realize more money now than it did 7 years ago, despite today's bleak economy.
If you like your collectibles hanging on the wall, there are numerous Koufax photos and artwork available for purchase.
Steiner Sports offers 15 Koufax photos. Expect to pay between $699-$1,400 for the unframed, autographed, 16X20 black and white images.
The same Steiner memorabilia is also available on Amazon.com. Purchasing through the Internet superstore can save budget-crunched collectors a few sheckels (as much as $150!).
Also available on Amazon.com are several Upper Deck Authenticated images of the southpaw, including the signed photo of Koufax celebrating his fourth no hitter shown to the right above.
The autographed displays will set you back approximately $1,000.
Koufax is also the subject of a well-known Leroy Neiman serigraph, pictured at right. Expect to pay $2,000-$6,000 on eBay for the print. Collectors with modest budgets can occassionaly find promotional postcards for the serigraph for about $10 on eBay .
I'd hoped to complete all of the profiles of the Jewish World Series MVPs during the World Series. This review of Sandy Koufax's collectibles took longer than expected, however, given the breadth of his available memorabilia.
While it may publish after the Series is over (come on Feldman and Kinsler!), stay tuned for a posting in the coming days on the cards and memorabilia of Steve Yeager -- who converted to Judaism after his career.
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For collectors with more modest budgets interested in owning Elias memorabilia, the 2010 Obak baseball card issue includes an Al Elias card (#72). These sell for less than $3 on eBay and the Beckett Marketplace.
Do you have any Elias memorabilia in your collection? If so, what is your most treasured piece?
Also, does anyone know if Seymour "Sy" Siwoff, who took over management of the company when the Elias brothers stepped back, was Jewish? How about current Elias exec Steve Hirdt?
Fast forward to Brooklyn in 1947 and you'll find the next Jewish link in the "moneyball" chain.
That's when Dodgers owner Branch Rickey hired Allan Roth as the first full-time statistician in baseball. The Montreal Native and member of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, pioneered the importance of on-base percentage, RBI percentage and pitch counts. He worked for the Dodgers, provided stats for radio and TV broadcasts, and edited Who's Who In Baseball.
Collectors seeking Roth memorabilia have a variety of options.
An eBay search shows vintage issues of Who's Who, '50s era Dodgers statistics guides (which the seller says come from Roth's personal collection - the seller has 100% positive feedback, but buyer beware), several vintage photo negatives, and program from Roth's 2010 induction into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.
I bought one of the photos of Roth that I found on eBay while researching this posting. I'm proud to add the piece to my Jewish baseball collection. What Roth memorabilia do you have in your's?
Moving into the modern era, we arrive at the Boston Red Sox c-suite. The office that Theo Epstein calls home (for now).
According to the article "The Art Of Winning An (even More) Unfair Game," a in the September 26 issue of Sports Illustrated, Moneyball author Michael Lewis approached Epstein about including the Sox in his book. Epstein balked at the idea, not wanting to share his methods with the rest of baseball. Epstein, in fact, thought the A's Billy Beane was giving away the recipe for the secret sauce. Using SABRmetrics, Epstein and the Red Sox won the team's first World Series since 1918.
The Yale grad is featured several baseball cards. These include a 2004 Red Sox team card, 2005 Topps Fan Favorites, including autographed, color and printing plate variations, 2006 Topps Autographs. Epstein is also depicted in caricature on a Red Sox Hero Deck playing card.
The 2005 Topps Fan Favorite standard issue sells for as little as $0.29 in the Beckett Marketplace. The HeroDeck issue for $2-3.
eBay is ripe with Epstein memorabilia, including signed jerseys, bats, balls, and photos.
I have tried, unsuccessfully, to get Epstein to sign autographs through the mail. What have your experiences been in getting the Sox GM to sign? What memorabilia do you have in your collection? What's your favorite piece and why?
Expanding the sphere of Jewish influence on, and use of SABRmetrics, you can add two recent books -- The Baseball Talmud and The Extra 2% -- to your shelves.
Lastly, if Jonah Hill's status as Brad Pitt's co-star in the film is enough to qualify it as a Jewish baseball movie in your definition, Moneyball -- the movie itself -- offers collectors a bevy of interesting opportunities. Think movie posters, lobby cards, DVDs, publicity photos, entertainment magazines, etc.
Will you collect Moneyball the movie because of its Jewish co-star? What memorabilia do you want in your collection?
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