Jewish baseball collectors rejoice!
Israel Sports Radio has published the Team Israel roster for the qualifying rounds of the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
WBC rules allow non-Israeli citizens of Jewish heritage to compete on behalf of Israel in the tournament. As such, the team is composed mostly of Jewish American minor leagues baseball players. Most of these players have baseball cards available for purchase.
It's been my experience that many of these players are terrific about signing autographs for collectors, both in person and through the mail.
Brett Lorin signed card and note.
Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
David Colvin. Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
Lorin included a note with his autographed card, and Colvin was kind enough to send me his Clinton LumberKings card, at his own expense. Read more about these minor league mensches
in this posting.
Pitcher Eric Berger
is a generous in-person signer. I corresponded with Berger via Twitter
before I met him after a Columbus Clippers game early in May. He autographed seven or eight cards for me.
During a nearly 30-minute pre-game interview he granted for me in June, Berger told me "to represent Israel would be really cool." I'm thrilled for Eric to have this chance!
Former Jewish Major Leaguers on the Team Israel roster include manager Brad Ausmus
. Shawn Green
(DH) and Gabe Kapler
(OF) will serve as player-coaches, while Andrew Lorraine
handles the pitching coach duties. Josh Satin
, a Mets minor leaguer who played in the Majors as a 2011 September call up
is slated to play second base. All have signed autographs for me in response to previous through-the-mail requests I've done over the last four years.
Team Israel t-shirt. Photo courtesy of PrintoMojo.com.
Official Team Israel World Baseball Classic hat. Photo courtesy of MLB.com.
Other memorabilia on the market now includes game tickets. Roger Dean Stadium
will host the WBC qualifiers in which Israel plays. Tickets are not commemorative; they are, rather, standard tickets, featuring team names, dates of games and along with seating information. Tickets are available at the stadium and from TicketMaster.com
for $8-14 (plus fees and shipping costs). I cannot, unfortunately, attend the series, but did buy a ticket as a keepsake for my collection.
Stay tuned to JewishSportsCollectibles.com
over the next weeks. I'll be publishing a posting a series of Team Israel player collectible profiles on the site.
In the meantime, please comment below to let readers know what player cards and memorabilia you have in your Jewish baseball collection, to share photos of the games, or just express your excitement as Team Israel prepares to take the diamond on the world stage.