Tuesday, February 26, 2008
1996 Old Judge T-96 Frank Catalanotto
Who is this? Tigers second baseman Frank Catalanotto.
What is this? An autograph card from 1995 Old Judge T-96 Series, card number 7. The card is serial numbered 5533/6000.
Where'd I get it? I really don't have any clue. I've gotten these cards out of packs, in a large autograph lot and at a clearance sale for a quarter each.
How much did it cost? Anywhere from 25 cents to 5 dollars.
Why is this so special? This is proof that the Retro craze didn't start with Topps Heritage. This minor league set from the mid 90's featured a smaller card size (but not quite the same size as the original Old Judge cards), cardboard stock (also different from original Old Judge cards), a series designation of T-96 (which is actually a series of Prize Winning Dogs) and of most importantly, an autograph per pack. If I remember correctly, the set was filled with minor league prospects most of which didn't pan out very well and Vlad Guerrero. There were also a bunch of insert sets also with autograph parallels including Griffey Jr, A-Rod and Todd Helton. Frank is one of the players in the set who actually made a major league career for himself and is a good fourth outfielder and bench player. Frank started his career with the Tigers and has also played for the Blue Jays and Rangers. He also played for the Italian national team in the 2006 World Baseball classic. He is currently in the mix for a job in the Rangers' outfield. Frank has a nice looking signature considering his hand must have been about to fall off by the time he signed for the 5,533rd time.