Who is this? Red Sox pitcher Andrew Miller. What is this? An autograph rookie card from 2007 Topps Co-Signers, card #100 in the set. Where'd I get it? I got it before a Pawtucket Red Sox game at McCoy Stadium in May. How much did it cost? I got it from a 10 cent box at my local card show at the Mansfield Holiday Inn in March.
Why is this so special? Andrew Miller played for the AAA Pawtucket Red Sox from April to mid-June of this season after being acquired from the Florida Marlins in a trade for LHP Dustin Richardson in the offseason. Miller was selected six overall in the 2006 draft by the Detroit Tiger's out of the University of North Carolina, where he won Baseball America's College Player of the Year Award as a Junior and became the first player drafted in 2006 to make it to the Majors when he made his debut on 8/30/2006 against the New York Yankees. Unfortunately, so far in his career, Miller has been unable to find the form that made him such a dominant pitcher in college and has posted mediocre numbers.
To most fans, Miller is best remembered for being traded to the Marlins as part of the Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera deal in December of 2007. However, since being traded to the Red Sox, Miller has had better control of his pitches and has recently been added to the Red Sox rotation and won his first game as a member of the Red Sox today, June 26, 2011.
This autographed card is so special because Andrew Miller is a true Major Leaguer, even when he was in the Minors. While many players with his skills and background avoid fans at Minor League ballparks, Miller was always very kind: signing autographs, taking pictures, and talking to fans. I hope that he remains in Boston and finds the success that has eluded him for too long, and will have his autographed cards as a reminder of what a nice guy he was in Pawtucket.
I'm only putting autograph-related links in this blogroll. However, if you have a blog or a collector site not specifically about autographs, but with an autograph page or an "autograph" label on your blog posts, I'll put that link here.