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Monday, April 16, 2012


I've been away for a good deal of time. As previously mentioned, I lost my wife in July 2010, met and married an AMAZING woman, started two businesses, had a baby, and have been working hard to making my businesses succeed. I have been continuing collecting baseballs, baseball cards and other items related to the National Pastime. I plan on continuing this blog by updating information about the newest additions to my collection!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A New Life

I lost my wife last year to lung cancer. I moved home and thought my life was over. It wasn't. When we took Karin to the hospital in late June 2010, we had the "good-bye" conversation. We knew her condition was grave, but wanted to fight - it was only eight weeks since we found the mass in her lung. So before they sedated and intibated her, we said our good-byes. She told me that if she doesn't make it, she wants me to find happiness again and that she wants me to have another family if I want because I am so young. Naturally, I told her not to worry about these things because she will be fine, but 11 days later she passed away.

For the next two months I was in a mental fog. I put my house up for sale in Virginia, packed up my house, and moved my son and I back to Fairless Hills, PA to be close to my family. I was a vegetable. I didn't eat, only slept and stayed in bed. Such the wrong thing to do.

Then in late August I got out of bed and started my new life. First thing I said I will do is buy a business and transfer my monies from Virginia to PA - the bank I used in VA does not have offices or branches in PA.

I got out of bed, got a shower, shaved, and went looking for a "big bank" to move my money. First thing I thought was Wachovia. I went to one branch, it was closed (this was a Saturday and they closed at 12:00 PM - I got there at 12:05 PM). I went to another branch to see if they were open. Closed at 12:00 PM. It was 12:15 PM and I looked across the street and saw Bank of America. Saying to myself, "they are a big bank," I walked in and took a seat. Five minutes later a gorgeous young lady asked if she could help me.

Long story short, I married that gorgeous lady on January 7, 2011.

Most people say you need time to mourn. OK, people can stay in bed and feel sorry for themselves, or others can say, "fuck it; Karin wouldn't want me like this" and move on. I moved on.

And it was the best thing for myself and my son. He now has two mommies: his protector mommy in heaven and his mommy here on earth.

Liana, I love you with every ounce of my being. You filled the darkest days with light, love, laughter, and happiness. You are everything to me. I cherish you and our expanding family, and look forward to all that life has to offer with you by my side.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

In HONORED memory, my young wife, Karin Andrea Hawk

In Honored, Loving Memory
Karin Andrea Hawk
November 22, 1968 - July 3, 2010

I haven't posted since April 2010. At the end of April, we learned that my young wife, Karin, had lung cancer that had spread to her brain. Ten weeks later, on July 3 at 7:20 PM my beautiful wife left this life, ten weeks after learning about her disease. She was an amazing person, friend, lover, companion, partner, and mother. She will forever be in my heart, and I will see her again one day.

Now Ewan, my six year old son, and I are living in Pennsylvania, close to my family and life long friends. I have purchased many more cards and baseballs and will begin updating this blog after I move into my new home on December 10, 2010.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Some More Autographed ROMLBs

Warren Spahn

Willie Mays - This is one of the few autographed baseballs I purchased off ebay. I prefer to get my autographs in person, but Mr. May's show fees are out of this world! So I bought with off ebay instead of paying the fee. It has Mr. may's own "Say Hey!" hologram along with an independant certification from PSA/DNA.

Willie McCovey - Obtained recently and shows a shakey signature.

Willie Stargell - one of my first autographs obtained in person at a Sports Show in Atlantic City in the early to mid 1980s. My dad is from Pittsburgh and this was important autograph for me to have in my collection.

My Absence from THE BLOG!

Hey fellow hobbists! It has been over a month since my last post. Pathetic. I have no excuse, except I have had little "me time" over the past month! We are having a house guest this summer from Europe, and now that the weather is nice, I have a "honey do" list a mile long! Just this morning I finished the shed I started three weeks ago! I coach T-ball, so I have that two days a week, and during spring break most of my collagues were out of the office, and I was stuck dealing with everything in their absence - can you say 12 - 14 hour work days? YUCK!

And....BASEBALL SEASON HAS STARTED! My beloved Phillies played my now home team (Washington Nationals), so I took my son Ewan to the game at Nationals Park two weeks ago. We have a GREAT FATHER/SON day! Decked out in all of our Phillies gear, we drove to Mom's office in Olde Towne Alexandria, parked, then hopped Metro to the park. When we got there, we hit the FOOD! Sausage, Peppers and Onions for the old man, a Five Guys cheeseburger ( and fries for the boy. I had the obligatory beer at the park, while Ewan and a Sprite. (Rant here, the ball parks need to have some beverage selections for kids - there were no juice selections that I saw, only carbonated, sugar filled beverages.)

I was sporting my Victorino away jersey while Ewan donned his Chase Utley home jersey while we watched the game from the visitor's side, Section 116U.

Anyway, today I am going to post some more photos of my autographed ROMLBs for your viewing enjoyment. I promise to try to make an effort to post more of my collection in the near future.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Here is a recent pick-up on ebay: a gorgeous Larry Doyle T-206 card from 1909 to 1911. The card is sharp and crisp and looks even better in person!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Whitey Ford, then and now

Ok, here are my two Whitey Ford baseballs. The first one (top photo) was obtained at the same autograph show in Atlantic City where I obtained Mickey Mantle's autograph.
The second one is from a private signing Whitey did at his home in Florida. I am a member of the autograph discussion board One of the members arranged for Whitey to do a private signing if he could get 160 committments. I asked and paid for a ROMLB with his full name and nickname, along with "HOF '74". What you see is what I got back from that signing. Here is a link to the thread on Sports Graphing that has photos posted from that private signing:

The Mick

As I mentioned earlier in my blog, one of the baseball related items I collect is autographed baseballs. The main focus of my signed baseballs has been members of the Hall of Fame, but I also have some non-Hall of Fame items in my collection. Here is one of my favorite.
I obtained this autograph in the late 1980s at an autograph show at one of the casinos in Atlantic City (I was about 13 years old when I got this and cannot remember which casino, but I believe it was one of the Trump ones). The great Mickey Mantle was there, along with Whitey Ford, Yogi Berra, and a cast of other legends of the diamond. I remember waiting in line a long time to get Mickey's and Whitey's autograph.
I kept this ball in an acrylic cube for the longest time. Recently, with the blessing of my wife, I have upgraded to nice cherry wood finished wooden cabinets with UV glass. This ball rests with the other legends in one of these cabinets.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Well, I gave myself a belated Christmas Gift by buying TWO vintage cards I had wanted for a LONG TIME! Here is a T-206 Chrisy Mathewson hands folder on chest with black cap graded a PSA 4 - an OUTSTANDING looking card! I AM SO EXCITED TO OWN THIS CARD! There are five cards I really wanted to own, two of which I own all ready: The T-206 Ty Cobb Red Background Portrait; the T-260 Christy Mathewson (shown above); a Cy Young Green Background Portrait; the 1934 Goudey Lou Gehrig; and a pre-WWII Honus Wagner card (except the T-206, which I will NEVER own!)


WOW..... Let me say that one more time; "WOW!" I have all ways had a deep interest in turn of the century tobacco cards. I just love them! I have owned some T-206 cards in the past, but never of anyone famous by today's standards, until today! And boy am I STOKED! I collect T-205 cards, and am trying to collect the set of them, but there are a few other pre-WWII cards that I want to add to my collection. This Ty Cobb with the Red Background is one of those cards. The others include: Cy Young green background portrait; Christy Mathewson hands folded at check with black (prefered) cap (but I won't say no to the white cap version!); and the 1934 Goudey Lou Gehrig. Now THAT is a card!

This card is graded a "30 - Good" by SGC. It does have a horizontal crease, but cards 100 years old do have creases! Although this card was a few bucks, cards in even slightly better condition sell for A LOT more! It seems once you cross that SGC 40 mark, the cost of the cards goes to the moon.

Wow, I have a Cobb....

Friday, February 12, 2010

Baseball HOF Autograph - Earl Averill

Above is a signed index card of Mr. Earl Averill, HOF centerfielder who played the majority of his career with the Cleveland Indians (1929 to 1939). The Cleveland Indians has since retired Earl's nuber (#3). Earl Averill was elected into the baseball hall of fame by the Veteran's Committee in 1975 (my birth year!)

Baseball HOF Autograph - Bowie Kuhn

Above is a scan of my autograph of Mr. Bowie Kuhn, the fifth commissioner of Major League Baseball from 1969 until 1984. Although I like autographed baseballs, I will not shy away from any autograph is good condition. Above you see a signed index card from Commissioner Kuhn. Bowie Kuhn was elected into the baseball hall of fame by the Veteran's Committee in 2008, nine months after his death.

Off Topic - In Memory Of

In Memory of

Wendy Suzanne Hawk

February 12, 1955 ~ February 12, 1995

This next post is completely off topic, so please forgive me.

Fifteen years ago today, February 12, 1995, I lost my mother, Wendy Suzanne Hawk, to breast cancer, she died on her 40th birthday when I was only 19. She fought a long, courageous battle with that evil disease, but in the end God needed her in heaven more than we needed her here on earth. She may be gone, but she is never forgotten. Mom, I love you and I miss you dearly; I wish my son, your grandson, got to know you and the person you were.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Travis Jackson HOF Autograph

Above is a scan of my autograph of Travis Jackson. He signed the 1961 Fleer baseball card with blue ballpoint pen, which I prefer over black ink. Travis "Stonewall" Jackson, a nickname he received because his range of coverage at shortstop resembled a stone wall, played for the New York Giants from 1922 to 1936 and was elected into the baseball hall of fame in 1982 by the Veteran's Committee.

Rube Marquard Autograph

This is a recent pick-up on ebay, HOF pitcher for the New York Giants, Rube Marquard. I like this autograph as Rube's election to the HOF has some controversy surrounding as he is often referred to as "worst starting pitcher in the hall of fame." Either way, he is in Cooperstown, having been elected by the Veterans Committee in 1971.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More T-205 Baseball Cards

Here are some more of my T-205 Cards. I get all of my cards graded by SGC to ensure they do not receive any more damage considering that have 100 years old! Well, they are actually 99 years old, but what's one year when you are 100...

My T-205 Baseball Collection

Although my blog is titled "Vintage Baseballs," I though about adding a few other "vintage" baseball related collections to this blog. These will be baseball hall of fame autographs and vintage, pre-WWII baseball cards.

Here are some of my T-205 card collection. I have about 40 or so cards so far, but only have scans/photos of a fraction of them. As I obtain more cards, and get my other cards slabbed and scanned, I will post them.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

September 11, 2002 ROMLB

This ROMLB is pretty special to me. I lost three friends on September 11, 2001. A week before these attacks, my then girlfriend (now wife! WOO HOO!) and I were in NYC for a weekend of food and broadway shows. I still have the ticket stubs on my wall from the musicals we saw and it is weird to see September 1, 2001 on them... To think I was so close, yet so far away from the events that happened in NYC....

Anyway, above is a September 11, 2002 special First Pitch ball that was to be thrown out at each game played on the first anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the USA. I am proud to own this ball...

ROMLB American League (Bobby Brown) Comiskey Park Inaugural Year

Here is a ball I recently picked up on ebay, a 1991 ROMLB American League Cominsky Park Inaugural Year (1991) baseball. I have been collecting baseballs for about two years, but have recently picked up my procurement of balls as they are not getting cheaper. As all ways, the balls are in their original boxes, and this item is no exception.

I have considered starting to collect very old vintage baseballs that have no boxes, but I think I will delay that collection until another day. Right now I collect baseballs in their original boxes, the T-205 Baseball Card set, autographed baseballs, autographs from members in the Baseball HOF (with prefence to signed baseballs), and the Topps 2004 Cracker Jack set. The Cracker Jack set is my son's birth year and I am attempting to collect each card in the set with the exception of the White Background mini version.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Wilson Official League ball Number W154

This ball is a Wilson - Western Sporting Goods Company Official League Ball number W154 with its original paper seal that dates from 1925 to 1930. Although opened, the box is in excellent condition. The ball is wrapped in lead foil with a tissue paper inner wrapper as shown above.

Wilson American Association Bruce Dudley Baseball - early 1950s

This baseball comes from the early 1950s (possible even the late 1940s). It is a Wilson Official American Association Baseball from when Bruce Dudley was President of the league. Bruce Dudley served as president of the league from 1948 to 1953.

Milwaukee County Stadium

This ROMLB celebrates the Milwaukee County Stadium's anniversary from 1953 to 2000. This is a recent ebay purchase.