First, the mystery: I was browsing eBay and I stumbled across the Bowman autographed card below. If you look closely, you’ll see that it does not look like the signature says “David Bromberg” — in fact, with a little research I found that it is in fact Red’s prospect Robert Stephenson’s signature. Well, errors happen all the time (don’t they, Topps?), but the mystery comes in when I look at checklists for the autograph cards in 2011 Bowman Sterling Prospects (or Bowman Sterling MLB Future Stars, which ever name you choose) and this card is not listed. In addition, I’ve never seen another one listed for auction or sold on eBay, whether refractor or not. This card does not exist anywhere else that I’ve seen.
2011 Bowman Sterling Prospects Refractor #BSP-DB David Bromberg [154/199] (auto ERR)
And now the four letters…which are of course, G, C, R, and L, and that spells GCRL, proprietor of Garvey Cey Russell Lopes. A package arrived with a nice minor league GU of Kyle Gibson, half of Donruss’ 1965 WS tribute Twins set, and a few other Topps and Bowman singles that I needed. All in exchange for Dodgers cards, which never really feel at home here on my desk and are always looking for a place to go…
clockwise, from top left: 2012 Topps Pro Debut Minor League Materials #MLM-KG Kyle Gibson (jersey); 2012 Topps Gold #111 Kevin Slowey [0188/2012]; 2005 Donruss 1965 Twins #16 Jim “Mudcat” Grant; 2013 Topps Chrome Update #MB-38 Kyle Gibson; 2013 Topps Pro Debut #175 Jose Berrios; 2005 Donruss 1965 Twins #26 Billy Martin
Thanks once more, GCRL!
Plus a few other recent Twins pickups, for good measure:
clockwise, from top left: 2014 Topps Tier One Acclaimed Autographs #AA-RNO Ricky Nolasco [264/299] (auto); 2014 Topps Pro Debut Commemorative Cap Patch #MH-KV Kennys Vargas [29/99] (manu-patch); 2004 Donruss Elite Extra Edition #315 Matt Fox [406/473] (auto); 2004 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Status #305 Kyle Waldrop [04/50] (auto); 2002 Fleer Hot Prospects MLB Hot Tandems #BB-TH Torii Hunter (w/Boone) [063/100] (dual bat); 2008 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Sweet Beginnings Gold #109 Brian Bass [29/50] (auto); 2004 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Turn of the Century #305 Kyle Waldrop [158/250] (auto); 2008 Bowman Chrome Prospects Refractor Orange #BCP124 Bobby Lanigan [17/25 (auto)