- Sent: 9/16/17 | Received: 11/8/17 | 52 Days
- ’83 Topps, ’84 Topps, ’88 Fleer, ’89 Topps, ’90 Score
- Address: Home
The Story of the Autograph
Gary Ward is a former outfield for the Twins, Rangers, Yankees, and Tigers. He played in Major League Baseball for 12 years. The father of another major leaguer, Daryle Ward, Gary was drafted in 1972 and saw his first action with the Twins in 1979.
Mr. Ward had some really great years especially in the first part of his career. In 1981 he was 9th in the MLB AL Rookie of the Year Award voting and then Twins Player of the Year and Most Improved Player in 1982. He made the All-Star team twice (1983 and 1985). When you look at Gary’s stats he most definitely had spikes in certain categories with relation to speed and power and overall he had some solid numbers for this career.
In his rookie campaign in 1981 he played half the season (85 games) and hit 3 homers, drove in 29 stole 5 and hit for a .264 average. But in 1982 we definitely witnessed the power spike. Gary followed up that first really sizeable action in 1981 with 18 HRs, 91 RBI, 13 SBs, and a .289 batting average. Overall that looks like Gary’s best year. This was definitely the power spike as he his 7 more home runs than any other year and 12 more than his 162 game average.
I also mentioned the speed spike and when you look at his stolen base numbers he average 10 for 162 games. But in 1985, his second All-Star season, he stole 26. That’s double his highest total for a single year. You can also see a spike in his average in 1986, when he hit .316 for the Rangers. That number is 40 points better than his career average. It looks like though, if you could give Gary some regular playing time and get him in 140+ games, he was going to give you 15-20 homers, 70+ RBI, 8-12 stolen bases, and hit in the .285 range.
An interesting family anecdote, Gary hit for the cycle on September 18, 1980 and his son Daryle hit for the cycle on May 26th, 2004. They are the first father-son combination in major league history to accomplish that feat. Gary still hold the record for the earliest cycle in a career doing it in only his 14th game.
The Score on Gary Ward – 5.0
While I do like a nice and big signature on a card, I also appreciate when someone looks at what they’re signing and then tailors the signature to the item. While these are completely obvious when you look at them one-by-one, seeing them together you get the idea that Gary changes his signature a bit based on the item. I like the idea that people do that because it means they are thinking about what they are signing to me and not just simply scribbling. The ’83 and ’84 cards are smaller signatures and the others are a bit more stretched out.
Gary signs with a good marker definitely. His autograph is interesting because “Gary” is really defined. You can understand it as “Gary.” The “Ward” part however is a bit different. You can see the “W” the best and then the rest is a little swirly king of thing. It adds interest to the signature, but there’s a kind of juxtaposition with the first and last name being different styles.
I’m right down the middle with these. Thanks so much Mr. Ward. These get a 5.0.
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