While waiting in the Costello line, it was announced that Matt Carpenter could not get a flight out of Texas so his signing was cancelled. I was not too thrilled with the news because he was the only reason I booked the hotel room. I also had this Stadium Club wall art to get signed:
After going through the 3 free autograph lines, my son was ready to go to the game room. Standing still in the autograph lines is not one of his strong suits, so I felt he earned it. On our way there, one of the workers handed us an autograph ticket for Michael Wacha. He was signing from 10-12. I am guessing he did not sell to many tickets at $50 each, so the Cardinals did not want him just sitting at the table. We got ticket #164 out of 400. I would guess they passed out at least 50 free tickets. While my son was in the game room, I went to the lobby hoping to get a ticket for an 11:00 free signing. I was able to get it and also 2 for another free signers at the same time.
So if you can make sense of all of my rambling, I now have 4 different autos to get from the present time of about 10:30 until 1:00. My son was able to spend about 30 minutes in the game room jumping around on some inflatables, so I was hoping he would be ok with a lot more standing. I did bring along his tablet for the trip so he had something to do while waiting.
After Wacha, we went to the line for the paid auto I just got that morning. By this time it was a little after 11, but Adam Wainwright continued to sign until everyone was through his line.
Once out of the Wainwright line, we got the first of the 2 free signers.
By this time is was close to 12:30 and my son was starving. We were able to hit up the lobby for 2 more free tickets before eating lunch. After lunch, we waited maybe 10 minutes for the auto.
We were able to get 1 more free autos before the doors were scheduled to close at 3.
This is the first time in 3 years I did not get Yadier Molina's auto. He was suppose to sign on Monday afternoon from 1-3, but had flight problems. He did show up a little after 3 and signed his 400 autographs. I guess his airline was more reliable than Matt Carpenter's. His auto was $150 this year. I saw a photo of him signing someone's foot. Not sure if there is a more crazy way to throw away $150 than that. Monday was much more hectic than Sunday with a few ups and downs, but overall I was satisfied with the weekend. A few observations from the 2 days:
1. Attendance seemed down. I am not for sure if this was weather related, or had more to do with the increase in autograph prices.
2. Along with Wacha, there were other players who did not sell many tickets. Mike Leak for $30, Jhonny Peralta for $35, and Lance Lynn for $20 were each finished signing well before the 2 hour time frame.
3. Fans are getting tired of the same free signers. I will not complain about anything free, but it would be nice for a little variety next year even if it did cost $5 or $10.
4. The vendor area is geared toward memorabilia now instead of cards. I mentioned in yesterday's post about there only being a handful of dealers with cards. I would estimate there were 10-15 memorabilia dealers selling bats, jersey, balls, and photos.
5. It is always fun to talk to other Cardinals fans in person. It sure helps pass the time while waiting for autographs.
6. I love my wife and daughter to death, but their is something special about spending a baseball themed weekend alone with your son. Memories for a lifetime.