Last week an old buddy from Galesburg, Illinois tipped me off that a package was on its way. Matt and I have made a couple swaps recently, as I’ve sent him a bunch of Tony Gwynn in return for Cubs.
In the last package he filled it up with a bunch of Peoria Chiefs autographed cards. It was awesome! I loved the Cubs-era Chiefs and have graphed the Midwest League both in person and through the mail (TTM).
Well, this package was even more surprising! There was a stack of Cubs cards in one package (he sent TWO packages), as well as some more Chiefs autographs.
Eric Patterson was a highly touted prospect and younger brother of the even more highly touted Corey Patterson. I once interviewed Eric while he was playing with the Iowa Cubs and told the story about getting his first Major League call up. It was believed that Matt Murton was going to make the trip down I-80 from Des Moines, Iowa to Chicago. In fact, Murton and Patterson were in the car when Eric got the call. He was heading to the show for the first time. Patterson said Murton, who had already played in the big leagues, was very happy for his teammate.
Ironically, both Patterson and Murton, and this next guy were all involved in the same trade from the Cubs to the Oakland Athletics in 2008 for Rich Harden. There was another guy the Cubs sent. You may have heard of him: Josh Donaldson. Gallagher was the Cubs minor league pitcher of the year during the 2005 season for the Peoria Chiefs.
Ryan Harvey was a power hitting top prospect for the Cubs in the mid-2000s. Harvey never made it to the big leagues.
And much to my surprise there was more! Two baseballs. Signed baseballs. Near complete team signed balls of the 2005 and 2006 Peoria Chiefs.
Matt even included printed out rosters noting which players had signed the balls. The 2005 ball includes Gallagher, Patterson, Harvey, as well as Sam Fuld and Luis Montanez.
The 2006 signed ball features Robinson Chirinos, and manager Jody Davis. Another player on the ’06 team that I tried and failed to attain an autograph is Yusuf Carter. He was a 12th round pick in 2005 and the nephew of former baseball star (and one time Cub) Joe Carter.
What a sweet mailday! I’m currently putting together some Padres stuff for Matt.