Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Gerald McNeil, Akili Smith, and Adam Eaton

I am going to discuss a return that I got yesterday as well as one that I got back early in the baseball season.  The first return is from Gerald McNeil.  He went to Baylor University and then went to play in the USFL with the Houston Gamblers.  I loved watching the Houston Gamblers with their run and shoot offense.  Of course having one of the best QBs didn't hurt-Jim Kelly.  Mr. McNeil surpassed the 1000 yard receiving mark with the Gamblers.  When the USFL folded, he went to the Cleveland Browns.  He was an excellent return man and made the Pro Bowl.  I had him sign a 1987 Topps card and a picture that I found online.  I really love the picture-it is him returning a kick for a touchdown (was called back) in Cleveland and there is a police officer in the background that is jumping with his arms up.  It is awesome.  He signed both cards with his name and nickname (ice cube).  

The second return was from Akili Smith.  I got him through a private signing on sportscollectors.net. I was born in Astoria, Oregon and as a kid I always thought I would attend the University of Oregon. I love the Ducks and really enjoyed watching Mr. Smith play there.  I rooted for him with the Bengals and was sad to see it not work out.  I don't think he necessarily got a great chance or a second chance (like some seem to always get) but what do I know. LOL  A few years ago I got an extra card from Dan Fouts that he signed.  It is a two sided card with Fouts on one side and Smith on the other.  I sent it in and it came out looking great.  

The last return was from Adam Eaton.  I am not talking about the former major league pitcher but the minor league (hopefully soon major leaguer) outfielder in the Diamondbacks organization.  I really like Adam Eaton and hope that he gets a real shot in the majors.  The only reason that he hasn't already been brought up (in my opinion) is that he is only 5 foot 8 inches.  He is hitting over 380 for the Reno Aces and has stolen a bunch of bases (over 30).  He was an all star last year in single A and this year in triple A.  He has been successful everywhere he has played.  I told him that he was in the perfect place this year because of his coach-Brett Butler.  If anyone can talk to him about the challenges and how to succeed as a smaller ballplayer it is Brett Butler.  One of the reasons I chose to write him was an interview I saw with him online.  He was talking about a bus ride home in the middle of the night and what happened when they came upon construction.  It was funny.  I also found a great picture of him online where he is acting silly in the dugout.  I loved the fact that he is enjoying himself while playing a game.  Mr. Eaton wrote me a note back where he said: He loved Missoula and that it was a great town and team.  His career goals are to be the best player/person that he can be.  The biggest influence on him are his dad and brother Dale.  He plays for them everyday.  
Everyone should root for him to be successful :)

1 comment:

  1. Congrats! Great reasons for getting some great autographs. Keep on blogging! Well done!!!