Friday, April 18, 2014

Game Used Gold

 My collecting habits have tailed off across the board of late.  But one of my favorite elements of my growing collection has been my array of game-worn jerseys.  I've largely focused on more unique pieces - throwback jerseys, commemorative patches, Jackie Robinson Day.

But a trip to the flea market last weekend caused me to stretch my collecting scope a bit broader.  While digging through a dime cards of one vendor I regularly buy from, I ran into a box right in front of me.  A sheet of paper on top said Pirate Jerseys - $30.

I quickly took a glance at the box, expecting to find some China knockoff jerseys or at best some jerseys of guys who left Pittsburgh that the vendor was able to score on clearance elsewhere.  I was quite surprised to find a box full of Spring Training jerseys complete with MLB hologram and decent signs of use.

I flipped through the box, but no players stood.  Lots of non-roster Spring cannon fodder - Brandon Boggs, Rick Vandenhurk, Logan Kensing.  I already have more stuff than I can display, so I figured best to just get my $5 in dime cards and be on my way.
And I did, all the way to the parking lot.  Until I made an abrupt U-turn.  These gold ST jerseys are by far one of my favorites from recent memory.  They only lasted for a couple seasons before being phased out by a black on black abomination this year.  For a mere $30 I'd be kicking myself for passing on these jerseys somewhere down the road.

Another dig through the box found the best of the bunch - Jeff Clement, who appeared in 23 games for the Bucs in 2012 late in the year.  And heck, he's only one letter off from a much more famous Pirate.  But the icing on the cake?  Clement came to the Bucs as part of the Jack Wilson trade with the Mariners, so there's a semi-valid connection there.

One jersey closer to acquiring an example of every jersey style the Bucs have worn during my lifetime.  And still a long, long way to go.


  1. Nice! Picked up my first "game used" jersey - a spring training one from the mid 90's of former Padres catching prospect, Raul Casanova. Only $40, a design that reminded me of my childhood, and a guy who actually played in the bigs, albeit not for the Padres. Plus, Casanova is kind of a cool name to have on the back of a jersey, I guess.

    But yeah, there are worse ways to spend $30 than on a jersey like that, I'm digging it!