Card of the Day: 2005 Topps Cracker Jack Surprise Signatures Kevin Millar autograph

napt5millarThree. That’s how many basic certified autographed cards Kevin Millar has. He doesn’t have any mass-produced signatures clogging up current products. No sticker ‘graphs for Millar. Just three, and those all were produced by Topps in 2005 and 2006.

It seems like such an odd occurrence for a current major leaguer to have only three autographed cards. Hell, some prospects who won’t even sniff the majors have more than that. But what you have to remember is that Kevin Millar was  replacement player at the start of the 1995 season; his actions of crossing the picket line keep him out of the player’s union, which I believe is a contributing factor to the relatively low number of signed cards.

Video gamers probably know Millar’s deal more than some card collectors. Gamers playing baseball video games looking for Millar (indirectly or not) have noticed that his name is not present on any roster. Instead his stats have been attributed to a fake players, more recently ones bearing the same initials.

All of this stems from the strike, which is now almost 15 years old. Because Millar decided to play while the rest of his brethren was holding out, he was banned from joining the Major League Baseball Player’s Association, the union representing the players. And it is this MLBPA that signs off on damn near all use of a player’s likeness.

What’s interesting to note on this Millar, the 2005 Topps Cracker Jack Surprise Signatures, is that there is a little logo on the back of this card that should not be there. Do you see it?


Right there next to the hologram  is the MLBPA logo, one that is printed on almost every card produced these days — except for those bearing the likeness of a non-union player.

There are few exceptions, most of them retired players, or a guy like Barry Bonds, who opted out of the union and has decided to market himself as an individual. Millar’s other cards, including this 2007 Topps Heritage card, do not have the MLBPA logos like the other players.

I snagged the Millar auto on eBay recently  to add to my Red Sox collection. Although there may be some players who hold grudges against Millar for his actions in 1994/1995, Millar was an integral part of the 2004 World Championship team and his certified signature is a must-have for Red Sox fans.

3 Responses to “Card of the Day: 2005 Topps Cracker Jack Surprise Signatures Kevin Millar autograph”

  1. Kevin Millar was also left entirely out of flagship sets because of the reasons you cite

  2. question for you…I came across your blog today. I have steadily been collecting sports memorabilia since the late 80’s anything that is older than that I got from my dad. I love baseball, and during these hard economic times. I see that people are dumping more cards in the market than in normal years. Maybe you have commented on this, if you have I apologize. However, as these sellers enter the market, driving down prices because of the increase in supply of cards and less buyers in the market because (even tho it’s a great hobby) people are paying their subprime mortgages first and looking at cards second. While I might be in a position (sounds like you are as well) to take advantage of some of the buying opportunities out there how do I go about avoiding some typical mine fields. Recently my pursuit of baseball card collecting has been re-ignited and I share with you many of the same joys and pains that you have expressed on this blog (UD sweet spot, to deals on ebay). With my lenghty comment here I will just ask one more question. How do you send cards to any of the grading agencies without breaking the bank in order to do so? Also are there any upcoming baseball card expo’s in the NY area…not sure where you are located.

    Sincerely, Dan (thank you for taking the time to not only read my winded BS but to reply) have a happy holiday.

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