It took me 22 years to notice …

If you’re a collector in your 30s or older, you remember the rage of autographed multi-sport releases from the early 1990s.

Classic, makers of games and cards, was a major player in the college and draft pick scene at the time and from 1991-1993 it produced a set called Four Sport. Essentially the set was made up of newcomers to the four major sports in North America. Classic was ahead of the game so to say with their inclusions of autographs in packs.

One of the big names associated with these sets has been Alex Rodriguez. 

A-Rod came into the sport with massive hype and as you can tell by this 1993 release, his likeness was put on cardboard from the get-go, and he put pen to card quite a bit back then too. 

I always wanted this card, the one shown above. I believe this is his first certified autograph. Like many Classic autos, this one has a back that signifies that this a legitimate autograph.

But here is something I never noticed before because it only exists on the certified autographs. Do you see it? 

Classic misspelled his name.

I’d owned dozens of the base Rodriguez, which has the same design and picture on front, and that card has his name spelled correctly. 

When this signed card arrived in the mail this week something looked off but I just figured my mind was playing tricks on me since Alex signed his full name instead of the abbreviated one he signs now. I looked at the card again a little while ago and noticed the mispelling. Go figure.

In my opinion, the early and mid 1990s and 2000 autographs of major stars are vastly underrated. These guys didn’t have true signed rookie cards or even signed Chrome prospect cards. These Classic cards, and in some cases Upper Deck later in the decade, offer collectors the early signatures of these generational players. The only real difference from these and the modern ones collectors value more is the lack of shiny card stock and MLB logos.

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