The Fan Favorite autographs are good for an occasionally lesser-celebrated player who doesn't have many/any pack-certified autographs on the market. A few years ago I got really excited when Bip Roberts was included and I rainbowed that card pretty hard.
I scanned the checklist for 2020 Archives today and found another name that rung a bell in my collection: Shane Spencer. The only player with a World Series ring who went to my high school. Surprisingly, he has no prior certified auto cards on the market other than the dumb cut-signature type.
|(not mine; pic from ebay)
I originally did a post on my Shane Spencer PC back in 2015, but I've added several cards to it over the past 5+ years, so I figured an update wouldn't hurt. This next part of the post is from when I did my Guys From Granite countdown of players who went to my high school.
This next guy was actually born in Key West, FL and seems to have lived in Florida during his playing days, but he found himself on the opposite end of the country in sunny East County San Diego when he was a teen. He was drafted out of high school in the 28th round, and after leaving Granite Hills, went on play on the biggest stage in baseball and become the first and so far only GHHS Eagle to ever be part of a team that won the World Series.
Shane Spencer put together a decent 7-year major league career as a "4th outfielder" type of player. His best year was his first in the league, 1998. Despite only playing in 27 regular-season games, he was a powerful secret weapon for the Yankees down the stretch, putting up an incredible slash line of .373/.411/.910 with 10 home runs, endearing himself to the Bronx faithful and earning the nickname Shane Spencer, the Home Run Dispenser. He was especially on fire in September, dispensing 3 grand slams in 42 plate appearances. He kept it going in the ALDS, hitting 2 key home runs for New York. In the World Series against San Diego, he played in 1 game, getting a hit in 3 at-bats as the Yankees swept the Padres.
He stuck around New York as a part-time player for a few more years, though he couldn't replicate that rookie magic, averaging .263 over his 5 years in pinstripes, picking up a couple more rings along the way. Toward the end of his career, he played a few games with the Indians, Rangers, and Mets, ending his MLB career after the 2004 season. After a couple years in Japan with the Hanshin Tigers (coincidentally the same team fellow Granite Hills alum Mike Reinbach played for in the late 70s), he hung up his cleats after 2006 and these days he's coaching in the minors.
In summation, the '98 baseball season may have ended in heartbreak for me (being a Padres fan), but in a silver lining, at least Granite Hills had a presence on a World Series Champion. So that's something for me and other Eagles to be proud of. You done good, Shane! Though I missed going to school with him by a couple years, it's cool that someone from my high school won the World Series, even if it was sadly at the expense of our hometown Padres.
Here's what I got of his cards.
Minor league cards.
Rookies. (including a signed one with a COA behind it)
Later Yankees cards.
Rangers and Mets to close out his playing days.
Minor league coaching.
Finally, a couple neat items including a locker nameplate and one of those dumb cut-signatures I was talking about. Glad that I'll be able to add some better autographed cards to the PC soon.
There are still plenty of Shane Spencer cards out there I need, so give me a shout if you have any and want to trade. Thanks!