|Chris Potter with Hall of Famer Bobby Doerr|
“Right now, to be honest, we’re up to our eyeballs in mail,” said Potter in a phone interview.
His last round of signings included the notoriously difficult Dr. Mike Marshall, who has evaded collectors for a long time, even proving to be a reluctant signer while he was playing. Potter, after taking the time to break the ice with Dr. Marshall, was able to help collectors land one who has kept his signature in great demand. “It’s definitely a scavenger hunt. A lot were able to cross Dr. Mike Marshall off of their lists,” he said.
So how exactly did Potter break down a guy like Marshall?
“It’s just getting to know somebody. It took me a few years just to build a relationship with him. He took a liking to me and it kind of went from there,” he said. For a player who doesn’t like to sign autographs, Potter was impressed with the amount of care Marshall put in to his signature. “He took pride in his signature. He definitely wanted to make things look good. There were situations where he didn’t think things were up to par and he didn’t let me have it. He was very particular about what he let out in to the market. He had a lot of pride in it, which I don’t see a lot of the players have now today.”
It is through these relationships that Potter has been given a window into the lives of these great men who have helped to build America’s pastime. One of those legends he will be visiting is the aforementioned 94-year-old Hall of Famer Bobby Doerr. “Bobby is of the classiest men I’ve ever met. It’s always a pleasure to see and work with him. I had a great time hearing his stories and talking baseball with him. [He is] one of the best ambassadors of baseball.”
With his June 22nd deadline approaching, Potter is excited to get back on the road to visit the players. One of the things he most looks forward to are the reactions of the players to the wide variety of items he reigns in from his customers. Despite the fact that many of these players have been signing their names for over a half-century, they still get a big kick of what Potter brings their way.
“They really enjoy seeing the stuff I bring them. They say, ‘I haven’t seen this.’ ‘Where can I find this?’ They haven’t seen these things in 40 years in some cases,” said Potter. “Sometimes they want to keep it, but I have to tell them they aren’t mine.”
- Click here to view the 80 players that Potter has available for his June 22nd signings, which includes three Hall of Famers, three MVP's, four Rookies of the Year and a host of other World Series champions and other award winners.