The Beckett Blog

Tales from Twitter: Nick Swisher, Jose Canseco, Keith Olbermann and much more… by Chris Olds

Twitter has been talked and written about countless times, but it’s a tool that’s making its presence felt in the collecting community in countless ways.

Want to see the latest from a card company or the latest from Beckett? You can find it there. Want to complain to a card company about something they made? You can do it there. (Pssst … You can also praise them, too. I’m just sayin’.) Want to see the latest deals from notable dealers? Yep, it probably was tweeted.

And there are countless athletes, reporters and others who are on Twitter, too. Want examples? Atlanta Braves red-hot rookie Jason Heyward is here when he’s not smacking baseballs out of the park. Like pinstripes? Try CC Sabathia‘s page. Steve Nash? Amar’e Stoudemire? There are countless others to be found — whether they’re players, leagues, fan clubs and so on…

I’m on Twitter, too, a habit that started some 4,400 tweets ago to see what my favorite baseball player, Nick Swisher, had to say. (That’s literally why I joined — no corporate mandates to generate traffic, no marketing push intended. It started on a whim.)

During my work day, I keep Twitter on (preferred app: TweetDeck) to see what pops up from those I follow, to discuss things with collectors and so on.

And every once in awhile, I’ll ask a question of someone or comment on something everyone else is talking about. Three examples of that from this week alone are below…

On Monday, my favorite baseball player as a child, Jose Canseco, was tweeting up a storm about … well, I’m not sure. But he was talking a lot of trash to haters — yes, he has a few — which only encouraged more snarky comments. (Snarky comments online? Never…)

I, like others, started discussing the oddity that was Canseco on Twitter, though I did defend him to some degree.  … only to receive a message from him mistakenly sent to me. It read “y u so ugly”. As someone who was defending him to some degree, I took it as a misfire, though with everything he was tweeting, who knows? Perhaps he wanted some “media” attention? I don’t know…

It actually wasn’t the first reply I got from him — he commented on a different comment awhile back — but it was an odd one to receive considering I’ve publicly admitted owning 20,000-plus Canseco baseball cards.

Today, a couple other tweets caught my eye as I found them interesting. First, Swisher called out for his 1.2 million fans to tell him in 250 words or less why they’re the No. 1 fan and post it on his Facebook page.

I contemplated whether I should bother, but figured why not… here’s what I wrote. (Warning: It’s not my best work… I’m a little wordier than that.)

What makes me the biggest Nick Swisher fan?

Not sure exactly where it began, but I just am. I’m also a collector.

I’m a long-time A’s fan, so I knew all about Swish from Moneyball. (Ironically, I was at Alabama at the same time as Jeremy Brown.) I think it might be because the hitter who was so well-talked about in the book wore No. 33 and played right field – the same spot as my favorite player as a child, Jose Canseco.

And, the moment that might have locked me in was when a few years ago when Swish jokingly did the Bash Brothers’ bash in a game. Between that and his on-field success (and growing his hair in support of cancer awareness) I found a new favorite.

At one A’s game I was lucky enough to attend, I got an autograph and Swish homered. I was sitting behind home plate to see it all. A thrill.

As a collector, I’ve picked up a lot of Swisherbilia. My collection includes 10 game-used bats, a game-used helmet, a game-used “pre-rookie” jersey, more than 2,000 baseball cards, 200-signed cards and more. It’s never enough! Some of my unusual finds? Swish’s dad’s Topps card contract as well as a game-used Binghamton Mets cap. I even own a bat that he broke in a game – with a photo of the play to prove it.

It’s tough to boil something so intangible down to 250 words, but here are a few images (unfortunately not many cards shown):

Then I provided a link to a few images, which included the one above showing off most of my Swisher game-used bats along with a couple of signed ones. We’ll see if I get the literal one-in-a-million nod, though I’m not holding my breath.

My second tweet of Wednesday was a much simpler one with a much-simpler reply. I noticed noted collector Keith Olbermann sounding off on some MSNBC -blogger controversy with several posts and asked a simple question: “Your favorite baseball card is … ?” The simple answer? “Any Kalamazoo Bat.”

You see, these three examples show the possibilities with Twitter … the connectivity that allows you to discuss and interact with anyone about anything unlike ever before. Heck, there are even collectors who inquire about trying to get autographs via tweets.

Yes, it’s been written about before — and it’s obvious to many people out there  — but there are still plenty of people who aren’t using a tool that can be immensely helpful for their hobby and could help them build their collections, something that, to a lesser degree, can help them explore their interests.

Or, at the very least, it lets them be trash-talked by one of their childhood icons.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.


1 Comment so far
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I still want that Olbermann card …

Comment by Newspaperman

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