Two days in a row now for Allen and Ginter autograph successes. That brings my success rate up to 4%. Not great, but I am happy to get any back. I have officially pulled the plug on TTM requests for this year. There are only a few more days left of the season and my ten dollar a day stamp habit could use a rest. The plan is to sit back and watch them all pour in now. I have over 250 requests out there, but only 168 are for the Ginter Quest. Anyway, this is the first autograph I have gotten this year from an Oakland A’s player (Dallas Braden, Adam Kennedy, Rajai Davis, Bobby Crosby are all pending) and also the first I have received from an All Star. On the subject of firsts, it is the first one that I have received from a front running candidate for Rookie of the Year, too. This act of kindness on his part could sway my opinion on who should be Rookie of the Year. I am still undecided. I am a total homer for the Rays so naturally I am backing Jeff Niemann. Rick Porcello has the wins lead and Elvis Andrus is getting hot at the right time. The problem is none of those three are responding to my fan mail! It is tight race and like I said, I am pulling for Niemann, but this guy, oh; by the way I am speaking of Andrew Bailey if you haven’t figured that out already, is hard to ignore. He literally came out of nowhere this year. After three seasons in the minors without posting a winning record as a starter, the A’s who were short on arms, gave him a shot in the bullpen. Bailey had never earned a save in the minors, but suddenly this year he has 26 of them in the big leagues. Not bad for a guy with a 12-22 career record, mostly in AA. Seriously, who would have thought that a guy who was 5-9 with a 4.32 ERA in AA last year would be an All Star closer? Not me. His 26 saves won’t rival Fuentes, Nathan, Papplebon or Rivera for the league lead, but the A’s don’t have many games to close. In addition to his 26 saves, he has those guys beat in games (65), innings (80), strike outs (88), wins (6) and games finished (51) and he is tied with Joe Nathan for the fewest homers allowed out of those 5 guys. Oh, and although all five of them are All Star relievers, Bailey is the only rookie in that bunch and that is pretty good company to be compared to, especially when your better! His record of 6-3 with a teeny tiny 1.90 ERA is pretty nice, too. In fact, the only reliever with more strikeouts than Bailey is his teammate in Oakland, Mike Wuertz, who is having a darn good year himself. If you want to compare Rookie of the Year candidates, head on over to the Closet Full of Cardboard blog, he has a great comparison of all of the candidates. I don’t have a vote for ROY myself, but I really do appreciate the speedy turn around on this TTM. Plus, the signature is pretty sweet and it never hurts to add in your number. Much appreciated Mr. Bailey, good luck the rest of the year!