There are some prolific Through The Mail (TTM) autograph collectors out there. Torren' Up Cards and The Lost Collector (although I hear he's cutting back) immediately come to mind. Let's make no mistake here: I am not one of them.
My first and last TTM came back successfully during the spring of 2015. I appreciated the way Theo Epstein was going about the business of remolding the Cubs and he didn't have any certified autographs that I could afford.
Early on in David Ross' tenure as a Cub, I thought long and hard about sending out a second TTM request, but I ultimately decided against it as I wasn't prepared to lose one of the customs that were made for me.
This past November I received a mini Zippy Zapping and during the ensuing Pack Wars I found a Ken Rosenthal card from a pack of 2017 Allen & Ginter.
I'm a big fan of Rosenthal's baseball reporting and charitable work through bowtiecause.com. I wasn't sure where to file his card away in my collection, as I am very organized. He didn't really fit any the descriptors of any of my binders or boxes. Typically when this happens I place the cards in the trade box and eventually they find a new home. Yet, I wanted to keep this one.
Then Zippy Zappy mentioned, through the comments, that Ken Rosenthal does TTMs. Now, there was an idea! If I had the card autographed then it could find a home in my autographed cards box!
I found a sheet of notebook paper, penned a nice letter, and shipped out my request, with a SASE, in a PWE on Thursday, January 3rd.
On Saturday, January 12th, I had a letter awaiting me in my mailbox addressed in my handwriting.
Thank you, Mr. Rosenthal, for signing for me! Your card has already been placed in my autograph and relic box for me to flip through on rainy nights and/or snowy weekends. 😀