Home Field Collection

By Jason Klein  

Originally Written For New York Yankee Legacy Magazine – October 2010

Click each individual thumbnail below to read the feature story, exactly as it appeared in New York Yankee Legacy Magazine:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Want the Dirt At Steiner Sports?

By Jason Klein

Originally Written For The Official Steiner Sports Blog – 3/23/10

Want the dirt?  Steiner Sports has all the dirt!

Looking for the juicy details on who’s dating who from around baseball?  Want to know which players can’t stand each other, or which managers and owners are at odds?

If those scandalous details are of interest, keep looking!  Steiner Sports doesn’t have that dirt…they have THE dirt!

Mariano Rivera scoops up dirt following final game at Yankee Stadium/AP

In 2010, Steiner Sports, an official licensee of Major League Baseball, will offer fans of all thirty clubs the opportunity to own actual dirt from their team’s home ballpark.  Buckets of game used soil will be unearthed following each team’s first home game of the 2010 season, delivered to Steiner Sports corporate headquarters, and made available for fans to own.

This is nothing new for Steiner Sports, the leader in game used collectibles, who already enjoys relationships with the New York YankeesBoston Red Sox, andChicago Cubs.  However, in 2010, capsules of authentic stadium dirt will be available for all thirty teams, and will be available in a variety of formats, including team coasterscrystals,plaques and collages.

So what?  What’s the big deal?  It’s just dirt, right?

After all, players spit on it, dig their cleats into it and managers kick it in disgust, as if their earthly abuse will somehow prove a point or win an argument (see Chicago Cubs Manager, Lou Piniella).

Yet, stadium grounds crews treat it like gold, constantly grooming and raking it, hosing it off, and decorating it with white lime powder around the batter’s box and foul lines.  They make sure it’s perfectly manicured at all times.

With that said, is there any value in owning dirt?

Let’s judge the significance of Major League dirt by its role in the game’s history.  The filthy truth is, since the beginning of time, where there’s baseball, there’s dirt…ever watch “The Sandlot?”  Even in MLB stadiums featuring artificial turf, dirt can always be found somewhere on the field: on the base paths, on the mound, and in the batter’s box.

The dirt has even been a part of some of the most historical, and memorable plays of all-time.  Jackie Robinson kicked up Yankee Stadium dirt on Yogi Berra as he slid into home plate during Game 1 of the 1955 World Series.  Though the Dodgers lost the game 6-5 to the Yankees that day, they went on to win the series in 7 games.  To this day, Berra insists Robinson was out.

During the 1970 All-Star Game, American League Catcher, Ray Fosse was close lined to the Riverfront Stadium dirt in a collision with Pete Rose at the plate.  The famous altercation gave the National League a dramatic 5-4 victory, and permanently damaged Fosse’s left shoulder, and his career.

Dirt from the Oakland Coliseum covered the front of Rickey Henderson’s jersey on May 1, 1991 after he collected his 939th career stolen base, passing Lou Brock for first place all time.  Throughout his career, Henderson made a habit of getting dirty, perfecting the head-first slide and totaling 1,406 career stolen bases.

Dave Roberts turned himself into a New England folk hero when he slid head-first in the Fenway Park dirt, past Derek Jeter’s tag at second base, during Game 4 of the 2004 American League Championship Series.  The legendary stolen base, coming with the Sox down 3 games to 0 and on the brink of elimination, changed the momentum and the history of the rivalry.  The Red Sox went on to win the series in 7 games, and won their first Championship in 86 years.

Stadium dirt played, perhaps, its most prominent role in a game’s outcome during Game 6 of the 1986 World Series.  A dribbler up the first baseline, off Mookie Wilson’s bat, skipped off the Shea Stadium dirt, and under the glove of first baseman Bill Buckner.  The legendary gaffe allowed Ray Knight to score the winning run, and sent the series to a pivotal Game 7, where the Mets prevailed.

Imagine owning some MLB Authenticated Shea Stadium dirt taken from the field after Game 6 in 1986?  What if a capsule of that dirt was framed up with an 8×10 photograph of the ball bouncing through Buckner’s legs?

That’s the kind of opportunity that awaits baseball fans of all teams in 2010.  Great moments happen every day in baseball.  Commemorate those moments by owning an actual piece of the field they occur on.

Steiner Sports is just the company to make this revolutionary collectible possible.

It’s a dirty job, but someone has to do it.

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Quick Year is a Memorable One at Steiner Sports

By Jason Klein

Originally Written For The Official Steiner Sports Blog – 12/24/09

“Life moves pretty fast.  If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

Those words, once spoken by Matthew Broderick in the 1986 hit “Ferris Bueller,” couldn’t be more apropos when thinking back on 2009 at Steiner Sports.  It was a year that had Steiner Sports employees’ heads spinning with activity and customers’ heads turning with curiosity and intrigue.  Though it flew by, it was a challenging, yet rewarding campaign, filled with moments and achievements that revolutionized the sports collectibles industry…again.

The final year of the “double zeros,” the “oughts,” or however one chooses to refer back to this decade, saw Steiner Sports prosper through three defining moments in company history, events that changed the way the company functions, and further developed the way sports fans collect memorabilia.

The Move

In recent years, Steiner Sports has developed relationships, and partnerships with some of the most successful organizations in professional and collegiate sports.  The company currently provides exclusive access to game used collectibles from the New York YankeesBoston Red SoxDallas Cowboys, and Notre DameAlabamaNorth Carolina, and Syracuse Universities.  The growing roster of partners, presented a growing inventory for a growing company occupying, what seemed like, a shrinking warehouse.

In an effort to satisfy the company’s need for more space, Steiner Sports moved into new digs in March.  Just like their pinstriped partners in the Bronx, the company shifted across the street into a new venue, better equipped to handle their needs in an ever-changing marketplace.  The move has been a positive one for all parties involved.  The state-of-the-art facility has allowed the company to function more efficiently, better serving loyal customers – many of whom made the pilgrimage over the last nine months to check out the new place.

The Seats

In 2009, Steiner Sports urged all Yankees fans and baseball historians to “Take a Seat in History.”  In May of 2009, the company announced plans to offer authentic seats, and other stadium artifacts including sod,monument park bricks, and foul pole pieces, from the original Yankee Stadium.  A flurry of activity ensued.  Eager fans were able to gobble up pieces of the historic stadium, scooping up whatever relics became available.  Owning an actual piece of Baseball’s Cathedral was an opportunity that few fans passed up on.

In addition, Original Yankee Stadium memorabilia was on display throughout the Inaugural Season inside the Great Hall, courtesy of Steiner Sports.  The Yankees-Steiner Collectibles Store flourished inside the Stadium too, giving fans insider access on game days.  Throughout the season, Steiner Sports employees were on hand to meet fans, and explain the unique line of items pulled from the “House That Ruth Built.”

What an unbelievable season it was too!  The Yankees broke in their new quarters in grand fashion!  The Greatest Closer of All-Time, Mariano Rivera, converted his 500th career save in June, and The Captain, Derek Jeter, passed Lou Gehrig on the all-time Yankees hits list in September.  Both historic moments served as appetizers for October’s (and November’s) main course…

The Title

The instant Mark Teixeira squeezed the final out of the 2009 World Series, the Yankees hard work towards a 27th Championship was over.  However, the work within the Steiner Sports office was just beginning.  Commemorative collagesplaques and crystals had already been prepared weeks in advance, but the quest towards a team signed project was quickly underway.

Over the course of about three weeks in November, twenty-nine members of the World Champions made their way through the Steiner Sports office, signing everything from team signed baseballs and photos, to game usedproduct from the 2009 season.  Once again, Steiner Sports had the most complete and intriguing collection of commemorative memorabilia to offer customers, featuring an unprecedented collection of superstars – perfect timing for the upcoming holiday season.

The Future

While 2009 was a legendary year in the history of Steiner Sports, the future is bright for the innovative leader in sports collectibles and gifts.  There are many exciting announcements on the table for 2010, events that will fire up customers, and further transform the collectibles industry.  2009 was fast.  2010 will move just as quick.  Just be sure to stop and look around.  Big things are coming so pay attention!  Bueller?

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