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• The Professional Baseball Agreement between MLB and minor league teams expires at the end of the 2020 season. But if a new MLB proposal were to become reality, more than three dozen cities with affiliated minor league teams will lose those teams a year from now and thousands of minor league players will be out of work as well. Full story here.

• "We said there's no chance that's happening. There’s no chance we’ll even discipline him." — NBA commissioner Adam Silver regarding China’s request that the league fire Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey

• "The losses have already been substantial. Our games are not back on the air in China as we speak, and we'll see what happens next. I don't know where we go from here. The financial consequences have been and may continue to be fairly dramatic." — NBA commissioner Adam Silver at the Time 100 Summit on Thursday regarding the league’s on-going situation with China.

• Showtime Sports will launch on Oct. 21 a weekly podcast, All The Smoke with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, in which the two NBA veterans (now retired) and NBA champs (Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs, respectively), will “deliver an authentic, unfiltered perspective on the most polarizing topics in and around the game of basketball.”  It will air Thursdays on the Showtime Basketball YouTube Channel.  

• Bluberi Gaming has signed a deal with WWE to develop a series of licensed slot games featuring WWE Superstars and Legends. Among those to be featured include John Cena, Triple H, Becky Lynch, Roman Reigns and Ronda Rousey. The first WWE series of slot games is scheduled to hit casinos October 2020.

• HarperCollins Publishers said it has acquired world rights to Back, the first memoir authored by Tiger Woods. According to Woods, “This book is my definitive story. It’s in my words and expresses my thoughts.” A publication date was not given.

• Halloween this year is Oct. 31, and retailers, marketers and consumers are ready for another season of trick-or-treat. Total spend on Halloween 2019 is expected to reach $8.8 billion according to the National Retail Federation, Washington, DC. Full story here. 

POLL POSITION

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2020 Nominees

• Pat Benatar
• Dave Matthews Band
• Depeche Mode
• Doobie Brothers
• Whitney Houston
• Judas Priest
• Kraftwerk
• MC5
• Motorhead
• Nine Inch Nails
• Notorious B.I.G.
• Rufus feat. Chaka Khan
• Todd Rundgren
• Soundgarden
• T. Rex
• Thin Lizzy

VOTE HERE

KEEPING SCORE

Most Popular NBA Player Jerseys (based on eBay sales October 2018-October 2019)
1. LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
2. Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors
3. Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets
4. Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks
5. Kevin Durant Brooklyn Nets
6. Dwyane Wade Miami Heat (retired)
7. Kawhi Leonard Los Angeles Clippers
8. Zion Williamson New Orleans Pelicans
9. Carmelo Anthony (most recently with Houston Rockets)
10. Russell Westbrook Houston Rockets

Most Popular Player Merchandise (based on eBay sales October 2018-October 2019)
1. LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
2. Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors
3. Kevin Durant Brooklyn Nets
4. Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets
5. Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks
6. Paul George Los Angeles Clippers
7. James Harden Houston Rockets
8. Dwyane Wade Miami Heat (retired)
9. Kawhi Leonard Los Angeles Clippers
10. Russell Westbrook Houston Rockets
SOURCE: STUBHUB.COM

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office Oct. 11-13
1. Joker $55M
2. Addams Family $30.3M
3. Gemini Man $20.5M
4. Abominable $6.2M
5. Downton Abbey $4.9M
6. Hustlers $3.9M
7. Judy $3.3M
8. It 2 $3.2M
9. Jexi $3.1M
10. Ad Astra $1.9M
BoxOfficeMojo.com

SEARCH

NYSportsJournalism.com + Topic Of Requested Search

Showtime: All The Smoke See More Ads Below

COLLEGE

BodyArmor Into NCAA
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
Notre Dame Builds Brand
Cancer Drives Home
Men's Hoops Are 'Toxic'

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Channel Chasers

NFL UK 2019
• Oct. 6 Chicago Bears v Oakland Raiders Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 13 Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 27  Cincinnati Bengals v Los Angeles Rams Wembley Stadium
• Nov. 3 Houston Texans v Jacksonville Jaguars Wembley Stadium

NFL Mexico 2019
• Nov. 18 Kansas City  Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers Mexico City Estadio Azteca (ESPN Monday Night Football).

Saturday
May132017

MLB’s Scherzer, Strasburg, Teammates Pitch New Plan To Sell Signed Memorabilia

By Barry Janoff

May 12, 2017: In an effort to eliminate the middle-man in the memorabilia business and give fans better access to personalized items — while also enhancing cause marketing efforts — several members of MLB’s Washington Nationals have launched FanSigner.

Among the initial backers and participants are two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer, Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg, first baseman Ryan Zimmerman and infielder Anthony Rendon.

Listed among the initial organizations that will benefit from the platform are The Humane Society of the United States, ZiMS Foundation (founded by Zimmerman and dedicated to "bringing home a cure for multiple sclerosis) and the Nationals Youth Baseball Academy.

According to Mission Pen LLC, which is doing business as FanSigner, people can request autographed items directly from participating players via the home Web site, with the start-up inventory including jerseys, baseballs and 8x10 photos.

For an added fee, people have the option to "personalize their memorabilia either by requesting a custom inscription or by mailing in their own sentimental item to sign and return."

FanSigner said it takes a flat 10% fee and covers the packaging, shipping and logistics (i.e. rights to the photos themselves and acquiring the merchandise) of getting the items signed.

Then, according to FanSigner, as much as 90% of net proceeds from the sale of each item, with a minimum of $20, is donated to the charity or foundation of the athletes choosing.

Autographed 8x10 photos are listed for $120. Autographed baseballs are $190. Autographed jerseys are $500. In most cases, an additional $35 gets the buyer the personalized option. (See full details here.)

As an example of the process, FanSigner said that $500 would purchase an autographed Max Scherzer Nationals jersey, with $35 extra for a personal inscription. Scherzer would sign on the "3" of his 31 on the back of the jersey. FanSigner said 90% of net proceeds goes to The Humane Society of the United States.

"Everyone benefits from FanSigner," Scherzer, who unveiled the official launch of FanSigner via his Twitter account (which has 223,000 followers), said in a statement. "The players get a way to actively promote a cause that matters to them. Fans get access to personalized memorabilia without flying across the country. Charities get a new source of funding from the proceeds of each item."

According to FanSigner, "Every day fans across the country search for autographed memorabilia from their favorite athletes. To get something truly personal, fans have to invest a lot of time and money for only a slim chance to get their gear signed.

"FanSigner created a way for athletes to connect directly with their fans to personalize all their signed memorabilia. To give back to the community, a portion of proceeds from each purchase are donated to a charity of the athletes choosing."

According to FanSigner, more athletes and celebrities are expected to be added to the official roster. The site even provides an application form for athletes and celebrities who want to join FanSigner.

In addition, people are being encouraged to submit requests of athletes and/or celebrities whose autographed items they seek. By joining a subscription list, people would then “be alerted when your favorite celebrity has available items for purchase.”

According to co-founder and CEO Ryan Mitchell, "Through our service, fans can request any signer they want."

However, Mitchell addresses, though barely, the fact that many of the top athletes and stars whose autographs would be in high demand already have exclusive autograph deals with other companies.

"Aside from athletes like LeBron James, fans can request musicians like Taylor Swift, actors like Melissa McCarthy, or writers like J.K. Rowling," said Mitchell in a statement.

James, for example, is among the active athletes or legends with whom Upper Deck has exclusive autograph pacts, which also includes Connor McDavid, Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods and Patrick Roy,

Arguably the most requested autograph among the Nationals would be Bryce Harper, but he currently has an exclusive autograph deal with trading card and memorabilia company Topps, as does reigning AL MVP Mike Trout and retired New York Yankees star Derek Jeter.

Panini America’s exclusive autograph deals include Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, John Wall, Damian Lillard and Blake Griffin.

Fanatics on its Web site lists exclusive autograph deals with more than 50 active and retired players.

They include MLB players Kris Bryant David Ortiz, Anthony Rizzo, Chris Davis, Jake Arrieta and Mookie Betts; NFLers Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning and Jim Brown; NBA stars Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Isaiah Thomas and LaMarcus Aldridge; and Conor McGregor and Ronda Rousey from the UFC.

FanSigner does address the illegal but lucrative practice of fake autographs and phony memorabilia.

"FanSigner works closely with each signer to establish strict procedures around the procurement and signing of each item which you, the fan, may purchase," according to the Web site. "One of our collective missions is to ensure that each item is autographed, inscribed, and delivered to you in a professional manner along with a personal letter of authenticity from our CEO.

"Fans get access to personalized memorabilia without flying across the country. Charities get a new source of funding from the proceeds of each item."

"Please know that a FanSigner representative will personally witness each and every signature to guarantee its authenticity and the initial handling of each signed item."

FanSigner said it plans to video each item being signed and post the videos to the Web site.

However, it ominously warns on its Web site, "Should you believe that any item, autograph or inscription is inauthentic, please contact us at support@fansigner.com as soon as possible so that we may assist with the investigation.

"Furthermore, if a third party authenticator denies the authenticity of your item we will refund 100% of your purchase. We only require the documentation of the authenticators' judgment," according to FanSigner.

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