That mark has been eclipsed today with a 90-minute drive to Waco, TX for the Texas Rangers Winter Caravan. After our success last week over in Frisco, Chris and I decided a quick dash down to Waco would be good. It's not too crazily far to get there, the crowd shouldn't be as bad as the stops in Grapevine, Mesquite, or Arlington, and it's a good way to get J.P. Arencibia, the new acquisition as the Rangers' backstop, along with normally-tough signer Mike Maddux.
The drive down was pretty easy, aside from thinking I was going to get busted by a cop ten minutes into our trip for doing 70 in a 60. Fortunately a truck was going a good 75 or so and I was off the hook. We got in at about 10:45 for a 12:30 signing, putting us 23rd and 24th in line. The great thing about this is that Academy was handing out numbered tickets so you could get yours and walk around the store to kill time instead of just standing around. We also met up with Matt, another collector who were were hanging out with in Frisco.
Anyways, they started pretty much right on time, just after 12:30 with the line moving pretty well. Maddux was in a surprisingly good mood compared to how we usually see him at the Ballpark on game days. In a year of graphing, I had only gotten him once, and it was on a single card. This time, he signed three of the four cards on my board. Neal Cotts did the two cards I had which Chris hooked me up with (one goes back to him). J.P. Arencibia signed all four cards I had of him, commenting on how well-prepared I was with the book and having all of them lined up in order and everything.
Since we got through quickly, we decided to jump the line once more, chatting with a few of the other collectors we've seen around at games and other various signings up in the DFW area. I decided this time I'd only go for two Maddux cards-- fortunately Matt helped me out and got two more done for me, while Arencibia signed the last card I had of him.
On the way back, we hit the famous Health Camp for lunch. If you are ever in Waco, you must try them out. They've been doing shakes and burgers for 66 years now, and have been located at the Waco Traffic Circle for the last 65 of those years. It was excellent, and I plan to go there every time I find myself in Waco, which hopefully isn't very often.
On the way back to Arlington, Chris recommended we do a little grave-stomping and visit Hall of Famer Tris Speaker. For those unaware, Speaker was from Hubbard, TX and is buried there in Fairview Cemetery, located at the end of NW 2nd Street.
|The current residence of the second-greatest Pre-WWII center fielder|
|An eagle for The Gray Eagle|
|The plaque below the flagpole|