Tim Salmon on the field always seemed to play the game hard and seemed like a genuine nice guy. I followed his career even though he was on the Angels but I respected the fact that he stayed on the team through thick and thin and was rewarded with a World Series win in 2002. With my wife being a fan of the Angels I even made it a point to attend his last game in 2006. He put up good numbers for his career but nothing that really stands out. He was a main cog on the team and he did his job well.
Wasn't really into autographs back when he played and just got back into collecting about the time he was retiring so I never picked up his autograph. In 2011 he was scheduled to do an signing at OC Sportscards in Anaheim and thought I would finally add him to my collection. My wife was even with me and though she rarely does these signings I told her it was an Angel so she came along. Still a tad reluctantly though. = )
Arrived at the store and there was absolutely no one in line. I arrived about an hour into the scheduled signing and people had already come and gone. Tim was sitting at the table signing for the promoter and I walked up after paying for the autograph and said good afternoon. He didn't say anything back and didn't even look up to acknowledge our presence. He signed the ball and gave it back and only then was there any eye contact. For some reason I asked would you mind a picture and the promoter jumped in and said he is too busy. What too busy in his cushy retired life getting paid to sign for fans that supported his ass through his career? Anyways, I took the ball and left and put it on the shelf in my collection. I will remember him two different ways now. One as a very good baseball player who I enjoyed watching and two as the dick retired player that needs to learn some common courtesy.
Signing numbers and ignoring people.
Signing ball and not acknowledging paying fans.
Signed ball by good player with bad manners.