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Changes in Cardinals Winter Warm-Up Autograph Prices for 2017

Autograph details for the 2017 St. Louis Cardinals Winter Warm-Up have finally been posted on the team’s official website – just before the tickets go on sale Wednesday. Perhaps the delay was due to Monday’s NHL Winter Classic at Busch Stadium. There is also a lot of coordination required.

wwu-logo-2017-200The three-day Winter Warm-Up fan event – for which all proceeds go to charity – is held each January over Martin Luther King weekend. This year’s dates are from Saturday, January 14 through Monday, January 16.

In my annual just-for-fun endeavor, I look at rising and falling autograph prices from year to year. These values are set by someone within the Cardinals hierarchy, and apparently reflect at least some estimation of the expected supply and demand for the signatures.

There is considerable shake up in last year’s Top Dogs. Of course, anchor Matt Holliday has left the team. New additions to the top tier for 2017 include newly-signed Dexter Fowler plus Aledmys Diaz, Carlos Martinez and Stephen Piscotty. Some kid named Alex Reyes slipped in there, too. Bargains compared to last year are Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha.

Most all of those in the middle tier of autograph prices were there before. New additions are lefties Brett Cecil and Zach Duke. Better deals this year include Mike Matheny, Mike Leake and Trevor Rosenthal.

Bargain signees at from $5 to $15 are prevalent, with 14 choices including top prospects Luke Weaver and Carson Kelly.

A difference from recent years is that instead of being free as in the past, autographs of minor leaguers on the cusp of the majors will cost $5 this year. A small price to pay for potential future stars like Harrison Bader.

The only noticeable absentees are Kevin Siegrist and closer Seung-hwan Oh. Of course, they and others may still join the lineup between now and the event.

Top dogs 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Yadier Molina $150 $125 $100 $100 $75 $75 $90 $75 $100 $90 The current face of the franchise turns 35 in July
Adam Wainwright $75 $100 $90 $80 $50 $50 $45 $50 $60 $80 Always one of the most popular Cardinals
Matt Carpenter $75 $60 $50 $40 $15 free Keeps getting better and better
Dexter Fowler $75 Biggest winter addition signed for five years to play CF
Aledmys Diaz $75 Big-time debut for team’s top rookie in 2016
Carlos Martinez $75 $35 $25 $30 The autograph of the new ace of the staff costs more
Stephen Piscotty $75 $35 $5 free Almost as steady as Carpenter
Alex Reyes $60 One of baseball’s top prospects is ready for rotation
Michael Wacha $50 $70 $70 $70 $5 Lingering health and role questions
Kolten Wong $50 $50 $40 $15 Needs to step up in 2017
Middle of pack 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Randal Grichuk $35 $35 $20 free Hopefully someone told him he is the left fielder
Jedd Gyorko $35 $10 Team leader in home runs in 2016
Jhonny Peralta $35 $35 $30 $25 Looking for health in final year on his contract
Brett Cecil $35 Signed big contract to anchor left side of bullpen
Mike Leake $30 $40 Back for year two of five-year deal
Trevor Rosenthal $25 $45 $45 $35 $15 Will he get his chance to start?
Mike Matheny $25 $40 $40 $40 $30 $30 $10 $10 Missed playoffs for first time in five years
Matt Adams $25 $25 $25 $20 $5 $5 Big or small – does he have a 2017 role?
Lance Lynn $20 $20 $40 $20 $15 Is a big comeback ahead prior to free agency?
Jonathan Broxton $20* $10* * Unable to attend. Pre-signed balls only.
Zach Duke $20 Slated to miss entire 2017 season after nice debut
Value picks 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Marco Gonzales $15 $15 $15 Looking for rebound for second straight year
Matt Bowman $15 Rule 5 pitcher was pleasant 2016 addition
Tommy Pham $10 $10 free Seems clear number four outfielder
Greg Garcia $10 $5 free free Returning to utility infielder battle
Luke Weaver $10 free TCN’s #2 Cards prospect likely to lead Memphis rotation
Carson Kelly $10 free Molina’s clear heir-apparent
John Gant $10 Acquired in Jaime Garcia trade with Braves
Tyler Lyons $5 $5 $5 $5 Still has some rehab ahead
Bill Mueller $5 $5 $5 Back to assistant hitting coach this year
Miguel Socolovich $5 Still looking for a spot in the back of the pen
Sam Tuivailala $5 $5 $5 Hard-thrower is up and down to Memphis
Jose Martinez $5 free Nice September debut and Memphis depth in OF
Mitch Harris $5 $5 Removed from 40-man roster after injury
Mike Mayers $5 Earned MLB debut in 2016
Future Cardinals 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Luke Voit $5 Power-hitting first baseman ready for Triple-A
Harrison Bader $5 Top hitting prospect closest to St. Louis
Ryan Sherriff $5 free Lefty reliever pushing for St. Louis debut
Patrick Wisdom $5 free Third baseman’s career has leveled off
Austin Gomber $5 free Top lefty starting prospect in the system
Paul DeJong $5 Move to shortstop could increase his value
Rowan Wick $5 Former slugger now 40-man roster reliever
Missing in action? 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Kevin Siegrist $15 $15 $15 Continues to receive heavy workload
Seung-hwan Oh Solidified closer role in second half of 2016

Here are some other interesting and important groupings.

Five Cooperstown Hall of Famers continue at the $75 amount – Red Schoendienst, Whitey Herzog, Tony La Russa, Bob Gibson and Ozzie Smith, though the latter two are not scheduled to attend in person. Sorry to see Lou Brock off the list.

It is exciting to see former star first baseman Orlando Cepeda added to WWU for the first time since at least 2008. He joins stalwart Mike Shannon among a list of former Cardinals with prices for their signatures.

The list of those Cardinals who have moved on from last year’s WWU includes at least nine players, headlined by Holliday and Jaime Garcia, as well as several veterans. Along with Brock, three other former Cardinals are not among this year’s signees after participating in 2016.

Hall of Famers 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Red Schoendienst $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $60 A true treasure
Whitey Herzog $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $60 $60 $40 $50 One of the most popular – for good reason
Tony La Russa $75 $75 $75 $75 $40 $40 $30 $30 $30 $30 His job is with Arizona, but still loved in StL
Bob Gibson $75* $75* $75* $75* $125 * Pre-signed balls for sale only
Ozzie Smith $75* $75* $75* $75* * Pre-signed balls for sale only
Ex-Cards players 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Orlando Cepeda $100 Great new addition to WWU!
Mike Shannon $30 $25 $20 $10 $10 $10 Joined team Hall of Fame in 2014
David Bell $5 $5 $5 Third year as bench coach coming
Jack Clark $5 $5 $5 $5 $5 $5 $10 Back after a year absence
Brian Jordan $5 $10 $5 $15 Ditto for Braves’ broadcaster
Ray King $5 $5 Burger time returns!
Moved on 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Matt Holliday $75 $75 $75 $75 $75 $100 $100 Free agent signed with Yankees
Jaime Garcia Unk. DNA DNA $20 $25 $15 free Traded to Atlanta
Seth Maness $10 $10 $10 $5 Non-tendered free agent
Brayan Pena $10 Released
Jordan Walden DNA $10 Minor league signing by Atlanta
Brandon Moss $5 Free agent
Tim Cooney $5 free Claimed by Indians off waivers
Charlie Tilson $5 free Traded to White Sox
Dean Kiekhefer free Claimed off waivers by Seattle
Not back for 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 Commentary
Lou Brock $75* $75* $75 $75 $100 * Pre-signed balls for sale only
David Eckstein $100
Tim McCarver $25* * Pre-signed balls for sale only.
Jose Oquendo $10 Off to minor league work

Finally, those who will be signing for free follow. They include hitting coach John Mabry and new Memphis manager Stubby Clapp.

Notice there is a change this year. For these individuals only, tickets will be available in the lobby of 100 North Broadway (previously Bank of America), located across 4th Street, west of the Hyatt. Check the website for further details.

Alan Benes Stubby Clapp Scott Cooper John Costello
Danny Cox Randy Flores Rick Horton Al Hrabosky
Larry Jaster Tito Landrum Tom Lawless John Mabry
Kyle McClellan Cliff Politte Kerry Robinson Jason Simontacchi
Brad Thompson Scott Terry

As always, the proceeds go to charity, Cardinals Care, so the needy are the true winners. Autograph tickets go on sale online at cardinals.com on Wednesday, January 4 at 10 a.m. Central time. Each individual typically signs for just two hours on one of the three days only, so check the schedule before buying your tickets.

The 21st Annual Winter Warm-Up, a three-day event, will take place on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. weekend; Saturday, Sunday and Monday, January 14-16, 2017. Three-day event passes are already on sale for $40 for adults and $10 for children 5-15 years of age, same prices as the last six years.

In addition, members of the military, police and fire departments with an active ID will receive one free adult pass which must be obtained in person at the Official Cardinals Team Store at Busch Stadium or at the event.

For full WWU information, including signing schedules and ticket ordering, follow this link.

Updates 1/6: Added to the list of free autographs are Bill DeWitt Jr. and Bill DeWitt III, along with Todd Worrell.

Sold out autograph tickets include stars Yadier Molina and Dexter Fowler. Others sold out are young and cheap – Harrison Bader, Paul DeJong, Aledmys Diaz, Austin Gomber, Carson Kelly and Luke Weaver. Tickets for three Cardinals veterans in Jack Clark, Brian Jordan and Mike Shannon are also no longer available.

Updates 1/11: Alex Reyes and Tommy Pham, both committed to play winter ball, have canceled out. Also, 93-year-old Red Schoendienst has been removed from the updated autograph list. The only additional sold out autograph signer in the last five days is Jose Martinez.

Update 1/12: Whitey Herzog has also bowed out, reportedly due to health concerns.

Update 1/13: With the cancellation of Saturday’s Winter Warm-Up events due to the ice storm in the area, all Saturday autograph ticket sales will be refunded by the Cardinals through the credit cards used for their purchase.

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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11 Responses to “Changes in Cardinals Winter Warm-Up Autograph Prices for 2017”

  1. CariocaCardinal says:

    I hope Patrick Wisdom’s mom shows up so at least someone will pay for his autograph!

  2. CariocaCardinal says:

    Is there an easy way to find all your past posts that have the WWU names and prices?

  3. CariocaCardinal says:

    No player freebies this year. Not even minor leaguers. Is that a first?

  4. blingboy says:

    Orlando Cepeda. Wow.

    It is interesting (and undoubtedly a menacing wake up call message) to see that Mad Mike’s price is at an all time low since he became manager. I wonder what people would pay if he was in a dunking booth instead.

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