What qualifies as a “game ball”?
I just had this debate with a fellow baseball collector named Brad. He feels that ANY ball used in a game should count as a game ball. I’ve always felt that game-used balls that get tossed into the crowd are too easy and therefore shouldn’t count. I mean, if you’re sitting behind the dugout and the batter grounds out to end an inning and first baseman jogs in and flips you the ball, is it fair to say you caught a game ball?
Brad and I agree that there should be two categories of gamers: assisted and unassisted. Assisted means the ball was thrown or given to you. (Perhaps it came from a ballboy or usher or vendor or photographer or umpire or someone in the press box.) Unassisted means you got the ball without any help.
My unassisted total (which is the only total I’ve kept track of) is currently at 98. I wish I’d documented my collection ball-by-ball from the very beginning. It’d be cool to know the exact number of assisted game balls. I know it’d be well into the hundreds.
What do you think about all of this?
What counts as a game ball in your collection?
Do you differentiate between assisted/unassisted?
Will you start doing it now?