Maryland collector will make pro debut in April

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

For one Maryland man collecting is a family affair, and it’s his son who drove him to do something he’s never done before.

Next month, on April 18, Tim Kane will become a minor league baseball player.

Kane, of Millersville, Md., will be a member of the Corpus Christi (Texas) Hooks for a day as the winner of ToppsMake Your Pro Debut contest found in packs of 2012 Topps Heritage Minors baseball cards.

“I hope to win this contest so when my son opens his next pack of Pro Debut,” he wrote in his winning essay, “I can see the shock and joy when he realizes his father is on that card.”

The newest member of the Houston Astros’ Double-A squad will get to spend time with team owner Nolan Ryan, be subjected to the media at a press conference where the his one-day deal will be signed, have his own locker in the clubhouse, a uniform and an equipment package for the game. In addition, Kane will take part in pre-game workouts, batting practice, shag fly balls in the outfield, eat from the clubhouse spread, throw out the first pitch, present the lineup card to the umpires, spend time in the broadcast booth, spend time in the owner’s box, chow with the team after the game and walk home with the lineup card. (Does sound like he’ll be riding the bench, but …)

And, perhaps most importantly, he’ll have his first baseball card appear in 2013 Topps Pro Debut, which arrives on June 5.

Why is that part important? Well, it all goes back to his family — and collecting.

“I am doing this contest for the most-passionate baseball fan in my life, my 8-year-old son,” Kane wrote. “Baseball has been the bond that we have shared since the day he as born. … Recently we began to collect baseball cards together.

“Since we regularly attend minor league games regularly, I thought Topps Pro Debut would be the perfect set to collect together. Words can’t describe the joy on my son’s face when he opens a pack of cards and gets a player we have seen play such as Brandon Douglas, Bryan Pounds or Rob Brantly. Even though these players are not household names yet, in my son’s eyes they are his idols.”

Beckett Media will be on hand in Corpus Christi next month to document Kane’s tale for an upcoming Families Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking hereFollow Beckett Media on Facebook.


  1. LJ
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Congrats. I hope you enjoy the experience. Your son must be proud!

  2. Bart The Explorer
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    he should be guarenteed at least 1 at bat, otherwise is just shameless promotion for the team

  3. Corey
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    Awesome, have fun!!! Your son can ask you for an autograph when he gets your card. :)

  4. ddizzal
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 11:59 am | Permalink


  5. Jason K
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    The closest thing I ever had to a baseball card of my dad was a couple Craig McMurtry cards. Seriously, they guy looked ALOT like my dad (only about 6-7 inches taller.

  6. Linda and Larry
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Congrats Tim!!!! Can’t wait to see the video! Peyton must be very proud…..

  7. Mary
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    How exciting for the two of them to share this real-life experience in this time of video games! It’s something they’ll have to share for the rest of their lives. Meeting Nolan Ryan, WOW!!

  8. Brandon Douglas
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    Oohhh baby!! looks like the next time I see you I’ll be the one asking for an autograph!!! Congrats!!!

  9. Adam Thornton
    Posted March 28, 2013 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    Nice to see them rocking the Erie Seawolves gear!

  10. jim
    Posted March 28, 2013 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    I seriously need to win this one day!

  11. Tim Kane
    Posted March 29, 2013 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Thanks everyone for the kind words. We are so excited to go and can not wait.

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