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Protecting You From Fakes: Why This AUTOGRAPH AUTHENTICATION is the Best in the World

January 20, 2022 6 min read

Protecting You From Fakes: Why This AUTOGRAPH AUTHENTICATION is the Best in the World

So today I want to talk about major league baseball authentication and why I think it is actually the best authentication in all of sports, but before I do that, I just want to touch on the Derek Jeter stuff that came back today and was able to finally get that out for all the customers that have been waiting.


As I was going through all the Jeter stuff I thought to myself, all their autographs come with major league baseball authentication and I was thinking to myself “I love MLB authentication.” I think it is the best authentication, obviously not just in baseball, but potentially the best autograph authentication in the world. If you're not familiar with what MLB authentication, is essentially back in 2001 or early 2000s, Major League Baseball decided that they had enough of the fraud that was going on in the industry, and they decided to come up with their own authentication program, not just for autographs, but also for game use stuff, which is really, really cool. So if you ever get a game used baseball from somebody getting that MLB authenticated is absolutely 100% the way to go. That’s the most legit authentication you can have out there.

It'll hold the most amount of value and is 100% authentic. So how it works with MLB authentication, you get a little number sticker on your item and those are tamper-proof ones, so if you try to take it off it just falls apart, but they only authenticate autographs that they witnessed. So it's only witnessed stuff and it's of course only baseball stuff as well. So that unique number is verified on MLB’s website. So it's not some random third party site it's actually on MLBs website.

So it's a really cool program, I absolutely love it, and there are really five reasons why I think MLB authentication is not just the best in baseball, but the best in sports.

The first reason is it's run by one of the world's best leagues. I mean, Major League Baseball has been around for a long, long time since, basically my grandparents came over from Ellis Island. Anything associated with the Major League Baseball you can be pretty darn sure that they're going to do everything they can to make sure it's legitimate, that it's run really well, and that it's authentic because they're putting their brand name behind this. It's not like it's just another authentication company like JSA, PSA or Beckett. So they're gonna do everything they can to make sure that it stays 100% legit.

Second reason is MLB authentication is only for witnessed signings. You can't send them a Mickey Mantle baseball and have them authenticate that. They are not autograph authenticators. All they do is witnessed autograph signings with baseball players. That's it. So every single hologram that you see from them is a witnessed hologram. So that means a representative from MLB, and usually these are like retired police officers in a lot of cases, and what that means is the representative from there was present for the signing and witnessed that athlete's signing your particular item. 100% authentic. They'll put that number to a hologram on there, you can verify that on their website, and that's what I love about it. Everything is always witnessed. There's no if, ands, or buts about it.

Number three, the online database is pretty easy to use. They've got these kind of weird numerical starts to everything though. Some things are like LH and they got other ones there. So just make sure that you type in the first two letters correctly, but their database is pretty accurate. Of course, they're going to have inaccuracies sometimes, but they're pretty quick to fix those. Like I said, going back to point number one, they're going to try and keep their database 100% accurate as possible because they got their league name behind it. Again, they've got a nice online database that you can use. It'll say when the item was signed, the item associated with it, who signed it, who conducted the signing, all that kind of stuff.

So it's a very cool online database and it kind of leads to another point. You don't have those stupid COA cards. I absolutely hate those. You always end up losing them. You can't find the right one and it's just a mess to try to find the matching COA card with the sticker. So what's great about MLB is you don't have any certificate of authenticity. Everything's just done online. So you don't have to worry about finding that matching card and all that kind of stuff. It's just a big pain to do that, but it's a big time-saver when you're shipping stuff out to customers and whatnot, it's just got that hologram on there, but also for you as a collector, you don't have to worry about losing that silly little card.

Number four. What I really like about them too, is their authentication isn't available to everyone. Only certain companies can use MLB authentication. So take, for example, me, Power Sports Memorabilia. I can't go and say, “Hey, listen, I'm doing an autograph signing with Salvador Perez and I'd like to have Major League Baseball authentication come in and witness the signing.” I can't do that. It's not going to happen. I don't have a license to be able to do that. So only certain companies that have a MLB license to do that can bring in Major League Baseball witnesses. So you've got Fanatics, for example, okay. All their baseball autographs will come with of course the Fanatics hologram, but it'll also have all the Major League Baseball stuff as well.

If you look at their Aaron Judge stuff, for example, cause he's an exclusive with them. Every single Judge autograph will have a Fanatics and the MLB authentication. So what I like about that is not everybody's going to be able to have access to this. So it kind of makes it limited out there. It's not like it's a JSA witnessed item on every single autograph out there. So it's very limited in supply as opposed to a witness sticker by one of the big three companies like PSA and JSA. So I really like that. I think it adds a little bit more mystique and value to that particular item.

My fifth point is they also authenticate game used items. So say you've got a game used Mike Trout jersey, and you want to have Mike Trout sign the jersey, but you also want to have him write game used on there. You want to have him maybe write the date or something that happened in that game. Most of the times with an athlete, they're never going to do that because they can't really verify that that was an actual game used item that they used.

They might recognize that and they might not, but they're very, very hesitant in most cases to write game used on an item because they don't want to be wrong. You know, it's like why Jordan stopped signing all those 1986 Fleer cards. They had so many fraudulent ones out there and he doesn't want to be wrong and sign one of those. So they just kind of stopped signing them. What's nice about the MLB authentication program is Mike Trout gets your jersey, they flip it over, they look at the tag, they see it's MLB authenticated already, they know they can look in the database and say, “Hey, yep. This is game used from this particular game.” Trout knows it's authentic. The representatives knows is authentic and they can confidently write game used on that jersey and know that yes, 100%, this was the actual jersey.

So it's nice to have that with the MLB authentication program, that they also do game used stuff on top of all the autographs that they witness. So just a very cool program. I wish the other leagues would kind of get involved in this. If the NFL did the same thing I think that would be a very cool thing for the league to do. I just don't know why they haven't kind of got to that point yet, but MLB authentication is the best. I love it. It's so easy to use. You don't have to deal with that stupid, silly COA card. I just hate those darn things.

So I know a lot of collectors really like the MLB authentication program too, because it is tied into the brand. Again, the fact that it is a witnessed hologram. So hopefully that brings a little bit of clarity to the MLB authentication program for you.

But again, be on the lookout for it, it definitely adds a tremendous amount of value to your collection.

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