As part of my effort to collect autographs of the 1998 Padres, I got this Joey Hamilton autograph from the 1996 Leaf Signature set. It was only $1. Joey was a key part of the Padres rotation for 4 years or so. He was one of our first round picks that worked out during those days, and was one of the top prospects in baseball. He was a key part of the Padres rotation in the 1998 season, and got a great number of strikeouts. He gradually gained weight, and was traded after the World Series season for Woody Williams, which worked out great for the Padres.
Joey was the start of the Padres distaste for Scott Boras, as he held out after the draft. Joe McIllvaine said he would have never drafted him if he knew he was represented by Boras (how did he not know?!?!?!).
I've now got 3 of the 5 starters from 1998, although I suspect Kevin Brown in a Padres uniform is going to be tough to track down.
I love that this set is so cheap, and that the autographs are on card.