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Welcome to The Real DFG's Pittsburgh Penguin Autograph Project. My goal is to eventually try and get at least one autograph of every player to lace up the skates in an NHL game for the Pittsburgh Penguins. It could have been for one game or 700 games, I will add them. Occasionally I may post cards of former players in their new team uniforms. While the goal is to get autos in Pens uni's, it isn't always possible. Since the team has been in existence since 1967, the list is pretty large. Last I checked, it was somewhere in the range of 624 different players. Currently, I sit at about 100 autographs (with some duplication). Enjoy the posts.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Roberto Romano

If Franco had his "Italian Army" in Pittsburgh, Roberto had...well, not much.  In fact, his career in Pittsburgh probably would have ended many years sooner had it not been for the fact that the Penguins were atrocious in the early 80s.

Even Roberto himself wanted to quit seeing that he spent four years on the Pens, bouncing between them and the Baltimore Skipjacks in the AHL, but was still (by NHL definition) considered a rookie.  Frustration, impatience, exhaustion, all got the better of him back in 1984-85 when he decided before the season ended to hang it up for good.  Unfortunately for him at that point, he lost the trust of his team, his coaches, and the fans.

The next season, he actually tried to come back, despite the obvious rift that was created between himself and the organization.  Through all that, he still won the starting job and went on to have the best year of his career.

This is considered to be Romano's rookie card here and as you can see, it's autographed (why else would it be on here).  Roberto only has three real issued cards, this 1986-87 Topps card, the OPC counterpart, and an OPC sticker.  There are a couple team releases out there but that is it.  An interesting statistic when you consider that he played:

  • 3 games in 1982-83
  • 18 games in 1983-84
  • 31 games in 1984-85
  • 46 games in 1985-86
  • 25 ganes in 1986-87 (plus one game for Boston)
  • and 2 games in 1993-94
All that and only three cards.  With today's rookie card printing rules, that amount of games would have gotten him about 15 cards alone in his first year.  My how times have changed.

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