The Ghost Of Frangipani COAs Past

I received this email and thought I would share.  I removed the person's name to protect his privacy...

I was recently doing some research on an autographed baseball I have with a signature verification from Donald Frangipani.  The item in question is an autographed Mark McGwire baseball.  I received this item through a contest from ABC Sports.  Along with a letter from ABC Sports they also sent the letter from Mr. Frangipani.  I am not a collector and was looking to sell this item when I stumbled upon you while looking up information on  Mr Frangipani.  I read various reports about him and was curious about the authenticity of the autograph considering its source (ABC Sports).  Any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated.  I received the ball back in 1999 and it is an official National League baseball.

My response...

While I can't say with 100% certainty, I'm sorry to report that the ball is likely a forgery.  I have yet to see a Donald Frangipani COA on an authentic signature.  I'm sure a few do exist, but the odds are overwhelming that it is a fake.

The 1999 time frame was when Frangipani was at the height of issuing COAs that appeared on eBay by the thousands.  They were all fakes.

Unfortunately, forgeries are commonly distributed through giveaways and charity auctions.  Often the people sponsoring the charity or giveaway know nothing about fakes and who reputable dealers are... and if they contract with the wrong person to provide the item for the event... you are stuck with a fake.  Stans Sports is an example of a company that every knowledgeable collector knew sold fakes...  but Stans had big flashy ads in magazines so the unknowing presumed they were legit... and so it goes...

I would send the ball to a reputable authenticator to confirm either way.  I recommend Richard Simon