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A handful of hounds have come to RFK and worked their way into the mix of autograph seekers.

Jostling through the crowd of youngsters, three men who appear to be in their 40s hold items in the face of Astros center fielder Hunter Pence, who has paused to sign for some youngsters before heading into the clubhouse.

“I’m signing for the kids,” Pence says, passing over the men’s items. They try to persuade him to change his mind, but to no avail. Frustrated, the men move on to the next player.

“They always come out the first game of a series,” RFK Stadium usher James Ercole says. “Then you don’t see them anymore.”

Thirty minutes before the game begins, the players retreat into the clubhouse. Mr. Ercole begins shooing the fans away, but one of the hounds spots Astros manager Phil Garner still signing a few more cards.

“Phil! Phil,” he calls before Mr. Ercole steps in front of him.

“It’s 6:30, time to move on,” the usher instructs. “That’s the cutoff.”

“What? I’ve never heard of such a thing,” the man says, raising his voice.

Despite the protests, Mr. Ercole maintains his stance and begins ushering away the angry man, who along with his partners declined to comment.

“I disagree with the whole autograph-selling business,” says 22-year-old Scott Rogowsky, a counselor with the teen tour group. “Those guys mess it up for guys like me because players don’t sign for adults very much.”

Mr. Rogowsky figures he has 150,000 cards in his collection, 5,000 of them signed.

“Part of the joy of getting an autograph is the hunt,” he says, while watching members of his group try for last-minute autographs. “Why buy an autograph? The great thing about getting one is the story that comes with it.”

Mr. Rogowsky remembers the first autograph he ever got.

Attending the Mets’ spring training in 1997, he called to catcher Mike Piazza and stuck his card and marker through a hole in the fence. A huge crowd flocked to the fence upon seeing Piazza approach and Mr. Rogowsky recalled getting crushed.

“Mike Piazza saw it and said, ‘Hey, hey! Give the kid some space!’ and made everyone back up. Then he signed my card and gave it back to me. I’ll never forget that.”

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