The iconic Hartland company, manufacturer of limited edition figures, dating back decades, is currently taking pre-orders for their new 2010 release of Billy Pierce. The signing date for autographed copies has come and gone but with a production run of only 100, there is still time to order the non-auto version.
Billy Pierce, a southpaw, played 18 years in The Bigs, the majority of those years (1949-1960) with the Chicago White Sox. He retired with a career record of 211-169 with a 3.27 ERA. A 7x All-Star, Pierce was part of the starting rotation that regularly battled the New York Yankees led by staff ace, Whitey Ford.
I have always been a big fan of the Hartland company not necessarily because of the quality of the figures. In all honesty, McFarlanes look more realistic. However, the two companies couldn't be farther apart as far as a business model is concerned. While Todd McFarlane has done his but with production runs to insure that SportsPicks didn't became just another figure casualty in the vein of Starting Line-ups, Hartland takes limited production to a whole new level. In so doing, they have insured the future collectibility of their product and this has contributed to realized auction prices that old SLU collector's would drool over.
In addition to legendary players from the MLB, Hartland has produced a line of statues featuring players from the famed Negro Leagues that have proven to be extremely popular. You can find out more about Hartland statues at http://www.hartlandllc.com/.