Putz photo with Bieber card goes viral

Putz photo with Bieber card goes viral

Putz photo with Bieber card goes viral
ARLINGTON -- D-backs closer J.J. Putz just thought he was being a good sport when he posed with a Justin Bieber autographed trading card for fellow reliever Brad Ziegler on Wednesday.

What he didn't expect was for Ziegler to tweet the photo and have it go viral on the Internet.

So when a reporter approached Putz on Thursday and asked him about being such a big Bieber fan, he was initially surprised.

"Zieg, way to go," Putz hollered across the clubhouse. "That Bieber thing went, like, viral."

"I know," Ziegler replied. "I picked up 400 Twitter followers."

Ziegler had toured the Panini card company's headquarters in Dallas during the team's off-day Monday. As he was leaving the hotel, Putz saw him in the lobby and yelled "Nerd alert" really loud in front of other people.

So, it appears Ziegler wound up with the last laugh.

"As I walk around [the company], I see several boxes of the Justin Bieber trading card set," Ziegler said. "I asked the guy if there was any way I could get just a pack or two just to give J.J., because he's a huge Bieber fan, and he ended up giving me two boxes."

Now, whether Putz is actually a Bieber fan is apparently in dispute.

"I'm not," Putz said with a stare usually reserved for opposing hitters he faces in the ninth inning.

"Huge Bieber fan, absolutely," Ziegler said. "If he tells you otherwise, he's lying."

Anyway, Putz and his teammates began opening the packs of cards before Wednesday's game, and lo and behold, they wound up with one card that was signed by Bieber.

"They're pretty rare," Ziegler said. "It looks like several thousand packs per autograph."

In fact, reports are that the card could be worth as much as $4,500.

With that in mind, Putz said he is probably going to give the card to reliever Craig Breslow to auction off for his charity.

But if he's such a big Bieber fan, why give it away?

"I'm not a big Bieber fan," Putz said. "We were joking around with the picture. It was a joke. I didn't think that people would take it seriously."