One of my favorite games to play is the Blame Game, which is why I’d like to begin this post by blaming the parties most directly responsible for my heinous actions on the afternoon of February 9th, 2012 — which actions involved mainly the prolonged research, and subsequent purchase, of 24 baseball cards, coming to a total of approximately $50.
I blame the internet’s Common Man for forcing me to attend TwinsFest the weekend before last, an event (i.e. TwinsFest) that forced me to become curious about The State of the Hobby. I blame the editors of BaseballCardPedia (and recent podcast guests) Chrises Harris and Thomas for patiently answering all my questions about The State of the Hobby. I blame my wife for leaving me at home, unattended, for hours at a time, as if I knew how to take care of myself. I blame the neurotransmitter dopamine — and the reward system of my brain, generally — for somehow allowing the research, and subsequent purchase, of baseball cards to provide me with great pleasure. And finally, I blame Big Oil — which, even though they didn’t do anything specifically, they’re probably somehow involved.
Phrased differently, what I mean to say is that, just today, I’ve made my first meaningful purchase of baseball cards since probably 1990. I don’t know if, in this case, meaningful is synonymous with fiscally sound.
I’ve listed my purchases below. Essentially, my strategy has been to target players whom I see as perhaps being undervalued relative to their future potential. In some cases (Mike Stanton and Mike Trout), it’s because I view the player in question as an eventual Hall of Fame candidate. In other cases (Brent Morel, Juan Nicasio, Chris Sale, Dayan Viciedo), it’s because I suspect the player in question will considerably raise his profile this coming season in the eyes of fans and collectors.
In every case, my goal has been to find at least two versions of each player’s rookie card — both from a base set and then some kind of numbered parallel set (gold or black, it generally is, for Topps), which I’m assuming will be more valuable than the base version.
I purchased all the following cards using the site Check Out My Cards, which gives dealers and collectors a very clean forum for selling their cards — and gives buyers a chance to see a scan of literally every card they’re considering for purchase. And again, I’ve found the site BaseballCardPedia very helpful.
Below are today’s purchases. I’ve included a key at the bottom of this post.
|Brent Morel||2011||Bowman||–||196||AU Chrome RC||–||Y||1||$3.00|
Series — Generally either First (1), Second (2), or Update (U). Bowman appears to produce just a single series each year.
#d — For inserts and parallels, how many cards were produced.
Insert/Parallel — AU means autographed. Everything else is pretty self-evident.
RC? — Is it a player’s rookie card?
# — How many I bought.
$ — Total spent on all cards bought, rounded to nearest half dollar.
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