Sunday, October 31, 2010

Madison Bumgarner and Buster Posey Circa 2009

Two of the brightest young stars the San Francisco Giants organization has seen in many years has the storied franchise on the brink of it's first World Series Championship since 1954.  Madison Bumgarner, the 10th overall pick in the 2007 MLB Draft pitched eight innings of shut-out ball and Buster Posey, the 5th pick in 2008, added a solo homerun in a 4-0 Giants win in Game 4.

It's hard not to get caught up in the spectacular performance by Bumgarner and Posey, because there is still business to be done. The Giants still need one more win. I remember the earthquake in 1989. By 1993 I was checking the newspaper everyday to see if the team could land star outfielder Barry Bonds. The loss in 2002 to the Angles was devastating. The years since have been........... torture.......

In 2009 I wanted to see first hand the young talent the Giants had acquired through the draft, specifically Bumgarner and Posey. Luckily the Single-A affiliate for the team, the San Jose Giants, play in my backyard several times a year in Northern California. I took a couple pictures of Bumgarner, the starter and winning pitcher that night, and Buster Posey, who laced a double and played great defense all night.  I would have laughed if someone had told me less then a year and a half later, both would be playing in the MLB, in the World Series, and come up HUGE for the Giants. Just one more to go...........


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

2009 UD Mystery Cuts Tom Cheney BBQ Autograph

This auction is truly bizarre. I mean it really, really is. Sound like a collector was upset with Upper Deck for taking 18 months to ship him - what was - a 2009 Upper Deck Mystery Cuts Autograph of former baseball player Tom Cheney.  The seller of the card was so upset at the wait that he, yes, barbecued it with his own special sauce and now has the card up for auction. Even more shocking, it's currently the most watched baseball card on eBay and has several days left to go.

I'm at a lost for words on this one, so here is the description straight from the seller: "After 18 months of waiting for this redemption card, the anticipation is finally ameliorated! Up for auction is one slightly tasty and cooked to "Rare" Tom Cheney ownage card directly from Upper Deck, the company that cares so little for its customers. With all the payouts to players associations and dubious reproductions on childrens cards, one would wonder, is that you Bernie Madoff running this racket?"

The seller goes onto describe the BBQ process: "This is a redneck riviera BBQ sauce from my old mans recipe. It's made slow (like UD shipping), is hot (like stolen childrens card copyrights), and will probably make you sick (like McWilliam) if you have too much. I'd like to state for the record there will be no pickle accompanying this card."

To add a personal touch, the seller will even autograph the brush he used to marinate the card with. I couldn't make this up if I tried: "I may have to include the marinade brush to verify the brush strokes on the rarefied card. I will autograph the brush at winners request. Henceforth, it shall be known as "The Brush of Ownage".

2009 UD Mystery Cuts TOM CHENEY 74/74 Barbecued BBQ
Watchers: 98 (Most Watched Baseball Card)
Current Price: $13.50
Final Price: $15.50
Auction Ends: November 1

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

2010 Topps Chrome Jason Heyward Superfractor 1/1

Some of the luster wore off 2010 Baseball products when Stephen Strasburg went down with an injury in late August and thus wax prices for the newly released Topps Chrome have dipped to less than $50.00 per hobby box. The price meltdown was great for collectors but bad for anyone who pre-ordered huge orders of the set well before Strasburg got hurt. Nonetheless, collectors are still enjoying opening boxes and one of the biggest pulls has surfaced on eBay, a 2010 Topps Chrome Jason Heyward Superfractor Autograph Rookie, serial numbered 1/1.

Heyward got the 2010 MLB season started with a bang when he hit a HR in his first at-bat on opening day. Strasburg and S.F. Giants rookie Buster Posey were still in the minors and it looked like Heyward was the top choice for N.L. Rookie of the Year after the first month of the season. Sales of Heyward rookie cards were strong and we chronicled many of them on this site including several cards from 2007 and 2008 that sold for over $1,000.00 at auction in early April. Heyward collectors were treated to a surprise in June when all three of his Bowman Chrome Superfractor cards were for sale on eBay at the same time. The 2010 Auto sold for $6,156.00, the 2008 Auto got taken off eBay when bidding approached $5K and the Un-Autographed 2007 version was also taken off eBay by Razor Collectibles and inserted into the 2010 Razor Rookie Retro set.

I mentioned in this post that Heyward moves his head and body a lot when he swings the bat which will make him prone to strike out a lot and go into slumps when his timing is off. That proved to be the case as the season wore on and Heyward struggled with injuries as well. He still had a very nice season and would be the top choice for the R.O.Y. award if Buster Posey didn't get called up in May and hit over .300 with 18 HR.

2010 Topps Chrome Jason Heyward Superfractor Auto 1/1
Watchers: 200+ (Most Watched Trading Card)
Current Price: $449.00
Final Price: $2,025.05
Auction Ends: October 24

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

2003/04 UD Legends Kobe Bryant/ Dwyane Wade Dual Auto /25

The landscape of the NBA in 2003/04 was much different back in those days. Dwyane Wade was a promising rookie for the Miami Heat and Kobe Bryant was a 3-Time Champion who was trying to shrug off sexual assault charges brought against him in Colorado. By the time the 03/04 UD Legends cards were released on June 20, 2004 - Wade was at home relaxing and Bryant was deciding if he'd resign with the Lakers.

Shaquille O'Neal was traded during the summer of 2004 and Bryant remained with the Lakers and struggled through a couple season with the likes of Smush Parker and Vladimir Radmanović as teammates. Meanwhile, Wade teamed with O'Neal and won a Championship in 2005/06. The Lakers eventually re-loaded, Kobe's off-the-court reputation was restored for the most part, and he has led his team to the Finals for the past three seasons.

This 2003/04 UD Legends Dual Autograph of Wade/Bryant is the most watched Basketball card on eBay. The card is serial numbered to 25 and is signed on-card by both players. You never know how these dual autographs, pairing a rookie with an established veteran, will turn out in the long run. For example, a card from the same 03/04 'Rookie Impressions' insert set is a dual auto of Larry Bird and Darko Milicic. Ouch. It's safe to say Upper Deck got lucky with this Bryant/Wade card and NBA Commissioner David Stern is hoping the two meet in the 2010/11 NBA Finals, you can bet on that.

03-04 UD Legends Kobe Bryant Dwyane Wade DUAL AUTO /25
Watchers: 93 (Most Watched Basketball Card)
Current Price: $315.00
Final Price: $504.00
Auction Ends: October 21

Monday, October 18, 2010

2007/08 UD Chronology Kevin Durant Patch Auto /35

Kevin Durant has the hottest Basketball cards on the market right now. Consistently over the past couple months his cards have reigned supreme as the most watched Basketball trading cards. Currently the most watched card on eBay is this 2007/08 Upper Deck Chronology 'Stitches in Time' Patch Autograph, serial numbered 25/35. On October 17th a 07/08 UD Hot Prospects Rookie Patch Auto sold for $255.00 and that card was also one of the top Basketball cards on eBay.
The Chronology card is not a 'true' rookie card of Durant, but the card was made during his rookie season of 07/08. Other names from the 30 card Stitches in Time insert set are: Chris Mullin, George Gervin, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Walt Frazier.  Parallels of the cards exist and are serial numbered to 25, 15, 5 and 1.

The seller of the card, cmeloman15 notes, "this guy (Durant) is further along than both Kobe and Lebron at this stage in his career."  While that point is debatable, I will say that players like Kobe and Michael Jordan have/had a desire to win that is found in just a small fraction of the elite players. For every Kobe and Jordan, we've seen guys like Tracy McGrady, Steve Francis and Vince Carter fail to ever have the competitive drive that is necessary to win in the NBA and remain a longtime hobby mainstay. It remains to be seen if Durant has that 'killer instinct'.

2007-08 UD Chronology Auto Patch Kevin Durant RC 25/35
Watchers: 100 (Most Watched Trading Card)
Current Price: $375.00
Final Price: $654.00
Auction Ends: October 19

2001 Bowman Chrome Cody Ross Gold Refractor /99

October is a special time for card collectors because it seems like every year a player who nobody was buying becomes hobby relevant. San Francisco Giants outfielder Cody Ross has got collectors everywhere digging through old boxes of junk to see if they have a nice Cody Ross card to put up on eBay. There aren't a whole lot of 2001 Cody Ross Rookie Cards, but his Bowman Chrome Gold Refractor, serial numbered #/99, is the rookie that will fetch the most at auction.

I am a long time Giants fan and couldn't be happier for Cody and I hope he continues to hit homeruns every night because the Phillies have got a stacked lineup with some great pitching as well. I would imagine Ross won't see an inside fastball for quite sometime because all 3 of his HR's were middle-in fastballs at the edge of the plate. As far as his trading cards go, this is a great time to sell anything and everything Cody Ross. Put together a nice lot with any and all cards you can find. If you do happen to have some of his 2001 rookies, or a modern autograph or game used card, this would be the time to part ways with it. Chances are, you can always buy it back next season at a steep discount. Ross is not considered a prospect, but will probably earn a starting job somewhere, possibly with the Giants, because of his stellar play thus far in the 2010 MLB Playoffs.

This 2001 Bowman Chrome Cody Ross Gold Refractor Rookie is serial numbered #99. To put the price in perspective, in September 2010, a Troy Tulowitzki 2005 Bowman Chrome Gold Refractor, serial numbered #/50 sold for $306.00. I think most everyone would agree that Tulowitzki is the far better player in the long term, and possibly might be a Hall-of-Fame type talent. If this Ross card even approaches $100.00 that is a great win for the seller.

2001 Bowman Chrome Cody Ross RC Gold Refractor 47/99
Watchers: 20
Current Price: $32.50
Final Price: $44.00
Auction Ends: October 19

Friday, October 15, 2010

2007/08 Kevin Durant Rookie Patch Autograph Hot Prospects

Usually, even the most popular players in the NBA have 'haters' who will take every opportunity to bash that player to anyone and everyone who has an ear. LeBron James has his fair share of detractors, especially after the wild free agent summer of 2010. The games best player, Kobe Bryant, keeps proving his doubters wrong year after year and is just one short of Michael Jordan's six championship rings. You can bet there are Kobe haters everywhere who would give anything to make sure Kobe doesn't match, or even pass Jordan in Championships. One thing I have noticed though, is the lack of 'haters' Kevin Durant has, everyone seems to love this guy. His popularity and the value of his 2007/08 rookie cards have steadily climbed in 2010 after he led the Oklahoma City Thunder to the first round of the NBA playoffs. He is a front runner to win the 2010/11 NBA MVP award if he can best his performance from 09/10.

There was a lull, maybe from late 2008 through the 2009 season, where prices were really soft for 07/08 rookies and boxes because #1 overall pick Greg Oden was continuously hurt and while Durant played well in Seattle, the fan base was dwindling.  Eventually, the Sonics were forced to move to Oklahoma City because of a horrid lease they had signed with the arena in Seattle. Once the fan base got rolling in Oklahoma, the love for Durant started to trickle out to the rest of country. Last season was a breakout year for Durant and collectors who waited patiently were rewarded by a boost in the value of his rookie cards.

2007-08 Kevin Durant Hot Prospects Auto Jersey RC /399
Watchers: 54
Current Price: $168.50
Final Price: $255.00
Auction Ends: October 17

Thursday, October 14, 2010

October 17th Baseball Card Show - Findlay, Ohio

Back again is Awesome Card Shop with another one of their monthly Sports Card Shows in Findlay, OH. The October edition will be held on Sunday the 17th at the same location and times as their last successful shows. Look for boxes to be ripped open and put on YouTube if you can't make the event.

Baseball Card Show Details
The Knights of Columbus Hall
701 West Main Cross Street
Findlay, Ohio
Date: Sunday - October 17, 2010
Time: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

For more information:
Visit AwesomeSportsCards on Twitter
Awesome Sports Cards Facebook Page

2010 Triple Threads Mickey Mantle Roger Maris Cut Relic

One of the huge product hits has been pulled from 2010 Topps Triple Threads Baseball, a spectacular Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris 'Cut Above" Dual Autograph Relic card. It's currently the most watched trading card on eBay and has New York Yankee collectors salivating at the thought of owing this gem.

The 2009 Triple Threads Baseball Set didn't go without controversy when hobby bloggers and collectors were concerned about the authenticity of a 2009 Babe Ruth/Lou Gehrig Dual Autograph Relic. Topps probably made 100% sure this time around that they got the real deal on all their high end cut autographs that were included into 2010 Triple Threads Baseball. Some of the other key cut signatures in the product are: Babe Ruth /Ty Cobb, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. 
The cut signature of Roger Maris appears to be from a letter or piece of paper because you can see "Best Wishes" inscribed above his autograph. Mantle's auto might be from a picture or perhaps an old signed baseball card. Both are very clear, it's just a bummer Topps wasn't able to include Mantle's full signature because part of the 'M' in Mickey and the 'E' in Mantle are cut off from the border of the card.

2010 Topps Triple Threads Mantle/Maris Dual Autographs
Watchers: 316 (Most Watched Trading Card)
Current Price: $2,146.00
Final Price: $2,275.00
Auction Ends: October 18

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

2009 Triple Threads Walter Payton Jumbo Patch Book

Walter Payton is without question one of the greatest running backs to ever play in the NFL and his premium trading cards are always some of the most watched on eBay. This 2009 Topps Triple Threads Jumbo Patch Relic Book Card, being sold on consignment by Beckett Media, has every big time Payton collector on full attention and bidding should be fierce toward the close of the auction.

I've taken a look at a few of Payton's high end cards in the past so it will be interesting to see what price the '09 Triple Threads Book Card fetches. All of the other Payton cards I've written about have either been his 1976 Topps Rookie or a game used card with an autograph also included. The Triple Threads card is just a game used card and is serial numbered 1/1.
The card was pulled by a collector and is being sold on consignment by Beckett Media. The leading publisher of hobby magazines will sell your cards on eBay if the card is valued over $250.00. Visit Beckett's My World Page on eBay and send them a question if you would like any additional information on this service.

2009 Topps Triple Threads WALTER PAYTON Jumbo Patch 1/1
Watchers: 64
Current Price: $515.00
Final Price: $616.00
Auction Ends: October 17

Thursday, October 7, 2010

2010/11 Panini Prestige DeMarcus Cousins Rookie Autograph /249

NBA Basketball cards from Panini have already hit hobby shops and the debut set, 2010/11 Prestige, has gotten some love from collectors on eBay during the first week of sales. Wizards #1 overall pick John Wall and Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins are the two rookies getting the most attention so far.
It's been many years since the Kings were a competitive team in the Western Conference but the organization remains hopeful that the pairing of Cousins and 2009/10 NBA Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans will bring back the glory days in Sacramento. Cousins played well in the NBA Summer League but will have to keep his large body in shape to be a force in the NBA. The NCAA College Basketball season is only 30+ games long while the NBA is 82, plus any additional playoff games. There are some NBA writers and experts that wonder if Cousins has the motivation and drive to be a superstar in the league.

The early pricing for the new NBA rookies is always interesting to monitor and will fluctuate drastically as more sets are released and the players eventually hit the hardwood. Tyreke Evans and Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry were the two top sellers from the 2009/10 freshman class which proves that rookies from small market teams can still get respect in the hobby. If there are any sleeper NBA rookies that you like heading into the 10/11 season then you might want to check the prices of their Prestige rookie now to get an idea how much they are selling for before games are even played.

10/11 Prestige Auto DeMarcus Cousins 246/249
Watchers: 48
Current Price: 46.99
Final Price: $72.00
Auction Ends: October 8th