Bad Hits

No new post today

I accidently left the scan I had for today (on a USB key) at home. I might post tonight when I get home, sorry. I suck!

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April 30, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Bad Game Used – Matt Cain

Player’s Name: Matt Cain

Player’s Position: P – Starter

Player’s Current Team: San Francisco Giants

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $1.87 on eBay

Set it’s from: 2007 Topps Series one

What it’s Worth: Beckett has it listed for a very cheap $10.00, but as you can see I got it much cheaper on eBay.

Why I like this card: It’s a funny thing.  Here is a guy who has never broken the 0.500 mark pitching and everyone loves him.  From the baseball card world, to the fantasy baseball world.  The problem is his record doesn’t lie.  That’s the kind of player he is. He had a rough start to the year, but I know he’ll put together another 12-12/3.85/1.26 year, because that’s the kind of player he is.  I like the card though, because I like all the highlight cards from the Topps sets.  This year’s set I already have 5 of them and this is my 2nd from last year’s set.  I just like the card design, and I like looking at highlights from last year.  In this card it highlights his 6 game tear from August – September 2006.  I think he can do that again, but he is going to need some help.

Why it’s a Bad Hit: The problem with player prospecting is two fold. Lay down low money in hopes of a Pujols type return.  The hotter the prospect, the mosre we expect from them.  It adds pressure on a real level.  Matt Cain was certainly supposed to be something special.  I’m not saying he isn’t going to be, but to me, it looks like he has quite a hill to climb.  I could very well be wrong, but I think in the end he might win 120 games and end up with a record around 0.550, an ERA around 4.00 and a WHIP around 1.30.  Is that a bad thing?  Of course not, it means he was able to stay in the league for more than a decade.  But to us the card collector, it sucks.  That’s why I don’t prospect.  I can’t understand why some 18 year old hitting 0.350 in A+ ball is worth hundreds of dollars, when someone who is in the league hitting 0.300 isn’t even worth a 1% of that.  How can that be? Damn the rookie card!

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More that a Common?:No, I really doubt it.  I think we are looking at a career 0.500 pitcher and those cards aren’t worth much.

April 21, 2008 Posted by | bad game used, Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Cheap Game Used – Tony Gwynn

Player’s Name: Tony Gwynn

Player’s Position: OF

Player’s Current Team: San Diego Padres

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $1.26 on eBay

Set it’s from: 2001 Upper Deck Legends

What it’s Worth: Beckett has it listed for a very cheap $15.00, I am not sure why but you can find a lot of Tony Gwynn Jerseys and such very cheap on eBay.

Why I like this card: I got this card as I was going through my contemporary Hall of Fame members period. I wanted to get game used cards of all players who recently got into the Hall of Fame.  I was of the age where I got to see Tony’s entire career unfold.  I watched him as a pudgy little rookie who had wheels that you would never believe by looking at him.  Until he became a stately member of baseball who was almost considered a living legend.  I just liked seeing him play even though he was on a team I cared little about.  I think the best I ever felt for him was when he walked into Yankee Stadium late in his career for a World Series game, the first time in his long career he played in a World Series and the first time in his career he played in Yankee Stadium.  That must have felt incredible.  I think as an adult I can appreciate it more, seeing that I saw him through every stage of his career.

Why it’s a Cheap Hit: It’s Tony Gwynn, the guy is a living legend in the baseball world.  I don’t quite understand why his cards (especially jersey ones) are running so cheap, but get them while you can.  He was never considered an upper echelon player and I think that is part of the reason it’s not worth as much as you would think.  He was a hits guy, with a little speed, but just a hitting machine.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More?: No, he is done with his career and has been elected to the Hall of Fame, I think his card is about as high as it is going to get.

April 18, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Bad Game Used – Morgan Ensberg

Player’s Name: Morgan Ensberg

Player’s Position: 1B/3B

Player’s Current Team: New York Yankees (Pictured with the Houston Astros)

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $2.99 for the pack it was in, purchased at Target.

Set it’s from: 2008 Upper Deck Series 1

What it’s Worth: It is not listed in Beckett as of yet but last year’s version of the card would make me believe that it would book at about $8.

Why I like this card: OK, where do I start. Let’s start with, he’s pictured in a Houston Astros number 14 jersey and the card has him lited as number 2 playing for the San Diego Padres. This was originally caught on WaxBreaker by Spud. Now I know it’s not unheard of for card companies to do this, and they do this now more than ever, but man how bad does something like this look. In this day and age, you couldn’t find one picture of Ensburg in his Padres uniform? To be honest though, any player moved before 12/30 should have a card on his new team, with his new jersey.

Why it’s a Bad Hit: The one thing that I am absolutely blown away from is that he is only two years removed from 4th in MVP voting during his 2005 season when he went 0.283/36/101. How did he go from that to maybe 250 at bats a year as a back up to Jason Giambi AND Shelly Duncan? That’s just crazy, did he skills really deteriorate that quickly? If he was given another starting slot could he make a go fo it and get back to his 2005 numbers? I have no idea, but the MLB clubs don’t think so.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than a common?: No, unfortunately his best years are behind him and I think in two more years, he might not even be in baseball. Now that’s sad. Such a bright future just two years ago, I just don;t get it.

April 10, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Cheap Game Used – David Wells

Player’s Name: David Wells

Player’s Position: P – Starter

Player’s Current Team: None (Pictured with the San Diego Padres)

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $0.50 on eBay .

Set it’s from: 2006 SPx Winning Materials

What it’s Worth:Beckett has it listed as an unlisted minor star, it lists for $8.00. As you can see though, it can be had for less.

Why I like this card:How can you not like David Wells? I mean even the mention of his name yields a laugh or two. The best thing about Boomer that I like was the fact that by the middle of the second inning, he’d have half his jersey unbuttoned. In fact a couple of my friends and I used to bet how many batters it would take to get the first button undone, second, ect… In fact, if you look closely at the picture, his first button is undone, so it must be pretty early in the game. I think Boomer finally retired last year at the age of 44. Known as one of the most unfit athletes of his era, he will be known for one thing. Pitching big when he needed to.

Why it’s a Cheap Hit: Again, to see this card of a guy of his caliber in the bargain bin, almost makes me mad. Either mad or glad. I am still not sure. Mad that I saw it for cheap but glad that I got it for cheap. After all, how many of you out there have a piece of Boomer? I just wish it was a button. What is interesting is that 4 of the 10 closest in stats is in the Hall of Fame. I don’t think Boomer will get in, but he does have a great winning percentage 0.604 and did win 239 games. So who knows, do you believe in miracles?

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than an unlisted minor star?: If he gets into the Hal . . . . wow I can’t even type it, I’m laughing too hard. No it’s a bargin bin forever kind of card and that’s all right by me.

April 9, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment

Cheap Game Used – Alfonso Soriano

Player’s Name: Alfonso Soriano

Player’s Position: OF/2B

Player’s Current Team: Chicago Cubs (Pictured with the Washington Nationals)

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $0.50 on eBay .

Set it’s from: 2006 SPx Winning Materials

What it’s Worth:Beckett has it listed as an unlisted star, it lists for $10.00. As you can see though, it can be had for less.

Why I like this card: I never stopped liking him, even though the Yankees traded him for A-Rod.  He was one of the players, that when I got back into collecting, I had decided that he was going to be one of my targets for game used materials.  He has never really had a bad season, even though he had some bad situations.  I don’t think he’s going to show the wheels he once had, but I can definitely see him continuing his home run pace of about 35 a year.  He has a nice batting average (around 0.280 for his career), which is amazing given his penchant for striking out as much as he does.  At some point when he is older you are going to see some 0.240 averages, just because at some point he won’t be able to catch up to those fast balls.

Why it’s a Cheap Hit: There are tons of these cards on the market. I have at least 20-30 of them (not Soriano mind you) but of that variety.  Even still, it is Soriano, the guy hasn’t really had a bad season yet in his career (knocking on wood) and yet, he is not as cherrished as a Pujols or A-Rod.  I think the K’s are what turns poeple off of him, but whatever, 50 cents for the card is a bargain.  I am not sure whether he is Hall of Fame worthy at this point, since he still has over 250 more homers to go and he is 32.  We would have to see a sustained jump in his homer totals to get him to that HOF level.  And to think he was just wasting away in the Japanese League when the Yankee found him.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than an unlisted star?: Probably not, but hey it’s a Soriano card, and he had a 40-40 year.  Not too many guys can say they did that.

April 8, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cheap Game Used – Tom Glavine

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Player’s Name: Tom Glavine

Player’s Position: P – Starter

Player’s Current Team: Atlanta Braves (Pictured with the New York Mets)

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $0.99 on eBay .

Set it’s from: 2004 Upper Deck R-Class

What it’s Worth: It is listed in Beckett as a minor star and set at $10. As you can see you can get it on eBay for much less.

Why I like this card:I am racking my brain but I can’t come up with what r-class means. I think it stands for rookie class but I don’t see how Glavine fits in that one since he is as far from a rookie as I can imagine. I got this card, as Glavine is a sure fire Hall of Famer. He got to 300 wins when no one was supposed to get to 300 wins anymore. Back in the late eighties, I remember a magazine article explaining how it would be very difficult for pitchers today to win 300 games. They had predicted at the time that only Gooden and Clemens would hit the magic number. Of course this was before Gooden hit the coke hard, at least they nailed the Clemens. I’m going to guess that this is going to be his last year, as he will be 42 this year. First ballot Hall of Famer?

Why it’s a Cheap Hit: This is where I am going to rail on the industry. What is wrong with the industry when rookies are worth more than Hall of Famers? Why is a jersey of Jacoby Ellsbury or Ryan Braun worth more than one of Glavine? Don’t get me wrong I’m sure they will have good if not great careers, but I’m so tired of every rookie being tainted as the next Hall of Famer before they reach 100 major league at bats. Everyone is so worried about finding the next Albert Pujols, that no one collects Pujols anymore. For $0.99 I have a piece of a jersey worn by a Hall of Famer. Sure it’s not the next big thing in the minors, but to me and all collectors it should be worth more. It’s not and that’s sad, but hey maybe someday this craziness will change.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than a common?: Maybe once he gets in, but then again, think of all those 300 win players I’ve gotten for $0.99 and they are already in the Hall.

April 1, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 3 Comments

Bad Game Used – Jeremy Sowers

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Player’s Name: Jeremy Sowers

Player’s Position: P – Starter

Player’s Current Team: Jeremy Sowers

Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $2.99 for the pack it was in, purchased at Target.

Set it’s from: 2008 Upper Deck Series 1

What it’s Worth: It is not listed in Beckett as of yet but last year’s version of the card would make me believe that it would book at about $8.

Why I like this card:I don’t know if anyone ever saw the movie Johnny B Good with Anthony Michael Hall, but during one of the scenes, the coach asks to see their game face, I think that the above picture is Jeremy’s game face. This card represents my only time in pack searching since I’ve come back to the hobby. I don’t like pack searchers, but I had to see what an average bout of pack searching would yield. I bought one pack it took me about 10 minutes to find it and this is the result. One very bad pull. I know that he is an up and comer, but if he can’t make this rotation after 2 years, I think he is doomed in his career.

Why it’s a Bad Hit: The pack searching idea was an experiment. I read a lot of stories about how every pack searcher pulls big hit after big hit. The truth is, sometimes actually if I had to guess, most times, you end up with something like this. I’m not sure what to think of Sowers. He is still pretty young (24) but last year he went 1-6 with a 6.23 ERA,if I had to take a guess, he is one of those guys that needs another pitch. He is not a strikeout guy, so he has to use his pitches wisely since he can’t just simply overpower him. It might just be a mute point though, as he is not in the majors, and may not be until someone gets injured, even then though it might be a smarter move for the Indians to bring up someone else since Jeremy hasn’t proven himself in the majors after two seasons.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than a common?: I really can’t see it happening, it may not have any value in the future (other than to his family) if he doesn’t get his head in the game and start performing. All in all bad hit!

March 31, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Bad Game Used – Dontrelle Willis

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Player’s Name: Dontrelle Willis

Player’s Position: P

Player’s Current Team: Detroit Tigers (pictured with the Florida Marlins).

Price I Paid for the Card: $19.99 for the blaster box purchased at Walmart.

Set it’s from: 2008 Upper Deck Series one

What it’s Worth: Since the 2008 Upper Deck hasn’t been priced yet, I’ll go from last year’s set and put him as a minor star worth $8.00.

Why I like this card: The D-Train has been one of my favorite pitchers for a while now.  I just like watching the way he pitches.  I still remember his rookie year in 2003 when he went 14-6/3.30/1.28 and won Rookie of the Year honors.  Sure he had a rough time in 2004, but in 2005 he was right back where he left off.  He went 22-10/2.63/1.13 and finished runner up to Cris Carpenter for the Cy Young award.  Some people seem to think that at the age of 26 he might be washed up after putting up back to back rough years for the Marlins in 2006 and 2007, but I’m not one of those people.  He’s only 26 and should be just entering the prime of his career.  In this case, A change of scenery might help with his game. Don’t forget now he has won 68 games in 5 years so on average he wins almost 14 games a year.  This is just one of a few D-Train jersey cards I have.

Why it’s a Bad Hit: I felt so ripped off when I finally got this card in the last pack of the blaster box.  I plunked down $20 and I was really hoping for something decent as my jersey card.  In 2004 this would have been one of the most sought after cards, but in 2008, it just isn’t. Just be aware that anytime you plunk down big bucks for an Upper Deck box, don’t expect to find a one of one card or even one of a superstar, as you will see as this blog continues, there are plenty of terrible cards I have gotten for the 2008 Upper Deck set.  Not all jersey cards are good ones, just see the Mike Sweeney one I got a few posts ago.  I think Mario even commented that every Mike Sweeney jersey card is a bad hit.  With D-Train though, there is a chance he can turn his career around.  I think since we are entering his prime it should go better for him in Detroit.
Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than an Unlisted Star?: At one point in his career, he might have been, but those days are gone (for now),Who knows? Stranger things have happened.

March 27, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Cheap Autographs – Adrian Beltre

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Player’s Name: Adrian Beltre

Player’s Position: 3B

Player’s Current Team: Los Angeles Dodgers

Price I Paid for the Card: Paid $1 at a card show in Freehold, NJ.

Set it’s from: 1999 Upper Deck SP.
What it’s Worth: Beckett has it listed at $10 as an unlisted star. On eBay, I saw it listed for $13 but only one seller.

Why I like this card: I don’t have too many autographs but I like all the player’s whose autographs I like. We may never know Adrian’s true age but who cares when he bombs out homers at the rate he does. I don’t know what everyone was complaining about, when he stopped hitting massive amounts of homers. He was always a 0.260/25/80 guy. The 47 homer season (contract year) was an aberration or should I stay steroidation? Of course it wasduring the years of testing, but look at his stats it’s very Brady Anderson-esque.

Why it’s a Cheap Hit: 1 buck baby! I remember buying this one with the Lowell card. I was just looking for guys that were either rookies or showed some potential. You’ll see a few more of these as the days go by. For a brief time in 1999 and 2000 I got back into cards, but really it was just to get the autograph and relic cards. I decided that I didn’t have enough money to dive back into the hobby full strength, so I started looking for autographs and game used cards. Now back then the game used cards were worth a lot more than the autographs, now though, the autos are worth tons more than the relic cards (as a rule of thumb). I won’t call this one a bad hit at all, because the guy is actually not bad at all. He is only 29 and he has 219 homers. There is a distinct possibility that he can get to 500. I’m guessing though he’ll end up in the low 400’s.

Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than an Unlisted Star Common?: Not unless he goes over that magical 500 homer mark. I am not sure if that’s possible for him though. He hovers around the 25 homer mark and he’s need 12 more of those. Possible but not likely.

March 13, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments