Players Names: Vladimir Guerrero / Alfonso Soriano
Players Positions: OF – Guerrero / 2B – Soriano
Players Current Teams: California Angels (Guerrero) and Chicago Cubs (Pictured with the Texas Rangers, Soriano)
Price I Paid for the Card: I paid $1.25 on eBay
Set it’s from: 2005 Fleer Authentix
What it’s Worth: Beckett has it listed for $15.00, but as you can see I got it much cheaper on eBay.
Why I like this card: What’s not to like? You get two of the premier hitters in the league jerseys on the same card. Both are on their way to the Hall of Fame. Vlad in 13 seasons has 2000 hits and 368 home runs. Where as Soriano, who has 231 homers and 231 stolen bases in 10 years, including a 40/40 season may not be a shoe in, but he has some nice credentials. Plus I love the design of this card. It’s meant to look like a ticket and actually Steve from White Sox Cards blog wrote about this on Things done to sports cards blog. But what I really like about this card is the dueling players in the middle of their peaks, and a swatch of jersey from both of them.
Why it’s a Cheap Hit: To players at the peaks of their careers, both are monster hitters and I get both of their jerseys on one card! I’ll buy this card up all day at a buck and change a pop. You can’t tell me that when they are all done with baseball, this card won’t be worth more. It has to be right? I don’t do prospecting but I would be floored if this card doesn’t go up in value.
Will it Ever be Worth Anything More that a Minor Star?: Damn I hope so! Can it ever be worth less than what I paid for it? I doubt it, but if one or both of these guys head to the Hall of Fame, shouldn’t this card’s price go up? I would think so.
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.
Player’s Name: Carlos Zambrano
Player’s Position: P
Player’s Current Team: Chicago Cubs
Price I Paid for the Card: $3.99 for the pack of cards it came in.
Set it’s from: 2008 Upper Deck Series one
What it’s Worth: I would consider it an unlisted star common and last year’s Upper Deck Game Jersey cards run about $8.00 according to Beckett. It is listed on eBay and is going for $0.99 consistently.
Why I like this card: The Big Z is definitely the power pitcher of this decade. Who would have thought that between Kerry Wood, Mark Prior and Carlos Zambrano, that Carlos would walk away as the best pitcher in that group. I think the other two are more likable but Z is such a workhorse what’s not to like. The only thing I worry about with him is whether he can keep throwing 200+ innings every year, or if they are going to back him down a little now that they have so much invested in him. I also like the swatch of jersey on this card. It is actually stretched on the bottom left piece, almost as though he did that sliding or something. Or maybe this was the jersey he wore during his infamous fight with Michael Barret in the Cubby dugout. Barret just got a hold of it and ripped it a bit, and now I am the proud owner of a stretched out swatch of his jersey.
Why it’s a Bad Hit: He’s a pitcher and although he is one of the better pitchers in the league, there just aren’t many high priced cards of pitchers. Another awful thing about this card is his mug shot like picture. What the heck is wrong with Upper Deck for letting something like that hit a game used card. Upper Deck is known for their superior photos, but really that’s the best they could do for this card? He looks like you’ve just called him a derogatory name and now he has to kick your tail. Either that or they just asked him a math question and he is completely stumped. It’s definitely one of the two.
Will it Ever be Worth Anything More than an Unlisted Star Common?: What can I say, he is a pitcher and pitchers don’t make for high priced collectibles. If he becomes better than Johan Santana or actually hangs around long enough to win 300 games, possibly. But then again how likely are those two things happening? Not very so my answer to this is no.