Fantasy News: Book Value

The first guest posting: From “The Changeup Artist”

I bet everyone reading this had a baseball card collection. If you didn’t have one, you knew someone who did. We all had our favorites, those cards that you loved that nobody else loved; those cards with the bent corners that you saved your dimes to buy; those cards that you put in plastic sleeves and locked away for when you were 50.

Fantasy baseball teams are no different than your old card collection. You collect guys hoping your collection is the most valuable. It isn’t about looks – twenty Dwight Gooden rookie cards won’t help you win the best collection. In fact, to get the best collection you need to beg, borrow, steal, trade, and scrounge guys onto your roster. This week, I offer you guys to save from a burning building, to hold on in your lock box, to make a complete set, and to use on your dart board.

Run Back into the Flames for that Card!

Example: 1909 Honus Wagner could buy you one of these for 1.5 million, 1933 Babe Ruth ($150K), and 1933 Mickey Mantle ($100K)

After saving the wife, children, dog, cat, and Brewer hat, go back in for these guys. They could at least buy you a new house. Who could buy you a new team in fantasy if yours burned down in May? The question is really how many good players someone would pay for a great player. You don’t have to wait for production with these cards: they pay now! Albert Pujols is obvious. The guy kills the ball (7 Homers, 18 RBI) and is on a great team. I would run back in for Miguel Cabrera, too. His 24 RBI leads the majors and he isn’t slowing down. Maybe gaining weight but not slowing down.


What about the guy that can do it all? Matt Kemp leads the league in runs (20), has 7 HRs, and two stolen bases! Baseball’s all-time ninth inning ice man, Mariano Rivera, should be here also. He wasn’t picked in any round ones but he is as close to they get to locking down a position. These guys are worth the price and more.

Remember the Combination to that Lock

Example: 1968 Topps Nolan Ryan ($350), 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson ($90), 1975 Topps George Brett ($90)

So many guys can be put into plastic protector cases and locked away. Are they all worth it? Many people thought Matt Murton was going to be amazing; that didn’t turn out so well. Make sure you use the space in your lock box well. Don’t waste spot speculating on Cameron Maybin and Aubrey Huff. They could break out but they could be held close for too long, killing you in such things as BA. Guys that belong here will take a lot to get you trade them, probably another lock box guy.

Who demands such equality?

How about Roy Halladay and Adam Wainwright. I got caught waiting on Wainwright in the draft and I wish I hadn’t. Both these guys look like they could win the CY Young and win 20.

Ryan Braun and Justin Morneau are across the board stars. If they keep up the high BA (.360+), they will move into category one.

Want to lock away someone for the future? Make sure your copy of Nelson Cruz doesn’t have any bent corners. The Cruz missiles are flying this season.

Complete the Collection

Example: 1992 Stadium Club Roberto Alomar ($3), 1988 Donruss Mark Grace ($3)

After stumbling upon the next big thing (category two) and staring at your cornerstone (category 1), you find an annoying gap on page three of your card album. By the time you decide to walk into the card shop and buy a copy, you are paying too much–do you have a choice?

What do you need with Ryan Theriot (valuable SS option) or James Loney (2nd tier 1B option)? You win your league with these guys. Everyone else seems to have a copy of the Denard Span card but you.

What’s the big deal?

Remember, a complete set is worth more than a bunch of random cards. Need steals? Andrew McCutchen has 10 SB. You don’t want to pay for saves but having the Nationals’ closer, Matt Capps (8), makes your team more valuable. What card are you missing?

The Doubles

Example: almost every Brewer, Cub, or Pirate from 1990-2001. 1994 Mike Matheny Select ($0.15)


You open the pack and all you can feel on the top card is that white stuff from the teeth shattering gum. If you bent this card in half, nobody would care. These cards could turn into category 3 guys but probably not. Having 42 copies of Jason Kendall won’t help you at catcher. Leave the Homer Bailey and Sparky Anderson cards of the world for the bike spokes.

Don’t worry your derby commissioner is still in mint condition,

-“The Changeup Artist”

Category: Fantasy Advice  Tags: ,
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