Hobby Musings: Going Acuna hunting with Onyx Platinum Elite – I rarely chase prospect autographs. With the typical cost and uncertain nature of a young player’s trajectory, it’s a risky proposition at best. However, I’ll break the trend and give it a shot every once in a while. The latest instance of this for me involved Braves super prospect Ronald Acuna. I had passed on the chance to buy an autograph card of his at Onyx’s booth at the National last year and found myself regretting it in the previous few months.
Thanks to Onyx’s 2017 Platinum Elite product, I had the chance to remedy that. Offering two on-card autographs and eight base cards per box, the small autograph checklist offers very good odds of pulling an Acuna signature.
Purchasing two boxes, I came up empty with my first one. I did get initially excited as I thought I pulled a redemption card for a case hit in the product. With possibilities like a Hank Aaron rookie card, I thought I had hit it big. However, I quickly discovered that I had pulled a redemption for an autograph of Red Sox pitching prospect Jay Groome. It’s a good autograph to be sure, but a little bit of a let-down off the initial excitement.
Box two paid off though as I not only pulled the Acuna auto I wanted, but also one of Blue Jays prospect Bo Bichette. The son of former All-Star Dante Bichette, the autos formed a nice 1-2 punch in the box. My only nitpick is that some of the autos, the Bichette especially, are a little rough and incomplete because of the marker not full taking on the card. That being said, it’s something that’s not uncommon with on-card autographs today, especially for players who have shorter signatures.
Aside from the autographs, both boxes came with the aforementioned eight-card prospect base sets. The cards are pretty good and can make for nice in-person autograph opportunities. Given that you get the same base set in the boxes, it can get a little repetitive. However, it does offer you the chance to trade or otherwise move them for something else you want.
I’m a little surprised that Onyx 2017 Platinum Elite boxes are still available sealed. At roughly $30 a box online plus shipping, it’s a very affordable product that offers much better odds at pulling an Acuna autograph than any other product. Given the excitement and hype he is generating, this is a product that I thought would have dried up almost completely by now. Aside from Acuna, some of the other available prospect autographs include Bichette, Groome, Triston McKenzie and DJ Wilson.
Beyond this year’s autograph checklist, Onyx also randomly included buyback autographs of top young players like Victor Robles and Lewis Brinson. With the parallel autographs and the case hit cards, you have a pretty good high-reward possibility at a low cost.
The one big drawback with Platinum Elite is that it isn’t a licensed product, so the cards won’t necessarily have the resale value of a Topps product. That being said, a quick search of Onyx’s Acuna autos show fairly strong resale prices of well over $40 for the base blue autograph. So even if you’re looking to flip and make some money, this product offers you that chance. If you’re someone like me though who is simply looking to get an Acuna at a very affordable price, you might want to give a sealed box or two a try if you want to gamble a little.