Klein’s Korner: The Road Not Taken – As I was getting ready to pen this column a note about this new fangled company – Alt – hit my email, thanks to the Axios Sports daily email.
Yes they own some very expensive cards and you can participate in this as well.
And yes, as it seems the sports collecting world has nothing left to do but have nothing but dollar signs and pure investment, there are other paths one can take.
I was struck by remembering this poem I memorized in Edward Simpson‘s English class when I was in 8th grade. Considering I’ve been in sports or sports collecting for most of the past 36 years, there is real merit in the final stanza of Robert Frost’s poem, The Road Not Taken:
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
What if I told you there were tons of options in sports card collecting to buy things you can enjoy and many of them are less than a cost of a Big Mac?
How about most football, hockey and basketball Hall of Famers going back to the 1960’s? Now obviously some of these cards, most notably the rookie cards of the biggest names are yes, big bucks but the second tier Hall of Famers are so reasonably priced you would never believe them. Plus there are fewer of these cards in circulation than baseball cards the pool is much smaller. Yes, I know we’ve been waiting for years for these to have a second spurt but the time may be past due. Here are a few nice cards I thought would be attractive to view:
These are just random names and cards I thought of instinctively but I would bet you can build a really nice collection of cards like these and others when the show circuit returns in full bore.
If old cards don’t interest you how about a previous 2020 hot flavor. Yes, Ronald Acuna Jr. we’re looking at you. I was shocked that Acuna’s 2020 OPS is 1.040. Just so you can understand how good that is, two inner circle baseball players of my youth, Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays had career OPS of .977 and .941 respectively. Sounds to me like Mr. Acuna is doing just fine in 2020 all things considered and maybe this is a good time to buy on the dip.
And here is the card which actually got me thinking about this topic. We know the 2011 Topps Update set spearheaded by Mike Trout has produced more than its share of nicely priced players but in my opinion there is one last player who has a push in him. No I don’t believe he will make the Hall of Fame but if he has a great post-season and the Padres go deep in the playoffs I would suspect this card has a push available. Yes, it’s time for the 2011 Topps Update Eric Hosmer to get a push if things work out correctly. Of course if he goes 0-10 in the playoffs and the Padres lose in three games, you can ignore this paragraph. But compared to other first baseball rookies in this set of Paul Goldschmidt and Anthony Rizzo why not look at Hosmer as well.
I’m sure if you do some of your own research you can come up with cards or sets which have upside potential. It does take work so instead of chasing the flavor of the week you might even enjoy your chase even more and make a better percentage profit.