Monday, July 21, 2008

300 All-Time Stars Baseball Cards in 1988

This is a continuation of a series of cards listed in the 300 All-Time Stars Baseball Cards published by Consumer Digest as an investment guide for baseball card collectors. See the previous post here. To recap, any text in quotations is a direct quote from the book. I give an inflation adjusted value for the 1988 price in parentheses.
Bob Boone - It's ironic that Bob Boone is next on the list since I just made a post about a 1952 Ray Boone (Bob's father) card I just acquired. Bob had a 19-year career as a player and a 6-year career as a manager. He was the starting catcher for the Phillies in the 1980 World Series. The book doesn't give any advice on Bob's cards except to say that his most valuable card is his 1973 Topps rookie card at $2.50 ($4.62). The current Beckett book value for this card is $15, making this the first card in the book to actually have a higher book value today then it did in 1988. They should have told us to buy some of his rookie cards. I'm getting the pictures of these cards from Couldn't they find a better Boone card to post? Maybe its been signed by Iveie, right across his face.

George Brett - The book said that Brett probably had a few good years in him. He played until 1993 and had a 21-year career. He was a 13-time All Star and was elected into the Hall of Fame in 1999. "It is a foregone conclusion that he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame, making all of his baseball cards hot properties". They list his 1975 Topps card at $40 ($73.99). Beckett currently lists this card at $80, so its done slightly better than inflation. 2 cards in a row which beat inflation. Although as an investment, you'd like to do better than just beat inflation.

Casey Candaele - Did you know that Casey's mother played professional baseball during World War II? Neither did I. "Despite the fact that he hit 0.272 in 1987, collectors seem to have virtually ignored his only rookie card". This card was in the 1987 Donruss set which they list at $0.30 ($0.55). This card is a common today. Its a mystery to me why they included Candaele. A 0.272 BA doesn't seem too impressive to me. He hit 0.170 in 1988. Casey was in the majors for 9 years, but only played in 754 games with a career batting average of 0.250.

Jose Canseco - Let's not get into Jose post-career antics (or for that matter, his career antics). In 1988, he was still hot. "The appearance of Canseco's rookie cards in the Fleer and Donruss packs that year (1986) marked the first time that a brand-new baseball card could be taken out of a gum pack and immediately sold for $3 or more". Ah, those innocent days of 1986 when $3.00 was a lot of money. And how much do these Consumer Digest people know about baseball cards? Fleer and Donruss didn't have gum in their packs. They list Jose's 1986 Donruss at $8.75 ($16.88). Beckett says $10 today so another poor investment. His 1986 Fleer card hasn't done any better.

Steve Carlton - Steve's career finally came to an end in 1988 after 24 years, mostly with the Phillies. He spend the last few years in the majors bouncing from team to team claiming that he could still pitch. But he finished his career with 329 wins, 4 Cy Young Awards, and two World Champion titles to his name. And 10 All Star games. He was elected into the Hall of Fame in 1994. "His baseball cards from the current sets are most affordable and well worth the investment as long-term mementos of an amazing career". They list his 1965 rookie card at $110 ($203.40), the highest priced card so far in the list. Beckett lists the card today at $200, so its kept pace with inflation.

That's it for now. One note about card prices. I'm using current Beckett catalog prices because it is a handy reference. The real arbiter of price these days, IMHO, is eBay. For example, you can get Carlton's rookie card, graded a PSA 7 for about $100. You'll probably be able to get a non-graded card for considerably less than that. His PSA 8 cards are currently going for closer to $300.


Anonymous said...

I imagine they just wanted to get ahead of the curve on Candaele and predict the next young superstar...but they really missed the boat. Topps even dubbed him an "All-Star Rookie," but then there wasn't much competition for his position in 1987.

Just FYI, I really enjoy these types of posts. Not that the rest aren't great, but these are my favorites on your blogs.

capewood said...

Thanks. They had Candaele but they totally missed Barry Bonds.

Anonymous said...

Bonds was just a flash-in-the-pan, wasn't he?