Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Autograph Offering: Fred Lewis

Etopps is now listing on their homepage an autograph offering of the 2007 Fred Lewis RRO rookie card at $29.99 on April 24th at 3pm EST. 50 autographs will be offered.

At first glance, this is not what was expected of etopps to be offering. There are plenty of other 2007 rookie cards that could be offered instead who are better than Fred Lewis, right?

As of this writing, Lewis is hitting .338 and has a .394 OBP. Not bad. He has only one dinger so far, 2 stolen bases, 5 rbis, 6 walks, .523 slugging, and .917 OPS. I thought his batting average was this high because he started well but has been declining. While it's early in the season, his average has actually been rising. In the past ten games it's gone up 28 points. I think he's having a pretty good start but what remains to be seen is if he can keep this up.

In the autograph department, he's quite reasonable. His cards do sell on ebay. In the past week more than 80% of the 50 cards that were listed have sold. The high end autos from Exquisite and 03 Bowman sold for $80-90 while the total listings averaged $11. My guess is if Lewis can keep up his numbers, his autograph value could follow.

Few other points: when his card was IPO'd there was a certain amount of hype for Fred Lewis that I'm sure etopps took into account when they went after him to sign his card. If etopps had him or any other rookie card signed, they will offer it. Just a matter of when. My hunch is if they offer a card like this one week, one would guess someone with more hype will be offered next week.

Since it looks like etopps will be offering an autograph each week, it's likely this will not be the last one that will be in the caliber of Fred Lewis, a player who showed promise (he hit for the cycle last season) but the jury is still out about him this year. Remeber, etopps went after players based on their hype/performance last year rather than 3 days ago.

Etopps will mix in others that will be reasonable. And this is a good thing for those who spend a lot of coin on both the IPOs and the autographs over the baseball IPO season. There were rumblings about the auto offering last week for Justin Upton because of the price. This one is more affordable though don't count on flipping it for a profit yet...wait and see.

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