Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Autograph Offering: Jose Reyes
My favorite baseball player growing up was Rod Carew. I collected his baseball card from each year he played, spanning from 1969 to 1982 excluding his rookie and his 1972 cards because I couldn't afford them. It was a thrill to watch him during an all-star game when he led off the game with a triple. I didn't care if my sister would say he looked like his mom.
I got back into baseball cards with etopps in 2002. But I didn't have anyone in mind to collect. Being a Mets fan, I hadn't found a player I could call my favorite. Piazza was from the Dodgers and Olerud from the Blue Jays. Everyone I liked had been traded from another team.
Enter Jose Reyes. He was hyped as a five-tool player out of the Mets farm system and was named MVP of the 2002 Futures all-star game. I wanted to start collecting with his rookie card so I ended up overpaying on ebay for his Bowman Chrome refractor rookie card (BGS 9.5) by more than $100, enough to be reported in the following month's Beckett price guide for the sale.
I've noticed that when I "invest" in a player's memorabilia or pay enough for a player's autograph or rookie card, I become an instant fan of the player: the better he does, the better my investment.
I'm writing all of this because you will have a much better start at investing in something related to Reyes with this autograph offering. To me, it's a steal at $40 and I thank etopps for offering it. If I am lucky to get it before it sells out, getting it in the mail will be like getting a package for Christmas.
So you can tell I'm biased.
But you may be too because of his recent mishaps: throwing his glove, failing to put his foot on second base during the Phillies six-run ninth inning, getting picked off at second base a few times, doing all of his high-five shenanigans with other Mets players, not playing like he's serious, swinging at too many break-ball pitches, the list goes on and on.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury: if you don't want to buy his autographed cards tomorrow because of this, go right ahead. I hope you don't so I can get both cards.
But consider this:
He became the second player in MLB history to have 50 triples and 250 stolen bases before his 25th birthday. The first player was Ty Cobb.
This season, Reyes became the only player in MLB history to have 30 stolen bases, 20 doubles, 10 triples and 10 home runs before the all-star break.
He will likely reach 1,000 hits by his 26th birthday next year (June 11th) which is not bad considering some players are in their first year of the big leagues at this age.
You're unlikely to lose money if you decide to sell either autograph on ebay, especially the 2006 card due to its fractional print run compared to the 2003 card offering.
If you really want an investment on Reyes, go after his signature that includes his middle name Bernabe.