PDA

View Full Version : KC Star: Mistake Alex Gordon rookie card going for big money


tk13
04-25-2006, 01:26 AM
http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/sports/14420520.htm

Gordon gets carded
Lucky buyers profit from Topps’ error on Royals prospect

By SAM MELLINGER
The Kansas City Star

No offense, really. But Alex Gordon knows you’re out there, and he knows what you’ve done.

And he thinks the person who wouldn’t sell Gordon’s baseball card for $1,300 is a few McNuggets short of a Happy Meal.

“They turned down that much?” said Gordon, a top Royals prospect. “Those people have to be crazy. I don’t think I’m worth anywhere near that. If I was him, I would have sold it.”

This whole hullabaloo over a piece of cardboard comes after Topps included a rookie card in its 2006 set for Gordon, whom the Royals selected with the second overall pick in last year’s draft.

Gordon, now at Class AA Wichita, is not eligible to be in the set, according to a Major League Baseball Players Association rule that requires rookies to be either on a 25-man roster or to have played in a regular-season game to have a card.

After the mistake was discovered, Topps stopped production and destroyed the cards by cutting out the middles. Not only did some of the destroyed cards make it into circulation, but at least a handful of the originals are out.

Clay Luraschi of Topps said fewer than 100 of the cards exist.

“Sometimes we have error cards, but this was very rare where we have to go back and change the cards out,” Luraschi said. “It wasn’t a practice we’re used to doing, so we made a mistake.”

The cutouts are going for about $100, and some of the pure ones are selling for more than $1,000. If this seems ridiculous for something purchased in a pack for less than $1, you’re not alone.

Rich Klein, a price-guide analyst for Beckett, said turning down four figures for any card is risky but isn’t necessarily a mistake.

“I think we’re seeing the true effects of a free market,” Klein said. “When the price of gas is $3, it’s worth what somebody’s willing to pay for it. If it turns out that Alex Gordon is as good as some are projecting, it could be worth even more down the road because of the fluke nature of it and that so few exist.”

This whole thing has created a nice little buzz for the card industry. Klein doesn’t think Topps did this intentionally but acknowledges that some do.

There is some precedent here. Billy Ripken’s 1989 Fleer card featured a hidden obscenity scribbled on his bat. The next year, Topps released an “error card” for Frank Thomas.

Luraschi maintains his company never intentionally releases error cards. Others aren’t so sure and are emboldened by some of the industry’s most famous mistakes being made on high-profile players and prospects.

“We all (collectors) think they did it on purpose,” said Craig Jones, owner of All Star Cards in Lenexa. “That one just happened to be Frank Thomas, and this one just happened to be Gordon?”

Mistake or publicity stunt, either way, Jeremy Troutman doesn’t care. He lives in Wichita and found five of the good cards in packs he bought at a local Wal-Mart.

He sold three of them for $490.33, $598.98 and $875 on eBay. A fourth received a $1,000 bid as of Monday afternoon. Not a bad investment, considering Troutman found the cards in boxes that cost $9.95 for 36 packs of 10 cards each.

He said he’s using most of the profit to pay off bills.

“I don’t understand it,” Troutman said. “But it’s making me money, I guess.”

Gordon’s friends have been calling and cracking on him about his rookie card. It doesn’t seem like all that long ago that he hopped on his bike, rode down to the neighborhood grocery store and bought all the packs he could afford.

He put them all in shoe boxes, though he was never lucky enough to find a card worth four figures.

Although, now that he thinks about it …

“I have like 10 at my house that they gave me,” he said. “Maybe I need to make some money on this. Maybe you’ll see me on eBay now, who knows?”

arrowheadnation
04-25-2006, 03:13 AM
There is some precedent here. Billy Ripken’s 1989 Fleer card featured a hidden obscenity scribbled on his bat. The next year, Topps released an “error card” for Frank Thomas.

lol...Billy Ripken is holding the bat over his shoulder and on the butt of the bat is inscribed..."F*CK FACE" His teammates wrote it on there as a joke. They made two corrected versions of it. A whited out version and a blacked out version. The Frank Thomas doesn't have his name on the front.

A similar thing to this Gordon deal happened a few years ago in football. LaVar Arrington didn't sign with the NFLPA his rookie season, so no cards of him were to be produced. Upper Deck had already printed some and they ended up having to go back and cut the centers out of the cards before they released them, but a couple of the full versions got out.

That's my incredibly worthless advice for the day. If you have any sportscard or memorabilia related questions, hit me up....I have no life other than the internet and school :(

Douche Baggins
04-25-2006, 03:32 AM
http://content.collegehumor.com/items/2004/08/collegehumor.67835.451xAUTO.jpg

Bob Dole
04-25-2006, 05:12 AM
lol...Billy Ripken is holding the bat over his shoulder and on the butt of the bat is inscribed..."F*CK FACE" His teammates wrote it on there as a joke. They made two corrected versions of it. A whited out version and a blacked out version.

Bob Dole sure wishes that eBay had been around back then. Bob Dole made a tidy little profit as it was selling about 70 of those things. Cello packs were a wonderful thing.

dj56dt58
04-25-2006, 06:05 AM
so why are some of them on ebay still selling for around 1 cent??

Rain Man
04-25-2006, 06:59 AM
Rich Klein, a price-guide analyst for Beckett, said turning down four figures for any card is risky but isn’t necessarily a mistake.

“I think we’re seeing the true effects of a free market,” Klein said. “When the price of gas is $3, it’s worth what somebody’s willing to pay for it.



Yeah, it's pretty much the same market forces at work.

I think it's time that America starts investing in alternatives to our current dependence on baseball cards, and particularly baseball cards of foreign players. Perhaps start looking at cheap lacrosse alternatives, or hybrid WNBA card options.