When I got back into collecting in mid-2007 I had a lot to learn in a very short period of time; memorabilia cards, parallels, super fractors, x-fractors, chiropractors, etc. One of the big movements in the hobby were the 1 of 1 phenomenons. Imagine you and your rich & spoiled neighbors collect Albert Pujols. He has every single one of his 2001 rookies while your collection is mostly Topps and Upper Deck low-end stuff. One day you both end up at the store and he buys an entire case of some $1,000 for 10 packs product and pulls thousands of dollars worth of cards, including a one of a kind Albert Pujols printing plate. You on the other hand put your life savings in a single pack of something relatively expensive and pull a mid-numbered Pujols. Who did better?
I opened exactly 20 hobby boxes last year and pulled exactly 3 one of one cards, all printing plates. Unfortunately, unless the player on the plate is Albert Pujols or Joba Chamberlain it really is no more valuable than a dull memorabilia card of some semi-star. What’s crazy is that cards #’d to just 1 are no longer that rare any more. If I pulled 3 in 20 different boxes, how many does the guy who opened 50 have? Also, would you pay $1,000 on an Albert Pujols printing plate #’d 1 of 1 just because no other collector will ever have that “card” AKA piece of metal? If you do, odds are he will have a chance of getting 50 more from products released that very same year. I for one don’t own one single Jose Canseco printing plate. Check out this .99 cent Jose Canseco printing plate on eBay. 1 month ago he had it listed for $499 on eBay Express. I guess he couldn’t sell that amazing 1 of 1 to any nut-job Canseco collector out there, and trust me there are plenty of them.
So to get back to the title of this blog…which one of these cards would you rather own? The one on at the top is a Pinnacle 1 of 1 printing plate that no other Ken Griffey fan will ever touch, the other is an Upper Deck exquisite that 24 people already own.