What are these strange baseball cards?

3 06 2008

It’s funny how important minor league cards are in today’s collecting world. I mean, that’s exactly what Bowman and Upper Deck do these days, right? They put out baseball cards of kids fresh out of high school and collectors like you and I pay hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to own them. I can understand why these cards are popular, considering how much Albert Pujol’s famous 2001 Bowman Chrome autograph sells for but what about the forgotten minor league cards of the 80’s? Why do they have almost no value in the market today?

Surely a minor league card of Ken Griffey Jr. produced in 1988 by a company called “ProCards” has a much smaller print run than 1989 Upper Deck, right? While I don’t know the specific number I do know that today Griffey’s minor league cards sell for under $10 while his mass-produced 1989 Upper Deck fetches big bucks when graded high. You can even buy Frank Thomas’ minor league card for under $2.00 and Mark McGwire’s for under $10. So is this a case of smart promotion by Topps?

How in the world did the guys from Bowman start releasing nothing but rookie cards in their sets and expect to survive? No Nolan Ryan or Bo Jackson, not even a Jose Canseco. Sure, today 80% of Bowman cards from 1990 to 2008 are of players chasing “Crash Davis” for the all-time home run record, but somehow it has gotten bigger and more profitable with each year that passes.

Meanwhile, there is a rare, never before seen to many, Minor League card of your favorite player you can pick up for cheap. It may not have the flash of today’s cards but they are beautiful and in my opinion, just as important.


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5 responses

3 06 2008
Spiff

Love minor league cards. I pick up any from any of Texas’ farm teams whenever I can. Have almost all of the Jon Matlack and Ivan Rodriguez issues.

3 06 2008
Fakehorsemuffins

Living in the palm beach area i can go to yard sales and find randy johnson palm beach minor league cards at least once a year. Sometimes the people make you buy everything but still normaly a good deal..i like minor league cards

3 06 2008
chemgod

Have sets and sets of minor league cards. Griffey, Sosa, McGwire, Smoltz, Glavine, Maddux, Deion Sanders, Jay Buhner, if they were a minor leaguers in the mid to late 80s I have a minor league card of them. The Griffey SB Spirit card goes for about $50.

4 06 2008
albuqwirke

I spend at LEAST 4 to 5 times more on minor league team sets each year than I do on Topps or Upper Deck products, but that is mainly because I enjoy the chase for in person autographs and live in a minor league city.

9 10 2008
2012_man

minor league cards are the best as far as i’m concerned. they are rare in any condion and supper supper rare in high grade. most minor league sets have a print run of 2000-5000. i spend countless hours searching for 79 henderson, 81 sandberg, 81 boggs, 82&85 mcgwire, 84 clemens, 86 schilling, 86 glavine, 86 maddux, 86 johnson, 87&88 griffey, 87&88 thomas, 89 rodriguez, 89 delgado, 89 piazza etc. etc. i think true collectors really know the value of these cards.

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