The Death of the Hobby Shop

I remember the last time I bought baseball cards before my 10 year break. I had just bought a box of some Upper Deck product and felt nothing—no excitement, no joy in the pulls, and certainly no thrill whatsoever. At 17 years of age I knew that it was time to move on. Back then there were considerably less products being released per year and THREE sports cards shops within 10 minutes of my house.

Today, getting back into collecting took a lot more effort. The nearest all-sports shop near my house is 37 miles away and the last 15 boxes I have bought have come from a comic book store that has a little section of the store to the side with about 5-7 baseball products at at a time. It seems that despite all these great products and amazing ball players of today, the business side of baseball cards has completely died. Even our beloved baseball pricing guide, Beckett, is no longer a monthly issue.

Shortly before creating Wax Heaven I began doing research on opening up a sports cards shop of my own. I began talking with current and former owners of shops and 100% of the time was told not to do it. It just wasn’t worth it and you will lose in the end was something I heard several times. It’s scary but by the year 2010 the sports card shop will probably look a little something like this;

The reason I even began thinking about this topic was because of ChemGod and his post titled ‘The State of the Industry‘ in which he makes a plea to the big companies to return to the good ol’ days of $15 per wax box and 300 cards per box.  Personally, I would give anything to bring back 1997 and the three sports cards stores in my area days but sadly, I think those days are gone for good.