Sunday, June 14, 2020

Cardboard Keepers - Aaron > Jordan

Time for the next installment of "Cardboard Keepers", a thought experiment where I theoretically whittle my entire collection down to just 2,000 cards; 1,000 baseball keepers and 1,000 other keepers.

Today's keeper card comes via yet another eBay flip that I pulled off while sheltering in place these past few months.  My activity is starting to wind down on this front, both because the market is cooling off a bit and because I'm running out of good low-hanging fruit in my collection as far as flippable cards go.

In the case of today's flip, it was a one-for-one exchange.  First, let's see the card I sold...

Michael Jordan's first Topps Finest card, graded a PSA 9.  Not the refractor or anything like that mind you, just a lowly ol' base card, albeit from a set that in 1993 was cutting edge and high end.  I picked this one up in the fall of 2018, and as I commented at the time it was because I just wanted one significant Jordan card to represent him in my collection.

I paid $16.49 for this card, which at the time seemed about right for a card like this that, while iconic, isn't exactly rare or hard to find.  Once I picked up Jordan's RC in a mega-flip this spring though, this Finest release became expendable as far as my collection goes.  With MJ's cards just skyrocketing off the charts price-wise thanks to the ESPN documentary, I decided to part with this one, and netted well over ten times what I shelled out for the card not even two years ago.  Yeah, the sports card market was just insane this spring.

So, what did I use the sales proceeds on?  As I mentioned, just a single card, but it's quite a whopper.

Behold!

I am now the proud owner of a second-year Hank Aaron card!  A real beauty if you ask me, and with great visual appeal but a lower assigned grade this is exactly the type of vintage legend that's right in my wheelhouse.  The front of this example is just so clean, no missing chunks, holes, giant creases, facial "snow".  Just a really solid card on the presentation front.

Here's a better shot, taken with my iPhone, to give you an idea of how the colors really pop on this card, which is now actually "retirement age".  Looks stunning to me!  I'm not sure there's a better looking PSA 2 in existence than this one?

If you look closely at the back you'll get a better idea of why this one graded out as a "Good 2".  There are quite a few surface creases, with the most noticeable being over the card number in the upper left.  You really have to click to enlarge the image to notice them, and as you can see they really don't detract from the overall visual beauty of this card back.

I've been a Hank Aaron fan since early childhood, when I read a biography of his cover to cover as a rabid kid baseball fan.  It's been very rewarding landing some of his playing-era cardboard since returning to collecting as an adult, but this card easily takes the cake as my favorite Hammerin' Hank to date.  I'd love to one day acquire a rookie, but I can expect that to set me back well into the four figures, so for now I feel extremely fortunate to have this beauty.  Pretty crazy to think that from eBay flips alone I've now acquired the Jackie Robinson, Ted Williams and Hank Aaron cards from this iconic set!  My casual '55 set pursuit has some real merit now.

An easy choice for my Cardboard Keepers baseball collection, which is now up to 37 cards and counting, and can be viewed here if you're interested.  I'll be back with more keepers soon, in the meantime thanks as always for stopping by!

4 comments:

Elliptical Man said...

That's quite the flip. I'm impressed.

The Diamond King said...

I would never have thought that a flip like that was possible. But that is where we are at!!

Fuji said...

Congratulations! You're really good at this flipping thing. I've struggled with it a lot since I have several friends who are into cards as a career and they're always bugging me to sell while things are hot. But I just can't get myself into that zone.

gregory said...

I'd make that flip 100% of the time, plus an extra 10% of the time.

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