Are you a life-long card collector that just realized the value of your card collection?
I've been a lifelong card collector who never purchased cards as a kid with the mindset it's an investment. I grew up as a massive sports fan, following my teams and favorite players according to their respective sports. Every Christmas i'd find a few new pack of cards in my stocking, in addition, to the cards i'd purchase the several times a month when visiting the local sports card shops. I would always seek out the Hall of Famers, every player on my squads and the few individuals throughout the league that captured my attention when they played.
Since working at SMR Collectibles, I've really learned the value of athletes and their sports cards. Many of the cards that you believe to be of high value are not actually worth much, and then you have a few surprise cards that cripple others in value. Once I become involved in the industry for some time, I learned quickly which cards hold value over time, which cards flex in price and how an athlete's death influences the market.
The whole sports card industry is an interesting niche market. Much like professional sports, you have your casual fans , which purchase cards and memorabilia very seldom. Then you have your full-time sports card and memorabilia fans that know the product, purchase the items, and attend local hobby shows. Lastly, you have your passionate, die-hard sports card and memorabilia collectors. These collectors come in all shapes and forms, but can never have enough, constantly buying, selling, and trading cards to complete collections. They attend all shows, traveling many times hundred of miles in search of a card or piece of memorabilia they "need".
If you're a die-hard sports fan and sports card collector, looking through vintage and early modern cards becomes nostalgic. My father and I, will have extended conversations about a single card, because the amount of memories a single card can generate.
"Do you remember that game he had?"
"How about that run he had against that team?"
Stories from a single piece of lightweight cardboard, can keep that inner child alive.
Below is a gallery of cards that will create memories for anyone, especially those born between the 1950's and 1990's. When I mentioned earlier in the article I'm a sports fan, I meant I follow football, baseball, hockey, and basketball. As I've reached my mid-twenties, a new sport emerged which is taking the world by storm, Mixed Martial Arts. MMA started in 1993 with UFC 1. Cards weren't produced for the UFC until 2009. Now that MMA has sports cards, it legitimizes the sport of mixed martial arts as a main stream sport. Since, MMA has single-handedly earned the new ESPN + app 1.6 Million buys in a night, when Conor McGregor fought Donald Cerrone, possibly making MMA cards value increase.
Since I've started working at SMR Collectibles about a year ago, my interest in sports cards has reached a new high. It also helps I am surrounded by the industry's top level experts and the knowledge I have been absorbing from them is incredible.
I've now seen the 1952 Mickey Mantle Rookie worth thousands of dollars. Mariano Rivera Signed game-worn cleats, Joe Namath's Rookie Card, Kobe Bryant's autographed Jersey, and Mike Trouts 2012 Bowman Sterling Rookie Autograph Red Refractor, which is valued at $50,000.
Collecting cards was always a fun hobby I was able to do with my father as a great way to spend time together. At 33, I haven't really purchased any cards for myself, but more so for my nephews. I also want to visit the new exhibit at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York,
So, I want to know, Why do you Collect Cards??