Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Regional collecting
I'm supposed to be a California/Anaheim/Los Angeles Angels' fan, but I've missed out on picking up some key cards of young players that have come up from the minor leagues and have helped the Angels' chances to stay afloat in the pennant race this season.

Maybe I've been lazy and ambivalent over baseball card collecting in general, but I still collect and read enough message boards featuring baseball cards, the Angels and prospects in general. I'm no stranger to websites like and

I've got an account on Ebay, so I should have already had particular cards of particular players [from my team] in-hand before all the hype takes place. I kind of feel left out of the picture, though I probably had my reasons for my 'no-action' as far as not picking these guys' cards up.

Still, I have nothing to show for guys like a Jered Weaver [2003 USA auto issues and 2005 BDP auto varieties], Howie Kendrick [various 2004 rookie cards/parallels issued by Topps] and Joe Saunders [2002 Upper Deck PP auto and 2002 Bowman Draft auto varieties].

Now, is it worth my time going through the reasons or am I just SOL?

1.) I'm an uber cheap collector and perhaps the initial prices for some of the cards was already at relatively high levels. I realize that I'm not into flipping cards for a profit. Rather than follow the herd, I'm more apt to be conservative and want something for my personal collection. I have recently speculated on a couple cards [2005 Bowman Draft Chrome Ryan Zimmerman refractor autograph/2005 Upper Deck Signature Edition Kendry Morales update autograph], but didn't want to worry whether or not Weaver will turn out to be the next Mike Witt or Jeff Weaver, as I see myself looking for more position players.

2.) There is a competition factor among the die-hard team collectors and I don't want to feel like I'm some kind of poseur by jumping into the fray.

3.) I don't want to admit I missed the boat, but best time to pick up cards of these guys is definitely not now. I do realize that what comes up, must come down eventually.

4.) I'm more of an autograph collector [in-person/through the mail], than a card collector. I'd rather get Weaver and Kendrick's random signed autographs, than get their rookie cards/rookie year parallels. If I think they are good enough, then I try and get them on an official Major League baseball and I'm happy with that.

5.) Still, maybe I don't show enough confidence in your team's top prospects, both long-term and in the short-term run. I didn't care to realize the potential of a guy like Weaver, who was in some circles, pimped as the next Mark Prior. Maybe I just didn't see guys like Weaver or Kendrick coming up until some time next year.

In 2006, it seemed like a whole roster of first year players have come up and made immediate impacts. Weaver, Kendrick and Saunders are just three of those guys that have already impressed.

6.) Kendrick projects more as a guy who is a good all-around player, with the potential to win batting titles. Does anyone see him putting up Alfonso Soriano numbers? Maybe he is another Ray Durham or someone who puts up all-star numbers, but not superstar numbers.

7.) Saunders probably should have been my guy for much of the last two years. While I look for PC cards, he was injured and there were downpoints when his cards were dirt cheap. Unfortunately, it isn't like I've sought out his cards out at a show. He maybe the guy among the three who becomes decent, but is generally unspectacular over the course of his career.

Now, I think I'm going to be a little more proactive in seeking out rookie cards/rookie year issues of any Angels' prospect who may give the parent club its next productive player.

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