Herein lies a cautionary tale…
Back in early 2002 I purchased a couple of sealed boxes of 1999 Topps Traded in a vain hope of pulling an Alfonso Soriano autographed rookie card. Soriano was ‘The Man’ at the time and given that 75 players signed cards for this release I knew that the odds were stacked against me.
When the boxes arrived I opened them to find, much to my disappointment, autographs of AJ Burnett and Josh Hamilton. I should have been grateful but just couldn’t muster the enthusiasm at the time.
My biggest disappointment was with the Hamilton autograph. Although I knew he was a highly coveted blue chip prospect as well as the 1st Overall pick in the 1999 Draft, I also knew that his career had been derailed by injuries and a much publicised drug addiction beginning in 2001.
As a result, a few months later I packaged up these autographs into a couple of 200ct lots and sold them on eBay for £6 or £7 each.
Obviously, as we’re all aware, Josh Hamilton returned to Baseball via the Rule 5 Draft in 2007 and quickly established himself as the All-Star and MVP that he was always destined to be.
When I looked this morning the very latest copy of his 1999 Topps Traded autograph to sell on eBay went for a penny shy of $400.
Lessons to be learned there I think…