On the bright side, they make me appreciate the days when pulling a rare card was something special.
Today's post centers around one of those cards:
2002 Topps Autographs #TA10
At first glance, this looks like your run-of-the-mill Barry Bonds autographed card. However after doing a little research, I discovered this card was one heck of a pull back in the day.
2002 Topps baseball utilized a tier system for their signatures and Bonds was in the A1 group, which were inserted into 2001 Topps Series One hobby boxes at a rate of 1:15,402 packs.
Please allow me to rephrase that... that's one A1 signature inserted into every fifteen thousand, four hundred two packs. In other words... one A1 signature per 35 hobby cases.
Now those are tough odds. And things get even crazier when you consider that there were three other guys in the A1 group: Ivan Rodriguez, Mike Mussina, and Johnny Damon. Assuming all four guys signed the same amount of cards, a collector might need to open 140 hobby cases to pull the Bonds autograph.
I couldn't find any information on how many Bonds autographs are out there, but this autograph was so tough to pull that after 18 years, it's still listed in Beckett as one of those "no pricing due to scarcity" cards.
These days, I try to spend $50 to $65 for certified, pack pulled, on-card autographs of Bonds. However I opened my wallet up for this card and dropped $100 (+ $3.94 shipping) a few weeks ago. When you consider that I only spend triple digits on single card purchases once or twice a year, this purchase is definitely a rare occasion for me.
I probably won't make another $100 purchase anytime soon, but if I do... odds are it's going to involve a vintage Mantle.
Okay it's your turn to chime in...
Have you ever beaten the odds and pulled a really rare card? If so, what card?
Well that's it for today. Happy Thursday and sayonara!