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The Future of Our Hobby

Greeting fellow cardboard collectors!

A couple weeks ago someone posted a link to Chris Stufflestreet's site,
and found chapter 2 of his article "A Short History of Baseball Card
Collecting" quite interesting. Here's the link.

The article ends with this statement: "The cycle was complete: in a
century, the hobby of collecting baseball cards had gone from an
adult-oriented diversion to an institution among kids, and then back
to a hobby more often followed by adults."

Which leads me to wonder, if our hobby consists of mainly adults right
now, what about the future of the hobby? Maybe the board members here
who own card shops can comment on the percentage of kids they get in
their shops, but are those kids only buying yu-gi-oh cards? I'm 33
years old, and I have to wonder how many people will be collecting cards
fifty years from now if the kids of today have no interest in the hobby.
That is, of course, assuming that *I'll* be around in 50 years! image

Back in the day, kids would look up to the sports figures as if they
were heroes, but do they do that now? Historically, baseball has been
the sport most prevalent in this hobby, but could that interest change
to football over the next few decades? I've recently shifted some of
my collecting to T206 HOFers, but I have to wonder how long it will be
until nobody really cares what some guy named Christy Mathewson did in
his career. I guess only time will tell, but until then I'd be interested
in reading what others might have to say about the future of our hobby...

Chuck
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Comments

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    kuhlmannkuhlmann Posts: 3,326 ✭✭
    I own a shop in georgia. and in the past year i dont think i have sold one single pack of cards to someone under 17 years old.
    than again you have to think that the avg. price for a pack is 2.99 all the way up to 100+. so not to many kids under 17 can afford that.
    Im not just a card shop though i sell all college stuff from license plates to banner helmets auto's etc.. but not many kids come in.
    most of the card buyers are guys in there 20's and 30's with good jobs. and they break open boxes as if it was a scrath off lottery ticket.
    as for the future of cards i think they will go down a little bit but not much.the older ones will always be rare to find and if its rare people will want it. as for the new cards well EBAY tells it all when the product is brand new and you pull a say lebron rookie card, you can list it get 100+ for it. one week later when there is 25+ listed of the same card you can pick it for 20$.

    any way thats my thought. later
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    Here's something to think about -

    Topps still produces a regular set of cards every year (commons, future stars, stars, future HOFers, etc.). Nobody seems to collect these (I might be wrong) because of the current craze of inserts, game used cards, redemptions, etc. I know there will always be tons of this stuff available - even unopened - but do you think it might be fun for someone to try a PSA graded set of say 1999 Topps in 30 years when they get into the hobby as 30+ year old adults? No inserts, no game used, just the basic set as issued by Topps.

    I'll stick with the 1999 Topps example and continue -

    As it was in the 1950s, 60s, & 70s, these kids will grow up, handle the cards for years, go off to college, get jobs, and start earning money. Moms will throw out their cards, or sell them at yard sales, and the cards will be forgotten. Until they remember that they really enjoyed going to a game with Dad 30 years ago back in 1999 and they'd like to relive their childhood. What better way to do it than through the cards that they had when they were kids?

    I don't know if this will happen or not. Maybe 30 years from now they'll still have the same attitude prevalent in the hobby today and just want those "rare" inserts or game used cards and start picking them up (probably at less than they go for right now).

    Just a thought.

    JEB.
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    i think the main problem is the price of packs. when i was a kid (which wasn't that long ago- think mid 1970s-1980s), i could get packs for $.25-.$.50 each (I was always fond of that Topps gum). i took a few years off from the hobby (went to college/life happened) and was shocked when i re-entered the hobby a few years ago and found even the "basic/lower tier" packs were often $5/pack. i won't even mention the "higher end" packs (i.e., prime cuts, leaf limited, pristine, etc.) that are $30-$100+/pack. when i was a kid, i didn't have $30 sitting around to buy 1 pack of cards.

    another issue is there are simply far too many sets out there. when i was a kid, it seemed like there were just a few sets/brands (i.e., donruss, fleer, topps mainly), making it easier to put sets together. today it seems like there are 10 products released/week and all have 500+ base sets, refractor/xfractor parallel sets, game used parallel sets, and wham bam thank you ma'am sets. w/the price of packs, it's a daunting task for a young kid to have the money and time to put a single set together.

    another issue is what i call the "brain dead living dead" syndrome of our society- i attribute this to the XBox craze, Internet, cell phones, and any other electronic gadget. it's made kids need stimulation more than they ever did...i.e., opening a pack of cards that you can't really "do" anything w/may not hold the appeal it once did. i'm not sure what the yugioh cards do, but i know that at the 3 shops i frequent the most, there are always a crowd of kids there. baseball cards seem to be the "wallflower/stepchild" to the yugioh cards. i haven't looked at the yugioh cards in detail, but from watching the kids, it seems like it's similar to dungeons and dragons- i.e., interactive, you can trade cards to get powers, etc. in these 3 shops, i have yet to see a "kid" (or even anyone under 21) buy a pack of sports cards. also, most of these shop owners tell me that even adults who come in and drop hundreds on boxes rip open the packs looking for the "hot" card of the moment and often leave the rest of the cards at the shops for FREE.
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    kuhlmannkuhlmann Posts: 3,326 ✭✭
    yu-gi-oh craze seems to dying out also.last year you couldnt find any at target or walmart for christmas. this year there was an overload of them on christmas eve when i was shopping and no parents were buying them.
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    Personally it has been a long time since I have purchased sports cards. I mostly collect non sport issues. On top of that I play competitively play Magic the Gathering. Wether it be Magic, Yu Gi Oh, WWE or whatever. At 27 I know people both older and younger who play these games. I can’t think of a person, I know, who plays these games that actively collects sports cards.

    Wether you play for fun or competitively these games give you something more to do with your cards then just look at them. On the competitive side you can make a nice profit if you are good at what you do. Professionally, although very few, you can make a nice living. And for fun that’s mostly for fun.

    I believe the allure is that you can take your deck of cards and sit across from someone and have a battle of the wits. Sports cards are an entirely different entity. With card gaming you can fairly cheaply get into a game and have fun with it. The cost of building a sports card collection can be much greater, and there is no residual use. $10 can get you a lot of things in gamming cards. But how far can $10 get you in sports cards?

    Of course it all depends on what you buy imageimageimage. But there is 2 cents. image
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    << <i>Here's something to think about -

    Topps still produces a regular set of cards every year (commons, future stars, stars, future HOFers, etc.). Nobody seems to collect these (I might be wrong) because of the current craze of inserts, game used cards, redemptions, etc. I know there will always be tons of this stuff available - even unopened - but do you think it might be fun for someone to try a PSA graded set of say 1999 Topps in 30 years when they get into the hobby as 30+ year old adults? No inserts, no game used, just the basic set as issued by Topps.

    I'll stick with the 1999 Topps example and continue -

    As it was in the 1950s, 60s, & 70s, these kids will grow up, handle the cards for years, go off to college, get jobs, and start earning money. Moms will throw out their cards, or sell them at yard sales, and the cards will be forgotten. Until they remember that they really enjoyed going to a game with Dad 30 years ago back in 1999 and they'd like to relive their childhood. What better way to do it than through the cards that they had when they were kids?

    I don't know if this will happen or not. Maybe 30 years from now they'll still have the same attitude prevalent in the hobby today and just want those "rare" inserts or game used cards and start picking them up (probably at less than they go for right now).

    Just a thought.

    JEB. >>




    Two problems.

    1) Even 30 years from now, there will be people with 5000 ct boxes of most product issued from 1982-present.

    2) The appeal of people coming back and buying cards or building sets is to do what they did as a kid. What kids are buying '99 Topps right now?

    The real problem is that there's no focus on what to collect. Look at 1984, or really any year until the insert/parallel/limited craze really started in '93 (1st Day Production, Finest refractors, etc.) If you were a Don Mattingly fan, or even a Ken Griffey Jr. fan, you could go out and buy all his rookie cards. for Griffey, Topps Traded, Fleer, Donruss, UD, Score R/T, and a few others like Donruss Rookies, maybe toss in Topps Debut, Baseball's Best, etc. Even go overboard and add in some minor league cards, regionals (Mother's Cookies) - the point is, ANYONE with even a modest budget could put together a comprehensive Griffey rookie collection. And each card was in demand, because there weren't a thousand others. What would a complete Griffey collection cost in '90? $500? MAYBE??? And that's including Bowman Tiffanys and the like. What would it cost to put together an Ichiro rookie collection? I don't even want to think about it.

    Point being it wasn't all overwhelming, and even a novice could get involved. Now, where does someone even start? I the lack of new blood to be a clear indication that the days of the hobby at even these modest levels is limited by the age group collecting.
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    Beefcake,

    Good points.

    My post was more of a "what if?" I was basically suggesting that there are always several cards from any issued set that are considered worthless for years until, all of a sudden, the player is on a HOF pace. In hindsight it's all clear, but who knows what players will be inducted into the HOF in 2035? Maybe a player whose rookie card is in the 1999 Topps set and we haven't even seen his potential yet (I know that's a stretch considering the cards are already almost 5 years old). The cards out there right now are abundant, but how many kids/investors/collectors/dealers/etc. will hold on to these for 30+ years? A lot of this stuff will (and probably already has) end up in the trash.

    Collecting as an investment is not a new idea and I guarantee you that there are dealers and collectors who sold cards in the 1970's that wish they could go back in time and get back that '52 Topps Mantle that they sold for $50 when the book value was only $25. I know that's not going to be the case with anything so recent, but there might be some potential for these cards in the future. Then again, I might be wrong.

    Could someone bookmark this thread and bring it up again in 2035. That would be interesting to see no matter how it all plays out. I'll either look like a fool or a visionary. image

    JEB.
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    DeutscherGeistDeutscherGeist Posts: 2,990 ✭✭✭✭
    One must ask the question: What appeals are there in getting fresh blood into the hobby?

    That will predict the future of the hobby.

    Card collecting was at a high point back when I and the rest of generation X were kids and actively collecting. I learned the hobby through peers at the time and kept continuing.

    With today's genration Y, I am wondering where the influence of the older brothers, fathers, uncles, etc have gone that can introduce the hobby.

    I guess one of the best things to do is increase PR. Donate all those commons cluttering up space to children's hospitals and charities all accross the country. Get the message out. Expose the young ones to the hobby.
    "So many of our DREAMS at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we SUMMON THE WILL they soon become INEVITABLE "- Christopher Reeve

    BST: Tennessebanker, Downtown1974, LarkinCollector, nendee
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    qualitycardsqualitycards Posts: 2,811 ✭✭✭


    << <i>and in the past year i dont think i have sold one single pack of cards to someone under 17 years old >>


    WOW! That blows me away. I had a store for 13 years and kids were in and out all the time. Granted the adults had alot more $ to spend but there were some faithful customers under 17. Its been 5 years since I sold out, so I'm far from an expert anymore of the
    state of affairs in a current card store. But thats a powerful statement!...jay
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    I agree the price is driving away the kids.image
    Michael
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    kuhlmannkuhlmann Posts: 3,326 ✭✭
    Im dead serious no one under 17 has bought a single pack in the past year! but the guys with good paying jobs buy by the box or 2!looking for that mike vick auto etc..
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    GriffinsGriffins Posts: 6,076 ✭✭✭
    Kuhlmann, that's actually pretty sad. Kids that buy packs in stores do move on to older cards- I started ripping '70 packs and by '74 was buying up T206's. Kids don't start with vintage, they start with new stuff, but it is impossible to complete a set these days, and with the emphasis on the monetary value of cards the soul of it is missing. Too much product, too much garbage, too many cut up uniforms, too much shiny refractor crap that will be worth nothing- frustrating both the person buying it just for monetary gain on ebay and the fan buying it to collect a set of that years players.
    Today, while cleaning out the attic, I came upon a '83 issue of The Trader Speaks, the premier card publication of its time. Flipping thru the ads, both classified and display, I came upon 4 names I recognized as still active- Dave Kohler, Keith Olberman, Bill Mastro and Rob Lifson. 3 major dealers and a major collector. Where have all the rest gone? Do people sink major amounts of time and money into this hobby, only to abandon it with a call to Mr. Mint? Or did it just get too frustrating back then trying to find cards one needed?
    Ebay specifically and the internet in general has enabled collectors to find cards they need in a matter of weeks, and this used to take years. Will this prove to spark interest in collecting, or kill it? The set registry is certainly one of the most brilliant marketing concepts ever thought up, surpassing anything a card company has ever produced. The surge in registered sets and the price of commons will attest to that, but are we seeing a bubble, or a new direction in collecting?
    I have no idea what the future holds for collecting, but would suspect we'll see some consolidation of grading companies, and hopefully some sanity on the part of those producing cards every year.

    Always looking for Topps Salesman Samples, pre '51 unopened packs, E90-2, E91a, N690 Kalamazoo Bats, and T204 Square Frame Ramly's

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    One major problem I see is a poor business ethos with some dealers/shop owners.

    I have seen this from a few dealers / shop owners...

    A kid drops $10-$20 in his store on packs of sportscards.
    The kids rips the packs open at the store...
    Gets nothing that he perceives as "valuable" or desireable.

    Next, the kid asks if the dealer would buy the cards or trade with him...

    The dealer usually says something like "I don't buy or I don't trade" or "you got nothing I want."

    The kid walks out feeling burned or upset.

    The dealer just helped turn the kid off to collecting.

    Sure... the kid might have had the wrong motivation in the first place trying to pull a lottery ticket card...

    But I think that it would help promote a healthier connection to the hobby if the dealer had a few boxes of "trade cards" that kids could go 1:1 with...

    This great shop I used to go to on Cape Cod had exactly that... the owner would never let a kid walk out feeling screwed or sad...

    He'd
    say "lemme see what you got!" and he'd thumb through the cards and say things like "wow!" and "great!"
    and when the kid said... "would you buy these? or could I trade...
    The owner would say "Sure!" and he'd direct the kid to these massive 5000 count boxes stuffed with base cards, inserts and flashy cards from all sports, sets and years and he'd say... one for one... pick what you want!

    and the kid would sometimes spend an hour or two deciding what to bring home.

    The kid never felt like he lost... and the shop owner always made the cards sound valuable, appealing, special... etc...

    When the kid pulled out some crappy insert that booked for $20-$50 that would probably never sell... The owner would take it in trade... always work with the kid to make sure that he got something he could run home and tell his folks about.

    He is a great guy... and his business did well with kids.
    The place was always crawling with kids...
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    kuhlmannkuhlmann Posts: 3,326 ✭✭
    Id love to try your idea! but in my town just wont be a big hit. ive tried contest and gave big prizes away like a framed auto picture, from steiner sports,mounted memories, or gamedaylegends.com!! but its still the same 20-35 year old busting the packs!
    Kids cannot affford to buy a pack or 2!thats my story and im sticking to it! later kuhlmann!
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    DeutscherGeistDeutscherGeist Posts: 2,990 ✭✭✭✭
    Ydsortter,

    that's my point. Better PR is needed no matter in what form.
    "So many of our DREAMS at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we SUMMON THE WILL they soon become INEVITABLE "- Christopher Reeve

    BST: Tennessebanker, Downtown1974, LarkinCollector, nendee
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    sixdartsixdart Posts: 821 ✭✭
    I see football having the best chance to attract new blood and maintain its collector base. Just look at how fantasy football has exploded in the last 5 years. It has attracted people to game who were never thought they would watch the NFL on a regular basis, and caused casual fans to watch multiple games.

    Football didn't start to develop a fan base until television arrived. There wasn't much tradition for too many teams until the NFL merged leagues. Wow! Look at the following for the game now! With all of our time constraints now days, it's easier to plan time watching a football game with friends and family once a week. The NFL parity has generated a team fanfare where the MLB and NBA is currently built on individual star promotion. Throw in the labor issues for other sports which were a major turn off for many fans.

    In my opinion, there are just too many baseball and basketball games ... it's not an event anymore until the playoffs. And the expense for season tickets ( 8 home games & 2 preseason games ) is much less than other sports.

    The NFL's current popularity has led many people to now discover the golden age of football. And that early history is quite amazing. Early player statistics are difficult to compare with the modern athletes because the rules have evolved so much. So that hurts a little, but many early HOF'ers made the HOF because of their accomplishments playing both ways - truly amazing athletes.

    It's also very easy to mix vintage football card collecting with modern football card collecting. There isn't single NFL HOF RC that isn't affordable for most collectors in high grade ( PSA 8+ ) except for maybe three ... Nagurski, Thorpe & Grange. Many are a bargain at current market prices vs their baseball equivalents. Just look at what Otto Graham did in his prime ... 7 league championships in 10 years. His PSA 8 RC can be had from $650 to $800.
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    DeutscherGeist, even though I don't post everyday, I read these post a few times a week... and have wanted to say that you always bring a lot of needed postive energy to the boards... and you always help me remember guys that I almost forgot like a ron kittle...
    Your collecting habits seem to embrace the love of collecting... awesome!

    yeah, I imagine that this won't work everywhere...
    I spent a few years working for an advertising agency and tried to help so many different businesses increase traffic/business...
    Good PR is crucial...

    It sounds like some people are doing everything they can... but the kids still don't pour in...

    As for how this overwhelming product and lack of youngsters will influence the future...
    I think it's bound to influence the value in the future... someone posted that 30 years from now... 5000 count boxes will be overflowing with all of this product and I couldn't agree more...

    I have been affected adversely by it... I have no interest in newer stuff. I feel ripped off everytime I chase some big rookie card down and it no longer is the flavor of the month...

    I spend 99% of my budget on vintage and 85+% of that budget on PSA graded vintage... I rarely find this in card shops... mostly eBay, shows and websites.



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    I agree that football could blossom... It's difficult to get a joe dimaggio... but Joe namath is still affordable!
    The football legends are relatively affordable copared with baseball.

    But... what about basketball?
    One thing that strikes me about basketball is that it has such a tremendous international/global appeal...
    it appears that it's growing a collecting base in other countries-
    would anyone agree with that?
    anyone wanna speculate?
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    calleochocalleocho Posts: 1,569 ✭✭
    football is a different style of sport than baseball ...football is pure emotion whereas baseball is more methodical slower.

    football cards wont ever reach its baseball counter parts because of their core collectors

    the people who collect only football vs the people who collect only baseball seem to be different.

    also while football is huge in the U.S ...its worldwide appeal is minimal compared to baseball.

    i refuse to buy modern anymore except for certified autographs which i do think are neat

    too many sets, and too much emphasis on the monetary value of the cards will destroy a good chunk of the market.

    but it will rebound...every collenting area has cycles
    "Women should be obscene and not heard. "
    Groucho Marx
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    qualitycardsqualitycards Posts: 2,811 ✭✭✭
    KUHLMAN - Didn't the card companies create a few cheaper packs like Topps Total & UD 40 to generate the collectors on a budget?
    If this is true and apparently still hasn't worked, what ways can you generate sales by kids in your area? Afterall the 14 year old w/ little money today may be a big spender in 5 years when he has a full time job and little expenses. I know my kid spends every dime he has incl alot of vintage cards (he even has his Mantle PSA cards listed on the registry). He even said to me today, "some day, I'll have a lot of expenses and won't be able to buy cards like I do now" He gets paid on the 1st and plans to spend his $ on cards before his leave ends on the 4th. Money in his hands evaporate instantly, so at least I'm glad he has cards to show for it...jay
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    I think there's way too much product out, I think card companies should produce only two or three brands a year tops! You could buy packs of almost everything that was put out in a year, even in the early 90's. Now, I just pick and choose which brands seem good in design, player selection, etc. Many products out there often make me say, "WHY?" Also, I believe low serial numbering on cards and regular auto rc cards should be outlawed to prevent all this "lottery" type pulls, but that's my own opinion. I'm being turned off by certain cards, that recently, I've been buying PSA cards of key RC's from 70's and 80's. They may not be as valuable or scarce, but for a reasonable amount of money, and the same price as a box of certain cards ,you could get high grade key RC's of a Hall of Famer superstar without worrying if you didn't pull a hot RC like Lebron or Michael Vick. That's my two cents.
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    DeutscherGeistDeutscherGeist Posts: 2,990 ✭✭✭✭
    Ydsotter,

    Thanks for the kind words! I like that kind of feedback and you have said nice things in the past that I still recall. Whenever you post something, I am more attentive to it as a result.

    You brought up card collecting and the international scene. Well, that's my alley. We live in the age of globalization, so we must consider and think globally. Basketball and NBA are well known in Europe and other countries, including those in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Jordan rookies can be found in Germany. There is even a card shop in Frankfurt. Germans do buy official NBA sporting attire as a fashion statement. I see NY Yankee logos there. Baseball caps are becoming more popular there even though they were considered silly in the beginning of its introduction. Basketball and NBA definately have global appeal, but football interests hardly anyone. MLB Baseball is recognized, but not strong. Whenever I have casual conversations with Germans, they all recall Jordan, LA Lakers and often comment on the story of Magic Johnson when he announced that he had AIDS.

    MLB hits more news in Japan than Germany. When players like Julio Franco go there for 2 years and do well, the Japanese pay attention. I have always wondered what the 1983 Topps Traded card goes for over there.

    Keep in mind that the Beckett price guide has been selling in Australia for many years now. They love rugby over there, but I have never heard anything about the NFL being embraced over there. They have actually sent athletes for MLB, like that relief pitcher from a few years ago that was on the Yankees (can't remember his name now).
    "So many of our DREAMS at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we SUMMON THE WILL they soon become INEVITABLE "- Christopher Reeve

    BST: Tennessebanker, Downtown1974, LarkinCollector, nendee
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    There was an article in the newspaper last week how stamp collecting is dead, I can see parallels of that with sports card collecting: to much product produced, frivolous product produced, lack of kids coming into the hobby who will be adult collectors.

    On the other hand, your most common sports card is not produced in quanities like a postage stamp, and the rarity of a scarce sports card is magnitudes greater than even rather rare postage stamps. So truly rare vintage cards are going to hold their value, but something like a T206 common midgrade card has fallen in price without a Kit Young buying for Topps. I don't see a future where sports cards will continue to go up in price over the long term as they had in the past, but scarce attractive HOFer items are always going to find a market.
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    kuhlmannkuhlmann Posts: 3,326 ✭✭
    Yes the card companies came out with cheap packs like ud 40 and victory. but i didnt move any of them.even the adults wont buy that stuff. Sports Cards are expensive period. a lot of people in there 20's and 30's cant afford them.
    Anther thing that ticks me off is what Barry Bonds is doing now, he pulled himself out of the players union so the card companies have to pay him directly. so look for higher pack prices when he gets close to 714!!!
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    I loved how this thread started with the article about "the cylce being completed" How card collecting started with mostly older men collecting tobacco cards and than kids collecting gum cards, to older men collecting sports cards. If anyone gets a chance, pick up some recent issues of SCD. They are printing letters of one of the original cornerstones of the hobby, Lionel Carter. Reading his correspondence with other early collectors and dealers is like entering a time capsule.
    Many collectors bemoan the fact that there are too many sets nowadays and that there is too much to collect. As a collector of modern as well as vintage cards I love the choices available on the market today. There is something for everyone with pack prices ranging from $2-$125. The key factor is CHOICE. You don't have to collect everything.

    Sixdart- Keep it down about vintage football. We don't need anymore competition.

    Deutchergeist- I've always known about the popularity internationally of the NBA. I would have thought football would be popular in Germany with the success of NFL Europe. Would like to hear first hand how that's going over there.

    Overall, vintage and modern collecting are two different beasts. I believe vintage will see small but steady increases in growth. Modern will see contraction in the coming years. Whether it be companies printing less sets or 1 or 2 companies merging or shutting down.
    Baseball is my Pastime, Football is my Passion
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    High end, museum quality pieces will continue to attract attention, even 30 or 50 years from now. Baseball was such a part of Americana in the 20th century, I can't imagine demand ever falling for Babe Ruth or Ty Cobb. They may not have the wide appeal of Old Master paintings or rare auto's, but they are far better investments than any refractor or chrome 1 of 1, unique insert.

    Have any of you looked at a Beckett magazine recently? From 1948 to the early 90's, there were a handful of price guide pages in the magazine. The rest of it looks like a phone book. I'll been patiently waiting for the card manufacturers to come to their senses and get back to the basics. I guess we'll have to wait a little longer.

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    CWCW Posts: 1,198 ✭✭✭
    First off, it's very interesting to read everyone's comments.

    Secondly, here's an auction I came across that shows how strong
    the market is for the gaming cards that MrMoo collects. A Magic
    "beta" Black Lotus PSA 6 sold for $900. Seems crazy, but then
    I'm sure a lot of people think the same thing when they see how
    much people spend on sportscards.

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    The maon problem is the players unions. They are the one's that allowed this to happen. They let all these companies make all these sets. I don't think there should be more than 5 sets per sport, and even 5 is a bit high.
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    DhjacksDhjacks Posts: 343 ✭✭
    image


    Did someone mention Ron Kittle?

    A cardboard sign autographed by the three 'stars' in attendance back in mid-'80's. At the time, you would have bet on at least one of them getting into the HOF.
    Working on 1969 through 1975 Basketball.
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    DhjacksDhjacks Posts: 343 ✭✭
    I am awful at the links. I'll try again, but if no luck...it is featuring
    Ron Kittle, Tom Brunansky and Kent Hrbek.WestCoastShow
    Working on 1969 through 1975 Basketball.
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    At times the 80s were Spectacular!

    image
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    4for44for4 Posts: 675 ✭✭✭

    So 20 years later I’d be interested in hearing the thoughts of those of you who have a better pulse on the hobby then I do.

    What’s the 2023 and beyond forecast.

    Forum members on ignore
    Erba - coolstanley-dallasactuary-SDsportsfan
    daltex

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    Jayman1982Jayman1982 Posts: 464 ✭✭✭

    I read the second post in this thread, agreed with it, kept reading more posts, and didn't notice the thread was 20 years old for quite some time...doesn't seem like much has changed

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    1951WheatiesPremium1951WheatiesPremium Posts: 6,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @4for4 said:
    So 20 years later I’d be interested in hearing the thoughts of those of you who have a better pulse on the hobby then I do.

    What’s the 2023 and beyond forecast.

    Here’s the forecast: I will continue to enjoy collecting cards. Some will go up in value, some will go down. Several hot rookies will see huge prices early then settle at low values. Sandy Koufax and Willie Mays will die and their cards will spike at that time and then keep going up. New sports will produce cards and people will collect them, such as pro pickle ball and professional eating. Vintage and modern collectors will mock each other. There will be some panic selling, FOMO buying and people who shop wisely and carefully will quietly kill it all along.

    Curious about the rare, mysterious and beautiful 1951 Wheaties Premium Photos?

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    West22West22 Posts: 225 ✭✭✭

    Quality unopened will outperform all.

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    chaz43chaz43 Posts: 2,128 ✭✭✭
    edited August 3, 2023 10:34AM

    Good vintage will continue to go up and as a foundation, will continue to drive the "overall" market. For example... a 1967 Mantle just sold for 8 grand a kid says to himself, will this Ohtani I have be worth that much someday? I'll hold on to it and see what happens and maybe I'll buy more when I have more money....it's comparing great vintage(and of course the price) to new product that will continue to drive the market IMO.

    chaz

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    threeofsixthreeofsix Posts: 564 ✭✭✭✭

    @kuhlmann said:
    yu-gi-oh craze seems to dying out also.last year you couldnt find any at target or walmart for christmas. this year there was an overload of them on christmas eve when i was shopping and no parents were buying them.

    @MrMoo said:
    Personally it has been a long time since I have purchased sports cards. I mostly collect non sport issues. On top of that I play competitively play Magic the Gathering. Wether it be Magic, Yu Gi Oh, WWE or whatever. At 27 I know people both older and younger who play these games. I can’t think of a person, I know, who plays these games that actively collects sports cards.

    Wether you play for fun or competitively these games give you something more to do with your cards then just look at them. On the competitive side you can make a nice profit if you are good at what you do. Professionally, although very few, you can make a nice living. And for fun that’s mostly for fun.

    I believe the allure is that you can take your deck of cards and sit across from someone and have a battle of the wits. Sports cards are an entirely different entity. With card gaming you can fairly cheaply get into a game and have fun with it. The cost of building a sports card collection can be much greater, and there is no residual use. $10 can get you a lot of things in gamming cards. But how far can $10 get you in sports cards?

    Of course it all depends on what you buy

    . But there is 2 cents.

    I really loved these positions from mrmoo and and @kuhlmann from 20 years back… and would be interested in their takes today as well.

    From my perspective, my son was playing TCG games at that time. So we spent a lot of time hunting for and playing the cards back then.

    I think it was fun then, and it is now.

    I personally think that the TCG market had huge growth over the last 20 years… and PSA knows just how much TCGs have impacted their view of the hobby (positively).

    I think those kids that played and collected back then are still playing (my son still plays on line) and collecting (we still check out current product) and that the majority of them will be doing so for many years to come.

    I don’t know about the sports side of things…. I’ve primarily collected non-sports my whole life, so I’ll leave the sports discussions to the sports experts.

    The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. Or the one.
    Live long, and prosper.
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    Copyboy1Copyboy1 Posts: 468 ✭✭✭✭

    It's all economics. Card companies don't have kid-friendly prices anymore because kids don't have money. You go after a target audience that has money. So they market to older consumers, make all the packs higher priced, and make way more with much less effort.

    There is no incentive to make lower-priced stuff to get a younger crowd into collecting. If they made something like that, it wouldn't be worth anything, so the main set of buyers (older) wouldn't even bother with it. Demand would fall and kids wouldn't want it either.

    With all the 30-year-olds collecting, card companies have another 30+ years before there will be any issue with not having cultivated a younger audience.

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    coinkatcoinkat Posts: 22,769 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Perhaps a reasonable approach might be taking somewhat of a contrarian view- especially with vintage cards. There are several excellent players that never will be in the HOF... but still represent the history of the game. I see value in looking at players that have been overlooked. And the better news is that most of these cards are not budget busters. If one follows this strategy, one is not likely to get a financial windfall. However, the education and developing an appreciation of the game and how it progressed to what it is today is something that simply extends well beyond the HOF stars. I would rather own a 1953 Topps Luke Easter or Gus Zernial card at a price that is unfairly discounted over the hype associated with a 53 Topps Mantle. While it is all about demand- lets be honest in that demand can be created and promoted. There are other examples that easily illustrate my point that collecting on the historical side does not always have to be expensive to be fun.

    Experience the World through Numismatics...it's more than you can imagine.

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    West22West22 Posts: 225 ✭✭✭

    I’ve been trying to focus on low pop stuff that has decent reach in the market. As an error collector for years I’m all too familiar with the problem of something being too rare - if I have the only one and no one else knows about it then there is little to no market. When you hit that sweet spot of low circulating supply and strong demand you know you have something that will outperform most assets going forward.
    Just based on what I’ve been watching recently, I’ve been surprised at the relative ease with which you can find a box of 1980-‘84 Topps BB, 1987 OPC BB, 1993 SP BB and ‘93-‘94 Finest basketball. There’s at least 5-10 of each of them on eBay at this moment. That makes me think prices on these will continue to flatline for a bit before making their way back up sometime next year.
    In another category altogether, there is a glut of stuff like 1990 leaf, 1989 UD baseball and 1990s Fleer bkb on eBay right now. Prices on these should drop for some time while supply is redistributed, then I see a period of underwhelming growth that generally mirrors inflation.

    With singles, for investment purposes I would stick to high quality names with staying power (Jeter/Griffey/Jordan etc) or niche markets you know well. It’s a buyers market so a lot of cheap stuff is being moved at bargain prices if you’re patient.

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    pdoidoipdoidoi Posts: 491 ✭✭✭

    ydsotter Where on the Cape. There was card shops in Orleans, W.Yarmouth, Hyannis and I think there is one in the Sandwhich area that I never tried. The only one that I know is still around is the one in W.Yarmouth and I just found another one last year in Dennis and he is great with the kids, makes the kids feel great about collecting.

    @ydsotter said:
    One major problem I see is a poor business ethos with some dealers/shop owners.

    I have seen this from a few dealers / shop owners...

    A kid drops $10-$20 in his store on packs of sportscards.
    The kids rips the packs open at the store...
    Gets nothing that he perceives as "valuable" or desireable.

    Next, the kid asks if the dealer would buy the cards or trade with him...

    The dealer usually says something like "I don't buy or I don't trade" or "you got nothing I want."

    The kid walks out feeling burned or upset.

    The dealer just helped turn the kid off to collecting.

    Sure... the kid might have had the wrong motivation in the first place trying to pull a lottery ticket card...

    But I think that it would help promote a healthier connection to the hobby if the dealer had a few boxes of "trade cards" that kids could go 1:1 with...

    This great shop I used to go to on Cape Cod had exactly that... the owner would never let a kid walk out feeling screwed or sad...

    He'd
    say "lemme see what you got!" and he'd thumb through the cards and say things like "wow!" and "great!"
    and when the kid said... "would you buy these? or could I trade...
    The owner would say "Sure!" and he'd direct the kid to these massive 5000 count boxes stuffed with base cards, inserts and flashy cards from all sports, sets and years and he'd say... one for one... pick what you want!

    and the kid would sometimes spend an hour or two deciding what to bring home.

    The kid never felt like he lost... and the shop owner always made the cards sound valuable, appealing, special... etc...

    When the kid pulled out some crappy insert that booked for $20-$50 that would probably never sell... The owner would take it in trade... always work with the kid to make sure that he got something he could run home and tell his folks about.

    He is a great guy... and his business did well with kids.
    The place was always crawling with kids...

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    As a pre-teen in the late '70s I moved from collecting new Topps baseball to 50's and 60's Topps baseball stars, not mint Mantle's and Aaron's but what I could afford with my lawn mowing, leaf raking, and snow shoveling income. When I got back into collecting about 15 years ago, I could not believe how many 50's, 60's and 70's Topps baseball stars were in existence in PSA 8 and above. Prior to third party grading and population reports, there was no way to know what the population of a given card in a given condition was. In light of the plentiful supply of such high grade cards and my prediction that the demand for cards of this era would steadily decline as Boomers exit the hobby, I began collecting late 60's to early 80's OPC baseball. Due to the relative scarcity of high grade OPC in comparison to Topps, collecting has become more challenging and, therefore, more rewarding and interesting to me. I can find a PSA 8 '74 Topps Aaron on eBay whenever I want to, but finding a PSA 8 '74 OPC Aaron is a whole different ballgame! In the end I believe the value of my collection will be more stable than a collection of vintage Topps cards due to the comparative rarity of the cards in my collection.

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    4for44for4 Posts: 675 ✭✭✭

    I don’t know what the future holds, but I do understand that guys between the age of 38-48 watched three of the greatest to ever play the game in the 80’s and 90’s, and when they get between the ages of 55-75 the demand for Jordan, Gretzky,and Lemieux will escalate.

    Forum members on ignore
    Erba - coolstanley-dallasactuary-SDsportsfan
    daltex

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    West22West22 Posts: 225 ✭✭✭
    edited August 4, 2023 4:19AM

    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

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    1951WheatiesPremium1951WheatiesPremium Posts: 6,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @West22 said:
    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

    Well, with a large international pool of talent, the inability to speak English certainly holds back some of their stars.

    You can’t get to know guys as well when they can’t communicate with the larger audience. I’d love to see Shohei Ohtani sit down with a talk show host but it would probably be a cumbersome interview and therefore not a great watch…

    …and this is coming from someone who watches lots of baseball every night, not a hater.

    Curious about the rare, mysterious and beautiful 1951 Wheaties Premium Photos?

    https://forums.collectors.com/discussion/987963/1951-wheaties-premium-photos-set-registry#latest

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    CakesCakes Posts: 3,462 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @1951WheatiesPremium said:

    @West22 said:
    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

    Well, with a large international pool of talent, the inability to speak English certainly holds back some of their stars.

    You can’t get to know guys as well when they can’t communicate with the larger audience. I’d love to see Shohei Ohtani sit down with a talk show host but it would probably be a cumbersome interview and therefore not a great watch…

    …and this is coming from someone who watches lots of baseball every night, not a hater.

    Juan Soto made it a priority to learn English however many of the Latin players do not.

    "Washington Nationals All-Star Juan Soto was born in the Dominican Republic. He signed with the Nationals in 2015. He joined the Nationals’ Dominican Academy and immediately began to immerse himself in English by using the Rosetta Stone language-learning software lessons. He initially practiced English for one hour a day, five days a week. After the Academy, Soto joined the Nationals’ Class A affiliate, the Hagerstown Suns. He met Suns catcher Tres Barrera, who was born in Texas to Mexican parents. Soto told Barrera that he only wanted the two of them to converse in English.

    Barrera told the Washington Post that he remembered how Soto would go to a McDonald’s near the ballpark every day to practice his English by ordering from the menu. When Soto was called up to the Nationals, he told manager Dave Martinez, “No Spanish, only English.”

    Soto now conducts his media interviews in English. Johnny Dipuglia, the Nationals’ head of international operations, stated, “His English has gotten so good in such a short period of time. It’s a special talent. That’s what makes him a star.”

    Soto himself recalled the role that his mother played in his English lessons. “I remember her telling me that if I wanted to be a star I had to know the language in the country I wanted to play in,” he reflected. “She was right. Moms always are!”

    Successful coin BST transactions with Gerard and segoja.

    Successful card BST transactions with cbcnow, brogurt, gstarling, Bravesfan 007, and rajah 424.
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    1951WheatiesPremium1951WheatiesPremium Posts: 6,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Cakes said:

    @1951WheatiesPremium said:

    @West22 said:
    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

    Well, with a large international pool of talent, the inability to speak English certainly holds back some of their stars.

    You can’t get to know guys as well when they can’t communicate with the larger audience. I’d love to see Shohei Ohtani sit down with a talk show host but it would probably be a cumbersome interview and therefore not a great watch…

    …and this is coming from someone who watches lots of baseball every night, not a hater.

    Juan Soto made it a priority to learn English however many of the Latin players do not.

    "Washington Nationals All-Star Juan Soto was born in the Dominican Republic. He signed with the Nationals in 2015. He joined the Nationals’ Dominican Academy and immediately began to immerse himself in English by using the Rosetta Stone language-learning software lessons. He initially practiced English for one hour a day, five days a week. After the Academy, Soto joined the Nationals’ Class A affiliate, the Hagerstown Suns. He met Suns catcher Tres Barrera, who was born in Texas to Mexican parents. Soto told Barrera that he only wanted the two of them to converse in English.

    Barrera told the Washington Post that he remembered how Soto would go to a McDonald’s near the ballpark every day to practice his English by ordering from the menu. When Soto was called up to the Nationals, he told manager Dave Martinez, “No Spanish, only English.”

    Soto now conducts his media interviews in English. Johnny Dipuglia, the Nationals’ head of international operations, stated, “His English has gotten so good in such a short period of time. It’s a special talent. That’s what makes him a star.”

    Soto himself recalled the role that his mother played in his English lessons. “I remember her telling me that if I wanted to be a star I had to know the language in the country I wanted to play in,” he reflected. “She was right. Moms always are!”

    Not surprising; starting to see him popping up in National ad campaigns…in speaking roles!!!

    Curious about the rare, mysterious and beautiful 1951 Wheaties Premium Photos?

    https://forums.collectors.com/discussion/987963/1951-wheaties-premium-photos-set-registry#latest

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    West22West22 Posts: 225 ✭✭✭

    @1951WheatiesPremium said:

    @West22 said:
    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

    Well, with a large international pool of talent, the inability to speak English certainly holds back some of their stars.

    You can’t get to know guys as well when they can’t communicate with the larger audience. I’d love to see Shohei Ohtani sit down with a talk show host but it would probably be a cumbersome interview and therefore not a great watch…

    …and this is coming from someone who watches lots of baseball every night, not a hater.

    I agree, language is certainly a barrier preventing guys like Ohtani reaching a broader group of fans, though I think some Americans could stand to broaden their perspectives beyond our borders and have some interest in other cultures (I know, this is beside the point.)

    I think my issue is that not only does MLB fail to market their stars, they also are so profit minded that they alienate large swaths of the markets by making the game completely inaccessible. The blackout rules are absurd. You end up having to pay for multiple subscriptions see all your team’s games. Not to mention the ridiculous service time manipulation that went on for over a decade leading to many future stars such as Kris Bryant and Vladimir Guerrero Jr languishing in the minors when they were more than ready for the majors. MLB still has a long ways to go in my opinion.

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    1951WheatiesPremium1951WheatiesPremium Posts: 6,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @West22 said:

    @1951WheatiesPremium said:

    @West22 said:
    I’m not too worried about demographics as far as its effect on whether card values rise over time by attracting new participants. I would classify sports cards as an “alternative asset” with cultural appeal, similar to art. They will always be investible even if the market shrinks a bit as participants die off. I’d be more worried about something like say, the fact that the MLB has the greatest athlete on the planet right now Shohei Ohtani, and barely anyone outside of baseball knows or appreciates him. That is a massive failure on MLB’s part to market the greatest talent of this generation. He should be as big as MJ. It’s kind of sad how bad they are at this.

    Well, with a large international pool of talent, the inability to speak English certainly holds back some of their stars.

    You can’t get to know guys as well when they can’t communicate with the larger audience. I’d love to see Shohei Ohtani sit down with a talk show host but it would probably be a cumbersome interview and therefore not a great watch…

    …and this is coming from someone who watches lots of baseball every night, not a hater.

    I agree, language is certainly a barrier preventing guys like Ohtani reaching a broader group of fans, though I think some Americans could stand to broaden their perspectives beyond our borders and have some interest in other cultures (I know, this is beside the point.)

    I think my issue is that not only does MLB fail to market their stars, they also are so profit minded that they alienate large swaths of the markets by making the game completely inaccessible. The blackout rules are absurd. You end up having to pay for multiple subscriptions see all your team’s games. Not to mention the ridiculous service time manipulation that went on for over a decade leading to many future stars such as Kris Bryant and Vladimir Guerrero Jr languishing in the minors when they were more than ready for the majors. MLB still has a long ways to go in my opinion.

    America is the great melting pot; we already have absorbed so much from other cultures including language, food, music, customs and traditions.

    This is still the greatest country on earth and I believe our diversity is a chief reason for it. We remain the great aresenal of democracy throughout the globe and subsidize freedom across the planet.

    And I don’t mind one bit if any of the athletes don’t want to grow their brand, earn more money and become bigger stars because they choose to (or not to) learn English. But obviously it is going to make a huge difference.

    They can just ask Juan!

    Or his mom!

    😁

    Curious about the rare, mysterious and beautiful 1951 Wheaties Premium Photos?

    https://forums.collectors.com/discussion/987963/1951-wheaties-premium-photos-set-registry#latest

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    BBBrkrrBBBrkrr Posts: 948 ✭✭✭✭✭

    If this hobby could survive the late 80's/90s then anything can survive and thrive. I'm always optimistic about how it's going. Even when it's 'bad' that means there are buying opportunities.

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