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Pricing Surprises

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smapdi

Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
4,397
221
I thought I knew the values of my cards, at least roughly, but I'm finding out I'm often way wrong. Ever since I started shipping cards from my "list on ebay someday" boxes to COMC and pricing them there, I'm often surprised by the values, one way or the other. 2020 Topps Chrome F1, 2000s baseball and basketball, non-sports, all sorts of stuff. My screening process was basically anything I thought would sell for $5 or more, based on the 50-cent + 5% sales fee to be close to ebay, and didn't have 100+ other copies on COMC. I didn't look up sales of everything I submitted, but many I did, and I'm glad because some sell for way less than I expected, if they even sell at all.

This morning's discovery was the 2002 Bowman Chrome Draft Zack Greinke. He's obviously been a good to great pitcher for a long time. I'm not sure of his HOF bona fides, but a lot of people expect him to make it. Anyway, I had a copy of it that I threw into my latest sub and it got processed this morning. I hadn't researched this one, but I figured it was good for $20. As I was about to price it, I was shocked to see that there are only 2 other copies on COMC and they are priced $85-$88. Confirmed on ebay, raw copies sold for as high as $105 this summer. Recent auctions have ended $25-$36, but BINs as high as $70 were hit in early September. Currently, the cheapest copy on ebay is a $75 BIN, none on auction. Obviously, would love to sell for $80 rather than $20, but I found this gap between auction and BIN surprising for a fairly common card, and I would never have guessed $80 was even in the range.

Other better than expected sales: numbered 2021 Topps Chrome Anniversary parallels, David Ortiz, mid-teens Topps Chrome refractors and colors, and 2014 Prizm World Cup cards. I opened a box of the latter way back when, and they just sat around. At the start of the big pandemic wave, I sold some numbered parallels for what I thought were impossible prices and now those prices are steals. But it's not only Ronaldos and Messis selling. Seems to be a key set and people want everything from it.

Shocking the other way (but probably shouldn't be), Hanley Ramirez. I bought into the rookie hype a bit, 20 years ago, when I paid I think $125 for a PSA 9 2003 BDP X-Fractor auto, and I picked up a couple other decent cards of his over the years. I don't think the 2003 BDP ever got higher than that, even with his best early performances. But no one wants his stuff today, like at all. Despite the talent, I guess he did nothing to ingratiate himself to fans, which is reflected in the hobby. Plus, he avoided being on any of the Boston teams that won the Series. On ebay, his highest recent sale as a solo card (compared to multi-player autos with Miggy or Pujols) was $100. If anyone wants to become a supercollector, some fertile ground here to amass a really impressive 21st century collection with little competition. However, BIN prices are in a completely different world from real sales, so some negotiation would be required.
 

OakAth

Well-known member
Nov 30, 2009
166
298
There are a lot of hardcore Greinke collectors out there. I decided to liquidate my 2008 and 2009 Finest Gold Refractors and the first cards to go were Greinke and almost immediately at the BIN price....made me think I set the price too low. lol So seeing this, I listed a 2021 Topps Finest Greinke Pink Purple Refractor /3 that I had two of for $160.00 as a BIN and was hoping to get $80-$90. It was immediately snatched up for $160.00.
 

madbull34

Well-known member
Sep 10, 2009
1,081
425
San Diego, CA
I picked up an Anthony Bourdain Ginter auto at release for around $35. Saw a few people mention that it is their grail card. Was shocked to see what they go for today.
 

smapdi

Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
4,397
221
I bought my wife a Bourdain A&G auto card for her birthday in 2015 or 2016. She's a big fan and still cycles through his shows once in a while. It's one of her favorite cards, right up there with her best Giannis, Jokic, and Josh Allen. I hope she doesn't see what they've gone for lately. I'd love for her to keep it but she's not overly attached to her collection and will sell anything for the right price, and a raw copy sold for $4000 BIN last month, while a SCG 10/10 sold for $2422 at auction. I knew they had been hitting over $1000, but this is a new level.
 

mrmopar

Member
Jan 19, 2010
6,204
4,133
You can't take it with you! I'd flip a Bourdain if I had it FOR $1-4K, but I also don't have any interest in having his auto either. That is my problem with sports cards. I have always been slow to react to spikes in prices, because I really don't have a strong interest in selling stuff. I should have sold my Oneil Cruz and James Outman bowman RC autos when they were crazy $, especially since I had dupes of Outman. Piad less than $10 each for them, I am fairly certain. I'll probably never see those prices or anything near them again. Then again, it's my whole argument for being frustrated when buying untested prospects, because as soon as they do 1 good thing, everyone comes a running to buy, buy, buy. Almost all of them drop like a rock when it turns out they are not Trout or other future HOFer.
 

Juan Gris

Well-known member
May 23, 2013
2,222
106
Columbus, OH
I paid $762 for my grail card in 2018 and that thing has shot through the roof. Talking about the 1993 Skybox Simpsons Art de Bart sketch card signed by Matt Groening. A BGS 9.5 sold last month for $13,100 (mine is ungraded but looks perfect in every way).
 

smapdi

Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
4,397
221
One thing I'm learning is the COMC pricing does not always track with ebay. I guess once you have cash built up, you tend to keep it in the system because of their ridiculous 10% cut to cash out. That appears to cause some sales to be higher than on ebay. I listed my Greinke for $75 and it sold in a few days, and now there are none on ebay under $100. And I have had several other things sell unexpectedly where my price was above ebay but was just what I thought it was worth, or else I would have taken a loss. Looks like in some cases, people are setting a floor on pricing, and in others they are just buying and flipping, sometimes successfully, sometimes not.
 

mrmopar

Member
Jan 19, 2010
6,204
4,133
I paid $762 for my grail card in 2018 and that thing has shot through the roof. Talking about the 1993 Skybox Simpsons Art de Bart sketch card signed by Matt Groening. A BGS 9.5 sold last month for $13,100 (mine is ungraded but looks perfect in every way).
I loved that set. I tried to get as many of the Arty Art cards, but the Art de Bart was already too pricy. I never even finished the Arty Art set. I have to draw the line and non-sports is a low bar for me.
 

Juan Gris

Well-known member
May 23, 2013
2,222
106
Columbus, OH
I loved that set. I tried to get as many of the Arty Art cards, but the Art de Bart was already too pricy. I never even finished the Arty Art set. I have to draw the line and non-sports is a low bar for me.
I opened a ton of 1993 Simpsons packs as a kid 30 years ago chasing the Lucky Day redemption card. Not sure what happened to my inserts (thinking I traded them back in for store credit) but it was always my goal to own an Art de Bart, especially after I saw one in person at a card show in my local mall. Makes me nervous handling it these days. Definitely need to get it slabbed. It's a legendary card to me.
 

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