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When do you get outta the hobby?

WizardofOz1982

Active member
Sep 30, 2017
944
Oklahoma
When I came back to the hobby about a year ago I had to set limits and really fine tune what I wanted to collect. That's why I haven't really started to kick up the Ozzie or Bagwell collections again at this point. I'm not getting rid of what I already have because I spent a good part of my childhood acquiring it all but I'm not actively looking to add to it either. If I see a playing era card here and there I don't have that is cheap enough I add it but I haven't even made a checklist for either guy as of now.

I made a couple of decisions early on about what I wanted:

1) Jeff Frye checklist 100%, not including the 1/1 plates. Not a huge checklist since he retired in 2001 but it's about 170 cards and he's in some of the rough ones like Fleer Starting 9.
I'm close now. I need 6 more cards. I had about 80% of it before I left the hobby and finding that last 20% has been extremely enjoyable as well as frustrating as hell. Finding a whole bunch of oddball/game used/auto'd stuff along the way has been a bonus.

2) Topps Heritage base set and Allen and Ginter set
I love vintage cards so these really fit the bill for me to feed my set building neuroses. I love the minis so that's why I add them to the A&G. There are way too many sets out there now to ever try to have everything issued in a single year like I used to do but these two give me plenty of stuff to chase without feeling totally unattainable.

3) Finish off my '90s Cardinals RC collection
Close again. Once I finish it I'll move on to the 2000s, 2010s, etc.

4) Acquire the HoF RCs I always wanted as a kid and couldn't afford
Kind of vague but I add RCs as I can.

5) Leave room to pursue something else that I think will be fun, be it cracking boxes to build a set I normally wouldn't (2017 Donruss Optic baseball) or starting an oddball PC like Northeastern State University (my alma mater) athletes who went pro (short list lol). Isn't this why we all collect anyway?
 
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aarne13

Active member
Oct 15, 2008
3,218
The Permian Basin
It's always good to take a break and re-assess your collection. I took a break a couple years ago for several reasons, mainly money and time. The other was a lack of enthusiasm- as a team collector I started to get bored seeing the same players in every set (same autos, GU etc). Throw in a boatload of parallels and high end products. It just didn't seem fun anymore. My players collections have been idle for a long time- competing for John Olerud high end cards was a losing battle. Too many collectors with deep pockets. I'm definitely not going to get rich selling my collection- I knew that from the start. If you are thinking of liquidating your collection just consider how replaceable some of your cards are. If you decide to get back into collecting down the road some of the cards you sold will never resurface. I'm sure everyone here has taken a break from collecting numerous times.
 
Feb 28, 2012
92
Syracuse
I was like you... and then I decided to downsize, selling and trading off my Cardinal collection. I was collecting all Cardinal refractors, sort of like refractor team sets of all colors while picking up other Cardinal cards here and there. It was the best decision I could have made. Got rid of unwanted cards that really didn't mean anything to me other than they were Cardinals. With all the refractors coming out in every Bowman product and Topps Chrome, it just got out of hand. I now just collect Pujols with a small side collection of 2013 Bowman/Chrome parallels of Carson Kelly and IP Cardinal autos. I would like to leave my two small boys (currently 2 and 1 years old) hopefully a solid collection of a Hall of Famer, including the dozens and dozens of RCs I have of him. I've enjoyed collecting again. I get more satisfaction of getting a Pujols base card I need compared to a red refractor of a prospect that will most likely never pan out. I also like the chase of rare, low numbered Pujols cards.
 

AnthonyCorona

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2014
9,529
Modesto, CA
I was like you... and then I decided to downsize, selling and trading off my Cardinal collection. I was collecting all Cardinal refractors, sort of like refractor team sets of all colors while picking up other Cardinal cards here and there. It was the best decision I could have made. Got rid of unwanted cards that really didn't mean anything to me other than they were Cardinals. With all the refractors coming out in every Bowman product and Topps Chrome, it just got out of hand. I now just collect Pujols with a small side collection of 2013 Bowman/Chrome parallels of Carson Kelly and IP Cardinal autos. I would like to leave my two small boys (currently 2 and 1 years old) hopefully a solid collection of a Hall of Famer, including the dozens and dozens of RCs I have of him. I've enjoyed collecting again. I get more satisfaction of getting a Pujols base card I need compared to a red refractor of a prospect that will most likely never pan out. I also like the chase of rare, low numbered Pujols cards.
My daughter is one of the reasons I collect who I do. We've met some pretty decent players and I hope she grows up and still likes going to games. By the end of last year she knew where we were going about a mile away lol. She'd start saying "ball, ball, ball." She's also the reason I thought of getting more investment type cards that over time should be pretty valuable.

Sent from my LG-H811 using Tapatalk
 

phillyfan0417

Active member
Administrator
It's interesting that this thread started because I've found myself going less and less to ebay. I noticed it when I noticed that my normal ebay bucks amount was over 100 dollars every single time...this last period I barely got to 30 dollars.

I'm thinking i'll go back to just collecting slabbed HOF/Star autos and auto'ed balls...I love these types of pieces and are the parts of my collection I actually look at.

 

Pills

Member
Aug 7, 2008
555
Well, considering I haven't posted here in 6 years... I mostly did.

I was spending WAY too much money chasing sets like Heritage and constantly going for the big hit. That stopped a few years ago. Now, it's essentially one jumbo box of Topps 1, one jumbo box of Topps 2, and one jumbo box of Topps Update. I'll occasionally buy some other packs if I see things at Target that look interesting. I've knocked my spending down to under $500/year.

My issue is that I have two large stacks of 5000 and 3200 count boxes in my closet that my wife hates because they take up a lot of room. I have ~15 boxes of cards in top loaders, and every Topps set from 1977 on in the bottom of the linen closet.
 

Mark70Z

New member
Mar 26, 2011
354
Collecting

We all know that people collect for all sorts of reason. I really don’t consider myself a baseball card collector since I only collect Brooks Robinson cards from his playing days. I do collect all types of other memorabilia of his as well. I also pick up Orioles displayable items that are not necessary related to my PC player, but to make for a nice display. It doesn’t really get old to me since I’m collecting a player that was my hero growing up and still just a great all around human being. It’s just a hobby to me and I really don’t sell, just collect and trade or give away stuff on occasion. If I needed the money for my family or close friends I’d sell and wouldn’t even hesitate. It hasn’t always been that way, but it’s been like that for at least 10 years or so. I’ll bid or buy with what I think it’s worth and if I come up short oh well. If it wasn’t fun anymore I’d get out of the hobby, but that hasn’t been the case.

I’m with some of the others and just take a break prior to selling unless you really need the money.
 

Lancemountain

Active member
Apr 11, 2009
8,308
Philadelphia
I've ebbed and flowed. Even in my super down times I search for the white whales I've been on the hunt for for years.

I have so many little projects going that I will never end them all. Very enjoyable to me and even if I take a break from a project, once I get back into it I feel that fire again
 

fsulevine

New member
Mar 5, 2011
517
Tallahassee, FL
I've been doing some thinking and I'm really considering leaving the hobby. I have had a big drop off of interest for various reasons.
1. I use to set build but with all the SPs, variations and SSPs getting so expensive I stopped.
2. Most of the players I collect have got too expensive.
3. There seems to be a new release every week so there's just too many cards to chase.
4. Maybe with there being more info...EVERYONE is buying prospects and prices are nuts. I've tried buying bowman autos of players I've met with my daughter and the prices have seemed to get outta hand.
5. I fear a market crash. I don't really collect to make a profit but with that being said, I don't buy a card for $15 thinking it's cool if it's worthless soon. I know the economy is chugging along with no end in sight but I'm old enough to remember everything crashing seemingly overnight.

I'd appreciate opinions and I'd really like to hear about people who have felt the same way. I won't ever stop watching and loving baseball but I could see myself selling what I have and finding a new hobby.

Sent from my LG-H811 using Tapatalk
I got out when my card collecting budget became diapers and daycare budget for my then newborn, now 4 1/2 year old. I am relegated to a couple boxes a year now... usually birthday and the holidays. My son expresses interest in my cards, but he is too young for me to give him anything but commons obviously.
 

nosterbor

Well-known member
Jun 20, 2010
5,538
Sunny Florida
Might be soon. It is to the point where most cards I need are $100+. I quit last year for about 3 months then 2017 Topps Archives Signature Series came out:benson:
 

blanning71

Super Moderator
Aug 8, 2008
7,892
Eastern North Carolina
Ah yes, the good ole "I'm getting out" thread. If I had a dollar for every time I have discussed this, I would be a very rich dude. Like Boyz 2 Men said, "Its hard to say goodbye". This hobby is no longer like a light switch. You can't just turn it off and walk away from the darkness. I think so many of us are tied into this hobby via social media. So many forums like FCB, so many fan pages on facebook. So many videos on youtube. All of those factors get coupled together and its like a spiders web and we are the little fly that can't seem to get away from all that webbing.

I have contemplated it many times but alas, I watch some damn video on youtube and someone pulls a player's card that I really like or a few cards from a set that catches my eye and BOOM. I'm hooked again. I think I would have to disconnect from all avenues of social media and not make any trips near the local cardshops for an extended period of time to actually break away from the hobby. I'm like many others on here who have commented. I think the companies are pumping out WAAAAAY too many products these days. Its hard for one particular product to gain traction and stand on its own until another "better than ever" product is being stocked on shelves. Yes, the iconic products like Topps, Heritage, Chrome, Draft, and the like will always have their special standing in the hobby, but even they are being threatened by new releases that taunt us as collectors. I see so many similarities in each new release. Manufacturers aren't being pushed to make unique products anymore. It all runs together and just ends up being a big ole mess.

I have really tried to slow down and limit myself this past year on what I opened and what I collected. I have tried to go back and start a collection of cards that were perhaps once an iconic card. Players that were once revered but have since been forgotten or the cards have lost their luster. A few examples would be a 1992 Leaf Gold Rookies David Nied, a Frank Thomas 92 Fleer Ultra AllStars (that black marble finish on the cards made them jump out of packs) or a 1993 SP Platinum Power Ken Griffey, Jr. Die Cut. They may not be expensive, but the nostalgia and memories that they bring back to a simpler time in my collecting history make them priceless.

Sure, I'll still chase the Chromey Chrome Super Duper Tantalizinglyfractor autograph of the next up and coming can't miss prospect, or I'll try to get a Kris Bryant or Mike Trout auto relic, but I know that it's not my niche. I'm a wax hound and I love the thrill of the rip. I'll hit some decent stuff but I'll whiff more often. I'm just not doing it as much anymore. Oh hell, here comes 2018 Topps Series 1.....gotta go put on my bib and get ready to drool over the crazy hits that I "see on the forums" or that are pulled in another "AMAZING MUST SEE CASE BREAK! AMAZEBALLS!".

Keep your head, up, your wallet close, make some solid decisions and refine your collection to meet your needs. Hang in there bud.
 

weight333

New member
May 28, 2013
581
Milwaukee, WI
I began collecting like many at a very young age (5/6). I began limiting my collection focus to Barry Bonds in 1998. Back then I could only afford the base and low level inserts. As of the last 5-6 years, I've been able to pick up many of the rarer, limited issues. Thankfully Bonds isn't in too many newer products and I don't make post-career issues a priority. When the market for Bonds cards I need dries up, I work on other side projects like my 1971 set. Collecting is in my blood. I'll always be a collector in some fashion. As my collection becomes more complete, I should need less funds to dedicate towards it. If I got to the point where I felt I wanted out of the hobby, I would give myself a period of time to contemplate my decision and wouldn't less the extremely rare issues towards the end of my sales like another commenter said.
 

chilly55

Member
May 16, 2010
472
I actually cancelled my 2018 Heritage case orders. 2017 was and is the last year I will be opening sport cards. Below is a post I made on another forum a little while ago. Some of you probably have already read this.



Well, 2017 was my last year for the hobby. Having been in the hobby since 1975, I have seen quite a lot in the hobby over the years.

I mostly picked up grocery racks back in the 70's begging my mom to spend the $.49 for each rack at the A&P grocery store. The 1975 Boston Redsox got me hooked at age 9 by having such a diverse and fun team. With players Yaz and Luis Tiant being my 2 favorite players from the team. Didn't understand at the time how fun a team it was with Rice and Lynn's historic rookie seasons. Yeah, they lost the World Series, but that team got me in the hobby.

I bought my first "hobby" box back in 1979 at age 13 thanks to my paper route and continued buying and putting together Topps, Fleer, & Donruss sets up until 1989.

Then Upper Deck happened and made me rethink my collecting habits. Couldn't afford to keep building the 3 sets and want the premium UD set too. So that was the first time I had to adjust. Dropped Donruss & Fleer so I could afford UD. Never bothered with Score.

Then, just 2 years later, 1992 happened. Thanks to Topps, I had to have the Topps Gold parallels. It was crazy that year and I went all out. Not only went after the Gold set, 1992 Fleer Ultra and Bowman came out. Two more "premium" sets I liked and then it was on.

Gave up on base sets and focused on insert sets I liked. Hey, hobby was getting real expensive with $12.00 packs of Finest in 1993. So for next 8 or so years, focused on inserts I liked and never touched base sets. One only has but so much money for the hobby.

Then in the early 2000's, the game used and autograph market really took off. So had to have game used and auto's, so had to change my focus again. So I chose to collect my 5 favorite players of all time (Yaz, Steve Carlton, Greg Maddux, Hakeem Olajuwon and Larry Bird). This way I could also pick up auto's and game used of other players I liked. Gave up on insert sets at that point.

Then, 2004 Diamond Kings happened. Frickin 1/1's became common and super low numbered parallels as well. So gave up on Yaz, Olajuwon and Carlton to become super collectors of Bird and Maddux.

Well, that lasted 2 years because the low serial numbered cards became so common place and with Maddux and Bird, couldn't afford it. Had over 2300 unique Maddux cards in 2006, and stopped because I simply couldn't afford to buy all the Maddux & Bird I wanted. I'm a completest and it ticked me off I couldn't acquire every card of them.

So stopped being a super collector and went back to sets. Since 2006, have been putting together insert and parallel sets I liked. Would buy cases to get me started (like Heritage Chrome & Chrome Refractors) and buy what else I needed.

What finally became the last straw was over the last few years, how little value comes out of these cases anymore. Having opened up packs since 1975, I have always had the itch to open. Well, nothing like opening up a $100 box to pull 2 sticker auto's box after box worth $5 and $20. Base set, if you can make one, sells for $15 and the inserts maybe $15 if you are lucky to even sell them. With so few "collectors" out there, I am stuck with tons of base and inserts whose value drops even more when you have to "blow out' the lot just to move them. And even when you hit a big name auto, it barely pays for the box.

So while I have never been in the hobby to make money (still have my 1976 Topps set), I would like to see value in the boxes I open.

Yes, the hobby has evolved over the years and I have adjusted time and time again, but it's at a point where I am no longer having fun. Too many sets I want to collect, but can't afford. Too many Maddux cards I want, will never afford or even be able to purchase because there are only 1 or 2 in existence.

So I say goodbye to the hobby in 2018. Topps has ruined the hobby in so many ways (too many products, redemptions, pricing etc.) that the fun that once was collecting back in 1975 has completely gone away, for me at least.

Goodbye Baseball, it's been a fun 42 years.

Bill
 

Tibor

New member
Sep 16, 2015
16
I got back into collecting in 1981. Collected quite a bit 1968-1973. In 1982
a friend recommended that I buy Ripken Jr. cards. Took his advice. At one
time I had 1500+ Topps rookies and 500+ each Donruss and Fleer. Sold or traded
most of them. Bought over 500+ different Jr. cards through 1998. Bought also
other Jr. items ( books mags. cups coins etc.) I left the hobby in 1998 because
there was no hope for completion. Still have it all including a few rookie cards.
I don't add to the collection but I keep up with the hobby through a few forums.
 

predatorkj

New member
Aug 7, 2008
11,865
I'm pretty much out. A thing like Harvey(the hurricane) comes along and it really puts things in perspective for you. That was the last straw. I was lucky enough to be unaffected for the most part but between that, and a few other things lately, I'm no longer going to bother. I think I have the money to compete. But I feel like it's foolish to continue. I did try to go about finding collectibles insurance but from everything I've seen, that was going to be so painstaking, it wasn't worth it. Space wasn't an issue either. I just don't want to sink so much effort into something just to have mother nature or some would be burglar take it all away. Not when I can still watch my teams on tv and spend the rest of my time fishing. I'll have other hobbies. But I don't want a room full of either irreplaceable things or things that would take a considerable amount of time and money to replace.

Might I point out, the hobby isn't really helping itself out either. As per usual, they(card companies) take good ideas and run them into the ground.
 

1st4040

Active member
Aug 10, 2008
5,736
New Bedford, Ma.
Its now been a couple years since I sold off my player collection.. I have it all scanned in on a thumb drive when I feel the need to look back but it was easier than I thought it would be to let go. being one of those crazy super collectors who has to have 1 of everything and Topps making that ridiculous with parallel after parallel of the same old boring card/picture really cemented my exit. I'm focused much more on Fishing and shooting these days which are also activities I can share with family members and friends. I can enjoy the hobby by checking these forums and talking with other collectors now from afar. my love for 90's inserts and that era of collecting will never go away but I don't need to physically own any of these cards anymore.
 

TNP777

New member
Aug 7, 2008
3,528
the 209
I'm on a bit of a precipice myself. It kinda hit me several weeks ago that my passion to collect has damn near disappeared. It seems like it's been months since I posted here and I've got zero interest in CU anymore 0 something that I never would have thought would happen not too many years ago - that place was my first home, but (and maybe this is the old man in me) things just aren't the same there anymore. Too many of my friends have moved on (voluntarily and others, well, not so much), and much of the conversation that is left has become divisive and partisan. I'll just leave it at that. Suffice it to say that my message board participation has in large part fueled, or more precisely has in part failed to fuel my desire to collect.

I used to shop for new Butler cards several times a day; I thought about it just now and it occurs to me that I haven't checked in probably a week, and it was probably at least a week before that... and when I reflect further I find that that has been going on for months. I've actually thought about dumping the entire collection - I'd take a huge loss on it, but it'd be one less thing for me to worry about holding on to.

I've got some vintage stuff that needs attention, but I haven't checked my normal saved searches in weeks. Guess it doesn't help that I'm completely done with almost all of the Dodgers sets I've ever attempted. I'm down to Cracker Jacks, a lone T205 variation, some Goudeys and some Diamond Stars. I added Bell Brand, Red Man, OPC and Post to try to reinvigorate my collecting passion, but it hasn't helped yet. The vintage collection I've got, especially the Dodgers team sets, is dear to me and will probably remain in my possession for hopefully the rest of my life. The rest... meh. I've partially said goodbye to it already, at least in my head.
 
When I die....
....or when I get bored of it
Whichever occurs first.

But in all seriousness, I have gotten out of this hobby so many times I can't even count. I'll start a PC of some particular player and then down the line I'll need the money or just want to clear space and sell it off. It's generally when a new season begins and I get all excited about some talented player that pulls me back in. Just when I think I'm out....

It was prospecting that brought me back into the game this latest time and I've gone a few years without selling everything off. Now I only sell off certain prospects when it suits me to maximize profit. But the money goes right back into other prospects. Buy low, sell high...you know how it is.
 

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