Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Condition Poor, It's All Your Fault (Or How I Ended Up Buying a 100 Year Old Card)

I never thought that I would own a 100 year old baseball card, but that all changed recently, and I entirely blame Condition Poor (but in a happy blame way, not an angry blame way). You see, after having to give up Cy Seymour recently, Condition Poor longed for a T206 replacement of his own. A nice little ebay search revealed that a lot of the T206's are going for reasonable prices, and CP managed to snag a 1910 Dick Egan card for $4.36. Not too shabby.

This piqued my curiosity - a piece of early baseball card history for under $5? You don't say! So I went over to ebay myself and took a look, and found some pretty cool cards. I decided I'd make one my own, and put in a few starting level bids (aka $0.99) on three interesting looking cards. When the auctions ran out I was outbid on all three, and was left to look again. This is when I found a 1910 T206 Frank Oberlin card, and knew it would be mine.

Now, I didn't really know anything about Pitcher Frank Rufus "Flossie" Oberlin, I just liked his name. I did my undergraduate work at Oberlin College in Oberlin, OH, and so the idea of having an Oberlin baseball card was cool to me. So I put in an opening bid...and was outbid.

Bid around $10...and was outbid.

I wondered if I should bid any higher - I rarely bid above $5 on cards, why would I bid so much more just for a wacky name. As fate would have it on this given night, I was a bit intoxicated (always dangerous with ebay haha) and my girlfriend was as well. She happened to look over as I was debating a higher bid, and said "ooo, cool card." Remember, this is the girlfriend who only just bought me a pack of cards for the first time - she hates cards. So if she thought it was cool - it was probably pretty cool. I put in a max bid of $20.

10 seconds left...the other guy upped his bid to $12. 2 seconds left...the guy upped his bid to $19. Auction ended. Oberlin was mine!


(Piedmont) Back:

In it's Current Resting Place:
Now, after doing some value research, I found out that this card is probably worth around $13 in it's current condition, meaning that I overspent by about $8 after shipping. But pin hole in hat, rounded corners, staining and all, this card rules. I do have to embarrassingly admit that I was shocked by the size of the card. I never realized that the T206's were all minis - I thought they were the size of all the common cards nowadays. Don't know how that knowledge escaped me until I opened the package an hour ago, but hey, stuff happens.

As for good old Flossie himself, the guy had a pretty non memorable career. He was a pitcher who finished with a lifetime 5-24 win-loss record and more walks allowed (88) than strikeouts (80). He did manage to play four seasons in the big leagues (1.5 with the Boston Americans, 2.5 with the Washington Senators), which isn't too shabby. This card comes from Flossie's time with the Class A Minneapolis Millers, who he was with before retiring in 1910.

1 comment:

  1. That's a pretty awesome card. Haven't seen that sky before!

    And yeah, the value for those in auctions can be all over the place at times. If you're not too concerned about a single card you're good, but if there's ONE you want to have it gets interesting. Especially with the more obscure clubs.