Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Collecting Minor Leaguers Who Made It: When Do You Stop?

This may come to a complete shock to many of you, but I collect a minor leaguer in the Yankees organization named Luis Torrens. I know this development is totally out of the blue but it's true.


I have very high hopes for Torrens. I think he can truly be a special player in the big leagues. I think he can even be the heir to great Yankees catcher throne.

And it's fun to think of what he could potentially be in the future as a fan but as a collector I shudder to think how much harder collecting Torrens is going to be if/when he becomes a big leaguer.

Although we now live in a world where the very best and brightest prospects can have close to a dozen new mainstream cards of themselves released per year (and that's ignoring the parallels) that number goes up quite a bit when they finally make it to the big leagues.

So I'm left with these questions. "Will I continue to be a Luis Torrens super collector if/when he makes it to the big leagues? Or will I stop when he finally graduates rookie status due to how my budget and sanity couldn't handle trying to collect a major leaguer in this day and age?"


Now I know that a lot can happen in these next few years and that Torrens is no guarantee to make it to the big leagues. And even if he did, there's no guarantee that he'd be anything more than what John Ryan Murphy currently is (a backup catcher). And most of all there's no guarantee he'd break through to the big leagues as a Yankee either.

If that were the case it'd be a lot easier to collect Torrens since Murphy (and other players of his ilk) just have a boost in cards when they were a rookie and then they're almost never seen on cards ever again until they have some out of nowhere breakout season. And once players are out of the Yankee org their value plummets (just look at Cano) and it'd be a lot easier for me to say "oh I only collect his Yankees era stuff."

But imagine if Torrens really did become the next Dickey/Berra/Howard/Munson/Posada. The number of cards I'd have to accumulate every year would be maddening. Useless relics from Triple Threads I have no interest in mocking me with their existence. Base cards from garbage products like Donruss or Museum Collection on my want lists.

And worst of all, the inner conflict within myself as I debate whether or not I should continue to collect Torrens or not. "I collected his pre-rookie stuff, why stop there?" followed by "Are you nuts? Look at that price tag on a card from a product you don't even like!" and then "Yeah but you're a super collector!" on repeat until I go mad and end up either homeless and rambling nonsense or thrown into a mental asylum.

I probably won't be able to decide how to go about collecting LUIIIIISSSSSSSSSS if/when he makes it to the big leagues and sticks around until it actually happens but it doesn't change the fact that this is something I'm potentially going to have to deal with someday.


What do you people think? Should I stop at his pre-rookie stuff? Should I not bother worrying since he's probably going to the Cubs in the Starlin Castro deal.

As always thanks for stopping by and take care :).
Oh and these cards shown were some of my latest additions courtesy of COMC.

14 comments:

  1. I think you should collect him till you hit 100 different cards, then let yourself off the hook. ;) That's what works for me.

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    1. If that were the case a few more parallels from products I've been neglecting (Bowman Chrome mini in particular) should help me reach the 100 mark ;).

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  2. Seeing how Buck Farmer got his "official" Rookie Card-logo status this year, Topps and Panini have been putting him in everything, with parallels and autographs and even a few insert sets.

    So far, I've been trying to chase everything I can, though I'm missing pretty much all of the key cards (1/1s, /5s, many /10s). Given his performance I have a feeling he'll be easier to collect in the future and I plan to continue hunting all of the Bucks, but if he should actually turn into the next Nolan Ryan or something I'll have to continue like I have for Altuve - go after one of everything and just the parallels and hits I can afford.

    I can guarantee you that any player's rookie year will be the worst. Lots of speculation and tons of cards. I was happy when A&G was released because he had no autographs in that set. And now that Topps Chrome is out, I have another 13 unsigned and 10 signed cards to find.

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    1. Oh, I'm sure the rookie year is the worst. Unless you somehow go unnoticed or get called up at an inopportune time for Topps (Jemile Weeks for example).

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  3. I would go with the Torrens collection until he hits the majors, because then it will be Parallel City all the time. No one has time for that! From there on, I would just casually pick up and trade for his cards rather than dropping tons of money on Ebay or whatever.

    I'll make you a deal regarding your comment, "Should I not bother worrying since he's probably going to the Cubs in the Starlin Castro deal?"

    If the above deal happens, then I'll trade you ALL of my Castro cards for any dupes of Torrens you're willing to part with. The rainbows and autos stay with you as you've worked tremendously hard to accumulate a fantastic collection, but a couple 2013 Bowman base cards would be nice to add to my collection. (You know, if LUUUUUIIIIISSSSS does become a Cub.)

    FWIW . . . Wouldn't a Vogelbach for Torrens trade just be a punch in the gut for the both of us?

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    1. Yeah after consulting a few collectors and my sanity, stopping right when he enters MLB territory is probably the best choice.

      And if my troll scenario happened you can keep your Castros, they'd just make me sadder ;). I probably will send a few Torrenses that you (ironically) probably sent me.

      And yes it would, luckily I don't think either team would be willing to do that. Or at least not the Yankees.

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  4. If you're still as big of fan of LUISSSSS when he gets to the big leagues, keep collecting him. Collect what you want. Ignore anything that you think is bullshit. Get the cards that make you happy, and to hell with Panini.

    That's my two cents worth.

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    1. The problem is that whenever I deal with major league baseball cards I think they're all bullshit. Flagship, the high end stuff, A&G, all of it. There have been very few MLB sets that have been able to capture my attention for long.

      But thanks for your input. It's, at the very least, an option I can keep in the back of my mind.

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  5. Not a bad predicament to be in. If he makes it... his stuff might blow up and he'll have millions of cards out there... but your investment in him will pay off. On the flipside... if he bombs, then you can continue to pick up his cards without breaking the bank.

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    1. That's true, this is definitely a first world problem.

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  6. I agree with Tony in that if you are still a fan you should still collect Luissss. You are in pretty deep so I think the drive will still be there if he does make the big league club. The only issue might be if he really blows up in the upper levels, but thankfully have the Bowman releases. Once he is in the majors you can just focus on cards that catch your eye.

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    1. That's my problem. What if he does indeed blow up in the upper levels? I'm doomed!

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  7. Honestly, I have no idea. I haven't experienced this. I was collecting Montero and he made the Bigs but then was traded and I stopped. Maybe I'll face it with Gary Sanchez, but I basically just like his cards and wouldn't really call it an official PC.

    While it is hard to collect Major Leaguers (Tino and Pineda), it's also fun and never-ending. You just have to come to terms witht he fact that you won't own every 1 of 1 or high end card (know you...you might!), but the chase is always enjoyable, even after they get more cards.

    You have a better connection to Torrens than nearly all of us have to our PC guys, so I say stick with it as long as you possibly can.

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    1. Thanks for the input. The problem with me is that I tend to really go after the low numbered stuff. "An obscure Luis that's numbered to <10? Sold!"

      Still your suggestion is an option as well.

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