August 15, 2012

Inside Informant

Don Mattingly, 1989 SCD Baseball Card Pricing Guide Monthly

I am posting this as a public service announcement so that nothing like this ever happens again. Granted, Don Mattingly is no longer an active player, so this probably will not happen again. But still. Let us never forget ... that this is the worst picture of Donnie Baseball ever produced.

Look at this! He looks like a guffawing, double-chinned, mustachioed redneck who spent his life savings to attend Yankees fantasy camp.

Uhh, where'd ya'll said the port-a-johns wuz?

UNACCEPTABLE. Where is the eye black? Why is it so dark outside? Why is Donnie so sullen when he is the undisputed champion of life? If this picture were on facebook, Donnie wouldn't be able to untag himself fast enough.

If my scissor hatchet job does not adequately come across here, allow me to inform you that I cut this beauty out of, apparently, SCD Baseball Card Price Guide Monthly. Yes, I was cutting baseball cards out of a monthly guide that priced baseball cards. Man, I was cool back in the diz-ay. Unfortunately, the SCD Guide did not price its own cards, probably because they weren't cards and were not meant to be cut out of the magazine. Nevertheless, this card is worth, according to me, $18, if only because the back includes a picture of Donnie's rookie card, and a picture of a Mattingly rookie card is worth a minimum of $15 even in the current financial climate.


Interesting. Here I am, an 11-year-old kid, thinking I know all there is to know about my favorite player and hero, and along comes this card claiming to have inside information. Delving any deeper into the world of Mattingly could, I suppose, uncover some truths I may not be prepared for, but I am willing to take that risk.

Although he suffered through an untypically slow start, Don Mattingly rebounded early enough in the '89 season to earn his sixth straight trip to the All-Star Game and salvage an otherwise off-year.

A few things:

1) Even at 11, I disliked the word "untypically."
2) "he rebounded early enough ... in an otherwise off-year." Makes zero sense.
3) Also, he didn't rebound to earn a trip to the All-Star Game; he earned a trip to the All-Star Game because he's Donnie freakin' Baseball and the All-Star Game is a popularity contest, and he's the most popular player in the game who plays in the biggest market.
4) All-Star Game participation does not salvage a season. If a dude got invited to the All-Star Game because three guys ahead of him got injured, then posted a .228/.264/.301 line in the second half and cost his team a trip to the playoffs after his pants fell down running the bases and he tripped over his pants and was tagged out on his bare butt, we wouldn't say, "He was terrible and that was totally weird, but it was a successful season nonetheless!"
5) Unless the All-Star Game is a private affair played at an undisclosed location and its participants are never revealed, this is not inside information.
6) I would also like to mention that, although '89 was certainly an off year by Donnie's standards, he did post a surface stat line of .303/23/113. The would be Justin Upton's greatest on year.

The left-handed Yankee slugger


remains one of the most popular players in the game today, a fact reflected in the value of his baseball cards

Popularity is the defining metric of card value. For example, my Luis Sojo second-year card is worth $4,000.

which held their value despite the early-season slump.


One sub-par season won't affect the long-term investment potential of a popular megastar like Mattingly, but it may delay future increases long enough to offer collectors a good opportunity to invest in a sure thing.

Take it from someone who collected Mattingly cards almost exclusively: it wasn't a sound long-term financial investment. Nor did I care if it would be. I collected baseball cards because it was fun as heck, and I love(d) baseball, and I had a hunch the Internet would be invented one day and I could post old cards that I cut out of weird magazines and hopefully make people laugh and what not.

For what it's worth, the '84 Donruss Mattingly rookie card is available on Amazon for $597 or, ya' know, $29.99.


troy said...

Looks a little like Mike Greenwell, who it goes without saying was his nearest comparable as a player.

mkenny59 said...

Yes, he does. Position aside, those two indeed had many similarities. They were like the mustachioed, short-lived, Dimaggio-Williams of the 80s. Not really, but still.

Bill said...

My favorite line of this post was the qualifier, "...even in the current financial climate."

Don Mattingly pictures transcend any economy. (A picture of a picture still transcends.)

mkenny59 said...

Thanks, Bill. Even if someone tried to flood the market with Donnie Baseball pictures, or pictures of Donnie Baseball pictures, it would defy the concept of inflation, and instead just make everybody rich.

mkenny59 said...

Except for the picture in this post, which is terrible.

troy said...

Mike, thought you might want to know that the comments functionality on the site is goofy for me. Like right now, I can't view them, I can only leave one. Other times, I need to do a lot of refreshing of the page to let me view comments; it only wants to display the box to leave one. The More You Know ...

mkenny59 said...

troy, yes, it IS very goofy. I, for example, cannot view them when I go directly from blogger. I don't know what to say except: keep leaving them because I WILL find them ...