Picking Up The High-End Scraps

High-end products confuse me sometimes.  I understand what they’re trying to do, but thinking about them with a critical eye makes them less appealing.  I mean, let’s think about this a bit.  Pay a lot of money for a handful of base cards (usually, but not always), one or two parallels, and then however many “hits” of relics and autographs.

Sounds okay on the surface, but these days every product has some form of relic, and the materials or swatches in the high-end stuff isn’t that much better.  Autographs are prevalent as well and high-end isn’t completely immune to stickers.

To add to that, in my opinion, most of the designs are relatively similar in structure or thought process.  To make them look fancy, they have ornate flourishes or marbling or some other element that’s reminiscent of luxury.

I guess what people are really buying are a better chance at getting a better player’s autograph or relic, and that seems to be all they care about.  If it’s not one of the top 5% of desired cards for the high-end product, it’s tossed away in the virtual dumpster.

Possibly the most basic of them all

That’s where I come into the game, I guess.  You see, these products are prone to include people I collect and I’m one of those rare sorts that actually doesn’t care about those low-numbered fancy autographs and relics for the most part.

Fancy frames are also common

I do care about other player collection needs and so base cards and these high numbered colored parallels.

What is this? Argyle?

Whereas an old parallel from the 1990s numbered to 10,000 could fetch several dollars, a contemporary card that cost more than several dollars to acquire (if you’re looking at the per-card average price of the box) typically sells for $1 or less.

Parallels are named after gems, like emerald

It’s strange how that works.  Most of those hits from the boxes aren’t worth the price of admission either.  And, yes, I know that fun an experience is part of the value.


Still, I’d much rather avoid the odds by not buying unopened expensive stuff and instead just pick up the discarded scraps for my pennies on their dollars.


There are just so many of them, too. If it’s numbered higher than 100, then basically no one cares.

Back to emerald

At this point, it’s really a matter of waiting for them to be available and also a matter of whether or not I’m in the mood to spend my money on them at that time.

Aside from a little bit of shine, it’s not much different than other relics

The relics and the autos may not be as quick to fall into my lap, but I’ll keep looking.  There are a bunch of these, too.

And this is all for one player.  Multiply this quest by…I don’t know how many, actually.  That’s a lot of scraps.

162 left to show before taking Sportlots delivery.

1 comment to Picking Up The High-End Scraps

  • sanjosefuji

    I enjoy Tribute for their on-card signatures, but can’t see myself busting a box of this stuff. I’d consider doing a reverse box break though.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>