The Incredibly Plummeting Canseco


The Wall Street Journal writer Tim Marchman contacted me earlier this week to discuss the status of some of the most investment-worthy baseball cards of the 1980s.

The pleasure was all mine.

His requests sent me sauntering down memory lane, thumbing through one yellowing page after another of Beckett Baseball magazines from two decades ago to capture 1989 prices of key cards featuring Jose Canseco, Ken Griffey Jr., Barry Bonds and others.

For comparison’s sake, Marchman also requested current Beckett prices of those same cards. So I departed the covered wagon of antiquated page-turning for what seemed like the time machine of, which seemingly instantly spit out up-to-the-day prices for those cards.

(For what’s it worth, that  juxtaposition of an antique Beckett — issue #50, I believe; for perspective consider that we’re on issue #291 now — and the search bar is quite arresting.)

To make a short story long, Marchman’s piece — which cites, among other things, the precipitous decline of Canseco’s  1986 Donruss card and the modest gains for RCs of Griffey and Greg Maddux — appeared in Thursday’s WSJ and on

For what it’s worth, five of the seven cards chronicled in the WSJ article are actually worth more now than they were 20 years ago. When adjusted for inflation, however, that number drops to three.

— Tracy Hackler


  1. Jesse
    Posted April 26, 2009 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    WHat do yuo mean “up to date?” On, it prices the Canseco 1986 DOnrus at $10, and it only sells for $3 with shipping on ebay:

    Where do you get your prices, you must just pull them out of a hat!

  2. chrisolds
    Posted April 27, 2009 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    Anybody care to mention what the low-book price for Canseco’s RC is?

Post a Comment

Your email is never shared. Required fields are marked *