Sports Card Insider: Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

Welcome to Sports Cards Insider. We use Moneyball tactics to discover undervalued, mispriced, and hidden gems in Fractional Investing.

Today is a deep dive into three assets:

  • Mike Trout 2009 Bowman Chrome Draft Picks Refractor /500 BGS 9.5 – IPOs 29th March on Otis
  • Joe Montana 1981 Topps PSA 10 – IPOs 29th March on Rally Road
  • Lebron James, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony 2003 Fleer Crystal Trio PSA 10 – IPOs 29th March on Collectable
Sports Card Insider: Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

What is the Mike Trout 2009 Bowman Chrome Draft Picks Refractor /500 BGS 9.5?

This is one of 500 autograph refractors made for the 2009 Bowman rookie card for Mike Trout. Of the 500, 206 graded BGS 9.5, and this card sits right in the middle of the grade with an average of 9.5 for the four subgrades. Twenty-five are graded BGS 10 but none feature the pristine grade (with four 10 subgrades).

Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

There are further 79 with PSA of which 29 are graded PSA 10. There are also another five more scarce autograph refractor cards for this set with print runs lower than 500.

It IPOs on Otis 29th March

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Cultural Relevance

Rally Road IPO’ed one of the other variants of this card a few weeks ago. You can read about Trout here.

Points – 10/10

Inferred Value – $63k

Because there are so many of these refractors, there’s been some significant action on these cards lately.

As mentioned above, Rally IPO’ed a slightly scarcer /225 version of this card for $56,000. They’ve also IPO’ed the far scarcer orange refractor, which traded up to $237k on 23d March.

An identical version of this card sold at Goldin for $62,730 last week. This auction is our best data point.

Inferred Value: $63k

Points 8/10

Category Strength

The sports cards category has returned 86% ROI so far across the entire portfolio.

Points 10/10

Subcategory Strength

The baseball card subcategory has returned 79% across the entire portfolio.

Points 8/10

Risk Profile

The baseball card subcategory has a standard deviation of 111% across all transactions. That’s high. Lower is better.

Points 1/10

Recent Growth Trend

This card has appreciated around 231% over the last twelve months.

Points 9/10

Growth Outlook and Future Catalysts

Mike Trout cards are one of the only modern sports card assets to hold their value during the recent sell off.

Points 8/10

Asset Liquidity

This will have a roughly 30 day lockup period then will trade daily.

Points 10/10

Platform Risk

Otis is most transparent

Points 7/10

Intangibles

He’s got another ten years to become possibly the best player of all time, and he plays in the second biggest media market in the country.

Points 9/10


Sports Card Insider: Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

What is the Joe Montana 1981 Topps PSA 10?

This is Joe Montana’s rookie card graded PSA 10. There are 17,343 graded copies of this card on file with PSA of which 109 are PSA 10. That puts this in the top 0.6% of available cards. Identical versions of this card are already up on Otis and Collectable.

Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

It IPOs on Rally 29th March.

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Cultural Relevance

Read all about Joe Cool here.

Points – 9/10

Inferred Value – $67,500

This card sold out quickly on Collectable at $65k and is currently trading at $60k on Otis.

The most recent sale of this card was for $67,500 via an offer on eBay February 6 2021. This was a drawback from the a previous sale of around $83k.

This fits a broader trend around his PSA 9 and PSA 8 cards, so it’s unlikely the recent pullback was an anomalous sale.

Sports Card Insider: Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

This card is a good buy, but you can get it for $10k cheaper on Otis.

Inferred Value: $67,500

Points 5/10

Category Strength

The sports cards category has returned 86% ROI so far across the entire portfolio.

Points 9/10

Subcategory Strength

The football card subcategory has returned 111% across the entire portfolio.

Points 10/10

Risk Profile

The football card subcategory has a standard deviation of 42% across all transactions. That’s low. Lower is better.

Points 6/10

Recent Growth Trend

This card has appreciated around 332% over the last twelve months.

Points 10/10

Growth Outlook and Future Catalysts

Montana is retired, of course, and his card has already had a decent run up. This may be an opportunity to buy the dip on a blue chip card, though.

Points 6/10

Asset Liquidity

This will have a roughly 90 day lockup period then will trade quarterly.

Points 5/10

Platform Risk

Rally is mostly transparent and well-capitalised.

Points 8/10

Intangibles

I have a framed 8 x 10 autograph of Joe Montana in my office.

Points 10/10


Sports Card Insider: Trout Rookie, Montana Rookie, NBA trio

What is the Lebron, Wade, Melo 2003 Fleer Crystal Trio PSA 10?

This is a tri-card featuring LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Carmelo Anthony from the 2003 Fleer set. A limited print run, there are only 50 of this crystal subset.

It IPOs on Collectable 29th March, and the consigner will retain $246,400 equity (69%).

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Cultural Relevance

We’ve written extensively about LeBron James, and you can read up on Dwyane Wade here if you’d like (from another of his 2003 cards).

This is Carmelo Anthony’s first card to IPO, and he’s the least relevant of the three from a culture and value perspective. That said, he:

  • Has played for four olympic teams (record) including three golds and a bronze.
  • He’s also the olympic team’s all-time leader in points, rebounds, and game played.
  • He shares the NBA record for second most points scored in one quarter with 33.
  • He’s a 10x All-Star, NBA scoring champion, NCAA champion, and 2x All-NBA second team.

He’s a lock for the Hall of Fame, but he’s never won and NBA championship.

Points – 10/10

Inferred Value – $182k

This card’s consigner bought it at auction on eBay 19th February 2021 for $308k. Applying our Fractional premium, that puts the most recent comp at $277k.

Between the three of them, though, their cards have depreciated significantly since 19th February:

  • LeBron: 37%
  • Wade: 36%
  • Melo: flat

Based on the value of their base rookie cards, LeBron comprises 85% of the value of this card; Wade is 9%, and Melo is 6%.

On a weighted average basis, the three’s value has declined 34.3% since the last sale, which gives is an inferred value of $277k x (1 – .343) = $182k.

Given the valuation and retained equity, this is a pretty easy one to skip.

Inferred Value: $182k

Points 1/10

Category Strength

The sports cards category has returned 77% ROI so far across the entire portfolio.

Points 10/10

Subcategory Strength

The basketball card subcategory has returned 79% across the entire portfolio.

Points 8/10

Risk Profile

The basketball card subcategory has a standard deviation of 115% across all transactions. That’s very high. Lower is better.

Points 1/10

Recent Growth Trend

All three of these players have appreciated over 300% in the last twelve months.

Points 10/10

Growth Outlook and Future Catalysts

Have semi-modern NBA cards hit a bottom? If you think so, you’re buying on the dip here.

Points 6/10

Asset Liquidity

This will have a roughly 90 day lockup period then will trade daily.

Points 10/10

Platform Risk

Collectable is moderately transparent and well-capitalised.

Points 7/10

Intangibles

Collectable bills this as the modern version of the classib Bird / Magic / Erving card. If you agree, that’s pretty cool. It’s also very rare to get three future HOF all on one rookie card.

Points 10/10


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Author

Wyatt Cavalier

Wyatt Cavalier

With a background in finance & intelligence analysis, Wyatt has an unhealthy obsession with finding the best blue chip investment opportunities. His previous newsletter, Fractional, resonated deeply with subscribers, bringing actionable insights and unconventional trading strategies. His rare book collection specializes in banned editions. He currently lives in Spain with his beautiful wife, three young boys, and dog Monty.

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