The RotoWire Blog has been retired.

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The Death of the Baseball Card

Good article today on Slate about how the baseball card industry fell apart.

It's interesting that so many people got heavily into baseball in part because of the cards, and losing that probably hurts baseball's marketing a lot, especially among the next generation of fans. I suppose that's what we're here for, but fantasy baseball isn't for kids under 10 the way the cards are. Maybe that's why the MLBAM is trying to extort money from the fantasy industry.

It's also too bad for the kids - one of my fondest memories as a kid was seeing my Dad bring home an entire box of wax packs, and spending all afternoon opening them and asking which players were good. I also remember going to a card show when I was eight, and buying what I thought were the Tom Seaver and Pete Rose rookie cards (they were actually their first year cards with the big cup on the front) for $10 ($6 for Rose, $4 for Seaver). There's some point at which you realize cards existed before you started collecting, some even before you were born, and they had much more value than the ones you had. And it was really cool to see the Aarons and Mantles and Mayses and Ruths that the high-end card dealers carried.