September 23, 2020 – Trending

Earlier in the week I introduced the Hot and Cold list. While the classic hot and cold format is great for seeing what cards are most popular, it doesn’t necessarily reflect how a cards’ value may be changing. The trending list is meant to address that shortcoming by examining which cards are experiencing the biggest rise or fall in average sale price. This will be done by looking at the last ten sales of each card and comparing the average sale price of the first five against the average sale price of the most recent five. Cards that see the biggest rise in value are trending up and cards that see the biggest drop are trending down. In theory, this could mean that a hot card (lots of sales) could be trending down (losing value) and vice versa, a cold card (few sales) could trend up (gaining value). That’s not something I expect to see often, but hey, I’ve been wrong once or twice before. Without further ado, here is the first official MJR Sportscards Trending list.

Trending Up

2018 Bowman Luis Robert


Luis Robert was a big name prospect heading into the 2020 season and to say he delivered would be an understatement. Despite going 1 – 22 in his last 27 plate appearances, the first Bowman Chrome auto of the AL rookie of the month for August is trending up more than any other prospect auto. The average price of $884.40 over the last five sales is 59.6% higher than $554.11 average sale price leading into that. However, raw, base autographs of the 23 year old Cuban are increasingly hard to find. There have been only ten sales made since July 7, as most collectors are opting to send the top trending card in for grading.

2017 Bowman Eloy Jimenez


Now in his +1 year of his Rookie+1 status, the fourth place finisher for the 2019 American League Rookie of the Year continues to trend up. The White Sox left fielder is keeping close pace with his teammate, Robert, seeing his own average price rise from $172.60 to $268.39, a 55.5% increase. A key part of a the South Siders talented young core, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Jimenez’ value continue to rise. The last sale of a raw base card was back on August 31 though, and the only thing keeping him off the cold list is a strong market for his serial numbered and graded cards.

2019 Bowman Chrome Noelvi Marte


The Mariners added to their already deep pipeline at the trade deadline this season and collectors seem to think the added talent will benefit the team’s number seven prospect. Since August 28, the 18 year old Dominican short stop has seen his average card price rise from $120.24 to $163.25, a 35.8% increase. While those holding onto this card are surely encouraged by the rise, Marte is not expected to reach the majors until 2023. Without a minor league season to showcase his talents this year, I would expect the youngster’s value to stabilize soon.

2018 Bowman Chrome Tyler Freeman


The SoCal native saw a dip in value from mid to late August so the current trend seems to be the market correcting itself. Normally valued between $20 – $25, the first Bowman Chrome auto of the Indian’s number two prospect dipped to an average price of $18.20 from August 12 – 25. Since then, the second round high school draft pick has rebounded 35.1% for an average price of $24.59. That doesn’t mean this card will stay there. The 21 year old short stop is expected to reach the majors in 2021. Depending on what the Tribe does with their current short stop, Francisco Lindor, this offseason, I would not be surprised to see Freeman as a mainstay on the trending list.

2020 Bowman Xavier Edwards


Edwards is mainly trending up because of one low sale at the end of August. If you were to ignore the one buyer that scored a deal well below market value, the San Diego Padres 2018 first round pick would only be trending 9% up. His average sale price over the last five sales is $35.31 which is up from the previous five average price of $28.47. I don’t expect the 21 year old short stop and second baseman to stick around much on this list. His card values have actually been declining since May. While being in the Rays farm system with Wander Franco, Brendan McKay, and Vidal Brujan may be great for Edwards as a player, I believe his card values may get overshadowed by the bigger prospects.

Trending Down

2020 Bowman Jeremy Pena


The arrival of a new card series always pushes the previous series out of the collecting focus somewhat. Bowman Chrome’s September 18 arrival pushed Bowman cards out of the way and Jeremy Pena apparently suffered the most from this. The value of the first Bowman Chrome auto for the Astros 2018 third round pick was not high to begin with, averaging $17.90 for the five sales made from August 20 – September 7. The five sales following that saw a 41.9% drop bringing the University of Maine product down to a $10.40 average sale price. Pena is expected to make his major league debut during the 2021 season but with his path blocked by Carlos Correa and Jose Altuve there seems to be little room for an increase in value, barring a trade.

2018 Bowman Cristian Pache


Pache made his first MLB appearance on August 21, had four plate appearance against the Phillies, and was promptly optioned back to Gwinnett to make room for a returning Nick Markakis. The call up led to a brief flurry of activity for the 21 year old left fielder’s first Bowman Chrome auto but the value has steadily declined since then. The current average from the last five sales is $73.60, down 30.3% from the $105.55 average from the previous five sales. The Dominican is still highly regarded amongst all prospect rankings though. Braves observers are looking forward to when he is eventually brought up to accompany Acuna, Ozuna, and the rest of Atlanta’s young core so I don’t think this season’s cup of coffee should have much of an impact on Pache’s long term value.

2018 Bowman Chrome Brice Turang


The Brewer’s first round pick in 2018 amateur draft has flown under the radar for most collectors, with his first Bowman Chrome auto averaging $20.69 from July 27 – August 24. The five sales most recent sales since then have dipped to an average sale price of $14.98, a 27.6% decline. Hitting .256/.367/.340 across A and A+ in 2019 did not generate much buzz for the the 20 year old short stop and second baseman. Only Keith Law had the Brewers’ number two prospect ranked in his top 100. Estimated to arrive in the show by 2022, things could go either way for Turang at this point.

2017 Bowman Chrome Leody Taveras


Taveras made his MLB debut in early September and failed to impress the card collecting community. The 22 year old Dominican is currently hitting .214/.306/.367 which has led to a 34.6% drop in his average first Bowman Chrome auto average sale price dropping from $21.04 from August 30 – September 9 to $15.39 from September 13 – 21. There isn’t much pressure to perform in Arlington anymore this season but collectors and Rangers fans alike would hope to see more production from Baseball Prospectus’ preseason #37 overall prospect.

2018 Bowman Chrome Carter Kieboom


Kieboom made his first MLB appearance April 26 of last season but only spent eleven games at the highest level. Now the Nats starting third baseman, Kieboom hasn’t quite lived up to the hype that comes with being a first round draft pick. The Marietta, Georgia native has struggled to stay above the Mendoza line in his 122 plate appearances this season and isn’t generating much power either, slugging only .212. Collectors that were hopeful at the beginning of the year have cooled off the high school product. The average sale price of the last five is $32.61, down 26.5% from the $44.34 average sale price before. With the reigning World Series Champions being basically irrelevant during their title defense season, it will take a big turn around next year to add value to this card.

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