On January 5, 2011, the Baseball Hall of Fame will announce the new Hall of Fame inductees. Collecting Hall of Fame autographs have picked up steam recently among collectors due to the addition of certified autographs released by trading card companies.
When a player is inducted his autographs and rookie cards tend to receive a temporary bump on the secondary market due to non collectors looking to acquire a copy to add to their memorabilia collections (not necessarily their card collections). Certified autograph cards tend to remain strong sellers once inducted but they are inducted but do not receive a dramatic book value increase.
For example a Bert Blyleven certified autograph card may have a book price of $15 and sell on the secondary market for $7. If Blyleven is inducted his book price may not increase but the secondary market may be stronger (for his autographed cards) and bump his sale prices to $10.
Collectors should try to look at the ballot to identify who might be inducted in order to acquire their certified autographs before the announcement. Below is a cheat sheet to identify possible inductees for 2011.
Bert Blyleven: Missed out on being inducted in 2010 by less than 10 ballots. This is his last year on the ballot and he should be inducted this year. Blyleven has 287 career wins and 3701 career strikeouts. He is currently a popular color commentator for the Minnesota Twins.
Jack Morris: Morris has an outside chance of being inducted this year but it isn’t likely, see Morris take the Blyleven route with his best chance of being inducted in his last available year on the ballot. Morris has 254 career wins and was a five time all star with two World Series rings with the Blue Jays and the Twins.
Roberto Alomar: Alomar should be a lock to be inducted in 2011, along with Blyleven, he also missed out in 2010 with less than 10 votes. Some think that the voters punished Alomar for the infamous spitting incident. Alomar was a 12 time all star who amassed 10 gold gloves during his career. He also has a World Series ring with the Blue Jays from their 1992 and 1993 World Championship.
Barry Larkin: Another player with an outside chance of being inducted this year. However, he will most likely be overshadowed by Alomar this year. Larkin has a good chance of being inducted eventually but it may take a few years before it happens. Larkin is a former MVP who was also a 12 time all star with 3 gold gloves to his name. Larkin was also part of the 1990 Reds World Championship team.
Mark McGwire: Most believe he won’t really have a chance to be elected into the Hall of Fame for a long time. His statistics make him a lock for a first ballot Hall of Famer but his trouble with performance enhancing drugs will have the voters punishing Big Mac for a while. There is a chance that Mac will never be inducted due to this.
Rafael Palmeiro: Another first ballot lock statistically due to his 3,000 hits will not be inducted into the Hall of Fame for a long time due to admissions of performance enhancing drug use. McGwire will most likely be inducted before Palmeiro, if McGwire looks like he may get inducted one year, look for Palmeiro to be inducted the next year.
Jeff Bagwell: Coming up short on the 500 home run club and not being anywhere near the 3000 hit club will most likely slow down Bagwell’s bid for the Hall of Fame. He has a career .297 batting average and 449 home runs. He was the Rookie of the Year in 1991 and the MVP in 1994. A popular player who spent his entire career with one club (Astros), Bagwell should be inducted in the Hall of Fame in the next five years.