May 19, 2022 - Sports

Unearthing cardboard gold and junk

Four baseball cards in a square.
Four former MLB stars with a shared connection. Photo: Tyler Buchanan/Axios

These four baseball cards share something in common. Can you guess it?

  • I found them among thousands of other baseball, football, basketball and Pokemon trading cards unearthed during a recent attempt at spring cleaning.

The intrigue: At first, I thought I'd stumbled upon cardboard gold.

Yes, but: It turns out most of my collection is worthless.

  • Card makers oversaturated the market with junk in the late 1980s and 1990s, which is around when the four cards above featuring MLB players from the Central Ohio area were produced — sorry fellas.
  • Included are Pat Borders and Paul Householder of Columbus, Allan Anderson of Lancaster and Kent Mercker of Dublin.

The intrigue: Mercker, a Dublin Coffman graduate, followed up an 18-season pitching career by becoming a pickleball sensation.

📬 Hey, collectors: My loving, well-organized wife would love it if any Axios Columbus readers want to make an offer on thousands of sports cards.

Meanwhile, I'll be taking my Pokemon cards to a local card shop, as it turns out there's a greater market for Pikachus than Paul Householders (sorry again, Paul).

Where to go: Should you discover a card collection of your own, or want a fill of nostalgia, here are three card shops to check out:

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