The Future of Baseball

The Future of Baseball
By: Holly Brantley

CARTERVILLE, Ill. - One 1987 Topps Card is the only thing we could find with Roger Clemens name on it at the Baseball Card and Sports Memorabilia Show at John A. Logan College.

Part of that has to do with the fact that we're in Cardinal and Cubs country here in the Heartland. The other has to do with the recent Mitchell Report, suggesting Clemens and others may have used performance enhancing drugs.
"It's had an impact on cards of players named," said Dan Fox, of Fox Sports and Collectibles in Marion. "Clemens cards don't sell for what they used to.  Bonds is also down in value."
In fact, dealer Bruce Marsan says that '87 Clemens card is only worth $1.50.
Overall, cards of players who have been implicated are down 30 to 50 percent, dealers estimate. But, Fox says it's hard to tell how long that will last.
"I think the steroid thing is a blip on the radar," said Fox. "Sure, Bonds hit homeruns on steroids, possibly. But, how many pitchers was he batting against that were also using."
Still fans and dealers at the convention say it's good to see all the youth who are interested in trading baseball cards.  They say it gives every indication the future of baseball is bright.
"I hope it'll be cleaner and they won't have the issues to deal with," Eric Carlson said of his two young sons, Benjamin and David.
Carlson says his boys are getting into card collecting.  Meeting Cardinal's pitcher Brad Thompson at the event is a nice bonus for fans as well.
"David, I let him pick what team he liked.  He's a Cardinal fan," said Carlson. "With Ben, I thought I needed someone on my side so I persuaded him to be a Cubs fan.  I rescued him."     
As he signs autographs for kids, who just might be future major leaguers, Thompson feels it's important to show kids there's a lot of good in baseball.
"This is fun," said Thompson. "Seeing all the fans here is awesome and I'm happy to help out."