What do Roy Oswalt, Ben Sheets, Carl Crawford, Tino Martinez, Robin Ventura, Joe Mauer, Grady Sizemore, Shane Victorino, Jered Weaver and Matt Holliday have in common? They all donned the USA Baseball uniform to represent their country before becoming MLB stars.
Over the last few years, the trend within baseball has shifted towards acquiring young talent. Players like Troy Tulowitzki, Chase Utley, David Price, Andrew McCutchen and David Wright came up to the majors, made an impact, and are now franchise players to build around. Every GM in the league wants to acquire as many of these guys as possible.
For collectors, the goal should be the same. The USA Baseball set is unique, because it allows collectors to obtain cards for tomorrow’s stars today, while they’re still in the minors. Or, in the case of phenom Bryce Harper, before they’re even drafted.
Everyone wants to get rookie cards of tomorrow’s big stars. Well, these are actually pre-rookie cards. In Harper’s case, he doesn’t even belong to a MLB team yet (though we all presume he’ll be picked #1 overall by the Nationals and join last year’s phenom #1 pick Stephen Strasburg in DC).
Upper Deck’s 2009 USA Baseball hits shelves this week, so find your local hobby shop and start collecting tomorrow’s stars today!