Baseball Rookie Card Report: Recent Call-Ups
Here's some youngsters who recently got called up the the Majors. We also highlight a top card you may want to consider adding to your collection.
Brad Hand, P Florida (D.O.B. 3/20/90)
After having a great start to 2011, in Double-A Jacksonville of the Southern League, Brad Hand recently earned a promotion to the Bigs. He made the most of that start, allowing just one hit and one run in six innings. Hand is known as a swing and miss guy and has great control of the strike zone. In his first start, he was painting the corners and showing late life on many of his pitches. Thus far in 2011, Hand is 7-1 with a 3.53 ERA in 11 Double-A starts. A former second-round pick out of high school, Hand is still just 21 and already has the makeup of a veteran. His stuff is not masterfully overpowering, but just good enough to get swings and misses. Look for Hand to shore up Florida's rotation for the rest of the season as many of their pitchers have been inconsistent. Hand has many autograph's from 2008 and some in 2009, but the one to look for would be his 2008 Bowman Chrome Draft Autograph.
Card to invest in: 2008 Bowman Chrome Draft Autographs Brad Hand
Cord Phelps, INF Cleveland (D.O.B. 1/23/87)
Talk about an overshadowed prospect. Playing in an infield with Jason Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall, two of baseball's top 100 prospects in Triple-A Columbus, Cody Phelps has still managed to excel. After a great 2010, he has not missed a beat, hitting .299, before his promotion. At every level, Phelps has shown he has elite talent and will finally get a chance to play in the Majors. Phelps is a hard-working grinder who get results up the middle with extreme effort and hustle. He is a sleeper to watch this season with a big upside as a middle infielder who can hit. Phelps' autograph to watch is in 2008 Donruss Elite Extra Edition.
Card to invest in: 2008 Elite Extra Edition Autograph (/693)
Dee Gordon, SS Los Angeles Dodgers (D.O.B. 4/22/88)
Son of former major leaguer Tom Gordon, Dee has many tools at shortstop with a plus bat and plus plus speed. He has hit for average at every level throughout his professional career. Playing shortstop, it usually takes prospects longer to develop since they must be great athletes first. Gordon has splashed onto the scene in Los Angeles, hitting well throughout his first few games. Gordon has already appeared in several sets, including 2008 Bowman Draft, 2008 Bowman Chrome Draft. He has autographs in 2008 Playoff Contenders (under his full name Devaris), 2010 Donruss Elite Extra Edition and 2011 Bowman Baseball. Look for his cards to take off this season and become a big time SS.
Card to invest in: 2008 Playoff Contenders Autograph Devaris "Dee" Gordon
Danny Duffy, P Kansas City (D.O.B. 12/21/88)
Another of Kansas City's left-handed starting prospects, Duffy is the first to arrive with the Royals. Duffy, a 2007 third rounder, has progressed through Kansas City's system under the radar compared to others such as Mike Montgomery, Jon Lamb and Chris Dwyer. He had a great 2010 and earned a job in Triple-A Omaha to open 2011 where he had great success, going 3-1 with a 3.00 ERA. Since being called up, he has not performed well, going 0-2 with a 5.55 ERA. He is still young and raw with work still to be done on his seconardy pitches. I wouldn't give up on him yet, espically since he only has one autograph. His 2008 Donruss Threads Baseball autograph is limited to 499 copies. It is one to watch, which can lead to great gains or could be blown up and overpriced.
Card to invest in: 2008 Donruss Threads Baseball Autographs Danny Duffy
Anthony Rizzo, 1B San Diego (D.O.B. 8/8/89)
Many scouts believe that Rizzo was the best prospect moved from Boston in the Adrian Gonzalez trade. A former cancer patient, Rizzo has recovered and has been tearing the cover off the ball since he came back to baseball. In 2010 he was a surprise at Double-A Portland, where he hit 42 doubles and 25 homers to give the Sea Dogs a potent power threat. Since joining the Padres system, he has done nothing but hit, which has earned him a call to San Diego. This season, Rizzo is hitting .365 with 20 doubles and 16 homers in just 52 games. In those 52 games he has manged to knock in an amazing 63 runs, giving him an OPS of 1.159 in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League. Rizzo has two autographs: 2008 Donruss Threads Baseball Diamond Kings and 2010 Bowman Baseball. His earlier autograph has a much lower print run and is a full 2 years prior so I feel that this is his most profitable and rarest card.
Card to invest in: 2008 Donruss Threads Diamond Kings Autographs Anthony Rizzo (/500)