David Freese Baseball Cards Soar Following Dramatic World Series Game 6
To reach the Fall Classic, teams need more than their stars to shine. Often, it's the role players or emerging stars that steal the spotlight, propelling their team to victory.
This is exactly what happened in Game 6 of the 2011 World Series. In what is already being heralded as one of the best games in baseball history, 28-year-old David Freese hit a walk-off home run in the 11th inning to force a deciding seventh game. Even if the Cardinals don't end up winning it all, the hit has forever added Freese to Cardinals folklore.
As far as baseball games go, game Game 6 had it all: home runs, bloop singles, sloppy plays and gutsy performances. With the Cardinals down to their final strike and down by two run in the bottom of the ninth, scores of fans started to leave the ballpark in St. Louis. However, the Cardinals found a way to stay alive, tying the game and sending it to extra innings. One inning later, the same scenario presented itself and, once again, the Redbirds clawed their way back to life. Then in the 11th, Freese's epic blast to deep center field finished off the Rangers, forcing a deciding game.
In a World Series that has seen it's fair share of firsts, that one swing of the bat instantly placed David Freese next to the likes of Bill Mazeroski, Carlton Fisk, Joe Carter and Kirk Gibson. It was a moment not just for Cardinals fans, but for all baseball fans.
Both Freese's jersey and bat from the home run have been donated to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Dave Huyette, the fan who caught the ball, returned it to Freese in exchange for a bat and a team-signed ball.
Freese has been on a tear this postseason. He was also the NLCS MVP after batting .545 with three home runs, three doubles and nine runs batted in.
Not surprisingly, his cards are on fire. A month ago, Freese's 2009 Topps Chrome Baseball autograph could be had for less than $10. Now they're pushing $60. In August, his 2009 Upper Deck Ballpark Collection autographed rookie, which is limited to just 100 copies, was trading for less than $20. After 25 bids, one sold on eBay a week ago for $120. That was before the moment.
Do these huge gains mean that you should go out and stock up on the third baseman's cards? As an investment, definitely not. They're at a peak now with several buyers likely being motivated by emotion. Should the Rangers end up taking the seventh game, the home run, although memorable, won't have nearly the lasting impact.
However, should St. Louis take the deciding game, Freese will have his place in the hobby for the rest of his life. Even if he doesn't have a stellar career beyond 2011, Freese could be seen in the same vein as Bobby Thompson and his "Shot Heard 'Round the World." That said, Freese's cards should settle back to more reasonable rates in the weeks ahead. Now is definitely a time to sell if you're looking for a little extra Christmas money.
No matter what happens, the Cardinals and Rangers have proved the naysayers wrong who were bemoaning the fact the one of the game's marquee franchises weren't playing for the World Series. Through six games, Texas and St. Louis have both shown why baseball is such a great game.
David Freese Rookie Card Checklist
- 2009 Bowman Sterling #DFR
- 2009 O-Pee-Chee #579
- 2009 Topps #643
- 2009 Topps 206 #278
- 2009 Topps Allen & Ginter #177
- 2009 Topps Chrome #199
- 2009 Topps Heritage #555
- 2009 Topps Ticket to Stardom #223 (/199)
- 2009 Upper Deck Ballpark Collection #74 (/100, autograph)
- 2009 Upper Deck Icons #120 (/999)
- 2009 Upper Deck Signature Stars #188 (autograph)