Check Out My Competition
January 15th, 2010 by slangon

It seems that Check Out My Cards has spread like wild fire amongst the blogging community as of late. As I mentioned in the post I wrote about my initial experience with it, I had been using the site as a research tool for quite a while, but only now had actually bought anything off of it. I was really very happy with the results. I ended up spending not a lot of money, came away with some great cards, and most importantly, had fun browsing the site.

There was another, similar site that I had thought about trying for some time called I can’t for the life of me recall where I first heard of that site, but several times I have browsed it and then for whatever reasons, ended up not buying anything. After the positive experience I had with Check Out My Cards, I decided to bite the bullet just to I could compare the two and see which was the best site for my card buying needs.

Here’s what I ended up with, all for $17.61, and that includes shipping.

A trio of ’62 Mets, including the ever elusive Old Perfessor. It’s always kind of strange to me to look at Mets cards from this year just because, outside of the small “N.Y. Mets” down at the bottom of the card, there is no indication that any of these players are on the Mets. Actually, the ’62 Don Zimmer card is the only one I can think of where he’s wearing a Mets hat, which is even weirder since that card lists him as a Cincinnati Red.

A trio of ’63 Mets, also including the ever elusive Old Perfessor as well as Marvelous Marv Throneberry. Speaking of the Perfessor and Marv, one of the funniest Casey Stengel stories I ever heard involves the Marvelous One. Apparently, Throneberry had hit a triple, but was called out for not touching second base. When Casey went out to argue the call, the umpire told him “I hate to tell you this, Casey, but he also missed first.” Hands down, this is my favorite Topps set from the ’60’s. I can’t wait until 2012 Topps Heritage comes out.

A couple of ’64 Mets. I always love how 2 cards from the same vintage set can look so different depending on how it spent it’s life.

A couple of ’65 Mets. Out of all the Mets team sets that I’ve been trying to piece together, 1965 was defiantly the most sparse. I think prior to this I had 2 cards from this set. I just doubled it. As a side note, I love that patch on Charlie Smiths sleeve. It was to commemorate the 1964 World’s Fair in Flushing, just a few blocks from Shea. Here’s a better look.

A couple of ’66 Mets. Are you seeing a trend here? Interesting trivia: Dan Napoleon never hit a Major League home run. Look at those guns and tell me if you believe that.

A lone ’67 Met.

A ’67 Topps Poster of Cleon Jones. These were inserted into packs folded into quarters. According to Things Done to Cards, only proof versions didn’t have folds. I don’t have this in front of me at the moment, but I don’t recall seeing fold marks. I like how Cleon’s batting glove looks just like O.J.’s murder glove.

A 1968 Gil Hodges. It’s sort of funny that for the first 5 or 6 years of their existance, the most desirable Mets cards seem to be of their managers.

A 1969 Topps Deckle Edge Jerry Koosman. A fun, if pointless insert.

So that’s what $17 got me on Sportlots. 16 cards, all from before 1970 at an average price of $1.06. That includes 2 cards of a Hall of Famer and 1 of a Should Be A Hall of Famer.

How does that stack up against my Check Out My Cards experience?

First the cons. The vast majority of the listings on Sportlots do not have photos. Some of the more expensive cards do, but for the most part, the listings consist of the set name, card number, player name, card grade and price. Because of that, the site is no where near as much fun to browse. You really need to know what you’re looking for in advance. That might not be a con actually, since you tend not to buy cards that you don’t need. That said, it did get a little tedious looking through all those spread sheet style pages trying to find the specific card that I wanted. As far as shipping fees, it is set up more like eBay, where if you buy from multiple sellers, you pay multiple shipping fees. Fortunatly, it is pretty easy to make sure you’re only buying from 1 or 2 sellers, thus cutting down on shipping. I happened to get all my cards from the same 2 people so I think I paid maybe $4 in shipping.

On the pro side, all the cards that I got were defiantly cheaper than their counterparts on Check Out My Cards. Granted, the discount might be 25 cents here, 50 cents there, but when you’re buying 20 or 30 cards, that could add up quick. Also, it seems like the seller absorbs whatever fees Sportlots charges. That might suck for the seller, but as a buyer, you just paid the price of the card plus shipping. Also, they do also have the whole make an offer feature, which I didn’t realize when I placed my order. Maybe I could’ve knocked another buck or 2 off my final price. As far as payment, you can either mail it in, or go the Paypal route. I liked that it was set up so that you just pay what you owe. There’s none of that buying credits business. When I placed my order on Check Out My Cards, I inadvertently ended up $0.25 short on the cost of getting my cards shipped to me. That one quarter meant that I had to buy $10 more in credits, since that is the minimum amount of credits you can buy through Paypal. By not keeping track of that $0.25, I was forced to spend $10 more than I was planning.

My overall impression, based on this small sample size, is that if you’re looking to pick up base cards, especially of the vintage variety, Sportlots might better serve your needs. If you’re looking for autographed cards, relic cards, or refractors and more high end stuff, Check Out My Cards might be the place to go. Also, Check Out My Cards seems more conducive to leisurely window shopping, whereas Sportlots is certainly more geared to checklist killing.

7 Responses to “Check Out My Competition”

  1. Great description of I just received my first order from them. I limited myself to just one seller to help keep the cost down.

    Heck, I should just cut and paste your description of them when I post about it.

  2. Nice post and overall haul, sir, and good grab with the Cleon, if it’s actually unfolded! I wrote up the TDTC post you mention and have only seen a few uncreased posters.

  3. Nice pickups. I’ll have to take a look at next time I want to buy cards.

  4. Nice comparison of the two.

  5. Yeah, I have to go back and check it. Like I said, I don’t remember seeing any folds, but I didn’t read your post until after I had scanned it in. I’m starting to think that considering they were only charging $0.75 for it, it probably does have folds, maybe they’re just not that pronounced.

  6. also, like you did, if you can contain your buying to one or two buyers on sportslots, the shipping is far less than COMC.
    COMC has the most overpriced shipping since Kruk Cards. Worse than ebay…

  7. I took a closer look at that Cleon Jones poster insert. It does have folds. They’re just not really pronounced. It’s actually in really fantastic condition. Almost like someone took it straight from the pack into a protector.

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