My dad recently reminded me of a something I said when I was much younger. See, I’m a Yankees fan, and on our way home from one game when there were rumors that the Yankees were going to move to the “West Side Site” during the late ’90s, my dad asked me my opinion on the move. I was 7 or 8 at the time so I don’t remember being asked this, but my answer was nothing positive.
“I’ll never go to another Yankees game if they do move”
That was supposedly my answer to my father.
Of course, the Yankees did tear down the old stadium and move right across the street. I miss the charm of the old place, but I still get to games when I can and I’m still a Yankees fan. So I guess that makes me a bit of a liar.
That story is integral to why this 2009 Topps Ticket to Stardom card that I bought for $3 on COMC is my most cherished card in my collection.
But first, let’s turn the clock back to Sept. 2016. Upper Deck e-Pack is still going strong and I’m poking around more and more on COMC. Thanks to some (OK, a lot) of purchases of Marvel Masterpiece packs on e-Pack, I sell a portrait on COMC and have some credit on the site. I decide to search the cards of one of my favorite Yankees, Robinson Cano, when I stumble upon this card.
And I kid you not, I’m pretty sure I let out an audible ‘woah.’
The piece of bat is pretty neat but what really drew me in was the ticket stub. A neat addition to the card for sure, but it was the game that really caught my attention.
Earlier that summer on a visit to my childhood home, I came up with a spreadsheet of all the games I’ve ever attended. It was a fun little project to do, including looking up the box scores on baseball-reference. So I couldn’t believe it when I saw the date on the ticket stub and then cross-referenced it on my spreadsheet.
Yep, it was the last game I attended at the old stadium, just weeks before leaving for my freshman year at college.
(And in case you’re wondering, Cano went 2 for 5 that day as the Yankees pounded the Royals, 15-6.)
I couldn’t believe it. What were the chances of having my favorite player featured with a ticket stub of one of the more meaningful games I attended? I mean, I pretty much cried watching the final game of the 2008 season at the old stadium. Like most Yankees fans, I really cherished that place. I knew I had to buy this card.
Thankfully, it was only $3 so that was an easy purchase. It could have been upwards of $50 and I probably would have bought it. Does that make good economic sense? No, but the hobby isn’t always about the bottom line. For me, it’s also about the memories. It’s about what the card means to me.
Since that day in September last year, I’ve bought more and more cards on COMC than I originally set out to do, but yet none were more special than this one.