Card of the Day: 1998 Bowman Chrome Refractor Troy Glaus

I’m not going to lie, Evan Longoria’s postseason tear has been nothing less than spectacular. He’s aided his team in its quest for a World Series title, has hit six home runs over the last two weeks, and at this point could have as much hobby clout as Ryan Braun did last season in his push for the National League Rookie of the Year award. Both of their Bowman Chrome autographed rookie/prospect cards are in the $150-$200 cash value neighborhood. But what we’re seeing is nothing new. In fact, this tear reminds me of a player who once had as much pull in the hobby as Braun and Longoria — that being Troy Glaus.

In 1998, Glaus burst onto the hobby scene garnering much attention for his Mark McGwire-like power at UCLA. That of course translated into tremendous hobby love. His base Bowman Chrome rookie was a good seller at $25, and his Leaf Rookies & Stars SP was his best rookie, weighing it at a hefty $150. The 1998 Bowman Chrome Glaus refractor I have pictured here once approached triple figures

In his first full season, Glaus slugged 29 homers, and then followed that up in 2000 with a whopping 47 dingers and 102 RBIs. Did you hear that? FORTY SEVEN! On top of that power stat, he also hit a respectable .284 and scored 120 runs. At that point fans and collectors were already crowning him as a beast, a sure-bet Hall of Famer.

But then came the batting average dip. Glaus continued to hit home runs in great numbers. In 2001 he mashed 41, and in 2002 — the year his Angels won the World Series — he hit 30, and then six more during the playoffs. However, Glaus’ average plummeted. He hit .250 in back-to-back seasons, before bottoming out at an abysmal .248 in an injury-riddled 2003 campaign.

Over the last five years, Glaus has been relatively healthy and his batting average has steadily risen, including a .270 mark in 2008, but whatever hobby momentum Glaus had was sucked away by a deadly batting average, which may or may not have translated him to being bounced around the league like a journeyman. His base Bowman Chrome rookie has become irrelevant, the refractor books for about $40 now, and that Leaf Rookies & Stars card has dropped by more than half even though Glaus has managed to amass more than 300 homers and nearly 900 RBIs to this point in his career. Just goes to show that Ruthian power alone will not translate into sustained hobby love.

2 Responses to “Card of the Day: 1998 Bowman Chrome Refractor Troy Glaus”

  1. I had this card, minus the Refractor.

    P.S – Over the next ten years I predict Braun to be a better slugger than Evan.

  2. Hmm, Braun a better slugger or hitter?

    I’m a bit undecided to this point as to who I think is better in either case.

    I do know that when Longoria makes contact he reminds me of a young Jose Canseco, the glory days that you, too, remember.

    With Braun, I somehow envision Miguel Tejada in his hay-day.

    The comparisons are solely on how I see the ball fly off their bats.

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