Monday, October 13, 2008

Reviewing the Mass Buy Sites

For those of you new collectors and first worlders out there, I wanted to quickly go over a few things that may be of interest for you. If you were like me coming back into collecting, you wanted a bunch of cards of your favorite player/team, and you wanted them fast and cheap. You were really unsure of value and you were probably wondering where to buy them. Well, besides eBay, there are actually a few sites worth checking out.


If your favorite player is not a top tier guy and you just want a bunch of cards to start your collection, you may want to check this place out. It is probably the biggest of all the sites, but it is also the most expensive. This is because all the listings are either from people who just want to list their cards on the off chance that people will buy them, or they are sync listings from inflated ebay stores. The problem with this is that most of the cards are priced at or above the already ridiculous/arbitrary book value if you want high-end stuff. Due to this fact, it makes little sense to buy that kind of stuff from them. It does make sense to buy a few base cards or crap cards of your guy because the shipping is standardized (I think) and the sellers who have them also have searchable inventories. Ebay should be your first stop, this may be your last due to price.

However, the process is great, and they have buyer protection if you are unsatisfied. I have ordered before with no problem on two occasions and both times I have been happy. The problem is that the scan on the site is not the scan of the card you are getting, and sometimes it comes in a PWE if the card is cheap. I would say for crap cards you can be rest assured you will get what you expect.

Inventory: **** out of five
Price: * 1/2
Scam Prevention: ***
Best Feature(s): Buyer Protection, Huge Inventory
Worst Feature(s): Cards are listed if buy offers are listed, search not based on available cards.

Sport Lots is cool because they have tons of shit for every player you can think of. Plus its much easier to buy in bulk, which is great for baseball prospectors. Also, for each player and brand, the cards are listed by set and by availability, so it is ridiculously easy to find the set you are looking for. If you are looking to complete a set, GO HERE. Prices are okay on base, high end can still border on naxcom prices. They take paypal, but the site just looks like it is prone to a lot of problems with satisfaction.

Shipping prices are standardized on the site, so that can save you from the uncertainty of eBay shipping. The problem is that there are a complete lack of scans completely on the search functions of the site. If you dont know what the card looks like - forget it - no help here. They do offer some protection from their "star sellers" but if you buy from Joe Collector Schmoe, you are out of luck unless you used paypal.

Personally, I have never bought from Sportlots because I dont collect base sets or base cards. I have been tempted on a few occasions, but eBay always drew me back. If there is someone out there who can elaborate on this site, I will add your comments here.

Inventory: ****
Price: ***
Scam Prevention **
Best Feature(s): Organization, Searching
Worst Feature(s): Lack of scans, buyer protection, overall site design


The name of the site bugs me, but there are a few other things that I like. The site design is nice, and the process is pretty streamlined. The problem is that EVERY GODDAMN THING on this site goes by book value. They have calculated all pricing based on it, and even give the idiots a percentage they are saving in regards to BV. That sucks a barrel of donkey balls.

This site is also pretty new, so the inventory is good not great. I would say this is a more baseball focused site as well, although they are trying to beef it up for the other sports. The other thing is that most of the sellers wont have much experience either, so I would maybe check out Sport Lots first. This could become a nice site eventually, but right now its still a beta version.

Shipping on the site is standardized again, and that is always a nice feature. They also promote the fact that all cards are scanned, so you should have a picture of the card you are ACTUALLY getting. They are also looking at adding a standardized trading site, so that might be cool too. Lastly, they have a return policy, so I would say that if you get scammed, it should be easy to return. Also, CheckOutMyCards keeps all the cards that are for sale, so you buy directly from them. I guess if the cards sucked, they wouldnt list them. The problem with that is that you are at their mercy if you are the seller and you think the condition is better than what they say.

Inventory: ** 1/2
Price: ** - for the way it is displayed
Scam Prevention: ****
Best Feature(s): Cards are expected to sell, this is not a display site. Very nice set up too.
Worst Feature(s): Site inventory isnt as expansive.

The Pit

When this was invented, I thought it was really cool. Then I saw what actually happens on the site. Basically, you buy cards like you buy an IPO and they keep it in their "warehouse" for you. That way you can buy and sell like stock trades, and the prices reflect those sales. They solely deal in graded and uncirculated cards, so dont go looking for base crap here. The Pit does have the option to receive the cards you bought, but they dont reccommend that.

Personally this type of site is not for collectors, but rather for people looking to play a game with real money. The inventory and site interest has dropped dramatically since the beginning, but when it was bought by naxcom, it picked up a little.

Really, go somewhere else.

Inventory: 1/2
Price: *
Best Feature(s): All cards are graded or uncirculated so there is no possibility of condition problems or fakes
Worst Feature(s): Its more of a game than a real collecting site

I know that eBay will always be the best and the cheapest, but not every card is on eBay at all times. Plus, for newbies and first worlders, they may want the base cards that ebay neglects. I figured that because the newbie collector journal is a living document, this should be added for the sake of all involved. Im glad the newbie collector world is safe for another day. Click the tag below to see the rest.


  1. I've tried them all and I think they're all really horrible. At least if you hate stuff like Sage, Press Pass, Topps, Bowman and crap like that.

    The only reliable option seems to be Ebay.

  2. Yeah, there is very little merit to these sites if you are second worlder.

  3. I've gotten some cards form Sports Lots and had good luck. Used it to finish out my UD Masterpieces 07 set. Prices can be a bit crazy though so watch out!

  4. I've bought from Sportlots many times and I've been happy with it. It's great if you're trying to complete a set and you need a few more cards, or if you're looking for a hard-to-find card for your player collection. The shipping prices are very low, and most sellers send the cards quickly. I highly recommend it.

    I'd also recommend Beckett Marketplace. Yeah, it has Beckett's name on it, so we instinctively think it's bad, but it really isn't. It's comprised of a bunch of card dealers that happen to sell their cards through Beckett's site. They don't all sell by book value. It's similar to Sportlots in that it's great for completing sets and adding to a player collection. I've used it many times and I've had no problems.

  5. Good review Gellman. Thanks for the info.

  6. Did you reject my comment because I said something nice about Beckett?

  7. I am actually starting to sell cards on Sports Buy and I give an actual scan of every card priced over a dollar.

  8. Dave, no I have not rejected it on purpose, I thought it was posted.

  9. Sorry, the approval doesnt always go through, it was still waiting to be moderated.

  10. Concerning CheckOutMyCards - what's so bad about basing off of book? You can ignore the book price if you want - just use propose offers. Any seller that knows his stuff will accept reasonable offers even if they aren't close to book.