Russell Wilson likely will never play on a major league diamond, but his baseball card is expected to fetch big bucks from collectors.
The Texas Rangers drafted Wilson in a novelty move in December that generated plenty of attention. The Super Bowl-winning quarterback took part in spring training drills with Rangers. His stint is being commemorated in a new card that went on sale Wednesday.
The card is part of the Bowman 2014 set, but getting your hands on one will prove almost as elusive as tackling Wilson in the backfield. That's because the company is only printing a small number of them and inserting them into random packs.
"I've got a lot of people looking for one and I'm having a hard time finding any," says Don Joss, owner of DJ's Sportscards in Renton.
It's a lot like trying to find one of Willy Wonka's golden tickets. DJ sells each 10-card pack for $3.69, or a jumbo pack of 32 cards for $13.95. But even buying a bunch of packs or a whole case still doesn't guarantee you'll land one of Wilson's coveted cards.
"I can't afford to open hundreds of dollars worth of boxes, but what I will do is I might find them from other dealers around the country or someone here might pull one and I'll trade them," he says.
As of mid-day, DJ says he couldn't find a single Wilson Rangers card for sale online. When he does, he expects them to sell for as much as $50.
"I'm guessing the price will start kind of high and then gradually come down as more and more get pulled from the packs," he says.
If you want the novelty of a Wilson baseball card without breaking the bank, he's included as part of the 2010 Bowman set as a prospect for the Colorado Rockies. Wilson was taken in the fourth round of the 2010 draft and had limited success in the minors. He hit .229 with five homers, 19 stolen bases and 118 strikeouts playing second base in Class A in parts of the 2010 and 2011 seasons.
DJ would be glad to sell you that card for a mere $8.