At last night’s game I was wondering around (possibly somewhat inebriated) and stumbled into the Braves Clubhouse Game Used Collectibles Store — that’s a mouth full. Basically they sell jerseys, bats, balls, and assorted other items for your fandom needs (or wants, there really are no needs in this department). The basic stuff — jerseys, bats, and balls — I understand the desire to collect that stuff, but it was the other stuff that really caught my eye… and made me gasp at the cost.
There are a bunch of official lineup cards that can be purchased… for $100 or more. It would be cool to have a lineup card, but $100.00 is a lot, though that’s something I might bite on if it was the right game. The next thing that caught my eye were the locker name plates, which I thought would be pretty cool (and they were only $10), but all that was left were spring training non-roster invitees and random coaches and clubhouse employees.
Above the name plates was an interesting array of autographs for sale, which is pretty normal, but I was fascinated by the price differences. New Braves pitcher (former Angles pitcher) Scott Downs was being sold for $50, while Jordan Walden (also a former Angles pitcher) who has been with the team all year is selling for $40. Was this an effort to extort the few completists who would presumable pay a premium for the new guy?
There were game used bases outside that were one of the more particularly expensive items in the store:
Probably the most astounding fleecing of fans in the store were the game-used baseballs from that game… that game you were at!!! For the pleasure of buying a dirty baseball they will gladly charge you $40. This is something one can get for free if you’re in the right place at the right time for a foul ball or a home run… or if you bring a kid and sit next to the field. I will say that in all the 100’s of baseball games I’ve been to in the Majors and minors I have never gotten a foul ball or home run, but I’m usually sitting in places where balls don’t land. Still, I wouldn’t in any universe think paying $40 for one is worth while.
The Braves were really cashing in on Chipper Jones final season… and still are. This can be seen in the game used bases above and the collectibles below:
I came close to thinking, “huh, that dirt might be worth $20.” Again, I was possibly somewhat inebriated, but even in that vulnerable state I did not buy $20 worth of dirt. Maybe if there was an official Chipper Jones discarded sunflower seed in there I would have thought about it. There were some other dirt coin things on the wall… I guess this is a popular collectible. (And look, I’m not knocking anyone’s particular collectible, I have plenty of useless collectible crap at my house.)
But none of this stuff compares to the last thing, which I blurted out in half-drunk laughter at the sight of. It is at the same time pitiful and tacky as hell. I would in fact make brutal fun of you if you bought this:
An empty bottle of sparkling wine — falsely advertised as Champagne, as that can only come from a specific region of France. An empty bottle with a hologram for $35… made even funnier by the fact that this bottle formerly filled with sparkling crap sells for $11.99 when it’s actually full of sparkling crap. Hi-larious!
I guess it’s good that the team puts all this stuff up for sale, but I’d wait for an actual SALE before buying anything. I’ll have to keep an eye out to see if they do a year end sale in a few weeks.
The game used store is located at the base of the stairs to the upper deck in right field behind the Taco Mac Zone.