Player Focus: Elijah Dukes (with Topps commentary at the end)
Right when we thought that Elijah Dukes' problems off the field were coming to an end...Now Dukes' wife filed a protective order barring him from contacting her for a year, and also requiring him to undergo a psychiatric evaluation before he can see their 2 children. This came after he allegedly threatened her life.
It's uncertain what impact this could have on his on-field performance. Maybe with all of this drama out of his life now, he'll be able to concentrate more on the game. Or, maybe, the temporary loss of his family will prevent him from being able to focus. Since the 5/31 release of this news, Dukes has gone 0 for 8. This, against a KC pitching staff boasting a lackluster 4.73 ERA (ranked 11th out of 14 in the AL). Hopefully this is not an indication of what's to come. I think that his team will support him, because they believe in his potential, and he should snap back into ballplayer mode and resume his development into a potent threat at the plate within the next month or so.
Up until last week, the only MLB RC's for Dukes listed on auction were his 07 Finest Redemption cards. All of the sudden, there's a flood of Auto RC's out there. 07 Bowman & Topps Co-signers have multiple variations of his Auto RC (For Bowman, I've seen the non-#'d base, Blue #'d 500 & Orange #'d 250 and for Co-Signers I've seen then #'d 275, 250, 225, 150 & 50). The first wave will probably sell for the most. Since there's so many for sale right now, I'm gonna wait for the impulse buyers' frenzy to subside and hopefully pick up some deals when the dust settles.
Topps has recently been having way too many variations for RC Auto cards. Why would you need so many that are so close in print run? All that does is increase the total number of Auto RC's on the market (of virtually the same card), which would cannibalize each other and make for a less valuable item. I would want to see say, for instance, a base that's #'d to 1000 (one for the general collector that still has a limited print run), then parallels #'d to 500 & 50 (for more serious collectors). Anyway, what do I know?