Sunday, September 20, 2015

2001 Grandstand Southern League Top Prospects Set

Prospect sets are fun. Lots of fun.

Dozens upon dozens of Minor League Baseball prospects sets have been created over the years, and they always provide years of entertainment, as the players pictured thread their way at varying speeds though the uncertain maze towards the Majors.

The 2001 Southern League Top Prospects set, produced by Grandstand, is one typical example. Consisting of thirty player cards and a header, borderless photos and a glossy surface help to give card fronts a slick new-millennium appeal. Backs are printed in black and give player statistics for the 2000 season, as well as Minor League totals. Surprisingly, the cards are not numbered except for player uniform numbers.

Being an AA league, a large percentage of these prospects saw time in the Majors. As always, some of the players "missed it by that much," while others went on to enjoy All-Star seasons (Josh Hamilton, Adam Dunn, Carl Crawford and Felipe Lopez each received the latter recognition). 

The volatile up and down price fluctuations of Minor League cards are very similar to those of the rookie cards released in mainstream major League sets. Fickle collectors and speculators are constantly shifting their focus to the "hot" on-field performers of the moment. In the case of older prospect sets such as this, history has already run it's course and the prices always stabilize -- usually at a very reasonable price if no superstars or Hall of Fame-caliber players are found within. 

We'd estimate the current market value of this set in the $10 to $15 range, and think it's a great addition to any baseball fan's collection.

Click here to find 2001 Southern League Cards

(1) Cory Aldridge, Greenville Braves
(2) Luke Allen, Jacksonville Suns
(3) Josh Bard, Carolina Mudcats
(4) Joe Borchard, Birmingham Barons
(5) Mike Bynum, Mobile BayBears
(6) Pasqual Coco, Tennessee Smokies
(7) Carl Crawford, Orlando Rays
(8) Bubba Crosby, Jacksonville Suns
(9) Juan Cruz, West Tenn Diamond Jaxx
(10) Adam Dunn, Chattanooga Lookouts
(11) Cam Esslinger, Carolina Mudcats
(12) Kris Foster, Jacksonville Suns
(13) Jose Garcia, Huntsville Stars
(14) Josh Hamilton, Orlando Rays
(15) Bobby Hill, West Tenn Diamond Jaxx
(16) Tim Hummel, Birmingham Barons
(17) Josh Kalinowski, Carolina Mudcats
(18) Austin Kearns, Chattanooga Lookouts
(19) David Kelton, West Tenn Diamond Jaxx
(20) Joe Kennedy, Orlando Rays
(21) Felipe Lopez, Tennessee Smokies
(22) Aaron McNeal, Mobile BayBears
(23) Jason Middlebrook, Mobile BayBears
(24) Brian Moon, Huntsville Stars
(25) Nick Neugebauer, Huntsville Stars
(26) Josh Phelps, Tennessee Smokies
(27) Brian Reith, Chattanooga Lookouts
(28) Billy Sylvester, Greenville Braves
(29) Dan Wright, Birmingham Barons
(30) A.J. Zapp, Greenville Braves
(31) Header Card/Checklist

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