Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em #10

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I thought Grand Prix Detroit might’ve put a twist on my list. But wow, Guilds of Ravnica spoilers will definitely change things. This is an exciting time as we’ll start to see shifts in cards seeing play, which is what makes this game so great.

If you haven’t seen it yet, here it is.

Whuuuuuuuuut? This card will single-handedly change the landscape of Modern and Legacy. And it will most certainly make BGx a pillar in Standard until it rotates out of the format.

So why am I mentioning this card? As per usual, here's the focus of our article series:

  1. Cards that you should hold on to or pick up for tournaments if you need them before they rise in price. These cards are either seeing increased play in one or more formats, the supply is drying up, or they’re pretty far from the next reprint.
  2. Cards that you should consider selling or trading away. Their prices are pretty much at the ceiling owing to inflation from speculation, reprint inevitability in the near future, a lull in tournament play, or some combination of these.

Hold ‘Em

Sylvan Scrying - FNM Promos

Target Buy Price

Keep in mind that Grand Prix Detroit was a Team Modern Constructed format, so the decks seen at the tournament could be a tad skewed. But generally, most of the 75's are pretty close to what we’d see in a non-team Modern Constructed tournament.

I was a little hesitant to include Sylvan Scrying in this list after seeing Assassin's Trophy because I’m not sure where Tron decks like Antonio Perez’s winning list will stand as GBx decks gain in popularity. But this is a pretty cheap promo so you can’t really go wrong. And it also sees play in Legacy’s Turbo Depths.

Thanks to Dominique Rahm for the comment on the last article in regards to adding target buy and sell prices to the public spreadsheet.

Eldrazi Temple - Modern Masters 2015 (Non-Foil & Foil)

Target Buy Prices
Non-Foil: $5
Foils: $10

Here’s another victim of Assassin's Trophy. However, this land sees play in multiple decks across eternal formats: Eldrazi Tron and BW Eldrazi in Modern, plus Eldrazi and 8-Post Eldrazi in Legacy. And although Assassin's Trophy might seem like the end of Tron and Eldrazi decks, they’ll just find a way to deal with the card.

Nature’s Claim - Iconic Masters (Foil)

Target Buy Price
Foil: Under $1

Here’s another card from Antonio Perez’s winning list which also showed up in Matthew Nass’s Hardened Scales Affinity and Bradley Tinney’s Infect decks. And don’t forget that this is also played in Ironworks Combo.

Mutagenic Growth - Modern Masters 2015 (Foil)

Target Buy Price
Foil: Under $4

Here’s yet another card that showed up at Grand Prix Detroit via Bradley Tinney’s Infect deck. And this won’t show up in Standard again as Phyrexian mana is generally considered a mistake. But it will continue to be a Modern Infect staple, as well as a powerhouse in Pauper.

Mishra’s Bauble - Iconic Masters (Non-Foil & Foil)

Target Buy Prices
Non-Foil: $3
Foil: $7

Here’s another "free" spell card that wasn’t a mistake. We saw this spike when Death's Shadow showed up at the top tables in Modern. There was only the Coldsnap printing at the time; but since then, the card has tanked and leveled off after the Iconic Masters reprinting.

A year has almost past and now is a good time to pick up this card. This still sees play as a four-of in Lantern Control.

Smash to Smithereens - FNM Promos

Target Buy Price
Under $1

Speaking of artifacts, here’s another cheap promo that sees a lot of play in Modern and is also another Pauper all-star. It doesn’t deal with Mishra's Bauble, but it sure destroys a lot of key artifacts in Lantern Control.

If Assassin's Trophy becomes ubiquitous in Modern, Goblins might have its time in the spotlight, which could also include Legion Warboss or Goblin Rabblemaster. Take a look at Jorge Paul Gochingco’s list for reference. This is also one of the more affordable options for Modern.

Skirk Prospector - Dominaria (Foil)

Target Buy Price
Foil: $1

Moving deeper into Goblins, Skirk Prospector hasn’t really had its time to shine in Modern yet since its introduction to the format via Dominaria. But keep in mind that it’s a mana-accelerant on a body that has a converted mana cost of one, so it could definitely become a crucial piece in a deck looking to do broken things fast.

This could also become part of the one-drop package in Standard Goblins come post-October, along with Goblin Cratermaker and Legion Warboss.

Standard Goblins Crew in October 2018

Worship - Masterpiece Series: Amonkhet Invocations

Target Buy Price
Under $40

Finally, let’s talk about a new-age Reserved List card. Many people don’t like the border, but there are definitely some people that like the unique factor. The Amonkhet Invocation version will never be printed again, capping the supply on these.

This card sees quite a bit of play in Modern, with a lot of the demand coming from the recent Spirits deck and GWx Vizier. While we didn’t see Worship in Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa’s runner-up Bant Spirits list at Grand Prix Detroit, it still sees play in many other builds.

And here’s Yuya Hosokawa’s ninth place GWx Vizier deck at Grand Prix Prague.


Ixalan Checklands (Non-Foil & Foil)

These have been reprinted into oblivion just like shocklands. And they’ll be in Standard together which means there will be real demand for them since they’ll be the core of almost all manabases. However, with the exception of Glacial Fortress, they don’t really see play in eternal formats so I would dump any extras you’re not using.

Dominaria Checklands (Non-Foil & Foil)

This is only the second printing; but as you can see, Wizards is not afraid to reprint lands like these. And just like the Ixalan checklands, only one really sees eternal play: Sulfur Falls. Dump these as demand increases post-October.

Faithless Looting - Eternal Masters (Foil)

Target Sell Price

Dubbed as Modern’s Brainstorm, this card has really seen an uptick in play over the last few months owing to decks like Bridgevine, as well as Sam Pardee’s Hollow One, and Jose David Marzuca Lozano’s Mardu list from Grand Prix Detroit.

This wasn’t printed in Iconic Masters, so it could get reprinted in the next Masters set. And although it also sees play in Pauper, I would sell or trade any of these you have and pick them back up again later. Note that Star City Games right now is buying these for $4 cash.

Tarmogoyf - Modern Masters 2017 (Non-Foil)

There was an error retrieving a chart for Tarmogoyf

Target Sell Price

Finally, circling all the way back around to the Assassin's Trophy effect, it’s almost inevitable that we bump into the mighty Tarmogoyf again. If you don’t remember, take a look back at my second article. Sell into the hype as people are starting to lean back toward BGx decks.

The peak price was about $76 at the beginning of April 2018, so $70 might be a bit ambitious from the current market price of $57. But Assassin's Trophy does a pretty good job of clearing a path for good ‘ol Tarmogoyf.

Dark Confidant - Modern Masters 2015 (Non-Foil)

There was an error retrieving a chart for Dark Confidant

Target Sell Price

And don’t forget about one of Tarmogoyf’s best friends, Dark Confidant, which helps with the card disadvantage Assassin's Trophy creates. The peak price was around $80 at the end of March 2018, so the target sell price of $65 is pretty conservative, but also quite a jump from the current market price of $51.

Office Hours

Lastly, as some of you might have already seen from Sigmund Ausfresser’s recent article, he and I will be hosting Quiet Speculation’s first Office Hours. If you have a subscription, join us in the Discord for an ask-us-anything session.

We can chat about things like…

  • Tournament MTG finance
  • Old School Magic
  • Guilds of Ravnica spoilers
  • Upcoming Banned and Restricted Announcement
  • Whatever else

When: Thursday, September 27 at 9pm Eastern
Where: Quiet Speculation Discord Channel
Who: Sigmund Ausfresser & Edward Eng
Why: To increase community engagement
What: Anything goes


Hold ‘Em

Fold ‘Em

Office Hours

Thursday, September 27 at 9pm Eastern in the Quiet Speculation Discord Channel

Public Spreadsheet

Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em Spreadsheet

Let me know what you think in the comments below. Agree? Disagree? Why? You can also connect with me on Twitter at @edwardeng. I’m also open to suggestions on how to make this series more valuable. Hit me up.

Have fun,

4 thoughts on “Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em #10

  1. That Assassin’s Trophy face will give me nightmares.

    Anyways, in light of that card, a hold’em on my radar is Vraska, Relic Seeker. Post-rotation, it should trend up. Vraska has been on some people’s radars for some time now, and Assassin’s Trophy is the call to action Vraska needed. It’s hard to refuse a Planeswalker with built-in removal who’s also a chump block spawner.

    I agree BG will be a pillar in Standard. It will be Golgari all day everyday.

    1. Ha. I think Trophy will give quite a few people nightmares for years to come.

      Vraska, Relic Seeker will be interesting. Not sure if Vraska, Golgari Queen will take precedence though. We’ll see. Either way, I would dump both into the hype as both will probably never see Eternal play.

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