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 (Toll Free)

Monthly Archives: October 2008

Jason Bartlett, World Series hero

The Tampa Bay Rays let down plenty of people with their loss (albeit close) in Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday night.

Jason Bartlett, culinary hero

Jason Bartlett, culinary icon

But there is a hero.

Rays SS Jason Bartlett.

Why? His fifth-inning stolen base earned anyone in America who wants one a free taco from Taco Bell.

How do you claim it? Just make a run for the border between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. next Tuesday (Oct. 28). It’s that simple.

If you’re hungry to begin a Bartlett card collection, start with one of his 32 rookie cards from 2004.

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Card Gallery: More Donruss Sports Legends

Here’s another look at what’s coming in DonrussSports Legends product, which is set for a December release. Check out the mix of these personalities and their sports. That first card? It will be huge.

[slideshow id=2954361355569321294&w=450&h=320]

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

Upper Deck unveils Pro Shots Ultimates sculptures for Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan

Fans of Upper Deck spokesmen Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan might be interested in this one.

The company released images of its latest Pro Shots Ultimates — deluxe polyresign sculptures of memorable moments — on Wednesday with Woods’ 1997 Masters fist-pump and Jordan’s final shot from the 1998 NBA Finals up for grabs. (Click on the Jordan for a closer look.)

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Best way to get a (sort-of) free auto? Book signings

By Chris Olds | Editor

If you’re patient and have plenty of time to wait in line, there’s one sure-fire way to get autographs of top sports figures and celebrities.

Book signings.

Any time someone famous decides to write a book, there’s almost always a tour.  Often you just have to be in the right place at the right time, but some larger independent stores will sell signed copies of books in advance of or just after autograph appearances. (Or, if you know where to shop, you can find books that were signed without appearances because the owners have good contacts or know the authors personally.)

I have obtained books signed by football legend Joe Namath, former baseball commissioner Faye Vincent, WWE star Batista, steroids whistle-blower Jose Canseco, To Kill A Mockingbird author Harper Lee and Forrest Gump creator Winston Groom in this way just to name a few.

No show fees. No authentication fees. No personalization fees. Just the cost of a book — and not even always that. Is it worth it? Have you seen what signed anniversary copies of Mockingbird go for? Go look… I’ll wait.

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So a dude walks into a Best Buy to buy a Kevin Smith DVD …

You ever hear that one? No? There’s no punchline, just a story …

So a dude pulls into a Best Buy parking lot to buy a Kevin Smith DVD after a hard day’s work at Beckett Media. (Busting and sorting Donruss Threads is work!) He’s just making a quick stop (no pun intended) there after previously heading to Wal-Mart only to find that said DVD wasn’t on the shelves.

Dude notices a guy walking into the door of Best Buy with a black baseball bat — and another in the parking lot with another black bat. (Dude considers Target … but goes in anyway. Dude likes baseball.)

As he walks in, dude notices note on door, something to the effect that “we’re recording inside so you’re consenting to be on film.”

Hmm.

First, dude checks new release DVD aisle for A Threevening with Kevin Smith. Alas, nothing — the two-disc special edition is nowhere to be found. Again.

Dude asks Best Buy Dude about dude named Smith’s DVD. Best Buy Dude says they’re all sold out. (Dude knew he should have bought it — signed — online. But now that site is sold out, too. Not cool, dude.)

What does dude find elsewhere inside the store?

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Dallas Cowboys team photographer set to auction historic image collection

The photographs of long-time Dallas Cowboys team photographer Ron St. Angelo – some 100,000 images — will head to the auction block next month to be sold in one lot through Lelands.com.

Here’s the catch — one bigger than anything Michael Irvin ever hauled in — they’re selling in one lot. And the buyer gets the copyrights.

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By the Box: 2008 Press Pass Elvis by the Numbers

Here are the results from a randomly selected box I recently opened …

2008 Press Pass Elvis by the Numbers cards (hobby box)
Suggested Retail Price:
$70
Packs per box:
28
Cards per pack:
6
Cards in this box: 162
Base set completion: 80 of 80 (100 percent)
Duplicates: 46

Insert/short-print cards found:
36

Elvis Master Pieces memorabilia (combined autograph and memorabilia odds are 1:14) — 2. No. MP1 Japanese Kimono, No. MP3 Plaid pajamas.

Co-star autographs (combined autograph and memorabilia odds are 1:14) — 1. No number Barbara Eden (produced for 2007 Elvis Is set). Read More »

More 2008 Donruss Threads preview images

Here are a few more slideshows showing inserts, autographs and memorabilia cards from 2008 Donruss Threads, which hits hobby shops this week:

First, the Kings …

[slideshow id=2954361355569019040&w=450&h=320]

Now, the autographs …

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Donruss unveils huge Sports Legends product set for December (updated)

Donruss announced plans Monday for a multi-sport set coming in December called Americana Sports Legends – a product that will feature more than 150 of the top athletes of all time.

Legends will include autograph and memorabilia cards from athletes in all sports — baseball, basketball, football, hockey, boxing, auto racing, golf, soccer, tennis, wrestling and even several Olympians. Each five-card pack will carry a suggested retail price of $10.

The cards of NFL players and those in collegiate uniforms are fully licensed by the NFL and by the Collegiate Licensing Company.

The set branches off from the Americana inserts of the same name. While that insert set included just a handful of athletes, this set will include, according to Donruss, Ted Williams, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Cal Ripken, Nolan Ryan, Shoeless Joe Jackson, Pete Rose, Don Mattingly, Jim Brown, Joe Montana, Dan Marino, John Elway, Knute Rockne, Larry Bird, Dick Vitale, Dennis Rodman, Bill Walton, Dean Smith, John Wooden, Lisa Leslie, Sheryl Swoopes, Phil Esposito, Patrick Roy, Ray Bourque, Paul Coffey, Mike Bossy and others.

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Card gallery: 2008 Donruss Threads Americana

Here is the first of a few galleries for the 2008 Donruss Threads product, which hits hobby shops this week. This gallery shows off the Baseball Americana inserts, which come in standard, autographed and game-used versions where possible.

[slideshow id=2954361355569007391&w=450&h=375]

Look for a couple more galleries this afternoon right here and on Beckett.com.

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

What does Evan Longoria have to do to avoid Eva?

There’s no doubt that one baseball player’s cards are hotter than anyone else’s right now — but no matter what Tampa Bay 3B Evan Longoria does, somebody somewhere will trot out a tale of the tape comparing him to ABC Desperate Housewife Eva Longoria.

Who am I to disappoint?

vs.
Burst onto the scene in MLB with the Tampa Bay Rays in April, finishing his first season with an appearance in the World Series in October 2008. One-line
career
summary
Burst onto the scene as a member of ABC’s hit series Desperate Housewives in October 2004.
The No. 3 overall draft pick in 2006 is a former member of the Class AA Montgomery Biscuits Also on sports resume Married to San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker
“Longo” and the dude who already has hit a boatload of home runs this postseason Also known as … “Gabrielle” and Eva Longoria Parker
A few — but not the one that matters — his 2006 Bowman Chrome autograph (above) Cards
in my
collection?
None. How can she not yet have a trading card? I mean, come on she only attends 82,000 Spurs games a year where 3.8 million photographs are taken every time she moves — or thinks about — moving
1,227 items
currently for sale
eBay stat 325 items
currently for sale
A perfect BGS 10 professionally graded copy of his rookie card for $1,500 eBay highlight A shirt and tank top Longoria reportedly wore on MTV’s TRL for $300 (Blurry authentication photograph included.)
$200 and up right now on eBay Rookie
card is worth?
What rookie card?
He played for the Class AAA Durham Bulls, which Costner made famous when he played Crash Davis in “Bull Durham.” Kevin Costner
ties?
According to The Oracle of Bacon, Kevin Bacon starred with Kevin Costner in JFK. Bacon starred with Jim Cody Williams in Rails & Ties (2007), who starred in Lower Learning (2008) with Longoria. (Don’t worry, I never heard of those films, either.)
$1,850 for an Orange Refractor autograph from 2006 Bowman in BGS 9.5 grade. Rookie
card last sold for
Again … what rookie card? (Maybe Donruss can get on this for Americana III?)
He’s pretty much a babyface, so I’d say low. Intimidation factor She’s stands 5-2 — so you really don’t wanna mess with her.
He sent her a Rays T-shirt. Wikipedia (and the Hartford Courant) says … She sent him a bottle of champagne.
We’re willing to bet there’s a (cursed?) cover appearance in his future. Sports Illustrated ties? Just stop what you’re doing and read this.
He’ll be all over FOX in the coming weeks. TV ties
Um, other than the obvious ABC gig, it depends whether there’s a Spurs game on.
Uh… Eva Longoria? Not to be confused with … Uh… Evan Longoria?
Well, if we had to bet, the American League Rookie of the Year for starters … Awards Um … just a few.
A World Series title. (Maybe.) What it will take to end these comparisons?
All male sports writers and bloggers vanish from the face of the earth? (Nah, that wouldn’t do it, either.)

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

Card Gallery: 2008 Topps Sterling football

It won’t hit hobby shops until early next year, but here’s a look at the upcoming Topps Sterling football set.

[slideshow id=2954361355568661393&w=450&h=200]

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

First Look: 2009 Press Pass NASCAR cards

Press Pass has released images of its 2009 NASCAR set. Here is a look at a few of the insert cards — but not the basic set — for the product which arrives in hobby shops in December.

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Card Gallery: 2008 Donruss Threads insert cards

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the cards coming in the 2008 Donruss Threads set that hits hobby shops later this month.

[slideshow id=2954361355568652377&w=426&h=320]

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

Rookie Leatherheads: Why didn't anyone think of that?

If you’ve been over to Beckett.com this morning you probably have seen a preview gallery for Upper Deck SP Authentic football, which arrives in hobby shops early next year.

Among the inserts in the set will be Rookie Leatherheads, which feature a slice of a photo-shoot worn leather football helmet and an autograph of a few top rookies. Since the NFL PLAYERS Rookie Premiere began several years ago, there have been many memorabilia cards tried — remember the Fleer’s Touch Football cards in 2000? — but this one is so simple and pretty cool not to have been done before.

This one I really like — and I’m pretty sure that other collectors will agree.

No word on whether George Clooney will make a surprise appearance in the set.

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

My top 10 greatest 1980 Philadelphia Phillies World Series team items

With the Philadelphia Phillies headed back to the World Series, it’s prime time to examine the best items from the last time they won it all — in 1980.

Here are my picks for 10 key items to own if you’re a Philly fan who’s still waiting for your team to equal its past success. They’re not the most valuable — just the most interesting or odd items that come to mind, ones that seem to capture the 1980 team the best.

1. Pete Rose‘s May 28, 1979, Sports Illustrated cover (above). Sure, it pre-dates the 1980 season, but there’s no doubting what Rose meant to the Phillies’ championship. It’s his first cover appearance in a Phillies uniform (he had three afterward) and is the best.

2. Bake McBride‘s 1974 Topps rookie card (click for a closer look) won’t cost you more than a couple bucks. Sure, it shows him in a Cardinals unform, but when’s the last time you heard of a guy named Bake? His full nickname? Shake and Bake. His real name? Arnold. Now you know why he’s cool. What made him really cool in the 1980 World Series was his 7-for-23 performance at the plate. He drove in 5 RBIs in the Series, second to only a guy you might have heard of — Michael Jack Schmidt.

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Texas softball star Cat Osterman among several notable players in upcoming Elite Extra Edition set

University of Texas and USA Softball star Cat Osterman will have her first widely distributed trading card in the upcoming Donruss Elite Extra Edition, which hits hobby shops on Nov. 19.

But she’s definitely not the only noteworthy addition to the set.

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Topps revisits popular Star Wars Galaxy line

Topps announced this week that it will produce a new Star Wars Galaxy set, which long-time collectors would remember as an all-artwork line that was introduced back in 1993.

Series 4 of the set will hit stores in February with more than 50 exclusive paintings, an archive set made of never-before-seen Galaxy art autographed cards of several artists, sketch cards as well as cards featuring art from Star Wars movie posters, comic books and elsewhere.

Here’s a look at a couple more images from the set.

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Elite Extra Edition Dean Smith autographs are now live

Dean Smith‘s 2007 Elite Extra Edition Collegiate Patches autograph cards have been signed and are on the way to collectors.

“Smith battled some health issues late last year and it took him a little longer than he expected to finish all the signatures,” Donruss Marketing/PR Director Scott Prusha said. “He wanted to fulfill those redemptions for collectors and worked hard to get them done — we appreciate all those that have hung in there while we worked hard to complete the signing.”

The Hall of Famer won 879 games as a coach, which ranks second all time, and won a pair of national championships coaching North Carolina.

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

Razor signs Matt Wieters to exclusive autograph deal – with a bit extra

Razor Entertainment signed an exclusive autograph deal with top Baltimore Orioles prospect Matt Wieters on Wednesday that prevents other companies from producing cards and autographed cards until a year after he makes his debut on a major league (25-man) roster.

The move means that Baseball America’s 2008 Minor League Player of the Year will not have cards in future Bowman products as Topps signs players to individual contracts to appear on its cards.

And after Wieters makes his big-league debut, Topps and Upper Deck will be able to produce standard cards (if he is signed by Topps), but no autographed or memorabilia cards — unless they negotiate for his rights, which would be lucrative, through Razor.

“We took a shot and we are taking a shot that is unprecedented,” said Razor President Brian Gray. “This could basically change the whole game.”

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