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Monthly Archives: July 2009

Press Pass Announces ‘Hobby Stimulus’ for Legends Football

Bleier

Press Pass officials on Thursday morning provided details of the company’s “Hobby Stimulus” program within 2009 Legends Football, a product that released yesterday packing a little more than previously expected.

“With the economy being slow to turn around, and collectors looking to get the most value for their money, we decided to deliver an additional bonus autograph in every full 18-count box this year,” says Nick Matijevich, Press Pass’ Director of Product Development.

So, instead of the five autographs per box promised on the 2009 Press Legends’ packaging, the product will deliver six.

Matijevich also confirmed that every box will include at least one autograph from a group that includes Mark Sanchez, Matthew Stafford, Michael Crabtree, Knowshon Moreno, Percy Harvin, Chris “Beanie” Wells, Jeremy Maclin, LeSean McCoy, Josh Freeman, Donald Brown, or Darrius Heyward-Bey.

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Preview Gallery: 2009 Upper Deck Prominent Cuts

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Upper Deck has released additional images and product information for its upcoming Prominent Cuts set that includes cut autograph cards from athletes in several sports as well as celebrity memorabilia cards.

(See the previous product announcement here.)

Now scheduled for release in November, Prominent Cuts will include one Prominent Cut Signature per five-pack box as well as two Cage Fighter (MMA) Signatures and two Hollywood History memorabilia cards.

The standard set will consist of 60 cards — 22 politicians (including President Barack Obama), 12 celebrities and 26 Sports Icons — a list that includes Kobe Bryant, Randy Couture, Michael Jordan, Laird Hamilton and Kristi Yamaguchi among others.

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.

Topps Unveils 2009 Magic Short Prints List

Brady

Topps on Wednesday morning released the short print list for 2009 Topps Magic Football.

The subjects and their quantities for the short printed autographs are as follows:
Kenny Irons
 Auburn
 20
 
Reggie Wayne
Miami (FL)
25
 
Chad Johnson
Oregon State
25
 
Willie Parker
North Carolina
25
 
Ray Lewis
Miami (FL)
25
 
Willis McGahee
Miami (FL)
25
 
Larry Johnson
Penn State
25

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Barack Obama's All-Star first pitch lands on baseball card

obamaetopps

President Barack Obama‘s first pitch before the MLB All-Star Game earlier this month is highlighted on an eTopps card that’s available to collectors this week.

A maximum of 999 cards will be made as part of the initial public offering at etopps.com. The cards carry a price of $5. Once allocated, collectors can sell them on eBay as part of their eTopps account or request that the card be sent to them. The card is on sale until July 27.

Obamaetopps2Obama’s only other previous eTopps card, which shows him throwing out a pitch before a Chicago White Sox game, was released as part of the presidential candidates set last year.

That card, according to the eTopps statistics, is valued at $85.36.

Like this week’s offering, only 999 copies of that card were produced.

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.

Preview gallery: More Panini America National autographs

PN7

Panini America released additional images of autographed cards that will be found only in wrapper redemption packs at the upcoming National Sports Collectors Convention next week in Cleveland, Ohio.

Among the selection are autographed rookie cards from this year’s NFL class as well as past RCs like Peyton Manning, above. Also among the grouping is the third certified autographed card of professional wrestling legend “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair.

Check ‘em out …

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2009 Topps Mayo Football First Images Released!

Print

Topps officials on Tuesday morning released preliminary details of 2009 Topps Mayo Football, the follow-up to one of last year’s most successful new products due to go live in early November. 

In addition to an attractive new white-bordered design that provides a stark contrast to last year’s black-bordered scheme, 2009 Topps Mayo features the introduction of Topps’ popular Rip cards (one per case) and 115 new Mini inserts (including World’s Fair Attractions, U.S. Governors and Celebrated Citizens).

The product includes a 330-card base set (180 veterans, 10 Legends, 60 Rookies, 25 Public Figures and 55 short prints) and 18 cut signature subjects. Each box of 2009 Topps Mayo Football will deliver one framed mini relic, one framed mini autograph and one box loader. 

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Baltimore Orioles OF Nolan Reimold is Topps' fifth Red Hot Rookie card

RHR5

Topps revealed its fifth player in the 2009 Red Hot Rookie redemption set on Tuesday, and it’s Baltimore Orioles outfielder Nolan Reimold.

Reimold is hitting.265 with nine home runs and 26 RBIs in 55 games this season.

The remainder of the 10-card Red Hot Rookies set will be announced throughout the season. Each Series 2 hobby box includes one of the redemption cards.

The first Red Hot Rookie of the year was New York Mets outfielder Fernando Martinez. No. 2 was Chicago White Sox infielder Gordon Beckham – with 10 percent of the cards coming autographed. The third card was Pittsburgh Pirates  outfielder Andrew McCutchen, while the fourth rookie was Atlanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson.

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 TRISTAR Obak minor league baseball cards

Modern-Williams

TRISTAR is turning back the clock with its latest minor league baseball set, Obak, which brings the tobacco card aesthetic to the masses with a limited-edition set that’s loaded with interesting cards for collectors to discover.

The base set consists of 114 cards — and there will be only 3,600 hobby boxes made — a lower number than TRISTAR’s already limited 2009 PROjections sets.

The autographs, which will be found two per20-pack box, will feature current minor leaguers as well as retired stars who made an impact down on the farm. All of the autographs in the set are numbered to 200 or fewer copies.

There will be three short-printed cards in each box, which are, according to the company, 77 percent more scare than standard cards.

The set consists of eight subsets as follows:

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Upper Deck America's Team Autographs Strike Chord with Collectors

Reeves

Anyone who thinks the Dallas Cowboys have lost some of their cultish collector following in the 12 years since the team’s last playoff victory should know this: Someone recently paid almost $60 for a 2009 Upper Deck Icons America’s Team autograph of Seventies Cowboy Scott Laidlaw.

Laidlaw, it should be noted, spent just five seasons with Dallas and never rushed for more than 425 yards or scored more than four touchdowns in any one of them.

Someone else paid a similar amount for D.D. Lewis . . . and John NilandEddie LeBaron sold for $71. Larry Cole traded hands for $41.

Now as always, there’s nothing quite like the star decal on a helmet to turn semistars into superstars.

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Warning: Tracy Hackler calls collect

Picture 2

Beckett Media publisher Tracy Hackler likes calling collect — calling those who influence how we collect, that is.

See what Topps’ Clay Luraschi says in the first episode of Collect Call.

Watch the video here.

Walter Cronkite appeared on trading cards, too

cronkite

Walter Cronkite, the influential journalist who delivered the news on CBS television for two decades, died on Friday. He was 92.

For millions of Americans, he was the voice of their history highlight reels as he brought the Apollo moon landing, President John F. Kennedy‘s assassination in Dallas and coverage of the Vietnam War into living rooms around the country on the “CBS Evening News.”

Many will remember him as one who signed off his newscasts with “and that’s the way it is” and many more will remember him for his countless moments on the screen, whichever one applies most finely to their lives.

cronkite2For collectors, Cronkite will be remembered on just a handful of trading cards like the 2008 Upper Deck SP Legendary Cuts Mystery Cuts autograph card above, a one-of-a-kind card that has a signature from a signed CBS promotional photo embedded into the cardboard.

In fact all but one of Cronkite’s cards are made up of this fashion. He also had cut signatures in the 2005 Topps Power Brokers Cut Signatures set, the 2007 Playoff National Treasures Historical Cuts set and this year’s Upper Deck Spectrum Celebrity Cut Signatures set. Each of these cards are one-of-a-kind, name-your-price pieces of memorabilia.

His lone non-autographed card cataloged in the Beckett Media database comes in the 1977-79 Sportscaster Series 103 set, which shows him doing one of his favorite things beyond a studio. That card is valued at $20.

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.

Barack Obama Cut Autograph Added to Sportkings Series C

BOcut

Less than two weeks before the product hits, Sportkings officials announced late Friday afternoon that they have added a Barack Obama cut autograph to Sportkings Series C’s First Pitch Cut insert that honors American presidents who have thrown out ceremonial first pitches.

Obama’s highly publicized heave to Albert Pujols in Tuesday’s Major League Baseball All-Star Game provided Sportkings with the photograph it needed to add the country’s 44th president to an already-loaded insert set. Obama joins an absolutely history-drenched First Pitch Cuts checklist that also includes Lyndon Johnson, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Dwight Eisenhower, Harry Truman, Franklin Roosevelt, Herbert Hoover, Calvin Coolidge, Warren Harding, Woodrow Wilson, George H. Bush, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and the originator of the first pitch, William Taft.

First Pitch is one of five cut signature sets in Series C (the others are PaperCuts, Vintage PaperCuts, Eight Men Out and Owners’ Box). Sportkings Series C releases July 29 at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland.

— Tracy Hackler

Preview gallery: 2009 Panini National autographs

Panininat20

Panini America released the following images of autograph cards that will be found only in wrapper redemption packs at this year’s National in Cleveland.

Check ‘em out after the jump.

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St. Louis Cardinals OF Colby Rasmus is fifth Topps Finest Rookie Redemption

09FBB_RASMUS

Topps announced the fifth player in its 2009 Finest Rookie Redemption set on Friday and it’s St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Colby Rasmus.

In 82 games this season, Rasmus is hitting .278 with 11 home runs and 34 RBI.

Topps will announce the rest of the 10 rookies throughout the remainder of the season. Each master box of Finest includes one Rookie Redemption, which can also be found in Refractor (#’d to 199) and Gold Refractor (#’d to 50) versions.

The previous rookies:

  1. Matt LaPorta, outfield, Cleveland Indians
  2. Tommy Hanson, pitcher, Atlanta Braves
  3. Andrew Bailey, pitcher, Oakland A’s
  4. Julio Borbon, outfield, Texas Rangers

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 offers Pioneers cut card for collector who grabs all Legendary Cuts

Legendary Pioneers Front

Upper Deck announced on Friday that it will award a single quad cut autograph card of Abner Doubleday, Dr. James Naismith, Knute Rockne and Frederick Stanley, a.k.a. “Lord Stanley” to the first collector who completes this year’s Legendary Cuts Cut Signature set.

No more than five of each cut card in the set was produced, so winning the card featuring autographs of the four sports pioneers will be a challenge. If no collector finishes the set by Dec. 15, the card will be awarded to the fan who comes closest.

“We know collectors who used to attempt putting this set together, but they were put off by the fact that so many of the extremely limited cards would end up in personal collections and usually never see the light of day again,” said Grant Sandground, Upper Deck’s baseball brand manager. “To entice collectors to try to put this set together, we came up with a very special promotion.”

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First look: TRISTAR's Obak National preview cards

ObakObama.jpg

TRISTAR released preview images and basic information on Thursday for its set of Obak preview cards that will be produced for this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, later this month.

Obak is a standalone baseball product based on early 1900s tobacco cards of the same name. The set, which will feature current and past players, will arrive in hobby shops in August.

The preview set will consist of eight cards — five baseball players as well as TNA Wrestling stars Kurt Angle and The Beautiful People (Angelina Love and Velvet Sky) and President Barack Obama.

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Neil Armstrong has eluded collectors for years

1969topps

With the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission to the moon upon us this coming Monday, there might be more than a few collectors interested in picking up something related to the flight that starred Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and “Buzz” Aldrin.

Now there have already been countless movies, documentaries and tributes about the Apollo missions, but there also will undoubtedly be some added interest as people read about one of the most historic events in world history on its anniversary. Several newspapers and magazines already have produced items relating to the anniversary and there’s sure to be more.

But when it comes to mass-produced collectibles — and in particular the autographs of Armstrong — there’s not a lot to choose from,  despite there being a healthy interest in NASA memorabilia and astronaut autographs.

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Topps reveals 2009 Allen & Ginter SPs

Big Foot Relic

Topps announced the short-printed autographs, Relics and inserts list in its 2009 Allen & Ginter baseball set on Thursday.

There are some surprises — in particular some gimmick Relic cards like the Bigfoot hair card above — as well as some short-printed baseball autographs to be found.

See them all after the jump.

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USA Today: Jason Giambi buys his old Yankees locker

yankees

USA Today’s Game On has an interesting story on how well the Steiner Sports sale of Yankee Stadium memorabilia has been going — well enough to the tune of eight-figures (i.e. more than $10,000,000) so far.

And some of the deep-pocketed collectors are the Yankees themselves — as well as former Yankees. Jason Giambi, now with the Oakland A’s, purchased his old locker for $50,000.

Read more about the Yankees (and others) who are collecting here.

Upper Deck to Produce Special Michael Jackson Cards

09_UDx_MLB_MJ3[1]

You knew it was just a matter of time: Michael Jackson has new trading cards . . . from the Super Bowl . . . in a baseball set.

Upper Deck officials announced on Wednesday evening that the company’s 2009 UDx Baseball release, due out in early August, will include four limited-edition Icons illustrated cards honoring the late King of Pop’s rousing, record-breaking Super Bowl XXVII halftime performance watched by more than 133 million people worldwide.

“Michael Jackson was a unique entertainer whose performances routinely exceeded expectations as he continually tested the boundaries with his music and dance,” said Jason Masherah, Upper Deck’s director of Sports Brands. “After witnessing the outpouring of love at his memorial, we knew the public would appreciate this commemorative collection to celebrate his larger-than-life persona. Both sport and music fans alike will no doubt reminisce about the memorable halftime performance.”

For the record, the Cowboys defeated the Buffalo Bills on that late-January evening in 1993, 52-17. Luckily for the more than 92,000 people in attendance, they had arguably the greatest halftime performance of all time to keep their interest. 

— Tracy Hackler

Atlanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson is Topps' fourth Red Hot Rookie

hanson

Topps announced its fourth 2009 Red Hot Rookie Redemption on Wednesday and it’s Atlanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson.

Hanson is 4-0 in seven starts with a 2.85 ERA and 25 strikeouts in 41 innings for the Braves this season.

The remainder of the 10-card Red Hot Rookies set will be announced throughout the season. Each Series 2 hobby box includes one of the redemption cards.

The first Red Hot Rookie of the year was New York Mets outfielder Fernando Martinez. No. 2 was Chicago White Sox infielder Gordon Beckham – with 10 percent of the cards coming autographed. The third card was Pittsburgh Pirates  outfielder Andrew McCutchen.

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.

Photo of the day

POTD

Sports Illustrated‘s David Bergman snapped this photo behind the scenes at the MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday in St. Louis. President Barack Obama signed more than a dozen baseballs while meeting the AL and NL All-Stars, but this batch was for the umpires, according to Bergman.

Press Pass adds to its promotions at the National

Press Pass has announced its popular box redemption programs for football and NASCAR collectors at this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland later this month.

Collectors who purchase a hobby box of 2009 Press Pass Eclipse, Premium, or Stealth NASCAR trading cards from a dealer at the show can bring the box to the Press Pass booth and open the box with a Press Pass representative to discuss the product.  Afterward, the collector will receive a pack that will contain one autograph or dual memorabilia card from a variety of drivers such as Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards and Mark Martin.

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Brock Lesnar Gets Revenge, Collectors Get No Certified Autos

LesnarDebut

UFC Heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar defended his title against Frank Mir in the main event of the ballyhooed UFC 100 pay per view Saturday, doing so with revenge on his mind and zero certified autographs on his checklist.

The former World Wrestling Entertainment phenomenon, who also tried his hand at the National Football League before entering mixed martial arts, avenged the only loss of his five-fight MMA career in brutal fashion with a second-round TKO.

Lesnar, arguably the most decorated crossover athlete in trading card history, has appeared on 54 licensed trading cards across three major organizations – the WWE, the NFL and now the UFC. Yet his first certified autograph, a card that most certainly would rank as a product-making coup driving sales and upward price guide values, remains the bane of many a product developer’s existence.

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Panini Larry Bird Card Highlights National Promo

bird_NTL

Panini America is combining the best of all its worlds – football, basketball and Americana – to produce a wrapper redemption set for the 30th National Sports Collectors Convention that includes, among other goodies, the company’s first card of NBA legend Larry Bird.

Collectors who bring five unopened packs of 2009 Panini hobby product (or a full box of 2009 Panini retail product) to the Panini America booth during the show (July 29-August 2 in Cleveland) will receive a three-card pack, the potential contents of which are varied to say the least:

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