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Monthly Archives: January 2010

Box Busters Preview Gallery: 2009 Playoff National Treasures Football

The Beckett Box Busters crew on Thursday afternoon drooled on, then nervously unveiled the contents of, two $400 boxes of 2009 Playoff National Treasures. You can catch the full results of the 18-card, $800 haul when the Box Busters episode is posted on Friday.

In the meantime, we thought a few sweet sneak peek pics would hold you over. While we don’t want to give away too much, we’re happy to report that each box delivered four autographs (and not all were stickers), three memorabilia cards, absolutely zero “scandal” cards and a duped Hall of Famer.

Stay tuned to Beckett.com on Friday to watch this must-see edition of Box Busters. Enjoy the images . . . now

— Tracy Hackler

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Box Busters: 2010 Press Pass Element Racing

The Beckett Racing team breaks one of the first boxes of 2010 Press Pass Element and unearths all manner of racing goodness, including Danica Patrick‘s first NASCAR  Rookie Card.

For high entertainment value, watch the video here.

LTL PRINTS isn't done with new wall graphics just yet …

Earlier today, we brought you news that Topps has partnered with LTL PRINTS to bring fans of the Garbage Pail Kids giant wall-sized graphics.

Well, they’re not done there.

Today, LTL is launching a line of graphics featuring memorable Topps baseball, football, basketball and hockey wrapper designs — those distinctive pieces of art that defined a product at a glance. (Well, at least until they’re opened.)

The wrappers span from the 1950s to the 1990s and are similar in prize and size to the Garbage Pail Kids graphics with prices starting at $14.95.

You can examine them all by clicking here and you can see more after the jump.

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Not a bad box of 2009 Topps Triple Threads

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It’s refreshing to see some real excitement out there when collectors open such high-end boxes like 2009 Topps Triple Threads.  And this box? Well, it’s got plenty inside. (Watch both packs … )

But it’s even more refreshing to see how ridiculously polite the kid is, too.

Preview Gallery: 2010 Press Pass 8 Seconds rodeo cards

Guilherme Marchi, the 2008 PBR world champion, shows off his autograph card. (Photograph courtesy of Press Pass.)

Press Pass8 Seconds pro rodeo card set, which features stars from the Professional Bull Riders circuit, arrives next week with a new look and feel for trading cards.

It’s not the first rodeo for the trading card industry — there have been other card sets  — but it might be the first one to include this many certified autographs and memorabilia cards. Collectors can expect a total of six per 24-pack hobby box. (See the promo set here and get more details about the product by clicking here.)

You can see a few more images — including the autograph card for Ty Murray — after the jump.

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Up next on Box Busters …

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We’ll let Tracy Hackler show you and tell you what’s up next for Beckett Media‘s always-beloved Box Busters … watch the video.

Preview gallery: 2010 Wheels Element Undiscovered Elements autographs

Press Pass2010 Wheels Element – aka the “going green” NASCAR set — arrives on Friday with the headline being the stock car trading card debut of Danica Patrick weeks before she takes the wheel for real in an ARCA race at Daytona International Speedway.

But there are more debuts to be found in Element besides the world’s most famous part-time Nationwide Series driver.

There will be Undiscovered Elements autographs of several young drivers to be found — like Leilani Munter, who signed the card above with a rather Elemental nickname.

Check ‘em out after the jump.

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Topps & LTL PRINTS bring Garbage Pail Kids to walls around world

Topps and Philadelphia-based startup company LTL PRINTS are joining forces to bring giant-sized Garbage Pail Kids wall graphics to the masses.

The news, expected to be announced Friday, means that nearly  80 memorable GPKs from the 1980s can adorn walls everywhere — memorable kids like Adam Bomb, Rappin’ Ron,  Half-Nelson can be taken to new heights.

Literally, new heights — as in 7 feet tall. The high-resolution graphics, which start at just $14.95, are available in as large as 74×52 inches.

“As kids growing up in the 1980s, my friends and I loved the first Garbage Pail Kids, and it is an absolute honor to bring the original Garbage Pail Kids artwork to an exciting new medium,” said Kendall Schoenrock, Co-Founder of LTL PRINTS. “Some incredibly talented artists worked on Garbage Pail Kids over the years.”

And they’re not done with this first hearty selection, either. Starting next month, there will be a new batch of GPKs available on a monthly basis.

See a sampling of GPK’s available after the jump or visit the LTL PRINTS store by clicking here.

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Something I found digging through a different collection

By CHRIS OLDS | Beckett Baseball Editor

Baseball card collectors know the joy of going through a dusty old box and finding something that they hadn’t seen in years, something that sparks a memory. They also know the joy of the cardboard equivalent of finding a $20 bill in their coat pocket — when a once-unknown player’s card is found in one of those boxes and it’s worth a lot more than they remembered.

Well, as a long-time collector, I’ve got plenty of baseball cards — but as a long-time writer about cards I’ve got a different collection of sorts, too. Some writers call them clips, while others call their past work a portfolio. But for me it’s just a different collection — one that’s unfortunately no more organized than any other in my possession.

But, like boxes of baseball cards, sometimes when you go digging around you find something that’s interesting, something that’s different or something that might make you cringe. It’s something that takes you back to a place in time — when things were perhaps a bit different than they are today.

My recent find isn’t one of those cringe-worthy items — but the tales of the last few years in the baseball world certainly have changed, making much of what I wrote impossible but ironic in some instances given the context of history.

It’s the column I wrote for The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News on the evening of Monday, May 13, 2002 — the evening my favorite baseball player, Jose Canseco, decided it was time to retire.

It’s a piece penned well before “performance-enhancing drugs” were a near-everyday part of the baseball vocabulary. It’s one penned before Canseco’s book, Juiced, and one from well before many an accusation, failed test or denial ever took place.

It was written well before Canseco got just six votes (or just 1.1 percent) on his Hall of Fame ballot, permanently leaving him for the Veterans Committee as the only option (and not a likely one) for consideration in Cooperstown.

You can read it all (unedited) — and more — after the jump …

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Preview Gallery: 2009-10 Panini Studio basketball cards

Panini America released a small batch of card images on Wednesday for what’s to be found in its 2009-10 Panini Studio basketball card set when it arrives in late February. (See our previous look at the set right here.)

The Heritage autographs appear to be signed on-card as are the Skylines autographs.

Check ‘em all out after the jump.

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The Hobby Rumor Mill … Jan. 20, 2010

“I love rumors! Facts can be so misleading, where rumors, true or false, are often revealing.”

Here’s a little something that should get the card collectors abuzz … a little something we’ll throw out there from time to time called The Hobby Rumor Mill.

Are all of the items legit? Maybe not, but even the ones we think are true haven’t yet been confirmed or officially unveiled. In some cases, the companies ain’t talking, either.

Until then, chew on these …

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Checklist: 2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition autograph print runs

With the official arrival of 2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition today from Panini America, we’ve scoured the checklist to get the answers to what many prospectors want — the quantities of cards released in the key autograph sets.

We haven’t listed them all — we’ll leave some mystery to those who hunt online — but you’ll find the basics after the jump.

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Checklist: 2009 Playoff National Treasures Souvenir Cuts

With the 2009 Playoff National Treasures football card set little over a week away from release, we’ve gotten a look at what the checklist will be packing.

It’s got plenty of what one would expect — but it’s also got a deep checklist of Souvenir Cuts autographs, a checklist that includes several important figures in U.S. history and pop culture as well as football greats like Sammy Baugh (above on his Century insert) and even coaching legends like Paul Brown, Paul “Bear” Bryant and Vince Lombardi.

See the Souvenir Cuts checklist after the jump.

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Beckett Baseball: We've got it covered — twice

The Best of 2009 issue of Beckett Baseball – or, really, The Best Issue since we’re offering our picks for the best of the decade — will be arriving in hobby shops soon with not one, but two covers.

The covers feature AL MVP Joe Mauer, the best catcher in baseball, and NL MVP Albert Pujols, the best hitter in baseball.

While the full slate of 2009 baseball products hasn’t even all arrived yet, we’ve tackled it all and made our selections.

Oh, did we mention we’re upping the frequency of Beckett Baseball again this year? We’re publishing 10 issues in 2010.

See both covers after the jump.

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The Face of SPx arrives on newsstands

Collectors who are regular readers here might recognize the little guy above, who is getting rather big play these days on the back cover of the latest issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly (No. 299).

He’s 3-year-old William Bucci and he’s The Face of SPx baseball cards from Upper Deck.

And to think … it could have been you.

How did that happen? Read all about it right here.

Product Preview: 2009-10 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection hockey cards

Upper Deck recently released the product breakdown and preview images for its 2009-10 Ultimate Collection hockey set, a higher-end product that packs one Rookie Card, one autograph and one memorabilia card in every four-card pack.

Collectors will find four patch cards per 15-box case as well as one autographed memorabilia card. Upper Deck also promises three top-level autographs in every case as well.

While collectors will have to wait until April 27 to get their hands on these cards, they can see a gallery of preview images after the jump.

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Preview Gallery: 2009-10 O-Pee-Chee Metal hockey cards

With 2009-10 O-Pee Chee Metal hockey cards set to arrive next week, we figured what better time than now to take a closer look at what the Upper Deck product will be packing.

Each 24-pack box will include 48 Metal parallels, two ‘Metal X’ parallels, one Top Draws Triple Jersey, 24 OPC Retro variations and eight OPC Update Rainbow parallels

Each 12-box case should include two OPC Metal autographs and two OPC Signatures or The Champions autograph cards.

Se e more images after the jump.

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Upper Deck explores NFL's Legacy with new football card set

Upper Deck will examine the origins and past stars as well as celebrate today’s NFL in a new football card set that will arrive in May called Legacy Collection.

The standard set will consist of 100 Immortals, 100 Veterans and 100 rookies with each subset printed on differing stock. The Immortals will be printed on clay-coat cardboard, while the rookies will appear on foil board. The veterans will be standard cards.

Each 24-pack box will include four autographs or memorabilia cards with one of the cards being a single-piece or dual-piece numbered patch card.
Every pack will include some type of insert card from a lineup that includes NFL Legacy, Foundations, Franchise Legacy, Past Meets Present and the UD Wire Photos insert sets. The Wire Photos set emulates the printouts that newspapers and magazines used for years if they subscribed to photo services like The Associated Press.

The 200-card AFL/NFL Legacy set will highlight the 40th Anniversary of the AFL/NFL Merger as an insert that will be found across all Upper Deck football brands. The line will include autograph and memorabilia cards as well.

See a full gallery after the jump.

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Panini releases 2009 Playoff Contenders College Rookie Tickets short-print list

Panini America released the  list of short-printed College Rookie Tickets cards from its 2009 Contenders football set on Monday.

See them all after the jump.

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500 Home Runs: A club forever changed


Once upon a time, the 500 Home Run Club truly was an elite group of baseball players, a small number of sluggers assured of immortality in the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.

Today, its exploding ranks carry much more than an air of greatness — it also carries an air of suspicion.

Entering the 1993 season, there were a mere 14 members of the club in nearly 125 years of baseball — that’s what my once-trusty third edition of Total Baseball says. (Remember the heyday of that relic? Some of you do.) It’s a list topped by Hank Aaron followed by Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Harmon Killebrew, Reggie Jackson, Mike Schmidt, Mickey Mantle, Jimmie Foxx, Willie McCovey, Ted Williams, Ernie Banks, Eddie Mathews and, ending the list, Mel Ott at 511.

Barry Bonds was nowhere to be found among the top 100 sluggers in MLB history with just 196 home runs for his career.

Oh, how times have changed.

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Bears DE and former Clemson star Gaines Adams dead at 26

Gaines Adams, a third-year defensive end for the Chicago Bears and former first-round draft pick, died on Sunday. He was 26.

Adams, a former Tampa Bay Bucs and Clemson football standout, died from cardiac arrest possibly linked to an enlarged heart.

The fourth overall pick in 2007, Adams appears on a total of 841 football cards, just 35 of those tagged as Rookie Cards in the Beckett.com database.

In all, Adams signed for 334 different certified autograph cards and has 278 different memorabilia cards. His most expensive autographed cards check in at $80 apiece (one being his 2007 Leaf Certified Materials Mirror Gold Materials #206, which is limited to 25 copies), while his most-expensive rookie cards (2007 Playoff National Treasures #112 JSY AU RC and 2007 Donruss Threads #280 AU RC) are $50.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Graded Card Investor. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

Panini releases Playoff Contenders Football SP list

Panini America released the list of short-printed Rookie Cards found in 2009 Playoff Contenders Football on Friday.

See the list after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition baseball cards

Join Beckett Media’s Tracy Hackler, Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into a pair of 2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition baseball boxes in this piping hot same-day edition of Box Busters.

Each 20-pack hobby box from Panini America contains at least six autographed cards, while one in every five boxes is a Hot Box that contains 10 autographs and one game-used memorabilia card. (Yes, we know that’s every other pack, not every pack.)

What will they find inside? Click here to find out.

Product preview: 2010 Bowman baseball cards

Topps released the basic product information and preview images for its 2010 Bowman baseball card set on Friday afternoon, a set that will mark the cardboard debut of No. 1 overall draft pick Stephen Strasburg in a Washington Nationals uniform.

Scheduled to arrive May 10, the set will include 110 prospect cards and there will be one autographed Chrome card (no sticker autographs) per 24-pack hobby box. Each 10-pack HTA Jumbo box will include three autographs.

There will be 220 cards in the basic set — all with Printing Plates, Red, Orange, Blue and Gold parallels as in past years — while there will be 110 prospects found with standard Bowman and Chrome  cards. These, too, will have the standard range of parallels.

The Bowman Chrome Autograph checklist includes 32 players — 10 Autographed Rookie Card variations and 22 Autographed Prospects — all with the typical parallels.

See images and the full preliminary checklist after the jump.

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Upper Deck unveils football rookie redemption program

Upper Deck has a new wrapper-redemption program coming next month that will put cards of top NFL rookies into collectors’ hands.

The company unveiled its Own the Rookies program on Friday, which will give the cards to collectors who buy $10 or more in Upper Deck football packs at their nearby Diamond Dealer hobby shop beginning in February.

The first 10 players who took Upper Deck’s Rookie of the Week honors will be on the checklist — a crop that includes Mark Sanchez, Matt Stafford and Percy Harvin among others.

See a few more cards from the set after the jump.

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