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Monthly Archives: June 2010

First Look: 2010 SPx Football

Upper Deck officials on Wednesday offered first glimpses of the history-making 2010 SPx Football release, the first in the brand’s 15-year history not to include NFL logos. Like all of the company’s 2010 football products, SPx will carry exclusive licensing from the Collegiate Licensing Company and an NFL Players license when it arrives in October.

The product includes a 235-card base set (including 35 Rookie Autographed Jersey cards and 50 Rookie Signatures) and is highlighted by Upper Deck’s unique Shadow Box insert cards (including some autographed versions) that will fall one per case.

All rookie autographs will be numbered to 599 or less.

According to UD officials, each box should deliver one Rookie Autographed Jersey card and up to three additional autograph or memorabilia cards per box.

Stay tuned to Beckett.com for additional information on this product.

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2010 Score: A Football Lover's Gallery

The retail-oriented, venerable entry-level gem known as Score Football is hitting store shelves this week. You can get our first look at the product here. But if you want a cool and exhaustive gallery full of fun, variety, updated images of the top rookies from the 2010 NFL Players Rookie Premiere and just a few autographs, well, keep reading . . .

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Stephen Strasburg is Topps’ sixth Finest Rookie Redemption

Topps revealed its sixth 2010 Finest Rookie Redemption card on Wednesday, and it’s Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg.

Topps previously announced Marlins outfielder Mike Stanton as No. 5, and that No. 4 was Reds pitcher Mike Leake. Topps’ other releases for the set include Cubs rookie Starlin Castro for rookie No. 3, while info on rookie No. 2 can be found here and rookie No. 1 can be found here.

After five big-league starts, Strasburg holds a 2-2 record with a 2.27 ERA. However, he has struck out 48 and walked seven in approximately 30 innings of work.

Through the rest of the season, Topps will announce the remainder of the players in the 10-card set.  Each Finest Master Box includes one Rookie Redemption, which also can be found as Blue Refractors (199 copies) and Gold Refractors (limited to 50).

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Card Gallery: 2010 Topps Allen & Ginter Relics and Autographs

The empty wrappers are piling up around the country — and beyond — as Topps‘ always-popular Allen & Ginter baseball card set has arrived.

Here’s a look at some of the autograph and memorabilia cards that collectors have found so far … after the jump.

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Signed Stephen Strasburg 1/1 baseball card heads to Auction House

The Red 1/1 autograph of Stephen Strasburg from 2010 Bowman struck out on eBay and is now headed to an auction house.

Huggins & Scott Auctions, which is based in Silver Spring, Md., is working out a deal with the owner of the rare card to sell it in an upcoming auction, according to a story on NBCWashington.com.

The card neared the $1 million mark on eBay but the auction was halted during the weekend as the owner realized that bogus bids were piling up.

Once the deal to sell is signed, the bidding will start at $9,000 and run through the latter half of July.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

So, have you landed an Allen & Ginter Strasburg card yet?

Update: At least one copy of the card has been found — a collector pulled one from a box at Odyssey Cards & Comics in Katy, Texas. By 2:45 p.m., there were just three on eBay.

By CHRIS OLDS | Beckett Baseball | COMMENTARY

There’s no question which cards would be hottest out of the gates as the fifth installment of Topps‘ popular Allen & Ginter baseball card set officially arrives today.

It’s the last-second addition of a Stephen Strasburg mini card — and a redemption card for an autograph.

Both were expected to be short-printed cards, at least the autograph, with the mini card being at least as tough to find as any of the other 350-plus one-per-pack inserts are. (Ever try building that set out of packs? It takes work.)

But, as it turns out, the mini is proving to be a much tougher find.

How tough?

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Box Busters: Star Wars Empire Strikes Back 3D

YouTube Preview Image

Beckett Media’s Keith Hower, Brian Fleischer and Bryan Hornbeck rip into a box of the latest Star Wars product from Topps in this rather Forceful edition of Box Busters.

What will they find?

Watch and find out …

Ubaldo Jimenez’s 2007 SuperFractor sells for $4,200

Another day, another big SuperFractor sale.

One day after the Stephen Strasburg SuperFractor from 2010 Bowman re-sold for $25,000, another 1/1 of a successful pitcher has sold.

This time, it’s a $4,200 copy of Ubaldo Jimenez‘s card from 2007.

“I bought it 2 1/2 years ago for much less,” said Tal Blanchard, who is from Colorado Springs, Colo. “I thought it deserved slightly more. I had $5,000 in mind, but I honestly have gotten a little disillusioned with collectibles lately. I am thinking about liquidating my entire collection in the next few months in favor of more outdoor/exercise pursuits. Just shifting my focus to different things. Still love baseball.”

Blanchard said that he has followed the pitcher since long before his current run at the history books. He is presently at 14-1 with a 1.83 ERA this season and has been on the upsurge in the hobby.

“I have always loved him since they brought him up at the end of ’07,” he said. “And I’m glad he finally has his control issues in check.”

And, like other collectors and those who own SuperFractors, he said he marveled at the Strasburg sales.

“Can’t believe the Strasburg card sold for that much more the second time around,” he said.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

First look: Stephen Strasburg’s 2010 Topps Allen & Ginter card

This year’s rendition of Allen & Ginter baseball cards from Topps arrives on Wednesday and this will be the card that everyone is seeking.

It’s Stephen Strasburg’s first packed-out MLB Rookie Card, though it won’t carry an RC designation because it’s only available as a mini insert card. (Inserts, even parallels of RCs, don’t get RC tags.)

Strasburg does not have a standard card in the set because of his late addition to the product.

Read more about Allen & Ginter by clicking here and clicking here for the Box Busters video.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Cut-Signature Gallery: Ringside Boxing, Sportkings Series D, Famous Fabrics

Officials from Creative Cardboard Concepts recently released an interest-piquing ensemble of cut-signature card images from its three newest products — Ringside Boxing (live last week), Sportkings Series D (live July 15) and Famous Fabrics Second Edition (due out in early August).

The images capture a stunning roster of autographs from some of the greatest names in the history of sports (such as Mickey Mantle, Jim Thorpe, Walter Johnson, John L. Sullivan) as well as civil rights pioneer Martin Luther King Jr.

Stay tuned to Beckett.com for additional information on all three of these products. But for now, enjoy this stunning gallery.

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Stephen Strasburg SuperFractor re-sells for $25,000

The Stephen Strasburg SuperFractor from 2010 Bowman has set yet another sales record.

The card sold for $25,000 after 75 bids on eBay Monday evening as Robert J. Power, opted to sell the card in the wake of the publicity that the since-removed 1/1 Red autograph generated on the auction block. (The Red autograph, the only card that can presently top the SuperFractor in significance, neared $1 million in bad bids before it the auction was ended this past weekend.)

Power’s auction ended Monday, topping the previous mark of $16,304 he paid for the card before Strasburg made his MLB debut earlier this month. The new sale sets a record for a SuperFractor.

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NHL Entry Draft Recap: Taylor Hall Steals The Spotlight

By Russ Cohen

LOS ANGELES – When it was all said and done, I – along with many others – had correctly predicted that Taylor Hall would be the first overall pick of the Edmonton Oilers during the 2010 NHL Entry Draft over the weekend.

The speedy forward was legitimately excited when his name was called his name and that’s part of what makes him so special. He had to know this was coming.

“I was so shocked,” Hall said. “I was shaking in my seat.”

While the excitement of the draft was taking place, Upper Deck was headlining a scaled-down NHL Draft collectibles show. There were a handful of top-notch vendors along with the card manufacturer.

Regarding the redemption card sets, Upper Deck produced two different six-card packs available during the course of the Draft while supplies lasted. Collectors had to rip open three packs of any 2009-10 Upper Deck NHL product (excluding Victory or Collector’s Choice brands) at the Upper Deck booth; in exchange, they got their choice of either six-card set.

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Some specifics on 2010 Topps Allen & Ginter baseball cards

We’re a couple days away from the official Allen & Ginter release date, but here are some basics about the set

Yes, Stephen Strasburg appears in the set — as a mini card only (card No. 401; presumed to be an SP) and as an autograph redemption.

The SPs in the set are card Nos. 301-350.

There are no autograph or Relic “groups” noted on boxes or packs this year.

Autographs are found one in every 40 packs, while Relics are 1:11. With no groups you can still presume that signed cards like Albert Pujols and Ryan Howard will be tougher pulls than the likes of Ross Ohlendorf and Clayton Kershaw. It’s simple economics based on the athletes’ costs for Topps to obtain their autographs.

Among the interesting inclusions on the autograph and Relic lists are Marvin Miller, who does not appear in the base set. Others of note on the autograph list include Jason Heyward, Evan Longoria, Alexei Ramirez, Tommy Hanson, David Blaine, Jordin Sparks, Regis Philbin, Sig Hansen, Shawn Johnson, Summer Sanders, Tony Hawk, Anne Donovan and Stuart Scott.

It’s interesting to note that David Wright has two mini framed Relics in Ginter — no other subject does.

See more after the jump …

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Were you a winner on Free Stuff Friday?

This past week’s Free Stuff Friday took a slightly different twist as we had you guys guess exactly how many sales of Stephen Strasburg‘s 2010 Bowman Chrome Prospects card had been tracked in the last month or so by Beckett Baseball.

We gave you a hint — it was a number between 1 and 5,000 — and if you guessed that number first (and answered a simple second question), the box, courtesy of GlobalSportsCards.com,  is yours.

Who won? Find out after the jump.

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Hobby Q&A: The latest Allen & Ginter codebreaker, Nick Jacoby

This year’s edition of Allen & Ginter is trickling into the marketplace in advance of its Wednesday release and 28-year-old Nick Jacoby is already at work examining the nuances of every card he can find, trying to discover the next big thing on cardboard.

And it’s got nothing to do with Stephen Strasburg.

He’s looking for clues on this year’s Ginter Code as he seeks to become the first repeat champion in the deciphering competition. Last year, he found the hidden messages on Ginter’s cards in less than a week after the popular baseball card set’s release and, as a result, appears on card No. 165 in this year’s set.

Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds caught up with him for this Q&A …

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Rojo Johnson gets another baseball card; Will Ferrell autographs coming, too

Rojo Johnson made a memorable debut for the Round Rock Express not long ago here in Texas, which meant he also would likely appear on a baseball card.

Now, he’s a Pacific Coast League Top Prospect.

The league unveiled its 36-card set with Johnson mixed in with names like Buster Posey, Madison Bumgarner, Brett Wallace, Logan Morrison and Jason Castro.

Will Ferrell, aka Rojo Johnson, authorized the card appearance as a way to further lend his support for Cancer for College, a charitable foundation that grants college scholarships to cancer survivors.

Later this year, 500 special Rojo Johnson cards — as well as 100 numbered cards signed by Ferrell — will be available for a donation on the foundation’s site.

Ferrell does not appear on a certified autograph card but has appeared on a sports card — a promo card of Jackie Moon made for his basketball movie, Semi-Pro.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

UD Signs Nine Top NBA Draft Picks for 2010-11 Ultimate Collection Basketball

AP Images

Upper Deck officials on Friday announced that they have signed nine of the top 16 picks from last night’s 2010 NBA Draft to appear in the late-September release of 2010-11 Ultimate Collection Basketball, an 81-card set featuring autographs from the likes of company spokesmen LeBron James and Michael Jordan as well as basketball legends such as Magic Johnson, Bill Russell, Larry Bird and Julius Erving.

Highlighting the slew of Thursday’s draft picks signed by Upper Deck are  Derrick Favors (No. 3 overall to the Nets), DeMarcus Cousins (No. 5 overall to the Kings), Ekpe Udoh (No. 6 overall to the Warriors), Greg Monroe (No. 7 overall to the Pistons), Gordon Heyward (No. 9 overall to the Jazz), Paul George (No. 10 overall to the Pacers), Cole Aldrich (No. 11 overall to the Hornets), Xavier Henry (No. 12 overall to the Grizzlies) and Luke Babbitt (No. 16 overall to the Timberwolves).

Stay tuned to Beckett.com for additional information on 2010-11 Ultimate Collection Basketball.

Panini America Honors Michael Jackson with New Card Set

Michael Jackson is dead.”

It was one of those “remember exactly where you were” bombshell bits of news that seemed somewhere between implausible and impossible. My parents had the John F. Kennedy assassination. I had this.

Completely different circumstances, I know, but both were tragic, shocking and left a heavy-hearted world to mourn the loss of a true American icon.  All this time later, there are those all over the globe grieving both monumental losses still.

Frankly, it doesn’t seem like an entire year has passed since the King of Pop passed away so unexpectedly at the age of 50 in his California home. But that’s the alarming revelation that stunned us all some 365 days ago.

In the hours, days, weeks and months that followed Jackson’s death, there were countless tributes paid to one of the greatest entertainers the world has ever known. And those tributes, in concert with the passage of time, have helped the forevermore memories – the music, the moves, the transcendent artistry – prevail.

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Get a closer look at the Stephen Strasburg SuperFractor

While it left Beckett Grading Services not long after filming on Wednesday, the Stephen Strasburg SuperFractor from 2010 Bowman did make one other stop.

A flatbed scanner.

Here’s a closer look at the $16,400 card — front and back — as it rests inside a BGS slab. This is the highest-resolution image available of the well talked-about card.

(Click on the images for a closer look – the back is after the jump.)

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Box Busters: 2010 Allen & Ginter baseball (with gallery)

We’ve busted the world’s first two boxes of 2010 Allen & Ginter baseball cards from Topps about a week before its official release and, as always, they were absolutely loaded with eccentric inclusions in the style of the 1880s tobacco set of “World’s Champions.”

How eccentric and unusual? Well, enough we broke our Box Busters video into two parts so you can soak it all up as Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer do the same.

And, because we know Allen & Ginter is a big, big deal to many of you, we have added a gallery of more than 40 cards found in the boxes so you can get a good look.

We’ll have more about the set later in the week.

See all of it after the jump.

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