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Monthly Archives: July 2011

Weekly Highlights (July 25 – July 29)

Last chance to make use of the MEGA-HUGE, IMPORTANT news of the week

First looks and sneak peeks of the week

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Box Busters

Q&A of the week

This week in National Sports Collectors Convention news

Auction action

Panini gives us a gander at 2011-12 Score Hockey

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

After a full year of being back on the ice, Panini’s hockey brands are ready for another round.

Wrapping up with high-end Dominion, the manufacturer will begin the new cycle with value-focused 2011-12 Score. Hockey fans will see the beginner level brand hit shelves in late October — just a few weeks after the revived Winnipeg Jets and the rest of the league takes off again.

Each 36-pack box brandishes high-percentage promises for completing the 500-card base set bolstered by the coveted Recollection Collection — a series of hard-signed cards bought back and autographed by legends like Mark Messier, Steve Yzerman, Patrick Roy and Ray Borque. Hits from current players can be found in the form of Hot Rookies and Score Signatures autographs.

Beyond the rare, but value-enhancing inclusions, 2011-12 Score features four familiar subsets … Read More »

Box Busters: 2011 In The Game Heroes & Prospects Baseball Hits Series 2

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into a pair of 2011 In The Game Heroes & Prospects Baseball Hits Series 2 boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Nicktoons invade MLB in upcoming video game

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The stars of Major League Baseball have a few new rookies to deal with — guys who are pretty well-known in their own right — in a forthcoming video game release.

Who?

SpongeBob Squarepants, Ren and Stimpy, Chum Chum and Danny Phantom to name a few.

These rookies — and more Nicktoons – will be competing against actual MLB players in actual MLB stadiums in 2K Play‘s Nicktoons MLB for the Xbox 360 with support for Kinect along with versions for the Wii and Nintendo DS. The game arrives on Sept. 13.

Just think, SpongeBob in Wrigley Field … and who wins in a showdown between him and Cliff Lee?

Read More »

Box Busters: 2011 Panini Rookies & Stars football

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Join Beckett Football’s Dan Hitt and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a box of 2011 Panini Rookies & Stars football cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Ripping Retail: Olds’ 2011 Topps Diamond Giveaway haul (so far)

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds as he opens his mail from a 2011 Topps Diamond Giveaway shipment. It wasn’t his first, but this one was loaded for reaction. Meanwhile, UPS made it extra special … and scenty!

What did he get? What made it more special? Watch and find out …

Box Busters Preview: 2011 Rookies & Stars Football

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor | Commentary

The first post-lockout product of the season, 2011 Rookies & Stars  Football is now live and leaving a lasting impression on hobby history.

Containing the usual blend of early studio-shot Rookie Cards, this year’s release in particular is also marked by a wide array of older-than-usual newcomer photography. Without the luxury of training camp snapshots and other pro uniform pictures, Panini’s preseason brand reflects the NFL year that almost wasn’t.

Delivered by a deep checklist featuring the incoming class in combine gear, the Rookie Cards in Rookies & Stars are arguable artifacts. Probably not reason for a spike in value, they serve to document the impact of the NFL lockout in the hobby.

With that being said, praise the pigskin! Football is back!

Below are some of the no-longer-locked-out sensations  from our forthcoming Box Busters break of 2011 Rookies & Stars. Read More »

USA Today cover story looks at loss of a collector

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Today’s issue of USA Today features a cover story that’s got quite a large collecting tie — the death of a man who was at home when a plane crashed two years ago, killing him and the 49 people on board.

As it turns out, he was a serious collector and all that’s largely left of the memories are bits and pieces of items in baggies — as they were once collected as debris and potential evidence in the accident’s investigation.

The story was posted Thursday night and you can read it here.

It’s worth a look.

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

COLLECTOR Box Busters: 2011 Bowman Platinum

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Beckett Baseball Editor Chris Olds stopped by Nick’s Sports Cards in Dallas and caught one collector ripping 2011 Bowman Platinum.

What will he find inside?

Watch and find out …

UD’s All-Time Greats packs plenty of, well, greats

By Chris Olds | Basketball Editor

Upper Deck‘s latest high-end line of college basketball cards arrives on Friday packing a player-centric configuration and some big names in every box of 2011 All-Time Greats.

As previously reported, the product will include a melded version of Letterman and UD Glass cards with a strong crop of autographs in the product, but the real allure is the autograph checklist that includes just 20 players.

That means there’s a pretty solid chance at finding a Michael Jordan or LeBron James autograph inside the boxes, which will contain just four cards. The catch? Each four-card box will contain three base cards and one autograph — each of the same player.

Read More »

Topps trumpets 2011 Triple Threads Football

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

Again causing a not-too-uncommon pre-weekend hobby frenzy, Topps unveiled details today about its 2011 Triple Threads Football brand.

Scheduled for a late-November arrival (thankfully, actually during an NFL season), the hobby exclusive set comes with a one-per-pack autograph guarantee and a handful of other choice chase factors.

Each pack (in this case, “mini box”), collectors can expect to land three numbered base cards, two numbered parallels, one Triple Relic card and one Triple Threads Unity Autograph single Relic card. Autographed Triple Relic Cards fall one per box and replace Triple Relics.

The low-quantity, high-quality box (comprised of two packs) should yield a total of four hits … Read More »

Box Busters Preview gallery: 2011 ITG Heroes & Prospects Hits Series 2

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you’re a fan of big hits and prospects — and that’s it — you just might find what you’re looking for in the second installment of In The Game‘s baseball line.

The next installment of ITG Heroes and Prospects Baseball Hits will include some impressive 1/1 patch cards when it arrives on Aug. 3 at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Chicago as well as some impressive cuts and a whole lot of prospects.

We should have our Box Busters boxes in hand on Friday — but here’s a teaser of what we’re not likely to pull … the biggest memorabilia hits of them all, a crop that includes the likes of this Hank Aaron Milwaukee Brewers patch and a whole lot more.

See more of the patches after the jump.

Read More »

Dave and Adam’s Card World celebrates 20 years and a whole lot more with its first ‘Hockey Fest’

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

Throwing its own birthday bash, major trading card dealer Dave and Adams Card World will celebrate 20 years of being in business  and a store opening with its first Hockey Fest.

Just in time to include its fourth store in Niagra Falls, N.Y., Dave and Adam’s late-summer fling is filled with promotions player signings and other perks.  From Aug. 11 – Aug. 14, all four of the company’s Buffalo area stores will collectively host the hockey hullabaloo.

“Buffalo and the Southern Ontario Region is home to passionate hockey fans and we wanted to celebrate our 20th anniversary along with the opening of our new store by bringing in some of the biggest names in hockey”, said D&A Card World CEO Adam Martin.

Some such names from the roster include legends Gordie Howe, Tony Esposito, Gilbert Perreault and legend in the making Steven Stamkos. All of whom will be signing various items on respective dates and at different locations:

  • Howe – Aug. 11 @ Tonawanda
  • Esposito – Aug. 12 @ Williamsville
  • Stamkos – Aug. 13 @ Orchard Park
  • Perreault – Aug. 14 @ Niagra Falls

Either staying parked at one store or making the four-day pilgrimage, collectors can take advantage of on-site services from the Upper Deck Authenticated crew and stock up on sale-marked merchandise. D&A announced that there will be “massive sales” on hockey cards, apparel as well as giveaway goodies from Upper Deck, Fathead and yours truly (no, not me specifically) Beckett Media. Read More »

Box Busters Warmup: 2011 Bowman Platinum

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Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds picked up a box of 2011 Bowman Platinum on Wednesday, its street date, in advance of our Box Busters episode to come.

What will he find inside? Will he land a Bryce Harper?

Watch and find out.

Box Busters: 2011 Topps Allen & Ginter Baseball

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into a pair of 2011 Topps Allen & Ginter boxes in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Well, one box over-delivers … but you’ll have to watch to find out how.

Comic Card Q&A: UD’s Bubby Johanson on ‘The Avengers: Kree-Skrull War’ Set

By Andrew Tolentino |  BSCM Editor

Having been on shelves for a full week now, Upper Deck’s The Avengers: Kree-Skrull War comic card set has had ample time to speak for itself. A unique endeavor that challenges the notion of how a comic book should be read, it’s the kind of product that’s bound to cause buzz in the Marvel Universe and beyond.

As a followup to last week’s preview and yesterday’s Box Busters video, we turned the mic to Upper Deck’s Marvel product manager Bubby Johanson for a Q&A on the comic book(s) told by way of trading cards. After the jump,  Johanson gives the lowdown on hit counts, free binders, production challenges, and what other superheroes (cough, Spiderman) might be found in future releases along these lines.

Read More »

Dem Bums take center stage in Memory Lane auction

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

A long-time collector of the Brooklyn Dodgers has decided to part ways with his 30-year stash of Dodger Blue treasures and Memory Lane Inc. will be the place for fans to look in its 2011 Summer Classics Auction which starts on Saturday and runs until Aug. 30.

The Tustin, Calif.-based auction house will have several items from the auction on display at the National Sports Collectors Convention next week. Among the highlights from the collection of Steve Ross are chairs from Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, items from Babe Ruth‘s brief turn as a Dodgers coach — including a team-signed ball in 1938 — and high-grade PSA-slabbed specimens of several key cards.

Read More »

Panini presents puck-lover prizes for the National

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

Fear not, National-going hockey collectors. There’s something special in store for you, too.

Panini recently stepped up to show off its event-exclusive hockey cards for those making the trek to next week’s National Sports Collectors Convention. Inside special silver packs found only at the show,  puck-inclined pullers can find autographed patch cards signed by several of the top 2010-11 NHL prospects.

Headlined by Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin and Jordan Eberle, the roster of NSCC-specific phenoms also includes …

Read More »

Box Busters: 2011 The Avengers: Kree-Skrull War

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Join Beckett Media’s Andrew Tolentino and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into a box of 2011 The Avengers: Kree-Skrull War trading cards from Upper Deck in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2010-11 Ultimate Collection hockey cards

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Join Beckett Media’s Tim Trout and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a pair of 2010-11 Ultimate Collection boxes in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps acquires digital currency card publisher

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps‘ focus on social media platforms, e-commerce and virtual trading cards online took another step on Tuesday as it announced the acquisition of GMG Entertainment, a leading publisher of “digital currency cards.”

“The Topps Company has found an ideal acquisition – GMG is a complementary business to our core and one that pivots us into the high-growth retail and digital convergence arena with partners such as Facebook,” said Topps CEO Ryan O’Hara in a prepared statement. “We are delighted to have Rob Goldberg as part of Topps’ senior management.  He is a pioneer in new technologies for new digital services delivered at retail and follows in the footsteps of 60 years of creating new products for Topps.”

Terms of the deal were not disclosed but GMG is part of an expanding market as the market for digital currency, according to Topps, is expected to top $7 billion during this year and double by 2014.

And what does GMG do? It creates digital currency cards sold at retail stores for online game, entertainment and social media sites.

“GMG is excited to join a global and forward-thinking business such as Topps,” said Goldberg, the CEO of GMG. “We are looking forward to joining the Topps family as we look to accelerate and grow the category and amplify both of our core businesses on a worldwide platform.”

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

First look: 2010-11 Elite Black Box basketball cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

The Black Box is Back — but this time it’s a brand and it’s in basketball.

Panini America unveiled its newest high-end product line for NBA cards on Monday with 2010-11 Elite Black Box Basketball, a high-end release that’s fast-tracked for an Aug. 31 release.

It will pack three autographed cards, two memorabilia card and two insert cards per box. Each memorabilia or autograph will be limited to 149 or fewer copies, while all inserts will be limited to no more than 99.

“We realize that by naming this product ‘Black Box’ we’re setting collector expectations really high as that name carries the biggest of big-ticket connotations with collectors,” said Panini America NBA Brand Manager David Porter in a prepared statement. “But based on the incredible content that we’ve injected into Black Box, I’m certain this is a product that will not just meet those expectations, but surpass them.”

Read More »

Bryce Harper headlines this week’s eTopps MiLB cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

He may be slumping, but it probably won’t hurt this one.

The first eTopps Minor League card of the most-watched Class AA player on the planet, Washington Nationals prospect Bryce Harper, was launched as an initial public offering today as part of the online portfolio trading card program.

A maximum of 1,499 copies of the 18-year-old Harrisburg Senators outfielder’s card will be made with each costing $8. Those who put in buys for the card will not know how many they received until the cards are allocated at a later date.

Harper is hitting .208 with zero home runs and just two RBI and 11 strikeouts in 16 games since he was promoted to AA.

This week’s other card is of St. Louis Cardinals pitching prospect Shelby Miller. A max of only 749 copies of that card will be made, each costing $3.50 apiece.

For more on the program, visit www.etopps.com.

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

Topps plans collector Q&A at The National

If you’re attending the National Sports Collectors Convention that begins next week in Chicago, then you just might have a chance to meet with the folks from Topps.

The company is planning a  Q&A session with 100 collectors next Thursday beginning at 4 p.m.  Those who want to attend need to stop by the Topps booth and reserve a seat as they will be handed out on a first-come, first-served basis.

The company also will give away prizes during the 90-minute session.

Box Busters: 2011 Press Pass Showcase racing cards

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Join Beckett Media’s Tim Trout and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a pair of 2011 Press Pass Showcase boxes in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …