Monthly Archives: August 2011

Voices from the 2011 NSCC: ‘What do you collect?’

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By Andrew Tolentino | BSCM Editor

Nearing the two-week mark since the 2011 National Sports Collectors Convention came to a close, I’m going through a withdrawal period … and I don’t think I’m alone here.

Reliving the experience through the “Voices from the Show” video series, I felt it would be selfish to hoard an extended National narrative — one final fix until next year — on my hard drive. Better yet, it’s something more meaningful than bonus footage.

Armed with a camera, and probably to the annoyance of many attendees, I prodded fellow show-goers with one simple question — What do you collect?

And I couldn’t be happier with each and every reaction.

Each response — spanning sports, players, generations and genres — adds to the rhythm of the hobby’s heartbeat. This is but a mere glimpse at what motivates the hobby core.

First look: 2011 Bowman Sterling baseball cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps unveiled the first looks and basic product information for 2011 Bowman Sterling on Thursday, giving collectors the first glimpses at the first cards of 2011 draft picks Trevor Bauer, Dante Bichette Jr. and more.

Sterling will pack two autographs, one Relic one Rookie Card and one prospect card in every pack when it arrives on Dec. 21.

Every six-pack box will include 12 autographs,  six USA Baseball or rookie Relics, one dual autograph limited to 299 or fewer copies as well as one dual-Relic box topper also limited to 299 or less.

New to the brand will be Canary Diamond 1/1s, while the typical array of Refractors (Red, Purple, Black, Gold and standard) will be included for the prospects autographs and for the dual autographs.

The USA Baseball presence in the product will include players from the Collegiate National and 18U National teams, while also in the set will be MLB Rookie Cards of Eric Hosmer, Dustin Ackley, Mike Moustakas and more.

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Box Busters: 2011 Sweet Spot football cards

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Join Beckett Football’s Dan Hitt and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a pair of 2011 Sweet Spot football boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Upper Deck unveils 2011 College Football Legends

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

By way of its Facebook page, Upper Deck recently delivered details concerning its 2011 College Football Legends line.

The California-based card company posted a 15-image gallery (with room to grow) and described the brand through configuration and college football figureheads. In what looks to be one of the best NCAA products of the season, College Football Legends highlights the history of the game  in late November.

Each 20-pack box (five cards per pack) offers a total of three hard-signed autographs — aptly autographed by legends like Troy Aikman, Dan Marino, Paul Hornung, John Elway, Barry Sanders and more. The set also features 26 cards showcasing Earl Campbell, Andre Ware, Cam Newton among other former Heisman Trophy winners.

Arriving in the midst of another NCAA season, the nostalgic brand is headlined by a number of autographed inserts, including … Read More »

Behold … the greatest baseball card ever made

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

If it seemed quiet around here this week, it’s because I’ve been neck-deep in the trenches researching items for stories to be found in the upcoming Sports Movies Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly.

It’s consisted of a lot of writing, a lot of emails, talking to Hollywood types on the phone about props for the movie Moneyball, watching Disney cartoons — you know, the usual kind of stuff. (Oh, and baseball cards, too — you’ll see the results soon.)

But I found a little bit of me-time on Monday evening while doing some heavy database searching of Beckett.com when I discovered what is quite possibly the greatest baseball card ever made. In nearly 25 years of collecting, I had never seen the card before. I had no clue that it even existed until I randomly discovered it in a search for “Bill Murray” on Beckett.com while compiling some highlight-worthy cards of actors who also have appeared on collectibles.

I did a double-take when I saw its listing.

“Nah, can’t be,” I said to myself. “That’s a pretty common name.”

There were other Bill Murrays to be found — a trainer who did a tour of duty down on the farm has cards, too — but I did some research and found that this really was a card of, well, you know who.

It’s a 1988 Salt Lake Trappers Team Issue card of Bill Murray — yes, that Bill Murray — if you can’t tell from the ever-so-slightly Murray-esque photo. (It just needs a bit more … how do I say it, disheveled flair?)

“That’s Carl SpacklerPeter Venkman,” I thought, shaking off mental cobwebs of a long day before some I-must-have-it adrenaline kicked in.

But here on Beckett.com, on card No. 29 of the 1988 Trappers set, he’s just Bill Murray, owner.

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Box Busters: 2011 Topps Lineage baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into a box of 2011 Topps Lineage baseball cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011 Topps Inception football cards

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Join Beckett Football’s Dan Hitt and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a pair of 2011 Topps Inception football cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011 Upper Deck All-time Greats basketball cards

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Join Beckett Basketball’s Chris Olds and Rob Springs as they rip into a pair of 2011 Upper Deck All-time Greats Basketball boxes in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Press Pass adds a little more fanfare to upcoming set

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Press Pass is upping the ante with a little more fanfare in its forthcoming high-end FanFare NASCAR set.

As in bonus packs good for autographs, 1/1s or even potentially tickets to an actual race.

The one-hit-per-pack, $20-per-pack product is scheduled to arrive on Aug. 31 and will now include a box-topper bonus pack.

Inside each bonus pack will be one of the following:

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There’s nothing Goofy about this piece of memorabilia

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Ok, so I just watched a cartoon at work — it’s research for our upcoming sports movie memorabilia issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly.

Why was I watching Walt Disney‘s 1942 short “How to Play Baseball” on YouTube?

To refresh my memory of the classic after I discovered how rare and how pricey the one piece of memorabilia tied to this short is.

What is it? How much is it worth? Find out … after the jump.

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Signing game remains same despite name change for Perfect Game All-American Classic

Tanner Rahier (left) and Jameis Winston sign their Bowman cards made by Topps for the Perfect Game All-American Classic during a signing session on Saturday in San Diego.

By Theo Chen | Special to Beckett Media

SAN DIEGO — If you’re looking for 2011 Bowman Aflac cards made by Topps, you won’t find any because after a five-year run, production has stopped.

Well, sort of.

The cards are still being produced, but longtime title sponsor Aflac was replaced in 2011 by Perfect Game USA, which bills itself as “Baseball’s Largest Scouting Service.”

Change, in fact, could be the theme for 2011 especially as it concerns baseball card collectors. The location of this afternoon’s Perfect Game All-American Classic – Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres and the 2009 and 2010 Aflac games — hasn’t changed, but almost everything else has.

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Legal filings piling up in the hobby …

A pair of lawsuits have been filed this month with card companies sparring for one reason or another.

First, Upper Deck International is suing Upper Deck over a $1 million loan from UDI to help settle the Konami lawsuit over counterfeit Yu-Gi-Oh! trading cards. According to the complaint, UDI presumed that the settlement would clear any legal entanglements with Konami for both companies. Meanwhile, according to this report, UD Chairman Richard McWilliam told Konami that UDI wasn’t interested in settling.

A second lawsuit filed this month has Topps suing Leaf for unauthorized use of images of its trading cards in Leaf’s 2011 Best of Baseball sales materials.

The product, which includes one re-purchased professionally graded card and one cut autograph card in every pack, had sales materials showcasing 16 non-Leaf creations with 11 of those being from Topps products. The most prominently displayed card is Topps’ most-iconic release, the 1952 Mickey Mantle. Only two cards shown on the sellsheet were new Leaf creations made for the product.

Leaf denied any wrongdoing to TMZ.com, which also reported that Topps warned Leaf about similar practices last year.

Ripping Retail: 2011 Topps Lineage baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds as he rips into a blaster box of 2011 Topps Lineage baseball cards in this latest Ripping Retail episode.

What are his first impressions? What will he find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011 TRISTAR TNA Signature Impact wrestling cards

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Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into a pair of 2011 TRISTAR TNA Signature Impact wrestling boxes in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011 TRISTAR Obak baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into a box of 2011 TRISTAR Obak baseball cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

At the National: Topps collector Q&A session

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps held a Q&A session with collectors during the National Sports Collectors Convention last week in Chicago where it addressed concerns and questions about everything from product inclusions to future plans.

Here’s Part 1 of a three-video series of highlights above, while the rest are below.

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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: 2011 Topps American Pie

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The Pie is back.

After nearly a decade since its last go, Topps has revived its American Pie line of cards as it unveiled the first glimpses at the non-sports set that will celebrate pop culture and personalities when it arrives on Dec. 14.

While the set was largely a baseball release with history and pop culture inside it in the past, this time American Pie is largely everything but sports — a 200-card base set of historic moments, places and people who helped defined the times. Each 24-pack hobby box will include three autograph or Relic cards as well as a buyback past Topps card.

There will be a parallel card or an insert in every pack with the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Fads and Fashions and Hirsute History (yep, notable hairstyles) among the insert sets.

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Auction to watch: Quad-Cut Camelot

By Andrew Tolentino | BSCM Editor

If you’re looking to kill some time between now and Aug. 21, Beckett Select just launched a particularly epic auction worth keeping an eye on.

Featuring four cut signatures from the Kennedy dynasty, the SP Legendary Camelot quad is currently open to a starting bid of $9,999.99. While this piece is a budget breaker for most, the historical significance of the four-card foldable has the potential to draw somebody with that kind of spending power.

Whether you’re just window shopping or looking to land John F. Kennedy, Jacqueline Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and Ted Kennedy in autograph form,  this one is a sight to behold before and after  it reaches five figures. Read More »

Behold 2011 Bowman Sterling Football

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

With a staple (2011 Topps) and its brand new brand Inception now hitting shelves, Topps football products are in full swing. Today’s announcement regarding the 2011 release of beloved Bowman Sterling adds even more steam to the season.

Set to release in mid December, 2011 Bowman Sterling Football features a five-card pack with two Rookie Cards, one autograph and two Relics. Six-pack boxes translate into 12 Rookie Cards, four autographs, two autograph Relics, 12 Relics and one dual Relic box topper. Case chasers can expect to find one dual autograph Relic in the eight-box load.

No stranger to shimmering cardboard, the set’s signature nuance comes in the form of  Pulsar Refractors.  Showcasing NFL stars on a refractive background of pulsating pixels, these cards are like snapshots from some futuristic nightlub — which isn’t necessarily a bad thing (take a closer look after the jump). Read More »

Voices from the show: The Complete Video Series

By Andrew Tolentino | Editor

In case you missed any of the ‘Voices from the show’ coverage from the 2011 National Sports Collectors Convention, we’ve assembled the entire series in one post here on Beckett.com. Feel free to park it just below the break to watch interviews from dealers, manufacturers, auction houses and other attendees from the show.

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A story about Beckett from a past National …

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Collector Nancy Skaggs stopped by the Beckett booth to tell a story about what she did to take up time while waiting on family members at the National several years ago and how she’ll always remember Beckett because of it. Check it out …

At The National: Ripping Panini wrapper redemption packs & more …

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Beckett Media’s Chris Olds caught up with another collector, Chris Gilmore, to rip a couple of boxes of Panini America products and get his hands on what were arguably the hottest wrapper redemption packs at the show. (You can say that based on what we found in just under 20 packs.)

What will they find inside their boxes of Century Collection and Totally Certified?

What will they land in their redemption packs? Watch and find out …

Voices from the show (Extended): Dennis Swain

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All the way from Anchorage, Alaska, dealer Dennis Swain explains why the eight-hour plane ride to Chicago was well his worth the time and trouble.

Box Busters: Ringside Boxing Round 2

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Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into a pair of Ringside Boxing Round 2 boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011-12 Victory hockey

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Join Beckett Hockey’s Tim Trout and Andrew Tolentino as they rip into a box of 2011-12 Victory hockey cards in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Ripping Retail Retro: 1981 Fleer baseball cards

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Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds continues his throwback pack-breaking madness as he rips five wax packs of 1981 Fleer baseball — the first Fleer release from the decade where baseball cards truly exploded onto the national consciousness — that were bought on the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention in this latest Ripping Retail video.

What will he find inside? Will he eat the 20-year-old gum?

Watch and find out …

Ripping Retail Retro: 1987 Fleer baseball cello packs

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Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds rips three cello packs of 1987 Fleer baseball — a classic release from the decade — bought on the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention in this latest Ripping Retail video.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out …

Voices from the show (Extended): Marcus Hall

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Collector and Second City conservatory student Marcus Hall stops by The National to discuss the show and open a box of Topps Triple Threads Football for the camera.

At the National: An Absolute SuperCollector

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Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds caught up with one Absolutely dedicated SuperCollector, Eric Kendrick, who came to the National Sports Collectors Convention on a mission …

What was he looking for? Can you help him finish a challenge?

Watch and find out …

First look: 2011-12 Panini Certified Hockey

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

The 2011-12 season will be here sooner than most collectors realize. It feels like we only just crowned the Boston Bruins the kings of the NHL, but it’s time to start preparing for the next season of cards.

Panini America has released the first details for 2011-12 Certified Hockey and one of the highlights for collectors is that the product won’t include any Rookie Card TBDs. What you see is what you’re going to get in Certified.

While there is no set release date set yet for Certified, Panini is bringing back many of pieces that made some of their first hockey products a hit. These items include Private Signings autographs with players such as Alex Ovechkin, Don Cherry, Ryan Miller and Felix Potvin. Fabrics of the Game die-cit cards, which will be a different design than last years, and Hot Boxes that will fall one in every eight-count inner case.

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Voices from the show (Extended): Carlos Torrez

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Panini America football brand  manager Carlos Torrez talks about the company’s presence at The National and explains how the NFL lockout has impacted the hobby.

Voices from the show (Extended): Michael Hattley

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Michael Hattley of Touchdown Treasures explains his passion for odd and unusual sports memorabilia — and offers his opinion on why The National should spread its wings to other cities throughout the country.

Second Moneyball teaser poster arrives … this time with more Hollywood

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

As we ramp up our research for the sports movies issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly arriving next month, I found it fitting there was a new discovery on the auction block this morning.

It’s the second teaser one-sheet poster for Moneyball, the Brad Pitt movie based on the book of the same name that is set to arrive in theaters on Sept. 23 (not long after our issue hits newsstands).  While the first teaser poster set a serious tone (and already sits in the living room of this Oakland A’s fan, which reminds me … I still need to find a frame), this one’s a bit more Hollywood as it showcases the movie’s leading man.

While it’s not a final poster — note there’s no release date noted — it’s not uncommon for this to happen. However, multiple posters are often reserved for larger releases, according to Wayne Woodward of MovieGoods.com, a Morrisville, N.C.-based movie memorabilia megadealer.

“Generally speaking, we see posters start to become available anywhere from two to six months before a movie comes out,” Woodward said. “Early ‘teaser’ posters are called advance posters and they’re the first to arrive on the scene (advance posters usually don’t have the credits information in smaller print at the poster bottom).

“The bigger a movie is, the more poster design variations are done and the earlier they come out,” he said. “For example, Harry Potter films are big business so posters for each film start coming out months in advance and with many different designs. A smaller film such as Hall Pass for example will only have one or two poster styles produced.”

We’ll have more on Moneyball closer to its release — and more on plenty of sports movies — but for now we want to know what you have to say about sports movies and their memorabilia … see the questions below.

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.


YOUR TAKE: WE WANT TO KNOW …

We’ll be focusing an upcoming issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly on sports movies and the various types of memorabilia found for some of them as well as the ways you can collect the reel-life stars that you see either in the theater or on DVD.

We want to know …

1. What are your favorite sports movies?

2. Do you have any favorite movie items made in the past?

3. What movie props would be dream items for you to own?

4. What might you want to read about for sports movies?

5. What movie tie-ins would you want trading card companies to try?

Leave us a comment or send me an email (address above) …the best responses and stories will be collected and published in the issue.

Game-used With a Cause: The 8D Network

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

There’s a new player in the game-used universe as the 8D Network launched earlier this year and made its unveiling official with a presence at the National Sports Collectors Convention last week in Chicago.

Its mission? To help athletes help their own personal causes through the sales of sports memorabilia — game-used and traditional merchandise — while offering fans a common place to find either causes or athletes who are aiming to help others all in one location. The group builds websites, markets them, helps foster the communities and aims to enhance an athlete’s image by getting him or her more involved with their cause and within that community.

The organization, which is an offshoot of the Game-Used Universe company, has several items coming up for auction this fall, including items from San Francisco Giants Pablo Sandoval and Andres Torres, while other athletes are close to coming on board. Items already set to be available this fall are game-used gloves and jerseys from Sandovall, a Josh Hamilton game-used and signed bat, Chris Chambliss‘ 1976 ALCS home run New York Yankees jersey and Vida Blue‘s 1971 MVP and Cy Young Awards.

We caught up with 8D Auction Director Ed Manguiat on the floor of The National to hear more about the organization — see the video interview above.

We’ll have more in a future issue of Beckett Baseball and/or Beckett Sports Card Monthly.

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.

Box Busters warm-up: 2011 Topps Inception Football

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Beckett Media’s Andrew Tolentino opens a box of 2011 Topps Inception Football — a pack within a box within a wrapper, maybe within a dream.