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Monthly Archives: August 2011

First look: 2011 Topps WWE Classics cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Topps unveiled its newest WWE trading card line on Tuesday, 2011 WWE Classics, a line that will be an all-foil series including an insert set dedicated solely to the forthcoming WrestleMania clash between John Cena and The Rock.

Scheduled to arrive in mid-December, Classics will consist of 90 base cards of Superstars, Legends and Divas, each found with gold parallels. The base set’s design is one that was tested in Topps’ 2011 Target baseball value boxes as Chrome bonus cards.

Here, we’ve traded The Mick for The Miz and gone with foilboard.

Some of the highlights from the base set’s checklist include card No. 1 being the debut for newcomer A.J., while, interestingly, also on the checklist is Eden Stiles, who has yet to make her TV debut on either Smackdown or Raw, and even a card for Batista.

There will be a 10-card Cena-Rock insert set, meanwhile the autograph and Relic checklists — 16 cards for each — are all TBDs at this time. There will be 24 packs per box and eight boxes per case when Classics arrives in hobby shops.

See more images from the set … after the jump.

Read More »

Box Busters: 2011 Panini Americana

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Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into a pair of 2011 Panini Americana boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Card Gallery: The still-elusive 1989 Major League Movie baseball card set

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

We’re coming down the home stretch in preparations for the Sports Movie Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly and we’re now at the point where we know what won’t be making the cut for print because of real estate.

You know, space.

While its story will briefly be told as part of my admitting I have one big-league obsession, I wanted to ensure that some recently received scans of what remains my biggest baseball card collecting nemesis — the 1989 Major League Movie set — could be seen by many.

It’s not an expensive set at all but it’s one that I have never seen in-person, let alone had a chance to own. It’s a real 11-card set of slightly over-sized photos featuring the stars of David S. Ward’s first baseball movie.

How obscure are they?

“I had lunch with [writer and director] David Ward a few years back and brought in a set,” said Miles Levy, who represents Corbin Bernsen aka Roger Dorn, “and he didn’t even own one.”

No wonder I can’t find one …

See all 11 cards — and learn a little more about the set — after the jump.

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Monday Matinee: The first video trading card?

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By Andrew Tolentino | BSCM Editor

“You’re goofy. Why don’t you have your mother buy you some Post Cereal and get your own tradin’ cards?”

Even reading from a script, the young actor in this ’60s-era commercial was in the right for being protective of his cereal-box treasures. Little did he know that the Mickey Mantle cutout from this set would be worth as much as $2,000 some 50-odd years later.

Little did we know that a talking trading card was also on its way.

Why Bull Durham is not my No. 1 baseball movie …

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

We’ve been busy prepping the Sports Movies Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, which means I’ve taken some time to re-watch a few memorable DVDs to soak up some of the nuances one last time before we put it all down on paper.

And there was one film — one that’s quite highly regarded — that I struggle with at times.

It’s Bull Durham.

You see, while the intermingling tale of Crash Davis, Nuke LaLoosh and Annie Savoy definitely is a classic, some of us look at sports films in different ways. As a memorabilia and card collector, I sometimes watch films to soak up details beyond story, greatness of performances and profanity-laced perfection found in many a memorable quote.

Instead, I watch them for accuracy — and to see what kinds of uniforms and equipment are used. (Yeah, I know, it’s weird … but you’ll see in the magazine one instance where it’s pretty cool. I hope … )

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Cardboard Commentary: 2011 Panini Americana autos

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

One of the reasons I look forward to non-sport, celebrity-laden sets such as 2011 Panini Americana each time they arrive is the fact that the boxes are just so full of surprises.

While some of this year’s pre-hyped additions are nowhere to be found — Michael J. Fox failed to make pack-out, for example, what would have been his first certified autograph card — there are always fun things to be found in sets that have so much variety in them because they simply aren’t like anything else.

Sometimes, they’re just one of a few cards — or no previous cards — for a signer. Sometimes it’s just the latest way to get an autograph that might have been tough in the past like Pamela Anderson here. (She’s had a couple previous Panini cards but this brand might be your best bet at landing one at a reasonable price.)

Here’s a rundown of cards already pulled from packs that caught my eye — with some one-liners and factoids where worthy. Read More »

Ripping Retail: Topps MLB & Panini NFL stickers

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Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds as he talks stickers and rips into new offerings from Topps in MLB and Panini America in the NFL in this rather sticky ediiton of Ripping Retail.

What will he say about stickers? What will he find inside the sticker packs? Will he actually stick them? Watch and find out …

Ripping Retail: Random packs from Target …

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds as he rips into some random packs of cards from Target in this latest episode of Ripping Retail.

What will he find? Watch and find out …

Weekly Highlights (Aug. 15 – Aug. 19)

First Pricing of the week

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Box Busters

First looks and sneak peeks of the week

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Question of the week

Auction action

This week in hobby departures, BILL MURRAY and more

Just for fun

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Box Busters: 2010-11 National Treasures basketball

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Join Beckett Basketball’s Chris Olds as he rips into a box of 2010-11 National Treasures basketball cards from Panini America in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out …

First look: 2011-12 UD NHL Black Diamond

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

Marching right along into the 2011-12 hockey season, Upper Deck leaked a sneak peek at its December-dropping NHL Black Diamond product.

Features like flashy Lustrous Rookies and appropriately named Championship rings cards carry brand appeal in nuance, while other signature elements shine with a new finish. The jersey cards seen here, for instance, offer something different for the material set builder.

We’re not quite clear on how many pairings there are, but these Capitals cards (when coupled) align to spell “Washington” — a simple, but handsome hobby puzzle.

Black Diamond comes five cards per pack, 24 packs per box (plus an advertised “bonus,” which means 25) and yields the following, on average … Read More »

First look: 2011 Gridiron Gear Football

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

Promising more Rookie Gridiron Gems than in previous years, Panini America‘s 2011 Gridiron Gear will arrive to the pleasure of pullers in mid November.

The manufacturer revealed information today regarding the influx of these now numbered-to-349, eight-per-case Rookie Cards and more about the upcoming release.

Through 18 packs, a box of 2011 Gridiron Gear should yield:

  • Two autographs limited to 349 or less
  • Two memorabilia cards numbered to 299 or less
  • 18 Rookie Cards
  • Nine other inserts or parallels Read More »

First look: 2012 Topps baseball (updated)

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps unveiled the design for its 2012 flagship baseball card set on Thursday — the first look at what the company promised would be a “game-changer” of a year for the company’s products.

It looks like it will first attempt that with gold.

New this year is the Golden Giveaway, a successor to the Diamond Giveaway, which will allow collectors to unlock, you guessed it, cards with gold embedded into them. Code cards call one every six packs and will have a chance to unlock Golden Moments die-cut cards, Chrome parallels of those cards and virtual coins that can add up to win prizes. Also to be found are autographed gold coin cards, which will be limited to just five copies apiece along with 1/1 gold-embedded Golden Moments die-cut Chromes.

Series 1 will include one autograph or Relic in every 36-pack hobby box when it arrives on Feb. 1, while each HTA Jumbo box will include autograph and two Relics in each.

Read More »

Box Busters: 2011 Topps football cards

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

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

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 …