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Monthly Archives: January 2012

The BSCM Art Issue: One sketch card artist that you must absolutely see to believe

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We’re prepping this year’s Art Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly and one of the features in the issue set to arrive next month will be my picks at 10 artists who are changing the game when it comes to sketch cards.

You know, those one-of-a-kind pieces of art found on a 2.5- by 3.5- inch canvas — real art commissioned by card companies for you to find in packs.

Picking 10 is much easier said than done but one absolutely stands out from the pack — and we’re not just talking sports artists here. Check out the video above for the creation of a single sketch card by Los Angeles-based artist NAR! … it’s unreal, yet as real as it gets.

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 releases details on Gold Rush wrapper redemption

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Ok, all you cardboard 49ers … the 2012 Topps Gold Rush rules have been declared.

Eight days before the arrival of its flagship baseball card set for 2012, Topps has unveiled the details of its Gold Rush wrapper redemption program, and it’s one that won’t last long.

For every 50 hobby wrappers — or 14 HTA jumbo wrappers — that a collector sends in to the company, they will receive a five-card pack of Gold Rush cards.

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BIG INK, BIG BUCKS: Blowout Cards’ Thomas Fish isn’t just serious about sports cards

A preview of an item in the upcoming Art Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

If you’ve ordered sports cards on the Internet, you probably bought them from him.

If you’ve been to a larger regional show or The National, you’ve probably seen him — a somewhat unassuming big guy with a shaved head and a goatee (or some two-day scruff) working with his team in a gray Blowoutcards.com T-shirt and pair of shorts.

But what you may not know about Thomas Fish — one of the card industry’s leading dealers and leading marketers of the hobby — is that he’s dead serious about something else, too.

Original comic book art. That’s his other hobby and an area of investment — and it’s a business that’s booming.

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Panini America offers wrapper redemptions at NHL All-Star Game

 

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

Hockey fans lucky enough to make it to Ottawa for the NHL All-Star festivities this week, will be in for a treat. Panini America is offering cards at the event through a wrapper redemption.

Panini has created base cards, autographs, memorabilia and special patch cards made just for the All-Star Game.

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Short-printed Albert Pujols & Jose Reyes cards set to arrive in 2012 Topps Series 1

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

As seen on the cover of the next issue of Beckett Baseball at the printer right now, Topps will be including short-printed variation cards of Albert Pujols and Jose Reyes into packs of 2012 Topps Series 1 when it arrives on Feb. 1.

The company teased the cards on Monday, nine days before the arrival of the hobby’s most-collected set — and the same day as the arrival of the magazine.

This will be Pujols’ first card as a Los Angeles Angel, while Reyes will be shown with the Miami Marlins for the first time. Pujols will be on card No. 331, while Reyes will be on 332 — both will have different (and not short-printed) versions in Series 2.

What else will be found inside the packs?

Find the magazine on Feb. 1 … maybe some packs of Topps, too.

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.

Auction Watch: The sweet smell of socks-cess?

 

You might not think that a pair of stirrup socks would be worth one’s time at auction … but this dynamic duo proved that notion wrong last fall when they appeared on the auction block via Heritage Auctions.

What makes them so special? They were worn by New York Yankees legend Lou Gehrig.

While the use of the items is not known – the color scheme is not of the New York Yankees or with the other items that Heritage sold that were once in The Iron Horse’s possession – they still got the attention of 13 bidders … and sold for $8,962.50. — Chris Olds

Look for more items just like this every month in the new-look Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Auction Watch department.

 

Monday Morning Collector: Conference Championships

By Dan Hitt | Sports Data Publishing Manager

Every Monday morning throughout the regular season, we selected our rookie, veteran and breakout players of the week with a run down on why collectors should take notice. For the postseason we’ll select three standout players for each round. Here are our picks for the conference championship round of the 2011 NFL Playoffs. Read More »

A Look at Joe Paterno’s limited card legacy

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

As many continue to mourn and contemplate the loss of legendary Joe Paterno, the collecting world offers its cardboard tribute.

As many hobbyists may have already discovered, JoePa’s legacy on trading cards is a mere speck in comparison to his legacy at Penn State and beyond. Paterno — who died on Sunday at the age of 85 — had undoubtedly been blemished by the unspeakable abuse scandal. However, his 18-card hobby presence was too limited to see a significant dip in value.
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Ripping Retail: 2011 Press Pass Legends

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Join Chris Olds as he rips into a pack of 2011 Press Pass Legends racing in this latest installment of Ripping Retail.

What did he find inside? Watch and find out …

Panini, Topps create cards for NFLPA Collegiate Bowl participants

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

Some of the top college football players competed in the NFLPA Bowl on Saturday night. While the players are working toward the NFL Draft and received national exposure, they also received a memento to take home with them.

The players got their first licensed trading card.

Panini America and Topps spent the week at the Rose Bowl in California working with almost 100 athletes to get cards organized, snap pictures and making sure cards get signed as well.

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Panini readies Contenders for Feb. 22 release

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Panini America released the basic box breakdown information and additional preview images for its forthcoming 2011 Playoff Contenders baseball card set on Friday, the second of its MLBPA-approved products and the first to have a deeper MLB player presence inside.

Now scheduled to arrive on Feb. 22, Contenders will include six autographs per 24-pack box with two of those featuring 0n-card sigs. It also will include the first Panini signatures of spokesman Josh Hamilton and NL Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw.

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Box Busters: 2011-12 ITG Enforcers

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As pr0mised in our preview from earlier this afternoon, we leave you this weekend with a new episode of Box Busters featuring In The Game’s newly-released Enforcers product. Watch as Beckett Media’s Bryan Hornbeck and Andrew Tolentino tear into two pack/boxes.

Box Busters: 2011-12 Black Diamond

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Beckett Media’s Bryan Hornbeck and Andrew Tolentino tear into a box of 2011-12 Black Diamond hockey cards. How many diamonds did they dig? Watch and find out.

Box Busters Preview: 2011-12 ITG Enforcers

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

Fresh from a two-box break of In The Game’s newly-released Enforcers line, I’m naturally in the mood to pull up a few great hockey fights on YouTube. But before it gets gory,  and while the forthcoming Box Busters video finishes processing, here’s a quick look at what we just pulled from the somewhat controversial set:

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Beckett Basketball Poll: Blake Griffin or Derrick Rose … who you got?

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

In the next issue of Beckett Basketball, we’re going to ask a simple question that might not be so simple for collectors to answer.

We want to know what you think right here with a couple of online polls.

The main question … who do you collect, reigning league MVP Derrick Rose or reigning Rookie of the Year Blake Griffin?

Griffin or Rose: Who you got?

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Take the poll and let us know why you voted the way you did in the comments below …

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Basketball 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: 2012 Topps Tier One baseball cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps unveiled the basic product information and preview images for the sophomore release of Tier One on Thursday, a second installment of the high-end brand that will arrive in June.

Each pack will include three hits — one Crowd Pleaser autograph or one of three other options — a multi-signed autograph card, an autographed Relic or a cut signature. In addition, every pack will include one On The Rise autograph and a Relic numbered to 399 or fewer copies when it hits hobby shops on June 18.

Every fourth pack will include all of that and a bonus Relic, while every 12-pack case will include a Top Tier autograph.

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Topps answers eTopps cancellation questions

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

When Topps announced it was canceling its eTopps program last week, the brief statement left more questions than answers for collectors.

And judging by the reaction from collectors, it was a disappointing end — even if the value of most cards dwindled over the years.

Knowing that collectors still had many questions, Topps released a Q&A on its website Thursday in hopes to shed some light as to why the program was canceled and some of its future digital plans.

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Memory Lane Inc. begins massive break of key vintage baseball sets

 

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The breaking of a massive collection of high-grade vintage baseball cards has begun through Memory Lane Inc. with more than 4,000 key cards from baseball’s golden years available to collectors.

Believed to be one of the biggest offerings ever made at one time, the Tustin, Calif.-based company will be handling sales of everything from tobacco cards of the early 1900s to high-grade rarities from the 1950s and 1960s. All of the cards have been graded by PSA and were amassed as sets through years of collecting from one serious fan of the game. (The first portion of the haul can be viewed by clicking here.)

The second-year Mickey Mantle Bowman card above, for example, carries a $16,500, pricetag and is just one of 11 cards to be slabbed a PSA 9 — only two cards have ever graded higher.

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Mr. Hockey is back In The Game

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

Howe about that?

Adding allure to its upcoming Heroes & Prospects release, In The Game revealed that a certain Gordie Howe will be making a long-awaited return to the company’s 2012 product lineup.

“It has been several years since Mr. Howe was prominently featured as part of In The Game’s products and we are incredibly pleased to be working with him once again,” explained ITG President Dr. Brian Price. “Our working relationship goes back even farther than that and collectors will be pleased to have an opportunity to get more cards of one of hockey’s greatest icons.” Read More »

Japanese star Yu Darvish signs with Rangers (updated)

Jan. 18 Update: Darvish has signed a six-year $60-million deal, according to ESPN.

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

One of Japan’s most successful professional pitchers just might be on his way to Major League Baseball as the Texas Rangers have won the bidding rights for Yu Darvish of the NPB’s Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters and now have 30 days to sign him to a big-league deal.

In the past five seasons, the 6-foot-5 right-hander has compiled a 76-28 record with a 1.72 ERA and 1,083 strikeouts in 1,024-plus innings of work. The Rangers bid? A record $51.7 million — for the right to try and sign him.

His 2005 BBM Japanese Rookie Cards have been consistent sellers of late, but his hottest cards should already be recognizable to American collectors as he appears on nearly 80 cards made by Topps for the World Baseball Classic in its 2009 products.

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