Monthly Archives: February 2012

Gem Mint Jeremy Lin for the win?

By Andrew Tolentino | BSCM Editor

The New York City arm of Beckett Grading Services just slabbed a piece of Linsanity.

After landing the card, a Jeremy Lin 2010-11 National Treasures Century Materials Prime Signatures numbered to 25, collector Yair Rozmaryn turned it over to the New York office with the same hope that every grading customer has. In his case, the grade was high and Rozmaryn was soon holding a gem mint BGS 9.5 Lin (for the win).

Currently sitting in a safety deposit box, the card just went live in an eBay auction.

With the help of BGS New York’s Charles Stabile, we connected with the 29-year-old collector to pick his brain about the phenomenon and what he’s planning on doing with his Linsanely hot Rookie Card.

Read More »

First look: 2011 Limited baseball cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Panini America unveiled its newest forthcoming baseball card product under its MLBPA licensing deal on Thursday, and it’s one that a few collectors might remember from the Donruss days.

It’s Limited.

Set to arrive late next month, it will be branded as a 2011 product and include three autograph or memorabilia cards per pack with each 15-pack case including an average of 43 autographs, according to the company.

Read More »

Topps ups the ante in 2012 Topps Tribute with bonus Hank Aaron autos & more

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps Tribute was one of the surprise hits of 2011 with the high-end brand’s inclusions sparking a run on wax almost immediately after its release.

This year, Topps is upping the ante with some additional bonuses not previously unveiled.

The company announced on Thursday that every Tribute Autograph and Tribute Relic card will now come encased with a Tribute authentication sticker attached, but that’s not the real bonus for buyers of the brand.

Read More »

First look: 2012 Topps Chrome baseball cards

By Chris Olds |  Beckett Baseball Editor

If Bowman is the home of the Rookie Card, then Topps Chrome might be the home of the diecut card.

Topps unveiled the basic product information and preview images for2012 Topps Chrome on Wednesday, and there is not one but two new diecut insert sets to chase with autographed versions in tow, too.

Oh, and there will be two autographed cards per box as well as Refractor Hot Boxes to be chase, too — one in every three cases — when it arrives on Aug. 22.

Read More »

First impressions: 2012 Press Pass Total Memorabilia racing cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

Every once in a while, I get a quiet moment to sit back and bust a box of cards the old-fashioned way — without a camera on.

On Wednesday evening, in advance of our Box Busters video to come, I did just that with a box of 2012 Press Pass Total Memorabilia and a single word sums up my experience.


Read More »

Lin-sane leaps in hobby value

Yesterday this Jeremy Lin Rookie Card booked for a $100 high value. Today it is currently soaring at $1,000.


By Andrew Tolentino | BSCM Editor

Jeremy Lin. That about sums it up.

With a three-point dagger against Toronto last night, the Asian-American NBA sensation continued to convince fans and collectors that Linsanity is here to stay.

Over the weekend we ran a comprehensive story about what’s driving Lin’s recent rise in the hobby, but his trading card sales just won’t stop soaring. According to the latest Beckett market research study, Linsanity is leading to even higher Rookie Card prices and overall collecting value. Senior Market Analyst Rob Springs pointed to significant increases in the Beckett Online Price Guide  which should reflect updated pricing later this evening.

Be sure to check the OPG for an all-encompassing look at Lin’s jump in value. But until then, here are three cards that summarize the ongoing Linsanity saga. Read More »

2012 Leaf Metal Draft Football on the Horizon

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

Moving beyond the Super Bowl and toward the draft, football cards are coming full circle again.

Early season manufacturer Leaf Trading Cards recently unveiled more details about its forthcoming 2012 Leaf Metal Draft release — complete with Andrew Luck allure and a number of eye-catching upgrades. According to a company press release, the late-March arrival will hit shelves with substantial aesthetic changes and a lower price point.

Read More »

Your Turn: What’s your favorite autograph?

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We’re preparing this year’s edition of The Autograph Issue for Beckett Sports Card Monthly and want to know just one thing from you at the moment.

What’s your favorite autograph (and why)?

Maybe it’s a signed ball or a signed piece of scrap paper from a random meeting. Maybe it’s a certified autograph of a superstar — or maybe not even a sports autograph at all.

Tell us — and be sure to include your name and location, which will appear with your answer in the next issue.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Box Busters: 2011 Limited Football

YouTube Preview Image


Beckett Football‘s Dan Hitt and Andrew Tolentino tear into two eight-card packs of 2011 Limited Football. Watch to find out what they pulled in this low-quantity card  break.

Jeremy Lin’s Knicks debut will come in NBA Hoops

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

He’s the biggest name in the Big Apple right now, but Jeremy Lin doesn’t yet have a single basketball card showing him as a member of the New York Knicks.

Panini America is ready to change that.

Read More »

Whitney Houston’s legacy also seen on cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Six-time Grammy winning singer and film star Whitney Houston died on Saturday at age 48 leaving behind an immense legacy in pop culture.

And it’s a life that’s also reflected on trading cards.

Her performance of “The Star Spangled Banner” at the Super Bowl in 1991 was a memorable moment as the United States fought in the Gulf War, and it was captured on a 1991 Pro Set football card, No. 350. The card was a strong seller at the time — purely from its novelty as a card that was quite different from the others (along with some star power) — and it will likely be an item that gets attention in the wake of this evening’s news.

Read More »

Linsanity! Supply, demand, major market attention & more drive Jeremy Lin card craze


By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor | Commentary

“How’d your week go?” might be a simple question with a rather mundane answer for many of us, but for one NBA player it’s probably not describable.

For Jeremy Lin, it’s been a week of meteoric rises — from that of an unknown to the toast of The Big Apple and beyond.

How has that happened? With a simple four-game stretch of double-digit games for the struggling New York Knicks — unbeaten during this run — he’s become the star of the town, a new face on the NBA’s post-lockout landscape, a guy who is single-handedly selling cardboard (singles and wax), has jerseys selling so hot they’re going on back-order and national media buzzing about a player and a team that were largely unknown and forgotten not all that long ago.

Read More »

Box Busters & Contest: 2012 Essential Elvis

YouTube Preview Image

Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into a pair of 2012 Press Pass Essential Elvis packs in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? How can you win a box? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011 Panini Plates & Patches Football

YouTube Preview Image

Beckett Football’s Dan Hitt and Andrew Tolentino tear into two boxes of 2011 Panini Plates & Patches. Watch to find out what they pulled from the low-quantity, high-quality brand.

Box Busters: 2011 SP Authentic Football

YouTube Preview Image

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

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Saturday is National Hockey Card Day (Now on both sides of the border)

By Andrew Tolentino | Hockey Editor

For the fourth year in a row now, Upper Deck will kick off the Canadian National Hockey Card Day on Saturday, Feb. 11  with tons of exclusive giveaways and a special 16-card set. But this year, the other nation in North America, the United States, will also be included in the hobby holiday.

Find out how to participate on either side of  the border after the jump.

Read More »

Don’t go nuts: The Rally Squirrel might not be as rare as other 2012 Topps SPs

By Brian Fleischer | Beckett Baseball Senior Market Analyst | Analysis

The 2012 Topps Series 1 base set photo variation short-prints have been some the best selling cards in the hobby during the last 10 days. Topps inserted 22 different variations, including super rare Albert Pujols Angels and Jose Reyes Marlins cards.

But the card that has attracted the most attention has been Skip Schumaker‘s “Rally Squirrel” variation. The first auction for the card ended a little over a week ago at more than $600 and early sales were in the $150-$300 range.  The card has since settled in at $60-$120 and is selling roughly eight to 10 times better than any other short print in the base set, with the exception of the Pujols and Reyes cards.

Should it be? Is the Rally Squirrel and easy pull compared to the other short-printed variations? Our secondary market sales analysis indicates that it is.

Read More »

Willie Mays is Topps’ first Prime 9 player of 2012

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

You can “Say Hey” to this year’s HTA Prime 9 cards beginning today as Topps has announced the first player to be part of its hobby shop redemption card program.

It’s “The Say Hey Kid” Willie Mays.

All collectors who found a Week 1 redemption card in their 2012 Topps packs (two per hobby or HTA Jumbo box) can exchange their cards for the Mays  Chrome Refractor card seen here at a participating hobby shop.

Topps will announce the remaining nine Home Run Legends each Friday for the next eight weeks.

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

HTA Box Busters: A golden 2012 Topps jumbo box

YouTube Preview Image

Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds as he rips into an HTA jumbo box of 2012 Topps baseball cards in a rather golden episode of Box Busters.

What will he find inside? What makes this video so golden? Watch and find out …

Want to comment on the video? Find it at …

2011 Panini Playbook Football: The Secret Set

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

You know that one track that’s never mentioned, or just subtly hinted at in the liner notes? You think the music is over and you’re about to loop back to the first song, and then — BOOM! — another song!

Keep listening, collectors. Panini America‘s 2011 football product album has a bonus track — 2011 Panini Playbook.

Just as we thought we had seen a preview for the company’s National Treasures grand finale, a “high-end, booklet-based” encore is apparently upon us. Mysteriously teased in an early-January Panini photo gallery, the brand new brand has now been confirmed and slated for an April 4 release date.

Read More »

First Look: 2012 Bowman Platinum baseball

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The third time’s the charm — at least in some boxes — for Bowman Platinum.

Topps unveiled the basic product information and preview images for 2012 Bowman Platinum on Thursday, and new this year — the third for the brand — will be redemption cards good for full game-used items from the Arizona Fall League.

As in memorabilia pieces, game-used caps, game-used baseballs, bases and more. In all, there are 53 redemption cards to be found for items — including at least one for Bryce Harper.

Read More »

Behold: 2011 National Treasures Football

By Andrew Tolentino | Football Editor

Perhaps Panini‘s experience at football’s premiere event  (ahem … the freaking Super Bowl) took their gridiron game to the next level — or maybe this is just the latest and greatest National Treasures release.

The company recently released a jaw-dropping gallery featuring the premium pieces and dramatic details from the highest-of-high-end brand. To describe the forthcoming March 21 release with any word other than “Schwing!” would be more inappropriate than the phrase itself.

Read More »

Beam me up, Scotty: A number of James Doohan autos to hit the market

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

With all the different Star Trek series and movies, Trekkies have had their favorite characters over the years. But the original always seems to have a special place with fans even if they grew up watching Jean-Luc Picard running the show.

Rittenhouse is releasing the second series of Star Trek: The Next Generation trading cards at the end of February, but one of the most popular cards is cut autograph from James Doohan. That’s Scotty to all you non sci-fi nerds.

It’s unclear how many of Doohan’s cards will be in the set, but the picture released by Rittenhouse shows at least 30 cards.

Read More »

First look: 2011 Prime Cuts baseball

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Now that the licensing deal is out of the way, the cards can be seen.

Just hours after Panini America unveiled its licensing deal with the National Baseball Hall of Fame, it pulled back the curtain on the first product that will be utilizing those Hall of Famers to the Nth Degree.

And that’s Prime Cuts, which is scheduled to arrive on March 15.

Labeled as a 2011 product, this high-end line will include two autographs, two memorabilia cards and one additional auto or mem card in every pack.

Read More »

Jeremy Lin’s cards soar after impressive nights on the court

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

One of the hottest NBA players right now is a guy who didn’t get noticed by many scouts. He was usually found at the bottom of reports with nothing more than a line or two.

But over the span of two days, Jeremy Lin has excited basketball fans and card collectors. The secondary-market prices are on a crazy surge – especially for a player who has just one NBA start.

Read More »

Panini America signs licensing deal with National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Panini America has taken the next step toward covering all of Major League Baseball on its baseball cards as it signed a multi-year licensing deal with the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

Terms of the deal announced Wednesday were not disclosed but it starts immediately, allowing the Texas-based company the right to show all Hall inductees, use Hall of Fame trademarks and showcase artifact images in six baseball card sets per year. The first of those will be Prime Cuts, which arrives in March.

“The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum represents the greatest players and personalities the sport has ever known and this partnership will help us bring that level of unparalleled excellence to our products,” said Panini America CEO Mark Warsop. “The trading cards we make utilizing this license will no doubt be Hall of Fame worthy.”

Read More »

Panini Silhouettes are signed, sealed … and set to be delivered

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

Panini America‘s first NBA product of the 2011-12 card season is nearing completion — and one of the most important stages for one card type to be found has been completed.

The autographs — rather, the on-card autographs — and they can be found in 2011 Preferred.

One of the high-end product’s sets, Silhouettes, carry rather striking signed prime patch cards and they are one of the sets found in the product, which is comprised of cards echoing three past products in the company’s portfolio — Panini’s Choice (a nod to Cramer’s Choice from the Pacific days), Crown Royale Silhouettes and Donruss Signatures. In fact, it’s a “three-brand” product without “base” cards at all as every card in the set is autographed except for a selection of booklet cards.

Read More »

Hobby reality show, Ball Boys, coming to ABC

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

When you walk into a good card shop, it’s can be a place you might not want to leave because of what’s found inside, what walks in the door and the discussions that take place.

And that’s exactly what viewers will get with Ball Boys, a reality show revolving around a hobby shop set to premiere on ABC on March.

The scene for the show is Robbie’s First Base, a shop in Timonium, Md., a suburb of Baltimore, which has been in business since 1989. It’s owned by Robbie Davis Sr., who works with his 30-year-old son, Robbie Jr., along with employees Shaggy and Sweet Lou.  The first two episodes of the show, which is from the producers of Pawn Stars, will air beginning at 3 p.m. Eastern on March 24.

So, how did it all come about?

“One day, I was just sitting at my desk and the phone rang and the girl from Leftfield Pictures, the production company, asked me had I ever seen the show Pawn Stars,”  said Robbie Jr. on Monday. “And oddly enough I had just seen it for the first time the week before, and I told my dad about it. She asked if we would be interested in doing a reality show about sports memorabilia.

“[We were] amazed,” he said. “[It was a] very easy decision. Anytime a small business gets an opportunity like this, it’s a no-brainer.”

Read More »

Press Pass Offers Exclusive Andrew Luck Autographs

By Andrew Tolentino | Beckett Media

The Super Bowl is over. Eli Manning‘s Giants are officially a football dynasty, and fans will have to wait until late summer before the gridiron takes center stage again.

But that doesn’t mean football collectors are out of luck.  In fact, according to today’s announcement from Press Pass, it’s quite the opposite.

The card maker that has become famous for its pre-pro football cards just confirmed that Andrew Luck and a lineup of other 2012 top draft prospects will appear — with autographs — in a late-March product release. 2012 Press Pass Rookie Football is expected to hit shelves on March 21 with a number of big-name college players who will undoubtedly amp up a six-per-box autograph guarantee.

More importantly though, this particular product marks the first — and only — opportunity for collectors to land non NFL-licensed authentic autograph cards from the projected No. 1 pick. Lucky you.

Read More »

Box Busters: Revealing Beckett Sports Card Monthly’s Art Issue cover piece

YouTube Preview Image

Join Beckett Media’s Chris Olds and Andrew Tolentino as they get the first look at the artwork you will find on the cover of Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Art Issue when it arrives in hobby shops later this month.

First look: 2012 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

Bugs, meteorites and Mars.

That’s not your typical assortment of finds in a hobby box, but Goodwin Champions has never been typical with its hits. This is a product that started a craze with its Entomology Cards where actual bugs were inside shadow boxes.

This year’s Upper Deck Goodwin Champions brings back the entomology cards, but also collectors will have an opportunity to find rocks from meteorites and Mars, and memorabilia pieces from museums, including Civil War and Presidential memorabilia.

Read More »

The Martians are coming: Mars Attacks returns for 50th anniversary

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Contributing Editor

Remember when the Martians invaded Earth? With their huge heads and ginormous eyes encased in a glass helmet? Fans of the Mars Attacks series remember it all too well. But it’s been 50 years since the Topps science fiction trading card set came out.

Mars Attacks spawned dozens of merchandising options from comics to re-issued sets to toys. The series was so interesting and obscure, film director Tim Burton adapted the storyline into a movie in 1996.

It’s time again to remember when the Martians attacked. In conjunction with the 50-year anniversary Topps is releasing a commemorative set.

Read More »

Monday Morning Collector: The Super Bowl


By Dan Hitt | Sports Data Publishing Manager

Every Monday morning throughout the NFL 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 choices for the Super Bowl. Read More »

Box Busters & contest: 2012 Topps Baseball

YouTube Preview Image

Join Beckett Baseball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into a pair of 2012 Topps baseball boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? How can you win a hobby box? Watch & find out …


Hobby Q&A: Showcasing A Masterful NBA stash

YouTube Preview Image

Beckett Basketball’s Chris Olds caught up with a heavy collector of Flair Showcase Legacy cards (and more), Ted Yates, after he came to Dallas to get a massive haul of the cards authenticated and slabbed by Beckett Grading Services — a stash that includes two Michael Jordan Masterpiece 1/1 cards and 11 other rarities similar to it.

Check out what he had to say — and what he had to show off — in the video above.