Monthly Archives: November 2012

First look: 2012-13 Panini Preferred basketball

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

The sophomore season for Preferred will include something that many collectors prefer and that wasn’t around in its rookie year.

Rookie Cards.

Panini America unveiled the first looks at 2012-13 Panini Preferred on Friday and the biggest difference this season will be RCs as last year’s release didn’t include any first-time players.

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Upper Deck previews 2012 SP Game Used Golf

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Golf was lacking from the hobby for many years. However, Upper Deck is bringing it back in a big way.

The company released images of 2012 SP Game Used Golf featuring an autograph and a memorabilia card in every pack.

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NHLPA addresses Devante Smith-Pelly’s stamped autograph cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Some collectors realized many of Anaheim Ducks Devante Smith-Pelly’s recent autograph cards were stamped and not actually signed by the player.

The NHL Players Association learned of the mistake and is working with Smith-Pelly, Upper Deck and Panini to fix the issue.

“It turns out he did stamp the cards, it affects five products,” said Adam Larry, director of licensing for the NHLPA. “It was just an error in judgment. There wasn’t any bad intention on his behalf.”

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Steiner Sports auctions items for Sandy victims

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Brandon Steiner was fortunate enough not to be directly affected by Hurricane Sandy went it slammed into the northeast about a month ago.

However, the owner of Steiner Sports still felt it.

His brother lives in Breezy Point, a waterfront section of Queens leveled by the storm. Friends, cousins, employees all dealt with the aftermath with losing power, possessions and patience.

Steiner has been helping the best way he knows how. The company has held auctions to raise money for relief funds to for victims of the storm.

“I know there are a lot of people struggling,” Brandon Steiner said.

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Early analysis: 2012 Prime Cuts baseball checklist

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

With 2012 Prime Cuts arriving Friday from Panini America, we got our first glimpses at the final checklist for the high-end product. Here’s a notebook-style rundown look at some of what it includes, according to information released by the company.

Harper’s here …
The reigning National League Rookie of the Year, Bryce Harper, can be found on his first Panini memorabilia cards in Prime Cuts. He’ll have five Century Gold cards, a 1/1 Century Platinum, 49 Century Silver  and 99 standard jersey cards. … While the product is chock-full of retired and Hall of Fame players, there is a crop of rookie autographs and USA Baseball players in the product. Signed USA Baseball jerseys will be numbered out of 199, while some rookies will be numbered to 199 but most are out of 149. Nearly all other cards in the product are limited to 99 or fewer copies. … AL Rookie of the Year Mike Trout will have approximately 200 memorabilia cards and fewer than 20 autographs in Prime Cuts.

Batty for barrels
There will be 25 1/1 bat barrel cards to be found in the Barrel Up set, a lineup that includes current stars such as Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez, Prince Fielder, Miguel Cabrera and Matt Kemp alongside legends such as Stan Musial, Kirby Puckett, Rickey Henderson and Roberto Clemente.

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Upper Deck offers exclusive promos for Industry Summit

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Retailers signing up early for the 2013 Industry Summit will get three exclusive cards from Upper Deck.

The company has made cards commemorating the launch of UD Infinite, which can only be found as part of a credit card reward system.

The Industry Summit cards will feature Tiger Woods, Lebron James and Robert Griffin III, and are numbered to just 150 each. Retailers can expect them in early 2013 as an advanced gift for signing up for the Summit.

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Preview Gallery: 2012 Prime Cuts + win a box




By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

You’re not seeing things … Prime Cuts is back and it arrives tomorrow.

While 2011 Prime Cuts arrived in April, the 2012 version of the popular high-end brand arrives on Friday with a different configuration and a new look for the long-running brand’s second release under the Panini America umbrella.

This time around, it will include just two cards per pack — at least one autographed — for approximately $150.

We’ll have a Box Busters episode right here very soon, but be sure to check out a preview gallery — and find out how you can win a box — after the jump.

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Vin Scully’s first certified autograph in demand

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

One of the hotter baseball cards on the secondary market these days is one that’s in short supply and features a first-time signer who turns 85 years old today.

It’s the 2012 Panini Cooperstown Signatures card of Vin Scully, who has been the voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers longer than many of you out there have been alive — for the last 64 years.

Despite a career with many memorable calls and countless Hall of Fame inductions, including Cooperstown honors in 1982 (video below), there was one thing that Scully had never done before Panini America‘s Hall-focused product — sign an autograph for a card company. Because of that, demand for the 100 cards in the product has been Cooperstown-worthy.

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Box Busters Preview: 2012 Topps Triple Threads Football

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Beckett Football Editor Susan Lulgjuraj rips open a box of 2012 Topps Triple Threads Football.

Want to know what she got? Watch the video!

Free Price Wednesday: A look at Robert Griffin III’s Rookie Cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Robert Griffin III is one of the hottest players on cards right now.

The Washington Redskins rookie quarterback has lived up to the hype so far with his gun-and-run style of play.

With Free Price Wednesday upon us, here’s a great chance to look at RG3’s cards in the Online Price Guide.

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Ripping Retail: 2012 Topps Heritage WWE cards

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds as he rips into some 2012 Topps Heritage WWE packs in this latest edition of Ripping Retail.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2012-13 Totally Certified basketball

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Chris Olds and Rob Springs as they rip into a pair of 2012-13 Totally Certified boxes from Panini America in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2012-13 Panini Prizm basketball

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Chris Olds and Rob Springs as they rip into a pair of 2012-13 Panini Prizm boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2012 Topps Chrome football cards

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Join Beckett Football‘s Dan Hitt and Chris Olds as they rip into a pair of 2012 Topps Chrome boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Predicting the Baseball Hall of Fame vote … and you can cast your own ballot here


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

Will a time of reflection reflect our complicated times?

That’s the question we’ll get the answer to on Jan. 9, when the latest class of inductees into the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum will be unveiled.

This year’s Hall of Fame ballot arrived from the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on Wednesday with some of the game’s biggest names ever on the ballot — some being players whose statistics eclipsed many others in the record books as they defied age and just kept getting better as their careers progressed.

Now comes the biggest question … yes or no?

Well, if you examine the values of their key baseball cards today vs. a decade ago, you might already have an answer — at least one that reflects how the fans feel. Many values for stars with clouds of suspicion around them are shells of what they were in their prime. Here’s a look at the most-notable players on the ballot when it comes to cardboard. Also, be sure to submit your votes on the ballot below.

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Wil Wheaton auctions Star Trek card for charity

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Actor Wil Wheaton dug through boxes in his garage when he discovered an old signed Star Trek: The New Generation Card.

Wheaton live tweeted his findings, including the card, which many noticed there was something a bit odd.

Wheaton messed up the signature by writing through his face.

So how did he fix it?

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Topps Five Star Football box will also be a display case

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Five Star Baseball made its mark on the hobby last week, but the idea for the product originated with football.

Topps Five Star Football was a popular high-end release when it came out in 2010. While the next football installment isn’t scheduled to come out for another couple of months, Topps did release news on Five Star.

Collectors always look for ways to showcase their collections from buying frames to making their own displays.

With Five Star Football, Topps is taking out some of the hassle.

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Sporting News set hits auction block on Friday

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

An attic find will soon hit the auction block through Memory Lane Inc.

It’s a high-grade set of 1916 M101-5 blank-back cards, a 200-card release that includes the likes of Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner and Jim Thorpe. The cards, which were originally released as a marking promotion for The Sporting News, open on auction on Friday with bidding running until Dec. 15.

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Swiss hockey league cards to feature locked out NHL players

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

As more and more hockey players wind up overseas because of the NHL Lockout, card companies abroad have something new to work with.

The Swiss Hockey National League has benefitted from the lockout by having NHL stars join its teams.

The league includes players such as Chicago Blackhawks Patrick Kane, New York Rangers Rick Nash, New York Islanders John Tavares and Boston Bruins Tyler Seguin.

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Bryce Brown breaks out on Monday Night Football

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Sometimes Monday Morning Collector comes a bit too early, a reminder after last night’s football game.

In a battle between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Carolina Panthers on Monday Night Football, a rookie emerged that hadn’t been talked about since he left high school several years ago.

Bryce Brown, who started for the injured LeSean McCoy, set an Eagles rookie record with 178 yards on 19 carries. He added two touchdowns, but also had two fumbles in the 30-22 loss.

When a game like that happens, usually collectors scurry to find his cards. But really, the first question that came to mind “Did he have any cards?”

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ITG previews 2012-13 Heroes and Prospects

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

In The Game’s 2012-13 Heroes and Prospects set is coming together and the company released the first images today.

As the name says, there will be a focus on old and new players, but this time the entire prospect set will feature solely players from the Canadian Hockey League.

The CHL is the governing body of major junior hockey in Canada. It’s widely considered one of the best developmental leagues. That means collectors can expect find players with some great potential.

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Beckett 20 Questions … on 2012 Topps Five Star


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Since its high-end arrival earlier this month, 2012 Topps Five Star — the most expensive pack of Topps baseball cards ever made — has been one that’s generated more drool, more talk and more debate than most products this year.

While the initial wave of cards has been priced (click here for a Five Star checklist and OPG), the impact of this one arguably may not be known for some time. Could it spark more high-end to come? Could a flood of rarities now equal genuine scarcity later? Or, could it be a one-time experiment? Only time will tell.

For now — and for the next issue of Beckett Baseball where we’ll take a look at more from Five Star — here are 20 questions about the $500-per-pack product that we want to hear your answers for. How would you grade it? What did you like? What did you not like? Give us your take on each question — or add a comment if you want at the end.

1. Did you buy any 2012 Topps Five Star wax?

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See the remaining questions after the jump.

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Beckett to host JSA session in Dallas on Jan. 5

Beckett Grading Services will host James Spence Authentication for on-site autograph authentication at Beckett Media headquarters on Jan. 5 for collectors who are interested in professional grading or need items examined and/or slabbed.

The Saturday event is, of course, open to the public and begins at 11 a.m. and runs until 5 p.m. at the Beckett Media headquarters in Dallas, Texas.

It’s located at 4635 McEwen Road just off of Interstate 635.

Among the services available will be the recently added baseball encapsulation, card grading and encapsulation of JSA-approved items. — Chris Olds By The Numbers: 2012 Topps Five Star


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The first wave of auctions have ended, the numbers have been crunched. The ranges have been tabulated and the OPG has been posted.

The 2012 Topps Five Star baseball card set from Topps has arrived on with plenty of high-end punch — but keep in mind many of those rarities are too rare to price. Let’s take a look inside the numbers crunched by Beckett Baseball Senior Market Analyst Brian Fleischer  — and see even more — after the jump.

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Chasing the white whales in Triple Threads

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Between turkey, stuffing and Black Friday sales, Topps released 2012 Triple Threads Football last Friday.

For many, the anticipation for the high-end product was high. What names would be used for the 2012 Rookies? What combination would end up on cards together?

An interesting aspect of Triple Threads has been the White Whales, printing plates but with a different name.

Printing plate are collectible as 1-of-1 anyway, but giving it a name synonymous with elusiveness seems to add a different aspect.

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Your Turn (Beckett Baseball 83): 2012 Topps Five Star … would you buy if you could buy?

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

High-risk, high-reward.

That phrase sums up high-end wax boxes, and the latest example of that arrived recently with 2012 Topps Five Star.

In the next issue of Beckett Baseball, we’ll be looking at the ins and outs of the historic release from Topps — the most-expensive Topps baseball product ever made at $500 (or less) for a single pack.

We know it’s not for everybody, but we simple want to know … If you could buy it, would you buy it?  … Or, if you did, how did you do? (Click here for a Five Star checklist and OPG.)

Tell us in the comments below. Please include your name and location with your comment. We’ll run a selection of the best answers — perhaps the most-constructive ones —  in the next issue of Beckett Baseball.

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.

A look at Colin Kaepernick on cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

With Alex Smith becoming the player many thought he should have been, Colin Kaepernick wasn’t expected to get much playing time in San Francisco.

Unless …

Well, unless became a concussion followed by a quarterback controversy.

Kaepernick has started two weeks in a row for the 8-2-1 San Francisco 49ers. He had one great start followed by another good one, allowing the QB dilemma to hold for another week.

On Sunday, the second-year player completed 16-of-25 passes for 231 yards with a touchdown and an interception in a 31-21 win over the New Orleans Saints. The week before, he completed 16-of-23 passes for 243 yards and two TDs in a 32-7 win over Chicago.

Kaepernick is a player collectors should watch.

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First look: 2012-13 Panini basketball cards


By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

The flagship is back on the hardwood.

Panini America‘s basic Panini line of basketball cards hasn’t been seen since 2009-10 but it’s back for this season after the company unveiled the first glimpses of the brand on Monday.

Set to arrive in late-February, it will include a 300-card base set along with 60 rookie autographs and plenty more. Each 24-pack hobby box will include two autographs.

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Trout, Harper headline Topps Rookie All-Star team

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Eleven baseball players have been honored and next year their baseball cards will be enhanced.

Topps announced its 54th-annual Rookie All-Star Team on Monday and it includes both 2012 Rookies of the Year, Mike Trout and Bryce Harper, as well as the other four finalists for the award. Each of their 2013 baseball cards will include a Rookie All-Star trophy, a feature that regularly appeared on Topps cards since the first winners, the 1959 class that included Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, made their debuts in the 1960 Topps set.

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Week 12: Monday Morning Collector

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

It’s that time of the week again – looking at most of Week 12’s games to hand out the weekly awards, and perhaps find a few key players to put on your radar.

Veteran of the Week
Andre Johnson, WR, Houston Texans – Johnson was a strong contender for the award last week. However, we couldn’t pass up on him again after his performance in Houston’s 34-31 overtime win over Detroit on Thanksgiving.

Johnson had nine catches for 188 yards, after coming off a 273-yard game last week. His two-game mark is the best back-to-back yardage total by a WR in NFL history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

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Steiner auctions jerseys from Operation Hat Trick

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

ATLANTIC CITY | Hockey fans were loud and clear on Saturday night.

“We want hockey,” rang through the building at Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall. Operation Hat Trick was in effect, an exhibition game to raise money for victims of Hurricane Sandy.

While the fans attended for charity, many came just to get a feel for hockey again. The NHL has been in a lockout and games have been cancelled through mid-December, including the All-Star Festivities and the Winter Classic.

“I’m happy to have hockey back in my life,” said Jocelyn Maldonado, a Philadelphia Flyers fan. “I’m going to need more after this, much more”

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By the numbers: 2012 Topps Chrome Football

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Topps Chrome Football is one of the most popular products of the year. The 2012 product has seen tens of thousands of auctions on eBay.

As of Tuesday morning, there were already more than 47,000 closed auctions on eBay and purchases on the Beckett Marketplace causing Dan Hitt, a senior analyst at Beckett, to speculate that this is one of the most broken football card releases of all time.

Beckett has updated 2012 Topps Chrome Football in its Online Price Guide with HI and LOW values for Rookie Cards, parallels, autograph cards and more.

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Free Price Wednesday: Chris Kreider in Upper Deck Series 1 Hockey

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Prices for Upper Deck Series 1 Hockey has been updated in Beckett’s online pride guide.

The most popular cards from the set are the Young Guns and the UD Canvas Young Guns.

Seems like good timing to have Upper Deck in the system, especially with the return of Free Price Wednesday.

Every Wednesday, we’ll look at a popular card, player or set and show values from Beckett’s OPG.

One card that jumps out from the Young Guns subset is New York Rangers Chris Kreider. His Rookie Card currently has a value of $20-$40 in the Beckett OPG. Kreider’s canvas card jumps to $25-$50.

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NFL’s top rookies spreading holiday cheer

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Panini America is doing its part to spread holiday cheer this season. It got Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Trent Richardson to don Christmas hats for special holiday-themed memorabilia cards.

The only way to get these cards is in Panini’s Black Friday promotion.

The 2012 NFL rookies wore hats specific to each player’s team. Luck’s hat has a bit more blue in it while RG3’s hat has that Redskins maroon color.

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Autographed handprint cards coming to Triple Threads Football

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

There’s something new this week with 2012 Topps Triple Threads – oversized autographed handprint cards.

Not new to Topps, but certainly a new element in football that will be included in one of Topps’ high-end products.

“We put a special Cal Ripken “Touched by Greatness” card in Archives Baseball that created much buzz,” Topps said in a press release. “The card included Cal’s autograph as well an impression of his actual inked handprint. We are now ready to blow this idea up and go Prime Time with our NFL products.”

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