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Beckett 20 Questions on … the hits

 

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

If there’s one thing that’s on the minds of collectors besides “What’s new?” and “What’s it worth?” it’s the old standby of the last 15 or so years.

“How many hits?”

While the use of autographs and memorabilia cards in products have revolutionized the hobby, what we call hits seems to meander in meaning from person to person. To some, it’s just those autos and mem cards. To others, it might include cards of other types. The hits have included everything from some star shortstop’s autograph to a piece of Superman’s cape — and seemingly everything else, too.

For the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’re going to focus on “The Hits” — whatever they might be — and here is the latest batch of questions — some serious, some fun — that we’re curious about on the subject. Check them out … after the jump.

1. What do you consider a "hit" to be? (select all that apply)

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2. What's your favorite kind of hit?

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3. Which sport creates the best hits in terms of creativity and variety?

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4. Which of these "hits" has NOT been made

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5. Which athlete's scandal was the biggest hit to his cardboard values?

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6. Which of these hits would you want to see more of?

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7. Is a Sea Monkeys card a hit?

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8. Who is the best hitter on this list?

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9. Which sports card company (past or present) makes the best hits?

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10. What kind of "advanced" hit do you like the most?

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11. Which "other" sport has the coolest hits to you?

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12. Which type of autograph hits hardest in the hobby?

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13. Which not done type of hit would you want to see?

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14. Which of these Blake Street Bombers (known for big hits in the 1990s) does not have a certified autograph?

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15. What kind of product do you prefer most?

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16. Do you feel the "hits" focus of the last 15 or so years has been good for the hobby?

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17. Do you collect hits more than standard cards?

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18. Which hit is the weirdest?

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19. For $100, how many hits should a box include

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20. Do you see hits -- particularly autographs and memorabilia -- being as vital to the hobby in a decade?

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Have anything else to add? Tell us in the comments 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.

23 Comments

Obviously starting Show Your Hits was derived from the excitement of showing hits, but the innovation will have to be constant as long as they are around. Everyone will want bigger and better, but when does it end? I’m actually happy with redemptions, as long as, they’re for full-size items.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 12:09 pm | Permalink
chrisolds

Your creation, too, I might add.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 12:19 pm | Permalink
brett fry

For baseball need some unique game worn autos such as batting gloves,players caps,fielding gloves,bat donuts, eye black,shoes,locker plates

Posted January 17, 2013 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

One of the weirdest hit style card I ever saw was…… From Upper Deck Racing. If I remember correctly they did a card with O-rings from Nascar engines.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 12:48 pm | Permalink
zotster

As for question: 9. Which sports card company (past or present) makes the best hits?
In the Game should definitely be among the choices. They get my vote. I don’t even think they even make cards with single-color pieces any more (at least not as often as everyone else).

Also, FYI, those “Photo shoot-used sand” cards are very deceptive. I remember people at one time claiming it was sand actually brushed off the models’ bodies after a shoot, but if you look at the backs, it’s actually just some sand taken from a beach where a shoot was held – not necessarily from anywhere close to where the pictures were taken, or even from the same day (or even same year in some cases) – and certainly not brushed off anyone’s body.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 1:21 pm | Permalink
Richard

I consider a “hit” card to be a technical term.
When someone asks how many hits come in a box, they state what cards come out more than 1/pack .
A “case hit” is a card that comes out 1/case.

In more general terms, a “hit” now refers to something that makes it a “good thing” that you opened the
pack instead of buying the card. So the “value” of the card is greater than the cost of the pack.
You either got something you desired or you can recover your costs.

So a common auto from a $100 pack is terrible, but from a $5 pack its not bad.

When it comes to product type, I usually prefer something like Bowman Chrome, if priced right.
Rookies are key. 1996 Select Certified was, at the time, a huge hit, but as soon as people saw
there were no rookies the regular set dropped dragging down the parallels along with it.
I think the fact that its hard to at least see a potential recovery of your “investment” in a pack
that kills the product.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 1:42 pm | Permalink
kris

how about cheerleader mems in football (dont know if its been done or any of my ideas, but let me know if so) or how about example: homerun ball hits sign, seat etc. put mem of sign, seat in card date specific and #’d with batters auto. nascar maybe the start engine button. i got more if you want them…. lol

Posted January 17, 2013 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

A few of the questions didn’t have options I wanted, so here’s what I would fill in for “other”

2. What’s your favorite kind of hit?
[x] Sketch cards

3. Which sport creates the best hits in terms of creativity and variety?
[x] Star Wars Galaxy

6. Which of these hits would you want to see more of?
[x] Sketch cards

11. Which “other” sport has the coolest hits to you?
[x] Star Wars Galaxy

15. What kind of product do you prefer most?
[x] Affordable box with no hits

Posted January 17, 2013 at 3:11 pm | Permalink
chrisolds

I added sketch cards to a couple of the options. I’m not going to call Star Wars a sport, though! Haha.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 3:15 pm | Permalink
Jason

Autos, Mems and low-numbered cards / SSP cards are the highest on my list. Although the Mem has really crashed lately due to the fact they don’t come from any specific game, moment, etc.
Ultimately anything that causes me to take out a top-loader makes me happy!

And if I could create one I would like a champagne cork or even some champagne (if possible) that is directly from a locker room celebration.

Also, how about announcer ties. Or better yet the network jackets some of the guys used to wear back in the day. A piece of the patch from ABC Wide World of Sports (Jim McCay or Al Michaels) would be a huge hit in my opinion.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 4:06 pm | Permalink
Richard Hogenson

They need to put in hobby boxes redemption cards for Autograph Balls,bats,tires basketballs, footballs, jerseys and so on.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Permalink
James

By Jose Canseco’s scandals you mean fading into irrelevance and becoming a joke, then yes, “scandals” had a lot to do with his decreased card values.

Posted January 17, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Permalink
steve emerick

I still like the joy of assembling base sets.

started in 1971 and still going!

Posted January 17, 2013 at 5:56 pm | Permalink
Ron H.

A “HIT” is always exciting to pull weather out of a single pack purchase or a box of cards. Manufactures should be required to state the odds of pulling redemption cards in their products. These are not guareented to ever be delivered yet they promote many products knowing “HITS” are not in the cards per say but players are on boxes or promo materials. .
Yesterday after practice I had a few of the boys over to show off some of my collection which they had inquired about and asked the question of them. I had them each pick out a box of cards which they could open.
I showed them my signed caps from players in 2001 Fleer Legacy boxes, Greg Maddux Precious Metals Platinum card, many autos and anything unique. Their excitement building as they anticipated opening their boxes. Two had never opened a pack of cards before and both received redemption cards as “HITS”. Bummer!!

How about something to do with signed roster game cards, redemption cards for complete base sets, hats, helments, jerseys not auto’s. Manufactured patch cards were a complete turnoff as they said they are fakes.

Posted January 18, 2013 at 8:05 am | Permalink
Keith

When they get to the game used jock strap we know they will have hit rock bottom.

Posted January 18, 2013 at 11:11 am | Permalink
Geoff

The massive amount of jersey cards have destroyed the value of owning a game used piece! There is no need in making multiple parallels of the same jersey card, or putting thousands of the same player’s jersey in EVERY product. Now you can get on eBay and buy a jersey card that books for $25, for around $2-$4 (less than the cost of the pack it came from)!!! So what’s the point anymore? Topps and Panini need to cut back on mass jerseys, and make some “other versions” like used ball, cleats, shoelaces, etc, etc, instead of the same plain piece of jersey over and over. I’d like to see the 2002 Playoff “signing bonus” 8X10 jersey/auto’s make a comeback this year!

Posted January 18, 2013 at 8:23 pm | Permalink
Geoff

Also, Topps and Panini should start putting holes the size of a jersey in the “dummy blocks” to detour the pack searchers! Give the kids a chance people! Believe me, I’ve known how to do it since day one, but I don’t! Those guys are causing more retailers to cut back and/or stop carrying cards simply because everyone knows you’re not getting a “hit” at Walmart or Target unless you’re the first one to get to the box. So the retailer is stuck with a stack of packs that no one wants. Plus so many of them are amateur searchers, so the flex the packs leaving an ugly crease next to the relic.

Posted January 18, 2013 at 9:01 pm | Permalink
Js

I absolutely agree with Geoff, a hit use to be saving up your money and going to the local card shop and or auction and buying a pack of cards or even a box. The idiots that buy boxes from people online deserve what they get or those “Hot Packs”. Just like walmart and target these people are being scammed and loving it. For every 10,000 the seller sells you might get one good auto or something and as for boxes these people don’t realize that the person bought a case and got the hit and or top card to get and is unloading his garbage to your home. eBay has become so bad with the Schill bidding and extortion to get money back from the seller that its a clown circus. I just sold 18 Kaepernick “Hits” in 4 days and half the people didn’t pay. But anyway sorry about the rant, I have a question for everyone? What do you think a players Jersey number card should be called? A 1/1? Or numbered out of blah. A card they need to come out with is a draft day card where you win a redemption and get to go to the draft of the sport of your choice and get a true 1/1 card made with you and the person being drafted where you both even autograph it. And then the company makes you the card and it comes with the printing plates so you truly have a 1/1. I know that might sound like a keepsake and who would want your mug next to Andrew luck or whoever but that would be an amazing HIT. Last side note, I collected at the wrong era of cards late 80s and 90s when bam Morris and bathrobe means were great along with penny, shaq, frank Thomas and Griffey jr. WHAT THE HELL HAPPENS TO GRIFFEYS CARDS WHEN HE MAKES THE HOF HIS 2000 era autographed cards go up and his upperdeck 89 goes up .50?? But overall this was a fun thread to talk about and one last thing I agree again with whomever said it is crap that the make 1/999,1/799,1/599 you get the point of the same player so it’s like playing the stock market I invested a few grand in KAEPERNICK cards and now they doubled and tripled in value. It’s all luck not of the cards just the player and when you sell them. Have a great weekend everyone

Posted January 19, 2013 at 3:41 am | Permalink
Michael Pereira

The hobby needs to change two things. Please get rid of EVENT WORN PATCHES and NON-NUMBERED AUTOGRAPHS. We all know the manufactures make the players wear tons of jerseys while they sign cards or take action shots just so the can stock pile them for boring patch cards that mean nothing. And we all know that the manufactures have some players sign thousands of autos because the player fees for those players are cheap compared to more profiled players. How many autos of Jeff Fuller, Michael Egnew, Dwayne Allen, and Corey Fleener are out their. WE WILL NEVER KNOW BECAUSE THEY AREN’T NUMBERED SO WHILE ANDREW LUCK ONLY SIGNED 200 AUTOS FOR THE PRODUCT FLEENER SIGNED 1000. F…N HATE HATE HIT FILLERS. F….U MANUFACTURES.

Posted January 19, 2013 at 10:34 am | Permalink

The problem with the hits are that it’s an escalating war. You had autographs in the early 90s, then everyone started using them. Then game-used in the late 90s…and people put more of those in. Then it was guaranteed hits per box, and then a product sucked if it didn’t have it.

What this has caused as a glut of ‘junk’ hits because the card companies have to include 1) a ton of content and 2) high-value names, which means that the majority of names necessarily have to be cheaper.

Unfortunately, I don’t know how it’s going to end but it’s almost depressing, especially going through older product and comparing it to today.

Posted January 19, 2013 at 1:05 pm | Permalink
Jason

They are slowly making autographs worthless. If Michael Egnew had only 2 autographs per entire print run, his card would be worth thousands simply because there would be such a tiny supply for a much larger set collecting demand.

But they’ll do what they’ve always done, they’ll find a way to completely create a new era of card collecting after the current one burns out.

They need to stop printing on paper. Start printing on recyclable and sustainable materials for every card. Then the ‘rare’ inserts can be ‘old fashioned’ paper cards like the ones we all get today. Hopefully it will create a generation of collectors who look at ‘cardboard cards’ a rare treasure, boosting the collection values of all those here…

Posted January 19, 2013 at 5:37 pm | Permalink
aaron

I think there needs to be a bigger focus and emphasis on legible or readable autographs. Too many athletes/stars today have signatures taht are worthless – the classic example is the checkmark one player did in the Upper Deck Champs set – thats not a hit thats not an autograph. The card companies pay them to sign cards – make them earn the money.

Posted January 21, 2013 at 3:06 pm | Permalink
David Brewer

I would like to see Fingerprint Autograph cards

Posted January 27, 2013 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

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