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Monthly Archives: April 2013

Baseball card collector Tim Kane becomes a player for a day — with Nolan Ryan as his boss

Hall of Famer and Corpus Christi Hooks owner Nolan Ryan signs the contract of Tim Kane, making him an official member of the team on Thursday. Kane, a card collector, was a player for a day this week after winning Topps' Make Your Pro Debut contest.


By Josh Trudell | Contributing Editor

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas | The grin on Tim Kane’s face was matched only by the size of the “30″ on the back of his jersey.

Kane, winner of the Topps and Minor League Baseball “Make Your Pro Debut” contest, signed his one-­day contract with the Corpus Christi Hooks, the double-­A affiliate of the Houston Astros, on Thursday.

“This is an experience I know I’ll never forget, and my son and wife will never forget,” Kane, a Maryland police officer, said before signing his deal with team owner and Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan.

Meeting Ryan was the icing on a day that included a complete tour of Whataburger Field, a press conference to announce the signing, warming up and playing catch on the field with the Hooks players, and sitting in the dugout with his son, Peyton, for the first three innings of a game against the Frisco Roughriders.

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It’s a dirty job: Dave Hobrecht creates game-used art

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

If you’ve collected the last few years, you may have seen the work of California-based artist Dave Hobrecht in packs of cards such as National Chicle or his work on sketch cards.

Or, you might have seen his striking black-and-white pastel-and-charcoal pieces – but you haven’t seen his latest.

It’s game-used art.

What? It’s game-used – as in artwork with actual game-used dirt from MLB stadiums ground and mixed into his charcoal and pastel pieces – a sort of sepia-toned version of his previous pieces with a bit more to them.

We caught up with Hobrecht for this Q&A about his newest creations …

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Cards inspired him to take photos — and now his photos are on cards

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Imagine you spend your career in a profession that allows you to travel, attend sporting events and then get rewarded when the proof of your journey appears in, say,  Sports Illustrated.

That’s exactly what 41-year-old Kentucky-based photographer Jeff Moreland does — but SI doesn’t quite compare to one of the other fringe benefits.

“Honestly, the magazines are cool, but the cards have just been the biggest thrill for me,” he said. “I love Sports Illustrated, and seeing my images of Kentucky basketball, Bryce Harper and others on the pages has been great, but those cards are just on a different level. I still get a kick out of finding a new card that has one of my images on it, and as soon as I know a release date is out for a product, I’m on eBay searching for singles to buy that I’ve shot.”

When he’s not at his day job is a publisher for a newspaper group or shooting other sporting events, he’s a photographer for Topps — one of at least a dozen who regularly shoots NFL games for the company and whose work appears on your trading cards.

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Beckett Media seeks a few more card experts

So you think you know cards? Prove it!

Beckett Media is currently accepting resumes from candidates for the following positions:

– Price guide analysts
Beckett Grading Services card graders
– Grading sales representatives

Candidates should have a solid grasp of the card industry, including all sports and non-sports as well as vintage and modern. Knowledge of other collectibles areas — autographs, memorabilia, comics, coins, etc. — also is beneficial. Please submit a resume, cover letter and salary requirements to careers@beckett.com.

Beckett does not reply to every applicant; qualified candidates will be contacted via email with further information and need to be willing to relocate to Dallas-Fort Worth area.


For those interested in contributing to Beckett magazines via freelance opportunities, please send story pitches to editor Chris Olds at colds@beckett.com.

Box Busters: 2013 Topps Tribute baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2013 Topps Tribute in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2012-13 Fleer Retro hockey cards

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Dan Hitt and Chris Olds as they rip into a box of 2012-13 Fleer Retro in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

UPDATED: Upper Deck creates card for 7-year-old cancer patient

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Jack Hoffman has been part of the Nebraska football family  since last season – and he’s getting his first trading card.

The 7-year-old is battling pediatric brain cancer and grabbed attention earlier this month when he ran for a 69-yard touchdown in Nebraska’s spring game.

Upper Deck is going to create a “Rookie Card” for Hoffman, the company announced Tuesday. The cards won’t appear in packs, but will be blown up and signed by Hoffman and used for charitable purposes.

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First look: 2013 Legends of the Gridiron

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Leaf has cobbled together the autographs of many famous football icons for a new product.

The cut-autograph product – 2013 Legends of the Gridiron – will focus on Hall of Famers, superstars and Heisman Trophy winners.

Each box will contain just one encapsulated card in this very limited production run. Just 99 12-box cases will be produced of Legends of the Gridiron.

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First look: 2013 Topps Platinum Football

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Topps intends to make Platinum football cards shine this year with all its chrome.

The company announced 2013 Topps Platinum Football will be released in early September, with 20 packs per box with five cards in each pack.

The 150-card base set will feature 50 Rookie Cards. The Rookie Cards will feature several chrome parallels cards such as X-Fractor, Black, Gold, Red, BCA and Military Refractors, and a Superfractor and Printing Plates.

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Box Busters: 2012 Topps Valor & Turkey Red football

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Join Beckett Football‘s Dan Hitt and Chris Olds as they rip into 2012 Topps Valor as well as a pack of 2012 Topps Turkey Red in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

First look: 2012-13 Leaf Metal basketball cards (with checklist)

By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

Aiming to fill an apparent void in the “under-served basketball market,” Leaf Trading Cards unveiled 2012-13 Leaf Metal on Tuesday, and it’s a product it says has features which “all companies are sure to imitate once unveiled.”

The product will include one autograph and one insert card per pack and five packs per box when it arrives in May, featuring on-card autographs of stars from the past as well as a few from the present.

Among the signers will be Patrick Ewing (click here for OPG & checklist), the former Knicks star and Hall of Famer who simply doesn’t like signing. He has signed jumbo patch cards for this one. Ewing has just 18 certified autographs made in the past with the most-recent cards coming in 2003-04 Upper Deck products.

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BGS, COMC partnership will benefit Canadian collectors

Beckett Grading Services and Check Out My Cards are pleased to announce a new partnership.

COMC customers will be able to grade cards through Beckett using store credit starting April 17 – a help for Canadian customers looking for ways to alleviate shipping costs when it comes to grading.

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Rittenhouse previews Warehouse 13 Season Four trading cards


By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The newest season of Warehouse 13 is here – right in time with the announcement of the newest set of cards for the SyFy television show.

Rittenhouse Archives’ Warehouse 13 Season 4 Episodes 1 thru 10 will release on June 19. The premium packs will contain one autograph or autograph relic card, two relic cards, two episode cards and one Of Monsters and Men or Grand Design chase cards.

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Leaf introduces Matrix inserts

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Leaf announced an update to its Metal technology at The Industry Summit, but weren’t ready to reveal the results.

On Tuesday, Leaf unveiled Matrix, using etching combined with color to create a dynamic insert.

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Beckett Baseball’s Hot & Not (mid-April): Mets rookie Matt Harvey steals the show

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary & Opinion

With the MLB season’s first month half over, now’s the time to look at who’s hot and who’s not …


Matt Harvey — SP, New York Mets (Beckett checklist & OPG here)
3-0, 0.82 ERA with 25 Ks and six walks in 22 innings
Harvey is the poster boy for red-hot baseball cards this season with his start on Saturday en route to NL Player of the Week honors. His next start on Friday will be just his 14th in MLB and he’ll face a young pitcher many a collector may know, Stephen Strasburg. This guy already has some uttering Gooden and Seaver, so the Big Apple hype machine is primed. His earliest cards can be found in the 2006-07 USA Baseball set — he has plenty of autographs and game-used there — while his MLB prospect debut comes in 2010 Bowman Chrome Draft. That one has generated a lot of attention with a BGS 9.5 Orange Refractor recently selling for $825, while another copy has an even loftier asking price, like many Harvey cards across the board. Remember Ike Davis’ start a couple years ago? We do, but we also remember Strasburg’s.

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Box Busters: 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen baseball cards + win our Darin Ruf box

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Justin Grunert as they rip into boxes of 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Click here for the OPG and checklist


Want to win our box that includes the Ruf autograph? Simply leave your name and a comment below. (Include your email address in the proper field.)

We’ll pick a winner at random from all comments received before April 26.

Dominion cards to be placed in Panini Prime hockey this season

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Hockey collectors may have wondered what was going to happen to Dominion this year after the release was canceled.

Panini America is adding it to 2012-13 Prime Hockey, due out in August.

With the addition of Dominion, Prime will get more content, but that also means the price will likely jump. Collectors can expect to pay around $250 or more for Prime this year.

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Ripping Retail Retro: 1982 Donruss baseball rack packs

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Reed Kasaoka from Baseball Card Exchange (bbcexchange.com) as they rip into a pair of 1982 Donruss rack packs in this latest Ripping Retail video.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Ripping Retail Retro: What do you want to see next week?

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The Martians are coming — again!

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

If the first story of the Martian invasion wasn’t enough, fans of Mars Attacks should get ready for another.

Topps is producing a new set of trading cards Mars Attacks: Invasion, due out in October, the company announced on Monday.

This new set comes on the heels of the successful launch of last year’s remake of the original Mars Attacks, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the iconic card set.

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Adam Scott wins Masters, has a small career on cardboard

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

An Australian won The Masters for the first time on Sunday.

Adam Scott, 32, took home the green jacket after beating Angel Cabrera in a playoff at Augusta National for his first Major win.

Scott’s cardboard career is short and more than 10 years old.

Upper Deck produced cards of Scott in 2001 and 2002 at the start of his professional career.

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