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Monthly Archives: January 2014

Hobby Notebook: Teasing 2014 Topps baseball cards


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

The arrival of the hobby’s longest-running and most-collected baseball card set is a week away, and Topps has begun teasing some of the inclusions in 2014 Topps Series 1. 

Set to arrive next Wednesday, it will include plenty of the features previously disclosed (click here for our First Look story) as well as some surprises. It’s pure speculation at this point, but with two of the cards shown above perhaps the mystery variations will be related to champagne celebrations?

We’ll wait and see.

As Topps teases more to come this week via social media and other platforms, we’ll post the most-notable and new teasers right here here all in one handy place. The company announced on Tuesday that it has added an Instagram account into the mix, username ToppsSports.

Check our First Look for the basics and more here as the week goes on. See more images after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2013 Panini Elite Extra Edition baseball

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Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2013 Panini Elite Extra Edition in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2014 Press Pass Five Star racing cards

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into a box of 2014 Press Pass Five Star racing cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps confirms Russell Johnson autograph redemptions will be fulfilled

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The actor who played The Professor on Gilligan’s Island died last week.

Russell Johnson was 89.

Many people who bought 2013 Topps 75th Anniversary packs may have pulled a redemption for an autograph of Johnson.

Topps confirmed to Beckett Media that Johnson signed the autographs before he died.

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Topps adds Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson to 2014 Bowman … baseball?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Russell Wilson is headed to the Super Bowl in February, and he’s headed to the baseball field in April.

Well, at least on cardboard.

The second-year pro out of Wisconsin helped his Seattle Seahawks clinch a spot in the big game on Sunday and Topps announced it will be adding the quarterback to 2014 Bowman baseball as a short-printed card arriving on April 30.

It’s not the first time that a former two-sport star has had both a baseball card and a football card. In fact, it’s happened many times with the likes of Bo Jackson, Brian Jordan, Ricky Williams, Quincy Carter, Drew Henson, Chad Hutchinson, Deion Sanders, Brandon Weeden, Josh Booty and others through the years.

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First look: 2013-14 Panini Playbook Hockey cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Panini America is crossing over another brand to hockey.

2013-14 Playbook Hockey will make its debut in late March. The set has been featured in football and is known for its booklets cards.

The hockey version will have two hits in every three-card pack, including a booklet card in every pack.

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Panini establishes early relationships at NFLPA Collegiate Bowl

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

E.J. Manuel has only played in 10 NFL games, but he’s already become a mentor for future NFL players.

He and seven other 2013 rookies are attending the Panini America NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, which kicks off today at 6 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

“My role is to be available and answer questions for these guys,” said Manuel, the Buffalo Bills quarterback. “What it takes to get drafted, what it takes to sort through draft boards, as well working with Panini.”

Manuel remembers his pre-draft experience well – it was only last year. He was a standout at the Senior Bowl and felt his performance helped his draft stock. Manuel was the only quarterback picked in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft.

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First look: 2014 WWE Chrome wrestling cards


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Topps is reviving a tag-team that’s not been done in more than a half-decade for its next wrestling card release.

It’s pairing Chrome with the WWE.

For the first time since 2008’s Heritage III Chrome release, a wrestling card set will be released with the preferred stock of many when 2014 WWE Chrome arrives on June 11.

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SIX PACK: Want to start a Jimmie Johnson card collection? Try these …


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

With Jimmie Johnson‘s quest for a record-tying seventh Sprint Cup starting this season, there could be more fans and casual collectors checking out the cards of the NASCAR veteran. There are plenty of collecting options out there but what should someone start with?

Try these …

2000 SP Authentic #39, $20
Johnson has more than 4,000 cards listed in the Beckett database valued at more than $123,700 excluding rarities. Only four of those are Rookie Cards from back in 2000. The priciest of those is his SP Authentic card that checks in at $20 or less, while the rest can be had for $12 to $15 or less.

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Beckett Radio: Episode 2 — Talking NFL, A-Rod & more


Forum post here.

‘Miracle on Ice’ team draws a crowd more than 30 years later

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, N.J. – The USA Hockey jerseys were a dead giveaway.

Or perhaps it was the photos and paintings, hockey pucks and sticks that let people know something special was going on at the Hilton in Hasbrouck Heights, N.J.

For the third time in recent months, the 1980 United States men’s hockey team – the group known for “The Miracle on Ice” – reunited for a public signing, something that previously hadn’t happened for many, many years.

“It’s been like a reunion the last three months,” said former forward Mark Wells. “We never imagined people would be talking about 1980. It was something we didn’t think would last.”

The 1980 gold-medal winning team was on hand as part of That 80’s Show run by MAB Celebrity-Services. The show featured the hockey team and the 1986 New York Mets World Series champions.

Some of the team’s biggest names, such as Mike Eruzione, Jim Craig and Ken Morrow, attended the show the weekend of Jan. 12-13. More than 100 people bought tickets for just Eruzione’s signature.

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Rittenhouse bringing Sarah Michelle Gellar autos to new Buffy set

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

One of the biggest names missing from non-sports cards in the last 15 years has been Sarah Michelle Gellar.

The Buffy the Vampire Slayer star never signed autographs for Inkworks’ Buffy sets despite there being more than 10 produced.

However, Rittenhouse Archives announced the popular actress will be signing cards for them starting this year.

The company announced on its Facebook page: “In late 2014, we will release The Complete Buffy The Vampire Slayer Trading Cards and include the first official signed Buffy cards by Sarah Michelle Gellar.”

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Does Greg Oden’s return mean it’s time to get his cards out of storage?

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

It might be time to find those Greg Oden cards you hid in a box in the back of your closet.

Oden made his return to the NBA on Wednesday night after missing four years due to injuries (micofractures, broken knee cap) and personal problems. He scored six points in eight minutes for the Miami Heat against the Washington Wizards.

And the first time he got the ball, Oden dunked it.

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Ivan Lovegren’s web series looks at the funny moments in collecting

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Ivan Lovegren’s love of cards started like many other collectors. He got a pack of cards as a child and love for the hobby blossomed.

Opening a pack of cards isn’t where the fun ends. Sometimes the best stories are the ones that don’t always work in your favor, but are enough for a good laugh – or video series – down the road.

Lovegren has created “The Breaks,” a web series looking at the funny, but not always good, moments of collecting through the ups and downs.

“Most of the ideas come from my own experiences – I have this horrible tendency to somehow make every mistake once, and that’s how I learn,” Lovegren said. “For example, (the second) episode has to do with me justifying a low-ball bid on a case of 2013 Topps Inception, but who can ever stop at just one bid?”

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Your Turn: What’s your favorite “other” card?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We all have our favorite players an our favorite cards from the stuff that seemingly everybody collects — or at least stuff everyone is familiar with — from the Big Four sports.

For the upcoming “Others Issue” of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, though, we want to hear about your cherished cards from the sports that aren’t baseball, football, basketball or hockey — or at least not the typical stuff from those sports.

Better yet, we want you to show us your favorites — as long as they aren’t the norm — show us and tell us about your favorite card or set in the comments below.

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Press Pass adds bonus Earnhardt cards to returning Five Star brand


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Five Star is back for racing collectors and so is the No. 3 — and Dale Earnhardt, too.

Press Pass announced on Wednesday that every third case of the high-end 2014 Press Pass Five Star product, which had been off the track since its debut in 2010, will include a bonus card of The Intimidator. Among the cards, which will be numbered to 25 or fewer copies, will be cut autographs, and race-used material cards. It will arrive on Jan. 23.

The new No. 3, Austin Dillon, will have his Rookie Cards in the product along with autographs and memorabilia cards. It’s the first time the car number will be in use in the Cup series since the death of the seven-time champion on the final lap of the 2001 Daytona 500. (Kevin Harvick took over the Richard Childress Racing car at the time, but its number was changed to 29.)

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Beckett 20 Questions on … the “other” sports and other collecting options


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

Majority rules.

That might be the best way to describe the sports card landscape and collecting habits these days. The sports that the most people like get the most attention and the most products — and that means that more people probably will own the key cards compared to some of the “other” sports that aren’t the Big Four of baseball, football, basketball or hockey.

And that might be the key to future potential — the oddball stuff of today could be much tougher to find tomorrow if there’s somehow more interest to be seen in sports that aren’t king on cardboard right now. While many a prospector is ripping case after case of the chromed-out stuff, there are far fewer likely buying soccer, wrestling and Olympic brands. There have to be far fewer autographs of some of the “other” sports’ biggest names — you know, the sports that don’t have 20-some products released each year. It’s a compelling thought as tastes always seem to change — just like the stars in the sports world.

In the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’ll take a look at some of those other sports. As part of “The Others Issue” we’ll showcase your thoughts on this — and more. Have something to say? Leave it in the comments below — only after you respond to our latest 20 Questions.

1. Have you bought sports cards that are not from baseball, football, basketball or hockey?

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2. Have you bought cards that were made outside the U.S. or made for release elsewhere?

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See the rest of the questions … after the jump.

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Chatter Up with Beckett Media’s Chris Olds … tonight on the Beckett Facebook page


Join Beckett Baseball’Chris Olds for this week’s Chatter Up over on the Beckett Media Facebook page on Wednesday night at 8:30 Central. There will be prize for active chatters during the two-hour session.

Click here to find the image above and leave an early comment there right now if you can’t make it — also look for the early bird question now for a shot at a prize.

First look: 2014 Topps Pro Debut minor league baseball cards



By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The date for Topps‘ minor-league call-up is June 4.

That’s when the first of the company’s card sets for Minor League Baseball arrives in the form of 2014 Topps Pro Debut, the exclusive home of the players down on the farm along with any other MiLB sets the company produces with its license.

Each 24-pack box will include two autographs, one memorabilia card and one manufactured patch card. Debut uses the same base design as the 2014 MLB set that arrives on Jan. 29.

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Box Busters: 2013 Topps UFC Bloodlines MMA cards

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds and Bryan Hornbeck as they rip into boxes of 2013 Topps UFC Bloodlines in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

First look: 2013-14 Panini Intrigue Basketball cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

The sophomore edition of Panini Intrigue will hit the shelves in April.

2013-14 Panini Intrigue Basketball will have 11 cards per box, including four hits and five Intriguing Players cards.

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First look: 2014 In The Game’s StickWork

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

In The Game is coming out with a unique set featuring a set full of game-used hockey sticks.

StickWork is dedicated to game-used hockey sticks ranging from the 1930s to present. There will be just 2,500 boxes made of StickWork and scheduled to release in mid-February.

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First look: 2014 Topps Finest baseball cards


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

In 2013, Topps celebrated the arrival of Finest within its new packs of Finest — and with the new inclusions for 2014 the company is clearly hoping for the finest Finest yet.

It’s added color, it’s added nods to the past, it’s added Hot Boxes and more. And it all arrives in 2014 Finest when it arrives in hobby shops on Aug. 13.

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Hobby Pulse Poll: Which recently released baseball product gets your cash?


Which recently released baseball brand gets your cash? (Pick your top two.)

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First look: 2013-14 Crown Royale Hockey cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Panini is getting ready to crown its next hockey release.

In late February, Panini will release 2013-14 Crown Royale Hockey with inserts and autographs set around the popular brand.

Regal Achievement and Heirs to the Throne die-cuts will appear along with Panini’s Choice Award autographs.

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