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Monthly Archives: May 2014

Beckett 20 Questions on … Tanaka, Topps Dynasty, prospects and more

Tanaka

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

It’s a busy time in the hobby with new products and new star making their mark with performances on the field.

Here’s the latest 20 Questions touching on a bit of all of it — check it out and tell us what you think with your answers and the comments below.

1. Do you want a Masahiro Tanaka autograph?

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Check out the rest of the questions … after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2014 Topps UFC Knockout

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds and Matt Bible as they rip into boxes of 2014 Topps UFC Knockout in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2014 Captain America The Winter Soldier

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds and Matt Bible as they rip into boxes of 2014 Captain America The Winter Soldier from Upper Deck in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Your ballpark photos could end up on a baseball card in 2015 Topps Opening Day set

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you go out to the ballgame and take a picture, you might have a chance to see it on a Topps baseball card.

On Monday, the company announced that it will include fan-generated photos on cards in 2015 Topps Opening Day via an Instagram-based contest called Topps Live.

Beginning today, any fan who posts an image at the ballpark and includes the hashtag #toppslive with the image will have a chance at being on a card. As many as 30 images will be selected from photos shot between now and the end of the season.

Topps said it will judge images on their originality and creativity with examples to be found at @toppssports. For more information, visit topps.com/toppslive.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Which Rookie Card have you always found interesting — and why?

BVGrickey

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

Do you have one Rookie Card that you just find more interesting than all of the rest? If so, tell us why and we might showcase your answers as part of the next Beckett Sports Card Monthly that’s all about rookies.

For myself, the 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson RC has taken on that spot for me after it being held by the 1986 Donruss Jose Canseco Rated Rookie or his 1983 Fritsch Madison Muskies first minor-league issue for years.

Why?

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Panini America signs Jadeveon Clowney to trading card deal

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Jadeveon Clowney has signed an autograph and card deal with Panini America, the company announced on Friday.

The defensive end was the top overall draft pick selected by the Houston Texans.

“It’s rare for a defensive player to generate so much excitement and capture so much interest from trading card collectors; the fact that Clowney has illustrates just how dynamic and talented he really is,” said Panini America CEO Mark Warsop. “His presence – on both Rookie Cards and autographed trading cards – in our complete line of 2014 NFL trading card products is just one more reason we’re so optimistic about the immediate and long-term future of our NFL business.”

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Topps confirms final checklist for Major League autographs in upcoming Archives set

Sheenfixed

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The red tags were put into lockers so we now know who’s in the Major League autograph set coming in 12 days from 2014 Topps Archives.

The 25th anniversary of Major League will be celebrated with autographs from five cast members as confirmed by Topps on Friday:

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First look: 2014 Topps Dynasty baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Presenting what it calls “the most carefully curated subject list in trading card history” and the “most-premium Topps product of all time,” Topps released on Friday the basic information and first looks at its latest high-end baseball card brand.

It’s 2014 Topps Dynasty, and it will arrive on Nov. 19 with every card limited to 10 or fewer copies, every card encased and with every card featuring an autograph. There will be one card per box and only five boxes per case with a factory (hobby direct) cost of more than $200 per box.

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Topps readies Masahiro Tanaka Relic cards for six upcoming products

Tanaka

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Masahiro Tanaka‘s game-used uniforms are coming to Topps baseball cards.

The company announced on Thursday that it has acquired game-used items for Relic cards of the New York Yankees pitcher and that the Relics will appear in six upcoming baseball products.

Tanaka will have Relics in Tier One (June 4), Allen & Ginter (July 11), Bowman Platinum (Aug. 1), Triple Threads (Sept. 12), Topps Updates and Five Star (dates TBD).

After his victory Wednesday night, the Japanese right-hander is 6-0 with a 2.17 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 58-plus innings.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

The chase is on for Chase Elliott’s autographs

Elliottauto

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

You have to wonder whether Awesome Bill from Dawsonville even has one.

Bill Elliott knows a thing or two about the fast-moving life of NASCAR drivers and the former Cup champ and 44-time race winner might not be able to keep up with this kid — at least on cardboard.

It’s his 18-year-old son, Chase Elliott, and his hot start this season in the Nationwide Series (NASCAR’s second-highest circuit) has collectors scrambling to find his only Rookie Card and autographs from three years ago — way back when he was 15 and appeared on a number of 2011 Element cards from Press Pass.

The teen has two victories and seven top-10 finishes in nine career races this season for JR Motorsports and boss Dale Earnhardt Jr. Oh, and he graduates from high school on Saturday.

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Topps teases upcoming high-end baseball card brand called Dynasty

DynastyTeaser

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps is going high-end once again with its baseball cards.

The company offered the first visual teases of 2014 Topps Dynasty on Thursday, posting the image above via its social media accounts. No details have been released for the brand at this time.

Three years ago, Topps released its most-expensive high-end baseball brand Five Star, which carried a $500 per box price tag. Is there room for another high-end brand? Tell us via our polls below and in the comments if you have even more to say.

First impression: 2014 Topps Dynasty baseball cards

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Does the hobby need more high-end baseball card sets?

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Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Upper Deck supersizing shadowboxes for UDA

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Upper Deck created shadowbox inserts in 2009 SPx Football. The cards incorporated three layers of acetate to create a 3-D look.

It has used these shadowboxes in several products incorporating autographs into the design as well. UD is bringing this element to Upper Deck Authenticated, its autographed memorabilia arm.

The new collectible pieces will measure 16-by-20 inches with a large base that it could be displayed standing up or hung on a wall. Upper Deck will continue with the 3-D look and add an autograph to the middle layer.

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First look: 2014 Topps Chrome Football cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Topps didn’t wait long to give the newest NFL rookies the chrome treatment. The trading card company previewed 2014 Topps Chrome on Thursday.

Chrome is one of the top products every year when it comes to rookie autographs. Each box will have one rookie autograph with the possibility of hitting rare refractors. There will be 24 packs with four cards in each pack.

The rookie autograph parallels will consist of Refractor (numbered to 150), STS Refractor (numbered to 99), BCA Refractor (numbered to 75), Black Refractor (numbered to 25), Pulsar Refractor (numbered to 15), Gold Refractor (numbered to 10), Red Refractor (numbered to 5), and Superfractor (1-of-1).

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Manufacturers looking for ways to handle growing group breakers

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Want a chance at a hit from a high-end product? Collectors have turned to online group breaks as a way to satisfy that craving.

It may be tough for some collectors to spend $500 on a box of cards, but a $50 slot in a group break is a more affordable gamble. Group break collectors can walk away with big-money cards or get “skunked,” the term collectors use when they wind up with nothing from a break.

Despite opposition from some hobby shops and manufacturers, group breaks are gaining appeal. The explosion of group breaks started a couple of years ago. It has become part of the National Sports Collectors Convention and The Industry Summit, with breaks happening live on camera.

Group breaks occur every night at various price points as the cards are shown off on camera.

While group breaks have become another collecting option, they have also become a place of concern for longtime hobby shop owners. Group breaks are often streamed online, showing breakers opening cases on YouTube or BreakersTV. This means a collector with a PayPal account doesn’t have to leave the house and can watch their breaks online. A few days later, their cards are in the mailbox.

The topic of group breaks was addressed at The Industry Summit in Las Vegas in March with representatives from Panini America, Topps and Upper Deck discussing the craze with a room full of hobby shop owners.

“Obviously, group breaks in general are a positive in terms of being able to expose people to products they wouldn’t normally see,” said Topps’ Vice President of Sales, David Reel. “It’s something that is going to continue to grow.”

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Topps adds vintage baseball card wrappers to its wall art offerings

TOPPS_1975

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

This time, it’s the wrappers.

Topps launched a new line of wall art for the baseball collector on Tuesday, and this time it’s 38 years’ worth of memorable baseball card wrappers getting the nod as limited-edition pieces of art.

The Topps Baseball Wrapper Art Collection will include each year from 1952 to 1989 will be available as 10- by 14-inch prints limited to just 99 serial-numbered copies. They will cost $29.99 per year and be available on Topps.com.

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Upper Deck to have interactive show and giveaway tonight

Ever wonder what card company officials think of upcoming prospects? Upper Deck is giving a chance for collectors to get feedback from its employees.

Using Breakers.TV, Upper Deck is holding a discussion on 2014 football rookies at 7 p.m. ET.

There will also be giveaways. To participate, contestants have to email UpperDeckMarketing@upperdeck.com with your full name, shipping address and phone number before 5 p.m. ET today. The event will take place LIVE on BreakersTV from 7-8 p.m. ET.

Upper Deck officials will also discuss upcoming products.

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Your Turn: Which Japanese players have made the biggest mark in Major League Baseball?

HideoNomo

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

With the Yankees’ Masahiro Tanaka continuing to impress and the Rangers’ Yu Darvish continuing to come so close to throwing major-league no-nos, it seems that Japanese players’ impacts upon MLB might be at an all-time high.

Many Japanese stars have come to MLB in the last 20 years or so since Hideo Nomo arrived and perhaps changed perceptions about Japanese baseball. And, of course, Ichiro Suzuki arrived in 2001 and showed us all that impactful baseball wasn’t just about 500-foot home runs — and that not all Japanese success stories in MLB have to be pitchers.

Baseball Reference lists 60 big-league hitters born in Japan and 42 pitchers — some of them more successful than others.

We’re curious … who do you think the best MLB players from Japan have been through the years?

Tell us in the comments below, and a selection of your responses will appear in an upcoming issue of Beckett Baseball.

Your Turn: Which MLB pitchers born in Japan are the most-collectable? (Pick your top three.)

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Your Turn: Which MLB hitters born in Japan are the most-collectable? (Pick your top three.)

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Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Collectors go on a mad dash for John Gibson cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

The Anaheim Ducks shook up their goalie situation this weekend, putting 20-year-old John Gibson between the pipes in Game 4 against the Los Angeles Kings.

The Ducks were rewarded with a shutout with Gibson making 28 saves. It was his first playoff appearance and just the fourth NHL start of this season. Gibson will now get the start in Game 5 against the Kings tonight at 10 p.m. with the best-of-seven series tied at two games apiece.

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Your Turn: Which new rookies — in any sport — are you collecting?

McCarron

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

With a new crop of NFL rookies aligned with their teams, a new MLB season under way and both the NBA and NHL drafts coming soon, there’s a lot of potential brewing for collectors of rookies and prospects.

For the upcoming Rookies Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’re curious about who you are going to collect — in any sport.

Tell us in the comments below … which rookies are getting your hobby dollars?

We’ll showcase a selection of the most-interesting answers left here in the issue.

Which NFL rookie is most-worthy of the next Beckett Sports Card Monthly cover?

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Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Beckett 20 Questions on … rookies and busts

1Manzielauto

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

When Johnny Manziel slid all the way to the 22nd pick in this year’s NFL Draft, some collectors had to wonder what was up with their red-hot pre-draft cards of Johnny Football.

Well, so far, they’re still hot — even though he’s headed to the quarterback blender called the Cleveland Browns.

Johnny Football’s story got us thinking about rookies who just couldn’t miss in the past — and many of those who did miss, too. We’re curious as to what you’re thinking about Manziel and more about rookies of today and yesterday.

Here are our latest 20 Questions …

1. Would you put your money into a Johnny Manziel autograph?

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See the rest of the questions … after the jump. (Click on “read more.”)

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