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Monthly Archives: June 2014

Stephen Laroche joins Beckett Media as editor for Beckett Hockey and Beckett Basketball

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Beckett Media is pleased to announce that Stephen Laroche has joined its editorial team and will take the helm of two of its monthly magazines today.

Some collectors may recognize him as being a former brand manager for In The Game, where he spent the past 10 years working on numerous projects ranging from its extensive hockey lines to Sportkings and Ringside boxing. Earlier in 2014, Laroche began contributing content to Beckett Hockey and he will be replacing the outgoing Susan Lulgjuraj as editor for that publication as well as Beckett Basketball.

“I am incredibly thrilled by this new opportunity with Beckett,” he said, “and believe that I can continue to move these titles in a positive direction.”

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Topps signs Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig to exclusive autograph deal

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Yasiel Puig has a new team.

The second-year star outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers has signed an exclusive autograph card deal with Topps, the company announced on Friday.

“Joining the Topps family is yet another dream come true for me,” Puig said in a prepared statement. “It’s exciting to be pictured on a baseball card and to be part of such a long-standing American tradition.”

Puig, 23, is in his second season in MLB after arriving from Cuba where he was star player. In 74 games this season, he’s hitting .309 with 11 homers and 45 RBI.

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Hobby Pulse Poll: Two no-hitters in one week — who will you collect?

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Two MLB no-nos in a week ... who you collecting?

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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.

Box Busters: 2013 Upper Deck Exquisite football

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Join Beckett Football’Derek Ficken and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2013 Exquisite  in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2014 SPx football cards

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Join Beckett Football‘s Derek Ficken and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014 SPx in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Beckett 20 Questions on … legendary hitters, strong pitchers, baseball cards & more

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

There’s plenty going on in baseball, so we’ll keep this edition of 20 Questions short and to the point.

1. Which of these hitters with Rookie Cards from the last 35 years or so would you buy first?

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2. Which of these 1983 RCs would you buy first?

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See the rest of the questions … after the jump. (Click “more” to see the rest.)

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Poll: Which Tony Gwynn Rookie Card is the best?

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

With Tony Gwynn‘s untimely death last week at age 54, there have been a lot of collectors picking up copies of his cardboard.

That’s inevitable since he was easily one of the most-productive hitters of the last 50 years and also one of the most-overlooked, having spent his entire MLB career in San Diego.

That got us wondering … which Gwynn Rookie Card is the best? Here are a few questions that might help answer that — and feel free to make a case for any of them in the comments below.

Which Tony Gwynn Rookie Card would you want first?

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Which Gwynn RC is the most expensive?

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Which Gwynn RC is the cheapest?

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In your mind, which Gwynn RC is the rarest?

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In your mind, which Gwynn RC is the easiest to find?

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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.

Box Busters: 2013-14 SP Authentic hockey cards

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2013-14 SP Authentic in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Distributor Sports Images discontinues sports card portion of business

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

After more than two decades as a distributor of sports cards, Woburn, Mass.-based distributor Sports Images is getting out of the game.

The company will continue to sell sports memorabilia to hobby shops and other companies, just not sports cards. Its accounts will now be handled by GTS Distribution, according to an email sent by Sports Images President Matt Lane on Monday.

Lane cited expanding opportunities in the other areas.

“Sports Images has transitioned the hobby trading card segment of their business to GTS Distribution,” he wrote. “After 25 years in the hobby trading card industry, we have decided to focus our efforts on our retail, novelty, memorabilia and other aspects of our business. As these opportunities continue to expand, the demand for more resources, time and attention also increases and a choice was inevitable.”

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Topps exploring even more ‘Major League’ items

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you think you’ve seen the last of Ricky “Wild Thing” Vaughn and the rest of the Major League gang on Topps stuff, think again.

The company already previously announced that it has acquired a Charlie Sheen-worn “gamer” from Major League 2 and will include Relics in a few upcoming high-end card brands.

In an interview about the company’s online offerings for an upcoming issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, Jeff Heckman, the company’s manager of marketing and product development, mentioned that there might be even more in the works as a follow-up to the recent online-only jumbo card offering from the company.

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First look: 2014 Topps Strata Football cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Strata Football is all about the layers and context. The hits are made with bringing multiple elements to one card, and that won’t change for 2014 Topps Strata Football.

Each box will have three hits: two autographs, including, a Clear Cut Autograph Relic card, and a relic card. There will also be five die-cuts in every box. Each pack will hold six cards with 18 packs in every box.

Case hits include one Strata Signature Relic card, one Clear Cut Autograph Patch card and three Strata Patch cards.

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Box Busters: 2014 Topps Pro Debut minor league baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2014 Topps Pro Debut in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2014 Topps Tier One baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014 Topps Tier One in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2014 Topps Archives baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2014 Topps Archives in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps readies Allen & Ginter promo cards of Masahiro Tanaka and Jose Abreu for National

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Two of baseball’s hottest rookies will headline Topps‘ wrapper redemption programs at this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland, Ohio.

Collectors who visit the company’s booth during the show at the I-X Center from July 30-Aug. 3 and open a box of 2014 Allen & Ginter will receive one of two mini promo cards made just for the show — one of New York Yankees ace Masahiro Tanaka or one of Chicago White Sox slugger Jose Abreu. This is the only way to receive these cards.

A second wrapper redemption program will take place for collectors opening any three packs of any Topps product that is not Opening Day or 2014 Topps Minis, which will be making its debut at the show ($50 per box). For those who opt to open three packs, they will receive a mini card from one of these eight past and present NFL or MLB players: Johnny Manziel, Jadeveon Clowney, Jim Brown, Jordan Cameron, Derek Jeter, Mike Trout, Bob Feller or Albert Belle.

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Press Pass preps wrapper redemption program, VIP card set for this year’s National

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Press Pass will have something to rev the engines of racing collectors at this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland, Ohio.

The only licensee of NASCAR cards is producing a five-card set for show-goers who buy a VIP ticket package for the five-day show beginning at the I-X Center on July 30. The set will include Dale Earnhardt Jr. as seen above along with Danica Patrick, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson.

The company also will have a wrapper-redemption program for collectors who buy a hobby box of 2014 NASCAR cards on the show floor.

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First look: 2013-14 Panini National Treasures Basketball cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

Logoman, RPAs and Prime Patches. That’s what 2013-14 Panini National Treasures Basketball is all about.

Each box of National Treasures will contain 10 cards with eight autographs or memorabilia cards, one printing plate and one base card or parallel.

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Vintage logos and player caricatures lead way in latest Topps wall art line

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps is turning back the clock and turning to caricature art in its latest line of wall art arriving on Topps.com today.

The Topps MLB Illustration line is reminiscent of the 1961 Topps Magic Rub-offs with more than 30 team logos and player prints available as 11-by-17 prints that are each numbered to just 99 copies.

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First look: 2014 Elite Football cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Panini America will feature 2014 rookies in the NFL uniforms in Elite Football.

Each box of 2014 Elite Football will contain 20 packs per box with five cards in each pack. Each box will also have four hits per box and three Rookie Cards numbered to 999 in each box.

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First look: 2013-14 Panini Spectra Basketball cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

Panini debuted the Spectra brand in last season’s football releases. It’s making the move to basketball in July when 2013-14 Spectra hits the market.

Each box will contain four autographed memorabilia cards and one memorabilia card. Each box will have just eight cards. All the cards will be showcased on Optimchrome printing technology, according to Panini.

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