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Monthly Archives: June 2014

Major League anniversary also includes commemorative mini bats and two MiLB giveaways

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you thought the Major League madness was over, well, think again.

The 25th anniversary of the film that brought Ricky “Wild Thing” Vaughn, Willie Mays Hayes, Pedro Cerrano and Roger Dorn to life has generated some red-hot baseball cards from Topps this summer — and the commemorative items for the fictional Cleveland Indians team just keep coming with the latest coming from Florida-based ReelBats.com.

They’re 25th anniversary Cerrano mini bats.

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Kings of Hockey: Los Angeles wins the Stanley Cup

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

This year’s Stanley Cup Final may not look like a hard-fought contest between the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers in years to come, but this series was close with three of the five games going into overtime. In the end, the Los Angeles Kings came out on top winning their second Stanley Cup in three years.

Only one game didn’t have suspense, but it doesn’t matter now. The Kings managed to get that magic goal when it counted, winning each of the three overtime games in the Stanley Cup Final.

Some players shined, others will find new life in the hobby.

Here are the players who might be getting a bit more cardboard love this offseason:

Jonathan Quick | Goalie
Quick became popular after Los Angeles’ first Stanley Cup win. His Rookie Cards sky rocketed in value and collectors wanted to own a piece of the Kings netminder. A second title in just three years may give his cards another boost. He even managed a shutout in Game 3 in the Final.

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First look: 2014 Topps Chrome Mini Football cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

If you love Topps Chrome Football cards, Topps is hoping you’ll enjoy it just a bit smaller. Topps is introducing 2014 Topps Chrome Mini Football, which is set to come around Christmas.

Each box of 2014 Topps Chrome Mini Football will have 24 packs with four cards in each pack. There will be one mini Rookie Autograph card per hobby box.

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Your Turn: Sabermetrics get showcase on short-printed 2014 Topps Series 2 baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Look closely at the backs of some of your 2014 Topps Series 2 baseball cards and you might not recognize the stats headers on some of the cards — or maybe even the stats themselves.

That’s because they are short-printed Sabermetrics variation cards.

While the full details about these cards continue to trickle in, we simply want to know what you think about this cardboard twist.

Tell us in the comments below.

Your Turn: Do you want Sabermetrics on your baseball cards?

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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 … Cleveland and the National Sports Collectors Convention

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Cleveland will become the center of the collecting universe for five days beginning on July 30 as the 35th edition of the National Sports Collectors Convention takes place with all of the major manufacturers, dealers and thousands of collectors under one roof.

We’re curious about what you know about Cleveland, so here are the latest 20 questions all with an NSCC or Cleveland-centric twist.

1. Which of these cities is the host of next year's NSCC?

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2. Who is the priciest signer (starting fee) at this year's NSCC?

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See the rest of our questions … after the jump.

 

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First look: 2014-15 Fleer Ultra Hockey cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Upper Deck is bringing back an old name into the hockey market.

In September, 2014-15 Fleer Ultra Hockey will release as a standalone product after five years. Each box will come with 18 packs with six cards per pack.

Fleer debuted Ultra during the 1992-93 season for hockey. Upper Deck produced an Ultra set in 2009-10, and included Ultra cards in its Fleer Showcase and Retro revivals over the past couple of years.

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Panini offers exclusive World Cup Prizm parallels through eBay

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

With the launch of the World Cup, Panini America is offering soccer collectors exclusive 2014 Prizm World Cup parallels through eBay.

The “El Samba” parallels, which are just 1-of-1, are inspired by the yellow and green colors of Brazil, the home country. These cards were not used in the original product.

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Upper Deck creates Young Guns card for Make-A-Wish Foundation recipient

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

When the San Jose Sharks signed Sam Tageson to a one-day contract in March, people took notice. He was just 17 years old, but he wasn’t a superstar.

Tageson has hypoplastic left heart syndrome, congenital heart defect in which the left ventricle of the heart is severely underdeveloped, and he may need a heart transplant one day. The Sharks signed Tageson with help from the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

As though skating out of the huge Shark Head and standing with San Jose during the national anthem in a March game wasn’t enough, Tageson got his own Young Guns card from Upper Deck. The company recently revealed the card to Tageson during a charity event, and a limited number of cards will be placed in 2014-15 MVP Hockey, which is scheduled to come out in August.

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Panini Prizm World Cup autographs bring new signers to collectors

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Soccer fans, it’s time to go crazy.

Today starts the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

But collectors – and many diehard soccer fans – have been experiencing the World Cup for several weeks. Across the globe, fans have been putting together Panini FIFA World Cup sticker albums with billions of packs being distributed.

Panini also incorporated a card set into this year’s fun with 2014 Panini Prizm World Cup. The set included dozens of players that normally don’t get cardboard attention and even offered autographs of players that haven’t had them. With 50 autographs, Panini put together a checklist that got high praise from collectors.

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Snoopy makes cameo on Joe Mauer’s short-printed 2014 Topps Series 2 baseball card

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Snoopy and Joe Mauer on a baseball card.

Makes perfect sense, right?

Collectors tearing into packs of 2014 Topps Series 2, which officially arrived today have found a short-printed version of card No. 125 (which is actually a Series 1 card) in the packs — a card with the Minnesota Twins star sharing his card with the Peanuts icon.

Why?

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Box Busters: 2013-14 Panini Innovation basketball

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds and Derek Ficken as they rip into boxes of 2013-14 Panini Innovation basketball cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2013-14 SP Game-used Edition golf

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Matt Bible and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014 SP Game-used Edition golf in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps’ latest MLB wall art offering revisits the 1955 Topps baseball card design

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you’re a fan of 1955 Topps baseball cards, then the company’s latest creation is for you.

It’s Topps‘ latest series of wall art prints — and this time they showcase active players on the memorable horizontal design.

Sixty-two players are available on 10-by-14 prints that are printed on 16-point retro-style card stock. Those cost $24.99 and can only be found on Topps.com.

For card collectors, there’s an extra twist, though.

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The release of 2014 Score Football signals the start of the Panini Rewards program

The first NFL-licensed football trading card set isn’t scheduled to come out until Wednesday, but that has never stopped people from listing cards early on eBay.

2014 Score Football has June 11 release date, but a few people on eBay have gotten their hands on the product early, giving collectors a sneak peek. As expected, Score relies heavily on the 2014 rookie class.

But what is more intriguing than the release of Score this week is the start of Panini’s point system meant to replace redemptions.

Panini Rewards points cards are randomly inserted into packs of 2014 Score.

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MLB Draft: Your team’s newest players probably already have baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

When the Houston Astros selected 17-year-old left-hander Brady Aiken with the first pick in this year’s MLB Draft on Thursday night, he immediately had a new fan base that probably can’t wait to seek out his cardboard.

The irony? They already can.

Thanks to the proliferation of pre-professional prospecting products and other All-Star inclusions, many players in this year’s draft — 28 of the first 41 players selected — already appear on cardboard and have certified autographs.

Aiken? Thanks to his presence on USA Baseball squads as well as appearances in the Perfect Game All-American Classic and other prep events, he already appears on 72 cards in the Beckett.com database valued (excluding rarities) at nearly $200 total.

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Latest Topps wall art offering celebrates baseball heroes

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Who’s your baseball hero? He might be among the players in Topps‘ latest vintage-style wall art offering.

The “My Hero Collection” is one of the largest offerings yet with 50 players from the past and present represented on a design reminiscent of the 1967 Topps test issue.

This time around, though, they are 11-by-17 prints printed on 18-point chipboard that are serial-numbered to 99 copies and cost $49.99 apiece on Topps.com.

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First look: 2013-14 Panini Preferred Basketball cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

Only autographs and memorabilia cards will be included in 2013-14 Panini Preferred.

Each box will have just four cards with three autographs and one booklet card. The set will include 600 on-card autographs.

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First look: 2014 WNBA Trading Cards

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By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

The yearly release of WNBA trading cards is coming in August from Rittenhouse Archives.

This year’s set will be limited to just 500 factory sets of 100 base cards.

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First look: 2014 Flair Showcase Football cards

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By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Upper Deck has used Flair Showcase in Fleer Retro products the past two years. Now, the brand is getting its own release.

Upper Deck will release 2014 Flair Showcase Football in September with 12 packs in every box and six cards in each pack.

Each box will contain one autograph and one memorabilia card along with another hit of either an autograph patch, a Jambalaya insert or a Precious Metal Gem. Collectors will also find four Row 0 cards, two Legacy parallels and three Metal Universe cards in every box.

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Topps Bunt players create real demand for virtual baseball cards

THE TOPPS COMPANY, INC. BUNT 2014

By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

There’s a whole new type of collector out there with more than a million users and 75 million sports cards that you simply won’t find in the best of hobby shops or in any retail store aisle — unless you’re on a smartphone.

Some of these fans are paying real money on eBay for virtual collections of cards — collecting pixels if you will — while others are using their real money to buy tokens for virtual packs all contained on the app. In fact, more than 50 million packs have been sold.

They’ve been sold to collectors of  cards on Topps Bunt, the virtual card platform and application from Topps, which has seen plenty of growth in its two years on the field.

“It’s remarkable. We knew these digital cards would have value like physical cards, but things have picked up very quickly,” said Chris R. Vaccaro, who is the head of app operations for Topps Digital. “It’s a credit to the platform and the Topps name holding weight in the digital world.”

Today, Topps launched Bunt for Android, further expanding its possibilities for growth. We caught up with Vaccaro to learn even more about Bunt.

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Rare sight: Two Superfractors, one box

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You don’t see this every day but Blowout Cards did — two Superfractors in one box of 2013 Bowman Sterling baseball cards.

The case of the Teddy Bridgewater changing autograph

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

How many autographs will we see from Teddy Bridgewater this year?

Right now, the count is at 3.5.

Obviously, his autograph at the NFLPA Rookie Premiere is legit. The cards were signed by Bridgewater with representatives from Panini and Topps on hand. Yet, since the start of the 2014 football card season there have been a few variations on Bridgewater’s autograph.

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Panini brings back Father’s Day promotion

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Panini America’s Father’s Day Promotion is back.

The program began in 2012 with collectors heading to hobby shops to buy Panini products and getting free Father’s Day packs in return. The packs featured exclusive cards and rare parallels.

This year’s offerings include Diamond-embedded cards, Cracked Ice parallels, Green Prizm parallels from 2013 Select Football (numbered to 15), memorabilia and autographs cards.

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Panini offers incentive packs for case purchases of 2013-14 Innovation Basketball

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

Panini America is offering an incentive for distributors who purchase cases of 2013-14 Innovation Basketball.

Suppliers will receive two free five-card bonus packs for each ordered case. Often the cards from these packs are passed on to dealers and/or collectors as prizes or incentives.

The packs will contain exclusive parallels of Purple View, Purple Rookie, All Purple Views, Light Blue Stained Glass, Light Blue Rookie Stained Glass and All Light Blue Stained Glass.

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National Sports Collectors Convention adds Case Breakers Pavilion and main stage to show floor

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By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Case breakers are getting their own pavilion at the National Sports Collectors Convention this summer, NSCC officials recently announced.

The 35th National Sports Collectors Convention will be held July 30-Aug. 3 at the I-X Center in Cleveland.

“Plans have been underway for two years to bring this exciting new hobby venue to the National floor,” said Mike Berkus, Executive Director of the National in a release. “Ever since we founded the National in 1980, it has been the goal of ours to constantly add more and more excitement to our National event. Over the years we have successfully added many wonderful and exciting components to the show, exclusive pavilions that house autographs, corporate sponsors, Olympics, and attendee benefits like the VIP programs and Family day, and now we are proud to present the very first Case Break Pavilion”

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