Category Archives: Baseball

Topps commemorates Todd Frazier’s Home Run Derby win, Mike Trout’s All-Star MVP

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The Derby champ and the MVP are now noted on cardboard.

Cincinnati Reds slugger Todd Frazier was the MLB All-Star Home Run Derby Champ and Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout was The Midsummer Classic’s MVP and Topps has commemorated both with a three-piece wall art offering released Friday.

Available only on Topps.com, these 10-by-14 prints are styled after the 1960 Topps All-Star subset design and are printed on glossy card stock.

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Photo of the Day: Olbermann’s Ferrell collection

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It’s not a shock, is it? Noted collector Keith Olbermann recently showed off his Will Ferrell autograph collection.

Box Busters: 2015 Bowman Inception baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2015 Bowman Inception in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

First Look: 2015 Topps Allen & Ginter checklist

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The wait is over for the biggest questions about one of the hobby’s most-popular products.

Who will be signing for Allen & Ginter this year?

Well, Topps answered that on Monday with the release of the checklist for the 1oth edition of the brand that has brought “world’s champions” from many fields of sport — as well as many other non-traditional inclusions — in advance of its release on July 22.

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Topps’ NSCC promos also include Ginter, Gypsy Queen

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Topps‘ plans for promo cards at the National Sports Collectors Convention will have even more of a retro-styled twist.

Beyond the previously announced 1953 Bowman homage that will be available to VIPs at the show beginning on July 29 in Chicago, the company is readying a wrapper-redemption program will focus on two popular retro brands.

One will be Allen & Ginter 10th Anniversary diecut cards, the other will be a youthful update to Gypsy Queen.

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Latest Topps release focuses on MLB All-Stars

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The MLB All-Stars already have another honor.

Topps revealed the 2015 MLB All-Star Selection Set on Thursday, an oversized offering showcasing 20 members of this year’s teams in a modified version of the 1960 Topps All-Star subset design.

Found only on Topps.com, there are two version of the 5-by-7 set and a series of 1/1 wall art prints that collectors can choose from.

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College ties among baseball highlights in Panini’s National show wrapper redemption program

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

When the Panini America wrapper redemption program kicks into gear at this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention in Chicago on July 29, there will be plenty of familiar names inside the packs.

Jameis Winston, Russell Wilson, Kris Bryant, Matt Harvey and plenty more will be found in packs.

What might not be the norm is what uniforms they are seen in.

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First Look: 2015 Panini Immaculate baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

More — that’s one word that might describe what’s in store for the second edition of one of Panini America‘s high-end baseball card brands.

The brand is Immaculate Collection and the 2015 installment is coming on Aug. 26 with five memorabilia or autograph cards and one base card per box — a selection that the company promises will have “more jumbo cleats, jerseys, batting gloves and fielding gloves of the game’s hottest players from the past to present.”

Last year’s introduction of Immaculate to baseball came on the heels of successes in basketball and football. For baseball collectors, there will be even more to be found this time around and biggest of them all might be a game-used memorabilia presence for Babe Ruth.

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Topps tests Fire in baseball as wall art collection

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The latest Topps baseball brand is Fire — but you won’t find these creations in packs.

The brand that has been around for a couple of seasons in baseball comes to the diamond with the designs of Australian graphic designer Tyson Beck as a series of wall prints only found on Topps.com.

The collection of 40 images includes some of the biggest young stars in the game today as well as a few Hall of Famers, too. Each of them comes autographed — by the artist.

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Box Busters: 2015 Elite baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Justin Grunert as they rip into boxes of 2015 Elite in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps prepares exclusive cards for All-Star FanFest

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

When MLB’s All-Stars converge upon Cincinnati, there will be another show besides the All-Star Game for collectors to check out.

That’s the MLB All-Star FanFest that begins July 10.

As part of the four-day show, Topps will be creating cards solely for the event and creating interactive exhibits for baseball fans who aren’t regular card-buyers to rediscover collecting in a few ways.

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BGS Diary Predictor (July): What will Olds submit?

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We recently introduced the BGS Diary and it seems like a few of you liked hearing about what — and why — Beckett Baseball Editor Chris Olds submitted what he did for grading.

He’s prepared his five cards for grading in June and we want to see if you can predict which of his cards will end up slabbed. Of the 10 cards listed below, a few are headed to Beckett Grading Services today for his next BGS Diary.

Can you predict which ones they will be?

BGS Diary Predictor (July): What will Olds submit?

  • 2015 USA Baseball Stars & Stripes Jersey Signatures #56 Kris Bryant (55%, 91 Votes)
  • 2015 Topps Heritage Gum Stained Back #377 Nick Swisher (44%, 72 Votes)
  • 2012 Bowman Chrome Prospects Refractors #104 Joc Pederson (41%, 67 Votes)
  • 2015 Topps #616 Kris Bryant (38%, 63 Votes)
  • 2015 Topps WWE Blue #32 Maryse (29%, 47 Votes)
  • 2012 Topps Mini #661 Bryce Harper (27%, 44 Votes)
  • 1988 Pacific Eight Men Out #13 D.B. Sweeney as Joe Jackson (23%, 37 Votes)
  • 1969 Topps #4 NL Leaders (McCovey, Santo, Williams) (21%, 34 Votes)
  • 2015 Topps First Pitch #1 Jeff Bridges (20%, 33 Votes)
  • 1987 Donruss #46 Mark McGwire (20%, 32 Votes)
  • 2014 Panini Prizm Gold Prizms #293 A.J. McCarron (13%, 21 Votes)
  • 2014 Topps Allen & Ginter Mini Minis #147 Clay Buchholz (9%, 15 Votes)

Total Voters: 164

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PAST BGS DIARY POSTS

– October: Rookie Cards, Moneyball & Watergate

 November: Vintage, booklets Dr. Beckett & more

– December: Saban, Cerrano, Hawk, Animal & practice

– January: Bull Durham, Star hoops, “Macho Man” … and Bill Murray’s baseball card?

– February: Chasing Amy, metal minis, USA Baseball green and, of course, Crimson Tide

– March: WWE Divas, The Killer, Koufax and a cardboard icon 

– April: Seeing gold, stickers … and furry autographs?

– May: A lone BGS 10 Michael Jordan, another Lana, a rare Yankee & one USA Baseball lineup

– June:  Vintage Pudge, Atomic Paige, Cooperstown autographs, Canseco & more

Stadium Club goes acrylic for wall art line

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

You can now put The Club on your wall.

Topps revealed its 2015 Stadium Club wall art collection on Wednesday, a selection of 133 jumbo acrylic wall art pieces that include highlights from the recently released baseball card set.

Found only on Topps.com, there are 19 basic cards from the photo-centric 300-card set available as acrylic jumbo prints limited to 25 serial-numbered copies as well as one Members Only 1/1 copy. They are 7.5 inches by 14 inches and include wall mounts. The standard versions are $99.99, while the Members Only versions cost $199.99 or more.

Those aren’t the only options, either.

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First Pitch celebs get jumbo treatment from Topps

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The celebs are going jumbo.

Topps revealed its First Pitch: Complete Oversized baseball card sets and there are three new ways to get your hands on some of the most-unique cards made this year.

Each of the 25 cards found in the first two series of 2015 Topps are now available as 5×7 creations that are part of three limited-edition sets found only on Topps.com.

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First Look: 2015 Topps Strata baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

A Bowman brand came off the calendar for this year and 2015 Topps Strata is replacing it.

Topps revealed the first looks at Strata as a standalone brand on Tuesday and it was with some technology we’ve seen in football before — a signature rivet patch card of San Francisco Giants star Buster Posey.

Strata was introduced in baseball last year as an autographed Relic insert in the standard Topps set and was done again this year. This time, though, it will be a standalone product.

Look for more details on Strata right here when the full details are released soon.

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.

Top Five: Overlooked Joc Pederson baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

Los Angeles Dodgers rookie Joc Pederson joined elite company Monday night with his 20th home run of the season — a 460-foot blast that catapulted him into rare air in the National League history books.

He’s just the second NL rookie to hit 20 or more home runs before the All-Star Break with the NL record of 21 set by Albert Pujols in 2001. Pederson has 12 more games until The Mid-Summer Classic, so, barring injury or slump the record should be his soon.

Just like Pujols, Pederson’s first Bowman Chrome autograph gets all the attention among his 640 cards valued at more than $15,700 (excluding rarities) in the Beckett database. Pederson’s first Bowman Chrome autograph arrived in 2012, but it wasn’t his first autograph.

Here’s a rundown of five overlooked Pederson baseball cards …

1. 2010 Donruss Elite Extra Edition #168 AU /799, $100 (above)
The 2010 rookie crop was one that had plenty of big names, but there was one prospect autograph that snuck into the mix in a single brand that year. Elite Extra Edition included the first certified autographs for Pederson, and it’s an undervalued card compared to its Bowman Chrome counterpart from two years later. The most-plentiful version of this card has a mere 799 copies and some of them have a more-complete autograph than the cards we see today.

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Beckett 20 Questions on … league leaders and top rookies

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

As we near the All-Star Break, we’re taking another look at this year’s surprises so far with our latest batch of 20 Questions.

1. Which of these hitters is most undervalued?

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2. Which of these home run hitters is most under-appreciated?

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See more questions … after the jump.

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Topps details print runs on rarest 2015 Stadium Club parallels

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Those Stadium Club parallels may not be numbered, but that doesn’t mean they’re not rare.

Topps detailed the print runs for three types of parallel cards in 2015 Topps Stadium Club, which arrived last week.

The rarest, one per case, cards are the Member’s Only parallels that are limited to just seven copies per card, the company announced on Monday.

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On the Rise: Cincinnati Reds 3B Todd Frazier

On the Rice - Frazier Topps Update

By Brian Fleischer | Beckett Baseball Senior Market Analyst | Commentary

Unheralded in the hobby since his first cards appeared in the 2006-07 USA Baseball product, Todd Frazier is having a breakout season, both on the field and in the hobby. In 73 games this season, he’s hitting .290 with 25 home runs – the second most in the Majors – and 53 RBI.

A semistar for the majority of his career, Frazier currently has 818 cards cataloged in the Online Price Guide, including 269 certified autographs and 168 memorabilia cards. He was a featured prospect in products from 2007 through 2010, but his first Rookie Cards didn’t appear until 2011. They were including in Bowman Chrome Draft, Bowman Draft, Bowman Sterling and Topps Update. All of his RCs are remarkably affordable, ranging in value from $1.50 to $5. In recent weeks, the secondary market activity has picked up considerably and in response, he was raised to an unlisted star for his 2012 through 2015 cards. The majority of his earlier prospect cards were raised a couple price levels and are now listed in print in the Beckett Baseball Price Guide.

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Box Busters: 2015 Topps Series 2 baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2015 Topps Series 2 in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2015 Topps Stadium Club baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2015 Topps Stadium Club in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps readies Bowman homage for VIPs at National Sports Collectors Convention

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

One big part of the major show experience is the ability to meet people from card companies face to face and discuss the hobby with those who create our treasures.
An even bigger part of the National Sports Collectors Convention is the show-exclusive card circuit — cards that can be mementos of a trip or a way to help pay the bills of going. It’s a big benefit of going to a big show and it’s all a part of having the major companies all under one roof — a competition of sorts between them where you can be the winner.

Topps revealed the first part of its plans on Wednesday.

For VIP bag buyers, Topps will have a five-card set of 1953 Bowman “cards that never were” — a checklist that includes Ernie Banks, Al Kaline, Ted Williams, Jackie Robinson and Willie Mays.

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Stadium Club returns with tradition it is known for — strong photography

 

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

Tradition is one thing that, for whatever reason, resonates heavily in the sports world. The past and the present are always together in baseball, for example, as the record books can seemingly always be altered any given day or season. Times change, but certain things seemingly stay the same.

One tradition that we have come to expect in the hobby has been the strong photography found in ToppsStadium Club brand. For the last 25 years or so, collectors have cited the imagery used in the brand as iconic and memorable. Why? Because that’s what it’s always been known for, and, oddly, that hasn’t seemed to stick elsewhere — even though a strong photo can make or break any design.

This year’s Stadium Club set officially arrives today with the newest batch of photographs destined for a double-take — and it’s a set that even includes my struggling favorite player, Nick Swisher, with a photograph so Stadium Club that I feel like I might even have picked it for the brand.

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Immaculate Collection baseball returns this summer

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Panini America‘s high-end Immaculate Collection brand will return for a second season reflecting the stars of the baseball diamond.

That was the news Tuesday as the company revealed the first images of autographed cards coming in the brand — a mix of various autograph types and technologies.

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Five cards to chase after Max Scherzer’s no-hitter

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

He was a beanball away from a perfect game, but a no-hitter still might impress.

The pitcher was Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer, who lost his chance at the 24th perfect game in MLB history on Saturday when he plunked Pittsburgh’s Jose Tabata with two stikes and two outs in the bottom of the ninth. Scherzer retired Josh Harrison to secure the no-hitter and raise his record to 8-5 this season. Scherzer struck out 10 Pirates in the game.

Baseball’s $210-million man is affordable on cardboard with his 1,769 cards in the Beckett database carrying a total value of $12,049, excluding rarities. Collectors have known about the right-hander since his cardboard debut back in 2005 as a member of the USA Baseball National Team.

Here are my picks for five early and affordable Scherzer cards to track down first.

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A-Rod & 3,000 hits … do collectors care?

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Alex Rodriguez is knocking on the door of the 3,000-hit club, a group that only 29 players in MLB history have joined.

Even fewer in history have 3,000 hits and also smacked 600 or more home runs — just Hank Aaron and Willie Mays — and at some point he might join Aaron as the only 3,000-700 players. However, we all know why Rodriguez’s statistics and his cards just don’t have the kind of image that they used to.

So with history nearly in hand — and plenty of history in just the last year or so, too — we ask a few questions about A-Rod (checklist/OPG here) and what you, the collectors, think …

Do Alex Rodriguez's on-field accomplishments make you want his cards?

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Do Alex Rodriguez's off-the-field issues make you want his cards less?

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Are you an A-Rod collector?

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Would you want A-Rod's autograph?

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A-Rod: Buy, sell or hold?

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Do you think A-Rod will break Barry Bonds' home run record?

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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: 2015 Topps Series 2 baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds as he rips a box of 2015 Topps Series 2 in this latest Box Busters Preview video.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out …

Card Gallery: 2015 Topps Series 2 First Pitch

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The second series of 2015 Topps baseball cards officially arrives today with a new helping of First Pitch celebrity cards.

The idea of capturing famous first pitches at MLB games on MLB cards was one of the simplest surprises on cardboard this year with Series 1 including Jack White, Jeff Bridges and 50 Cent.

Series 2 includes a mix of Hollywood stars, comedians and musicians. See them all … after the jump.

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Considering autograph signings at the National? Here’s a rundown of who is appearing …

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The National Sports Collectors Convention is set for Chicago beginning on July 29 with more than 100 signers from the four major sports and beyond.

One highlight this year will be the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team reunion, while notables such as Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders, Allen Iverson and Greg Maddux also will be signing.

Here’s a rundown of this year’s schedule with beginning prices for each signer. (Click here for more info.)  Note: All times p.m. except where noted by *. Tickets for autographs from all members of the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team in attendance start at $399.

WEDNESDAY, July 29

Name Time Signing Fee
Rollie Fingers 4:30 Free
Pierre Pilote 4:30 Free
Bret Saberhagen 4:30 Free
Lem Barney 5:30 $39 and up
Ed Belfour 5:30 $60 and up
Tom Gordon 5:30 $39
Tony Esposito 5:45 $50 and up
Eric Hinske 5:45 $29 and up
Bobby Hull 6 $50 and up
Paul Konerko 6:15 $80
Fergie Jenkins 6:30 $40 and up
Chris Chelios 6:45 $50 and up
Jeremy Roenick 7 $60 and up

Olds’ Bargain Pick: It’s hard to beat free, so I’d go with Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers. His penmanship is as slick as his famous mustache.
The High-end Pick: There are a few hockey legends here but I’d go with Hall of Famer Chris Chelios.

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Box Busters: 2015 Topps Archives baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2015 Topps Archives in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2015 Topps Finest baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2015 Topps Finest in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find? Watch and find out …

First Pitch cards return in Topps Series 2

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

One of the simplest surprises on cardboard this year returns in 2015 Topps Series 2 arriving next week.

What is it? First Pitch cards that capture celebrities throwing out the first pitch at an MLB game — a selection that included Jack White, Jeff Bridges and 50 Cent in Series 1.

With the final checklist available from Topps,, we can now run down the subjects in Series 2 — a mix of Hollywood stars, comedians and musicians that includes members of The Grateful Dead, Metallica and even comic book icon Stan Lee.

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BGS Diary (June): Vintage Pudge, Atomic Paige, Cooperstown autographs, Canseco & more

 

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

For the last few months, I’ve submitted a few cards a month to Beckett Grading Services to finally get some of the cards I like into slabs. Selecting which cards to submit has been easier said than done — and the results can be interesting, too.

Here is the batch I got back from BGS for June — so here is my latest BGS Diary entry. See which cards I decided to submit … after the jump.

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First Look: 2015 Bowman’s Best baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Bowman’s Best is back and now it’s time for a look.

The formula for 2015 Bowman’s Best revealed by Topps on Thursday looks similar to Finest with two six-pack mini boxes per box with every pack including four base cards and a parallel while every box will contain four autographed cards when it arrives in hobby shops on Dec. 23.

The brand has been on the shelf since 2007. It was introduced in 1994 and was a hobby mainstay for years before taking a break in 2006 and then returning for a one-and-done campaign as an autograph-driven product eight years ago. The brand was also one that Topps used in football, basketball and hockey through the years.

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Poll: How much can Will Ferrell’s autos sell for?

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How much to you think Will Ferrell's most-popular Archives auto will go for?

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The first Will Ferrell 2015 Topps Archives autograph has hit eBay with a Buy It Now price of $899.

While there might be other MLB teams that are more popular for deep-pocketed Ferrell fans, this price got us wondering how much you think he’ll sell for.

Tell us what you think above or in the comments below.

Update: A second card, this time the Dodgers, has a $2,000 BIN, while a Reds card carries a $699 BIN.

Update II: All three cards have sold.