September 30, 2011

Who is Matt Moore?


With all the craziness that led to the end of the baseball season, one more thing got fans scratching their heads.

The Tampa Bay Rays named Matt Moore their Game 1 starter for the American League Division Series.

Yes. Matt Moore.

Don't feel bad if you don't know who he is. It doesn't make you any less of a baseball fan. Matt Moore has pitched in three Major League baseball games for a grand total of 9 1/3 innings.

You can say he hasn't gotten a lot of exposure.

So, just who is he?

Here's Moore's rundown:

Moore is 2007 eighth round draft pick - the  same year as David Price. The 22-year-old is a lefty and has made just one career start. On Sept. 22, he went five innings against the New York Yankees, giving up just four hits and striking out 11.

Even though Moore just came up to the Majors, he has a number of baseball cards on the market - all prospect and no rookies.

The first card to look at for Moore is the 2011 Bowman Platinum Superfractor. Seems that seller picked the right time to list this card. Moore's first Bowman appearance came in 2009. Even these sellers were able to wait until Moore was more popular. Just in case you didn't have enough rare cards on Moore to choose from, the 1/1 parallel from Topps Pro Debut is even out there.

CONTEST: Just three hours left to enter to win a Brandon Belt patch/auto card

OK ... time is running out. You have three hours left to enter our contest to win a 2011 Topps Marquee Brandon Belt patch/auto card.

Here is what it looks like, in case you weren't intrigued just yet.


Go to this post. Read the rules and leave a comment with your entry.

Good luck!

Triple Threads wouldn't be complete this year without this baseball icon

I feel we're ragging on Triple Threads this year, but I really don't hate the product. It just lends itself to being scrutinized because of the price. You get so few cards for the amount of money you are paying.

But Topps really did well by including this baseball icon in its set this year.

Of all the people that had to be in Triple Threads, I am sure this was the one.

/end sarcasm

By the way, don't forget to enter our contest to win a Brandon Belt patch/auto. The contest ends at 3 p.m. today. 

September 29, 2011

CONTEST CLOSED: Brandon Belt auto/patch card

UPDATE: The contest is closed.

Feast your eyes on this beauty.

It could be yours.

We're holding a contest to win this Brandon Belt Topps Marquee autograph/patch/jersey card.

By the way, second place is a complete set of Prime 9 cards courtesy of The Baseball Card Store in Midland Park, N.J.

To win the card you have to get the most points in the contest we are holding where you predict the World Series winner.

Here are the rules:
1. Pick the winner of every baseball series, including the games the amount of games it will take for a team to win the series (example: Yankees beat Tigers, 3-1).
2. Do this for the Division Series, League Championship Series and World Series.
3. For a tiebreaker: Pick the number of total runs scored in the clinching World Series game.

Point system:
Division Series: 1 point for each winner you get right
League Championship Series: 3 points for each series right
World Series: 5 points for picking the winner
Bonus points: If you get the pick exactly right, you get 1 bonus point. Using the example above, if the Yankees beat Tigers, 3-1, you can two total points for picking the team and the games. But if they win the series, 3-2, you only get one point for getting the team right.

So here are your series:

American League
Tigers vs. Yankees
Rays vs. Rangers

National League
Cardinals vs. Phillies
Diamandbacks vs. Brewers

CONTEST CLOSES FRIDAY AT 3 P.M.

By the way, check out the teams left in our Finest case break.

September 28, 2011

Triple Nightmare

Did you think we were done looking for Franken-cards here yet? Ohhhh no. I have spare time.

Why on Earth would you do this to a card that could have been so nice? I know they need to use stickers but really? Get it together, Topps.

$200 bucks a box or whatever it is and half the cards are redemptions and the rest are either piece meal patch cards that look shoddy or franken-stickers.

#losing

What is off on this Triple Threads card?

There have been some very pretty cards (like this one) to be pulled out 2011 Triple Threads this year. There have also been some duds.

Then, there is this card (which I found on this auction courtesy of @JuddFamilyStone on Twitter).



First glance, I was floored. The design is great. The bat knob is fantastic (the bat is about 70 years old). And the jersey ... Wait.

What the hell is that?

Here's a closer look at the jersey from a picture in the auction.


According to the back of the card, "The relics from this card are not from any particular game, event or season."

Here's a card that didn't need this jersey on it. The bat knob is such a good piece that it could have stood on its own without anything added to it.

So, what is this jersey then? Any guesses?

BGS War / Triple Threads Rant

Obviously you already know I hate money and love cards otherwise I wouldn't be fishing on eBay periodically throughout the day for nonsense. Since I have no interest in tracking down 65 piece game used Triple Threads, I look for things I actually like.

I would rather spend money on an autograph than spend $50+ on a gray swatch card, so that's usually what I look for if I'm searching.

One of the cards missing from my PC is the 2005 Bowman Signs of the Future Robinson Cano autograph. I am currently watching two of them, but will probably buy neither because Christmas is coming and I'd rather save money for that. However, for those people looking to buy me a gift.... Here is your chance (wink, wink, nudge, nudge).

Here is what I don't understand, look at these two cards and explain to me why one autograph is graded a 9 and one is graded a 10 when the are identical. If I were buying one I'd probably go for the 9/9 over the 8.5/10 but honestly, I don't see a difference in the auto that is so great to be different. Maybe someone can point it out.

P.S. Here is a card designed by a bunch of "Dingbats" (Lame meter is high for this one.)

P.P.S. Love the shoddy piece meal patch assembly on this Mr. November. The Mr. looks like it's between two envelopes not bats.

P.P.P.S I'm done for now. Stupid eBay.

September 27, 2011

2011 Triple Threads is live ... sort of

The newest version of Triple Threads is out. 

I just want to put it out there that I have never bought a hobby box of this product in my life. I don't normally go for high-end stuff, but I like looking at it every year - usually for the wrong reasons. 

For the person that could find me the funniest Triple Threads card out there, I will give them a prize. I am not sure what it is yet, and it will probably be a pick of several cards I have in my collection. 

Meanwhile, let's go to the Bay to see what Triple Threads has in store for us this year.

Oh look! One of the latest rookies we are all in love in the set. ERIC HOSMER! It's great big white card that you need to redeem in order to actually get the Auto Relic Gold Parallel.

Alright. Let's see if we can do better. Let's find something that is actually in hand. 

Well, for that, I actually have to go all the way to the Blowout Cards forum. One collector there got some Triple Threads cards in hand. They look pretty decent this year compared to years past and I know one person who going to be running down that Mitch Moreland.

When these cards starting hitting eBay over the next couple of days, I'll be intrigued to see what they look like. 

For the fan that has everything

It's almost October and that means Christmas is rapidly approaching. While I can't say I have given much thought to presents yet, I stumbled across something entertaining on eBay that would be great for a football fan/dog owner. How many of you are trying to think of something that has both things in common?

Now the only reason I even know this item exists is because I was doing a search for a something for my puppy and it was one of the items. I'm done laughing about it and wanted to share this item with all of you.

Please tell me you think it's awesome. I may even buy one for my dog.

September 26, 2011

Hobby Box Break and Review: 2011 Topps Marquee

Let me start by saying, "Congratulations, Topps!"

It appears that they are finally moving their high end cards in the right direction with this product, oddly enough it means they are starting to mimic some Upper Deck products which is fine because they were amazing at high end. The 2011 Topps Marquee game used, autographs, and dual relic/auto cards are absolutely amazing looking in person.

I scanned the cards by pack because there are only 4 packs per box, 5 cards per pack, and one autograph or game used card per pack. One of the things I wouldn't have known by looking at scans on eBay of these cards are the feel of the actual card, meaning the name stamp on the bottom. They appear to be a sort of foil stamp, or some sort of embossed name plate and it's not. The name plate area is just as flat as the rest of the card and I think that really cheapens the product.

The same can be said of the hits, with no embossed or impressed writing on the cards. I think when you have a high end product such as this you expect something above and beyond what you would get out of a mid-line or base product. It bothers me more so on the hits than on the base cards, but if they can make that change next year this could possibly stand to be a bigger hit next year.

The four packs come in their own mini box within the master box. Similar to how Sweet Spot used to be sold. Here are the packs...

Pack #1


Joey Votto /199
Jose Tabata on card autograph (Suzy hates you, Jose!)

Pack #2

Tim Lincecum /299
Ozzie Smith Titanic Threads bat relic /99


Pack #3


Carlos Santana /299
Brandon Belt dual patch autograph /400


Pack #4 (best patch I have EVER and may ever pull)


Tony Gwynn /199

Roberto Alomar quad patch 3/5
This may be the best pull ever. While I was never a Cleveland, Mets or Alomar fan I can certainly appreciate the kind of player he was and this awesome patch card. Now if I had seen this on eBay I would have been skeptical that it was a fake because this is just that ridiculous. I absolutely LOVE this card. I have two problems with the card. (Did you really think I wouldn't?) The first and biggest problem is the picture is him in a Mets uniform, yet the patch is an Indians patch. Why wouldn't they just use an Indians picture? The second problem is the quad format for this particular patch. Why would you want to ruin in by turning it into a quad when this logo would have been amazing as a jumbo patch in this set with an auto or without? This card is also the reason I was saying that Topps has come a long way but still has a little bit to go because aside from those issues the name of the player and the card should be either raised or impressed into the card to make it sharper.

Now onto the grades...

2011 Topps Marquee Report Card:

Design: B+

This is by far and away a huge improvement in the high end department of Topps baseball. The only product that is near the level of Triple Threads in terms of quality patches and autograph selection. The reason I can't give this an A is because of the issues mentioned above plus, I have a huge problem with the jumbo patch autographs that have a solid jersey swatch with a silver sticker auto slapped on it. The base cards have great photographs that go to all four borders which is nice, but I don't like how the names are not made to be more significant on the cards.

Value: A

For around $150 per box you are getting 4 hits, and they are much higher quality hits than you get in other Topps products. This box was worth every penny of $150 and then some, however depending on what you got that could change. This is the type of product that you gamble on for that amount of money. Would the Tabata pack have been worth around $30-$40 if you picked up one mini box? No way. But if you picked the pack with a quad patch, it sure would be. Bottom line is 4 hits, 4 serial numbered parallels plus base cards is worth it if you are a hit chaser.

Quality: B-

The base cards feel just like the dummy cards in packs to fool people into thinking they got a hit. They are obviously glossed slightly, but they look and sound like (yes, you know what I'm talking about) like the plain old white cards and they slapped images on both sides. The hits need to be be worked on as far as the lettering goes and a Titanic Threads card should be a little nicer and contain at least a small piece of a patch and they can use these giant plain swatches for base Topps hits. Also, why not have the players sign those solid swatches instead of silver stickers that look so horribly misplaced and tacky? Just some ideas, boys.

Overall: B+

This product is showing that Topps creative team is trying to listen to what collectors want or what we have told them we like numerous times in the past from either Topps or other card companies high end products. Now that they have the right idea if they can tweak this just a little for next year I think people will love this product very much. It has a TON of potential to be a very premium product, but the little things need to be fixed for that to happen.

September 25, 2011

Sunday Question

Most of us buy a ton of cards on eBay during the year and maybe even some other useful stuff like sneakers, phone accessories, t-shirts, etc. I've been on eBay for a little over ten years and I have used it for everything from cards, car accessories, gifts, running an eBay store, Power Seller, consignment business- you name it and I have probably bought it or sold it on eBay.

Do you remember why you first signed up for an eBay account? Or what was it that prompted you to join the craze?

I first signed up to buy carbon fiber racing pedals and xenon headlights for my Honda Accord. I actually even signed up through eBay motors and not even the regular site. I mainly used it to buy stuff to change out factory parts in my car. I don't think I bought cards on it until after college (the first college try) at some point.

September 23, 2011

Hobby Box Break and Review: 2011 Topps Heritage Minor League

This year Topps decided to put a twist on the Heritage craze by issuing a minor league set with the 1962 design. While the set is one of the best releases for the major league player sets, it's a little lack luster to me as a minor league set. I can see the appeal to collectors for sure, but if you aren't a prospector it probably won't do much for you.

(For the record, my scanner cropped all cards on the left side- no idea why but they are not all that off center.)

Let's start with the base set and take a look at those cards.

The hometown boys including phenom rookie Jesus Montero
The Killer B's: Andrew Brackman, Dellin Betances, and Manny Banuelos
Some of the bigger stars from the box, Manny Machado, Mike Trout, and Bryce Harper

Obviously I am a big fan of the Heritage series each year and this year was no different. It is odd to see non-roster players and young kids on this design but there is an upside to it. The one thing that these cards will be great for are TTM's. They will look amazing autographed on card for your collection. If you know of a prospect you would like to send cards to sign to, I would buy a lot of 5 or 10 on eBay and use them to get TTM's.

The parallels of the base set come in a variety of tints much like the pro set released earlier this year. Here are the ones we pulled:

Blue Tint /620
Red Tint /620
Green Tint /620
My only problem with the tint parallels is that they are all serial numbered to the same amount of prints. If the green ones are 1:14 packs as opposed to red and blue 1:9, shouldn't the serial numbering be different? I also think they should be different for each color just to make the chase a little more challenging- especially for people fighting for those Harper and Montero cards on eBay.

There was one black bordered parallel, Andrelton Simmons, it is numbered /62.


Instead of the New Age Performers or All-Star News cards, this set features Baseball America cards with some of the top prospects in the minors.


While I like the idea behind the Baseball America inserts to mirror the big league version, they just don't so as much for me as something like the Topps 100 in Bowman or the other subsets from Bowman. Bowman has become the be all end all of draft picks and rookie cards. Whether or not that is a good thing for Topps is debatable in another post, I suppose.

The box states there are two autographs and 1 relic per box. We ended up with 2 autographs and 2 relics. Loaded box!

Andrelton Simmons game used jersey card

Adam Bailey game used jersey card

David Kopp /861 stealth sticker auto

Chris Gloor /861 stealth sticker auto

While I love the Heritage design, I don't really feel like minor league players work with it. I know that these will be great for in person signings and TTMs, but in the long run I don't see collectors going for this when they can pick up a box of Bowman and get an on card auto or two.

Also keep in mind that this is a hobby only product so you won't be able to run out to Target or Walmart to grab a blaster, so if you like them order some boxes or grab singles on eBay.

2011 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball Report Card:

Design: A

I love the Heritage design every year (until the get to the 1980's then.... I'm done) and this year is no different.

Value: C+

With current prices of hobby boxes ranging from $50-$65, I don't really see an upside to this set. Most prospectors don't build sets, they look for their player and that's it. While you are guaranteed (on average) 3 hits per box, I don't see anyone picking this product over Bowman with on card autographs. You do get a variety of the tint cards, but is that enough value for the money?

Quality: A

The quality has improved very much in the last couple of years in this product specifically with the centering of the cards. While the original sets were never centered, times are different now, packs are more money, and people expect a clean mint card when they open a pack. The cards are mildly off center in some cases, but nothing that makes you want to be mad at Topps. These aren't really cards people grade anyway so it isn't a big deal when a card is a hair off center. The autographs are on stickers, which we all hate. I would think it would be easier to get minor league guys to sign on card than big league guys.... Then again, what do I know?

Overall: B

I think this set is great... for major league baseball players. I think it leaves alot to be desired by the casual collector or a prospector. The autographs are lackluster and people are over pulling plain gray and white swatches. The upside to the set is that you can put together team sets of your favorite teams affiliate clubs and not spend a ton of money. You can grab two sets even, and use one for TTM's or spring training autograph signings.

For my money I would buy a box of Bowman before this, but that's just me. Do you guys like the idea of Heritage minor league cards or do you think this set should be reserved for the big league players? Any opinions of this set you would like to share?

Remember these: 1989 Pro Set Announcers



Remember Pro Set? They flooded the market with billions of football cards in the late 1980s and early 1990s, making it possible for you to own rookie cards of Barry Sanders, Emmitt Smith and Deion Sanders for pocket change.

Many of the company's ventures didn't work, including Guinness World Records cards and a Santa Claus insert. Eventually Pro Set filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and that was it for the inexpensive football cards.

But within the failures came one of the greatest - and unintentionally funny - sets of the current collecting era, 1989 Pro Set Announcers.

The orange-bordered cards appeared in football packs, bringing cardboard glory to some of the game's greatest voices:

Dick Enberg, looking dapper with an aquamarine pocket square

Bob Costas, getting ready to wax poetic about something

Dick Stockton, once married to Leslie Visser

Chris Berman, before Nutrisystem, Applebee's and male pattern baldness came calling

Jack Buck, broadcasting legend

John Saunders, ESPN

Verne Lundquist - preparing for his greatest glory, a featured role in the Adam Sandler film "Happy Gilmore"

Steve Sabol, the NFL films guy

Al Michaels, "Do you believe in moppy hair? YES!"

1989 Pro Set Announcers would be legendary if it featured another dozen cards of broadcast school grads. What makes it world-class is the set's inclusion of players-turned-broadcasters with dubious on-air careers.

Joe "I wanna kiss you" Namath

Tom "TJ" Jackson, who deserves humanitarian awards for enduring Chris Berman's screaming for all these years

Frank Gifford, who's married to Kathy Lee, the brightest star on NBC's Today Show (during the fourth hour, not named Hoda)

Terry Bradshaw, who once bared his butt in a Sarah Jessica Parker-Matthew McConaughey movie

Ahmad Rashad, whose ex-wife Phylicia starred as Clair Huxtable on "The Cosby Show"

And O.J. Simpson, famous for a nationally-broadcast drive in a White Bronco, among other things

You can find the set online for less than $5.

September 21, 2011

2011 Finest Case UPDATE

OK guys, just trying to get this filled as quickly as possible. I would love to schedule another break after this but I can't do that until this break is full. I can not afford to eat any teams so if you guys know anyone who would be interested in the teams that are left feel free to link them to the blog.

Here are the teams that are left for the break:

White Sox
Astros
Brewers
Rays

If you want one, speak up. Team are $40, which includes shipping. The updated release date is Oct. 12. This was done to include some of the rookies that made it up later in the season.

These teams were left out because they are rarely ever bought. If you would like one, email us and we'll see if we an work out a price.

Pirates
Diamondbacks
Marlins
Padres

September 20, 2011

Varsity Trading Cards

Some of our long time readers will recall posts we did on custom baseball cards that I received from a fellow blogger. The cards are called GameDay Graphers and you can check them out by clicking here.

My buddy from Minnesota has kept in touch with us throughout the years despite his lack of interest in collecting/blogging. He is a big Twins fan and I always put aside cards for him but sometimes forget to mail them (well not my Mauer cards, he's too cute). Anywho, he has since started his own trading card company devoted to creating team sets of high school varsity sports.

I received a brochure and sample card in the mail. The card reminds me a lot of the minor league cards you can pick up at the parks when you go to the team shop. The one difference between the minor league and this one is there is a space for an autograph.

Just think, if you have the next Albert Pujols or Eric Hosmer in your town you can get their first card signed by them and hold onto it.






I scanned the card and the brochure in case anyone is interested in setting up a team set for their local high school, or if there are any coaches out there interested in creating a set for a fundraiser.

If you have any questions or are interested in making a set of cards please contact Christopher at VarsityTradingCards.com.

The best part of Topps Marquee

Searching through eBay listings of Topps Marquee, my eyes fall onto the same types of card - no matter who the player.

The Topps Marquee Museum Collection autographs are some of the nicest autograph cards I have seen in a while. I love the autograph matching the color of the background in many of the pictures or sometimes the different color auto makes it pop.

This Pablo Sandoval auto /10 ended today for $210.06. It's Pablo Sandoval. He missed a number of games last year and this card still went for a good price.



September 19, 2011

Even non-Yankee fans can appreciate Mariano Rivera


On May 17, 1996, Mariano Rivera recorded his first career save.

There was no way to know he would become the greatest closer in the history of baseball. At the time, he was still the backup to John Wetteland.

But on Monday afternoon, Rivera stood on the mound at Yankee Stadium and recorded a Major League record 602 saves.

While it’s a statistic made up from a cranky sportswriter once upon a time, Rivera’s accomplishment is a remarkable feat.

As a New York Yankees fan, there is no better song to hear at Yankee Stadium than 'Enter Sandman'. The song brings confidence, joy and an overwhelming feeling that your team is about to win another game.

[Related: You can already buy Mariano 602 items from MLB.com]

Even without playing, Tim Tebow gives collectors a reason to chase


The Denver Broncos quarterback controversy is giving collectors reason to swoop up cards of Tim Tebow.

Tebow, the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner during his colllege career with the University of Florida Gators, is currently listed as the team's third-string quarterback, behind Kyle Orton and Brady Quinn.

Orton has struggled so far this season, throwing an interception and losing a fumble in a week one Monday Night loss to rival Oakland. Orton led Denver to a 24-22 win over Cincinnati Sunday, throwing two touchdowns. 

But the calls for a new QB persist.

Quinn, a star during his Notre Dame days, has started 12 NFL games, most recently for the Cleveland Browns in 2009.

Tebow started three games last year, throwing five touchdowns and three interceptions.

Hobby Box Break and Review: 2011 Topps Chrome Baseball

This year, I was anxious to check out 2011 Topps Chrome, but I am not sure if it's because I actually wanted it or because it felt like it had been a long time since I opened wax. I had ripped a few rack packs from Target and was very pleased with the cards in general and was eager to open a hobby box to see what refractors I might get. The blue refractors in every set are my favorite so I was cheering for a Robinson Cano, but let's see how I did and more importantly what I think of the set.

Here are a sample of the base cards.



What I liked about this year's cards most was they maintained the same maple syrup smell, but without the coiling and curling of the cards. The curling cards has made past Chrome sets annoying to collect and just shoddy looking. It was nice to see that corrected this year along with the major machine marks down on most of the cards. You can see minor marks on some cards, but overall this year there was a huge improvement in that area as well.

There were no doubles in the box and there were around 22 or so rookie cards. Not bad if you are into collecting just rookies. Did I pull any "shiny" cards? Well, I'm glad you asked. This to me is the "funnest" part of Topps Chrome- the inserts and parallels.

Read the full review after the jump ... 

September 18, 2011

Run Faster and Jump Higher

For anyone who ever wanted to go "Back to the Future", Nike is offering fans young and old alike the chance to try and do just that. There are new sneakers that are based on the movie and are made by Nike for sale on eBay. There is one catch... Since 100% of the proceeds are going to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, the shoes will cost you if you want them.

Here is the commercial if you haven't seen it yet, it's pretty awesome.



The shoes can be seen here on eBay, if you can afford them. I wish I could because I can honestly say I would rock these everywhere I went.

Sunday Question

This week we found out that Panini is now licensed to produce MLB player cards and is planning to do a few releases. This is a great thing if you ask me because we need some variety in our collections and a choice of what to buy is always nice.

I'm curious as to who else is excited about this, and will you guys be buying Panini baseball cards when they are released?

I guarantee that I will be purchasing some and I am hoping they do something good with the license and make some nice high end inserts and auto cards.


Here are some example of Panini products:

Elite Extra Edition baseball cards
Panini Contenders (Mostly hockey cards in this group)
Logoman cards
Some of its rookie cards with patches, jerseys and autograph cards

September 16, 2011

For the football fans: Topps releases preview pics of Five Star

In the baseball card collector's past, many people haven't been happy with what Topps has put out when it comes to high-end products.

Triple Threads can be a little gimmicky, especially with some of the wording they put on the card (example).

Some of the autograph cards from Marquee are nice, but the jumbo relics (forever known as rags) have a lot left to be desired.

However, when it comes to football, Topps has a high-end hit on its hands with Five Star. It was popular last year with fans as the autographs were on-card. Additionally, Five Star was well-designed.

Topps just released some preview pics of the next installment on its Facebook page.


The not so fifty dollar card

A week ago I challenged everyone to find me a 2008 Bowman Chrome Jesus Montero RC AU for $50 and only one person came close. The only problem I had with the one close to $50 was that I wasn't crazy about the centering on the card (oh and I was sleeping when it ended).

I started clicking on the people selling raw Montero cards on eBay to see what else they were selling and the majority also had graded ones for sale. Some sellers even had words eluding to them collecting or selling mint cards or graded cards. This made me fairly certain of one thing- they were all selling sub-par quality cards raw to flip quick. I'm all for that, but I just don't want a card that the centering is 70/30 for example.

I decided to badger my pal Wes who has a very, very, very vast collection of Montero cards to sell me one of his for a fair price. I made an offer- he accepted and here is the card:



September 15, 2011

You want competition, you got it: Panini gets MLBPA license


Topps is coming to the end of the second year of its exclusivity with an MLB license.

Upper Deck had an MLBPA license in 2010, but no MLB license, which meant they could only make cards with players only, no logos or team names. UD didn't follow those rules and got sued.

So, for some time there was just one.


The longtime card company stood alone creating a variety of products that were received differently by the collectors. Regardless if a collector liked or disliked a set, it seemed there was one thing they all wanted – competition.

Most people understand competition is good in a business marketplace. It doesn't allow companies to get complacent. I'm not saying this is what Topps has done. It has put out some really good products this year such as Gypsy Queen.

Still, we wanted more.

Consumers wanted options.

On Thursday, we got one step closer, although we're not entirely there. MLBPA gave a license to Panini America to create baseball cards. The catch? Just like Upper Deck, they cannot use team names and logos because those are with the MLB license.

2011 Topps Chrome break: he stole my mojo

The BF and I hit the card shop on Monday. It was a pleasant trip through the Pine Barrens as we drove past log cabins and almost had a girl hit us as school let out.

But the 45-minute trip was worth it to get a little of the card shop experience.

Dan was happy with his break, especially after he stole all of my luck. I used to pull decent cards. I used to get lucky and get case hits when I would buy a box. Doesn't seem as I have that kind of pull anymore.

But someone else did.

Refractors

Jason Heyward




David DeJesus atomic refractor



September 14, 2011

2011 Topps Prime 9 Set

I finally got my grubby mitts on the complete Prime 9 set, the redemption set from 2011 Topps Series 2 baseball. I must say, I am a big fan of the design of this set because it reminds me of old school Finest for some reason.

Here is what the complete set looks like:



Boxing cards in baseball: Topps put Manny Pacquiao in another product


Even though 2011 Topps Marquee is supposed to be a baseball product, the company has put in Manny Pacquiao cards. A boxer.

2011 Topps Marquee is live

Topps Marquee made its debut this week. The 100-card set is not for casual collectors with just four packs in each hobby box.

But it seems as though eBay would be the place for fans to pick up the cards they would like.

Early opinion: I find this set intriguing.

The base cards remind of Stadium Club with the flushed out picture and no border around it. I could also say it reminds me of Upper Deck. These cards come in parallels including bronze and gold.


Titanic Threads... Umm...

So I was looking up Pujols 2011 Topps Marquee cards and I came across what is called a "Titanic Threads" card...

Would there need to be actual threads on here to be named as such? However, in this case the card being named along with a ship that sunk is quite appropriate.

Talk about a waste of money.

September 13, 2011

Cam Newton loses, but his card owners are the big winners



Of all the impressive quarterback performances we saw this weekend, one really stood out to card collectors on eBay.

Cam Newton shredded the Arizona Cardinals in a loss, throwing for 422 yards and two touchdowns. The Carolina Panthers still lost 28-21, but people are mostly talking about Newton's performance in that game. He just made it look easy at times.

Even though he lost in his debut, the big winners are the people owning his cards right now.

An extra $10 and some gas - well worth the trip


I went between looking at prices on the Internet and calling hobby shops for prices. Online, I could get a hobby box of Topps Chrome for $65. At the hobby shop, it was $75.

I thought about it. Do I want to purchase a hobby box, pay for shipping, then wait two days to get a box? Or drive to shop, talk to the nice guy who owns the place and open my cards immediately.

It actually didn't take that long to make the decision. Since the BF had never been to the hobby shop – that Marie and I found during one of our escapades – we drove about 45 minutes. Yes, so there was gas money involved as well.

But nothing beats the shop experience. It was worth the extra $4 (that includes shipping from the Internet) and gas money.

September 9, 2011

2011 Topps Chrome Rack Pack Breaks

Yesterday I took a trip to Target for no reason other than to see if they had chrome and return the bag full of empty water bottles in my trunk. I figured if they have 2011 Chrome, I can use some of the return money to buy some packs and if not I'll buy coffee. Either way I was going to win.

As luck would have it they had cards. They only had rack packs though, no blasters and no loose packs. I wouldn't have bought loose packs anyway when you can get the rack pack and get 3 orange cards. I took the 10 or so rack packs off the rack, and picked two that I wanted and checked out. I didn't feel like taking the first two for whatever reason, and it worked out to my advantage.

Here are the cards from rack pack #1:




September 8, 2011

Fifty dollar card idea

This time of year is fun for baseball not just for pennant races and playoffs, but also for the September call ups. The Yankees have called up a bunch of kids, including the highly prized Jesus Montero.

Tuesday night Montero showed everyone why he is so highly valued and what all the scouts have been talking about for quite some time by hitting not just one opposite field homerun, but TWO! Then today he had the longest RBI single to RF which put the Yankees ahead, though not for long.

Obviously now is not the best time to start a Montero collection, but the best time to begin unloading one. I have wanted a 2008 Bowman Chrome auto of his for quite some time but it's a wee bit out of my budget, and by wee bit I mean like $100+ out of my budget (I have Cano's to buy remember?).

Someone hands you a $50 who does not go on eBay or online and said, "use this to get a Montero RC for your collection." What would you buy? I have unfortunately become one of those people that would really rather just have an autograph rookie card than a base one so I wouldn't even know what one I would buy with that money or if I would buy a bunch of cards.

Would you go for a 2010 Bowman Platinum autograph instead? Or a Donruss minor league auto? I wouldn't mess with any of those other minor league cards but they are also out there.

I have one autograph of Montero in my collection, but it is a Tri-Star sticker autograph I pulled from a blaster of Yankees I bought at Modells a couple of years ago. While I love the card, the signature goes off the sticker and it looks pretty lame.



If someone can find me an un-graded 2008 Bowman Chrome auto in the $50 ballpark, there will be a prize... I don't know what it will be yet but I will give something away as a finders fee. So.... let's hear your ideas or propose a trade or sale to me. Ready. Set. Go.

P.S. Can someone also tell me why people list things like this on eBay? Idiots.