Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
2008-09 UD Hockey Legends Masterpieces
2008-09 Topps Basketball
2008 UDX Baseball
I have been sick and then my daughter got sick, and then my other daughter got sick and now my wife is sick, so it has been a hectic week. Sorry for the lack of fresh content.
Friday, September 26, 2008
By reading industry publications and talking to dealers you regularly hear a recurring complaint. Hobby storeowners whining and complaining that the “industry”, which typically means the manufactures, don’t do enough to help them promote the hobby. I always find it amazing then that when the manufactures do something to help promote the hobby that hobby storeowners routinely mess it up. Case in point with Topps Turn Back the Clock promotion. As a way of celebrating their 50th anniversary in the football card market, Topps produced a hobby store exclusive set and launched it this NFL opening weekend, where for a nickel, collectors could purchase the first 5 cards of a 22 card set with the purchase of any 2005 Topps football product. In the 17 subsequent weeks of the season, collectors can return to their participating hobby shop and with another purchase of Topps ’05 football products, would be given that weeks card. This is a tremendous opportunity to drive traffic to local hobby shops and get the start of the NFL season off to a success for storeowners.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
You know what they say about assumptions right? So if you guys already know this stuff don't shoot me.
Upper Deck NPN
Have you ever read the fine print on a wrapper? Part of the text reads, "No Purchase Necessary. For your chance to win these inserts, at the same odds. . yadda . . yadda"
Basically this is there way of getting around gambling and lottery laws.
No it's not out of the kindness of their heart.
Typically, you had to fill out a 3x5 card and mail it with a SASE.
Time consuming and not FREE.
Well Upper Deck now provides collectors the ability to utilize an online NPN system.
Both websites have a daily weepstakes for autographed photos, and mini-helmets.
I actually won a very cool Bob Feller B&W 8x10.
It takes just seconds, as you can populate the fields in the registration form via AutoFill.
SCD Daily Sweepstakes
Tuff Stuff Daily Sweepstakes
For non-sportscard collectors, scifihobby.com offers FREE samples of pending and current releases.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Topps Factory Sets- 9/23
Leaf Certified Materials- 9/23
UD Premier- 9/23
SP Rookie Threads- 9/25
Donruss Gridiron Gear- 10/15
Donruss Threads- 10/22
Topps Letterman- 10/27
UD Masterpieces- 10/29
UD 1st Edition Factory Set- 10/30
UD 1st Edition Factory Sets- 9/23
UD Masterpieces- 9/30
Just Minors Mystery Bat- 10/03
SP Authentic- 10/03
Topps Updates & Highlights- 10/16
Topps Factory Sets- 10/20
Fleer Ultra- 10/02
UD MVP- 9/30
Topps Treasury- 10/01
Fleer Hot Prospects- 10/09
Bowman Draft Picks & Stars- 10/22
Press Pass Legends- 10/22
Press Pass Legends Racing- 10/13
UD MMA The Art of Fighting- 10/15
Press Pass Wheels: American Thunder- 10/22
Topps WWE Heritage IV Wrestling- 10/27
Choose wisely. If I had to pick only 1 from each category, of yet to be released product, they would be:
Football- UD MasterPieces
Baseball- SP Authentic
Basketball- Press Pass Legends
Other- UD MMA Art of Fighting
I had a chance to sample a mini-box of 2008 Topps Letterman Basketball and I was happy I did. In this box I got four cards and I was hopeful of getting at least one good hit - - instead I got two.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
To say my life has been changed is an understatement. I am recovering from a major respitory infection brought on by working around all the mold. I'll have more details on the trip later but in the mean time here is a link to part 1 of a photo gallery.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
10. After being inserted into a criss-cross shredder, they make excellent kitty litter.
9. After shredding can also be used as Oil-Dry.
8. While lacking the absorbency of newspaper, in a pinch, can be used for puppy potty training.
7. When stored in 800 count boxes, are the perfect width for wall insulation between the studs. Simply stack between the studs from floor to ceiling. 8ft ceilings will require approximately 25 boxes.
6. Keeps toddlers occupied while you blog, eBay, trade, or otherwise "work" on your collection.
5. Take a 100ct storage box (cardboard or plastic), fill with '91 Donruss, cover with '91 Fleer stickers, use as an attractive MLB desktop paper-weight
4. BB or pellet gun target backing. This can be accomplished several ways. My preferred method is to make 2 rows of 800 count boxes, side by side, glue, stack and repeat to a height of 3ft (requires a total of about 18 boxes, 9 on each side, and spray adhesive works best.) Then glue or tape police silhouette to boxes. Easily moveable and can be used anywhere.
3. When used with the appropriate, corresponding box can be used as a prop or lift for anything. Wobbly, uneven table legs, furniture for carpet drying, my daughter thinks shes too big for a high chair so I sit her on 2 layers of 600 count boxes, be creative, use your imagination!!
2. Adds increased R-value when used in an attic as additional installation. Just shred and blow baby! Or save the shredding and increase the quantity by distributing a 2" layer for every square foot, or roughly 800 cards.
1. Makes excellent tinder for any bonfire, 800 count "logs" work best. Smaller quantities can be used for back packing (enough to fill a team bag) and 300 count boxes work excellent for car camping.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Recently on a road-trip to western Illinois, an area that boldly defines the heart of the Midwest, I frequented several small towns, exploring every antique store and garage sale I came across. Always on the lookout for baseball cards and memorabilia of yester year, the process becomes more like an extended treasure hunt. As in most rural communities, antique shops abound. Most are quaintly decorated boutique like stores filled to the ceiling with everything from furniture, china and glassware, vintage clothes and signage, books, tobacco paraphernalia, and occasionally, albeit rarely, sports memorabilia.
It was in a small town whose population sign, proudly displayed, 175, established 1845, that I came across the kind of find that one only dreams about or hears on the news or reads in the paper. An assortment of vintage cards that could hardly qualify as a collection in its entirety, but instead proved to be a sampling of memorabilia from the golden ages’ greatest hero.
An aged and yellow sign, affixed to the top of a dusty cigar box simply said, “Assorted baseball cards”. Blowing the dust of the top of the box and coughing as I created a cloud, and waiting for the dust to settle so as not to disturb the unknown contents inside, my pulse raced and my hands begin to perspire with anticipation as this box had clearly not been looked thru let alone opened in years. Raising the lid ever so carefully, my eye immediately was drawn to the striking white borders of some of the cards in comparison to the darker tones of the dusty box. And there it was, a pile of cards, at first glance maybe 5 or 6, Topps 1952 Mickey Mantle Rookie cards. As fresh as the day they came out of the pack they were wrapped in ordinary kitchen cellophane wrap. The corners were, sharp and unblemished. The edges displayed white as paper without a sign of any yellowing. The surfaces of the cards protected for years from contact with each other with a piece of tissue paper between each card, revealed, un-creased, unscratched surfaces that looked, quite frankly . . .new.
Holding in my hand the most valuable post-war baseball card ever produced I could hardly contain my excitement. I asked the elderly woman how much she wanted for the box of cards and she naively replied to me, “$100”, her voice filled with boredom.
Now this was a dilemma. What to do? Almost choking, I replied, “M’am, do you have any idea what the cards are worth?” she not so naively responded, “Sure I do. I just want them to go to someone who will appreciate them. You know that Mickey Mantle was a heck of a ball-player.” she said with a wink somewhat understated. Feeling guilty at the thought of doing something that would closely resemble robbing this woman, I said “ but these cards are worth thousands of dollars.” “I know what there worth. They weren’t the only ones my husband had. He always told me to save them for a rainy day. But, Hon, I am very well off for my age and have no reason to keep ‘em anymore. I know what you’re thinking,” she continued, “and it’s ok. Young man with a wife like you is probably going to have a family of your own someday. Why not enjoy the opportunity?”
I sat there speechless, still unsure what to do. In my daze I had failed to notice another customer browsing casually when his eye caught the opened cigar box sitting right where I had found it. “How much for the baseball cards?” he asked excitedly. Just as she was about to reply, “$100.” I snapped out of my daze and said, “They’re already sold.” The woman looked at me knowingly and smiled, turning to the gentleman and said, “Oh, I am sorry sir but those cards are already sold.”
Small town America, only in small town America can you find hidden treasures valued not for what they are worth, but for what they are worth to someone. I’ll never forget that trip and the sweet woman who made me feel like a kid again for $100.
Monday, September 15, 2008
A game used, autographed card, with a serial numbered print run of between 1 and 20 has very little difference in value REGARDLESS OF THE BRAND IT WAS PULLED FROM!
A few years ago Beckett actually tried something that I thought was a decent idea. Anybody remember the matrix called the C.H.A.R.T? It was a fancy acronymn for something that I don't remember now but the principle was simple in theory.
Example: A single game used jersey, 1-color swatch card of Alex Rodriguez numbered to 100 has a price range value of between $x and $y It doesn't matter if comes out of Topps Series One or Sterling. The range still applied and this pricing model was very simple to use and understand. It provided a quick snapshot of expected value.
I imagine the reason this was abandoned is because Joe Collector Nation revolted, demanding to know the precise Book Value of their 2004 Alex Rodriguez Leaf Certified Materials Mirror Red jersey parallel numbered to 75
The C.H.A.R.T. pricing model even made it possible to approximate a range for low numbered cards. Now Beckett provides us the useless information for a card serial numbered to 20 or less: No Pricing Due to Scarcity.
Really? Ok, well in the exact moment in time when I choose to sell a few cards of the aforementioned numbering I can tell you exactly what they were/are worth.
2005 Upper Deck Hall of Fame
Johnny Mize Game Used Uniform
Serial numbered 1 of 1
On September 14th was worth $75.55
2005 Upper Deck Hall of Fame
Rogers Hornsby Game Used Uniform
Serial numbered 1 of 15
On September 14th was worth $20.49
2004 Leaf Certified Materials
Wade Boggs Game Used Jersey Autograph
Serial numbered 9 of 10
On September 14th was worth $18.49
Hey Joe, you might want to print this out and put it in your Beckett Annual.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Obviously this isn’t necessarily a product for the seasoned collector but it is an efficient, entry level product that delivers what so many collectors seem to ask for. An attainable base set, with only the best players from each team, and the year’s top rated rookies. Hold the bells and whistles. Kickoff comes close to delivering that with 220 cards consisting of 165 veterans and 55 RC’s.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Yeah, I know it's a bogus day to have a B'day after what happened 7-years ago but what are you gonna do?
I have been out of town (Baltimore) at a trade show and thought I was going to have time to go here, but my schedule just didn't allow it. My hotel was only a short distance from Camden Yards and I must say that if the inside of the park is as aesthetically pleasing as the facade this could be one of the most beautiful parks in baseball.
Next year's show I am definitely allowing for an extra day.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
While the recurring theme in the book is about the legendary PSA8 T-206 Honus Wagner, often referred to as "the Gretzkey Wagner", having once been owned by the legendary skater, the drama that unfolds to reveal harsh accusations of gross impropriety on the part of some of the industry's established giants is quite chilling. Mastro Auctions and it's founder Bill Mastro and current President, as well as PSA and it's founder Joe Orlando and Sotheby's are all "taken to the wood shed" in this no-holds-barred, tell-all expose.The following excerpt captures the writing style and theme of the book perfectly.
"Over the decades, as The Card has changed hands, its value has skyrocketed. It was initially sold for $25,000 by a small card shop in a nondescript strip mall. Years later, hockey great Wayne Gretzky bought it at the venerable Sotheby's auction house for $451,000. Then, more recently, it sold for $1.27 million on eBay. Today worth over $2 million, it has transformed a sleepy hobby into a billion-dollar industry that is at times as lawless as the Wild West. The Card has made men wealthy, certainly, but it has also poisoned lifelong friendships and is fraught with controversy—from its uncertain origins and the persistent questions about its provenance to the possibility that it is not exactly as it seems. "
I encourage everyone who has even a vague interest in the Hobby, let alone die-hard collectors, to read this gripping tale of "collectors and con men."
Monday, September 8, 2008
Sunday, September 7, 2008
So as a Cubs fan, you can imagine my excitement of pulling this sweet patch card, numbered to just 25 of Japanese import Kosuke Fukudome. He needs time to adjust to the fact that pitchers have figured out that he has a hard time with pitches in on the hands. Despite that he still has a respectable on-base percentage as he is a very patient hitter.
Friday, September 5, 2008
Sorry for the terrible crop jobs. I'm tired.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Monday, September 1, 2008
While it might seem like common sense to some, others will gain greatly from these simple suggestions.Send a legible, hand written request. It personalizes the request. Keep it brief but cordial. Give a reason for your request. i.e. “I’ve always admired the way you play the game.”, “Your pass in the 1997Playoff game to win it in OT was awesome!” Say please, thank you, and be sure to “ask” for the autograph.
There are an abundant number of resources at your disposal for address information from books, to websites, lists, and magazines. Obviously you may have your own preferences and/or favorite means but I’ll share with you my personal favorites.A website called http://www.startiger.com/ I have found to be an immense help. For only $4.99 a month Startiger allows you access to their daily updated online database of celebrity and athlete addresses. This has been one of the most effective resources I have found for finding current home addresses. The shear volume of request that most athletes receive at their team stadium often prohibits the athlete from responding to requests. However, when it comes to home addresses, not all but many, athletes seem to think you’ve gone the extra mile and there is far less competition relative to volume.Another inexpensive resource is a publication simply titled Autograph Collector. It is monthly publication that provides editorial content relative to the hobby, and more importantly provides a monthly listing of over 300 addresses. They are not all of athletes but we obviously all have interests outside of sports so you may even decide to expand your collecting niche by sending out requests to your favorite actor, actress, musician, etc.