Monday, May 31, 2010

LWOT- Last Week On Twitter 5/21-5/27

Great content from around the web- Sports, The Hobby, news, TV, music, movies, photography, technology, comedy, video games, comic books, hotties and more!

This week's highlights:

Supreme Court weighs in on exclusive licensing

Trish Stratus- Where has she been

Boondock Saints comes to comics

24 and Lost- End of the road

Indy 500

trishstratuscom I uploaded a YouTube video -- Promo - Trish Stratus returns home as the guest host of W...

toppscards Get to know us at Topps. Asst. brand mgr. Kevin Eger had a pretty cool gig at the rookie premiere. We talked about it.

NHLBlackhawks Greetings from media day!

petermurphyinfo The Dirty Dirt Tour! Peter Murphy live in Europe & North America. Check for tour news & updates.

mslayel crashing have a great night Show the peeps u value how much u luv them lifes 2 short random pic Love you Lay

GeekTyrant Out this week in the Gaming world 5.26.10

HBO The @BleacherReport breaks down the Top 10 HBO Sports Specials of all time. Do you agree with this list?

IGN Is Arkham Asylum 2 the last laugh for The Joker?

CBR PREVIEW: "Boondock Saints: In Nomine Patris" #1

danicaracing Two new pics from Danica's appearance on "Mike & Mike" posted @ Off-Track Gallery

DanicaPatrick Win the break pedal from my win in Japan, thanks to my team and GoDaddy!

blowoutcards Sportkings base card checklist announced:

LIFESportsNews Must-See Sport Meccas & Events

IGN Jack Bauer's time on TV is done. Did #24's last hour deliver? I

mslayel Random pic :-)

ESPNChicago Season could be last for Chicago White Sox's Omar Vizquel

Microsoft_Xbox Battlestations: Midway is now available on the Games on Demand.

Microsoft_Xbox Battlefield 2: Modern Combat is now available on the Games on Demand.

GettyImagesEdit Skydivers Break World Record! --

SI_Swimsuit Swimsuit Photo of the Day: 2010 Bethany Dempsey photographed by Yu Tsai in New York, New York -

cheaperthandirt Why is ammunition STILL so difficult to find sometimes? We interview CEO Michael Tenny for the...

DanicaPatrick 10 Most Awkward Sports Interviews

NRAnews More guns less crime: Violent crime falls sharply: Preliminary data indicates that, for the third year in a row, t...

MikeAndMike Mike & Mike change tires with Danica Patrick and Dan Wheldon. Check out the video and pics. What do you think?

FCBsportscards The @toppscards free box give away is here.

PlanetXbox360 Turtle Beach Adds 7.1 Dolby Surround to Any Stereo Headset:

darrenrovell1 One week: More than 7.6M hits on Nike's official "Write The Future" ad YouTube clip

LIFESportsNews Muhammad Ali: The Greatest Pictures

ESPNChicago Omar Vizquel matches idol Luis Aparicio for second most hits by a shortstop

myhouseofcards Babe Waxpak: The many faces of Topps' metal minis » Redding Record Searchlight

BreakingNews U.S. expanded use of covert action in Iran, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and other countries - New York Times

LRCH58 RT @BleacherReport Jacked Up: The NFL's 10 Hardest Hits on YouTube Bleacher Report

SI_Swimsuit Swimsuit Photo of the Day: 2010 Anna Trebunskaya photographed by Steve Erle in Los Angeles, California-

nfllabor NFL statement on today’s American Needle decision

blowoutcards Giving away a FREE Box of 2010 Bowman HOBBY Baseball...

chrisolds2009 This could end up being a very, very big deal in the card world:

toppscards Posted a gallery of card pics from the NFL Rookie Premiere on the FB fan page.

Marvel Find out how to get a free download code for the Iron Man: Extremis motion comic:

sportscards Update: : Top 25 Hottest Cards In The Hobby

SBJSBD NASCAR Hall inducts the five members of its inaugural class.

LIFESportsNews The Best Big-Game Pitchers

FrankandSons What if Star Wars was a 1950’s 3D movie?

amazonmp3 Download Peter Gabriel's cover of Elbow's "Mirrorball" free for a limited time:

sportscards Update: : Top 5 Jonathan Toews Rookie Cards

mslayel Pic ...random again Have a wonderful day Love love

trishstratuscom I uploaded a YouTube video -- Trish Stratus on Canada AM (August 2008)

heartbreakcards @SCUncensored I fell like it is my duty to bring this to your attention if you haven't seen it yet:

sportscards Update: : Top 25 The Cup Rookie Cards Of All-Time

espn 13-year-old Jordan Romero youngest to climb Mount Everest -

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Working at the Stanley Cup Finals

The last two days have been a whirlwind of activity. Because of my work with Card Corner Club and, I have had the distinct pleasure of being asked to cover, my hometown team, the Chicago Blackhawks, in their Stanley Cup match-up with the Philadelphia Flyers and issued full media credentials including locker room access!!

Yesterday I attended practice and a post-practice media session with locker room Q/A and the head coaches' press conference. Feeling a bit like a fish out of water, I followed the crowd after practice into the dressing room. When I entered that inner sanctum I'll be the first to admit that I was a bit star struck. Here was MY team!! I paused a few minutes to take it all in and realizing I actually had a job to do, I tentatively approached one of the players, former Flyer and current Hawk, Patrick Sharp. I had heard he was a nice guy so figured that would be a good place to start.

Now feeling more confident, I worked the room and worked up the nerve to ask more questions. I got some great sound bytes from Adam Burish, Antti Niemi, and Brent Sopel in addition to Sharp. You can hear all the audio and read my Stanley Cup preview over at .

Well today is the BIG day. After finding my way to the Media Work Room and enjoying a pre-game meal and reviewing Game Day Media notes, I am currently in my seat and we are a half hour away from puck drop and I couldn't be more excited.

Go Hawks!!

Now back to "work" ;)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Topps Struggles With An Identity Crisis

Over the last year, Topps has managed to regain their famous and cherished monopoly in the baseball trading card world through exclusive licensing deals with MLB, MiLB, and USA Baseball. Arthor Shorin would be proud. Flustered by almost 30 years of competition in the marketplace, Topps is once again reaping the benefits of what they sowed in their first 30 years. However, as I see it, they are currently struggling with defining who they are and what they do.

The identity crisis of which I refer can be summarized by 3 products.

1) Bowman Baseball
2) NFL Attax
3) Triple Threads

Catering to a target market that is as polarized as sports trading card collectors is no enviable task. It is impossible to produce one product that meets the needs of the various factions of collectors, be they set builders, rookie card collectors, high-end gamblers, player or team collectors, prospectors, etc. And yet often times that seems what Topps tries to do.

Coming on the success of their Attax line, reportedly accounting for 25% of their trading card revenue, Topps is scheduled to release a NFL licensed version later this summer (early August 2010). Designed as an affordable, kid-friendly trading card game to serve as a potential gateway to the larger collecting hobby, Topps has put a tremendous amount of marketing resources into the game. The problem is, it's boring. The game play engine is too simple and offers little more than a sports card version of the classic playing card game "War". But maybe that's the point, make it simple and cheap and they will buy it. It appears to have worked thus far.

Now we come to find out that Topps will be randomly inserting autographs into the product. Doesn't that defeat the whole point? Or is the NFL version the equivalent of candy cigarettes once designed to serve as a gateway for kids to the real things when they were older. Are we know going to purposefully replant the seed of the hit mentality in a whole new generation of would be collectors? Isn't it that same mentality that got the industry to where it is today?

When the MLB crafted the rookie card logo, it was designed to eliminate confusion in the marketplace. The theory being, that if a player has a break out season start, gets hot mid-season or is a late call-up that helps a team win in the post season, collectors and casual fans will know the current year and be able to find that player's rookie card in current product releases. Simple enough right? So what does Topps do? They find a loophole around the logo to include prospects in current year trading cards. What this means, is for a guy like Jason Heyward, even though his 2010 Bowman card is designated as a Rookie, collectors know his "real" RC can be found in 2007 products and rendering his RC logoed rookie virtually worthless. What a turnoff to the unsuspecting hobby returner, newbie or fan.

So what's the deal? Doesn't Topps have a vested stake in the process of attracting new or one-time collectors to The Hobby? Or converting the sports fan to a casual collector? Of course they do, but 2010 Bowman is a perfect example of where their greed, interferes with the health of The Hobby as a whole.

Triple Threads- Enough people buy this product that the design department of Topps has bought into the mis-guided logic that it doesn't matter what the card looks like only how many relic pieces can be crammed into it. This is a total double edge sword. The cards look like crap but people buy them, in droves. Why should they ever change?

Topps English Premier League, Cricket, UFC, and who knows what else. I would prefer they focus on making a few GREAT products than dozens of mediocre to crappy ones.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Remember When A Guys Bowman RC Was Actually Worth Something?

For all the hype surrounding 2010 Bowman this is a perfect example of everything good and bad about The Hobby all rolled up into a single, currently over-priced product. So I am opening packs and will be doing a full review and Video Highlights piece later, when I find a Jason Heyward rookie card. Cool!! Was my first reaction, and then I reminded myself to not get to excited as it 1) isn't shiny, 2) doesn't have a colored border with 3) serial numbering or 4) an autograph, meaning that in all essence it's completely worthless.

Isn't there something wrong with that? Remember when a guys RC was a coveted piece of cardboard distinction, especially a Bowman RC at that? Instead, the card is relegated to the ho-hum bin. It's really sad if you think about it as this guy is showing the potential to be a tremendous, long-term player for the Braves. I guess I shouldn't say they are totally worthless. I mean, a dollar is still something right? However, I hope you see my point.

I know times change, and I'm not trying to live in the past but the industry side of The Hobby is trying to recapture the haphazard magic created in 2001 with the base RC's of Albert Pujols and Ichiro Suzuki, right? The problem is that a culture has been created that unless a player's rookie card has any of the above characteristics, it's just another base card.

Recapping Game 3: One Win Away From A Date With History

Less than 2 minutes into Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals, the San Jose Sharks appeared to score a goal that rapidly deflated the frenzied energy of the United Center crowd in Chicago. However, video review confirmed the puck was kicked in, thus, disallowing the goal and putting the Sharks right back where they started. Lesser teams would have cashed it in but not the Sharks who responded with a flurry of shots at the Hawks net. Blackhawks goalie Antti Niemi responded to the test, denying the Sharks snipers at every turn.

Read the rest.

TWOT- This Week On Twitter 5/14 - 5/21

Great content from around the web: The Hobby, sports, tech & gadgets, music, TV, video games, movies, comic books, photography and more.

This week's highlights.

Google TV
Sports Business Awards
Transformers (Megan Fox OUT!)
UD's Survival Plan (Soccer and Lacrosse
and more

myhouseofcards Full swing: Baseball card collecting poised for a comeback

myhouseofcards Sports Memorabilia: Does Anyone Collect Anymore Bleacher Report

GeekWeekOnline And The Replacement For Megan Fox in TRANSFORMERS 3 Is....

LIFE Check out these photos of terrifying, high-flying motorcycle wrecks -

sportscards Update: : Valuable Sports Video Games

FCBsportscards FCB Hot List is Live...

AfternoonSaloon Hey, we got a Facebook page! You can now (officially?) "Like" us:

LIFE Go inside the Secret Service and see what life is like protecting the president -

mental_floss Amazing 3D Projections on Buildings --

boltbrowser Great video explaining #GoogleTV

sportscards Update: : Five Fastest Rising Hobby Favorites of 2009

amazonmp3 Find 9 free sampler albums and more in our Spring Indie & Alternative event:

justcardboard1 Prospecting? Give this site a try -

BreakingNews Google unveils Google TV platform, latest attempt to bridge the gap between the web and television

LIFE The name of the gallery says it all....Super Freaky Lifelike Sculptures :

AuctionBytes What Are the Benefits of eBay Stores to Small Sellers (AuctionBytes Letter to the Editor)

PlanetXbox360 We look at the top 10 video game releases of Summer 2010 and it's a busy couple months:

Marvel Marvel One on One: Matt Fraction The writer takes us inside his thought process for the "Iron Man 2" video game.

mental_floss Why Does Asparagus Make Your Pee Smell Funny? -->

FCBsportscards BGS to cease grading of 2008 BDP Aflac Autographs?

CBR IDW Comics Now Available on Blackberry

BleacherReport The most beloved athlete of our time sporting the most hated facial hair of all time.

CBR Comics A.M. - The Comics Internet in 2 Minutes

googleio Just announced the Chrome Web Store, an open marketplace for web apps!

boltbrowser Wow, #youtube serves up over 2 billion videos a day. Heres a list of the top 10 most viewed

LIFE RARE: The Night Marilyn Sang to JFK

IGN The new Call of Duty: Black Ops trailer is full of awesome.

30YOC Wanna win 12 packs of Upper Deck baseball cards? Come see how -

sportsnetworker Sports Biz: Seven of America’s Most Awesomely Bad Failed Leagues

GeekTyrant Disney Princesses Get Sexy Comic Book Style Makeover! These are great.

mental_floss Behind the Lyrics: The Inspirations for Famous Songs --

TopChoiceAwards New post: Top Choice Magazine Trish Stratus cover on WWE Raw in Toronto

CBR America's Favorite Pastime Becomes a Nightmare in "Sullivan's Sluggers"

SBJSBD Just 2 days till the Sports Business Awards! Here are the finalists for Pro Sports Team of the Year.

UpperDeckSports Get fired up soccer fans!

GawkerTV Ten Shows that Advanced Sex on Television

amazonmp3 Quickly sample today's new releases with a playlist of our editors' 25 favorite new songs:

AP Life returns to Mount St. Helens 30 years after the deadly volcanic eruption. Video Essay:

CBR Last Week's Comics Reviewed

GeekTyrant A Sequel to ROUNDERS Is in the Cards

IGN Is buying used games a bad thing?

SI_Swimsuit Swimsuit Photo of the Day: 2010 Anna Trebunskaya photographed by Steve Erle in Los Angeles, #California -

PlanetXbox360 The Splinter Cell: Conviction DLC Will Land on May 27, 2010:

sportsnetworker Top 10 Resources for Sports Management Students

MinorLeagueBlog Check out over 80 of last night's Top Minor League Performances all in one place at

blowoutcards 2011 Baseball Hall of Fame Inductions-Who Will Get In??

LIFE Meet Miss USA 2010

SportsCollector $10,000 Reward for Stolen Baseball Cards: The victim of a major vintage sports card theft is offering a cash rewar...

GettyImagesEdit Happy 24th Birthday Megan Fox! Take a look at her hot fashion transformation over the years

NRAnews We are now replaying Newt Gingrich's speech to the NRA tonight - Watch it at

UpperDeckSports Soccer fans, check out this new product from Upper Deck:

SportsBizNews Podcast on NHL and Gary Bettman

danicaracing "Interview With Danica Patrick"

GeekTyrant NAPOLEON DYNAMITE The Animated Series os being Developed

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Dorothy Kamenshek Truly Was In A League Of Her Own

Dorothy "Dottie" Kamenshek, fictionallyby Geena Davis in the movie, "A League of Their Own", passed away Monday at the age of 84. Dottie played first base for the Rockford (IL) Peaches and is remembered in a fitting tribute by Samantha Carr of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Dottie, has had a few collectible items including a Cooperstown Collection Starting Line-up from 1997 and an independently made baseball card in the AAGPBL set manufactured by Larry Fritsch of Fritsch Sports Cards. A willing through the mail signer well into her years classic B/W photos can also be found signed.

You can see all of her currently available items on eBay.

TNA Ushers in "New Era"

Guest Review- Doug Cataldo

Over the past ten years I have reviewed just about every brand from nearly every company that has produced cards during that time. Only a small handful has eluded me, and today I get to remove one of them from the short list. A big thanks to TriStar for giving Card Corner Club the nod to review 2010 TNA New Era.

Read the rest.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

When Hobbies Collide- Sports and Comic Books

**Official Press Release**

Image Comics announces the release of SULLIVAN'S SLUGGERS, a powerful collaboration between writer Mark Andrew Smith and artist James Stokoe (ORC STAIN). Smith, winner of a Harvey Award for co-editing POPGUN 1, is also the writer behind the offbeat favorites AMAZING JOY BUZZARDS, AQUA LEUNG and NEW BRIGHTON ARCHEOLOGICAL SOCIETY.

"Sullivan's Sluggers is a great blending of sports comics and horror," says Smith. "It was great to do a story about a baseball team while also at the same time working in the horror genre. I think this book will simultaneously resonate with sports and baseball fans as well as horror fans, making it a perfect storm."

"The horror genre has played a hugely influential role in comics, so it's been really cool to dip my toes in that pool," adds Stokoe. "Mark's cranked out a really fun script that puts a lot of emphasis on stuff that can only be done in comics and has stuffed panels with crazy amounts of gore and action. Our unsung hero, Rodrigo Aviles, is laying down some really vivid and imaginative colors as well. Lots of red splatter and juicy monster gizzards!"

"From THE AMAZING JOY BUZZARDS to POPGUN, Mark Smith has long been one of Image's most imaginative and prolific writers," observes Image Publisher Eric Stephenson. "He has a great eye for artistic talent and a head full of ideas that in many ways are ahead of their time. Aided and abetted by the incredible James Stokoe, SULLIVAN'S SLUGGERS is easily one of his best projects yet. If you haven't been exposed to the madcap wonder of Mark's work, this is the place to start!"

SULLIVAN'S SLUGGERS: When Sullivan's bedraggled minor league sluggers accept an invitation to play an out-of-town game, they have no idea their small-town destination is cursed. When the sun goes down after the 7th inning stretch, the dysfunctional teammates find themselves fighting for their lives against a town crawling with flesh eating monsters.

SULLIVAN'S SLUGGERS, an all-new 176-page full-color trade written by Mark Andrew Smith and illustrated by James Stokoe and published by Image Comics, will be available in stores on August 11, 2010, for $16.99.

Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of four major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit

Poll- Redemptions Suck

Monday, May 17, 2010

What Do Chris Olds, Keith Olbermann and I Have In Common?

We have all been published on the Topps Million Card Giveaway Stories page.

2010 Bowmania Is Upon Us

Not since 2001 Upper Deck and the coveted RC's of Albert Pujols and Ichiro Suzuki has an early season release seen this much hype. There are currently 17,316 listings on eBay for "2010 Bowman" and by the time this post is published that number will probably grow. Fueled by the anxiously awaited debut of Stephen Strasburg collectors are eating this product up by the close load as evidenced by the numerous breaks on the Blowout message boards and the exorbitant prices for Hobby ($85) and Jumbo boxes ($160+). Autographs drop at 3 per box for Jumbos and the prices realized on eBay for Strasburg, Starlin Castro, Dustin Ackley and other prospects 1st autos and refractors are outrageous.

2010 Bowman Rookie Superfractor AUTO Dustin Ackley 1/1 . . . . $3,495

2010 Bowman is prospect speculation at its finest and I understand that. There is a lot of potential money to be made. However, only a week after its release quite a few of the "gold mine" pulls are already accounted for and yet there has been no drop in the product's price. This equates more to supply and demand then it does common sense as I have long wondered that now through social media and the ability to keep track of a particular products content and its pulls, shouldn't the price theoretically go down with each major pull that disappears from remaining unopened product? If I go buy a jumbo box today I know for a fact that the Superfractor 1/1 Auto for Strasburg is gone. How do I know? Because of this handy dandy Superfractor Tracker.

Now, I am not so naive as to not understand the simple basics of Econ 101, but what I do find interesting is collectors seemingly disregard for this age old principal. If only 33% of prospective box buyers were to hold off a week or two, wouldn't it would effect the supply/demand equation enough to result in a drop in price? However, I also realize that in the mind of the collector is the fear that by waiting, the product will sell out.

Despite the aggressive pursuit of this product I have yet to see it at retail which isn't necessarily surprising. It seems the manufacturers and distributors are making an attempt to provide brick and mortar retailers a cushion so collectors go there first. Once it does hit retail and with drastically different odds, I think it's fair to say the bulk of the product's content will have already been pulled.

Prices for singles rise sharply in the first 48 hours of a product's release and then taper with occasional spikes as new "money hits" are pulled. The prices realized this past week will not be sustained over the long-term and adds another factor in the "gotta have it NOW" mentality of Bowman collectors, prospectors, and speculators. It's amazing to think that all of the prices realized to date, have been for raw cards. Can you imagine what's going to happen when cards sent in for grading start hitting the secondary market?

I would love to be in a financial position to bust a case of Jumbo for the sheer sake of flipping it. But as a collector, I am still amazed at what you could have in exchange for the money paid by some people for cards of unproven players with an above average chance of actually never amounting to more than a mere "cup of coffee" in The Show.
My $50K eBay spree from a few weeks ago could have landed me single signed balls from Mantle and Williams, with money left over when compared to what the Ackley Superfractor went for.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

TWOT- This Week On Twitter 5/8 - 5/14

Great content from around the web. Music, technology, The Hobby, movies, TV, photography, news, sports, comic books, video games, and more.

This week's highlights:

Bowman, Bowman and more Bowman
Steiner Sports offers tours
Topps Triple Threads Preview
Playboy goes 3D
Betty White's Muffin
and more!!

ThePitUpdates Our Facebook Page is Moving to a regular page instead of a group page for better functionality! Follow us here!

Auctionreport New blog post: Photos: 10 Holy Grails Of Baseball Collecting: Ten Coveted And Valuable Items Yet To...

ThePitUpdates Check out's official blog here:

MariaLKanellis RT @FatheadsShow WWE Diva, Playmate, & Celeb Apprentice @MariaLKanellis WILL be on next Wednesday!

danicaracing ESPN feature: "Danica's Double"

myhouseofcards Check out our blog for a special surprise this weekend! #baseballcards #ebay #sportscards

myhouseofcards The House of Cards has hit 200 Fans on Facebook! Thanks! Enjoy 25% off all GAME USED BASEBALL cards this weekend!

foxnews EXCLUSIVE: Toy guns sold in U.S. can easily be converted into the real thing

NHLBlackhawks Full schedules for Conference Final series now available - . Schedule for West final differs based on BOS-PHI winner.

SteinerSports Want to take a tour around memorabilia heaven? Come take a tour of the Steiner warehouse! Email for more info

Marvel See exclusive concept art featuring M.O.D.O.C. and more from ''Iron Man: Armored Adventures''!

chrisolds2009 Upper Deck set to produce Major League Lacrosse cards:

SportsCardNews 2010 Bowman Baseball Most Watched Cards: Hot! Hot! Hot! 2010 Bowman Baseball is on fire thanks to an an excl...

SI_24Seven Hoping to climb Mount Everest, skydive & go heli-boarding, Ellyn from Western Ontario is SI's Cheerleader of the Week-

tcrowntom 5/14/1998 - The final episode of the TV series "Seinfeld" aired. Youtube Seinfeld Bloopers video...

boltbrowser BlackBerry Addiction Shows Its Ugly Face On Episode of "The Marriage Ref" via@crackberry

sportsnetworker Want to maximize your website with affiliate marketing without having to do any work? Sign up here for @skimlinks

SportsCollector Billings, Montana: Signed Babe Ruth Ball Hotbed: The Babe's visit to Montana just months before his death has pro...

mental_floss The Quick 10: 10 Snack Foods Originally Sold as Medicines --

GeekTyrant According to Samuel L. Jackson a S.H.I.E.L.D. Movie will Happen after THE AVENGERS

sportsnetworker Sports Biz: Arnold Palmer Finally Making Big Money Off His Drink

SI_24Seven Today's Most Popular: Iowa owners put 'Field of Dreams' site up for sale -

CBR Holy Pornography, Batman!

CBR REVIEW: "The Return of Bruce Wayne" #1

SI_Swimsuit Swimsuit Photo of the Day: @DamarisLewis photographed by Walter Chin in #California- Lets get her over 1K followers!

toppscards New at ToppsBlog: 2010 Topps Triple Threads Baseball Preview:


sportbabes Danica Patrick stars in trailer for racing game Blur (video)

GeekWeekOnline Read Ted Hope's article 38 Ways The Film Industry Is Failing Today, which we will be discussing on GeekWeek Live.

BenBadler The Daily Dish is up, with takes on Strasburg (duh), Ackley, Alvarez, Posey and Weglarz

GettyImagesEdit 60 Years Since The First Formula One World Championship Grand Prix! Take a look back--

CBR Comics A.M. - The Comics Internet in 2 Minutes

NRAnews Article by Ted Nugent: My gun control -

Marvel A new Daredevil? The countdown to Shadowland continues!

LIFE EXCLUSIVE: Yogi's Baseball Memories

GoogleMobile Got a ticket to @googleio? Search "mobile" to check out the many sessions about developing for the small screen

boltbrowser Has Comcast created the killer #iPad app? @lefsetz thinks so. check out the video:

foxnews Iran allows Al Qaeda operatives to freely cross its borders, replenish ranks of fighters

blowoutcards 2010 bowman chrome superfractor stephen strasburg 1/1 has been pulled !, Thread-

SportsCardRadio New SportsCardRadio Podcast: Show #52 FB Card Collector Podcast & 2010 Bowman Baseball -

IGN Playboy goes from Double D to 3D

BleacherReport Yo-yo scam artist fools a local TV station. Classic stuff...

SI_24Seven Philadelphia Flyers Ice Girls - /via @si_photos #NHL #Bruins #Flyers

PlanetXbox360 Co-Op is Heading to Battlefield: Bad Company 2 in Onslaught Mode DLC:

boltbrowser RT @hnshah: Twitter has 105,779,710 users. 300K new users/day. 600 mill searches/day. 175 employees.

xbox_news Five things you didn't know about '2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa' - USA Today

JimmyTraina Tim Donaghy's (yes, that Tim Donaghy) column on Deadspin is a must-read if you've ever placed a bet.

espn Ken Burns baseball documentary "The Tenth Inning" looks at steroid era -

tcrowntom Wall Street Journal lists 5 best baseball books of all time... I want to read 'The Glory of Their Times'

AP An exclusive look at The National Sept. 11 Memorial & Museum, scheduled to open by September 2012:

blowoutcards Great discussion for those who break NON-SPORT Cases...Tips, advice, products

ESPNChiHawks Blackhawks blog: Hawks clinch series in style

youtube Check out this @google logo art installation made out of recycled computers:

SportsCollector PSA Grades Autographs for New Packaged Product: A new venture has put certified, cut autographs three to a box wit...

SportsCardRadio Collectors are pretty pumped up for this set -

SportsCardRadio Sports Card Community & Hobby Shop Directory - Tweet me if you want in. I have other spots as well.

LIFE The 2010 Gulf Oil Spill From Above -

xbox_news Microsoft Teams with LG Electronics for Stereo 3D Games on Xbox 360. - X-bit Labs

eBay Own a piece of Olympic history! Bid on 140 hockey jerseys worn by various NHL players during the 2010 Olympics []

SI_24Seven NASCAR opens $195M Hall of Fame in Charlotte - The NASCAR Hall of Fame is kicking off its opening day with a...

danicaracing "Q & A with Danica Patrick"

VersusIndyCar More IICS Blogs Is Danica Patrick Overrated?

BreakingNews No sign of a Quebec family missing since their farmhouse was swallowed up by a giant sinkhole

IGN Is Facebook gaming in trouble?

toppscards Interesting ESPN feature on how major leaguers break in their gloves:

GeekTyrant Out this week on Blu-Ray and DVD 5.11.10

BleacherReport The 2010 @Playboy Playmate of the Year, Hope Dworaczyk, and 10 other WAGs we'd like to see in 3D:

SportsBuyNews Follow us on our official homes! Twitter: @thepitupdates Facebook: Blog:

darrenrovell1 Maxim Hot 100: @BrooklynDDecker (#2), @DanicaPatrick (#25), @ErinAndrewsESPN (#58) & @LindseyVonn (#59)

eBay eBay Radio broadcasts every Tuesday from 11-2 PM Pacific & Thursdays

eBay Call in toll free 888-708-6226 to get helpful guidance (on both buying & selling) from eBay experts. & get the scoop on hot topics & news!

AuctionBytes Google Launches YouTube Ecommerce Channel #AuctionBytesNews

IGN When can you expect Project Natal in your living room?

blowoutcards First Starlin Castro 2010 Bowman Chrome Auto RC...

CBR Vivid Entertainment Announces New Superhero Imprint

bbgeeks Do you have a car insurance app for your BlackBerry? Why not?

CBR "Transformers: War for Cybertron" - Multiplayer Character Customization Trailer

LIFE The Stars at Cannes: Classic Shots

AP AP Exclusive: Playboy 'readers' get 3-D centerfold. June's edition comes with 3-D glasses.

GeekTyrant Marvel Moving into the 3D Realm of Films

SI_24Seven Swimsuit Photo of the Day: 2010 @CherylBurke1 photographed by Steve Erle -

AuctionBytes eBay Seller Dinged by Non-Paying Customer (AuctionBytes Letter to the Editor)

sportscards Update: : Top 25 Upper Deck Young Guns Of All-Time

LIFE Prohibition: When Booze Ruled

MinorLeagues #MiLB video highlights, including clips from Strasburg's Triple-A debut and Will Ferrell's "Rojo" night in Round Rock:

GawkerTV Betty White: Bluffin' with Her Muffin on SNL

Sports Market Report

Monday, May 10, 2010

Off the Grid

I'll be off the grid this week other than Twitter. In the meantime, Happy Collecting!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Standing Out From The Crowd On eBay

With the changes to the eBay pricing structure at the end of March, there has been an estimated 30-40% increase in listings in the category of "Baseball Cards". So as a sporadic, periodic, or frequent seller, what can you do to insure your listings don't get lost in the shuffle.

eBay 101 is being sure to use a detailed, yet straight forward, title that contains the key words necessary to produce a result in the search listings. eBay 201 is maintaining the mandated minimum DSR (Detailed Seller Ratings) scores. eBay 301 and 401, respectively, are creating bid inducing item descriptions and page listings.

For newer cards, for the most part, if a seller has a decent feedback rating and a fair price, that's all that is really necessary to turn listings into sales. With vintage cards it is a bit different. Vintage buyers are a different breed and come in many shapes and sizes. Some are starting, filling, or upgrading sets while still others are chasing perfection on every card, including commons.

Creating a professional page listing that looks more like the cards are coming from a business and less like from a guy with a shoebox full of vintage cards in his Mom's basement is what I have realized might have been lacking in my previous listings from The Vintage Consignment(s) and more importantly now that I am parsing out high number, semi star, and common lots, I thought it was time to up the ante.

I recently came across a great tool for creating stylish page listings from an HTML template generator called The interface is very turn key and user friendly, seamlessly integrates with eBay itself and your listings can be posted to social media and networking sites like Facebook, Blogger, My Space and more. The best thing is that it is FREE for up to 24 listings per month.

Here is a snapshot of one of my first go-arounds and a link to the actual listing.

TWOT- This Week On Twitter 5/1 - 5/7

Great content from around the web- TV, The Hobby, comic books, music, movies, news, video games, sports, technology and more.


IronMan 2 Debuts!

RIP Ernie Harwell

Robert Edwards Auction

Call of Duty: Black Ops

eBayCollectors Just in time for #ironman2 ...original art, vintage comic books & more at the #eBay comic book superhero auction event:

Marvel Read Iron Man 2 - Black Widow: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. The Black Widow goes undercover in Marvel movie continuity!

IDWPublishing The A-Team is back!

tcrowntom Sports Illustrated picks the top 20 sportscasters of all time. I bet NO ONE can get their exact order without looking..

MLBNetwork Check out Ernie Harwell's call of Clemens' 20-strikeout game from 9/18/96 on @MLBNetwork #Tigers

NRAnews Illinois: Bill banning semi-automatics threatens jobs at area gun makers: Illinois House members are preparing to ...

blowoutcards Dr Price from ITG would like your input for the ITG 10th Anniversary Product ! Great way to interact direct...

blowoutcards Upper Deck cuts 119 workers off payroll

IGN Second #MW2 map pack coming this year, but not soon enough.

Marvel Unlimited Hightlights takes a tour of Iron Man's evolution through the years:

NRAnews Little-publicized Senate panel to demand disarming legally innocent under guise of fighting terror -

amazonmp3 Here's a playlist of our editors' 25 favorite songs from this weeks' new releases:

BleacherReport Yesterday we had a 1 year old girl snowboarding. Today we have a 7 year old girl dunking!

CBR PREVIEW: "The Return of Bruce Wayne" #1

cardboardicons Twitter friends, I need your help. Can everyone create an eBay search for "Soriano Plate" and "Jon Lieber Bowman"?

sportscards Update: : Alabama Man Wins $1,000,000 Throwing Perfect Game In Video Game

bbgeeks BBGeeks Quick Tip - How to remove Uninstalled apps from AppWorld

LIFESportsNews Babe Ruth: Totally Random Trivia

GeekTyrant This Week in Comics, 05.05.2010

tntweknowdrama TNT unveils its summer lineup of original series:

sportscards Update: : Topps Announces Cal Ripken eTopps Autograph Opportunity

bbgeeks For those who may have missed it yesterday - an excellent wrap up of BlackBerry Travel apps

WaxWombat Collect sketch cards? My friend @CelKrantzArtist is doing commissions. Unbelievably talented artist who does epic work.

SI_Swimsuit Swimsuit Photo of the Day (via @mdamore4): 2010 @genevievemorton photographed by Walter Chin in #California -

BleacherReport Video of the 17 year old Phillies fan who ran onto the field and got tasered.

bbgeeks RT @BBExaminer: #BlackBerry users finally have a YouTube player worth using!

SI_24Seven Not everyone's a Formula One fan

SportsCollector Ideas for Putting Your Worthless Baseball Cards to Use: The garbage dump is calling but you can't bear to part wit...

IGN A new spy series from the creator of #Lost just became fall TV's first big pick up

GeekTyrant CAPTAIN AMERICA to Set up The Winter Soldier?

LIFE In Praise of Classic Comics

SportsCollector T206 Wagner, Turkey Red Set Top REA Auction: All but four of the 1720 available lots were snapped up by bidders as...

nytimestech New Role: YouTube as Outlet for Live Sports

mental_floss Quiz: How many TV Batman villains can you name in 8 minutes? --
SportsCollector #scdaily: Hockey Hall Expanding To Make Way for Memorabilia

JamesRyanJ Going to the National Sports Collectors Convention? #NSCC @SportsCardInfo has a preview

sportscards Update: : Recent Autographed Jersey Sales On E-Bay

sportscards Update: : 2010 Topps National Chicle Baseball Card Art

Ve3tro Video: Call of Duty - Black Ops Announcement Debut Trailer HD 720p

Todd_McFarlane SPORTS TOYS: Here are some photos of our NFL LEGENDS figures coming soon.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

A Little Nostalgia

I recently added a couple of pieces to my Nolan Ryan and Cal Ripken Jr. player collections. Many of you probably remember a product released from Upper Deck in 2005 called Origins. Each hobby box contained a box-topper with a nostalgic tin sign.
I recently won another drawing at for a $10 gift certificate and purchased these beauties. Kitchy but cool.

Topps Football 2010- The VOTC Speaks

Below is a list of questions Topps is soliciting collectors to answer regarding their 2010 products. They are giving away random prizes and you don't have to be a blogger to enter. You can find all the details here.

1. What products from our previous Topps football lines would you like to see us continue or bring back?

This one is easy. Fan Favorites. I love seeing the old school retired players, the greats of the game and legendary Hall of Famers on old Topps designs. Doing this set right would obviously mean ignoring the relics and making sure the autos were hard signed, 2-per box with no more than an $80 price tag and a base set of 200-250 cards.

2. What new products or ideas would you like to see?

I'd really like to see a product incorporate an "audiogram". An embedded MP3 in the card of a player describing a particular winning catch, run, pass, etc. I would buy a product that had no autos or relics but delivered 2-3 of these per box.

What about the idea of using the book type card but when it opens, it unfolds a replica of an NFL stadium, kind of like a pop-up book? It would have to be well designed to not be cheesy but those might be pretty cool.

I've often thought that on a card back instead of the same old bio and stats, a quote from a player's former coach would be cool. So you would have real basic bio info, last year stats and a quote. Real simple, insightful and different.

3. Which 2010 NFL Rookies would you like to see us sign to autograph deals?

All of the first round picks.

4. Regarding our products calendar, which releases would you like to see early in the season, late, etc?

To avoid using the dreaded, "photo-shoot worn" or "event worn" rookie relics any product that is going to be heavy on rookies should be autos only in the first part of the year, thus saving game used reliant product for later in the season.

5. Are there any NFL-related themes, anniversaries, celebrations, etc. you’d like to see featured in our 2010 products?

Not per say, but, it is imperative, regardless of the cost to get Walter Payton into products. Not just cut autos but base and parallel cards. There has been a real lack of his cards on the market the last several years.

Monday, May 3, 2010

A Junk Wax Bonanza

No these are not my cards. I completed purging my own "collection" of such worthless crap several years ago. Knowing the success I have had with the legit vintage consignments, my wife offered my assistance to a friend of hers to sort and sell her son's childhood "collection", with any money going to her grandson.

Begrudgingly I went over to her house and loaded up about 30,000 cards of utter junk. I have since asked my wife if anyone offers to take advantage of my services to please let me talk to them first because this is obviously something I don't want to waste my time on, but unfortunately I am now obligated to. I was half tempted to tell her to take themto a Good Will drop-off, take a receipt and write $100 on it for her taxes next year.

Most of this will be dumped at one of the several garage sales we have each summer. The good news from a selling standpoint, is that a lot of the original boxes exist, meaning I can put all the cards in the appropriate box, mark $5 on them and be done with it. The bad news is that the boxes aren't filled with their corresponding cards. Go figure.

So I am really sorry to be putting more of this crap into the market instead of sending it to cardboard heaven but this one's not my call. Pray for me, I'm gonna need it. This sucks :(

In Case You Missed It On Sports Collector's Daily- Video

The Forgotten LCS and a National Chicle Purchase

When I think of my local card shop, this, isn't the one that comes to mind. As you can see from the signage, they aren't strictly a card store and you'll typically have more lucking finding old packs of last year's product, non-sport trading cards and Topps Series 1, than you will the latest release. I have often talked about card shops needing to diversify, and on this aspect of hobby retailing, Me and Dads Toys does very well.

However, the trap they fall into is two-fold. The first being a cluttered, cramped, unorganized retail experience more akin to rummaging in someones basement than a retail establishment. The second pitfall is the over-priced syndrome. Seemingly more content to let their precious Jordan, Hull & Makita, Payton, Fisk, and Sandberg cards sit nicely on display then priced to sell it's a fun place to visit but not top of mind when I think LCS.

On a long shot and follow-up from my last post, I decided to give them a call on the outside chance they had some National Chicle packs and to my surprise they did. I purchased 7 packs at $3.99 a piece. I would have been happy to pull an auto but this purchase was more to see for mysel,f the art as a whole, compared to the gawd-awful previews previously mentioned.

What I found was a rendition of, The Great, The Good, The OK, The Bad and The Ugly and it really comes down to the artist. I scanned some cards for reference below.

The Great- George Sisler by Chris Felix

The Good- Tyler Flowers by Chris Henderson

The Ok- Juan Pierre by Ken Branch

The Bad- Nolan Ryan by Paul Lempa

The Ugly- Gordon Beckham and Paul Konerko by Jeff Zachowski

Slim Pickings . . . Be Careful What You Wish For

Well to all the people that griped and complained about their being too many products on the market, I hope you're happy. Because unless you like art cards (which I do LOVE) with mediocre player renderings (albeit the cards overall are FAR superior to the horrid previews released a couple of months ago), you are pretty much S.O.L. as a baseball card collector right now. If I see Chicle the next time I'm at a big box, I'll check it out. However, I am not going to go out of my way to the (hardly) LCS as the gas alone would cost me about 2 packs at retail.

Collectors are in for some short-term growing pains to allow the market, the industry and subsequently The Hobby, to return to a more stable and viable environment. I understood the need to reduce the overall number of brands on the market at any given point. The years from 2001-2005 were ridiculous with the multiple product releases per week. But, in all honesty I would have preferred that to the drought we as collectors personally find ourselves in.

This whole exercise in exclusive licensing, I hope, is a short-term plan to serve as a major market correction. Eventually then, allowing for the addition of a second licensee and a middle ground in the number of products released from the 100+ per year in the aforementioned time frame to the current single digit number released to date, almost mid-way through the calendar year.

Looking at the upcoming releases scheduled, absolutely NOTHING gets me excited.

Bowman- No thanks.
Allen & Ginter- Again? Really? Keep it.
Topps Series 2- More or less out of collector obligation I guess.
T206- Another horse to beat to death ala A&G, no thanks.

So basically, any collector who likes upper mid-range to higher-end product and singles from those products is screwed, plain and simple.

But, for the health of The Hobby, I am willing to suffer through what I hope and pray is only a short-term situation.