The Beckett Blog


Rippin’ Retail: 2010 Topps The Best of Chrome Value Box by Chris Olds

Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds as he opens a 2010 Topps The Best of Chrome Value Pack in this latest Rippin’ Retail video.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out.



Rippin’ Wax: 2010 Topps Update Baseball Jumbo HTA (with poll) by Chris Olds
October 30, 2010, 5:52 pm
Filed under: MLB, Stephen Strasburg, Topps

Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds as he busts an HTA Jumbo box of 2010 Topps Update that he picked up at Nick’s Sports Cards in Dallas in advance of our Box Busters episode coming soon.

What will he find inside? Pie cards, variations, Relics, autos and more?

Yep.

Watch and find out … he promises it will be a good one.

Part 1 is above and Part 2 — a must-see segment — is after the jump along with a poll.

Tell us what you think of the box.

Continue reading



The hobby’s biggest story in years gets bigger — Stephen Strasburg needs Tommy John surgery by Chris Olds

By CHRIS OLDS | COMMENTARY

Anyone who doubts Stephen Strasburg‘s place in the hobby in 2010 hasn’t been paying attention to the stat sheets.

You know, his numbers on the field — and the sales of his baseball cards.

However, the biggest story in baseball in years got a little bit bigger on Friday morning as a Washington Nationals official said the highly touted hard-throwing right-handed rookie likely needs Tommy John surgery — ligament replacement in his right elbow. That means we may not see him on an MLB mound until 2012.

Cynics saw Strasburg’s high level of success on the field and predicted a downfall eventually — though one has to wonder where that particularly came from as he has been absolutely dominant in college and the minor leagues before becoming the spectacle of all spectacles in the big leagues this season. You can’t argue with his numbers — they were there and had been enough to justify his being the No. 1 pick, which came with a hefty $15-million record-setting contract.

However, one can never predict injuries — and the cynics got what they wanted; a quick downfall this season, an end to the biggest story MLB has had — especially when reflected on cardboard — in years. Some say Strasburg’s arrival challenges the impact of the arrivals of Ichiro Suzuki and Albert Pujols in 2001, but I’d say it might surpass them both and go even further back.

Now what, though? Let’s assess Strasburg’s performance as we look forward …


Continue reading



First look: 2010 Bowman Sterling baseball cards by Chris Olds

Topps revealed its latest prospecting product on Friday morning, Bowman Sterling, which will arrive in late-December packing 20 hits in every six-pack box.

The hobby-exclusive product will include four autographed Rookie Cards, eight signed MLB Future Star Cards, six  USA Baseball  Star Autograph Relic or Relics, one dual autograph and one dual-Relic boxtopper.

The base set will consist of 50 rookies and 50 MLB Future Stars cards, a 20-card skip-numbered RC Autograph checklist, a 50-card Future Stars autograph checklist and a 32-card USA Baseball dual-autograph set. The remainder of the product is made up of a 42-card USA Baseball Relic contingent and 31 dual-Relic boxtoppers.

The Rookie and Future Stars sets will, of course, include Refractors — Reds, Blacks, Golds and standards — and the same for the dual-autograph cards.

The Relics will have Patch Red Refractor 1/1s, signed Relic Black Refractors, Triple Relic Gold Refractors and Dual Relic Refractors. The easiest of all Refractors — Relic or autograph — is just 199 copies.

Among those on the Rookie  autograph checklist are Stephen Strasburg, Ike Davis, Jose Tabata, Jason Heyward, Mike Minor, Domonic Brown, Logan Morrison, J.P. Arencibia and Brennan Boesch among others.

The Future Stars checklist includes Aroldis Chapman, Kolbrin Vitek, Matt Lipka, Bryce Brentz and several players to be determined.

See a gallery of images after the jump.

Continue reading



Rippin Retail: 2010 Topps Baseball Value Box by Chris Olds

Beckett Media’s Chris Olds rips into a 2010 Topps Baseball Value Box, a new item that hit retail shops this week.

What will he find inside? Watch and find out …



Box Busters: 2010 Obak baseball cards by Chris Olds

Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer rip into boxes of 2010 Obak baseball cards from TRISTAR in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside these boxes

Watch and find out.

See Part 2 after the jump …

Continue reading



First look: 2010 Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects baseball cards by Chris Olds

After teasing a few card images on Thursday, Topps released the basic product breakdown for  its forthcoming 2010 Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects baseball card set on Friday morning.

Scheduled for release in mid-December, it will include one Chrome autograph per 24-pack hobby box and each 12-box case will include just one 16U USA Baseball team autograph card.

The Draft Picks & USA Baseball Stars checklist includes 110 cards each with Red and Blue standard Bowman parallels along with the full run of Chrome parallels as well (SuperFractor, Red, Orange, Gold, Blue and standard). The Rookies checklist includes 110 players with both standard and Chrome cards to be found.

The Chrome autograph checklist includes 43 players  — 25 prospects and 18 members of the 16U USA team. Each of these cards will be found with the standard parallels, while a Stephen Strasburg Chrome autograph card is listed as a rookie variation card.

Continue reading



First look: 2010 Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects Stephen Strasburg Autograph by Chris Olds

Topps is apparently taking a different  approach with what could be the biggest Chrome autograph card in recent years — if not ever — as it teased the card image for Stephen Strasburg‘s 2010 Bowman Chrome Draft RC on Thursday.

Interestingly, it doesn’t feature an action photo — instead a curtain call from his big-league debut game on June 8.

That’s a move that might make some collectors cringe but is perhaps one that will stand out among the countless cards Strasburg has this season.

Does it help or hurt a card like this? Thoughts on this move? Let us know in the comments and take the poll below.

FOR A GALLERY OF IMAGES FROM THE SET, LOOK AFTER THE JUMP.

Continue reading



Topps pulls back curtain on Stephen Strasburg cards to come by Chris Olds

Topps‘ next baseball card release will be the always highly anticipated Triple Threads set, which will include the first game-used jersey cards of Stephen Strasburg — both standard swatches and patches — as well as on-card autographs of the highly touted Washington Nationals pitcher.

While Strasburg’s status on the field has slowed since his impressive debut, he’s still by far the story of 2010 regarding MLB’s rookie class and Topps recognized that fact in its discussion panel with collectors at the National Sports Collectors Convention. He’s probably had the biggest entrance into baseball from a collecting standpoint since the 1990s.

Continue reading



Topps confirms Stephen Strasburg autograph quantity in Tribute by Chris Olds

They aren’t immensely rare, after all.

Topps confirmed the quantity of Stephen Strasburg autographs in this year’s Tribute set on Wednesday, announcing that there are, indeed, 500 autographed cards of the Washington Nationals rookie to be found in the high-end product. The number was what Beckett estimated at the time of the product’s arrival.

However, there is a slight wrinkle to this year’s Tribute redemptions for the highly touted rookie. As many collectors have noticed, the redemptions don’t state which version of the four parallels the recipients will receive.

Topps said Wednesday that there are 250 copies of the single-piece Relic as well as the dual and that the redemptions will be randomly fulfilled.

Continue reading



At The National: No. 1 for a cause by Chris Olds
August 7, 2010, 11:56 pm
Filed under: MLB, Stephen Strasburg, the National, Topps | Tags: , , ,

Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds caught up with the buyer of the No. 1 Topps Heritage Stephen Strasburg card, which was sold to benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore.

The Strasburg card has been the talker of the show and it started with the charity auction where it fetched nearly $900.

See what the buyer had to say about the card …



Two Days at The National: A Photo Gallery by Tracy Hackler

BALTIMORE — Following two and a half days immersed in the 31st National Sports Collectors Convention, I bittersweetly boarded a plane in Baltimore Friday afternoon to head back home. Bitter: I had to leave The National! Enough said. Sweet: I was mere hours away from reuniting with my sainted wife and two sons.

Not to worry: The ever-capable Chris Olds and a superstar slew of Beckett folks remained in Baltimore, as did an inordinate amount of personal highlights, including four maddeningly delicious crab cakes, quality time well spent with loyal Beckett customers, longtime friends and neat new ones.

I saw tons of cool autographed Tim Tebow memorabilia, but not nearly enough Tebow singles. I saw a bunch of excited collectors pulling some absolute cornerstone cards while participating in redemption programs for In The Game, the new Leaf, Panini America, Press Pass, Topps and Upper Deck. I saw a Brett Favre lookalike (Gary Williams from Kentucky) on Thursday morning, a walk-off Orioles victory from the cozy confines of Camden Yards on Thursday night (Tom and Mindy Noonan, you people are saints),  and enough cool Babe Ruth memorabilia to last until, well, at least a year — until the 32nd National in Chicago.

Heck, I even signed a few autographs (no, really, I did) and made an appearance on the Card Corner Club radio show. Indeed, I left Baltimore with tons of great memories — and an iPhone full of photos . . .

Continue reading



Stephen Strasburg Topps Heritage Card Creates National Frenzy by Tracy Hackler

By SUSAN LULGJURAJ | SPECIAL TO BECKETT MEDIA

BALTIMORE — The stampede was nearly heard across the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention (NSCC) on Thursday afternoon. Collectors, flippers and baseball fans ran to get on line for an exclusive Stephen Strasburg 2010 Topps Heritage card, which can only be found at the NSCC at the Baltimore Convention Center.

Security tried to keep collectors back, but at 1 p.m., they rushed the line to get one of 225 cards given out that day.

Topps will hand out 998 of the Strasburg Heritage cards (the first was sold on eBay as part of a charity auction) as part of a wrapper redemption program at the NSCC. Ten packs of any 2010 Topps baseball products worth more than .99 cents will net a collector one of the Strasburg cards – while supplies last.

While there are many who like to grab the cards for their own collection, the common idea on the show floor this week has been to throw the Strasburg Heritage card on eBay and try to make money.

“Moving it is a no-brainer,” said Wes Yee, a prospector from San Francisco attending his first National. “It’s a cool card, but I would rather have the money to spend on stuff I really want.”

The Strasburg card was an instant hit with collectors from the moment Topps announced the redemption program. Early eBay sales have the National exclusive card selling between $80-$100.

Continue reading



Stephen Strasburg 1/1 Red autograph card sells for $17,000 by Chris Olds

The premiere Stephen Strasburg card from 2010 Bowman — his 1/1 Red autograph — sold for $17,000 (not including any additional fees) after 10 bids Wednesday evening in an auction that ran for a good portion of this month with Huggins and Scott.

The Silver Spring, Md.-based company’s auction of the card opened at $9,000 after it was found by a collector in Florida who initially opted for an eBay auction that ended with plenty of bad bids.

The card jumped from $12,000 to $17,000 on its final day, prompting overtime in the auction. It had been set to end at 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time but ended at 11:30 p.m. Eastern as interested bidders were allowed extra time if they remained interested if a bid was placed late.

The card came up short of the highest price paid for a Strasburg card from 2010 Bowman, though this card’s status as a 1/1 autograph clearly trumps the other card.

The Strasburg SuperFractor from 2010 Bowman has been sold twice since it was discovered — on eBay for $16,403 and to Razor Entertainment’s Brian Gray for $21,403.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.



Box Busters: 2010 Topps Tribute baseball cards by Chris Olds

Join Beckett Baseball’s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of the high-end 2010 Topps Tribute baseball card set in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside these boxes?

Watch and find out … and you can find out how to win the sweetest cards from these boxes in future issues of Beckett Baseball.



Famous Fabrics Second Edition Impresses — Without a License by Tracy Hackler

What In The Game patriarch Dr. Brian Price lacks in big-time league licensing, he more than makes up for by continuing to push the creative envelope when it comes to high-end multisport, multi-generational products.

For the latest case in point, look no further than Famous Fabrics Second Edition, a simply majestic memorabilia-card marvel from Price’s Creative Cardboard Concepts label due to drop next week at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore.

Devoid of player photography and the always-welcomed stamp of approval that player and league licensing affords, the product manages to sparkle anyway thanks to the historic nature of its content and the innovative high points of its development.

The checklist alone is arguably the most comprehensive ever assembled in terms of sports and eras touched. No less than 20 sports or disciplines are represented (the big four plus mixed martial arts, golf, boxing, soccer, horse racing, poker, professional wrestling, auto racing, bicycling, gymnastics, tennis, volleyball, swimming, ice skating, coaching, announcing and even dare-deviling). The fact that Price and his people even managed to acquire memorabilia for such a far-reaching roster is a commendable feat in and of itself.

Continue reading



First Strasburg National Topps Heritage card sells for $869 in charity fund-raiser by Chris Olds

Update: The card sold for $869.

The first copy of the 2010 Topps Heritage National Sports Collectors Convention card of Washington Nationals rookie Stephen Strasburg has hit the auction block benefitting the Juvenile Diabetes foundation.

The card, No. 1/999, is available on eBay right now.

The other 998 copies of the card will be available during limited times at the Topps booth during the NSCC, which starts next week in Baltimore, Md. There is a limit of one card per person per day if they open packs of cards at the company’s booth during the show.

The winner also will receive a VIP Pass to the National, which includes 12 free VIP celebrity star autographs, all promotional cards given to VIPs as well as entrance into the private VIP Party among other benefits.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.



Topps will release Heritage Stephen Strasburg card at National Sports Collectors Convention by Chris Olds

Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg will be at this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention next month in Baltimore, Md.

On cardboard, that is.

Topps revealed on Wednesday that collectors who open 10 packs of 2010 Topps or Bowman packs (except Attax, Opening Day and 99-cent cello packs) at the company’s booth during the show will receive a Strasburg 2010 Topps Heritage card (No. NCC1).

The card will be limited to just 999 copies and will be available in limited quantities at certain times during the show, which runs from Aug. 4-8.

Collectors will be limited to one card per person per day.