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News Catchup for 4/2

Posted by houstoncollector on April 2, 2009

I’ve been away for a few days, and thought I would give input on some of the news over the past few days.

1)  Upper Deck announcing the “Spectrum of Stars” line of autographs in 2009 Upper Deck Spectrum.  The press release features the following quote:  “This was an opportunity for us to include some unusual, never-before-seen autographed trading cards of performers outside of sports,” said Gabriel Garcia, Upper Deck’s associate baseball brand manager. “It’s certainly something different to open up a pack of baseball cards and find an insert card with ‘Terminator’ star Linda Hamilton’s signature on it.”

Here’s the thing, UD.  People buy baseball cards for /baseball players/.  They don’t spend $77 a box for two autographs where one of them could be from B-Real or Susie Feldman.  This is the same problem with the 20th Anniversary Waste of Space.  Sure, it’s great if you pull an autograph from Burt Reynolds or Linda Hamilton, or one of the cut autos (which also have their share of duds) but that shouldn’t be the draw of your product.  It’s an improvement on 2008 with the 80s rock autographs….but not by much.  

2)  Topps Announced the full information on 2009 Allen & Ginter, including the fact that each hobby box will have three hits per box, but no indication on how many of those will be nameless GU.  The packs will have 8 cards each, of a 350 card base set.  Each pack will include a mini parallel, with A&G Backs falling 1:5 packs, black bordered minis falling 1:10 packs, No-Numbered minis limited to 50 (but presumably unnumbered), hobby-only Bazooka Back hand-numbered to 25, hobby-only wood 1 of 1s, printing plates, and hobby-only cloth cards numbered to 10 each.  

There will be 10 DNA relics, numbered 1 of 1 each, your standard autographs, red auto’s numbered to 10, relics, mini exclusives from the rip cards, numbered 351-400, mini wood exclusives, National Pride acting as the roll of filler inserts, 1 per pack, National Heroes which fall 1:12 packs, and a Hoaxes set which also falls 1:12 packs.  Also inside the rip cards is a possible Dick Perez original, which is an actual painting on the mini card stocks.  Rip cards are 1 per case, and there are 10 cut autos, all 1 of 1, and finally the Crack the Code cards, inserted at 1:12 packs.  

Personally, I think Allen & Ginter is in danger of jumping the shark in its 4th year.  Everyone is trying to outdo each other, and it’s honestly overshadowing the cards themselves.  Topps needs to be extremely careful with this product, or it’s going to fall flat on its face.

09agbb_ss_linceum  allenginterdna-napolean

3)  Back to Upper Deck, with news of two interesting additions to 2009 Goudey, being first that two of the Tiger Woods autographed ‘Sports Royalty’ cards will be inscribed, one with ’14th Major’ and the other with ‘2008 Torrey Pines’.  The second is the inclusion of autographed buybacks in this year’s product, to go with the rest of the buybacks.  From the Press Release:

 “Being able to add two exciting inserts like this to this year’s Goudey Baseball release is a great way to add value to the set and provide collectors with some very unique collectibles,” said Gabriel Garcia, Upper Deck’s associate brand manager for Baseball. “The original Goudey cards from the ‘30s are amazing, but to pull one that is autographed by these legends is an extra special thrill. And what else can you say about Tiger Woods? As everybody saw at last weekend’s Arnold Palmer Invitational, Tiger is a one-of-a-kind champion with an unbelievable flair for the dramatic. His collectibles will continue to command top dollar and likely appreciate over time.”

I like Goudey, and it’s not quite to the point that Allen & Ginter is.  Granted, I’ll never see a Tiger autograph or a buyback, but it’s still nice that they’re putting this stuff in the product.  The idea of inscriptions is definitely good, as it’s something beyond the normal autograph, and feels more personalized.

lr-sports-royalty-tiger  lr-buyback-autograph-rice lr-buyback-autograph-odoul lr-buyback-autograph-gehringer lr-buyback-autograph-frischlr-tiger-woods-sports-royalty-14th-major1 lr-tiger-woods-sports-royalty-2008-torrey-pines1

4)  Upper Deck is announcing a 1,170 card Michael Jordan tribute set, including over 100 GU numbered to 23 in this year’s basketball products.  This is honestly how the 20th anniversary set should have been done, split between products.  With Upper Deck losing the license for basketball after this year (and maybe baseball), this is a great year to pick up those products.  It’s like 2005 Donruss Baseball all over again.

mj-legacy-1 MJ-89.eps mj-legacy-1033

5)  Topps Announces T-206 100th Anniversary Set, with a special giveaway at the Hawaii trade conference later this month.  The set is coming out this fall, with details yet as unknown.  Each giveaway will be numbered to 100.  I’m not sure yet if this is going to have current players, retired legends, or both.  


 6)  Also, Topps announced the 2009 eTopps Presidents series.  This year the subjects include George H.W. Bush, Harry S. Truman, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and William Howard Taft (the first President to throw out a ceremonial Opening Day first pitch).  From the press release:  

*While the Allen & Ginter eTopps cards differ in size from regular eTopps cards, they will continue to be encased in the regular-sized eTopps tamper-evident, plastic case. The cards will be placed into a fitted frame and then fixed inside of the case.

I only have one question:  Where is the Barack Obama card?  Surely they have a picture of him throwing a ball somewhere?


One Response to “News Catchup for 4/2”

  1. Mario A. said

    Woah, nice post!

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