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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Rickey Henderson - The Man of Steal

Rickey Henderson is the first guy featured in Dean’s Cards "Player of the Week".   He was not the easiest player to like when he was on the other team because he was such a hot dog. Henderson

The only game that I recall seeing Henderson play (although there must have been more) was a one game playoff in 1999, where the Mets killed my hometown Reds 5-0.  Al Leiter 2-hit the Reds and a sellout crowd was forced to sit in the sweltering heat and watch a terribly boring game.

The highlight of the night was when several drunk fans jumped onto the field and would run the bases.  The cops would chase them every time and try to prevent them from "scoring".  It happened 2 or 3 times during the night and was the only comic relief that the Reds fans had.

Henderson would swipe catch the pop flies that were hit to him in left field and then slap the glove on his leg.  It was like rubbing salt in the wound of the disappointed fans and we would boo every catch.  Rickey seemed to enjoy the attention and capped off his performance by hitting a dinger.  That is how I remember Rickey.

That said, Henderson was the best lead-off player ever.  Rickey had some great cards and his career spanned many teams.  Congratulations Rick.

Below are the top five candidates for the best Rickey Henderson card.  (His rookie card is disqualified, because that would be too easy of a pick.)

Click Here to see all of Rickey's Cards



Please cast your vote.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Announcing the new DeansCards.com

After much time and effort we want to invite you to visit the new DeansCards.com. The new site is designed for speed and ease of use.  Hopefully you will find the site to your liking.


Dean’s Cards now has over 880,000 cards listed online and ready to buy.  With a database that large, speed is always a priority.  The pages and card images load faster and it takes much less time to shop than it did on our prior site.  With so many sets of cards in stock, we have tried to make the cards easier to find. You can now also follow us on Twitter. DeansCards.com also gives you the ability to refine your search by the condition or type of cards.  For example, if you are looking at the 1965 Topps category page, you can refine the search to include only the Professionally Graded Cards or only the cards in Excellent/Mint Condition. You may also refine your search by your favorite team.


Although the basic site is working great, we will continue to add functionality over the next several months.  The next major functionality that will be added in a few weeks is individual team pages for each of the baseball and football teams.  These pages will list all of the cards, media guides, yearbooks, Sports Illustrated and memorabilia for each particular team.  For example, you can select the Cincinnati Reds or the Denver Broncos team pages and see all the products for those teams.


I would greatly appreciate your comments and any suggestions that you may have.


Dean

Thursday, August 20, 2009

1954 Topps Baseball Cards

1954 Topps Baseball

The 1954 Topps Baseball Card set includes 250 vintage size cards, which measure 3 5/8” by 3¾”.  The 1954 Topps Baseball cards feature numerous Hall-of-Fame rookies as well as a few stars from pre-War days.  The middle-number series (51-75) is the most difficult and expensive to collect.

The key rookie cards are #25 Harvey Kuenn, #94 Ernie Banks, #128 Hank Aaron, #132 Tommy Lasorda and #201 Al Kaline.
  • The 1954 Topps Baseball Card set featured Ted Williams on both the first and last cards (#1 and #250).  This is the only time that Topps ever had two regular cards of the same player.
  • Dean’s Pick for the best 1954 Topps baseball card is the #250 Ted Williams card that shows Ted Williams with the bat on this shoulder.  This image has been reused many times over the years.
  • In the early 1950’s, Topps and the Bowman Gum Co. were locked in a competitive battle for the baseball card market.  In 1954, Topps was able to sign the game’s biggest star - Ted Williams - to an exclusive 5-year contract its policy and offering Ted more money.  Up until that time, Topps paid standard, non-negotiable amount to all players.
  • There were 11 Hall-of –Fame Players that went with Bowman, instead of Topps Baseball cards in 1954:  Roy Campanella, Bob Feller, Nellie Fox, George Kell, Ralph Kiner, Bob Lemon, Mickey Mantle, Pee Wee Reese, Robin Roberts, Red Schoendiest and Enos Slaughter.
  • Some of the other stars missing from the 1954 Topps set include: Bobby Avila, Gus Bell, Lew Burdette, Smokey Burgess, Billy Cox, Al Dark, Del Ennis, Carl Erskine, Dee Fondy, Carl Furillo, Whitey Lockman, Gil McDonald, Minnie Minoso and Billy Pierce.
  • Stan Musial did not want his picture on a card and had no baseball card again until his 1958 All-Star card.
  • As a result of losing these top names, 1954 Topps Baseball card set contained rookie cards for almost 60 players.
  • Many of the 1954 Topps rookies were unknown players (including 17 old coaches and 4 managers) who would never appear on cards again.
  • Three of the 1954 Topps coaches cards were elected to the Hall-of-Fame: Earle Combs, Billy Herman and Heine Manush.
  • 1954 Topps Baseball Cards were its first issue to feature both a portrait head shot view of the player and an action shot.
  • The 1954 Topps 1st series (cards #1 to #50) contain a “grey backed” version that is believed to have been printed and distributed in Canada.
  • The 1954 Topps Baseball card set contained Topps’ first multi-player card of twin brothers Ed & John O’Brien
  • 1954 Topps Baseball Cards were issued in one-card penny packs, five-card nickel packs and 15-card cello packs.
  • Another innovation of the 1954 Topps baseball cards is that the backs of the cards had 2 or 3 panel cartoons that highlighted the player’s career.
  • The back of the 1954 Topps Baseball card set was printed in sheet format in such a way that when the front of the cards are stacked to face the same way, half of card backs will have the card number at the top and half will have it at the bottom of the card.  This confusing over site has frustrated collectors ever since and the mistake was never repeated by Topps.
  • The first two issues of Sports Illustrated Magazine contained 1954 Topps Baseball cards issued on paper stock.  The SI issue contains a card of Mickey Mantle, which is not available in the standard 1954 topps baseball card set.
  • The 1954 Topps is the oldest set that is a relatively easy set to complete.  There are no really tough to find high numbers and except for the rookie cards – the card prices are reasonable – especially in lower grades.
  • If you can not afford the expensive 1954 Topps rookie cards, then temporarily substitute cards from the 1954 Topps reprint set until your budget can afford the originals.  About everyone but the two Ted Williams cards are available.
  • Get used to the portraits on the 1954 Topps baseball cards as many were reused by Topps for the 1955 and 1956 sets.


Tampa Bay Rays

[caption id="attachment_164" align="alignleft" width="100" caption="Click here to buy Rays products"]Click here to buy Rays products[/caption]

The Tampa Bay Rays are a Major League Baseball franchise based in St. Petersburg, Florida, and are the defending American League champions. The Rays are a member of the Eastern Division of MLB's American League. Since their inception in 1998, the club have played in Tropicana Field and have finished out of last place only twice: once in 2004, when they finished fourth in their division, and again in 2008, when they won their first division title, entered the playoffs for the first time in team history, and qualified for the World Series.

In November 2007, majority owner Stuart Sternberg made significant changes to his franchise's image, changing the club's name from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays to the "Tampa Bay Rays", which he described as "A beacon that radiates throughout Tampa Bay and across the entire state of Florida." [1] The teams' primary colors were also changed from black, green, and blue to navy blue, Columbia blue, and gold.

See what Dean’s Cards has to offer on their Rays Team Page!


























































 










Retired Numbers12, 42
Colors


  • Navy Blue, Columbia Blue, White, Gold


                   
Name


  • Tampa Bay Rays (2008–present)




  • Tampa Bay Devil Rays (1998-2007)


Other nicknames


  • The "Rays"


Ballpark


  • Tropicana Field (1998–present)


Major league titles
World Series titles (0) 
AL Pennants (1)2008
  
Division titles (1)2008

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Determining How Much to Pay for a Card



The collecting community tends to use Beckett's Price Guide as the standard baseline for valuing cards, but there are several other card-pricing guides available that list the value of each card. The available publications include Beckett Sports Collectibles, Tuff Stuff, Sports Market Report, and Sports Collectors Digest. For the most part, these guides do a pretty good job of setting prices.


A card's value is determined by a simple case of supply and demand, but the card's worth to the individual collector will always vary due to the collector's individual preferences. In short, it just all depends on how bad a collector wants a particular card! The prices in these guides are intended to be a reflection on how difficult a card is to find (the supply) and how popular (the demand) the card is within the card collecting community.


For example, Vintage Yankees and Dodgers cards usually sell for more money than players from other clubs. Many people will collect the players from their favorite team and just because those teams are located in highly populated cities, have many fans and have historically had very good ball clubs.


When I came up with the concept for Dean's Cards, I designed the type of eStore from which I would like to purchase baseball cards. My original goal for Dean's Cards was to create the easiest and quickest way to buy vintage cards - not necessarily the cheapest. As it turned out, the prices of cards at Dean's Cards are very comparable