Thursday, March 31, 2011

2011 Opening Day

As we celebrate our Opening Day here in Cincinnati, Ohio, we know that many of you will be celebrating your own team’s Opening Day in the coming days. got in our 2011 Topps Opening Day cards just in time for the first pitch! The 2011 Topps Opening Day base sets contain a total of 220 cards.  The 2011 Opening Day cards are available for purchase both individually and as a set on our website.

The set features numerous Rookies, including big names such as Aroldis Chapman and Freddie Freeman. Card #7 Mickey Mantle, is sure to be popular amongst collectors as well. To see a complete list of all the big names in the 2011 Topps Opening Day set, please visit our website at

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

1969 Deckle Edge Baseball Cards

The 1969 Deckle Edge insert set consists of a total of 35 cards. While the cards are only numbered 1-33, two cards, #11 and #22, feature two different players, depending on the variation. Card #11 for example, can feature either Hoyt Wilhelm or Jim Wynn, and card #22 is either Joe Foy or Rusty Staub. In both cases the “B” variation is more valuable (Wynn and Staub).

For being such a small set, '69 Deckle Edge has lots of big names!
Just as the ’65 Embossed cards were inserted into the original ’65 card packs, the 1969 Deckle Edge cards were inserted into regular issues of ’69 cards. The Deckle Edge cards have a unique design as well. In fact, the title of the set alludes to the way in which the cards were cut. The scalloped borders simulate an old-style photo, thus the cards had their vintage-style appearance right as they rolled off of the printing press! Visit to see our collection of 1969 Deckle Edge insert cards!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

1965 Topps Embossed Baseball Cards

You Can't Get a Good Scan!
The 1965 Topps Embossed insert set consists of 72 cards that were once inserted into the regular ’65 series card packages. The cards themselves are relatively tall and skinny, measuring 2 1/8" by 3 1/2". The card fronts feature profile-view player portraits on gold foil. The images are slightly raised, and are often found with scratches and flaws, because the gold foil is so thin and easily damaged.

The player portraits can be found on either a blue background (denoting an American League player), or a red background (denoting a National League player). There are various rumors circulating the industry, suggesting that there are 1965 Topps Embossed cards that feature silver foil as opposed to gold., like many others, is in the majority that has never seen one of these supposed silver foil cards. If you have any information on these cards, or if you have seen one of these cards personally, feel free to drop us a line and tell us about it!

Unlike so many expensive 60's Star Cards, the stars in the '65 Embossed set are actually quite affordable.  The complete set as well as our inventory alike, are both filled with 1965 Embossed stars including big names like Mickey Mantle, Roberto Clemente, Hank Aaron, and Willie Mays.

We just added a 1965 Topps Embossed Set to our website this morning!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Just In: Old Baseball Magazines

Baseball Magazine
January 1934 
Here at we just inventoried a nice collection of Baseball Magazines ranging from the 1920s to the 1950s.  These are not just the covers but the full magazine!  So many great covers containing photos of Baseball's great heroes like Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.

Baseball Magazine was highly regarded as the top baseball publication in the beginning of the century. It began in 1908 and continued until the final issue was published on September 1957. Known for its articles written by players and managers prior to 1930, Baseball Magazine contained full page-sized sepia finished photos of players on the inside of the front and back covers, making them popular for baseball enthusiast bedroom walls.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Just In: PSA/DNA Authenticated Autographed Cards

Several weeks ago, we received a collection of autographed cards and we just got them back from PSA/DNA as certified authentic. We bought them from a returning seller who went to dozens of autograph signings in North Carolina.

We have signatures from guys who are known to sign autographs frequently, such as Whitey Ford, Enos Slaughter, Bob Feller, Joe Adcock, but we also had signatures from Ted Williams and Mickey Mantle. The Ted Williams autograph is on his 1951 Bowman #165 card. The Mickey Mantle autograph is on the 1953 Bowman Color #59.

We're still working on building our autographed card collection. If you are interested in viewing our full selection of autographed cards, please click here. All of our autographs are either PSA/DNA certified or come with a certificate of authenticity.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Inventory In-Depth: Best of the Worst

Here at, we thoroughly enjoy cards that have been "well loved". Sometimes, the Poor and Fair cards can have more character and uniqueness than their Near Mint counterparts. Here are some of our favorite cards in Poor and Fair condition.

This 1910 E96 Philadelphia Caramel #19 Rube Marquard card is a great example of a caramel card that has barely survived the 100+ years since it was printed. As previously mentioned in our E-cards blog, these cards were handled primarily by children, since they were placed in packages of caramels. The simple design of this card is very characteristic of E-cards, which are usually either a figure or portrait against a solid color background.

One of our favorite Poor-condition cards from the 1950's just recently sold. The #66A Ted Williams from the 1954 Bowman set can be very difficult to find since Bowman was forced to stop printing his card due to contract issues shortly after the first series was released. They replaced Williams with Jimmy Piersall, who would end up with two cards in the 1954 Bowman set. The card was most likely graded "Poor" because of the paper loss on the front, but this was definitely a great deal for anyone interested in buying a rare card at a low price.

The 1955 Topps All-American Four Horseman is one of the most famous football cards ever made, and we actually have one right now in Fair condition. It grades Fair because one of the sides is severely damaged. The card was short-printed by Topps and was has been in high demand since 1955.

A Fair or Poor condition card can be a great way to buy a rare or expensive card for a bargain. Although grades only Pre-War and star cards in Fair or Poor, there are also sets and starter sets that grade "Poor" and are a great way to start a collection. Click here for our Poor condition starter sets.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

1923 W515-1 Uncut Sheet with Babe Ruth

We were sorting through a box of Non-Sports cards yesterday and we happened to find an uncut sheet of 12 cards that had actresses, Presidents, military generals, and baseball players, including Babe Ruth. With a little research, we realized that we had a sheet of 1923 W515-1 strip cards. While most of the actresses, generals, and Presidents are not particularly popular with collectors, the Babe Ruth card is one of his most interesting cards. The W515 strip cards come in two different varieties: W515-1 and W515-2. The two varieties look very similar, have the same checklist, and have the same price. The only difference between the two is the size of cards (the W515-1 cards are slightly smaller). When in strip form, the W515-2 cards have the phrase "The Little Wonder Picture Series" at the top.

W-cards, or strip cards, were intended to be cut into individual cards, either by a shopkeeper or the kids themselves. Strip cards are one of our least popular Pre-War cards because it is so hard to find them in nice condition. However, when a strip card is found in strip or sheet form, it becomes much more collector-friendly.

The Ruth card itself is a close-up of his face in front of a bright red background. The consensus here at the office is that this illustration doesn't really look much like the Babe. It's really amazing that we found this sheet of cards floating in a pile of Non-Sports cards and we hope to make more rare discoveries just like this.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

1917 Boston Store #87 Walter Johnson

We just received another collection that had a few Boston Store cards in it, including a PSA 4 VG-EX #87 Walter Johnson. This card is exceedingly rare, as it has a population of one. There are only two PSA-graded Walter Johnson cards from the Boston Store set that currently exist (the other grades a 6 EX-MT). The Boston Store cards are particularly hard to find because the cardstock was thin and many of the cards that have survived are in Poor or Fair condition. Click here if you would like to read our previous article about the 1917 H801-8 Boston Store baseball card set.

At the time this card was printed, Walter Johnson was in the middle of his 21-year-career with the Senators. By 1917, Johnson had already won an AL MVP award for his spectacular 1913 season, in which he had an ERA of 1.14 and threw 11 shut-outs.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mickey Mantle Autographed Baseball

We just got our first authenticated Mickey Mantle autographed ball back from PSA/DNA today and it is definitely one of the best looking autographed balls that we have in stock right now. It came in a collection several months ago and the seller told us that he had attended a Mickey Mantle signing in North Carolina in the 1980's, where he had a chance to meet Mickey and get him to sign several different cards, including a 1953 Bowman #59 Mickey Mantle, and one baseball. This is definitely one of our favorite pieces of memorabilia and we hope that the quality of the ball and signature are adequately reflected in the pictures.

Friday, March 18, 2011

1938 Horrors of War Promo Cards

One of our most popular Non-Sports cards set is the 1938 Horrors of War card set issued by Gum, Inc. The 240-card set features illustrations of several different international wars and was received very well by the American public, particularly children. Recently, we found several promotion cards, which were designed to be issued at schools. The backs of the cards read "You Can Get 240 Pictures and Thrilling Stories of Actual Warfare by saving the cards just like this which come packed with Horrors of War Bubble Gum, sold at candy counters for one cent. The gum is a sensible chew between meals; the picture cards teach the value of peace. 1000 cash prizes to the 1000 children who send us the neatest lists of 240 correct titles. Ask your dealer for the details."

Horrors of War cards are particularly interesting because of the time period in which they were released, but also for their popularity both then and now.  We are very excited about these promo cards and we hope to find more like them in the near future.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Crane's & Guy's Potato Chip Pins: Update

Actually a 1969 Crane's pin
Several months ago, we wrote an article about a collection of Crane's and Guy's potato chip pins that has been one of our most popular blog articles to date. There is very little information available about these pins, but it seems that many people remember them from their childhood and have come to thoroughly enjoy collecting them as adults. Because there is no information about these pins anywhere else, it has taken some trial and error on our part to figure out what years they were made.

The 1965 Crane's pins actually have the year stamped on the back. We mistakenly identified the red, white, and blue pins as the 1965 issue, but we now believe they are from 1969 thanks to a phone call from a customer. We also found what we believe to be a 1968 Crane's pin, which has the silhouette of a crane stamped in orange on the back. We are going to continue researching both Crane's and Guy's pins and we always appreciate any additional information from collectors.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

1916 Tango Egg Baseball Cards: Update

Borrowed from
Several weeks ago, we wrote an article about one of the most unique and rare sets that we had ever encountered - the 1916 Tango Egg baseball cards. As the original article mentions, there are several cards that are known to exist, but have actually never been located. Recently, we spotted an article from The Vintage Sportscards Blog that announced that the Ty Cobb card had actually been found in an SGC 1 Poor. This means that only the Joe Tinker and Honus Wagner card remain at large.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Just In: 1931 Johnson Candy Dick Tracy Cards

We just got some high-grade 1931 Johnson Candy Dick Tracy cards into our inventory. The 144-card set is a "picture story" that was released in packages of 1-cent caramels. The cards that we just put into our inventory are so clean that we thought they were reprints until we determined that a reprint set was actually never issued.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Just In: 1913 Fatima Teams T200

We just got a new collection that included seven 1913 T200 Fatima Team baseball cards. We have never had that many Fatima cards in one single collection, so we were pleasantly surprised to find a seller with so many in the Netherlands. The seller apparently found us from our previous Fatima blog and was somewhat familiar with the concept of baseball cards because he worked for the National Museum of Football History.

The teams are the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Pittsburgh Pirates, and New York Giants. The players included in some of these cards are Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson, and John McGraw (Giants manager).

Friday, March 11, 2011

Meeting Jim Palmer

Last night at the Green Diamond, I got the chance to meet Jim Palmer and he is definitely one of my favorite speakers of the year. He spoke for at least an hour and a half and even signed a ball for me.

The entire decade of the 1960's had so many great pitchers that I often forget how talented Palmer was. In his 19 season career with the Orioles, Palmer won the AL Cy Young Award three times (finishing second twice), was named an All-Star six times, and won the Gold Glove Award four times. And, most impressively, Palmer was also the answer to the trivia question last night - who is the only pitcher to win a World Series game in 3 different decades?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Inventory In-Depth: Best Qualifier Cards

Here at, we have a lot of professionally graded cards, so we thought we would focus on a particularly cool segment of the graded card population: cards with qualifiers. Qualifiers are the letters that sometimes go after grade. Some of the more common qualifiers are MC (miscut), MK (marked), and OC (off-center). On average, a qualifier bumps price of the card down by two numbers. Therefore, if you found a PSA 7(OC), you would be paying the PSA 5 price. Qualifier cards are a great way to buy expensive cards at discount without sacrificing condition. The cards mentioned in this article are no exception.

The 1933 Goudey baseball card set features a total of four Babe Ruth cards and all four command a premium price. Card #53 is a close up of Ruth batting against a yellow background. It is probably one of Ruth's most popular cards from the 1930's. Our card grades a PSA 4(MK) because a previous owner wrote "BOS" on the back of the card and then erased the mistake, just as the Red Sox ownership surely wished they could erase the mistake of trading away Ruth. Aside from the mark on the back, the card is in remarkable condition.

Another favorite qualifier card in our inventory is the 1958 Topps #488 Hank Aaron All-Star card PSA 7(OC). The card commemorates one of Aaron's best years in baseball. In 1957, he won the NL MVP Award, the only one of his career, and the Braves went on to win the World Series. This card has incredibly clean corners, but the left/right centering is off by as much as 80/20 at the bottom.

The 1961 Topps #160 Whitey Ford card would normally be a fairly unremarkable card, except that our is a PSA 8 NM-MT(PD), meaning that it has a print defect. These cards are particularly hard to find in a PSA 8 or higher. Nearly 90% of all 1961 Topps #160 cards grade lower than PSA 8. But what is especially interesting about this card is that the "print defect" is very difficult to find. It is a small blue blur in the background of the card. It almost appears to be a spectator in the stadium behind Whitey Ford.

Buying a qualifier card is a great way to find a deal on a rare or expensive card. Please click here if you would like to see our inventory of professionally graded cards.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Just In: 1967-68 and 1968-69 Topps Hockey

We just bought a collection of pristine 1967-68 Topps Hockey cards and 1968-69 Topps Hockey cards. Most of these hockey cards are going on our site directly, while some of the high grade cards will be sent to PSA. As soon as we get these cards back from PSA, we will let you know how they came back. The stars included in these sets are Jacques Lemaire, Bobby Orr, Phil Esposito, and Bobby Hull.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

1951 Topps Connie Mack All-Stars Baseball Cards

The 1951 Topps Connie Mack All-Stars set was one of Topps’ first sets ever printed. Topps’ first official set was the 1951 Red and Blue Back baseball cards, but around the same time, they printed an 11 card that featured players from the first few decades of the 20th century. The cards measure 2” by 5¼” but were die-cut so that the player featured on the card could be punched out to make its own display. A short biographical paragraph is printed on the back of each card.

Connie Mack was the owner of the Philadelphia A’s at the time this set was produced, but he had been involved with professional baseball since 1886 as a player, manager, owner, or some combination of those three jobs. As a manager, he was the first to win the World Series three times. He would retire from baseball three years after the set was released.

The set itself includes some of the best players from the past fifty years, including Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, and Christy Mathewson, among others. If you are interested in selling 1951 Connie Mack All-Star cards, please click here. If you are interested in viewing our selection of 1951 Connie Mack All-Star cards, please click here.