Saturday, February 5, 2011

The winner for Best Premium Basketball Cards announced.

There are five nominees for Best Premium Basketball cards, which is a little crowded for a Premium category.  There is a lot to choose from in this batch of nominees.  Here are descriptions of the nominees for the All About Cards 2010 Sports Card Award in the category of Best Premium Basketball Cards.

2009/10 Panini Absolute Memorabilia Basketball
Following the successful Absolute Memorabilia formula, you get four packs to a box, four cards to a pack. With a great mix of Rookies, Stars and Famous players of the past and present, this set delivers.  The set contains a wide variety of inserts so there is something for everyone.  And with the Kobe on-card exclusive, it’s an exciting box to open.

2009/10 Panini Hall of Fame Basketball
This is a history lesson reduced to 2.5 by 3.5 cheat cards. Sorry rookie prospectors, only the time tested names can be found here.  Those with a deep knowledge of the game can truly appreciate the players and coaches represented in this set.   And with a retro feel, these could be mistaken for your father’s cards, but your father never pulled jersey cards, on-card autographs or Hall of Fame cut autos out of a pack.

2010/11 Panini Limited Basketball
With a checklist of players that is deep, this is one of the best premium boxes for Rookie prospectors.  We particularly like the Glass Cleaners and Decade Dominance inserts, but fans of first season players will love the Phenoms cards in base, jersey and jersey auto options.

2009/10 Panini Timeless Treasures Basketball
What lays within this little tin?  Treasures untold for you to unfold, cards that will make you grin.  Though you’ll find five cards per pack, the deep checklist keeps you coming back.   With jerseys, laundry tags and apprentice cards galore, the plethora of autographs will make you want more.

2010 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection Basketball
It’s the strength of the players in this set that makes these cards desirable, something that is appreciated when you are looking at 4 cards per pack, 1 pack per box.  There is a lot of creativity with this set and the autographs, especially in triple and quad signatures really hold up.

And now… the All About Cards 2010 Sports Card Award for Best Premium Basketball cards goes to:
We could wax poetic about 2009/10 Panini Timeless Treasure but we wont.  The bottom line is these are some fantastic looking cards and with a great variety of inserts it offers a bit of something for everyone.  Truth be told, it came down to Timeless Treasures and Absolute Memorabilia, there was even a moment when we thought the Hall of Fame set would win,  and if the 2010/11 Timeless Treasures had been released just a few day earlier, it might have been a cage match battle between all of them.  In the end, we feel good about our choice and you should feel good too picking up a tin of the 2009/10 or the 2010/11 Timeless Treasures or even what looks to be a great release of 2010/11 Absolute Memorabilia in March.  Bottom line is this category was filled with nominees because there are a lot of great cards to purchase, so you wont go wrong picking up a box of any of them.

The winner for Best Premium Baseball Cards announced.

There are only two nominees in this category but it still took some time to pick a winner.  Both sets offer close to the same content, base cards with alternating hits of relic and relic auto cards.  Volume and design are the things that separate these two nominees.  Here are descriptions of the nominees for the All About Cards 2010 Sports Card Award in the category of Best Premium Baseball Cards.

2010 Topps Tribute Baseball
 Cool base card design, six hits per box and the chance to pull monster booklets like the 1927 New York Yankees starting lineup cut autos, this was a blast to open, as can be seen in our box break.  Topps Tribute continues to be a solid product and even improved on last year’s release. 

2010 Topps Triple Threads Baseball
This is another improvement over last year’s release, which included jumbo patch book cards.  And when people were selling their platelets to obtain Strasburg cards, this was the high end product to have.

Choosing a winner from these two releases is a close call.  You should be happy owning either product, or both, or any of our nominees in any of our award categories for that matter.  So lets look at hits for both sets side by side.  I didn’t pull a triple material auto card from Tribute so I’ll have to use the double material auto.
Topps Tribute                            Topps Triple Threads

I must admit, in mind I always felt the materials in Triple Threads were bigger but looking at them side by side, they appear to be about the same size.

So even that seems to be pretty even. One difference is seems to be the price point.  With Tribute at about $50 a pack and Triple Threads at about $75 a pack you are paying more for Threads.  But what are you getting for that extra expense?  Well… for those of you not ready to put down $300 at a time to pick up a box or take your chances buying the individual packs, Threads offers a low price level to get in for a guaranteed Auto/material card.  But a clue to the true difference is in the name.  With Tribute you might pull a single, double or triple material, with TRIPLE threads, you are pulling a triple material every time.

So… the All About Cards 2010 Sports Card Award for Best Premium Baseball cards goes to:
Collectors love this product and so do we.  With triple game used materials on the hits and a higher ratio of booklets, this makes for a great box of cards to buy or receive as a special gift.  It’s going to be hard to dethrone Topps Triple Threads Baseball in the category.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Video from Andy Pettitte's retirement press conference

During the month of October we made a suggestion that perhaps Brett Favre should retire, again, before the end of the regular season.  Too bad for Favre he didn't have Andy Pettitte to advise him on how to leave the game the first time he retired.  Today, even with some lingering doubts, Pettitte went into the Yankees press room and handled the situation with grace.

Pettitte explained he felt an obligation to return after Cliff Lee signed with the Phillies and so he started working out in preparation for this season.  But while he felt fine physically, he lacked the "hunger" to pitch again.  Even though he had told his wife as recent as two weeks ago that he would come back to the Yankees one more time, it became clear to him that his heart wasn't in it.

Here are some highlights from the press conference.

Second Contest Winner announced and Fan Favorite winners of our 2010 Sports Card Awards revealed.

Look for the second winner in our contest at the bottom of this page.

We asked you to vote on your favorite cards in three categories, The Sickest Card of the Year, Fan Favorite Set of the Year and the Box Most Likely to Contain Mojo.  You've spoken and here are the winners.

The 2010 Bowman Baseball Stephen Strasburg Red Auto 1/1 became an eBay sensation and created a huge frenzy of collectors trying to get their hands on all things Strasburg.  It was finally sold at auction for $19,975.   Not too shabby.  This card took off in the fan voting right off the bat but looked as if it would be knocked down to second place mid way through.  With a resurgence of votes in the final days of polling, this card pulled away as the clear winner.

This award was for the set that collectors love and want to complete.  With a wide variety of inserts, every thing from Regis Philbin to Zeus to Tony Hawk to Rip Cards to... oh yeah... some baseball cards too, this continues to be a set to get excited about.  Voting for this award had the lead changing several times, but with another large, late push, Allen & Ginter pulled it out in the end.

Clearly you think triangles are where its at because 2010 Triple Threads Baseball takes the award for Mojo.

So it was a clean sweep for Topps/Bowman and for Baseball cards.  Here's a look at the cards that got runner up.

Runner-up for Sickest Card was...
The 2010 Press Pass Five Star Racing Dale Sr./Dale Jr. Patch Auto Booklet.  An impressive showing for a non "big four" sports card.  But its easy to see why this card did so well.

Runner-up for Fan Favorite Set was...
2010 Topps Chrome Football.  Clearly you people like the shiny.

And Runner-up for Most Likely to Contain Mojo was...
2009/10 Panini National Treasures Basketball.  Something tells me if the news about Blake Griffin Cards skyrocketing in value had broken just a little bit sooner, this might have been you first place winner.

We will reveal the winners of our other 2010 Sports Card Awards soon.  Congratulations to the winners in our fan categories.  Did the cards you voted for win?  Let us know.  And speaking of fan voting and winning, now is as good a time as any to reveal the winner of our second prize, the Fan Voting Prize.   Here is the video.


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Teams are still available for a case break of Topps 2011 Gypsy Queen over at A Cardboard Problem.

A lot of you have asked us, if and when we will be doing case breaks.  It's in the works, but probably not this year.  Many of you who have asked for case breaks are very interesting in the highly anticipated release of Topps' newest baseball card set, Gypsy Queen, which we've covered here on the blog.  As a service to all of you, we've got an available break that you can get in on.  

A Cardboard Problem has been a part of our daily reading for a long time now.  We don't take recommending other sites lightly and when it comes to the possibly that you might be sending in your money to get in on a break, no matter how small the amount, we are extra careful.   But after watching a live UStream feed of their case break of 2011 Topps Baseball Series One tonight, I feel confidant you'll be in good hands.  

They are looking to fill the case break of Gypsy Queen first at $36 a team.  There is the possibility they will also do a case break of 2011 Topps Heritage Baseball at $29 a team.

Use this link to get to their case break page for more details if this is something you want to get in on.  And kids, ask your parents for permission before you do.  

Andy Pettitte set to announce retirement on Friday, leaving the New York Yankees with some big shoes to fill.

Weather forecast for New York City?  It looks like it will be getting a bit colder on Friday as some of the heat goes away.  That's heat in the form of pitcher Andy Pettitte, Yankees great, who is set to announce his retirement from baseball on Friday.

As the first member of the "core four" of Yankees to retire, Pettitte, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada, this seems to be the sign that management needs to look towards the future and rebuild with some young talent.

Having seen the team through some incredible years, Pettitte will retire with 203 wins, placing him third on the Yankees' all-time wins leaders list just behind Whitey Ford and Red Ruffing.

Leaving a huge hole for the Yankees to fill, Pettite will be missed.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Our Topps 2011 Baseball Series One Blaster Box Break of the first day of the release.

Baseball is back!  Well... at least the cards.  Here is our first baseball box break of the year.  This is not your normal break.  You wont see our signalture visual checklist or box recap.  We wanted to get this break up as fast as possible.  We will return to our normal break format when we open a hobby box of these.

For the inserts, I think those diamond card are the Platinum Diamond cards.  They are not numbered, but they sure do look cool.  The minis are the Kimball Champions inserts.  The old black & white/sepia tones are reproduction cards.  The Honus Wagner is a 1903 Breisch-Williams and the Johnny Mize/Enos Slaughter is a 1941 Double Play. We will list more as information comes in.

Panini teams with the NBA to promote the All-Star Game with free cards. And for the first time, players will have the choice to wear an alternate uniform.

Looking towards the NBA All-Star Game, Panini has partnered with the NBA to give away a special set of Starting 5 cards based on the starting line up for the East and the West.  This is being run through your participating local hobby shop, which we think is great.  Anything that supports you local small businesses is something we can get behind.  For more details about the promotion as well as pictures of the cards and the list of participating shops, head on over to The Knight's Lance.

And speaking of the All-Star Game, the NBA is giving players a choice in what they wear for the game, a first for the organization.   In a continued attempt by Addias to provide players with the most comfortable uniform possible, and. in turn, making it nearly impossible for card companies to make patch cards anymore, they have developed a uniform/compression tank, seen here, modeled by Derrick Rose.
The thought process behind this is that most, if not all NBA players wear a compression shirt underneath their uniforms anyway, so why not eliminate the outer uniform and just put the numbers/name/logo on the undershirt.  

I don't know about you, but I don't like it.  I want my players uniformed, an external badge to show that they've worked hard and deserve to be on the court.  It doesn't look professional to me.  And it certainly doesn't look progressive.  If anything, I think it looks kind of retro,  See if you agree.
Now the reason players will have a choice in wearing this new uniform has more to do with contracts than anything, I don't think you'll be seeing a Reebok spokesperson wearing this Addias shirt, but if I were given the choice, I would still go with the regular uniforms, which have already been modified this year, thanks to Addias.  I think if we progress to undershirts, the next logical step will be an All-Star Game of shirts vs. skins.  Not something I want to see happen. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Here comes some Mojo. A box break of Panini 2010 Plates & Patches NFL Trading Cards

Today we have for you a box break of the newly released Panini 2010 Plates & Patches NFL Trading Cards and if you haven't seen one of our box breaks, give this one a try.  At five minutes long, its easy to watch. Expect a full rated review with scans soon.  Until then, enjoy this video of the box break.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Our first prize winner is announced.

If you haven’t read our shout out to those of you that entered our contest, make sure you follow this link to read a special message just for you.
A big thanks goes out to our Early Adopters for helping us at the beginning of this contest.  All 27 of you have waited patiently to find out who is walking away with this great prize package of Panini cards.  Here is the video of the drawing for the prize.

To our winner, we will contact you and get your cards out in the mail.  I’m sure others would be interested to know what you pull from those boxes, so make sure to send us some scans/pictures of your hits or we can link a video if you do a box break.  Keep looking for our next drawing for the Fan Voting Prize some time soon and, of course, our Grand Prize winner revealed during half time of the Super Bowl.