2013 Bowman Mini Baseball Set – Are Factory Sets a Good Idea?



One of the fun parts of collecting cards for pack busters is building sets. With the announcement of Bowman Chrome’s new Mini-Factory Set which promises to take the best of Bowman, Bowman Chrome and Drafts and Prospects into a ready made set how will the hobby react?

For many this is an excellent opportunity (I personally didn’t break any Chrome baseball products in 2013 so I see it as a fast way to acquire the key rookies I missed out on.) On the other hand I can only imagine my potential frustration if I spent a lot of resources building those sets myself to see I could have waited.

Another theory being tested is the addition of 30 refractor parallel cards being inserted inside every set. So the age old tradition of buying a complete set and keeping it sealed is now going to be tested with to break open or not to break?

Is this going to become a new trend? Similar to Box/Case Breaks…will we be witnessing Set Breaks?

Will the $220+ price offering be too high?

I’d love to hear your thoughts…until then…Happy Collecting.

McAdoo vs Kareem

Kevin Durant vs. Bob McAdoo

It’s always interesting to me when I hear fans and card collectors talk about the greatest players in NBA history. Among the usual suspects mentioned are: Jordan, Magic, Bird, Wilt and Russell. Then later it usually turns to today’s stars – Kobe, LeBron, and Durant – ranking them among the game’s all-time greats. All of those players have some of the hobby’s most sought after rookie, memorabilia, and autographed cards and with each new release there are collectors looking to add to their collections.

Kevin-Durant-Exquisite-RC-Patch-AutoWhen people mention Durant and what he has accomplished in his first six season in the league – Rookie of the Year, 3x Scoring Champ, and an All-Star Game MVP – and anoint him as the next great of the game, it reminds me of a forgotten great scorer – Bob McAdoo.

McAdoo RCBob McAdoo doesn’t have as many sought after cards as Durant. But it’s interesting how their first six seasons stack up against each other and how similar they are. McAdoo was an undersized center at 6’9″ and Durant is a 6’11″ guard/forward, but what they both have in common is scoring the basketball. Just compare their stats for their first 6 seasons:

In Bob McAdoo’s first 6 seasons he was ROY, 3x Scoring Champ, NBA MVP and a 5x All-Star.

McAdoo Scoring Leader

  1. 1972-73 – ROY 18.0 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 1.7 apg
  2. 1973-74 – Scoring Champ, All-Star 30.6 ppg, 15.1 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.2 spg, 3.3 bpg
  3. 1974-75 – MVP, Scoring Champ, All-Star 34.5 ppg, 14.1 rpg, 2.2 apg, 1.1 spg, 2.1 bpg
  4. 1975-76 – Scoring Champ, All-Star 31.1 ppg, 12.4 rpg, 4.0 apg, 1.2 spg, 2.1 bpg
  5. 1976-77 – All-Star 25.8 ppg, 12.9 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.1 spg, 1.4 bpg
  6. 1977-78 – All-Star 26.5 ppg, 12.8 rpg, 3.8 apg, 1.3 spg, 1.6 bpg

Durant USA

In Kevin Durant’s first 6 seasons he was ROY, 3x Scoring Champ, 4x All-Star, and All-Star Game MVP.

  1. 2007-08 – ROY 20.3 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 2.4 apg, 1.0 spg
  2. 2008-09 25.3 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.3 spg
  3. 2009-10 – Scoring Champ, All-Star 30.1 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.4 spg, 1.0 bpg
  4. 2010-11 – Scoring Champ, All-Star 27.7 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.7 apg, 1.1 spg, 1.0 bpg
  5. 2011-12 – Scoring Champ, All-Star 28.0, 8.0 rpg, 3.5 apg, 1.3 spg, 1.2 bpg
  6. 2012-13 – All-Star, All-Star Game MVP 28.1 ppg, 7.9 apg, 4.6 apg, 1.4 spg, 1.3 bpg

McAdoo GoldI’m disappointed that McAdoo was the only former league MVP at the time not to be selected to the 1996′s NBA Top 50 at 50 Anniversary team. It’s probably one of the reasons why he’s not on as many collector’s radar and hopefully his omission will be rectified in the next anniversary team and he’ll be joined by Kevin Durant. But until then basketball collectors and fans can still pick up a Hall of Fame scoring machine’s certified autographed insert card for between $10-$20 which is just a fraction of what Durant’s autos usually sell for.

Durant McDonaldsKevin Durant is putting up some similar Hall of Fame numbers as McAdoo did back in the day. It’s just that his cards are a little more pricey. Are they worth it? It’s hard to say, but his numbers sure look HOF worthy.

Do you have any comparisons in mind? Maybe CP3 and KJ? Carmelo and Bernard King? Let’s take a look and find another star from yesterday who may be a collecting bargain!


Kevin St JacqueContributing Author Kevin St. Jacque has been collecting cards, comics and watching baseball and basketball since the late-1970′s. He has over 1,100 Marvel sketch cards and just as many autographed and memorabilia sports insert cards. Raised in the LBC, he’s an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan. Recently he spends time with his young daughter hunting stores for Monster High dolls for her collection. You can find him contributing various hobby happenings on


In The Game ITG StickWork Hockey Only 2500 Boxes Produced

It takes a LOT for me to venture outside of my comfort zone from the big three (Baseball, Basketball & Football) to get excited about breaking down a product. In The Game Stickwork Hockey has definitely captured my attention with their ambitious product release due to hit shelves in late February 2014.

game-used-stickWith a limited Print run of 2500 boxes and each box containing 3 Game Used Stick inserts already holstered in Magnetic holders my expectations are to pull some very unique items.

The Game-Used Stick insert features past, present and future hockey stars. Each player is featured in 19 silver versions and one gold version. Some of the players featured are Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman, Raymond Bourque, Evgeny Malkin, Trevor Linden, Joe Sakic, Mark Messier and Brian Leetch to name a few.


The Vintage Game-Used Stick insert set is so exquisite, I thought I would show you two of them, Doug Harvey and Terry Sawchuk. These cards are part of hockey’s history and are limited to nine silver versions and one goldversion. Others in this insert set include Frank Brimsek, Jacques Plante, Maurice Richard, Bill Mosienko, Tim Horton and Ted Kennedy to name a few.


goalie-paddle-imageSome of the most colorful players in the game use some of the most colorful  sticks. The Goalie Game-Used Stick insert includes Goalie Game-Used Sticks and Goalie Paddles The Goalie Game-Used Stick and Goalie Game-Used Paddle checklists are impressive including Arturs Irbe, Carey Price, Jimmy Howard, Kari Lehtonen, Mike Richter, Kelly Hrudey, Grant Fuhr, Richard Brodeur, Patrick Roy and John Vanbiesbrouck to name a few.


In The Game brought the Lumbergraphs concept to the hobby and this product takes it to another level.


An insert set that is made up of 1/1′s from the players’ names on their stick shafts or “handles”. The list of cards in this insert set is mouth watering, especially for the player collector.

So keep an eye out for the video break and product review we will be doing in late February…Home Plate takes it to the Ice!

2014 Bowman Platinum Baseball – July 2014 Release

Auto Relic

2014 Bowman Platinum Baseball




So I just put in my pre-order to break some 2014 Bowman Platinum Baseball….curious what everyone thinks of this product? How do you collect prospect heavy sets….try to complete the set? Put away prospects you predict will break-out? I always feel products like these in baseball require a long-term vision of buy and hold….Thoughts?

Hobby boxes Guarantee (2) Autographed Prospect Refractor Cards and (1) Refractor Autographed Prospect Relic Card in Every Box – featuring larger-than-life prospects from the 2014 Draft Class! Look for New! Platinum Cut Autographed Refractor Relics and New! Toolsy Die-Cut Insert Cards; as well as a total of (18) Different Hobby Only Autograph, Autograph Relic, Bat Plate Relic & Parallel Cards!

Jose Abreu Red Prospect Auto
(2) Autographed Prospect Refractor Cards
(1) Refractor Autographed Relic Card


Autographed Prospect Cards – including:
- Refractor Parallels – #’d to 399, 199, 50 & 25
- Refractor Parallels – #’d to 10, 5 & 1 of 1- All Hobby Only!
- Printing Plates – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!

Purely Platinum Autos – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!
Dual Autos – seq #’d to 25
Triple Autos – seq #’d to 10
Hexagraphs Book Card Autos – seq #’d to 5 – Hobby Only!

Bowman Black Autos – seq #’d to 25 – Hobby Only!
- New! Violet Parallel – #’d to 10 – Hobby Only!
Retro 90 Bowman Auto
New! 1989 “Bowman is Back” Black Refractor Auto – #’d to 25 – Hobby Only!
Top Prospect Die-Cut Autos – #’d to 5
New! Autographed Platinum Cut Relic Cards – #’d to 49
Cutting Edge Die-Cut Autos – vets & Rookies #’d to 25
Cutting Edge Die-Cut Relics – vets & Rookies #’d to 50
Prospect Bat Plate Relics – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!

Autographed Relic & Autographed Jumbo Relic Cards
- Refractor Parallels – #’d to 199, 50 & 25
- Refractor Parallels – #’d to 5 & 1 of 1- All Hobby Only!
- Printing Plates – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!

Insert Sets include:
- New! Toolsy Die-Cut Inserts – new unique die-cuts representing 5 Tool Die cuton-field abilities – 6 different to collect!
- Cutting Edge Stars – die-cut cards featuring top vets & rookies
- Top Prospects – die-cut #’d to 25
- New! 1989 “Bowman is Back” Silver Diamond Refractor – Hobby Only!
- Arizona Fall League Contest Insert
- Arizona Fall League All-Stars Redemption Program

Base BPBase Cards
Veterans & Rookie Stars – including Gold, Blue Sapphire & Ruby Parallels; & Printing Plates – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!
Prospects (100) – including:
- Refractor & X-Fractor
- Color Refractors #’d to 399, 199, 50 & 25
- New! Orange Refractor #’d to 10 & Atomic Refractor #’d to 10 – both Hobby Only!
- Super-Fractor – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!
- Printing Plates – #’d 1 of 1 – Hobby Only!

Configuration: 12 boxes/20 packs/5 cards* * Each pack contains (5) 2014 Bowman Platinum Baseball Cards

2013-14 Panini Gold Standard Basketball – Case Break Coming Soon – February

Excited about the upcoming Case Break of 2013-14 Panini Gold Standard Basketball coming in February!
Excited about the upcoming Case Break of 2013-14 Panini Gold Standard Basketball coming in February!

Really excited about our upcoming Panini Gold Standard Basketball Case Break coming in February – we will offer a full product review as well as video link when the product arrives.

2013-14 Panini Gold Standard Case break - Coming in February!
2013-14 Panini Gold Standard Case break – Coming in February!

13/14 Panini Gold Standard Basketball features (4) Autograph Cards (…including Rookie Autos) and (1) Memorabilia Card inEvery Box! Content includes (8) Autograph Insert Sets, (3) Memorabilia Insert Sets, (90) Metal Cards & (50) Sold Gold 14-Karat Gold Cards. There is a stacked checklist of golden autograph & memorabilia opportunities – including phenomenal Rookieperformers like Michael Carter-Williams & Victor Oladipo; plus a275-Card Base Set that includes the return of the popular Short Printed Base-Set Uniform Variation Cards.

(4) Autograph Cards (…including Rookie Autographs)
(1) Memorabilia Card


DwadegoldFeaturing (8) Different Autograph Insert Sets, including: – (4) Brand New Autographs Sets all #’d to 299 or less
- Rookie Autographs from the top players selected in the 2013 NBA Draft, including Michael Carter-Williams & Victor Oladipo
- Rookie Jersey Autographs – return of one of the most sought after RC’s
- Ring Bearers – featuring the top NBA Champion’s Autographs #’d to 99 or less

Featuring (3) Memorabilia Sets, including:
- Bullion Brand Logos – returns with Super-Prime memorabilia from the league’s top players, #’d to 2 or less
- Black Gold Threads

Insert Sets include:

14K Solid Gold Cards (50) – look for these precious metals printed on real 14 Karat Gold, – #’d 1 of 1

Finals MVPs – relive the NBA’s finest Finals performances – #’d to 20 or less

Metal Cards (90)

KloveGoldBase Set (275)

Short Prints (25) – base-set variations featuring players wearing the jerseys of every team they’ve played for.


Configuration: (10) boxes/(1) pack*/(10) cards * Every pack includes (4) Autograph Cards and (1) Memorabilia Card

2013-14 Panini Titanium Basketball – Box Break Coming Soon (February)

2013-14 Panini Titanium Basketball product review coming soon!
2013-14 Panini Titanium Basketball product review coming soon!

Stay tuned as at the end of February we will be breaking some boxes and offering a full product review of 2013-14 Panini Titanium Basketball.

2013-14 Titanium Basketball Guarantees (2) Autograph and (3) Memorabilia Cards Per Box (one Hit Per Pack)! Titanium features(4) On-Card Autograph Sets, including: Reserve Signatures, Metallic Marks, & Enshrinement Ink; and (5) Memorabilia Sets, including: Game Gear Duals, Titanic Threads Jumbo, & Double-Double Jerseys. Collectors will also find Rookie Cards #’d to the player’s jersey number, draft year & draft position, as well as a 1 of 1 Platinum Parallel for every card in the set!

(1) Autograph or Memorabilia Card

(2) Autograph Cards (…at least)
(3) Memorabilia Cards


Titanium GSW(2) Autograph Cards Per Box, including:
- Reserve Signatures – on-card autographs from stars of yesterday & today
- Metallic Marks – on-card autographs from the NBA’s most dynamic players
- Enshrinement Ink – on-card signatures from NBA Hall of Famers
- Electric Endorsements – honoring the game’s biggest stars

Titanium Pippen(3) Memorabilia Cards Per Box, including:
- Game Gear Duals – dual-memorabilia team combos – Titanic Threads Jumbo – featuring some of Panini America’s nicest swatches
- Double-Double Jerseys – with Prime Parallels #’d to 25 or less

Rookie Cards - #’d to the player’s jersey number, draft year & draft position

Insert Cards:
- Find numerous short-printed inserts #’d to 199 or less – including Conductors, Atomic Numbers, Luster and Strength

Platinum Parallel - #’d 1 of 1 – produced for every card in the set!


16 boxes/5 packs/4 cards
*(2) 8bx inners per case


Jose Reyes - #66 - Moments & Milestones Black, Magenta, Cyan & Yellow Printing Plates

Baseball Card Printing Plate Sets – When a 1 of 1 can really become rare!

Jose Reyes - #66 - Moments & Milestones Black, Magenta, Cyan & Yellow Printing Plates
Jose Reyes – #66 – Moments & Milestones Black, Magenta, Cyan & Yellow Printing Plates

I have always been a fan of finding a Printing Plate in a wax pack….there is something cool about holding a plate used to manufacture the final card it represents. From the moment companies first started inserting them into packs I thought how cool would it be to obtain all Four plates of a single card and then frame it with the final product in the middle?

So whenever I was fortunate enough to pull a printing plate of a player I liked I would scour various auction sites and listings looking for the matching pieces of the puzzle. There is definitely some luck involved in this process as if the player is decent the odds of it finding a home in a personal collection and never being offered for sale is high.

Also there is the chance in an auction setting where your limits will be tested should you get into a slug fest with an individual player collector who just has to have that “1 of 1.” Which brings up the question….is it really a 1 of 1 if there are 4 of them?  Granted they each look slightly different….but in reality 4 different people can claim they have a printing plate of any individual card…..semantics perhaps.

So back to my challenge….with this particular card from 2008….my challenge is not complete….as to this day I am still looking for the base card with the number 78 next to Jose Reyes, the number of stolen bases he had in 2007, which this card is commemorating.

Thus if anyone has this card or knows someone who does please let me know……Also I would love to see anyone else’s collection of 4 plates of the same card!

Until then….Keep on busting!


Clemente base card collection.

Roberto Clemente – Collecting or Investing? Grade Cards – Yes or No?

Clemente base card collection.
Roberto Clemente base card collection.

One of my favorite childhood memories will forever be linked to when I was a young 8 year old boy and my father bought me a 1971 Roberto Clemente card. I cried because I was so upset he bought my older brother a 1960 All-Star Willie Mays card so it must have meant he loved him more since Willie Mays was one of the “Greatest Players of All-Time” and I got some no-name outfielder from Pittsburgh???

Later on I remember my Dad getting on one knee and telling me that Roberto Clemente was HIS favorite baseball player and someone who not only was one of the “Greatest Players of All-Time” but a great human being too and how he left the game and the world too early passing away helping people.

From that moment 30 years ago (around the early 80′s) we decided to collect a Clemente base card of every year he played in the Majors. Ahh….the “simple” years of collecting when there were not autographs, inserts, parallels, one-of-ones, and a million different product releases to collect this seemed obtainable. Of course there also was no internet, not many card stores initially, and the only way to track items down were through long drives to card shows and getting to know dealers.

It took us many wonderful years and journeys to get them all but once the collection was complete in the mid 90′s I put them away to eventually pass on to my children. So that brings up the next question.

One day my children may not be as interested in baseball cards….or perhaps my family would fall on an unexpected expense and need to liquidate the asset – should I get the cards graded?

It seems to me that a graded vintage card can become almost more liquid in the sense that they could put it on-line with little to no knowledge of the market and at least have a greater chance of getting the most value out of the item….I am thinking to protect the cards as an asset that would be my only choice?

I would love your thoughts on the topic and what you would or are doing with your collection/investment.