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1971 O-Pee-Chee/OPC #686 Chico Ruiz SHORT PRINT SCARCE HIGH #.(Angels) Baseball cardPrice = $ 10
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Like all collectibles, some sports cards increase in value and a few can become very valuable. Determining a card's value is based on a number of factors including the popularity of the player, the card's scarcity, it's condition, and demand among collectors. A card can be scarce but if there's no demand for it, it's value may not be to great.
Q: What are some of the ways to collect cards ? There are several different ways to collect cards. For example, you can try to collect all the cards in a given set. Or you can focus on cards of your favorite team or even just your favorite player.
Some people only collect Rookie cards while others only collect cards of Hall-of-Famers. Because of the high cost of vintage sports cards today a growingly popular way to collect sportscards is "Type Collecting".
"Type Collecting" is collecting just one of each "type" (or different issue) made. To keep costs down, on some of the scarcer more expensive issues you can simply add a less expensive "common" to your collection. While on more common or recent issues you can select your favorite player or a card from your favorite team.
No matter how you collect - the key is to have fun !
1956 Topps Baseball CardsI have a fondness for the 1956 Topps issue. When I first started collecting back in 1964, my friends and I would wander nearby neighborhoods in search of "old cards". Back then, the oldest cards we ever found in dealing with other kids were 1957 Topps.
Eventually I saw my first 1956 Topps card - I was hooked. It was larger, on a thicker, fluffier card stock making it look much, much older than the just 1 year younger 1957. We even thought they looked "ancient" !!!
We changed neighborhoods in 1966 leaving my childhood friends behind. Before I left, I gave away all my cards except for a small cigar box full of my favorites and I stopped collecting. I had a great 3 year run but I sure wish I would have been collecting in 1966 and 1967 with those tough high numbers. I would have loved to have had a cigar box full of them in place of my hoard of 1964 Topps Felix Mantillia and Gary Peters cards.
The regular 1956 Topps baseball card set is one of my favorites. Topps again went with a slightly larger (3-3/4" by 2 5/8") horizontal card design, similar to their 1955 Topps cards. Several of the portraits are even the same used on 1955 Topps cards and even back to 1954 Topps.
1956 Topps was the first issue to feature team cards and checklists. In addition Topps also included cards of the 2 league presidents, William Harridge and Warren Giles.
With Bowman now gone, Topps could again make cards of Mickey Mantle who was missing from Topps issues since 1953. Once you get past Mickey Mantle, this is a fun and relatively simple set to complete as there are no high numbers or extremely expensive rookie cards with Hall-of-Famer Luis Aparicio being the top rookie.
The set contains over 200 variations making things quite interesting for master set collectors.
Most variations deal with the card stock (gray and white card back variations).
There are also several cards that have color line variations on the card front. Most notably is the Ted Williams card which has either no line over his name or a thin green, red, blue, or yellow line between the white border for a total of five variations. Whitey Ford and Early Wynn also have no line or a thin red or yellow line. In addition, many team cards had 3 different variations with the team name either on the Left, Centered or Right.
The only errors in the set are a handful of uncorrected errors the most famous of which is card #31 of Hank Aaron which actually pictures Willie Mays sliding into home. Card #135 Mickey Mantle is also an interesting card. The card pictures Mantle leaping into the stands and making a fantastic catch. An awesome play to put on this great card - right ? Only problem is that on the real play, Mantle missed the ball. If you do some research you can find the exact photograph that the card was painted from. The artist did a great job and in his version, Mantle makes the catch ! And as always for vintage Topps sets, take a quick look at Don Mossi and his famous ears !
Collectors of 1956 Topps should also take a look at their side issue '1956 Topps Pins'. In addition to their 1956 Topps baseball card set, Topps released their 1956 Topps Pins set using the same portrait photos as the cards. In the end, collectors of the day preferred cards to pins and Topps cut back the 1956 Topps Pin set from a planned 90 pins to just 60.
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1956 Topps baseball cards Checklist and Prices
1961 Topps Baseball Cards AUTOGRAPHED Set info/informationBy now you all heard of the rash of counterfeit autographs on the market.
The following autographs all come with auction house LOA's (Letters of Authenticity) from the top authenticators in the hobby - PSA/DNA or James Spence !!!
The 1961 Topps baseball card set included 587 standard size 2½" x 3½" cards (#1-#598 with several skipped numbers). 2 cards were accidently numbered #463, one of them (the Braves Team card was supposed to be card #426).
The 1961 Topps set included the following special "subsets":
* League Leaders (10 cards)
* World Series highlights (10 cards)
* Highlights (11 cards)
* MVP's (16 cards)
* Checklists (7 cards plus several variations)
* Team cards (xx cards)
* Special Multi-Player cards (xx cards)
* Managers (xx cards)
* Topps Rookie All-Star Trophies (xx cards)
* Sporting News All-Stars (#566-#589)
1961 Topps was the first of the very popular and continuing Topps Rookie All-Star Trophies subsets. Cards from the last series (#523-#589) are scarce "High Numbers" making the set fairly expensive to complete.
MLB Baseball expansion led to one of the least attractive aspects of the 1961 Topps baseball card set. The American League made several changes. The Los Angeles Angels were added, the Washington Senators became the Minnesota Twins and a new franchise was granted to the Washington Senators who also debuted in 1961. Possibly because of these team changes, many players had their portrait photos taken without their baseball caps. Not only did most of the players look awful without their caps, they looked more like your old, not so handsome uncle then athletes!
Card backs were black print on an army green background on a dark card stock making them somewhat difficult to read. TOP ROOKIES: #35 Ron Santo, #141 Billy Williams, #417 Juan Marichal, Willie Davis, Zoilo Versalles & Jim Maloney; are popular players but still reasonably priced.
More interesting tid-bits from the 1961 Topps set:
Card #1 features All-American basketball player Dick Groat
Collectors of 1961 Topps cards may also want to take a look at 3 other baseball issues Topps released that year: a Topps Dice Game, Topps Magic Rub-Offs and a series of Topps Stamps.
Although some dealers and collectors consider this set boring, with it's clean design, many special subsets
and multiple cards of some of the games top stars including 6 Mantle's I rate it much higher.
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1961 Topps Autographed baseball cards Checklist and Prices
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