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1971 Topps #681 Bill Butler HIGH # (Royals)


Book   = $ *BOOK*
Price = $ 9.95
EX/MINT.

1971 Topps #681 Bill Butler HIGH # (Royals) Baseball cards value
Price = $ 9.95
         

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Baseball

1961 Topps Baseball Cards
Checklist & Values


The 1961 Topps baseball card set had 587 cards (#1-#598 with some missing numbers). In addition to the missing cards, 2 cards were accidently numbered #463 (the Braves Team card was supposed to be card #426).
1961 Topps set was packed with special "subsets":
League Leaders (10 cards), World Series cards (10), Highlights (11 cards), MVP's (16 cards), Checklists (7 cards plus several variations), Team cards, Special Multi-Player cards, Managers, Topps Rookie All-Star Trophies, & Sporting News All-Stars

Of note - 1961 Topps were the first cards bearing the very popular Topps Rookie All-Star Award Trophies. "High Number" cards (#523-#589) are very scarce.

The least attractive aspect of the 1961 Topps baseball card set were the capless players !!! Baseball expansion led to the problem when Los Angeles Angels were added, the Washington Senators became the Minnesota Twins and the Washington Senators got a new franchise. Because of these changes, tons of players were capless and looked awful. picture you 50 year old grand-dad. Life was obviously tougher back then.

More 1961 Topps card info:
Card #1 was All-American basketball player Dick Groat
Card #2 was Roger Maris, right before his record breaking 61 Home Run season
Mickey Mantle was on (6) 1961 Topps cards adding to the sets cost.

Topps released 3 other sets in 1961: Topps Dice Game, Topps Magic Rub-Offs & Topps Stamps.

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Click for complete 1961 Topps Autographed baseball cards Checklist and Prices
Baseball

Team Autographed / Signed Baseballs


Team signed baseballs were the thing well before single-signed balls exploded on the market.
What is a "Team Signed Baseball" ???
Simple answer: A ball with XXX signatures of a certain team for a certain year. What is difficult is the XXX. Baseball tons of roster moves make it nearly impossible to "Get Them All".

Generally, team signed baseballs from early 1900's had 10 to 15 signatures, the 1940's that jumped to 18 to 25. Joyce Sports Research Collection (Notre Dame) says "signatures must include only members of a specific team from a specific year, and there must be some approximation of completeness."

Not concrete but to me a "team ball" MUST have ALL the team's STARS (unless a rookie or in season trade) and in today's market at least 20, preferably more, and the manager.

Determining Age of Team Signed Balls
"Official" league balls have stamped signatures of current league presidents on the "sweet spot". Starting 1934/1935 balls were produced by Spalding (NL) and Reach (AL). Rawlings took over in 1977/78. Have a possible team roster at hand, ESPN & baseball-reference.com have great sites), decipher a few signatures then solve the puzzle.

Team Signed Baseballs Values
Pricing team signed baseballs is difficult due to subjectivity and factors involved suce as: Signatures placement, quality, strength, number of autographs, stars, age, team significance, and eye appeal considering fading, whiteness, scuffs, shellacking, staining, overall wear...

Team autographed baseballs on official league balls get higher values. They are "official", made better, preserve better and even help in dating especially with balls signed at "Reunion" baseball card shows which brought together great teams of the past.

Facsimile Autographed Balls
1960's/1970's machine-printed "autographed" team baseballs were sold at stadium gift shops for around $1.95. Easy to identify as all signatures were uniform in ink, color, size and look. "Facsimile" signatures are also often found on baseball cards.

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Baseball

1969-1970 Topps Basketball Cards
Checklist & Values


The 1969-1970 Topps Basketball set, (99) "Tall Boys" (a huge 2-1/2 x 4-11/16) , sold in 10-card packs for 10 cents, was history making in card size & players. WOW !!! Lew Alcindor's ROOKIE (later Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), John Havlicek, Dave Bing, Earl the Pearl Monroe, Bill Bradley, Willis Reed, Walt Frazier, Elvin Hayes & more.

Brightly-colored "Rulers" were random inserts. Delicate 2-1/2 x 9-7/8, printed on thin paper, they featured a cartoon drawing and a ruler measuring his height. Planned for 24, #5 Bill Russell was not issued.

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Baseball
History Of O-Pee-Chee

O-Pee-Chee (OPC) based in Ontario Canada, is mostly thought of as the Canadian version of Topps but it actually pre-dates Topps by many years.

In 1933, OPC issued their first sports card set, the V304 Hockey cards and is currently in the tens of thousands. Their first baseball set was issued in 1937. It was similar to the 1934 Goudeys and Batter-Ups and the top player was Joe Dimaggio.

O-Pee-Chee created baseball card sets similar to TOpps from 1965 into the 1990's. At first OPC sets were much smaller than Topps and included just the first few series. Fronts & backs were nearly identical but with a small "Printed in Canada" on the back and the card stock was slightly different.

Baseball being much less popular in Canada, OPC print runs of their early years were between 1% and 10% of Topps making them exceedingly scarce !!!

Starting in 1970, Canadian legislation demanded all items produced in Canada carry both French & English so OPC baseball cards became bilingual with both languages included.
Other OPC differences include:
1971, OPC even changed the back design to a much more interesting back and also offered 14 different card photos not in the Topps set.
1972 OPC included a card of Gil Hodges mentioning his death that was not a part of the Topps set.
1974 OPC did not include any "Washington Nationals" variations.
1977 the card format remained like Topps but almost 1/3 of the OPC set had different poses/images than Topps.
In late 1970's, OPC card fronts appeared similar to Topps but sometimes included traded information saying "Now with XXXX". They were able to do this as the OPC cards were printed much later into the season.

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