Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Looking For a Reason to Visit a Card Store

As a kid, I loved going to a card store. I went to several and never really had a favorite, but I had a choice depending on where the parents were driving around that day.  

You'd beg to stop at one so you could get a pack of cards, look for a few singles and get back in the car before your mom's Buick started embarrassing you with that annoying car horn.

Fast forward too many years to count and what reason does a kid have to visit a hobby card store?

What can you get a hobby store that you can't at Target, Walmart, eBay, Freedom Cardboard, Sports Card Forum and Beckett.

I've blogged several times here, here, here, and here about ways for card shops to capture the passion of card collectors.

Unfortunately, I'm not seeing a change.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

When Will Sports Cards Have QR Codes?

You've seen this in magazines, Best Buy advertisements, and even in the windows of some businesses.

It's a QR Code. If you scan it with your smart phone camera via a QR Scanner app, it opens a video or URL.

It sounds complicated, but it's not. 
For example, I downloaded a QR scanner from the iPhone app store. There are a ton of free ones out there. I use the AT&T Scanner and QR Scanner.

A few weeks ago there was a code to scan in the Sunday Best Buy ad. When I scanned it, the code launched a 5 minute YouTube video of the highlighted band recording their song - very cool behind the scenes video.

I'm writing a blog post at work about us doing this on business cards to either our corporate home page or to our personal LinkedIn page. The QR Code pictured here goes to my LinkedIn public profile.

When will sports cards have QR codes on the back?
I think this is another way to give the collector extra content and make cards more digital. Some types that I'd like to see the QR code linking to: 
- A video of a current player talking about the upcoming season.
- A video of a player talking about a career highlight. A 500 home run series having a member of the club talking about hitting #500.
- Upper Deck or Topps running giveaways with some of the codes for free cards and boxes.
- A video of a historic moment.
- A video link of the player signing the card you have.

There are a lot of possibilities and it would add some life to the industry.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Remember the Blue Road Uniforms

At the time I wasn't a big fan of them, but looking back, I really like the blue road uniforms some teams had.

This Paul Molitor, '84 Topps card has Paul in his blues. I like the Brewers blue, the Blue Jays blue and the Phillies blue . . . the grays that teams wear now, just seem a little boring compared to these.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Favre Texting Scandal Is the Seinfeld Tractor Story

I think nearly everything in life can be related to a Seinfeld or Brady Bunch episode.

All we heard about during the NFL off-season was Brett Favre and his Mississippi tractor riding. Now, all we hear about his Brett Favre and his texting issues.

I'm waiting for the Jennifer Sterger to say: "My boyfriend said I got gonorrhea from a tractor."

And you call that the tractor story?! 

We Can't Have Bullets and Colt .45s, but Redskins are OK?

One of my Topps Million Card give-away is this 1962 Joe Amalfitano card of the Houston Colt .45s. After looking at the wiki page and some of their cool logos the story of the .45s seems really interesting to me.

In today's politically correct world, we could never have another Colt .45s team, just as we can't have a Washington Bullets team name. I get it, I'm not here to argue the name change, but I don't understand what appears to be a double-standard.

We can't have:
- Colt .45s
- Washington Bullets
- Eastern Michigan Hurons
- Miami (OH) Redskins

Why can we have the Washington Redskins and Chief Wahoo of the Cleveland Indians? Why are these images and stereotypes OK?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Signs Your Baseball Career is Going in the Wrong Direction

There are several key signs to alert a player that his baseball career is trending in the right direction. A player's bat speed could slow down, velocity on his pitches may drop or getting injured more frequently are all signs that the career is in the wrong direction.

Former NY Mets pitcher Dennis Ribant could also see this by reading the back of his 1966 Topps card!

This is a '66 card, but the highlight listed in the top right corner is, "Dennis led the midwest league in ERA in 1961."

So his career highlight is 5 years ago . . . and it's a minor league accomplishment. Dennis ended up having a decent 1966 season in New York, but was out of baseball a few years later.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

October CSA Autograph Show Line Up

CSA Shows has another unique and collector friendly show this month.

The October 15-17 show has more '72 Dolphin reunion guests and is heavy on the basketball guests. Some of the basketball autograph guests include:
- Magic Johnson
- Jerry West
- George Gervin

There's also a '77-78 Washington Bullets reunion (pictured here) with: Phil Chenier, Bob Dandridge, Kevin Grevey, Elvin Hayes, Tom Henderson, Dick Motta, Joe Pace, Wes Unseld, and Larry Wright. 

My favorite part of CSA Shows is the free admission on Fridays. This is perfect for the card collector who doesn't want to fight the autograph crowds.