Donruss 2021 Baseball, Topps 2021 Baseball Series I & Covids unlikely revival of the hobby

by Jamie Heap,

BOXSCORE Amherst, Nova Scotia (May 11, 2021) Last Friday, May 7th, you really went to his Walmart to look for wrestling figures one last time before asking big stores like the ones above to start selling during the third wave of Covid-19 Discontinuing essential items – such as the ongoing pandemic has been credited with the resurgence of the card collecting hobby.

Instead of wrestlers, I bought Topps Series 1 & Donruss baseball cards. I was very pleased with the quality of the 75 cards in my Aaron Judge tin, highlighted by inserts such as Aaron Judge Topps Heritage, a shiny Albert Pujol 70 year Topps legacy, Jacob deGrom Heritage & Chrome, Justin Verlander & Sonny Gray Heritages, Ronald Acuna Jr. 1962 Topps Design and 1986 Topps Design Joe Odell RC.

Other Topps Series I collectible boxes available include star baseball players like Mike Trout, Cody Bellinger, Bryce Harper, the aforementioned Ronald Acuna Jr., and Javier Baez.

Regarding the Donruss (Panini) 50 card hanger box with Clayton Kershaw on the cover, I was even more impressed by the high quality licensed MLBPA cards which contained a number of Donruss bordered cards from 1987 (this time only White). instead of black borders, which like Topps’ 1986 made graded coin cards rare due to chipping) with cards like Roger Clemens 354 Career Wins, Greg Maddux, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, Gary Carter, Barry Larkin, Sammy Sosa, and Jon Papelbon (you could for sure claim that Roger Clemens, Greg Maddux, Randy Johnson, and Pedro Martinez were the top four starters in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1985 to 2010.)

Other cards that impressed me were exclusive hanger boxes like 6 holographic oranges, two diamond parallels and diamond kings by Fernando Tatis Jr., Jose Ramirez, Nelson Cruz, Juan Soto and Jack Flaherty. The key-based cards in this box included two Mike Trouts (DPs), one of which serves as a snapshot of the pandemic (trout with mask), regardless of the cards from Anthony Rendon, Josh Donaldson, Kris Bryant, Bryce Harper, and Yadier Molina. Paul Goldschmidt, Freddie Freeman, Mookie Betts and Francisco Lindor.

How the Covid-19 pandemic contributed to the unlikely revival of card collecting in March 2020, according to William Wagner (who wrote an article for Lindys Sports Baseball 2021 Preview titled, “Comeback Story: Baseball Cards Are Back In Big Scale”) Leighton Sheldon, owner of Just Collect, Inc. in New Jersey feared Covid-19 would change its sports card business. “I remember being very nervous about what was going to happen,” Sheldon said to Wagner. “Logically, it just made no sense to me why a company is still good when people are laid off and sick and companies go under.”

For a variety of reasons, this is exactly what happened when baseball card collecting was booming in ways that had not been seen in years (if at all). At the onset of the pandemic, a virtual lack of live sports (other than professional wrestling) prompted card collectors like me to rediscover the priceless pieces of cardboard that were collected in attics, garages, or sheds during childhood. “(It was a) perfect storm,” said Sheldon, noting that wealthy people (like stockbrokers or those from tech companies) had started investing in sports cards in the years before 2020 (much like the previous investor) types in the late ones 1980s after a market crash). “I’ve bought and sold over $ 30 million worth of tickets in my career, and I’ve never seen a period like this,” Sheldon said. “There are millions of dollars of money coming in, raised by people on Wall Street or by tech companies. You see an opportunity … we’ve never seen any of this before.”

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