If you ever find yourself in the mood for a good ol’ hobby discussion — or debate — but can’t find any collectors to jaw with, you can always head over to Blowout Cards Forums to get your fill of cardboard talk.
As the name implies, Blowout Cards Forums is a discussion board run by Blowout Cards, one of the largest hobby retailers going, who offer up new product across all four major sports, plus more fringe sports, plus non-sports titles like Garbage Pail Kids, Marvel, Star Wars, and others.
Their forums are broken down along these general lines, too, with major divisions dedicated to general hobby talk, card breaks, buying and selling among members, and even off-topic issues of the day (not necessarily hobby-related, that is).
And, even though Blowout Cards trends very modern in their offerings, and even though baseball isn’t always the main focus, there are plenty of gems for even us old-school diamond enthusiasts to dig into … and to lose a few hours reading and kibitzing.
To whet your appetite, here are five great, fun — and long! — baseball card threads on Blowout Cards Forums that just might swallow up your evening or weekend.
Nothing like a bold statement as a title to get people clicking and chiming in, huh? And this one has done its job like a champ since it was started by a now-banned member in March of 2020.
Is Topps Project 2020 really the worst product since 1991 Fleer?
And, is 1991 Fleer really the yardstick against which all terrible modern baseball cards should be measured?
It’s a fire-starter of a proclamation that has generated nearly 4100 pages of responses as of May 2022 … and folks are still chiming in from time to time.
What do you think about 1991 Fleer, and about Topps Project 2020?
No matter what your opinion, you’re bound to find someone who will debate it with you ’til the cows come home.
One of the great things about this hobby and the internet is that we collectors are usually pretty happy, and often even proud, to showcase our cardboard conquests by posting pictures of our cards online for others to enjoy (or envy!).
This thread is a great example of that, and it’s exactly what it says it is — a back-and-forth among all who want to participate, detailing their personal collections of Hall of Fame baseball cards.
Here you’ll find listings of what people already have, want lists of the cards they still “need” to add, and, often, pictures of their treasures.
The posts can be enlightening (if you learn about a “new” card you never knew about), inspirational (“look what he put together!”), intimidating (“look what he put together!”), entertaining, and fulfilling (trades and sales) all at the same time.
If you were a collector in the 1980s and “survived” into the 1990s, then you no doubt remember the Coming of the Insert Card.
That pretty much all started with the 1990 Upper Deck Heroes Reggie Jackson autograph cards, even though there were inserts of various ilk that had made their way into the hobby in the preceding decades.
But, man, as the marketplace got more and more crowded for the dozens of card brands jockeying for collector dollars in the early-to-mid 1990s, they all needed a way to differentiate themselves. For awhile, it was all about ratcheting up card quality (or perceived card quality) and scarcity (or perceived scarcity).
You can only gold-plate base cards so much, though, so companies and brands started inserting even more limited and “special” cards in their packs: refractors, autographs, cards with hunks of equipment attached, one-of-ones, and on and on and on.
Much of that hype and insert love has persisted into today’s market, but there’s nothing quite as nostalgic as the original. And that’s what this thread is all about — talking about and showcasing those trailblazing inserts from the 1990s.
If this is your era, this is a can’t-miss thread, no doubt.
The biggest hobby story of the last couple years? Of the last decade? Of the last 70 years, even?
It could just be the news that broke during the summer of 2021 — Fanatics had been granted exclusive MLB and MLBPA licenses to make baseball cards, which meant that Topps was out after seven decades as The Real One.
But that wasn’t he end of the story, because Fanatics also landed exclusives for football and basketball.
And even that wasn’t the end of the story, because Fanatics *gasp* bought Topps in January 2022.
What’s it all mean for the hobby and the future of your baseball cards (and other sports cards)? Those are questions we’ve all been asking since the original Fanatics news broke.
And they’re the questions that collectors continue to hash through in the “Topps out—Fanatics in” thread on Blowout Cards Forum.
Remember when you were going to put yourself through college, retire young, put your kids through college, and buy that villa on the Riviera, all courtesy of the Kurt Stillwell and Ruben Sierra and Greg Swindell and Jose Canseco rookie cards you were hoarding like they were gold bullion?
But, even though thousands (millions?) of then-young collectors eventually had our hopes of cardboard riches dashed by the realities of oversupply and the human fallibility of even our favorite players, that doesn’t mean all Junk Wax is junk.
Indeed, thanks to the emergence of third-party grading in the 1990s and 2000s, and the pandemic-era hobby explosion, many of those beloved 1980s rookie cards are enjoying at least a mini renaissance, both in popularity and in pricing. After all, there are only so many PSA 10 copies of even the most common of dirt-common 1980s cards.
In this popular thread, collectors show off their PSA copies of those classic ’80s RCs, and they also talk about their experiences with this segment of the hobby. If you’ve ever wondered what the toughest part of a 1986 Topps Traded Tiffany Will Clark rookie card is, condition-wise (border yellowing), this discussion will be right up your alley.