Your next big-name New York Yankees rookie to arrive in The Big Apple will face big expectations — but he doesn’t have nearly as much cardboard as those who arrived before him.
Unlike the arrivals of Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge — guys who had plenty of baseball cards and plenty of certified autographs when they hit The Show — shortstop Gleyber Torres doesn’t.
And that could bode very well for collectors who own them.
To say that the baseball card landscape has changed in the last decade might be an understatement, but there’s been one prospecting brand that has delivered many of the biggest names early and often and delivered a good amount of ink, too, thanks to Hot Boxes.
It’s packed a number of surprise inclusions, a tremendous rainbow of serial-numbered parallel autos and even some pretty good bargains as many collectors have their established habits elsewhere. In recent years, it’s also given us a teaser of younger USA Baseball players, too.
This mainstay — and arguably a simultaneous sleeper — is Elite Extra Edition.
One of the more-impressive feats of the summer in baseball ended on Sunday night — and you may not have even known it was happening.
Cleveland Indians catching prospect Francisco Mejia had his 50-game hitting streak snapped. It’s a streak that began for the 20-year-old High-A Lynchburg Hillcats standout on May 25 and is apparently tied for the fourth-longest streak in MiLB history.
For the year, he’s hitting .345 with nine homers and 73 RBI in 351 at-bats.
With the first pitch he saw as a big-leaguer, Willson Contreras delivered and that might spark more future deliveries for collectors as he’s not got that much cardboard just yet unlike all of those other young Chicago Cubs stars.
His first pitch resulted in a pinch-hit two-run homer — and that’s resulted in his first MLB Rookie Card, a Topps Now card available right now and only for the next 20-plus hours.
But it’s not his only card — or his only card to come.
Another holiday week leads to another abbreviated release schedule for trading cards with just five brands on the tarmac and set to arrive beginning tomorrow.
We’ve got one from Leaf Trading Cards, one from Cryptozoic, one from Topps and two from Panini America and that’s where we’ll start off.
This week’s NBA release is 2015-16 Panini Court Kings, a rookie-heavy art-style product that will include one autograph and one memorabilia card per 10-card box. It will also include box-toppers. This one will feature on-card autos as well as one Hot Box delivering extras in every 15-box case.
When Panini America first revealed 2015 Elite Extra Edition back in October, it promised that the annual prospecting staple would include plenty of autographs — eight to 10 in the warmest of Hot Box scenarios and six autos for the standard boxes.
But there will be even more ink when it arrives next Thursday.
A lot more in every case.