How to Collect Baseball Cards

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Baseball card collecting, even if it’s just for fun, can become an expensive hobby. Learning the basics is important, or you’ll wind up wasting your money.

Step 1: Visit the Baseball Hall of Fame website
Visit the Baseball Hall of Fame website. Learning about the great teams and players in game history is a prerequisite for a beginning collector.

Step 2: Learn card collector jargon
Learn card collector jargon. A “set” is a series of consecutively numbered cards, and a “jersey card” can include an embedded swatch from a player’s uniform.

Step 3: Decide what your collection focus will be
Decide what your collection focus will be. Some collectors focus on individual players or teams and others concentrate on building a full set.

Tip
A “super collector” might aim at collecting every card ever produced for a team or player.

Step 4: Learn card values jargon
Learn card values jargon. “Book value” is a card value based on a baseball card guide price and “sell value” is the actual price paid for the card.

Tip
“Exclusive spokesperson cards” are autographed or jersey cards from a player with an exclusive card company contract.

Step 5: Learn card grading terms
Learn card grading terms like “mint,” “near mint,” “very good,” “fair,” and “poor.” Physical defects include corner wear, creasing, trimming, and stains.

Tip
If you want to buy a rare card, get one that’s been professionally graded.

Step 6: Visit a sports memorabilia convention
Visit a sports memorabilia convention for an overview of card prices, or visit a dealer shop authorized by a card company like Topps or Upper Deck.

Tip
A graded card in an unopened plastic holder guarantees that the card grade remains unchanged even if traded multiple times.

Step 7: Start your collection with a box of new baseball cards
Start your collection with a box of new baseball cards. Rarer cards are sometimes randomly placed in a box; these are called “hits.”

Step 8: Learn how to protect and store your cards
Learn how to protect and store your cards correctly. You can put them in individual plastic holders or in a three-ring binder containing nine-card plastic pocket sheets. You can now begin to enjoy your new hobby!

Did You Know?
The world’s most valuable card, a 1909 Honus Wagner tobacco trading card, was once owned by hockey legend Wayne Gretzky.

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23 comments

  1. "If you want to buy a rare card, get one that's professionally graded(And spend much more money then buying it raw when you could get it graded yourself if it's in good condition)."

  2. Cool video. I've got some vintage baseball cards(400-500),though my main targets are Marlins sets.I've got every Topps base&update sets from 1993 until now,except for the Cabrera RC of 2000.

  3. step 1. grab 100 dollars and go to the store and buy all of there card packs. step 2. rip them open. step 3. repeat steps 1 and 2

  4. True Gretzky had the T206 Wagner card. Another fun fact is that ,in 2007, memorabilia kingpin Bill Mastro was founded guilty for altering the edging of the card to increase its value (which is considered mail fraud), before selling it to Wayne Gretzky.

  5. Hey HowcastSportsFitness- We subscribed to your channel, would you mind subscribing to ours as well? We are a small card retailer, from Miami. If you would subscribe that would be greatly appreciated! We just recently launched our YouTube channel and will be doing a lot of box breaks there, starting tomorrow night!

    Thanks!
    Boris

  6. how to collect baseball cards number one go to a store step two buy a pack of baseball cards step 3 open the pack step four see what you got

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