Card of the Day: Peyton Manning 1998 Press Pass Kick-Off #1

Product Highlight: 1998 Topps SportzCubz

Cube crazy!  That’s exactly how you could describe some card companies in 1998.  Pacific and Pinnacle both released products based on cube-shaped cards.

Along with the packs, inside boxes of 1998 Pacific Aurora baseball, football, and hockey you’ll find one card in the shape of a three-dimensional cube.  Between all three sets, the most notable cube would be that of Peyton Manning since its a rookie.  Some people actually remove the card from the cube so it can lay flat.  I would never do that because you can cause serious damage to the card during the removal process.  Its best left wrapped around the cube, otherwise you’ll just have a squashed box.

Pinnacle’s Sport Block is a real conversation piece.  Each team specific Sport Block contains nine different images.  They remind me of a baseball-themed Rubik’s Cube.  You can rearrange the block just like pieces of a puzzle.  Not every team received the Sport Block treatment.  Only the Angels, Diamondbacks, Braves, Orioles, Red Sox, Indians, Dodgers, Yankees, Mariners, and Devil Rays got one.

In that same year, Topps looks to have wanted to throw their two cents into the cube fad.  Very little is known about 1998 Topps SportzCubz.  The main reason for this is because it never made it past the test phase.  About five prototype cards are rumored to have been made for each player.  Then the idea was canned.  What the end product would have looked like is a mystery.  Judging by the prototype, it looks as if it would have been wrapped around something.  I guess we’ll never know.

Neither the 1998 Pacific Aurora Cubes or Pinnacle Sport Block carry much value.  The 1998 Topps SportzCubz are a completely different story.  Player collectors don’t mind spending into the hundreds for a single prototype.  The following players are in this set: Derek Jeter, Greg Maddux, Tony Gwynn, David Justice, Vladimir Guerrero, Bernie Williams, Ken Griffey, Jr., Tony Clark, Albert Belle, Barry Larkin, Mark McGwire, Mo Vaughn, Livan Hernandez, Raul Mondesi, Chuck Knoblauch, Andy Pettitte, Dante Bichette, Hideki Irabu, Roberto Alomar, Paul O’Neill, Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Juan Gonzalez, Mike Piazza, and Mark Grace.

Card of the Day: J.D. Drew 1998 Donruss Signature Series #129

Card of the Day: Rhonda Blades 1998 Pinnacle WNBA #1

Card of the Day: David Ortiz 1998 Fleer Tradition #285

Food, Cars, and Underwear – In 1998 $26,000 Could’ve Gotten You One Of These MJ Cards

Walmart, Target, and Kohl’s have seen an increase in foot traffic recently.  Underwear can be thanked for that.  Michael Jordan has been a key spokesman for Hanes for 30 years.  To celebrate, Hanes teamed-up with Upper Deck who created a special set of cards.  These exclusive cards can only be found in specially marked Hanes products.  Upper Deck went with the 1988-89 Fleer Basketball design.  (10) Michael Jordan autographs have been thrown in.  They fall 1:108,625 packs.  A complete base set consists of (50) cards with Red and Blue Foil parallels.  All-Star inserts which have Gold Foil parallels are also possible to pull.

Over the years we’ve seen some incredible sales of Michael Jordan cards.  His 1986-87 Fleer rookie is a hobby icon.  Recently a 1997 Metal Universe Precious Metal Gems Green #’ed/10 parallel of his sold for $350,100.  Collectors go crazy for his stuff.  I can’t wait to see what one of those Hanes autographs sells for.  My guess is $500-$1,000.

In 1998, one of the more interesting Michael Jordan cards was created.  A Chevy dealership in Chicago worked with Upper Deck and produced a small 2-card set.  How were you suppose to obtain one of these cards?  That’s simple.  All you needed to do was purchase a new 1998 Chevy Blazer for $26,000.  Along with the keys to your new purchase, you’ed be handed one of the two cards.  It doesn’t end there folks.  Those cards came with a nice little perk.  You could exchange them for a dinner in a glassed-in room at Michael Jordan’s Restaurant.

Either not many people purchased Chevy Blazers from that dealership, or they did and decided to cash-in on the dinner offer.  Very few of these cards exist today.  Restaurant staff most likely threw them away.

Condition can be a big issue.  They were handled a lot.  Gem mint examples can sell for $600 per card.

Reprints also are a problem.  Based on the reprints I’ve seen, ones of Michael Jordan in the “looking down” pose have a black border around the edge on both the front and back.  Reprints of the “smiling” pose seem to just have this border on the reverse.

Michael Jordan’s Restaurant is still open.  According to the cards, you’re suppose to call 312-644-DUNK (3865) ext. 227 to make reservations.  I called the number, but its been disconnected.  Their new number is (630) 828-2932.

I’d love to see someone pull up to his restaurant today in their 1998 Chevy Blazer, whip out one of these cards, and ask for their meal.

Card of the Day: Michael Myers 1998 Pinnacle Auto