Around the Hobby: Topps Leon Sandcastle, Panini Featured in ‘D’ Magazine, 1880 Spalding Guide, Cracker Jack Moments

The NFL is making sure Leon Sandcastle is not an exclusive.  Topps revealed its version of the Deion Sanders alter-ego Tuesday.  It seems the Kansas City Chiefs #1 draft pick Leon Sandcastle Topps footballwill appear in the company’s 2013 Bowman football line, due out in June.

Topps didn’t reveal anything beyond the photo so we don’t know yet if it’s a base card, short print, insert or anything else.

Last week, the league’s other trading card partner, Panini, revealed its 1989-style Score football card of Leon, who became a favorite when his character was unveiled during a Super Bowl commercial in February.


Panini America was featured last week in ‘D’, a Dallas magazine.  They had some fun with the photo to illustrate the piece, which offered some company history and its philosophy, among other topics.

You can check it out here.


What’s the hottest piece of vintage baseball memorabilia on eBay right now?  How about an 1880 Spalding Baseball Guide.  It has more watchers than any other items.

Spalding Guides from the early 20th century do show up for sale fairly regularly but one dating from the third year of what we now know as the National League is pretty unusual so it’ll be interesting to see where the bidding ends.

By the way, you don’t have to buy those old guides to enjoy them.  You can actually read them online.


Look for the upcoming book on Cracker Jack baseball cards by Tom and Ellen Zappala later this summer.  Just as they did for the T206:  The Players and Their Stories, the crew is putting out a series of short videos highlighting the careers of some of the players who appear on the 1914 and 1915 sets that will be featured in the coffee table style book.

Here’s the first one.  Enjoy.