Our mailbox overflows with news from the card companies: unclaimed autographed cards, a Japanese card of Kosuke Fukudome and more Jay Bruce rookie cards.
Upper Deck has produced a short-printed rookie card of popular Cubs’ import Kosuke Fukudome. It’s in Japanese, much like the Topps’ Dice-K cards from last year. The card is in the company’s series II baseball cards.
Fukudome has somehow catapulted to one of the National League’s top All Star vote-getters despite solid but unspectacular statistics in his rookie MLB season. The unlimited affection from Cubs fans has helped push his regular issue rookie card to $3-6 while the early arrivals on eBay of the Japanese version have been selling for around $50.
“Fukudome has a huge following in Japan and we felt it necessary to recognize that by creating this rare version which will likely be very popular in Asia,” said Jason Masherah, Upper Deck’s Baseball brand manager. “There has not been very much activity on them so far as many collectors may not fully realize what they have. Collectors lucky enough to pull one of these cards will have found a card that’s in high-demand with Japanese collectors in particular.”
Some Mystery Dual Cuts are still up for grabs in UD’s collection of historical figures issued earlier this spring. 23 of the cards were inserted into random packs of 2007 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection Baseball, 2007 Upper Deck Black Baseball and 2007 Upper Deck Exquisite Rookie Signatures Baseball.
Winners got to hand pick their dual-signed autograph card from a list that included tandems like P.T. Barnum and Charles Stratton (Tom Thumb); Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant; and even King George V and Queen Elizabeth I. Those who registered cards first, had the best chances of owning the most desirable cards.
Each card is numbered “1-of-1” and the first winners will receive their cards this week. Upper Deck reports that twelve Mystery Dual Cut cards remain unclaimed including the JFK/Jimmy Hoffa and Ronald Reagan/Mikael Gorbachev.
Topps says the player redeemable for the 2008 Topps Baseball Series 2 Red Hot Rookie Redemption # 1 is Jay Bruce, who has signed on the cards themselves rather than a sticker.
Throughout the remainder of the 2008 Major League Baseball season, Topps will announce the subjects for the 20-card Red Hot Rookie program. Each Topps Series 2 Hobby Box includes one redemption, which can be redeemed online.
The cards will be printed on Topps Chrome Refractor technology and shipped to collectors first week of November.