Our cardboard friends mean a lot of different things to different people. A connection with childhood. A hobby that strengthens connections between parents and their kids. A way to make some extra cash. A hobby you can show off to your friends who are also fans.
For many, though, it’s still a matter of ‘what’s it worth?’ How else to explain the dominance of price guides in Amazon.com’s top 10 list of best selling sports card books?
Inside the online giant’s Antiques and Collectibles category, sports card price guides are among the biggest sellers. #1 on that list is the 2012 Beckett Baseball Card Price Guide. The ever-popular annual edition provides complete checklists and pricing for the most important and popularly traded baseball card sets from 1887 to present, according to the promotional verbiage. There are more than 800,000 cards priced. Complete checklists for all included card sets are in the book as well as values for individual cards and complete sets developed from thorough market research done by Beckett staff.
Of course, online guides–including Beckett’s own–have rendered some of the pricing for current year cards irrelevant by the time the book is published but it’s still a solid reference for collectors. Priced at around $22, it’s an investment collectors and the simply curious make on a daily basis.
The list does include a book that’s been around now for a couple of years and remains one of the best ever written about the hobby. Dave Jamieson’s Mint Condition has also proven popular with those who aren’t necessarily hard core collectors.
Whether you’re looking for a gift for a collector or buying a guide for yourself, here’s the complete list of Amazon’s top 5 best selling sports card books at present:
1. Beckett Baseball Card Price Guide 2012
2. Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards (Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards)
3. Yankee Greats: 100 Classic Baseball Cards
4. Beckett Racing Collectibles Price Guide No. 21
5. Mint Condition: How Baseball Cards Became an American Obsession
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