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  • Writer's pictureCarterCollector

Updated: Dec 27, 2019

The year 2019 was a pretty significant year for Gary Carter in the baseball card world. Including printing plates and oversized “wall art” cards, “The Kid” had a total of 202 different cards produced during the calendar year, up from just 92 in 2018. And since 18 of those 92 cards from 2018 were Leaf Metal Sports Heroes, which were actually released in March 2019 (despite their ’18 markings), that means Carter had about 3X the number of new cards released in 2019 than the year before!

Carter's very first card of 2019.

Between the big three card producers –Topps, Panini and Leaf/In The Game— Gary appeared in 23 different sets. His very first card of the year was a exclusive Throwback Thursday "1976 Star Wars design" card with a print run of 513. He later appeared in all three major Topps releases –Series 1, 2 and Update— as well as Allen and Ginter, Archives, Diamond Icons, Dynasty, Five Star, Gypsy Queen, Luminaries, Triple Threads and Tribute. Carter also appeared in the Ginter X and Reflections online sets as well as the aforementioned #TBT and the ever-popular Topps Living Set, his very first foray into the supposedly never-ending set. His 1953 design Living Set card featured him from his initial run with the Montreal Expos and had a print run of 2,606. Since a player can appear only once for each team they played for, Carter can still appear as a Met, Giant and Dodger should Topps choose to make them.

An image of the exceptionally poorly designed Leaf Ultimate. What a waste of a beautiful laundry tag.

Gary also appeared in Panini’s Diamond Kings, Flawless, Leather and Lumber and National Treasures sets. Despite being unlicensed, the design and image selection used by Panini in 2019 was pretty on point. They also stuffed their Flawless release with some of the nicest patches Carter has ever had.

Conversely, the unlicensed and somewhat homemade-looking Leaf/In The Game card company included Carter in two of their sets featuring very poorly designed cards that did not even have an image of the 2003 Hall of Fame inductee and 11X All-Star. For this reason, I passed on owning any of them, including a beautiful laundry tag that was sadly wasted on a very visually unappealing design, again, sans player image. Too bad they didn't put their Leaf Metal Sports Heroes designer on the job or spring for an image.

Without further adieu, here are the 2019 Gary Carter cards I've picked up as of this writing...

The full run of 2019 Allen and Ginter / Ginter X, including the super popular Stained Glass /25, Framed Cloth /10, Dual Rip Card /10, Metal /3, Wood 1/1 and Silver 1/1.
Topps S2 Legends SP Variant, Living Set, Reflections Insert, #TBT and all four Transcendent sketch cards, including the encased, wood-framed 1/1 originals.
Carter was included in Topps' yearlong 150 Years of Baseball celebration, with inserts in Series 1 and Update.
Near complete runs of Tribute and Archives. Just missing the 1/1 variants.
Three true 1/1s: Luminaries Dual Auto Booklet with Mike Piazza, Dynasty Cut Auto and Five Star Cut Auto. On the bottom are 3 of the 4 Diamond Icons Cut Autos.
Complete run of Gypsy Queen, including Blank Plate, Logo Swap and Black 1/1 variants.
In addition to his 202 physical cards, Carter had 12 Topps Bunt digital trading cards. Among the highlights were a 150 Years of Fun "signature variant" award, a lenticular Batteries card (also featuring David Cone), two Bunt 150 inserts and a unique ticket stub card.
Carter's largest rainbow ever produced. Here are 27 of 28 Prizm cards. Just missing the Shimmer /7.
The October 2019 issue of Beckett Magazine featuring my Carter Prizm Rainbow in the bottom righthand corner. The feature story "Chasing the Rainbow" was written by me.
Check out my patches! The complete Flawless rainbow, including Black 1/1.
Diamond Kings Unnumbered, Holo Blue /25 and "First Off The Line" Purple /10.
Full run of Flawless, including the 1/1 dual patch and two low #'d cut autos.
Three different styles of National Treasures Booklets along with Hall of Fame Materials and Retro Materials inserts.
Though they were called 2018 Leaf Sports Heroes, this slick set came out in March 2019. Quite an upgrade from the hideous offerings by Leaf/In The Game if you ask me. Here is the full run of regular regular and wave. On the top left is the Superfractor-looking Gold Circles 1/1. The only one I'm missing is the Black Etched 1/1 parallel.

That's it for 2019 blogs. I hope you've enjoyed this site so far and will come back in 2020 to see what new Gary Cards get released and/or added to my page. As you can see, we've already added a spot for the "new" decade. Thanks for visiting and Happy Holidays!

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  • Writer's pictureCarterCollector

About a month ago, a family in Providence, Rhode Island was having their family’s more than century old grand piano repaired and restored. When the servicemen arrived to inspect the unit, they unearthed an unbelievable, once-in-a-lifetime find—a short stack of 1909-1911 T206 tobacco cards, all in near mint condition. The family was astounded and quickly brought their newfound treasures to an appraiser at an auction house to see what they could fetch.

Among the prized finds were Deadball Era legends like Nap Lajoie, Ty Cobb, and a never before seen Gary Carter Rookie Card. Despite a little paper degradation on the edges, these pieces were in astonishing condition for their age. The appraiser especially couldn't believe the Carter card, as “the Kid” wasn’t even born until 1954.

The items were all autcioned off, with the Carter fetching the highest price—$1.2MM.

A close-up look at the 1910 T206 Gary Carter Rookie Card

Ok, so you’re probably wondering how the heck Carter ended up on a 1910 baseball card 64 years before he played in his first major league game and 44 years before his mother even gave birth to him. No, there wasn't a great prognosticator who could see into the future working for the vintage cardmaker. It’s because this entire story is a farce. In reality, this amazing find is a one-of-a-kind novelty card created by an artistic genius named Jerry Andrews III (@sportking1 on Twitter).

While I'm not usually a fan of custom-made cards (except for my own, which you can see on this very site), this particular card caught my eye. The painstaking detail that Jerry puts into his cards is simply amazing. He literally takes an image of modern-era player and designs it to look just like the art and design of the early 1900s. He even creates back-of-card artwork mimicking the cards of that era. But what truly takes his cards to the next level is how he prints them on off-white card stock and then distresses them enough to create a vintage look and feel. Should you hold this card up next to an actual Lajoie, you'd think they were part of the same set.

An actual 1909-11 T206 Nap Lajoie

According to Jerry, an avid sports fan, historian and graphic designer, his work hasn't gone unnoticed. Every Thursday for the past 9 years, he "releases" new cards and themed series in his eBay store, and his biggest fans go wild bidding against one another to try and collect his work. The first T206 Carter I bid on, I actually lost. Seeing how it was a one-of-one, I was a bit disappointed. Fortunately Jerry was gracious enough to make a different version of the card for me to have. After all, if his cards are truly all one-of-one, he can only make them one time, and then he has to "retire" them.

This morning I received the Carter card in the mail, and I was very impressed. The detail and quality of the card was better than some cards produced by the major card companies. Jerry has taken custom card making to a whole new level, and his work shows his craftsmanship and meticulous attention to detail. If you have a favorite player who didn't lace up the cleats around the turn of the century, I highly recommend checking out Jerry's store and picking something up. You will not be disappointed.

For more information about Jerry's work, check out

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  • Writer's pictureCarterCollector

You can buy a lot of things with $38,000 –a pretty luxurious vehicle, a decent boat, a motorcycle or in some parts of this country, a home. You can also buy exactly one case of 2018 Topps Transcendent Baseball Cards.

These are without a doubt the highest-end cards Topps produces or has ever produced. Only 83 of these cases were made, and each comes with an invitation to meet one of baseball's best - Mike Trout! Though I'm sure Mr. Trout is a nice fella, there was only one thing about Transcendent that piqued my interest –a 1/1 Gary Carter Jumbo Relic Cut Auto Card! Like the rest of the set, the card is an homage to 1983 (hence 83 cases), which is one of my favorite Topps Flagship designs. As soon as I saw the checklist, I just knew I had to have it!

Well on December 18th, 2018 (8s!), just 4 days after the release, the booklet was pulled by a breaker named Houdini in case #45/83. A fine gentleman in the break knew I was a Carter Super Collector and was looking for the card, and contacted me within minutes of it being broken. I quickly found the stream and fast forwarded right to the Carter being unearthed. Houdini even mentioned having seen my posts looking for the card. Since the booklet came in a sealed plastic holder, the inside design was a mystery. Suddenly I began dreaming of opening this card for the first time on Christmas morning. To me, from ME!

I reached out to the lucky new owner, but he had a number in his head I knew I just couldn't meet. I came up a little higher, but he wouldn't budge. He said he was going to wait until he got the card in hand to decide what he was going to do, and because he was all the way up in Alaska, the card took a while to reach him. My vision of opening this card under the Christmas tree vanished, but as luck would have it, on December 28th (8s!), he received the card and reached out with an offer that we were both happy with. The booklet was leaving the Last Frontier and heading to somewhat warmer Connecticut. I didn't dare ask if he opened it and took a peek.

On January 2, 2019, the booklet arrived at my Post Office. The previous owner couldn't help himself and did take a look at it before sending it along. I took a video of myself opening with the intention of adding to this post, but it's not very good. Guess I'll need some more practice if I ever want to try my hand at being a case breaker. Anyway, without further adieu, here is the 2018 Topps Transcendent 1/1 Jumbo Relic Cut Auto Booklet of the great Gary Carter.

While I was hoping for an auto on a plain piece of paper (as opposed to a check), I'm very, very pleased with the look of this booklet overall. It's a great head shot of Gary and the use of the 1983 design in a booklet is pretty darn cool. So...I think I'll keep it.

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