Baseball Card Terms
most comprehensive Glossary of baseball Card terms,
abbreviations and, acronyms on the internet complete with pictures, and cross reference
links. Links that are available will lead to another
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- A brand of bubble gum that began to be marketed in the U.S. by the Brooklyn, New York based
Topps Company shortly after World War II.
- Building Blocks.
- Bonus Card.
- A well-known publisher of sports
card price guides. The first Beckett
price guide was published in 1979. This
guide is widely credited for ushering in
the modern sports card collectibles
- Bright Futures.
- Short for Beckett Grading
Services, a professional sports
card grading company.
- Blue Letters.
Back - A baseball card that has no
printing on the reverse side by design
or as a result of a manufacturing error.
Blank backs that are manufacturing
errors usually carry a premium.
Back - A card with a blue back.
This term is usually connected to
the 1951 Topps Blue Back baseball
- Banner Season.
Price - Also known as
for," Book Value, The retail
selling price that appears in a price
- A well-known card manufacturer
that began production in 1948 with
baseball, football, and basketball
cards. Their basketball production was
halted that same year, while baseball
and football cards were produced through
1955. The following year, Topps
purchased the company and ended their
rivalry in the sports card market. In
1989, Topps once again began production
of cards with the Bowman name. Cards
with this brand name are prominent in
the modern sports card market.
Card - Card issued on a box (e.g.
1987 Topps Box Bottoms).
- A group of 50 or more cards having
common characteristics that is intended
to be bought, sold, or traded as a unit.
- Short for Beckett Vintage
Grading, a division of Beckett
- A designation used for Canadian
Tobacco cards. for example C46.
Card - An oversized card that was
issued by tobacco manufacturers. They were
commonly produced on a thick cardboard
stock and available as premiums in the
19th and early 20th century. Curio
cabinets were very common in this era, and
a favorite place for collectors to display
these treasures, thus the name cabinet
CC - Curtain Call.
CG - Cornerstones of the Game.
Box - A box that contains cello packs.
These boxes were distributed to retailers
for individual pack sales. Most cello
boxes contain 24 packs.
Pack - A form of card packaging. These
packs usually contain more baseball cards
than the standard wax packs. These packs
are wrapped in a transparent packaging,
much like cellophane. Cello packs that
have a star visible, especially on the
front, are collectable and carry a premium
over that of the price of the single card.
of Authenticity - Also known as
COA - A statement of the
genuineness of an item (often an
autograph), printed on a piece of paper,
thin cardboard, that is furnished to the
buyer by the seller. Certificates of
authenticity can be issued by the seller
or a third party authentication service.
The validity of the certificate of
authenticity depends upon the integrity
and knowledge of the seller or
(CL)- A list of cards in any one set or
series. Checklists can be found in books
and price guides, although the term is
more commonly used for checklist cards,
which are often included in sports card
sets. These are intended as aids for
collectors and commonly include small
boxes that can be checked when the card is
obtained. For this reason, many vintage
checklists are of great value if found
free of markings.
CL - Checklist card. A card that lists in order the cards and players in the set or series. Older checklist cards in Mint condition that have not been marked are very desirable and command premiums.
- A term used to describe a card that is not a rookie, semi-star, or star card. These are usually the least expensive cards in a set. "Singles" has also become a widely acceptable term for commons.
The term Common can also be used in regard
to lesser known or desired players in any
given memorabilia set such as silk
blankets, or figurines for example.
- Corrected Card.
CP - Changing Places.
Jack - A brand of snack consisting of
caramel-coated popcorn and peanuts. It is
also well known for being packaged with a
Toy Surprise Inside. This term Cracker
Jack is used as reference to the 1914 and
1915 Cracker Jack baseball card set that
was issued as an insert in Cracker Jack
boxes. Cracker Jack is also an inexpensive
Baseball bat sold by Hillerich &
Bradsby (Louisville Slugger) during the
1920s-1950s. Possibly taking
advantage of the snacks popularity the Bat
has no relationship with the Cracker Jack
Cut Signature - or "Cuts" - A signature on a small piece of paper, or
"cut" from a larger piece. The
lowest Item in value for a signature.
Index cards are the next step up in value,
and both sell at a fraction of the higher
priced Photos, Baseballs, Bats, and
equipment. Cut Signatures are often cut
from an item that has been ruined to save
its value such as a baseball card, cover
of a publication, photograph, letter or
notebook on which it was originally
are commonly used for inserts
by baseball card companies
- Cy Young Award.
- A person who buys and sells
collectibles professionally for a profit.
Sports cards and sports memorabilia
dealers are usually very knowledgeable
about their specialty, and talking with
them is a valuable experience for
- Decade of Dominance.
Kings (DK) - A subset of cards issued
Baseball cards. The cards entitled Diamond
Kings feature the artwork of Dick Perez of
Star - A set of cards that was
produced from 1934 to 1936 by National
Chicle. The set consists of 108 color
cards that feature artwork done from
original photos. The set is one of the
more popular pre-war issues.
- A card with part of its stock partially
cut, allowing one or more parts to be
folded or removed. After removal or
appropriate folding, the remaining part of
the card can frequently be made to stand
- A term used to describe the damage
on the corner of a baseball card. A ding
is commonly caused by dropping or
mishandling a card. A card with a ding (or
dinged corner) is greatly devalued. A Ding
can also be in reference to the
indentation mark on the surface of the
cover of a publication or photograph left
by being struck by an object.
- Diamond Kings. (see Diamond Kings)
- Division Leaders.
- A term used to describe a
collectible item that has been altered to
cover up a flaw. A doctored baseball card
might have been trimmed, as to sharpen
"dinged" corners, or remove the
fraying on a Doctored pennant for example.
Any collectible item that has been
doctored will be devalued, and this
practice is frowned upon, among the
- A sports card manufacturer that
began production in 1981 with a baseball
set and a golf set.
Header - A unique set of baseball
cards that was issued by Topps in 1955.
The cards are larger than standard and
feature colored art drawings of baseball
players. When the card is folded in half,
another player's body matches up with the
shared feet and legs of the card. A Double
Header in baseball is when two teams
play two games in one day with the same
crowd in attendance. When referred to as A
day night or Twi-Night Double Header one
game is played in the afternoon and one in
the evening typically with separate
Play - A baseball card set
Issued by Gum Inc. in 1941. This set
features 75 black and white cards, each
depicting two different players.
Print (DP)- A baseball card that
has twice the print run of the rest of the
cards in the set. This is due to the fact
that, occasionally, two of the same cards
will appear on a sheet (usually 132 cards
per), which is later cut into individual
- Double Print (a card that was printed in
double the quantity compared to the other
cards in the same series) or Draft Pick
- Dream Team.
- A method of card manufacturing
technology patented by Pinnacle Brands,
Inc. It involves a refractive
quality to a card with foil coating.
- The World's Online MarketplaceŽ,
enabling trade on a local, national and
international basis. With a diverse and
passionate community of individuals and
small businesses, eBay offers an online
platform where millions of items are
traded each day.
- Earned Run Average.
- Error card. A card with erroneous
information, spelling, or depiction on
either side of the card. Most errors
are not corrected by the producing card
Card (ERR) - A card that contains a mistake.
An error card may have an incorrect photo,
a misspelled name or incorrect statistical
information. Error cards will only be
worth more money if the mistake was
corrected, and the card that was printed
in the fewest quantity is worth the most.
Not necessary the card with the error.
- Short for Excellent.
- Short for Excellent - Mint
Card - A larger-type card that is
roughly the size of a postcard made by the
Exhibit card company. Exhibit
cards were commonly sold in
arcades and were produced from the 1920s
to the 1960s.
Extended Rookie Card
(XRC) - A card released in an extended
or limited set outside of the regular
issued set of the major company. Most
often once a player was drafted and prior
to a player's first major league
Facsimile Signature - Also known as Facsimile autograph. A
stamped or printed reproduction of an
autograph as might appear on a baseball
card, photograph, souvenir baseball, bat,
glove or any product endorsed by a player
of note. A signature model baseball glove
will have the Facsimile Signature or
autograph of the player endorsing it. More
information on Facsimile
Set - An entire set of cards
that was packaged by the manufacturer for
sale to the public. These sets usually
include a distinct box with a security
seal or inner-packing to secure the cards.
Sets from the factory generally carry a
premium over hand-made sets.
- Fan Club.
- First Donruss Card
- First or First-Round Draft Pick.
- Future Foundation.
- Fleer Future (Fleer Card)
- A term used at autograph shows to
describe a picture, poster, magazine,
postcard or baseball card. Usually
"flats" have a different pricing
structure than equipment, uniforms or
- A manufacturer of sports cards. The
company produced baseball cards from 1959
to 1963, as well as several football sets
and a single basketball set in this same
era. In 1981, the company once again began
production and is a leading manufacturer
in today's market. Fleer is now owned by
Rite Aid, the well-known Pharmacy.
- Foil embossed stamp on card.
Packs - A group of cards that
are packaged by the manufacturer for
retail sale. These packs are so named for
their metallic packaging.
- Franchise Player.
- Father/son card.
- Future Star
- First Topps Card
Full Bleed - This is the term used when a card has no border.
The image on the card goes up to the edge
of the cardboard.
- Fun cards.
- First Year.
- Short for Global Authentication
Inc., a professional grading
Game Used Cards - A card that has a piece of game used
memorabilia embedded into the card. These
are often thicker than regular issue
- Gold Glove Award
- Griffey Gallery (Upper Deck Card)
- Green Letters.
- A card with a luster; a shiny finish as
in a card with UV coating.
GM - Golden
- An extremely popular card
manufacturer that produced cards from 1933
to 1941. The 1933 Goudey set is their most
popular, and arguably the most popular
pre-war set produced. The art drawing set
features numerous Hall of Famers,
including two cards of Lou Gehrig and four
cards of Babe Ruth.
- A description of the condition of a sports card or sports memorabilia item. Grade is always a big component of price. The higher the grade, the more desirable, and consequently, the more valuable the item. Nowadays nearly all valuable sports cards are graded using the 10 Point Grading Scale established by Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA) in 1991.
Stain - A stain on a card that is
caused by gum. When gum was inserted in
packs, it was placed on top of the pack,
between the wrapper and the card. Over
time, the gum would stain the card. Cards
with gum stains are worth only a fraction
of those without. Topps
received numerous complaints from
collectors that the gum was either
staining the cards, or creating an
impression in them, sacrificing their
"mint" condition. The gum was
eliminated in 1991. :(
- Heroes of the Game.
- Hometown Heros.
Numbers - A description of the last,
or near the last series in a baseball card
set. Traditionally, manufacturers would
produce cards in several series. As the
season would wind down, so would public
interest and production. This lower print
run resulted in more limited supply and
later, more valuable cards.
Series - Also known as a high number
series or high number, a high series
contains baseball cards from the last
series distributed for a set in a given
year. Many of these older high series
cards are of great value, as they were
often released after the baseball season,
when interest for baseball was waning.
Therefore, these cards were often printed
or distributed in smaller amounts than
those of the preceding series. The most
well known high series is from the 1952
Topps set (#311-407), which includes
Mickey Mantle's first Topps card (#311).
- Hit List
- Highlight card.
- Short for Hall Of Fame
- Horizontal pose on card as opposed to
the standard vertical orientation found on
- The silvery, laser etched trademark printed as an anti-counterfeiting device by sports card and memorabilia manufacturers,
and authenticators. As seen on the back of
this Upper Deck authentic Baseball
- Home Run Derby
- In Action card.
- A word that describes cards that
were added to a regular pack to help
increase sales. The first inserts were
around the turn of the century, when
tobacco companies used cardboard to keep
packs of cigarettes from getting smashed.
Eventually, pictures were included on the
small pieces of cardboard. Over time,
these premiums became collectible and a
key element of different cigarette sales.
Throughout the years, manufacturers have
used many kinds of inserts. Inserts have
evolved to the point where almost every
new issue available contains at least one
type of insert. These modern inserts are
far rarer than regular issue cards.
Inserts from the past have included
posters, decals, and scratch offs as
- A concept that involves collector
- International Road Trip.
- Inter league Showdown
- Synonymous with set, but usually used in
conjunction with a manufacturer, e.g., a
- A uniform top or shirt worn by a
athlete. A part of the uniform worn by a
team. A Jersey might be an Item for a
collector to have signed. A game
used Jersey was worn by a player
during a game. An authentic Jersey can be
- A card that has a piece or
"swatch" of a game used Jersey embedded into the card. These
are often thicker than regular issue
Cards - The most expensive, desirable,
or important cards in a set.
-King Of The Hill
- King of Kings
KP - Kid
- An established hobby publisher,
Krause produces annual 'Standard Catalogs'
of sports cards along with Memorabilia
price guides and weekly issues of Sports
Collector's Digest (SCD).
- Well known for its production of its
modern day sets, Leaf is also well known
for several sets produced right after
World War II. In 1948 and 1949, they
produced crude sets of baseball, football,
and boxing stars. Over time, these issues
have become very popular, especially
tough-to-find, high-grade examples.
- Left-handed Pitcher.
edition - A term often used by
makers of cards and memorabilia to
indicate scarcity. A limited edition means
just that - production of the item in
question will be limited to a certain
number. However, that number may be large
or small, and is relevant to the amount of
collectors interested in it. The value of
a limited edition item is high only if the
number made is less than the number of
collectors that desire the item. If the
Limited amount made is more than the
amount of collectors interested, the value
will go down from the issued price.
- League Leaders or large letters on card.
series - Low series or low number
cards are from the first series
distributed for a set in a given year.
Production and distribution of these cards
was generally greater as they were the
first run of cards available to the public
for that baseball season. However, there
are exceptions. For instance, the 1933
Goudey low series or low numbers are worth
considerably more than their higher
set - A set produced by a national
manufacturer of cards containing a large
number of cards. Usually 100 or more
different cards constitute a major set.
- Master Blasters.
Short for "Miscut"
Type of qualifier. A card that has no
border, or even portions of another card.
Cards with a factory miscut, such as a
diamond cut, or when another card's image
is on the original card will be designated
MC. These cards have little value.
- Memorial card. For example, the
1990 Donruss and Topps Bart Giamatti
- A glossy design method that enhances
- Maximum Impact.
- A small card; for example, a 1975 Topps
card of identical design but smaller
dimensions than the regular Topps issue of
League Card - A
card that features players from the minor
leagues. Minor league cards
are a small, but important part of the
market. Most minor league cards have low
print runs and are difficult to locate.
- Short for "Mark"
a term used with baseball card grading.
Type of qualifier.
The card exhibits marks caused by pen,
pencil, or some other type of ink and the
presence of the mark or marks causes the
card to fall below the minimum standard
for the grade.
- Major League.
- Major League Prospects
- Memorable Moments or
- Short for Mint
Card - A single card depicting two or
more players (but not a team card).
- Most Valuable Player.
Mylar - A type of plastic from
which many card holders, plastic sheets
and other protection devices are made.
- Also known as "The
National" A sports memorabilia show
held annually in different parts of the
United States. The National Sports
Collectors Convention is by far the
largest and most attended show of the
year. The first national took place in
1980 in Los Angeles, California.
- No autograph on card.
- Next Game.
- Short for National League
- Short for Near Mint
- Short for Near Mint-Mint
- No name on front.
- Name on Front.
Measures Of Greatness
- A card-grading term used to describe
indentations along the edge of a card,
sometimes caused by a rubber band.
Notching decreases a card's value.
- Now and Then.
- Short for Off Center
- An "off beat" category of
sports collectibles other than the normal
cards, or commonly collected items.
Examples could include An autographed beer
can, A player endorsed Ice cream wrapper
(food product), or A baseball card issued
by a fast food chain or non sports related
company. A unique collectible.
- Outfield or Outfielder.
Center - A term most commonly used
with baseball cards. An off center
baseball card for example could have a
ratio of 35/65 as opposed to a perfectly centered
card of 50/50
Cards - or OJ Short for Old Judge
Cards also see Tobacco
Judge - A brand of cigarettes which
was popular in the late 1800's. Also the
name given to the huge set of baseball
cards issued as a premium with that brand
of cigarettes. The Tobacco
cards, issued from
1887-90, carried advertisements for Old
- Olympics Card.
- A division of the Topps company
located in Canada that manufactures
baseball and hockey cards.
||P - Pitcher or Pitching pose.
P1 - First Printing.
P2 - Second Printing.
P3 - Third Printing.
- A group of cards that are sealed by
the manufacturer for retail sale.
- A card that is similar in design to
its counterpart from a basic set but
offers a distinguishing quality.
PB - Play-off
Perez-Steele A Line of popular Baseball Hall of Fame art
postcards that is ideal for autographs,
produced by artist Dick Perez and his late
business partner, Franklin Steele.
PF - Profiles.
PG - Postseason Glory.
Plastic sheet - A clear, plastic page that is punched for insertion into a binder (with standard three-ring spacing) containing pockets for displaying cards. Many different styles of sheets exist with pockets of varying sizes to hold the many differing card formats. Also called a display sheet of storage sheet.
- A metallic element used in the process
of creating a glossy card.
Ball - A very popular pre-war baseball
card manufacturer that produced sets from
1939 to 1941. Also, the phrase used by an
umpire to signal the start of a baseball
War - A collectible that is
from a time after World War II.
- Power Passion.
- Printed name on back.
PRES - President.
War - A collectible that is from a
time before the start of World War II.
- An item issued as an advertising
extra. In most cases, collectors have had
to send away to the companies or
manufacturers to receive a
Guide - A list of estimated values for
sports cards and/or sports memorabilia.
The first major sports collectibles price
guide was The Sport Americana Baseball
Card Price Guide issued by Dr. Jim Beckett
in 1979. Today, there are dozens of guides
such as Krause's 'Standard Catalog',
Beckett's 'Baseball Almanac', and
Collector's Universe's 'Sports Market
Guides - Third party guides published
on a regular basis to indicate the
estimated value of an item according to
the current market, such as
Keymancollectibles.com, the Beckett price
guide, and the Krause standard catalogs of
(PRISM) - A glossy or bright design that refracts or disperses light.
- A glossy or bright design that refracts or disperses light.
Card - A card produced by a
manufacturer to promote upcoming issues.
Generally, these cards are more limited
than the regular issues.
- Short for Professional
Sports Authenticator. Founded in 1991, PSA was
the first widely accepted grading service
and set the standard for the graded card
PS - Pace Setters.
PT - Power tools.
Card - A card whose back contains a part of a picture which, when joined correctly with other puzzle cards, forms the completed picture.
Puzzle piece - A die-cut piece designed to interlock with similar pieces
- Pro Visions
- Polyvinyl chloride, a substance used to
make many of the popular card display
protective sheets. Non-PVC sheets
are considered preferable for long-term
storage of cards by many.
In some cases, a card will be designated with a qualifier. A "qualified" card is a card that meets all the criteria for a particular grade, but fails the standard in one area. For example, a card which exhibits all the qualities of a NM-MT 8, but is 90/10 centered left to right, will receive a grade of NM-MT 8oc. The "OC" stands for off-center. Here is a brief list of qualifiers: OC (Off-center), ST (stain), PD (Print Defect), OF (Out of Focus), and MK (Marks).
Pack - Packs designed for retail sale. These clear packs usually contain three panels of cards, which are designed to hang from store displays. Rack packs with stars showing are collectible, much like they are with cello packs, although they are not quite as valuable.
- A card or series of cards of very
limited availability. Unfortunately,
"rare" is a subjective term
frequently used indiscriminately to hype
value. "Rare" cards are
harder to obtained than "scarce"
- Record Breaker.
- Refers to any card that is not encapsulated by a grading service.
- Abbreviation, short for Rookie
Card . Notes a player's rookie card.
- The art of fraudulently re-coloring the surface of a sports card to hide wear or physical damage.
Back - A card with a red back. This term is most commonly used with the 1951
Redemption - A program established by multiple card manufacturers that allows collectors to mail in a special card (usually a random insert) in return for special cards, sets, or other prizes not available through conventional channels.
- A 33 card set from 1954 that was issued by the Red Heart Dog Food Co. The set was issued in three series of 11 cards each that had different colored backgrounds behind the player: Red, green, and blue. The red background series is considered to be the scarcest. This issue was redeemable by mail from the manufacturer and was reportedly available as late as the early 70's.
Refractor - A card that has chrome reflective devices. These cards often come with a thin removable protective layer. The card loses some value if this plastic layer is removed.
Set - A set issued only in a specific geographic area. These sets are usually smaller and feature one or several teams from the issued area.
- A card that is a reproduction of an original, usually more expensive card or set.
A reproduction of an original publication.
- Reversed of flopped photo side of the card. This is a major type of error card, but only some are corrected.
RHP - Right-handed pitcher.
RHW - Rookie Home Whites.
RIF - Rifleman.
- A player in his first season. Also short for rookie card.
Card - A players first year of cards, whether or not it is his rookie season. Players may have one or dozens of rookie cards, depending on how highly touted he was as a youngster and in which year his rookie card was issued
Post Season Highlights
- Round Trippers
- Rookie of the Year.
- Rookie Premiere Materials.
RP - Relief Pitcher.
- Rated Rookies
RTC - Rookie True Colors.
SA - Super Action card.
SASE - Self-Addressed, Stamped Envelope.
SB - Scrapbook.
SB - Stolen Bases.
Scarce - A card or series of cards of limited availability. This subjective term is sometimes used indiscriminately to hype value. "Scarce" cards are not as difficult to obtain as "rare" cards.
- Short for Sports Collectors Digest.
- A sports card manufacturer which first started production in 1988.
- Script name on back.
- A card from the next-to-last series of a
sequentially issued set. It has more
value than an average card and generally
less value than a high-number. A
card is not called a semi-high unless the
next-to-last series in which it exists has
an additional premium attached to it.
- A group of cards that are a part of a larger set. Until the 1970s, many card manufacturers, especially Topps, issued cards in several series, which were released throughout the season.
- An entire run of cards from a given issue, including all card numbers that were produced.
- Spirit of the Game
- Short for Sportscard Guaranty
Corporation, a professional sports
card grading company.
SH - Season Highlights.
Sheen - Brightness or luster emitted by card.
Print - A card that is printed in lesser numbers than the other cards in the same set. Generally, short prints have a print run of half that of the other cards.
- A set that has many unissued card numbers between the lowest number in the set and the highest number in the set, e.g., the 1948 Leaf baseball set contains 98 cards skip-numbered from #1 to #168. A major set in which a few numbers were not printed is not considered to be a skip-numbered.
- A sports card manufacturer that started production in the 1990's.
- A term used to describe a professionally graded
card that has been encapsulated in a sonically sealed
- The process of encapsulating a card in a sonically sealed holder.
- Silver Slugger Award
- Abbreviation for short
print. Also, a high quality set produced by Upper Deck.
Card - A card that portrays something
other than a single player or team, for
example, a card that portrays the previous
year's statistical leaders or results from
the previous year's World Series.
- A manufacturer of baseball cards in the 80's and 90's, best known for their 3D style cards.
- Sporting Life was a major publication in the early part of the century. They issued numerous sports card sets, the most popular of which was the 1911 M116. Offered as a premium to subscribers, these cards were issued in 24 different 12-card series.
- A popular issue from 1933/1934 that featured the top athletes from that period. The issue was produced by
Inc. Both of these sets are among the most popular pre-war issues ever produced.
After 73 years Sport Kings cards are
returning for release in October,
Sports Market Report (SMR)
- The leading price guide for professionally graded sports cards.
- Star Rookies (Upper Deck Cards)
- A term used in baseball card
grading. Type of qualifier. The card exhibits staining which falls below the minimum standard for the grade. This could be a gum, wax, water or other type of stain.
- or a mark left on the surface of a sports collectible, usually as a result of contact with a foreign.
- An autograph applied to a photo,
baseball card or other item
such as a signature model bat or glove. A facsimile
signature. not hand signed.
Size - Most modern sports cards measure 2 1/2 by 3 1/2 inches. Exceptions are noted in the card descriptions throughout the books and guides.
- Refers to a type of card that was die cut around the player's picture. The background section then could be folded in half, so the card could stand up by itself while the player's picture stood alone. The most well known stand-up issues are the 1964
Topps Stand Ups and the 1934-36 Batter Up set. The cards can be difficult to obtain in high grade, as many of them were folded, thus compromising their condition.
- A player that stands out above the rest.
A better than average player.
Card - A card that portrays a player of some repute, usually determined by his ability; but sometimes referring to sheer popularity.
- Also known as SLU. Toy action figures that depict sports athletes. These are made of plastic and commonly come in a
sealed package with a baseball
card. These figures are very collectable and are most valuable when in their original packages.
Stock - The cardboard or paper on which the cardis printed
Superimposed - To be affixed on top of something; i.e., a player photo over a solid background.
Superstar Card - A card that portrays a superstar, e.g., a Hall of Famer or player with strong Hall of Fame potential.
-A letter used as a designation for a
20th Century Tobacco
cards. A "T" with a one
digit number for Example T3 (Turkey Reds)
T4 (Obak Premiums) T5 (Pinketon Cabinets)
Indicates an oversized card. One exception
to the T-200 premium cards. Other Tobacco
cards as an example include T206, T210,
- A classic set of over 500 small tobacco premium cards issued in various brands of cigarettes from 1909-1912. This set contains dozens of cards depicting Hall-Of-Fame players of the day. Widely recognized as one of the three most important sports card sets ever produced.
-Turn Back The Clock
- Team Checklist
- This abbreviation for Topps
Chewing Gum Company, and can be found on the backs of many Topps produced cards.
Card - A card that pictures an entire sports team.
Set - A complete run of players from a given team from a larger set.
Iissue - A set or sampling of cards that is issued by a manufacturer in limited supply, in order to test its marketability.
For example 1951 Wheaties Test Issue.
(3D) - A visual image that provides an
illusion of depth and perspective.
- A high end set of cards, issued by Topps. These sets were identical to the regular issue set, except for the higher quality white cardboard stock and the addition of a protective UV coating.
- Team Leaders
- A card that was issued in a tobacco product as a
premium. The most well known issue is the
T-206 set, which includes the Honus Wagner card, the most expensive card in the industry. A majority of the cards were produced around the turn of the century, although there were Red Man tobacco sets issued in the 1950s.
- A subset or group of cards that have
a common theme (e.g., MVP award winners).
- The most recognized sports card manufacturer. They are most well known for the 1952 Topps set, the king of post-war issues. Today, Topps still dominates the market, with Topps Chrome, Topps Finest, and
Bowman Chrome issues.
- Triple Print (a card that was printed in
triple the quantity compared to the other
cards in the same series).
TR - Trade reference on card.
- The prefix after the card
number on Topps Traded sets.
Set - A set of cards, usually factory packaged, that features players who switched teams during the season, as well as those who made their debuts.
Topps, who started this trend in 1981, is most well known for traded sets. Other companies also produce traded sets, although they refer to them by different names such as "Update"
(Fleer) and "Rookie/Traded"
- A card that has been Doctored
by cutting or shaving the edges. The most obvious reason for this is to improve the condition of corners, by removing the worn areas. Cards are also trimmed to correct centering problems. Cards that have been trimmed have very little value.
Other examples of a trimmed Item could be
the removal of fraying on a pennant.
TS - Team
- Short for Upper Deck
- Upper Deck Classic Alumni.
- Uncorrected Error.
- The prefix
before the card number on Topps Update and Highlights baseball card sets.
- The Untouchables
- A sheet of cards that has not been cut by the factory into individual cards. Most uncut sheets contain 132 cards.
- A major sports card manufacturer that started in 1989 with a premium issue. The 1989 Upper Deck set is very well known for its inclusion of the extremely popular Ken Griffey rookie card. The company produces sets for all sports, as well as other lines of cards such as SP, SPX, SP Authentic, UD3, and Collector's Choice.
Upper Deck Authenticated
(UDA) - The sister company of The Upper Deck Co., which produces authentic autographed memorabilia items under contracts with star athletes including Michael Jordan.
- Team USA.
- Stands for Ultraviolet. The Sun emits
harmful ultraviolet radiation. UV light
can fade autographs if over exposed to. UV
protective cases help prevent fading of
signatures or other memorabilia. A glossy
UV protective coating applied to sports cards.
UWS - United We
- variation Card
(VAR)- A card that is different, usually subtly, from its more common counterpart in any set. Some variations are
error cards that were corrected by the manufacturers, while other variations might be as simple as a color change in the background of the card. Many variations are extremely rare, as they were corrections made early on in the press run, and therefore, have considerable value.
The variation with the least amount
printed would be the most expensive. This
can also apply to other forms of
memorabilia such as Armour Coins 1955
Mickey Mantle Variation for
Box - A box of cards (usually 500) that was originally issued by the manufacturer for use in vending machines. Later, these were more often used by dealers who would collate the boxes into sets for sale to the public.
- A wholesale unit of cards, which contains vending boxes. Almost all vending cases contain 24 vending boxes, or 12,000 cards.
- Vertical pose on card.
-Short for Very Good, A term
used in grading.
- Short for Very Good -Excellent,
A term used in grading.
term usually intended to indicate an item
was issued or produced quite some time
ago. Aged or of older origin. For example:
a vintage 1955 baseball card as opposed to
a modern day 2005 baseball card. A piece
of memorabilia manufactured about 25 or
more years ago. Vintage, from the early
List - A collector's or dealer's list of items
wishing to acquire through purchase or
trade. Often, a collector will send a dealer a "want list," and the dealer will try to locate the items on the list.
A Want list can be posted to locate an
Item by others.
-Washington National League (1974
Pack - An unopened pack of cards, named for its traditional form of packaging: wax-coated paper that is sealed shut at the factory by simply applying heat. Wax packs may contain anywhere from one to 15 cards.
- What's the Call?
WL - White Letters on front.
WS - World Series card.
- World Stage (Upper Deck Card)
- Extended Rookie Card. A card released in
an extended or limited set outside of the
regular issued set of the major company.
Most often once a player was drafted and
prior to a player's first major league
||YL - Yellow letters on front.
- Year of the Record (Upper Deck Card)
YT - Yellow team name on front.