How Nice Is This 2011 Panini Prime Cuts Baseball Card?

I don’t know about you, but I’m liking some of the things I’m seeing from Panini right now in the baseball card world. One of those things is what they have done to revitalize the Prime Cuts brand.

With Panini’s new MLBPA license this season, I really hope to see some things that brought me back to the hobby in 2005. I think this card here is a great start:

That is one of the nicest baseball autographs I have seen in awhile and beats most of Topps’ autographed cards by a mile. This is a great job utilizing the MLBPA license without needing the logos.

When you have an on-card autograph as pretty as this, who needs logos?

I need this one for my collection immediately.

Want to see more photos? Check out this recent Panini blog post.

Panini Signs Deal With Baseball Hall of Fame

The world’s largest trading card and collectibles company has added another license to it’s resume to bolster it’s attempts at a MLB trading card license.

Announced today, Panini America has signed a multi-year agreement to use players inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in future trading card products, beginning with 2011 Panini Prime Cuts along with it’s new CMG Worldwide license and MLBPA license.

The deal allows Panini to produce cards of Baseball Hall of Fame inductees as well as marks, artifacts, and induction ceremony photos to be used on 6 trading card products a year.

This is big news for Panini as they are entering the baseball card genre since 2005, back when they were known as Donruss. They are working hard to secure a future MLB license and are going about it the best way they can to show the MLB what they can do, and I applaud them for doing so as competition is always important.

What Hall of Famer are you most excited to see on a future Panini trading card?

Donruss Elite Extra Edition Autos and Prospect Rankings

Courtesy of Top Prospect Alert, we have prospect rankings and information on 4 of the 6 autographs we pulled in our review of 2011 Donruss Elite Extra Edition baseball.

Let’s take a look at the autographs and a little blurb about each prospect.

Danny Hultzen – Seattle Mariners – Pitcher – 1st Round

Hultzen is projected as a future starter for the Seattle Mariners perhaps as soon as this year. He is the #1 prospect in the organization on our Seattle Mariners Top 15 rankings. He posted a 1.40ERA with 18K’s in 19.1 innings in the Arizona Fall League.

Keenyn Walker – Chicago White Sox – Outfield – 1st Round

Walker is a toolsy outfield prospect who ranks as the #1 prospect in the very weak Chicago White Sox organization in our Chicago White Sox Top 15 rankings. He will look to improve upon his .257 batting average from the 2011 season.

James Baldwin – Los Angeles Dodgers – Outfield – 4th Round

Baldwin is a speedy outfielder who also has some pop. He blasted 10 Home Runs and stole 22 bases in his debut season after being taken in the fourth round of the 2011 draft. He comes in at #13 on our Los Angeles Dodgers Top 15 rankings.

Bobby Crocker – Oakland Athletics – Outfield – 4th Round

Crocker made a nice impression after being drafted in the fourth round of the 2011 draft. After starting in rookie ball, he advanced to Short-A where he batted .322 in 32 games. Overall he hit a combined .296 and showed some ability to hit for extra bases. He comes in at #14 on our Oakland Athletics Top 15 rankings.

Make sure you visit Top Prospect Alert for all your information on current minor league baseball prospects.

 

Review: 2011 Panini Donruss Elite Extra Edition Baseball

Elite Extra Edition baseball has been coming out for a number of years from both Donruss and Panini. It is a product loaded with enough potential talent to make even the smallest prospector take notice. With a ton of a first round autographs and some great looking hard signed cards, baseball card collectors don’t seem to care if they don’t use the logos. The prospects are hot and collectors want them.

Here’s what we pulled:

Design:

Well I have to stay consistent. This is the same base design as it was in 2011 Elite Football so I must be true to my word. The base design is okay. At least they didn’t go horizontal on us like they did in the football release and for that, I thank you. The lettering is nice, but the background is just kinda bland and shiny. Some sort of design in the shiny area would be nice. Even if it’s just shapes. But besides that, as always, I love the design of Panini’s inserts. The Yearbook and Elite Series cards look fantastic. While the Building Blocks reminds me of 2005 Donruss designs, it’s just average. I also thank you for not making a big white box for the autographs and fading the images.

Checklist:

The checklist is fantastic for a prospecting product. The inclusion of 25 MLB players is a nice touch and let’s you see some of the game’s top players mixed with some top prospects. Speaking of top prospects, almost the entire 2011 first round is in this product with autographs. Those players are some of the most sought after prospect autographs so it’s good to see Panini grabbing all those players for this product. Nicely done.

Value:

While to me $100 for this product might feel a little high, you can’t complain with the content. 6 autographs in a box and a few paralleled inserts that add a decent amount of value as well, especially when you’re lucky like me and pull a first rounder on a popular team numbered to just 10. One thing I didn’t really like was the doubles of the MLB talent, so maybe they should play with the checklist a little bit next time and include more MLB talent of less packs per box. I don’t like getting doubles, but it happens.

Overall:

Overall, this is a solid product put together by Panini for their first venture with a MLBPA license. While the base design leaves a little bit to be desired, the inserts look fantastic and I don’t mind the Status or Aspirations die-cuts as much the second time around with this design. The checklist is full of first rounders and heavy favorite prospects as you will see more of in a moment. The sheer number of autographs in a box is great along with the parallels that usually add some pretty good value if you get the right players. Definitely a solid pick up for prospectors out there.

And just for you prospectors out there, I have put together a little cheat sheet on the prospect autographs I pulled, courtesy of Top Prospect Alert.

Check out some prospect ratings on 4 of the player autographs I pulled from this box break.

Want your chance at an autograph from this review? Tell me what you think about this product and if you’re feeling like you got a good idea of prospects, tell me who you are most excited about. I will hold the drawing on Saturday.

Panini Prime Cuts and the Deal with CMG Worldwide

Probably the most popular Donruss baseball product of all time will be coming back in March in 2011 Panini Prime Cuts. You know what will make it that much better? The deal with CMG Worldwide.

Panini America inked a deal with CMG Worldwide today, which allows them access to some of the most legendary players in baseball history to put on their newly minted MLBPA license. Some of those names include Jackie Robinson, Jimmie Foxx, Johnnie Mize, Lou Gehrig, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, and Shoeless Joe Jackson amongst others.

You know darn well that deep within the Panini/Donruss vaults is a stash of game used jerseys and more cut autographs from these players back from the Donruss era. I personally can not wait to see what Panini has in store for Prime Cuts in March.