Baseball Card Holiday Gift Buying Guide
Hobby boxes make an ideal gift for any baseball card collector. They come at several price points, so no matter your budget, there's guaranteed to be something great for the baseball fan on your list.
Thanks to online shopping, finding the right set hasn't been easier. Hobby shops aren't as plentiful as they used to be. And while retail places like Walmart and Target have cards, the ones sold there often don't have as many autographs or memorabilia cards. For most collectors, hobby boxes are definitely the way to go. On top of that, many sets are now hobby exclusives.
We've picked some great baseball card hobby boxes to give this season. Because boxes can range in price from under $50 up to around $400, we've highlighted some for all budgets.
Baseball Card Hobby Boxes Under $75
Got someone on your gift list that was big into cards in the early 1990s? Then they'll probably recognize the Stadium Club name. 2014 Topps Stadium Club Baseball is highlighted by some of the best photography of the year caught on cards. It also has several nostalgia-inducing inserts and three autographs per hobby box.
The Topps factory set is a great way to get capture the season. It has all 660 cards from 2014 Topps Series 1 and Series 2, including Jose Abreu and Masahiro Tanaka rookie cards. The 2014 Topps Baseball Complete Set Hobby Edition also has five orange cards that can't be found anywhere else. There are also retail versions that come with five exclusive bonus Rookie Variations.
Panini's answer to Topps Chrome and Bowman Chrome, they packed a lot in to 2014 Panini Prizm Baseball. Hobby boxes have just 12 packs, which has kept the price relatively low. Hovering in the $50-60 range, each box has a pair of autographs and six colorful parallels, at least three of which are serial numbered.
2014 Bowman Draft Baseball is scheduled to release on December 10, which is plenty of time for a box to get under the tree in time. A perennial favorite with a lot of collectors, the highlight of the set is the inclusion of the first MLB cards from many of the top picks in the 2014 MLB Draft. Hobby boxes have one autograph. More expensive Jumbo and Super Jumbo boxes have multiple autographs (three for Jumbo, five for Super Jumbo).
Baseball Card Hobby Boxes Under $150
Like all Bowman products, the main focus of 2014 Bowman Inception Baseball is on young prospects. This is a product for collectors who focus on signed cards. Every box comes with four autographs and an autographed relic, which includes a piece of game-used memorabilia embedded in it. 2014 Minor League Player of the Year, Kris Bryant, is the highlight of the set.
Since debuting in 2006, Allen & Ginter has become the hobby benchmark as far as variety goes. Baseball stars are freely mixed with champions from other sports and activities. 2014 Topps Allen & Ginter Baseball includes everything from Jose Abreu rookie cards to Snoop Lion (better known as Snoop Dogg) autographs to cards with shavings from Daniel Nava's beard.
As the name suggest, 2014 Panini Hall of Fame 75th Anniversary Baseball is all about Cooperstwon inductees. There's plenty of history in the product, which includes a pair of autographs in every box. Most aren't the biggest names in the Hall of Fame, but it's also not a wildly expensive product either.
Baseball Card Hobby Boxes Over $150
The big draw of 2014 Topps Museum Collection Baseball is the checklist, which draws heavily from past stars and current players. They're not all this way, but there are more than most release. The high-end product includes an autograph or memorabilia card in every pack. Boxes have one autograph, an autographed relic, a jumbo memorabilia card and a quad relic.
Similar to Museum Collection, 2014 Topps Tribute Baseball has an autograph or memorabilia card in every pack. The product also has a nice mix of past and present players. What sets Tribute apart from Museum Collection is its flashier high-end foil design, a longtime trademark for the brand.
2014 Topps Dynasty is a new brand from the company that isn't scheduled to release until December 17 (barring any more delays). This is their most expensive baseball set ever with single-card packs running more than $300. However, every card in the product is an autographed memorabilia card numbered to 10 or less.