Thursday, November 19, 2015

What's in Your Best Binder Page?

This should be fun.

Create your own Best Binder Page! It's a single binder page containing your nine favorite cards from your collection (yes, cards you already own). Think of it as your "dream page" or a "desert island page."

The other day a friend asked me if I could take one card with me to a desert island, which would I take? Choosing just one was too hard, but I could make a full page work. I started assembling the page in my mind, and eventually got around to actually making it happen:

Page notes: Brand-wise, we have 5 cards from Upper Deck, 2 from Fleer, 1 Topps, and 1 Best. The Beckett value of this page is about $3310 (I had to estimate for two cards, but I'm sure I'm pretty close). I chose these cards based on scarcity, hobby significance, and good ol' sentimental value. Here's a closer look at each card:

1989 Upper Deck #1

A little obvious? Not really - this is the '89 Upper Deck rookie I pulled from a pack when I was a teenager. It's got more karma built-in than every other copy of this card I own, even my wallet card.

1988 Best San Bernardino Spirit
Team Set #1 Platinum /1300

The rarest and most difficult pre-rookie of The Kid there is, if you can find one. And if the one you do find isn't a fake. Yeah, someone made fakes. How lame is that?

1993 Finest #110 Refractor

Baseball's first refractor and a legend among 90's kids who read Beckett. Plus it scans BEAUTIFULLY.

1998 E-X2001 Destination Cooperstown #7

You may expect I'd have chosen the Cut Above insert from '97 E-X2000, but I prefer it's younger brother from '98 E-X2001 which is significantly rarer (and doesn't have a print line).

1996 Ultra Hitting Machine #4 Gold Medallion

The Gold Medallions of 1996 Ultra are notoriously tough pulls. On top of that the parallel was applied to the inserts as well as the base cards. Combining those facts with this rarest insert from that set leaves us with what may be the toughest-seeded card of the 90's. These bad boys fell 1:2880 packs, and even if you pulled one, there were still 10 cards in the checklist, making the Griffey 1:28,800. Here's a great article on this bananas insert.

1994 Upper Deck Griffey/Mantle Dual Autograph

If I really did have to choose one card to take to a desert island, this would be on the short list. The very short list. Like, this very well may be the one.

2009 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection
Ultimate Dual Signatures Autograph
#UDS-15 #/70 (w/ Ken, Sr.)

There are a few Junior/Senior dual autos out there (I have two), but this one is on-card and features the two on their heritage teams.

1997 Upper Deck Game Jersey #GJ1

The first relic on a baseball card, and one of the cornerstones of any serious Griffey collection. The design, the portrait, the tasteful use of gold foil, the Seattle-green jersey swatch - this card is just perfect.

2004 Upper Deck A Piece of History 500 Club
Game-Used Bat Relic #500HR /350

We wrap it up with the astoundingly difficult-to-find 2004 Upper Deck A Piece of History 500 Club bat relic card. This legendary multi-year, multi-set checklist featured some of the greatest sluggers of all time, and at 1:15,000 packs, it's one of the toughest pulls I know of (apart from the exponentially rarer autographed version #/25). You can read more about these cards here. There's really nothing else like it.

So that was my Best Binder Page, but I want to see yours! If this is a problem for any reason, I'd be happy to make you one - just e-mail me the card scans and I'll make an image for you of all your cards in one page (it's easier than you think) and e-mail it back to you so you can post it.

Anyone who decides to make a page of their own, please link to it below so we can all have a look. I also figure this could be an ongoing thing as each of us acquire new cards. For example, if I ever got a hold of a Donruss Crusade Purple Griffey, I would most certainly update my page to show it. This thing's not written in stone.

So go! Scan your page or e-mail me card scans and I'll make you one. I'm excited to see what you guys pick!

EDIT: I should clarify some things per a couple of e-mails I've received.

First, if your card is slabbed or in a case you don't want to remove it from, just send me a straight top-down photo of the card in the slab. Don't worry about cropping out the case - I can do that. If you do insist on cropping it yourself, please leave a few extra millimeters around the edge of the card in case I need to fix the rotation which auto-crops some of the photo edges automatically (unless, again, you plan on fixing the rotation yourself). Also, please try to take the photo with as little glare as possible, preferably none at all as there is not usually glare in a scan. I'll take care of the rest.

Second, every card in the page shown above lives in my safe deposit box in a big, steel bank vault. I happen to have brought a few home for one night to make that scan (they are back in the vault now), but a couple of those cards were not actually in the page when I scanned it. I superimposed previous scans of those cards on an empty page so it looks like they were in it. Heck, the dual auto is slabbed, and we all know slabbed cards (on top of not fitting in binder pages) turn out blurry because the card is away from the glass of the scanner. I cropped that card image out of a photo. The point is that the page will look legit.

Third, if you have a die-cut card, odds are I will not be able to make it look absolutely perfect because there will be a difference in background. It would be best if you scanned just the die-cut cards in a binder page and e-mailed be the entire page scan, empty slots and all. I can make it work from there.

Hope I answered all your questions. Again, looking forward to some impressive Best Binder Pages!


  1. awesome, awesome, awesome stuff man!

  2. This is cool. I'll definitely be doing it.

    1. Challenge accepted. Here's mine!

  3. My preliminary page would be the nine cards that serve as the background image for my blog, but there are one or two of those that I would swap out for sure.

  4. Cool idea. If I remember, I'll try to come up with mine sometime soon.

  5. In other words, you've given us all a prime 9 challenge.

    Challenge accepted.

  6. Digging this idea.
    It's like the Sophie's choice of cardboard!

  7. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm only 9???

  8. Great idea for a post at a time when I can use a few ideas! Thanks!

  9. this is a good post idea. allow me to borrow your comment section for a moment.

    my 9 cards from my current collection would be:

    1952 topps jackie robinson
    1953 bowman color pee wee reese
    1955 topps sandy koufax
    1966 topps jim lefebvre
    1978 topps steve garvey
    1989 upper deck kirk gibson (1988 world series)
    2001 leaf certified materials steve garvey game worn patch jersey number 6/6
    2008 ud spx clayton kershaw rookie signatures auto
    1978 topps custom vin scully (autographed)

    the cards from the 50's are probably self-explanatory, but i like that the reese card also would represent my double play collection. the '66 lefebvre has sentimental value, the '78 garvey is my favorite card ever, and i was at the game in which the photo for the '89 gibson card was taken. the garvey patch card is certainly a jewel in my collection (red wool patch), and the scully custom i made and he signed was the subject of the greatest ttm success ever. the kershaw is a card that i received in trade from mario at wax heaven, so it would help represent the blogging aspect of my collection.

    i probably should have just posted this at my site. oh well. thanks for the prompt!

    1. I love that the '89 UD Gibson made the list. I love that card.

      Yes, make a post!

  10. Just posted mine. Great idea!

  11. Cool idea. I did one too.

  12. Here's mine. I just finished it minutes ago and I already think I should have switched out some cards.

    Five Toll Collector's Best Binder Page

  13. Just posted mine, although it isn't in an actual binder page.

  14. I threw mine together just now.. Again, not in a binder page, really, but set up like it could be