Hobby retailers who were coming off a disappointing end to 2008 weren’t sure what kind of response their customers would have to the first baseball card products for the coming season. Three weeks after the first of the 2009 products hit the market, many retailers say they’re quite happy with the demand from customers.
“The response has been fantastic,” said Rob Vandorick of All Star Baseball in Henderson, Nev. “We sold out of Topps in two days. On its heels, we sold out of Upper Deck after five days. People were chomping at the bit to get the new cards. The content really helped.”
Timothy Broman of Collector’s Connection in Duluth, Minn., has experienced similar success. “Topps always sells well, and for the first time in years, Upper Deck is selling out quickly,” Broman said. “Reorders abound.”
Dan Fox of Fox Sports Cards in Marion, Ill., said his customers have “absolutely loved” the newest baseball card releases. He noted the Upper Deck 20th anniversary promotion and Topps’ weekly Ring of Honor card giveaways are also helping drive sales.
Because of the slowdown in sales during the last quarter of 2008, many retailers were very conservative with their preorders for the first products of 2009. As a result, manufacturers were conservative with their production runs. Retailers and collectors alike have noticed.
“Topps cutting production across the board will be a major asset in the long run, especially if they can continue to do so,” said David Young of Collector’s Zone in Jackson, Mich.