- According to Major League Baseball officials, the Topps baseball cards have been a cornerstone of fan engagement and entertainment for generations.
- The decision to roll-out the first MLB baseball cards as NFT collectibles comes after NFT has already a giant leap with NBA’s release of NBA Top Shot Moments.
- The NFT card collection will be issued in two different flavors as ‘standard’ and ‘premium’ packs priced at different ranges.
Major League Baseball has announced its latest move to set a Topps Baseball Card live on the blockchain. Cashing in on the worldwide NFT craze, the Topps Series 1 Baseball Non Fungible Token(NFT) collectibles set will be issued in partnership with Major League Baseball and MLB Players Inc.
Topps is using the WAX blockchain to sell the new NFT baseball cards, which the company has used on previous occasions for its earliest blockchain-based collectibles. The launch of their flagship annual baseball card collection in NFT form signifies a digital shift for Topps, banking on the growing appeal of blockchain-based collectibles.
A Shift from Traditional to Digital
“Generations of Major League Baseball fans have expressed their passion for the sport and the players through Topps baseball cards. We are thrilled to see Topps extend that experience through NFTs,” said Jamie Leece, Senior Vice President, Major League Baseball Games & VR.
The sale of the first ‘Series 1’ cards will begin April 20 onward, offering 50,000 standard packs containing 6 cards for $5, and about 24,000 premium packs offering 45 cards for $100. The cards available for purchase range in varying degrees of rarity from “common” to “legendary”, including limited-edition and platinum anniversary cards.
While the Topps baseball cards will not be full-fledged videos like NBA’s Top Shot Moments, the company plans to use motion graphics to create what it calls “nostalgic card templates” and “other digital flourishes” to heighten the digital experience for buyers. Also featuring is a free “exclusive Topps MLB Opening Day NFT Pack” set aside for the first 10,000 users to email alerts for their upcoming releases.
An Opportunity of a Second Market
Topps chairman Michael Eisner explained that with the company now set to go public, it made a lot of sense to single out the blockchain and NFTs in particular, considering their wide appeal. The sports and entertainment side of Topps is already 25% digital and eyeing huge growth. NFTs would provide an opportunity for the company to participate in the secondary market.
“As collectibles enjoy a breakout moment with NFTs and blockchain technology, we can’t think of a better way to honor the legendary players from years past…”, Evan Kaplan, Managing Director of MLB Players, said.
Topp’s traditional collectibles have been around for decades and bring to the table a level of recognition and appeal that other NFT efforts may lack. With these classic collectibles entering the blockchain era, the company has expanded its suite of mobile sports and entertainment digital collectible apps.