30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Saturday Night Five: Reasons to Love SI for Kids Cards

Did you know that Sports Illustrated for Kids has been around longer than Upper Deck?  I'm serious.  The first issue of SI for Kids was published back in January of 1989.  Three months later, the premiere edition of Upper Deck baseball was released.

And as we all know... the latter flourished in our hobby for over two decades and even though they no long have a Major League Baseball license, their baseball cards continued to be popular among collectors.

On the other hand, Sports Illustrated for Kids trading cards cater more to a niche market.  I know that statement can be said for trading cards in general, but it's especially true for these cards.  The fact is... outside of a few cards like the Tiger Woods rookie, there aren't a lot of valuable SI for Kids trading cards.

Now the question is... are they cheap because nobody wants them?  Or does nobody want them, because they're cheap?

Whatever your response is... tonight's post is my last ditch effort to share one of my favorite PC's and in hopes of creating awareness for these interesting oddballs.

So without further adieu... here are my top 5 reasons to love SI for Kids cards...

#1:  They're fully licensed and feature the hobby's biggest names.

March 2015 #401

Unlike Upper Deck, Panini, and Leaf... Sports Illustrated has a MLB license.  That mean's you'll actually see team logos on their cards.

#2:  They specialize in variety!

September 1993 #181-#189

Where else are you going to find a placekicker, barefoot water skier, and racquetball player in the same set?  Oh wait... isn't that what Goodwin Champions and A&G specialize in too?  Well Sports Illustrated was years ahead of them.

#3:  Want rookies?  They've got them too.

March 2013 #210

This Manziel card was produced months before his next trading card and almost a full year before his first regular issue trading card.  Sports Illustrated is constantly targeting athletes who are still in college.  Sometimes they even produce cards of kids.  It's only a matter of time before one of them grows up and becomes a professional athlete.

#4:  Do you like women?  So does SI for Kids.

November 1992 #98

I can't remember the last time one of their nine card sheets didn't feature at least two female athletes.  They've featured everyone from Jennie Finch to Serena Williams.  Of course my personal favorite is the 1992 Kristi Yamaguchi rookie card.

#5:  Like the name of their magazine states... it's for the kids!

October 1997 #627

Let's face it, even the cheapest 2015 packs are going to run $1 to $2... and that's for retail product where hits are few and far between.  The fact is... card companies haven't targeted kids' money in years.  But SI for Kids does it every month.  I'm not sure there's anything that can convince millions of kids to start collecting cards again, but at least this is the one magazine that's trying.

I'll wrap things up by saying that one of the greatest things about our hobby is the variety of cardboard we have to choose from.  I know that these cards aren't going to be for everyone.  I just figured that if one or two of my readers were looking for something new to collect, I'd throw these cards into the mix.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!


  1. The cards from the 1990's are very 1990's. Could they BE more 1990's???

    ...but the two recent cards you feature are actually pretty nice designs. Some of these companies trying to appeal to kids feel like you have to go over the top, and I've always thought that was a mistake.

  2. Love these sheets. I had a subscription for the first few years 1989-91 (I was 25!) just to get the card sheets. I still pick them up if I find used issues at Half Priced Books. Good stuff.

  3. I subscribe and not ashamed to admit it. I am a card collector and all the facts you stated above is why I subscribe.

  4. I've had a free subscription the last couple years, hoping to find it free again soon. I like the mix they have, especially the college and odd sports. I don't care for their new design they just started this year though, and wish the cards were just a bit thicker, but for free I'm not complaining.

  5. I've always considers SI For Kids cards to be oddballs, but they are some pretty sweet oddballs to add to my collections. I like these cards a lot and always look to grab some when I can.

  6. I got most of the issues from 1997-1999. Have not seen one since then, and didn't know it was still being published until I saw them on the Trading Card Database. I have debated subscribing (again) just to get the cards.

  7. I think this would make a great Xmas gift for my grandson. Thanks for the idea Fuji. He's 9 and loves sports

  8. shlabotnik - i hear ya. some of those bright designs remind me of Topps Kids which could be considered a little over the top

    angels - lol... i'm 42 and still have a subscription

    sports card collectors - it's good to know that I'm not alone.

    jupiter - free? how can i get in on that action?

    mike - i think the fact that they're oddballs is the biggest attraction for me.

    billy - you could also go down to barnes & noble, see if there's anyone you collect in the current issue.

    mr. hoyle - no problem. i don't have any grandchildren, but i do have a subscription for my classroom. it's a pretty good magazine and my middle school boys enjoy reading them.