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How many do you think that game used swatches are not real?

What do you think about game used cards?

  • I think fakes are rampant! You can't hardly trust any game used card out there.

    Votes: 17 48.6%
  • I'm ok w/it not being game worn, as long as the player wore it at some point, no matter how short.

    Votes: 5 14.3%
  • I'm ok w/it not being worn by the player pictured, as long as it was worn in a game.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I think most everything is legit. Most card relics are used in a real game by player depicted.

    Votes: 8 22.9%
  • I simply don't care. They are cool cards!

    Votes: 5 14.3%

  • Total voters


Featured Contributor, Bridging the Gap, Senior Mem
May 18, 2012
I have been researching, and have come up with some startling things - from stories from players who were told to put on jerseys then call them game worn by card companies and teams, to stories of people who sold, or know of card companies who purchased non game-used items and included them as "game used". Then of course, there is the secondary market of folks who pop out the game used stuff and replace with fake patches. Finally, there is the suspicious labeling of companies not specifying it the material was even worn in a game or by the player shown.

What are your thoughts? Please participate in the poll, as I'm interested to hear what the masses think.


Trade Moderator
Mar 12, 2010
Cherryvale, KS
I put jersey and bat cards in my player PC's, but don't go out of my way to acquire them. I have a love of patch cards, so will go out if my way to get them.

I think maybe 25% of relic cards are truly game used.

The labeling sucks. Just take a look at the 2010 206 Ruth relic.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalkd


Well-known member
Jan 15, 2010
southeast Alaska
I only trust anything pre-2004/2005. But have a list of more recent items in my various pc's. Don't go out of my way to get them. If they were to go back to the guaranteed to be worn by such player in an official mlb game.. No problem. As it sits I have my doubts any piece is from the player listed on the front
I only collect autograph rookie year nba and mlb autos. If a card I want has more than 1 color on the swatch then I usually stay away from it. I trust an event worn rookie year piece of uniform was actually worn by the actual player depicted on the card at some point. Most game used jersey cards use a broad description to explain where the actually piece of memorabilia came from. Until the major companies start answering some questions, I will continue to stay away from "game used" cards.


Active member
Jan 2, 2013
I'm not as sceptic as most . I think they are detailed very poorly , but think they are player worn in some way at a fairly high %. The thing is , a lil effort from a company and they could build the desired jersey / patch brand that could last long term



New member
Apr 21, 2009
I'm not as sceptic as most . I think they are detailed very poorly , but think they are player worn in some way at a fairly high %. The thing is , a lil effort from a company and they could build the desired jersey / patch brand that could last long term

Agree with you here. I think most are legit as well. There are obviously patch fakers out there, but the fakes are usually so easy to notice and stay away from.


Active member
Jan 2, 2013
Agree with you here. I think most are legit as well. There are obviously patch fakers out there, but the fakes are usually so easy to notice and stay away from.
My post was more towards the manufactures using legit pieces , on the resell patch authenticity I think it's still a small percentage over all , but it's a big enough % that matters if that makes sense.



Jul 16, 2013
Cincinnati, OH
I've never heard about this - could you tell me more?
Here ya go.


"WELLS was asked if the card companies knew that what he was selling to them was not game used. WELLS said that the card companies were too smart to put their beliefs in writing but they knew a lot of what they were buying from resellers like WELLS was not game used. WELLS recalled a conversation he had with UPPER DECK buyer MIKE O'GRADY at the Anaheim, California National Sports Collectors Convention approximately three years ago. During the conversation, O'GRADY told WELLS that UPPER DECK needed eight DEREK JETER jerseys and they were willing to pay between $1,000 and $1,200 each. WELLS told O'GRADY that he was paying between $3,500 and $5,000 for JETER jerseys from STEINER SPORTS and STEINER SPORTS obtained their JETER jerseys directly from the New York Yankees. WELLS told O'GRADY that by only paying $1,200 for JETER jerseys, UPPER DECK was inviting fraud. O'GRADY said that UPPER DECK knew what they were getting, but they needed the JETER jerseys at the minimum price."

Read more: http://www.cardboardconnection.com/...cused-of-fraud-in-fbi-interview#ixzz3Aqs9dcEX
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New member
Jan 29, 2010
I have a bunch of them and I'm very skeptical that even most of them are authentic, upper deck has a reputation for shady stuff from day 1 when they were printing up sheets of 1989 griffey cards, what makes you think they wouldn't fudge on the details of these jersey cards. Also with the wording topps puts on these things, who knows what your getting. If topps thought they were real they would say so on the card. Instead they cut up pieces of stadium seat and call it a Ruth relic because Ruth played in that stadium. It all comes down to the money and it's just too easy to scam the unsuspecting public and to claim ignorance or stupidity if you ever get called out on it. I'm amazed at how badly people want to believe these are all real, I'm sure some are but I'm also pretty sure a good percentage (at least half or more) are not.


New member
Aug 7, 2008
I'm with Michael Stepper in the fact that I believe older stuff is more likely to be real. I think once the demand started getting so crazy, and the companies realized people wouldn't question it to the point it mattered, they got a little loose about where they obtained the jerseys. Now do I think they 100% know they are including fake stuff in cards? Nope. I would have to guess there is some plausible deniability going on. I don't think they even know where the jerseys come from. I just think that as long as their source says it's GU, then they give it a green light.

Now this is just my opinion. But it just seems odd that they'd be able to churn out all these gu cards like candy. Gu stuff, even from scrubs, is usually going to cost some nice upfront capital. And before a single cent is realized from product sales.
First of all all, let me say that I own hundreds of of these supposed GU cards of Cal Ripken Jr. IMHO, there is no way they are all "REAL" game used. Imagine the syeps the companies have to go through before this little pieces of cloth gets to the little windows of the card.

1. Card company representative buys the Jersey.
- Where does he take it? His home? Office? He don't own the card company, he just work there and I'm sure ALL of them are
110% honest.
- He just spent 10K (or more) on 10 "GU JERSEYS". Does the card company provide him a safe to store these jerseys. Who gets
possession of these jerseys next? Let's bypass everyone and say he delivers the jerseys to the person responsible for cutting
2. The man in charge of cutting the materials gets the jerseys.
- How many different players' jerseys does he get? 1 player, no problem. Cut, bag and tag - Done. Then someone comes and
pick it up or he delivers it to who? He just got done cutting up 10K worth of materials, they're not just going to leave it laying
around, would they? Let's bypass the steps and continue to....
3. The person in charge of placing this little pieces of materials into the cards. If done by machine, "someone" still need to load/unload
the machines. All tis person have to go by is the "tag" on the bag. The tag says Cal Ripken Jr so IT MUST BE Cal Ripken Jr.
- Is this person doing one player at a time or multiple players at one time. As I stated above, even if card companies are using
machines to do this, there is a person working in this area.

With these three little steps and only three people (I'm 100% sure there are other steps and more people) involved, how much
security is involved? How many of the people involved are collectors and how many of them know the value of these jerseys? At some point of this process, someone making (let's be generous) $20 per hour have his hand on these items and say..... Hmmmmm, I make $160 a day minus taxes, and they want me to deliver 10K worth of jersey. I think I'll hurry and be on my way so I can come back and deliver more....Sure, they are ALL 100% honest, all of the people mentioned above.

Even if the jersey was really game used at the beginning, it becomes "questionable" at best by the time you open that pack and say "Yippeeeee, I got me a real nice 2 colors patch card" and it's serial numbered to 10 too". Then you pull the same patch card, serial numbered to 100 and this one is 5 colors and of course looks better that the 10, and then you ask yourself thinking out loud, "who's the idiot that did this? Man or machine?

I can type all day about my opinion on this but at the end of the day, it's the collector's choice. Buy or not buy. Personally, I buy the CARDS because I need/want it in my PC. I really don't care who/where the cloth came from. The piece of cloth are just bonus (I guess) and more colorful, the better they look in my binders...

Sorry for the long rant but it makes sense to me....


New member
Aug 7, 2008
Yeah, we didn't even delve into the nightmare that is the manufacturing process. The OP pretty much made me think the question is just about the item actually coming from a player that wore the item in a game. Once you get to the manufacturing process, there is a whole other issue about jersey pieces being switched with different players, or whether anyone is sneaking them out the backdoor, etc.

The sad part is....you may think you have a real gu Cal Ripken Jr. card when it's really a fake Adam Jones GU jersey piece in your Cal Ripken Jr. card. But like I said, it's probably a see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil thing. And the loose wording on the card backs helps with relieving them of liability. I'm sure the companies want you to get a gu jersey card. A real one. And they won't intentionally do anything to derail that. They just aren't going to do anything special to ensure it though either.

Main thing, like was said, buy the cards knowing that you are taking a chance. Keep in mind there are a lot of people who will outbid or outspend you simply because they are still buying under the impression these are 100% legit. And know that you might have to fight these bidders or collectors to win these cards at prices that might be higher than you might want to pay considering their fishy nature. If you're ok with that, then bid away.


Dec 12, 2012
I'm like some of the others that said they don't go out of their way to obtain them. I used to think differently, but slowly realizing how shady the whole memorabilia market is coupled with how shady Topps/UD are, coupled with how poor the quality control is makes you really think differently.

I wonder if in about 10 more years if we'll look back on this relic boom era in similar fashion that we look at the junk card era. I can see prices fall on the relic side of cards and stuff that costs a lot now will be able to be had for next to nothing.


New member
Aug 7, 2008
I think a lot of the jeresys that topps and panini cut up on good faith as game used aren't game used.

In fact I know that to be true due to the Steve Jensen and Bradley Wells thing.

? Care to elaborate? I'm genuinely curious...

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