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Still waiting for delivery

Buyers of Baseball Hall of Fame commemorative coins from the U.S. Mint are getting antsy again.

Delivery of the popular gold, silver and clad cupped-shaped coins was not fast enough for individuals who wanted early release designations from major grading services.

Now we seem to be entering a new wave of discontent.

In my review of my Monday morning email I had the following message:

“Hi, members of Reno coin club are having a difficult time getting the new baseball coin. Glenn.”

The entire message was in the subject line and it was sent from an iPhone Friday evening.

If you order the clad half dollars today, the Mint’s website says delivery will occur July 23.

Those who ordered sooner have the ability to check and see when they might expect their coins. That’s the hard part when you can’t wait to get something.

It is tough to be at the end of the delivery line especially as my email also shows that coin sellers are inventing ever more creative ways of trying to increase the appeal of these commemoratives that are already in the marketplace.

Some plastic holders now feature labels with facsimile signatures of old-time baseball players.

Obviously, they have their place in the market.

Some individuals, though, will pay extra to get a label with the baseball player’s facsimile signature on it.

In future months the inquiries will begin as to what these private labels might be worth. This is every price guide editor’s nightmare.

With private label creations, theoretically there could be as many individualized products as there are coins minted.

No matter how interesting these labels are, I expect values in the future will depend on the coins themselves and the grade they are assigned. The signatures will probably not add any long-term value, but if you are a baseball fan and have one of your favorite players, you might consider it a welcome bonus.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2013 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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