Sports Card Grading

Sports Card Grading 101 Guide

Sports Card Grading Guide

So you want to know more about grading cards, but don't know where to start? Our guide is here to help.

The Grading Companies

Beckett Grading Services (BGS), PSA and SGC are the main companies used to grade a card. In general, BGS is preferred for modern cards, while PSA is the favorite for vintage cards.

The Grading Scales

Beckett grades their cards on a scale of 1-10 with sub-grades (.5s). PSA Grades on a flat 1-10 scale and SGC Grades on a scale out of 100, which they then use to give the card a grade of 1-10.

Cards are graded based on these factors: Centering, Corners, Edges, and Surface. They give each attribute a grade of 1-10, then combine those to give the card a final grade of 1-10. Anything above a 9 is worth book value or greater, as BGS 9 (known as a "Mint 9") is the condition expected of the card out of the pack. A grade of 9.5 is Gem-Mint, which is a card that is nearly flawless. This is the condition most collectors want. Then there is a "PRISTINE 10" which is the holy grail of cardboard. Pristine 10s are rarely handed out. A Pristine 10 can turn a $10 card into a $1,000 one.