Why Doesn’t Target Sell Baseball Cards?

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In recent years, the trading card industry has experienced a significant boom, leading to a surge in demand for baseball cards and other collectibles. However, in May 2021, Target, a major retailer of these cards, made the decision to suspend in-store sales of all MLB, NBA, NFL, and Pokemon trading cards. This decision has left many collectors wondering, “Why doesn’t Target sell baseball cards anymore?”


Target stopped selling baseball cards in-store due to safety concerns arising from incidents related to the high demand and limited supply of these cards. An incident in Wisconsin where a disagreement over trading cards escalated to a man pulling a gun was a key factor in this decision. However, Target continues to sell baseball cards online, providing an alternative for collectors.

Safety Concerns

The primary reason behind Target’s decision is safety concerns. An incident outside a Target store in Brookfield, Wisconsin, escalated to the point where a man pulled a gun during a disagreement over sports trading cards. In response to this event and other similar incidents, Target decided to prioritize the safety of its guests and team members by halting the sale of these cards in-store from May 14, 2021.

The Impact on the Baseball Card Industry

Target’s decision has had a significant impact on the baseball card industry. The suspension of trading card sales at Target has raised concerns about the future of the market. Some experts believe that the market cannot continue to grow at the same rate it has over the past year, and a bubble bust or a slow decline may be imminent. The incident at the Wisconsin Target store has also been described as a “black eye” for the industry, indicating that it may have a negative impact on the public’s perception of the hobby.

Customer Reaction

The customer reaction to Target’s decision has been mixed. Some collectors have expressed frustration with the decision, as it makes it more difficult for them to purchase cards in person. However, others have supported the move, recognizing that it was a necessary step to ensure the safety of customers and employees.

Alternatives for Baseball Card Collectors

Despite the suspension of in-store sales, Target continues to sell trading cards online, providing an alternative for collectors. They offer a variety of options, including the Topps MLB Heritage Baseball Trading Card Mega Box, the MLB Prizm Baseball Mega Box, and the Panini Prizm Baseball Trading Card Blaster Box.

Comparison with Other Major Retailers

Target’s decision is not unique. Walmart, another major retailer, also halted trading card sales in their stores. However, other retailers like Meijer, K-Mart, and Big Lots have been mentioned as places where trading cards can be found, although availability may vary.

Future Implications

Target’s decision to halt in-store sales of collectible cards may have significant implications for the future of collectible card sales, potentially affecting sales figures, the shift towards online sales, industry-wide policies, and safety measures.

In conclusion, Target’s decision to suspend in-store sales of trading cards was made to ensure the safety of customers and staff. While this may have a temporary impact on the baseball card industry, it is likely that trading cards will eventually return to retail stores with appropriate safety measures in place. Until then, collectors can continue to purchase cards online through Target’s website and other retailers.

Frequently Asked Questions

When did Target start selling baseball cards?

Target has been selling baseball cards for many years, with the exact start date not readily available. However, it’s important to note that they have only recently suspended their in-store sales of these cards in May 2021 due to safety concerns.

Are all trading cards suspended from sale at Target, or just baseball cards?

The suspension applies to all MLB, NBA, NFL, and Pokemon trading cards. This means that not only baseball cards, but all sports and Pokemon cards are currently not available for in-store purchase at Target.

Has Target given any indication of when they might resume in-store sales of baseball cards?

As of now, Target has not provided a specific timeline for when they might resume in-store sales of baseball cards. The decision will likely depend on the evolving safety situation and company policy.

Are baseball cards still available for purchase at Target online?

Yes, despite the suspension of in-store sales, Target continues to sell trading cards online. Collectors can find a variety of options on Target’s website.

Are there any restrictions on purchasing baseball cards online from Target?

There may be purchase limits on certain products to ensure fair access for all customers, but these restrictions vary by product and availability. It’s best to check Target’s website for specific details.

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