Whether it's a 1793 copper cent or a 2014 National Parks quarter, every coin ever struck by the U.S. Mint has something in common: they all lay flat in your hand. But that will soon change -- and baseball is responsible.
In 2014, the Mint will make commemorative gold, silver and "clad" (nickel-plated copper) coins honoring the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. While they had previously commissioned a curved coin in honor of Roberto Clemente, this will be the first coin of this shape actually minted at the Mint itself. The coin's design, which was chosen from 178 citizen submissions, features a baseball glove on the obverse (the "heads" side) and a baseball on the reverse. When you look at the obverse, you'll see a concave dip - like a real glove. The reverse will bulge out in a simulation a spherical ball.
The coin's curved nature might make it hard to drop into a vending machine, but its unusual shape seems worth it for the novelty and added realism. (And you really shouldn't buy sodas with commemorative coins anyway.) The Hall of Fame coins will go on sale sometime in early 2014.