Hope everyone is doing well. After many, many, many, many posts in the blogosphere from folks obtaining their first cards of the Fanatics era, I was finally able to come across some packs at the Target closest to my work last week. Sure I could have gone to the Target website and picked up a blaster box, but that wouldn't be fun.
Plus, it appears that the general consensus from the blogosphere is hanger boxes and rack packs are the way to go. I'm in that boat as well, mainly since Topps started using patches and not-relics as their "bonus" pack. Anyway, I picked up 2 hanger boxes and 2 loose packs.
16 cards per pack, still $3.50 per pack (still $12 for the hanger boxes). Let's see what I got:
#65 - Triston McKenzie
#196 - Jordan Romano
My first 2023 card is Triston McKenzie. Several bloggers seemed to always chronicle their first cards for a given year, something I haven't done consistently and regretted not doing so. I would have loved to remember what my very first baseball card was.
#228 - Ryan Pressly
#59 - Eduardo Rodriguez
There's the usual 330 cards in the checklist.
#321 - Garrett Cooper
#181 - Yordan Alvarez
The bloggers appear to approve of this year's design, and I'm with them, although I'm not a fan of the tiny team names, since the enlarged logo should be enough for the buyer to know what team the guy's playing for.
I think Topps should have also used baseballs instead of stars on the bottom corners, and then used stars as a subtle recognition for All-Stars or those (now rarer) gold parallels.
#200 - Freddie Freeman
Night Owl picked up Alvarez / Gonsolin / Freeman / Toro in one of his hanger boxes so this appears to be a regular collation of cards.
#297 - Abraham Toro
#T88-64 Julio Rodríguez
Topps is sticking with the odd-sounding 35th anniversary inserts. At least they got the 3-D effect correct.
#SMLB-2 Mike Trout
#162 Isiah Kiner-Falefa
A Stars of MLB insert is found in every pack. I love Isiah's profile picture. It seems all of the others are straight-ahead, his is kinda cartoonish.
#76 - Josh Winckowski (RC)
#105 - Seth Beer
It took this long for me to get to a rookie card. There are 56 rookies in Series 1 (2022 Topps Series 1 had 49 rookies).
Seth Beer needs to be traded to Milwaukee. Then Nick Bierbrodt needs to come out of retirement (holy crap, he retired in 2011?) and sign a one-day contract with the Brewers or something so they can play together. Think of the marketing opportunities!
#75 - JT Brubaker
#97 - Brandon Hughes (RC)
We end the pack with rookie Brandon Hughes from the Field of Dreams game.
Here are the backs. I went with Triston's back not because he's my first card of 2023, but to show that apparently Topps can't use Indians anymore?
Anyway, that's the pack. Not bad...like everyone else I plan to get more. Opening Day is just around the corner!
Enjoy the week, and thanks for reading!