Tuesday, January 28, 2014

2013 Topps Magic

Topps Magic, the Gypsy Queen set of football cards.  For the last several years I've been impressed with the look of these cards, but I've yet to chase building a set...and probably never will.  However I couldn't pass up buying one pack a few weeks back to see what 2013's set looked like.  Plus I hoped to pull a Cam Newton, Greg Olsen or a general Carolina Panthers card.

To me this is just more of the same...which for me at least isn't a bad thing.  I still don't know how Topps pulls off the look of the image, but I love it.  Design is simple and doesn't obstruct the player / action.  Seeing how I didn't really follow the NFL until the Carolina Panthers came into the league in 1995, I could care less for the older players included in the set.

The one per pack minis are still present.  I've never cared as much for these smaller parallels as I like the minis from releases like Allen & Ginter better.

My pack yielded two inserts, the first being Ground and Pound.  Seeded at 1:6 retail packs, this insert set just doesn't do much for me.  Maybe it's the pink?

Speaking of Gypsy Queen, these Rookie Enchantment inserts feature the same paper border that Topps first introduced in GQ a few years ago.  While my scan makes the foil look bronze, it is gold foil on purple.

1994-95 SkyBox Premium Basketball Series 2

Much like with baseball cards, I missed out completely on the mid-'90s and the aftermath of the overproduction era. Unlike baseball, however, I still know very little about what happened to hoops cards in the years that I stopped collecting. I do know that people tend to like shiny gaudy '90s inserts and Michael Jordan cards. I guess not that much has changed.

339 - Kenny Anderson Sky Pilots - Right off the bat, I can tell that there's going to be a lot of subset cards to justify a second series in a sport that is much shorter on players than baseball. This still has the familiar SkyBox graphic design look and feel.

269 - Sharone Wright - Nothing says '90s like that horrid "ROOKIE" font. I have no idea who this guy is.

285 - Vincent Askew - Every time I post a Sonics card here I seem to have to rant about it. I won't. It just sucks. I'm glad David Stern is on his way out the door.

323 - John Starks Sky Shots - He was never the biggest star, but if you know '90s basketball you know exactly who John Starks is. And you probably hate him, unless you liked the Knicks, or liked playing as the Knicks in Tecmo NBA Basketball.

293 - Juwan Howard - He's no Webber, but here's a familiar face. It's a rookie card of another Fab Fiver, one who stuck it out in the league longer than anyone on that team.

DP25 - Greg Minor Draft Pick - Even though I don't think their draft cards were ever particularly rare, by making them inserts, I think SkyBox pioneered the annoying "We're Going to Make Your Precious Rookie Cards Hard to Get For Some Reason" movement.

SU18 - Dikembe Mutombo Slammin' Universe - Is this flashy enough for you? I was in the Adidas headquarters employee store the other day and noticed this guy still has his own shoe. It might be a throwback, though.

223 - Dale Ellis - He could knock down a 3.

 261 - Charlie Ward - Eek, a Heisman winner!

306 - Larry Johnson Sky Slams - Something something Grandmama something something.

275 - Jerome Kersey - Hands down, the best card in the pack (if you ask me.)

221 - Jason Kidd - Whatever you say, Jason Kidd rookie card. You're a lousy coach.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

2013 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball

I like minor league baseball cards and I like the Topps Heritage line, but this is something that's generally out of my price range. I was in a hobby store recently to pick up supplies, however, and decided to snag one of these as one of my few impulse buys.

147 - Marcus Stroman - I think my favorite thing about these cards are the minor league team nicknames in huge caps.

56 - Arismendy Alcantara - As you can see, the backs are similar to the 1964 Topps design as with their big league counterparts. However, instead of the rub-off spot on the back, there's a small space for an autograph. Nice touch. Did they do this with previous Heritage minor league sets?

89 - James Ramsey - Well, this pack is already a winner for me. Ramsey is one of the Cardinals top outfield prospects and he'll look good in one of my Cardinals binders.

103 - Kyle Waldrop - Dragons! I love this.

225 - George Springer - Apparently, Topps has carried over one of the most annoying traits of the major league Heritage set to this product in short prints. Springer had a monster year last year and is definitely a prospect to know, so this SP card may turn out to be a pretty good one.

41 - Jonathan Schoop - Shoop ba-doop.

70 - Nick Martinez - There's a baseball Pelicans team, too? And people complained about the NBA team changing its name...

47 - Clay Schrader

194 - Rymer Liriano - I'm going to be really disappointed if I find out that Liriano doesn't have a rap career on the side.

Monday, January 20, 2014

2013 Panini America’s Pastime Baseball

Today I received a Fed-Ex box from Panini inside was the box of 2013 Panini America’s Pastime Baseball box that I won from them on January 7th. Inside was the following:
  • 1 Book Card
  • 3 Autographs
  • 2 Memorabilia Cards
  • 1 Insert
  • 2 Numbered Base Cards
  • 10 Total Cards
and this is what I got:
Here is what the packaging and pack looked like was nicely done:
Top of Box as it arrived

Bottom of Box 

Unwrapped box

Opened box with pack

Pack free of box

These packs are FAT!
The following four cards are the regular cards no Auto's or Memorabilia:
Mike Piazza # 107 #'d 93/125

Brett Oberholtzer # 224 #'d 91/125
C.C. Sabathia # 60 #'d 21/25
Pete Rose Decades #D1 #'d 18/25
The following are the 2 Memorabilia cards:
Awesome triple jersey Past, Present & Future of Nolan Ryan, Justin Verlander & Matt Harvey # PF-MH #'d 59/99
Josh Reddick Silhouettes Large Swatch Jersey #S-JR #'d 3/25
The following 3 cards are the Autographs that were included in the box:
Pat Tabler Pastime Signatures #PT #'d 95/125
Frank White Pastime Signatures #FW #'d 4/25
Eury Perez Rookie Autograph # 263 #'8/10
And finally the big hit in this product to me is the booklets! These cards look amazing with 4 windows this includes autograph in the upper right a black jersey piece in the lower left and two prime patch pieces in the upper left and lower right which look like part of the "A" in Arizona and the "D" from Diamondbacks and how limited is this card you ask how about #'d 3/5.

 I'd like to that Panini for this since with a suggested price of $249 a box not sure currently i'd be able to buy a box but it sure was fun to rip this baby open! Would love to open more with ever card basically a HIT!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Fairfield Sports Chicago Fan Box, Pack IV: Memorabilia / Autograph Card


If the Blogger Scheduler is working properly (note:  it didn't, probably because I didn't hit the Publish button), then this post has gone up after both football games are done and thus begins the 2 week wait for the Super Bowl.  It's best to get the final post from the Fairfield box out of the way then...OK, because it's a running gag...

For Christmas, Santa judged me worthy enough to get some baseball cards for Christmas.  Therefore, a Fairfield Sports Chicago Fan Box found it's way into my stocking:

I've seen these $12 boxes at Target for a while and even thought about picking one up to see who'd I get.  I mean, look at the box...Soriano and Dawson!  The sides of the box (not pictured) have even more stars...Billy Williams!  Fergie Jenkins!  Ernie Banks!  Multi-patch cards!  It can't be that bad...right?

Anyway, with the three packs out of the way, it's time for my guaranteed memorabilia or autographed card.  The card came in a plain white envelope and was not protected.  Who'd I get, one of the aforementioned players?  Maybe it's one of the players on the sides of the box I didn't list...Chuck Klein?  Travis Wood?  Derrek Lee?  Darwin Barney?  OK fine, you all waited long enough:

#TR-GS -  Geovany Soto (front and back)

Not a horrible pull, in my opinion.  I was expecting some sort of no-longer-in-baseball prospect autograph card   The card is from the 2010 Topps T-206 set.  This one is the Piedmont back.  There are also Old Mill and Polar Bear versions, but I don't know the difference.

I also lucked out and got one of them fancy uniform cards with a stripe on them.  I know about the memorabilia controversy and that this very well may not even be a piece from a baseball uniform, but hey, it's my first striped something, so that's cool with me.

Anyway, that's the card.  Anyone see a similar Fairfield set in his or her neck of the woods?  I'd be interested to see if there are sets outside of the major markets.  More later...thanks for reading!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Fairfield Sports Chicago Fan Box, Pack III: 2012 Bowman Chrome


Hope everyone's ready for the weekend.  Time for the last of the three packs from my Fairfield box.  Oh, you forgot?  One more time...a Fairfield Sports Chicago Fan Box was in my Christmas stocking:

I've seen these $12 boxes at Target for a while and even thought about picking one up to see who'd I get.  I mean, look at the box...Soriano and Dawson!  The sides of the box (not pictured) have even more stars...Billy Williams!  Fergie Jenkins!  Ernie Banks!  Multi-patch cards!  It can't be that bad...right?

Since I was in the Christmas spirit, I decided to scan the cards from all three packs for you to enjoy.  I saved the best for last (if best means a pack that has yet to be posted here)...2012 Bowman Chrome!

Guess which one is Yu and which one is Bryce?
3 cards per pack, 220 cards in the base set, lots of Refractors.  I only get Bowman when they're in the clearance bin or if one falls out of a repack box, like here.  Here's what I got:

#152 - Heath Bell
#FAS-BT - Carlos Beltran / Oscar Taveras
#BCP175 - Taylor Siemens

The odds for the All-Stars card is 1:18 packs.  Bowman Chrome has Prospect cards 111 through 220; you'd have to purchase 2012 Bowman Baseball for the first 110 cards.

Here's the backs of all 3 cards, since there's only 3 cards in the pack:

Anyway, that's the pack.  Enjoy championship weekend; I'll try to get the final Fairfield post up before next week, since the packs may get football intensive for the Super Bowl.  Thanks for reading!