Saturday, December 31, 2022

2022 Topps Allen & Ginter Retail


Hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas and are getting ready for New Years hijinks!

First a PSA...I had my first colonoscopy a couple of days ago (you all didn't think a post would veer into health topics did you?).  Fortunately, nothing was found and I was given a clean bill of health, so I guess that means my next experience would be 10 years from now.  They need to find a better method than that liquid concoction they make you chug.  Anyway, if you're stalling about undergoing the procedure, just get it done could save your life!

Since baseball cards are back at retail (especially if you time your visits around the time the card vendor stocked the shelves), there's more choices available for us.  There's still some things missing like rack packs (besides Topps Flagship) and gravity feeders, but these days you can go to the card aisle and generally spend a minute or two there looking at options as opposed a year or two ago.

A few weeks ago during a Target shift I saw a box of Allen & Ginter on the shelf.  All the packs were in the box so it must have been put there recently.  I'm not an A&G guy but I usually get a pack or two to sample the set.  I picked one up at the end of the day, $3.50 for 6 cards.  Here's who I got:

#249 - Drew Rosenhaus
#126 - Tom Seaver

Drew represents Gronk, among other NFL players.  Nothing wrong with getting Tom Terrific either.

#324 - Sal Bando

Here's a guy you don't expect to see in sets these days.  Bando is a Short Print, which comes 1 in every 2 packs.

There's 350 cards in the set, but there are some oddities.  Cards #167 and 181 do not exist, and there are 2 versions of Cards #337 and #344 (in the SP section).  Those second versions, for Manny Ramirez and Luis Castillo, are not Short Prints, which makes me think they were supposed to be in the main set.  Great quality control during your pandemic-related delays, Topps.

#BS-43 - Reggie Jackson (Banner Season)
#TO-1 - Power Outage (Time Out! Mini Set)

There's 50 cards in the Banner Season set, while there's just 10 cards in the Time Out! set.  

#189 - Rob Riggle

Hey, not a bad final card.  The Marine-turned-Comedian has been in a bunch of fun stuff, from Step Brothers to Holey Moley.

Here's some card backs because New Year's:

Anyway, that's the pack.  Odd to open a pack of baseball cards and not get a current player but that's A&G for you.

Everyone have a safe and happy New Year!  May 2023 be infinitely better than 2022!  Get that colon checked...and thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 25, 2022

2013 Panini Cooperstown (Hobby)

It's 17 degrees here in Massachusetts so lets open some 2013 Panini Cooperstown.

We have previously opened the retail version of this product, today we take a look at the hobby variant.

6 cards-per-pack. 24 packs-per-box. 1 on-card autograph per-box.

Opening these hobby products is always a bit of a gamble years later because you run the risk of paying a large chunk of cash to get an expired redemption.

We have Paul "Big Poison" Waner, a member of the 3,000 hit club and former NL MVP, and Phil Niekro, legendary knuckleballer.

Next we have Jim Bunning, class of 1996, and "Year of the Pitcher" legend Bob Gibson on an 025/499 blue parallel.

Here is "The Frenchman" Napoléon "Nap" Lajoie, collector of nicknames and 5x batting champion. This is part of the "Stars of the Diamond" rounds subset, 1/pack.

And finally, our autograph hit from the box is Juan Marichal, 196/200, Class of 1983.

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

2022 Topps Archives Baseball Blaster Pack


Hope everyone is doing well.  The holidays certainly crept up on us this year.  The house is still a mess and we host Christmas celebrations Sunday afternoon.  I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Less loose packs in the stores during the pandemic means more blaster box purchases.  Is there a rack pack for this year's Archives?

I was able to pick up a blaster of Archives after a recent Target shift (last month was my 20th anniversary there, holy crap!) but then my eldest came back with a blaster box of his own a few days later.  We saw a hobby pack a while back, so why not a blaster pack?

He let me scan one of his packs before they disappeared into the abyss that is his room.

25 bucks for the blaster.  3 exclusive 1988 Topps Big Foil cards are included in the box.  Here's a pack of what he got:

#61 - Hoy Park (RC)
#47 - Matt Manning (RC)

A couple of rookies in the 1963 design start the pack off.  Manning has a background color variation card in the set...obviously this isn't it.

#134 - Jose Abreu
#167 - Ronald Acuña Jr

We move on to 2 cards with the 1978 design.  Abreu moved on to the Astros in the offseason.  Sox fans will miss him for sure.

Acuña also has a design color swap variation...this isn't it either.

#PC-11 - Jose Ramirez

The Topps Post Cards insert come 1 in 8 packs.

#281 - Willy Adames
#230 - Salvador Perez

Hey, kudos to Topps for using the often ignored 1987 design.  It's been 35 years...about time they brought it back!

#289 - Sonny Gray

Here's the checklist for those who need it, and here are the backs because it's the most wonderful time of the year:

Anyway, that's the pack.  Nothing earth-shattering in the blaster, just the 3 Big Foils and a couple inserts here and there.

Hope you all have a great holiday season!  Hopefully there'll be time for one more pack before the end of the year.  Thanks for reading!