Tuesday, February 19, 2013

TTM Return: Chris Carter

  • Chris Carter 1/1- Another catch-up return from last year's spring training.  Chris signed a 2011 Gypsy Queen in thin black marker from A's camp.  Sent 3/10/12 (346 days)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Box Break: 2012 Topps Update Series Jumbo

I bought a jumbo box of the 2012 Topps Update Series at the beginning of December, but never got around to posting about it.  The results weren't that impressive, thus my laziness in delaying a post about it.  I try to stay away from buying full boxes, and I definitely regret this impulse buy.  I'd say the Prince Fielder jersey card is probably my favorite card from the box.

  • Steve Delabar- Black Border #20/61
  • Prince Fielder- All-Star Game Workout Jersey card
  • Willie Mays- Hall of Fame Plaque Card
  • Mark Hamburger- Golden Debut Autographs

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

TTM Return: Clayton Kershaw

  • Clayton Kershaw 1/1- This one was a nice surprise after seeing so many other people get him back recently.  I forgot that I sent out a 2008 Allen & Ginter rookie card for Kershaw last season, and I just got it back today.  Sent 2/27/13 (351 days)

TTM Return: John Grabow

  • John Grabow 2/2- One of two returns I got back today from last year's Dodgers camp.  Grabow signed his 2001 UD Vintage rookie card, as well as a card from the 09 Topps U&H set.  Sent 2/21/12 (357 days)

Monday, February 11, 2013

TTM Return: Aaron Poreda

  • Aaron Poreda 1/1- The Pirates minor leaguer signed his 09 Topps U&H rookie card from last year's spring training camp.  I have yet to send out any letters this year, but I'm hoping to get started sometime later this week.  Sent 2/21/12 (356 days)

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Pack Break: 2013 Topps

After a few cold months without buying any packs, I was browsing MLB.com the other day and saw ads for the 2013 Topps going on sale this week.  I stopped by my local shop and picked up 13 packs today to test out the new stuff.  It was exciting to get a new product of any kind after several months, and I'm pleased with how this year's Topps offering has turned out.

The base card looks and feels like it belongs in a Bowman set.  I'm a bit concerned about the glossiness of the cards this year, but that might just require more prepping on my part.  The insert sets seem to have less retired players than in the past few years, which is nice for someone that tries to focus on current players.  However, it was a pleasant surprise to find a thick stock, ultra-glossy insert of Chipper Jones smiling back at me, as the beginning of a Chipperless era draws near.

The 1972 minis are nice, but I'd still prefer if these throwback cards were full-size instead of minis. I guess I'll only have to wait 9 more years for Topps Heritage to catch up to it.

I seemed to get a nice variety of former and current Red Sox inserts, and the Pedroia die-cut is especially good looking in person.  I wasn't a big fan of the diamond and champagne parallels from the past two years, and I'm not sure how I feel about the emerald parallels this year.  There are no major league teams that have green as one of their main colors, so I can't visualize this looking particularly good for any player.  The orange of the Orioles logos on the Mark Reynolds emerald card make it look like a Nickelodeon giveaway. 

On the more mundane (back) side of the cards, the theme this year is record chasing.  From the back of Brandon Inge's card:  "With 641 RBI, Inge is 1,656 away from Hank Aaron's all-time record of 2,297."  Reach for the stars, Brandon.