In trying to complete my set of A&G, I broke down and bought a hobby box. The details of the inserts and whatnot have been features so many other places, it's common knowledge what the contents of this set are. So I'm going to go right into the stats
Base Set: 144/350 Doubles: 0 Dick Perez Sketch Cards:24/30 Dick Perez Doubles: 0 Short Prints: 12 Short Print Parallel: 2 (Alex Rios, Michael Barrett) Allen and Ginter Back Parallel: 4 Black Bordered Parallel: 2 (Victor Martinez, Adam Wainwright) Black Boardered NNO Short Print: 1 (Jason Isringhousen) Flags of All Nations: 2 (Brazil and Nigeria) Relics: 2 (Aramis Ramirez jersey, Chad Tracy bat) A-Rod Road to 500: 1 (HR# 274) Hobby Box Topper: National Pride Puerto Rico
While I was hoping for some sort of autograph or printing plate in this box, I'll take what the box gave me. Set wise, this is one of the best boxes I've ever opened getting no doubles whatsoever. I really think this is the best set of the year by far. It's affordable, there are great inserts and the card design is spectacular. However, on these Dick Perez sketch cards, it looks like Dick should have taken maybe a bit more time on some of them. Is it just me or did Jim Edmonds turn out looking like Carson Daily? Also I've never really been a fan of inserts that run between series like the Mickey Mantle home run set or the A-Rod road to 500 set that is in this set and pretty much every other set that Topps puts out this year and maybe next year. It almost seems like they're doing inserts for the sake of doing inserts. But the inserts, along with the solid base set that includes people and monuments other than baseball players, are what drive this set. If there's one flaw with the way this set was handled, it would be neglecting to put a Perez sketch card in every pack in retail packs like is done in the hobby packs. This makes pack searching at the retail stores very easy and since the relics, autographs and printing plates are around the same thickness of the sketch cards, you can easily tell which retail packs has a sketch card or something better in them. So at the retail level, go pack searching and the worst thing that happens is that you end up with a sketch card and not a higher level of insert. If you look on the back of the relics it says that whatever the game used memorobilia is is not from any specific season or game. But I really wish Topps would start putting what game and season the piece of whatever is from. Wouldn't it be much cooler that way? Yes they'd have to print different cards, but I mean why not? I'm sure it wouldn't be that hard for them to do this. But this box did help me get closer to my goal of a complete set. After 1 hobby box, 7 blaster boxes, and 15-20 retail packs, I still need 82 cards for the base set and one sketch card for that set. I do have lots of doubles so if anyone is interested in a trade, e-mail me.
Goudy Pack #3 Bobby Abreu David Wright Chone Figgins BJ Upton Travis Hafner Chris Carpenter Glen Perkins Insert: A-Rod Heads Up with Writing The best thing about this card is that it gives us the information that A-Rod used to call his sister the "Secretary of Education" because she made him do his homework. So would Joe Torre be the "Secretary of Labor" because he makes Alex do his job? Is Steinbrenner the "Secretary of the Treasury" because he pays him? Does he call the Yankee's bus driver the "Secretary of Transportation"? I'm sure Bernie Williams is the "Secretary of Veterans Affairs".
Topps Chrome Freddy Sanchez Miguel Cabrera Mike Sweeney Refractor - Tom Glavine
I would give this pack a good A- based on the players, but it included Tom Glavine. Tom and I have a love/hate relationship with each other. I have always been a Braves fan and after the 2002 season, he basically spit in my face, called my momma names and ran over my dog. Now you can say Glavine wanted more money or that John Schuerholz just screwed the whole thing up, but I'm sticking with the theory that it was all Glavine's fault. To me the Glavine post 2002 season doesn't exist. I have a lithograph featuring Tom as well as a signed box score from the 1991 World Series hanging up in my apartment. I like to remember the good times Tommy and I had together:Winning the World Series and the MVP in 1995, the Cy Youngs in 1991 and 1998 and the four Silver Slugger awards. However, I can't say that I didn't see the villanous turn coming from Glavine. After his role in the 1994 strike, I could kind of tell it was about the money with him. I wish I would have been there opening day in Atlanta to boo him with the rest of the fans. He'll go into Cooperstown with a Braves cap, but he should have gotten his 300th win with them too.
TA&G Retail Pack #1 Adam Dunn Hunter Pence (RC SP) John Smoltz Eiffel Tower Jamie Fischer
Parallel: Carlos Delgado
TA&G Retail Pack #2 Mark Tehan Troy Tulowitzki Bartolo Colon (SP) Joe Mauer Carlos Gomez
Parallel: BJ Upton
The star of these 2 packs would be the John Smoltz. The way I have a love/hate relationship with Glavine, I have a love/love relationship with Smoltz. Not only has he stayed with Atlanta through those testy years as a closer, but he's still a great pitcher. But I think the most awesome thing about him is that he plays golf with Tiger Woods on a regular basis and they often jab at each other in the media. Tiger has called Smoltz his "Personal ATM". Hilarious. They also have a bet going to see who has the most "wins" this season. Every game Smoltz wins as a pitcher counts as one win. Every tournament Tiger wins this year counts as 3. Tiger is up on Smoltz at this point and he texts John after ever tournament win just to let him know. The 2nd best card in these packs is Jamie Fischer. However, Topps mispelled his name "Fisher". On the autograph cards of his I've seen on eBay, his name is spelled correctly. Wonder which genius figured that out?
I had to make a run to Target to get some things the other day and picked up 3 packs of Goudy, 1 pack of Topps Chrome and 2 packs of TA&G. I'll be posting these packs today and tomorrow. But now, here are packs 1 and 2 of the Goudy
Pack 1 Pat Burrell Jason Schmidt Gary Matthews Josh Hamilton David Ortiz Chad Cordero Carl Crawford Noah Lowery
My favorite card in this pack is Cordero cheesin' it up looking like he knows something we don't. I give this pack a C+. I did get the great card of Cordero, as well as 2 All-Stars in Ortiz and Crawford, but the rest of the pack looks like a horrible trade someone would make in a fantasy league.
Pack 2 Randy Johnson Jeremy Bonderman Michael Cuddyer Albert Pujols (SP) Garrett Anderson Billy Wagner Phil Huges Ryan Zimmerman
This pack gets a solid B+. This might be the first time I've ever seen a card featuring Randy Johnson smiling. The star of this pack is the Pujols short print. With the generic city background and a look on his face that says "I'm not quite smiling, but I do have an expression and I know I'm awesome." The back of the card states that whenever Big Al hits a home run "it's going to be a significant one". Significant in what terms? A game winner? His 500th? The 3rd of the day he promised to little Jimmy on his sick bed? I'd like to know what's significant to Pujols.
More packs tomorrow and a box break either tomorrow or Friday.
Welcome to The House of Cardboard. What this blog hopefully will do is allow me to share my collecting journey with people who care about sports cards. Most of the focus will be on baseball, but football and basketball might pop up from time to time. In order to better explain my purpose, I decided to go a bit Marxist and give you a manifesto. First, I hope this blog will be educational and informative. While I will often make jokes and backhanded comments, the underlying purpose will be to educate others about this hobby that has sucked me in for the past 17 years. Secondly, I hope this blog will be enlightening. I hope it will give others viewpoints on card collecting that maybe readers haven't thought about before. Third, I want it to be entertaining and hopefully some laughs will be had upon the way. Lastly, I hope above all that this brings at least one new person into card collecting or brings one back into the fold. I think now is a great time to be a card collector for various reasons which I hope to get into at some point. I have some big things planned for the inaugural week, so be looking for some new things in the next few days.
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