2017 Bowman Baseball Box Break & Review

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Seven decades ago in a galaxy far far away, the first Bowman baseball set was released.  It was a small set only consisting of (48) black-and-white cards.  The checklist is packed with rookies of Yogi Berra, Stan Musial, Warren Spahn, and Ralph Kiner.  Other notable Hall of Famers include Bob Feller, Johnny Mize, Phil Rizzuto, Red Schoendienst, and Enos Slaughter.  Despite being the first “Bowman” branded product, this same company under the name Gum, Inc. issued the Play Ball sets between 1939 and 1941.  Topps rose to power and purchased Bowman in 1956.  Over thirty years later in 1989 Topps revived the Bowman name and labled it the “Comeback Edition!”.  Its been a hobby staple ever since, and the #1 product to go to for a player’s prospect/rookie cards.

2017 Bowman has one of the nicest designs I’ve seen when it comes to this prospect-driven brand.  The core part of the set has completely gotten rid of the borders.  It gives the cards a very freeing and unrestricted appeal.  They almost remind me of something you’d see in Bowman’s Best.  Combine that with the on-card autographs, and you have some fantastic looking cards.

Given that this is the 70th Anniversary of Bowman, Topps included some cool nods to past sets.  First up are the 1948 Bowman Chrome inserts.  These pay tribute to 1948 Bowman.  Black-and-white photography on chrome stock looks amazing.  Its a perfect mix of old school and modern day.  Parallels include Green (retail) #’ed/99, Gold #’ed/50, Orange #’ed/25, Red #’ed/5, and Superfractor #’ed/1.  You can also find autographed versions that have Superfractor parallels as well.

The homage to 1951 Bowman is my favorite.  That painted look on chrome stock is top notch.  Parallels include Green (retail) #’ed/99, Gold #’ed/50, Orange #’ed/25, Red #’ed/5, and Superfractor #’ed/1.  Topps got artist Bob Hepner to hand-draw one-of-one sketches based on these.  Its not very often you see sketch cards in Bowman.  Sketch cards drawn to look like a vintage set with a mix of current and older stars was a great idea I’d like to see done again.  Check them all out!

1992 Bowman makes an appearance.  We all remember that set.  That’s the one which pictures many players in casual everyday clothes.  Parallels include Green (retail) #’ed/99, Gold #’ed/50, Orange #’ed/25, Red #’ed/5, and Superfractor #’ed/1.  Autographs can be found too.

Buybacks are plentiful.  Most come with the Bowman 70th Anniversary foil logo ranging in a bunch of different colors.  John Smoltz, Mark McGwire, Frank Thomas, Chipper Jones, Randy Johnson, Mike Piazza, Pedro Martinez, Greg Maddux, and Roberto Alomar all have buyback autographs.

With the 70th Anniversary celebration, 2017 Bowman offers a great mix of new prospects and veterans.  This might be my favorite version of it.

Here is what I pulled:


  • C.J. Hinojosa Bowman Chrome Purple Refractor Auto #’ed/250

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  • Cole Hamels Bowman Orange #’ed/25
  • Willy Adames Bowman Purple #’ed/250
  • Mitch Keller Bowman Chrome Purple Refractor #’ed/250

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  • Brady Anderson 1993 Bowman Bronze Foil Buyback
  • Jeff Bagwell 1993 Bowman Bronze Foil Buyback
  • Yadier Alvarez/Willie Calhoun/Cody Bellinger Talent Pipeline
  • Justin Dunn/Amed Rosario/Brandon Nimmo Talent Pipeline
  • Aaron Judge 2017 Rookie of the Year Favorites #9
  • Alex Reyes 2017 Rookie of the Year Favorites #14
  • Tyler Glasnow 2017 Rookie of the Year Favorites #7
  • Brent Honeywell Bowman Scouts’ Top 100 #44
  • Sean Newcomb Bowman Scouts’ Top 100 #56
  • Cody Sedlock Bowman Scouts’ Top 100 #70
  • J.P. Crawford 1948 Bowman Chrome
  • Brendan Rodgers 1951 Bowman Chrome #20
  • Rafael Devers 1992 Bowman Chrome
  • Yoenis Cespedes 1992 Bowman Chrome

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Other Notable Cards

  • Aaron Judge RC #32
  • Dansby Swanson RC #57
  • Yoan Moncada RC #25
  • Andrew Benintendi RC #23
  • Mickey Moniak #135
  • Blake Rutherford #121
  • Blake Rutherford Bowman Chrome #121

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One Response

  1. Sell those Judges right now!!! 😀

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