2018 Topps Gypsy Queen Baseball Box Break & Review

This August I plan to attend the 39th National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland.  It’ll be my fourth time visiting the I-X Center, and seventh overall National.  One of my collecting goals is to eventually own an original card from the 1880’s.  Something from the Old Judge or Gypsy Queen sets would be nice.  Tobacco cards from that time period were the first broadly distributed cards in the hobby.  Prior to that, what cards were available mainly were issued through localized promotions.  I certainly don’t want to pick one up on a whim.  I’d like to take my time, do some research, and obtain one in person.  The National is a terrific place to find these.  I can’t promise that I’ll pull the trigger on any while I’m there though.  I’m easily drawn to corporate wrapper redemption programs and vintage bobbleheads.

When it comes to the hobby today, nobody makes artistic sets better than Topps.  I don’t care if the art-look comes from using a filter in Photoshop or a hired artist, Topps does it well.  2018 Gypsy Queen continues this tradition.

This year the Gypsy Queen set consists of (300) cards.  Parallels include Green (Retail), Missing Team Nameplate, Missing Blackplate, Indigo #’ed/250, GQ Logo Swap, Bazooka Back, Black & White #’ed/50, Red #’ed/10, and Black #’ed/1.

Short prints fall 1:24 packs, and range from card #301-#320.  These too have parallels: Missing Team Nameplate, GQ Logo Swap, Bazooka Back, and Black #’ed/1.  All short prints are of retired players.

Lots of products today have variations that need to be watched for.  That goes double for Gypsy Queen.  2018 Gypsy Queen has three main variations: Capless, Jackie Robinson Day, and Team Swap Error.  Now this is where things can get a little nutty.  Both of the Capless and Jackie Robinson Day variations have parallels.  The Capless variations have GQ Logo Swap and Black #’ed/1 parallels.  The Jackie Robinson Day variations have GQ Logo Swap and Black #’ed/1 parallels.  You’ll also find that some Jackie Robinson Day variations have autographed counterparts.  These autographs also have parallels: Black & White #’ed/42 and Black #’ed/1.  Team Swap Errors do not have any parallels.

CMP code list:

  • Base – #29
  • Base SP – #59
  • Jackie Robinson Day Variation – #64
  • Capless Variation – #67
  • Team Swap Error Variation – #70

Be aware that the CMP codes DO NOT change for parallels.  The CMP codes are great for weeding out the regular variations/short prints.  But you almost need to check the front and back of every card to see if its a parallel no matter what the CMP code is.  While opening my box, I did realize that many of these cards were backwards and/or upside down in the packs.

Gypsy Queen is packed with some great looking “hits”.  You’re most likely going to pull (2) on-card autographs from your hobby box.  The GlassWorks Box Toppers look even better than last year.  I like the chrome and wood grain design.  If you get really lucky, you might find a low numbered parallel and/or autographed version.

When Topps revived the Gypsy Queen brand in 2011, they introduced collectors to the Original Art Patch Card.  Since then, these have been a staple.  Artist Dan Bergren worked on the ones for 2018.  He recently did work for 2017 Transcendent Collection.  Found at a rate of 1:30,430 packs now they’re called Playoff Performers Portrait Art Patch Originals.  Nineteen different players covering the past and present make up this set.  Each player has two cards.  That’s a total of (38) cards.  One of these years it would be fun to see these in a booklet format.  A sketch on one side with a jumbo patch on the other.

Ripping through a box of Gypsy Queen quickly just looking for the autographs and relics isn’t in your best interest.  I highly suggest examining everything so you don’t miss something.  Adding parallels to the variations requires extra attention in order to find them.  Take your time and have fun.

You can see the entire checklist here.

Here is what I pulled:

Autos

  • Anthony Banda RC Auto
  • Zack Granite RC Auto

Short Print

  • Mariano Rivera

Parallels

  • Khris Davis Jackie Robinson Day Variation GQ Logo Swap
  • Patrick Corbin Indigo #’ed/250
  • Brad Miller Bazooka Back
  • Luis Castillo Missing Team Nameplate
  • Chris Sale GQ Logo Swap
  • Yangervis Solarte GQ Logo Swap

Inserts

  • Francisco Lindor GlassWorks Box Topper
  • J.P. Crawford Fortune Teller
  • Khris Davis Fortune Teller
  • Gary Sanchez Fortune Teller
  • Giancarlo Stanton Tarot of the Diamond
  • Clayton Kershaw Tarot of the Diamond
  • Kevin Kiermaier Tarot of the Diamond

Rookies

  • Paul Blackburn
  • Dominic Smith
  • A.J. Jimenez
  • Greg Allen
  • J.P. Crawford
  • Rhys Hoskins
  • Felix Jorge
  • Nicky Delmonico
  • Walker Buehler
  • Tzu-Wei Lin
  • Miguel Andujar
  • Amed Rosario
  • Miguel Gomez
  • Francisco Mejia
  • Victor Robles
  • Ozzie Albies
  • Shohei Ohtani
  • Erick Fedde
  • Chance Sisco
  • Clint Frazier
  • Sandy Alcantara

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