2017 Topps Opening Day Box Break & Review

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Opening Day 2017 is almost here.  Hot dogs are heading to the grill.  Bobbleheads are waiting at the gates.  I’m prepared to watch the Phillies go all the way.  I know its a long shot, but it could happen.

2017 Topps Opening Day acts as a good flagship filler that can hold you over until Series 2 is released.  I’ve always considered it an entry level product since hobby boxes sell for under $30.  The base set consists of (200) cards.  Parallels include:

  • Blue Foil
  • Purple Foil (Toys “R” Us exclusive)
  • Black Foil #’ed/1
  • Printing Plates #’ed/1

As is the case with their main flagship brand, photo variations play a major role in Opening Day.  Unlike other products containing photo variations, the ones found in 2017 Opening Day do not have alternate codes on the back when compared to the plain base cards.  This makes identifying them a little more difficult.  One particular photo variation, Stadium Signatures, is easy to spot as the players are pictured signing autographs for fans.  Those cards also have the letters “SS” before the card number as well.  Technically these are inserts, but other than the card number there is nothing on the front that identifies it as a Stadium Signatures card.

Opening Day is known for having some crazy inserts.  2017 is no exception.  Inserts include:

  • Incredible Eats
  • Mascots
  • National Anthem
  • Opening Day at the Ballpark
  • Opening Day Stars
  • Stadium Signatures
  • Superstar Celebrations
  • MLB Stickers Collection Stars
  • MLB Wacky Packages

Some of these inserts are incredibly difficult to pull.  My personal favorites are the Mascots and Incredible Eats.  It looks like at one time there was a plan for a bobblehead-themed insert, but it seems to have been scrapped.  I’d like to see Topps comeback to that idea.

Autographs and relics can be pulled, but nothing is guaranteed per box.  I like the Stadium Signatures Autographs.  These are limited to (10) copies.  Its fun to try and see what the player pictured is signing, especially when it turns out to be an older Topps card.

Here is what I pulled:

Auto

  • Billy The Marlin Mascot Auto

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Parallels

  • Aledmys Diaz Blue Foil #39
  • Julio Urias Blue Foil #186
  • Matt Strahm RC Blue Foil #90
  • Jay Bruce Blue Foil #70
  • Kyle Seager Blue Foil #95
  • Aaron Nola Blue Foil #32

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Inserts

  • Nolan Arenado Opening Day Stars #36
  • Addison Russell Superstar Celebrations #12
  • Yunel Escobar Superstar Celebrations #25
  • Giancarlo Stanton Superstar Celebrations #21
  • Javier Baez Superstar Celebrations #3
  • Jayson Werth Superstar Celebrations #6
  • Francisco Lindor Superstar Celebrations #5
  • Carlos Santana Superstar Celebrations #8
  • Jackie Bradley Jr. Superstar Celebrations #24
  • Carlos Correa Superstar Celebrations #20
  • Troy Tulowitzki Superstar Celebrations #14
  • David Ortiz Superstar Celebrations #15
  • Miami Marlins Opening Day at the Ballpark #15
  • Oakland A’s Opening Day at the Ballpark #12
  • Atlanta Braves Opening Day at the Ballpark #8
  • Baltimore Orioles Opening Day at the Ballpark #5
  • Cleveland Indians Opening Day at the Ballpark #14
  • Arizona Diamondbacks Opening Day at the Ballpark #10
  • Kansas City Royals Opening Day at the Ballpark #3
  • Cotton Candy Incredible Eats #11
  • Peanuts Incredible Eats #2
  • Classic Pastrami Incredible Eats #7
  • Hot Dogs & Onions Incredible Eats #13
  • Foot-Long Hot Dog Incredible Eats #8
  • Cheesy Corn Brisket-Acho Incredible Eats #5
  • South Philly Dog Incredible Eats #4
  • Dinger Mascot #9
  • Mr. Red Mascot #4
  • White Sox Mascot #16
  • TC Bear Mascot #6
  • Brewers Mascot #25
  • Phillie Phanatic Mascot #11
  • Swinging Friar Mascot #13
  • Oakland A’s Mascot #17
  • Billy The Marlin Mascot #2
  • Wally The Green Monster Mascot #24
  • Orbit Mascot #22

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Card of the Day: Taco Charlton 2017 Leaf Metal Draft Blue Prismatic Auto

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Card of the Day: Phillie Phanatic 2017 Topps Opening Day Mascots #11

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Cabrera ’17 Topps Heritage Jersey Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Miguel Cabrera 2017 Topps Heritage Clubhouse Collection Jersey.  Good luck!!!

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Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, March 24, 2017 @ 8:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

2017 Topps Heritage Baseball Box Break & Review

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The year was 1968.  Adam West’s Batman television series came to an end, Robert F. Kennedy/Martin Luther King, Jr. were assassinated, and Denny McClain became the first pitcher since Dizzy Dean to win 30 or more games in a single season.  Baseball collectors were introduced to the 598-card, speckle-border, set known as 1968 Topps.  They may not have had Hall of Fame careers, but guys like Jerry Koosman and Ron Tompkins will forever be linked to Nolan Ryan and Johnny Bench due to being pictured on the same rookie cards.

Topps is gradually working through their classic designs and applying them to the Heritage brand.  The 1968 design is up to the plate this year.  If you plan on building the base set, there are (500) total cards including (100) short prints.

Most base parallels are not serial numbered.  I like that as it adds a little mystery.  Obviously the print runs for each type of parallel were announced.

  • Blue Border (50) copies
  • Bright Yellow Backs (25) copies
  • Gray Backs (10) copies
  • Flip Stock (5) copies
  • Base Mini #’ed/100

Chrome parallels come in a variety of colors:

  • Chrome #’ed/999
  • Refractor #’ed/568
  • Blue Refractor #’ed/68
  • Gold Refractor #’ed/5
  • Superfractor #’ed/1
  • Purple Refractor

When it comes to the Blue, Gold, and Purple Refractors, you really need to look in order to see the color.  Its a good thing they’re serial numbered.  I could easily see someone mistaken one color for another.  For some reason those colors aren’t distinct this time around.  The speckle-border may not have shown up as much when those colors were added.  Perhaps that is why they kept the color so light.

Although Heritage is not the only product that contains photo variations, collectors seem to want them more.  Especially the rarer ones.  In a hobby dominated by autographs and relics, its awesome to see the amounts some people are willing to spend on these.  Luckily, all you need to do in order to spot them is check the code on the card backs.  Look carefully.  Those codes are tiny.

  • Color Swap ends in 74
  • Traded ends in 73
  • Throwback ends in 72
  • Action/Rookie ends in 71
  • Error ends in 70
  • Base SP (401-500) ends in 69
  • Base ends in 1867

I was pleasantly surprised to see how collectors responded to some of the box toppers.  Specifically the 3D cards and posters.  Anytime non-autographed and non-relic cards sell well is a positive in my book.

Heritage has a tremendous following.  A single hobby box can be loaded with stuff.  Topps gives you a lot more to look for than just your traditional “hit”.  I can’t wait to see how they handle the 1971 design.  1971 Topps is notorious for it’s all black borders.  It doesn’t take much for them to get damaged.

Here is what I pulled (Purple Refractor Hot Box):

Relic

  • Miguel Cabrera Clubhouse Collection Jersey

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Base Variation

  • Kris Bryant #500 Action Image

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Short Prints

  • Justin Upton #438
  • George Springer #432
  • Chris Sale #405
  • Mark Trumbo #461
  • Carlos Correa #430
  • Robinson Cano #422
  • Jason Kipnis #448
  • Giancarlo Stanton #401

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Parallels

  • Baltimore Orioles Blue Border (50) copies
  • Freddie Freeman Chrome #’ed/999
  • Aaron Judge/Tyler Austin 2017 Rookie Stars Chrome Purple Refractor
  • David Dahl/Raimel Tapia 2017 Rookie Stars Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Manny Margot/Hunter Renfroe 2017 Rookie Stars Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Ian Kinsler Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Jose Altuve Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Christian Yelich Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Justin Verlander Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Aledmys Diaz Chrome Purple Refractor
  • David Ortiz Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Kenta Maeda Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Danny Duffy Chrome Purple Refractor
  • David Price Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Albert Almora Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Lucas Giolito Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Mike Trout Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Madison Bumgarner Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Jay Bruce Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Giancarlo Stanton Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Todd Frazier Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Corey Seager Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Yu Darvish Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Francisco Lindor Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Bryce Harper Chrome Purple Refractor
  • Aroldis Chapman Chrome Purple Refractor

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Inserts

  • J.A. Happ/Carlos Correa – The Topps News/Tyler Chatwood Advertising Panel Box Topper
  • Aledmys Diaz 1968 Topps Game
  • Felix Hernandez 1968 Topps Game
  • Manuel Lee 1993 Rediscover Topps Bronze Buyback #488
  • Mickey Tettleton 1987 Rediscover Topps Bronze Buyback #649
  • Kyle Lohse 2012 Rediscover Topps Silver Buyback #26
  • David Holmberg 2014 Rediscover Topps Gold Buyback #242
  • Lou Brock/Jonathan Villar Then And Now #4
  • News Flashbacks 1968 – Ivy League Goes Co-Ed #13
  • News Flashbacks 1968 – Civil Rights Giant Slain #2
  • Baseball Flashbacks 1968 – Johnny Bench
  • Mookie Betts New Age Performers #3
  • Manny Machado New Age Performers #8

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2017 Topps Now Predictor: MLB Little League Classic – August 20th

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Rumors were confirmed this week that the Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals will play a regular season game in Williamsport, PA this year.  The game will take place on August 20th, right in the middle of the Little League World Series.  It’ll be broadcast on ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball”, and played at BB&T Ballpark at Historic Bowman Field.  Based on the official press release from the Williamsport Crosscutters, only Little Leaguers and their families will be invited.  Tickets will not be sold to the general public.

The MLB Little League Classic would make for a perfect Topps Now card.  It is right on par with the Fort Bragg game they played in 2016.  I’m predicting that Topps will make a Topps Now card to commemorate this game.  If they do, it would most likely show up for sale on August 21st.  I at least just want to see a base Topps Now card made.  If any of the players do something spectacular, I guess autographs and/or relics won’t be out of the picture.  Whoever pulls the Topps Now Golden Ticket for August 20, 2017 will be due a special gold stamped parallel #’ed/1.

Its not easy to predict who and what will receive a Topps Now card.  This game feels like a sure thing.  Having it take place in my backyard is even cooler.  I visit BB&T Ballpark at Historic Bowman Field almost every summer for a bobblehead night.

Card of the Day: John Ross 2017 Leaf Draft #39

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